REMEMBER WHEN 811 E Burnside was just another nondescript building on a strip of patchy (and kinda sketchy) commerce? My, how times have changed.
Ever since jewelry designer Hazel Cox and apparel designer Genevieve Dellinger broke the ice with the Denwave boutique back in 2005, the building has steadily blossomed into a hub for fashion, art, and commerce, at various times the home of fondly remembered shops from Sword + Fern to Golden Rule. Thanks to its small spaces and, in turn, affordable rent, the 811 has also been an important growth step for businesses like Nationale and Stand Up Comedy—both of which moved into larger locations within the past year—and, along with the Doug Fir, can arguably be credited with spurring the development of lower East Burnside into the busy bar/shopping/show/food destination it is now. (Where did you think the idea of First Friday came from, anyway?)
The turnover may be on the high side, but today's incarnation of 811 E Burnside is as vital as ever. Long-term residents like Redux and Haunt are now joined by new names like Seven Sisters and Six/Seven, and if you need an excuse to experience what the latest configuration offers, look here: This Friday, the 811 neighbors are keeping their doors open late for a spring presentation (think poses on podiums in the breezeway rather than a formal runway) of new work and merch from heavy hitters like Holly Stalder, Kate Towers, and both Liza Rietz and Emily Bixler (of BOET) separately and together with their 6/7 collaboration. Also along for the ride are Haunt, shoes from newly opened neighbor Fortress of Inca, and a trunk show at Seven Sisters to debut the new jewelry collection from Beach Bones. Spring Fashion Presentation, 811 E Burnside, Fri May 1, 7-8 pm
• Woolrich wants you to stop thinking of them solely as a resource for cold weather woolens: The brand is launching its spring/summer line of shoes, which include summer hiking kicks, canvas slides, and even clog heels—plus they created an apparel/surf line called Wax + Wool in collaboration with Almond Surfboards. So there. For further proof, they're having a party, replete with food and giveaways (including a two-day trip in a camper van!). The Annex, 4018 N Mississippi, Thurs April 30, 5-10 pm
• New York's Parke & Ronen menswear brand is paying a visit with their summer 2015 collection. Designers Parke Lutter and Ronen Jehezkel will be on hand as you peruse. UnderU4Men, 800 SW Washington, Fri May 1, 7-9 pm
• Beach Bones jewelry has chosen a lively night on E Burnside to debut the spring/summer collection, which focuses on hand-picked stones. Seven Sisters, 811 E Burnside, #112, Fri May 1, 6-9 pm
• No discussion of Italian contributions to fashion is complete without addressing the importance of craftsmanship. That's why the Portland Art Museum's programming in conjunction with the Italian Style: Fashion Since 1945 exhibit includes a showcase of some of Portland's own design talent, demonstrating and discussing their own techniques live in the gallery space every Saturday. This week, the guest is Nike design. Portland Art Museum's Object Stories gallery, 1219 SW Park, Sat May 2, 1-5 pm, included with $20 museum admission