Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.Emma Lazarus, The New Colossus
During the peak of immigration through Ellis Island at the turn of the 20th century, this phrase, etched onto the Statue of Liberty, welcomed weary travelers after their difficult journeys toward a better life. Written by Emma Lazarus, these words represent the very soul of our country—the American Dream—and they serve as the foundation for the Joseph Abboud Fall 2019 collection.
For over 30 years, the Joseph Abboud brand has stood for inclusionary masculinity, producing American-made clothing for all kinds of American men. As such, this season, Joseph aimed to celebrate the melting pot that is America and those courageous enough to search out a new beginning.
An homage to those early immigrants, the Fall 2019 collection recalls the clothes they wore to change their destiny. Each garment has a story to tell, with washed fabrics, raw edges, and surprising combinations of texture and pattern reflecting homespun wares from around the world. The men who travelled here to forge a new nation were at once modest, proud, and filled with character. So too were their clothes, perhaps handed down from a father or grandfather. Mismatched buttons, sheared shoulders, and patches crafted from remnants of antique Kilim rugs nod to the care with which one might mend his treasured wardrobe, carried from one life to the next.
With a vintage palette and lived-in essence, the Fall collection features noble fabrics like washed tweeds, vintage velvets, and time worn flannels that inspire a workman-like tone. Trousers are full to allow for movement; capes wrap around the body like blankets; purposeful bellows pockets run throughout; and layering, a brand signature, is unstudied and eclectic. Each piece is as individual as the person who wears it. The utilitarian theme carries over to the accessories. Leather satchels and duffels are made with functionality in mind; distressed fedoras and caps, designed in collaboration with Albertus Swaenpoel, have a time-worn quality. Evening wear, too, remains humble, imbued with an heirloom feel and hard-earned confidence.
Leather footwear, the product of our ongoing collaboration with American heritage shoemaker Allen Edmonds, is inspired by sturdy work boots. Allen Edmonds, like Joseph Abboud, encapsulates the American spirit with their time tested lasts and designs. Goodyear welted and handcrafted in Port Maine, Washington, their footwear combines a reliability and quality that men recognize and trust.
Set in the spirit of Ellis Island at Pier 16—part of the South Street Seaport Museum—this show honors who we were and who we are. As the grandson of Lebanese immigrants, it gives me great pride to celebrate America’s rich tapestry and diverse heritage the best way I know how: By making timeless, authentic, and quality clothes for all Americans.