Design & Sustainability on

Snow Peak x Nau: Q&A with Peter and Carma

— By: Alison Wu
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This week, designers Peter Kallen and Carma Ferrier reveal their favorite pieces from the recent Snow Peak x Nau fall collaboration and give us some insight into the inspiration behind the capsule collection. You can see the entire Snow Peak x Nau collection for men and women on nau.com.

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How did the collaboration with Snow Peak come about? 

We had been following their brand and the product that they had been making over the years. We are big fans of the brand and its aesthetic, sensibility and attention to detail. We’ve always been attracted to the way they reference classic camping and outdoor gear, but done with better materials and with a more refined and minimized approach. When they opened their North American headquarters here in Portland, a conversation started, and it seemed like the perfect opportunity to share design sensibilities from different platforms. It just seemed like a natural collaboration.

How did you approach the blending of both brands into the collection?

It was actually pretty seamless because of our aesthetics and how refined both of the brands are, so bringing them together was just natural. It felt really effortless. In the early conversations when we were sharing concepts, everyone was on the same page right from the beginning. We saw it as a new opportunity to explore this blurry genre of fewer things doing more – breaking down the barriers of what is expected around a campsite. Asking the question, “What are the essentials?”

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What other things inspired the collection? 

The sense of interaction with the garment is one of the biggest cues that informs new design for us. Fabrics, always. Cuts, old references to Japanese heritage, but making them modern and applicable to life today. Versatility, always having the right piece for layering. A reductionist, minimalist approach, so you end up with an item that is just perfect for what you need.

What are your favorite pieces in the collection?

Carma: The Felt Up Jacket. It’s like wearing an old leather jacket. It will shape to your body and your elbows. It’s made of the highest quality Merino wool. You can have this piece for the rest of your life.

Peter: The Hokkaido Blazer. It is 3-layer technology done in a more familiar, blazer silhouette. It has waterproof zippers, access zip portals that get into inside pockets whether it be on the Checkmate Shirt or the Felt Over Sweater. I love how the pieces interact together.

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What are the most interesting design features?

We love how the pieces layer together, how the dimensions work with each other. The portal pockets on the men’s pieces. With the women’s pieces, there are some really cool forms, dimensions and scale that you can play around with. The hood on the Kimono Trench and the collar on the Butterfly Dress. The mix of fabrics, too. We love how everything can work in the outdoors as well as an urban setting.

Why did you choose the three snow peak hardgoods (spork, chopsticks and wine tumbler) to be the essentials?

These pieces really represent the mobile, minimalist approach to what you might have at a campsite, or if you go for a picnic at the bluffs. You could take them anywhere – surfing, hiking, friend’s house, your own backyard.

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If the collection had a motto, what would it be?

Less is more.

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Words by Alison Wu.