Journal

Create+Connect with Samantha Paige of Last Cut Project

Posted on February 04, 2018 by Angie Kang | 0 comments

Join us this Wednesday, 2/7 from 5:30-7:15pm for February's Create+Connect with Samantha Paige of Last Cut Project!
Samantha will be sharing her experiences that led her to start Last Cut Project, and what she's learned about 'living a life that is authentically yours'.
Space is limited / RSVP to events@shopwmgoods.com

Designer Self-Care Tips & Tricks

Posted on January 22, 2018 by INFO WM GOODS | 0 comments

This month at the shop we are making it a priority to kick off our new blank slate with self-care as a priority. We sat down with some of our talented designers and muses to get their top tricks and tips for prioritizing self-care this year. Read on to get your wellness-on!
 
How do you practice and prioritize self-care?

"Reclaiming sleep. It's so truly important, 8 or 9 hours is ideal. We stigmatize it and tell ourselves that it's cool to sleep less, work more, but there's a balance. Own it."
"Well, right now I'm struggling with perioral dermatitis so I have been changing my facial care every 15th day for a month since August. I have curly hair, and I have been using Moroccan Oil (the brand) and they are amazing! And I work out a lot, here in Mexico City I go to a program called SERSANA, it's like a boot camp for girls. I train every day for one hour, and on Thursday I take a private yoga class. I really try to eat healthy and organic food. I eat everything, the only things I cut out are dairy, carbs, and sugar, especially because of my dermatitis." 
Michell Galindo, Gala is Love 

"Make time for yourself every day, whether it be 5 minutes or a nice hour-long workout. No matter how busy you can get traveling non-stop or working long work days, it is important to take time to do something that makes you think positively about yourself. This can be as little as a quick meditation when you wake up, a nightly face routine, or squeezing in a workout even when work is piling up. Small actions such as these can make a big difference over time."
Fiona Morrison, Wolf Circus 

"My self-care tip is having a furry friend(s) - getting my dog William taught me more about being present and the basics of unconditional love and loyalty than any other rituals combined. He is a constant source of calm, care and reassurance. I'd also love to give my resounding endorsement to adopting a senior dog, William is an oldie but a goodie and a lot of his calm and soulfulness is definitely a product of his advanced age."
Miranda Bennett 
 
 
"January is always a busy time and starting the year off on a healthy note always helps us stay focused and feel good. I like to take a break from that evening glass of wine and have a cup of tea instead. It’s soothing, warm and just as satisfying. Another way I stay organized in the new year is de-cluttering my closet. I like to re-evaluate items and put a big bag of unwanted clothes together to donate. (It also makes room for a few new items to splurge on."
Sophie Monet 

"Lately I've been taking morning walks right after I make my coffee. Sometimes it's hard to find the motivation to take that first step out the door, but I never regret it afterwards. The mental, emotional, and spiritual benefits of taking time to breathe and be at peace in the crisp morning air make it so worth it."
Monica Watson, Berlin Skin

"I always feel more healthy and alive when I take time to be outside and exercise. In the snow or in the rain, it doesn't matter!"
Sarah Wolf, Wolf Ceramics

"Living on the East Coast, my self-care approach changes drastically with the seasons... During the fall and winter, I'm a bit of a hibernator. I try and focus on slowing down with hobbies. I make small commitments, meaning dedicating 10 minutes a day to either reading, water coloring, or playing guitar. Sometimes I end up reading, painting, or playing for longer... this practice breaks me out of the cold, grey, shorter days.
During the spring and summer, I'm the opposite. I thrive off of daylight and try to find ways to spend more time outside. I run a sprint triathlon every summer, so I make a point to swim, run, or bike every day. Sometimes it becomes my mode of transportation which makes it less about "exercising" - I'll run to dinner with a friend - it's insanely refreshing."
Mary MacGill

"One of my favorite self care tips is yoga. I've been practicing for
over 15 years, and I find it so helpful to relax, gain focus, and
open my mind up to the creative process. These days my week is
always jam packed with designing, team meetings, and spending time
with my kids, so to make sure that I take time each week, I have
one of my favorite instructors come to my house. That way I always
fit it in. Sticking with the routine each week has been great, and
encourages me to stay active."
Amy Voloshin


  
"I do not look at my phone after 9 pm on weeknights.  That means no texts, emails, Instagram, etc. It does wonders for my nerves and I am always asleep by 10:30!"

An Interview with Meditation & Movement Guru Kait Hurley

Posted on January 13, 2018 by INFO WM GOODS | 0 comments

Kait Hurley is one of the warmest, kindest, most supportive people you'll meet. This could have something to do with her expertise in meditation, mindfulness, and movement. Kait created a website to help everyone gain easy & affordable access to her tips and tricks, including easy at-home workout videos, guided meditations, and more. Kait was kind enough to chat with us about how she got involved in the wellness community, the challenging parts of keeping calm, and so much more.

Don't forget to RSVP for Kait's Create+Connect talk she'll be hosting on Tuesday, January 16th from 5:30-7pm (invite below).


You launched your business this past year in 2017, tell us a little about what your life looked like prior to being one of Portland's beloved meditation and yoga gurus:

I've been an athlete my whole life and in the fitness industry for over a decade. Even though I looked like the picture of health throughout my 20s—I exercised 4 to 6 days a week, I drank all the green smoothies....I even worked for a fitness company and taught group exercise!—I was stuck in this cycle of feeling not enough. I had body image issues always wishing I could lose 5 pounds. I also had so much negative self talk, and my attitude of trying to prove myself to myself every single day was leaving me exhausted. It wasn't until I had a series of anxiety attacks at work that I considered meditating seriously. After a few months of meditating regularly, I realized meditation was the missing piece I needed. It helped me uncover this stronger, more resilient part of myself I didn't know was there. It also taught me how to be more compassionate and patient to myself and others. And then when I started combining my daily meditations with movement? Game over. I felt so good. I had to share it and start this company.

What has been the most challenging part of your own meditation / fitness journey?

The most challenging part for me was learning how to navigate the uncomfortable energies that came up during my meditation practice. By sitting in the quiet, all of the things I had buried deep for so long started to bubble up. The shame, the fear, the anxiety, the grief, the anger....all of it. I feel things really deeply as is, and it wasn't easy to allow myself to feel all of the uncomfortable emotions and thoughts. So many people think that meditation is some blissed out experience. While that can be the case, meditation isn't always comfortable and the goal of meditation is not to achieve some certain state of being. The meditations that have been the hardest for me to sit through have taught me the most about myself. 

If you had to pick three books to buy for your favorite people, what would they be?

Easy! My favorite book of all time is Tiny Beautiful Things by Portland author Cheryl Strayed. I've probably bought over 30 copies as gifts, no exaggeration. The next one is actually also my favorite book of all time. Am I allowed to have two? It's by Kate Fagan, and it's called What Made Maddy Run. This one's about a young woman who died by suicide after her freshman year at Penn. It's so much more than just a book about death though. It unpacks the destructive nature of perfectionism, how sometimes what we want isn't actually healthy or right for us, and how we need to start using social media in a healthier way. My close friend Robyn Downs interviewed Kate on her podcast show, and it's one of the most powerful episodes I've ever heard. Listen to it here. For my last book, I pick Andrea Bemis' cookbook Dishing Up the Dirt. I am the worst cook, and she makes it easy to eat outrageously tasty, seasonal meals. 

If you had an entire day to yourself, what do you do?
 
I'd hit up Tea Bar for some matcha with coconut milk and lavender (that's my drink!). Then I'd take a yoga class at YoYoYogi with my mom and swing by either Kanani Pearl for a facial and massage or Root Whole Body for a sauna and soak in their tub on my way home. The rest of the day would be hanging out with my partner Peter and my cat Javier while I snuggled up reading. I love travel and I love being with people, but there's something so luxurious about not having any plans and being able to hang out at home in my PJs all day long. This is where I thrive!

If you could go back and tell yourself one thing on January 1, 2017, what would it be?

You've got this. Keep trusting your gut. This is the year you will come into your own. And it's gonna feel so damn good. 

What is your favorite Saturday morning ritual?

Not setting an alarm. A longer meditation. Followed by gluten free pancakes. Pancakes are always a great idea.

New Year's Eve Styling Tips

Posted on December 28, 2017 by Whitney Goodman | 0 comments

If you're anything like me, you're probably planning to spend your New Year's Eve at home in sweatpants and asleep by 11pm. With the hopes that you are actually nothing like me, I've rounded up a few of the team's favorite party looks for you with some styling tips. Whatever you end up wearing, we hope you have a happy, healthy, and fun night & new year!

xWM


 Wowza Black Dress
 Ganni's Jerome Lace Dress in Black

Ganni never fails to design the cutest dresses, regardless of season. This black lace mini dress looks super cute paired with a heel if you're really going for it or a Chelsea Boot. Pair it back to some chunky earrings for a killer outfit that'll look amazing on the dance floor all night.
 
That 70's Show
 Grace Jumpsuit in Black

I'm a huge fan of any jumpsuit, but if it's got a slightly 70s-vibe, I'm all in. This Mara Hoffman Black Jumpsuit is super silky, moves like a dream, and is arguably one of the most comfortable things you could throw on. Oh yeah, and it's on sale for 20% off using code "Happy20off" through 1/1/18!
 
 Lady In Red
 
Bally Top in Red by Stil.

Arguably the cutest little combo of an outfit, the LA-based designer Stil. created a crop top and high-rise pant in the perfect shade of tomato red that's sure to catch some attention.  I'd pair it back to a white sneaker or a strappy sandal, weather permitting. 

If red is your color but you're into a sexy dress vibe, I'd consider checking out this Mara Hoffman number...
 
Floral Delight
Louvre Dress in Black by Ganni

A frilly, sweet, yet super babe-ly floral dress by Ganni, the Louvre Dress would be New Year's Eve ready paired with some black tights and over the knee boots or a little black bootie. The best thing about this dress? It works just as well in the spring with a bare leg and flat sandal. Win, win. 
Shop all dresses here

Create+Connect with Minnie + George Founder Lori Caldwell

Posted on November 09, 2017 by Whitney Goodman | 0 comments


Lori Caldwell, Founder of Minnie+George, was one of the first local designers I met with when I moved back to Portland. She kindly invited me into her studio space, shared her process with me, and welcomed me into the beautiful world she has created. We recently partnered up with Lori to loan a few pieces from the shop for her stunning new lookbook (check out this amazing feature on Portland Monthly!).

She is always refreshingly real & honest about what it's like to run a small and bustling business, which is why I thought she'd be the perfect fit to host our next Create+Connect event. 
Lori will be leading a discussion on creativity & commerce, sharing the truth about what happens when you turn your creative passion into a profession, and the benefits and side effects of that pairing. 

RSVP to info@shopwmgoods to join us on Tuesday, 11/14 from 5:30-7:30pm (tickets are free but space is limited!).

Read our interview with Lori below & hear more at Create+Connect!

++

How did you originally come up with the concept for Minnie+George? Had you always been interested in accessories? What drew you to this path?
There isn't really a linear path that brought me to Minnie + George. I was working as a freelancer for an online company. It was incredibly boring and unrewarding. So, while "working," I would play on Pinterest, pinning creative projects. I stumbled on a DIY leather clutch. That piqued my curiosity about bag making and also got me thinking creatively again. Minnie + George evolved from that a few years later.

Once you decided to start your own business, what were the first few steps you took?
I started to learn my craft. My ex bought me private sewing lessons. I also started reading books on starting a small business and attended some of the free seminars at Mercy Corps NW.

Do you have any resources for creatives who are considering starting their own business?
Resources? Hmm...Well, from a business perspective, definitely take advantage of organizations like Mercy Corps NW. They can help you create a business plan, find additional funding, that sort of thing. Also, find a mentor. Someone related to what you want to do and where you'd like to see yourself in the future. Preferably, someone who has been in the business for more than 5 years and is established. The insight you'll gain in just a few coffees or lunches will be invaluable.

Have you experienced any unexpected setbacks in your business? If so, what were they and how did you overcome them?
Unexpected setbacks simply come with the territory. At this point, it feels like it's compulsory. You handle them by using the "tools in the room." What I  mean is, you use what you have and what is available to you to come up with a creative solution. When I started, I used all my money just getting materials and creating a sample collection. I soon realized that, no matter how great the bags might have been, no one would be interested if I didn't present them with great professional quality images. With no money left, however, that seemed impossible. I had started to gain a little attention on social media. As a result, a few fashion bloggers had contacted me about collaborations. I decided to write them all back and offer to give them each one of my samples, in exchange for them not only blogging about Minnie + George, but also allowing me free use & access to all of the photos taken. I was able to update my website, create a lookbook and promotional materials with those images. I used what I had (samples and interest) in exchange for what I needed (great images), instead of overextending myself financially trying to hire a photographer, models, etc. Use the tools in the room.

What is the most rewarding part of owning your own business? What is the most challenging part?
The most rewarding and challenging are inextricably linked for me. Using, questioning, and growing stronger and more confident in my creative voice while balancing the practicalities of a business. That dance between the two is both rewarding and also the most challenging thing I've ever tried to do.

Where do you hope to see your business in 2 years? 5 years? 10 years?
I have no idea. Currently, I'm changing the business model and also the creative focus of Minnie + George. How will this new vision takes shape and where will it lead next? Too soon to know for sure.

Where does the inspiration for the line come from?
Certainly my parents, who the business is named after. Their classic, understated, timeless style was definitely my first and strongest influence growing up. But, also I've derived a lot of inspiration from the years I spent living abroad and also from what I learned about design when I worked as a floral designer. Oh, also Shelley Mokoena, a South African blogger is my muse and spirit animal. If you don't follow her on Instagram, you're missing out.

Who are the other designers or businesses that you admire?
Too many to list...I fan girl out on so many other independent designers and makers. I suppose some of my biggest influences are: Sevilla Smith Shoes, Bryr Clogs, Hackwith Design House, Jackson Phillips Leather Goods, Paterson Salisbury Leather Goods out of Australia, Marlow Goods, & Grace Gordon out of London.

Do you think Portland is a good place to start a business? If so, why?
Portland is pretty supportive of independent designers and businesses. And, it's basically become the mecca of the maker movement in the United States. I mean, Portland made goods is a huge phenomenon in Japan! They have stores dedicated to just goods made from our city and huge tourist groups come just to shop here.

What book or quote has made an impact on you?
I don't have a particular quote, but I always turn to my favorite poem, Some Days, by James Baldwin. I love the last stanza: "Some days leave, some days grieve, some days you almost don't believe. Some days believe you, some days don't, some days believe you and you won't. Some days worry, some days mad, some days more than make you glad. Some days, some days, more than shine, witnesses, coming on down the line!"

Be sure to RSVP for Lori's Create+Connect event on Tuesday, 11/14 by emailing us at info@shopwmgoods.com!

Why WM GOODS Is Here

Posted on October 26, 2017 by Whitney Goodman | 1 comment

Hi Friends,

As I hope you now know, my personal goal in having the store is to create a warm & relaxed space that invites honest & real human connection and interaction. Yes, we love having pretty things that you might want to bring into your closet or home, and that is so special, but beyond that, it's about the people. At the risk of getting political, the world is a little batty right now and I think we are all craving genuine connections that make us feel like we've found 'our people' (no? just me?).

That's why I talk to you as a human rather than a business on social media, why WM hosts talks like Create+Connect, fundraisers and random nights full of wine and insanely delicious Trader Joe's cookies (trust me. woah.). It's why I love when someone reaches out on Instagram and asks if I'll grab a coffee (the answer is always yes). It's why I encourage my employees to have outside lives and interests that expand their circle of connections. It's why, as a business we trudge along through tough winters, protests and political uncertainty. It's why I love having this shop, for better or for worse. 

The last few months at WM GOODS have had some ups and downs. A few months back, an unwell man walked by our store and kicked in one of our massive windows (downside to having a ton of light pouring in) in the middle of the day. Yesterday morning someone broke into our shop, banged up our front door and stole our cash register. There's also the day to day issues of figuring out respectful distribution in a small city with lots of wonderful boutiques, crossed-wires due to wonky communication, the list goes on... It's hard not to feel worn down and low when things like this keep happening (come on karma, did I do something wrong?!). I don't think I'm alone in this feeling.

It's in both the hard moments and the beautiful moments that I see the big picture of why. We are coming up on 2 years of being open in Portland and I feel #blessed to have made genuine connections with some of the most talented, interesting, business savvy, kind, and inspiring people I've ever known and likely never would've known without the store. I am a natural introvert, but hosting little meet-ups or just chatting with someone who pops into the shop has been so expanding for me. My life is enriched by knowing you all and I truly mean that. This isn't some sort of marketing ploy or weird attempt to humanize a business. This is the gosh-dang truth of why I do what I do.

The moral of the story is that I want to thank you for the love and support you've shown to me and my team. I also want to invite you to join us in honesty, laughter, friendship, and community. Come by and hang out, sign up for an event, or reach out digitally. You might just meet some cool people that become your circle.

Warmly,

Whitney 

 

(photo by Mikola Accuardi)

Create+Connect with Alison Wu

Posted on October 17, 2017 by Whitney Goodman | 0 comments

UPDATE: THIS EVENT IS FULL. YOU CAN STILL SIGN UP FOR THE WAIT LIST!

SO excited to announce that Alison Wu is the host of our second Create+Connect event, happening Thursday, October 26th from 5:30-7:30pm! Create+Connect is our in-shop series where we get the chance to hear from unique & creative people about their process, struggles, and successes. 

As I'm sure many of you know, we have worked with this amazingly talented & sweet lady before on our Ronald McDonald House fundraiser, so I'm thrilled that Alison agreed to lead our next conversation & share her experiences with us. Alison is an incredibly talented stylist, recipe developer, and the brains behind the holistic lifestyle blog, WuHaus.  

She will be focusing on self-care, how to create a work/life balance, how she stays inspired, and more.  Details on the event are below! 

Time: 5:30pm cocktails, 6pm conversation starts
Place: WM GOODS
RSVP: email info@shopwmgoods.com (this event is free!)

Hope to see you there!
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