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Arnold Palmer Teeing Up Apparel

The legendary golfer will reintroduce his men’s golf collection in the U.S. in 2012.

Arnold Palmer is preparing for a comeback.

This story first appeared in the March 23, 2011 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

The legendary golfer will reveal today that he has signed a five-year license with Quagmire Golf to reintroduce his men’s golf collection in the U.S. in 2012. The brand has been absent from the American market for over a year after a licensing deal with Tehama was discontinued. The announcement will be made at the Arnold Palmer Invitational golf tournament in Orlando, Fla.

The Quagmire-designed collection will be marketed under the name Arnie and targeted to better green grass stores, off-course golf retailers and major department stores. The Arnold Palmer collection, which is skewed to an older demographic, will continue to be sold at all Sears Canada stores and is unrelated to this deal.

Geoff Tait, co-founder of Quagmire Golf and creative director of Arnie, said the collection will be “designed around what he wore in his heyday.” It was developed after hours of researching Palmer’s personal library of photographs from the Fifties, Sixties and Seventies. The line will have three components and deliveries. The first, launching next February, will be the 1950s Collection, which offers shirts defined by short plackets, small collars and shorter sleeves, along with fitted pants. Red will be the primary color. “It’s very Munsingwear-like,” Tait said.

Next April, the 1960s Collection will launch with wider collars and longer plackets on the shirts and wider-legged pants. It will be based around the color blue. The July delivery, the 1970s Collection, will feature shirts with slightly wider collars and long plackets, and pants with a modern boot cut. Gray will be the signature color.

The logo will feature Palmer’s signature umbrella in black and white with the Arnie name. “Everything, from the new two-color variation of the Arnold Palmer umbrella to the fits and details, was a collaborative process,” said Bobby Pasternak, co-founder of Quagmire and director of operations for Arnie.

Tait said all the product will feature performance fabrics to appeal to the modern golfer. Prices will start at $79 retail for a polo. Pants will sell for around $99 and shorts will be $89. “It’s affordable, but we want it to be sold in premium stores,” he said.

Palmer was recently ranked one of “The 25 Coolest Athletes of All Time” by GQ, which previously named him one of the “50 Most Stylish Men of the Past 50 Years.” He was also honored as one of “The 75 Best Dressed Men of All Time” by Esquire magazine.

“The Arnie line of apparel represents the styles of clothing that are as popular today as they were in the earlier part of my career,” said Palmer.

The Toronto-based Quagmire Golf was founded in 2005 and merchandises men’s, women’s and children’s golf and lifestyle apparel in North America.