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These Sublime Soccer Shirts Are a Much-Needed Revival of Retro Style

The other day we riffed on Rowing Blazers, the cool NYC brand founded by author, archaeologist, and U.S. national team rower Jack Carlson, and, his girlfriend, national champion oarswoman Keziah Beall. Thursday they're dropping some stylish new merch just in time for the weather to start showing some improvement on the East Coast.

Carlson tells us the theme of new spring collection is "not fitting in." From childhood, "we're programmed to fit in with one tribe or another: jocks, nerds, preps, punks, artists, surfers, the so-called cool kids, whatever," he says. "Then at some point, hopefully, you reject these labels and stop trying to be a cookie-cutter person – and you take the time to learn about some of the cool things from all these worlds. As a brand, we reject labels like this, because we think the most interesting people are the ones who don't fit in."

We're going to be highlighting a number of cool items from the new collection but let's (ahem) kick things off with these American-made "soccer shirts" in blazing vertical stripes. Based on traditional British schoolboy soccer shirts, they're similar to rugby shirts except that they're much lighter in weight while the stripes are vertical and they feature tab collars. 

Carlson relates that the word "soccer" began as an Oxford nickname for "association football" or "assoc" for short. "Adapting soccer shirts for fashion is nothing new, but we wanted to do what we do best, which is go back to the beginning," Carlson says. "The result is very different from a lot of the streetwear takes on the soccer jersey, but we think it’s pretty cool and perfect for that time between rugby shirt weather and polo shirt weather."

The shirts are available as of today here, so look sharp.