History You Can Wear
The C.C. Filson Collection
Including the ($685)
Filson, the 117-year-old Seattle company that started out as the outfitter for Washington's timber loggers and has since become the standby for just about everyone who goes outside, is taking a great leap forward this fall—by looking back. The storied American label has partnered with British designer and historian Nigel Cabourn, who's known among the luxury-fashion crowd for his own brand of meticulously researched World War I– and World War II–style outerwear. (For his collection, inspired by Robert Falcon Scott's doomed 1912 South Pole expedition, Cabourn pored over photos from the trek, sourced archival jackets, tracked down original materials, and resurrected pieces that hadn't existed for 100 years.) Together they've created the C.C. Filson Collection, a special, historically minded line of fall jackets inspired by the Filson archive.
Our favorite from the collection, the Work Cape Jacket, is based on a 1930s Filson Cruiser that Cabourn and Filson CEO Alan Kirk tracked down in a vintage shop in Japan. The new coat, like the original, has mismatched pocketing and is layered with water-repellent waxed-cotton fabric. Cabourn added his own twist, replacing buttons on the upper half with World War II–era clip closures that you'd typically find on a fireman's jacket, making it easier to open and close the jacket with gloves on. He switched out the original cotton-canvas base and lining with extra-warm wool from Pendleton, the Oregon-based mill that has been churning out classic American blankets longer than Filson's been making jackets. As a final touch, the label inside each jacket is a replica of the one stitched on the company's first coats 100 years ago, and signed by Cabourn himself.
The collection is still very much a part of the Filson brand your grandpa swore by. The jackets are manufactured by the same workers in the same Seattle facility. And they can take a beating as well as anything else Filson makes. Because there's no point in wearing something with so much history if you can't imbue it with a little of your own.