In 2022, Stio® opened Bend Mountain Studio right in the heart of town and it has quickly become a favorite for residents who love to ski, snowboard, hike and/or just spend time outdoors. “Time spent on trails, in rivers and on summits inspires the casual and technical functionals of the outdoor apparel, footwear and accessories we create,” says store manager, Allison Barnard.
Founded in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, in 2011, Stio now has 10 studios across the U.S. Here, Allison tells us more about the brand and why it’s a perfect fit for Bend.
What is the inspiration behind the brand?
Stio was founded to inspire connection with the outdoors through beautiful, functional products infused with mountain soul. Technical performance, quality and versatility are hallmarks you’ll find in every piece of our apparel.
Tell me about the quality of the Stio brand. How does it stand out?
We’re looking for progress, and that’s reflected in everything from our direct-to-consumer business model to our distinct, modern take on classic fashion. Yes, we have a few standbys (who doesn’t have a favorite pair of jeans they won’t let go of), but we’re also going to bring you freshness, every single season.
At Stio, we are committed to building garments that are durable, timeless and continue to perform season after season. After all, the most sustainable products are those that we keep in our closets and out of the landfill.
While we make fully Gore-Tex ski kits for a big day on the mountain, we also have a range of lifestyle pieces such as flannels and fleeces for hanging out with friends by the fire or recovering from yesterday’s adventure on the couch.
What are some winter clothing and accessory favorites and why?
Three of our local Bend store team members own the Colter WINDSTOPPER® Down Parka. The GORE-TEX WINDSTOPPER® shell stops the season’s coldest gusts and wettest snow in their tracks, and 650-fill Allied Feather™ Responsible Down Standard Certified feathers lock in warmth.
An absolute favorite is the best-selling Women’s and Men’s Hometown Down Jacket. This ultra-warm jacket wraps you in supple, 800-fill goose down that is remarkably lightweight and also water repellent, thanks to the latest innovation in down insulation technology from our partners at ALLIED Feather™.
Our Credential Jacket has earned credibility in that world, whether lapping trams, touring big mountains or bootpacking into exposed lines. The foundation of its elevated function is GORE-TEX 3L Warm technology, with standard-setting stretch and waterproof/breathable performance, and warmed with a soft, brushed, flannel-like interior texture. An adjustable bonded-brim storm hood and extended full-coverage hem keep out the elements.
Tell me about the company’s commitment to sustainability.
We live and love the mountain life, and as such see ourselves as caretakers of the resources that provide it. Internally that means we use Bluesign® approved textiles wherever possible, using recycled packaging for waste reduction, audit our supply chains for best practices, and operate our workplaces responsibly. Externally it means we do our part locally and nationally to advocate for conservation and sustainability. In 2020, Stio introduced PFAS-free DWR and announced this month, we’re committed to eliminating PFAS (aka forever chemicals) from our entire collection by 2025.
(Adds Stephen Sullivan, Stio’s founder/CEO), in 2022, we continued our commitment in reducing and completely offsetting our carbon footprint through our partnership with Climate Neutral and Bluesource. We increased the number of styles brought into our preferred materials program by over 50%, including upgrading our best-selling Environ program to 100% recycled polyester. Furthermore, the brand was able to expand its circular commerce program, Stio Second Turn™, with over 2,000 units redirected into the program to date.
Why is the Stio brand a perfect fit for Bend?
We think that outside is the best side and that you can’t improve on nature. It’s good for mind, body and soul, and it’s our responsibility to help enable access for all people, regardless of race, gender, beliefs, background or ability. We strive for inclusion in our local and national communities.
How is the company committed to supporting local organizations?
Stewardship and community impact are a major ethos of Stio, and a commitment to support is shared across the entire company. Each month we take time to connect with and support local organizations – via employee volunteer time and company monetary and product donations – that strive to protect and share the Central Oregon outdoor spaces we all love.