If you are looking for Ginew products in Portland, Oregon - look no further than MADEHERE PDX. We are excited to announce our newest stockist - MADEHERE PDX located in The Pearl District at NW 10th Ave & Couch Street. MADEHERE focusses exclusively on designers, makers and manufacturers who are all from Portland, Ore - AND they carry over 400 brands! The shop features a wide array of beautiful and useful goods - all with a direct connection to Portland and the spirit that makes our community so vibrant and creative. MADEHERE aims to support local design, makers, and manufacturing by providing a premier experience in their bright, modern, and open showroom. Stepping through the doors you will be greeted by smiling, sales associates who are excited to share their vision and the stories of the Portland products they feature. It is such a pleasure for us to visit with the sales associates because they know the intricate details of each item in the shop, while maintaining bright enthusiasm about their mission. Go find out for yourself - enjoy The Pearl District and all that Downtown Portland, Ore has to offer - and don't forget to jump into a meaningful dialogue with the MADEHERE PDX team about their mission and the designers, makers, and manufacturers they feature.
"I feel connected here - to humans, to a beautiful environment. This place nurtures me on so many levels" - Dr. Jessica Metcalfe, Phd.
Welcome to Gardena, North Dakota - a tiny community on the edge of the Turtle Mountain Indian Reservation. Just a skip away from our friendly neighbors to the North - Canada. With a population of 29 people, Gardena seems like the last place to find the most influential voice in American Indian fashion. However, this tiny town is home to Jessica Metcalfe - the owner and visionary behind the Beyond Buckskin Boutique. We met Jessica through friends from Santa Fe, New Mexico years ago and jumped at the chance to visit her. A short detour while driving Raven (our F250 pickup) from Wisconsin to Portland, OR - we had to visit and find out for ourselves. What makes this tiny community so special...and the perfect place for Jessica to root her life and business? Gardena is truly a window back in time - with dirt streets, big lawns, and buildings slowly returning to the earth. Yes, Main Street - it's dirt. And First Street - better yet - it's grass. Despite the humble feel, there are big things going on in Gardena. Jessica used to be a professor for Arizona State University, living in a city of 1 million people, but the call to home and the desire to help her community was strong. She packed up her bags and moved back to Gardena to invest in her home community - the Turtle Mountain Indian Reservation - and to continue growing her business - the BEYOND BUCKSKIN BOUTIQUE. Together we walked around town, met neighbors & family members...and were able to slow down and see why Gardena is the right spot for Jessica. No more General Store - it returned to the Earth - but the foundation now serves as the largest raised bed garden I've ever seen. The day of our visit, Jessica and her mother were planting potatoes and onions for the community. (IN - planting the vegetables IN the foundation of the old General Store!). Resourceful - generous - dedicated - this is what small town America must be to survive and, perhaps it is the display of these values that what larger places can learn from. Jessica purposefully moved back to Turtle Mountain to make an impact - to contribute to her community and provide a vision for opportunity in commerce and education. We love what Jessica is doing. We encourage you to learn more about her story, check out the STAR TRIBUNE article about our friend - a "style maker" - "community leader" - and to us, someone who is a visionary. Looking toward the future for American Indian artisans and designers, in a way that builds upon our strengths and fosters opportunity for the next generation. Chi miigwetch Jessica!
The drive from Billings, MT to Oregon is ruggedly inspiring. Rural highways, old-growth forests, wide rivers, and grand mountain ranges...absolutely stunning. Crossing the Snake River into WA and heading South, we climbed a steep grade to be greeted by intense heat and distant views of rolling fields of wheat and prairie. 106 degrees in an old Ford pickup truck - windows down, vents open. Next stop - Joseph, Oregon. A long-overdue visit with friends at THE JENNINGS HOTEL was in order to celebrate our arrival into Oregon. Spending the weekend in "The County" was the perfect respite from time on the dusty road trip trail. Wallowa County - "The County" - is aptly described as a mountainous hinterlands - a place where the high prairie collides with alpine mountains. Visit and you will encounter a genuine mix of gracious hospitality and practical self-reliance. To cap off our first day back in Oregon, we drove out to a prairie to share a slow meal as the sun took its sweet time dipping below the horizon. We were guests in the countryside, home to the bear, elk, and deer that shared the evening with us. If you need a break on your journey - look no further than THE COUNTY. Get there as quickly as you can, and settle into a pace of life predicated by the world around you.
Welcome to Mitte (the center, the heart) of Berlin, Germany - a city perfect for creative and independent people to thrive. Berlin is home of renowned BURG & SCHILD - an industry-leading shop for men who appreciate quality and tradition. Each brand and product in the store is hand-selected by the team, whereby they concentrate on unique brands which adhere to timeless style and high-quality, limited-run production. The shop embodies the ethos of respect and quality, with a customer base that truly understands and appreciates the experience of breaking in a pair of selvedge denim jeans or a leather jacket for years. To meet the high expectations of their customer base, the shop team focuses on excellence in the products they care, the service they provide, and their unique shop identity. The Burg & Schild is an experience - go find out for yourself. Meet the team, talk story, share a drink and let the team do the rest.
At Ginew, we are proud that Burg & Schild is our very first European stockist. The shop is actively featuring the world premier of the GINEW CROW WING JEAN - a regular rise, straight leg jean made in Los Angeles with 100% USA-sourced materials. And, you read the product description correctly, we hunt the deer we use to make our leather patches.
"Most come for the Badlands. I came to see where prairie meets sky" - USNPS Ranger Komar
We love road trips. Not the raging, interstate highway road trips. We love the back roads, the blue highways, and the opportunity to meet amazing people. On our recent segment driving the Raven from Wisconsin to Montana, we had the chance to take it slow and visit with the people who comprise the fabric and core of America. One such chance encounter was with USNPS Ranger Komar at the Theodore Roosevelt National Park in Western North Dakota. Our visit to the park occurred after Mother's Day and many weekenders had already left the park. What a stroke of luck for our tiny group. We spent a portion of the morning with USNPS Ranger Komar learning about little-known facts of the USNPS Ranger experience and the North Unit of the Park. What a treat to get to know the person behind the USNPS RANGER uniform and hear about their journey.
Ranger Komar grew up in the Northeastern states of America, but we quickly learned she has lived all over the world - from remote villages of the Dominican Republic and Peru, to the major cities Barcelona, Budapest, Dusseldorf, and New York City. Recently, her "...inner spirit of wanting to 'run away to the woods' grew stronger in each passing day." She recalled being on a packed, rush-hour, subway car in New York City while reading the job posting for the Park...and realizing that more people were riding the subway car with her than the entire population of Medora, ND. Ranger Komar put a lot of thought into her decision to move West stating, "I spent quite a bit of time thinking about possible future paths. I thought about the environment I wanted to be in, the people I wanted to work with, and the message I wanted to be sending with my work. The USNPS fit the bill." Now she spends her days as a public servant and steward of the National Park - where each day presents a new opportunity to interact with park guests and the stunning landscapes of Western North Dakota.
The USNPS Ranger uniform is iconic - with classic style and exquisite touches steeped in history, which honor the experience and life of a Ranger. The manual of instructions is fifty-six pages long!
Thank you USNPS Ranger Komar - you enriched our visit to the Theodore Roosevelt National Park. We benefited from seeing the landscape and history through your eyes and learning nuances that can only be taught through patience and being intentional. The most memorable moment of the visit was when our group crested a hill in the prairie - it was stunning to see the land meet the Western sky. On queue, you noticed our amazement and appreciation of the moment and softly spoke, "Most come for the badlands. I came to see where prairie meets sky."
Say hello to WILSON & WILLY'S, now stocking Ginew in Minneapolis, MN. Tucked into the vibrant NORTH LOOP, the shop compliments the city's perfect balance of art, business, and culture. We recently stopped into the shop to visit with the team and spend some time in the neighborhood. From across the street, we could immediately tell that Wilson & Willy's is up to something special. Their vision for storytelling, experimentation, and collaboration is clear as you browse the carefully curated brands and house label. We immediately noticed the feel of the shop. It embodies a clean, industrial feel, which is made cozy by warm lighting and natural wood grain shelving. The team at Wilson & Willy's takes great pride in serving their customers, making certain they go the extra distance to ensure personal responses to all communication. For instance, the team answers their phone rather than sending you to voicemail and will email you back immediately once they have an answer to your questions. Wilson & Willy's is a perfect fit for Ginew - the team takes great pride in quality and transparency throughout all phases of product development. The little things matter to Wilson & Willy's - just like they matter to us. Thoughtfully designed details, meticulously sourced materials, and truly valued perspective of American manufacturing - these things matter and make a difference. Find out for yourself. Go check out Wilson & Willy's - we know you will love what you discover.
The desert and denim vest - two of our favorites. During DESERT & DENIM 2017 we spent early, crisp mornings gathered to watch the sunrise. Slowly and expectantly, we would see the possibilities of a new day taking form. Extremes in the desert are no joke - from high 20's in the morning to 80's during the day - you better be prepared for the swift change in the elements. The Ginew Denim Vest is the perfect addition when encountering the desert - be it on foot or cruising. Each vest is 100% made in the USA - down to the threads and tags - with subtle and intentional nods to our cultures. The shell - made of Selvedge Denim from White Oak Cone Mills in Greensboro, NC - and the lining is wool blanket fabric made right here in Oregon by Pendleton. Inside you will find a welt pocket made from the softest deerskin - hunted by us with our family each Fall. Finished with custom snaps adorned with our very own Ginew crest symbol - which is a fusion of our tribal symbols for home, life, and creation. The Denim Vest is the perfect companion for your journey - in your town, around the world, or into the rural and remote places where you seek silence. The desert and the denim vest make a perfect match. Go ahead, follow the call and check out night vibes and celestial skies.
Meet Raven. The Ginew truck - a 1971 F250 Camper Special. After two years in the shop and barn, Raven was dusted off for the journey to Portland. We did not intend to keep the truck long. After finishing up training in Seattle, Erik moved to Wisconsin to be with Amanda. Job finished, apartment cleaned, and ready for a new chapter. The only problem was the cost of renting a U-Haul exceeded our savings. Luckily, Erik found a stonemason eager to sell the oldest truck in his company fleet...much cheaper than the price of a U-Haul and with a topper. Deal. Done. Erik and his father made some minor repairs and packed up all of our belongings. Then drove from Seattle to Wisconsin on the "HIGHLINE" - HWY 2.
After that trip, Erik just could not part with the truck. Each year since, we have fixed something. Sometimes something small, other times something bigger. Most recently - the engine needed work...and our friends back home worked on it with us over the past 18 months. Just like our collection, we have incorporated little details into Raven. We had some fabrics remaining from our first run of Heritage Coats which we used to repair tears in the bench seat. We made sure to remain true to the spirit of this truck, while making some subtle and custom additions.
The best part about Raven is taking your time and watching the world go by at 55 MPH. Driving in Raven is like riding a couch across the country. If traveling any faster, we would likely miss the little gems of the journey. We love rolling the windows down, braids blowing in the wind, and following our whims through places less traveled. Sit back, relax...enjoy the ride.
New to the West End of Pearl Street in Boulder, Colorado is CANOE CLUB - a menswear store of appreciation and story. The team behind the shop has a vision for a comfortable shopping experience, where everyone will feel an instant warmth the moment they step through the door. From the McIntosh stereo spinning records all day, to the meticulously curated selection of Japanese whiskeys, a visit to CANOE CLUB feels like time spent with close friends. At Ginew, we are excited to be a part of the CANOE CLUB experience. We appreciate the high value they place on the smallest of details and the pride they take in working with a family-owned business. When in the Boulder, Colorado area - make time to visit the team at CANOE CLUB. Enjoy some vinyl, whiskey, and good story among your new friends. They are waiting for you and, as they promise, "No pressure, just good vibes."
Greetings from Portland, Oregon! Spring is shifting into Summer...almost over night. Around here, it means people begin to wake up. Seriously. Portland's long Winter nap has come to an end and it is the season for exploring and visiting with friends. Our first adventure of the year was to the Oregon Coast. Amanda and I had ambitions of driving most of the coast, but found a pleasant and lonely stretch of beach that we just could not leave. As the seasons change, storms often blow in from the ocean - raining one minute, bright and sunny the next. We cannot wait for the coming adventures. Coast - Mountain - Dune - Desert - and the quiet, two-lane roads which get us there. EXHALE...Summer is here. Finally - we will pack up the dogs and visit the people and places in Oregon that never cease to inspire. Look out - here we come.
A morning on the beach with Stinky and Pippa. No one around for as far as you can see. This is what awaits us this Summer...
Never seen anything quite like a Joshua Tree... I'm not certain what it is, but they have a presence which seems essential and minimal, yet are full and complex. This Spring offered our first trip into the desert of southern California and Joshua Tree National Park. What a trip. Go - it is amazing. It was also our first trip to DESERT & DENIM. Just like the desert, our experience at Desert & Denim exceeded expectations. The gathering offered a renegade hybrid vibe of equal parts tradeshow, market, and campout. The morning sunrises in the desert were calm and crisp, only to be rivaled in the evenings by the gentle hues of the Joshua Tree-lined sunsets. Those sunsets seem to last hours. Taking a walk through the desert with our friends from EL GRITO TAQUERIA and WOOD & FAULK led to good times, great laughs, and new discoveries in this truly stunning landscape. When you go...plan to make it for a sunrise and make sure to stay well past sunset.
Ginew has been busy in the past 6 months. We will be re-stocking on the Heritage Coat, Chore Coat, and Rider Jackets...with a few new surprises. This year will also be our first season with denim jeans and button-up shirting...done our way with premium fabrics and a touch of family-inspired culture & history. Stay tuned - we have some treats in store for you.
One of the great things about Portland is the abundance of creative and talented people. You do not have to look far - seriously. We feel so fortunate to have met such amazing people right in our neighborhood. Looking for a Honda Trail 70 restoration master - check. How about someone who restores antique and vintage guitars - look no further. Oh, you need someone who is an expert at repairing selvedge denim - just around the corner. It is simply the norm. Over and over and around every corner...creativity lives here. In this spirit, we had the pleasure of meeting John Blasioli - a local talent in apparel design and pattern making. We recently spent the afternoon in John's Portland studio going over some finishing touches on a chambray shirt - the Mohican Work Crew Shirt - due to arrive in the coming months. The year is shaping up to be a big step for Ginew. We are expanding our outwear and jackets, while adding jeans and shirting to our collection. Ginew could not have landed in a better spot than Portland, Oregon. Where it seems ambition, creativity and know-how are right at home...and just down the street.
The talk at the War Bonnet (Menominee Nation) late in August was the growing activity at Standing Rock and the Sacred Stone camp. News reports indicated at least 200 people were gathered to pray and resist the construction of an oil pipeline north of the reservation. Whispers at the War Bonnet indicated that thousands were gathering. On a whim, we altered our course in late August to go and stand in solidarity with Water Protectors at Standing Rock.
We were not prepared for the sight as we crested the hill - thousands of lodges, tents, and campers. Amazing - chilling - solidarity. People were arriving from all directions to support the efforts at Standing Rock. The atmosphere at Sacred Stone Camp was peaceful, prayerful, and vibrant. Elders from across Indian Country - one from Obashing, Red Lake Nation - shared insights, stories, and prayers with the many gathered around the arbor. It made us proud to see our tribal flags flying in support of Standing Rock, the Water Protectors, and the young women with the vision to start what has grown into an awakening movement. Challenges persist and we are not certain how things will end up at Standing Rock, however, this is not the end. Rather, this is a beginning. We look forward to watching the youth who began this moment grow into national leaders - leaders who amplify the peoples' voice. Water Protectors, we stand with you.
100% of proceeds from the WATER PROTECTOR SHIRT will be donated to the legal fund providing assistance to Water Protectors.
We are grateful for the support of our friends L A N D Boys - JUNGMAVEN - SCREEN DOOR PRINTING - ART & SONS who generously participated in this effort. Please take time to learn more at FRESHET COLLECTIVE. For more information about Standing Rock and global, indigenous efforts to protect our homelands, please visit VICELAND RISE.
We recently returned from Berlin, Germany and the SELVEDGE RUN - FOCUS ON THE GOOD show. The city of Berlin has a contagious, positive energy driven by creative and welcoming people. Each night we joined with friends for laughter and slow dinners - often lasting hours. Each dinner was measured by the number of candles burnt. Brilliant. Showing the Ginew® collection at Selvedge Run allows us to mingle with premium denim-centric brands, while simultaneously meeting some of the most influential shops and press in the industry. This year we were part of a Pacific Northwest contingent featuring CRESCENT DOWN WORKS, DEHEN 1920, GINEW, AND WOOD & FAULK. After the show we made our way up to Sweden and Finland to spend time with our friends from INDIGO FERA. The Scandinavian vibe is amazing. From pristine nature, rich architectural history, and the age-old tradition of sauna - we are hooked and cannot wait to go back. IF you find yourself in Finland, find the nearest Russian dive bar and ask for "toasts" - thank us later.
Special thanks to our friends Mats, Kari, Jukka and Essi - what an amazing experience spending time with y'all. Looking forward to seeing y'all again soon!
The final day of our trip we relaxed back in Berlin by enjoying walks through Mitte and a couple small cafes (DONATH and DER HAHN IST TOT!). No visit to Berlin would be complete without stopping by one of our favorite men's shop - Burg & Schild. It was a pleasure to visit with the crew and talk story. BURG & SCHILD is a highly curated shop and we are honored to be a small part of the experience next to brands we admire. Please check them out. Inside you will find IRON HEART - INDIGO FERA - ROUGE TERRITORY - 3SIXTEEN - GINEW - REDWING BOOTS - DEHEN 1920 - STETSON - and many more.
After driving back to Portland, OR from Austin, TX - definitely without shortage of amazing views and back roads - it was time to complete the bandana project. We worked with Walker and Magnetic North in SE Portland, who kindly opened up their studio space. The natural dye process with Maura (FOLK FIBERS) was amazing and, as a group, we wanted to stay true to the dyes and the unique qualities of each piece.
Much thought and experimentation went into the decision to choose the correct process to affix the designs. Screen print, resist, and discharge techniques were all considered to accomplish our collective vision. Given the unique qualities of the naturally dyed fabric and the intricate designs, we settled on discharge printing the bandanas. Screen printing seemed to "cover up" the beauty of the naturally dyed fabrics, whereas the resist was not able to maintain the integrity of intricate details. Discharging allowed us to apply a resin which would essentially reverse the dying process without fully eliminating the presence of the natural dye color. After "pulling" the resin through the screen and applying it to the bandana, we heated each bandana individually. It felt like magic! With heating the opaque resin would react and the design would brighten and appear crisp in a matter of seconds. All 240 bandanas were complete in time for the El Cosmico Trans Pecos Festival of Music & Love in Marfa, TX.
Special thanks to our dear friends Chap & Maura of FOLK FIBERS - who graciously hosted us at their ranch outside of Austin, TX. AND special thanks to NICOLE MASON who came by the studio to shoot the discharge process from beginning to end.
Analog - slowing down - being present - and enjoying the scenic route. Vision accomplished!
It's OK to be analog - to slow down - to take your time - to enjoy the scenic route. Working with Maura Ambrose (FOLK FIBERS) and Lou Medel (MEDEL) on the bandana collaborating exemplifies how we were able to make time for a project and to do so with patience. Can you imagine, it took us nearly two years to complete the project together? The idea of doing a bandana was born one morning over breakfast at Maura and Chap's ranch. Steadily, we worked out ideas and direction...we made our road map, now it was time to enjoy the journey.
Together we were able to source bandanas 100% from South Carolina, develop a collaborative design, naturally dye fabrics, and discharge print the designs onto the fabric. Lou and I drove through nine states to visit Folk Fibers at their ranch outside of Austin, TX. Maura patiently explained her process and gracefully led us through hands-on instruction. It was a gift to be working with Maura and Lou atop a hill on crisp, Texas mornings. Maura shared her passion for dyes and fabrics with us during family walks, where she would point naturally dyes located around their ranch. We chose three dyes for the project - indigo, madder root (red), and logwood (light purple).
Our goal was to work on something analog - something tactile, relational, and in-person - and we committed to doing the work together, regardless of the distance between us and the delays this may create. We wrote letters, paid visits, and enjoyed phone calls with one another as we worked through our collective, creative process. In the end, we created something beautiful together - memories. My fondest memories of the project are those spent late at night around Folk Fiber's kitchen table, on the porch watching the sunsets, and huddled near the many campfires between Portland and Austin.
Special thanks to WILL MEDERSKI for making time to visit with us and document the process.
Far Out West Texas - is one of our absolute favorite places. No one particular element makes a trip to West TX amazing, rather, it is a mystical combination of people, circumstances, and skyscapes. "Alpine - Big Bend - Marfa" - that was our Western escape mantra while living in Houston, TX. Frequent visits resulted in life-long friendships and a deeply rooted appreciation for the TX land & sky. This year, El Cosmico and the Trans Pecos Festival served as the impetus behind the journey and the adventure ahead.
This year we made a custom piece for our friend Jamey of Garza Marfa. The vest is the same form as our WAX CANVAS VEST with a twist. Jamey's vest is lined with the custom Garza Marfa woven fabric featured in their furniture line. The colors in the fabric are directly inspired by the land and skyscapes of the Big Bend region and Marfa. Walking through the desert, one frequently finds prickly pear cactus. If you look closely, you will find the source of the brilliant reds used for ages by the first peoples of the region. The result is a piece which gently nods to the colors of the region - from earth - to cochineal - to sky.
This Fall we released the WAX CANVAS VEST - find the vest in-person at Burg & Schild (Berlin, Germany) and CONTEXT Clothing (Madison, WI). We were inspired to develop a classic vest with modern fit and minimal external branding. On this project we had the pleasure to work with JOHN BLASIOLI of Portland, OR. All components of the vest are sourced domestically and manufactured in Los Angeles. A deerskin welt pocket rests over the heart; made of deerskin hunted and prepared by us with our family. Inside the vest is lined with Pendleton® wool blanket fabric. Each snap cap bears the "Skydome Lodges" symbol which is a combination of two symbols from our respective tribes - one signifies the home or dwelling place, the other creation, bounty and life. Merged together, the symbol represents are different backgrounds and the flourishing of our home.
Special thanks to the kinds folks of Cobra Rock Boot Company, Folk Fibers, Fort Lonesome, Wood & Faulk and Carey Haider. Y'all made the trip truly amazing. We are looking ahead to meet up with our friends - new and old - next year under that brilliant sky in FAR OUT WEST TEXAS.
Little clears our minds better than meandering down the open, back roads or rural America. Add in Fall weather...and the perfect road trip is at hand. We packed up the van and drove home from Portland, OR to Wisconsin. The timing of our visit was perfect. The land was changing before our eyes - grasses, trees, rivers. All of it. Changing from the bright greens of summer, to the tans, reds, and sages of Fall. This time we planned to add three days to our trip so we would not rush from West to East...and back. But to slow down, take our time, and follow our instincts...who knows what we would find.Read More
The excitement of the first Stay Wild EXPO is still alive in us despite the distance we have covered in the past few days. We decided to make a trip home to visit our families - covering the distance from Portland, OR to Wisconsin in our van. Each night we have set up camp in a different spot - Montana, Minnesota, and now Wisconsin. Most of our time of late has been spent on deserted roads, in forests and along rivers. Rivers - we love them.
By happenstance we have spent each night within ear shot of a river - Hood, Clark Fork, Yellowstone, St. Louis, & Wolf Rivers. Each has it's own personality and messages to share. However, at this time most rivers are hinting of the Fall and Winter to come. Leaves float by more frequently and the hues of early Autumn leaves reflect upon the water. The warm, humid air of the mid-west Summer quickly fades after sunset to a clean, crisp breeze on the river bank.
We take things slowly and listen to the rivers laugh and chuckle. The evenings linger on these shores sitting on our camp stools (thank you Matt of Wood & Faulk) close to a smokeless, crackling fire. The night closes in and the stars shine brightly without the moon. Tomorrow begins again, just as the previous day ended. Along a river - somewhere - and around a fire.
"Traveling with a dog, it doesn't get better than that..." Words of dear friend we met up with in Duluth, MN for breakfast. We could not agree more. Traveling with the dogs is so much fun - even in a small van.
Neek Mason dropped by the design studio to find out exactly why it takes five hours to make a Ginew Belt. We share about our space, materials, and process as we make a belt with a hand-fabricated & -forged buckle. What we do is different, it is unique; we would not have it any other way.
The Ginew design studio is a bright & airy studio in Northeast Portland, Oregon. The light in the mornings is fantastic. During the summer months, a soft morning light shines through the windows to the East and South. The white walls are calming - with intermittent decorations carefully chosen along our journey. The studio is where we go to create and dream - a place which limits distraction and draws us comfortably into a place of contemplation and creative energy. Our mornings begin early before most of Portland awakens, but not until after we have made RUBY Coffee or visited our friends at BARISTA. The air is crisp and quiet, perfect for taking things slowly. Thus, ensuring we are completely focused on the immediate experience of designing and making.
Below are a few of the hand-tools we use to make our belts - punches, edger, and great-grandfather's rule. All of the products we use are 100% made in the USA - Herman Oak and Horween leathers - and lastly, our custom hardware fabricated at SmithShop in Detroit, MI. Much like each product we make, we focus on USA materials and intentionally including details from our history. See our wool-lined barn coat (Heritage Coat), wool blanket lined wax canvas vest, and our wax canvas jacket. Each belt has minimal external branding in order to show the quality of construction and premium materials used. Look deeper; open things up; turn them over...and you will see the subtle detailing we include.
We use pre-industrial technique while making our belts - no machines - no electric motors - just our hands and simple tools. A handful of our tools date back to the 1880's, while others are new and sharpened. Bees wax from our friend's apiary is used in the final step to condition the edges. The process is the same - focused, intentional, and present. We choose the slow path to ensure consistency and quality. The sound and texture of finishing someone's belt by hand is meditative - soothing. No motors, no burning of the leather; simply intentional construction.
We choose mindfulness - to be present and intentional during our process - as we make a belt specific to the person who ordered it. It takes longer, but we are also able to dedicate more attention to the final product, while making a belt that is truly one of a kind.
Our buckles take at least three hours to hand-fabricate & -forge. Ginew buckles are individually made by our friends at SMITHSHOP in Detroit, MI. We wish you could feel the weight of each buckle. Resting in your palm, you can feel quality - attention - effort in each buckle. WATCH OUR BUCKLE being fabricated by our friends Amy & Gabriel.
We delicately form the leather around the buckle and soften the leather so that it does not suffer small splits. The final step of attaching the buckle involves hand-hammering each Ginew rivet in a circular pattern. SmithShop hand-fabricated our ball-peen hammer (yup, they MADE our hammer) and adorned it with designs from George Levi.
All told, over five hours goes into making each belt. And our shop dog "Stinky" approves of the final product as it is finished. Thank you for making the time Ms. Mason!