Quality Menswear Basics Since 2006
London-Based Fashion Label Founded By James Shaw and Alastair Rae
View Albam Fashion collections on London Fashion Review Blog
An Introduction to the Albam Brand
Entrepreneurs James Shaw and Alastair Rae set up menswear fashion label Albam in 2006 in response to the ‘distorted prices for quality basics. The duo created the Albam brand with the aim of creating ‘Modern Crafted Clothing’.
As a brand, Albam aim to produce and manufacture quality clothing that, where possible, have been made in factories where they are meant to be made – as opposed to in large factories that standardise all their products. In the early days of the label they managed to keep costs down without turning to oversized factories in China for help. All production was kept within England; however, as the brand expanded it became unrealistic to keep all manufacturing local. The production is now on a more global scale, with for example shirt-makers in Japan and shoe-makers in the USA that have the same values as the Albam brand.
When the brand launched in 2006, there was only 7 styles in their catalogue. Over a few short years Albam have expanded to incorporate a full menswear range, including shirting, leg-wear, knitwear, outerwear, footwear and accessories. Additionally, as of 2011, Albam had three stand-alone stores within London (Soho, Spitalfield and Islington), as well as being stocked in many boutiques throughout the globe.
The Three Stand-Alone Albam Stores in London’s Soho, Spitalfield and Islington.
Albam – Key Dates
- 2006: The menswear fashion label, Albam, is founded by entrepreneurs James Shaw and Alastair Rae with the aim of creating ‘Modern Crafted Clothing’.
- 2009: Albam collaborates with British footwear brand, Grenson, to create a tasselled loafer. The two brands would team up once again in 2011 to create a suede brogue shoe.
- 2010: The Albam brand teams up with photographer John Spinks to create a book entitled, Factories, which documents all the places that Albam clothing is manufactured.
Images Featured in Albam’s Publication ‘Factories’
- 2011: The Albam website and e-commerce store is re-launched. Also this year the brand receives the ‘Best for Men’s Fashion Award’ at The Telegraph’s Best Small Shops in Britain awards.
The Albam Aesthetic
Albam is not a heritage brand and therefore does not have a large back catalogue to inspire future collections. As a result the brand has a forward-thinking approach to design, while still being inspired by vintage items they see at markets or within books. Classic pieces are re-worked and re-interpreted to create garments that have the classical look with signature Albam quirkiness. Keeping things simple is at the centre of the Albam design philosophy – basically to make garments that will transcend fashion trends or fads while remaining at an attractive price to the customer.
Future of the Albam Brand
In the future of the Albam brand, expect to see further expansion of the label to allow development of the Albam product lines, while still maintaining the philosophy of top quality basics at fair prices.
Visit the official Albam website, here.