Gloverall: The Harold Jean
The humble duffle coat is an icon of twentieth century menswear. Gaining popularity during the Second World War when Royal Navy sailors wore the garment on the bridge of destroyers in the depths of the cold Atlantic, the duffle coat really came into its own during the post-war years. When piles of military surplus became readily available after 1945, the civilian market responded. One business that reaped the profits and recognised the coats popularity was Gloves & Overall wholesalers, H&F Morris.
Harold Morris was the son of a master tailor and having seen the popularity of the surplus duffle coat, decided (along with business partner Freda) to produce their own duffle coats. The new company would go on to become synonymous with this garment for decades, its name: Gloverall. Refining the military issue jacket with leather trims as opposed to heavy duty jute rope as a fastener and an internal check fabric, the modern duffle coat is born.
Over the decades, Gloverall continued to outfit men and women in classic outerwear, with the brand becoming internationally recognised with markets from the United Kingdom to the Far East. Arguably the most iconic duffle coat offered by the brand is the ‘Monty’, a knee length coat with hood, two front patch pockets and toggle closure. Named after the famous British commander of WWII – who was frequently seen in a duffle coat of the same style during the war years – the ‘Monty’ is still made in England by Gloverall today.
So you’re probably wondering what the hell this has to do with denim? And you’d be right to question that, but have faith. This Autumn / Winter, Gloverall has stepped into a new market and has applied the same time honoured approach which has served the brand well for the last 70 years. Looking towards the past for inspiration, the Harold Jean is named after the co- founder of the brand Harold Morris and is the first denim offering from the Northampton based outfitter.
Made from a raw 13oz selvedge denim, the Harold is a classic 5 pocket workwear fit with a relaxed top block and features selvedge belt loops and a vegetable tanned leather patch. The jeans themselves are proudly made in Manchester by skilled workers, in a factory that was established in 1860. The Harold Jean is an affordable heritage jean which is steeped in the history which the brand is known for. With no fancy trimmings or gimmicks, Gloverall are continuing to do what they’ve always done; make no-nonsense garments which are fit for the rigors of everyday life. But that’s not to say that style is lacking, quite the opposite. This is a contemporary silhouette which can be dressed up or dressed down, but very much leaves the wearer to create their own path with unique fades and denim evolution. So pack up your kit bag, throw on your duffle coat and break in your Harold Jeans as a testament to this heritage heavyweight.