In the first post of a new series on the ways fashion and film bleed into each other (quite literally, in this case), we explore the 1981 British-American crossover cult classic directed by John Landis, taking at look at the outfits from the famous opening scene. Come with us on a walk across the moor and find out what outdoor garments might protect you against the biting winter weather… and any other ‘biting’ winter surprises there might be in store.
Poor old Jack and David...
Kitted out in their backpacking best, they were only trying to take in some of Yorkshire’s finest natural beauty. Heading out for a hike in the wilder parts of the UK is an excellent way to enjoy the breathtaking scenery and diversity good old Blighty has to offer, though some of our larger fauna might prove a little off-putting if you’re thinking of heading out under a full moon. John Landis’ 1981 cult classic An American Werewolf in London is a dazzling film that blends horror, humour and one of the most famous uses of prosthetics and makeup in the silver screen’s history, creating an atmospheric and unique take on the legend of the werewolf that’s still entertaining and enthralling viewers to this day. We love the perfect mixture of preppy-smart and practical outdoorswear that characters Jack and David are wearing in the film’s famous opening scene, and we’re going to break down the look for the contemporary gent who’s looking to get out and about without going for the full nature-nutter, waterproof-everything, all-the-gear-and-no-idea look: in short, to retain some of that classic US prep and style whilst schlepping across Britain’s wild spaces.
At the core of Jack and David’s look is the jacket: they each wear a lovely, cosy-looking puffa-style coats. Waterproof and warm, stuffed with down for natural protection, it’s like taking a lightweight, portable duvet with you, helping you feel at home even in the middle of nowhere. Berghaus are today’s well-known technical-wear masters, and their Ronnas Insulated Down Jacket comes in a mossy mix of greens for a camouflaged look... maybe it was David’s bright red jacket that gave him away on the moor. Berghaus also do a Mavora Down Jacket, which is hoodless and has smart navy shoulders.
If you’re looking to get off the beaten track a little, Häglofs are the outdoor adventurer brand for cynics: they pride themselves on being able to convert even the hardiest of outdoorswear-sceptics thanks to their reliability in providing immaculately high-quality garments, their persistent self-evaluation - meaning they stay on top of the latest technology, sustainability and fashion - and their pride in ensuring you look, feel and perform better in a Häglof item. Founded by a man with a foot in the worlds of both workwear and fashion, Häglof understand that not everyone's on board with an outdoorsy lifestyle straight off the bat, and that it's important to feel comfortable, be thoroughly protected, and feel, style-wise, like you're not pretending to be someone you ain't. Their Nas Down Jacket surely holds the most legitimate claim to be the contemporary heir to AWIL’s fashion palette: with it’s silver buttons and sustainable credentials, it’s what Jack and David, re-cast as millennial hipsters, would surely have been sporting as they set out into the Yorkshire Wilds.
Jeans are an iconic American product, and it’s only right that the two young backpackers should still be setting out in their trustiest pair of denim trousers. Comfortable, durable and ready for anything, jeans are a beloved product that actually fare incredibly well out in the wilds. Just remember to try and put them to one side if you’re going to transform, though: David’s don’t look that great once he’s burst out of them in that quaint London living room. Though not strictly American in origin, Edwin are expert denim masters who’s products last and last, while being well cut and stylish. Denim can soften and be wonderful comfortable for long walks, as well as offering great warmth and insulation. Take a look at Edwin’s Yamato Left Hand Denim pair that are particularly soft due to their unique weave, or browse through the other Edwin selections to find the colour and wash that suits you the most.
You’ve got to have good shoes if you’re out walking – or fleeing – across Britain’s beautiful moors. Known for their rough terrain, tussocks and surprise bogs, you’ve got have something sturdy and stylish to keep you well-grounded. The true contemporary American look would be a pair of Redwing boots, which look perfect with a pair of jeans of any variety. If you’re going for something a little more technical, Haglofs Vyn Gt Boot boasts Goretex waterproof materials with a soft collar top for comfort, a tongue gusset to keep snow and water out, as well as a reinforced toe for protection and stability and a brainy FluidRide sole that helps with your natural stride, keeping you in the walking groove. Smart, comfortable, impenetrable and brainy, maybe if Jack was wearing a pair of these, he wouldn’t have been caught first by that lunatic.
David’s Ivy League Look
What marks David out is the smart white collar and blue sweater combo that peeks out from under his red jacket. Distinguishing him as a true Ivy Leaguer, this classic combo is a great way to stay smart and proves that you don’t have to relinquish every part of your style when out hiking or backpacking. Regent run a fine variety of navy crew necks: we’ve got Cashmere, Merino Wool or Geelong Lambswool for extra warmth and comfort and varying thickness, whilst we also stock Shetland Woolen Co.’s ‘Shaggy Dog’ Navy Crew Neck – who knows, perhaps the werewolf would mistake you for one of his own with that one on…? Meanwhile, you can’t go wrong with a White Oxford Button-Down to accompany. A timeless look achievable with two garments, you’ll be ready for anything with this look. Well, almost anything: we can’t vouchsafe this shirt as wolf-proof.
- Tags: Adventure, American Werewolf, Backpacking, Cinema, Comfortable, Comfy, Dartmoor, Fashion, Film, Hiking, John Landis, Outdoorswear, Yorkshire Moor