Tag Archives: That’s Swank

Mother-daughter team bring “stylin'” touch to That’s Swank!

5 Apr

As reported earlier, That’s Swank! has changed hands. After a bit of a facelift, new owners Robin Allen and her mother, Cindy Allen, appear ready to infuse fresh energy and new life into their inventory of vintage fashions and housewares.

Cindy, who had followed her brother to Hood River 10 years ago and still commutes three days a week to Portland for a job with Care Medical & Rehabilitation Equipment, says she had dreamed for years of owning her own business.

Robin was working in Los Angeles as a wardrobe stylist for film and TV productions — independent (i.e. horror) films and Bravo’s “Millionaire Matchmaker” sport her work — when she read on Craigslist of That’s Swank! and its availability.

They’ll still call the store at 4th and Cascade That’s Swank!, and augment inventory with a couple of Robin’s own product lines. She makes and sells R.A. by Nature organic T-shirts and accessories, plus a line of hand-painted glassware.  Both are available through the RA portal.

Cindy works as house manager for the theater productions at Columbia Center for the Arts. Owning the shop may feed into that.

“I’d like to do some styling workshops here,” Robin says. “And I’d like to get involved with the theater community.”

Movie work? Well, sure, if it follows her north. She’s not going back to L.A.

She thought she might have to, occasionally, to see her boyfriend, Paul Antunes. He had been a graphic artist for 13 years with CBS, helped Robin and Cindy get set up, then headed south for the start of a long-distance relationship.

And walked right into a layoff notice. Cosmic? Well, yeah.

So he’ll be heading north, too, with a couple of different resumes in hand, looking to build a Gorge lifestyle.

If you’re in the vicinity, drop in and say “hi.” Call them at 541-386-7733.

And best of success with the store, Robin and Cindy.

Owners of That’s Swank! prepare to welcome new buyer

13 Feb

Josh Bridgewater and Rachel Hallett, longtime owners of classic clothing store That’s Swank!  at 4th and Cascade, have been trying to find a buyer for awhile now, so were happy to report that they have a deal in the offing.

If all goes to plan, they will hand over the reins March 15 to a buyer moving north from Los Angeles to work the shop with his mother, who lives in Hood River (we’re hoping to get names and learn more; stay tuned).

Hallett does design work for Columbia Gorge magazine. Bridgewater plans to switch places with the new buyer, moving south, getting married and setting up virtual space out of his new digs in Long Beach. Yup, he’s got plans to sell vintage threads to the world with a cyber store, so if you’ve been liking Swank’s threads, you can continue to shop the (digitized) racks sometime after Bridgewater completes his southerly sojourn.

We’ve asked him to let us know his store’s new web address.

Bits ‘n’ pieces from around the town

21 Jun

Thanks to Carol Thayer and son William at The Enchanted Alpaca for a great Coffee Clatter event Friday morning. Lots of people sharing news about their businesses. Don’t miss the next one … Good chat with Craig Holloway of Golf Etc. at the groundbreaking event for Mid-Columbia Medical Center’s new Mind Body center in The Dalles: He’s survived a year, and business is up in double digits. That’s news we love to hear … Looking for something different in a getaway? Check out the Carson Ridge Luxury Cabins. Owners Pete and Latisha Steadman have created a lux retreat, as alluring for out-of-towners as it should be for locals looking to score a cool staycation … There’s a new Subaru-focused mechanic in town. Tony Vinsant calls himself the Suby Man. He’s in White Salmon for the moment, but when he handed me his card recently at the Event Site (he must’ve noticed that I drive a Subaru), he said he wanted to move to the Hood. Call 509-281-1487, or send e-mail. Oh, yeah, he’s a blogger, too. … Great bread, soon, although much later than first anticipated. Michael Eggebrecht and his wife Cassandra say they’ve finally wrestled dangling purchase details to the ground, and should be opening Eggebrecht’s Bakery soon (original plans were for mid-May), in the old Panzanella space at 5th and Cascade. Thanks, Michael, for the free loaves that you and Cassandra seem to drop by with tasty regularity … Did you know that Candyland has moved from the Heights to downtown, at 111 Third St.? Biz is better since the move, what with a bit more walk-in traffic. Hours: 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 or maybe later, seven days. … Whoops, That’s … History? Spoke briefly with Rachel Hallett of That’s Swank the other day, and it sounds as if its five-year run is nearing an end. The owners plan to shut ‘er down later this year, so get your pre-owned fashions now. Rachel’s going to be sticking around town, though, and resuming her graphic design work. Call 541-490-4781 … Looking for help with weddings? Talk to Mary Ortega, whose Bella Bliss Boutique is sharing space in the front of Lucy’s Informal Flowers, at 311 Oak. Mary provides all sorts of decorative accoutrement to make your event the most memorable ever. … Need a tent for an event? Sam Gambill and Kristy Holsopple have added a White Salmon-based tent rental business to their day jobs. Tents and Rents has a variety of gear for those special occasions. And when they’re not renting tents? Sam works in the lab at Hood River Distillers, and Kristy works … in the lab at Full Sail Brewing. Part-TY!