Alabama Chanin x Far West

Alabama Chanin x Far West

It's hard to talk about our feelings for our friend Natalie Chanin without an abundance of superlatives. Brilliant Artist. Ethical Fashion Visionary. Otherworldly Southern Gothic Goddess. Exceptionally wonderful human, woman, mom. Funny as hell.
We've wanted to work with Natalie on a project for years. We've also been talking internally about ways to work more sustainably in our hotel operations, an industry that is rife with waste. The two desires came together in our new Far West x Alabama Chanin Reclaimed Collection, which repurposes damaged-out El Cosmico sheets and duvets and gives them a new life as travel accessories. 
Far West x Alabama Chanin Upcycled Drawstring Backpack
Far West x Alabama Chanin Upcycled Drawstring Backpack
We hung out with Natalie to talk about our collaboration and get a peek into her beautiful mind.
Tell us a bit about how you came to know El Cosmico and about how this Reclaimed Collection came into being: I’ve been traveling to El Cosmico and Marfa for almost two decades now—thanks to Liz. One of my daughter's earliest memories is of the desert. Of course, I’ve loved everything about the community of El Cosmico but, as a designer and maker, I was always mesmerized and inspired by the shop—which I’ve watched grow over the years into Far West. When we first started talking about the designs for the (Reclaimed) project, I found myself thinking about my time at El Cosmico and what I wish I’d brought along. Of course, I forgot mine and needed a backpack for all my daily adventures and bike rides. I also didn’t think about a pouch to organize my journal and pens, collections of rocks and sticks I found, and and so it went…I’m looking forward to getting back to Marfa and put all of this daydreaming into action. Of course, I’ll be packing these new accessories we made for all my upcoming adventures.

INSIDE THE MIND OF: Natalie Chanin

Personal motto: “Use the good china every day.”  My mother told me this when I got her beloved best china. Beauty is important every day.

Dream car: (Aspirational Dream) Custom Sprinter Camper Van

Favorite bumper sticker: Team Oxford Comma

Vacation read: Whew. I’m an avid reader so this is hard. Right now I'm rereading 100 Years of Solitude (in English) by Gabriel Garcia Marquez and listening to the audio version in Spanish.

Next trip: Paris

Coffee order: Chemex pour over with The Factory blend coffee

Road snack: Almonds and apples

Early bird or night owl: Early bird

Driver’s seat or shotgun: Shotgun then driver’s seat | Driver’s seat then shotgun

Soundtrack: Rotating playlists of Trip Hop, Hip Hop, Downtempo, Bossanova, Folk, and, of course, historic and contemporary Muscle Shoals sounds.

Epic travel story: Swimming with Barracuda off the cost of Los Roques, Venezuela. Read about it here.  

Far West favorites: There is just so much to love! First, both the Cross Body bag and our Far West x Alabama Chanin backpack (different days/ different adventures/ different bags). At home, the Ikat Duvet Cover and the Hand Painted El Cosmico Baba x Sabah. Shall I continue? Love it all.