Thursday, February 12, 2009

Merchandizing - that undefinable something . . . . .
If you have been following my blog for a while you will know that I am a big fan of eclectic shops with quirky personality and bundles of style. The kind of shop that offers a selection of old and new and imported and handmade and displays all those treasures in fabulously vintage cupboards or hanging from old tin ceilings and piled on top of perfectly scruffy old tables. You know what I mean - I know you do. There is a fine line that some stores seem to understand - kind of chic but not shabby chic, slightly bohemian, not too antiquarian, not too much imported stuff but definitely edgy and ethnic, not too many reproduction tchochkes and definitely, no definitely not twee. Why are there so few stores like this now? What has happened to them all? Why is it that Anthropologie is the only large chain store that seems to have figured it out that the average gal wants something special when they go shopping? Why is it that we really are drawn to this undefinable, abstract style of merchandizing?


So far in my travels there are only a handful of stores that fall into this category for me - here are a few(but not all) - Fan Tan Gallery, Victoria BC. Any Anthropologie anywhere. The Rubaiyat, Calgary. Salamagundi, Vancouver BC. Cabin Fever, Sandpoint Idaho, ABC Carpet and Home, NYC. Fish's Eddy, NYC. The Cross, Yaletown Vancouver. Watson Kennedy, Seattle. Most of which I featured here over the last few months.

Now it's your turn - I want to know what stores you have found in your neck of the woods and beyond that just have that undefinable something that sets them apart. Let's make a list . . . . . .

8 comments:

Suzanne said...

I think I have similar taste in stores... there is one in particular that I really like, in Peachland, BC, called Dragonfly and Amber. It's small and a little crazy but it's jam packed with all sorts of fantastic things: unique jewellery, purses, clothing, kitchen accessories, cards and all sorts of other little trinkets... things that I rarely see anywhere else. Plus the women that work there are wonderful. (There is also a D&A store in Kelowna but it's smaller and just doesn't quite have the same vibe to it.)
I make sure to visit that store everytime I'm in the area.

Suzanne said...

Oh and here is their website... which I think is a constant work in progress (it's crazy and a little hard to navigate but it does actually kind of suit the store :)

http://www.dragonflyandamber.com/

Hanna said...

Where is Cabin Fever? I did some wandering in Sandpoint this summer while I was in Creston. Have you been to that rambling antique store? The one with three rooms and a basement. And a coffee shop. It was very amusing.

cartolina said...

Thanks Suzanne and Hanna. I am going to go to the Dragonfly and Amber store this weekend in Peachland Suzanne - can't wait.

Hanna - Cabin Fever is in Sandpoint. You know the main street is one way and you have to swing a big left at the end of it if you are coming back up to Creston? Well Cabin Fever is on the left just after you make that big left turn. They have a gorgeous clothing store next door (that i would like to live in it is so cute) and they carry clothing that I've never seen anywhere else. The owner Rebecca has very good taste. Oh and I have been to that big antique store - rather quirky - there's actually a better one half way down to Sandpoint on the left
f.

Tanis said...

Hmmmm...

What about Honeybee's in Calgary? There is also Chintz & Co....and, fo course, the up and coming Anthropologie in Edmonton!!!!! We also have this fantastic place called Wellington Garden Centre, it has the MOST beautiful things....kind of French country, distressed. Very Nice!

Dorian Fletcher said...

Wonderfully eclectic Nest in San Francisco -Castle in the Air, Berkeley, CA. My all-time favorite being Tail of the Yak in Berkeley, CA.

Suzanne said...

Ooh, well if you're going to go to the D&A in Peachland then also be sure to go to Bliss Bakery which is next door (if you haven't already been there before?) and have one of their croissants (ham & cheese is my fave)... amaaaaaazing.

Sara said...

Thanks for mentioning Fan Tan Gallery - oddly enough, I've lived in Victoria my entire life, walk by that store on a fairly regular basis, and have even thought to myself that it looks interesting but for some reason have never gotten around to going inside. I'm definitely going to make a point of checking it out now, because I love the kind of store you're talking about in this post!

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