Paul Smith's cycling jersey collection

paulfrasercollectibles

2015-06-26 13:00:51

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Paul Smith's cycling jersey collection

Designer Paul Smith's cycling jersey collection is slowly taking over his studio, along with his sugar lumps...

You might think that British fashion designer Paul Smith's love of cycling jerseys comes from their often vibrant, eye catching designs. The way in which the mix of colour and advertising is arranged on a tiny canvas.

But you'd be wrong.

"I collect them because of their association, the memories they hold of certain races, and the friendships I have made with riders like sprinter Mark Cavendish for instance," Smith explained to the Obsessionistas website.

Paul Smith cycling jersey collectionPaul Smiths Las Vegas shop is modelled on the Mondrian-inspired cycling jerseys of the La Vie Claire team of the 1980s

A fan of cycling from a young age, it was only when Nottingham-born Smith's hopes of making the professional ranks were curtailed in his teenage years by a bad accident that fashion found a way into his life.

In his studio, jerseys from all the big races, and the sport's greatest riders, are piled high in boxes. He has no trouble getting hold of jerseys; his love for the sport among the cycling fraternity is well known and riders are happy to send him items. Indeed, the 2008 Olympic time trail champion Fabian Cancellara once rode the last stage of the Tour de France with a signed shirt for Smith in his back pocket, reports the Guardian newspaper.

"Probably the most special ones are from the Tour de France... and [the] pink jersey from the Giro d'Italia signed by the winner Alberto Contador. Also the World Championship jerseys from Bradley Wiggins, Thor Hushovd, Chris Hoy and Nicole Cook," says Smith.

Smith's passion for cycling has naturally seen him design some of his own jerseys, including a collection produced with Rapha.

Yet Smith is not simply a collector of cycling jerseys - he is a collector full stop. "I have huge collections of many things including clocks, watches, car speedometers, bicycles, ghetto blasters, magazines, stamps, sugar lumps and Japanese advertising memorabilia," he says.

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