Northern Grade, a menswear market founded with the intention of providing consumers access to the best American-made goods available, will be held this weekend at Richmond’s iconic Haxall Point Power Plant. Looking forward to this weekend’s market, we decided to catch up with one of the participating vendors, MOTHER FREEDOM. Born in the heart of New England, MOTHER FREEDOM is a heritage inspired men’s sportswear brand with garments made for the adventurous spirit. We met up with Michael Anderder, MOTHER FREEDOM’s Global Sales Director, to learn more about the company.
MOTHER FREEDOM is a relatively young company, can you tell us about how the brand was started?
In August 2012 we took our love of design, textiles, craftsmanship, and manufacturing and bought a 12,000 square foot factory in New Bedford, Massachusetts in hopes to re-energize domestic manufacturing. This would allow us to create a collaborative conversation between customer and designer for exclusive in-store product.
Is there any particular reason why New Bedford was chosen as the headquarters for MOTHER FREEDOM and how has the city’s history inspired the brand’s design?
When it came time to pick a home for MOTHER FREEDOM, we knew there was really only one choice. New Bedford has historically been known as the best fishing port in the country but is also home to generations of skilled textile artisans. Not only do we have great reverence for our craftsmen, our location in New England – the birthplace of American freedom – gives us extra pride in our effort to invigorate American manufacturing. We want New Bedford to, once again, be seen as one of the best apparel manufacturing cities in the United States.
What are your favorite things to do and places to go to in New Bedford?
My favorite places to go to are the Waterfront Grille for the best seafood and drinks, Sid Wainer and Son to collect fresh local produce, and the New Bedford Whaling Museum to soak in the history of the city.
In addition to Northern Grade, where else can people find MOTHER FREEDOM?
Freeman’s Sporting Club, NYC, Tokyo
Carson Street Clothiers, NYC
Plain Clothes, Homewood, AL
Hudson & Jane, Kansas City, MO
Haberdash, Chicago, IL
Beecroft & Bull, Newport News, VA
Family Britches, Chappaqua, NY
David Wood, Portland, ME
What can customers expect to see in MOTHER FREEDOM’s Fall/Winter 2013 collection?
We’ve drawn inspiration from the beautiful and rugged New England landscapes and the legendary historical figures of New Bedford and Massachusetts. The varied pieces can bring to mind a windy traverse along the sea in the Melville Blazer, a rustic hike in the mountains in our reversible Barn Jacket, waxed cotton Mackintosh, or Duster coats. This collection is for chilly nights under the stars in a wool & cashmere zippered vest or a cashmere fleece. These are all real American experiences that we’ve sewn into our product with timeless style and elegance.
What’s on the horizon for MOTHER FREEDOM?
We have been successful in collaborative discussions with many amazing retailers and brands such as Freeman’s Sporting Club in New York City. We are excited to see how this process develops for us.
You can also catch us in addition to Northern Grade, we will be participating at American Field in Boston and The Pop-up Flea in New York City.
To learn more about MOTHER FREEDOM, visit their website and find them on Facebook. This weekend’s Northern Grade market will be open this weekend, Saturday-Sunday. For more information on the market, visit the event’s Facebook page here.
We’re looking forward to seeing you at the market and visit the Northern Grade website for the complete schedule of upcoming events.