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December 1st, 2010 KELLY CLARKE | Special Section Stories
 

North Williams & Vancouver Avenues

Shop here for: letterpress cards, old-school toys, vintage threads, handmade and global gifts.

     
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Ink & Peat


3808 N Williams Ave., No. 126, 282-6688, inkandpeat.com.
One part florist, one part textile heaven, this shop revels in vivid color and exotic scents—guaranteeing you’ll find a gift for the world traveler on your list. Big piles of teal- and mustard-colored vintage Indian Kantha blankets ($170) nestle next to Pigeon Toe ceramics, woolen scarves and medical beakers. Funky knit armadillos share table space with creamy bars of Saipua red currant soap. And we haven’t even gotten to the hand-stitched pillows, hand creams or jewelry yet….
Buy this: Tatine ginger candle trio ($28), funky EcoJot owl notebook ($10).

Livingscape


3926 N Vancouver Ave., 248-0104, livingscape.com.
A sign in the shape of a bee the size of a bicycle clues visitors in to the focus of this charming house turned sustainable home and garden shop. There are beekeeping classes in the basement, fruit trees and native plants for sale out front and a kitchen full of cast-iron cookware and glass canning jars. And in the bedroom—camping gear and outerwear, of course. Who needs a couch?
Buy this: One-gallon decorative Ball jar ($16.49), yellow bumblebee galoshes ($32.99).

Lodekka


Corner of North Williams Avenue and Failing Street, 703-3605, lodekka.com.
At Erin Sutherland’s shop, you don’t just buy vintage, you’re inside it—a 1965 Bristol Lodekka double-decker bus, to be specific. After the musician and longtime thrift-store scrounger was laid off from her job at Oregon College of Oriental Medicine, she opened the whimsical rolling dressing room, packed with flirty ’60s minidresses, frilly reconstructed aprons and thick Pendleton wool men’s button-downs ($20-$40). Don’t pass up the hat boxes packed with vintage hosiery and bizarre greeting cards.
Buy this: Vintage teal knee-high stockings ($5).

Queen Bee Creations


3961 N Williams Ave., No. 101, 232-1755, queenbee-creations.com.
For nearly 15 years, Rebecca Pearcy has been making Portland’s favorite “beautilitarian” bags and wallets, her handstitched PVC-free faux leather empire growing from a one-woman biz to a bright NoPo showroom along the way. Recently the company’s branched out to multi-pocket diaper bags and recycled wool purses, but the big original Truckette bags, stitched with chic flower, leaf and geometric patterns, are still the queens of this hive.
Buy this: Rebecca Pearcy Textiles Scissors Tote ($32), Queen Bee Flock eyeglass case ($18).

Lark Press


3901 N Williams Ave., 546-9930, larkpress.com.
“I’m so happy we both showed up here,” read the words screenprinted on thick card stock, the wobbly legend surrounded by a bright red outline of the state of Oregon. Both the sentiment and the rough-edged design capture Lark Press in a nutshell. The polished-concrete-and-wood space marries handmade elegance and Northwestern outdoorsiness in its quirky card designs, art prints, textiles and gifts—many of them from local artists or hand-printed on the shop’s own 100-plus-year-old Chandler and Price letterpress printer. Owner and artist Jean Sammis is obsessed with birds, mushrooms and woodland creatures (“I don’t try to pick things that have birds on them, it’s just things I like,” she swears). Screenprinter Sarah Landwehr, who shares the space (and who made that Oregon print) digs teeth, hands and meerkats. Those obsessions show up everywhere in the shop, from Sammis’ own paint-by-numbers bird cards and custom wedding invites to blue Little Lark baby onesies decorated with ghostly foxes and towering fir trees or Makelike’s funky mustard-and-orange mushroom “Fungus-Among-Us” tea towels. For all Lark’s twee leanings, the five-year-old shop’s goods are rarely precious or saccharine. Instead, they capture the naturalistic spirit of this town—the reason we’re so happy we all showed up here in the first place.
Buy this: Flower- or forest-print wrapping paper ($3), Little Lark adult fox shirt ($30), Sarah Landwehr’s TwoSarahs art prints ($20).
 
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