Vintage Crewroom

Vintage Crewroom

To many rowers their crew rowing suit is more than just a necessity – it's a badge of honour, a piece of nostalgia evoking memories of teamwork, hard training, and the thrill of competition. That’s why we’ve worked incredibly hard to create a rowing suit that’s designed to stand the test of time.

Welcome to the fourth in a series of Blogs called ‘Vintage Crewoom’, where we showcase some vintage, very loved, very worn (and very washed!) pieces of Crewroom kit – all of which still cut the mustard years after purchase!

This month we’re featuring a three-year-old, rowing suit belonging to Philippa Emery, a former student at Durham University. At DUBC, the selection for both the Men's and Women's 1st VIII earns them a Palatinate Rowing Suit, the equivalent of the Oxford and Cambridge Blues.

Philippa told us: 

This all-in-one was awarded to me my first time competing at HRR when I made Durham University’s first eight. The full Palatinate rowing suit holds a huge significance within DUBC as an athlete who has raced in the first boat at Henley, and therefore it’s a privilege each time I put it on.

Alongside HRR, my main memory associated with this all-in-one is the full Palatinate ceremony –  which DUBC hold to congratulate the Henley Royal lineup – awarding such athletes with their rowing suits to race at HRR and wishing them a successful campaign. This was the first time I had been selected for the top boat; therefore I feel proud I could celebrate with my teammates and coaches.

The history behind the Crewroom Rowing Suit

The founder of Crewroom – Kate Giles – is herself a former elite rower who was motivated to create fit-for-purpose rowing kit after contracting pneumonia while training in extreme weather. Her own experience of rowing suits at both club and national level, often saw her wearing ill-fitting team unisuits made with uncomfortable, non-wicking fabrics, many of which eventually wore and faded.

This inspired Kate to create the Crewroom Rowing Suit, using exceptional fabrics and attention to detail, with a considered approach to product design. Must-haves to ensure fit and function included: sustainable, recycled fabrics that felt soft to the touch yet fully opaque; four-way stretch to accommodate the full range of the rowing motion and exertion of the stroke; durable enough to withstand intense and frequent training; comfortable enough to fit varying body shapes and sizes.

Additional features including flatlock seams, no-rub hems and a waist panel with extra support were all incorporated for maximum comfort. The unisuit would also feature an internal gusset for men and women, providing additional comfort and keeping the garment fresher for longer. And for made-to-order team unisuits, the ability to add extra length to the body or bottoms would mean a fully ‘custom’ fit was available.


Today, the Crewroom Rowing Suit is a staple in the kit bags of many crews up and down the country, along with international and elite crews. Since the original rowing suit was launched, we’ve gone on to design variations including The Winter Rowing Suit with full leg coverage, The Ultra Rowing suit with zip pocket storage and The Elite Rowing Suit, ultra-lightweight and ideal for rowing in the warmer months. The Crewroom Rowing Suit boasts more panels for comfort and fit than any other all-in-on on the market.

Our mission has always been to make products which not only offer athletes technical benefits, but also to make products which athletes are proud to wear. The Crewroom Rowing suit was designed to achieve just that.

To see more Crewroom products that have stood the test of time, stay posted for the next in our series of ‘Vintage Crewroom’. 

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