L.L.Bean Inc. has gone back to the future, as Marty McFly and Doc Brown might say.
The Freeport retailer on Monday unveiled a new-old line of outerwear, made with surplus fabric that had been stored away for 30-some years. The sustainability-minded designs are retro too, with blocks of bright colors recognizable to most people who can remember the premiere of “Back to the Future.”
The company is repurposing 8,000 yards of the leftover material to create 1,700 remakes of its 1991 All-Sports Anorak pullover. It features the familiar kangaroo pocket of the original, suitable for carrying a phone or maybe a Walkman. There are also 750 bucket hats and 750 tote bags, all dubbed as the company’s first “Archive Re-Issue” collection.
Courtesy / L.L.Bean
The new “Archive Re-Issue” collection borrows colors (and fabric) from 1990s L.L.Bean products.
Within two days, the collection has generated buzz among national media, consumers and lifestyle trend-spotters. The website Gear Patrol called it “a spectacular retro throwback.” The NBC “Today” show lauded the launch on the show’s website, and called it “peak ’90s fashion.”
Amy Yeo, senior product designer at L.L.Bean, helped create the collection and said on the company’s website, “This collection is completely unique to L.L.Bean — a revival of one of our most iconic ’90s jackets, recreated using excess fabric to eliminate waste, and offers our customers a fun matching kit that is full of nostalgia and completely now in fashion.”
But not forever. The company says that once the inventory is gone, it’s gone.
For those who are interested, the price of the anorak is $69, about $20 more than the 1991 version cost.