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MissoulaValleyLifestyle.com

FEBRUARY 2020

Starting Somewhere:

Arts & Makers HITTING A (BENCH)MARK

MISSOULA MEETS ITALIANO

HOME ON HIGGINS


INTRODUCING! An intense specialized group ямБtness training course!

PYHSICAL PYHSICAL THERAPIST THERAPIST ONON SITE! SITE! ORTHOPEDIC ORTHOPEDIC POST OP SPORT MEDICINE FOOT ALIGNMENT MANUAL THERAPY SPORT SPECIFIC TRAINING


Passionately crafted dishes for the foodie in you!

SAVE THE DATE!

March 5, 6 & 7!


LIFESTYLE LETTER

FEBRUARY 2020 PUBLISHER

Mike Tucker | MTucker@LifestylePubs.com EDITOR

Chelsea Lyn Agro | Chelsea.Agro@LifestylePubs.com MANAGING EDITOR

Erika Fredrickson | Erika.Fredrickson@LifestylePubs.com

Start here. THE COVER IMAGE OF THIS ISSUE IS SO REPRESENTATIVE OF THE ARTS, FOR ME.

ACCOUNT MANAGER

Ted Huter | Ted.Huter@LifestylePubs.com STAFF PHOTOGRAPHERS

Open Lens by Pamela | OpenLensByPamela@gmail.com, Erika Spaulding | SpauldingErika@Gmail.com

This image was captured right after Pamela Dunn-Parrish and I got lovingly

AD DESIGNER

attacked by Ryan's (Missoula Bench Builder page 20) very lovable dogs. The big

Chad Jensen

one was a fury of hair and slobber and just downright excited to finally meet the strangers who'd been admiring Ryan's work outside. Cue the cover image: the bench. This is Ryan's first-ever bench. It's rickety and it lives in a dark corner of the rustic barn on his property, and it's perfect in its simple nature. In a lot of ways it says, start here. 

LAYOUT DESIGNER

Chad Jensen CONTRIBUTING WRITERS

Chelsea Lyn Agro, Erika Fredrickson, Erika Spaulding, Jill MH Taber, Susie Wall

No one begins their journey as a professional, despite how dreamy that alternative would be. There will be displaced nails and crooked boards and it'll fade or rot or sag in the beginning. Whatever deterioration takes place of these first endeavors of ours, they are so meaningful to the start of something and that's what makes them so special. When I first began writing, there were those people (the crucial ones!) who encour-

CORPORATE TEAM CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER Steven Schowengerdt CHIEF SALES OFFICER Matthew Perry CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER DeLand Shore

aged me. Write, write, write! They were the necessary pressure in the background

ART DIRECTOR Sara Minor

with their constant waiting. And then there were the other people (also, very crucial

OPERATIONS DIRECTOR Janeane Thompson

ones) who critiqued my work, told me it needed help here, here, and here. There

AD MANAGER Chad Jensen

were red pen marks everywhere. And then I noticed how I became both the lover

REGIONAL SALES DIRECTOR Eric Williams

and criticizer. I needed to love my work but I also needed to be hard on myself to

WEB APPLICATIONS Michael O’Connell

get better, and the practice is difficult. Sometimes we spend our whole lives in the messy part, but there's beauty there, and the ability to see the beauty is what makes you an artist. So if you've been meaning to start something, by all means, begin! Let these pages fuel your dreams and let that inspiration take flight. We can't wait to see what you'll come up with.  ARIZONA | CALIFORNIA | COLORADO | CONNECTICUT | FLORIDA | GEORGIA IDAHO | ILLINOIS | KANSAS | MARYLAND | MASSACHUSETTS | MICHIGAN MINNESOTA | MISSOURI | MONTANA | NEVADA | NEW JERSEY | NEW YORK NORTH CAROLINA | OHIO | OKLAHOMA | OREGON | PENNSYLVANIA

Chelsea Lyn Agro, Editor

SOUTH CAROLINA | TENNESSEE | TEXAS | VIRGINIA | WASHINGTON

Chelsea.Agro@LifestylePubs.com ON THE COVER Ryan Hollingsworth is the passionate and hardworking hands behind Missoula Bench Builder, a woodworking company that strictly uses reclaimed lumber.

PHOTOGRAPHY BY OPEN LENS BY PAMELA 4

Missoula Valley Lifestyle | February 2020

514 W 26TH ST., KANSAS CITY, MO

MissoulaValleyLifestyle.com

Proverbs 3:5-6 Missoula Valley Lifestyle™ is published monthly by Lifestyle Publications LLC. It is distributed via the US Postal Service to some of the Missoula Valley areas’ most affluent neighborhoods. Articles and advertisements do not necessarily reflect Lifestyle Publications’ opinions. No portion of this magazine may be reproduced in any form without written consent. Lifestyle Publications does not assume responsibility for statements made by advertisers or editorial contributors. Information in Missoula Valley Lifestyle™ is gathered from sources considered to be reliable, but the accuracy of all information cannot be guaranteed.


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February 2020 | Missoula Valley Lifestyle

5


INSIDE THE ISSUE FEBRUARY 2020

FEATURES 12 Missoula Meets Italiano Montana Bag Works is a crosscontinental, artist-centric company

16 Home on Higgins Do-it-yourself build at AR Workshop

20 Hitting a (Bench)mark Missoula Bench Builder finds his style in reclaimed lumber

12 26

26 Let it Last a Little Longer Owner of the General Public sways toward more sustainable fashion

16

20

DEPARTMENTS 4

Lifestyle Letter

8

Good Times

10

Around Town

12

Locally Owned

16 DIY 26 Trend Setter 32 Lifestyle Calendar 34 Parting Thoughts


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GOOD TIMES

Fun at a Hearts Afire Pottery workshop! Participants of the stoneware workshop got to experiment with reactive, specialty glazes on pieces that were made from high fire stoneware clay. PHOTOGRAPHY OPEN LENS BY PAMELA

8

Missoula Valley Lifestyle | February 2020


PROTECT YOUR INVESTMENT from the Chemicals used to De-Ice our Winter Roads

Magnesium Chloride, Salt and Sand are Harmful to your Vehicle.

Wintertime road salt, treatments like liquid magnesium chloride, sand, snow and moisture can cause rust on a car, and rust can spread across your car over time. Not only does rust not look great, at its worst, it can cause major damage to your vehicle. Keeping your car freshly washed and clean in the winter can help limit long-term damage.

Some experts recommend washing your car after every big storm or when you think your car may have been exposed to salt, sand or other chemicals on the road. Our 2-stage under carriage flush with our signature ‘Rust Guard’ application helps ward off corrosion to keep your vehicle clean and protected.

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AROUND TOWN

SPINNING BABIES WORKSHOP This course introduces the Spinning Babies® approach to pregnancy comfort, labor progress, and easier birth. Participants learn fresh solutions for long and/or posterior labor, labor dystocia and labor pain. Spinning Babies presents a new per-

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spective on the anatomy of fetal positioning and birth, and applies stretch and jiggle techniques for body balancing. After the workshop you'll be able to: demonstrate fetal movement of rotation and descent, explain how uterosacral ligaments may influence fetal position, design a daily pregnancy protocol (activity routine) for pregnant people to follow, and differentiate a progressing labor from a non-progressing labor among so many other useful tidbits of information! This two-day event is February 1 and February 2 between 8:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. at Community Medical Center. There will be a one-hour lunch break.

LAST CALL FOR ARTISTS! On March 28, the Zootown Arts Community Center will host its 8th Annual Mini Show Benefit Auction at Missoula's historic Wilma Theater. February 9, however, is the last day to submit artwork! This gala event brings together Missoula's creative community to celebrate all things mini. This year's festivities include an art exhibit with silent and live auctions, a mini dessert competition/auction and more! Submit ANY size artwork but mini works (8 x 8 inches) or smaller including the frame, will be given special consideration. Submit your work at ZooTownArts.Submittable.com.

A WORD FROM BLACKWELL BEHAVIORAL HEALTH Blackwell Behavioral Health is an office of two therapists who work with clients and their families on issues surrounding addiction and recovery. We take care to provide a comfortable, safe, and discreet environment for exploring these important but sensitive issues.  We believe individual, couple, and family therapy are all integral components of the recovery process. We combine these, whenever possible, to help clients achieve favorable long-term outcomes. We see a wide range of clients, including individuals looking to achieve long-term recovery, as well as clients wanting to look more closely at their alcohol or drug use and simply explore the idea of recovery.  We believe in removing barriers to accessing treatment  by implementing an easy 10

Missoula Valley Lifestyle | February 2020


intake process and by offering evening, weekend, and tele-medicine appointments. Each client's circumstance is  unique and we work hard to provide individualized, personalized treatment for everyone. To contact us directly, please call 406.412.4644 or visit us at BlackwellBehavioralHealth.com.

SKI & SNOWBOARD MAINTENANCE CLASS On

Wednesday,

February

19 at 6 p.m. at the University of Montana Outdoor Program, you can keep your ski and snowboard equipment primed for the rest of the winter season by taking this one-hour class. Learn how to do base repair, wax boards, and sharpen edges through hands-on instruction.

Register

online

at

Register.CampusRec.umt.edu. The cost of the class, which includes instruction, workshop use, and tools, is $15.

FUEL FITNESS MANAGER Fuel Fitness has a new Group Fitness Manager and her name is Kammy Meyers! A Missoula local, Kammy is a proud mountain-loving woman and a mother

The concept of Sandhill Ridge is to provide custom homes designed for your lifestyle. 25 Acres Open Space with 2 miles of walking trails, Borders State Land, Energy Efficient Homes, Fiber optics on-site – High Speed Internet

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We are always accepting submissions for announcements you’d like to see included in our Around Town section. Submissions are accepted via the Contact Us tab at

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MissoulaValleyLifestyle.com. February 2020 | Missoula Valley Lifestyle

11


LOCALLY OWNED

MISSOULA MEETS ITALIANO MONTANA BAG WORKS IS A CROSS-CONTINENTAL, ARTISTCENTRIC COMPANY

EVERY

WESTERN

MEADOWLARK

ON

A

MONTANA BAG WORKS BAG HAS MIGRATED 10,368 MILES FROM MISSOULA, MONTANA TO BERGAMO, ITALY, AND BACK. So has every horse, wolf, trout, and bumble bee. Missoulian Paul Wade is the owner of Montana Bag Works. Paul employs local artists to paint designs on the bags that showcase the natural world of the mountain west. The designs are then sent to Bergamo, Italy, where Paul’s business partner, Paolo Valli, turns each design into a 100% handmade handbag to be sold back in the states.   The history of Montana Bag Works goes back to when Paul taught English in Bergamo in the early 1990s.  After teaching, he would return to Bergamo often over the next several years, making friends and connections, with his daughter even attending kindergarten there. One of those friends was Paolo, a former student of Paul’s and best man at his wedding.      Paul is originally from Missoula and he returned to live here in 2014.  “I always wanted to connect something with Missoula and Bergamo,” said Paul. Two years ago he was visiting Paolo, who had started a handbag company in Bergamo using work from local artists. With some encouragement from Paolo, Paul began the line of bags and starting showing them at trade shows, only to notice a disturbing trend.  12

Missoula Valley Lifestyle | February 2020

ARTICLE SUSIE WALL | PHOTOGRAPHY ERIKA SPAULDING


“Everybody liked them but nobody bought them,” Paul said. “I just went away from the trade show empty handed. It was a total dud.”

and then sends them on their way to his longtime friend Paolo to finish the job using 100 percent European-sourced parts.

Then, at one show, he was approached by Jordan Kim, an artist out

The bags currently come in two sizes and range in price from

of Hood River, Oregon. After talking to her he said, “I should hire you

$150 to $185  online. A larger bag Paul refers to as a “shopper” is

to design some bags for me.” She agreed. Paul then began to form

coming out in the upcoming spring months. You can find the bags

his own business model thinking he wanted to do things his own way.

in Dillard’s in Missoula and Billings. They are also sold in specialty

“And I’m going to pitch it on a mountain west theme in Montana,”

shops around the west such as a trout outfitter in Sun Valley, Idaho,

he said. Thus Montana Bag Works was born.

and other boutique stores in Seattle, Hood River, and Bozeman.

Today, Jordan Kim and Missoula artist Mary Durbin Firth create

Paul and Paolo face unique challenges running a venture across

a few proofs based on a design Paul is looking for that relates to

continents. Duty, or payments levied on the sale of foreign goods,

Montana’s outdoors. They generally fit into three different product

takes a big hit from sales.

lines: Prairie, River, and Backcountry. Paul’s daughter Dominika has also contributed a couple of themes involving a Red-winged blackbird pondering, a grazing horse, and bees buzzing over sunflowers. After considering each proposed design, Paul selects one along with two to three background colors

“Our margins are very thin,” said Paul. “Also there’s an ocean of competition out there. It’s very hard to be found and once you are found you have to maintain a level of volume to make anything.” Financial gain does not drive Paul to make Montana Bag Works a successful company.

CONTINUED >

February 2020 | Missoula Valley Lifestyle

13


LOCALLY OWNED (CONTINUED)

“My thought is if I can combine unique artwork with fashion on a local level based in Missoula then it makes it worthwhile. But if it’s just for a buck then it’s not worth it.” This is evident in his commitment to give a percentage of his profits to local organizations helping the wildlife represented on the bags. “I would really like it if the company gets big enough to have a portion of each themed bag go to a specific nonprofit,” said Paul. A donation is currently made for every 100 bags to plant trees. A mountain lion bag is coming out in the spring and, recently, Paul made a donation to the Cougar Fund out of Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Paul said, “I grew up fishing on the Blackfoot and spent so much time on that river so I’m going to eventually replace that [tree] donation with something that benefits the Blackfoot locally.”  A true Montanan, Paul’s talents and interests span many different endeavors. He is an impressionist painter, a builder, and he continues to run an apparel label company he started many years ago. But his commitment to making Montana Bag Works a successful, lasting company is unswerving. “It’s a unique little bag company in Missoula,” he said, and adds, “It’s a bag company that showcases our extraordinary natural surroundings and our inherent entrepreneurial spirit.   SHOP THE STYLE Montana Bag Works 206.937.3000 MontanaBagWorks.com 14

Missoula Valley Lifestyle | February 2020


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DIY

Home on Higgins DO-IT-YOURSELF BUILD AT AR WORKSHOP ARTICLE JILL MH TABER | PHOTOGRAPHY ERIKA SPAULDING

JANIS HEINRICH YASWA GREW UP IN

The large workbenches are covered with

HER GRANDPARENTS’ JEWELRY SHOP

brown butcher paper. Drills line a shelf along

ON SOUTH HIGGINS AVENUE. In the fall

the wall. Paint-spattered aprons hang from

of 2018, Janis learned that the space that

hooks next to shelves stocked with jars of

housed so many of her childhood memories

paint. If you can dream it, you can likely cre-

was up for lease. She took a leap, returning to

ate it at AR Workshop. Build a tray, paint a

her hometown of Missoula.

sign, learn how to make a tasty cocktail—it’s

“121 South Higgins is home to me. I remember everything about this space as a

“We have over 600 projects to choose

little kid,” Janis said. “This was either going

from, a variety of materials to work with, and

to be rented to me or to someone else. I had

the option of customizing your own project,”

to have this space.”

Janis said. “New projects and designs are

She didn’t know exactly what kind of business she’d open, but the charming little shop on Higgins called her home. “I was really at a crossroads in my life and

something new to create.” Creating in community fuels the passion behind AR Workshop.  “Our workshops are activities for all ages and

if this was all laid out for me,” Janis said. “It

skill levels and it’s great to see how impressed

started with the location; this space is so

guests are with their projects when the end

precious to me. It really was where I grew

result is revealed,” Janis said. “The workshops

up, with so many memories of my parents

are three hours of carefree creativity, connecting

and family.”

with others, talking, and laughing. Our guests

soul-searching, Janis decided she’d share her love of crafting with the Missoula community. Enter AR Workshop—a boutique DIY studio

Missoula Valley Lifestyle | February 2020

released each month, so there is always

needed to make decisions. It really was as

So, she signed a lease and after a bit of

16

all available at AR Workshop.

always comment [on] how cozy our space feels and we love that people feel at home here.” Janis said the workshop is an extension of her home. 

that offers instructional crafting classes. Janis

“Every day I’m here I meet someone I

first heard of the company’s founders from

have a connection with somehow,” Janis

a television segment and followed them on

explained. “I love to share my story and hear

social media for several years. They’d recently

other people’s stories, especially hearing

opened franchising opportunities when Janis

what they love about living here or what has

found the Higgins location.

brought them to Missoula.”

“The timing was perfect,” Janis explained.

With the popularity of DIY shows and

Her son helped fix up her family’s former store

social media platforms like Pinterest and

which now offers a retail area in the front and

Instagram, Janis explained, maker work-

a workshop area in the back.

shops have really taken off.


“Our workshop allows people to be creative in a safe space,” she said. “Guests get the satisfaction of learning a new skill and [get to leave] with a finished project of their own making.” Take knitting, for example.  You’ve seen pictures of a woman cuddled under a chunky knit blanket, steaming mug in hand. AR Workshop brings the dream to life: you can learn to knit a blanket or a pair of throw pillows in a few hours using only your hands and a few skeins of jumbo yarn.  Women giggled as Janis instructed them on the first few stitches. They knot and then unknot their first rows, learning from their mistakes. They sip wine and nibble on take-out as they chat with friends. Within thirty minutes, muscle memory begins to take over as blankets double, then triple, in size.  Whether it’s knitting or painting, building or decorating, AR Missoula offers something for everyone. Janis will celebrate the shop’s first anniversary in May and is planning some special events to celebrate. She’s collaborated with several local crafters to offer new workshops and plans to expand those offerings in the future.  YOU CAN DO IT! AR Workshop Missoula 121 South Higgins Avenue

“OUR WORKSHOP

406.640.8484 ARWorkshop.com/Missoula

ALLOWS PEOPLE TO BE CREATIVE IN A SAFE SPACE.”

February 2020 | Missoula Valley Lifestyle

17


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Missoula Valley Lifestyle | February 2020


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HITTING A (BENCH)MARK

MISSOULA BENCH BUILDER FINDS HIS STYLE IN RECLAIMED LUMBER

I ALWAYS GET ASKED TO DO UNLIKELY PROJECTS.”

RYAN HOLLINGSWORTH RYAN HOLLINGSWORTH IS AS MISSOULA AS THEY COME, MEANING HE’S DONE IT ALL. It isn’t uncommon in this city for a person to love and respect the work they do and then, moments later, come to find that they have several other gigs or hobbies. It leaves the rest of us wondering—how do they do it all? Ryan is the proud owner of Missoula Bench Builder, a business he started about five years ago, unofficially. It began with a simple bench he made of scraps from the Missoula Helitack base, where he worked as a wildland firefighter and for whom he had recently helped his crew construct an addition. Ryan was also a construction worker in the off season, and he logged up highway 12, just a few miles from where he now lives and does all of his woodworking and furniture building. In a very Missoula-mysterious way, all paths either kept or drove Ryan to working with wood in some capacity. When it came to those off seasons, and paying bills, Ryan always came back to woodworking, commissioning a few benches for a woman who used them to display her goods at the Missoula Farmer’s Market, and then a vanity for a different customer. His business was generated mainly from Craigslist advertisements and word of mouth until Facebook ARTICLE CHELSEA LYN AGRO PHOTOGRAPHY OPEN LENS BY PAMELA 20

Missoula Valley Lifestyle | February 2020

Marketplace reached more people whose interest was piqued by his reclaimed material and aesthetic.


Officially, the company started a little over a year ago,

it. The piece he’s cut is going to fit like a puzzle piece

when Ryan was able to stray from his various seasonal

into the dog crate that he’s building for a customer. It’s

jobs and land at home, in his shop, with the reclaimed

unlike anything you’ll see at a department store or even

lumber he continually retrieves from Heritage Timber. It

a furniture maker’s shop. And that’s kind of Ryan’s style.

was a risk to ignore the other avenues that steadily paid

“I always get asked to do unlikely projects,” said Ryan.

the bills and go in the direction of making Missoula Bench

He jokes that it’s his specialty. And in the next moment

Builder a legitimate business, but Ryan was determined

we’re standing next to a piece he’s just finished, complete

to go all in.

with upholstery. It’s a Minbar—a pulpit in a mosque where

He remembered where it all began.

a prayer leader sits or stands to deliver sermons—and it’s

“I grew up in Columbus, Montana and Rick Flemming

home to the members of the Missoula Islamic Society.

was our neighbor and he had two boys that were right

He’s thrilled with the final product and loves when that

around my age, my best friends,” said Ryan. “He always

excitement is matched by his customers, but that recipro-

told me to come up to the land to build stuff. I remember

cation didn’t come as easily in the beginning.

my mom picking me up a chainsaw for like twelve bucks at a yard sale.” As he reflects back to childhood and his first days of running saw, he slices through another reclaimed piece that is imperfect in all the perfect ways. It’s blonde and gray and grainy and a little bowed. There’s a charm about

I’M A WHOLE DIFFERENT WOODWORKER NOW, EVEN FROM JUST A YEAR AGO.” CONTINUED >

February 2020 | Missoula Valley Lifestyle

21


HIT TING A (BENCH)MARK (CONTINUED)

“I’ve had stuff come back at me,” Ryan said. “I was making this jeweler’s bench and I used ball bearing drawer slides because that’s what I did for drawers…When I delivered it, he said something like, ‘No, that’s not what I want’ and I basically went back to the drawing board to get it right.” Ryan winces when he remembered these early lessons, but he couldn’t be more thankful for them, and for the customers who pushed him to be the craftsman he is today. “I’m a whole different woodworker now, even from just a year ago,” said Ryan.  And he’s right. Before leaving his quiet shop at the foot of a mountain, his little bench—the original—is brought to light from the barn. It is just as charming in its physical state as compared to Ryan’s narrative of it in those humbling beginning days of his craft.  “People will always need furniture,” said Ryan. And he intends on meeting that demand with thoughtful, stunning pieces that are sure to please anyone who is looking to pay tribute to wood with a story.  MISSOULA BENCH BUILDER MissoulaBench.com Missoula Bench Builder on Instagram and Facebook

22

Missoula Valley Lifestyle | February 2020


CONTINUED >

February 2020 | Missoula Valley Lifestyle

23


HIT TING A (BENCH)MARK (CONTINUED)

I WAS MAKING THIS JEWELER’S BENCH AND I USED BALL BEARING DRAWER SLIDES BECAUSE THAT’S WHAT I DID FOR DRAWERS. WHEN I DELIVERED IT, HE SAID SOMETHING LIKE, ‘NO, THAT’S NOT WHAT I WANT’ AND I BASICALLY WENT BACK TO THE DRAWING BOARD TO GET IT RIGHT.”

24

Missoula Valley Lifestyle | February 2020


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TREND SETTER

Let it Last a Little Longer OWNER OF THE GENERAL PUBLIC SWAYS TOWARD MORE SUSTAINABLE FASHION

ARTICLE ERIKA FREDRICKSON PHOTOGRAPHY OPEN LENS BY PAMELA

SHORTLY

AFTER

ALLISON

REAVES

LAUNCHED HER CLOTHING LINE, SHE STARTED FLYING TO NEW YORK FOR MARKET WEEK. It was 2017, and she had just moved back to her hometown of Missoula after working with fashion in Portland, Oregon for two years. The New York-based design and retail consortium allowed her to promote her clothing to larger markets beyond the Garden City. But it wasn’t easy. She was among a multitude of other designers vying for buyers in a madhouse of showrooms. “You’re in these booths for 10 hours a day, three or four days in a row,” Allison said. “It could be really soul-sucking.” But the connection with other designers at Market Week was also what kept Allison sane. A lot of them, like her, were small-scale artists with larger ideals about what clothing could be in an industry that affects the world both negatively and positively. “Chatting with all these other amazing people and knowing how hard it is to just be an artist and try to make that your career—it made me want to support them however I could,” Allison said. 26

Missoula Valley Lifestyle | February 2020


In April of last year, Allison opened her own retail shop named after her clothing line, The General Public, to do just that. The

the space feels like an art gallery of curated lifestyle objects rather than a run-of-the-mill boutique.

shop inside downtown’s Florence Building showcases her own

Designers include Kordal, a knitwear company out of Brooklyn

clothing line plus more than 30 designers from across the coun-

and Los Angeles-based 323, a clothing company that creates

try. She often carries just a few pieces from each vendor so that

“funky silhouettes” and whose philosophy celebrates, among CONTINUED >

February 2020 | Missoula Valley Lifestyle

27


TREND SE T TER (CONTINUED)

THE GENERAL PUBLIC 112 W Front Street 406.493.0132 The-GeneralPublic.com

other things, emotional intelligence, body positivity, tolerance, and kindness. Also in the shop: Hats of various materials from Portland milliner Brookes Boswell, quirky and cosmic brass jewelry from Yu Yu Shiratori, CLT bags from local designer Caitlin Troutman and Allison’s own line, which is inspired by workwear made from light denim, canvas, and linen. February is when the spring lines start coming through the door, including dresses and jumpsuits and objects in light pastels. Allison always carries Fat & the Moon plant-based cosmetic line and nail polish from tenoverten, a company that doesn’t use the top 8 main toxins usually found in nail polishes.  The collection of clothing, jewelry, cosmetics, ceramics, and other functional decor isn’t just handpicked for aesthetics. Allison’s journey to becoming a designer and retailer included a lot of discussion about sustainability and ethics. In Portland, where she landed after graduating from the apparel design program at Oregon State University, she worked with a lot of femaleowned design companies that cultivated creative passion around ideas of sustainability. “They were doing new things and they had ideas they’d just run with,” Allison said. “They were not really thinking about what’s popular, they were expressing themselves as artists. And that was when I was like, ‘Oh, whoa! I could do this. This is what I want.’” The vendors she chooses are part of what’s called the “slow fashion” movement. They work with natural fibers or textiles that would have otherwise gone to waste. They are vendors who make products by hand on small scales and if they do commission their products to factories, they aren’t going to be sweatshops. 

28

Missoula Valley Lifestyle | February 2020


“TO BE TRULY SUSTAINABLE WE WOULDN’ T BE CREATING ANYTHING NEW RIGHT NOW. THERE’S SO MUCH CLOTHING IN THE WORLD ALREADY.”

Why does it matter? Each year, the U.S. generates 15 million tons of textile waste of which 10.46 million ends up in the landfill. An average American throws away about 80 pounds of used clothing per person, per year. And the clothing industry, itself, is the second highest polluter of our water resources. So these designers look to make products that are biodegradable, that haven’t been made with a lot of chemicals and that use textiles that would have been otherwise thrown out. “To be truly sustainable we wouldn’t be creating anything new right now,” Allison admits. “There’s so much clothing in the world already. But I think there’s an opportunity to educate people about what being a conscientious buyer looks like.”  The

higher

price

point

of

handmade,

slow-fashion objects can feel prohibitive, but the quality and uniqueness is a logical argument for the cost. These items are distinctive because Allison generally orders only one or two of a kind—especially things like ceramics and other decor, and once she sells them, she’s out. It gives the buyer a sense of owning something special that also lasts and could even be passed down. “I feel like our generation doesn’t have any heirloom pieces,” Allison said. “We get something and throw it away or wash it once and it’s falling apart already. And so I want to bring back that idea of having something that you really appreciate. And I think that’s an idea that’s starting to catch on.”

February 2020 | Missoula Valley Lifestyle

29


30

Missoula Valley Lifestyle | February 2020


*photograph by Erika Peterman

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FEBRUARY

LIFESTYLE CALENDAR

1

the Local 271 BomBEARos and The

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LADIES NIGHT OUT

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Running the 5K also shows your

5

they will create fun, experimental

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kinetic art projects and finish the

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PUBLIC GROUSE FILM TOUR

piece to be displayed at the ZACC.

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day by collaborating on a large scale Visit ZooTownArts.org.

Our upland heritage was built upon the various grouse species that span the continent. On Wednesday, February 5 at 5 p.m., join Project Upland and Backcountry Hunters & Anglers at one of 20 showings across the U.S. Visit BackCountryHunter.org for ticketing information.

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public speaking at the University of

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town. Forestry Club and other stu-

20

13

28 HOSPICE BALL

Hospice Care Foundation

Enjoy a night of doo-wop on Friday,

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14

February 28 between 6 and 9 p.m.

CROSS-COUNTRY SKI WEEKEND

to fund compassionate care activi-

This event is hosted by the Hospice Care Foundation, whose mission is

University of Montana Outdoor Program

ties and educate the community on

Sunday, February 8. Visit Forester

Register by Wednesday, February

hospice and palliative care options,

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12, to enjoy a cross-country ski

while striving to ensure that hospice

weekend in Glacier National Park

care options are available to all those

8

February 14 through February 17!

in need. Visit HCFMissoula.com

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9TH ANNUAL FIRE ON ICE

Montana Campus Recreation, this

7 p.m. on Saturday, February 7 and

32

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Missoula Valley Lifestyle | February 2020


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PARTING THOUGHTS

Making, Doing, Dreaming in Missoula ARTICLE AND PHOTOGRAPHY ERIKA SPAULDING

TESTING MY BRAIN IN WAYS THAT ARE NEW AND UNFAMILIAR BRINGS ME SO MUCH JOY, AND FRUSTRATION. I’m convinced that pushing myself to do things that I know will be a challenge (and that I may even fail at), keeps my ego at bay and overall creates a bigger canvas to exceed goals. This year, a few of my new hobbies and goals I have completed are as follows: Helped teach a cadaver lab, trained to be a nurse’s aid, became an Uber driver, started as a freelance photographer for Missoula Valley Lifestyle Magazine, trained for a half marathon, recorded myself playing guitar and singing, began horseback riding lessons, competed in the Miss Montana pageant (a HUGE step outside of my comfort zone), and am working toward becoming a certified Veterinary Technician. I also have started various crafts like knitting, sewing, Kombucha brewing and working with leather to make jewelry and accessories. This list is a small sample of what I dream of accomplishing. Some of them I did, simply because I thought I couldn’t. There were times that I had to stop and come back to a project, or wanted to scream at the thought of threading one more needle, or walking down the runway in my bikini in front of a panel of judges. My hopes for you, the reader, is that the next time you doubt something you do, or find yourself in fear of failure, you can think of this little parting thought and that random Missoula gal  who decided that failure was the building block to a better future.  There’s no better place to dream than under this Big Sky. 34

Missoula Valley Lifestyle | February 2020


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Missoula Valley, MT February 2020  

February 2020 Issue of Missoula Valley Lifestyle

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February 2020 Issue of Missoula Valley Lifestyle