As we celebrate our independence and freedom as a nation this weekend, we thought we’d share the stories of a selection of American-made brands we admire.
Founded in 2011, The Things We Keep is an architectural jewelry line headquartered in Brooklyn, NY. Based on the idea that of all the things we accumulate in our lifetime, the things that stay with us are the things we keep most dear to us. All work is designed and fabricated by hand in NYC.
Previously a marketing executive for nine years, Kay Wang brings a unique outsider's perspective to art in her work as a designer and an intense focus and scrutiny on craftsmanship as a jeweler; a focus on sculptural design and impeccable workmanship have become signatures to her line.
"In 1988, my search for an original, wool uniform led me to a warehouse containing baseball flannel dating from the 40's. I bought in one bolt at a time and we literally built our company on it."
- Jerry Cohen, Owner and Founder
Ebbets Field Flannels continues to be run by its original founders, and remains committed to bringing the quality, beauty and craftsmanship of mid-Century American athletic garments to a 21st Century public.
Our grandfather, Raymon "Ace" Everett Disch, showed us what it means to build your own American dream. He was a man of effortless confidence and lived to be a man of great style. "Ace" wore a crisply folded pocket square and tie pins when inspecting his machines at the crack of dawn. His commitment to quality and attention to detail was impeccable. We draw inspiration from him in everything we do.
Our partnership with a family-run hosiery mill, based in the USA, is a great source of pride. Each pair of Ace & Everett socks receives individual care from the factory's 275 employees, and are carefully handled in a mill that has been open since 1920.
Tony Patella and Pete Searson have been like-minded friends since 1990. Their love for durable goods, their respect for where they came from and who made them is found in their brand. "We are 100% committed to the city of San Francisco and will make our jeans here and only here, forever. This place is the home of blue jean culture as we know it and moving production somewhere else to save a couple of bucks just won't happen. If you know us, you know this to be true..."
The economy was still recovering from the 2008 crisis and I knew at that time it would be difficult to rely solely on donations to continue our work. I was inspired to create a socially conscious product so that we could have a sustainable business model that would ensure Fotolanthropy could continue the work of documenting inspiring true stories. A camera strap seemed to be the perfect fit since it would support a movement of photographers and filmmakers. The dream of Fotostrap was developed on a 16 hour road trip to Colorado and then came to life in 2012.
When we started talking about creating a camera strap to help support Fotolanthropy, we knew we wanted our product to reflect the same aesthetic, with high-quality materials and a timeless look. We also strongly felt it was important for us to be creating a product that is made in the United States.
We take pride that our materials’ purchasing, manufacturing and production begin and end in the USA. We are proud to provide jobs in our country, to foster fair and safe commerce, and proudly stand behind the higher standard of our American made products.
6. Topo Designs
The idea around simplicity and the sense of connectedness with the things we own is a huge part of Topo Designs. A big part of that inherent connectedness also relies on how and where we make our products, we really value the fact that we can work here in Colorado. We are lucky enough to work with our friends and neighbors to make our products and every time we use them we carry a little piece of that community around with us.
FOTO is the ideal blend of genuine ingredients and refreshing customer service. Supporting American tanneries and family-owned production businesses, this brand (that also gives 10% of proceeds to Fotolanthropy) is the perfect concoction of socially conscious style and photog functionality that you will be sure to enjoy all year long!
Pinch of Personalization: One of our favorite features we offer is an $8 monogram! Whether you decide to add your traditional monogram, initials, name, phrase or logo file-- this feature will make your FOTO product unique to YOU.
Socially Conscious: 10% of our proceeds are given to Fotolanthropy, a photography and film non-profit who specialize in telling the inspiring stories of people in adversity making the best of their circumstances. To learn more about how you can support their movement, click here.
Luxurious Leather: We are super proud to support one of the few American tanneries left (Wickett & Craig) and love that we are able to support American jobs and bring security to this typically outsourced craft.
Splash of Timeless Style: The beauty of leather is in it's simplicity and timelessness. Our product designs take years of perfecting and we are proud to present products that we feel meet our brand's standards of timeless authenticity.
Full Bodied Functional Fashion: Our products are equal parts functional and fashionable. We like to keep our customers in mind when designing and are open to feedback and suggestions on making future products that are more functional for our users!
For Every Kind of Storyteller: With the ability to customize with a monogram, or personalize with color choices we hope to allow every customer the ability to tell their own story. Our hope is for our customers to feel proud and self-reflected through our products-- that they feel their purchase is unique to them and furthers their personal brand.
We love the opportunity we have to give back to the non-profit film and photography corganization, Fotolanthropy. It's a true privilege to be a part of their movement and witness the beautiful inspiring true stories they share.
In honor of Father's Day, here are three of Fotolanthropy's featured fathers who have shown true wisdom, love and bravery in the face of adversity:
1. John Paine
The Luckiest Man tells the story of John Paine, who when faced with the life-changing diagnosis of ALS, decided to take stock in the relationships that were most important to him and continue to live his life as best he could with the time he has been given.
2. Fred Evans
A Father's Love tells the story of Fred Evans who after learning he only had months left to live, desired to surprise two of his daughters and wife with a special gift to show them just how much he loved them.
3. Travis Mills
Travis: A Soldier's Story tells the story of Travis Mills, who after losing portions of his arms and legs during his tour in Afghanistan, chose to rise above his circumstances and walk bravely into his new future.
Inspired? Here are three easy ways you can join the movement and/or help support these inspiring stories (and others like them).
1. Follow @fotolanthropy on Facebook, Instagram & Twitter and share their stories!
2. Purchase your own copy of Travis: A Soldier's Story or The Luckiest Man on DVD or Blu-ray
3. Buy a Fotostrap (10% of all proceeds to go Fotolanthropy)
Now go hug the fathers in your life extra tight and join Fotolanthropy's movement of telling inspiring true stories!!
You can do better than a tie... We've got you covered for Father's Day with this gift guide of dad-inspired gifts that he will LOVE!
This film, produced by Fotolanthropy, is a one-of-a-kind documentary featuring a father whose journey with ALS has opened his eyes to a more meaningful life than he could have ever imagined or planned for. Recently released on DVD and Blu-Ray, this will make a perfect gift for the father in your life. Watch it with him, and you will receive the inspiring truths of this film too.
Gift your dad with our American-made genuine leather camera strap that is a perfect mix of personal and practical. He needs a comfortable and durable strap to hold his camera and this gift is made even sweeter by the addition of a personalized monogram, phrase or logo file on the shoulder pad. [Order today and receive a free monogram with code: FOTOdad. Offers ends tonight at midnight CST so don’t wait!] Be sure to let him know that 10% of proceeds go to the non-profit we support, Fotolanthropy, who share inspiring true stories of people in adverse situations.
Whose dad doesn’t need a little help in the “cool” department? Make sure your dad is staying hip in the electronics department and replace his clunky iPhone case for this stylish and durable leather one. (Your mom will thank you).
A perfect gift for the dad in your life who loves America's favorite pastime. This unique Baseball/Softball sporting goods and apparel company has a fresh outlook on the aesthetic of the bat and its use in the art of hitting. Gift your dad with a uniquely designed bat that is made for strength, precision and heart. Furthermore, proceeds from each Warstic go toward the Travis Mills Foundation to support wounded and injured veterans (talk about the ultimate manly American gift...)
Keep the dad in your life smelling fresh with this au natural cologne from Juniper Ridge. Made of organic sugar cane alcohol and 100% natural fragrance (tree pitch, plant sap/juice, steam-distilled essential oils, extractions of mountain plants, bark, needle and other things found hiking in the backcountry), this cologne is about as macho as you can get.
For the guy who is always stuck carrying stuff for his wife and kids, get him something masculine and cool to carry it in! This small pack has a padded back panel and webbed shoulder straps to keep this grab-and-go bag comfortable, while the cinch-top closure and removable interior wool zipper pouch secure goods in all conditions.
Your dad is going to want to read this inspiring true story written by Sergeant Travis Mills. His is a story of bravery, sacrifice, loss and determination that’s impossible to put down. Be sure to also check out Travis’s full-feature documentary by Fotolanthropy, Travis: A Soldier’s Story.
Present your father with this manliest of man-gifts this Father’s Day: the ultimate beard care set, complete with wax, reviver, oil and wax excavator. Better yet, proceeds from your purchase go to Our Calling which helps provide mentorship and education to the homeless.