Archive for the ‘retail’ Category

Local markets rock!

My local market

My local market

Last week (was that only last week!), when most of Seattle was snowed or iced in, I heard numerous reports of stores running out of basic items like bread and milk. UPS wasn’t running, many people couldn’t drive anywhere, and in general, cabin fever was running rampant.

Enter my little corner market. Green Market was open every day, and even stayed open late on Christmas Eve. They got regular deliveries, and while their prices are a little higher than Safeway or Ballard Market, they have the convenience of being just up the street.

So Green Market, thanks for being there for the Sunset Hill area. You rock!

This weekend: Urban Craft Uprising

It’s time again for the only reason to not do all of your Christmas shopping online: the Urban Craft Uprising is Saturday and Sunday, at the Exhibition Hall, from 11 – 5. They’re doing swag bags again for the first 100 or so people to enter each day, full of nice things from many of the vendors. It’s the perfect time to buy a handmade gift from a local vendor for all of the people on your Christmas list, or, if you’re like me and only have two teenage brothers to buy presents for, for yourself. And if that doesn’t tempt you, you should know that I have never heard of anyone getting trampled to death at the Urban Craft Uprising, which has to be an added bonus in this dangerous shopping season. Bring cash, since some of the vendors don’t take credit cards and the ATM at the top of the stairs often runs out of money pretty early.

UVillage Apple Store progresses

Pity the employees of the University Village Apple Store. First, their venue closes down for much of June, barely re-opening as a small store-within-a-construction-zone in time to handle the onslaught of iPhone 3G buyers. All summer, this microstore (built out of plywood and particleboard) has tried to handle the demand for phones and laptops as the only official retail venue within Seattle’s city limits. Visitors can attest that it’s been packed tighter than the Titantic’s steerage class for months.

Now, the store is shut down totally to allow the final phase of refurbishment to begin. As part of the construction, the original wood floor is being replaced with some sort of poured-concrete system.

Apple Store University Village, Seattle

Despite the extensive, multi-month refurbishment, it’s unlikely Seattle will see any kind of glass staircase design element that other cities’ multi-level stores enjoy. Though the store now extends nearly all the way to the back of the building, only storage and service are expected to occupy the (previously-unused) second floor.

Whole Foods Bag Policy: don’t use your own in-store

We all know that Seattle is moving towards a future where far fewer plastic grocery bags end up snagged in trees or floating in local waterways, but what you might not expect is the complications the upcoming bag tax may have if it goes into effect. If everyone starts bringing their own reusable bags, stores may have a tough time separating the shoplifters from those who are just putting tomatoes in their own containers. At least, that’s the only rationale I can think of for this sign at the Roosevelt Whole Foods:

don't use your own.

While a bit ambiguous, I believe that the sign is intended to discourage only the use of one’s own bags while shopping, rather than being a blanket ban on non-Whole Foods bags. Still, the sign made me do a double-take, and there’s no doubt we’re heading for a period of behavior adjustment on everyone’s part as free disposable grocery bags become rarer.

McPhee’s Moving to Liquor Store Location

OH, Archie! by Seattle Daily Photo [flickr] via our group pool [#]

As reported by FremontUniverse this afternoon (#), Archie McPhee is moving to the no-man’s land between Wallingford and Fremont, right into the spot currently occupied by the state-controlled liquor store.

Since I walk past that store almost daily, I’m pretty excited that I’ll have something other than Not A Number to amuse me on my way home. However, I am minorly concerned about where I’m going to buy my liquor on the way home if Archie’s takes over that space.

On the other hand, the combination of liquor and Archie McPhee seems like a really excellent business plan.

So… if McPhee’s moves into the liquor store, do they just get to keep the liquor license?? They already have the cocktail supplies, so perhaps they could supply the cocktails as well? My walk home is looking better and better every day!

other perspectives on the h & m

Mark Fefer, channeling Naomi Klein:

what the fuck is the matter with you people? Don’t you realize that damn near everything that’s screwed up right now can be traced to your insufferable appetite for cheap? Everything fucked up about the global economy arises from the massive sucking force exerted by people in the richest country on earth demanding cheap food, cheap clothes, cheap energy, cheap mortgages, cheap everything. [seattleweekly]

Me, seeing his point but not taking it, yet still avoiding the downtown melee because there’s nothing like the sight of a line and a crowded shopping experience to send me running for the hills:

yes, but now let’s just start moaning about how awful it is that Seattle doesn’t have a Uniqlo or TopShop, OK?

Anyone else braving the reportedly blocklong lines for the sake of an early peek at the downtown H & M?

Goodwill attempts to update its image

I guess Goodwill has finally realized that college kids both like to buy cheap clothes and frequently don’t drive cars, because sometime next month they’re going to be opening a store on the Ave. (It’ll be the non profit’s 17th store in the Seattle area. I don’t even know where the other locations are except that one down in the ID-ish.)

They’re going to call it “Goodwill on the Ave” and attempt to stock “hip” and “trendy” things [PSBJ]. I sincerely hope some of the stock of hilarious wedding dresses comes along too, because the Seattle Goodwill is where I found the best Brides of March dress ever. The space is going to be much smaller than usual, at 5,400 feet, in an attempt to break into more-dense neighborhoods where it is difficult to find 20,000 square feet. I know I certainly spent a lot of free time in college combing the racks at the local Goodwill, so I’m glad that UW students will have an easily accessible location. (I’m glad for me, too, because I don’t even know how to get to the other Goodwill without someone driving me there.) It’ll be at 4552 University Way NE.


After months of watching these newly built work/live lofts on Union St. sit vacant, I noticed that one of the storefronts was finally occupied. The new tenant, envy, describes itself as “plants and pots for urban living.” The airy space is filled with tropical plants and hanging planters, and they even have some artwork on display.

The shop focuses on indoor exotic tropical plants, which sounds like just the thing to combat the rainy, gray days of winter that will soon be upon us.

They also have a small selection of outdoor plants, and can special order just about anything you need. They are currently offering 20% off all outdoor plants and trees. Check out the envy blog for more shop goings-on. It’s good to see this space occupied. Hopefully some other business will follow suit!

Paper or plastic? Wine or beer?

Going to the grocery store is getting interesting. Starting on October 1, 2008, a number of local grocery stores will be piloting a new program to allow wine and beer tastings on-site. A grand total of 30 stores were selected to participate in this program. Full listing of the stores and more details on the program after the jump.

Babeland Is Turning 15!

On Thursday, September 18th at 7pm Babeland will be celebrating its 15th birthday with a party at their Pike Street location . Contact the store at (206) 328-2914 to RSVP. In honor of this upcoming event I spoke with Audrey, the Marketing/Education Coordinator at the Seattle store.

After the jump, one NSFW photo, and Audrey’s favorite classes, books, and toys.
You know you want more!

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