Sunday, January 16, 2011

Oregon brands

I've had this post on the back burner for quite some time. Since other inspiration/photo ops are coming a little slower these days, now seems like a good time to pull this out and dust it off. On top of that, blogpal Theresa recently did a post on two companies she appreciates for both their products and their customer service, and we've emailed back and forth about encouraging others to showcase companies worth patronizing. When I realized how many of the products I love are made right here in Oregon, I decided to make that my focus!

Listed below in alphabetical order are seven Oregon companies. Each name is a hot link, so you can click on them to learn more. I'd love to hear about companies in YOUR state that make products you love!

Dave's Killer Bread. A church friend introduced me to this line of bread, and I must say it is the only bread I eat outside of my own homemade bread - it's that good and wholesome. (Fortunately we also get free close-date loaves at church sometimes, as it's rather spendy.) And Dave's story is as inspiring as his bread is good!

Honest Chocolates. When the owner opened a retail store in our town, I made the mistake of visiting it. Fortunately, I don't go to town that often! Everything they make is good, but Mac Mochas are my favorite by far. MMMMM!

Keen Footwear. My sister has worn Keens for some time, and encouraged me to try some. We have very different feet so I had my doubts about whether they would work for me as well as they do for her, but they are WONDERFUL. I've replaced most of my shoes, sandals and slippers with various models (bought on eBay so I can afford them), because I have no metatarsal pain when I wear Keens. The company has a conscience, too, contributing to the community and making choices with an eye to preserving the environment.

Jenkins Woodworking. I first took notice of Turkish spindles (which happened to be Jenkins) at Black Sheep Gathering in 2010. I didn't buy one, but I couldn't get the design concept out of my head. After purchasing a couple Turkish spindles from a very nice Etsy vendor, I finally broke down and ordered a Lark/Jay combo from the Jenkins because of wood-lust and the desire to support a local business. A standard has since joined the stable, and an Aegean is on order. Ed's craftmanship is superb, and Wanda is one of those rare gentle souls who makes you aspire to be a better person (I got to meet her at the Oregon Flock and Fiber Festival in September and am blessed by her friendship).

Nike. My first "serious" running shoes were Nikes, back in college when I was averaging 35 miles a week and participating in runs from 10K to half-marathons. When we moved to Oregon 21 years ago, it was exciting to me to be moving into Nike's backyard! I have since found some other brands' models that work for me, but when I think of running shoes, I still think "Nike."

Stash Tea. I used to buy a brand whose teabags came in a waxed paper package that didn't seal once opened. Somewhere along the way I was introduced to Stash teas, and found I preferred their varieties and individual teabag packaging. It was later I realized they are an Oregon company - bonus! I've been completely stuck on their Wild Raspberry herbal tea for some time now.

WooLee Winder. What can I say? I'm a surprised convert! I have heard of WooLee Winders since learning to spin, but they sounded like an awful lot of money for a little convenience. But the HansenCrafts miniSpinner I tried at OFFF had a WooLee Winder on it, and since I was wanting to increase my production it only made sense - that and the fact that a miniSpinner equipped with a WooLee Winder was cheaper as a package deal than purchased separately. NOW I know why people love 'em!

That's it for now from blessed-to-be-in-Oregon . . .


SweetMissDaisy (Anna Wight) said...

you make my heart ache for oregon.

Nancy K. said...

OOOoooooooo! I want a Woo-lee Winder SO badly!
(I didn't realize it was spelled like that!)

Theresa said...

Oh, I had no idea Keens were made in Oregon! I learn something new every day gosh darn it.
I need to get over to Dave's Killer Bread and check it out. Wonder if it's available in my area.
Jenkins makes lovely weaving shuttles too. I have both shuttles and a spindle from them. First rate products and they are so nice to deal with.

Michelle said...

Nancy, the owner's surname is Lee, so the spelling WooLee Winder is a bit of a play on words.

Theresa, I am under no illusion that Keen footwear are all MADE in Oregon (I know few Nikes are), but at least this is where they started and are based, and give back to the community. I'll take it! Oh, and if you have one down there, Costco carries some varieties of Dave's Killer Bread.

Lois said...

We LOVE Dave's cinnamon raisin bread!!!!

thecrazysheeplady said...

Keen's DO rock! Yay Oregon :-).

Sharon said...

I didn't realize either that Keens were made in Oregon. I hope they're not just headquartered there and the work done in Jakarta. I've always worn Asics but I do have two wonderful Jenkins shuttles. I loved this post!