Brand Focus: Schott NYC
Standing the test of time to maintain it’s position among a select few as one of America’s true heritage brands, to this day Schott NYC still proudly manufacture the majority of their textiles in the US.
Founded by brothers Jack and Irving in 1913, the first garment produced by the pair was a raincoat, created in the basement of their house and then sold door to door. These humble beginnings set the foundation for the brothers, later innovating clothing fastening systems by putting the first ever zipper on a jacket. The ‘Perfecto’ range of jackets from the first few years of production took their namesake from Irvings favourite cigar.
Undeniably, one of the most iconic pieces from Schott’s back catalogue is their leather Motorcycle Jacket, the first the world had seen and produced in 1928, it was created to be hardwearing and designed for protection against accidental falls. The jacket was quickly embraced by the motorcycle community and soon morphed itself into a symbol of rebellion for the youth during the mid 1950’s after being worn by actor Marlon Brando in cult movie ‘The Wild One’.
As with all fashion trends that send tremors of loss of control throughout the education system, the jackets were soon banned from schools to discourage their students from adopting the hoodlum image. Another key icon associated with being a cinematic badass was actor James Dean, who tragically died in an automobile accident in 1955, which ironically catapulted the popularity of the Perfecto Bike Jacket in memory of his loss.
Quickly backtracking to a period before the mainstream acquisition , Schott’s most important commission of the time came the moment the world fell into international dispute during World War II. The US Air Force asked the brothers to create a rugged Bomber Jacket to serve their pilots during the period of conflict while in the air. Also at sea level, the Melton wool Naval Peacoat was born, produced using a combination of wool and leather trim, the brief was to create something resilient to keep crew both warm and protected against the harsh sea winds.
Continuing with it’s streak against the establishment via it’s subcultural association, the leather jacket found itself on the backs of one of the most controversial movement of the 70’s & 80’s, Punk. Scolded by parents and the government alike, the anarchic attitude of the Punk of the time was what attracted youth the most. Flicking the V’s to your parents was what every kid dreamt of, and the slick black leather and silver zip combination was the perfect accompaniment as a uniform for trouble. Famous stalwarts of the Punk scene recognised for adorning the jacket came in the form of The Ramones, Blondie, Joan Jett and The Sex Pistols.
Later on in it’s life with the development of international trade, Schott expanded it’s product line to include nylon outerwear, knitted garments and sportswear. Production which is kept within America has always been a revered element in a brands appeal, which Schott were very proud to continue to announce with many others seeking asian production en masse.
Updating the brand to cater for the more discerning streetwear customer, in recent years Schott NYC have collaborated with foundation brands including Supreme, Stüssy and A Bathing Ape to allow them to put their modern day interpretation on some of their classic back catalogue pieces to cater for a different consumer.
More recently, Schott found itself once again propelled into the spotlight when Kanye & Kim commissioned matching customised 'Just Married' Perfecto's to be created to wear for their wedding photographs.
Shop our current selection of Schott NYC apparel online here.