Being a fourth-generation Montanan, Lindsey Thornburg was introduced to Pendleton at an early age through various family members who collected their vintage blankets.
“It’s a textile that, being from the West, we all grew up around. Essentially, when I started making clothes with them, I just wanted to modernize the silhouette where it felt a little more fashion-forward. That came from walking around in the cold in New York and being young and not being able to find a jacket that really suited me. I walked around my apartment answering emails in my blanket and I just adapted the silhouette of the cloak from there,” she recalls.
The silhouette of her iconic cloaks was developed with the intention of being a canvas for the Pendleton designs. Their goal was to have a very limited amount of design lines to give way for the fabric to live on and feature the artwork.
“The psychology behind just wearing a blanket, there’s something very nurturing about it that you can’t really describe,” Lindsey explains. “There is something very encompassing about wearing a blanket outside and it looks very chic and there’s something very special to that. We’re just happy to facilitate that, to work with Pendleton. That’s where we pay all our attention.”
In 2017, Lindsey realized the Lower East Side of Manhattan was not the best place for her designs to be showcased. She decided to put all her efforts back into being in Montana and going back home, so she took the time to rebuild her community in Montana and make sure she was having visibility with the resorts catering to a high-end audience.
Her Pagosa Springs cloak made an appearance on Beth Dutton in the hit show Yellowstone, which was an amazing surprise to Lindsey. “I didn’t even know it was happening, they were just buying them off the website. I think having made my way back to Montana and the synchronicity that led for me to be featured on her and that character. I’m like, ‘What a privilege, what a reward for 15 years with this collaboration with Pendleton.’ It’s different when you don’t see things coming too, when you don’t go after them and it’s just something that happens naturally. It was a risk when I started going back to Montana, so to see my efforts be rewarded from a feature on her with her character and her skills, what a privilege because she’s a master of her craft. I’m always pretty humbled and awestruck by that for sure.”
“I’m pretty slow going when it comes to designing things. It’s a big responsibility putting things out into the world. I think “Is this worth producing?” versus feeling like I have to create something every six months,” Lindsey says. She and her team strive to make heirloom pieces that, once you receive it, you’ll want to hold onto it and pass it down. She wants it to feel like there’s an element of permanence to everything they do.
She also prides herself on her products being made in the US. “Working with Pendleton is a really privileged position for us. It’s an art project. We have to make a pattern to place on all the different blankets so it’s a very intimate process,” she explains. “We’ve been working with the same factory for 12 years. We want to be hands-on with it. You can feel the energy exchange with the product that has people there that are overseeing it top to bottom. I love having an American-made product.”
View all of Lindsey Thornburg’s designs online at lindseythornburg.com.