Category Archives: portland

friday finds

Is there anything better than a summer Friday? I’m awfully excited about this week’s list of finds, so let’s get right to it, shall we?

I spent some time at Tiffany & Co last week checking out some top-secret goods you’re going to love…and managed to fall head over heels for these sunnies. The truth is that I’ve been coveting a pair of their sunglasses since they launched, but they were maybe a smidge too blingy. But these? Perfection…right down to the Tiffany blue flecks in the tortoiseshell.

Tiffany Locks sunglasses, $430

Too soon for fall? Never! For the first time since she branched into apparel, I find myself coveting a look from Rebecca Minkoff. Check out the drape on this shearling-lined trench…so, so versatile. And the dress (which, I’ll admit, I’d wear as a tunic) has one of those prints I’ll dream about.

Henry coat ($798) and Wednesday Dress ($368); both, Rebecca Minkoff

After those splurges, I owe you some steals, don’t you think? Spotted this spotted tunic (surely they aren’t serious about it being a dress) at Forever 21, of all places. Sure, it’s polyester, but it’s $20, and looks a lot like my Tucker tunics. Worth the gamble, I think.

Polka-dot dress/tunic, Forever 21, $20

I got the loveliest-smelling hand soap in the mail yesterday! It’s Neroli & Clementine by Mor, and it is heaven. The packaging is a little ’80s Asian, but I’m willing to call it kitschy and forgive them if it means I get to have this light, sweet/tart citrus fragrance in my life.

Neroli & Clementine body products, Mor, starting at $10

And last, of course, my Pinterest pick for the week. My new favorite way to save magazine clips is to use the Pinterest app to snap a quick pic of them. Be gone, cluttery inspiration board which I have nowhere to hang! Maybe this amazeballs Miu Miu jacquard jacket will materialize in its place.

via Elle, June 2012

Oh, and! While we’re talking Pinterest, you must check out Picnic, a genius new Pinterest tool that launched this week. Picnic lets you shop pins or find similar images. Things it’s great at: tracking down that polka dot tee someone pinned from a dead link; tracking down a decent substitute for that vintage YSL necklace your style icon pinned; finding more wedding bouquets like the one your BFF pinned. It’s also perfect for tracking down the source of a photo online, so you can credit things properly. Hallelujah! Install it, use it, love it.

That’s it for me, friends. If you’re in Portland this weekend, you might want to stop by Mercantile and check out their Lafayette 148 trunk show, by the way. I was pleasantly surprised by the direction they’ve taken this season. Very mod-chic, with loads of staples you’ll wear to threads.

Have a fantastic weekend!


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just for mom: heather moore jewelry

I’m getting this in just under the wire, since most of these beauties are custom-made, but I couldn’t resist sharing these completely perfect Mother’s Day options with you. I visited Manor recently, one of my favorite home shops in Portland (they just launched e-commerce too!), and they mentioned they were having a trunk show next weekend (May 12) for a jewelry designer I love. Have you heard of Heather B. Moore? She designs the most amazing, entirely custom charms that are just exactly the thing for moms everywhere.

I know, I know…charms? But hear me out.

See?! Beautiful, right? Each and every one is completely custom – add names, dates, geographic coordinates, birthdates, maybe a line from your wedding vows or the first verse of your favorite lullaby…whatever strikes your fancy. I even saw one version in which the designer actually created a custom engraved stamp of the closing line of a letter from a client’s dad, so the result was a pendant in his handwriting. I’m already saving for that one.

The down side…they’re not cheap. Prices start at $300 per charm. But think of it this way – you have your Mother’s Day gift planned for the next 5 years at least! Just add a charm a year, and in no time, Mom will have a beautiful piece of custom jewelry, packed with memories. And you’ll be her favorite kid.

If you’re in Portland, definitely hit up the trunk show next weekend (if only for the free bubbly). I’m hoping to be there. And if you don’t make it, still give Manor a call to order – they tell me it’s actually cheaper to buy through them than directly from the designer. If you get in touch, tell them I said hello!

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april showers, in style

I have always been a fan of understated (bland) rain gear. Best to blend in, look sophisticated, and all that. But all of these grey April days looking so very beautiful against the bright, happy flowers of spring have made me reconsider. So, last month, I treated myself to my first “bright” umbrella: navy with hot pink hearts from J.Crew (alas, not available online, but well worth a trip to the store). It’s changed my entire outlook on this dreary spring weather.

{Hillary Day trench, $435; Sorel Tivoli rain boots, $115 (or $30 on clearance for the black!); Marc Jacobs umbrella, $24}

Now, I’m traipsing around town with my bold umbrella and a bright, puddle-stomping pair of Sorel rain boots (how could I resist that polka dot lining?)…and, though I may not look sophisticated, I’ve still managed to cling to stylish. And I can tell you it’s done an immeasurable amount of good for my attitude.

While I’m rambling, a word about that lovely trench above. It’s by Hillary Day, a designer based here in Portland, and it’s possibly the most flattering – and utilitarian – trench I’ve ever tried. No buttons to pull uncomfortably when you layer (or sit down), and the fabric is the highest tech thing I’ve seen since the iPad. Hillary’s favorite party trick is to dump a glass of water on one when you walk in the shop. By the time you leave, that water will still be in a puddle on top of the trench. Unreal.

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plus one: nordstrom designer preview

Much as I love to fantasize about attending every fashion show during Fashion Week (New York and Paris, thank you), it’s definitely more dream than reality right now. Runway samples, models and a bevy of beautiful people sipping champagne are a coast (or a continent) away, and I’m forced to live the experience vicariously through photos, videos, and the musings of others. Until now!

It turns out that Nordstrom hosts a fundraiser every year in Portland to benefit the Women’s Health Center at Oregon Health & Science University. And not just any fundraiser. It’s called the Designer Preview, and it goes a little something like this: the store works with all of the major designers to pull runway samples from the season’s shows, then stages a massive fashion show highlighting all the biggest design houses. You’re picturing one of those lame mall-grade fashion shows, but it wasn’t that at all. This was serious business. Want to come along? I knew it.

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Best of all, attendees get to shop the samples right after the show, in an exclusive designer boutique set up just for the event. In other words, you get to see, touch and try on samples fresh from the show, in all their couture glory…and, if you have the means, plunk down that Nordstrom card to special order your favorites. Try doing that at Fashion Week! A few of my favorite finds…

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Sounds like a dream, right? If you can imagine, it’s even better than it sounds – and that’s not just the champagne cocktails talking. For the first time in my fledgling fashion career, I got to see a Chanel runway sample up close – to check out all of the intricate stitching, the gossamer-light linings crumpled in the sleeves to create volume, the luxe iridescence of the fabrics. I got to manhandle a silver laser-cut lace evening jacket from Marc Jacobs, that looked as if it should weigh 100 lbs, but was light as air. And to see that the beautiful striped cocktail dress that came down the runway from Gucci was actually made up of rows of intricately trimmed leather fringe.

Friends, if you get the chance, this is a ticket worth saving for (never mind the fact that the proceeds go to charity). In addition to the Portland event, Nordstrom hosts similar shows in Seattle, San Diego, Washington DC, San Francisco, southern California and Minneapolis every year. Just check with your local store to get all the details, and be sure to save the date. I’m already blocking my calendar for next year’s festivities!

A huge thanks to Nordstrom for inviting me, and to our lovely Trends columnist, Kimberly Brandt, for shooting all of these amazing photos. That is one multi-talented lady!

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must read: 100 best places to stuff your faces

How exciting! A friend of mine from blogland has written a book…and my friends, it’s fantastic! Jen Stevenson is a well-known food blogger in these parts (meaning Portland, naturally) – this girl is a fantastic writer, and knows her way around a restaurant menu. She’s unbelievably astute when it comes to sleuthing out undiscovered culinary gems and showing off the best, least-known delights Portland has to offer.

Her book, 100 Best Places to Stuff Your Faces is already a huge hit here in PDX, but naturally, it needs to travel. If you have any plans to visit the Rose City any time soon, believe me when I tell you this book is an absolute must. Without it, you’ll be stuck dining at the same three restaurants every single local will recommend to you, and you won’t even get near the best spots, which are almost always off the beaten path. After all, Portland is nothing if not hipster, which usually means the best finds are hidden down a back alley, behind an unmarked door, in a suburban neighborhood across town.

{Side note: Speaking of hipsters, you must watch this video about “Hipster Rules” from last season’s new show, Happy Endings (warning: there’s an auto-play video on that site…très annoying). Spot-on description of the Portland vibe.}

Ahem…as I was saying. This witty, utterly charming little guide would also make an excellent gift for any local friends you have. I’ve already found literally dozens of places I’d never tried (or, in many cases, never even heard of), and am so looking forward to working my way through all of Jen’s fantastic finds.

Plus, how often do you get to send a hipster something they haven’t already seen?

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