The History of The Hoodie

The History of The Hoodie

What could Medieval Europe and the film Rock possibly have in common? They both play a part in the history of the hooded sweatshirt! An item that is a staple in most people's closets has a long history of invention and reinvention. From serving as weather protection in the European Middle Ages to being prevalent in the underground hip-hop scene in the 70s, the hooded sweatshirt has served a variety of purposes. 

The Origin of Hooded Garments 

The origin of hooded garments dates back to the European Middle Ages when workers wore hoods attached to their capes, known as chaperons. The purpose of the hood was to protect them from rain and snow in the simplest way possible. Hooded garments were also used as a cultural expression throughout the Assyrian Empire and Medieval Europe.

The word “hood” derives from the Anglo-Saxon word “höd”, which means “hat”.

The First Hoodie was Born

In the 1930s the US brand Champion sewed the first hood on a sweatshirt. During this time sweatshirts were worn for those who worked or played sports outside. The hood was added to the sweatshirt to keep workers in upstate New York warm and was purposely designed with dropped shoulder seams for football players to wear over shoulder pads. After inventing the hooded sweatshirt, Champion started to supply the US and English military with sports kits including hoodies for training and exercises. 

The hooded sweatshirt started to gain popularity in the 1960s when The University of Michigan noticed the durability and functionality of the hooded sweatshirt and invited Champion to create a hooded sweatshirt for their sports teams. Soon other universities followed and started to print their name and logos on hooded sweatshirts, creating a phenomenon that is still widespread today.  

From Underground Music to Rocky: How the Hoodie Gained It's Icon Status

When New York's underground music scene brought hip-hop to the 70s, the sweatshirt became the uniform for Master of Ceremonies and graffiti artists. The hoodie style was adopted by youths to feel safe and cocooned. The hoodie soon gained its icon status when the film Rocky came out in 1976. In the film, Rocky wears a gray hoodie during most training scenes as he fights his way to the world's heavyweight champion title.

Later in the 90s as hip-hop music became popular, the hoodie found its way into fashion as an “urban look” with designers like Tommy Hilfiger and Ralph Lauren. 

 What Goes Into The Comfiest Hoodie? 

Our soft, comfy hoodie is made with 30 single tri-blend sponge fleece with raglan sleeve detail. It is our comfiest hoodie that is a year-long staple. 

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