Filson Women’s Weekend / by Victoria Wright

A few weeks ago I received an email invitation from Emily, a friend of mine over at Filson. She was organizing a short weekend excursion to the San Juan Islands with a group of women from all over the country to connect, explore and learn more about the Filson culture and vision. 

A weekend in the San Juan Islands?! Is there anything better? I have spent years visiting these islands, but this last trip proved to be the most memorable.

Before taking off to Kenmore Air for our departure via seaplane, we met with the remarkable Aude Tabet, Filson’s new director of design to get some sneak peeks of the upcoming women’s fall line. One of my favorite things about the company is that they're intentional about every piece and its purpose. The quality and classic look is still true to their timeless American style, yet with this new line –– the shapes, textures and details are more than just an afterthought. 

After a quick lunch in the city, we headed up to Orcas Island where we spent our afternoon exploring the grounds and taking in the sweeping views right outside of our cabins. We headed over to Hogstones Wood Oven for dinner, a true farm-to-table experience and easily one of the best spots on the Island. Ps. You’ll need a reservation and you may need to wait a bit for your food, but I promise ––  it's worth it!

EARTH DAY.

I couldn’t think of a more fitting way to celebrate Earth Day than with a group of women who choose to be powerful voices and advocates for this planet we call home. I loved that we were able to spend the entire day outdoors. (It only rained for a couple hours!)

In the morning we took off on a ferry to Friday Harbor to a magical pocket of the island known as Westcott Bay Shellfish Co. We met with Erik and Andrea Anderson who so graciously shared their story and the history of the farm while guiding us on a tour of the bay and property. I was blown away by their commitment to restoring this farm as well as their patience while teaching the ladies to shuck oysters. ;) Erik grilled some fresh oysters for us as I hovered over the warmth of the grill, listening to his story while watching him work. He shared his incredible chipotle bourbon butter recipe with me which I can’t wait to revisit soon. 

A little down time was in order so we made our way back to our cabins at Doe Bay. After a mini reset, we headed toward the garden and met with the in-house gardener, Jess Townsend. Her eyes beaming, her hair a perfect pile of curls atop her head and hands covered in soil, she showed us around the farm, introduced us to her pet chickens and led us to the greenhouse where we harvested fresh greens for our dinner.

Then came my favorite part of the weekend. Dinner over an open flame with Executive Chef, Jon Chappelle. We started with sautéed baby mushrooms, burrata cheese and toasted artisan bread. (Calories don’t count at Doe Bay, right?) Jon continued to impress us ladies with his creative dishes which included grilled seafood, a hearty roast, freshly harvested salad and roasted baby potatoes –– all prepared over a campfire with wine, good company and the sun setting behind us. It was an evening to remember.

The next morning we met at Doe Bay Cafe (HIGHLY recommend.) If you are a breakfast burrito kind of person, this is your place. I know some of you take burritos very seriously and I’m telling you… this one’s a winner. After fueling up, we slowly made our way over to the van, and reluctantly said goodbye to Doe Bay before heading out on a little hike to Cascade Falls. I had never been before, but now I cant wait to get back. I like that the hike to the falls requires minimal effort. It's perfect if you simply want to stretch your legs before a long drive. 

 

As our trip to the San Juan Islands was drawing to a close, we took off on our seaplane back to Seattle. I looked around at the incredible folks surrounding me and couldn't help but think to myself, “What an honor to have met such phenomenal women and to have spent quality time exploring the islands with some of my closest friends." This weekend getaway allowed us to truly connect with the heart and vision of our friends behind Filson.