Nothing warms the more tribal portions of the Hub heart like watching local businesses joining together Avengers style.
Better (especially on the cusp of slopes-season around New England) is when the assemblage of Mass-based brands wants nothing more than to outfit you in ski gear worthy of the deep alpine history the region holds so dear.
Enter Alps & Meters, the Boston based sportswear company founded by a former global director of strategy and innovation at Puma, who is throwing an all-day sartorial mixer at famed Newton family-owned house of posh menswear Mr. Sid on Saturday from 9am-6pm at their Centre Street shop.
But along with the wares of the house, and the tailored alpine gear from the organizer, Middleborough legacy family owned Alden Shoe Company will be there, along with Randolph Engineering and their military-spec aviator shades, and even Frank Clegg items from the family owned, Fall River-based luxury leatherworks company. And they want to give away a head-to-toe product shower to those attending.
And there’s the obvious pattern here: Mass-based makers with deep local history and rep for quality gear made right. But while the collaboration is hashtagged #masscrafted, the irony that Alps & Meters manufacture overseas – the company designs products out of their Seaport HQ, and there’s a Newbury Street retail pop-up opening Dec 7-23rd – isn’t lost on marketing director Zari Sadri. She says the outsourcing to China, Vietnam, and Turkey comes down to manufacturing capacity. At present the company focuses only on menswear, but Sadri said they’ll be outfitting women come winter 2018.
“Massachusetts has rich manufacturing background, but no one is doing in the States what we require for creating tech-forward ski apparel,” Sadri says. “The manufacturing capacity isn’t there. We’d love to find sources to make things domestically in Mass.”
Having said that, the event still aims to mesh the history of tailoring and sharp suiting Mr. Sid is known for and Alps & Meters similar MO for fitting and tailoring tradition-meets-tech jackets and alpine gear, inspired by vintage photos of the Dartmouth Outing Club (the first people to ski Mt. Washington) and even the famed 10th Mountain Division. The latter being the elite mountain division of WWII US armed forces who returned from WWII (shipped over to fight Nazis in Europe’s mountain terrain) and wound up launching the Vail and Aspen alpine industry, as well as the National Ski Patrol.
As a bonus there will even be gratis Autumn cocktails on hand, and, to sate the rowdy hunger such hyperlocal consumerism conjures, a spread of charcuterie and killer products from Waltham’s famed Moody’s Delicatessen.
No day-shopping effort should be without a salted cured meats finish. Ever.