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The Though Kitchen - Dedicated to Stirring the Pot

The Dirt on Laundry: Ideas on Lightening Your Load

Posted by leighann | April 21st, 2014 | Filed under Environmental Change, Positive Change, Sustainability, Who We Are

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In his 2008 Ted Talk, Hans Rosling argued that the washing machine was the single greatest invention of the industrial revolution. Instead of spending hours every day collecting water, hand washing along an antiquated washboard, and hanging each garment on a clothesline, we were now free to read more books, learn new languages, go to school, and—yes—contribute to greenhouse gases.

While the washing machine has freed us up to enjoy a few (hundred) extra cups of coffee in the morning, it has also contributed significantly to the environmental footprint of a garment. Some say that over the course of a garment’s lifetime, up to 82% of energy use, 66% of solid waste, and over 50% of air emissions come from washing and drying. Surprisingly, more water and energy are used during consumer care than in production.  That’s why, at Nau, we design our clothes to thrive using low-impact cleaning methods.

To make sure your Nau clothing lives a long life, we’ve compiled a few ideas to lighten your load.  By following such practices, you not only guarantee your garment’s long life, you also join us in minimizing their impact on the earth.
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First Stop: The Columbia Gorge

Posted by Alison Wu | March 27th, 2014 | Filed under Photography, Travel, Uncategorized

Over the past few weeks, we’ve been following Travel Oregon‘s guest Instagrammers on their adventures through the 7 Wonders of Oregon. Follow along as we recount the highlights from their travels and offer up some of our advice on where to go and what to do.
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The Uncommoners: Meet the Ambassador of Food

Posted by leighann | March 12th, 2014 | Filed under Partnerships, Positive Change, Sustainability, Who We Are

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Last month, we asked for nominations for our next Uncommoner. Submissions poured in: tool makers, bike builders, community organizers, milliners, compost cultivators. The choice was difficult. But after careful consideration, we’d like to introduce you to our newest Uncommoner. She’s an entrepreneur, teacher, food advocate, and Board member of Slow Food USA working at the crossroads of policy, education, and food sovereignty to change the way we eat. And she makes one mean cabbage dish. Meet Katherine Deumling, the Ambassador of Food and brainchild behind Cook With What You Have.
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The 7 Wonders of Oregon

Posted by Alison Wu | March 10th, 2014 | Filed under Travel, Who We Are

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There is no denying our love for Oregon.  We agree with our friends over at Travel Oregon: whoever named the 7 Wonders of the World must not have stepped foot in our home state. From the top of Mt. Hood, along the Coast, down the Columbia River Gorge, through the Painted Hills, up Smith Rock, across the Wallowas and around Crater Lake, The 7 Wonders of Oregon capture the magnificent diversity of this state’s landscape.

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Meet the venerable Jun Kang, Nau’s new President

Posted by leighann | February 12th, 2014 | Filed under Partnerships, Who We Are

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You might have heard; we’ve been eating a lot of Korean food lately. We’ve also been busy celebrating the year of the Blue Horse with a spacious new office, beautiful spring line, and—yes—even new owners. The Korean-based, outdoor brand, Black Yak and Nau have officially tied the knot.  

This week in the Thought Kitchen, we’re honored to sit down with  Jun Suk Kang, Nau’s new President, to find out what’s ahead for Nau and Black Yak, what’s going to change, and what he thinks about being voted one of Portland Monthly magazine’s most fascinating dinner guests.
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The Escape Collective: Exploring the Other Side of Ordinary

Posted by leighann | January 15th, 2014 | Filed under Art, Design, Travel

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Four friends. Four days. No limits. What would you create? That’s what a group of friends had in mind when they set out to build a Geodesic dome. Two months later, their passion-fueled venture landed them a coveted spot at Summit, a Davos-meets-Ted conference for young thought leaders. Self-named the Escape Collective, this fledging group of makers, creators and designers are our third portrait in the Uncommoners—our blog series dedicated to exploring the other side of ordinary.

But this isn’t a story about how to build a 30-foot, low-frequency geodesic dome or how to sew a massive waterproof cover composed of 256 panels of unused material from Nike golf bags (yes, that did happen). This isn’t even a story about the Escape Collective and the other 800-or-so entrepreneurs, artists and leaders they joined at Summit’s newly acquired Powder Mountain Resort last July. No. This is a story about freedom, creativity, and the ideas born out of unencumbered space and time. Because as Einstein once said, “Creativity is the residue of time wasted.” And in a world punctuated by deadlines and deliverables, no one embraces this lost maxim more than The Escape Collective.

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Behind the Scenes with Emancipator on his latest video, Minor Cause

Posted by Alison Wu | December 5th, 2013 | Filed under Design, Music, Photography

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Portland-based music producer, Douglas Appling, better known as Emancipator, enlisted the help of one of our favorite photographers, Ben Moon to direct his recent music video, Minor Cause. Shot on the Oregon Coast, the video uses natural imagery in an abstract way to capture the dreamy, ethereal feeling of Emancipator’s music. The stunning aerial shots were captured using a Sony FS700 which shoots at 240 frames per second. The highspeed camera was attached to an eight-bladed “octocopter,” allowing the story to be told from many perspectives. A collaboration of creative minds, the blend of melodic electronic sounds with breathtaking visuals certainly caught our attention  Check out the video, and a behind-the-scenes look at the making of Minor Cause.

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The Cultivators: Farming with a Social Purpose

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photo by Giles Clement

In our next installment of The Uncommoners: Exploring the Other Side of Ordinary, Lindsey heads to Long Beach, Washington to get her hands dirty and learn what it means to farm with a Social Purpose.

When I accepted an invitation from Starvation Alley Farms to join their cranberry harvest last month, I didn’t know what to expect. Perhaps, an idyllic Ocean Spray commercial or another episode of Dirty Jobs. (Yes. Mike Rowe visited a cranberry farm.). But what I found was hard work, laughter, great cocktails and a deep sense of community with people who were passionate about food, family and local farming.

After a few cranberry cocktails, I sat down with farmers, Jessika Tantisook and Jared Oakes, to learn how this small family-run experiment expanded into a corporation with a unique uncommon product and an even more uncommon purpose.

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The Uncommoners: Exploring the Other Side of Ordinary

Posted by leighann | October 29th, 2013 | Filed under Design, Partnerships, Who We Are

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We all know them, those friends who work behind-the-scenes, who fly under the radar while doing extraordinary things. They build stuff. They make things. They grow goods. And they do it quietly without the need for accolades or recognition. They’re our friends and neighbors. They’re the humble warriors who live their passion everyday and create positive change. They’re people like Katy Anderson. Known by some as the Lady Carpenter, Katy—as her moniker suggests—is a skilled craftswoman in a man’s world. She’s also the first portrait in The Uncommoners, our new Off-The-Grid series dedicated to exploring the other side of ordinary.
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From Schizopolis to Standells: 5 Things You Should Know from musician Erik Menteer

Posted by Bryanna | October 22nd, 2013 | Filed under Music, Personal Reflection, Who We Are

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It seems everybody loves lists these days. Our facebook feed is crammed with headlines like, “Five ways to do this, ten habits of these people, six ways to yadda yadda.” So we took it upon ourselves to create our own. Over the next few months, we’re gathering a “should” list from some of our favorite musicians, artists, creatives, and changemakers. We posed the same five questions to each person and compiled a list that has just as much grit and intrigue as Ten Ways to Kill a Pig. At least, we think so. First up: Erik Menteer, multi-instrumentalist for the weirdo folk and rock band Blitzen Trapper

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