THE HISTORY OF LE MINOR HOSIERY

Since 1922, Le Minor has been making marine-inspired clothing for men, women and children in Brittany.

1922

Mrs. Berthe Etui creates in Lorient the MBL, La Manufacture Bonneterie Lorientaise

The company manufactures marine sweaters for fishermen.
The sailor sweater, well before becoming a fashion garment, has always been an armor against bad weather for the workers of the sea. The ancestor of Le Minor hosiery, MBL, for Manufacture Bonneterie Lorientaise, founded by Mrs. Berthe Etui, set itself the goal of protecting these sailors with the best possible sweaters, by creating a first manufacturing workshop in 1922, on the street of the 62nd Infantry Regiment in Lorient.

Breton sailors have a rough life, in contact with the elements, like the Terre-Neuvas. These sailors, from all Breton families, left at the age of 14 for 9-month cod fishing campaigns across the Atlantic, off Saint John and the Gulf of Saint Lawrence. At the time, the sailors took with them the MBL knitwear made of local wool, which they sometimes wore next to their skin, and which had to be warm and resistant.

This emblematic garment quickly became part of the sailors' gear before becoming a must-have in men's and women's wardrobes, as a symbol of French elegance.

1936

Marie-Anne Le Minor, creates in Pont L'Abbé the company LE MINOR

In parallel, in 1936, another Breton symbol was born in Pont L'Abbé. Le Minor is first the name of its founder Marie-Anne, who created the company in the 30s.

She gathered around her the embroiderers of the Bigouden country, who perpetuated a traditional Breton decorative art, by making first traditional folk clothes, doll clothes, then table and household linen, and very quickly ready-to-wear.

1950

Creation of the Kabig, Le Minor's iconic and emblematic piece.

The Kabig, emblematic piece of the Le Minor range, has been dressing Breton children and adults since the 1950s. A woolen coat, a sort of hooded coat, this garment is said to be inspired by that of the "goémoniers" (seaweed gatherers), these people who live at the time of the collection of seaweed at low tide, to make fertilizer or medicine. This garment must be warm, covering and weatherproof. To make it a trendy garment, Marie-Anne Le Minor had it redesigned by René-Yves Creston.

1960

Minor becomes a fashion brand: "a brand in the wind

Through new collections and new products inspired by the marine world, the brand continues its development.

1963

The company set up its workshops in Guidel. More than 150 people have joined the entrepreneurial adventure

During the 1930s, MBL continued to grow, but was forced to move to Quimperlé and Pluméliau during the Second World War, before returning to Lorient at the end of it. Under the direction of Juliette Corlay, the company moved to the current factory in Guidel in 1963 and began to dress the general public by making cotton sailor sweaters and sailor shirts.

1970

The company won the contract from the French Navy.

In 1970, MBL started to manufacture the regulation jersey for the French Navy and will manufacture between 5000 and 15000 officers' sweaters per year for the Navy until 2010. Today, the workshop in Guidel continues to manufacture this sweater made to last a lifetime.

Minor employs 500 people in Pont L'Abbé: a true regional symbol.

1982

Minor is bought by the company MBL

To better represent the excellence of Breton manufacturing, Le Minor and MBL merged in 1982 and moved together to Guidel.

1987

The Grammatico family takes over the management of the company

The company is taken over by the Grammatico family in 1987. Under her management, MBL labels gradually gave way to Le Minor. Passionate about design, Marie-Christine Grammatico remained at the head of the factory for 31 years, designing colorful sailors' shirts with ever-changing stripes.

1989

Development of the brand on the Asian territory with in particular the opening of the Japanese market

The Minor is going through the crisis of the French textile industry (1990-2010) by successfully carving out a nice place for itself in the export market, especially in Japan, where coquettish women swear by this traditional sailor made in Brittany.

2000

Opening of a new activity

Le Minor is developing its activity as a manufacturer in France for high-end and luxury brands.

2018

Jérôme and Sylvain, two entrepreneurs passionate about French know-how, take over the company

In 2018, Le Minor was taken over by two friends who intend to perpetuate a quality know-how that has become very rare in France.

2020

Le Minor represents Morbihan at the Élysée Palace for the first exhibition of Made in France and is a winner of France Relance

For the first Made in France exhibition, Le Minor was selected by the Morbihan prefecture to represent the Elysée Palace. Le Minor exhibited one of its emblematic sweaters, the 92012 ecru-navy, a symbol of its Breton manufacturing for nearly 100 years, alongside brands such as Guy Cotten, with whom the company would later manufacture nearly 100,000 masks during the Covid crisis.

2021

Development of the French market

This year marks the redeployment of the brand on French territory, after a long period in the desert, during which it had developed mainly in export markets. The brand is distributed at Merci and Centre Commercial in Paris, a sign of a successful premium repositioning.

2022

The Minor celebrates its 100th anniversary

The centennial year is full of events, starting with the reintroduction of the Kabig, the house's emblematic coat. As this centenary is synonymous with a projection into the modern world, Le Minor is carrying out 2 M € of work to equip itself with a new production workshop, a new factory store, and to open a museum in Guidel.

This 100-year anniversary also sees the birth of new collaborations with Monoprix, L'Étiquette and Norse Projet.

Finally, in 2022, Le Minor is releasing its "Woolly pully", a sweater made from recycled wool and spun in France, a true embodiment of the brand's mission to safeguard textile know-how in France.