We got word of some happy Pendleton fans this last week when we received this photo of our Route 66 blanket on the front seat of a 1953 Hudson Hornet. Thanks to Anna and Dean for letting us share it, and from their friend Carolyn for letting us know about it. If you missed our post about this blanket and the route that inspired it, just click here.
The Westerley Cardigan, made famous by Jeff Bridge’s The Dude in The Big Lebowski, is back for fall. This is a different coloration, but as you can see by the vintage ad on the left, it is straight from our archives. We found a mill that could recreate the weight and gauge of the original sweater. We changed one detail; this version zips with a leather pull tab instead of the original metal ring.
We’ll have a contest coming soon, so you can win your own.
At Pendleton, we have so much local lore to draw on when naming products. We all agreed that the Burnside was a perfect name for this Fall’s new cotton shirt! What else would we name it? It was a perfect name, the perfect name! But then it occurred to us that not every one lives in Portland. So here’s a little background.
Burnside Avenue runs from east to west in Portland, crossing the Willamette River with one of Portland’s original bridges. The best-known stretch on the west side of the river, where Burnside was originally known as “B Street,” is part of Northwest Portland’s Alphabet District. In the 1800s, before the bridge was built, this was a wild part of town. B Street was home to bars, card rooms, and other nefarious businesses that made it a less-than-respectable part of town. The street name was changed to Burnside after David W. Burnside, a Portland merchant, in the late 1860s, but it took more than a new moniker to alter the neighborhood. It took traffic.
Yes, traffic! The bridge, the streetcar and then the demands of the automobile turned Burnside into one of Portland’s more heavily traveled avenues. When the 205 freeway was cut through, Burnside even got some on-ramps (one block off Burnside). Burnside served as one of the boundaries of what Portlanders called “close-in Northwest,” an industrial area adjacent to the river.
It was home to rail yards, breweries and warehouses. But by the late 1980s, the breweries had closed, and the rail yard had relocated its giant concrete turntable to SE Portland. Change was coming.
Today, Burnside bounds the Pearl District, a prosperous mixed-use neighborhood full of lofts, studios, galleries, restaurants and shopping. But Burnside’s gritty charms remain. You can see it in Powell’s, the City of Books housed in an amalgamation of warehouses joined together to make a square city block of books. You can also see some original Burnside in Everyday Music, another vast emporium housed in converted industrial spaces. And you can see it in the work of the McMenamin brothers, Portland entrepreneurs who restored an ancient dance hall with a famous floating wooden dance floor and opened the Crystal Ballroom with Ringler’s Pub underneath.
Pendleton’s HQ sits where the Pearl District meets Portland’s Old Town, on NW Broadway, just east of the North Park Blocks. Burnside Avenue is only two blocks away. It continues to carry foot, bus, car and bike traffic through a part of Portland where the newness of the Pearl District rubs shoulders with history, and it carries it all comfortably. What better name could we find for a 100% cotton flannel shirt, peached on both sides of the fabric for softness, bar tacked for strength, and made in the kinds of plaids that say Pendleton?
That’s right. We called it the Burnside shirt, and we hope you like it.
Part of the Calgary Stampede’s Indian Princess’s year includes a “special” – a contest for the dance style she dances. The Indian Princess is responsible for supplying the prizes and judges.
Amber Big Plume’s Fancy Shawl special was held at the recent Tsuu T’ina Pow Wow.
This coat in Pendleton wool was the prize for the winner, designed and sewn by the amazing Janine’s Custom Creations.
We have been so proud of Amber during her year as princess. It is hard to believe that her reign is coming to an end.
We hope you remember this post about Pendleton fabrics used by YSL in a grunge-inspired collection that hit the runways this past spring.
French VOGUE’s shoot with Georgia may Jagger showcases these Pendleton plaids again.
So there you go….Umatilla wool in VOGUE, and we love it.
Japanese lifestyle magazine mono presents a new publication; “World Styling: A Journey for Timeless Masterpieces,” showcasing international high-quality brands.
We were pleased to host the photographers and take them on a tour of our Washougal mill.
We also welcomed the photographers to our design headquarters in Portland’s Old Town.
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!
Amber, a Law and Society student at the University of Calgary, is from the Tsuu T’ina Nation. Amber has had an exciting reign as Indian Princess, with international trips and appearances throughout Canada. She’s represented the Stampede, her nation, and Pendleton beautifully.
Our role was to provide clothing, fabric and blankets for some of Amber’s extensive royal wardrobe. Amber is affectionately referred to as “the pocket princess” by the Stampede staffers, so even with our petite sizes, we had trouble finding clothing petite enough for Amber. Thankfully, her skilled seamstress, Janine Stabner, could come to the rescue.
Janine used Pendleton fabrics for ensembles she designed exclusively for Amber.
Heather Hirsch was the genius behind the needle for Amber’s official overcoat, made from one of our Jerome blankets. Luckily, Heather had just enough fabric left to make a matching jacket for Amber’s sister, Kaitlyn.
The vertical orientation of the design is in honor of the Calgary Stampede Indian Princess and the people she represents. According to our friends at the Stampede, in Blackfoot culture, ceremonial members of the community commonly wear robes with the patterns oriented in this fashion.
A Pendleton Chief Joseph blanket was also part of Amber’s official serape, which was often worn by her mounts (those with hooves and those with wheels) during her numerous parade appearances.
It’s been our pleasure to support Amber. She has worked so hard this year. Though Amber’s time as Princess is drawing to a close, we will watch with pride as she finishes her degree and moves into her professional life. And we hope you will watch this slideshow with pride. It’s full of Amber’s highlights, including an incredible belt buckle, saddle, custom boots and more Pendleton!
Pendleton commemorates America’s first completely paved highway with our Route 66 blanket.
Route 66′s 2448 miles of two-lane highway fired the American imagination for sixty years. John Steinbeck referred to it as “the Mother Road,” the path out of the Dust Bowl during the Great Depression. It was the route of countless family road trips after the automobile took hold of American society in the 1950s. In 1953, it earned another unofficial name, “the Will Rogers Highway.” Thanks to countless references in books, music and film, Route 66 became a genuine American icon, even inspiring its own TV series on CBS.
Route 66 was decommissioned in 1985, a casualty of the nation’s improved freeway system. On our blanket, the highway’s path still rolls across America with classic roadsters, retro road signs, rest stops, motels and diners. These quaint roadside attractions of Route 66 helped earn it the nickname, “America’s Main Street.”
You can read more about Route 66 in this excellent piece by TIME magazine.
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.
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.”
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.
As part of this year’s Thomas Kay Collection, we are offering select gear that echoes our founder’s craftsman ideals. The gear in the Thomas Kay Collection has been carefully chosen to reflect American standards of craftsmanship and integrity.
For nearly eight decades, Zippo® has been manufacturing lighters in Bradford, Pennsylvania. Their patented windproof lighter is an American icon in peace and war. For the Thomas Kay Collection, we offer this 1941 Replica™ in brushed chrome with a vintage Pendleton logo engraved on the side: “Where quality decides, we always win. Pendleton Woolen Mills.”
We didn’t go far to find the next product; the Thomas Kay Leatherman® tool is made by the Oregon company that has been manufacturing this indispensible tool since 1983. A stainless steel Leatherman® is 18 handy tools in one; knives, pliers, scissors, screwdriver, corkscrew and more. Our version is engraved with our vintage tilted logo, and presented in a Pendleton jacquard wool pouch.
The Thomas Kay Camp Stool is also made in Oregon by the hands-on craftspeople at Wood and Faulk. This ingenious design combines hardwood, Pendleton wool and rugged leather. It’s is comfortable, collapsible and easy to carry, thanks to the detachable strap. You can see the manufacture and some really beautiful shots over at their blog.
We’re proud of this group of American-made products, and of the heritage that inspired them. Remember, “Where Quality Decides, We Always Win.”