When MISADVENTURES editor Zoe Balaconis tapped me to visit the American Field Pop-Up Market in Boston, I jumped at the offer. What is that, you ask? Only a smorgasbord of American-made everything, from switchel to sunglasses. And don’t worry, if you missed Boston’s you can still catch the market in Brooklyn, D.C., and Atlanta in the coming weeks.
As a lover of all things artisan, I thought the field show would be the perfect way to spend my Saturday morning — and I couldn’t have been more right.
Walking out of the freight elevator into the Boston Design Center, I felt overwhelmed in the best way. I immediately spotted Mast Brothers chocolate samples and Loyal Supply Co.’s proprietess passing out Quinn Popcorn. After grabbing a quick snack, I wandered through the aisles, taking in the scene with a smile. The field show reminded me of a big, loud neighborhood event — a traditional bazaar in a modern space. Each brand contributed to the kaleidoscope.
Just for you, Misadventurers, I perused each booth and found the coolest up-and-coming brands to share:
Beyond created their technical seven-layer heating system with survival in mind. They equip the US special forces with the clothing they need to survive in extreme weather conditions. Beyond sells their products to the general public too, and a lucky few get to take their serious gear home for personal adventures. Our only question to their manager was, “When does their women’s line come out?” They said 2017, but we’re hoping it’s a lot sooner.
Dubbed by Forbes as “Warby Parker” for your living room, Greycork is a game changer. Their American-made living room collection will put your Ikea furniture to shame. Not only does Greycork build their furniture with the same wood that makes baseball bats, their couch takes five minutes to assemble — and it looks good, too!
Corinne Prevot began Skida when she was a Nordic ski racer at Burke Mountain School. Unable to find the kind of bold, colorful hats and neckwarmers she wanted to wear, Prevot started sewing them. Now, Skida is a hot brand in the outdoors space, capturing the attention of women with their rotating supply of beautiful winter wear. When you see a print you love from this Burlington-based company, snag it — everything’s limited edition.
Studdly blew me away with their jewelry. Their rough-cut gems and metals capture the natural beauty in original materials without too much polish. Plus, their designer Maggie Anatalek always lists the meaning of accompanying gemstones. Think Alex & Ani but better.
United by Blue
United by Blue promises to remove one pound of trash from oceans and waterways for every item sold. Their beautiful products, which walk the line between fine apparel and technical gear, are as diverse as they are lovely — check out the Explorers Axe and the über technical Ultimate American Sock (made with bison wool). United by Blue’s flagship store in Philadelphia doubles as one of the city’s finest coffee shops and a DIY classroom. Road trip, anyone?
Tait Design Co.
Based in Detroit, Tait Design Co. makes colorful yo-yos and turbo flyers by hand. Their design-oriented brand encourages every adult to tap into their childhood curiosities. Prop one of their classic hobby shop airplanes on your desk to remind you not to take life (and work) too seriously.
These six brands are just the beginning, reflecting a larger movement toward American-made manufacturing that values high design and durability. Do you have any local products you just can’t live without?