Thursday, June 14, 2012

A behind-the-scenes look at the making of Girl Scouts OSW's commemorative 100th Anniversary blanket!

A few weeks ago GSOSW Communications Director Sarah Miller and Communications Specialist Rebekah Hubbard visited the Pendleton WoolenMills Headquarters in downtown Portland to learn about the making of our 100thAnniversary commemorative woolen blanket.

The blanket was created by Janet Worthington and Kelly Fagan, both fabric designers at Pendleton. Both Janet and Kelly were longtime Girl Scouts – Kelly even had her vest in the office!

The women showed us around the design offices at Pendleton. 

When building inspiration boards for a line of clothes, designers use an entire wall full of color samples.

If they are designing a specific pattern, they may make a real-life sample of it. There are hundreds of shades of red... 

And hundreds of shades of blue, and green.
Many times they weave samples of fabric by hand right in their workshop, even though the factories that make the finished product are all across the state.

Each sample includes hundreds of threads. This is a look at a loom set up to weave a sample.

This is Kelly's computer, where she designed the Girl Scouts OSW 100th Anniversary commemorative blanket. Kelly wanted to reflect both the badges of the past and the badges of today to pay tribute to the history of Girl Scouting.

After she designs the blanket, a pattern that breaks the image down into millions of tiny squares is sent off to one of the mills to make a full-size sample, like the one Kelly and Janet hold above. They examine the sample, make any corrections and come up with a final design - the one that is available to buy through the GSOSW store!

Kelly said that many of the skills and attitudes she learned in Girl Scouts were useful to her as she made her way through college and started her career.

Janet told us that there is a special way to fold a Pendleton blanket, so the trademark blue logo is always facing up.

Thank you, Pendleton, for a great tour! As we celebrate the history of Girl Scouting, it's great to know the heritage of one of our commemorative products!

You can check out Pendleton's blog post about the 100th Anniversary commemorative blanket here.

Buy the blanket at the GSOSW online store here!