Course of Style: Adidas Introduces Elegance

AdiPURE golf apparel
AdiPURE sanded golf shirt and wool trousers

Adidas, a brand long associated, if not synonymous, with the athletic performance look, begins the new year with a new elegant, high-end golf fashion line called AdiPURE (in honor of the founder of Adidas, Adolf "Adi" Dassler). The small capsule collection has the kind of polished style designed to appeal to the country club customer — with nary a three-stripe logo in sight.

The centerpieces of the AdiPURE line are a "sanded" golf polo shirt, made of a fabric processed to give it an exceptionally smooth and silky feel, and performance-wool trousers, a mixture of CoolMax and worsted wool, in silver or black. There are also sweaters, rainwear, and shoes.

The clothes are a bit dressier than Adidas Golf's usual offerings and cost slightly more than you would pay for an Adidas shirt or trousers pulled off the rack at Golf Galaxy. The sanded golf shirts will run $90, the wool trousers $140 (photo). But you won't find them everywhere. The AdiPURE line is to be sold only at green-grass retailers (that is, pro shops), beginning in March.

As part of its foray into a more exclusive market, the Adidas Golf design team paid careful attention to tailoring details. Shirt collars have been redesigned for greater neck comfort, and shirt fronts feature a four-button placket, instead of the more typical three, to evoke the prevailing seventies-style golf esthetic. Trousers are sleek and flat front — and could easily be worn to the office.

"We brought in an Italian tailor to work with us," said Patricia Dahan, senior design director for global apparel at Adidas.

The AdiPURE clothing is in addition to the regular, somewhat less expensive Adidas Golf clothes that will continue to be sold at golf specialty retailers, like Golf Galaxy and Dick's Sporting Goods. Like Lexus to Toyota, AdiPURE will have a more limited distribution, reflecting the company's more upscale ambitions.

Former LPGA Pro Joins Sunice
Caroline Gowan, a former LPGA player, has been hired by Sunice, a maker of technical outerwear for golf, as strategic accounts manager. Sunice is a unit of Fletcher Leisure Group, based in Montreal, Quebec. According to the company's announcement, Gowan will join the Sunice sales team and serve as a liaison to the PGA Tour, the Champions Tour, the LPGA Tour and the Nationwide Tour, developing strategic initiatives. Previously, Gowan managed Zero Restriction's U.S. tour business for eight years. Gowan retired from the LPGA Tour in 2001 after a 17-year career.

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