Hopefully you haven't gone too nuts with the Nordstrom's anniversary sale (ahem, it runs until August 6), because sales based closer to home are starting to heat up: The summer sale at Halo Shoes (1425 NE Broadway) is on, as well as at Phlox (3962 N Mississippi), where you'll find 25 to 50 percent off all spring skirts, dresses, tops, and slacks, plus 50 percent off all shoes. And, wildly, Magalí Corzo is offering 50 percent off her entire store, beginning this Wednesday and continuing for the whole month of August (1720 NW Lovejoy, Ste. 106, call 235-6660 for an appointment).
Then, of particular excitement, is the fact that this weekend is the first chance you'll have to check out the new retail/studio space being opened by local designers Liza Rietz and John Blasioli—to be named simply Liza Rietz and John Blasioli... or John Blasioli and Liza Rietz—we'll keep you posted on that. Although the store will not be officially off the ground until later this summer, Rietz is hosting a trunk show to showcase her past designs—and offer them at 25 percent off—before she and Blasioli launch their fall collections with the grand opening on August 31st. (Rietz will be keeping open hours through the month of August [11am-7pm], but says it's best to call ahead: 459-4292).
This is a great opportunity to snap up some pieces from one of Portland's best modern-minded designers. Long a staple of the inventory found at Seaplane, Rietz's eponymous line has distinguished itself by striking a careful balance between concept and practicality. While many of her pieces have experimental, sculptural qualities that are cool, but can be alienatingly hard to wear, Rietz has a knack for reining in her concepts just enough to make them flattering, not frustrating, to the off-the-catwalk buying public. You still look artful and interesting in a Liza Rietz dress, but you don't look as though your clothes are wearing you. Her designs are also appealing because while feminine, they lack the cloying, infantile girliness that so many designers are currently fixated on—perfect for any grown woman averse to donning bows and ruffles and waist-less babydolls.
A self-taught, lifelong creative, Portland has enjoyed more of Rietz's design talent in part because of the breakup of her former band, Swords. The fact that she's not constantly touring has given her the time to embark on something as ambitious as a retail space. (Although she still plays music, often with fellow local Corrina Repp.) (Liza Rietz trunk show, 2305 NW Savier, Fri-Sun, 11 am-7 pm)
Other events this week include the Last Thursday launch of HART, a collaboration between local designer Chelsea Erhart and Heart Mind Soul, the custom design company she became acquainted with when she had some printing done by them. The collaboration's emphasis is on color, something they feel is lacking in the average Portland wardrobe. Check out the result, and get 10 percent off all dresses in the store during the trunk show. (Foundation Garments, 2712 NE Alberta, Thurs, 6-9 pm)
Meanwhile, Portland continues to ride the crest of the green/sustainable/ethical fashion wave/marketing scheme it helped create with "Organic Day," an event being hosted by Mario's 3.10, the venerable designer superstore with two other locations, in downtown Portland and Seattle. Its two local darlings, Anna Cohen and Sameunderneath, whose designs are both carried on the Bridgeport Village 3.10 location's shelves, are both heavily entrenched in the sustainable design scene. Cohen can be credited with being instrumental in the popularization of using hemp blends, and of being one of the first designers to combine an eco conscience with the cool of Italian streetwear. Sameunderneath founder Ryan Christensen was an early proponent of the now-prevalent bamboo fiber, and both will be making personal appearances at the event. Also showcased will be new designs from Organics and Loomstate, and the event will be topped off with a farmers' market in the Village's courtyard. The only catch? Most Portlanders will be expending no small potatoes' worth of carbon to get out to the Bridgeport location, but hey—nobody's perfect. (Organic Day, Bridgeport Village, 7455 SW Bridgeport, Tigard, Sat, 11 am-6 pm)
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