(I wrote the bulk of the following as an off list response, but I will print it here as I think it will serve a wider audience.)
There is a type of company, for example Carradice, that trade on having integrity and perseverance of design without being slaves to fashion.
It doesn't take long for a 'legend' to become a joke, and if Brooks produce $400 'Humphry leather shoe-spats' or 'Chichester moleskine notepad holders' then they are going to shoot themselves in the foot.
As an Englishman I find it appalling that many indigenous manufacturers these days, Burberry's, Bentley, Rolls, Barbour, are doing silly things to for money.
Interestingly Rapha clothing is very expensive, yet really well designed and manufactured and they don't seem to have a problem with business.
They've also made a couple of nice looking and practical tweed jackets. Yet I don't think that they'd touch a rain cape with a dirty bargepole, even if that cape was redesigned by a couple of well-meaning but clearly deluded English folk as the Brooks 'one has been. Brooks (or their foreign investors come to that) shouldn't be encouraging this stuff.
I'm fiercely proud of my countries clothing heritage, it is something that we have had a peculiar genius for. But the rain-cape chapter was a big mistake in our sartorial history, and I'm not happy to see it revived.
It's a short step from 'retro' to 'retrograde'.
Best wishes, Mark
Mark Lawrence Oxford, United Kingdom
-----Original Message----- From: email@example.com [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] On Behalf Of Jim Merz Sent: 11 January 2011 17:30 To: paccoastcycles Cc: Jon Spangler; Dale Brown Subject: Re: [CR] Brooks introduces the world's most fashionable rain cape(KOF candidate)
I don't understand the aversion to fashion in the bike industry, or in any industry for that matter. It is really hard to make a living selling bikes or bike parts. I rode a Brooks leather saddle on the trip from Portland to Panama. It worked, but I never wanted to use a leather saddle again. So I think of them as a fashion item in any case.
Jim Merz Big Sur CA
On Tue, Jan 11, 2011 at 9:21 AM, paccoastcycles < email@example.com> wrote:
> Mark Lawrence says that he's growing tired of the "new Brooks". I say this:
> Dude, it's owned by Italians! What can you expect?
> Chuck Hoefer
> Pacific Coast Cycles
> Oceanside, Ca.
> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Anthony Taylor"
> To: "Jon Spangler" <firstname.lastname@example.org>; "Dale Brown" <
> Sent: Tuesday, January 11, 2011 6:02 AM
> Subject: Re: [CR] Brooks introduces the world's most fashionable rain
> cape(KOF candidate)
> This is a development of the standard rain cape used before the days
>> jackets and pants. It's nice that a hood has been added, but, I
>> suspect it would not be compatible with a helmet. The old ones had
>> thumb loops inside to hold the cape in place over the handlebars. The
>> cape would be carried rolled up behind the saddle, usually with the
>> spare tub in the middle.
>> They clain that your lower parts will not get wet. Your own forward
>> motion is enough for your pants to get wet. We always used "leggings"
>> that came up mid thigh and attached to your belt. The whole ensemble,
>> made of yellow oil-skin fabric guaranteed one would become nice and
>> Tony Taylor
>> Manchester, NH