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Steal This Look: Canoe in Portland


Steal This Look: Canoe in Portland

June 1, 2011

One of our favorite interior environments anywhere is Canoe, a Scandinavian-influenced retail oasis in downtown Portland, Oregon. Owners Craig Olson and Sean Igo have a pitch-perfect aesthetic; every detail in the space is carefully considered, down to the shelving supports. How did they achieve the look? “We removed an existing ceiling to open the space up and removed the plaster from the columns to expose the wood,” Olson says. “And we mixed hard-edged furniture such as the steel tables from DWR with vintage Danish pieces.”

Update: Olson and Igo have expanded into the the space next door and have added jewelry and to the retail mix. Go to Canoe to see the current offerings.

Above: The shop’s exterior brickwork is painted white.

Above: “We used a trio of handblown glass Terra pendants, designed by Jeremy Pyles for Niche Modern, in three different shades: Smoke, Amber and Gray.” The Terra Hanging Pendants are $995 each at Niche Modern.

Above: Olsen and Igo used simple Concrete Patio Pavers from Home Depot, which cost less than a dollar each, to create an instant step. “The floors are white pine tongue and groove, which was sourced very inexpensively from Lumber Liquidators. The ceiling boards are from a local lumber yard.” Unfinished White Pine is $1.59 per square foot from Lumber Liquidators.

Above: “The floor and ceiling are finished with plant-based products that are white-pigmented and keep the pine from darkening to orange. We used the Aglaia line from German company Beeck, including hard-resin oil, self-glossy wax, liquid wax, balsam lacquer thinner, and linseed primer. The products are easy to use, and we were able to do the whole project ourselves.” Aglaia is available in the UK through Womersleys; unfortunately, it has become hard to find in the US. Ecohaus recommends a similar product: Osmo Polyx-Oil, an engineered finish made with plant oils and waxes, plus highly refined mineral spirits to allow easy application. Osmo Professional Color Oil comes in nine shades, including white, and can be finished with Osmo Polyx-Oil.

Above: “We used Behr’s Nature Retreat on the back wall; the blue/green/gray is special because it is highly variable, changing with the light.”

Above: “The other walls are painted in a pale, neutral shade called Zephyr from Rodda Paint Company.”

Above: “We sourced the White Pennyround Tiles from a California company called American Universal and used white grout with two coats of sealer.”

Above: The oversize Model 125F Noguchi Akari Lantern is 48 by 46 inches and costs $995 at the Akari Store.

Above: The satin-finish stainless-steel Quovis Work Table from Design Within Reach is $1,500. “A restaurant supply company could be an alternate source for a similar table.”

Above: “For shelving supports, we used satin aluminum SH15B Brackets with C-Style Tracks available directly from Rakks.”

Above: “The wood shelves are Ikea butcher-block countertops finished with vegetable-based Clear Carnauba Wax, $10.99 for a 16-ounce can from Real Milk Paint Co.”

Above: Made of injection-molded polypropylene, the simple, modular Cubitec Shelving from Design Within Reach comes in a 10-inch depth or a 13.25-inch depth and starts at $196.

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