Back to the Drawing Board | A Brick + Mortar Update

Retail Space Inspiration

Hello muffins. I wanted to share a bit of brick + mortar shop news with you. It’s back to the drawing board. Or so it seems. One of the lessons I have learned in operating an online vintage shop then trying to expand into an actual retail location is that until papers are signed NOTHING is final.

We had high hopes for a certain location in Portland for mine and my fiancé’s combined retail store, but our recent meeting last weekend didn’t pan out too well for us. Things could still shift and turn out differently, but right now, it’s back to the drawing board.

Retail Space Inspiration for Adored Vintage Brick + Mortar

Sometimes getting into commercial real estate is simple. But then you get into bigger corporate sort of places and locations still in development and it starts to get complicated. And SUDDENLY numbers and figures are laser shooting holes through your money bag at a dangerously quick pace.

So, you take a step back. Gather your wits about you, and just start the process over.

That’s where we’re at right now. And frankly, I’m quite exhausted about it. It’s a minor hiccup in the big scheme of things, but I can’t help but feel anxious that plans are just taking too long to be set into action.

I want to be picking out PAINT colors already. And buy STORE FIXTURES. And hang plants from the ceilings. I’ve been saving dozens of shop inspiration images to my (secret, hehe) Pinterest boards and taking screencaps on Instagram of beautiful shops from around the world. I just want to GET STARTED already.

Retail Space Inspiration for Adored Vintage Brick + Mortar

We looked at another space this morning and then looking at a couple others early next week. I am not pinning to many of my hopes on these too much. We’ll just see what happens. We’re still set to open a brick + mortar in Spring 2015. Just perhaps not in the location we have been planning on for the past few months.

So, to pick up my spirits, I’m posting a bunch of my shop inspiration photos.

Retail Shop Inspiration

I have always adored this old fashioned looking shop sign.

Retail Shop Inspiration

Rob and I love the idea of old shop lettering on the exterior and dark paint on the exterior too. Not quite as ink black as this, more of a dark navy or hunter green.

Retail shop exterior

This is closer to the color we would paint the exterior. It would be a beautiful contrast with white, pale grey, cream, and industrial accents.

Retail Shop Inspiration

The challenge of course is seamlessly blending the aesthetic of Orn Hansen and Adored Vintage in one space. We have some ideas on how to do it… but until we can try them out, it’s just floating around in our minds.

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Brick and Mortar | Part 1


It’s finally happening… I’m opening up a brick + mortar shop!

HOWEVER… it’s probably not what you’re expecting.

HECK, it’s not even what I MYSELF was expecting. And I’m GREAT with that. (It took me awhile to get around this, believe me!)

Maybe you know, but maybe you don’t, but my fiancé also owns a shop called Orn Hansen. It’s an all American made men’s and women’s shop with home goods, vintage, and apothecary… good stuff.

For the past couple of months we have been discussing the future of BOTH our shops. Certain passions have come and go. We both feel slightly pulled in different directions but have a common goal. Just different pathways of getting there.

Am I opening up an Adored Vintage shop? No. No, I’m not.

Portland already has too many vintage shops. And most of them are absolutely wonderful. Portland DOES NOT need ANOTHER vintage shop.

Instead my fiancé handed the reins of Orn Hansen to me and the feel and look of that shop will now have traces of Adored Vintage.

But it’s probably going to have a different name. Maybe. I really like the name Orn Hansen. Mostly because it doesn’t define what KIND of shop it should be. It’s a name that belongs to one of my fiancé’s ancestors. It has strength, history, and a pretty damn awesome story behind it.

I’ll get to those details and stuff later.

Really right now I’m in the midst of flushing out what the future shop is going to look like. How it will feel. What it will evoke in you when you walk in.

Will I sell vintage? You bet your ass I will. I’ll be selling a highly curated selection of vintage in the shop.

But I’ll also be selling modern day clothing and accessories from independent designers mostly all American Made. There are a couple brands from Japan I really want to bring in, but hey… I can’t get too over my head yet.

My store will be the kind of store I want my style icons to shop in. Audrey Hepburn, Diana Vreeland, Georgia O’Keefe, Jane Birkin, and any Ziegfeld girl from the 1920s.

It will be clean. Clean simple lines. Clean white walls. Or grey. Probably grey. Raw cement floors. And some touches of antique salvaged architectural pieces. And plants. I’ll have lots of plants.

It will be a warm and welcoming space. A space that feels familiar, there will be bits of nostalgia. I want you to feel like you’ve been here before. Maybe in your dreams. *HEHEHEHE* I have to giggle about that because I’m NOT KIDDING. I seriously want you to walk in and feel like you’ve been here before. I’m not trying to be creepy, promise.

Oh, and the shop will also be housing my small capsule clothing collection I’m currently working on. (Name to be revealed as soon as it all becomes official!)

We’ll be selling menswear still too! Great classic American made basics like selvedge denim, classic white and grey tees, oxford shirts, leather boots, canvas rucksacks and packs.

In addition to clothing and accessories, we will be stocking bitters, salts, honey, beeswax candles, linens, ceramics, apothecary, literature…

I’ll also be in the lookout for any florists who would like a small space in the shop. We’ve been told that it’s probable a bakery/cafe/biergarten will be our next door neighbors… perfect pairing if you ask me.

I’m dreaming big these days. And they’re not scaring me yet. And what’s that silly quote about if your dreams don’t scare you then you need to dream bigger?

NAHHhh… I’m calling BS on that. Your dreams SHOULDN’T scare you (those are nightmares, duh). Your dreams should INSPIRE you, should MOTIVATE you. Your dreams should IGNITE hope inside your very core and make light spill out of your pores like sunbeams through a cloud.

And that’s about how I feel like now! I know there will be challenges. Problems. Troubles. I’m NOT just a dreamer. I can get real, I can get DOWN. LOL. It’s just more fun to function on dreams than on worries.

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