Living 'where Mountains Meet' is an ethos that goes far beyond what you wear. It's a lifestyle that is an ever-evolving process meant to be lived out through community.
Denim production has been a longtime staple in the American Textile industry. In fact, it is one of the few textiles still produced in mass quantities here in the States. Cone Denim, a mill based in North Carolina, has been a major player in the American textile industry for generations. At White Oak, their North Carolina plant, they have been continuously producing denim for 126 years – and they have the archive to prove it! We’ve been fortunate enough to work with this heritage mill almost since the launch of where Mountains Meet and were even more fortunate to get a personal tour on a recent trip to North Carolina.
One of the most memorable stories we’ve heard from the Cone team is the origin of Pinto Denim. In 1969, the entire mill was flooded after an intense storm hit Greensboro. Machinery was damaged and millions of yards of denim were soaked with water. To keep the denim from mildewing they hired local high school students to wash and dry all the yardage, even so the denim was still damaged. In an effort to salvage what could have been a catastrophic loss, a young Cone merchandiser suggested running the yardage through a solution to randomly remove the dye. The outcome was mottled, faded stripe and what could have been a complete disaster quickly became an overnight success.
In 2014, Cone wanted to recreate the magic that Mother Nature had gifted them and began a research process to bring the distinct look of Pinto denim back to White Oak. Lucky for us (and you), their hard work paid off and Pinto Denim has risen from its watery beginnings.
We recently learned that White Oak will be closing its doors in December, but we feel fortunate that we were able to be a part of this iconic mill’s history and look forward to Cone Denim’s next chapter.