Local Jewelry Designers We Love + Carry

When clothes and shoes don't fit, jewelry always does. The designers we've chosen to carry at Consign Couture are not only talented at their craft but the women behind making the actual pieces are all incredible women. Every one of these ladies I think the world of personally and professionally. We've grown together in this business ownership gig, and the shop would not be the same without them. Each designer below has a link to their online shop if you want to see more of their designs. 


Chapter Jewelry: Made by Erica Brotzman 

" I design pieces that are defined by contours, delicacy and negative space, for versatility that can link day to night, the present to the future, and one chapter to the next. This is jewelry for every story."


Saressa Designs: Made by Rachel Hughes 

"Classic and modern are beautifully balanced with each piece from Saressa Designs. Self-taught designer Rachel Hughes creates a striking line of handcrafted jewelry that is trendsetting and timeless, making adornment effortless for her customers."

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Kirsten Elise: Made by Kirsten Landau

"Don't let anyone tell you that you aren't rad as fuck" 

One of a kind jewelry made with gem stones, vintage chain, and bones.

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Ayumi Angel: Made by Ayumi Angel 

"The philosophy behind the collections is that fashion should be simple and easy. The inspiration behind the designs are the minimalist aesthetic found in Asia where Ayumi lived and traveled extensively"



Ann Revere Lavenda Collection: Made by Allie Philips

"Ann Revere Jewelry is named after my wonderful grandparents, Edna Ann & Paul Revere. They will always be my greatest inspiration to follow my heart and pursue my passion."


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Morgen Barrett Designs: Made by Morgen Barrett

" I have a love and passion for drama and art and decided that I would use my talent to create dramatic designs through jewelry. In the last 6 years, I have improved my talent and have created my own style through my unique designs."


A Tea Leaf: Made by Alissa Thiele 

"Today, A Tea Leaf jewelry is still inspired by nature and exploring the Pacific Northwest as well as vintage touches. As a "one woman shop", I do it all: from concept to creation to packaging and shipping. It all happens from A Tea Leaf HQ (my apartment)."

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Brighton Place: Made by Dani Collette 

"I started this shop to share my creations with those who have a love for the unique and handmade. Watch as I create everything from functional work and jewelry to fine art that will be shared with those who have an appreciation for the beautiful and unique. 


You can't go wrong with supporting any of these designers in the shop or with them directly. 


Grace applied to work at my friends bakery, Posies, a little over a year ago. When my friends saw her resume and noticed she had been a fashion designer in LA she sent me the resume. I met Grace and it was a great interview. I was worried she was overqualified for a shopgirl/etc position so I waited a little over a week to schedule the follow up. I knew I couldn't let her go. After working with her the first day seeing her get excited at the smallest things (like I do) being super random I knew she was going to fit right in.

As she ends her time here at Consign Couture on a regular basis in 2 weekends I have to explain some of what she did for my business. She listened and supported my daily challenges in running a small business, she allowed me to take meetings and develop my passions in working on my book, collaborating with other consignment shop owners, creating my shopping tours, explore growth options, spend time with my family, do more closet edits and she always cared about everything I did like it was hers too. Being next to her made me a better person because she was a walking talking living example of my favorite quote: "how you do anything is how you do everything". Grace is also a walking example of why anyone can be touched by gods love and grace. Even if you are not religious she embodies the most beautiful example of a perfectly un-perfect disciple of god. 

Where is Grace going? She's staying in the Portland area and hopes to have more time not working at CC to develop her own clothing line for women. When she is ready to show some of her inital prototypes I will be her biggest cheerleader. We will announce how you can follow her and support her very soon.  I know all of the regulars at the shop can't wait to see what she does next and we will all be behind you following your passions and dreams!

I will miss when she texts me a warning when she is microwaving chicken "chicken time" (because I hate the smell of chicken).

Love you Grace thank you for a year of service!

Mini Business Pod on Lombard St. Behind Consign Couture

I've owned 7400 N Lombard St for 8 years and have dreamed of ways to successfully occupy the empty space behind the shop for all those years. I'm finally ready and super excited to move forward with my plan to create a mini business pod (AKA boutique trailer park) in the space.  

  • I've hired a landscape architect who lives in the neighborhood and we've decided to manage the project in 3 steps:
  1. Identify the 2-4 trailers and sizes we want in the space 
  2. Design for the trailer sizes going in and plan the landscape design for the common areas (August 17)
  3. Plant the landscape design, put the final touches on the landscape (September 17)
  • The goal for the space is to have 4 small businesses that already own or can acquire their own trailer for their business to operate in the pod behind Consign Couture. The 4 businesses would be like minded and collaborative and we could all share customers!
  • After brainstorming with other peers and a PR firm we agreed that the types of business best suited for the space would be: 
    • Blow out bar
    • Eyebrow threading
    • Nail Salon
    • Alterations/Shoe Repair (could share a trailer space)
    • Esthetician or Massage Therapist
    • Other beauty, gift or service related business 
  • We plan to offer coffee, tea, juices and kombucha in some form as part of the pod when the plan for the space unfolds more. We will work with the food cart pod located next door and offer options that they don't currently offer!
  • Trailer specifics: after talking to the city the trailers need to be on wheels and no longer than 26 feet. The space is already zoned commercial.
  • There will be a separate side entrance accessible from Lombard and great signage space visible from Lombard St. on the side of Consign Consign Couture
  • Rent for the spaces will be determined soon, in the ballpark of $550 per space.  I am planning on offering a sliding scale that will go to full rent after 3 months. Lease terms will be for a minimum of 1 year.  The rent will include water, power and ground maintenance. 
  • On the block currently: A very popular Portland/St. Johns food cart pod and farm stand next door, a tire factory, a fair trade gift store with things from all around the world (Zumbido), an art gallery (AKA) and a fantastic tap house (Lombard House)
  • If you want to check out the yard inspiration board click here
  • Consign Couture has been open 6 years and has a wonderful community of customers, vendors and neighbors. There is a steady stream of traffic all day long. Lombard St is a very busy street and St. Johns is a growing area!

If you are interested in applying to be part of this project please send me your idea and/or a proposal to Tamara@Consign-Couture.com. 

Portland Shopping Tours Maiden Voyage

You know those jobs you've always dreamed of having but they sound silly? I've secretly always wanted to be a tour guide. Any vacation i've ever taken I always sign up for a local tour and always find it the best way to get to know any city you're in. This last weekend one of my dreams came true when I took 24 amazing ladies around Portland. 

The day began with pastries and coffee from Posies Bakery while perusing Consign Couture.  We boarded the bus and off to our first stop What's Upstairs on NW 23rd. Rachel, the owner, went above and beyond in getting swag bags together for the ladies full of amazing samples from stores on 23rd. 45 minutes of shopping later we were settled in for a catered lunch at The Society Hotel complete with Underwood Rosè, Avacado Toast, seasonal fruit and salad with a side of a beautiful roooftop view of downtown Portland and a history lesson from Jessie Burke one of the hotels partners.  

Following lunch we shopped Consigning Women in the Pearl District, and finished the day at Button in Kenton. On the ride back to Consign Couture we played a round of "Show & Tell" showcasing our favorite finds of the day. 

I think the best part of this first tour was the community of women who were full of joy all day. Mother's and daughter's, old friends and new friends were all made. There is nothing I enjoy more than connecting like minded positive women!

The next Portland Shopping Tour will be 5/27 more details to come as we get the shops on board!

You can sign up here: THE NEXT TOUR

Special Thanks: 

Jade Shebelski Social Media Content Creator for the day

Meg Nanna Event Photography 

 CC Barber Event Assistant 

Want To Be a Consign Couture UP Fashion Ambassador?

What Are We Looking For: 

Are you active in social media? 

Do you have an interest in clothing & styling? 

Do you have a small bio as to why you would represent our local boutique well to other UP students? 

Would you be willing to post 2 times weekly wearing clothing from consign couture and tagging our store on Instagram and Facebook?

Do you have a creative collaborative approach to projects?

Do you have a solution based attitude? 

If chosen you will receive:

Store credit monthly allowance

A standing % off all items in the shop 

How to apply: 

Name *

Closet Clean Out With Tamara

Before Shot

Before Shot

One of the things i've done most of my life is clean and organize closets. Before I opened my shop I started organizing my friends closets and personal shopping and that was the perfect mixture of passions to open a consignment shop in 2011. I think I instinctively enjoyed color coding and making my own closet a fun place since I was little and my mom was and is a borderline mild hoarder (she's gotten a lot better!) Because of my upbringing I am a compulsive declutter. I've been in heaven the last 5 years with the minimalist and konmari methods going viral. I also love shopping and constantly evolving my personal style based on my travels and how I am feeling. 

I offer in home consignment pick ups and closet clean outs as add on services for my business but I also teach classes to declutter your closet. 

Here's what you need to pre-detox your closet: 

  • 6 bins/boxes

  • Full length mirror

  • Good music & morale support

  • Wine & snacks

Label your boxes or bins

  • Donate

  • Consign

  • Keepsakes

  • Trial Separation

  • Get Tailored

  • Off season storage

I made a highlight video this weekend doing a mini closet clean out with one of my clients with the filming thanks to Megan Nanna.  You can see some of the before closet photos where her closet seems not too cluttered. We touched every item and discussed if it worked for her current life, style and if she felt confident in it and after 4 hours we removed TWELVE trash bags of stuff. Amazing. My approach is not to force anyone to let go of things I just ask questions. 

After chatting with Teri post closet clean out she told me that she acquired the bulk of her excess "stuff" when she transitioned from the East coast to Portland 5 years ago. She realized she didn't know how to adjust to the PNW style and just continued to acquire instead of really identifying her own personal style and buying with confidence. 

My general rule of thumb is after a closet clean out to really sit with what you are missing and what you need and keep notes. After 2 weeks you can start shopping again with more confidence. 

A video with Tamara and Teri showing some of the process of what a normal closet clean out looks like. At the end her husband Ryan comes in and she had to explain she wasn't leaving him. (haha). 

Sorting process

Sorting process

This is not even all that we removed from Teri's closet. Most being donated to GHM ministries!

This is not even all that we removed from Teri's closet. Most being donated to GHM ministries!

A quick after photo

A quick after photo

Now the process of shopping can be fun again now that Teri has a better idea of what she really needs. Not to mention all the space (physical & mental) she has now!

Thank you Meg for filming and photos. Thank you Teri and Ryan for letting me raid your home and allowing me to drink your good pink bubbles. 

The Last Two Years

The past two years I've had more personal growth than any other time period of my life. No matter what you may be facing I have found that the hardest things in life really do promote a new lens on life. I have gained an appreciation for all I have, a gratitude, and an understanding of life that fills me with more compassion, understanding and a deep sense of self.  

I want to thank Meg Nanna for the beautiful photos she did for The Women's Expo Magazine. about a week ago. I've been photographing as part of what I do my entire career and I have actually never had my own lifestyle shoot. She made me walk the talk I help others see for themselves. 

48 Hours in Phoenix

In the last year I've been to Phoenix 3 times. A place i never thought i'd fall in love with but it really has become one of my favorite place to have a long weekend trip! Its so true if you know a local and find the best spots any city can be refreshing. One of the main draws here are my dear friends who live here Adam and Hayfa. I met them when they lived in Portland but they are both from Phoenix. I had to share my favorite spots (all food spots guided by Hayfa) for those of you who can find cheap airfare to Phoenix and want to enjoy it like a local. If you're willing to fly frontier you can find $78 RT tickets often from PDX - PHX! You can't bring luggage when you fly Frontier -- so I always recommend Southwest. 

Must Visit Stores


My Favorite Spots to Eat: all places found because Hayfa knows what I like 

Lastly, If you can swing it go to Sedona! One of the most beautiful places in the US. (2.5 hours from Phoenix) and eat at  http://chocolatree.com/ and pay $9 for the most amazing drink you will ever have called the "warm on" (shown in photos below with a heart) 

Have Fun!



New Arrivals At The Society Hotel: Chloe + Jade

These crazy girls have been a part of my life for nearly 5 years now. They grew up in Bellingham, WA and their moms were pregnant together nearly 24 years ago. I met Chloe one day when she was shopping and knew I wanted her to work in the shop. About a year later when I was living out of state for a while; Chloe introduced me to Jade and the 2 girls managed the shop together perfectly. They have been a blessing to my life and business and its been so fun watching them grow as women. Their friendship is one that I’ve never seen anything like.

Here’s a little Q + A with the girls after our shoot at The Society Hotel


What are you up to now?

Chloe: I've been a part of the Oblation Papers & Press team for about two years now, and recently became the manager of the digital design department. The position is time consuming, but I love the people I work with, and am getting good experience while finishing my graphic design degree at Portland State University.


I am currently in my 4th term of massage school at East West College of the Healing Arts, and will be able to get my license in the Spring of 2017. I work a few days a week at a cute little restaurant, and of course at the beloved Consign Couture on Saturdays because Tamara can't get rid of me! I spend any free time I have hanging out with loved ones, taking dance classes, cooking, reading, netflix-ing and being outside.

What is your favorite thing to do in Portland together?

Chloe: Jade will forever be my favorite person to dance with. The amount of energy bottled up in that tiny human is amazing, so dancing at a concert, random club or bar will always be a good time when she's around. I also love when we can plan date nights, and treat ourselves to dinner and drinks at new restaurants around town. It doesn't happen often since our schedules often clash, but that what makes the time even more special. *cheese*


We like to eat good food, drink good drinks, hike in the lovely surrounding areas of Portland, have fun nights out, and cozy nights in! Basically no matter what I'm doing with Chloe I have a good time.

What is your favorite thing you've ever gotten at cc?

Chloe: The first item that comes to mind is this Pendleton Portland Collection poncho sweater. It came in one dreary day, and I immediately knew I couldn't live without it. Soft wool. Black. Large and boxy. Yes.

Jade: It's going to sound lame but my best loved and most worn thing I've ever gotten at CC is a pair of amazing high waisted Lululemon leggings that I have literally been able to make work for every activity in my life. School? Yes. Work? Yes. Dance class? Yes. Hiking? Yes. Lounging? Yes. Going out? Yes, I'm pretty sure I've worn them to go out too.

What is a memory that sticks out from the times you worked at cc?

Chloe: Either the memory of how I got hired -- trying on clothes in the dressing room, and having Tamara hire me upon our first meeting, or the days when Jade and I were the only two working and would be able to organize the shop, collaborate on social media together and host cold, Winter events in the shop.

Jade: I loved the day when Tamara decided we needed to drag the teal couch out to the backyard to take photos. I had just put on stiletto heels when she got the idea, and instead of asking me to take them off and help her, she said "Oh, I'll just carry you out to the couch." I ended up taking the shoes off and helping her anyways, but I truly do not doubt that she would have moved that couch out to the back yard by herself and then carried me too! Too funny.

What would you say is your superpower?

Chloe: Always a tough question. I think I'm relatively good at remaining level headed even in stressful situations. Whether it's work related, or a friend is in emotion need I like to think that I can keep calm throughout any situation, listen to whoever is in need, and keep a positive attitude.


I have an annoyingly good memory (only annoying because I expect everyone else to have the same memory capacity, which just isn't so,) and I have a knack for remembering small details.


Clothing Details: Top to Bottom

Dress w/ gold: Vintage (4)

Dress (black) Vera Wang (6)

Beaded Black Top by J. Crew (S)

Legging/Pants by J. Crew (Olive/0)

Black Silk Top, Nike Hoodie & Portland Top (sold on the shoot)

Loafers by Dr. Martian (6)

Chunky Sweater (M/)

Tassle Necklace by Le Jardin

gold Earrings By Kirsten Elise

Wrap Top by DVF (0-4)

Pleated Skirt Pins & Needles (4)

Black Heels by Topshop (6.5)

Black Coat by Laundry (10)

Tweed Skirt by St. John (M)

Silver Dress by BCBG (2) 


Fall Favorites

This past week I was so excited to photo new arrivals because Portland is so beautiful when it first turns fall. I called on 2 of my most favorite shop beauties. Its such an honor to know a stylist as talented as Karen who's willing and excited to help me our make pretty photos no matter what the job is. Karen works as a stylist and creative director at Studio Luxe in The Pearl . We've worked together on photoshoots for at least the past 8-9 years creating for own individual business endeavors together and always sit back together usually on a couch while smiling, laughing and trying to plan the next thing we want to do together. 

Dani is a friend who will always be a part of my store in some capacity. She is at an amazing place in her career forecasting trends for a major footwear company.  She has shown up more times than I can count to help model, style, list things online and so much more. She loves to support other women follow their passion.

The following photos is the result of 3 friends getting together in the pouring rain to create something.  Outfit details at the bottom. 

Hair: Karen Miles | Studio Luxe

Outfit 1: Dress by J. Peterman Company (14), Black Booties by Target (9.5)

Outfit 2: Coat by J. Crew (M), Dress by Baraschi (6) Boots by Sam Edelman (9.5) Necklace by Chapter

Outfit 3: Lace Top by Lucky Brand (XL), Denim by Seven 4 All Mankind (27), Booties by Von Dutch (10) and necklace by Chapter. 

Clothing all found at Consign Couture

Fall Looks At The Society Hotel

I don't know why I don't hang out at this hotel every Sunday and shoot new looks. Maybe I will. Every single day I get asked what are we looking for? I worked with a blogger and Megan Nanna to create a 5 best fall looks of what we are looking for. Megan was the photographer who freelances for Willamette Week. SHE DID SUCH A GREAT JOB! The Society Hotel in Chinatown is one of my most favorite places in Portland now. I've seen it transition from an old abandoned building 2 years ago to what it is now. A destination place in Portland where the staff all feels like family.

Here are some ideas of what we are looking for. 

Top Things we are looking for:

Ath-leisure, Sunglasses & athletic shoes. 

Black on Black, Tops, skinny jeggings, denim, leggings. 

Tops, Skinny/Straight denim, Boots & all coats. 

Holiday Dresses, heels, velvet, long gowns .

Going out: boots, rompers, pantsuits, handbags, backpacks.

Location: The Society Hotel

Photographer: Megan Nanna

Model: Katie Cockerill

Clothing: Consign Couture

Jewelry: Hana Designs BY Ayumi Angel

Jewelry Organizer Workshop

The first necklace organizer event back in July was popular and many requested we hold a 2nd one!  Save the date for Thursday, September 29 6pm-­8:30 pm. Wine, power drills and you walk away with a way to hang your jewelry beautifully. From the workshop you will leave with not only a one of a kind necklace organizer made by you. To register for the workshop please call the store, send a direct message on Facebook, Instagram or email directly.  Workshop is limited to 10. 


When: Thursday 9/29 (6pm-8:30 pm)

Where: Consign Couture 

Cost: $40

How To Register: Your place will be held with payment. You can sign up by emailing info@consign-couture.com

How to pay: You can stop into the shop and pay via credit card, check or cash --- you can pay online by requesting an invoice and we can send one via PayPal or Venmo. 

What it includes:

A jewelry holder you will make out of reclaimed/exotic wood (assorted color & sizes)

Light snacks (food carts are next door also)




Fall Is Here What Are We Looking For?

The season is changing from summer to fall, which means we need you to start editing your closet. All of those fall clothes that are in your closet that you didn’t wear once last season, we want them.. If you're anything like me you don't want to wear much of what you did fall 15 so lets make room for new fashion for Fall 16 in your closet. 

We are looking for all things that say fall & winter but here is a list to give you a guide:

●  Booties

●  Clogs

●  Layering Sweaters

●  Athleisure (ie: thick leggings, Cardigans, Nike, Lululemon, Fabletics)

●  Crossbody bags

●  Leather backpacks

●  Sweater Dresses

●  Boots

●  Wool & Rain Coats

●  Designer Denim (Straight & Skinny Styles)

●  Holiday Dresses

We have a large demand of sizes 10,12,14 and 16 which means they don’t stay on the racks very long which is great for you as a consignor. Consigning your clothes in those sizes with us pretty much guarantees money in your pocket.

We are looking for items that are clean, lightly worn, seasonal, currently in fashion, have good color saturation (not faded) and without pilling or fuzz balls. Items should be items that you would feel good about spending money on if you were looking at them for the first time.

Stop by and bring us your clothes, we are open everyday except Mondays. We can’t wait to see you. 


Summer Craft Night Series: Wood Jewelry Hangers


Our first in a series of 3 summer craft nights! During our first one we will be making a wood jewelry holder. An example is shown below. I've made a few after some employees made some for the shop years ago and everyone always LOVES them (and always asks to buy their own!) We will provide wine & snacks and the best part is we will feature an amazing local singer , Katelyn Convery. She will be performing a few songs on and off while we're making.


When: Thursday 7/21 (6pm-8:30)

Where: Consign Couture 

Cost: $40

How To Register: Your place will be held with payment. You can sign up by emailing info@consign-couture.com

How to pay: You can stop into the shop and pay via credit card, check or cash --- you can pay online by requesting an invoice and we can send one via PayPal or Venmo. 

What it includes:

A jewelry holder you will make out of reclaimed/exotic wood (assorted color & sizes)

Light snacks (food carts are next door also)


Little bit of live music performed by Katelyn Convery


JD's Shoe Repair

I met Julie because I like to repair my most loved shoes instead of buy new ones. When you walk into her shop on 728 N Alberta every ounce of floor space is full of creative ideas that improve her business. I took this photo her her with her mom when she hand delivered a pair of boots he had fixed for me.  She has a beautiful calm spirit and always talks about the joy of riding her bike and still really loves her work as a cobbler. 

As we have gotten to know each other we are trying to figure out a way to work together more (since there is no shoe repair in St. Johns) For now, we are going to host "pop up shoe repair parties" HA. I'm Serious. Tomorrow, Julie will be at our anniversary party from 4-8 shining shoes and taking any of your shoes that need to be repaired and then return them back to Consign Couture. 

I asked her how she got into her current line of work

Before shoe repair I had worked as a union organizer and community organizer in public schools, but I always felt a yearning for shoe repair. I can't explain it. I had to get into it, though. I was able to get on the job training at Art n Sole and with Cobbler Bill, then decided to open my own shop in my own neighborhood in 2009. It's been 11 years in the trade and I'm always learning more about my craft. I love the variety of work and the tools, and I have huge appreciation for the shoes and my customers. 

What keeps you in it? 

I would say that shoe repair is humble work and grand work all at once. I love to keep shoes going for people for whatever reasons they have. I love the incredible variety and also the consistency in shoes. 

This is a 2nd career for you? 

It is. I love it continually, plus there is the ever expanding journey of small business ownership. I'm in my version of what you were talking about last week, dealing with a couple of displeased customers and smoothing and diffusing. Mostly it is rewarding and great.

You can find JD's shoe repair on Instagram @jdshoerepair on the web here: Jd's Shoe Repair

Customer Stories: Ellene

First off I loved this woman before I could remember her name. Ellene is the exact customer that makes the cycle of consignment so fun. She brings clothes in every month and stops in most weeks to see whats new. Over the years we slowly become friends. She's one of my favorite people on the planet.  If She's had a stressful day she stops over at the shop and we have tea. Our favorite mutual story is she bought her wedding dress at CC ON THE DAY OF HER WEDDING day for $30 and invited me to the wedding. 

I invited her over this morning to my office for coffee and a Q & A: 

What do you do:

I am a Mental Health Consultant with Multnomah County and work with children and adolescents in the mental health system. I also ride my bike and tap dance, but unfortunately don't get paid to do those things.

How did you find out about cc:

I live in St. Johns and popped in shortly after you hung the original sign. It was love at first sight.

Why do you like shopping consignment:

This is such a tough answer to break down...I just do! Who doesn't love consignment?! I accumulate a lot of clothing because a) My job can be stressful and shopping is one way I decompress and b) I have two closets in my home and my husband literally owns five t-shirts and a couple pairs of pants, so I have lots of potential space to fill. Shopping consignment has allowed me to avoid becoming a total hoarder by making a "one in, one out" rule...if I'm going to buy something, I also need to consign something at your store.

Additionally, consignment shops like yours are great in that everything is carefully hand picked, clean stylish...your space is welcoming, you and your shop girls are so friendly and will tell me straight up whether something I've tried on is working for me. It feels more like popping over to a friend's house to grab something out of their closet, and I think that's one of the many, many benefits of shopping at a local business that's woman owned.

Best consignment score:

These amaaaazing red patent leather Taryn Rose peep toe wedges. Somehow they landed in the sale section and I snagged them for $35! I get so many compliments every time I wear them.

How did we meet: 

I'd been shopping at CC for about a year when I purchased a darling couch off of Craigslist very randomly and unexpectedly from you! Though you were moving away, you'd visit every month or so and every time I'd run into you at the shop you'd introduce me to everyone as, "The girl who bought my couch!". I still have that couch, by the way.

What other cities have you lived: 

I grew up in Portland, Texas and moved to Atlanta for college. I've been in Portland, Oregon for over 11 years and still love it.

Besides CC where do you love to shop:

Anthropologie, Tilde, Frock, Madewell


Meet Kristen with Ideaspark Interiors

A few months ago I hung out at Kristen's house to take photos inside her beautiful home in North Portland.  A glimpse of her interior decoration skills. I've known her almost the entire time i've owned my shop (my very first memory is of her and her husband walking in to the store with 6-7 BOXES of amazing clothing). As i processed her items for consignment I realized that this woman has style. Any time i've done something new she's supported me with advice or bringing in clothing. In the last 5 years she has transitioned into interior designing from a long career in PR work and and helped open 2 very successful Portland based restaurants. Tabor Tavern in SE first then Swift & Union last year in Kenton.  Since she started interior design she has helped me with my space and recently she helped a dear customer of the shop. That customer will not stop talking about how she loved what Kristen did with her space and how it made being in her space so much more enjoyable!

you can find Ideaspark online at Ideaspark or on Instagram @ideasparkinteriors

I asked her some questions: 


In today’s world, home decor trends are ever-changing and occurring at a breakneck speed.  As a designer, it’s difficult to keep up and it’s even more so as a consumer.  I find it’s hard to stay true to your personal style when all of the home magazines are telling us what we own is “so yesterday.”  Hiring an expert is great way to minimize the noise; he or she can identify which trends are likely to pass and those that are tried and true. This can not only help you feel happier with your home, but significantly reduce the amount you spend chasing after the latest trends. 



Hiring a designer should neither be intimidating nor make you feel incompetent. To me, bringing in a designer is akin to hiring a great hairdresser.  You could cut and color your own hair, but in all likelihood, the result will not be as good. Like a hair stylist, my goal is not to judge a client, but to assess what he or she has to work with and then recommend ways to make their space both functional and fabulous.  



My ideal client is open-minded and willing to get a little vulnerable.  I feel a huge amount of responsibility when I am invited in to a person’s home. This can be a very difficult process for some people because I do dole out a bit of tough love (i.e. do you really love that Hope chest from high school). Those who are willing to dig deep and take a few chances are the ones that will glean the greatest results. 



I have my undergraduate from University of Oregon.  I practiced public relations for 20 years before deciding I needed to follow my dream of interior design. I studied that at Heritage School of Interior Design here in Portland.  It’s an amazing, accelerated curriculum that I can’t recommend highly enough. 



There have been so many, but my latest would be these gigantic wooden hands I found at Kenton Antiques. They are both weird and wonderful and always elicit a response from guests. If I could shop second hand stores exclusively, I would.



Personally speaking, I have always been impacted by my environment.  If a space didn’t feel right, I literally couldn’t focus.  This has been an advantage in interior design in that I am not afraid to try many things in a space until I find the one that fits and makes a space feel harmonious.  Professionally, I practiced PR for 20 years helping clients tell the stories of their businesses either verbally or in writing. Today, I am helping clients tell their stories through their homes’ design.



I grew up in California in the central valley.  I attended college in Eugene and did a stint abroad in France.  My husband and I lived in Seattle for a year, as well.  We’ve also lived in nearly every quadrant of Portland, each of which can feel like another country at times! We’ve been in North Portland for nearly two years now. 



Ah, travel. My long-term goal is to have a client on every continent! My husband and I do not have children (of the human kind) and have spent the majority of our 20 years together plotting our next getaway.  We have been all over Europe, SE Asia, Japan, South America, Central America and Mexico, to name a few. There are three things I must do whenever I visit a place 1) Go to a grocery store and wander the aisles. 2) Visit a gallery featuring local artists and 3) Get a pair of shoes or jewelry from a local maker.  Food, design and fashion make the world go ‘round.

Le Jardin

Nicole asked me if I wanted to carry a few necklaces she had made recently. She sent a picture and I was in love. We sold 3 in the first few days and have requests for more so I'm going to pester her to make more for our anniversary party this Saturday. 

Last Friday I popped into Nicole's new house so I could get some pictures of the necklaces. Her 4 year old, Yvie, who could be the cutest child alive was excited to ham it up for the camera. 

For the next hour Yvie entertained us all and I took some photos. Nicole's calling her line Le Jardin. 


Nicole & her Husband Travis own Leisure, a bar a few blocks from the shop which happens to be one of Portland's best kept Brunch spot secrets. The food & service is fantastic and there is never a wait.