Portland Fashion Institute (PFI) has published the first-ever guide to Portland area boutiques.
Entitled “boutique guide: Portland,” the book features 34 shops that sell clothes and accessories from local, independent designers.
“Every week someone calls our school asking where they can shop to buy from local designers,” says Portland Fashion Institute (PFI) director Sharon Blair. “After talking to several friends who own area boutiques, it seemed like it was about time to put together a guide.” The guide includes descriptions, pictures, maps and lists of other nearby places to shop and grab a bite to eat.
Portland is known for Nike, Adidas, Columbia Sportswear. Beyond that are companies from Pendleton to Hanna Andersson that make the clothes people wear day-to-day. “What often goes unrecognized are the many more small businesses that are making clothes that make Portland famous in other parts of the United States,” added Blair.
More than 100 self-employed designers live in Portland. In turn, these designers hire contractors and staff to help produce clothing. “What they create is a serious driver to the local economy and the Portland character,” Blair said.
What keeps these designers in business are the boutiques that sell their goods. This includes stores such as the Pearl District’s Anne Bocci (416 NW 12th Avenue, 503-313-2839), Garnish Apparel, Folly, Radish Underground, Liza Rietz and Haunt.
“Tourists come here specifically to buy these goods, to buy a piece of Portland,” Blair said. Portland has become nationally famous for its brand of clothing thanks to national shows such as Project Runway where 11 area designers have competed and four have won.
The new book went on sale April 22 at PFI and at several area boutiques. To celebrate the release, PFI hosted a bus tour of 12 independent designer boutiques on Sunday, April 23rd as part of Design Week Portland.
Before the tour, guests visited six local designers’ pop-up shops set up for the weekend at PFI. Designers are Sarah Donofrio, recently from Project Runway, Kate Troyer & Shelby Morgan, Jessica Caldwell, Lisa Silveira, Jessy Burris and Bondi Nyary. Most were former students at PFI. For more information about PFI, please visit portlandfashioninstitute.com.