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Provenance: Gramicci


Gramicci, a Japanese brand by way of Yosemite CA, is a Basement favourite. And having just watched The Dawn Wall, this is a brand very much on The Hambledon’s radar. Here’s the inside track.


The Story or History

According to Google Translate (much of the information on this brand is in Japanese) ’in 1982 she gave birth to a garage' but we're thinking that in 1982 Mike Graham, a well known mountain climber in the 70s, going by the rather cool moniker 'Stone Master', invented a new climbing pant with a 180 degree crotch (I know, who knew?) and an adjustable, integrated belt and that he started the business in his garage.

The story, apocryphal or not, is that Mike Graham and a group of friends set out to be the first all Italian team to scale Half Dome in Yosemite. The problem (setting aside the problem of climbing a sheer rock face of 2000 feet) was that they weren’t Italian. The solution, not applications to the Italian embassy or a speedy relocation to Naples but to change the name Graham to Gramicci. And an outdoorwear brand was born.

During the 80s and 90s the rise of Gramicci mirrored the success of other outdoor, workwear and specific sportswear brands (eg Stussy and Carhartt) who found a dedicated following within the emerging worlds of skateboard and street culture. The product was well made, practical and affordable.

The Present Day

The Gramicci at The Hambledon is no longer, strictly speaking, the Gramicci of 1982. After extensive restructuring, financial difficulties and changes in ownership, part of the business was acquired by Japanese investors and relaunched as Gramicci. I know. Confusing. The product, with devoted fans in Japan, remains immaculately produced and extremely practical and utterly true to its Northern California heritage. Louis Cheslaw writing in Conde Nast Traveller sings the praises of Gramicci:

‘Whenever I’m imploring my friends to purchase a pair (which has become my second job these days), the first feature I rave about is the elastic waistline. You don't need to fasten them with a button or a zip fly—instead, you tighten or loosen them by cinching a nylon band, a little like adjusting a backpack.
Say you're freshly returned from a trip to Italy where you just had to order those extra bowls of pasta "for the table" (i.e. for yourself), your Gramiccis won't kick you out. They welcome you in, whether you’ve slimmed down for summer or become cuddly in the winter.’

The NN Pant and Friends

The NN Pant, 98% cotton twill , 2% polyamide with the favoured elasticated waistband and the integrated, adjustable climbing belt, two rear pockets and two hand pockets and the famed 180 degree gusseted crotch for a wider range of motion, is our best selling Gramicci trouser. And Louis Cheslaw has something to say about the pockets too:

‘While the deep pockets were originally added to make sure torches wouldn’t fall out at 7,000 feet, they also come in handy for safely stashing away passports, loose currency, keys, sunglasses and more.’

So the NN Pant is designed for a few days soloing on El Capitan or a long weekend slumming it on the Cote d’Azur. I know. We can but dream.

What Else?

If you like the NN Pant, you will love the NN shorts. If you like the NN Pant, you will love the sturdier Weather Pant. And if it’s all a bit monochrome, and you like things a little more outre, try the Shell Jacket and Short combo in Leopard or Camo. All Gramicci online now.