Essensuals London brings British beauty to 11th and Union — Plus: Kismet opens on Broadway, Bang celebrates 2 years

IMG_3864Paris and London at 11th and Union? Newly opened boutique salon Essensuals London is bringing the freshest cut, coloring and styling techniques from Toni&Guy UK to Capitol Hill. After nearly a year of commuting back and forth between Los Angeles, hair whisperers (and twin brothers) Jason and Robert Townsend have opened up shop in the new retail space located next to French pastry shop Ines Patisserie at 11th and Union in the Viva building.

The brothers left Beverly Hills in search for a new home to offer their UK-inspired styling services and quickly set their sights on Capitol Hill. “We had been coming to Seattle quite a bit and fell in love with it,” Jason Townsend tells CHS. “It seemed like to us, at least, Seattle is what other major cities wish they were,” he said.

“We started looking around, we saw the style here, the cool people here, we just wanted to be part of it,” he said. Continue reading

Shop the Hill: World Beads keeping DIY jewelers and Capitol Hill crafters happy one tiny treasure at a time

The name World Beads doesn’t do justice to what’s actually inside the storefront on Broadway. Sure, there’s a dizzying array of beads, semi-precious stones, and sparkly Swarovski crystals, but also behind the counter is a knowledgeable and crafty staff ready to help complete your next creation or readily offer their jewelry repair services.

“I think what makes us successful is our hands on approach to our customers,” said Melissa Ludin. “Helping nurture their creativity and passing on our knowledge of crafting,” she said.

LSXhJx_10418904_969449039736317_881034204080337542_n (1)

Shop the Hill 2014 — November 28th to 30th
Support local merchants and get great deals on holiday shopping — 50+ stores plus restaurants and bars
Shop the Hill Spotlight:


Since the 1990s, the boutique has featured beads from all around the world. The small bead shop has established itself in the community of capitol-hill crafters and DIY jewelers, a place where designers can stop by for supplies like wire, chains, and charms.

“We hope that in turn, people come and support our business and we can stay put despite the changing neighborhood,” said Ludin. “Rent gets higher and it’s harder to stay afloat when your items cost 15 cents!” Continue reading

On the List | Shop the Hill, The Seattle Collective, Indies First Day, Seattle Marathon

Joining 50+ Capitol Hill merchants (and a great selection of bars and restaurants) offering holiday shopping deals and promotions this weekend for Shop the Hill 2014, The Seattle Collective will be the latest holiday popup to come to the neighborhood. The new addition to the temporary shopping scene will take over the 5,000-square-foot space at Melrose Market Studios Sunday November 30th from 11 AM to 6 PM and provide a cozy environment of 22 of vendors from all over the city under one roof.

While some of the smaller holiday markets and bazaars are the best way to discover new artists — quick nod to the local makers who attended the Savvy Marketplace at Melrose Market Studios earlier this month and will display their gifting goods again December 20th at Sole Repair for any last-minute shopping needs — the Seattle Collective pop-up will boast established local talent.

“You’re going to get to speak to all the owners and designers,” said event organizer Melissa Riddington. “Most events are so busy, so rammed with people, what’s special about this event is you can have a drink, have a shop, and chat with the designer.” Continue reading

Broadway Veterinary Hospital ready to provide Capitol Hill’s pets care morning, noon and night

The big, new, rotating sign on 12th Ave

The big, new, rotating sign on 12th Ave

In a city that happens to boast more canines than children, it should come as no surprise that pup-loving Capitol Hill has experienced a boom in dog-related businesses over the last few years. But these days, Broadway Veterinary Hospital sees a lot more than just routine visits from your average Fido and feline.

“Ferrets, rabbits, rodents, chickens, and I’ve seen my fair share of goats as well,” says owner and doctor of veterinary medicine Greg McWilliams about his range of clientele.

You may have noticed the newly raised red rotating sign on 12th Ave or extended hours — now open seven days a week from 8am to 8pm — just a couple of changes Broadway Veterinary Hospital has seen since McWilliams took over the practice in December of 2013.

Pet owners now have a new option for emergency care. Aside from wellness visits, vaccines, neuters, and dental, the hospital’s new emergency services mean the hospital can offer preventative and interventional care to combat severe illnesses and assist animals in critical care conditions.

A recent patient (Image: CHS)

A recent patient (Image: CHS)

Continue reading

After two years of business on E Pike, Dr. Jen’s House of Beauty muscles up Atomic Cosmetics production

A model shows off some Dr. Jen colors (Image: Atomic Cosmetics via Facebook)

A model shows off some Dr. Jen colors (Image: Atomic Cosmetics via Facebook)

(Images: Dr. Jen’s House of Beauty)

Armed with dramatic lip colors, bold eye shadow pallets, and luxurious body care products, Dr. Jen, as she’s known around Capitol Hill, has plans in place to streamline her neighborhood-based Atomic Cosmetics production with new makeup machinery.

With an eye shadow press, lipstick machine, and eyeliner pencil machine, Jen Dietrich says her growing E Pike company will be able to simplify a process currently done in her open lab that’s super labor intensive.

Formerly located within Retail Therapy, she’s since opened her Dr. Jen’s House of Beauty shop on the corner of Pike and Boylston, turning what was once a smoke shop into a toxin-free cosmetics lab and house of beauty thanks in part to glitter, chandeliers, and loads of pink.

“I wasn’t really sure how Seattle was going to respond to an open lab, but people love it. I can tell you I’m making this non-toxic makeup, but you’re actually watching me make it.” Continue reading

The Herbalist brings 30 years of Seattle herbal remedy knowledge to Capitol Hil

(Image: CHS)

(Image: CHS)

The Herbalist, an herbal remedy retailer in Seattle since 1984, is ready to open its doors and join the thriving commercial strip of restaurants, cafes, and shops that has popped up around 19th and Mercer. We caught up with Tierney Salter, owner and “Medical Herbalist,” for a look inside the new natural pharmacy.

(Image: The Herbalist)

(Image: The Herbalist)

“It’s pretty much what you’d get at a normal pharmacy, made with natural ingredients. Real ingredients, rather, I’d say natural is an overused word these days,” Salter said.
Using an efficient color-coding system for healing the body’s many zones, Salter categorizes products on the “therapy wall,” helpful for customers looking to find a quick fix and fast for all kinds of ailments.

“I’d say one of our most popular products is our Sinutone, the Northwest is cold and damp, it creates upper-respiratory challenges,” said Salter. Continue reading

Freeman flagship shop opens on Capitol Hill (but hopefully you don’t need a rain jacket… for a little while)

photo 2

Frank and the Freemans inside the new Loveless shop (Image: CHS)

Last Friday marked the opening for the Capitol Hill flagship shop Freeman, the formerly online-only, made-in-Seattle outerwear company best known for its primary-colored rain jackets. Located in the Loveless Building, the mostly menswear store — they now make a Lady Freeman rain jacket for women, cinched waist and all — is now officially part of the neighborhood shopping district at the end of Broadway neighboring longtimers Kobo and Joe Bar and newcomer Restaurant Marron.

It’s not the most common direction for a store to go from online to brick and mortar, but the three-person team behind Freeman is eager to get to know its customers face-to-face, which is partly why the company decided to open its first-ever shop on Capitol Hill.

“We love how people in the neighborhood are stopping by and seeing what’s going on,” Scott Freeman told CHS, who originally thought about opening in Ballard before deciding on the north end of Broadway. Continue reading

The Vajra continues its 25-year spiritual journey on Broadway

Savage inside The Vajra (Image: CHS)

Savage inside The Vajra (Image: CHS)

If you’ve ever wandered up Broadway, you’ve probably spun the prayer wheel outside The Vajra, or at the very least noticed the street suddenly made fragrant by incense.

“Sometimes people live in the neighborhood and have never even noticed the shop,” said The Vajra owner Rachael Savage. “I tell them when the student is ready, the shop appears,” she continued. “It’s kind of a magical thing.”

The Vajra, with plenty of magic to help it survive the continually changing Broadway, celebrated 25 years in May. Continue reading

Name change for 12th Ave co-op changing the way we view business of death

10463930_710169835695636_4966584017991816651_nA 12th Ave nonprofit that is working to change the way we think about and prepare for death is also working to change how people think of it with a new name: Co-op Funeral Home of People’s Memorial.

“There was some confusion, people didn’t understand the difference between the association and the funeral home,” said Nora Menkin, the co-op’s funeral director.

She’s also aiming to change the way we view funeral homes.

“We chose Capitol Hill because we wanted to be in proximity to hospitals, we wanted to be accessible and convenient,” said Menkin, who started out as an intern at the Co-op in 2007 before being promoted to funeral director in 2009. Being in the mix of things allows the co-op to reach people who may not have given funeral planning a thought. “A lot of people walk in our doors curious about what we do,” she said. Continue reading

Cone and Steiner — with some help from the neighbors — figuring out what it takes to run a Capitol Hill general store

(Image: Sarah Jurado with permission to CHS)

(Image: Sarah Jurado with permission to CHS)

2014 started with an interesting experiment in neighborhood retail, food and drink — how would a 21st century general store custom-shaped for Capitol Hill fare in a world with giant supermarket chains and global online commerce giants dabbling in the grocery delivery business? Turns out, it would do pretty well.

Cone and Steiner’s all-star team of backers say the first-of-its-kind retail venture is successfully providing convenience items, fresh, local produce, giftable home goods, and lots and lots of beer to the neighborhood around 19th Ave E at E Mercer. The first six months of business has been about adjusting to what the east side of Capitol Hill wants.

“The neighborhood has played a most significant part in our product selection,” says co-owner Dani Cone. Continue reading