Fab’s Top 3 Favorite NW Brands – A Soft Guide to Keeping it Local
When looking for goods that are locally made, sustainable, and long lasting – there are many different aspects I really look for when trying to finding new brands to follow for when shopping for clothing or items that won’t break in less than a year, or even a couple weeks for that matter. Having been in retail for about eight years, far less than many people, working in sales and holding different managerial positions at a few different Seattle boutiques, an appreciation for the locality of products became something that I started to truly care about.
Once I left my managerial position in a small boutique and moved to a Sales position at WAYWARD, I was quickly promoted to an Assistant Manager role within a year and a half. This experience has helped me in creating great relationships and meeting some amazing vendors, but having the time and attention to genuinely care about what I am wearing, where the materials are coming from and the awesome stories behind so many of the brands Wayward curates. When it comes to local brands, I’ve filtered through and broke down a guide of just a few PNW neighbors who are doing what they do so well and why:
1. See See Moto
See See Moto is a Motorcycle and coffee brand based out of Portland, OR. With a smiley face on all of their apparel, playing off their company name and providing a smile in connection to all of their customer interactions. They have been able to create a beautiful community, connecting motorcyclists and all that come across with their fun and unique coffee shop! Bringing everybody together stating: “Our company has, and always will be, inclusive to all riders of all types at all levels and at all times.” Providing locally roasted coffee, moto-riding gear and other graphically unique apparel, this one of a kind cross-company lands a spot as a top mention as a one of a kind local NW brand to check out.
Based out of the Ballard neighborhood in Seattle and started by power husband and wife duo Billy and Leah, Baleen Jewelry was born. Baleen offers a beautiful mix of trendy and simply made long timeless designs made from sustainable recycled metals. The sustainability factor in creating these designs makes for a low-impact piece of jewelry from a local brand. Baleen minimizes its production waste and considers fair treatment of the environment. This being a factor in the way they create jewelry, makes the process hard to truly perfect, but the way that Baleen is doing what they are doing as a company shows a stunning display of grace and individuality, while also providing an affordable present option for yourself or loved ones. As a woman, buying jewelry personally is something that I have a harder time with. Having extremely sensitive skin, and the thought process of, “I want to be able to wear these earrings everyday till I die” is the way I try to look at things when sourcing lasting pieces for my own collection. I have been a customer of Baleen’s for about 6 years, long before working with a company like Wayward who sells them, and having purchased pieces that never disappoint is something that keeps me loyal to Baleen!
Vancouver, WA based company Jungmaven, offers well-made cotton and hemp blended everyday wear apparel. With the mission to “Think freely. Live fully” Jungmaven’s ethically made and sourced clothing is one that works for all kinds of people and body types. Using Hemp as their main material for creation due to its sustainable factor and ability to regenerate in months. Hemp made clothing is also healthier for our water and air. When trying on basic t-shirts, the everyday-wear factor really plays a part in what you want from a shirt. Something you DON’T have to constantly wash, will not get dirty easily, is comfortable, and versatile with outfits. When paying for something as simple as this, it’s hard to say what a “good price” should be. That is a perk to picking Jungmaven, what you pay for is worth what you are getting – a tee you can wear all the time that won’t break, rip or go out of season at any point. All Jungmaven products are hand-made and sewn in the U.S., this locally made brand brings simplicity and ethically managed apparel to the next level!