Founded by Susie and Doug Tompkins in 1968, Esprit is rooted in sunny Californian culture, whose free loving ethos represents the postive energy of the brand. Positivity and love radiate through Esprit’s manifesto and rejects mainstream attitudes torwards curation of fashion, marketing strategies and overall aesthetic ethos. Instead of tapping into the capitalist manifestos of its direct competitors, Esprit moves past financial gain and concentrates on promoting ‘espirit de corps’, a spiritual catchphrase that refers to creating ‘unity’ ‘togetherness’ and ‘feel good energy’.Esprit is a refreshing change from mainstream fashion retailers and its cool, laid back approach to producing fashion is what draws consumers right in. And that is the magic of the Californian retailer, being able to effectively target its chosen audience and remain true to their spiritual motto is no mean feat but Esprit effectively combines the two traits together with great ease.
Essentially Esprit’s positive ethos is something that I as an emerging brand and platform is hoping to capitalize on; being positive, independent and free-spirited are three features that me and Espirit have in common and I hope to continue to deliver the same non-conformist posts week by week. Because that is what Espirit and I are about, rejecting the norm and approaching fashion in a way that has not been seen before. Dancing to the beat of its own drum, Esprit’s laidback spirit has proved popular in consumer culture with 900 stores in 40 countries clamouring to showcase Esprit’s classic, non-conformist style. But what makes Espirit so special? Esprit moves beyond catwalk trends to curate long lasting, well tailored pieces that combine the modern freshness of our current catwalk industry with the vintage preppy tailoring of the 90s making its hybrid fusion of fashion cultures irrisistably magnetic. Not only does Esprit perfectly capture the essence of California clean living but it also has been awarded numerous accolades for its contribution to reducing its carbon footprint and being environmentally sustainable.
Unfortunately there are very few retailers that remain sustainable but Esprit’s commitment to preserving the natural environment is an ethos I can wholly relate to. An avid environmentalist myself I support ethical clothing choices that not only support fair trade and human rights but also reduce its destructive impact on the evironment. Esprit’s compassion towards the environment has made me see fashion in a new light and allowed me to question how much I had contributed to the gradual detoriation of our worlds landscapes and heritage sites. Chances are a lot more than I think. That is why I was drawn to featuring Esprit on Faded Spring because its delicate tailorship, awareness of environmental issues and spiritual ethos is a brand aesthetic I have not yet come across.
Esprit is more than just a brand but a way of life. No other brand has quite altered me the way that Esprit has and that is saying something as everyone knows I am a huge fan of Miss Selfridge. But what ESprit has that other brands lack is not neccessarily its unique clothing collections but the faces behind the manifesto. Similar to Banana Republic there is a backstory; born in 1968 Esprit tottered precautiously between Mod (60’s) and ‘Free-Spirited Bohemianism’ (70’s) starting life at the back of Susie and Doug Tompkin’s station wagon. What started life as a small seed grew into an international retail giant topping $100 million by its 10th year and by 1996 was rated the 28th most recognized brand in the United States.Over the years Espirit has developed into a environmentally conscious, liberal, feminist, body image positive brand that has continued to astound consumers year after year.
One of my favourite campaigns was their ‘Imperfect Campaign’ launched in 2015 to promote their fall fashion drop with a twist. So many women and men go through life hating their flaws and thinking that their bodies are not good enough for fashion forward clothes but that is where they are wrong. No matter how tall, small, petite, large you are #imperfect celebrates the beauty of the human body in all forms reminding me that I too need to practice self-love. Being able to love yourself and feel confident in what you are wearing can be a hard task for most of us but the key is to buy into Esprit’s intersectional ethos and love every little bit of you no matter what.
Would you shop at Espirit? What are your thoughts on Espirit’s philosophy?
Please note all thoughts and opinions are my own. This is not a sponsored post but a new regular feature I will be introducing onto Faded Spring. Want your brand featured?
Then contact me firstname.lastname@example.org
Find Espirit HERE