2000 Ballistic Nylon 'Fan Pleat' Biker Jacket
Size S: best for an IT 48 - 38 Chest - S/M or a large IT 46 - 36 Chest - S.
Vexed Generation biker jacket from A/W 2000-2001. In excellent used condition. Made in the United Kingdom.
Vexed Generation's designs were astoundingly ahead of their time aesthetically as well as technologically. Combining aggressive streetwear style with extremely advanced fabrics, Thorpe and Hunter created products that blur the lines between form and function. Stephanie Talbot writes:
'Inherently passing social commentary on civil liberties, the proliferation of CCTV, corporate responsibility and the demise of the environment, Adam and Joe’s designs were imbued with seditious and iconoclastic overtones. Their utility-inspired collections, whilst supremely stylish and highly coveted, acknowledged the essence of urban living and urban safety. Fashioned from intelligent, hard-wearing fabrics (many devised by the M.O.D) [Ministry of Defence] including ballistic nylon and fire and knife retardant materials that were treated to make their garments windproof, waterproof, antibacterial and breathable, those Vexed boys considered every eventuality – thank you! Furthermore, a 'Vexed' garment was designed for longevity - making a statement at fashion’s ephemeral nature, perhaps?' (our emphasis)
This jacket is a quintessential Vexed piece with an outstanding construction and seriously impressive fabrics. The cut is slim and structured, with high armholes and elongated proportions. The label's iconic high neck covers the lower part of the face when closed, or falls dramatically towards the shoulders when open. The back of the collar stands up and features pleats to optimize movement. Similarly, the sleeves have a truly unique construction; intricate fixed pleats (referred to as 'fan pleats' by the designers) allow the upper arms and elbows to stretch when needed. In line with Vexed Generation's aim to create pieces that enable Urban Mobility, the jacket looks razor-sharp while being extremely comfortable to wear. The front closes with a double zipper and features two reinforced slit pockets on the waist, as well as a concealed zip pocket on the right chest. Andrew Bolton explains this further in his book ‘The Supermodern Wardrobe’:
'The Fan Pleat Jacket concentrates on the arms for increased comfort and freedom of movement. Again the pleats are expandable, but as well as being functional they are also highly decorative. As Thorpe and Hunter explain, "With the Fan Pleat Jacket, we wanted to move slightly away from the utilitarian look of the J 96 Jacket and Box Pleat Jacket. Of course, the Fan Pleat is still extremely practical, but it is also a beautifully sculpted garment –glamour utility, if you like." Glamour clearly underlies the choice of colour, a shimmering metallic silver. Indeed, the full beauty of the garment can only be appreciated in motion, with each fan pleat expanding and contracting to create an ever-changing silhouette. It recalls the dynamism of Futurist clothing and the structural intelligence of Vionnet. Ultimately, though, it is Thorpe’s and Hunter’s ability to create practical garments for a nomadic urban lifestyle that dictates their clothing aesthetic. Their garments may include beautiful styling, but it is always delivered in a package that allows for ever greater comfort and freedom of movement.'
A whole paper could be devoted solely to the jacket's exemplary materials. The shell is realized in high tenacity ballistic 6,6 nylon, as utilised in security services. Lorraine Gamman and Vexed co-founder Adam Thorpe explain: 'This fabric had never previously been deployed within civilian streetwear, previously being utilized primarily in bulletproof vests and ‘blast curtains’ (curtains that contain flying fragments during controlled explosions).' This hard-wearing fabric is then coated with neoprene resin that makes it waterproof, fire retardant and knife retardant. The interior is lined in thick polyester jersey that is coated with Outlast capsules, 'a phase change material that maintains an optimum wearer temperature of 37°C via a molecular heat exchange system integrated into its laminate.' All zippers are high quality Riri M6, and are very easy to pull.
This impeccably constructed jacket combines a very directional design with some of the most durable technical materials on the market. It can be worn for decades, only to look better with age.