Art, fashion, and commerce all hang out, so a First Thursday week means a busy week in the world of local style. Here's all the shindigs fit to print, plus a couple o' sneakers that came in after deadline:
• It's testament to the eyes behind Maven Collective—Kim Ludy and Jacklyn Arvin—that I followed them on Instagram before figuring out that theirs is the brick 'n' mortar at 7819 SE Stark. Their emphasis on housewares jives with thirtysomething Portland shoppers who grew up thrifting clothing and have recently become homeowners. This week Maven sets up with Vintalier to debut a fresh crop of merch; check 'em out. Vintalier, 412 NW 13th, Thurs Aug 7, 6-9 pm, through Fri Aug 15
• If you've never been to a hair show, you're in for a treat: Hair M|W is presenting "Hair Is Art," a party that showcases stylists when they aren't tied down by the practicalities of their clients' lives, which is to say there will be loads of sculptural talent on display. Models will also show off Danielle Grasseth clothing and Alchemy Jewelers accessories, plus DJ Avalanche and cocktails courtesy of New Deal. Hair M|W, 1015 NW Lovejoy, Thurs Aug 7, 6-10 pm
• Caravan Pacific is relieving your hair-tie frustration (cheap-looking elastic, the challenge of using your ends to cover them up tidily—ugh!). They've developed Modern Metal Hair Ties, which are exactly what they sound like, and come in simple brass and copper styles. They're hosting a release party for 'em too, with refreshments and styling tips. Betsy + Iya, 2403 NW Thurman, Thurs Aug 7, 6-9 pm
• Upswept Creative is hosting an open studio featuring a trunk show of Hubris Apparel along with sculptures by Dwight Evalt Art, and Megalith beer to entice a stop on your First Thursday cruising. Upswept Creative, 217 NW Couch, Thurs Aug 7, 6-8 pm
• Lizard Lounge is launching a show for artist Zane Spang with a party that includes live music, beer, and 20 percent off all full-priced merch. Lizard Lounge, 1323 NW Irving, Thurs Aug 7, 7-10 pm
• Orox Leather Company celebrates the completion of its first year in Old Town, with a party that features snacks 'n' boozes plus hourly raffles of their signature handmade sandals and 25 percent off. Orox Leather Co., 450 NW Couch, Thurs Aug 7, 5:30-9 pm
• This city has come down with a serious case of the fleas, and it's worth mentioning the one being held every second Friday and Saturday of the month at Grand Marketplace, which is a goldmine for antique furniture, as well as smaller vintage goodies. Grand Marketplace, 1005 SE Grand, Fri Aug 8, 4-7 pm, Sat Aug 9, 10 am-4 pm
• Renegade Craft Fair partners with Rejuvenation for the first-ever Portland Mini Market, with over 60 independent designers from Portland and beyond, plus art installations, music, and food vendors. Look for Portland favorites like Pigeon Toe ceramics, Make It Good clothing, and Portland Apothecary, as well as introductions to work from beyond the local circuit. Rejuvenation, 1100 SE Grand, Sat Aug 9-Sun Aug 10, noon-6 pm
• Northwest jewelry shop TWIST is playing host to Pippa Small, who won a Members of the Order of the British Empire Award last year for her work, which focuses on indigenous craftspeople and ethical production practices. For one day only she'll be showcasing the complete collection of her new work in addition to a number of one-of-a-kinds. TWIST, 30 NW 23rd Pl, Sat Aug 9, noon-5 pm
• Adam Arnold dropped the news via FB/Instagram that he's having one of his rare studio sales: "One can expect many men's and women's iconic and experimental pieces. Really everything from suit jackets to swimsuits. And snooks!" Adam Arnold Studio, 338 SE MLK, Sat Aug 9, 10 am-6 pm
• This happens so rarely, it really shouldn't be missed: Odessa is hosting one of its backroom sales, with past seasons' merchandise at $10-100. Empty your bank account before you go; it's cash only. Odessa, 717 SW Ankeny, Sun Aug 10, noon-4 pm
• Destiny's Style vintage market pops up every Sunday in front of Valentines, representing a coalition of vendors (Milk Money, Drank Sinatra, World Clique, Zero Wave, Moonfossil, Thread and Roses). They specialize in '80s and '90s gear, plus there are a smattering of new wares, such as jewelry by 3 caves. Valentines, 232 SW Ankeny, (every) Sun Aug 10, 2-6:30 pm
Adam Arnold is having another studio sale this Saturday from 10am-6pm. "One can expect many men's and women's iconic and experimental pieces. Really everything from suit jackets to swimsuits. And snooks!" An A.A. swimsuit sounds pretty righteous! Visiting his studio means a somewhat intimate and very welcoming environment where you'll most likely have an intelligent conversation with the designer while you admire and try on the pieces. This type of thing doesn't happen very often (One usually has to schedule an appointment and the last invitation of this sort was extended in January), so check it out.
Artist and designer Haley Ann will be taking over Yo Vintage! for the entire month of August. This Thursday they're having a celebration/sale to debut her pieces that are being installed. BLTN and Rill Rill are bringing some of their jewelry over to the party too, so arrive prepared to ooh (yeah) and aah and get your hands on some fantastic goods.
413 SW 13th Ave.
Thursday, August 7th 6-9pm
The week in shopping (and shows) starts... now.
• Adorn's second annual Shop Sale is its biggest of the season, with up to 50% off spring/summer gear. Discounts increase (though selection dwindles) as the days march on. Adorn, 4120 NE Fremont, Today-Mon August 4
• Indie Ella is launching a brand new bag collection, and with it? A party. Look for sale prices on the new totes, as well as the Indie Ella and Ginger Lamb lines of apparel. Indie Ella, 333 NE Hancock Suite #2, Thurs July 31, 5-9 pm
• Hand Eye Supply is throwing a party to release its summer quarterly, featuring the selfies of creators with their favorite tools. Check out the new garage space, Pacific Pie Co. edibles, plus DJs The Beatles and Tobias, spinning “your uncle’s records” and "weird classics." Hand Eye Supply's Glisan Garage, 714 NW Glisan, Thurs July 31, 6-9 pm
• The August edition of Wanderlust Vintage's "Window Dressing" series kicks off this First Friday, featuring crafter/blogger the Paper Mama, whose window design will remain up at the shop throughout the month. Come for the first look, first dibs on limited edition merch, and refreshments. Wanderlust Vintage, 2804 SE Ankeny, Fri August 1, 5-9 pm
• Every neighborhood takes its turn in the summertime, and this week is Fremont Fest, where, in addition to other brands of mayhem in the street, (hello again) Adorn will have a clearance tent with markdowns up to 70 percent off, plus a photobooth, face painting for the kids, and more. Adorn, 4120 NE Fremont, Sat August 2, 10 am-6 pm
• Lowell had an opening party for Jeffrey Hale and Lila Jarzombek's art show inspired by Roky Erickson, so why not a closing party? Especially since The Woolen Men will be there with a set of Erickson covers... Lowell, 819 N Russell, Sun Aug 3, 8 pm
We mentioned before that the Urban Air Market is paying us a visit, so get ready for the first ever installment in Portland. The San Fransisco based event is bringing in their guns to host an amazing array of both emerging and established designers from Portland alongside a few SF vendors. The focus is on sustainable design, as in locally manufactured, handmade by the designers themselves, or at least made in the US. Not only will there be a bounty of local creative talent, but you can chill at the beer garden and sip a few, listen to live music throughout the day(s), admire some art installations by Ivan McLean and Blake Hudson and eat satisfying food. We got our hands on the list of vendors (so far, they're still adding people) and it's certainly a righteous group.
Urban Air Market-Portland
2 Day Event: Saturday, August 2nd and Sunday, August 3rd
11 am-6 pm at Zidell Yards in South Waterfront
If it so happens that you would like to be a part of this event, they are still looking to fill some volunteer spaces, and there are perks: 21+ volunteers will get a PDX staff tote bag, an Urban Air Market T-shirt, and a drink ticket for the beer garden in exchange for a couple of hours of on-site help. More info here. If you just want to go and shop and get to know the vendors a little better, you can RSVP here. The first 150 people to RSVP will receive a good sized free tote bag that can be picked up at the info. booth upon arrival.
Turn that heat right back the eff up and get out there:
• SaySay Boutique celebrates 10 years with a storewide sale for one day only (or find them on Facebook and RSVP for a preview sale on Thursday night). SaySay Boutique, 1010 SW Morrison, Fri July 25 (and register online for preview sale on Thurs July 24, 5-8 pm), 11 am-7 pm
• Foster Row is a new storefront and collaborative studio space opening in the Foster-Powell neighborhood, and tonight's grand opening will include open studios, music by DJ Big Booty Judy and Rick Klaras, drinks, small bites, films, and raffles. (Stay tuned for a pop-up that will launch the retail side on August 1.) Foster Row, 5300 SE Foster, Sat July 26, 7-10 pm
• Pretty much every business in the blast radius of the Clinton/Division street fair will be putting its best foot forward, like Xtabay, which is having a blowout sale inside and on the sidewalk, with housewares, knick-knacks, art, and "an awe inspiring collection of $5 hats." Xtabay, 2515 SE Clinton, Sat July 26, 11 am
• The Rejuvenation and Portland Flea's Sunday Emporium lit up Instagrams across the city for its inaugural run, and now it's back with a slightly different rotation of vintage- and housewares-focused vendors. Rejuvenation, 1100 SE Grand, Sun July 27, 11 am-5 pm
As previously mentioned, the sustainably minded Urban Air Market—already well established in San Francisco, with over a decade of events spread over various neighborhoods—is making its first foray into the Portland market on August 2 and 3 at the Zidell Yards. In addition to pulling in some of their Bay Area vendors, they've tapped a growing roster of Portland makers, including Amira Jewelry, Appetite, Indie Ella, Sticks & Stones, Beckel Canvas, and so. many. more. They're also going to have art installations, food vendors, a beer garden, and a bunch of live bands.
If that weren't enough, the following weekend (Aug 9 and 10) sees the first-ever Portland version of the Renegade Craft Mini Market, which has 14 annual events in Chicago, New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Austin, London, and—now—Portland. (They also seem to still be adding vendors; you can find out how to participate and see who's already on board here.)
It's been like Christmas in July around here with all the flea market/indie vendor events happening in town this summer. I'm excited by what seem to be lineups that miraculously aren't the same people over and over, intrigued by the ability to access out of towners without a plane ticket and a timing strategy, and optimistic about the prospect of Portland's small businesses making connections in other markets, too. I'm also curious to see if our population of flea/craft-market enthusiasts is strong enough to support the increased saturation. Needless to say, I hope so.
Ten years does deserve a celebration indeed, and Say Say knows it. Being open a decade is no small feat, so if you can make it to their storewide sale on Friday, July 25th every item in the shop will be available at a discounted price. They are also featuring a preview sale on facebook the night before, for those of you who'd rather avoid the crowds and get first pick, but you must RSVP because there are only a certain amount of spaces available at the preview sale.
In Store July 25th 11am-7pm
Say Say Boutique
1010 SW Morrison
Facebook Preview Sale Thursday, July 24th, 5-8pm
The week/end in sales is bigger than it looked:
• Grayling Jewelry's annual sample sale is bigger than ever, with up to 70 percent off past season pieces. Grayling Jewelry, 3115 NE Sandy, now through Sat July 19, 11 am-6 pm
• The Ellington handbag warehouse sale is also ongoing, with up to 90% off (!) retail prices. 525 NW 10th, today till 6 pm, Sat July 19, 9 am-2 pm
• Bike 'n' Hike is also preparing for a location change (TBD), and their clearance sale is on, with 10% off technology, 20% off bikes, and 30% off gear. According to them it's the biggest sale they've had in 30 years! Bike 'n' Hike, 400 SE Grand, now through July 31
• Reif just launched their line of fall "basiks," and you can take 10% off the top of your pre-order this month online with the code: BASIKLAUNCH10. reif-haus.com, through August 1
• Marine Layer is opening a second Portland store, hot on the heels of the one in Union Way. Check out the launch tonight with a party featuring 20% off plus beer and wine. Marine Layer, 828 NW 23rd, today, 5:30-7:30 pm
• Shop/gallery Nationale hosts an opening for photographers Jake Arcularius, John Voves, and Marshall Scheider. Nationale, 811 E Burnside, today, 6-8 pm
• Who doesn't like wine, fashion, and recycling, really? The delightfully named "A Debris Aperitif" is a haute trash fashion show "designed to entertain, educate, and empower." Corkscrew Wine Bar, 1665 SE Bybee, Sat July 19, 9 pm, $15
• Combining two of Portland's favorite things, comedy and fashion, Hems and Ha's is a fundraiser for the all-female sketch comedy web series Potty Talk, featuring looks from designers like Carolyn Hart and Lizz Basinger, along with stand-up from comics like Bri Pruett. From the highly quotable press release: "Both fashion and comedy are about beauty, observation, and vulnerability. Both genres are highly personal and creative and deal with the realness of personhood." Amen. The Secret Society, 116 NE Russell, Sun July 20, 7:30 pm, $10-12
• According to the Portland Flea, this will be their biggest yet, with 50 vintage vendors, plus food carts and cocktails. Union/Pine, 525 SE Pine, Sun July 20, 10 am-4 pm
• Mojave is hosting a storewide sale, with 30% off everything, champagne, and DJ Oppositta. Mojave, 415 SW 13th, Sun July 20, noon-6 pm
• Yung Zine is "an alternative Teen Zine for the Tumblr Era," and it's having a launch party for issue #4, the Teen Fashion Issue, featuring Yung Zine and Dreem Street shirt designs, plus DJ E*Rock and a live set by Kimonono. Church, 2600 NE Sandy, 9 pm
This week's another sleeper hit on the city's retail calendar. See below for what's listed in today's print edition, and then some:
• Montana artist Nicholas Coleman is setting up at Beam & Anchor with his paintings of the West. Kicking off the show is tonight’s opening reception, with Roman Candle food and Union Wine Co. vino. Beam & Anchor, 2710 N Interstate, Thurs July 10, 6-9 pm
• Backtalk joins N Mississippi’s Second Thursday art walk with a show for tapestry artist Kayla Mattes, in whose work “triangles, stripes, and squares intersect with smiley faces, pizzas, and pie charts.” Backtalk, 3962 N Mississippi, Thurs July 10, 6-10 pm
• Here’s an excellent idea: Wildfang hooked up with the awesome Portland surface design company Pattern People for a “WF pack collection.” It’s launching this week with a party featuring live music from Charts! Wildfang, 1230 SE Grand, Thurs July 10, 6-9 pm
• Jewelry dealer Arlene Abelow is setting up shop at Mag-Big for an evening, with "tables packed with treasures from Art Nouveau necklaces, Art Deco pendant earrings, lockets, bracelets, Mid-century costume and sterling jewelry, and 1960s & 70s designer signed chic jewelry." Cash and checks only! Mag-Big, 3279 SE Hawthorne, Thurs July 10, 5-9 pm
• This weekend marks the fourth annual Summer Style in the Pearl, where 13 boutiques in walking distance of each other team up to offer various discounts. This year’s participants: Mabel & Zora, Folly, Bonnet, Consigning Women Handbags, Christopher David, Porch Light, FlairWalk, Garnish, Monique’s Boutique, Silkwood, Flor, Rachelle M Rustic House of Fashion, and Jack Spade. Pearl District, Fri July 11-Sun July 13, hours vary by store
• If you needed another push to join the throngs at the Mississippi Street Fair, try this one on: Slightly removed from the fray will be a little oasis of local style called Designer Flea. It’ll have its own dressing room, complimentary cocktails with purchase, and merchandise from Portland accessory and apparel companies like Sticks & Stones, Mag-Big, Seaecho, Julia Barbee, and Haunt, to name just a few. Lot 13, N Mississippi & Shaver, Sat July 12, 10 am-5 pm
• The Portland Flea is setting up shop at its St Johns digs this week, and if you've never experienced one of these vintage and local goods bonanzas... well, it looks like you'll have plenty of opportunities to in the future, but why not see what the fuss is about sooner than than later? Colony St Johns, 7525 N Richmond, Sun July 13, 10 am-4 pm
• Wildfang (yes, again) invites you over to watch the World Cup's final match, and they have free booze? Best not tell anyone at Pioneer Place. Wildfang, 1230 SE Grand, Sun July 13, 11 am-3 pm
Urban Air Market has been going strong in San Francisco for a decade, where it goes down several times a year in neighborhoods like Hayes Valley and the Lower Haight, and this summer—August 2 & 3—it's making its debut in Portland. Its emphasis is on the sale of sustainably produced goods, bolstered by additional attractions like live music and beer gardens, and it'll be the first real event to warm up the pastures of Zidell Yards. Another way it plans to differentiate from an increasingly busy market of pop-ups and fleas come from its Bay Area connections, with SF vendors mingling among like-minded Portlanders (collaborations, anyone?), adding up to a day of sunny outdoor shopping and entertainment for you (entrance is free), without the tie to winter holidays that bungles up so many budgets around these types of large-scale shopping events.
Though the Market has partnered with a variety of local entities to some extent (including, recently, ADX, Portland Made, and Know Your City), the list of vendors is still being finalized, and you can still apply to get your foot in the door.
One more style event in the name of independence, this time from Dehen 1920:
It's one of them hot holiday weeks, with just a slight rumble on the retail front:
—Wanderlust Vintage is pressing pause on its Window Dressing series for the month, instead using July's First Thursday to celebrate their two-year anniversary with a day-long 10% off sale and a raffle for a $50 gift certificate. Wanderlust Vintage, 2804 SE Ankeny, Thurs July 3, all day
—Upper Playground debuts its Alex Pardee & Zero Friends pop-up shop (which will remain until Aug 2nd). Pick up the new Bunnywith book, plus the first 50 people "to ask" will get a free print, too. Upper Playground, 23 NW 5th, Thurs July 3, 6-9 pm
—Bridal/formalwear designer Sophie Chang is having a fine little soire for her summer '14 collection, featuring live music by Los Gallos, plus wine and cheese tastings. Cafe Umbria, 303 NW 12th, Thurs July 3, 7-10 pm
—Valentines is already one of the best summertime destinations for knocking back a few, but this year they'll also be hosting a vintage market each Sunday through September, featuring what appear to be only vintage dealers with rad names: DRANK SINATRA, MILK MONEY, HAZY CHAIN, LONELY PLAYER. Valentines, 232 SW Ankeny, Sundays 1 pm-dusk, through Sept 28
—Hair W's makeup staff teaches "Creating the Perfect Base" with Jane Iredale Mineral Cosmetics: "We'll teach you how to choose the correct foundation, concealer and primer products for your skin type and skin tone, along with application techniques in order to achieve your desired coverage and a flawless base." The class fee is $25, though that will get refunded if you drop $150 or more on product. Speaking of which, all retail will be off 10%, and all featured in the class by 20%. Hair W, 1015 NE Lovejoy, Tues July 8, 7:30-9 pm
The Portland Flea has been happening at both Union Pine every first Sunday of the month and at The Colony in St. Johns every second Sunday. The ambitious team behind it all has added yet another member to the Sunday flea family: Sunday Emporium at Rejuvenation. The head honcho (I'll call her the Mama of the flea family) Kate Sullivan doesn't look worn down from all these highly organized events, but rather wide eyed and enthused, happily meeting and greeting guests and visiting with the vendors. Alex Bellos, who manages at Rejuvenation, relayed that although the store has been bought by a larger corporation they feel strongly about staying connected to the local community. It's quite a fitting environment for this kind of event; the vibes were pretty stellar (and the lighting certainly played a role).
When you arrive at one of the three (so far) and you see the famous FLEA wood cut sign, it's a reassurance that this is going to be the shit. We were able to arrive slightly early and have a chance to converse with the variety of vendors that were scattered about the immense space. The first pop-up we were entranced by was Sweetheart, whose adorable and polished treats are eye candy that make the mouth water. The pastry chef, Anna Hendricks' pop-up is her only outlet (she also vends at the Colony every 2nd Sunday).
Another included The Good Mod with their $100 chair and their new and already famous conference table that's also a ping pong table, which dons a strip of copper down the center and powder coated legs (available in many colors). They're customizable, made to order, and pretty. fucking. bad ass.
The lookbook (or in this case, they're calling it a moodbook) of the day comes from Seaecho, who had photographer Mikola Accuardi shoot model Anissa Glory paparazzi style as she cruised the aisles of grocery outlet with one of Seaecho's summery kerchief-style carryalls. +1 for sense of humor!
If your Dad likes cool old things and appreciates the beauty of classic cars, you might want to head over to Portland Flea at Union Pine this Sunday. There will be food carts serving comfort food (tacos, desserts, mimosas, and bloody marys) so Dad stays satisfied while admiring the roundup of sexy metals. The car show is a special addition for Father's Day at an event that is already fun and has over 30 vintage and antique vendors to get to know.
525 SE Pine
Father's Day is this Sunday, and Orox Leather Co. is offering 20% off all their items from now until June 15, which you can receive by using the promo code: PADRE!
If Dad wears a belt, if he has a smart phone, if he's a business man, Orox Leather has all the swag.
If you're a lover of vintage and a seasoned shopper who hits all the best retro boutiques here in Portland, then I'm sure we share the same sadness about Eden closing, and now we have word that another vintage gem is bidding farewell also: Lulu's Vintage on W. Burnside. Lulu has been a prominent asset and advocate for Portland's vintage scene over the years. On top of opening and overseeing her own sweet little shop in 2001 (it was located on SW Morrison before the Burnside location), she's also spent time blogging about all things vintage on her blog, Lulu’s Vintage, since January 2006, and has been writing about vintage and retro businesses and events in Portland on ShopVintagePortland.com since January 2008. Although she's packing up and leaving us, she won't be saying goodbye completely, because she'll still be keeping PDX peeps in the know while writing for ShopVintagePortland.com and her own blog—but most important, you can still get your hands on items from the website and etsy store... and if you happen to end up in Spokane someday soon, she plans to eventually open a new brick and mortar there too!
Everything in the store is at least 25% OFF! Vintage men’s and women’s clothing, accessories, jewelry, books, housewares and postcards are on sale for 25% - 90% OFF!!!
Illume, Pacifica, Pre de Provence, and Stella Mare candles, soaps and lotions are 50% OFF!!!
Come dig through our huge $3 to $15 bargain bins filled with leather and fabric belts; silk, cotton and wool scarves and handkerchiefs; leather & fabric gloves; sewing patterns, and fabric.
The sale lasts through June 21st/22nd and the store is open every afternoon except on Tuesdays.
916 West Burnside Street
Mostly through the Portland Flea organization, Portland is quietly proliferating its frequency of flea markets. They don't have that generations-old mustiness cultivated quite yet, but it's a fantastic way to ferret through vintage oddities and see the work of small-business start-ups. The latest addition to the rotating schedule (third Sundays at Union/Pine, second Sundays at the Colony in St Johns) is in collaboration with Rejuvenation. They calling it the Sunday Emporium, and it's scheduled for the last Sunday of every month beginning June 29, at 1100 SE Grand. Look for vendors like Demimonde, Caravan Pacific, Mazama, and Portland Apothecary, plus food from Sweetheart Bakery, Taco Pedaler, Kuza Burger, and more. It's set to run through November (skipping the December holiday dates to resume in 2015), but these sunny days are the loveliest to troll for treasure.
It seems to be raining birthdays this week: Parallel is marking Year Six with a three-day anniversary sale, featuring 25% off Fri June 6-Sun June 8. (Online customers use code: ME6NOW.)
Frances May is hosting a trunk show for Ace & Jig on Sunday May 25th. This is a good opportunity to meet one of the two designers behind the brand of interesting textile prints cut into clean and modern garments, Jenna Wilson.
Enjoy drinks, snacks and 20% off exclusive designs, samples, and the SS14 Collection. Discount will be available online as well, with code: ACE&JIG20.
This Saturday, save up to 65% off items from the Spring '14 Portland Collection. If you don't already own a piece of the first ever Spring collection from the brand, this is a good opportunity to get some into your closet! You know the drill: All sales are final, only at the Broadway store, and for just one day, from 10 am-4 pm, or until items sell out. (And they will sell quickly, so get there early if you want a good variety!)
The Pendleton Store
220 NW Broadway
Google maps still shows the lot at N. Mississippi and Failing as an empty one; a few food carts use to sit next to a large grassy area encased by a chain link fence. In actuality, the lot has a brand new building that provides a home for new residents of the district (which seems to be a major trend in North Portland in general) as well as a retail space that's been inhabited by a very interesting new little shop called Wanderlust + Wildhearts. The owner, Courtney Keene, is a designer who graduated from FIT in NY. She is a passionate traveler and lover/collector of fine handmade goods from her worldly adventures. She studies the design aesthetic while on her trips and brings back inspiration to invest creatively in both her jewelry and clothing lines, both sold in the shop.
She buys all her stones and metals from trusted sources, finding special stones like the Dzi (pronounced, ZEE) that in Tibet is a spiritual stone worn as a symbol of good luck, and ammolite, which looks similar to amber but is a different fossilized material that only occurs in one part of the world. The clothing consists mostly of simple cuts with textiles that are dyed and bleached to make each garment one of a kind, with screen printing done by her man, Murf. The house collection also includes bags made from handwoven textiles. She also decided to start selling her personal collection of Navajo and Zuni jewelry, consisting of hard to find rings, bracelets and necklaces. (Some of the pieces in that case are so unique that if you're a collector of such, your heart will melt).
The only way to get the whole story is to ask questions, and we did just that.
Mercury: Tell me about the products you design, do you make each piece?
Courtney Keene: My design aesthetic is heavily influenced by my upbringing on a rural Adirondack farm, a love for adventure, and a passion for design-based storytelling. We travel internationally every year and personally source handwoven textiles for our bag collection from fair-trade textile centers, weaving villages, and individual weavers. We also seek out stones and interesting pieces that can be incorporated into our jewelry line. Many of our stones are purchased directly from families of miners. We pay whatever price these skilled artisans ask for their traditional craft, and then ship all raw materials back to our shop in Portland where our collections are produced from start to finish. I make all of the jewelry, but with the help of a fantastic local metalsmith; Spooltown does all the cut-and-sew production of our bag line; and my fiancee, Murf, screen-prints all of our hand-drawn artwork.
We focus on small run production, and the majority of our bags and jewelry pieces are one-of-a-kind. I have no interest in creating pieces that will be mass-produced, and my fingerprint is probably on everything in our store. We want people to leave our shop feeling really inspired and exhilarated about this incredible world we live in, and to feel like they are getting something very unique.
Easter is this weekend, and many stores are celebrating by hosting egg hunts and such. Lizard Lounge is joining the action by hosting a special sale both Saturday and Sunday. They're encouraging kid presence, with an egg hunt while you shop for spring finds. A discount of up to 40% off your purchase will be determined at check-out. Oh, and you'll be offered complimentary mimosas while you shop too!
We don't get tired of seeing all the new things that Portland designers are creating, and here's yet another intriguing lookbook from R.A.W. for their Spring/Summer '14 collection. It shows off luxurious scarves and a refreshing hue of aqua featured on Rio Wrenn's carefully hand-dyed (and some digital) silks and cottons, each a piece of art. The lookbook was photographed by model Meredith Adelaide.
The collection is called "Daydream" and has the romantic notion of inspiration and intrigue. The focus for the patterns are semi precious stones and things found in nature. Two of the patterns are digitally printed with acid dyes. These were created with Rio’s original composting method and computer manipulation. All other patterns are hand dyed with natural dyes and iron. The fabrics used consist of silk haboti, silk chiffon, organic cotton gauze, and a silk seersucker. We hope you enjoy this collection as well as we have in manifesting it.
A selection of pieces will be available for sale on the store site. R.A.W. will also be moving from one studio space to another by the end of the month and will be having a "last chance" studio sale on April 26 and 27 from 11 am-4 pm.