The Big Lebowski is a cult film from the Coen brothers that’s arguably more popular today than ever.
Pendleton Wollen Mills, one of the Pacific Northwest’s original outdoor brands, is the lucky beneficiary of the film’s evergreen nature. Why? The Westerly, dude, that’s why!
Jeff Bridges wore his own clothes for this role, and though there were two sweaters handknitted as backups, he preferred wearing his personal Pendleton Westerley.
The Westerley drew inspiration from beautiful Cowichan sweaters that are hand-knit by Pacific Northwest tribes. Heavy enough to work as outerwear with only two knit stitches per inch, our version was machine-knit by Winona Knitting Mills of Minnesota, a two-facility company owned by the Woodworth family.
Super thick and warm, the Westerley was one cozy sweater. We carried it for more than ten years. Throughout those years, the Westerley’s zip front, ring zipper pull, shawl collar and Greek key pattern all stayed the same, although the color variations were surprisingly wide. The sweater went out of production in the 1980s, but found popularity again in the early 2000s, thanks to an obscure movie that didn’t stay obscure for very long.
The Coen brothers’ film was originally released in 1998. This December, fans will celebrate 20 years of The Big Lebowski at Lebowski Fest New York on December 7th & 9th, 2018.