Words by Jesse Serwer—
Scroll through the advertisements in the latest issue of your favorite fashion magazine, and you might find a familiar object in an unfamiliar place: Specifically, the mesh marina in Burberry’s autumn/winter 2014 men’s line. The mesh tank is a staple in Burberry’s native England, where it’s better known as a string vest, but it has long been associated with working-class slobs, thanks to depictions like Andy Capp and Ras C. Nesbitt. Could its place in a collection from one of the country’s most iconic luxury brands have anything to do with Jamaica, where the undergarment has been re-purposed as a rude-boy fashion staple? We think so.
In fact, we saw this one coming. Erin Hansen-McKnight’s LargeUp story on “Jamaica’s Love Affair with the Mesh Marina” (published June 20th) traced the history of the mesh tank from the Norwegian military to its current place as a symbol of classic Jamaican style, seen in video after video. Read Erin’s story here, and watch the video from Burberry’s fall line.