New Era and Northwest Custom Apparel


New Era and Northwest Custom Apparel

New Era and Northwest Custom Apparel have a lot of things in common. Both New Era and Northwest are family owned businesses.

New Era was founded in 1920 by Ehrhardt Koch and will be 100 years old in a few more years. Northwest Custom Apparel was founded in  1977 by Jim Mickelson and will soon celebrate its 40th anniversary. Both are family owner businesses.

Northwest started buying caps from New Era in 1980. Caps with emblems were popular in those days. Northwest sold to the trucking and fishing companies. That’s when the term “trucker caps was first used.” This actually was the start of the trucker and feed cap revolution. A cap with a seed logo was the best medium to reach out to the farmers who was their target market for seeds.

Those were the days of trucker caps and seed caps.

At the time New Era and Paramount made the best USA caps in the country. We all know the story of imports and price slashing. New Era still maintains a production line for American Made Caps. Northwest can offer these as a part of our line of headwear.

Another interesting fact about New Era was that they we located in Derby, New York. This could be the reason caps were sometimes referred to as Derbies. It makes sense a cap made in Derby, NY was called a Derby.

Spike Lee

Yankee Red Cap

An interesting story about New Era is that they only made black caps for the Yankees. They received a call from Spike Lee who wanted a red Yankee cap. Spike wore it to the game and that was the beginning of fashion licensed. caps. Thank you Mr. Lee.

New Era is distributed in Tacoma/Seattle area by Northwest Custom Apparel. Northwest offers 17 styles of New Era caps

The 17 styles are



Snap Back

Flat Bill snap back

Stretch back (one size fits all)

Sized caps for the baseball teams.

The only way to see the full line of New Era caps is to visit the Northwest Custom Apparel Show room.


About Erik Mickelson

Erik Mickelson is the author of Northwest Custom Apparel's blogs. Erik has been with Northwest Custom Apparel since 1996 after graduating from Washington State University and is the founder of the Apparel Graphic Academy. Trained by the custom graphic apparel industry's best, Mark Venit, Erik brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the Embroidery Adventure blog. As they say, 'Experience is the best teacher.' We are proud to have Erik as part of our team!