Hardy & Homespun in MN: Faribault Woolen Mill

faribault woolen mill wine bag with bottle of wine and bottle opener

Never underestimate the hardiness of the born-and-bred Minnesotan.

These hardy folk endure winter after sub-zero winter and find reasons to stay — reasons that somehow make the blizzards and frigid cold worth enduring. It seems that the companies founded here are as resilient as the people who built them. And when the cold comes without relenting, you’ve gotta have something to bring the warmth. 

Faribault Woolen Mill has been weathering the Minnesota winter storms — and other times of turbulence for 150 years. The heritage brand is the oldest surviving manufacturer in the state; enduring world wars, economic recessions, disease outbreak, and more. They’re best known for their hardy woolen blankets and their high-quality craftsmanship, and have earned their reputation as a Minnesota icon. 

We knew the folks at Faribault might have a few words of wisdom for the rest of us, who are all likely experiencing some form of hardship now. We spoke with the President and COO of Faribault, Ross Widmoyer. He sees the key to persevering through a time like this — one that is marked by a global pandemic, economic recession, and civil unrest — is to stay true to your brand. To do what you do, and do it well. To surround yourself with great people. And as a company, to keep your commitment to a great product and inspired design. 

Faribault’s no stranger to helping out in hardship, either. In our modern times of need, they began manufacturing masks; increased their supply of blankets to the US Armed Forces; and responded to the murder of George Floyd with the creation of the Justice Blanket, proceeds from which are being donated to the United Way’s fund to help the Minneapolis businesses that suffered during the period of civil unrest following Floyd’s death. What else would Minnesota neighbors do in a time like this?

For Faribault, staying true to their brand also means:

  • Continuing to provide beautiful and quality home goods to help their everyday customer invest in the spaces they spend with their loved ones.
  • Supporting their local community by employing local people and keeping their production grounded in Faribault, MN.
  • Keeping their commitment to sourcing sustainable wool and using low-waste production methods. Their innovative use of scraps has led to new lines of accessories - like the wine bag that’s featured in our Best Summer Days Box!

Faribault’s customers can feel confident in knowing where their products are coming from and what they’re made of. And they’re seeing that people far and wide are turning to their products to create a home that’s worth spending a lot of quarantine time in.

Now that’s a story we could wrap up in a wool blanket and cozy up with. And we just so happen to have one folded at the end of the bed. Welcome to MinnBox, Faribault!