Signature Style

We weren't exactly surprised to hear that L.L. Bean will launch a signature line, designed by Alex Carleton of the Portland-based Rogues Gallery label.

When our Heritage tote arrived in the mail this spring, The Maven actually said, "This looks like something you'd buy at Rogues." Frankly, we never expected people to stop us in the street and ask where we got an L.L. Bean canvas bag, but it happens all the time.

Whether Carleton was at work behind the scenes or not, one thing is for certain: the fashion quotient at Bean's has gone WAY up over the last year. Remember those adorable flats? The cute Wellies? The sweaters that don't look like the small is actually a mislabeled extra-large?

Now that this partnership is official, we have great expectations for L.L. Bean Signature. Carleton, who designed for Abercrombie & Fitch and Ralph Lauren before moving to Maine, has said he'll dig deep into the archives and retool vintage looks for contemporary living (read: better tailoring, slimMer lines, great fabrics). It won't be a huge departure from the retailer's traditional look, but enough of one that you'll notice.

The best part? L.L. Bean Signature will be sold at the same price point as everything else at Bean's.

Now that the cat's out of the canvas bag, we can't wait until the line debuts in 2010.


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