Former Releases Shaun Manners’ Debut Roadman Range
Perfect threads for the travellin’ man.
The team-rider clip/range drop is well trod terrain, but its formula is rarely mastered as there’s always one element of the multi-pronged attack that feels contrived. Former, however, have this geezer way, way back in the warehouse jamming away under a pile of boxes who happens to be the best surfing marketer of his generation. He’d loathe the label, but his name is Dane Reynolds, and it seems like he’s on course to creating something quite unique alongside his co-founders Craig Anderson and Austin Gillette.
Dane worked out that DIY values and portraying the surfing experience that most people have with their friends (only with far superior surfing) was the antidote to what he feels is/was surfing’s corporate doldrum years ages ago. And he’s gradually moulding Former in that image, whilst incorporating some of surfing’s stronger characters into the fold in various capacities. The signing of Shaun Manners – for what close Stab friend and filmer/agent to the stars Beren Hall described as “proper money” – and the range that’s dropped alongside his first major film since signing with the brand, really feels like Former reaching full stride. Let’s examine.
The range is befitting of Shaun’s lifestyle, clearly based off a number of trinkets he’s picked up in myriad thrift stores/gas stops whilst constantly searching and filming around Australia (big place). It’s the range for the man who lives out the back of his car, but wants to look good whilst doing it. For example, camo cargo pants have been done (almost) to death by city kids dressing like they’re going yak huntin’, but if you spend your days running down tracks and yanking stinky wetsuits on and off in red dirt then they’re genius because they hide the mud and you never have to wash ’em. With, some neon tribal contrast embroidery for good measure because why not? Staying on camo, anyone who resides in as hellishly sunny a place as Australia knows that something that keeps the sun off your honker without making you look like a dork is a sun-spot saving miracle. And the slouch/sun Shaun’s rocking up top is job done in that regard.
No roadman range would be correct without a pair of dirty old jeans, but the stencilled take on Shaun’s signature denim is a fun variation on panting’s most hardy textile. Ie. something different you can chuck on without thinking about too much, but don’t look like you’re about to feature on some whack, ‘tell me how much your scraggly-ass fit cost’ TikTok video, only for some twinky 19-year-old to reel off 20 grand’s worth of shit that sill makes them look like Avril Lavigne’s anaemic little brother. Anyway.
The range is actually pretty extensive for a capsule, so whether you’re after a new pair of trunks or fresh pair of jorts then Shaun and Former have got you covered.
Even when the Former coalition dips its toe into the saturated revival of 90s tribal everything and heavy metal fonts, the thinking man takes a step back and goes, “Well, Shaun’s Dad was/is a core 90s surf figure who still makes his boards and played in a metal band called ‘Cachexia’, whose song features in Shaun’s film, so… fair enough.”
Furthermore, said film was made by Toby Cregan, who’s been friends with Shaun for years, thus being able to dig out all the gold of a young Chun to give the film a crucial extra layer. Then Dion Agius, who you could argue played no small part in this extended surf stew – from co-starring in ‘Modern Collective’ with Dane way back to curating Creed and Shaun et al under the Epokhe banner – shot the lifestyle and cookbook over a weekend in Surfers Paradise with Shaun… see where we’re going with this? It’s not the most polished, sure, but you can tell that all involved wanted to do their bit in making something cool for their friend. And the love shows. People notice that shit.
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