Champion (originally called the Kickerbocker Knitted Company), was founded in 1919 in New York by three members of the Feinbloom family.
Throughout the 60s up until the early 90s, Champion dominated the outfitting of USA sports teams in the NCAA, NFL and NBA. But after decades of being the top brand for sports kits, they started getting complaints that their products were prone to shrinking after frequent washing.
To overcome this, in 1934 they invented the world’s first engineered sweatshirt, which became known as the ‘Reverse Weave’. Unlike their other designs, their Reverse Weave products were developed by cutting cotton on the cross-grain during production, resulting in a shrink resistant and durable product.
At the time, this was a revolutionary approach! While the process was more time consuming and expensive, the superior product kept their customers happy and is one of the reasons why branded Champion sportwear is still so desired today.
Champion applied to patent the ‘Reverse Weave’ technology in 1938, but this was only granted in 1952 due to the Second World War.
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