Famous for its engineering, Germany exports excellent automobiles and industrial equipment. But what about beanies? Bet you didn't know some of the best are made there, too. Say hello to Heimat, a brand founded in 2016 by ex-Ralph Lauren (specifically RRL) Merchandising Director, Christian Hofmann. His label boasts a suite of Naval-inspired headwear and knits, and a tagline that reinforces the country's reputation for fine manufacturing: "Qualitätsprodukte," which translates plainly to "quality products."
"Our clothes are universal but we are proud of the German heritage and craftmanship. Germany is known for high-level engineering and great quality all over the world and that’s what Heimat products are about," Hofmann told Les Indispensables in 2020. "I love things that are simple and made for a purpose and are stripped of any unnecessary design features. Hence why a lot of inspirations come from traditional workwear or military garments."
Honestly, it's where a lot of menswear items derive from: T-shirts, field jackets and bomber jackets to name a few. But Heimat proves even beanies can be attributed to the armed forces. With the Mechanics Bobble, Heimat tells the story of the famous fluff. The bobble first helped soldiers identify their units and then protected deck hand's heads from low, load-bearing beams.
As you can tell, the Deck Hat is the same... minus the bobble. Both are cut from virgin wool, because Hofmann says the material "pays back in the quality of our products. You can wear our sweaters or hats for years and the wool will not pill or rip, which is an advantage against other traditionally used materials." The beanies are also super stylish by today's standards, with their fisherman-like size (meaning they sit folded, above the ears). Despite the memes that mock those who wear tiny beanies, this is a certainly an instance of fashion coming full circle.