With floors, tables, and trim made of rugged wooden planks, Alpine Outfitters feels like a far-flung mountaintop ski lodge. In fact, like the selection of outdoor gear inside, the decor was designed with an eye toward the local landscape: the Lake Oswego Review reported that the woodworking at the front of the store was shaped entirely from boards reclaimed from a century-old barn near Albany. The specialty shop helps adventurous clients thrive away from civilization with a wide selection of outdoor apparel and equipment for backpacking, skiing, camping, and subzero yodeling. Campers can stock up on everything from hiking boots to sunglasses to sleeping bags, all from trusted trekking brands such as Merrell and Patagonia.
In the Just for Fun piano workshops, key-strikers step away from the piano for demonstrative lectures on chord-centric playing techniques. Created for new players, students will learn to play chords by feel, much like touch-typing or finding ice-cream stashes during darkened midnight freezer raids. Each student receives a workbook to follow along during a three-hour demonstration from the instructor (a $60 value), and afterwards each student gets an instructional audio CD (a $25 value) for at-home practice of the day's lessons. The workshops are also meant to provide aspiring players with the confidence to stylize their favorite songs, improvise melodies, and attempt one-fingered renditions of "Chopsticks."
Most people fall in love at some point in college, and Bill Edmund was no exception. He can still recall how his heartstrings tightened when, in 1983, he was introduced to the classical guitar. As his burgeoning career in geology led him to Louisiana and California, Edmund carved out time to pursue classical and flamenco guitar. While studying new fingerpicking techniques and improving his musicianship, he managed to accumulate a sizable collection of fine and rare guitars. In 2010, this collection helped him to open Vintage Guitars International, where he now devotes his full attention to the love he first discovered back in college.
As one of the top guitar retailers in the Northwest, Edmund’s guitar emporium stocks a selection of classical and flamenco guitars and ukuleles crafted by luthiers from across North America and Europe. Alongside its most sought-after instruments, the store also sells intro-level guitars, sheet music, books, and cases—each of which includes a complimentary air guitar.
Meringue's knowledgeable staff curates a collection of more than 300 styles of denim alongside a variety of chic formalwear and casualwear, maternity clothing, baby and kid clothing, and gifts. Designer denimcrats can brandish jean brands such as True Religion, 7 For All Mankind, and Hudson. To treat that special someone locked in a darkened crawlspace, Meringue also stocks a wide range of home and gift items, including candles by Bluewick (starting at $10 on sale) and Kobo (starting at $28 on sale). Stylish toddlers can snuggle up in baby products such as Petunia Pickle Bottom swaddling blankets ($74–$84 for a set of three). Other high-end toddler trimmings at the lifestyle boutique span brands such as Fleurville, Juicy Couture Baby, and Splendid Littles.
A ponytailed toddler grips her sunglasses determinedly as her parents crouch, smiling, in the background. Walking atop either side of a railroad track, a young couple bridges the distance with their hands. In the midst of wedding preparations, a bride pauses to read a love letter from her soon-to-be spouse. These are a few of the fleeting moments placed in a beautiful image-jail by This Is Life Photography’s founder Marisa. Fascinated by the power of freezing time since she was a child, she composes portraits and wedding scenes with an eye toward creating mementos that can be handed down for generations.