Polo Ralph Lauren x Element — Heritage Made for Today.
A Collaboration Founded on Heritage — Made for Today.
Sometimes the most interesting projects are born from the most simple of circumstances. A chance meeting of between the Element and Polo Ralph Lauren design teams led to a conversation about the origins of both brands and where they both would like to go in the future. The synergy was real and the idea was concieved to partner up on a collection that is a reflection the identities of both brands.
When the design teams started sifting through the famed Polo archives, they discovered the piece that would become the inspirational design for the entire collection. The “Sampler Schoolhouse Sweater” from the Polo Ralph Lauren Fall 1982 collection immediately stood out with its New Egland style sampler motif. It was decided that a new take on this iconic piece would serve as the cornerstone of the Polo Ralph Lauren x Element collection.
Samplers have been around for generations. In essence, a sampler is a knit depition of multiple elements of needlepoint skill worked into one project. This technique has been documented to be used by needlepoint and knitting enthusiasts for hundreds of years as a way to practice and display their skills. The original 1982 Polo Ralph Lauren Sampler (worn by Vitória and Rafaela in the top photograph) was designed and knitted by renowned knitwear master Nancy Vale. Her designs depicetd a New England schoolhouse scene as well as a pattern of letters and numbers, turning the sampler tradition into a revolutionary fashion piece.
Our rendition of the Sampler is a 100% wool knit sweater depicting a countryside skateboarding paradise with a skater pushing their way to the local mini ramp for a session, paying homage to the original while giving it a contemporary twist. With continual respect for our roots and history, at Element we also train our focus on the future as well as guarding our passion for the present. That is why the Polo Ralph Lauren x Element Sampler sweater is the perfect piece to headline this collection. It is heritage— made for today. ´