Archive for the ‘retail’ Category

Kiehl’s and Motley Zoo join forces to help animals

Kiehl’s has been making skin, body, and hair care products for people AND animals since 1851. Their products are available locally at Nordstrom and Barney’s and they’ve got their own store at University Village.

Motley Zoo is a Washington-state 501(c) (3) non-profit dedicated to rescuing and rehoming dogs and cats in need through their network of private foster homes.

On Saturday, April 10, the two come together for a Pet Adoption and Fund-raiser kick off at the U Village Kiehl’s from 11 am through 3 pm. Motley Zoo will bring some animals in need of a home to the store for people who are looking for a new friend to love: any customer who adopts gets a special bonus Kiehl’s gift box to take home with them.

Not ready to commit? That’s cool – it’s important to be prepared for a new pet. You can still make a difference by making a donation. Anyone who donates $10 or more on Saturday, or any day through April 17, gets to choose between a complimentary Creme de Corps body moisturizer or a Spray-N-Play Cleaning Spritz. Additionally, Kiehl’s is making their own cash donation to the cause.

Can’t make it down to U Village but still want to help? You can donate to Motley Zoo online.

Walking the Talk

Walking Green Lake by Seattle Daily Photo - from our Flickr pool

Walking Green Lake by Seattle Daily Photo - from our Flickr pool

The Seattle City Council is reviewing a draft plan to make Seattle a more pedestrian-friendly town. Appropriately enough, the measure is called the Pedestrian Master Plan. Very grand sounding, ain’t it?

I’ve lived in Seattle long enough to remember when Westlake Plaza was closed to traffic, and I’m still outraged that the city opened it. Westlake Center has never regained the vibrancy and foot traffic that it had when the Plaza was closed. And does anyone think that closing Pike Place Market to through traffic would detract from its appeal? There is no bad there.

The new plan, currently in draft and public comment stage, purports to focus on “safety, equity, vibrancy, and health,” through six stated objectives:

1. Complete and maintain the pedestrian system identified in the Pedestrian Master Plan
2. Improve walkability on all streets
3. Increase pedestrian safety
4. Plan, design, and build complete streets to move more people and goods
5. Create vibrant public spaces that encourage walking
6. Get more people walking for transportation, recreation, and health

These are great goals, and the plan (read it HERE or download as a PDF –low res or high res) does an admirable job of outlining strategies and tactics to meet them. The city has a funding levy of $60 million to fund pedestrian improvements over the next six years. Based on current programs, the plan projects that $47 million will go towards new improvements, such as sidewalks, curb ramps, and signals, while $19 million would pay for maintenance. The plan would require other funding to fully support all of the objectives, such as private investment.

And it’s this last part that has me worried: private investment.

The draft Plan includes stated strategies for meeting the objectives. Among the strategies for #5– “Create vibrant public spaces that encourage walking”– the single most important strategy is missing: car-free streets. Instead, “develop guidelines for car-free and shared space streets,” is the last item in the sidebar, under “sample of actions” that could possibly, perhaps, be considered to encourage walking.

Private investment does not like car-free streets. Private investment likes lots of convenient parking, preferably on-site parking. Pedestrians buy only as much as they can conveniently carry home or back to the office. Drivers buy as much as can fill up their SUV for the drive home to the suburbs. Car-free streets favor small businesses that serve local residents and employees. Parking lots favor ‘shopping destinations’ that serve tourists and visitors. National chain stores and big retailers wield the political clout and investment dollars that result in parking lots, narrow sidewalks, and through traffic. Neighborhood business owners, residents, and employees get screwed. Again.

It doesn’t have to be that way. As residents and business owners, we have a say in this process. The public comment period for the draft Pedestrian Master Plan has been extended to Friday, June 26th. You can read it at, or download a PDF from the same site.

Also, the Transportation Committee and the Special Committee on Pedestrian Safety will host a public hearing on the draft plan on Tuesday, July 21st, from 5:00-6:30 p.m. in the Council Chambers at City Hall (600 Fourth Ave.). This is your chance to be heard. Don’t blow it!

Other ways to comment:

Online webform:
E mail:
Telephone: 206-733-9970
Mail: Pedestrian Master Plan Comments
Seattle Department of Transportation
P.O. Box 34996
Seattle, WA 98124-4996

Archie McPhee moves to Wallingford

Mr. Bacon

Mr. Bacon

As of 5pm yesterday, Archie McPhee was no longer a Ballard business. Due to leasing issues (the owner of the Ballard buildings reportedly wouldn’t let them sign a new long-term lease, instead only offering a very short term deal), they had to find a new location.

The move was insane. According to an employee, they weren’t even sure they’d be able to remain in the Seattle proper area there for a while. They were looking north and south. Can you imagine Archie McPhee in Renton? I can’t.

Archie McPhee's Homemade Rocket Ship

Archie McPhee's Homemade Rocket Ship

Finally though, they found their new location on Stone Way and N 45th. They’ve taken over the old liquor store and they’ve turned it into their own. Gone is any semblance of a ‘normal’ paint job. The outside of the building is fire engine red with a screaming yellow awning. Inside, the paint job is just as bright.

The new space has a very quirky feel to it. There are twists and turns and walls and posts and merchandise literally EVERYWHERE! The Wallingford store is about the same size as the main building in Ballard, so they had to get rid of a few of their larger items. I asked them what one of their biggest regrets was regarding merchandise they needed to sell and their answer was the handmade rocket. But don’t fear. The rocket went to a very good cause – 826 Seattle! It fits in perfectly with their Greenwood Space Travel Supply Company.

Archie McPhee opens in their new location on Monday. So spend your weekend browsing their website or Flickr pool if you need your Archie McPhee fix. Here are a few photos of their new location.

Archie McPhee's Devil

Archie McPhee's Devil

The End of an Era…

The Ballard location of Archie McPhee will be closing forever at 5pm today. We’ll have a tour of their new Wallingford location later this evening, but in the meantime, get down to Ballard before 5 for one last look at the now mostly empty store. (Word is there’s free stuff outside the Ballard store too.)

New Economy Closing Times

Recently a number of places in North Seattle have been trimming their hours of business, closing an hour or so earlier than when the economy was booming. Off the top of the head, these include places as diverse as the Barnes & Noble at UVillage (10pm instead of 11pm Mon-Sat), Tangletown Zoka (10 instead of 11) and the Wedgwood Starbucks (9pm instead of 10pm). The first of these, coupled with the temporary shutdown of the large corner Starbucks there for renovations, has really turned the Village into a ghost town after 10. A micro-trend in today’s economy, or a coincidence? Anyone notice other Seattle area retailers or restaurants giving up on the late-night crowd?

Save a little $$ this weekend

We’re all interested in a little savings these days, whether you’re patronizing happy hours instead of those slightly-less-happy-full-priced-hours or walking more than driving, if you’re in West Seattle this weekend, you can save your sales tax and find some discounts at 30 different merchants at the West Seattle Junction on Saturday.

Participating businesses will have a red balloon on display.

April 15th: No Taxation Without Stimulation

This is the motto at Babeland and they are backing it up with two ways to be rewarded for paying your taxes:

1) The first 100 people to visit the Capitol Hill store on April 15th who inform the staff that they have filed their tax returns will get a free Gold Digger vibrator. Prefer the internets? No problem. The first 100 orders on on the 15th will get a Gold Digger as well, with no minimum purchase.

2) No sales tax for purchases online and in store on the 15th (in the form of a 10% discount).

So get out there on Tax Day and fulfill your patri-erotic duty, Seattle!

707 E. Pike St. (on Capitol Hill)
Seattle, WA 98122
Hours on Tax Day: 11am – 10pm

Your dog needs biscuits

If you live in or near the Central District and have a dog, why not take your doggie down to Immortal Dog Pet Supply and Bakery which just opened in that area?

Located at 1712 S. Jackson, Immortal Dog offers fresh handmade treats (many of which are wheat-free for your doggies with sensitive tummies) and they’re all made from whole ingredients, so tasty and nutritious for your canine companion. They also offer food for your dog and your cat including natural, frozen raw food, treats, toys, chews, litter and all other sorts of accessories to meet your pet needs.

Stop in and say hello to owner Nicole or give her a call at 206.323.9112 to ask about free food delivery options.

Free Tip of the Day

Brought to you by an email I received from Vain:

Free haircuts! That’s right, on Friday evenings for the next few weeks VAIN will be offering free haircuts by appointment at our downtown salon with VAIN apprentice stylist in training TT. TT is already known for her stellar skills with braids + dreads, and she’s been ramping up on haircuts as part of her continued training on the VAIN salon floor. Appointments are limited, so call VAIN downtown fast at 206.441.3441 to book your free Friday night haircut with TT!

You’re welcome.

AveWatch: Cinderblocks thrown through windows

Ave Starbucks

New Year’s Eve revelry on the Ave in the University District got a little out of hand with cinderblocks thrown through Orange King, Magus Books and Starbucks’ windows. Not, by far, the most traumatic event to go down in the University District during the holiday.

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