Bookkeeping | Cross referencing the voices of the herb world at Capitol Hill’s SugarPill apothecary

(Image: CHS)

By Kimberly Kinchen

Bookkeeping is an occasional series touring some favorite places from Capitol Hill and the nearby via bookshelves, covers, and spines

Since opening in 2011, SugarPill has been Pike/Pine’s stop for herbal remedies and time-honored health wisdom. CHS Bookkeeping made a visit to the Hill’s apothecary where Karyn Schwartz’s homeopathic prescriptions sometimes include book leaves.

How does a book make it onto the shelf? Half of them are books and texts that I used in school. I studied herbs informally by apprenticing with people and taking workshops and going to gatherings. That was very hands-on, like learning a language when you move to a place where that language is spoken. But homeopathic medicine I went to school for and so this whole [left] side is all my homeopathic texts.

The right side is all herb books. This is a fraction of what I have, but these are ones I refer to frequently. I always wanted to actually have a book section here, but I’ve never had room. And there’s always new stuff coming out. And since the bookstore is right around the corner, I’m like, let them sell the books. And we’ll give the advice. Continue reading

Bookkeeping | Little Lago’s books bind together tasty mediums on Portage Bay

(Image: Rod Huntress)

By Kimberly Kinchen

Bookkeeping is an occasional series touring some favorite places from Capitol Hill and the nearby via bookshelves, covers, and spines

The two shelves of cookbooks at Portage Bay’s Little Lago are easily missed, stacked as they are back past the restroom and above gleaming cake pans and cookie sheets and plastic tubs of foundational ingredients like flour and salt. In this rendition of Bookkeeping, we talk to owner Will Steinway about the current go-to volumes that flavor his kitchen.

How does the book make it onto that shelf? For the most part, it’s books that we use on a more constant basis. Most come from my house library that we’ll bring in, and if we find we’re using it more than once or twice, then it’ll stay on the shelf.  Sometimes they come back and then go back to the store. But for the most part, those are just our go-to books.

If you had to choose a favorite, which one would it be? Well, I guess it depends on what is being done, but I would say that my favorite book is The Flavor Bible, which is much more of a resource than anything else. When it comes to baking, I would say Bake, which we have all four volumes of. Continue reading

Seattle Public Library says Capitol Hill branch to reopen Sunday after more than a year of COVID closure

Busier days at the Capitol Hill Library (Image: Seattle Public Library)

In the annals of pandemic history, some might trace the true reopening of Capitol Hill to July 11th.

The Capitol Hill Branch of the Seattle Public Library will reopen to visitors Sunday, according to the system’s latest “Road to Reopening” updates.

As its libraries return to in-person service, SPL requires everyone to remain masked and some resources like meeting rooms remain unavailable. Other vital resources like computers, wifi, and charging stations will be online and available along with the library’s vast collections. Continue reading

Bookkeeping | Cycling through the bookshelf at Capitol Hill’s Good Weather cafe

(Image: Rod Huntress)

(Image: Rod Huntress)

By Kimberly Kinchen

Bookkeeping is a new, occasional series touring some favorite places from Capitol Hill and the nearby via bookshelves, covers, and spines

Small bookshelves are tucked into establishments all over Capitol Hill. What’s on them, and why? In Bookkeeping, CHS asks small businesses on and around the Hill to open their books to us. For this inaugural post, we spoke to Brandon Waterman, co-owner, with Jason Marqusee, of Good Weather in Seattle, one of the Hill’s collection of bike shop-slash-cafes. You can find Good Weather’s book collection on their bookshelf just inside the front door of their Chophouse Row shop.

How does a book make it onto this shelf? Most of those books are mine. Some aren’t there — we have more in the back — because not all cycling books feel inclusive, so to speak. Bike shops have traditionally been male and fast, and that space is really negative. And some of the books were all about how to be a dedicated, perfect cyclist. And it’s like — “Maybe it’s not about that.”

The bookshelf doesn’t get used much now that we don’t have indoor seating. Which will come back soon, hopefully. But the way that books show up, each one has their own unique story. It’s a little bit like looking through your closet….I can look at every single garment that’s in my closet and know where it came from and have like a story behind it like, “Oh, I got that at Crossroads, I got that when I went on vacation to Japan.”….Some of them come from friends. Some of them come from collections that we’ve had for a long time. And then some of them just magically showed up. There’s a series of maps, because a lot of cycling is finding your way around. And while there’s really good resources for that online, there’s also a huge amount of printed and interesting material….A lot of those maps came from a guy who was touring in the Pacific Northwest, from here up into British Columbia. He had a bunch of maps sent here before he arrived from Europe. And when he came back through to fly out, he left them with us. Continue reading

Capitol Hill Community Post | A New Little Free Library on Capitol Hill

From Sheila Hoffman [email protected]

We are fortunate on Capitol Hill to have more than 30 Little Free Libraries (LFL) scattered around our neighborhood. Each is a unique labor of love. I’ve lived on Capitol Hill since 1979. Over the years I’ve greatly enjoyed browsing these gems, mostly taking books and occasionally dropping off one or two.

There is now a new one to check out on 12th Avenue. Continue reading

City honors outgoing chief librarian after ten years of Seattle Public Library service

(Image: Seattle Public Library)

The City of Seattle is honoring a decade of service from the Seattle Public Library’s chief librarian and executive director Marcellus Turner as he is stepping down from the position.

The Seattle City Council honored Turner on Monday with a proclamation recognizing his contributions to the city’s literary culture.

“Turner led the Seattle Public Library during two successful levies in 2012 and 2019. He prioritized equality by eliminating overdue fines and allowing people without proof of residence access to library materials,” the announcement of the proclamation reads. “Additionally, Turner led pioneering programs such as adding wi-fi hotspots to circulation so more households have access to the internet, and installing a social worker at the Central Library to better serve Seattle’s homelessness communities.” Continue reading

Return of the Capitol Hill newsstand: Big Little News planned for Pike/Pine

It’s been a decade since Capitol Hill last had a newsstand. The news? Well, it’s changed a bit in the meantime but the appetite for newspapers and magazines has somehow survived the explosive growth of online information and smartphones.

CHS has learned a new project coming to Pike/Pine from some familiar faces in the neighborhood will celebrate that appetite for the printed page — and the bottleshop. Continue reading

Oh Hello Again is a new Capitol Hill book shop organized in a bibliotherapeutic notion

(Image: Oh Hello Again)

In the wake of another “record breaking” Cyber Monday for Seattle retailing giant Amazon, a new bookstore with a twist in how it organizes its shelves and helps its customers find new and useful things to read is preparing to open on Capitol Hill.

“You can find the topic you’re interested in. Or a book maybe you weren’t even looking for,” owner Kari Ferguson tells CHS about Oh Hello Again, her new “bibliotherapy” bookstore opening this week on 15th Ave E.

Bibliotherapy? Ferguson describes it as “the notion that novels and reading can help individuals process, work through, and deal with different issues and concerns in their lives.”

The approach means Oh Hello Again is organized by topics — “mental health, everyday problems, bettering yourself, relationships, travel, and many more” — but don’t expect shelves of self-help books. The sections contain a mix of novels, picture books, young adult books, and graphic novels that address the themes of the areas a reader might want to explore. Continue reading

Fuel to join Ada’s family, adding books to blend of coffee, community

(Image: Fuel Coffee)

(Image: Fuel Coffee)

It’s a blend that should work out, mixing the 15-year-old creation of a Seattle coffee veteran  with the energy of two Capitol Hill entrepreneurs who have a vision for growing cafe communities and independent book retail.

Fuel Coffee and its three locations in the 19th Ave E Stevens neighborhood, Montlake, and Wallingford is becoming part of the Ada’s family of bookshops and cafes. The merger is the outgrowth of conversations that started well before the outbreak and is ready to move forward now that reopening plans are taking shape, both sides say. It’s now a vision that seems even more clear after weeks of COVID-19 restrictions with neighbors sticking mostly to their nearby streets.

“Community is even more important,” Danielle Hulton says.

The new Fuel will be a flip of how the original Ada’s was shaped on 15th Ave E. Ada’s is a community built around books — Fuel shops will be built around coffee. Continue reading

‘A month’s rent’ — Purr-haps pitch in to help Twice Sold Tales

Elliott Bay Book Company is weathering the storm of the COVID-19 crisis with a shift to online sales and local delivery along with a healthy dose of positive labor relations. A smaller, simpler, Capitol Hill sister book retailer, Twice Sold Tales doesn’t get the nationwide love of Elliott Bay but it, too, is trying to hang on through the outbreak and the ripples of economic challenges. Continue reading