From the rail roads to the street scene, over the past 120 years Carhartt have become a staple brand in the streetwear scene with sought after products and a strong brand ethos that champions durability, style and quality.
In the early days in Detroit, founder Hamilton Carhartt employed a unionized work force to manufacture duck cotton overalls. Today the Carhartt’s still run the business, offering heavy duty garments that promise the same standard of quality to a slightly bigger client base.
Carhartt started in 1889 and was the brain child of Hamilton Carhartt. In the beginning the company only had 5 employees who worked in a dusty old attic in the heart of Detroit and with 4 sewing machines. These were the foundations for one of the greatest American brands.
Carhartt started out producing cotton duck overalls, a heavy woven canvas fabric, aimed at Detroit’s blue collar workers. At that time, Detroit was the industrial hub of America, and there was high demand for the utilitarian, heavy duty work wear. The ‘Union Made’ label stitched into each pair of Carhartt duck overalls was a guarantee that made the products so appealing to the blue collar work force they were aimed at and cemented Carhartt’s quality and reputation among its customers.
In 1994, Edwin Faeh established his project ‘Work in Progress’ and became the first distributor of Carhartt in Europe allowing the brand a greater bearing and outreach in the European market. The ’90s saw a rise in interest and popularity for supporting the independent street art and music scene. As urban youth subcultures took off the ground, Carhartt WIP came to prominence as the brand that clothed its dignitaries.
Since day one Carhartt WIP cottoned onto how investing in art and music cultural movements could promote their clothing and enhance sales. Combining their ideas linked with the scene and Hamilton’s original pursuit for high quality, durable clothing, Carhartt WIP have come to the forefront of street and work wear.
Shop the Carhartt WIP collection here.