RRL. The vintage inspired, rugged living, yurt sleeping, cowboy brand of the Ralph Lauren empire. It’s east coast meets the Great Plains. It’s mud. It’s turquoise. It’s denim. It’s distinguished.
The RRL store in East Hampton is gorgeous. It’s a two story vine covered cottage with an eclectic assortment of finds from Native American tribes alongside vintage Breitlings with map covered walls. Mannequins in chunky sweaters and indigo shirts. Shades of cream, navy, whites and pale blues, the deep brown of wood and leather. A large American flag hangs from the 2nd floor down to the first, black and white photos of fishermen hang on the walls. It’s like an Ernest Hemingway museum.
Graduate school taught me that smart branding creates a community, the brand becomes the badge of what it represents. Advertising is where you sell the religion, create the belief system and share the holy ideal, if you will into what the brand should look like, should represent. The store, therefore is beyond a place of transactions or but rather of exacted beliefs — it’s the enacted livelihood of the created glossy page in a magazine.
This store is all of those things, expertly. But it’s also a really special and crafted dedication to all the things that inspire the RRL brand. It’s a masterpiece showroom, effortless but meticulous. A perfect haven for your mountain man.
*in case you’re wondering about the eloquent title of this article, I left a very genius professor speechless except to say ‘Horse-y aristocracy-ness’ to a brand architecture presentation I delivered on Ralph Lauren in a graduate branding class.
What helped to influence my love americana panache? For one thing… my childhood bed.