From time to time, we like to feature brands on the journal that share our love of the outdoors and who have an adventurous spirit baked into their DNA. We recently caught up with our friends, Ben Bloom and Geoff Mahley, to hear about their inspiration and mission behind their California adventure apparel, Blood & Bolts.
Blood and Bolts came to life a little over a year ago, based on the idea of creating outdoor oriented clothing that relied on a more urban aesthetic. We’ve been friends since high school and both grew up in Berkeley, CA, a place that gave us a constant balance of city life and nature. We were within a short drive of some of the most beautiful regional, state and national parks in the country while still living in a city. Being lucky enough to experience this temporary idea of escape formed Blood and Bolts. Through this perspective on the importance of nature, we wanted to create a company that promoted the outdoor lifestyle and still felt within reach to anyone and everyone.
Both of us agree it was our parents who instilled this perspective within us and became our biggest influences. Berkeley is lucky enough to have Tilden Regional Park in its backyard, a place our parents have taken us hiking ever since we were able to walk. Being introduced to nature at a young age really opened up the world for us and sparked our interest in conservationism and environmentalism, two qualities we value and want our brand to represent.
Our logo, the Bison, was chosen because in addition to being an incredibly majestic animal, they symbolize the values of our company. On one hand, they represent the Great Plains and the days of frontiersman who explored the beautiful landscapes of the west that had never before been seen by colonists. On the other, they are a living success story of how conservation measures can prevent extinction. Along with the frontiersman came a sense of greed and wastefulness. Settlers would shoot Bison for fun as they rode past herds on trains headed west. The Bison population, estimated at one point to be greater than 50 million was decimated to less than a thousand before conservation measures were put in place. Now, thanks in large part to national parks and reserves, there has been a resurgence. This story shows that when taken seriously, conservation has worked and can work despite the selfishness and ignorance of the world’s inhabitants.
Last collection we were able to break into the cut and sew realm and released four button-ups and four five-panel hats made fully in the United States, with the button ups produced in our very own San Francisco. Currently, we are working on our fifth collection slotted to be released in the next few months. It’s going to include another couple button ups, some new custom dyed henleys, and new designs for printed goods. In addition, we’re getting ready to release a new sister website that will act as a platform to broadcast some more expressive opinions and news relating to environmentalism and conservation. It’s been a crazy first year but we’re stoked for all the amazing things to come!”
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