Even before the pandemic made refined loungewear the most glaring hole in otherwise well-dressed men’s wardrobes, CDLP set about filling the void. Having made its name by elevating underpants to the Platonic ideal—comfortable, durable, discreetly sexy—the Swedish brand decided to give leisure clothes the same treatment. As co-founders Cristian Larson and Andreas Palm tell us, their instincts were uncannily on the nose.
“We were actually ready to launch when lockdown started but we pulled the brakes on it,” Larson says. “It was too perfect; it would’ve come across as opportunistic.” Gentlemanly as that decision was, CDLP Home is precisely what many men have spent lockdown longing for (at least as far as matters of dress go). But thankfully, as of today, the wait is over.
Much like CDLP’s underwear, created when Larson and Palm’s search for trunks with design and performance in equal measure left them empty-handed, CDLP Home was born of the two friends’ personal wardrobe grievances. “We’re both at an age where we’re really starting to value time at home and how we behave in that area,” says Larson. And as professionals in a creative field, the line between the duo’s work and home was blurring well before #WFH. They wanted clothing they could feel stylish lounging in but also confident enough to take a video call or head out for a coffee. As Palm puts it: “We don’t want to wear sweatpants but we don’t want to wear a Hugh Hefner silk robe either.”
Their solution? A tailored “home suit” in either a long-sleeved version with pants or a short-sleeved version with shorts, complemented by a natty notched-lapel robe. Design-wise, the collection subtly nods to traditional pajamas of the Hefner variety (piped trim and a languid silhouette) while maintaining CDLP’s Scandi minimalist vibe (that piping and the buttons are all monochromatic). The star player is the fabric: Based on the success of Lyocell, a sustainable textile derived from wood pulp that features in their underwear and T-shirts, the designers worked with their Portuguese mill to develop a Lyocell that is woven rather than knit. The result is a sumptuously soft fabric with a drape and slight sheen that recalls silk but avoids Saturday Night Fever flashiness.
And anyway, looking this good while lounging should feel a little bit decadent. “A T-shirt and sweatpants, that’s always dressing down,” says Larson. “But why should you be dressing down when you get home? Why can’t that be dressing up, in a sense?”
That ethos is brought to life in the corresponding campaign, starring esoteric French musician Sébastien Tellier photographed by Jonas Unger. While all of CDLP’s imagery until this point has featured the founders’ own mates, Larson jokes that they’ve “run out of friends.” As longtime fans of Tellier’s music and singular sense of style, they reached out on a whim and he gladly obliged. Coincidentally, his latest album (released in May) is titled Domesticated, a nickname assigned by his friend Sofia Coppola upon observing Tellier’s shift from rocker antics to stay-at-home dad propriety.
Photographed in Paris during lockdown, the campaign depicts a handsomely attired Tellier going about such mundane tasks as pumping gas and barbecuing. In a case of life imitating art, the past few months have afforded Larson and Palm ample opportunity to test-drive their latest collection. Back in Stockholm, CDLP Home has become something of a company uniform. “The whole team has been wearing them,” says Palm. “Seeing them all in their suits on Zoom, [the collection] looks really, really nice.”
As restrictions have eased, the collection has made its way out of the house and into the world. The founders already knew the designs were a home run in their own abodes, but seeing how well the pieces translate to everyday life has been a bonus. Larson says his go-to all summer has been the short suit in blue, while Palm is partial to the long version in burgundy: “I wore it to the office with sneakers, I can wear it out for a drink or to bring the trash out.” Any item of clothing that can comfortably tick all those boxes is certainly a welcome addition to any man’s home.