Was looking through Phil Poynter’s photography portfolio recently when I noticed some great shots for Henry Cotton’s. For the uninitiated, Henry Cotton’s is an Italian-owned brand with a heavily British viewpoint, sold mostly in Asia. The company is of particular interest to me because most of my work is for clients in Southeast Asia (some of whom carry Henry Cotton’s), and because I always dig British and Americana inspired brands—especially those with Henry Cotton’s level of lifestyle commitment.
2008 campaign shot by Phil Poynter
While Poynter’s campaign skews schoolboy, the brand does have a variety of styles and looks, all under the British aesthetic. I recommend checking out their website (it makes up in passion what it lacks in layout). You could probably skip the catalog and heritage sections and go straight to Spring Summer 09 collection, which is split into College Time (skip it, it’s all polo shirts), MUC Bike Polos, Khaki HC 78, Garden Therapy, and Marine Atmosphere. The collections are much better than their names, and are rigged pretty nicely. The women's line is pretty nice, too, if you're in to menswear-inspired women's apparel.
Like Rugby, the brand is positioned young, but unlike Rugby, it does so without the irony, which means it probably wouldn’t succeed in the States. Dressing British and dressing Trad (in the true tweedy sense) seems to have no mass (ie. mall) traction here, save New York and pockets of New England.
Also check out Poynter's portfolio which, in addition to a great fashion portfolio, also has awesome shots for Henry Cotton's and Thomas Pink, as well as Sportmax, Prada, Louis Vuitton, the "jump" Lacoste shots, and this season's Tommy Hilfiger.
Update: Just received an email from JG with additional info on Henry Cotton's: in the mid-90's they did have limited distribution in the States, and was once made in Italy and a higher-end competitor of Polo's. However, production was then moved to Asia, and pricepoints dropped. The last he saw the brand domestically was on discount around 7 years ago.