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Recognized as a leader in materials innovation and for a
commitment to quality, authenticity, functionality and
sustainability at every level.
From top: Patagonia logo; Nano Puff Pullover, made from recycled
polyester shell fabric; and screenshot from the Footprint
Anyone who has hiked through unrelenting rain or paddled out to
catch winter swells is indebted to the thoughtfully constructed
gear protecting them from the elements. As a company founded on
improving every step or stroke for outdoor enthusiasts, Patagonia has many grateful—not to
mention dry and warm—supporters. Patagonia consistently sets the
trend by innovating streamlined outdoor clothing and progressive
business practices—from introducing fleece made from post-consumer
recycled plastic soda bottles to ensuring safe, legal conditions
for its workers.
Founder Yvon Chouinard, an avid rock climber, experienced
firsthand the need for lighter, more functional climbing equipment
that was less damaging to the environment. So he began to forge
climbing gear and a company was born. Thirty-five years later,
Patagonia's commitment to creating thoughtful, responsible products
has expanded to include the sports of surfing, fishing, hiking,
skiing and trail running. The modest tin shed that served as
Chouinard's first workshop still stands today as a reminder of the
company's roots at headquarters in Ventura, California. Visitors to
the Patagonia website can virtually explore the tin shed
environment to uncover adventure stories, videos, slideshows,
podcasts and field reports.
Patagonia's engaging website and catalogues exist not only to
sell, but also to provide a snapshot of the Patagonia lifestyle.
Presented more like magazines, the lush guides address
environmental issues and feature stories and images submitted by
real people, known as “Patagonia ambassadors.” Authenticity is key,
thus Patagonia strives to be more than a label, but to be
associated with those real life adventures.
Welcoming consumers into the world of Patagonia means not only
enticing them with the breathtaking images of where a garment has
traveled, but also educating them about where it came from. True to
its core values, Patagonia participates in the fight to preserve
those wild and beautiful places where its gear is put to the test.
Last year alone, Patagonia donated—in direct grants, clothing
donations and sponsorships—more than $3 million toward grassroots
environmental giving. Twelve years ago, Patagonia converted its
entire sportswear production process from conventionally grown to
organic-only cotton, and it has instituted, among other
initiatives, the web-based Footprint Chronicles, which tracks the
impact of a product from design to delivery.
Through the forward thinking that goes into its garments and
corporate ideology, Patagonia proves that even large companies can
leave minimal trace while making a big positive impact.
The AIGA Corporate Leadership Award was established to recognize the role of perceptive and forward-thinking organizations.
Section: Inspiration -
Corporate Leadership Award, awards
Patagonia is recognized as a leader in materials innovation and for a commitment to quality, authenticity, functionality and sustainability at every level. Julie Gilhart, fashion director for Barneys, presents the Corporate Leadership Award to Patagonia, accepted by Rob BonDurant, VP of marketing.
Section: Inspiration -
product design, Event, Corporate Leadership Award, eco issues
As in-house designers, we often become immersed in our companies, causing us to lose perspective on our assignments and, more insidiously, on appropriate behaviors and ethics. Learn to identify if you’ve fallen prey to “brand blindness” and adopted the company culture wholesale, and use your creativity to improve the culture instead.
Section: Tools and Resources -
in-house design, corporate design, in-house issues, professional development, INitiative, advice, business, ethics
Designer and educator Archie Boston admits he likes to test boundaries when possible, and holds that politically correct self-censorship is a chief enemy of
the visual communicator.
Section: Inspiration -
advertising, communication design, diversity
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