Issue 6 Stephen Monaghan and Graeme Gaughan Brand consultants

Insight

DANCING TO THEIR OWN TUNE

Quiet, unassuming and refreshingly uncomplicated, Our Legacy is building a cult brand in its own distinctive way



That the only Our Legacy store outside Sweden is tucked away on Silver Place, a 25-metre-long conjoining alleyway in the backstreets of Soho, is rather pleasingly indicative of the brand’s attitude - quiet, unassuming, but above all confident that those in the know will come and seek it out. What started as a tiny T-shirt-printing enterprise between childhood friends Christopher Nying and Jockum Hallin in 2005 has, in the subsequent decade, become something of a cult label - so cult, in fact, that unless you are particularly dialled in to men’s fashion, you probably have no idea who or what they are. And therein lies their secret.

For years, Our Legacy has inhabited a peripheral place in the canon of menswear, lingering comfortably on the outside but, crucially, not looking in. Nying, Hallin and Richardos Klarén, who later joined the brand, have built a brilliant label by virtue of being aesthetically ‘in fashion’ while at the same time out of fashion, dancing to their own inimitable tune of contemporary tailoring and reinvention of classic menswear pieces with a typically Scandinavian minimalistic bent. Given Nying and Hallin’s design background, Our Legacy approaches menswear in a refreshingly uncomplicated manner, focusing on details and under-designing where possible, while still capable of producing statement pieces that underline the brand’s respective obscurity - obscurity only in the marketing sense, however. Nying and Hallin design for the peg rather than the runway, so there is rarely any pomp or posturing about their collections.

Perhaps it’s too simple a connection to be made between the brand’s perceived Swedish idiosyncrasies and the way they have quietly gone about building their business, but clearly the ‘grow slow, grow big’ model is working a treat. However, after 10 hugely successful years under the mainstream radar, Our Legacy has now reached a certain critical mass. For Sane Communications’ Steve Monaghan and Graeme Gaughan, this makes strategising the brand’s communications an exciting project right now.

Our strategy with Our Legacy has always been based on our understanding and appreciation of their technique and ethos when it comes to brand development and awareness,’ says Monaghan. ‘In many ways they’ve run their business just like we have ran ours. The lesson is to work with good people that you trust; to work with people who are lovers of great products and who appreciate intelligent cultural nuances and references. Our communications strategy for Our Legacy has never really deviated from a simple concept: by delivering cohesive messages about key points in the collections to the right people, you allow the brand to do the talking through those in whom you trust.’