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American Clothing Brand
Brand Profile

Kühl’s origin story is about passion, perseverance, and modifying dreams without sacrificing ideals. It began as Alfwear, a small company selling handmade ski hats in counter-culture style. After founder John “Alf” Engwall’s early passing, friend Kevin Boyle felt compelled to carry on Alf’s unconventional vision. He rebranded the company as Kühl in honor of Alf’s spirit.

Guided by longtime climber Conrad Anker, the nascent Kühl strove to build cutting-edge technical wear for daring the elements while tending the soul. They valued remaining independent and private to steer their course. Though the outdoor industry consolidated rapidly, Kühl committed to keeping quality, not scale, as their North star by retaining control.

This rebellious spirit informs the brand’s positioning today as premium performance gear crafted for freedom-seekers. Kühl integrates top-grade materials like merino wool and flexible nylon blends selected for sustainability and real-world durability. These fabrics take shape in Vietnam factories vetted for ethical working standards. The final garments empower wearers to feel at home in any environment.

Staying small and nimble does have downsides, however. Kühl reveals little about its manufacturing base despite the public appetite for transparency around worker welfare and environmental impact. Such disclosure could bolster their premium brand equity as conscious consumption gains traction.

Still, Kühl’s ever-expanding catalog speaks to the brand’s resonance with modern adventure seekers. Whether summiting Denali or grabbing apres-ski beers, Kühl’s versatile layering keeps the elements at bay while blurring the lines between work and play. This ability to transition smoothly between mountain assaults and casual hangs cements their positioning as outfitters, enabling inspired lifestyles.

Ultimately, Kühl retains its niche by rejecting shortcuts in favor of quality craftsmanship. The brand stays faithful to Conrad Anker’s wisdom guiding its inception: gear should not just perform but open the way to living courageously while caring for people and the planet. Kühl proudly exemplifies these ideals.






Salt Lake City, UT, USA

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