An Insight In To Lesser Known Brands – Bunker Mentality

Firstly, apologies for the lack of content recently, I’d like to blame it all on Covid-19 but that’s not the case.

It’s played a role, however the biggest factor slowing down the articles is me. I’ve struggled to find the motivation to write and was contemplating shutting the blog down. Fear not, I’ve just renewed my domain name and the hosting package. So good news I’m sticking around for a bit longer.

A few months ago I wrote an article and a subsequent review about a lesser know golf brand called Caley Golf. I said back in June that I’m a fan of the smaller, independent and lesser know brands. I want to do my bit by talking and writing about these brands. Hence the 2nd article on the subject…

Today’s article is all about the British company  Bunker Mentality, a golf clothing company based in Nottingham. Not only am I a fan of their clothing and their mentality towards golf (PUN ALERT), but their spirit really does encompass everything about golf. With clothing ranges for on and off the course. In fact take a look at some of their polo’s and hats being worn by yours truly.

Some of you may know that I am an ambassador for Bunker Mentality, some of you may think that I am going to be totally biased in this article. You’d be wrong for thinking that, social media is filled with brands asking people to be an ambassador, and there is even more people asking for freebies in return to be an ambassador regardless of the brand, quality or what even the products are.

Me on the other hand, I’m really fussy I wouldn’t want to publicly support any brand if they weren’t a quality company offering products that I genuinely would buy. Plus the article is more about going beyond the products and finding out about the brand and not just promoting their products.  Now that is out of the way lets takes take an insight into the brand, and what better way than getting to know the brand by speaking to the owner Robert Hart.

Bunker Mentality was founded back in 2003, the concept for the company came following a business trip to Northern Ireland. A golf magazine by the name of Bogey in Belfast airport caught Robert’s eye, the magazine was golf inspired with how to guides and suggested places to play golf around the world. It sparked the thought that golfers would and could apricate a brand that epitomised the amateur golfer’s mentality of golf.

Both Robert and his partner were keen to start a business on this premise and more importantly manufacture their own clothing. That is how the brand started and the 1st range of clothing was in fact t-shirts with slogans that they still use today such as “Who’s Your Caddy” and “Goddamnmutherputta”. Now the highly popular “Birdie King”

Want to know who their 1st customer was?? I was really surprised when I found out.

House of Fraser! They loved the concept and ordered 7 styles at 200 pieces per design. Flying start right?! It was on the lead up to Christmas and the order needed to be fulfilled in less than 4 weeks to land in time for the Christmas rush.

At this point they actually had not set up manufacturing for the t-shirts yet, with the 1st order hanging in the balance a bulk order of t-shirts was ordered and delivered. A printing company based in Nottingham printed the designs allowing Bunker Mentality T-shirts to be in golfers homes for Christmas.

Not only is that an amazing story, a little bit dragons den like if you ask me, but the printer that helped them fulfil their very 1st order is the same printer they work with for all of us to enjoy the t-shirts they continue to sell today 17 years later!

What’s more impressive is their 2nd customer… Selfridges and then a number of other national fashion chains picked up their t-shirts to have in stores across the country.

In 2004 Nottingham University kindly offered to build a free website for Bunker Mentality, and through the evolution of that it has become the brand we have Today.

The company has seen some great successes since starting, and let’s be honest back in 2003 niche golf clothing companies had some serious competition as there just wasn’t many about. Surviving against the likes of Nike and Adidas is credit to them. Not even Puma golf had started back then to put that into perspective.

In fact, that is their biggest success according to Robert just surviving. For a small brand to last this long it’s incredible. It’s sad but most small business fail within 5 years.  They owe a lot of their success down to their website that was started back in 2004 for free!

Covid-19 has impacted all of us and all business, unfortunately Bunker Mentality has had to reduce their team down to 50% of what it was before the start of this year. They will now be a fully web based business and no longer rely on some of the sales team they had previously. That’s not stopped them they are currently hard at work on designing next seasons items. 

For those of you who have not seen any of the clothing by Bunker Mentality before, where have you been!

Their designs are bold and striking. They do not stick to drab colour schemes take a look at a few below:

Their range covers; t-shirts, hoodies and jumpers for off the course as well as polo’s, mid-layers, jackets, hats, snoods, shorts, trousers and belts for on the course.

For me the material of their polos is great, its light and not restrictive to my movement and they have some stretch to them meaning they will grow with all of our Christmas bellies this festive season.. They are also an athletic fit so if you going to loose the Christmas belly in the new year they will still look great on you.

They have also recently released their own golf membership called “Club Bunker” this annual membership gives you access to events hosted by Bunker throughout the year, discount codes for both their clothing but their partner brands such as Shot Scope and Stewart Golf. When you sign up and/or renew you get to pick an item of clothing to go with your membership. It’s already had people signing up from the UK, Germany and Canada and they are currently building an app for it. This is a really good concept and I’m keen to see how this plays out over the next year as it’s something that is very different.

Personally, for me the biggest thing I like about Bunker Mentality, is that they have really nailed the mentality of a golfer (PUN again sorry!). However, it’s true since I got into golf I think about golf a lot of the time, I play with friends and family, I play sometimes at work events and I talk about golf a lot. I even have golf blog for damn sake! So having a brand that get this and has clothes designed for every day wear around the house, out shopping or out walking the dog and then having the ability to take the same brand on the course in colours and styles that you don’t see an awful lot on the course is truly unique. Very little chance of turning up somewhere and looking like you have co-ordinated outfits with a mate or even a random golfer on the course!

Yes of course you can wear your other golf clothes off the course, but that FootJoy pull over was originally bought by you to wear on the course not around the house, right?

So if you haven’t already checked them out head over to their Instagram page (@bunkermentality) or website (www.bunker-mentality.com) to take a look, and hopefully  you know a bit more about the brand and where it started and that adds something special to your next or 1st Bunker Mentality purchase. Let’s not forget to support smaller and British business in this hard time for us all.

Until Next Time, Happy Golfing

Lewis

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