Pete the penguin revisited in comic form

Original Penguin has teamed up with London-based artist Jethro Haynes to bring the origin story of its mascot, Pete the Penguin, to life.

Haynes used a 1950s comic strip style to tell how Pete lost — then got back — his head, and the brand gained a mascot.

No more WWD

According to company lore, traveling salesman Abbot Pederson picked up a penguin from a taxidermy shop in New York City as a drinking companion for an upcoming robbery. He named him Pete. After a few cocktails on the plane, he accidentally knocked Pete’s head off, but a kind flight attendant reattached it using Pederson’s bow tie – and a logo was born.

Haynes ran with the story and created a cartoon illustrating the tale, which is used on 19 pieces in an Original Penguin x Jethro Haynes collection. The line includes short and long sleeve t-shirts, polo shirts with left chest crest and all over print, graphic hoodies, short sleeve button down shirts, swimwear and a rain jacket with a printed lining.

The capsule features illustrations of Pete the Penguin.

The capsule features illustrations of Pete the Penguin.

“I really enjoyed illustrating Original Penguin’s quirky origin story for this collection,” Haynes said. “I went for a 1950s comic book style with my own twist to add a visual time stamp to the funny, improbable and unique story. Although in 2022 Pete’s inspiration should be left unpranked, waddling southern hemisphere and still timelessly cool.

Prices range from $45 to $165, and the collection will be sold online as well as at Original Penguin stores on Lincoln Road and at the airport in Miami, Florida.

Haynes is a multidisciplinary artist working with illustration, animation, typography, model making, sculpture, art direction and wildlife photography.

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