Handmade by Her: Melissa Allen, making a Kromer a Kromer.

Up next in our series of employee features, meet Melissa Allen!

Stormy Kromer Sewer
SK: What’s your role at Stormy Kromer?
MA: I put the earband on the cap. It’s a big job, and I love it.

SK: What are you most proud of in your work?
MA: My favorite thing is to see people wearing our caps. That puts a smile on my face, and I think: I sewed that!

SK: So, do you have a sewing machine at home?
MA:
No, but my first job out of high school was in a sewing factory. I’ve been doing this awhile.

SK: What kind of person works at Stormy Kromer?
MA:
You’ve got to be an honest, hard-working, happy person to be here. If you don’t like your job, why do it? You’ve got to be happy with it, and I expect that all of us are.

SK: When we say “True. Since 1903.” what do you think that means?
MA:
To me, it means good clothes and outdoor gear that will last a lifetime. And it just keeps getting better and better as time goes on.

SK: What’s your favorite piece of Stormy Kromer clothing?
MA:
It’s the Original wool cap. I buy those for everyone—even one for my grandbaby who’s not here yet!—but I haven’t gotten around to picking one up for myself.

Sewing an earband
SK: What keeps you at Stormy Kromer?
MA: I like it here. I like what I’m doing. Believe it or not, I like to get up and come to work every day—I walk in with a smile on my face.

SK: What’s your best day so far?
MA: Oh, my first day. I’d been trying to get a job here for a year, and I was just so excited to start.

SK: What does “Made in America” mean to you?
MA:
When I look inside the cap and see the flag and “Made in the USA” label, I know people are getting good quality and that they’ll be proud to wear it. What we make will last their whole lives.

SK: Any other advice for the people who’ll read this?
MA: You’re gonna love Kromer gear. Go get some!

A Legendary Team

Just as the voting period for the 2013 Living Legend comes to a close, we received an email from a fan alerting us to a truly legendary story about a small-town football team, just down the road from us.

In the spirit of legendary-ness, we felt compelled to be sure all of you read it too.

Each year, Sports Illustrated does a series called, “Underdogs: Inspiring Stories in High School Football.”  Not only was Ishpeming High School (right here in the Upper Peninsula) named a finalist, they won this year’s prize.

Daniel Mears/AP

Their winning story, which you can read here, centered around Eric Dompierre, a 19-yr old student with Down’s Syndrome.  You see, Eric was the back-up kicker for the team, but because of his age, had to fight the Michigan High School Athletic Association for the right to play his senior year.  A fight he, his father and the entire Ishpeming community took on wholeheartedly, and won.

The amazing thing is, this is only a portion of the inspiring story behind this Ishpeming Hematite Football Team.  If you want to know “the rest of the story,” we encourage you to check out this wonderful blog posted yesterday on SI.com.  Trust us, you won’t regret the time you spend on it.

Are there any other legendary team stories we need to know about?  (And don’t forget to get your Stormy Kromer Living Legend votes in by 12/16.)