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Deep Dive - Engineered Garments SS24 Graphics

Welcome back to "DEEP DIVE," where we explore the inspiration behind some of our favorite Engineered Garments pieces. In this installment, we delve into the graphics for the Spring/Summer 2024 season.

Daiki Suzuki, the designer behind Engineered Garments, creates each season's collection with a central theme. For the Spring/Summer 2024 collection, Daiki offers a unique take on Ivy League style, which rose to prominence in Japan in the latter half of the 20th century, largely due to the influence of magazines such as Men's Club and Popeye. These publications crafted a rich narrative around the style and lifestyle of the pioneering students.

Daiki collaborated with artist Manabu "Gaku" Inada to develop a series of thematic graphics contributing to the season's narrative. The graphics center around Ravenswood, a fictional university in Long Island City, the location of the Engineered Garments production office.

Initially, Daiki wanted to use the old hamlet names of Long Island City as fictional college names, such as Dutch Kills, Hunters Point, and Sunnyside. However, they settled on the little-known name Ravenswood, a narrow stretch along the East River waterfront.
The university's characteristics could encompass art, fashion, and the East Coast surfing/skating lifestyle, forming the core concept of the overall design.


The concept behind the Type Bandana is inspired by images of the Novelties Wall Pennants sold at Co-Op stores. The T-shirt designs, featuring slogans like "Absurdist" and "Satirical," were inspired by college humor magazines from the 1950s and 60s, such as Harvard Lampoon, The Brown Jug, Yale Record, and an 80s Thrasher magazine.

Gaku thought it would be humorous to wear an ABSURDIST T-shirt on campus, where students explore ideologies and philosophies of life but face designs that carry contradictory meanings. Bluto (John Belushi) from the movie "Animal House" might wear such a shirt.

The graphics include a graffiti print, custom-printed on fabrics like Khaki Flat Twill, Olive Ripstop, and Indigo 8oz Denim. This time, Gaku wanted to add more style twists, incorporating themes like The American Industrial Revolution, modern art, New York City, and surfing.

The text in the graffiti print came from various sources, reflecting the brand's personality, especially Engineered Garments' motto, "Not Designed But Engineered." Gaku sourced some texts from a Bauhaus book and others from a vintage industrial machines' manual.

The graffiti-print T-shirt features a character, the mascot for the fictional Ravenswood school, drawing inspiration from Greek mythology. This is fitting since Long Island City has a Greek town called Astoria, where Gaku used to live. Poseidon, the god of the sea, was a perfect match for the surf theme. He is known for his temperamental nature, which aligns with the New Yorker's attitude. During the climax of the 1981 film "Clash of the Titans," Poseidon unleashes the Kraken, a concept that fascinated Gaku. He combined two mythological icons to create an offbeat surf monster with a unique design.
The number 64 was chosen for the character's name, as it visually matches the shape of the trident. Daiki and Gaku were born in the 60s, making 64 a fitting choice.


Finally, the specific placement of the graphics is highly intentional, referencing Princeton Senior Jackets or beer jackets. The tradition dates back to 1912 when seniors adopted easily washable natural duck canvas overalls and jackets for their drinking sessions. Each class jacket carries a distinctive logo, usually chosen through a design contest, printed on the back right of the jacket.

The Engineered Garments Spring/Summer 2024 graphics showcase the deep connection between art, culture, and fashion. By embracing the inspirations found in their work, Daiki and Gaku craft a collection that showcases their creativity and the power of cultural influence.