Porch Light

Vintage and antique homegoods and gifts.

Month: December, 2011

Happy New Year!

Wishing you all the best in the New Year!


A Day on Mississippi Avenue

Mississippi Avenue has always been one of my favorite streets in Portland.  In fact, my parents and I always spend at least a day strolling down the street whenever they come to visit.  Since the holiday season is bound to bring some friends and relatives into town, I thought I’d post a little guide to Mississippi!

1. Pistils Nursery

 Pistils has a plethora of garden, home, and farming goods.  You can pick up a succulent, a fig tree, some red compost worms, or my usual purchase, a bag of scratch for your chickens!  Their outdoor garden area is filled with real-life, ornamental chickens and roosters roaming around.  If you’ve got the courage, you can even pick one up!

2. Mississippi Records

(image via lightintheattic.net)

While Pistils is definitely my mom’s favorite shop, Mississippi Records is my dad’s.  Their variety of genres is nothing less than impressive; one can find rare folk, punk, and South American pop.  My dad always scours the oldie’s section for looked-over Buddy Holly collectibles.  They even have a quaint listening section which customers are encouraged to use!

3.  Flutter

As some of you might know, Flutter is the sister store to Eden (our next door neighbor in the Pearl.)  I could spend hours in Flutter, discovering all the little curiosities they scatter around the shop.  From taxidermied animals to vintage slips, Flutter definitely has a little bit of everything.

4. Ruby Jewel Ice Cream Shop

(image via jaunted.com)

This may sound crazy, but one of my favorite winter activities is eating cold ice cream inside of a warm shop.  It feels like I’m cheating winter a little.  Either way, Ruby Jewel is definitely the place to do that.  They make all of their own ice cream (and waffle cones!) and all of the flavors are so delicious.  My favorites are the caramel ice cream with salted dark chocolate and lemon cookie ice cream with honey lavender.

5. Black Wagon

(image via Black Wagon)

Black Wagon is definitely a shop you should stop by, especially if you’ve got a little one in your life.  It’s a children’s boutique and toy shop that is environmentally friendly and supports local designers.  Every item is undeniably cute and the staff are super friendly!

6. Amnesia Brewing

(image via mylifeoncraft.com)

And, of course, you’re probably going to want to stop and grab a drink.  There are plenty of places to sip on a fancy cocktail (like Equinox, Miss Delta, and Bar Bar), but for a more casual setting I like to go to Amnesia.  They brew their own beer and grill their own sausages (and veggie dogs!) on their patio.

The best part about all of these shops is that they’re small, local businesses.  There are plenty more shops along the strip too, of course including Porch Light!  So, whether you’re showing your relatives around or doing your holiday shopping, make sure to stop by Mississippi to support your local businesses!

For the handyman

One of my favorite things about Portland is the abundance of old, Victorian houses.  The house that I live in dates back to the early 1900s and is filled with wonderful character and funny architectural quirks (i.e., a laundry chute that runs through the kitchen, rounded ceilings, and a bathroom in a closet).  While I would never give up my house, I must admit that it requires a lot of upkeep; I’m constantly hammering, patching, painting, or drilling.

When picking tools for said upkeep, I always opt for vintage rather than new.  I’ve found that they tend to last longer.  And of  course, their old wooden handles and patinated metals look much better than the new, plastic-handled tools out today (my vintage tools become decoration when they’re not in use!)  Here are some of my favorites that we have in the shop:

An assortment of hammers, $16   $18   &  $24

A cast iron level, $38

A vintage Stanley rosewood & brass angle stop, $22

A trouble light (which we think looks lovely with an Edison bulb inside), $135

Expandable metal ruler, $14

Adjustable wooden clamps, $28  &   $24

And you’ll now need something to hold all those tools!   $48

Quite possibly my favorite piece in the store.  A workbench, complete with a vice and multiple drawers.  Who wouldn’t love to have this in their studio?  $1,125

All items listed above are available for purchase at our Pearl shop location.