A night of boyish fun that ended with Tony Pook parading around with a Canadian wool sock on his head was the unexpected beginning for the Pook Toque™ knitted sock hat, and the company’s subsequent line of warming gear. Pook Toque, founded by Pook and lifelong friend, Kevin McCotter, also distributes Pook Dukes™ mittens, fleece lined Pook Loop™ scarves, licensed Hockey Sockey Toques, the Pookie Toquie™ hat for babies, Pook Lite, Pook™ the Monkey sock toys, and Pook Boots, Canadian wool work socks with added fleece lining. All products are made from the wool work sock.
Located in Stratford, Ontario, Pook is now wholesaling merchandise in the U.S. as well as its homeland. In Canada, the company’s most popular product has been the Pook Toque with ears, which transforms into hundreds of styles. Pook’s website posts a flowchart of Pook styling, but to fully appreciate the genius of the man behind the hat, one can view the YouTube video in which Pook himself fashions the bowler for martinis and appetizers, the Donald Trump Comb over, use your imagination, the Robinhood and other varieties. The mittens are a close second to Pook Toque in popularity, McCotter adds. “Most of our buyers are women, and when they buy a hat for their son or husband they usually buy a pair of mitts for themselves. The mitts have a polar fleece lining, so they are super warm.”
Keeping it Fresh While Staying Warm
Pook adds new products each year, expanding with Hockey Sockey Toques this past year. “Getting the NHL license was a pretty good score,” McCotter stresses. “We’re one of only two companies allowed to make headwear in Canada with the NHL logos.” Pook is hoping to expand its NHL license agreement and create hats with U.S. hockey team logos in the future. This year, however, Pook is introducing a new toque fleece lining, patterned after the red and black plaid worker’s shirt, which will be a bit flashier and more rustic than the current fleece, McCotter says. “And we’re going to start selling socks in different colors. We never actually sold socks, we just bought them and made them into different things,” he explains. “We’re going to have them in different multi-colors, and I think they will be popular for the holidays.” Pook Monkeys, locally handmade at present, also are expected to be holiday favorites. “We haven’t started wholesaling the monkeys yet, but we hope to have them available wholesale for the fall.” Wholesale price is $12 for any one item and retail is around $24.99 for most merchandise, with socks priced around $15 for two pairs. Minimum order is 25 items in any combination. The Pook Toque style flowchart is available in a large, laminated poster for POP display, as well as a DVD showing how to work the toque.
23 Albert Street
Stratford, ON N5A 3K2
Email: Kevin@pooktoque.com, Tony@pooktoque.com