Blaque Life Quarterly re-experiences Replay Jeans, for your viewing pleasure below. #BLQFashion

Denim Jeans

The world of jeans exists as more than just a piece of clothing. The fabric’s durability and inclination towards versatility, has made it a forerunner in the textile ecosystem. Jeans blend with the body, are moulded by the body into an indissoluble whole, becoming one with the wearer in a sublime symbiosis. Jeans reflect just who we are – slipped on in seconds, shaped over the years as the fabric adapts to and enhances every single curve and fold. Some of the qualities that make us love our jeans so much are that they are durable and comfortable, and that they can (nearly) have unlimited approaches to style.

 

 

The greatest charm of jeans, however, is the manner in which they develop with you as you wear them. How they become 'yours' as they document your way of life and how you've worn them.

 

This is why they’re so sexy. This is why they’re still so rebellious, still a symbol of dressing and thinking outside the box. Above all, this is what makes them so unique. No two pairs are ever the same, just as no two people are ever the same. Yet there’s nothing haute couture or high class about jeans. They’re democratic. 

The catch is that it requires some investment, tolerance and diligent work (now and then truly) to accomplish that alluring lived-in look.

 

Brand History

Jeans started as workwear: garments made to carry out a responsibility for men with a job to do. They were utilitarian and resilient pieces of clothing with a basic structure and uncomplicated development, modest and brisk to make. Furthermore, they've been around for quite a long time. 

 

Many a curious folk took a keen interest in the complex structure of the jean and one such man was Italian born, Claudio Buziol. Buziol was born in 1957 in Crocetta del Montello, in the province of Treviso, Italy. His folks were garments sellers which helped began his youthful and playful approach to producing shirts in his parents’ shop. 

 

His thought, from the earliest starting point, was to make garments that touched on the past of garment-making but also spoke to something new and on the cusp of the newest fashion of the times.

 

In 1978, at the fresh and vigorous age of 21, Buziol registers the trademark REPLAY. After watching the football world cup on television, he was inspired by the word replay. Due to it’s simple, straightforward and inherent meaning of remaking, Buziol believed he had discovered the right trademark to transmit his ready to deliver, easygoing lifestyle wear reinterpreting the '50s American-style.

 

After working as a designer for design and product firm Pedrini, in 1981 he set up Fashion Box S.p.A., an organization situated in Maser and spent significant time in casual shirt-production. It’s in this year that Buziol establishes Replay Jeans as an authentic and smart casual wear clothing brand that has since become one of the leading international companies in the denim sector.

 

Motivated by the concept of “re-making”, “re-creating” and “re-elaborating”, REPLAY create, promote and distribute men's, women's, and children's casual wear, along with accessories and footwear. The brand has developed and evolved along this theme since its debut, taking the best of the past and giving it a contemporary twist.

 

 

Sandton City  

 

Brand Ethos

REPLAY is experiencing a revamp of the ’90s, a decade when Italian fashion was so hot, creative and relevant. The brand is expressing itself at its best again in terms of creativity. Finding a new energy and ability to renovate itself both from an aesthetic and functional standpoint. Among Italian jeans brands REPLAY are great ambassadors in creating innovation and highly functional products. 

 

The main evolution of the brand is in the products’ editing as well as in the way they communicate to consumers. They’ve learned what’s most valuable is the understanding about what each product can mean in everybody’s everyday editing and use. Therefore while they safeguarded and maintained their brand identity (which is one of the paramount values of the brand), REPLAY has evolved its styling, its communication and the way they present their products.

 

Innovation seems to have always been part of REPLAY’s DNA. Founder Claudio Buziol was the first one to introduce washed and aged jeans. Today the denim house offer products with more technical content that can equally move and influence the market. Three years ago for being relevant in the denim market a product had to be renovated in material and fit to resist the overall uncertainty of the market.

Whereas REPLAY touts itself as having continued to follow their own path–that is offering a premium denim product always highly innovative such as all of their newest products including Hyperflex, Hyperfree, Touch, Hyperselvedge and similar ones. Though, while innovating, they have remained faithful to their jeanswear identity.

 

''Replay's brand message is to be cool''

 

Local History 

This contemporary twist found its way to the newly democratized land of South Africa sometime during 1994. Establishing its flagship store in Sandton, dubbed the richest square mile in Africa, REPLAY officially lands on South African soil. As a side, it’s interesting to note that Tunisia, an African counterpart, manufactures a high percentage of most of the world’s denim. Resting comfortably amongst other smart casual wear giants, REPLAY has stamped itself as an aspirational lifestyle brand in the country. 

Having chatted to Greg Bowles, Managing Director of REPLAY South Africa, we tried to unpack the brand’s position in the country.

 

Replay South Africa

The brand impact of REPLAY on the South African market is huge and that’s not without reason. Be it the country’s global assimilation during a period in which it was finding its identity as a democratic nation or the manner in which western luxuries penetrated the world’s economy. In 2019 REPLAY employs brand heads, the likes of DJ Tira, and previously DJ Zinhle to champion this Italian craftsmanship.

 

But given that it is 2019, does having a so-called face do enough for a brand?

 

Full disclosure compels the need to state that as a brand both globally and locally, it does very little to create a cohesive, inclusive picture of the current buying power that exists within the markets.

A quick scroll through REPLAY’s pages on one of retails biggest marketing platforms, Instagram, and it’s easy to notice the disparity in representation. Commercially polished editorial photos of bright blue-eyed, blond-haired models take precedence over the easily missed appearance of brand head, DJ Tira. And the international page is no better.

 

Whitewashed and without any strong POC (People of Colour) visualizations, it’s disappointing to know that the biggest buying power of the brand (locally) is missing from its marketing efforts. It has to be said that the brand has worked to curate experiences for its local audiences with celebrity meet and greets and shopping sprees but those are few and far between.

 

It is, however, still quite impressive the manner in which REPLAY has brought the Italian flair and charm to the fearless streets of South African lifestyle culture.

 

Replay Jeans Sandton City

 

With four REPLAY stores in the country, namely Sandton City, Menlyn, V&A Waterfront and Durban’s Gateway, the brand has established a solid footprint on all fronts. And it’s no surprise that local celebrity powerhouse DJ Tira has partnered with this aspirational brand. The musician and lifestyle personality is no stranger to orchestrating the tune of South Africa’s beat and thus the synergy between him and REPLAY is quite fluid and seemingly effortless. We hope to see more long-lasting collaborations that are more involved and engaged with African audiences as opposed to the quite stark and removed marketing approach that exists to date.

 

Perhaps a celebrity collection the likes of 2Pac and Nirvana as seen in the brand’s most recent efforts. Collections like these re-ignite a passion for icons of yesteryear and project them into contemporary fashion as their life stories were so vital to how we engage and consume fashion today.

 

Brand Offerings

The Replay stores idea plans to go past the great thought of a store as a negligible compartment showing products where quantitative and stylish variables dominate, by inspecting the feelings associated with nature and space, and the desire to discover somewhere revitalizing. Hence, the impression of their stores is in the energizing, invigorating store plan that manages to express both the Replay brand identity and the soul of the city in which it is found. 

 

While natural materials like wood and iron evoke industrial archaeology, a skilled human hand has transformed the interiors to create a perfect balance between art, matter and sensorial impact.

 

This feeling transfers itself to the South African stores with walls lined up with an overwhelming amount of Italian product, hard steel surfaces and industrial design. It’s a nod to the workwear beginnings of denim.

 

 Replay Sandton City

 

REPLAY flexes its denim muscles with the aforementioned Hyperflex, Hyperfree, Touch,  Hyperselvedge, and more creating a range of denim that adapts to the consumer.

 

Hyperflex

The main features of Replay Hyperflex are high elasticity, excellent fabric recovery and superior comfort. This means that Replay Hyperflex offers great shape retention, complete ease of motion - no sagging or deforming even after considerable wear, plus a luxurious feel.

 

As for the fabric per se, Lycra comprises the corespun, Poly defines the middle, while the external layer of cotton is what gives the jeans an authentic denim look. The two top fibers protecting the Lycra ensure that the stretch factor is compromised by neither industrial nor domestic washes. 

 

Hyper Train - Chino 

These days, it seems like a new training trend appears every day. Our daily lives are full of new ways to move and flex our bodies. With its extensive range, the Hyper range is the best outfit to challenge yourself with these new activities. Whatever they are!

Chinos are undoubtedly essential in style. They can be simply described as casual trouser with a smarter look than jeans but, at the same time, they are less formal than dress pants. Their simple cut provides a well-rounded option, adaptable with almost any footwear and t-shirt or button down shirt for a smarter look but with the comfort factor.

Hyperflex + is the result of tireless research and a major journey of innovation. Hyperflex + provides 100% elasticity in the weft as well as high percentage of elasticity in the warp, giving it a three-dimensional flexibility in the threads running the length of the fabric: a 3D elasticity for a perfect fit in every direction, which will stand the test of time thanks to the “recovery power” feature. All garments have undergone the same 3D drying process that gives a worn look to the apparel.

The company’s mission has always been to excel in its innovative style, characteristic Italian design and superior quality of its products; the skill and expertise gained in the production of denim, in particular, is a special, unique asset to the Group.

 

 ''All garments have undergone the same 3D drying process that gives a worn look to the apparel.''

 

REPLAY claims that their new manufacturing process for the Hyperflex Clouds guarantees a 75% water saving, does not use harmful chemicals and does not produce any toxic residue.

 

But that’s sadly not a cohesive enough picture in today’s state of fast fashion. And as we are always asking, what can the brand do more of?

Replay Sandton City

 

 

REPLAY is here to stay and we welcome them proudly, as it's in our South African nature to do so. But we also hope for more inclusive stories that many other brands in the space have seem to have executed well. #BLQFashion #ReplaySA

Re-Experiencing REPLAY
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