Sunday, March 23, 2014

The F.L. Woods Sopwith Sweater

Photos by Salt Water New England
F.L. Woods - known as "the old wood box" - has been a Marblehead institution for 75 years.  (And they still have their original phone number.)  They have developed a unique, functional,  and wonderful garment, the Sopwith Sweater.  To quote them:
Yachtsman & Aviation Pioneer Sir T.O.M. Sopwith - challenged the America's Cup with his J-class yachts Endeavour & Endeavour II
In 1936 he commissioned crew uniforms for the 1937 campaign, which included a jersey-knit wool sweater. 
Our Sopwith Sweater is modeled after the original now in a marine museum - it provides the same form & function as the original, with a sharp seafaring look and feel. A perfect layering companion to the Mariners Jacket.
In Navy
It is made of oiled wool (80%), which means the natural protectant lanolin has been left in.   They have added to this 20% nylon, for shape retention, which has resulted in a tough, thin, non-fussy, but extremely lightweight Made-in-US garment.  It is cut for movement.
Sopwith Sweater

While designed to be a tighter fitting garment (as with the Guernsey), F. L. Woods sent this one which was deliberately sized up to a Unisex Medium. 

The F.L. Woods Buoy Patch

They refer to it as a great layering piece and they are right.  

To the touch, the sweater feels somewhat like a lighter version of the original Norwegian fisherman sweater.  It is designed for hard use in "sea  spray" conditions. For sailors, this malleable, thinner, but no less tough sweater belongs next to the Guernsey.

Hanuman is a replica of the British J Class yacht Endeavour II, photographed at the 2012 America’s Cup World Series, Newport, Rhode Island.