Falke are one of those names that everyone seems to know, a brand that is recognised all over the world and for very good reason. Falke has become a household name because of its incredible reputation as the designer of some of the world's best hosiery and on a par with Wolford. There are plenty of names that contend for this title, but so many of them designer incredibly luxurious items that it just wouldn't make sense to wear each day. Falke is a designer that you can wear again and again, throughout the week and during the evenings and it'll always be ideal.
That's not to say that Falke only make everyday tights and essentials. On the contrary, Falke have some of the most beautiful items you'll ever wear as part of their range. They make tights and stockings that would be difficult for anyone else to outdo. So what makes this brand so magnificent? It is a collection of different factors that make Falke the magnificent designer it is known to be today.
One is its history. Falke has been producing great tights for over a century, since the year 1895. It is one of the longest lasting names in the industry and one of the few designers outside of Paris to have lasted longer than one hundred years. When you make leg wear for this long, you will almost certainly perfect your craft to a level that few others can rival. Time and experience are irreplaceable and they are a very valuable asset that Falke have always used to their advantage.
Founded by Franz Falke-Rohen in 1895, Falke benefitted immediately from Franz's experience as a knitter of warm winter tights. He began working for himself with a dream to make the best tights he could and outdo all the other garment makers on a level of quality. With his experience making tights, that was the garment he concentrated on, over other forms of leg wear. He succeeded with plenty of hard work and help from his family, who also worked in the family business. In 1902, it was his eldest son, Franz Junior, who took over the business from his father. Franz Junior was originally an umbrella manufacturer and was very skilled with fabrics and knew how to create sturdy and robust materials that would handle any weather conditions. This experience with making technical fibres was blended with his experience in the clothing world and his fathers love of luxury to create tights that was both strong and beautiful.
This was what gave Falke its incredible reputation, making Falke tights that lasted as well as ones that fit well or were made of soft fabric. A pair of Falke tights that lasts a hundred wears is very impressive, whereas one that lasts a dozen wears isn't so pleasing, even if they feel incredibly comfy.
In 1918, Falke purchased a large factory in the town of Schmallenberg. This was the place where they would develop, test and make most of their yarns and fabrics for the next few decades. But two years later, their manufacturing plant, the place wear they make the garments rather than just the yarns, is opened nearby in Schmallenberg. This facility remains their headquarters to this day and it is a testament to their love of tradition, heritage and long lasting quality that they have remained firmly rooted to their home for so long.
In 1928, the founder passes away and Falke goes officially into the hands of the next generation. At the time, Falke produced more tights than most other manufacturers in Europe with a work force of 800 employees. It was a powerhouse of production and it was starting to gain recognition all over the globe.
Falke Hold Ups
In 1939, Falke purchased another company based in Schmallenberg, called Salomon Stern. This company was founded in 1810 and had a reputation as one of the finest manufacturers of leg wear in Germany, and Falke's own founder began his apprenticeship at this corporation. The purchase of it by a younger company that had started with knowledge learned at Salomon Stern shows just how far Falke had come in just a few short years and with the experience of Salomon Stern's knitters and designers, Falke would surely become an even more loved and talented designer. This company is now operating under the name Falke Fashion and creates all their seasonal garments. Taking over a fashion manufacturer was the first step towards creating other kinds of leg wear too,
like hold ups. Falke hold ups give you the sexy look and feel of stockings but also the practicality of tights doing away with the need for a suspender belt. They excelled at creating this demanding and difficult item and used their knowledge of superior fabrics to create the best silicone and lace they could.
Falke continued to innovate under the third generation of the Falke family until the 70s and 80s when they decided to turn to new avenues One of these was making menswear like socks, but also, they decided to expand another collection that may be considered more traditional but has seen a resurgence in modern times; Falke stockings. They now make both stockings in the world. Their growing international fame and their willingness to explore new possibilities beyond just tights and socks meant they would become internationally recognised all over the world for other clothing, especially in places like Paris where traditional stockings are still adored.
In 1979, they partner with Giorgio Armani and make his new leg wear collection, putting them even more in the spotlight of the fashion community as well as the praise they have received for their work with essential leg wear. In the 1990s, the company was passed onto the fourth generation of the Falke family and by this time, Falke had outlets and even manufacturing stores all over Germany, Eastern Europe and even as far away as South Africa. As of today, they also have stores in Switzerland, a place that is used to incredible leg wear, showing just how far they have come.