Friday, June 24, 2011

Darn Tough - Vermont - U.S.A.

Darn Tough Socks of Vermont is another inspiring "Made in the U.S." story. We traveled to Northfield recently to pick up our summer order of Darn Tough Socks. We were eager to tour the mill and find out how Darn Tough can offer a Lifetime Warranty on their wool socks. If you've worn Darn Tough you know these socks don't go threadbare like others. What's the secret? In a nutshell, the density of the wool terry loops (1440 per sq. inch)is so tight that the loops don't move side to side and wear out. Pretty impressive. We think that the Darn Tough Merino Wool Boots socks are the perfect complement to our backpacking boots.

It helps that Darn Tough has an attention to quality that is rare in our modern world. Most Darn Tough employees have been with the company for 15 years or more, many over 30 years! During our tour, we saw owner Ric Cabot in three different corners of the factory looking at product, machinery, and working one-on-one with his workers. Impressive! We couldn't be happier for their recent successes.

If you'd like the background story...when other knitting mills were fleeing the Northeast in the 60s and 70s for states in the South, owner Mark Cabot bought some used sock weaving equipment and set up shop about 25 miles from where CCOutdoorStore now stands. When pressure from overseas manufacturing threatened their business and its 120 plus employees, the company "toughed" it out. Hence the burgeoning six-year old outdoor sock brand DARN TOUGH.

With new packaging, new styles, and 20 new looms on order we're very excited by all the exciting developments we heard about on our recent tour of the Darn Tough factory.

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