I wanted to mention one of my new favorite hometown designers: the eco-friendly performance designer Nau. I've been hearing about them for a few years since they are based in Portland, but now I am excited to find that they are successfully expanding to offer their designs in other areas of the country as well. Nau outerwear for men and women is now being sold at Epaulet in Brooklyn!
Nau is a small company that values sustainability, beauty, and performance. The trend towards incorporating sustainable practices and eco-friendly products into designs is such a great one. I am supportive of all companies who take that extra step to put a high value on environmentalism. The Nau website is full of interesting information about the environmentally-conscious decisions that are made for every step of production for each product.
Hailing from the Pacific Northwest, I understand that you really just need to have some functional high performance outwear in your closet. Cashmere coats look great, but it's a lot more practical to have some pieces that keep you warm and dry. I love that designers are creating beautiful pieces that function as well as your ski coat, but still look unique and fashionable. Yes, my closet is full of North Face coats, but I'm tired of my same old black Gortex.
Fashionable high performance clothing fits directly with my concept of great design being applied to all areas of our lives. A ski coat doesn't need to look like a ski coat...it should look like a beautiful coat that finds its place in your wardrobe with the rest of your fashionable clothing. Nau has an entire collection of performance wear for men and women that includes baselayers to handbags to dresses, but I am most intrigued by their outerwear.