There's no such thing as American flannel anymore. These entrepreneurs didn't like that idea

How's this for a a comfortable story? Second only to bluejeans, there's perhaps no type of clothing more associated with rugged American individualism than flannel. Ranchers, hunters, rockers, skiers, workers--they all wore American flannel.

But, the last flannel fabric actually produced in the United States was more than two decades ago.

Enter Bayard Winthrop, CEO of American Giant (makers of a $100 sweatshirt reviewed as "the greatest hoodie ever made"), and James McKinnon, head of textile manufacturer Cotswold Industries ("I spent years touring with the Grateful Dead. ... I wore one flannel shirt for two years.") 

Both men are Gen Xer flannel fanatics going back to the Carter administration, and they teamed up to try to reboot the American fabric.

Result: Complex negotiations, visits to every corner of the country searching for potential partners, delays and disappointment--and finally, coming soon, a limited run of 1,000 flannel shirts under the American Giant brand name.

"We wanted to start an American-made business and build it to scale," Winthrop told the New York Times. "It's worth it for that alone -- to prove the ability to do it."

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Here's what else I'm reading today...

Yes, but women will probably be less surprised than men

Ogilvy commissioned a women's dress equipped with touch sensors to track how often women at a club in Brazil were groped over the course of an evening of dancing. The results were shock--okay, they're not that shocking. The three women in on the experiment were groped an average of 40 times per hour. Ogilvy said it hopes sharing the results will help men see the problem.
--Sangeeta Singh-Kurtz, Quartz

If you like Sim City, you'll love working here

You've heard about big companies that let employees work remotely. But eXp Realty, a real estate brokerage company based in a small office in Bellingham, Washington, takes things to a new level. It has 13,000 agents and 200 support staff who work together by logging into a virtual world full of avatars, conference rooms, auditoriums, and even virtual speedboats that they can use take for virtual joyrides. You really have to see the photos to believe it, and to imagine what it might be like to work there.
--Prachi Bhardwaj, Business Insider

The problem with Amazon's soon-to-be biggest moneymaker

In just three years, Amazon's ad sales are predicted to eclipse cloud services as the company's main profit center. That's great news for shareholders. For customers? Not so much. The shopping experience is going to get even clunkier than it already is.
--Jeff Bercovici, Inc.

One brewer asked, 1000 breweries answered

In what's being described as the largest charitable collaboration ever among the country's beer-makers, 1,000 breweries plan to produce a special brew and donate 100 percent of all proceeds to victims in Northern California's Camp Fire. The idea came from Ken Grossman, founder of Chico-based Sierra Nevada, which plans to make 8.6 million pints of a West Coast-style India pale ale.
--Mike Snider, USA Today

What to buy the business book nerds on your list

We whittled down the year's business books into a list of 10 must-reads. There's something here for everyone: inspiring stories about the women who built the Internet, a tell-all about the harrowing process of designing some of Apple's most iconic products, and one founder's funny and "painfully honest" look at launching a tech startup.
--Leigh Buchanan, Inc.

Published on: Nov 29, 2018
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