Happy Mother’s Day from Pendleton Woolen Mills

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Cassy Berry – @cassyberryphoto

To brand new mothers who are finding their way, and mothers who have this motherhood thing all figured out-

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Cassey Lennon – @eyeamsun

To mothers-to-be, and mothers remembered-

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@merzydotes and @cosmic.american

For all your days and nights of work, worry, joy and laughter; we say thank-you, and we wish you the best.

Happy Mother’s Day.

 Pendleton gifts for Mother’s Day

April Showers and Pendleton Rainwear

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The Pacific Northwest is famous for rainy spring weather, and this year is no exception. But a little moisture (or a lot) doesn’t stop us from getting out and about—which calls for rainwear!

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Pendleton’s signature rainwear is engineered to keep you comfortable, with fabrics that join the water-resistance of polyurethane with the breathability of cotton, and seam-seal technology. From the hood to the snaps, our coats are designed to stay dry.

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When it’s time to hit the trail, slip on some Pendleton rain boots! Padded for comfort and support, dry for any weather.

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We have plaids, jacquard-inspired tonal patterns, and National Park boots in three heights. With the right Pendleton rain jacket and a pair of Pendleton rain boots, you’re ready to take on the wettest spring.

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Check out more jacket styles here:   Pendleton Outerwear

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And see all the boot styles here: Pendleton Rain Boots

 

Photo credits:

Shots 1, 2, 5: Danielle Visco for Zoom Zoom Creative

Shots 3, 4: Kristen Frasca, @kristenfrasca 

Willow Inspiration – soft, flexible, and surprisingly sturdy

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It’s been a long, late winter, and we are ready for Spring with cotton, silk, and patterns that remind us of growth and harmony.

Willow Inspiration

Weaving baskets from willow has long been associated with tribes of the American Southwest. Basketry among Native American’s varies by region because of the materials available. In the Northeast, weavers work with sweet grass or ash splints. In the Southeast, baskets are made with bundled pine needles or rivercane. Northwestern tribes use the abundant cedar bark, spruce roots, and grasses of the region. Tribes of the Southwest use sumac or willow wood.

This is a living art form, very much in practice. This video portrays a contemporary basket maker, Margaret Acosta. In the museum shots, watch for a vintage Pendleton blanket on the wall!

 

Willow Basket Blankets

Our Willow Basket cotton blankets, inspired by the intricate beauty of handcrafted baskets, are woven  for us in Germany from 100% certified organic cotton. Why Germany? Well, we are masters weavers of wool. For cotton blankets, we turned to the experts in Germany to find the quality we wanted.

Ultrasoft, lightweight and woven of the finest yarns, our cotton blankets are made with the same quality and care as our world-class wool. This exclusive pattern is woven in soft hues to match any room. Machine-washable organic cotton is certified socially and environmentally responsible by the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS). See them here: Willow Basket Blanket

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If you love the Willow Basket pattern, you can also check out Mojave Twill and Yuma Star, two more beautiful organic cotton blanket patterns.

Silk gets Willowy

The lacy woven patterns of willow baskets also inspired a silk fabric for our Women’s line this spring – Willow Creek.

 

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See it here: Willow Creek

 

Magic Wash Merino is magical.

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By the end of January, we’re all looking forward to warmer days. What do you wear when you’re tired of winter clothes, ready to transition into Spring, but still need warmth?

Magic Wash Merino

Magic Wash Merino knits feature the luxe, silky hand of knitted merino, in a range of colors that look to the season ahead. The crewneck (above) features some very cool neck detailing, ribbed trim, and raglan sleeves. See all the colors here: Magic Wash Merino Crew

What is the Magic?

It’s a special treatment that makes each garment unique. These sweaters are hand-dyed for unique variations in color, transforming each piece into a one-of-a-kind find, with unique shading along necklines, seams and hems.

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Look closely at this pullover–it has the cutest (faux) pocket ever, and a relaxed hem to keep it easy to wear. Our design team thought a lot about the sleeve length to get it just right. See all the colors here: Magic Wash Merino Pullover

Why Merino?

Merino is one of our favorite luxury yarns, thanks to its sheen, airy lightness, and comfort. That’s right – you can layer for warmth and/or fashion, but this wool feels wonderful next to your skin. So slip on the V-Neck, and enjoy the silky, thermo-regulating comfort of pure merino wool. See all the colors here: Magic Wash Merino V-neck

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Merino Sheep

If you’d like to learn more about Merino sheep and what makes their wool so special, we suggest this page: Merino Sheep Info.  They are a special breed, carefully husbanded over centuries to create this outstanding wool. Plus, they’re handsome, and they know it.

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And speaking of handsome, we have men’s pieces too: Men’s Magic Wash Merino

The Pendleton ’49er for Fall 2018.

The Pendleton ’49er is a perfect illustration of the adage that quality never goes out of style.

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This American classic is still going strong after more than sixty years. But where did it come from?

The answer starts with the changes for women in World War II, when American women proclaimed, “We can do it.” This iconic WWII image was used in countless posters and bond drives during WWII. A serious woman dressed for hard work with her hair in a kerchief, the image still fixes us today, gazing out at onlookers over a flexed bicep.

She was a symbol of women stepping up to fill the need for factory workers during wartime, but she was also part of the emergence of one of Pendleton’s most enduring items of womenswear: the 49er jacket.

Continue reading

A Pendleton coat travels the world!

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Patricia sent us the following story about a world-traveling Pendleton coat (seen above in St. Petersburg). And we love it!

Fifty-four years ago this month, my new husband bought me a full length, lined, red plaid Pendleton coat at a store in Bangor, Maine. I loved that coat and for many years it kept me warm. After having two children, I “grew” but my coat did not. Unable to part with it, I found a home for it in the back of a closet. Years later my older daughter saw it and asked if she could take it to college with her. I was happy to have it in use again. After four years at the University of Minnesota, the coat found its way back to my closet.

Continue reading

What to wear to a job interview: 3 outfit ideas

A new year means a fresh start—and for some, a new job. Landing an interview can seem like the hard part, but choosing the right outfit can be almost as tough.

After all, the wrong look can cost you the job. We’ve had candidates show up in flip-flops and cutoff shorts (and you can guess whether they got hired). Even a nice shirt and slacks can give off a careless vibe if something is wrinkled, covered in cat hair or too tight.

On the flip side, the right outfit can make a winning first impression and help you relax. You’re more confident when you’re comfortable and not tugging on hemlines. That translates to a smoother job interview.

Need a cheat sheet? Here are three different interview outfit ideas based on the type of work environment. (If you’re interviewing to be a paralegal, your look will obviously be much different than Chief Officer of Fun at a startup.) When in doubt, contact the HR person who scheduled the interview with you and ask for general dress code guidelines. Here we go!

  1. Conservative job interview outfit

Finance, law, politics…if you’re interviewing in a conservative environment, play it safe. Start with a classic black suit. (According to experts, orange is the worst job interview color; black is safest.) If you’re wearing a pencil skirt, sit down in the dressing room to make sure it’s long enough and doesn’t pull at the hips. Whether you wear a skirt or a pantsuit, make sure it fits perfectly–take it to your tailor if necessary.

As for suiting material, we’re partial to our Seasonless Wool or Ultra 9™ wool suiting. The latter has a pinch of stretch. Either way, wrinkles fall out of wool and it just plain looks sharp. (What can we say? We’ve been perfecting wool for over a century, so we’re biased.)

Once your outfit is clean, ironed or steamed and impeccably fitting, add subtle jewelry and moderate heels. Since it’s winter, finish everything off with a peacoat or trench coat. For last-minute touch-ups, toss a lint roller in your car’s glove box or tuck a travel-sized one in your purse. Last, don’t forget to breathe. You’ll do just fine.

Here are a few of our pieces we love for conservative job interviews:

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Shop these looks

  1. Creative job interview outfit

Applying for a job in the arts, fashion or teaching? Your outfit can be more fun. Play with color, pattern and texture while staying squarely in “professional and polished” territory. January in particular can be a dull sea of black winter coats, so seize the chance to showcase your personality with a touch of florals, stripes or color. But don’t go too wild. Pick one eye-catcher and keep the rest of your outfit simple in solid, more subdued tones.

Now to accessorize! Unlike conservative workplaces where quiet, delicate jewelry is key, creative settings mean you can wear statement jewelry. As for shoes, heels are always safe, but why not try booties, Oxfords or equestrian boots? Stay away from sneakers no matter how nice they are. (I know. Wait until you get home.) Hint: If you’re interviewing for a job here at Pendleton, you should be at least this dressed up!

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Shop these looks

  1. Casual job interview outfit

At certain tech companies and startups, wearing a suit won’t impress the boss; it’ll get you strange looks. (It’s especially true here in Portland, land of the casual.) The good news is, you can tone down the formality without heading into jeans-and-hoodie territory.

It can be tricky to strike the right balance, so start with a blouse, casual slacks and a blazer to give a “I’m competent” vibe. Then add nice flats and a brightly colored belt or vibrant bag for a down-to-earth touch. And remember, no matter how casual your outfit, it should be well-fitting, well-maintained and not too revealing.

You’ve probably heard the general rule: However employees in your (future) department dress, you should dress one step nicer for the interview. Translation: Even if everyone in the company wears jeans, resist the urge. Save your favorite faded denim for once you get the job! One last tip: Don’t forget to send a thank-you card after the interview. Works every time.

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Shop these looks

Good luck—we’ll see you in the conference room!

What’s your go-to outfit for a job interview?

“The Happiness Project”: LONNY and Joy Bryant and Pendleton

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We are loving this feature of our pullover on LONNY, as worn by the beautiful Joy Bryant of “Parenthood.” She takes readers on a home tour and talk about what’s next, so be sure to check it out. She’s wearing our ivory cashmere sweater, which features a very subtle tonal version of our Chief Joseph design. It’s on sale now at pendleton-usa and it comes in four colors.

THE PENDLETON 49’ER JACKET REDUX

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The Nouveau ’49er for Holiday 2014, in a new boucle-accented plaid. See them here and here!

The Pendleton 49’er is a perfect illustration of the adage that quality never goes out of style.

This jacket is an American classic, still going strong after more than sixty years. But where did it come from?

The answer starts with the changes for women in World War II, when American women proclaimed, “We can do it.” Rosie the Riveter’s  WWII image was used in countless posters and bond drives during WWII. A serious woman dressed for hard work with her hair in a kerchief, Rosie’s image still fixes us today, gazing out at onlookers over a flexed bicep.

She was a symbol of women stepping up to fill the need for factory workers during wartime, but she was also part of the emergence of one of Pendleton’s most enduring items of womenswear: the 49’er jacket.

Pendleton’s success with men’s shirts had happened twenty years earlier, but during WWII, men were not the only people enjoying distinctive plaids and ombres in pure virgin wool. Women began to borrow men’s work shirts for both work and warmth. It’s possible that by wearing their husband’s shirts, women kept the memories of their husbands, fiancés and brothers close, though many undoubtedly needed some serious work wear that was simply not available for women at the time. Whatever the reason, women loved Pendleton shirts.

In 1949, when market research identified an opportunity for sportswear for women, Pendleton entered the market with their first women’s line. This was a test offering of classic skirts, jackets and shirt, to test exactly how the American woman would react to a branded line of virgin wool sportswear. The positive response was resounding, but no one could have predicted the enormous success of a single garment introduced that year.

Says Linda Parker, head of Pendleton Communications, “The first women’s line in 1949 was composed of five items.  It is amazing to me that out of such a limited initial offering that the 49’er would develop such an immediate following and reputation.”  The jacket referred to both the year of its introduction, and the California Gold Rush, in a nod to Pendleton’s Western roots.

The designer was Berte Wiechmann, a young woman who came to Pendleton from Jantzen,  another iconic Portland apparel company. Miss Wiechmann sewed the original samples herself, taking styling particulars from the Pendleton men’s shirt. The 49’er jacket featured discreet tucking at the yoke, and two bias-cut patch pockets near the hem. The boxy cut showcased Pendleton’s famous plaids, and larger iridescent shell buttons softened the look.

Miss Weichmann was very particular about these buttons. She insisted on a special black shell from Australia and Tahiti, supplied by J. Carnucci & Sons, NJ.

In 1956 alone, Pendleton would use $150,000.00 worth of these buttons.

Yes. You read that correctly. One hundred and fifty thousand dollars worth of buttons alone, in 1956.

The desirability of the 49’er was immediate, despite the introductory retail price range of $14.95 to $17.95. Says Parker, “We have many testimonials of how young women saved their babysitting and strawberry-picking money in order to buy a 49’er.  Women everywhere had it on their wish list of gifts.” The first consumer was the collegiate girl, who were in the grips of a menswear inspired trend. The 49’er was perfect over a white cotton dress shirt over “trews,” narrow wool pants.

The first print ad for the 49’er ad was done by Fred Love in 1950. A college girl in a MacLamond tartan 49’er pretends to ignore the cartoonish interest of the college boy behind her, snug and stylish in her 49’er. Love continued to illustrate the ads through 1951, when famed illustrator Ted Rand took over the job of communicating the Pendleton 49’er with ads that are still iconically beautiful. He changed the focus from the teenager to the woman, and incorporated elements of the Western landscape when he could.

The 49’er’s simple, casual styling continued to be a perfect fit for the emerging suburban lifestyle of post-war America. During the post-war years, it served as one of the easiest solutions for outerwear over all the Baby Boom baby bumps. Parker explains, “I personally think that Ted Rand shares some of the kudos for making the 49’er a household name with his inspired illustrations.”

Ted Rand began illustrating Pendleton ads in 1953. His elegant women and echoes of the Western landscape moved the jacket from the campus to the suburbs, where it became the staple of a woman’s wardrobe. The popularity soared and knock-offs abounded, to the point where the company had to seek legal protection of the design. Yes, the 49’er is a patented jacket!

The earliest 49’er in the Pendleton archives is a red, yellow and chartreuse version owned by Mrs. Sarah Brourink, who sent it to our archives in the year 2000 after wearing it for 51 years. Here is a vintage example in the exact plaid.

In the years of its prime (1949-1961), over a million Pendleton 49’ers were sold to American women. And it continues to sell well now, after re-introduction in the early 2000s. Collectors still chase after the originals, and beautiful examples can be seen on elated bloggers. Our re-issues do extremely well whenever they are included in a Fall or Holiday line.  Whether in the arresting brights of a bold Buchanan tartan, or the shaded colors of a subtle ombre plaid, the silhouette is still unmistakable. Still made of 100% virgin wool woven in our USA mills, the 49’er works dressed up with a skirt and a belt, or dressed down with jeans. Like a good wool men’s shirt, it serves as a go-to second layer for the backyard or the office.

And we’ve had a little fun with our original archival jacket. We brought it out, compared the specs, and refashioned the original design. Back in 1949 the collar points were a little more dramatic, the back shirring more subtle and the length slightly shorter—all details that give our fashion icon a decidedly modern edge and make it new again.

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Fashion is fleeting, but style endures. The Pendleton 49’er is a perfect illustration of the adage that quality never goes out of style.

 

Editor’s note: This post is an update on a favorite post, just as the Nouveau ’49ers are updates to this classic jacket.