Shared City
Micro-entrepreneurship meets a sharing economy with AirBnB’s newest concept in Portland, OR.
According to a post by Brian Chesky, co-founder and CEO of AirBnB, the company has launched a Shared City initiative to enrich “The City of Roses” above and beyond a rental marketplace. 
Mississippi Marketplace Portland
It's time to venture beyond the community tent at the Mississippi Marketplace food-pod on your next visit to Portland. Concepts for the pilot project include:
  • Working with Travel Portland on joint campaigns to highlight small businesses and diverse neighborhoods. 
  • Helping hosts donate the money they make to local causes and match those donations as a percentage of AirBnB’s fees.
  • Making smoke and carbon monoxide detectors free for hosts to ensure safety.
  • Cutting the red tape and collecting taxes to the city on behalf of hosts.
  • Monitoring corporate property managers who abuse the AirBnB platform.
  • Training programs to help hosts respond to crisis as part of a broader disaster relief and emergency plan.
Portland, OR
We love how this vision helps to foster community in a way “where space isn’t wasted, but shared with others.” It’s an idea that we feel comes at a right time – when communities are seeing alternative resources to maintain history, preserve infrastructure, and expand urban innovation. 
Shed Healdsburg
Healdsburg Shed
There’s a new breed of independent retail developing. Complexes, campuses, and marketplaces offering convenience for kindred spirits. An all-in-one indie mall of sorts.
Shed, in Healdsburg, CA is one of two concepts launched with this type of modern market flair in Sonoma County. Visiting the two-story café-meets-grocery, retail, deli, bar, workshop, larder, grange is like stepping into the pages of Kinfolk magazine. Including verbs such as Cook, Farm, Eat, and Make to identify individual sections. 
Shed Healdsburg
Signage aside, the spaces are superbly merchandised with all the vital necessities for any culinary-centric gathering. From farming essentials to packaged foods, the enthusiasm for quality and local products resonates.
Shed Fermentation Bar
The fermentation bar – with shrub beverages, local wines, and kombuchas  is the most talked about differentiator, but certainly not the whole story. The ingredient-driven menu, open kitchen, and wood oven are cornerstones of seasonal dining. The communal seating, both in the café and upstairs grange, sets the appropriate stage for Sunday suppers and social events. 
Shed Healdsburg
Design and community are give even-weight throughout each department in the expansive space. By our best estimate, the build-out could have been in excess of ten million dollars. 
We're pretty tired of the words artisanship and reimagined, but Shed has both in spades. We hope that ventures like this inspire more traditional spaces to evolve by serving a lifestyle instead of a menu or assortment. 
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SmallBusiness Saturday
{photo via Jackstraw}
Small Business Saturday may be an American Express holiday meant to eke more pennies from retailers with higher percentages, but it's heart is in the right place. Small is big — supporting independently operated and/or local stores is more than just a trend, but a means necessary to survive in a volatile retail climate.
In 2008, well before Fashion Night Out or Small Business Saturday, we developed City Stimulus: the first city-wide shopping event to generate this same kind of enthusiasm in Seattle. Four years later, three of our favorite participating local retailers — Jackstraw, Far 4, and A Mano — have combined efforts on Small Business Saturday to illustrate what neighborly love looks like.
Sustainability is not just about the foods you eat or purchasing local and organic produce. It’s also about the social, cultural, and economic success of the community. Today, we applaud American Express' efforts and hope you're willing to go big by shopping small.
UPDATE 11.26.12: According to this report in USA Today, anecdotal evidence indicates Small Business Saturday is really catching on.
Interesting innovation found in Germany allows small farmers to sell directly to consumers daily without the labor, time and travel associated with a farmers market.

{photo: Franziska Luh via}

German farm, Peter-und-Paul-Hof, has collaborated with vending manufacturer Stuewer to create farm vending machines, according to Springwise. The Regiomat machines sell fresh milk, eggs, butter, cheese, potatoes and sausage in thirteen German towns and communities.

We love the update to the traditional farm stand and hope to see more fresh vending options that cater to local foods.

City Stimulus
I wanted to share a new event around food, drink & fashion that we are producing this weekend in Seattle...

City Stimulus is a 4-day celebration of Seattle restaurants, bars and retailers that rewards buyers who shop local and shop small. The concept was hatched only weeks ago in an effort to maintain our local community for generations to come and build awareness. You see, sustainability is not just about the foods you eat or purchasing organic produce — it's about the social, cultural and economic success of every community.

If you are in Seattle, please visit to download your free membership and receive special offers at participating establishments located in Downtown, Capitol Hill & South Lake Union.


A beautiful open kitchen and communal table at Boulettes Larder in the ferry terminal for private events, delicious brunches and outstanding lunches. Everything is meticulous: from the single serving french presses to vande rose farm ham hocks.

We also love dinner to-go options with seasonal cuisine from local farms. The food presentation is appealing regardless of the quick options: no cans, no ugly styrofoam packaging, and pure flavor.