Trophy Case

13 Winning Home, Tech, and Fashion Finds in Local Design

Beautiful backpacks to custom claw-foot tubs, these Portland-designed goods are a step above.

By Marty Patail and Eden Dawn September 21, 2016 Published in the Design Annual: Fall 2016 issue of Portland Monthly

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Handmade in Portland by ceramics masters Mingleware, the glazed stoneware Sill Planters add a spark of bright spring sophistication to your windows. The planters come in three sizes that fit snugly together, like puzzle pieces. From $60,

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Shwood’s Canby Line of wooden frames epitomizes the company’s artsy-meets-Americana aesthetic. From $149,

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Image: Courtesy Folk


NoPo furniture maker Folk’s manifesto reads like a blissed-out mood board: “Stay true to yourself,” “A job worth doing is a job worth doing well,” and “Do the stanky leg.” Whatever the inspiration, Folk’s handcrafted pieces are simple and stylish. Like this floor lamp, with a walnut base, Pendleton wool shade, and steel neck. Do the stanky leg! $1,200,

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All the cool kids want to head east to the Jennings Hotel, a neglected, century-old building in Joseph, Oregon, rehabbed as a hotel-cum-artists’ residence by Portland Bazaar cofounder Greg Hennes. Hennes used his savings and $107,070 he raised on Kickstarter to buy materials, and tapped renowned designers as collaborators. Five rooms were operational as of this summer.

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Tanner Goods adapts salt-and-pepper canvas developed by the Swiss in the ‘40s. (Neutrality!) The Voyager Daypack is woven from nettle and flax. $300,

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Caravan Pacific’s savvy take on midcentury mod has been a design-scene staple for years. The Sullivan table lamp, handcrafted from matte stoneware with a linen shade and deep mahogany, cherry, maple, or walnut accents, basks in the brand’s refined aesthetic. $185,

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Looking Glass Baths creates wild, custom claw-foot tubs that combine functionality with gallery-ready aesthetics. The aether, for instance,
is a 1912 white tub covered in individually cut mirrored mosaic pieces that took more than 100 hours of painstaking labor to apply.

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Wear This Now

Apparel designer Hillary Day has outfitted Portland women for the cold and rain for nearly a decade. Her best-selling winter jacket, the Origami Coat, available in black and charcoal, features a slim A-line and a feminine silhouette. $575–625,

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Big Idea

OK, this robot isn’t going to fetch your slippers anytime soon. But Ringo the Robot serves a more important role: teaching kids to program. Each tiny robot is loaded with light sensors, accelerometers, gyroscopes, and even bot-to-bot communications, all of which can be manipulated via code. $100, 

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Craftsman Jordan Saia makes unadorned furniture out of reclaimed woods. His company TinyShed’s adjustable drafting table turns scrapped “fishtail” oak and steel into a workspace that tilts up for drawing and back level for your laptop. From $1,950,

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Image: Michael Novak

The Library

With its eye-popping sequence of 150 infographic maps—charting everything from racial diversity to security camera locations, ghost sightings to breweries arranged by bitterness—Portlandness: A Cultural Atlas should be required reading for newcomers and natives alike. $25

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Image: Michael Novak

Cannabis Storage

Local leather workers Walnut Studiolo branch out from their lineup of retro-inspired bike accessories with the hand-stitched Classy Stash, which houses three odor-resistant, light-filtering jars to keep your bud fresh and—crucially—organized. $159,

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After Stahl Firepit founder Chad Hughes and his wife remodeled their backyard, Hughes sought an easy-to-store fire pit. He eventually made his own. Precision-laser-cut from five pieces of metal, Stahl pits comes in three sizes, from the steel big boy to a “camper” edition made from lightweight aluminum. Says Hughes, “They develop a beautiful patina that matures in character.” Starting at $499,

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