At Side Alley we’ve been collectors of vintage garments for a long time. We love hoodies and when we decided to do our own hoodie, it wasn’t an easy task.
Traditionally hoodies were built to last but, unfortunately, as the years went by and the clothing industry and the demand grew, the quality of the garments went down. Clothing became more disposable. That’s why we wanted to make our own hoodie. A hoodie that would be built to last like the first “modern” hoodies of the 1930s. A hoodie that you could keep for years, even forever, a hoodie that you could repair and pass on to others, if not needed anymore. A hoodie that would fit your needs.
The hooded sweatshirt as we know today originated as a work / athletic garment in the 1930s in NYC to protect the wearers against the elements and was first produced by Champion. As the years went by and the clothing industry grew, hoodies became more popular all around the world. In the 1930s the hoodie fit was more boxy, as many other fits those days. A hoodie was (and still is) a perfect and simple garment for the workers, athletes, and everyone else dealing with the harsher conditions and / or when just simply wanting an all-around garment for hanging out.
When designing our own hoodie we went through different archives of well built, made in USA and made in Japan hoodies for inspiration. Although we love the boxier fits of the 30s-60s, we wanted our hoodie to fit the times we live in now.
That’s why we went with a bit slimmer and longer fitting hoodie that could also be used in an oversized and boxier manner if sized 1 or 2 sizes up from your regular size. A bit more modern fit / take that would still respect and be inspired by the olden days.
When choosing the fabric for our hoodie, we wanted to have 100% cotton – the traditional way. We like to use natural ingredients as building blocks, and are not the biggest fans of acrylic/cotton mixes, for example. That’s why we chose all cotton hoodies.
We also wanted our hoodie to be thick. These days, basic sweatshirts and hoodies are usually somewhere around 180-280gsm in thickness. But that’s not how it used to be when the hoodies were made to last. Therefore we wanted to use a thicker fabric. We settled for 420gsm – thick enough and warm, but not too thick for being uncomfortable when worn. At first we also considered about doing a loopwheeled hoodie (in short: no side seams) but went with a bit more modern twist on that as well, and did a hoodie with side seams.
We are proud to present our Essential hoodie, a simple garment made to last. We encourage you to use it as you please, as much as you can, and repair if broken.