The aesthetic eye shakes hands with functional leisurewear in 209 Mare’s Terry cloth collection of the highest quality blazers and other pieces of resort wear. Founder and creative mastermind, Federico Uribe designed 209 Mare upon noticing the absence of “quality and aesthetic clothing” around his beachside villa. His idea was to combine the sensation of a soft robe on the skin after a day in the sun with the polished look of a blazer – a sophisticated take on a coastal wardrobe. Within a year, 209 Mare elevated the “functional, soft, and durable” French fabric into a sought-after collection.
Repurposing an overlooked material is the motivation behind the company. Federico proudly claims that “the name 209 Mare comes from 20.9, the date on which in 2015 I jumped from the third-floor balcony from a building in Madrid, whilst in the middle of my MBA. I decided to use this experience to change my life and do something bigger than myself. I have repurposed my life”
Terry cloth has an interesting history, from its invention in the Early 1800s. The pre-industrialized French fabric was created by two warp threads, one being left loose to be pulled through a weft. This created a piling texture that proved to be ideal for both water absorption and comfort, but never being recognized for its aesthetic appeal. As a few decades would pass the market began booming for this comfortable fabric, ultimately leading to the production of terry cloth on the industrial scale.
In the 1930s you see the introduction of the French Terry, the lighter-weight brother of terry cloth. This fabric became popular both for its French Riviera style and its versatility in a capsule wardrobe. Terry cloth continues to dominate both the men’s and womenswear markets for its comfort, versatility, and sustainable production.
Like fine wine, French terry cloth “gets better with time”. Uribe found the formula for the highest-end terry cloth on the market. “I love the feel of French Terry,” writes Uribe. “It has drying wires on one side and is brushed and cut on the other side”. The duality of the texture proves excellent for sophisticated leisure from the coast of Monaco to sunny Newport Beach. In one word, Uribe describes the versatility of the style as “flawless”. 209 Mare is for the elegant, well-traveled client – think “1970s Bridgitte Bardot and Steve McQueen or Onassis, back when they were vacationing in Saint Tropez”. 209 Mare is found in the classic wardrobe of the “modern-day gentleman or lady”.
Further impressive is the company’s use of sustainable methods of production to optimize the use of the pieces and increase their quality and value. “All our fabrics are either organic, upcycled, or recyclable. Our packing is done in high-quality dust bags so that it is reusable and all our shipping is carbon neutral. The best way to support sustainability however is by making durable high quality products that last our customers summer after summer. Our motto for our customers is “Buy less, buy better”’. To “buy better” not only means to feel and look better in 209 Mare but also to understand the process of production and purchase quality with confidence.
This current collection has been 18 months in the making. Taking inspiration from the art of David Hockney, his color palette to be precise, as well as from the architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright which inspired the patterns, shapes, and hardware on the collection. 1950s pop art and 1920s Art Deco inspirations is a bold and beautiful combination that mixes two of the most important eras of design. You can see the monogram pattern and how it mixes round and sharp shapes, similar to what FLW used to do in his architecture. This very same monogram can be seen again in metal buttons and all other details. Pair that with Hockney’s Palm Springs-esque color palette and you have one of the most unique fashion collections out there.
Words by Annie Buda