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Avedon & Colby: Reinvent the classic Willis & Geiger African safari bush jacket

Contact: harrycampbell@campbell-lacoste.com

(Black Earth, WI) Leave it to Burt Avedon and Susan Colby to reinvent the iconic 1939 Willis & Geiger African Safari Bush Jacket. Styled after British Army tunics worn throughout the tropics during the early 20th Century, the original Willis & Geiger African safari bush jacket quickly became the uniform of choice among professional hunters, trackers, explorers and photographers.

Now, drawing on his first-hand experience working with A.P.H.A. (African Professional Hunters Assoc.), African game warden groups, game species preservation groups and regional anti-poaching projects, Burt Avedon, he long-time president of Willis & Geiger, envisioned a dramatically improved version of the original W&G bush jacket. Working with Susan Colby, the head designer at Willis & Geiger for over 10 years, they have literally reinvented the African bush jacket with all-new performance and comfort features never even imagined by those early African adventurers.

The result is the new Avedon & Colby Signature African Safari Bush Jacket -- a state-of-the-art improvement in field functionality and comfort -- that maintains the classic look, feel and functionality of the original. Finely tailored in Hong Kong by a long-time manufacturing partner from Burt and Susan's Willis & Geiger days, the Signature Safari Bush Jacket is at home at a casual day at the office or club as it is on the African savannah.

New performance features include:

Multi-Purpose Cargo Pockets: Spacious, full-bellows cargo pockets feature hand-entry pockets behind them.

Tuck-In Pocket Flaps (a Signature Feature): All four front pocket flaps are designed with unique side notches to tuck into the open pockets without puckering to prevent snagging on a rifle or shotgun butt.

Zippered Security Pockets (a Signature Feature): Concealed brass zippers secure two “drop behind” hidden pockets behind breast pockets for safekeeping a cell phone, passport, cash, wallet or other valuables. Reinforcing cloth panels sewn on the inside of the jacket support the zippers to prevent sagging.

Interior Security Pockets: Two spacious, button-secured interior pockets are roomy enough for maps, travel documents or an oversized cell phone.

Functional Epaulets: Reinforced X-box secured epaulets with keeper guides keep canteen and camera straps comfortably high on the shoulder.

Side Panels (a Signature Feature): Tailored side panels replace traditional side seams (which are cheaper to sew) to separate the front and rear jacket panels and prevent transfer of torque so the jacket does not twist or pull when climbing, crawling or pulling.

Articulated Elbows (a Signature Feature): A sequence of small pleats at the elbows help prevent the jacket cuffs from pulling back and binding when bending arms for shooting, fly casting or using binoculars.

Bi-Swing Shoulder Pleats: Unique side "stride" vents and bi-swing shoulder pleats add comfort and freedom of movement.

Classic, Notched Collar: Traditional collar features military zigzag stitching (a Signature Feature) for turn-up support to protect the back of neck from sun and wind.

Sleeve Roll Tabs (a Signature Feature): Extra-long concealed sleeve roll tab loops, exterior buttons and a full 7" sleeve placket accommodate rolling up jacket sleeves without binding at the cuffs.

Horn & Urea Buttons: Stronger and more durable than traditional horn buttons, these unique buttons are molded from ground horn powder and urea-methanol resin to withstand harsh washing on rocks (when on safari) or high-temperature commercial presses (back home). Raised button rims protect the thread from abrasion.

Signature Bush Poplin: 100% long-staple cotton that's distinguished by its light, compact weave of high-twist yarn.

Available in Men's M - 2XL in traditional khaki or pewter and retailing for $239, the new Signature African Safari Bush Jacket can be ordered on the Avedon & Colby website: www.avedoncolby.com.

About Avedon & Colby

Burt Avedon: Burt purchased the original Willis & Geiger in 1978 after it went bankrupt following the collapse of Abercrombie & Fitch, the company's largest customer. After a distinguished career as a Navy fighter pilot serving in combat during both World War II and Korea – and later as a Top Gun instructor and a bush pilot/professional hunter in British East Africa, Burt set about to revive the bankrupt company by re-introducing improved and entirely new versions of many of the iconic Willis & Geiger styles that had so capably outfitted adventurers and explorers like Teddy Roosevelt, Ernest Hemingway, Charles Lindbergh, Amelia Earhart, and others. When Land’s End closed Willis & Geiger in 1999 during a company-wide downsizing, Burt and Susan Colby launched their design and consulting firm, Avedon & Colby, to create premium performance wear and accessories for leading outdoor and lifestyle brands.

Susan Colby: Susan joined Burt at Willis & Geiger in 1986 with an art degree from Smith College following a successful career as a member of Westinghouse’s Design Center, Associated Merchandising Corporation, and finally as a designer and buyer at Paul Stuart/NYC. Together, Burt and Susan designed garments and accessories for Willis & Geiger that blended the classic good taste of a bygone era of wilderness exploration with high-performance features never before seen by outdoor enthusiasts. They continued this tradition after the close of Willis & Geiger, designing premium-performance clothing and accessories for leading outdoor and lifestyle brands like Orvis, Beretta, Woolrich, King Ranch, Kevin’s and Eddie Bauer.


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