Saturday, March 5, 2011

Pacific Northwest Love Affair

We escaped for a vacation last month to Portland and Seattle. I wasn't prepared for how much I would fall in love with these two cities. In Portland, I experienced the best cupcake of my life: the cherry cheesecake cupcake at Cupcake Jones. In Seattle, we drank up our cup of Joe's on Pike Place at the very first Starbucks!

While in Portland, I managed to hit up the local antique mall, Monticello's in Portland and wanted to share some photos from my afternoon stroll through all of the talented vendors' booths! If you are headed to Portland, you must stop here! The lace selection was heaven sent. I haven't ever seen that many of perfectly tied bags of antique and vintage lace.

Thanks to everyone for suggesting I visit Fabric Depot. Their extensive ribbon selection kept me occupied for hours. The Oregon coast was a sight to behold! Wow, how have I never visited this place? I definitely will have to go back in the summer!

I think Seattle had me at hello. If I could set up shop at Pike Place, well, I would. On the other hand, the drive into Portland on I-84 through the mountains along the Columbia River Gorge took my breath away and I never wanted to leave. Coming home was a drudge!

I would be happy moving to either city! We visited both to consider relocating. For a long time, we have wanted to move somewhere with much cooler summers, covered in tall green trees, and quick access to the mountains or the beach. The Pacific northwest has it all and then some!

What do you think? Which one would you move to if you could, or if you live in or near Seattle or Portland, what are the things you love or don't happen to like so much? Rain isn't a factor for us because we happen to love rain! Post your thoughts below or feel free to email me at I would love to hear your thoughts!


Manda said...

ahhh...thanks for making my home seem so special! Sometimes all the rainy and grey days can take a toll - especially these past few weeks - but you reminded me of the beauty all around us. I work in Portland and will be adding that antique mall to my 'to visit' list. Yes, Fabric Depot will suck you in :) My favorite part about living here - the beach is an hour an a half away, and the mountains and snow are a few hours the other way. Summer time is camping and swimming in the lakes. Oregonians take advantage of each summer day, they know that there aren't that many :)

Snazziedrawers said...

Wow I loved Portland. We headed to Seaside for a few days and fed the Sea Lions. We had planned to drive down the whole coast but it was just too cold with the kids. I think I would have to plan a 6 week vacation in the summer if I lived up there because there is so much to do!
Do you have any suggestions for surrounding towns to Portland? We visited a lot of the state but it was difficult to get a real feel for the other towns just driving through.
We spent most of our time in actual Portland.
I forgot to say how affordable that antique mall was! I would have left with a truck load if I had had a way to get it all home. They had AMAZING trunks for around $25.00. Luck you for living so close!

Melissa Mickelson said...

Yes, you have helped me remember what is beautiful about Portland. I live in a city right outside of P-town. I love that in about 20-30 mins I can either, go to Mt. Hood for snow or into downtown for some funky cool stuff! If you don't mind the rain, then yes.. this is the place. I get kinda gloomy after a few months. At least its green year round! But like Manda said we cherish every nice day we have.
I am originally from Texas. Just south of Austin. I moved here in my teens. So I grew up with the hot and muggy, and I like it too!
Either way you decide they are close to each other. You can easily get to Seattle if your in Portland or vice versa.
On the other note- thanks to Fabric Depot I'm on a "fabric budget" :)
Happy deciding!

Anonymous said...

Just was on the phone with my college room-mate last night that lives in Seattle...haven't seen her in 14 years, and wishing I could make a trip there!
It seems full of life and fun.
Rainy but fun?!?!!
I for one will take rain over snow!
Fun textures and vintage books!!!!

Anonymous said...

OH, and tell me you bought that slip?!?! Its so beautiful!
I love old lace. By the way, where did you get the lace in the photo
for your new pants pattern (the cream colored lace with the aqua pants fabric)
I can't seem to find any lace that I am happy with, I am a very picky fabric shopper....tried online and JoAnns...not much to work with!
I want a vintag-ey cream like the one, not so cheap bride looking if you know what I mean!

Gloria said...

You take things for granted wherever you live, but Seattle has a just about everything. I have a friend who was in the military and traveled many places in the world, and says Seattle is about the most beautiful place. You have creeks, rivers, lakes, Puget Sound, ocean beaches, mountains, all within a few minutes or hours. There is almost one continuous city from Vancouver WA to Vancouver BC, and so many places to chose to live! I have visited family in Arizona and took my first trip to Texas recently, but only for a few days to attend my son's Air Force graduation in San Antonio. But in AZ, I was amazed and really shocked, but lack of water anywhere! They said they had "one lake" about 20 miles out of town! We are so used to heading out for a walk, meet someone or have a picnic on a whim. There is always greenery and water. And if you don't mind gray or rain, it's really the place! We actually don't have the most rain, but do have many overcast days. But I am with you, moderate temperatures are more the ideal. You can cross over the mountains and have HOT temperatures, or cold winters and so many places to tour in Eastern WA.
Come on down, the place is JUST RIGHT!

Snazziedrawers said...

I loved the funky cool vibe downtown Portland. We spent almost a whole day in the Pearl District with the kiddos. I loved that I never felt uneasy or scared.
Oh YES I bought a slip just almost identical that Ava is wearing today under a cute apron. I bought that lace at High Fashion Fabrics....sigh. It was the most I have ever paid for a piece of fabric because I fell in love with it instantly. I have used 1 yard for countless projects and just purchased another yard just in case they ever run out because I love it so very much.

Seattle was so ME. We have been to Aberdeen and Tacoma on a different trip but this was our first time to the city. You are one lucky girl to live there. It is incredibly gorgeous and vibrant. I think we need to go back soon for a second visit and stay at a cabin in the mountains. I wish we would have gone to Vancouver, BC. I have heard it is breathtaking.
Thanks for your notes ladies!

Andrea said...

My husband and I have also often thought of moving to Seattle. My mother is from there and I remember summer trips crabbing and clamming with my grandparents. The smell is so amazing and it was love at first site for me too. I hope you visited Ye Old Curiosity Shoppe while you were at the pier near Pike's Place. It is amazing and full of life and wonder! Good luck whatever you do! I know t would be inspiring for you!

Joellen said...

I live in McMinnville, OR. Been an Oregonian most of my life and have found very few other places I'd like to be :) McMinnville is about 45min (or more depending on traffic) from downtown Portland... we like it b/c it's small-townish, but has the necessary shopping - not all the fun, but the needed. WAY less traffic than your average towns (like Tualatin and Tigard) and it's close to the beach (45 min from Lincoln City) and an hour or so to various mountainous areas. Salem, Portland, Tigard, Tualatin, Lake Oswego, Woodburn... all close with great shopping. Good luck on your decision making!

Sew Much Ado said...

Oh my gosh Joy, small world! My husband's job is going to be relocating him in the next few months or so, and it will most likely be to either Portland or Seattle! I think either place would be fabulous to live, especially after reading your post :). Maybe we'll end up in the same city one day and get to do lunch!

Rachel said...

I live right across the water (50 minutes by ferry) from Seattle and love it here. I actually prefer living in a small town rather than in Seattle itself. I love living in the pacific northwest! I grew up in New Mexico where it is completely different. Good luck with your decision (our 1917 year old house is for sale if interested, ha ha).