Into the Arctic

‘Outsider’ Liz Seabrook is one of our favourite wanderers, frequently roaming both in Britain and abroad, whilst articulating her exploits through photography and journalism.

She’s very much part of the unplastic movement that is embracing natural fabrics for performance and helping to reduce the impact of outdoor gear on the environment we cherish so deeply.

Liz, and her McNair Shirt, are just back from shooting an adventurous expedition in Finland, deep in the Arctic Circle for Sidetracked magazine.

Liz reflected on her back to basics Arctic adventure…

“We stayed in a remote cabin in the woods at Totavaara, with no running water or electricity, we had wood-fired saunas every day, sat around wood burners, chatted a lot, saw skies full of stars, watched perfect snowflakes fall and even caught a burst of the Northern Lights, glowing green and dancing overhead.

My mountain shirt served me well, keeping the wind out as a top layer and minimising that horrible swish-swish sound that plastic jackets make as your arms swing by your sides. 

Very much in keeping with the McNair Shirts ethos, ‘Of nature, not against it’.

See more of Liz at:

www.lizseabrookphotography.com
www.instagram.com/lizseabrook
www.twitter.com/lizbethseabrook

Photographer Liz Seabrook pictured in Finland's Arctic Circle

Liz Seabrook wearing a McNair Mountain Shirt on a cross-country skiing expedition in Finland

Photographer Liz Seabrook wearing her McNair Mountain Shirt on a photo shoot in Finland.

Photographer Liz Seabrook in a McNair merino Mountain Shirt in Arctic Finland

Liz Seabrook in Finland

 

Meet your maker at the Slaithwaite Moonraking Festival

Meet your maker at the Slaithwaite Moonraking Festival

On Saturday 25th February we are once again pushing open the creaky old mill gates and opening the McNair Atelier to celebrate the Moonraking Festival. Held biannually, this is a very special day in Slawit’s calendar. Art, craft and food events will be taking place across the village from 1–6pm.

There will also be story telling, music and the Saturday finale starts just after 6pm with the beautiful lantern procession and the playing out of the legend of moonraking with fireworks too.

Come and join us to celebrate with food, drink and tunes from the talented Alana Clifford.

We’ll be sharing a secret on the day too.

 

 

Men's heavy weight merino mountain shirt in dark sage

New Flying Jackets for the RAF

RAF Snowboarding

We’re a little bit proud to have been chosen by the RAF Snowboard Team to make their competition shirts. They chose a bespoke colour that looks stunning.

They seem to have done rather well in them too. Taking all three podium places in the Boarder Cross competition as well as other positions during the Parallel Giant Slalom and Slope Style events. Congratulations from us all.

To find out more about the RAF Snowboard Team visit www.raf.mod.uk/rafsnowboarding/

Facebook: @RAFwintersports
Instagram: RAF_Snowboarding
Twitter: @RAFSnowboard

Photographs: Chris Thompson-Watts

RAF Snowboarding

RAF Snowboarding

McNair Shirts – RAF Snowboarding

McNair Shirts – RAF Snowboarding

RAF Snowboarding

McNair Shirts – RAF Snowboarding

McNair Shirts – RAF Snowboarding

McNair Shirts – RAF Snowboarding

Made Beautifully Here – Saturday 3rd December, 2016

Upper Mills in Slaithwaite once again opens those big creaky gates to host ‘Made Beautifully Here’ on Saturday 3rd December 2016. From 10.30am to 5.30pm, you’re invited you to come and browse world-class products and sample local delicacies.

The brass band will play, you can get slightly sizzled on mulled wine and a bit podged on fancy pastries. Dress for sunshine or snow!

We’re excited to have friends from other British companies join us. Khunu make lovely woollies out of Yak’s wool, Walsh Sports make trainers in Bolton and Trakke will be there explaining how they manufacture their unique range of bags. Anna-Lisa Smith, a West Yorkshire based weaver and designer who creates minimal, colorful merino woven throws & cushions for the home is joining us again.

Anna-Lisa Smith

Olicana Textiles, who supply Liberty of London amongst others, will be sharing their space with talented friends who make soft furnishings using their beautiful fabrics, all available to buy on the day.

You’ll be able to see where we make McNair Shirts, try them on and even get measured up for a bespoke shirt. We will also be launching some brave new colours.

McNair Womens Merino Fell Shirt in Heather

On the top floor Sgt. Smith will open their doors so you can get your hands on their fun range of kids T-shirts and gifts that are usually only available on-line. Also ceramics from Karen Howarth, glass by Louise Watson and prints from Dan Booth.

Ceramics by Karen Howarth

To keep your energy up there will be locally roasted coffee from Dark Woods Coffee, craft beer from Empire Brewing, fresh produce from The Green Valley Grocer and delicious snacks from the Handmade Bakery and charcuterie from The Cure.

The Handmade Bakery

For up to date information follow “Made Beautifully Here” on social media…

Facebook: /MadeBeautifullyHere
Twitter: @MadeProperHere
Instagram: @MadeBeautifullyHere

McNair at Chatsworth Country Fair, 2nd – 4th September

Chatsworth

We often warn people before they try on a McNair Shirt that once you’ve put one on, it stops being, ‘will I, won’t I?’ and becomes, ‘sooner or later’. If you haven’t tried one on yet and Derbyshire doesn’t sound too far away, why not pop in and say hello at Chatsworth Country Fair from September 2nd – 4th.

The show is huge and there’s lots of happening country stuff going on. Everything from fly fishing to vintage vehicle displays, clay pigeons to horse driving. Mary Berry to the Red Arrows.

This could be the perfect time to find out why one of our testers described putting on a heavyweight merino shirt as ‘slipping into a cloud’. It’s also a chance to meet co-founder Neil McNair. There are rumours that his Mum is coming down to help, if so expect to hear… ‘You’ll no be wanting a discount will ye.’

You will also be able to see the new PlasmaDry™ range of moleskin and corduroy shirts that take beautiful natural fabrics and make them perfect for the inclement British weather.

falconry-court

There is such a thing as a free lunch

The Handmade Bakery, Slaithwaite

With more and more people wanting to call-in and see shirts being made in our home village of Slaithwaite we’ve decided that brave souls that seek us out and buy a shirt should be treated to a free lunch. Just below McNair, overlooking the canal is the truly excellent The Handmade Bakery.

You’ll need to book your appointment beforehand and if you combine it with a walk down the canal and maybe a trip to the neighbouring Empire microbrewery, based in the mill’s old boiler room and perhaps even a bit of the Pennine Way you’re looking at a grand day out.

The offer is available from 1st to 30th September 2016. To make a booking you can either email natalie@mcnairshirts.com or telephone 01484 846666. We look forward to seeing you in Slawit.

The Handmade Bakery

Igloo adventure.

McNair shirts igloos night

We’re all about locally sourced materials and craft at McNair. Our co-founder Neil has also been known to camp out at high altitude whilst exploring the Alps. These two passions don’t really have a lot to do with each other do they?

Well, er, call him a bit daft, but at the end of last winter Neil and a few of our McNair Shirt ambassadors were invited to join Ed Leigh for an Alpine adventure. Their overnight accommodation was as locally sourced and crafted as it’s possible to get, Neil explains:

“The mission was to construct and live in an igloo base camp, comprising of 3 modules, 2 sleeping and one mess pod in a high altitude, remote, location in the Swiss Alps”

Yes, igloos. For anyone who hasn’t slept in one, (me included), igloos take a lot of effort and time, and have to be built properly to do their job (a bit like our shirts – see what we did there?).

Neil goes on:

“Our days started at 5am, hiking in the dark and riding new lines at sunrise before returning to camp for breakfast.”

The Igloo adventure will be featured in a new British Snowboard documentary this Autumn and look out for articles in the Financial Times through the Winter season.

We’ll also be sharing more shots and films over the next few months.

mcnair shirts igloo adventure lewis

igloo adventure walking

With love. McNair shirts Fortnum & Mason.

For many years Fortnum & Mason has been the royal grocer and one of London’s swankiest places to shop so we were very flattered and surprised when they asked to stock a range of McNair Shirts for the next few months. We’re part of a collection curated by the guys at the With Love Project. All the brands featured produce their wares with love (see what they did there?), we’re proud to feature alongside other businesses who are driven by ethics and craft.

So if you’re in and around London over the summer please pop in and have a look. Alongside our merino wool, corduroy and moleskin shirts are AJOTO’s stunning wallets and pens, Banton Frameworks handmade glasses frames, and Norman Walsh’s wonderful footwear.

McNair at Fortnum and masons 1

The display is at the main Piccadilly Fortnum & Mason store – details here.

Wool vs plastic fleece

fleece-nightare-mcnair

The fleece is one of the outdoor world’s most popular garments – most of us will have owned at least one. However, there’s a rather shocking truth about polyester fleece starting to emerge in the outdoor press. It turns out that each time you wash your trusty fleece jacket you are releasing thousands of tiny plastic particles into our ecosystem. Of course real wool fleece sheds fibres as well but natural fabrics biodegrade in a reasonable timescale, plastic just doesn’t.

America’s Outside Magazine have a long article on the subject here.

It seems we’re all waking up to the fact that we have to start looking for alternatives to our dependency on plastic. If only there was a more sustainable, longer term option…*cough*…