Most guys have no idea what a plectrum is, but they might know it by its colloquial name—guitar pick, which is why it’s an appropriate name for Ben Sherman’s newest sub-brand. Plectrum by Ben Sherman draws inspiration from two rock ’n’ roll subcultures: the sharply tailored Mod and the rough-and-tumble Rocker.

As creative director Mark Maidment puts it, this collection is the ultimate mash-up of the two: “We took the idea of mixing together the Mod and the Rocker to create a clash of style cultures that would not normally meet, to make something very fresh and new, but with a nod to two great past style tribes.”

Plectrum accomplishes this with new takes on outerwear, like trench coats with tonal dyed fur collars and café racer jackets with hardy wool bodies and sleek leather sleeves. Bombers are made up in black-and-white buffalo check, while sturdy topcoats are rendered in a subtle shadow plaid pattern. The flash of the Mod is artfully melded with the Rocker’s dark wardrobe. “We mixed fabrics that traditionally did not go together—leather and canvas, leather and nylon, and iridescent twills with shearling collars,” says Maidment.

Ben Sherman will usher in its 50th anniversary in 2013, so it’s only proper that Plectrum tap into its roots. Much of the collection is made in England, and by channeling the two classic British subcultures, it perpetuates the brand’s place in the pantheon of iconic English style.

“We experiment and challenge ourselves every season to come up with new fabrications, new details, and new silhouettes,” Maidment explains. “We try to keep moving whilst not losing a sense of our roots and history.” 

On The Model: Hat $44; Cardigan $25; Coat $795; Pants $50; Shoes $375

All available at

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this story appears in complex's december 2012 / january 2013 issue