Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Hello Again, Windows!

For a brief moment in time, yesterday, our store was open for the world to see! Well, maybe not the world, but at least the people walking down Belmont. We took down the painter's plastic and got to see the gorgeous windows that have been covered the past few weeks.

The entire front has been painted a chocolate brown. Set in this color, the stained glass above the door isn't as imposing and we're starting to actually like it. We may paint the yellow part of the sun black to look like a vinyl record.

Of course about a half hour later, the windows were taped back up with paper. We still have a lot of work to do! :)

Sunday, March 28, 2010

New Dishes!

Justin and I are super stoked because we found the best dishes!! We've always wanted large, colorful cafe mugs to serve both our coffee and soups in. Up until today, we've had a hard time finding exactly what we wanted. But this afternoon, we saw these awesome mugs, plates and bowls on sale at Fred Meyer.

I challenged Justin to make a mental note of the name of the company, Hausenware, and we came home to look them up online. I found out that they are sold at Ross for a fraction of the price. So we made the trip down to the Lloyd Center and wiped them out of house and home! We bought 10 bowls and 25 mugs for $2 each!!

They are the perfect match for Aunt Bettie's Organic Tomato Soup with fresh grated parmesan and tapenade. Can't wait!!

Adios, Totem Pole

Hello, Red!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Night Owl Record Show

Saturday April 17th is the date of both the Night Owl Record Show and the annual Record Store Day.

The Vinyl District blog is the official blog of Record Store Day 2010. It makes us wish we were open already!! But we WILL be selling records at the Night Owl that day. It will be our third appearance at the show and we are looking forward to it!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Gorgeous Day!

The last few days we've been working on the "details". We had to put painting on hold a few days until John can get the sprayer from his work. So we've been trying to be productive while we wait.

Today, I went to Pitman Restaurant Supply and bought a sink for our kitchen. We also inventoried all the wood we saved from Carl's mosaic waterfall wall. We're going to use it for our moldings and on the front of our bar. We already bought all the paint so we went ahead and started painting the moldings. They are a rich chocolate color.

It was a gorgeous day outside!

I also went ahead and stained the table tops. They turned out a gorgeous, deep cherry color. We have an amazing patio!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Prepping to Paint

The past few days we've been getting the space ready to paint. After many weeks of resurfacing the wall between Wayne's side and ours it's finally done! Now we know how to drywall and do a skip trowel.

We started covering the beams with painters plastic and washing off the existing walls. The totem pole is also starting to see the end of its days. So many people have jokingly asked if it's staying. But no, no it's not.

Tomorrow our friend John is renting a paint sprayer from his work and is going to help us get paint. We'll probably be doing that all week.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Ah, the City

Everyone I've talked to that has dealt with the City Permit Dept has said it's challenging, at best. Justin and I went there a long time ago when we were trying to change the zoning on a building we wanted on Hawthorne. I just remember filling out little cards of the departments we wanted to talk to and waiting our turn to go talk to them.

Well it turns out when you want to get the permit itself you have to see every single department. It's a multi-day process that Wayne's in the middle of right now. Our building is a class B occupancy which means we could only have 50 people on each side (our side and Wayne's). It's fine for us because we are small but Wayne's business includes a music venue so we need to get a higher occupancy.

This could take a while and we can't get the permits for the plumbing, electric and building until we change the occupancy. We still have a lot to do, though. We can paint and put the floors down and bring in the shelves and DJ booth and put in our seating, we just can't build what's on the permit, which is the bar and the wall to enclose our kitchen. But we can still prep it as much as possible. We want to use the wood pieces we pulled down from Carl's wall on the bar and moldings.

Once we get approved we can do the rest. Luckily for us, all the electrical is already there. It's just a matter of extending some lines. We were also super lucky that we have a floor drain and plumbing on our side already. Carl was using it for his drinking water station. So we'll be adding two sinks and a line to the espresso machine.

I'm so looking forward to it all coming together!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Vendors, vendors and more vendors

One thing I was not expecting was to be bombarded with as many vendors as we have been. A lot of them are really great people. They're just trying to get our business. But my phone has been ringing all morning. It's like once you meet one, it sets off this ripple effect and I get ten more calls.

I remember being in the pizza place before it switched hands and the phone ringing constantly. Carl said that he got at least three calls a week from merchant service people trying to get him to switch to their service.

I guess it's not really a big problem to have. We're meeting more and more people and everyone is super excited for our business. I just think that once we have our vendors in place I'll need to come up with a polite way of getting the rest to stop calling.

Thursday, March 11, 2010


We're beginning to acquire a lot of stuff for the store and it's been accumulating in our apartment.

This morning I went to the Habitat for Humanity ReStore. I didn't even know it existed, but the girl that is helping Wayne design his side brought him there yesterday and he told me about it. I found some pre-finish and stain for the tables and bar top and bought an amazing Chandelier for $35.

We may end up spray painting it because we were originally intent on finding a gold chandelier. We wanted it to match this other lighting fixture we brought up from California when we moved. It's been sitting in our apartment for over a year and a half waiting to be restored to its former glory.

But it's kind of interesting that the chandelier turned out to be purple. We have a Justin Bua poster that we love and may turn out to be the focal point of the room. The background is a deep red just like our walls.

In the poster, he contrasted the red with green and purple. So maybe the purple in the chandelier will go well?? I guess we have to wait until we get the room painted and see how it looks. Either way, we're excited with all of our acquirements.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Big Dig - Spring 2010

March 20th is the next Big Dig Record Show in Seattle. It also happens to be the first day of Spring!

We had a great time selling records at the Big Dig last year. It's a great show and I highly recommend you go!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

The Couch

I should probably explain that we're going for the eclectic coffeehouse vibe in our store. The color pallet is dark, rich and cozy; reds and browns with splashes of bold colors in the artwork. For those of you that have been to the Bourgeois Pig in LA, we're going for that kind of vibe (chandeliers, eclectic lighting, artwork) but with a rich reds instead of blue walls. Unfortunately, the pictures I found online of the Bourgeois Pig don't really do it justice.

Anyways, my friend and sister were asking for pictures of the couches I had seen at EuroClassic Furniture. So here's two examples:

There were a couple of other couches that had regular cushions instead of pillows. The guy at the store said our customers may have more fun with the pillows than cushions. But at least you can get an idea of the style.

I am really leaning towards the darker one. Plus he said a darker couch would look fantastic with a dark floor - very monochromatic. We have an amazing overstuffed side chair that has similar rounded arms and would look fantastic with it. We brought it with us from California with the sole intention of putting it in our store.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Furniture Shopping

Yesterday, I had one of the best shopping experiences of my life. We're making most of our furniture either ourselves or from recycled material, but when it comes to the centerpiece of the store, the couch, we don't want to hold anything back.

A few weeks ago I was driving down Foster Rd. and saw the most gorgeous couch in the window of EuroClassic Furniture. I usually don't pay attention to things like that but what jumped out at me while I was driving was the price tag: $695. Now this looked like a $5,000 couch. It had the most gorgeous wood trim going down the sides and across the top.

So a few weeks had passed and I felt the urge to go in and see what the deal was with the couch. As soon as I walked in there were SOLD signs on the first five furniture sets I saw. I was like, every-thing's sold! I don't even know what I'm looking at. The owner immediately walked up and said he'd had a good month. I'll say.

The owner, whose parents had started the business 73 years ago, started personally showing me all of his couches. He was trying to remember which couch he'd put in the window for $695 but was basically telling me I could get almost anything in the store within my budget, he'd just have to check with the boss. But he was the boss :)

He sat me down and we started looking through book after book of the most gorgeous, eclectic furniture I'd ever seen. He was telling me about how he knows the owners of all these restaurants in SE and how they furnish their whole houses with his furniture. I could see how someone would want to buy all of their furniture from him. He's super personable, willing to give you a good deal and most importantly the furniture is GORGEOUS! It made me want to be a customer for life. I can't wait to go back.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Soul'd Out Music Festival

So not only has vinyl become increasingly more popular in the wake of the fall of the CD, but Soul and Funk music in particular is seeing a great resurgence. Current artists are putting their own spin on the classic soul sound and we love what they're coming up with! This April, Portland is playing host to the Soul'd Out Music Festival a soul-centric festival featuring Buddy Guy, Gil Scott-Heron, Bernard "Pretty" Purdie and Mayer Hawthorne.

You know I'll be at the Roseland April 12th for the Mayer Hawthorne show!

The festival is April 11th to the 24th at the Roseland, Aladdin, Berbati's Pan, Jimmy Mak's, Doug Fir and Wonder Ballroom.