Shiny! Shiny! The PDX Browncoats always do a kickass job with their flyers for the annual Can't Stop the Serenity charity screening of Serenity.
Shoot me an e-suggestion for next week's poster, if you'd so like.
In March, Shape magazine published a big "best-of" feature in which they canvassed the country's various gyms and other workout-related businesses to determine the "best" in each category. There was only one winner from Portland: Studio Blue, which was christened the best studio for "Pilates powerhouses." Naturally, I had to see what the hype was about, so I signed up to take a month of classes.
It was perfect timing, actually. At the beginning of that month I'd suddenly—and with surprising severity—injured my knee running, just as I was about swing into full-on Spring fitness mode, and I was crushed and frustrated. I tend to gravitate toward harder core sweat workouts like long-distance running, boxing, and circuit training. I like a bit of Bikram during the winter months, but in general think of Pilates and yoga as too sleepy. That said, there's a perceptible improvement in core strength whenever I do it, which makes you stronger in whatever other activities you're engaged in.
After being completely benched for a month, I started at Studio Blue, which also works quite a bit with people recovering from injuries and chronic pain stemming from imbalances in posture and alignment. The studio, on the second floor across from the Mission Theater, is well appointed with nice lighting, bright wood floors, and a cozy lobby with complimentary water, tea, and reading materials.
I started out easy, with mellow, more yoga-centric classic like Exhale Pilates, gradually working up to higher-impact courses, like a Bosu-fitness ball combo class, Pilates Sculpt, and TRX Suspension Training. I never took the same class twice, and there are still plenty of things I haven't tried, like a class devoted to rolling around on a tennis ball, squidging out all those hard-to-reach tight spots—something sports massage therapists have been telling me to do for years. They also have several levels of classes devoted to springboards, which are strictly for the healthiest of knees:
This summer is turning out to be a full season of fashion events, and the latest one to be announced taps into the current trend of runway presentations that feature retailers rather than individual designers. Summer Style at the Pearl, which takes place the weekend of July 12th at Pure Space, will showcase some of the neighborhood's strongest retail forces, with Mabel & Zora, Garnish, Silkwood, EcoVibe, Flairwalk, Vintalier and Lexi Dog (awww) showing on Friday night; and Eden, Folly, Leanna NYC, Lizard Lounge, EG Page and Physical Element showing on Saturday. And if you like what you see on the runway, everything will be available for purchase at the on-sight pop up shop to be set up after the show. Also! A portion of proceeds will benefit Go Red for Women, and there will be supporters of the cause appearing as guest models in the show each night. RSVP and get full details here, and order tickets here.
Fall feels far off, but the city's two—count 'em two—fall fashion weeks are doing their best to get you excited about the post-summer months. FASHIONxt has been gradually rolling out announcements of their participating designers as they are confirmed, but let's take a moment to get all the way up to speed.
As has been the trend with this event, it is once again super popular with former Project Runway contestants, with a whopping eight such designers out of 13 (!). That includes the area's Seth Aaron, Michelle Lesniak, and Becky Ross, of course (Bryce Black, where are you?). I'm particularly exciting to see Michael Costello returning, whose line last year completely knocked my socks off. And yes, it's a little bizarre that Portland's become a hub for reality television fashion design stars, but why be mad at it when they are delivering some of the best designs of the entire lineup?
Otherwise, the show looks a little light on local talent, with Stephanie D Couture representing along with Atelier Exclusively Yours, and yet another emerging designer showcase in the mix (called FashioNXT Up/NXT). There's also a small uptick in international presence, including first-time participation from Hong Kong's Yane Mode, and the return of France's Ethos Paris. The event takes place at the old Vigor Industrial Shipyard stomping grounds October 9-12.
Local institution-in-the-making Tanner Goods is celebrating their two-year mark at the Blackbox building this Friday, with a shindig featuring meat and booze. Because leather.
Lille recently released their newest lookbook, "Summer in the City", and boy is it eye catching. Shot by Lisa Warninger and featuring Lille's summer stock of lingerie and swimwear as worn by Portland's top model of the moment Clarke Flowers (seriously, that girl is EVERYWHERE), it makes me want to lounge around on a fire escape in my knickers. Of course, I would not look nearly as glamorous. The lookbook also includes sunglasses by Cheap Monday, shoes by Chie Mihara, and jewelry by Orly Genger by Jaclyn Meyer and AK Vintage. Here are some of my favorite shots, and you can see the entire lookbook here.
One quick note, Lille is giving away three more $50 gift certificates in their Pinterest contest. Click here for details.
Animal Traffic is having a sale this Saturday and Sunday in honor of Father's Day and will be offering 20% off all menswear. This includes Sierra Designs parkas and jackets, Forage neckties and bowties, Richer Poorer and Wigwam socks, and all vintage clothing. If you are still searching for a last minute Father's Day gift this sounds like the perfect place to do it.
Today Converse and Ace Hotel are unveiling a third style in their partnership with the limited-edition Converse x Ace Hotel Pro Leather. The high-top is constructed with a clean and white minimalistic design aesthetic and features premium materials of white leather with grey contrast and an allover Ace Hotel "A" pattern. The choice of either white leather or cotton laces is available, and it all comes in a fancy custom-packaged dust bag with box lid. These kicks will set you back $120, but in all honesty, I am not really a sneaker person and I would totally rock these all the time. The Converse x Ace Hotel Pro Leather is on sale now at the Portland Ace Hotel, along with the Seattle, New York, and Palm Spring locations, and online here.
Attention Francophiles and general art enthusiasts: the ever-evolving and inspiring shop Nationale delivers Portland a photo report from France. Shop-keep May Juliette Barruel spent a month of research and curation in Paris which included a Mike Kelley retrospective at the Centre Pompidou and a visit to the bookshop/gallery 0fr in Paris. Armed with loads of inspiration and an armful of specialty French items for her shop (get your espadrilles while they last!), Barruel returned this June. Pay Nationale a visit and catch the current Marie Koetjie exhibit while you're at it.
Send your Poster of the Week recommendations this way!
Estheticians, like so many specialists, are the sort of people you find either by word of mouth or stabbing in the dark/trial and error. A facial, which usually starts with a commitment of around $60 and an hour or so of your time, is no minor purchase, and so recommendations are crucial to finding someone whose practices match up with your needs and comfort levels. For instance some people don't like to deal with the heavy machinery that you can get into for microdermabrasion, ultraviolet light therapy, microcurrents, etc. Some people value all-natural products over everything, and in general people either get facials as part of the regular maintenance of their bodies, like going to the gym or dentist, or they do it every once in a blue moon just to pamper themselves. Or you have a specific problem that needs to be addressed, perhaps.
Most estheticians will cater to any one of these client profiles, but considering how overwhelmingly many options are out there, it's worth it to seek out someone whose practices perfectly dovetail with your own. And there are more options than you may even know. Aside from the visible salon signs on the road, there are places ensconced on the upper floors of office buildings, people who work out of their homes, and still others who are tucked away off of busy commercial corridors.
The later situation is the case with Illume Day Spa, a petite, tranquil space located just off of Sandy Boulevard at 2453 NE Pacific. It's the workspace of Cate Wheetman and Stara Laborde, a cozy environment with bowls of chocolates in seemingly every room.
On my visit, as I waited for Wheetman to finish with her previously client, I scoped out the all-important product wall, which features a comprehensive but well-edited selection of botanically based, high-quality lines like Astara, iS Clinical, and Epicuren. (One thing I will say about skincare products, is that you really do get what you pay for, and there's something about your skin that is really bothering you it's worth finding something that gives you real results, and you can certainly expect to pay more for it than anything you'll find at Wallgreens. That said, don't waste your money plunging blindly into a $60 face cream. Estheticians are loaded with product samples, and you should try as many as you can before taking the plunge. You know you've found the right one when it seems worth the money to buy.)
Wheetman's approach is based on what I think is the most logical thinking: That your skin's needs are the same as your body's. Your diet and lifestyle are—at least eventually—going to present a direct reflection onto your body, especially your skin. (Both Wheetman and Laborde were educated at The Euro Institute for Naturopathic Skincare in Renton, WA.) Illume specializes in working with clients in the long term to trouble shoot factors that might be provoking unwanted blemishes, dryness, puffiness, and other issues. And while she has a good number of plug-in toys at her disposal, once you're in her hands you'll find that she relies more on applications of some truly exquisite, personalized products than on her gadgets.
But the best thing about a facial with Wheetman is that it's basically and two-in-one facial and massage. The Illumination signature facial includes serious attention to your skin as well as massaging of your hands, arms, calves, feet, and scalp. It is probably the most indulgent facial I've ever had in that regard and at $125 for 90 minutes of thoughtful skin therapy and ridiculously pleasant massage it's a screaming bargain.
If I were to imagine the perfect match-up between client and Illume, I would say that you 1) understand the symbiotic relationship between your overall health and appearance, 2) gravitate toward organic/holistic/all natural products, but make room for some exceptionally effective innovations, 3) aren't particularly eager to break out the heavy machinery (but open to it when deemed advantageous), and 4) you know a good value when you see one—their facials start as low as $60 for 45 minutes.
I've only ever had a facial at Illume, but it's also worth noting, if you like their approach, that they also offer body treatments like wraps, bronzing, and scrubs, waxing, brow and lash tinting. If it sounds like your jam, check 'em out.
Some of you may have scoped the Sasquatch coverage that went up earlier this month, and just in case you missed it, or wanted to know where to secure a teepee for your Perfect Portland Summer, look no further then House Inhabit. I was introduced to them through Shayda at General Merriment, who so graciously let me borrow hers. Now I’m lusting after one for myself. Made by super-cute parents Mike and Jessica Kraus from reclaimed, hand-picked aged wood and canvas, these teepees could not be cooler. For the kiddos there is a five-foot option, and for us kids at heart the six-foot style as well. Whether you’re going camping under the stars or just making a fort in your living room, these sturdy, yet surprisingly lightweight teepees are ACE! l loved decorating mine with colorful scarves and loads of puff pillows. USA all the way, each teepee is handmade with love in California, and are under $150. Check em’ out here.
If you happen to be in the Midwest between October 19th, 2013 and April 18th, 2014—or more specifically St. Louis, Missouri, I highly recommend you check out the A Queen Within: Adorned Archetypes, Fashion and Chess exhibit at the World Chess Hall of Fame. You may be wondering what chess and fashion have to do with each other, but it turns they go hand in hand. This is explained very eloquently on the WCHF website:
In the game of chess, the queen is considered the most powerful, and often the most unpredictable piece. A queen, both in chess and as an archetype, embodies tradition, yet possesses the creative freedom to redefine the rules established by a patriarchal system.
The exhibit focuses on how the various archetypes of the queen have influenced the most innovative designers of our time and will include pieces from Alexander McQueen, Gianfranco Ferre, Gucci, Hussein Chalayan, Iris Van Herpen, Maison Martin Margiela, Viktor & Rolf, and more. Here are a few images highlighting the amazing pieces that will be shown at the exhibit:
Before our annual Bike Issue pedals off into the sunset, including a feature on subtly bike-appropriate options for women, one more thing about bike gear that's designed and produced right here in town: North St. Bags.
They make backpacks, panniers, tool rolls, hip pouches, reflective ankle straps, wallets, and so forth, all on SE Clinton St., with most of their materials sourced from US manufacturers. Certainly worth considering as you gear up for the season/year, especially if you're one of those self-righteous bike types. Buying local will give you a little something extra to be smug about. Because you are correct.
Badass LA based brand UNIF is up to no good again, and you do not want to miss out on their latest collection featured at Solestruck for the month of June. Last year's stock went super quick, so I’d recommend hitting up the party to nab your gear before it’s gone. Drinks, shoes, and a super rad assortment of UNIF tees, tanks, jackets, accessories, and more will all be on hand. Party kicks of at 7pm at Solestruck. Sneak peak of the goods below!
The local jewelry scene can be a tad overwhelming, what with the sheer number of people plying the trade. Frankly, it's easy to see patterns and trends in local design, with a few of the bigger names setting the tone for dominant shapes and materials.
I was recently introduced to Thorn & Wynn, by Erica Brotzman, and a couple pieces from her current selection stood out to me (click the previous link to see them all), but especially this black magic-y bracelet, which tickles my eternal Stevie Nicks fancy:
Also, I'm a sucker for the blue accents on this rectangular trick on the old hoop earring standard:
I’m off to spend about five weeks away from our fair Rose City (follow along on MOD for updates from Washington DC, New York, and London). As I write this I feel like I’m already betraying my beloved Portland by sitting in this Starbucks. (Shhh... Don’t tell my mateys at Stumptown!) Anyway, I’ve never packed for such an extended period, and my fashion philosophy is more “Dress how I feel this morning” than super planned out in. Hopefully I don’t commit to many faux pas! Here’s what I packed in my carry-on:
Now this is what I call a successful fashion shoot:
This is an accurate representation of what happens when three or more girls all find themselves wearing wacky leggings at the same time. More importantly, you no longer have to order out such things from Australia. Nope, you can get your skin tight funky on right here at home. Kiss Me Kitty is a small-batch leggings operation helmed by Cristi Howe-Story, who—overseen by her five cats—began churning out these designs after becoming frustrated trying to find leggings she liked herself.
Check out some of my favorite styles, and head on over to the online shop for more options.
Agave, the line of denim and sportswear for men and women that is designed in Portland and manufactured in California, is having a MASSIVE sale today and tomorrow, 9 am-5 pm. Snag items at 40-80% off, and then pat yourself on the back for driving the distance to save all that dough. (The distance being that the sale is in their distribution warehouse in Ridgefield, WA.) If you want to add on to that amazing feeling, bring your gently used jeans to donate to "Neighbors Helping Neighbors" and "The Arc of Clark County" and receive an additional 10% off your purchase. Win fucking win.
This evening from 6-9 pm, Machus will be celebrating the launch of new collections from two Portland jewelry designers: Revere and The Sum. From what I gather, both designers have a strong aesthetic and I am sure we will seeing their wares on the taste-makers of Portland very soon. The launch promises cool displays, good music, and complimentary drinks, of course.
Well, I think we can safely say that our first Thursday dance card is now FULL, with the addition of Leanna NYC's First Thursday Party, happening this evening from 6-10 pm. There will be an open bar, music, a trunk show featuring Sseko Designs, and an introduction to their June artist of the month Hilary Winfield. Start mapping out your game plan now so you don't miss out on all of the fun tonight!
Hmmm, where do I begin… My name is Marissa and I’m a Taco Bell addict. Since moving to Portland I’ve almost completely cut fast food out of my life, but I still have moments of weakness. Usually it involves being drunk, a very nice cab driver ordering for me, willpower being lost, and Taco Bell consumed. My skin, at 32, is worse than it was when I was a teenager, and I’m shocked I’m not 200 pounds considering the amount of sugar I eat. I know that my lifestyle will catch up with me, but more importantly I had a wedding in New York to go to and I wanted to drop lbs, son! Enter KURE Juice Bar to (hopefully) save the day.
Cleanse Day One: I’m bummed that I decided to start my cleanse on Memorial Day, a day most widely celebrated by BBQ-ing and drinking. Thank god it’s raining; I spend the day blogging and watching the new Arrested Development. I’m constantly thinking about food, I think I’m hungry, I’m day dreaming about pizza, and I’m kind of bummed I’m writing about this because if I wasn’t I would’ve already cheated. I text my friend, "I’m doing a juice cleanse I’M SO HUNGRY" and she texts back to watch the documentary Hungry For Change. I take her advice and my mood is instantly lifted, I’m hopeful, I’ve realized that sugar is as bad as cocaine, I’m absolutely doing the right thing for my body, and I’m unstoppable! I finish my fifth and final juice of the day and I’m actually full! YES!
(My one cheat today: I have a soy-au-lait with a bit of sweetener in it. Even though Kure's co-owner, Nate, told me I was supposed to "pre-cleanse" before my liquid cleanse, I did not. He told me that this is the most important part of my experience, and I had good intentions to abide, but instead I drank bottomless mimosas at Club 21. What I should’ve done is cut out processed foods and eaten lots of fruits and veggies, exactly what that documentary was preaching.) Note: Coffee is not a total cheat, Nick the other owner of Kure told me they don't like it because of the acidity, but ultimately this is your cleanse, do what you think is best for you.
Day two and three after jump...
Saturday night was the Art Institute's 15th Annual Senior Fashion show, and fittingly for such a major milestone, there were about a trillion (23) graduating designers showing. With any show of this size, all the collections can start to blur together after a while, but fortunately, this year there was a strong variety of collections that included quite a few stand outs. While I was a little disappointed to see that there was no menswear this year, the womenswear showcased ran the gamut from evening wear to street, with a really strong showing of swimwear and lingerie. The prevalence of these last two was interesting, as these are arguably the hardest categories to really nail; after all you're working with such a small canvas to create something special, and that has to be flattering enough for women to feel comfortable wearing it. Also, these are two very heavily tapped markets, with a questionable amount of room for newcomers, particularly in a city like Portland. On the other hand, it is a great way for designers to prove their ability to solve problems creatively, and I believe designers of any type who have a strong and unique point of view will always find a way to succeed. Anyway, enough of my musings, lets check out some of the goods!
This is what great swimwear should look like. The vibrant prints and sexy shapes make these pieces stand out while still being accessible (at least if you're not afraid to show some skin). Sandoval clearly has an eye for color, and knows how to flatter a variety of body types using very little fabric.
Moulagerie is having a trunk show this evening from 6-9 pm at Garnish's Pearl District location, where you will be able to buy pieces from the summer collection as well as view and pre-order selected pieces from the upcoming fall collection. In addition to viewing lacy and feminine frocks, guests will enjoy wine and cheese, a live fashion show, and Ebel Artistry will be showing off summer lip shades as well as offering personal styling tips and tricks to help capture your style.
This li'l number is by Joshua Keith Vincent. Someone should tell that blotchy man to stop strangling himself.
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