We get a lot of questions about our company’s name. We arrived at Orox by combining Oregon and Oaxaca, the two most important places in our life. We’re from Oaxaca, Mexico and those memories and experiences continue to color our work and style. And we’re blessed to live and work in Portland, Oregon – a rugged, creative, beautiful, and vibrant city.
Our family is from Oaxaca, Mexico. José Martinez was one of 14 brothers and sisters and his father owned a leather sandal business. Growing up in Mexico, José learned to make rugged leather goods that would last forever. We’ve all been influenced by Oaxaca’s natural beauty, craft traditions, and brilliant colors. We love that Oaxaca is a city steeped in traditions, but that those traditions are very much alive and not frozen in time.
Since arriving in Oregon in 2005 we’ve fallen in love with the Pacific Northwest. Yes, the comparative cold, the rain, and the winter gray took a bit of getting used to. But we love the region’s natural beauty and its sense of possibility. We also enjoy how Oregon is something of an outsider, a foil to the more established and larger US cities. It’s a great place for us to be creating.
Some people associate Orox with Aurochs, a prehistoric wild ox. That’s fine, but not exactly what we were thinking.