Continuing a legacy of 90 years of outfitting, today's Sport Shop line is a mix of technology and tradition, and a tribute to Eddie Bauer himself, his wife and partner Christine "Stine" Bauer, and their embrace of the outdoors.
In 1920, Eddie Bauer, an avid Northwest outdoorsman, opened his first shop in downtown Seattle. Within a year, he had saved enough money to expand the shop to include hunting and fishing gear and the store soon became a gathering place for Seattle's best outdoorsmen and outdoorswomen. Eddie was more than a shopkeeper; he designed and built revolutionary products that remain functional and influential to this day. In 1940, he patented the first down jacket in America, the "Skyliner," and later began to design and build down apparel and sleeping bags for the U.S. military. In the 1950's-60's, Eddie became THE American expedition outfitter during the Golden Age of Himalayan mountaineering, providing down apparel and gear for many of the history American expeditions, including twelve epic first ascents.
Eddie quickly realized that the successful creation of a technical and authentic product line required expert testing in the environment for which the product was designed. Every Labor Day Eddie closed his shop for five months to go hunting and fishing and field test everything he made, gathering feedback from the local guides who lived in and counted on the gear he sold. This strategy is still deeply engrained in the Eddie Bauer Guide-Built, Guide-Tested® process, and is the foundation on which the Sport Shop Collection is created. This approach was also part of Eddie's dedication to superior service and commitment to offering products that were "worthy of your high esteem," a mantra that remains at the heart of the Eddie Bauer brand today.
The Sport Shop Collection will be built through a series of product launches, the first of which is a full lineup of apparel for sporting clays, trap and skeet shooting for Spring 2012. The Spring 2012 collection includes a Clay Break Shooting Vest, which features a leather quilted shooting patch, removable air mesh recoil pad and an upper mesh back panel. The Palouse Shooting Shirt is designed with lightweight cotton and features a vented mesh back, button down collars with diamond quilt stitched overlay, and gusseted underarms. Among the spotlighted products will also be a signature Hunting Skyliner Jacket, an updated version of the original 1936 Skyliner Model Jacket, the cornerstone of the Eddie Bauer outerwear legacy.
Following closely behind the spring release of shooting apparel will be a full product offering for upland hunting available to consumers in July 2012. Each piece was designed and tested by guides and experts, including John Burrell, President of High Adventure Company, certified wildlife biologist and award-winning outfitter; and our in-house Sport Shop Expert, Rebecca Etchen Peters, who has been shooting and hunting since she was strong enough to hold a gun. Both have logged hundreds of hours to ensure that this product not only remains authentic to the sport and the Eddie Bauer heritage, but is also pushing the limits of innovation for technical shooting apparel.
The Fall 2012 offering includes the Mabton Flats Jacket, which is built with water-resistant CORDURA® in body and overlays and coated, nylon-lined bellows that serve as a game bag big enough to hold a brace of Ringnecks. The Microtherm™ Featherweight Hunting Jacket is a piece Stine would have worn back in the day. It is highly packable and warm with 800-fill power, making it the perfect piece for layering under an upland vest for mid day high altitude buck hunting in the Pasayton wilderness. The Hanford Reach Upland Brush Pant is our heavy weight upland pant with Cordura® overlays. This is a great late season and wet weather pant, one Eddie would have also used for dog training, when he had a wet Labrador at heel.