Home Gear Reviews Meet Stormy Kromer, a True American Heritage Brand

Meet Stormy Kromer, a True American Heritage Brand

by Karen Ung
When I heard of Stormy Kromers, wool caps that won’t blow off your head, I had to get my hands on one. I’ve always been a hat girl, but since I’m outside in all weather, every couple years without fail, a hat is unwillingly sacrificed to the wind.  Imagine my joy and surprise when my application to become a Stormy Kromer Brand Ambassador was accepted in August! Since then, I’ve been able to learn more about the company and test their amazing products.
Button Up Cap in Harris Tweed and Canvas Carryon Bag

The Legend

George “Stormy” Kromer was a real person, the driver behind the brand, and trains incidentally. After having many a hat blown off while working on a windy locomotive, he asked his wife to make him the ultimate cap that would stay on his head and keep his ears warm. No small task, but in short order, Ida Kromer hand sewed a 6-panel wool cap with a pull-down earband! It was similar to a baseball cap – perfect for Stormy, who was a former semi-pro baseball player – but better as the higher brim, snug fit, and earband ensured it would stay on in any weather. The year was 1903.
Original Stormy Kromer Cap and Wear Weather Jacket for Him
(Image Credit: Stormy Kromer)
The caps became a railway symbol as the local railway outfitted all their staff in Stormy Kromer six pointers (named such as the cap’s 6-panels met in a point at the back) and the trend spread across the American Midwest. Cotton caps were added to the mix in the 50’s and were a hit, but in later years, sales declined to the point that the company was going to close. Fortunately, Bob Jacquart (owner of Jacquart Fabric Products) bought the company in 2001 and revived it with the help of talented family members, staff, and advisers.
True to Stormy Kromer’s roots, products continue to be hand made in America with only the finest materials. The new management has, however, expanded the product line to include clothing, outer wear, bags, and women’s hats with narrower brims and decorative features. If you need proof that everything is made by hand, see the Stormy Kromer factory tour video here. While you may pay a little more, you can easily see the quality in workmanship and materials. I love knowing that my garments were made by people and not pumped out by machines!

What I Love

I love the luxurious fabrics, classic styling, and fit of the Stormy Kromer line. The hats fit as if they were made for me since the sizing is so exact. Instead of small, medium and large, hats come in sizes of 1/8″ increments! 
Gatsby Cap and Highland Vest
After 112 years making caps, Stormy Kromer has perfected the art and most of their hats look good on anyone! Since I ordered my caps online without trying them on, I was worried whether or not they’d look alright, but I love them! After trying two different caps (the Gatsby and Button Up), I feel you would be hard pressed to find better made or better fitting hats anywhere! The exact sizing is a huge factor in comfort and appearance. The materials used for cap construction are attractive, sturdy and durable too.
Caps come in solid colors, two tone, tweed, plaid, camo or blaze orange and certain styles are embellished with hardware, buttons, or a flower.
  • Cap Buying Tip: Be sure to measure your head circumference and read the sizing chart before you order! If you do not require a really snug fitting hat, or prefer your hats to fit a little looser, go up one size (e.g. If the size chart says you are a size 7, order 7 1/8). Cap sizing instructions are available here.
When it comes to clothing, at 5’3″ and size 4, I found Stormy Kromer’s size small fit perfectly. Clothing has been cut so different pieces may be layered together comfortably. The woolover for example, has a closer fit than the vest, so you can wear them together. Jackets also allow for sweaters to be worn underneath; something I appreciate in the cold climate I live in. The poncho is one size fits all, and is easy to put on and remove thanks to buttons on the left shoulder. And did I mention the poncho is a gorgeous wool blend? So warm for its weight and so gorgeous! The mittens are so warm and cozy too and will brighten up a winter day. The leather strip on the palm allows mitts to be worn when driving. For full leather palm, look at the Tough Mitts.
Huron Poncho and Canvas Carryon
Highland Vest, Button Up Cap in Harris Tweed, Ida’s Mitts
Button Up Cap in Harris Tweed, Woolover for Her, Highland Vest

I wish I could have all the bags, but was happy to receive the Canvas Carryon. The bag is just the right size for travelling with or even day use as a gym bag and its rugged construction will last for years. Stormy Kromer also makes totes, a messenger bag, backpack, and just started offering purses this year! Pretty sure I know what I’m putting on my Christmas wish list (hint: see picture below).

Companion Purse in Harris Tweed
Image Credit: Stormy Kromer

What I Would Like to See

I would love to see a wider selection of apparel, and clothes for all seasons (right now, it’s geared to fall and winter) and it seems my wish will come true! Stay tuned for the 2016 Spring/Summer line!

Fingers crossed more kids’ stuff will be available too! For now, you can order adorable hats for toddlers and children!

Little POG couldn’t resist trying on my Stormy Kromer kit.
Looks like I’ll have to order a cap in her size!

Where to Buy

Buy Stormy Kromer online at stormykromer.com or at these Canadian retailers.
In the U.S., try the select retailers listed here including Cabela’s and L.L. Bean.



As a Stormy Kromer Brand Ambassador, I received a collection of free products to test and review, but the views and opinions expressed are my own.

You may also like

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Accept Read More