As a hairstylist you see a number of people within a day, weeks, & years. I have a handful that are memorable to me. One in particular, Dawn. As soon as she sat in my chair we had an instant connection. With each visit we would discuss life, families, the theater as well as our love for clogs. I knew once leaving the hair world I would keep in contact with this amazing woman. Which brings me to this post, to share with you the brand her and her husband Adam have created. From the history behind the brand name to where you can pick it up! I am happy to share with you the story of Product Of The North.
Tell me about the name Product of The North?
The name Product of the North came from our belief that babies come from heaven and it also correlated with our Pacific Northwest roots. When we started the brand we were living in California, but there was something about the PNW that always held a special place in our hearts. The name just worked.
Why diaper bags?
We started Product of the North because when we were on the hunt for a diaper bag we couldn’t find anything that fit our style and need. It seemed that everything out there was meant for a woman. We wanted to come up with something that worked for both mom and dad. I cannot tell you how many times we would see a dad at the park wearing a pink, frilly diaper bag. Dad’s gotta look cool too – so that was our aim.
Who’s behind Product Of The North?
Product of the North is equal parts Adam and Dawn Rode. We are a married couple and family owned business. We both bring our unique backgrounds to the table to be effective and work together as a partnership/team. Much like being a parent, a partner, and a friend – we negotiate and make the best decisions that we can to be successful. Dawn brings her unique background as an Executive Assistant/Office Manager while also being the personality/face for the brand. All marketing decisions are approved by Dawn. She manages all social media, wholesale order logistics, accounting, and all buyer relationships. Adam is the designer, creative director, sales manager, cashflow/product manager, and addresses all customer related questions. Adam graduated in Apparel Design and immediately started working for big brands such as Nike, Nixon, Eagle Creek, Pelican and Chrome (just to name a few). His niche is definitely in the bags department. Overall we both wear a lot of hats and periodically our roles change when needed. You can check out Adam’s portfolio here – www.adamrode.com
The moment you realized the brand was taking off?
Last year we finalized our collaboration with Nordstrom Online, and that has really been huge for us. We are hoping to come in-store within the next year or so. We also just teamed up with Macy’s which should hopefully begin near the end of summer. It’s all very exciting and we are humbled for the opportunities to work with such amazing retailers. This is not to discredit the boutiques we work with. They are so much fun, and we have really been able to create such special bonds with each of them. Just the other night we ran into one of the store owners in town and was able to catch up over a cocktail. We’ve bonded as friends, not just a business related relationship. It’s also fun to go to truck shows or pop up shops and interact with the customers in store.
Your favorite bag?
I really like the Elkin Backpack for everyday use. It’s the perfect size, and I can really navigate through it easily. It zips all the way down to the bottom and I can literally stack all of my items on top of each other, zip the bag up, and I’m ready to go. We also use the Westin a lot, but for bigger outings when we know we will need more space.
Advice for someone who is wanting to create their own brand?
TAKE IT SLOW!!! I feel like when brands are rushed and they grow too quickly, they often times collapse because of the instant mandates put on them. I feel very comfortable with where we are at, and I couldn’t be more pleased with our slow and steady growth. I’m not out there buying followers to “impress.” I just want people to like our brand because they genuinely feel that our product is cool and hip.
Where can we find Product Of The North?
We are currently selling to boutiques across the country as well a few larger retailers in the US and Canada.
- CHANNING BABY
- POSH BABY
- ALBEE BABY
- MYSTERY MADE
- MY LITTLE PEANUT
- KIDS ‘N CRIBS
- DESTINATION BABY
- BABY ON GRAND
- LITTLE BIPSY
- INDIGO BOOKS
- WEST COAST KIDS
- GOOD TO GROW
- ELLA + ELLIOT
I love a good backstory to a company especially one family-owned & local! I have to tell you my last visit with Dawn in my chair was bittersweet. I was a month and a half away from my due date with Berkeley and she surprised me with a diaper bag. To be more specific A Westin. I cried the entire day! No joke haha Can we all appreciate hormones! I have been eyeing this bag as the ONE for awhile. It’s perfect for us. We are a traveling family and I know Anthony wouldn’t carry any old diaper bag.
If your looking for a timeless bag either as a modern parent or just for yourself head over to Instagram and follow Product Of The North.