Our Story


In 1978, NOMAR opened its doors as Mitchell's Marine Canvas & Upholstery. At that time, Homer's population was about 2,000 people and Alaska had been a state for less than 20 years. Alaska -- all eight million square miles only had a population of 300,000. We were not really pioneers. Our reasons for making Alaska home were based on personal freedoms and great fishing more than anything else. Check out some of Ben's photos from our years exploring Alaska.

A converted GMC school bus was our shop, a barrel stove for heat and a single commercial sewing machine for manufacturing was enough to open the doors.

With a sprinkling of talent and a healthy dose of guts, we nurtured that first business until it grew to 16 diverse and talented employees, numerous sewing machines and 10,000 square feet of work space. We now have a beautiful retail store where visitors and locals alike love to browse, shop and design that custom item to perfectly fit their needs.


We are an American company. We are an Alaskan company. We take pride in manufacturing our products in this great state using materials sourced from the USA in every instance possible. All of our products are produced right here in beautiful Homer Alaska, where we can provide a service to our friends and community and a healthy livelihood for our employees year round. We are committed to serving local Alaskans and those that enjoy our lands here. Of course we welcome you from wherever you are to explore our products here at NOMAR, enjoy the spectacular outdoor opportunities Alaska has to offer and know that you are being served by the finest manufacturing family in America!

We invite you to shop on-line or, if you are in Homer, stop in and visit our retail store located in one of the prettiest places on earth. 

From Our Family to Yours.

Kate Mitchell

Founder and Matriarch

Kate is the founder of NOMAR and the creator of the Original NOMAR Brailer Bag. She is the loving matriarch of the family. She works to keep everyone on step and NOMAR moving forward.

Ben Mitchell

Head Fisherman and Fixer of Things

When not fishing (which is rare these days) Ben can be found in the back of our shop keeping our machines fine tuned, and scissors sharp. Ben has either created or been an integral part in many of our designs over the years.

Jen Hakala

Office Manager and Adventure Guide

Jen leads NOMAR through all of the office necessities but besides the bookwork, she is head of all outside sales, retail, office management, merchandising and human resources. After she's done with all of that, she sometimes finds time to go commercial fishing in Bristol Bay with her husband!

Rich Mitchell

Head of Production and Custom Shop Guru

Rich is the leader of all things sewing at NOMAR. He's the one that makes sure everything actually gets built. He works with customers to design and engineer anything they want, from the perfect boat top to a cover for anything imaginable.

Our Crew

The employees are what make NOMAR the place that it is. We always have a great crew of people that enjoy work and play equally. Their talents never fail to amaze us. We appreciate them so very much.