Is Barbour International The Same As Barbour?
Welcome to Outdoor and Country‘s exploration of the quintessentially British brand, Barbour. Today, we delve into a question that often arises among enthusiasts and newcomers alike: Is Barbour International the same as Barbour? Let’s unravel the tale behind these two iconic labels.
Barbour: A Legacy of Heritage and Tradition
At the heart of the British countryside, where rolling hills meet quaint villages, lies the birthplace of Barbour. In 1894, John Barbour, an entrepreneurial Scotsman, came across the border and opened the first Barbour store in South Shields, England. The brand quickly became synonymous with quality and craftsmanship. Initially crafting oilskin coats to protect the seafarers and mariners from the worst of the North Sea weather, Barbour’s reputation for durability and protection against the elements spread far and wide. Soon, farmers, labourers and shepherds also opted for Barbour.
Over the decades, Barbour evolved from its humble beginnings into a global phenomenon. Yet, amidst its growth, the brand remained steadfast in its commitment to traditional values and impeccable standards. Today, Barbour continues to produce outerwear and lifestyle garments that seamlessly blend timeless style with modern functionality. You can still shop the classics like the below today.
Barbour International: The Spirit of Adventure and Exploration
In contrast to its parent brand’s rural roots, Barbour International embodies the spirit of urban adventure and motorcycle culture. Established in 1936, the International line was initially designed by Duncan Barbour. He was the third generation of the family and a keen motorcyclist. Duncan introduced into the range a one-piece wax cotton suit called the Barbour International. Developed specifically for the 1936 International Six Day Trials (ISDT) event, hence its name, the Barbour International jacket was born. It became so popular that it was worn by virtually every rider, including Steve McQueen.
The iconic Barbour International jacket, with its biker-inspired design and practical features, quickly gained popularity beyond the realms of motorcycling. Embraced by style-conscious individuals seeking both form and function, the BI range expanded to include a diverse selection of clothing and accessories. You can still shop the originals like the below today.
While both Barbour and Barbour International share the same commitment to quality and craftsmanship, they cater to distinct audiences and aesthetics. Barbour remains rooted in its heritage of country living, offering a range of classic outerwear and clothing suited for rural pursuits and everyday adventures. These are some of the best-sellers from todays full Barbour collection.
On the other hand, Barbour International captures the essence of urban exploration and contemporary style. This collection features edgier designs and modern interpretations of classic pieces. From waxed cotton jackets to quilted gilets, the International range exudes an urban sophistication while staying true to Barbour’s legacy of durability and performance.
In essence, while Barbour and Barbour International are born from the same heritage of craftsmanship and quality, they each carve their own unique identity in the realm of outdoor apparel. Whether you’re drawn to the timeless elegance of Barbour or the urban allure of Barbour International, one thing remains certain: both brands embody the spirit of adventure and discovery that lies at the core of British heritage.
So, the next time you find yourself debating between a classic Barbour waxed jacket or a sleek motorcycle-inspired coat, remember that whether it’s Barbour or Barbour International, you’re choosing more than just outerwear—you’re embracing a legacy of style, quality, and adventure.
If this blog has inspired you to invest in a waxed jacket you can read our blog for Our Guide To The Best Wax Jackets For 2024