Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Small-batch Biblelots

The Pacific Northwest is big on micro-brew production of beer, wine and spirits. Why? Closer quality control, easier experimentation, more exclusive end product. At Momo, we believe the same can be said for small-batch jewelry. Working with indie designers allows us to introduce you to a taste of different talents, for example:


One of the rare folk who is native to Seattle, Nina has been a maker for as long as she can remember. After earning a BFA in Jewelry and Metalsmithing at the Rhode Island School of Design, she returned to the area, honing her skills through production for local jewelers while working on her designs in her spare time. Today, she is on her own, turning out more ambitious pieces than ever. With a strong focus on sustainability, conscious design and meticulous craftsmanship, Nina’s work is both stunning and something you can feel good about wearing. We are particularly in love with the stones in our capsule collection of Nina rings showing at Momo right now. 

“The Square” labradorite

“Triple Stone” labradorite & moonstone

“Grid Ring” with five different gemstones
Amy Bush has been crafting jewelry of many kinds for 15 years. At times, she strayed from the path, detouring in 2007 to own and run the adorable JayWalk in Madrona, then taking a hiatus for the birth of her son, Gus. Now, she’s getting back into the swing of things and Momo is excited to be Amy’s first wholesale account! The concept behind her latest line, Loyalsmith, is to combine dual-tone metals to create lightweight, everyday adornments that ‘play well’ with all your other jewelry. You can find a variety of her well-crafted earrings at the shop, including these innovative designs.

”Exclamation” in large or small
”Corkscrews” in large or small
Fun, not formal “Black Ties!”

Bay Area wife and husband team, Creek and Johnny Van Houten, share a love of antiques ranging from trains to potato buckets, marbles and buttons. While attending graduate school in Holland, Creek became fascinated by antique buttons. She began collecting the fashionable fasteners and thus was born Compass Rose Design. Our assortment at Momo features sterling silver pendants, cast from molds made from some of these buttons, ranging from sweetly whimsical to classic nautical themes.

“Lovebirds” - SOLD!

”Honey Bee”

”Sun Medallion”

Shoreline-based designer Melanie Brauner is the virtuoso behind Verso. Simply put, her unique jewelry is made from sterling silver forms cast in handmade paper. But the process is more complex: she begins by creating a wire armature that is then dipped in a pulp of water and abaca fiber. This material dries, shrinks and adheres to the metal. Once dried, the process is repeated until a desired thickness is reached, at which point the pieces are all individually hand dyed in subtle shades. The labor-intensive operation results in lightweight, yet surprisingly durable creations inspired by nature: the coil of a fern, a dangling seed, the curve of a leaf. Whatever her artist’s eye envisions.


More Seattle for the win! Francine Moo-Young is perhaps best known for her hand-painted suede kimonos, but this leather-obsessed designer is also a jeweler. One of her latest experiments is with supple leather cord and pearls in lustrous tones of silver, bronze and rose gold. These new creations come in a variety of sizes and styles, and many are versatile, with the ability to be worn in multiple ways. Take for example the dramatic “Abacus” (the baroque pearls slide up and down the lace) which can be worn long, looped twice around the neck, or encircling a wrist. Or the dainty “Rock Daisy” necklace strung with mini pearls — same utility, but a whole different appeal. Momo is among the first to tout this new line; we are especially attracted because they remind us of the laid-back luxury of Hawaii.

“Plume Abacus” necklace

“Rock Daisy” necklace

“Ghost Flower” bracelet 

Friday, July 14, 2017

Celebrate Summer, Asian Style!

The events of the International District promise fun in the sun. With so much going on, you could be here every weekend and still come back for more. See you at Momo!

Discover the Delights of Dragon Fest
Saturday, July 15 from 12-8
Sunday, July 16 from 12-6
International District

King Street comes alive with cultural activities, family fun, food and festivities. Take a day trip to foreign destinations through experiencing martial arts demonstrations. lion dances, the Chinese Girls Drill Team, and traditional Korean drumming while munching Japanese sweets, Filipino noodles,  Chinese dumplings and Hawaiian shave ice. Mmmm, when you need a break, stroll to Momo and say hello! More info on Dragon Fest.

Dance Away the Evening at Bon Odori Festival
Saturday, July 15 from 4-10
Sunday, July 16 from 3-8
Seattle Buddhist Temple at 1427 South Main Street

The Japanese celebration of honoring the dead is alive and well at Bon Odori, just a few blocks east of Dragon Fest. Don your kimono and line up with the young, old, gay and happy to perform age-old dances. You’ll also find Japanese snacks, craft booths, and a beer garden for the over 21-set. Details at Seattle Betsuin

Shop Summer AAPI Arts & Crafts Fair
Thursday, July 20 from 6-9
Hing Hay Co-works at 409 B Maynard Avenue South

Enlightened self-interest! Support the API community while you browse a unique array of goods created by hand. Jewelry, stationery, clothing, and yes, cupcakes! are among the offerings. Held within the cool offices of the CID’s best-kept secret: Hing Hay Co-works. More info at Hing Hay Co-Works.

Be Jammin’ at The Wing Luke JamFest
Thursday, July 20 from 5:30- 9
Around the CID

It starts at The Wing, then follow the fun around the ID. Discover live music and performances — like our favorite, Shanghai Pearl —  tucked away in interesting nooks and crannies, a great way to spend a summer’s eve into night. More info at The Wing

Save the Date: Hai! Japantown
Saturday, August 26 from 2-10
Jackson Street, Hing Hay Park and Nagomi Teahouse

Nihonmachi is coming into its own with a summer celebration highlighting the joys of Japantown. Connect the cultural dots between Nihonmach Alley, Cultural Heritage Walks, Mahouto Market and Hing Hay performances and Movies in the Park. More info to come, check out FB: Japantown Seattle. 

Mark Your Calendar: Kimono Mania
Saturday, August 26 from 3:30-5
Momo in Japantown




As our part of Hai! Japantown, Momo has invited two local lovelies to share their wears: Rian from Tuesday Scarves and Jancy from Saltaire Life. Come try us on.



But wait, there’s more ... Thursday Happy Hour Food Walks, Asian-American films in the park ... too much to include here. So, check it out yourself on our neighborhood Facebook page: I Heart ID. Get set for a hot summer of frolic — and remember who loves you! xo Momo





Tuesday, June 27, 2017

The Secret Side of Angela M.

 Angela at home in her studio, well equipped for the job
You may have met Angela at the shop as she helped you pick out the perfect item, and then chirpily wrapped it up. But you might not know that the pretty pink-haired Momo Girl (now a five-year veteran!) is our resident jeweler and hidden talent behind two of our favorite lines: Flora and Fawn and Little Teal.
Angela (or A1 as we like to call her) began her foray into jewelry making in 2006. Upon completing a metalsmith class at a local college, she invested in a kiln and launched Flora and Fawn, setting out to create a collection of happy-making, brightly colored enamel adornments. She appreciated the technical and methodical process by which she could consistently produce her fun, affordable earrings and necklaces.

The beginnings of a cheery enamel accessory
The magic kiln that heats up to 2,500 degrees
A finished Flora and Fawn necklace

In 2016, adversity struck with the unexpected loss of her sister. Her world shaken, for months she sat numb at her workbench. One day while poking around her studio, she rediscovered a cache of natural stones, many of which she collected as a child in her Southern Oregon home. Picking through the random assortment of gems sparked a long-smothered ember. “It felt like Christmas!” she recalls, and so inspired, she created Little Teal.

A teal is a small, freshwater duck
Slowly, her passion rekindled as she experimented with the smooth, soothing stones. At first, she applied the same prescribed planning as she used with enameling. But things never worked out as intended, “The universe conspired against me,” Angela says. Instead, the individual stones dictated design, often leading to happy accidents. “If I let go of control, it makes sense … and ultimately, I’m more pleased with the results.”

Ring or necklace? The stone sets the tone
Each piece is meticulously hand made, start to finish
She’s careful not to fracture the stone
Entirely different than Flora and Fawn, Little Teal is all about elegant, one-of-a-kind pieces, as no two stones are alike and designs are difficult to replicate. Angela loves the distinctive personalities of individual stones and lusts after obscure varieties like Peanut Obsidian and Victoria Stone. Her selections are all natural, no lab grown varieties for this rock hound.

So many unpredictable shapes, colors and sizes, oh my!
Angela’s favorite finds are from a lapidary near where she grew up. For years she drove by the rustic shop situated on the highway linking the Redwoods and Oregon Coast, assuming it to be a tourist trap. While home for her sister’s memorial, she stopped in to check it out only to confirm that it was indeed stocked with crystals, beads and fossils for the hobbyist, and layered with a fine film of rock dust.

But then the owner asked her what she was looking for, ushered her to the back room, and presented her with velvet-lined trays of beautiful, hand-cut-and-polished stones. “It was like finding a dragon’s hoard of gems!” smiles Angela. She learned that Marc and his wife, Gabby often come upon possibilities while hiking through the woods, and many of their offerings are found only in their area. Their store has since shuttered, and the couple now only sell online to avid fans that snatch up the rock rarities as quickly as they’re listed. 

An Oregon river: possible source of A1’s hydrogrossular garnets
Although her new love is found in nature, Angela once again enjoys the systematic task of enameling, balanced with the spontaneity of stone setting. Luckily, both Flora and Fawn and Little Teal are available at Momo, with A1 on hand to enlighten us as to their individual delights. 

“I’m sure that I would not be doing the work that I’m doing today if something catastrophic had not happened,” she says thoughtfully “It was the only thing that made me feel alive.” Through creating beauty, Angela found peace and joy. Thankfully, she shares her wisdom with Momo.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Glad for Dad

Dads have the annoying tendency to buy themselves the things they want before anyone else has the chance. Well, we at Momo can help you find a little sumptin’ sumptin’ to surprise Dad this Father's Day. Here’s a sample of gifts that we think he’d love:

For the Dapper Dad: Lorenzo Uomo fun socks from Italy. Your choice of fine merino wool or cotton ensures the ultimate in comfort.

Maybe Dad is more of a backyard grill master? A Hawaiian Kahala shirt will be perfect for warm summer evenings spent barbecuing.

Nothing says “Cool Dad” like a natty straw hat. We have two styles, both from New York Hat Co. (the oldest American hat manufacturing company)! Perhaps Dad is playful and a bit quirky? SumoFish shirts fit the bill to a tee.

What dad wouldn’t appreciate top-of-the-line personal grooming products? Billy Jealousy (winner of awards from Men’s Health, Real Beauty, Instinct, Motley and Esquire) is our go-to in this department. Momo has facial scrub, cleanser, moisturizer, aftershave and super slick shave cream as well as their signature shampoo and styling gel.

Billy Jealousy user, Daddy Jimmy
looking pretty youthful for 85 years old.

Drop by, say hi ... We’ve got Father’s Day covered, from head to toe. And as always, we love love love to gift-wrap for you.

Happy Daddy’s Day!
xo Momo

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Tape This: Cute + Crafty

Straight from Japan: Juice Planning tape! This is no wishy-washi tape – unlike its cousin, this happy-making plastic tape is glossy and durable. At Momo, we use it daily to secure our gift wrapping and envelopes as it stays stuck, in a good way. Perfect for the crafty set, a little goes a long way to cheer up any project, and it’s only $3 a roll. We have tons of fun patterns (22 to be exact) and Juice Planning tape is available only at Momo!

Tower O’ Tape!

Here how we use Juice Planning tape to spruce up envelopes and packages:

Add a little vintage button for extra cuteness.

Why not seal your envelope with a unique tape?

A touch of patterned tape adds a wee bit of fun.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Let the Short Sleeves Season Begin!

The season of short sleeves will be upon us soon. Really! We’re certain that the Longest, Wettest, Dreariest Winter EVER (literally!) is about to turn a corner and deliver us into a gloriously warm and sunny summer. We all need to be prepared to luxuriate in the golden rays of the big bright thing in the sky known as the Sun! Momo has got you covered in the department of uncovering your arms. For your viewing pleasure, a small selection of cool picks for days ahead:

WRK’s NYC snappy aesthetic in a perfect weight linen.

Aloha from Hawaii! Kahala’s playful prints
compliment the rugged durability of their shirts. 

You can always count on Portland’s own Bridge and Burn
for stylish, comfortable textiles.

Cotton and linen fabrics with great hand and fun patterns!

We love the tiny fish print.

Bridge and Burn for ladies. The dreamy “Brookings” top
is as light as a summer breeze.

Bunnies! Squirrels! Elephants!
What is not to love about this adorable Three Stones cami?

As always, Prairie Underground provides easy, comfortable style.
Hopefully we’ll see you (and the sun, AND our naked arms) soon at Momo!