Aimé Leon Dore FW22 Is a Menswear Translation

There are two secrets to Aimé Leon Dore’s immense success: presentation and New Balances, maybe not even in that order. Aimé Leon Dore has thrived thanks to how deftly it handles both, though those are certainly not the only things ALD that does well, as its Fall/Winter 2022 collection demonstrates.

One of ALD’s understated talents is that it very cannily translates menswear from disparate eras — the stoic ’50s, the sporty ’80s, the streetwise ’90s — into a blend of styles that’s palatable for its streetwear-leaning audience.

Think of ALD as a blender, mashing up all these cues that could ostensibly be challenging for a crowd of fans weaned on New Balances to swallow. The end result, a complete Aimé Leon Dore collection, is a masterclass in approachability, offering ultra-wearable garments that don’t clash, divide, or transgress.

Shop the FW22 collection through the first offering that dropped August 26 on Aimé Leon Dore’s website and you’ll get the picture.

Perhaps that’s why ALD’s seasonal campaigns, cast from a collective of the brand’s downtown New York pals, are so seamlessly styled, with everyone in the imagery comfortably geared up regardless of stylistic background.

Of course, it doesn’t hurt that the photos are crisp, the set is gorgeous, and the layout is tasteful. That’s that innately evocative ALD presentation for you.

It’s hardly unfair to compare Aimé Leon Dore to the likes of BEAMS PLUS or fellow NYC labels like NOAH and Wythe, who affect a similar sense of effortless cool through laid-back lookbooks and menswear inclinations.

The difference is that ALD’s got a young audience hungry for its New Balance collabs, a younger cache that hasn’t had its eye trained on decades of vintage J.Crew catalogs or back issues of TransWorld and Popeye.

So, they come for the New Balances and stay for an intro course on tailoring, a brief rundown on vintage sportswear, and a hands-on knitwear discourse.

There are enough older consumers keeping up with Aimé Leon Dore who can explain a Polo homage and no one needs to be told why a revamped football jersey looks cool but ALD’s skill is in bridging the gap between that stuff, the things that’re inherently streetwear-adjacent, and the double breasted blazers, the bouclé wool overshirts, the washed denim jeans worn with penny loafers.

In fact, speaking of Ralph, ALD is almost a sort of spiritual next-of-kin, translating that ephemeral sense of good taste to an audience eager to dig into ALD’s vibe. And we all know how that worked out for Ralph.

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