CHS Pics | Isla House and Flower a pocket of Pike/Pine green

Need something lovely for your Valentine? There’s a pocket of green across from Cal Anderson Park that you may not have noticed.

Isla House and Flower opened last year in the space formerly occupied by the Molly Moon’s HQ office next to its Odd Fellows scoop shop on E Pine. Isla Morris’s shop is filled with fresh flowers, plants, gifts, and cards.

Morris’s advice for a meaningful Valentine’s gift? “Something that’s thoughtful and shows that you put some effort into it,” she says. “It doesn’t have to cost a lot as long as its meaningful. And of course you can’t go wrong with a beautiful flower arrangement.”

Green thumb or no, you don’t have far to go to stock up a mini terrarium or get your growing wall going. If you need more help than that in the romance department, try a rose.

Isla House And Flower is located at 919 E Pine. You can learn more at


Ghost Gallery finds new Capitol Hill haunt in Chophouse Row

After being pushed out to turn her retail space into a new apartment unit in the building her shop had called home for seven years,  Laurie Kearney put on a brave face when she announced last fall that her Ghost Gallery would have one last holiday season where Denny meets Summit and E Olive Way. “I’m not ready to give up yet, while being completely aware of the challenges ahead,” she told CHS at the time.

Her confidence was well-placed. Kearney said she can now announce she will reopen her gallery and boutique in a new Capitol Hill home. Continue reading

No need to say sorry as fashion boutique Mishu prepares to exit Broadway

Michelle Conley is at peace with the end of her storefront after seven years on Broadway. She would like the neighborhood and her customers to be at peace with the end, too.

“It’s not just one reason. It’s all the factors that Seattle is going through,” she told CHS Tuesday morning about the coming closure of the Mishu Boutique, one of the rare independent retail shops still operating on Broadway.

Mishu will shutter its Broadway doors for good by the end of February. In the meantime, everything must go. Continue reading

Capitol Hill’s Horizon Books evolves into a community space

A week before Horizon Books was slated to vacate its old location on 15th Ave E, when things were looking most grim for the continued survival of this longstanding neighborhood institution, Brandon Letsinger jumped onboard to usher the shop into its new era.

Letsinger has deep roots in local bookselling — his first job out of high school was working at Horizon and his father, Dave Brown, is the proprietor of Recollection Books, which has shared space with Horizon for decades. Letsinger swiftly moved to cut a deal for a new location and began loading boxes into the underground “book bunker” at 1423 10th Ave, down the block from Neumo’s and beneath Super Genius Tattoo. He now runs the day-to-day operations, although owner Don Glover still drops in regularly bearing bags of more books.

“His one rule is he gets to keep bringing in books,” Letsinger says, “He’s probably one of the most prolific book scouts — with one of the best collections — in the western United States.” Continue reading

So, when is Amazon Go-ing to open its E Pike store?

(Image: Amazon)

Amazon Go, the company’s cashless, employee-less, checkout-less, quick mart concept is now out of the alpha-beta grocery phase and has been unleashed on the real world of 7th Ave to solve your snacking needs. Check-in with your phone, let the shelf’s weight sensors log your selections like the world’s largest minibar, and be on your way.

It’s possible we might see one next on E Pike. Expect a wait. Continue reading

A good time to visit Capitol Hill’s ‘most strange & unique book bunker’ Horizon Books

What if we told you Horizon Books was still alive? We reported the 15th Ave E bookshop’s closure in 2009. Eventually, another book shop would take its place. But Horizon never really went away as it retreated below ground, squirreled away on 10th Ave in the middle of Pike/Pine. Over the summer, it looked like Horizon was about to say goodbye again before it sprang back once more in September.

Thursday night might be a good time to get reacquainted as the underground bookstore hosts a January Art Walk open house:

Horizon Books will be showcasing the large, mostly figurative oil paintings of Seattle artist Rani Laik. We will also be featuring spoken word artists: *Jesse Bernstein whose poetry revolves around themes of life, death, race, relationships, love, family, social issues, and politics. *Gui Chevalier will be reading select poems from his 2016 book entitled “Radical Human” *Darwin Manning, among others. Live acoustic music provided by Jose Simonet. The event runs from 5-9pm with drinks and snacks provided.

Horizon’s ownership says it is now trying to build one of “the most strange & unique book bunkers in all of Seattle.” Stop by!

Horizon Books is located at 1423 10th Ave. You can learn more at

Seattle U’s new campus store now open at 12th and Madison

Seattle University’s overhaul of its campus at the corner where 12th meets Madison has a newly opened component — the school’s new bookstore, carved out of the first floor of the storage facility building at the intersection, is now open for business. Continue reading

Two Big Blondes Storewide & Bag Sale

GIANT STOREWIDE SALE: Friday & Saturday, February 2nd & 3rd, 11am – 6pm. Every item in the store will be reduced 25% – 95% OFF! From casual to couture – clothing size 14 & up, shoes size 8 & up and all accessories – you can find it all at our Giant Storewide Sale!

BAG SALE: Saturday February 3rd ONLY. $8 bucks to fill a 13-gallon bag with clothing, shoes & accessories. Located downstairs in our basement. Enter through parking lot stairs. Come early to find the best selection! Four bag maximum until 2:00 pm. Proceeds from Bag Sale benefit Seattle Women’s Assistance Fund.

WEDDING GOWN PRE-SALE: Thursday, February 1st, 11am – 6pm. All wedding gowns will be sold at storewide sale prices (up to 95% off!) on Thursday before the sale to provide more time & space to try on the gowns.

Happy Hill Holidays: The No Parking on Pike Baby Doll Tree is back

Over the Thanksgiving weekend, the surest sign of the start of the holiday season on Capitol Hill appeared. Yes, it’s that time of year. The No Parking Baby Doll Tree is back on E Pike.

“I have read different theories about what different things represent on the tree and I find them pretty hilarious,” No Parking thrift shop owner Linda Young tells CHS.

But she says not to read too much into the bizarre holiday display that has helped make the thrift shop she runs with husband Billy Hutchinson a Pike/Pine season of light photo op. It was really a happy accident. A few years back, the couple’s seven-year-old son Liam had a great idea. Continue reading

Homestead pops up a new Plant Shop on E Pine

There is a new patch of greenery in the middle of Pike/Pine’s home decor retail scene. The folks behind Homestead have brought some of their green thumb goodness to E Pine.

A second Homestead Plant Shop is opening at 411 E Pine — Homestead’s original Capitol Hill location before its move up-Hill earlier this year. Homestead also opened a Plant Shop in the Central District at 2202 E Olive St, around the corner from Safeway.

Homestead founder Ryan and Michele Tansey say the Central District plant shop has been a big hit. “The first months at the CD shop have been better than we could have imagined,” they write. “We have people come in daily from the neighborhood and as far away as Tacoma.”

The couple have also found a way to spread green love to local nonprofits:

The most rewarding part of running the CD shop has been our charity weekends. We pick a few weekends a month to donate a portion of sales to a cause, and we’ll continue to have the CD shop be a center for local outreach and activism.

The 411 E Pine Plant Shop will celebrate its grand opening Saturday with rare and unique plants for sale, a 20% off sale, and a free plant on the house with purchase.

Looking for more ways to shop local? Check out Shop the Hill, our annual effort to highlight neighborhood retail, art, and gift giving opportunities.