Wild Things, like many of Japan’s semi-niche sartorial exports, started with an emphasis on functional climbing gear, but has since been absorbed into the western fashion canon.
Wild Things’ story begins way back in pre-internet 1981, when the only way to verify the quality of clothes was through committed word of mouth combined with solid production. The brand was started by two mountain climbers, Marie Meunier and John Bouchard, who, through experience, knew that the best climbing clothes needed to be two things: light and tough.
The two climbers began manufacturing their clothing in Massachusetts, USA, where, in the early 2000s, their story changed. Wild Things’ output caught the attention of the US special forces. In 2004, the brand was awarded its first contract to produce cold weather clothing systems for the U.S. Military. Now, the brand’s products are in the field with every branch of the U.S. Armed Forces.
Our story, however, isn’t about Wild Things’ US credentials, although it is a necessary component of the larger brand story, but about the brand’s Japanese line, tailored to a more fashionable clientele, built entirely upon the brand’s 40 years of knowledge.
Of course, citing a Japanese fashion brand with military influence and functional undertones is nothing new, but Wild Things’ extensive history and knowledge has made it incredibly sought after. For example, This Thing of Ours’ Tim McTavish – one of Manchester’s premier knowledge bases on Japanese fashion – refers to Wild Things as “rarer than rocking horse sh1t”.
This Thing of Ours isn’t the only place in the city to find Wild Things, though. Oi Polloi has recently begun stocking the brand, which they describe as a combination of unreal fabrics and cunning details. The brand’s famous Monster parka – one of the key pieces to start the word-of-mouth craze in certain circles – is available, as well as this season’s stand-out winter cap.
Head over to Oi Polloi’s new site to pre more of Wild Things Japan.