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World Styling visits Pendleton, takes awesome photos!

Japanese lifestyle magazine mono presents a new publication;  “World Styling: A Journey for Timeless Masterpieces,” showcasing international high-quality brands.

World Styling cover

We were pleased to host the photographers and take them on a tour of our Washougal mill.

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We also welcomed the photographers to our design headquarters in Portland’s Old Town.

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We are proud to keep company with world brands like Louboutin and ic! Berlin. The photography is fantastic, as are the products shown, if we do say so ourselves. And please remember that you don’t have to be an international journalist to tour Pendleton Woolen Mills in Washougal WA or Pendleton OR. Stop by and see us!

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Pendleton’s New Badlands Blanket!

Since the early 1900s, Pendleton has honored our nation’s parks with a growing collection of distinctive National Park blankets. Each blanket is woven in the company’s Pacific Northwest mills and Made in the USA.

The newest addition to the Park blanket collection for 2013 honors Badlands National Park, designated a national treasure by President Roosevelt in 1929, and home to one of the world’s richest fossil beds.
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Deep forest green, golden sunrise yellow, sunset orange and light earthy brown reflect the natural beauty of the landscape with its sharply eroded buttes, pinnacles and spires. The Lakota knew the place as mako sica. Early French trappers called the area les mauvaises terres a traverser. Both mean “bad lands,” no doubt a reference to the rugged and treacherous terrain.

The story of how these special blankets began is a true American frontier story. In 1893, the Great Northern Railroad completed its transcontinental route two hundred miles north of Yellowstone National Park, too far away to attract visitors. Railroad President Louis V. Hill tirelessly promoted the establishment of a new national park along his rail line in Montana, leading to the establishment in 1910 of Glacier National Park.

Pendleton Woolen Mills was asked by Louis Hill’s father, James J. Hill (founder of the Great Northern Railroad), to design a one-of-a-kind blanket for his guests at the Glacier Park lodges. “In 1916 we introduced our first National Park Blanket for Glacier Park,” says Robert Christnacht, Worldwide Director of Sales for Pendleton. “These treasures are not only warm and practical, and a perfect souvenir from the parks, but a legacy to the entire park system and the expansion of the American West.” NatlPark_poster

In addition to the new Badlands blanket, other parks represented include Yellowstone, Grand Canyon, Yosemite, Rainier, Acadia, Crater Lake and Glacier.

Each blanket bears the Pendleton label signifying its authenticity, along with a special label depicting an image with an important natural feature specific to each park. All blankets are 100% pure virgin wool. The Badlands, Glacier, and Yellowstone blankets are available in Twin, Full, and Queen sizes. All other National Park Blankets are available in Full and Queen only.

Wool & Prince

Wool & Prince

You’ve heard about it on the radio, seen it on YouTube, read about it in the paper and on innumerable blogs  all over the world. Yes, we are talking about the 100 Day Shirt by Wool & Prince, the new company Kickstarted  by Mac Bishop. We have fielded quite a few queries about this project because the shirt Mac wears in his video is actually a Sir Pendleton. So, here are some Pendleton answers to your Wool & Prince questions.

Was Pendleton aware that their shirt was being used by Wool & Prince?

Yes, we were aware the shirt worn in the video is a Sir Pendleton. Mac Bishop is a proud member of the sixth generation of Pendleton’s Bishops, and he’s worn Pendleton products his entire life.

Were you surprised by Wool & Prince’s claim that your Sir Pendleton was wrinkle and odor-free after being worn for 100 consecutive days without cleaning?

We were not. We have been making men’s wool shirts for 90 years, and we understand the attributes of wool. Even though there is no such thing as a self-cleaning shirt, a wool shirt will refresh itself when allowed to rest after a wearing. We’re excited that Wool & Prince is illuminating the qualities of wool to new consumers.

Have you ever subjected any of your wool shirts to a similar test?

Pendleton’s consumers have been wear-testing our Men’s shirts since 1924. That’s why we’re not surprised at the outstanding results.

Is Pendleton producing the Wool & Prince brand?

No. Mac Bishop has developed his own fabric and sourced production independently.

Is Pendleton planning any changes to the line based on the excitement generated by Wool & Prince’s slimmer fit shirts?

We have been doing great business with our Fitted shirts, which we introduced years ago. Our contemporary brand, The Portland Collection, offers a trim fit, and this fall we are launching a new brand, Thomas Kay, celebrating our founder and 150 years of weaving in America. The garments in this collection (including new shirt models and fabrics) have a modern, tailored fit. Which is all just our way of saying that we have been working on a more body-conscious fit for a few years.

For those of you who haven’t seen it, you can watch the Wool & Prince video here.

For excellent background on Wool & Prince, read Fast Company’s profile .

And for more information on wool, see our website.

Jack Kerouac and Pendleton

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“Hi, my name is Daniel Glicker, and I’d like to work with Pendleton for a film I’m doing, an adapation of Jack Kerouac’s On the Road.”

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That was an exciting phone call to receive. For those of you who don’t know, Danny Glicker is the Oscar-winning costume designer who dressed Sam Riley, Garrett Hedlund, Kristen Stewart and many more for their roles as Beat pioneers. He shopped vintage heavily, but the demands of filming require multiples of nearly every garment. Those are difficult to come by when you are searching out garments made in the 1950s.

That’s where Pendleton came in. We supplied Mr. Glicker with some new shirts made in plaids drawn from our archives, which he tailored to match our earlier specs. Because he is an exacting perfectionist, he also re-labeled the shirts with vintage tags we provided. And then, using processes known only to costumers, he weathered them to suit the road-battered, nonconformist lifestyle of Sal Paradise and Dean Moriarty, the novel’s protagonists.

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Premiering at Sundance this year is “Kill Your Darlings,” a film about one of the more infamous episodes in Beat history. With Jack Huston as Jack Kerouac and Daniel Radcliffe as Alan Ginsberg, this is a fantastic cast.  And it is not another reworking of On The Road. This is a the story of an actual death, possibly murder, possibly self-defense, that echoed through the tightly-knit  Beat Generation. We also worked to provide Pendleton shirts for this set of Beats.

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Kill Your Darlings

These movies demonstrate the lasting impression made by Jack Kerouac on American literature. The story of his life, echoed in his works, resonates with iconoclastic spirit.

On The Road has never been out of print since it was first published by Viking in 1957. Here is a tour of the book’s covers, decade by decade along with some shots of the author. These shots of Jack Kerouac explain why costumers sought out Pendleton.

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Greg Hatten says Hello.

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We mention Greg on this blog fairly often. He’s a wooden boat crafter and enthusiast, and he’s also just a great guy with infectious enthusiasm and tremendous knowledge of the rivers and byways of the American West. It was amazing enough that wooden boats ran the the Grand Canyon in 1962; it was just as amazing that Greg and his crew built wooden boats by hand and ran it again fifty years later.

Here’s a recent note from Greg:

It’s been a winter filled with rain, snow, and presentations on the Grand Canyon trip. I’ve been speaking A LOT & having fun doing it. I show my audiences the little video I created to tell the story. I was fortunate to meet Martin Litton and his wife last month down in California. He’s 96 years old & still remembers a lot of the details from his “river running” days. He gave me a number of old videos of his original trips from the early 60s. It was a memorable day.

Greg’s projects have a real connection to history and devotion to authenticity. We like to think Pendleton has some of the same.  Here is the video. Enjoy!

YSL and Pendleton fabrics

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YSL’s inspiration for their latest runway shows for men and women is Seattle Grunge, and for their fabrics, they came to the source. Yes, they came to Pendleton for wool shirting. The collection has made noise out there, as controversial in its way as Grunge was. We are proud to have been selected as an archetypal source for plaids. All photos courtesy of Style.com.

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Benny Gold for Jansport and Pendleton: coming in Fall 2013

This was a fun collaboration to work on, and we think you’re going to love the results. Jansport is another Pacific Northwest company, and Benny Gold is fantastic to work with. More information and shots here  and here  and just about everywhere else.

How will you wait until Fall?

San Francisco Chronicle

The Thomas Kay Collection: a Pioneer’s Legacy

photo of Thomas Kay

Pendleton Woolen Mills dates our founding to 1863, when an adventuresome young weaver named Thomas Kay settled in the brand new state of Oregon. The story of Pendleton began earlier in the mid-19th century when Thomas Kay was a bobbin boy in Yorkshire mills, working his way up to weaver before sailing for America to continue his training on the East coast.

In 1863, Thomas Lister Kay traveled by boat, burro and buggy to settle in the new state of Oregon. Using his genius for fabric, Thomas Kay staked his knowledge and integrity on the success of his mill, which soon turned out the first bolt of worsted wool west of the Mississippi. The Kay Woolen Mill was once the largest weaving facility in the West. It still stands as a working museum in Salem, Oregon, a symbol of pioneering spirit and innovative technology.

Thomas established a tradition of excellence by weaving the finest woolen textiles in America, a tradition he passed on to his daughter Fannie Kay Bishop and her sons. Six generations later, Thomas Kay’s descendants weave on at Pendleton Woolen Mills, heirs to his manufacturing legacy.  Every product is still “Warranted To Be A Pendleton,” an homage to Thomas Kay’s original commitment to quality.

Thomas Kay

In recognition of our founder, we have launched a signature brand for Pendleton Woolen Mills; The Thomas Kay Collection.  Inspired by Kay’s desire to weave woolens of the highest merit, Pendleton offers classic and traditional apparel and accessories for Men, Women and Home for Fall 2013.

The Thomas Kay Collection embodies a heritage of fabric craft and discovery. Richly patterned jacquard, tweed and plaid fabrics are woven by craftspeople in Pendleton’s Pacific Northwest mills. Each item has been carefully fashioned to reflect Thomas Kay’s history, marrying proper English refinement with a distinctly American sense of style. The Thomas Kay label stands for 150 years of honesty, artistry and authenticity.

A fitting introduction to the collection is found in this motto from the Pendleton archives: “Where Quality Decides, We Always Win”

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If you’d like to see more about the Thomas Kay line, please visit our Facebook page.

Who are the Mammoth Men, and why do we love them?

Mammoth Men

To answer the first question, click here.

Mammoth Men

To answer the second, watch this.

Exhibit at the Multnomah County Library – Now!

Multnomah County Library

Portlanders revere our central library as the grande dame of a network of libraries, large and small, that serve our metro area.  The Multnomah Country Library fills an entire block in the heart of downtown Portland with its trove of information. The library also hosts several displays on its upper floors.

Local readers will want to stop in to see out this one; Smoke Signals, the Literature and Culture of Native America.  This collection of rare Native American manuscripts will be on display until March 24th, with rare works from antiquity to the present. Also on display will be two Pendleton blankets, including this very limited edition “Bridging Communities Together” blanket, designed by Yakama Nation artist Toma Villa for the NCAI.

AIC blanket by Toma Villa

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The books and manuscripts are part of the John Wilson Special Collections, with artifacts (including blankets) loaned by NAYA. The blankets are lovely, but the stars of the show are the written materials. Please give them a visit.

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