The 2015 Levi’s® Skateboarding Spring and Fall Collections pay tribute to the brand’s hometown roots. Spring ’15 was inspired by a small group of working class heroes who helped build the Golden Gate Bridge, known as the “Half Way To Hell Club.” The bridge was completed in 1933. One year later, seven miles into the San Francisco Bay, Alcatraz became a fully operational federal penitentiary, and this famed landmark became the inspiration for the new Fall ’15 Levi’s® Skateboarding Collection. Fast forward to 1988: Skateboarding photographer, Bryce Kanights, and legendary skateboarder Mark Gonzales hop a ferry boat over to the island where they capture one of the most iconic skateboarding images of all time. Gonz in full prison stripes slashing atop a vert wall in the prison’s courtyard.
That single image inspired the Levi’s® Skateboarding design team so much that they encompassed the entire Fall 2015 Collection around this picture. That image, in many ways, also informs the development that goes into each piece of Levi’s® Skateboarding apparel, particularly our pants. In order to attempt a wall like that, mobility is critical. In order to prevent your pants from blow-out, reinforcement is critical. In order to withstand the unavoidable bails, durability is critical. Levi’s® has solved for every demand skateboarding can put on a pair of pants and these are the best pants you’ll ever wear skating.
From that initial inspiration of Bryce’s photo, the Levi’s® Skateboarding design team dug into the famous Levi’s® Archives to take nods from workwear styles of the ‘30s and ‘40s eras on ‘The Rock’. Highlights from the Collection include the Work Pant, a skateboarding favorite released seasonally in new colors, along with the Quilted Mason Shirt, the Lined Chorecoat, Reform Shirt, Work Pant and the 2-Pack Tees. The Quilted Mason Shirt is a dual-lined heavy weight button-up akin to what a prisoner would have worn outside in the yard to combat San Francisco’s foggy days.
The Lined Chorecoat is a two-piece jacket featuring a quilted synthetic layer that can be worn as a standalone piece or inside the denim chore coat on colder weather days. The jacket embodies a timeless design remnant of the 1930s complete with patch-on pockets and a corduroy collar. This piece complements the Reform Shirt and Work Pant perfectly, resembling the outfits of Alcatraz groundskeepers during the 29 years the prison was in operation.
In addition, the design team took on the challenge of reinventing the perfect T-shirt. The Tees will be sold in two-packs, as they were commonly in the 1930s-60s, and feature a solid and striped variation to complement the inspiration behind the collection.
The Levi’s® Skateboarding Collection aims to deliver timeless style, comfort, durability and mobility. To view the full collection, please visit our Fall ’15 look book. And be sure to check out Marius Syvanen and Pat Moran wearing the collection as they skate through Alcatraz’s backyard of Oakland here.
About Levi's® Skateboarding Collection:
Skateboarders define themselves. They do not conform to rules, and there is no standard uniform. However, almost anyone who has ever stepped on a skateboard has worn Levi’s® jeans. Featuring timeless design and meticulous craftsmanship, Levi’s® jeans have been offering classic American style for more than 140 years – the Levi’s® Skateboarding Collection is the latest in Levi's product innovation. Focusing on performance details that offer skateboarders of any level greater comfort through mobility, breathability, strength & protection, the Levi’s® Skateboarding Collection is intended to withstand the harsh punishment skateboarders endure. For more information about the Levi’s® Skateboarding Collection, please visit levi.com/skateboarding.