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Tuesday, July 30, 2013

What's Happening

I forgot to tell you that we're having a great sale this weekend at Passionflower.  A good sale. A really good sale.  Lots of super cute clothes and other goodies half off.  So, tell your friends, come early and get the good stuff.


Sunday, July 28, 2013

It's Dahlia Season Chez Passionflower



My sources in the know tell me that these overcast mornings we've been having
tend to make the colors of the dahlias even richer and more intense.
Now I ask you, how extremely cool is that? That this family has been growing dahlias for so long and paying attention to the subtleties of sun and wind and water and weather, that they notice these
kinds of things. 

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Another Beautiful Bride

Made my week when this photo of last weeks bride crossed my desk. 
She just looks so happy.  And when was the last time we did a brightly coloured bouquet?
I can't really remember.

Friday, July 26, 2013

More Dandelion Love

First fell in love with this botanical illustration by Erika Beyer (who just so happens to be from Eugene) when I saw them at Karin Clarke Gallery.  What she's illustrating here is the dye colors different part of the dandelion plant produces.  See?   She's teaching you without words.  How cool is that? Plus not sure exactly what it is she's got going on in the upper right, but I think its her version of a seedpuff blowing away.  Oh and those simple black and white leaf parts. There's a whole lot to love here.  Well I was one happy camper when I found out Ms Beyer has a little card line too.  Which are now gracing the shelves chez Passionflower.
There's an iris and a horsetail and I love her series on plant pollinators too.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Something Big Going on in My World

This is kind of a hard blog post to write and one I've been thinking about for a while now.
Big changes are afoot chez Passionflower because beloved manager of many years now, the amazing and stylish Becky Tonkin is leaving the store in October to....to....well I guess the best way to put it is that she's leaving the store to follow her dreams.  And she's moving to Astoria.  I know whatever Becky puts her mind to, it will be amazing, and I completely believe in her creative genius (and I do not use that word lightly) and (OMG, does this sound sappy or what?) I  wish her all the best of luck in whatever she pursues. And I am forever grateful that she has poured her heart and soul into Passionflower.  And I totally get it that someone as talented as she might want to give what they've got to their own creative vision instead of someone elses. Plus it's been a wonderful ride.  And did I mention, how much I'll just miss seeing her everyday?   But, always one to look at the bright side,  it is the perfect excuse for a big blowout, Becky Bon Voyage Party ....so stay tuned for that - I'm thinking First Friday in October.
Insert multiple smiley faces here.
And that also means I'm in a world of hurt until we (the collective Passionflower we)  hire a new manager.  Just a little higher than normal anxiety level - fear of the unknown etc, etc (insert anxiety emoticon here).  And I know she (or he Ha!, how would you feel about seeing a guy behind the cash wrap at Passionflower?) won't be Becky. They'll be someone else with their own strengths and interests and skills and that's actually pretty exciting.  And Becky is going to train them and me too.  And we really need you to help us find the right person - someone who gets our brand, someone who has some panache and a big heart  and loves to sell and has some math and computer smarts too.  You can read the Craig's List ad here.  Or if you think you know someone who'd love this job, tell them about it, Or maybe you, dear reader, are that someone. (Insert hopeful emoticon here)  I'd like to hire in August and have the new person (that's what I'm calling them in my mind right now, might want to reframe that) start in September. Oh my gosh, it's really happening. It's official now.  

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Having Fun in Card Land

  A while back, I realized that constant expansion was not a workable, long term, growth strategy for the store.  I think every business needs to find the size where it does best.  And I think I've found mine.  But being me, which means I am rarely satisfied for long, just because I'm not growing size wise, doesn't mean I don't want to keep getting better.  Hence my new strategy to refine and deepen what I already have at  Passionflower.  And I thought I 'd start with our card section.
So we've added more racks and there's room for 75 or so more cards!  We have a thank you section and a wedding section and lots and lots of our favorite cards from many of our long time vendors and small presses. Hello Lucky, Lark Press, P. Flynn, Saturn Press, Rifle Paper, Waste Not Paper, and Papaya all have an expanded presence at the store.  It's been super fun to troll through my (after almost 20 years of doing this) extensive memory bank of cards I love and pick the best for you. 

Feasting with Honey of a Thousand Flowers

I have always loved this photo of a styled shoot done by Sarah Winward who has a floral business out of Utah (hello Utah - I didn't even know they had flowers in Utah).....And with it being hard core berry season around here , this seemed like the perfect time to share this inspiring photo with you . 
 We've got a nice selection of cake plates at the store right now to fulfill this summer dining fantasy.
A few pieces of wood, a rustic linen or two, some amazing cakes and hunks of cheese  and voila!
which is the name of Sarah's business - don't you just love that name?

A little Birdwatching in the back alleys of Eugene

 Here's a photo of our back alley, land of recycling and UPS deliveries and the occasional hobo and general kind of urban wasteland.  But place where we store sticks and sometimes take photos because there is good natural light.

One day, Becky put a little piece of ponderosa pine bark inside the abandoned electric meter. Just Becky being her usual artsy self while doing the recycling.  Well , lo and behold, some enterprising young bird couple found it the perfect place to build a nest.

Not much to look at but pretty homey for them.   And pretty exciting for us to think we had a bird nest outside the back door.  I i.d.'d them and they're dark eyed juncos!

 To me, this speaks to the resilient power of nature, even in the midst of the concrete jungle, these birds made a little oasis from the Passionflower bark and stick piles.  I will never complain to my staff again about the need to "get rid" of all those messy sticks and bark out there.

Monday, July 1, 2013

First Friday at Passionflower

There are so many things I love about being a retailer.  One is all the interesting people you meet.  Like the cool woman with the way curly hair who always wears the best vintage dresses. And I do mean the best vintage dresses.  One day, you think, "Hmmmm, wonder what she does for a living?".  Lo and behold she's a New York Times bestselling author who writes tongue in cheek humor.  We love her personal style and she's funny too!  So, when Laurie told us she was launching a new book, we thought, "Well we're a literate, humorous bunch.  Why not have a little bookreading/booksigning at the store?".  Which is exactly what we're doing for this coming up First Friday July 5th.  So put on your finest vintage threads and head downtown this Friday and laugh it up with us. Plus enjoy all the other downtown fabulousness.

Image courtesy Amazon