From the streets of Detroit to cities the world over, Carhartt's outerwear have become icons of both work and play since Hamilton Carhartt developed his first pair of overalls for railroad engineers in 1889. Proudly sporting a union-made label, Carhartt's working-class origins and their straightforward, rugged clothing—produced in humane conditions and utilising their trademark denim and waterproof "duck" canvas—appealed to youth as an authentic expression of their style. Beginning with graffiti artists, musicians, BMX riders and skateboarders in American cities in the 1980s, the brand soon drew an audience from the rest of the world.
Under the Carhartt Work In Progress label, a product range designed exclusively for Europe followed in 1997. In an atelier in Basel, Switzerland, the original workwear cuts were re-interpreted and re-fitted for the demands of an active life in the urban environment, and reshaped Carhartt for a new generation of consumers. True to Carhartt's core values the Basel studio began engaging luminaries in the fashion and streetwear worlds. With collaborations with brands like A Bathing Ape, Supreme and Hiroshi Fujiwara/Fragment, Carhartt has gone a long way into creating a new lifestyle. Carhartt has become Europe's largest streetwear brand, and their network of over 90 Work in Progress shops are anchored by flagship stores in some of the world's hippest shopping districts. This book provides access to never before seen photography of Carhartt's designs, sketches, and concept renderings.