Then and Now.
Today’s gear offers absolute performance right off the shelf. What’s more impressive is how easy it is to get to market. A single mouse ‘click’ exports a pattern to some monstrous factory. Busy little hands slam garments together in less time than it takes to fry sausages. But all that efficiency can come at the cost of longevity. After decades of repairs, I’ve replaced miles of zippers and reapplied rolls of seam tape. Nylon and polyester fabrics shed their coatings, fray at the seams, and rot from UV exposure. By default or by design, there is a planned obsolescence to synthetics at the genetic level.
Lather. Rinse. Repeat. It’s cheap enough, isn’t it?
Plenty of barn coats, portage packs, and wool pants have come through my door. Some of them were older than me. But they have patches, fresh stitching on their seams, and shiny new grommets. There are great role models out there for a company like this.
Nature has its quirks.
I use natural fibers and hides, so we’re going to incorporate their personality into our work. You’ll see range marks on my leather, odd yarns in the canvas, and wild hairs in my wool because I won’t waste good material. Forget the Technicolor perfection you’ve come to expect from stores. This stuff was absorbing sunlight and chewing plants in the last few decades, not bubbling in prehistoric limbo.
Nothing from the wild is perfect. Neither am I. I’m not afraid to run over a seam twice, and work a scar into the back of a mitten thumb if it doesn’t affect the durability. Every hand crafted garment is flawed. No two will be identical. If you ever see a cosmetically perfect garment from Empire, it was not intentional.
My warranty is simple.
I try to make clothing right in the first place, so I’ll promise make it right again if you find a functional problem. If an Empire garments goes wonky because of the way I built it, I’ll fix it or replace it for free. Movable components will wear out, but I’m happy to swap those out for you. Wear and tear are expected, especially on wool. All clothing will die, eventually. I’ll offer repairs at a reasonable rate until then.
The final word.
If you’re unsatisfied with your purchase, you may return it unused within 30 days for a full refund.