Hélas SP20: Collection Overview
French skate brand Hélas has introduced an impressive selection of goods for their spring / summer 2020 collection, designed to take you on a nostalgic journey through founders’ Lucas Puig, Stephen Khou and Clement Brunel youth through a distinctly 1990’s aesthetic. Ahead of the collections official release, the trio teased us with a short ‘Security TV’ campaign video which includes a team of friends running riot in a Parisian mall with a mission of ‘messing up consumer society, its rules and domination’. The accompanying lookbook, shot by Maime Verret, continues the theme and presents the new designs at their best with casual retro inspired styling, fish eye lense angles and not-so-impressed security guards.
Living up to their goal of making ‘French Lacoste Steeze’ styles, there’s a stronger sense of refinement within the latest release in comparison to previous collections with the inclusion of practical shorts and button through shirts alongside the more casual sportswear inspired jackets and pants. Showing variety within their design vision and a certain ‘je ne sais quoi’ that is intuitive with any French brand, the Classic Denim Shirt offers more character than your average everyday shirt thanks to neat embroidery on the chest and a woven label around the curved hem which together nod towards the brands personality without taking away from the sophisticated finish. A favourite amongst anyone who seeks timeless appeal, the team have also created two denim Classic Cap styles for the release, also adorned with simplistic umbrella embroidery which for those in the know, will speak for itself. Dividing opinions, there is an option to go for a double - or even triple - denim look with the Classic Denim Shirt paired with the matching fabric Classic Denim Shorts, which are cut just above the knee for a more early ‘90s look with a half elasticated waistband to keep in the fit in check over time and topped off with script ‘Hélas’ embroidery on the edge of the left leg for a more high-class form of branding.
Following similar roots of influences from the same decade, Hélas have brought their own contemporary touch to relaxed tracksuit tops and bottoms which may have been introduced for spring/summer but are true essentials for year round comfort and weather protection. Presenting their own take on a utilitarian print which has retained its place within fashion and streetwear over the last few seasons, the camo edition of the Gang Tracksuit Pants stand out from the crowd - especially when paired with the matching Bucket Hat - having been constructed from lightweight polyester customised with an all over earth-tone camouflage design which, much like the traditional pattern, has softened curved edges and subtly complements the ripstop surface texture of the selected fabric. Also available in an all black colourway, two large expandable pockets on either side of the leg offer ample space to securely carry essentials and are highlighted by contrasting embroidered text branding, with the signature umbrella emblem on the left side. Designed to be worn with the corresponding Gang Tracksuit Jacket, the duo provides coverage from the elements without unwanted bulk and together capture the urban side of Hélas’ character.
Alongside the investment pieces of the collection, the array of casual everyday styles on offer showcase a more playful side with a ‘Strong’ outlined cartoon character seen on either side of 100% cotton tees and hoodies of the same name, printed upon a block colour Hélas umbrella image, resulting in a sort of new mascot that we’re sure we’ll be seeing again in future drops. On the same note with a selected use of colour, either edition of the Peps T-Shirt portrays a distinctly old school look that no doubt has been directly pulled from any of the co-founders’ childhood wardrobes with two tone panelling across the chest which continues to the tips of the sleeves with stylised ‘Hélas’ lettering below. With a push to combine similar looks without looking too contrived, the accompanying Sporty Hoodie follows a similar aesthetic with luminous lime panelling popping out from the chest and sleeves.
What is special about the latest release from Hélas is the suggestion of making each piece your own, whether you choose to don a double denim combo, are into the full sportswear look or simply want to express a little extra personality at more formal events with one of their shirts. Like many skater owned brands, practicality heads up the focus of each design and the less fuss the better to ensure suitability for equal amounts of activewear and more relaxed activities. Offered in khaki green and black colourways that can be easily incorporated into warm weather ensembles, the Classic Chino Shorts are simple yet effective and a welcome addition to the spring/summer range with elasticated waist ties, a secure reverse pocket and that signature umbrella logo once again on the edge of the left leg.
Since the idea for setting up their own brand was planted during an average pub get-together in 2011, Hélas founders Lucas Puig, Stephen Khou and Clement Brunel have taken it upon themselves to create an affluent skate-focused brand that has its place within both skateboarding and fashion. Through their collective vision of creating considered designs constructed from hand selected fabrics that demonstrate an air of refinement borrowed from luxury sportswear brands the team aspire to emulate, Hélas has found its place within this generations streetwear scene and continues to build upon its own community within the multifaceted skateboarding industry.
Shop all Helas at Flatspot.