It is difficult to have a worthwhile conversation about techwear without bringing up ACRONYM. The Berlin-based label has come to define modern techwear and has introduced countless innovations to the field. Despite little to nothing in the way of traditional marketing, ACRONYM has rightfully earned a devoted international following.

ACRONYM maintains a relatively small operation, but is able to exert massive influence on the fashion and sportswear industries. The small team is actually a source of strength and the company prides itself on their ability to quickly innovate and react to new technologies or production methods. This uncompromising approach is how the team is able to make some of the best technical apparel for everyday life on the market today.

The founders, Errolson Hugh and Michaela Sachenbacher, have stated ACRONYM is run more like an elite guerrilla military unit than a traditional clothing company. While the brand has reached new heights of popularity and brand awareness, its existence is an unlikely result of an ambitious founding vision and intensive design process.

The Founding of ACRONYM

ACRONYM was founded in 1999 as a legal entity by Errolson Hugh and Michaela Sachenbacher. Before ACRONYM created their own products, the company operated as a design agency offering consulting services to the activewear industry. They began working with a German snowboarding company called Protective, which lead them to a role with Burton Snowboards. Their relationship with Burton was a fruitful one that lasted nearly 14 years. At Burton, Hugh helped bring uncompromising technical innovations to traditional snowboarding gear. He describes their working relationship as a positive one: Burton was great because they were so irreverent. Snowboarding's inherently technical. You need the protection, you need the performance for the activity, but it's got such a punk rock spirit to it. There was never an idea that was too crazy.

Working heavily with sportswear and military technology, Hugh and Sachenbacher developed an interest in applying them to everyday attire. In between their consulting work, Hugh and Sachenbacher planned out the scope and identity of ACRONYM as an independent label. The design process for the first products took 2 years and were not released until 2002.