On a particularly frigid night in February, we were delighted to host friends old and new at The Outpost. The occasion was a special event celebrating Colorado’s community of makers and the kickoff for the This Is My… city series, a collaboration between digital culture mavens The A.V. Club and Basil Hayden’s Bourbon Whiskey. Our cozy evening was graciously MC’d by the inimitable Max Wastler (Basil Hayden’s cultural bloodhound, and yes, that’s his real job title), who happens to be a good pal from our days in Chicago. It was such a treat to bring together our worlds, and to share a whirlwind of talent from Denver-area creatives.
Fellow artisans included glove gurus Astis Mittens, gearmen Topo Designs, snow specialists Wagner Skis and eco-carpenters Azure Furniture, all of whom shared stories about their journeys in discovering their craft. Mixologolists Chad Michael George of Williams & Graham, Acorn's Alexandra Parks and Bread Bar proprietress Shae Whitney kept everyone in high spirits, while the Comida taco truck team braved the chill to serve their creative Mexican nosh. A Small Print Shop whipped up a special run of T-shirts featuring our freshly-painted mural by Mountain vs. Plains.
For the second half of the evening, we headed around the corner to the bicycle-building and -repair studio Chocolate Spokes to enjoy Simon Pegg’s new film, A Fantastic Fear of Everything, accompanied by The Long I Pie Shop’s lovingly made pies and the purest, most delicious hot chocolate courtesty of Ritual Chocolate — whose confections, made just down the street, are also stocked in the bike shop’s selection of American bean-to-bar chocolates.
You can follow the This Is My… event series here, and check out some pics and video of the event below!
Photos: Adam Bove
Video: A.V. Club
At Winter Session, we are proud to offer consistency and quality, and we stand by the dependability in each and every piece that we create and make available to you.
We delight in discovering the qualities inherent in unique hides when we receive them from the tannery (Chicago’s renowned Horween Leather Company). In transforming this beautiful material into our final products, we aim to use as much of the hide as possible. In an effort to maintain visual consistency on our website, the leather pieces we typically offer online are those with the most uniform surfaces and colors. The others, often with distinct character markings and color variations, are normally only available in person, to folks who stop by our workshop in Denver.
We’re excited to finally be able to share these one-of-a-kind wallets and cases with a wider audience through a limited-time Spring Cleaning Sale. It is our hope that these pieces will find a home where their nuanced individuality is fully appreciated, and likewise, that you might discover a wallet with a personality perfectly suited to you.
The story behind our wallets, and what you might find in our Spring Cleaning inventory:
Although our leather goods are handled carefully in the process of making, they sometimes acquire superficial marks — each one a subtle memory of that process.
The colored hides we use are already dyed when we receive them, and occasionally this process leaves small amounts of extra pigment on the inside of the leather. The dye is permanently integrated into the leather, and will not rub off on clothing, skin or the wallet’s contents.
Variations in Color, Texture and Shape
We like to keep our colorways fresh and our collection thoughtfully edited, so what you see on our site represents only a portion of what we keep in our inventory. We’re fond of some of the shapes, styles, and colors we’ve offered in the past, and we’re glad to have the opportunity to share some of these pieces with you now.
Although we see great beauty in the variations on some areas of our hides — scars and ranch brands, striations and wrinkles — these pieces are so visually unique that we cannot categorize them as a standard offering.
Just like the leather handles on our bags, the leather used to make our wallets and accessory sleeves naturally darkens with exposure to sunlight. Even after spending a few sunny days on the shelves here at the Outpost, a wallet will begin to take on a richer, deeper hue, differentiating it from the selection shown on our site.
For our wallets, we use hides in the 4-5oz range (the ‘ounce’ is the industry unit for measuring leather thickness). Occasionally we’ll stitch a piece that’s slightly thinner or thicker. Though these don’t make it onto our website, they’re still viable companions and will appeal to those who prefer more sturdy or minimal styles.
Think of the most used feature of your Garrison Bag: Is it one of the six pockets, the internal key clip, or possibly the sturdy waxed canvas that can take the toughest abuse while allowing you to carry anything? Chances are it’s none of these, but rather an often-overlooked element of its design—the handle.
All Garrison handles are stitched right here at the Winter Session Outpost in Denver, Colorado. We pours hours into the handle-making process. From punching holes, to water molding each piece, to the actual stitching and riveting; it’s a hands-on process with input from each member of our team.
Stitching involves placing each piece of cowhide into a stitching “pony” that holds it steady while we work. Then, we thread our needles and begin transforming the thick piece of leather into a durable handle. After cutting away excess thread, we shape the handle, match it with a similarly colored mate, and use a bench-top riveter to attach it to a Garrison body.
Why do we focus so much energy into this single element of our product? Simply said, the handle is the first and last thing touched on a bag. They contact your body more often than any other feature and we want each of those experiences to leave you with a feeling of quality and sturdy longevity. That’s why we’ve experimented over the years with numerous designs and finally landed on one made of vegetable tanned cowhide, die cut, punched, hand stitched, and hand riveted. It means that each Garrison handle you see underwent five distinct processes. We think this effort is a small price to pay to make something you’ll want to hold thousands of times.
See below for pictures of our very first handle design compared to our current:
#MURALSTREEP AT THE OUTPOST
As the snow fell on Thursday night, Jan 30th, people began trickling in to The Winter Session Outpost in Denver to celebrate the unveiling of our new mural by Mountain vs Plains aka Paul Michel. Emboldened by hot toddies, visitors ventured out in short bursts to admire the woodland scene now gracing our southern wall. We asked Michel, a local artist better known for pen and ink drawings, if he’d be interested in trying something new by livening up our blank outer wall. He did a phenomenal job and we’re so happy to play host to his first mural project.
Inside The Outpost, we filled our workspace with friends, laughter, and the signature Colorado sounds of Patrick Dethlefs. A big thanks to all who joined us for #muralstreep and if you missed out, you can catch Patrick live on March 7th at Swallow Hill Music and come see the mural in person anytime: 2952 Welton St.
When asked about his mural experience Michel stated, “I loved the experience. Winter Session purchased pretzels to feed me all week while I painted. They went with Rold’s Gold, a name I trust.”
*mural photo by Ross Evertson