Mt. Rainier Design is a label with one foot in the past and one firmly striding into the future. The past is represented in not only the aesthetics of the brand, which are inspired by traditional outdoor wears of 60s and 70s West Coast America but also in their commitment to the usage of 60/40, a water-proof fabric that was invented long before the days of Goretex. The future, for Mt Rainier, takes shape in their cutting edge design sensibility and a commitment to pushing American heritage out of its niche market and putting it on a bigger, potentially global display. We spoke to the design director of Mt. Rainier Design to get some inside information on the brand's identity, design processes and values as an true outerwear company.
Mt.Rainier Design started out in the year 2006, the director of the brand has been and still is buyer for Seilin&Co, a company owning shops such as Hollywood Ranch Market, High! Standard, Okura and Blue Blue in Japan.
What does Mt. Rainier Design mean to you?
Mt.Rainier is an embodiment of my idea of quality pieces of clothing. Garments with design that do not go out of time, garments with a certain level of enough functionality and durability.
The company is a rendition of an American heritage brandwhat does it mean to you to continue this legacy of craftsmanship?
It is true that American heritage is an important element of the brand, but I am not stubbornly attatched to it. Since the 1990's, outdoor products have explored to countries such as the Philippines, Vietnam, China and other parts of the world outside the US to seek production bases with higher quality and efficiency. Mt.Rainier Design focuses on needlework and fabric above all. Mt.Rainier Design selects the best factories with most appropriate techniques for our needs in order to make products of high quality.
What are the key pieces in the current AW12 collection?
Slant Pocket Anorak, Hood Inyo Down Jacket, USA Mountain Parka, Box Pack, One Pocket Down Vest, which can be seen here.
What is the design process like, from conceiving the idea to designing to production?
My inspirations are classical outdoor products, hunting wear, work wear and millitary wear. I always try to keep the design simple without any needlessness.
Where can your goods be found, online and in stores?
High Standard, Tokyo. Journey, Tokyo. Unionmade, San Francisco. Norse Store, Copenhagen. End, Newcastle. Oi Polloi, Manchester. Inventory Stockroom, Vancouver. Man on the Boon, Seoul. Thisclose, Seoul. Less, Taiwan.
What are some of your favorite stores/blogs/magazines/websites?
How do you define a quality piece of clothing?
Garments with design that do not go out of time, garments with a certain level of enough functionality and durability.
And finally, what inspired the rendition of 60/40 Fabric?
Because the 60/40 fabric fulfills the brand's basic expectationsnot going out of time, certain level of enough functionality and durability.