Capsule Paris – THE EIGHTH
Jason Cauchi, Creative Director and Co-Founder of ‘The Eighth’ saw men’s underwear as: “The final frontier for menswear, neglected and a huge creative outlet for us. And two years of research, developing the three fabrics we work with.” He outlined their design commitments, “fabrics dictate everything – cut, fit and style.” The prima-cotton (91%) and elastene (9%). “Different body types were tested, not too tight, must have support and we always come back to the hand feel.”
As a US brand showing in Paris, they were not trying to ram provenance down our throats – Cotton sourced from India, Egypt and China. The second range is micro-modal, where lightness is important, and “the machining and threads not readily available in the US. It’s a more expensive finish ‘four-needle over locker’ manufactured in China. We did not want to sacrifice finish or quality, just to be at a particular price point or to say, ‘made in USA.’ Eventually as part of the 5 year plan, we will buy the machinery to invest in.”
That said Jason was proud to say they work with a US factory in New York City “in the Garment District – the armpit of USA” and had done for 19 years (which made him about 12 in appearance). It was great to hear him describe how you “stay in the neighborhood, where the garments get finished, where you source your buttons” – the same as most fashion cities.
The third range the ‘nylon short’ had 77% nylon and 23% spandex for the sports guy, great for running in, washable, quick dry easy recovery, a cleverly designed ‘deep cuff’ so it stays put on the leg and doesn’t ride up. And good to hear Thomas Mason, a textile mill in the UK was being sourced for fabric. All three ranges are between $48- $68. The showstopper ranges are the cashmere/ cotton blend – comfort to die for in the trouser department, at a cool $320 a pair. You know you’re worth it. Or at least some women – the buyers of most men’s underwear, might think so. Who could also be persuaded to buy the washed silk print range, maybe? How much sharing goes on is any body’s guess.
By Paul Markevicius