Sometimes refinements come from surprising places. In the Case of 1800 Tequila, true refinement comes from the rugged agave plant, which they double distill into quality, premium liquor. For designer Waraire Boswell, the search for raw materials has been a lifelong quest. Growing up in a family that was “rich in love, not in finance” Waraire learned to use the materials around him to build his own personal style. That’s why he was the perfect fit to work with 1800 on a unique collaboration highlighting how hard work and passion can transform rough, raw materials into an outfit befitting a red carpet.
When Boswell teamed up with 1800 to create a bespoke ensemble for an NBA player, he knew he wanted to do something different, something spectacular. He’d never been one to follow the crowd. When he saw other designers bending to the passing trends of the day, Boswell stood firm in his search for true style and authentic voice. In the creation of every elegant piece of clothing, he follows his craft without compromise.
For this project, Boswell searched for new ways of using old fabrics. He wanted to create a one-of-a-kind suit that would be a work of art as well as being functional and stylish. He sourced surplus and vintage materials, spent hours drawing and redrawing sketches, handworked pieces, and then refined them into a luxury three-piece ensemble that was fit for one of the most fashionable men on the court. And he did it all in two and a half weeks.
Getting to a place as a designer where he’d be asked to take on such a high profile collaboration wasn’t a straight shot for Boswell. It took complete dedication to style and his craft. It took hard work, the kind most people aren’t willing to attempt anymore. Boswell, however, always had a stong drive to be a designer. And he wasn’t going to let any setbacks big or small stand in the way of that pursuit.
“With the help of family and friends,” Boswell says, “I pretty much just called out to the universe and was like, I want to make clothes; I want it to completely sustain my lifestyle and its trajectory.”
Now, he’s known worldwide for his taste and creativity, as well as attention to detail and fit. His designs are red carpet staples for everyone from Will Smith to Ellen DeGeneres to LeBron James. Celebrities flock to his designs because the innovation and craft he brings to his work is evident in every button, every stitch. He transforms raw materials into the sleek, elegant, and bold, and it draws anyone’s eye with a sense of true style.
Boswell’s goal with this suit, was to craft an ensemble that would set the NBA star apart from the crowd, while remaining consistent with his personality and being appropriate for the weather. He decided to start by crafting a pair of trousers. But first, he had to source the perfect material.
Boswell wanted to go with the untraditional for this project, and so he tapped into a massive collection of military surplus from different countries around the world. He tested a wide range of fabrics until he found exactly what he was looking for, 1950s fatigues from the Belgian Congo. The camouflage of the pants featured a refined design and a sort of “brush stroke” effect. They were perfect.
The fatigues were a terrific find, but that didn’t mean they were going to be easy to transform into the refined, modern men’s trouser that Boswell wanted to create. Initially, the military fabric lacked the fluidity of movement and drape that was needed for the trousers being made.
“They’re battle fatigues,” Boswell pointed out. “So, they’re very thick, not necessarily something you would wear for comfort.”
He needed a creative solution. So to loosen up the fibers, the fatigues were given multiple silicone and stone washes. Then, once he achieved the flowy fabric weight he was aiming for, Boswell created a pair of cropped pants that make a statement.
The result is an impossibly cool pair of pants. The kind you’d never know was sourced from vintage army gear, but would always know was made with the utmost quality and care. Boswell’s work harkens back to a time when refining raw materials into something sophisticated was simply the way the world worked. Like 1800 Tequila, his pants make a statement about what you can do when you put work, craft, and time into a product. You get something cool and stylish. A project that defies expectations.
“They’re comfortable and stylish all in one,” Boswell said simply. “Perfect.”
The trousers were perfect, by being everything that 1800 tequila has always sought in its tequila – authenticity, bold flavor, and quality ingredients. But Boswell’s journey to create the entire ensemble was only just beginning…