SHOPPING IN BEND MEANS ADDING LAYERS, TECH UPGRADES & WINTER SPORTS PREP
We love prepping for the fall months here in Bend.
That means gear runs at REI, headphone upgrades at Simply Mac, and crop top hoodie hunting at Vanilla Urban Threads. It’s the time of the year we get to indulge our dark chocolate sweet tooth at Sweet Tooth Candy Shoppe, search out for something sparkly at Saxon’s Fine Jewelers, and joyfully experiment with the bounty of Central Oregon’s fall harvest with the help of Ginger’s Kitchenware.
Autumn’s also the perfect time to check out some of the new shops in Bend’s Old Mill District. Somewhere That’s Green plant shop, Lush, Sephora and the seasonal pop-up, Sutiki Emporium, all recently opened their doors along the Deschutes River.
However you ready yourself for shorter days and cooler nights, the Old Mill District is here to help!
FRESH BEAUTY IN THE OLD MILL DISTRICT
LUSH’S FIRST MONTHS OF KEEPING BEND…LUSH
How does a shop that relies on touching, feeling, and experiencing its products open and thrive during a pandemic? It takes creative thinking, a dedicated staff and a growing, loyal fan base.
LUSH Fresh Handmade Cosmetics (Lush), features cosmetics and beauty products for hair, face, and body. All products are handmade, 100% vegetarian (80% of products are vegan) and ethically sourced. It opened in Bend’s Old Mill District in July 2020 and, despite COVID-19 restrictions, reports a bustling first month. They currently offer “shopping at the front door” and online order/pick up at the store services.
We caught up with Allie Sole, Manager at Lush in Bend’s Old Mill District, to learn more about these first few weeks of business.
Question: This is the first Lush on this side of the state. How many shoppers were already familiar with Lush vs being unfamiliar?
Answer: “I estimate about 75% of shoppers are already familiar with Lush. Lush doesn’t do any paid advertising so their knowledge is from word of mouth or personal experience. People love telling us about their first Lush experience, and we love their stories.”
Q: How have Lush shoppers reacted to shopping during COVID-19?
A: “People are just so happy we are open! Shopping at the front door is fun. Customers tell us what they need, or a scent they enjoy, and we bring items to show them. We even wear running shoes. It’s a fun, personal way to connect.”
“Other customers utilize the buy online/pick up at the door program. We can offer a 100% contactless experience, if desired.”
Q: What have been the most popular items?
A: “The bath bombs and bubble bars! Our skin care line is second most popular; we have wonderful face washes, face masks, and lotions. It does get a bit dry here in Bend – we can help you take care of your skin throughout the year.”
Q: What has been your favorite aspect of the first month?
A: “The welcoming community. The people of Bend have been so happy to have us here. Secondly, I am beyond proud of my team. They have learned the products, put in the hard work, and impress every day.”
Welcome to the Old Mill District, Lush! Follow their Facebook page for upcoming events, product stock, and new item launches. Lush is strictly adhering to the CDC guidelines and appreciates all customers for wearing their masks at the door. You can learn more about Lush here.
WORLDWIDE LEADER IN THE BEAUTY INDUSTRY OPENS OLD MILL DISTRICT STORE
The Old Mill District is beyond excited to welcome our newest tenant, Sephora, which opened its doors the last weekend of August.
“We are thrilled that the prestigious Sephora brand chose the Old Mill District for its first storefront in Central Oregon, said Carrie Ramoz, the Marketing Director for the Old Mill District.
A global leader in the beauty and cosmetics industry, Sephora has been at the forefront of the experiential retail movement, pioneering the trend of letting customers test and experiment with products on their own within the store. Founded in France in 1969 before being acquired by luxury juggernaut LVMH, Sephora has also been a welcomed champion of diversity and inclusivity. The company launched its “We Belong to Something Beautiful” campaign in 2019, reinforcing its dedication to a more inclusive vision for retail. In June of this year Sephora took the “15% Pledge,” a commitment to devote at least 15 percent of their shelf space to Black-owned business. And in July, the retailer began work to gather quantitative and qualitative data from BIPOC shoppers and retail associates in an effort to examine racially-biased and exclusionary tendencies from Sephora and other retail businesses.
“Sephora has been at work on some of these issues for some time, but the current conditions make these needs more salient and more urgent,” Deborah Yeh, Sephora’s Chief Marketing Officer, told the digital magazine Glossy in July. “As a business model, Sephora came to [market] to offer access to prestige cosmetics that were hard to access. Retail is ultimately about the product experience, the purchase experience and how we support every client that walks into our store, physically or digitally.”
Additionally, Sephora has been twice recognized by Forbes as one of America’s Best Employers in 2018 and 2019. Most recently, Sephora scored 100 percent on the Human Rights Campaign’s Corporate Quality Index 2019, the national benchmarking tool on corporate policies and practices pertinent to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer employees.
AMONGST THE PLANTS: RELAXATION, VISITING FROGS, AND PLENTY OF SURPRISES
THE FIRST SUMMER OF BUSINESS FOR SOMEWHERE THAT’S GREEN
Upon walking into the plant shop Somewhere That’s Green (STG), you are welcomed into a verdant and lush experience. Wander among the hundreds of plant species, the locally produced pots and macramé, and take in the English-pub-with-a-dash-of-whimsy inspired design. It’s beyond just a treat for your senses; it’s an unexpected treat for your soul.
STG co-owner John Kish has always found peace amongst plants and is pleasantly surprised at how many others do, too.
“People come in and tell us they’ve had a hard day. They immerse themselves in the resilient, yet delicate, beauty of plants. Whether or not they make a purchase, it’s a joy to see their spirits relax,” says Kish.
Many other surprises have happened since STG opened in the Old Mill District in July 2020, after outgrowing their original space at Bend’s DIYCave. The first month was a whirlwind of happy shoppers that far exceeded Kish’s expectations. The biggest challenge has been supply chain logistics caused by COVID-19, which has disrupted shipping worldwide.
Another surprise is the look on shopper’s faces when they learn that STG is 100% Bend-based, unique, and not a franchise, says Kish.
“This shop is a unique experience in Bend. Shoppers ask if we are part of a larger corporate structure, but we’re totally locally-grown. We’re thankful to the Bend community for their support.”
What else has surprised Kish? The number of tiny visitors to the shop. To be precise, the little frogs who hop in from the Deschutes River, which is mere feet away from the shop. These little friends are gently returned to the river on a daily basis.
Autumn at STG will include a rare plant swap, and workshops for building terrariums, creating kokedamas (plants growing from balls of moss), and crafting your own plant mounts. All workshops will take place outside with distancing and masks for safety. These events are perfect for older kids, make a unique date night or a fun outing with friends. The shop will also stock special plants and other autumn goodies.
Somewhere That’s Green offers a diverse mix of arid, tropical and aquatic plants, along with horticultural advice and in-home plant consultation services. Learn more online about Somewhere That’s Green, it’s products, workshops and the fascinating team behind it all. Follow them on Instagram, too!
BOHO BALI FURNITURE & DECOR FOR THE WANDERING SOUL
SUTIKI EMPORIUM POP-UP SHOP OPEN IN THE OLD MILL DISTRICT
Sourcing handmade, artisan furniture and household items directly from Bali, Sutiki Emporium, the Old Mill District’s latest pop-up concept, brings contemporary boho Bali furniture and decor to Central Oregon.
Located in the Little Red Shed next to Somewhere That’s Green and Vanilla Urban Threads, Sutiki features items such as handcrafted furniture, baskets, artwork, kitchenware, home decor and more, many made with reclaimed Teakwood. Sutiki owner Danny Fry works closely with Balinese artists, personally choosing every piece in his shop.
“The art and pure beauty of Bali have forever changed my life,” Fry says. “It’s an honor to help people integrate this beauty into their homes here in Bend.”
Learn more about Sutiki Emporium on Instagram: instagram.com/sutiki.emporium.
WHERE: The Little Red Shed, 421 SW Powerhouse Drive, Bend (next to Somewhere That’s Green and Vanilla Urban Threads)
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