HISTORY OF THE SHU
Photo: SHU archive
The classic raincoat is probably the most recognizable SHU model. A waterproof raincoat with metal press buttons has always been associated not only with the brand, but also with the city of St. Petersburg itself where it was created. For eight years, the raincoat has appeared in more than 50 shades, while its design has always remained unchanged.
This season, the classic raincoat is presented for the last time, so we decided to tell the story how it was created and bring back the brightest moments related to this legendary model.
“The coat as a symbol where it all started.”
In 2012, Andrey Kravtsov sewed the first raincoat. The idea of creating a bright and waterproof raincoat came to Andrey when once again he was coming back home from the night shift at a car factory in the rain.
It took three weeks to think it through: during that time, Andrey came up with a design, learned how to sew and created his first raincoat. After that, Andrey quit the factory and released the first series of four raincoats. The first raincoat was sold on April 1, 2012, so since then the history of the SHU brand began.
For eight years, the design of the raincoat has not changed much - a simple silhouette, a hood and two patch pockets. Before creating the raincoat, Andrey had visited the exhibition, where he saw a photograph of Viktor Tsoi in a typical bologna raincoat with press buttons. Andrey got inspiration from the aesthetics of Soviet jackets, where, regardless of the color of the fabric, there were always the same press buttons of metallic color. Thanks to this, branded metal buttons appeared on the raincoat.
In its first versions the raincoat went with a silver-coated lining, but soon Andrey refused from that idea. From season to season, the production technology was improving and the raincoat became more technologically advanced and better quality. Now the classic raincoat is made of membrane fabric, with completely tight seams.
The raincoat was designed at a small studio on Nevsky Prospect to the album of the band “Zorge”. This music inspired Andrey so much that he decided to thank and present one of the first samples of the raincoat to the band’s frontman Evgeny Fedorov.
Andrey had no money to get into the concert, but he was able to persuade a security guard at the concert to let him into the dressing room. In a few years at the music festival Andrey ran across Evgeny Fedorov, who was wearing that very raincoat he had given him. Now the raincoat with the signature of the musician is exposed in the SHU store in Loft Project ETAGI, Saint-Petersburg.
The story of Evgeny Fedorov marked a start for a whole series of unique raincoats that were presented to musicians. SHU for KROVOSTOK, SHU for KORN, SHU for XIU XIU, SHU for ALAI OLI, SHU for NOIZE MC, SHU for SUNSAY and others. This is how the idea to make a special collection was born, where everyone can write in their name or the name of the one whom a raincoat is presented to.
In 2013 SHU launched the first kids collection of classic raincoats.
UPDATE YOUR SHU
In 2014, a promo was launched to exchange items from old SHU collections for a new model with a discount. For six years, more than 200 classic raincoats with messages and drawings by the people, who were wearing them, have been collected in the brand’s archive. Each item is a personal story that the SHU team carefully keeps in its archive collection.
In 2015, Andrey left for China to find and set up local production. In the same year, the SHU launched the collection, completely made in Guangzhou. It was a big breakthrough for the brand: the transition from one-unit to large-scale production, the use of special membrane fabric, the latest technology and the elaboration on our own colors. In the new collection, the yellow raincoat was introduced for the first time, and later on it became the true hit of the brand. It became a must-buy before a trip to Iceland, many Petersburgers would wear it and namely that model got associated with the city.
TIMUR NOVIKOV Х SHU
In 2016, SHU released a limited collection of raincoats with some prints by Timur Novikov. The idea came after visiting the Manifesto 10, where the exposition of the Leningrad-based artist was shown.
After that, Andrey met Maria, Novikov’s daughter, who had given her consent to release the collection. Not only did Maria provide Novikov’s original works, but also she introduced the children and grandchildren of the dissident artists of the 80s who took part in the shooting of the lookbook with the original canvases as the background. The very first coat from the collection was presented by Andrey to Sergey Bugaev-Africa for his fiftieth birthday. Then he said very important words to Andrey: "Timur would be very glad to see that his work continues to live in such a form."
In the same year, SHU launched a version of the classic raincoat made of reflective fabric in a mini collection of just 50 pieces.
For the fifth anniversary of the brand, SHU released a limited collection of raincoats with that very silver lining that was in the first samples of the raincoat.
There was a letter printed on the inside, in which Andrey told the story how the raincoat was created and how the brand started. Also, each buyer was given a book about the brand, specially created for the anniversary of SHU.
In 2018, SHU made collaboration with the AF BREW brewery in St. Petersburg. A limited collection of imperial stout was released - a can of beer with maple flavor. As well as classic raincoats were presented in the same concept - in black and maple shades.
In 2019, the SHU team went to shoot a lookbook in Iceland. The main characters were the artist Aron Bergmann Magnússon and the musician Högni Egilsson from the electronic group GusGus.
LAST RELEASE OF CLASSIC RAINCOAT
This season, the classic raincoat is presented in the SHU collection for the last time. It was a long and exciting journey. The brand’s story began with the classic raincoat, thanks to it we met a lot of significant and interesting people, made interesting collaborations. Now we are ready for a new stage and want the raincoat to stay a symbol of the brand.
We know that this model has many loyal fans who have been wearing it for many years, so it was important for us to announce the latest issue of the coat so you all know about it.
Now the classic raincoat is still available in nine different colors.
Thanks to everyone who has been loyal and true-hearted to this model for years and has been with us for all this time.
So many new interesting things are coming!
Andrey Kravtsov and the SHU team