Salvage / Scrap / Handmade Shopping Update
May 9
Because I have no money, I shop a lot. No buying though! It's masochism, folks, plain and simple! We all need a vice, and masochism works nicely for me. And you benefit as well = bonus!

Here are three new places you really, really need to check out (they're all online, so no need to actually live in gorgeous, wet, muddy PDX):

First is Kiriko Made. A few weeks ago I noticed this article about boro workshops at Portland shop Kiriko:

Meaning rags or scraps, boro is a waste-not-want-not textile tradition dating back to 17th-century Japan, when, for nearly 200 years, all trade was prohibited with foreign nations. As a result, cotton became a currency: coveted, treasured, and passed down through generations. Year after year, mending after mending, generations communicated through prints and patterns, textures, weaves and seasonal dying techniques, leaving their mark in hand-stitching for the next.

Having no talent for sewing whatsoever, Kiriko left my brainspace (there's only so much room in there). Then, while waiting on a friend I passed a shop window displaying a boro jacket. The pull was very strong - and thus Kiriko was discovered. My friend was equally enamored and we probably spent enough to cover their rent for the day. Please visit. There are vintage kimono fabrics, gorgeous boro pillows, scarves and ties, and so much more. (See pics above.)

Let's move on to Sellwood and Tropical Salvage, a shop jammed full of furniture and housewares:

Tropical Salvage uses the marketplace to drive positive change. We make our products from resources that would otherwise be lost, burnt, or left to decay. We do not cut down trees to make our furniture. We salvage wood from rivers, landslides, land conversion projects, plantation cull and volcanic lahars. Using revenues generated by sales of our products, we buy land in Indonesia to reforest it with endemic tree species in an effort to increase biodiversity and carbon storage in Indonesia’s extraordinary tropical ecosystems.

The inventory at Tropical Salvage is wide, from furniture to baskets to wooden spoons (to use up all the wood!). The range of prices is also impressive, making this a place to check out for yourself as well as for gifts. Don't forget: Mother's Day, Father's Day, graduations, and wedding season are upon us (otherwise known as hellish distractions from otherwise lovely spring/summer activities). Shop now, get the gifts bought. At least that part will be done.

Last is FIXT Electric, which is found online. Fixt has the coolest lights I've seen in a while:

FIXT travels all over the world in search of unique Industrial designed light fixtures. We most recently came back from Russia where we salvaged lighting from the depths of the Moscow subway systems to the abandoned Soviet era factories of the DDR (East Germany) and Poland.

It's funny. I used to think finding lighting was the hardest thing in the world. Not any more. There are so many artist-made lights out there that I almost want to start over and re-do all the lighting in my casa. But I won't. No money, remember?
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