A graffiti-inspired flak jacket for the cool times ahead. By Valery Joseph
The artist-designer collaboration is nothing new. But when Matty Merrill founded his line Distilled, it was with the sole intent of encouraging such inspired partnerships. "We wanted to take the artist-designer partnership to a new level," says Merrill. "Not only appropriating graphics and slapping them on an item, as with many collaborations, but rather by working from square-one with an artist to create something that is reflective of their perspective." For Merrill, formerly a designer for Triple 5 Soul, intelligent design is another important hallmark.
The Adam5-100 jacket is one such example. Military-inspired and fashioned from a winter-worthy Melton wool, it's (at first glance) a handsome update of a classic. But this coat's distinctions go further. Working with Oakland-based graffiti artist Adam5-100, the duo aimed to produce a piece that spoke to the unique needs of its creators. "We made a beautiful coat that not only performs in cold weather, but also addresses Adam's need for an accessible interior pocket—which can hold Adam's stencil rolls and spray cans—or, in the case of our customers, whatever cargo they need to stow."
In addition to its graffiti roots, (the jacket also features Adam5-100's trademark screen-printing artwork on the inner lining), the design offers a nod to the tech-savvy with a leather headphone eyelet for easy ear-bud access. "We [intend] each Distilled garment to look great," says Merrill. "But we also want them to offer design solutions." Mission accomplished.
A graffiti-inspired flak jacket for the cool times ahead.