Kangol’s Visit with Hats Plus
If you missed the visit from Kangol on Saturday, Nov. 9, at Hats Plus, you missed quite the experience.
Kangol’s North American Sales Director Mark Harris and Regional Sales Representative Kelli Conroy were in attendance talking with customers and giving away free Kangol army caps (like the ones worn by Eminem) and baseball caps with every Kangol purchase.
Luckily, during a brief lull in the action, we were able work in a fun discussion about what it is like working for Kangol and the interactions they share with customers around the country.
Mark has been with the company for 15 years, and moved from England to New York as part of his job. His wife Nichola also happens to be Kangol’s design director.
“It is very interesting, as an Englishman, to move to America to work for such a legendary hat company,” Harris said. “New people, new cities. I’ve been to all the famous headwear stores across the country and met lots of interesting characters. Everyone has a story to tell about their hat.”
Kelli, an American, is based out of the Detroit area but covers a region that spans 12 states around the upper Midwest.
“I feel honored to work for a brand that is so recognized,” she said. “Everywhere I go people recognize Kangol. It has such a diverse retailer base. I meet all different kinds of people.”
Asking the man married to the company’s design director what his favorite hat or cap is might have been a bit of a loaded question. Nevertheless, Harris was game.
“I love the English Peebles,” he said. “It is made in England with English fabrics. I like the shape, the quality and that it is made in England.”
Conroy prefers the Kangol Diva.
“The Diva is made in the U.S.,” she said. “I like the floppy brim. You can hide behind it.”
What do they like most about meeting Kangol customers?
“Their stories and their love of the brand and their knowledge of the brand is incredible,” Mark said. “Where ever you go you get a story.”
“I would say their creativity,” Kelli said. “They always have a suggestion for things they want in their next Kangol.”
Best of all, the company really is listening to those suggestions, the Kangol employees agreed.
Kelli described the story about the Kangol Colette, which started its life a woman’s hat, but after a fashion designer started putting them on his male models, men started demanding the hats be made in an extra-large size. Kangol quickly obliged.
Mark detailed how a customer in Paris began altering his Kangol Mau. He would put the front way far forward and altered the back a little. Mark’s wife saw it and like it and adopted it for a new line of mau caps with that design and named it for the guy in Paris: Clery.
Customers in the shop also shared their Kangol loves and experiences.
Gil, who was in all the way from New Jersey, said, “My dad had a Kangol 30 or 40 years ago. I’ve worn it some, but it is getting too tight, so I thought I’d get a new one.”
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