Mister Freedom® MEDALIST Crewneck Sweatshirt, all-cotton tubular fleeced jersey, mfsc FW2021 “PODIUM” Collection. Made in Japan

 

 

MF® Medalist red naturally sun-faded.

MF® Medalist UCLA blue naturally sun-faded.

 

MF® Medalist Olive Green naturally sun-faded.

 

Buncha winners.

Mister Freedom® MEDALIST Crew Sweatshirt, all-cotton tubular fleeced jersey
FW2021 mfsc PODIUM collection.
Made in Japan.

The Mister Freedom® MEDALIST is our take on the iconic American SWEATSHIRT (or “sweat shirt”, “sweat-shirt”, the top part of a “sweat suit” or “training suit”… just don’t call them “sweaters”). We’ve been working on this one for a while, as plenty of contemporary options already exist and we wanted to make sure that our version be classic yet special. 

First, if you get asked on Jeopardy and your friend Bob can’t get to the phone, sweatshirt material consists of a single knit fabric, with a flat texture jersey on the face (outside), and a French Terry reverse with loops mechanically shredded/brushed into a soft fleece pile (inside). It has been the fabric of choice for warm-up athletic gear for about a century.

Classic vintage sweatshirts (~ pre-1970s) are usually cut from tubular fleeced jersey, meaning the sock-like cylinder body has no side seams.

With roots in the 1920s, modern tubular fleece has been produced since the 1950s on elaborate single-jersey circular knitting machines, puzzling pieces of engineering resembling the 1969 Apollo LEM, and, I suppose, about as equally easy to operate and maintain.
Using this knitting technology, and due to the cylinder shape and fixed circumference of the finished material, several machines and tedious set-ups are required to produce different sizes of the same tubular sweatshirt fabric. Meaning, the body of a size Small tubular sweatshirt is knitted on a different machine than the Medium. This doesn’t help with cost of production, but vintage clothing purists will appreciate the seamless tube body.

To add to the challenge of milling this special fleece fabric, we also insisted that our waistband ribbing be tubular, without the joining side seam typical of modern fashion sweatshirts. We also were set on a special “5×1 needle-out” type of ribbing, a cool feature of certain rare and desirable vintage 1940s-50s specimen. With this tall order, we sent our friends at Toyo Enterprise on a double wild-goose chase, and, as always, they sourced-out not only the perfect tubular fleece, but managed to mill the special needle-out tubular ribbing.

For the design and construction of our MEDALIST, we wanted to stay away from anything contemporary. So we scrutinized and dissected several vintage specimen collected over the years, studied classic proportions and cuts, found inspiration in period silhouettes from old photos and athletic goods 1930s-1960s catalogs, tested prototypes with traditional stitching options… and basically came up with a very old-school looking winner, the MF® MEDALIST!

Pattern-wise, one of the key point for us was the “drop shoulder” look. Modern sweatshirts and even contemporary vintage replicas tend to prefer an updated non-slouching shoulder seam, for a “more tailored” look. The drop shoulder cut may be an acquired taste, like the leg twist on a pair of old Levi’s for instance, but we went for the “anti-fit” cut of authentic 1940s-50s vintage sweatshirts.

Regarding the double neck insert detail, scoring a “double V” sweatshirts in my 1990s rag-picking days always meant bingo! Double Vs were to vintage sweats what XXs were to vintage Levi’s, an extra $500+ at the flea market.
Initially intended as a stretch gusset on the neck band so that the pull-over warm-up shirt (made of wool in the early days) would fit over, say, a football helmet, the “V” was a good substitute to a ½ zipper. Our MEDALIST 40s-style double Vs are of the “functioning” type, as they actually are double-layer stretchy ribbing inserts, and not just the decorative V-shaped flat lock stitching typical of later productions of sweatshirts. Many “V”s on contemporary sweats are also purely decorative.

On that note, some of you may remember that, during a 2010 interview with Valet Magazine, yours truly asserted that the “V”s on sweatshirts were originally designed to, wait for it, sponge-up sweat. An opinion, as they say, is the perfect compromise between knowledge and ignorance.

Online Valet Magazine, April 2010, and 2017 Sponge Bob IG post.

Another feature of our MEDALIST is the underarm expansion gusset, a detail and intricate construction challenge lifted from a rare 1950s vintage sweat from our archives. Like the double Vs, these arms gussets are also double-layer inserts of needle-out rib.

Anyone familiar with vintage sweats knows of the common sleeves-are-too-short issue, the result of excessive shrinkage and improper shrink tests from the maker. McQueen was a specialist at quickly solving that problem, on and off screen, and is probably responsible for a few chopped-off vintage sweats out there!

SMcQ, 1963 (John Dominis, courtesy GETTY IMAGES)

This is one of the liberties we took with “authenticity”, as we carefully balanced the drop of the shoulder seam, calculated optimal sleeve length while considering the extra-long (foldable) ribbed cuffs, factored-in fabric shrinkage, adjusted sleeve width… to achieve a proper post-wash fit that will work for most.

As a touch of modern practicability, we mounted a back pocket to the MEDALIST rear panel, with an original flat-lock construction “sandwiched” in the waistband. This discreet storage will come handy when cycling, to carry a smart phone or small bidon without obstructing the front of the shirt. Just avoid using it for your phone or wallet while riding the metro in Paris…

We are introducing the MEDALIST in six original yet classic color options. The heather grey is yarn-dyed, a much darker shade than the traditional “silver” heather grey of Champion® sweats, a fleece color characteristic of some older athletic collectibles. The Arctic White model features contrasting oatmeal heather grey ribbing trims, for an attractive subtle two-tone effect.
The Scarlet Red, “UCLA” Blue, Gold Yellow and “Nam” Olive Green MEDALISTS will fade over time with normal wash/wear routine and sun exposure, just like your favorite butter-soft sun-bleached vintage sweatshirt. For reference, we included some naturally-faded prototypes in the photos above.

Pair it with blue jeans, khaki chinos, piques… for the gym, the beach or to lounge around at home, our MEDALIST is versatile, comfortable, functional, ethically-produced… and just ridiculously good looking!

The MF® MEDALIST Crewneck Sweatshirt, in all-cotton tubular fleeced jersey, is designed by Mister Freedom® in California, USA, and produced in Japan in collaboration with Sugar Cane Co.

SPECS:
FABRIC:
Heavy weight 12 Oz. 100% cotton tubular fleeced jersey knit, soft brushed pile back for warmth and absorbency. Milled in Japan.
Color options:
a) Yarn-dyed Heather Grey.
b) Arctic White with contrast oatmeal needle-out ribbing.
c) UCLA Blue.
d) Scarlet Red.
e) Gold Yellow.
f) “Nam” Olive Green.

DETAILS:
* An original mfsc pattern inspired by vintage 1940s-50s classic American sweatshirts and period athletic wear.
* Tubular body (no side seams).
* “Drop shoulder” pattern.
* Fancy all-cotton 1×5 needle-out ribbing waistband, cuffs, neckband and gussets.
* Double “V” neck inserts, dual layers of stretchy ribbed knit.
* Vintage-style extra-long waistband and cuffs.
* Underarm expansion gussets.
* Rear panel smartphone or bidon pocket.
* Four-needle flat lock stitching construction.
* Original mfsc “PODIUM” rayon woven label.
* Made in Japan

SIZING/FIT:
The MF® MEDALIST Sweatshirt comes pre-rinsed (i.e. pre-shrunk), and is ready-to-wear. No need for any initial soaking process.
All different color options fit the same.
Depending on your own personal style, preference of silhouette, body type, and whether you’re going old-school vintage or contemporary streetwear, the size that will work for you is subjective.

I opted for a size SMALL in all color options, for a shorter “period” look, matching one’s natural waist rather than covering the back pockets of jeans. Just a personal preference for the vintage vibe. I am 5’7 / 145 lbs.

CARE:
Low maintenance garment. Launder when needed.
Machine wash, normal cycle, cold water, mild eco-friendly detergent. Tumble dry or lay flat to dry on clean towel.

Available from www.misterfreedom.com, our Los Angeles brick & mortar store, and fine retailers around the World.
Email sales@misterfreedom.com or call 323-653-2014 with any questions unanswered above.
Thank you for your support.

Christophe Loiron
Mister Freedom®
©2021

 

 

Mister Freedom® “PRIVATEER” Rollneck Sweater, Indigo and Ecru Cotton Rib Knit, mfsc FW2020 “Waterfront Surplus”. Made in Japan.

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

 

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® “PRIVATEER” Rollneck Sweater, Indigo and Ecru Cotton Rib Knit.
FW2020 mfsc “Waterfront Surplus”.
Made in Japan.

The pattern of the MF® PRIVATEER Rollneck is inspired by an older crew neck casual cotton sweater from our archives, to which we mounted a classic high rolled collar, turtleneck or rollneck, giving the resulting hybrid its nautical vibe.

Vintage prototype of the MF® PRIVATEER (rollneck is Photoshopped in) with pattern edits ©2020

We kept the textured 1×1 “fisherman” rib knit of the original, along with the raglan sleeve construction, but extended the seamless cuffs and bottom webbing for an older sweater vibe. The overall proportions were tweaked for a shorter vintage silhouette that pairs well with high-waisted pants.

We opted for 100% cotton knit, a more SoCal-friendly and less allergy-inducing option than traditional rollneck wool sweaters. Our PRIVATEER is definitely not intended as a contender to a wool submariner’s jumper in the warmth department, but is rather devised as a casual mid-season piece for temperate climates, leading to extra playtime disguised as Captain Haddock in Sunny California.

The original sample that inspired our PRIVATEER was pure white and we chose to hand-dye it indigo during R&D. We liked the results, so for production, we settled on two color options: a specific warm tone of ecru matched from an old vintage Aran sweater, and the medium indigo blue shade matched from our back-yard dyed prototype.

The MF® PRIVATEER is designed in California by Mister Freedom® and manufactured in Japan in collaboration with Sugar Cane Co.

FABRIC:
100% cotton 1×1 rib knit, “fisherman” rib pattern or “Brioche” stitch type.
Two color options:
1) “Aran” ecru.
2) Indigo blue.

SPECS:
* An original hybrid mfsc pattern, inspired by casual sweaters and vintage nautical jumpers.
* Single fold ribbed rollneck.
* “Fisherman” rib knit stitch body.
* 100% cotton knit.
* Raglan sleeve pattern with contrast rib pattern mounting.
* Large seamless ribbed waistband.
* Foldable extended and seamless ribbed cuffs.
* Original mfsc “Waterfront Surplus” woven rayon label.
* Made in JAPAN.

SIZING/FIT:
The PRIVATEER Rollneck, in both ecru and indigo, comes pre-shrunk and is ready-to-wear as-is. No soaking required.
This garment is considered true-to-size. I opted for a medium, for a comfortable fit.

The specific “Fisherman” rib allows horizontal (crosswise) stretch, with good natural recovery (= the knit’s ability to return to its initial size after being stretched.)
Therefore, measurements can be misleading, as with all stretchy knit garments.
We do recommend sticking to your usual MF® size with the  PRIVATEER Rollneck. If you are a Medium in mfsc shirting, you are more-likely a Medium in this sweater, regardless of our chart measurements. The arms might feel a bit snug and first, and pulling your head though the neck might feel a bit tight, but the sweater will settle naturally after a few minutes of wear.
I am wearing a chambray Snipes shirt underneath a Medium PRIVATEER in the fit photos, and am 5’7 approx 150Lbs.

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

Mister Freedom® PRIVATEER Rollneck cotton rib sweater ©2020

CARE:
Turn sweater inside out. Machine wash on DELICATE, cold water, mild eco-friendly detergent. Air dry flat on a clean towel, or hang dry on a well-padded hanger to avoid shoulder stretching.
Light fuzzing or piling may occur temporarily and will subside.
Wash with similarly-colored garments.
Do not use the washer’s heavy-duty cycle. Heat dryer is also not recommended and may result in excessive shrinkage.

Available PRE-SHUNK
Sizes
Small
Medium
Large
X-Large
XX-Large

Available from www.misterfreedom.com, our Los Angeles brick & mortar store, and fine retailers around the World.
Email sales@misterfreedom.com or call 323-653-2014 with any questions unanswered above.
Thank you for your support.

Christophe Loiron
Mister Freedom®
©2020

“Campus Cardigan” Mister Freedom® x Ohio Knitting Mills, Made in USA

 

Mister Freedom® x OKM Campus Cardigan ©2013

Mister Freedom® x OKM Campus Cardigan ©2013

 

 

 

The “CAMPUS CARDIGAN”, Sportsman Collection
Mister Freedom® x Ohio Knitting Mills

Walking past a table of folded vintage 1950’s cable knit shirts last year at ‘Inspiration’ in Long Beach, I noticed the “Ohio Knitting Mills, Since 1927″ sign on the booth.
I’ve always loved these shirts, having first seen one in the 80’s on the cover of the ACE Records “Hollywood Rock’n’Roll” LP, featuring that famous photo of two thirsty fellas from the Booze Fighters MC in 1947…

Hollywood RnR Ace Records

Turns out, “if it was knitted, wool or cotton, it was probably from OKM” said Steven Tatar, now running the show at Ohio Knitting Mills.

Well maybe they made this one too?

Sophia-Loren-1954

I’ll call Sophia later, back on topic…
We spoke regarding a potential future MF® x OKM project… and months later decided to put words into actions. And that’s how the journey of the “Campus Cardigan” started…
Wool, as i was about to learn, is similar to denim. In the sense that not all is created equal.
I also was about to get some tech terms thrown at me. A ‘Milanese stitch having to be attached to a jersey body‘?… Soprano material to me. But not to Mr Tatar.

As for inspiration for the project, I used a cream color vintage 50’s Letterman sweater, found a while back. I liked that it didn’t have the ‘Frankie Lymon & the Teeenager’ vibe, but rather a versatile cardigan for grown-ups vibe with interesting construction and unusual details that still looked ‘simple’ and not overly designed.
I also had attempted to indigo dye that vintage sweater, since when I get going, anything that doesn’t move is a potential candidate for getting thrown in the vat.

Mister Freedom® ©2013 Mister Freedom® ©2013

Not being sure what to expect with wool, I was happily surprised with the result.

Mister Freedom® ©2013

Well all that sounded like a good challenging puzzle for our new collaboration.
And a challenge it was, for all involved.

Mister Freedom® x OKM Campus Cardigan ©2013

From sourcing the right unbleached domestic wool, spinning the yarn to specs, milling, cutting, sewing, solving construction challenges, adjusting patterns and machines… to the (fun part for us) indigo dyeing…

We wanted the buttons to remain their original natural color (and not get dyed, as seen on the 1rst prototype shown in some of the photos), so, finally sewing on the corozo buttons and dual labels was quite satisfying.

The natural wool yarn OKM sourced has a beautiful ‘slubby’ texture and subtle color variation. This makes the natural color option as interesting as the second color option… Indigo.
Back in California, we put some long hours into relentlessly dipping the heavy pre-soaked/dye-ready sweaters in our indigo vat. One by one, some 3 or 4 dips depending on the resulting hue, stopping only when we thought the indigo color looked nice. The result of that ordeal is an assortment of various shades of blue that will change overtime, with wear and outside exposure.

INDIGO PHOTOS

Designed by Mister Freedom® in collaboration with Ohio Knitting Mills. All made in USA by OKM. Indigo vat dyed in California.
Thanks Steve, Paula and the OKM team for their expertise and for making this project happen.

SPECS:

PATTERN: Inspired by a vintage 1950’s Letterman wool sweater, cardigan type. ‘Dropped shoulders’ pattern. Single wrap body panel (no side seams). Relaxed silhouette.

FABRIC: unbleached 100% wool knit jersey, American yarn spun and milled in the USA.
Two options:
a) Natural
b) Indigo

DETAILS:
* Wool Jersey body and sleeves, ribbed end knit.
* Single piece body wrap knit (no side seam).
* Milanese knit button placket.
* Wide wrist knit cuffs for roll-up.
* Fold over double layer pockets.
* Blind stitched bottom hem, folded end knit.
* Natural Corozo buttons, aka vegetable ivory or coconut wood.

SIZING/CARE:
I could go with a Small, but decided to wear a Medium, for layering options with heavier shirts/henleys this winter…
The natural option comes unwashed. The indigo has been rinsed. The loose jersey knit tends to stretch slightly after being rinsed and dried. The sweater will eventually adapt to your body with repeat wear, looking more natural than it did on the first day. This is normal.
Refer to the charts below for measurements.

Natural Campus Cardigan Size Chart

Size Chart NATURAL

 

Indigo Campus Cardigan

Size Chart INDIGO

When needed, the “Campus Cardigan” can be hand washed in cold water, with minimal mild detergent. NO machine wash, NO boiling. Machine spin dry, then lay the sweater on a towel, flipping it around until dry. NO electrical/gas dryer. The sweater is quite heavy when wet, so do not hang dry on a hanger, as this will result in unattractive stretching…
Your sweater can also be professionally dry cleaned.
Same care for the natural or indigo options, making sure you wash the indigo by itself, as bleeding will occur for some time.
DISCLAIMER: Due to the natural of indigo dyeing, some color rub-off will occur on light color shirting worn underneath the indigo cardigan, noticeably in the armpits .
This crocking should eventually stabilize, and also eventually wash off stained garments.
All this comes with Indigo Territory.
Available sizes:
Small, Medium, Large, X-Large

Retail:
a) Natural $399.95
b) Indigo $449.95
(ordering this option may take some time should we run out, as we are not sure when we will be able to do another dye batch.)

Available from www.misterfreedom.com
sales@misterfreedom.com will gladly answer any questions unanswered above 😉

Thank you always for your support.

…and at last this evening’s cargo MFSC “Deck Sweater”

 

SWEATER, MAN’S, DECK

Type MFSC 0415

To wrap up the MFSC fall 08 collection, our sailor’s last issue: a navy blue wool/cotton button neck sweater. A warm garment with a very soft hand to be layered with MFSC645 chambray shirt or cotton under shirt.

(Unissued. Size S, M, L, XL. Retail $449.95)