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Camping has come to have a coolness factor to it. Social media has impacted the popularity of sleeping under the stars by capturing our curiosity with breathtaking images taken at some of the most remote destinations in the world. A strong community has developed around spending time in the outdoors, from camping to glamping to even living out of a decked-out van (aka #VanLife). Similarly, heritage brands have seen a recent surge in popularity, and for good reason. Tried and true, they’re both well-made and good-looking. They’ve become go-to goods for nature lovers to ensure their wilderness experience is a positive one. Here are 4 of my favorite American heritage brands to help you enjoy your next Instagram-worthy outdoor excursion.

Artful Living |

Photography by Ashley Sullivan

Faribault Mill 

When it comes to brands rich in heritage, nothing compares to Minnesota’s own Faribault Woolen Mill. Founded in 1865, this company supplied our military with thousands of blankets during World War I to help keep soldiers warm. Today, the quality remains the same. You can feel the richness just by touching the fabric, as every throw is incredibly warm yet soft. I remember when I picked out a Faribault Mill blanket for my college dorm room; it is as beautiful now as it was then. These days, I have a small collection of these blankets, and I use them often, both indoors and out.

Skotch Kooler

You may remember this iconic plaid thermos that debuted in the early 1950s. A Minnesota company recently brought back the Skotch Kooler, and it’s better than ever. The brand offers some fashionable yet highly functional items that will take you from a tailgate to a campsite with ease. I own the lightweight, easy-to-use portable grill, which has become my on-the-go grilling companion. Other favorites include the leather Skotch Kooler, which is great for transporting wine or snacks, and the Skotch Jug, which will keep your drink of choice chilled on a hot summer day.


The Stanley brand has a rich history dating back more than a century. In 1913, inventor and engineer William Stanley Jr. discovered a way to keep liquids hot by combining vacuum insulation and the strength of steel into a portable bottle — forever changing the way we drink hot beverages. Today, the company still offers its iconic vacuum-sealed bottles but has also expanded the line to include camping cookware, storage containers, coolers, jugs and more. This is a tried-and-true brand that never disappoints.


Barebones believes in elevating life outdoors, with a mission to connect to the community through food, nature and the pull of the fire. From heritage-inspired Union Pacific railroad lanterns to must-have camping cast-iron skillets, everything the brand makes is crafted with exquisite attention to detail. Plus Barebones has philanthropic roots, with the company’s first-ever creation being a state-of-the-art emergency shelter that’s still used in underprivileged communities and disaster recovery efforts today. In other words, you can feel good backing this brand that does good. 

Laura Schara is a lifelong outdoor enthusiast and cohost of the television series Minnesota Bound.

Read this article as it appears in the magazine.

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