Where the runway meets the street
J.Crew Frank Muytjens Discovered 2013 01

We introduce J.Crew‘s upcoming series, “Discovered,” with the Nanamica Cruiser. Discovered is a curation of special items from third party brands and J.Crew’s own in-house archives, each item containing its own unique story of discovery. In anticipation of the line’s debut in J.Crew’s September style guide, Selectism asks a series of questions to Frank Muytjens, the brand’s director of menswear design. Read on for the inspiration behind Discovered, the Cruiser’s own unique story and the must-have item you should pair it with.

Heritage is very important to J.Crew, both on the design front and in collaborations with other brands. What makes Discovered special? What will this add to J.Crew?

Discovered was developed to showcase our most special items. Over the years, from word of mouth, trips across the world and our own archives, we’ve come across items that changed the way we think about design — Items with a story that really caught our attention; Items that deserve their own destination. Discovered essentially elevates our partnerships and our own products. We provide our customers with insight into the item by showing them what is special about [each] particular piece based on design, craftsmanship and history. This idea of a curated shop adds a level of uniqueness because we are handpicking these items to engage the customer and make the shopping experience that much more interesting.

What was the inspiration behind Discovered?

Discovered was designed to ramp up the idea of what our guy already knows or what he may not already know. Men are shopping very differently today — they are becoming more aware of what they are buying. Because men are becoming more engaged, it is important to continue down this path and highlight our most special items every month. These items change every month so our guy is exposed to a variation of new and interesting items all the time.

How did you “discover” the Nanamica Cruiser? Could you please give the specific time and location or the anecdote around it?

The men’s design team came across Nanamica during a trip to Italy. We were all immediately impressed with the level of technology and quality of the performance fabrics. Through a lot of conversations and collaborating, they showed us the Cruiser. We love it for its tailored yet rugged look and feel.

If you had to pick one other must-have item to pair with the Cruiser from the Discovered collection, which would it be?

I would pair it with the Ludlow Chambray shirt, which is a workwear classic made of Japanese cotton chambray. Like the Cruiser, it is unique in the sense that it’s a classic shirt that we’ve updated with a slimmer fit. As we are approaching the Fall months, both are great statement pieces that will help you transition from the warmer to the cooler months.

Shop J.Crew’s Discovered collection online and in stores now.

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