Sure hope you’ve been able to spend some time downtown this glorious summer, enjoying the new wider sidewalks with cafes and shops popping up everywhere.
It’s the perfect place to people-watch, and who could ask for better weather to enjoy it all than an Okanagan summer?
There have been a few big moves downtown this year.
Picture Perfect & Perpetual Blooms moved in the spring from Bernard Avenue to a great new spot at 543 Lawrence Ave. with lots of convenient parking. It’s bright and open and just brimming with luscious artwork by local artists.
Owner Linda Winnick tells me that some of their most popular artists are John Revill (stunning landscapes), Douglas Morgan (panoramic photos that take your breath away), Julia Hargreaves (bright, happy paintings of animals and flowers).
A new artist who’s fast becoming popular is Daniel Dearborn, who paints beautiful local landscapes with big powerful skies.
Linda tells me that their Dickens Memory Tiles are also very popular, as people build a uniquely personal wall by adding tiles that have meaning to them—kind of like a charm bracelet.
Picture Perfect is the exclusive retailer for that line in Kelowna. Of course, they also specialize in custom framing, which they do in-house.
Perpetual Blooms is the floral side of the business, featuring silk flowers and decor items.
Rosemarie Vass, the floral designer, is available for free consultations and can put together some truly stunning arrangements to add some “wow” factor to anyone’s home.
Rosemarie has been quite busy lately, preparing silk flowers for destination weddings—it saves a lot of work for the newlyweds if they don’t have to locate flowers in an exotic destination.
Tigerlily Fashions also had a move at the end of June. After selling the building at 575 Bernard, TigerLily moved to a new location at 541 Bernard (nestled between Cruzwear and Behind the Fly Men’s Underwear Shop). The new spot is light, airy and feminine.
We love our new neighbourhood, even though it’s only about 10 doors away from the old spot.
Tigerlily still focuses on natural fabrics and Canadian designers like Gilmour, Michael Tyler and Crystal, and we’re bringing in some great new lines for fall to complement our pretty new spot.
Have to tell you about a wonderful new shop I discovered downtown the other day.
Lavish Design and Uniquity are two super-creative businesses under one roof at 540 Bernard. The owners, Shannon Chubb and Rachelle O’Halloran, met while taking a business course, and decided to join forces to open their own businesses in March of this year.
Lavish Design is the creation of Shannon, a professional interior designer. Through her connections in Indonesia, she imports Eco furniture made from reclaimed materials.
It’s an adventure to browse among the cabinets, benches, mirrors and tables made from such exotic things as reclaimed boat wood (from the 2004 tsunami), reclaimed teak and metal, driftwood and suar wood; every single piece is brimming with history and character.
Uniquity, the other side of this fascinating store, is run by Rachelle, who specializes in taking local vintage furniture pieces and making them beautiful again. Her slogan is: “From tired to inspired.”
Retro pieces have been lovingly restored to glory in bright colours and funky finishes, creating a shop full of unique, eco-friendly, one-of-a-kind furnishings made by Rachelle and other local artisans.
But it doesn’t stop there, you’ll find hand-made jewelry, soaps, bookmarks and gift pieces made from recycled cutlery stamped with unique sayings, recycled wood wine racks, chalkboards and hand-painted wooden signs.
Don’t forget about the huge Block Party happening on Bernard Avenue this Saturday, Aug. 9, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Organized by the Downtown Kelowna Association, it boasts a full day of activities from yoga to dog agility to food to fun for the kids, and shopping, as vendors set up tents all along the street.
With Bernard Avenue closed to traffic, it’s the biggest party downtown all year—don’t miss it.