BLUEWATER CREEK FARM

BLUEWATER CREEK FARM

Each week, as the Factory Café staff puts together our menu, they take into consideration the produce and meats available to them from our local farms and merchants. We have developed long-time relationships with growers like Jack-O-Lantern Farms, who provide us with homegrown, seasonal vegetables—using no pesticides, herbicides, or synthetic nutrients. In recent months, we have also begun working with Bluewater Creek Farm, a family-owned sustainable farm in nearby Killen, Alabama.

BLUEWATER CREEK FARM

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NEWSLETTER #25

Newsletter-#25

Newsletter #25 shares recent and upcoming happenings at Alabama Chanin in the new year. It notes our new website, features 2015 workshop programming offered through The School of Making (which we will continue to add to), and upcoming designs added to our growing collection. Our 2015 Swatch of the Month Club also kicks off this month. If you haven’t yet joined, register here.

Join our mailing list and stay up-to-date on all the happenings at Alabama Chanin. Please note that you can update your mailing subscription at any time, and choose to opt in (or out of) certain mailings.

xoNatalie and all of us @ Alabama Chanin

DETOX 2015

DETOX 2015

In 2011, and just before my 50th birthday, I publicly—on this Journal—declared a detox. I don’t really like to write much about my private life, as Alabama Chanin has grown into something so much bigger than me. And, truth-be-told, I am a rather shy and private person. However, I forged ahead and wrote in the second post:

“I felt reluctant to continue writing about my detox after the first post as I thought that it could be, frankly, a bit boring. Each of us has visited a site where the writer has a fondness to overshare about their eating habits and diet: each morsel eaten, photos of unmentionable detox attributes, things that we really don’t want to know—way too much information. I don’t want to be that person.”

But, the fact of the matter is that I completed the detox, lost 25 pounds, and felt better than I had in years. At the time, I vowed to stay “on the path.” I swore to be committed, stay focused, and to forge ahead. The best laid plans of mice and me…

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THE FACTORY | THIS WEEK 1.25.2015 – 1.31.2015

THE FACTORY THIS WEEK 1.25.2015 - 1.31.2015

Diets, like clothes, should be tailored to you. — Joan Rivers, June 8, 1933 – September 4, 2014

Here is what we have going on this week, Monday, January 26 – Saturday, January 31:

Join Natalie as she takes a huge step towards a healthier lifestyle beginning on Monday, January 26 (check back on Monday for her Detox 2015 post). If you choose to do your own version of the detox, please do so carefully and with the advice of your doctor. To help all of us to get the best results from our health plans, we have created menu keys—found at the bottom of this post—for the items served at The Factory Café that will help everyone decipher which items are suitable for their own dietary program. Join us every day for nourishing, healthy food, and let’s help each other reach our goals—whatever they may be.

The Factory
462 Lane Drive
Florence, Alabama, 35630

Store Hours
Monday – Friday, 9:00am – 5:00pm; Saturday, 10:00am – 4:00pm

TOURS
Stop by any weekday at 2:00pm for a guided tour of our space, including The Factory, the Alabama Chanin production and design studio, and Building 14.

CAFÉ
Join us for lunch at The Factory Café this week and enjoy our fresh, seasonal offerings. This week features items like our customer favorite, the Open-Faced Meatloaf Sandwich, as well as our popular Roasted Vegetable Quiche.

Whether stopping by to shop, eat lunch, or take the afternoon tour, don’t forget to bring home our egg salad, pimento cheese, and/or soup of the day. We also bake fresh ciabatta bread every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday and have bread available daily for $6 per loaf.

We offer freshly baked whole cakes as well. Our cakes are made from scratch, fresh from the oven—from our family to yours. Please provide 24-hours’ notice when placing an order.

Custom catering is now available for all events and occasions. Work directly with our head chef, Zach Chanin, and the Alabama Chanin team to create a menu tailored to your needs.

Café Hours
Monday – Friday, 11:00am – 2:00pm; Saturday, 11:00am – 2:00pm
*Lunch service begins at 11:00am, but coffee and snacks are available all day.

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SATURDAY BRUNCH + THE WEEK IN REVIEW

SATURDAY BRUNCH + THE WEEK IN REVIEW

Join us tomorrow, January 24, for Saturday Brunch at The Factory Café. This week’s Brunch features our favorite Factory Benedict loaded with pork loin, poached eggs, and sriracha hollondaise sauce, as well as French Toast made with our homemade ciabatta bread in cinnamon custard, served with Vermont maple syrup and freshly whipped cream.

As always, we will have a selection of seasonal choices that highlight products from local and regional farms and purveyors.

View our Saturday menu here or check below.

Saturday Store Hours: 10:00am – 4:00pm
Café Hours: 11:00am – 2:00pm

The Factory Store + Café
462 Lane Drive
Florence, Alabama, 35630

Call us: +1.256.760.1090 or email office (at) alabamachanin.com

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TRAVEL: THE ROSENBAUM HOUSE

TRAVEL: THE ROSENBAUM HOUSE

“Organic buildings are the strength and lightness of the spiders’ spinning, buildings qualified by light, bred by native character to environment, married to the ground.” — Frank Lloyd Wright

When visiting the Shoals area, or anywhere in Alabama for that matter, you should take time to visit the Rosenbaum House in Florence, Alabama. Nestled among otherwise ordinary Southern homes, this gem of craftsmanship and architecture is a perfect example of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Usonian style of design and is the only home he built in Alabama. Constructed nearly 60 years ago, the house was inhabited by the Rosenbaums (the home’s sole occupants) until 1999, when the family donated the property to the city of Florence. The home has been completely restored to look exactly as it did when the Rosenbaums lived there. Walking through it, you can feel the life and love that seeps from it still.

In 1938, Stanley Rosenbaum, a young Harvard College graduate who lived in Florence and worked in his family’s movie theater business, married New York fashion model Mildred Bookholtz and brought her home to Alabama. As a wedding gift, Stanley’s parents gave the newlyweds two acres of land and a small sum of money with which to build a home. The couple optimistically turned to world famous architect, Frank Lloyd Wright, known for his innovative design approach and affordability. The Rosenbaums asked Wright to build them a home with three bedrooms, two baths, a large kitchen, a study, a living room large enough to accommodate Mildred’s piano, and all for the sum of $7,500. To their surprise, Wright agreed.

TRAVEL: THE ROSENBAUM HOUSE

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IN PROCESS: BUILDING 14 FINISHINGS LIBRARY

IN PROCESS: BUILDING 14 FINISHINGS LIBRARY

When we first opened our Building 14 division in July of 2013, we learned quickly that there was still SO MUCH to learn. So, with the concept of The School of Making firmly in place, we began at the beginning to work on a set of finishing examples for our Building 14 machine-made division. Like our Alabama Chanin Library of hand-embellished fabric swatches, this library documents the capabilities of the machines, folders, and attachments we have available in the factory and the endless variations and combinations that create everything from collars to hems and in between.

In 2015, and as we fold our MAKESHIFT programming into The School of Making, we foresee many more conversations about design, fashion, DIY, and community. And, of course, we will continue sharing the evolution of our manufacturing systems—including this new sort of maker’s library—to explore their part in the larger making process.

IN PROCESS: BUILDING 14 FINISHINGS LIBRARY

Photos from Abraham RoweAngie Mosier, and Rinne Allen

#makeshift2015

IN PROCESS: BUILDING 14 FINISHINGS LIBRARY

HOMEMADE BITTERS (REVISITED)

HOMEMADE BITTERS (REVISITED)

In December of 2011, we started playing with bitters. Today, we explore how craft meets cocktail with Jesse Goldstein. Read on to learn how to make variations of your own of cocktail bitters and how to use this relatively simple ingredient to add complex layers to your own drinks:

It was in 1806 when the word “cocktail” was first defined in print. The Balance and Columbian Repository of Hudson, NY classified it simply as “a stimulating liquor composed of spirits of any kind, sugar, water and bitters.” Fellow cocktail enthusiasts may recognize this description as what we would call an Old Fashioned today; but it’s that last, often misunderstood, ingredient listed the lineup that has fascinated me for many years.

The term “bitters” typically refers to alcohol infused with a variety of botanical ingredients resulting in a somewhat bitter or bittersweet taste. There are really two classifications of bitters: digestive bitters like Campari are sipped neat or on the rocks after a meal; concentrated tinctures of cocktail bitters (often referred to as aromatic or potable bitters) like Angostura are used in drops and dashes in many classic and modern craft cocktails. I’ve often referred to bitters as the “salt and pepper” of cocktails, providing amazing depth and flavor that you can’t get from basic booze ingredients alone. But the more I looked into bitters, the more fascinated I became with their history, their variety and, eventually, the process of making them myself.

Though modern Americans are only recently regaining an appreciation of bitterness, our ancestors once embraced the taste of bitter flavors. Bitters were originally developed for medicinal purposes, with a history traced as far back as ancient Egypt. The proliferation of distilled spirits and an obsession with pharmacology led to even more concentrated varieties in the Middle Ages. The use of bitters for ailments continued for generations, often used as preventative medicine for everything from seasickness to heartburn.

Bolstered by the renaissance of craft cocktails, bitters have been gaining steam amongst cocktail connoisseurs for the past few years. The old standbys of Angostura and Peychaud’s have been joined by companies like Hella Bitters, Scrappy Bitters, and The Bitter Truth popping up all over the country—reimagining bitters in small batches with flavors created specifically for cocktails. These purveyors are joining classic bittering ingredients of gentian, quassia bark, dandelion, or wormwood with ingredients more commonly found in your kitchen spice cabinet. But these craft bitters are not cheap, often fetching more than $10 for a single ounce.

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A. CHANIN INDIGO: LONG SLEEVE CARDIGAN

A.-Chanin-Long-Sleeve-Cardigan

Part of our A. Chanin + Basics collection, the A. Chanin Long Sleeve Cardigan is a must-have piece for cooler weather. Constructed of lightweight cotton rib, the casual cover up is machine sewn and hand dyed here at The Factory.

The Cardigan features raw edge detailing along the placket and hits at the natural waist—accentuating curves. Measures approximately 17 inches from shoulder and is hand dyed to order in Dark Indigo.

Like our other A. Chanin basics, the Long Sleeve Cardigan integrates beautifully with Alabama Chanin garments—layer over the Panel Tunic for a feminine silhouette, or pair with the Daisy Long Skirt to create a classic look.

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MLK DAY, SELMA, + SONGS OF FREEDOM

MLK DAY, SELMA, + SONGS OF FREEDOM

Today is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, and we are honoring his legacy and observing the holiday through service to our community. In the past few weeks, the Civil Rights Movement along with the work of Dr. King has received much media attention, due in part to the film Selma. The film, directed by Ava DuVernay, tells the story of how the Voting Rights Act of 1965 came to be and chronicles the events leading up to its monumental passing.

There were three marches that took place in March of 1965—the first is referred to as “Bloody Sunday” due to brutal attacks on the marchers, and the second march was cut short, as Dr. King felt the marchers needed protection by a federal court to prevent further violence. On March 21, 1965 the third march began—this time with the protection of the Army, Alabama National Guard, FBI Agents, and Federal Marshalls. The marchers arrived in Montgomery, at the State Capitol building, on March 25. The route taken from Selma to Montgomery is now a U.S. National Historic Trail.

MLK DAY, SELMA, + SONGS OF FREEDOM

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