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SeaCloth

I’m seeing SeaCloth fabric everywhere lately, especially in some of my favorite magazines, so I thought I’d email the designers to see if they’d send us some images of their fabric and a few shots from their Greenwich, CT store. We all like to see products in action, am I right?!?

Partners Susan Harris, an accomplished fine artist, and Deirdre Halper, a former marketing exec, teamed up to create a line of textiles, home furnishings and decorative accessories known for their durability, gorgeous colors and nature-inspired patterns. Harvest Hue and Splash On are my two favorite collections (shown below), especially the lattice pattern. SeaCloth is available to the trade, so you’ll need a designer to assist you on your purchase, but if you’re around CT anytime soon, you can shop their store – no designer needed!


(images from seacloth)

Posted in Shop Tours, textiles on July 23, 2007

Greenward – New Eco-Friendly Store! [Boston]

I had such a great weekend, I can’t remember when I had so much fun crammed into only a few days. I kicked things off with a ‘girls night out’ on Friday with my amazing mother, hung out with my bff who was up visiting me from Miami, then spent time in Cambridge shopping at Paper Source, browsing Nomad (great ethnic textiles here) and Abodeon (awesome vintage mid century finds), then hit Greenward, a brand spankin’ new must-see store for products with a conscience.


When you’re in need of beautiful planet-friendly homewares, books, magazines, jewelry, baby gear, bike accessories, and stationery, shop Greenward because this place has a great selection and is in a great little hood. I mean, with Starbucks and other random cafes sprinkled around, tons of great ethnic eateries, Paper Source, Nomad, Abodeon, and other boutiques all within a few blocks, you can easily take the T over to Porter Square and do a little Mass Ave. shopping for a few hours. Greenward is located at 1776 Mass Ave., so it’s only a 5 minute walk.


I was impressed to find Greenward for several reasons, the first of course being the cause, shopping eco when I can is important to me. But also the selection is great. It’s not crunchy and boring, which is sometimes what you think of when you picture eco-friendly finds. With Jill Bliss, Little Otsu, Good on Paper, Josh Jakus, Pear Tree Studio, K Studio, and Pangea Organics on the list (to name a few), this shop carries the best of modern green goods that are currently on the market. They even have those great bike baskets in green and white that have been all over the blogosphere lately (Joy wrote about her basket here).


In addition to the great products, the location can’t be beat. Don’t let the below street level location fool you, it’s not dark, depressing, or hard to find. Quite the opposite. Owners Scott Walker and Simone Alpen (soon to be husband + wife, if her name sounds familiar, she’s the brains behind The Bazaar Bizarre) did a fantastic job with their bright signage and in the overall design of the space. With tons of natural light flooding in and cheery colors dotted all around the store, you can only guess that a lot of planning went into this store. The moment you find out that the displays are all hand built using eco-responsible woods, the flooring is cork, overhead lighting is energy-efficient compact fluorescent bulbs, and the walls were painted using low-VOC paint, your suspicions are confirmed.


The energy in this store is just great, almost like you’ve left Boston for a few moments and entered sunny California. When you walk in, you’re not only greeted with great products, but also with a friendly smile, the smell of a delicious soy-based candle burning, and great tunes (music is a huge plus for me) piped through “green” speakers constructed of oak reclaimed from whiskey barrels. Take a complete tour of their space here (lots of product shots). Or if you’re local, go check out the store and see this great green store for yourself.


A huge thanks to Scott for sending these over to me. Hi Simone!!

(images from greenward)

Posted in Shop Tours, shopping, travel on June 04, 2007

Layla (Brooklyn, NY)

Have I been living beneath a rock, because I missed this place along my travels, and not to sound snobby, but as any shopaholic knows, we cover our territory (regional). Layla is amazing, and I discovered it today thanks to Domino online.


I did a little research and found out that owner, Alayne Patrick, plays curator in this vibrant Indian boutique and from these images, she blends both modern and traditional Indian patterns and prints that dazzle. In addition to bedding and clothing, she also carries a selection of both new and antique jewelry. Has anyone shopped Layla? What’s it like (price, quality, selection)? Where in Brooklyn is it? And lastly, is there a website because I’m not finding a link anywhere…

Aren’t these colors inspiring though?

(images from domino)

Posted in Shop Tours, travel on April 27, 2007

Ferdinand (Portland, Maine)

Another gem of a store in Portland, Maine that I visited last Saturday was Ferdinand, co-owned by designer Diane Toepfer. The moment I walked in and spotted tons of cram cream tape and Japanese goodies, I knew I’d thoroughly enjoy the experience, but wait, it gets better.

I had a chance to meet with Diane, watched her do a little screenprinting (she gave me one of the zebra designs she was busy working on), and spent some time making small talk with her. I guess I’m a nerd, but I cherish these intimate exchanges with shop owners, it means a lot to me when they take a moment to explain a process or give a tour. It was really relaxing and nice hangin’ with Diane. She’s totally chill and so is her store. I wasn’t surprised to find out she and her hubby relocated to Maine a few years ago from the west coast.

Here she is working on her zebra cards. It was cool when she told me that her husband reads decor8, as I’m always excited when I go to random stores and someone there has heard of my blog. I’m sure other bloggers can relate, it’s really exciting! Blogging is amazing, it links so many of us together, it’s truly inspiring, don’t you think? Anyway, Ferdinand is a large store, packed with everything from cram cream tape to pins and jewelry, tees, cards, pillows, pottery, and lots of adorable owls made of natural materials, like bark. I highly suggest visiting and spending some time with Diane yourself.

I could have easily purchased every single one. I love how she arranged them on a bright aqua wall. Check out the baby bibs on the second shelf below from Japan. Can you stand it?!? Cute!


Sorry, no close up product shots. I need to work on my photography skills, I know. But I’m trying and hopefully, you’ll see me improve over time. :)

Here’s a few of Diane’s latest designs above. You can buy these online. Do you like my zebra below? I put him in the living room for the time being. I love that Diane signed it, and adore the raw edges. I have to get him in a frame…

When you’re in Portland, mark down Ferndinand as a must-see shop. They are open Wednesday-Saturday from 11-6, and are located at 243 Congress Street, not far from Angela Adams, so you can hit both stores.

And there’s good news for those not heading into Maine anytime soon… You can shop some of Ferdinand’s wares online.

Thanks Diane for taking time with me, it was so nice to meet you.

(images from holly becker for decor8)

Posted in Shop Tours, stationery, travel on April 27, 2007

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