Portland Picks Website presenting
  life + style to you: every Friday
September 1st, 2006

Do you ever go back and watch the movies you loved in high school, only to be disappointed by how poorly acted and cheeseball they are? We just watched “Can’t Buy Me Love,” for the four-thousandth time, and we were practically rolling off the sofa (our favorite Sunday place to be) with glee. CBML wasn’t just cheesy, it was just plain awful!

Oh, how we loved to repeat certain lines so long ago…not realizing then that the writing was typical teen-movie and not cutting-edge comedy. “I’m into class. It’s my new thing.” “Boy? There’s no boy here!” Okay, those are still funny, but the clothes—they were pure 80s awfulness, where a single outfit might include billowy Hammer pants, a satin tank top, a tight vest and a headband. And, oh, the hair! In one scene, three girls and their greenhouse-gas-inducing use of Aquanet manage to completely engulf the headroom in a Volkswagen Rabbit with their ginormous coifs. And thank goodness for Tivo.

Now we can put the African Anteater Ritual on a continuous loop and finally—finally—learn all the moves.


Portland Picks:


Handle Mom with Care

When we were prego, we just wanted to lay in bed with our remote, all ugly and large.  We didn’t want to go out at all and were quite agoraphobic, in fact. When we haaad to leave the house, for, say, food, we wore these ghastly Gap overalls. And we didn’t wait til month 7 or 8 to feel this way; it started during that early “just fat” phase where we weren’t showing enough to look pregnant, but were just plump enough to look like we’d been putting away the Costco tub of Skippy again.   

That was then. If we were prego now, we probably still wouldn’t want to leave the house, except during our weekly visit to the new Zenana Spa for some well-deserved pampering.  This spa is designed with the pregnant woman in mind, in all her fragility. And if you have other kids already, you can bring them with you for their amazing childcare, which is double the reason that this place is your new home. You don’t have to be a recluse anymore!

Zenana Spa and Wellness Center offers all of the typical spa services you would expect at a traditional spa: massage, manicure/pedicure, facials, waxing, and so on. The difference, however, is that every service is customized to meet the special needs of moms and moms-to-be. Yoga and Pilates classes are modified for pregnancy or post-pregnancy.  Nail products and massage lotions are organic and safe for moms and babies. The spa itself even features an on-site childcare center where the kids can be entertained while you get pampered. And no one will treat you like Zenana will. You can be a nutcase and they'll hold your hand. It's a dream!

Zenana Spa and Wellness Center
2024 SE Clinton St.
Portland, OR 97202




Why So Blue?

It’s no secret that we have a love affair with Mississippi. The good stuff stretches from Lovely Hula Hands at the south to Albina Press at the north, and we can’t get enough of everything in between. We’re smitten, it’s true. But that’s not why we headed down there last weekend.

We went because we were having such a great time with our movies-inspired 80s flashback that we decided to check out Blue, open just two weeks! We heard they have a rad collection of 80s inspired sunglasses and jewelry, and even some dead-stock accessory items, like pins and earrings, and killer sunglasses with Dynasty-worthy gold frames.

But once we popped inside Blue, we found ourselves surrounded by cool gear for guys and gals that spans time. It’s not all retro—in fact, it’s perfectly modern. We loved that their collection includes hip, casual clothing, hot denim, and quirky accessories like hats, belts and bags for men and women, as well as local & well-known brands. Treat yourself—happily, their “moderate” prices are quite accessible—and put together an outfit + accessories from designers like Obey, RVCA, No Star, Insight, Hecklewood and Frozen Peas. And coming soon: Levis Premiums, a full line of Vans, and Poketo accessories. Like, we totally feel a very stylish Blue Period coming on, and it is awesome.

3753 N. Mississippi Ave.
Portland, OR 97227


Give Us Some Space

Okay, so better late than never? Space Design and owner Martie Accuardi have been written up in the Willamette Week “Best of Portland” and soon will be in PDX Magazine and eat.shop.portland. So with all this word of mouth, we wanted to check out her studio and outdoor space for ourselves, to absolutely, positively ensure it was worthy of our Portland Picks readers! And, no surprise, we’re jumping right on the beauteous bandwagon.
Space Design does interior and exterior design, merging what’s great about the outside and bringing it inside to doll up your space in a cool and modern way. But Space doesn’t just design your garden or home office; they also have a studio space where you can design your own arrangement, using any of the cool containers and planting accessories that just happen to live at Martie’s Botanical Bar. She’s offering classes for the fall in all kinds of green-thumb goodness, like Living Centerpieces and orchid planting parties. And if you have an event idea of your own, give her a call; we’re sure you can work something out.
Space Design also offers an Orchid of the Month club, where every month you get a different, stunning specialty. It’s a lot less caloric than that Harry & David Chocolate-of-the-Month subscription you got in a food-porn frenzy. Check it out and tell her Portland Picks sent you!
Space Design
3729 SW Kelly Ave.
Portland, OR 97239





Shake and Blake

The sun sets earlier, the nights are cooler, and soon we’ll be waking up when September ends. Don’t be bummed…don’t you know what this means? It’s officially Jeans Season! And it’s about time, because flippy sundresses are lovely, but come on, this is Portland. We want to pull on our denim and slouch! (Ever-so-fashionably, of course.)
And we’ve got just the place: Blake, in NW, which is now celebrating its third anniversary. Their business cards read, “Love Blake,” and yes, we do. With more than 40 denim brands, and 3-4 styles per brand, that’s what, about 140 different styles? Oh, the permutations of pants! Think snappy brands like Seven, Big Star, Paige, True Religion, Cheap Monday, Habitual, and Melting Pot. Namesake owner Blake swears he’s a champion fitter and encourages shoppers to make an appointment to find the perfect pair. What’s next, bespoke denim? Hmm…
Blake carries more than jeans, with tops and bags and accessories that’ll look perfect with your new trou. They also carry men’s clothing, so you can outfit your guy, too! Just do us a favor and resist the urge to do matching outfits. Thanks.
2285 NW Johnson St.
Portland, OR 97210




The Truth…with Haircuts

There's nothing worse than when your long-time hairstylist is out of commission or, worse yet, out of the business entirely. After the obligatory period of mourning and hand-wringing, it becomes necessary to crawl out of your cave, bad hair and all, and brave a new ’do.

We survived such a terrifying experience just last week, thanks to the nurturing and completely competent hands of Gabriela at Pravda Salon. Like the name says (“Pravda” means “the truth”), Gabriela will assess your locks and give you the honest truth – suggesting bold colors or an edgy new cut. Hair help comes in other Slavic languages as well...along with co-owner Evona, they’ve got Polish, Bulgarian and German covered.

Pravda works a little differently than other Portland salons, with no fancy receptionist or frou-frou drinks.  There are just two chairs and a whole lot of talent, making it an easy decision to give up the fluffy amenities for some straight-up style.  But if you're absolutely dying for something sweet (and believe me, we often are), Pravda is conveniently located right above Java Vivace, making it easy to enjoy a cappuccino along with your classic bob. And that, dearies, is the truth.

Pravda Salon
2287 NW Pettygrove, Suite 2A
Portland, OR 97210




Come Fly With Me
We wish we had a fashionable family. How excellent would it be to be born into a fabulous boho lineage that is written up in Vogue or Town and Country, and one cloudy afternoon, you just happen to stumble upon a wealth of vintage Dior or Chanel in a mussy, Waspy attic? Sigh. We were born into a regular brood, alas, and all we’ve uncovered thus far in the attic were tennis balls and Lladro. But our pain was assuaged when we found Keep Em Flying.
Keep Em Flying (the store name is based on a campaign in WWII to solicit clothing donations) is a store full of the stuff that your ancestors neglected to save for you. They’ve been in the same location since 1974, and owned by Pamela Springfield since 1985. The wares all date from pre-1980, are for both men and women, and aren’t at all funky in The Bad Way. No jeans, no exercise wear, nothing precious. Nothing smelly, either; the store is spotless. We felt like Auntie Mame (in all of her phases) rifling through the goods!
Keep Em Flying is also as “green” as a vintage store gets – for example, if something comes back from the dry cleaners shredded, they turn it into something beautiful. Also beautiful: the tree outside the storefront…every day it’s draped in a different outfit! Oh, my little love, your Auntie Mame would most certainly approve.
Keep Em Flying
510 NW 21st St.
Portland, OR 97209



Say that you just want to go straight-up shopping. You don’t have anything specific in mind. You don’t have anyone specific in mind. You just want to browse, maybe get inspired, hopefully find something cool and unique. Here’s a tip: Make a stop at Stella’s on 21st.

Stella’s is full of stuff you want to give as gifts, as well as things you absolutely must keep for yourself. Fun photo frames (we particularly loved the one with sparkly paw prints on it, which we swear won’t make you look like the weird pet lady at your office), great soaps, cards, journals, books, fragrances by Thyme, jewelry both demure and over the top. Even glassware, dinnerware and business-card holders. All of which we simply must have!

And due to the nature of Portland Picks, we have to disclose the simply awesome selection of handbags they carry—many of which are on sale now. We’re warning you though, we want to keep all of them for ourselves, so you’d better get there right quick.

Stella’s on 21st
1108 NW 21st. Ave.
Portland, OR 97209



  Chick Picks:  

Luxe Shoes…with a Conscience

Shoes with a conscience, for reals.  Meet the new luxe Charmone' Shoe...now you can have socially conscious shoes without sacrificing style.  

This fabulous new line of shoes are elegant, handmade in Italy, and are Animal-Free, Environmentally-Friendly, and Sweatshop-Free. But even better, they are hot!



Your New Secret Weapon

In the heat of the summer the bra straps come out. They’re peeking out of tank tops, slipping off of shoulders and making their presence known at every sleeveless opportunity. Tired of this fashion faux pas? We have the solution.

Embrace is a fully detachable bra accessory designed to control unruly bra straps.  Embrace also has other fringe benefits - it lifts, it supports and it enhances the bust shape.

Ooh, we love it!


embrace the bra strap solution.ca

Adorable Blankets

We adore Adora.  Adora Hitchcock, that is.  She makes the most adorable blankets that will wrap your baby in love (and cuteness!)  The blankets are so soft and the patterns are incredibly sweet.
Through her line “I Adore You” she creates one-of-a-kind accessories for baby: baby comfort blankets, blessing blankets, hooded towels, burp cloths and more.  Special order adult blankets are available as well.  Her blankets are sold at Aesthetiks in Lake Oswego (on A Avenue), or you can call her to order.
Adora Hitchcock


Rare Designs
We love t-shirts.  We collect them.  Especially if they are ultra cool, retro, and have a sexy fit and a clever message.  Like this limited-edition Rooster Hurley Tee featuring a silkscreen of a retro desktop - doesn't it remind you of that little nook with the phonebooks in your kitchen in the 70s? (Or maybe your mom's kitchen?)  The shirt is hand-dyed organic cotton from Turk & Taylor in San Francisco.  

And this is from one of our fave websites, Rare Devices.  Shop on, guys!



Just Marvelous!

When our twins were little we had the goofiest, cheesiest and eventually mangiest diaper bag.  We would even fling a sweater over it to camouflage its hideousness.  Now there are so many cool ones, like this diaper backpack from Jane Marvel. 

She makes the coolest diaper bags, diaper backpacks, lunch bags, and travel, beach and messenger totes.  We're talking Bags, baby, and you'll love them all!



Hip Happenings:


Three-Day Sale at Stars!

  • What: Stars-Three Antiques Malls is holding a three-day sale—only one of two sales they hold all year. Almost everything is on sale, too, from 15-50% off – in all three Stars Malls: Stars, Stars and Splendid, and More Stars. And Saturday and Sunday there is also a sidewalk sale, with more amazing discounts. The three malls represent more than 250 dealers who bring in new items daily.
  • When: Sept. 8-10, doors open at 11 a.m. Friday and Sunday, and 10 a.m. Saturday.
  • Where: Stars Antiques Malls, 7027 SE Milwaukie Ave., PDX
  • Visit: www.starsantique.com


Russell + Hazel Trunk Show/Design Event at OFFICE

Join OFFICE for a “back to school” party with beloved brand Russell + Hazel! If you love seeing new product before anyone else, are passionate about paper goods + binders, and organization, this is one event that you must attend (and it’s free!). OFFICE is presenting a Russell + Hazel trunk show and design event with none other than architect/founder Ms. Chris Plantan!

At this OFFICE exclusive event, you’ll get to see all-new product from R+ H (like the binders shown here), get insight on design and business and hear first-hand about trends, color, materials, and why this woman-owned business continues to succeed. Sponsored in part by the local chapters of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO), organization was never this much fun!

  • What: Russell + Hazel Trunk Show + Design Event (FREE to attend + complimentary R+H gift with R+ H purchase!)
  • When: Thursday, Sept. 7, from 6-8 pm. Presentation starts at 6:30
  • Where: OFFICE – 2204 NE Alberta St., Portland, OR 97211 
  • Visit: www.officepdx.com
  • RSVP: Kelly Coller, at event@officepdx.com. Space is limited to the first 75



Tokyo in PDX Art Show @ OFFICE

OFFICE is pairing – for the first-time – two award-winning and highly respected artists/designers, APAK (comprised of Aaron and Ayumi Piland of Portland, OR) and FUMI WATANABE (of Seattle) for the group art show, Tokyo In PDX, which runs now through the end of September 2006.

APAK + FUMI’s work is incredibly smart, appealing, and textural, and represents an urban fusion of East and West aesthetics – their work is both “cute” and sophisticated. Both artists/designers show widely on the West coast and have won several awards for graphic and product design.

 Anyone interested in fine art, graphic design, and a love of all things Japanese should come to OFFICE this weekend.

  • What: “Tokyo in PDX” Art Show
  • When: Thursday, Aug. 31 through Sunday, Sept. 24th
  • Where: OFFICE, 2204 NE Alberta St., Portland, OR 97211
  • Visit: www.officepdx.com for more info


A Crafty Back-to-School Wonderland

At the September installment of Crafty Wonderland, an ongoing all-ages event, the folks from SCRAP (www.scrapaction.org) will be celebrating “SCRAP to School” by featuring a found object project for all ages to make and take in preparation for back to school. Shoppers will also have the  opportunity to support this amazing organization by purchasing one-of-a-kind scrap crafts and supplies from them. You don’t want to miss this one!

For the past five months, Crafty Wonderland has attracted hundreds of eager shoppers to Doug Fir Lounge with a rotating lineup of over 40 amazing artists and crafters. Shoppers can enjoy food and drink at the Doug Fir Restaurant, then head downstairs to the lounge area where the artists and crafters will be selling their work. Visitors can also score a free issue of the new Fall Fashion issue of BUST Magazine, a sponsor of the event.

  • What: Crafty Wonderland
  • When: The second Sunday of every month from 11-4 pm
  • Where: Doug Fir Lounge, 830 E. Burnside, PDX
  • Info: www.craftywonderland.com , email , or call Torie Nguyen at 503.545.7713. Admission is free!



Ultra Party at Rake

One year (plus) of style, design, and culture for Portland.

  • What: ultra is celebrating this milestone and throwing a closing party for The Collections, (\following a fashion show by Liza Rietz, Emily Ryan, and Anti-Domestic.
  • When: Sunday, September 10, from 9-12 pm
  • Where: Rake Gallery, 325 NW 6th
  • Details: Please print out this invitation for your free admission.


Here + Now  

  • What: A friend-raiser and benefit for Self Enhancement, Inc., celebrating their 25th year of providing opportunities to Portland's most underserved youth.  Come for the signature cocktail "The Standard" provided by  Elephant's Deli, enjoy the food generously donated by many of Portland's finest restaurants and caterers, the silent auction featuring many of Portland's emerging artists, enter the drawing for an Aprilla Italian Scooter, and toast and celebrate SEI as they reach our fundraising goal and party with Liv & the Warfield Project and our Starlight Cigar Bar!
  • When: September 7th, 6pm
  • Where: The Center for Self Enhancement
  • Info: For tickets and information go to the SEI website


Speaking of vests…we “experimented” with them back in the day, and have to say we regret the choices we made back then. So now that they’re turning up in department stores and magazines (along with leggings, too, though we swear we never swung that way), well, we’re not at all happy about either development.

The Wall Street Journal just ran a story about office-appropriate leggings, and we read it with mouths agape—leggings are appropriate for one place, and one place only: The End-of-Movie Get-Baby-Out-of-the-Corner Defy-Your-Daddy Lambada Dance-Off. So please, please, do not wear them to work. Or anywhere else. And thank you for your support.

Happy Labor Day!


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