by Robert W. Stolz
September 30, 2019
Back in 2017 I had a crazy idea. I thought, 'Wouldn't it be cool to bring the Austrian style to America by producing Austrian Sweaters in the U.S.A. with authentic pure Austrian boiled wool?'
As you might know, ALL of our Loden coats have so far been made exclusively in Europe, by expert artisan sewers with only the best quality Austrian or German Loden wool fabrics and one look at our customer reviews leaves no doubt as to their quality.
But I wondered, 'is there anyone in the U.S.A. that can match the quality tailoring of our European partners?'
That question led me on a journey to explore the state of textile manufacturing in the U.S.A. Let me say it was not easy to find a reliable partner in the U.S.A. that had the knowledge and dedication to quality needed for our carefully tailored products, but eventually I found what I was looking for in Alabama of all places at On Point Manufacturing (OPM).
Robert W. Stolz on the factory floor at OPM
Unlike virtually every other factory in the world, OPM specializes in on demand production, basically single unit custom made products. Over the last 18 months, Robert W. Stolz and OPM have worked very hard to develop the first ever collection of men and women’s Austrian Jackets, Austrian Sweaters, Hoodies and Vests – all made in the U.S.A. out of premium 100% boiled wool fabric imported from Tirol, Austria from the boiled wool specialists at Gottstein.
Aerial photo of the Gottstein Mill in Tirol, Austria
Producing one Austrian sweater, jacket, cardigan, hoodie or vest at a time has many advantages. For example we can offer inclusive sizing! Inclusive sizing is a no brainer. Need extra-long/short sleeves? No problem! Petite sizes, plus sizes, regular sizes . . . we’ve got you covered. Our standard men's sizes run from 34 - 62 and women's sizes run from 0 - 28.
Over the years I’ve heard from so many customers struggling to find the perfect fit in outerwear because they had an unusual size that most brands ignored. No matter how tall, short, wide or thin you are, we can make a perfectly fitting Austrian sweater or jacket and at an affordable price.
Another benefit is that it enables us to offer you a tremendous selection of colors, styles and custom options that we could never afford to carry on stock. Would you like to personalize your jacket with a custom body/trim color combo? No problem!
The icing on the cake is that single unit clothing production is highly sustainable and we love that! As a green fashion company dedicated to sustainability this was a home run. Why? Because producing custom-made clothing means there is never any excess production and you get exactly what you want. Not that we would ever do this anyways, but did you know that big fashion brands destroy billions of dollars’ worth of unsold merchandise every year? Just google: “fashion industry burning clothes” and you’ll get quite a shock.
For us, quality and eco-friendly go hand in hand. Doing our part to promote sustainable fashion requires a holistic approach that means not only using pure renewable materials like wool, but also ensuring our mills and factories adhere to sustainability practices as well. Just as important, we produce garments that will stand the test of time both physically and stylistically. Our timeless styles never go out of fashion. It’s the ultimate recipe for environmentally conscious fashion.
Ordering a custom-made jacket is just as easy as ordering any of our finished products. Just browse the available styles at this URL: https://www.robertwstolz.com/collections/100-boiled-wool-jackets or click any of the images below. Choose the style you like, consult the size chart, pick your size & color, add it to the cart and place the order! It’s that easy. Your jacket will be cut & sewn in 5-10 days and ship straight to you.
If you want a size not shown on the size chart, like longer or shorter sleeve lengths and/or longer or shorter body lengths, just send us an email or give us a call with your desired lengths and we’ll take care of the rest.
Phone: Sun-Fri 10am - 8pm eastern time 860-748-4478
Robert W. Stolz testing out a 1st sample in Saalbach, Austria
In keeping with our tradition of offering functional performance fashion, the customer experience wearing the jackets was the guiding light in designing the fit and construction. The first samples were rigorously tested in the Alps by my wife and me last February.
The aesthetics reflect their Austrian-American heritage by offering a mix of traditional Austrian styles and modern upscale casual designs. In addition to using a pure boiled wool fabric from Tirol, special care was used in choosing buttons and trim.
For example, the Men’s Hunter Jacket 103 (below) has authentic deer antler buttons (Hirsch Knöpfe) with a mandarin style collar and no trim. Shown here in brown:
However, the beautiful blue mélange used in the Men’s Boiled Wool Hoodie 201 (below) gives this sporty model a major aesthetic boost. Shown in blue:
The women’s styles also offer subtle details like 2nd button which has an eagle set on an antler button, featured on the Women’s Boiled Wool Sweater 202 in red:
The Women’s Felted Wool Cardigan 204 in gray:
One of the most distinguishing traits of the collection is the stunning mélange fabrics knit and ‘boiled’ (fulled) by the Tirolean ‘walker’ Gottstein in the heart of the Alps and which comes in brown, blue, red and gray, (shown above) as well as green, light blue, orange and tan, as shown in these examples:
Men's Bavarian 5 Button Cardigan (green)
Women's Boiled Wool Hoodie (light blue)
Whether you’re looking to add a bit of fashionable performance to your everyday wardrobe or you’d like to complete an outfit for holiday parties this season, these designs offer a range of up-casual styles that you can be pretty sure nobody else will be wearing.
Best regards from Austria,
Robert W. Stolz