When he speaks about the foundation of the brand, Alps & Meters founder Louis Joseph recalls a vintage, shawl-collar ski sweater that he found in an anonymous mountain town during his one of his many ski-fueled trips around the world.
And what that item’s discovery inspired is hardly your average cold weather jacket.
Instead, what it led to is the creation of a set of luxury products that are a throw-back to a time where drinks were stronger and the work days shorter – the impossible cool.
The first round of gear that Joseph and his team just dropped is simple – one jacket, one hat (complete with pom pom) and a neck warmer. The hat and the neck warmer are high-quality wool and warm as you'll ever need, but nothing that’s going to blow you away. The jacket on the other hand, is likely pretty different from anything you’ve seen before.
As far as construction goes, it’s made of wool – not the tech-wear shell that you see on your average ski-jacket. The wool covered in “DuPont Teflon” to keep the water out. The inside is lined with a waterproof membrane and a powder-skirt to keep snow out on the slopes.
Now for looks - this is where things really get interesting. It’s a shawl collar jacket with strategically placed leather patches across the elbow/forearm and shoulders/collar. The inside is shock orange and emblazoned with a huge Alps & Meters logo. They say this is “emergency orange lining” but I’m pretty sure it’s just there because it looks cool. The price point is very high ($1k+) as the brand is aiming for the luxury high-end market.
Room to grow
So, here’s the breakdown. The jacket is warm as hell, and looks damn cool too. There are, however, a few things I’d change in the next rev of the jacket. Firstly, it needs a real locker loop on the inside like other jackets – the one on the back is made of leather and not too obvious. Secondly, the powder belt should be removable, or at least just constructed so that the coat doesn’t billow out too much around it. Finally, the jacket currently runs on the larger side - I'd like too see it structured to be a little truer to size.
Wrapping it all up, it’s awesome to have such an original and creative brand coming out of Boston. They’ve got a great product that’s different from anything on the market with a cool lifestyle aesthetic to go along. With Joseph’s cred from his time at Puma, I’m confident that we’ll start to see Alps & Meters gear pop up around town and on the slope. This is a brand I'll be keeping an eye on over the next year.
In the meantime, I may just have to spend next month’s rent to buy one of my own…