Hi, I’m Nick, the founder of FRAHM. I’m incredibly proud of this jacket - the first I designed and the first we launched.
Are you thinking of buying aUtility Field Jacket but unclear what the big deal is? Not heard of us? - Hardly surprising given we launched in the Summer of 2018. Here’s everything you need to know.
The what, why, how, when and who of it all.
Military Green with twin needle stitched cargo pockets for strength and custom hardened stainless steel metalwork.
I’d always wanted to make a Field Jacket. I love the utilitarian design of this British classic. It works and it looks awesome. A field jacket was always going be our first launch. I was very clear about what it would be, I’d be research and designing this thing for years.
What I also saw from a business opportunity point of view, is that the Big Brands are taking the proverbials. Stellar growth AND profit overrides quality, service and longevity. They are demanding a high price for an increasingly inferior, margin-heavy product, banking on past brand glories. It’s not on. But, good for us - now we can do even better, knowing customers are looking for an alternative. Plus, it’s so much more FUN doing it this way.
First, I needed to define what was to be achieved:
Designed to move & stay comfortable. Or stand in the middle of a road because the photographer wants that shot.
I want a jacket that covers the maximum range of use in a British climate, from pub pint to dog walk to work meeting. Every man has that favourite jacket they grab every time. This had to be that jacket.
This meant I had to be pragmatic. Widest use in the UK means a lot of mild, changeable weather - overcast then sunny, wind, showers - the unexpected. We get relatively little hot sun or freezing weather - so I worked within that wide band of climate we have, from September right through to June.
I would have two increase practicality - fit, movement, storage, even the ability to be washable - I don’t wear ‘normal’ waxed jackets anymore because they frustrate me in this way. I move a lot - throwing kids above my head, running, jumping whatever - it had to move with me.
With that movement comes heat and sweat - got to nail that. Handily, I have an awarded background in sports and performance garments that don’t show off their tech - I have exhibits in the Design Museum and Victoria & Albert Museum in London, plus I studied ergonomics and biophysics and uni.
That practicality even extends to creasing - I hate ironing jackets, and often throw mine in a heap.
Lastly, all this performance had to fit into a classic, not weird or ‘fashion’ design, that had our own voice, without being wacky or boring. Harder than you think.
Here’s my not-exhaustive list of what I had to bear in mind, as the jacket came together on paper.
- British but progressive.
- Vintage motorcycle & military influences
- Masculine but not aggro.
- Classic & subtle.
- Clean, straight lines.
- Matt fabrics, not shiny, sticky or loud - understated quality.
- Pleating to articulate shoulders and arms.
- Room to lift arms above head, sit down, etc, without discomfort, ripping or inconvenience (like undoing jacket).
- Make it easy to use - washable, no need to iron, smooth zips, storage.
- Comfort - soft skin contact materials, breathable, water resistant, wind proof.
- Venting to dump unwanted posture but not let in cold.
- Collar high, fitted to neck and skull, cosy, enclosing. Stiff but soft.
- Everything tough, especially consider zips, snaps, stitching - stress areas.
- Hand pockets in right place, fleece lined.
- Find herringbone (British cue, looks great but not showy) trims - labels & lining.
- No flapping cheap care labels - must be sewn in - quality down to last detail.
Most men are not twenty-something fashion models with cheekbones that could cut diamonds.
I know from experience that fit is a worry and frustration for us all. It’s simply not possible to fit for every man, so I aimed for the kind of man I am and know - The Dad Bod Man. Reasonably fit, not perfect, not bad - the middle - most of the bell curve - the REAL middle.
Our measurements are the real ones. If you're a 42 chest, we've made a large for a 42 chest. Seems obvious really...Surely?!
I want room to wear layers, adding to the field jacket’s versatility.
I want it to move with me and have space, but be fitted enough to be flattering, smart and to stay smart.
I’m average height, but I know tall men who can’t find anything that fits - so we do Tall sizes.
Shorter men are frustrated too, so we now do alterations (rolling out in the coming weeks, but do ask now).
- Outer: British Millerain of Rochdale, England, provide their awesome machine wash Staywax waxed cotton in a medium weight 230 gsm grade.
- Lining: Herringbone pattern odour resistant and fast drying from Como in Italy.
- Zips: Custom hardened stainless steel in gunmetal finish from YKK, Britain.
- Snaps: Again, custom gunmetal finish hardened stainless outer, brass inner snaps from Northern Italy.
- Cuff, collar & hand pocket lining: Ultra fine micro fleece from Northern Italy.
- Labels: Embroidered in the UK.
Handmade by talented people who care. Personal nicknacks are everywhere. This is a community, not a sweatshop.
We don’t work with the cheapest, we work with the best. Not just that, we work with friends, people we can trust. We help each other. That’s important.
We use Eva’s factory in Sofia, Bulgaria. This may come as a shock to some, who think we make all our jackets in the UK. We would if we could do it to the standards we desire - but Eva’s work, kindness and understanding of our aims is unparalleled. Above all, the quality is the best I’ve ever seen, from the dozens of factories I’ve worked with in my career.
With only 25 staff constructing handmade jackets with pride and care, we know what we’re getting, from whom. We’ve met everyone, they’ve looked after us, we trust them, nobody is getting shafted. That stuff matters as LOT.
The first ever 100 buyers of the Utility Field Jacket in 201received this.
We all need to feel safe buying online. We know we have to create trust - real trust that you can believe in - we have to keep our word and let customers do the selling…
It’s worth knowing most of our customers have bought 2 or even ALL of our jackets!
- Reviews: We never edit or remove them. All are real. Please do check them out - we are so touched, not just by the positive scores, but the detail and passion within. There's even one from Pete Townshend of The Who.
- Service: I do everything. The owner - the guy who cares most. I answer quickly, politely and always helpfully (I hope!).
- We’ve never had a customer complaint. Ever.
- Returns: If you pre-order, as most do, you can get a refund at any time. If you don’t like it, we’ll refund 30 days after we sent it out (which means we have a chance to sell it to someone on waiting list).
- Sizing & exchanges: Sizing can be intimidating. Best thing is to live chat me from the website, call or email. I can always help. If you do have the wrong size, we can sort that no problem.
- Faults: I’m proud to say that Utility Field Jacket has never had a fault reported. For an industry that might write off at least 5% of it’s stock due to QC issues, that is extraordinary - except it’s not, if you know the lengths we go to.
- Loyalty & Referral scheme: We know we MUST look after you to thrive, so you get bigger bonuses as you go. It’s the blue box on the bottom left.
The Utility Field Jacketis lighter weight than an old style waxed jacket, making it far more comfortable and pleasant to wear, as it's not weighed down by sticky wax that gets everywhere.
- Dog walk
- Space travel*
- Not for torrential rain, but showers and persistent light to mid rain.
- Temperature range from cold (freezing with layers) to warm. Best in cool to mild range. All but freezing and hot weather.
- Again, widest use possible - most British/temperate weather.
*FRAHM Utility Field Jacket cannot be pressurised.
No cheap flapping care labels. We try to improve every detail.
Machine wash cool in non-biological liquid. No conditioner as conditioner kills performance (it suffocates any performance characteristics by coating it), if you do, just rinse the jacket and it’ll be fine.
No need to re-treat, but the fabric will slightly fade (rather nicely we think) with washing and wear.
We offer a Lifetime Guarantee on faults. That doesn’t cover stuff like running through a plate glass window or washing it in hot bleach.
Can be worn in dense forest wearing sunnies. Though try not to linger furtively in ferns like Chris.
Phew, that was a lot. Hopefully everything you could want? Here’s a reminder:
- We only make a few once a year.
- Pre-order is best.
- We give to charity.
- Pricey but great long term value.
- Designed to be the widest possible use all-rounder.
- Built for far greater quality, fit & detail than the big brands.
- Fit is Real World - sorry pubescent models.
- Everything is made by talented people we know, that are good, kind folk.
- Our service is by me (a good thing, I think) and we keep our promises.
- Never had a fault or a complaint.
- Lifetime guarantee.
- Use it (almost) anywhere.
- Easy to look after, for years and years.
- Bloody hell, look at those reviews!
Thanks for listening. Grab me anytime on live chat (I don't sleep).