Eileen Fisher Not-Quite Perfect Sale at PGF by Britt Howard

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PGF is hosting a Not-Quite Perfect Sale of used Eileen Fisher clothing on June 10 & 11 (11–3pm)!

Come get your Eileen Fisher fix and stock up on used EF garments ($10 + up!). Let us count the ways this promises to be a must-attend June event... you will... 

1. Find beautiful, well-made garments at a sweet price
2. Be an active part of the cycle of clothing reuse and renewal
3. Sip rosé from our lovely beverage sponsor, A to Z Wineworks 
4. Take advantage of our mending stations for a quick hem or patch
5. Feel even better about your fabulous purchases knowing that a portion of the proceeds will go to Dress for Success Oregon, an amazing organization empowering women to achieve economic independence. 

See you there!

Portland Japanese Garden Happi Coats by Britt Howard

When you visit the newly expanded Portland Japanese Garden, you'll notice garden staff and volunteers all wearing Japanese happi coats. These traditional cotton coats, are boxy handsome numbers with three-quarter length sleeves, historically worn to festivals, often with a family crest on the back. Here at PGF, we were excited to learn about this celebrated garment while making the new happi coats for the Portland Japanese Garden (images above!).  A hearty thank you to the staff and volunteers who let us snap a few pics of the happi coats in action!

A few images below survey the happi coat from traditional portraits, to the 1966 arrival of The Beatles in Japan.

And here's a look at the happi coats being made at PGF:

Stacking, laying the pattern, and cutting the fabric for the happi coats. 

Stacking the fabric and laying the pattern for the happi coats

After the pattern has been cut the happi coats are ready to be sent to the screen printer. 

After the fabric has been cut, the happi coats are ready to be sent to the screen printer

Ning sewing the coats after they've been to the screen printer.

Nghien sewing the coats

An sewing on the front sashes that read "Portland Japanese Garden"

An sewing the neck band onto the coats

Design Week Portland & Struktur Event / That's a Wrap! by Britt Howard

Last week, Design Week Portland and Struktur Event brought out designers, creatives, and makers from across the country to our fair city. PGF was involved in four DWP events, and a workshop at Struktur Event. We shared, we listened, we learned and then we crashed for the weekend! Check out a few of Britt's favorites from the whirlwind week! 

My favorite moment: Meeting my new besties at the Gray Magazine Design & Activism panel: Mark Busse of HCMA Architecture + Design in Vancouver, B.C., and Kevin Cavanaugh from Guerrilla Development here in Portland. Seriously, these guys are my new BFFs! Oh and hey, the two images above are from the Gray Magazine panel. 

Craziest thing I learned: I was so excited to be on the "Let's Talk Transparency" panel organized by the Portland Material Transparency Collaborative. Experts from across various industries talked about the stuff that makes up our food, buildings, furniture, and clothing. Chemist Amelia Nestler from Northwest Green Chemistry totally blew my mind when she talked about the real story behind BPA-free products (plastic water bottles, baby bottles, etc). The disturbing news is that BPA has been replaced by another chemical called bisphenol-S, otherwise known as BPS, which appears to be just as harmful to humans as BPA. Read more about this alarming fact HERE in Scientific American. 

My two favorite Instagrams to follow during DWP: @katebingburt@laptopsandsmalltalk 

Video still by @laptopsandsmalltalk of Britt's workshop at Struktur Event

Video still by @laptopsandsmalltalk of Britt's workshop at Struktur Event

EILEEN FISHER + PGF: DREAMS REALLY DO COME TRUE by Britt Howard

The incomparable womenswear clothing designer, Eileen Fisher has long been a business role model for PGF. EF designs, made from natural fibers like linen, cotton, and silk, are elegant, timeless, and a pleasure to wear. But it's not just the EF look that we admire, it's also the forward-thinking company ethos that makes EF a worthy business idol. From numerous environmental initiatives, to supporting amazing non-profit organizations, and providing grants to women-owned businesses, Eileen Fisher continues to be a paragon of what businesses can and should be.

All of this is to say that we were extremely honored to have had the opportunity to work with EF on a recent project of making tote bags from upcycled EF garments through the company's clothing recycling program, Fisher Found (formally Green Eileen). 

Two tote styles were cut and crafted at PGF—rectangular made from stretch cotton and circular fashioned from linen—with many color scheme variations. The circular tote was designed here at PGF and is a special collaboration between PGF and Fisher Found. 

We're gearing up to host a Fisher Found Not-Quite-Perfect Sale of used Eileen Fisher clothing at PGF in June—check back soon for more info or SIGN UP for our mailing list to be notified first!  

In the meantime, here are images of this unique upcycled tote-making process!

PGF received boxes and boxes of used Eileen Fisher clothing still intact. We cut the tote patterns from these garments and separated them by color, as each tote had a designated color scheme. 

PGF received boxes and boxes of used Eileen Fisher clothing still intact. We cut the tote patterns from these garments and separated them by color, as each tote had a designated color scheme. 

Safety first! Stephanie cutting a stack of pant legs wearing her metal mesh glove for protection. 

Safety first! Stephanie cutting a stack of pant legs wearing her metal mesh glove for protection. 

Cutting the many pieces for the rectangular tote. 

Cutting the many pieces for the rectangular tote. 

Stephanie and Britt planning out the color placement using full garments for the light-hued circle tote. 

Stephanie and Britt planning out the color placement using full garments for the light-hued circle tote. 

Ngoc sewing the rectangular tote.

Ngoc sewing the rectangular tote.

Rectangle totes in process.

Rectangle totes in process.

An ironing the tote straps.

An ironing the tote straps.

Blue & black circle totes ready for tags. 

Blue & black circle totes ready for tags. 

Britt howard, resident, woi by Britt Howard

PGF's owner/founder, Britt Howard is honored to be named one of Portland Business Journal's 2017 Women of Influence! PGF celebrated this amazing achievement at the award luncheon surrounded by a room full of inspiring women (and the men that were there to cheer them on!). Portland Business Journal awarded this honor to 25 Portland women, from mental health professionals to architects, food entrepreneurs, and many more. Needless to say, it was a invigorating event full of stories about successes and failures, and the necessity of taking risks to find your passion.

One of the highlights of the event was Governor Kate Brown's spot on speech about supporting diversity in our workplaces and communities. Even as we see more women of color and more people from the LGBTQ community enter government seats and executive level positions, there is still much work to be done to ensure that all voices are heard. Governor Brown echoed Michelle Obama in saying "...when you’ve worked hard, and done well, and walked through that doorway of opportunity, you do not slam it shut behind you. You reach back and you give other folks the same chances that helped you succeed.” Words to live by!

Check out all the honorees HERE, and pick up a copy of the Portland Business Journal to read individual profiles of each woman of influence—or "WOIs" as we like to call them! 

PGF WORKSHOP AT STRUKTUR EVENT by Britt Howard

Britt doing her thang at PGF (photo by Nicholas Peter Wilson/The Style Line)

Britt doing her thang at PGF (photo by Nicholas Peter Wilson/The Style Line)

Join Britt Howard for an insightful workshop at Struktur Event in Portland on April 26th! 

Best Practices in Partnering with a Domestic Manufacturer
Within the apparel and soft goods manufacturing industry, what does it mean to be a domestic factory and a creative partner? And how can designers and creatives who want to produce domestically carve out collaborative and productive relationships with local manufacturers? During this workshop, Portland Garment Factory (PGF) owner/founder, Britt Howard, will delve into the process and benefits of working with local producers to create high quality and innovative products.

The Details: 
April 26, 2017
2:45–4:15 p.m.
Left Bank Annex
101 N. Weidler St. 
Register for Struktur HERE! 

PGF + DESIGN WEEK PORTLAND OPEN HOUSE by Britt Howard

PGF is excited to participate in Design Week Portland's Open House series! We'll be here on April 28th (4-7pm) with our doors open, ready to show you around the factory, and answer any burning questions you may have about PGF. Click here for a map of all participating studios, and for info on how to sign up to attend! 

LET'S TALK TRANSPARENCY: PANEL DISCUSSION WITH BRITT HOWARD by Britt Howard

Ever wonder what it takes to get food on your plate, clothes in your closet, and a roof over your head? Come learn about it firsthand from a diverse group of industry leaders at Design Week Portland's Let's Talk Transparency panel Wednesday April 26th from 6pm–8pm. The panel will be held at EcoTrust 721 NW 9th Ave, #200 Portland, OR 97209. Tickets for the panel will be $5 and can be purchased online through DWP.

PGF owner and designer, Britt Howard, will be sharing her experiences and knowledge with a focus on raw materials and the manufacturing process in relation to ethical labor and environmentally sustainable practices within the soft goods and garment industry. 

Design Week Portland & PGF by Britt Howard

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Design Week Portland (DWP) is coming up and we're excited to share the multiple ways PGF is involved in this amazing festival. Come hear Britt (PGF owner/founder) speak at the following events: 

April 21st: DWP Main Stage @Revolution Hall. More info HERE.

April 24th: Gray Magazine Design & Activism Panel @Hotel Lucia (Cocktails 5:30–6:30pm; Panel 6:30–7:30pm). More info HERE

April 26th: Let’s Talk Transparency. Presentations and panel discussion on the stuff that makes up our food, buildings, clothing, and objects. @EcoTrust (6–8pm). More info HERE.

April 28th: Open House at PGF (4–7pm)! Register HERE to attend!

Pssst... HERE's a list of Britt's DWP favorites, if you're looking for a little guidance on what to check out. 

REMEMBERING TRISHA BROWN by Britt Howard

Taking a moment to remember postmodern dancer/choreographer/visual artist, Trisha Brown. Her innovative work in performance and dance continues to inspire artists working across many mediums and genres. For a fuller picture of her amazing life, take a minute to read this NYT article. 

Trisha Brown’s dances are shaped by dreams of levitation, by geometry, enigma, physics, by memory, mathematics and geography, by language. Her gestural imagery challenges perception of the moving body, making the impossible appear possible. Imagining that dancers can fall not only down but up or sideways, Brown makes the rules of life seem arbitrary, offering an exhilarating transcendence of physical limits. Since 1962 her choreography has explored the interplay of intellect and instinct, paradoxes of logic and non sequitur, interpenetrations of present and past, coincidences of abstract form and mythic action, and the edges between visibility and invisibility. - Marianne Goldberg from Fifty Contemporary Choreographers published by Routledge, edited by Martha Bremser. To read the full essay, click here. 

Roof Piece, 1971

Roof Piece, 1971

Set and Reset, 1980 (music by Laurie Anderson, designs by Robert Rauschenberg)

Set and Reset, 1980 (music by Laurie Anderson, designs by Robert Rauschenberg)