Desperado Teams Up with Vogt Silversmiths through Christmas & Special Event Dec.14-15

VOGT SILVERSMITHS AT DESPERADO’S CORE…

When Desperado first opened its doors in Portland’s historic Pearl District, Western style was at its forefront.  23 years later Desperado now calls Bend, Oregon home and features a broad eclectic mix of Bohemian & Western style in its jewelry, apparel, footwear, and home decor.  Vogt Silversmiths has been a part of that journey.  “We’re excited to be teaming up with Vogt again.  We’ve always carried Vogt Silver, but this collection is really special for us,” says Owner/Proprietor Joanne Sunnarborg.  “It’s a big investment for a small boutique like Desperado to carry this much sterling silver so when Vogt approached us to do a holiday event we were thrilled!”  This special Vogt Collection will be available at Desperado through Christmas with a special weekend event with giveaways on Saturday, December 14th & Sunday, December 15th.  Desperado will continue to carry Vogt throughout the year on the jewelry section of our website.

THE VOGT STORY OF FINE SILVERSMITHING…

In the late 1960s, family patriarch Norm Vogt, a World War II veteran, discovered a community of sterling silver and leather artisans in Old Mexico and began a partnership that lives on to this day. In the early years, Vogt Silversmiths specialized in silver bits and spurs. The Vogt family was raised using silver ornamentation on their ranch inspired by traditional vaquero culture.

For three generations the Vogt family, now lead by Chet Vogt, has been creating the world’s finest hand-engraved solid sterling and hand tooled leather accessories.  Their silver shops, located in Mexico, employ local artisans who draw upon the region’s 500 years of guild tradition developed and passed down by their great teachers and are still practiced today. Vogt’s tools and traditions have stayed the same for hundreds of years. Vogt silversmiths obsessively refine their craft and focus on creating new and beautiful designs in the ancient tradition. Every Vogt Silversmiths piece is individually crafted—by hand and by heart.

UNCONDITIONAL GUARENTEE

Each Vogt product, made by hand, one at a time, has an unconditional lifetime guarantee. Bend it or break it, Vogt will fix or replace it—no questions asked.

Secrets to Jean Care by Dear John Denim

Dear John care tags.

 

Dear John,

I’m terribly sorry I had to do this through a letter, but this felt better than talking to you in person because I am a wuss like that.  This note will be the last memory you’ll ever have of me.  I’m leaving you and I’m not looking back…This should come as no surprise to you since you’ve ruined every nice pair of denim I’ve every owned.  I have tried reminding you time and time again to stay out of my dirty laundry!  My jeans don’t need to be washed all the time, and when it’s time to wash them – machine wash cold with like colors! Also, wash denim inside out so that it may retain its color longer and doesn’t damage embellishments or embroidery.  And never use bleach!  Hang dry as lycra, which keeps me comfy, hates the dryer. And no short cuts John…denim hates the dry cleaners! But like the typical “Macho Man” that you think you are, you just don’t hear me…I know you listen John…But you never HEAR me and I’m sick of explaining the difference.  So I leave you now and my only hope for you is that you find someone new…and when you do, I hope you’ll be kinder to her denim than you have been with mine… Have a Nice Life!!!  

How to Tell if the Turquoise You’re Buying is Real by Sam Silva

Images of faux & real turquoise.

It’s no secret that people enjoy the finer things in life; but sometimes the finer things in life come at an all too high cost. High-end items like jewelry are commonly being copied and made from cheaper materials, yet sold at high-end prices. Unfortunately, without the right expertise, consumers can be tricked into buying stones and jewels different from what we intend.

Fake turquoise makes up about 90% of the turquoise market today. Real turquoise is a mineral found near deposits of copper. Turquoise also requires the presence of three other materials: aluminum, phosphorus, and water. The mix of these minerals make each piece of turquoise incredibly unique. Turquoise has a rare distribution of green and blue color that other mined stone simply can’t recreate. However, other stones, like howlite, can be easily manipulated and dyed to achieve an almost identical look to turquoise, at a cheaper cost.

Howlite is a borate mineral found in evaporite deposits. Like turquoise, howlite itself is a beautiful stone that can be sold in its natural state. Howlite can be found under the names of: white turquoise, white buffalo turquoise, or white buffalo stone. However it can also be altered to imitate other stones like turquoise. Because of its spongy texture, howlite is easily dyed and the dye then sinks into the pores of the mineral giving it a look very similar to real turquoise.

When consumers look at the beautiful turquoise stone, there are three things to keep in mind to be sure that the turquoise is the real thing:

  1. Appearance: Every piece of real turquoise will have its own, unique look. If stones are identical, they may not be real.
  2. Color stability: Natural turquoise will be colored throughout from its creation in the earth. The color will not rub off.
  3. Price: Real turquoise is going to be more expensive. If the price looks too good to be true, it probably is.

Here are a couple tricks to find out if the turquoise is real.

  • The fingernail test. The fingernail test is simply running your fingernail along the surface of the stone. If your fingernail gets caught where the veins and splotches of the stone are, chances are the stone is real. If your fingernail can run smoothly along the stone, chances are you have manipulated howlite.
  • The scratch test: Howlite is a lot lighter and softer than turquoise. The scratch test will test the hardness of the stone. If the stone scratches easy, chances are you have piece of howlite. If the stone is difficult to scratch, odds are higher that it’s turquoise. Be careful when using this technique as it does involve scratching up your stone.

The only way to be certain that you are buying real turquoise is to know where it came from. There are many vendors who sell fake turquoise labeled as the real thing. You should always buy turquoise from a reputable source with expertise and knowledge of the stone’s source. Here at Desperado Boutique we highly encourage that when looking for your new jewelry you shop local and don’t be afraid to ask questions. We love to talk about where we get our products, as everything we sell comes with a story.

Behind the Scenes @ LA Market by Haleigh Newbeck

Images from LA Market in the fashion district.

We landed in LA early on a Saturday morning with high hopes of hitting a few famed shopping areas on Los Angeles.  “Research & Development”, as Joanne calls it.  We ended up spending a good chunk of the day walking Abbot & Kinney Boulevard, which is the claimed “coolest few blocks of America”.  Spring was in full effect inside all the cool LA shops, statement denim & slides team up to make for a perfect, plea for sunshine, ensemble. It’s pretty fun to people watch over some avocado toast and a Moscow Mule… fashion is at every turn in LA.  It’s a vast difference from our casual little city in the heart of the Oregon high desert.  Our shopping afternoon got us both really excited to shop for the store and to make summer and fall the best our clients have seen yet!

Images from LA Market.

The LA Market is held in the fashion district of Downtown Los Angeles. An iconic area full of breathtaking Art Deco buildings & hipster cafes. We started off Sunday with lots of excitement, eager to see what fashion has in store for us. I feel pretty confident saying that the biggest trend for our up-coming seasons is positive 70’s glam. You’ll see lots of chartreuse, shades of green & pink, and yellow. With jaw-dropping outerwear leading the way, you’ll be more excited than ever to put a coat on and face the Fall & Winter weather of the high desert. Lines like Johnny Was and Dylan have really stepped up their game to brighten up a dark Winter wardrobe with unique embellishments & prints. There is also an abundance of positivity on the horizon in fashion. Statement tee’s & hoodies with the happiest of affirmations will be sure to be a necessary addition to your wardrobe. We went on a hat hunt & found the most perfect line for our store, Brooklyn Hat Co., they’re feminine & on trend with a fabulous low price point to boot!
We are really excited about some new lines that will be hitting the store starting in a few months. So stay patient, Summer will be here before you know it. Our fashion loving tanks were fully fueled this buying trip…anything goes in LA & we are totally okay with that.

❌❌
Hal

Images from LA Market.

Dogs, denim, & daring outfit combinations! by Haleigh Newbeck

Images from market in LV.
Images from market in LV.

Images from LV market.

Images from market in las vegas.
This Fall seems to be all about stepping out of your comfort zone and daring to create some ‘out of the box’ wardrobe choices.  Feminine florals and embroidery are still on trend and more ornate than ever.  3D applique and bold colors are in!  Stay safe with feminine pinks and rose golds, or go above and beyond in fluorescent fuscia or cherry red.

Images from market in LV.

Images from market in las vegas.Apparel line Johnny Was hit it out of the park with their newest Fall/Holiday designs. Staying true to their statement styles of gasp worthy pieces like embroidery on silk printed gowns and “wearable art” hoodies. Boot company Liberty Black Boots had us drooling over their black on black suede embroidered boot due this Holiday season. Pair them with a printed Viereck dress & an amazingly unforgettable leather jacket from Mauritius & your go-to Fall/Holiday wardrobe has three key fashion components.Images from market in LV.

It’s ALL about the denim as we close out 2017, from head to toe. From shearling jackets, to embroidered denim vests, to raw edge gaucho pants. With Dear John Denim & Driftwood setting the pace for daring wearables with an incredibly fabulous price point…it will be easy to be on trend without breaking the bank.

Who could resist a reusable shopping bag with all your life aspirations?! Come on, we do live in “dog town USA” ????

Images from market in Las Vegas.

Images from market in LV.
Images from this years retailers show in LV.

Care Tips For Your Denim by Dear John

Images of Dear John Jeans.

So you’ve got the perfect jeans, but now what is the best way to care for them and keep them looking good and fitting right???  Dear John Denim has tips for keeping your jeans (no matter what the brand) looking good for years to come.  These great tips come from the Dear John Care tag and even if laundry isn’t your bag this entry is worth the read, we promise!!!

Dear John care tags.

 

Dear John,

I’m terribly sorry I had to do this through a letter, but this felt better than talking to you in person because I am a wuss like that.  This note will be the last memory you’ll ever have of me.  I’m leaving you and I’m not looking back…This should come as no surprise to you since you’ve ruined every nice pair of denim I’ve every owned.  I have tried reminding you time and time again to machine wash cold with like colors.  To wash denim inside out so that it may retain its color longer and doesn’t damage embellishments or embroidery.  And never use bleach!  Hang dry as lycra, which keeps me comfy, hates the dryer.  But like the typical “Macho Man” that you think you are, you just don’t hear me…I know you listen John…But you never HEAR me and I’m sick of explaining the difference.  So I leave you now and my only hope for you is that you find someone new…and when you do, I hope you’ll be kinder to her denim than you have been with mine… Have a Nice Life!!!  

Dear John Denim Fit Event: May 12th 3-8pm & May 13th 10-6pm

Come see our great selection of Dear John Jeans, plus get your personalized fit

with LA based denim fit expert Kaitlin Moor of Dear John!!!

Image of models in Dear John shorts.

 

Behind the Scenes at Market – a.k.a. Biggest Retail Show in the World! by Haleigh Newbeck

Graphic of LV Magic Show

There’s nothing quite like Las Vegas. Especially during Market week. We head to market in Las Vegas about two times a year to buy for future seasons. This February, we were buying for Summer, Fall, & early Holiday. Prepping for market is a beast of its own, which includes lots of research on current and future trends, planning a tight schedule, and knowing “our current client”. Central Oregon is a challenge. With a pretty well rounded lists of “regulars” (as we call them ????) and heavy tourist seasons, it’s up to us to find a balance between high end fashion and practical wardrobe essentials. Which, is not as easy as you’d think.

Collage image of Haleigh, Joanne, & Nicole trying on coats at the Tasha Polizzi booth at Magic in LV.

Myself, Jo, & Nicole- shopping for Fall and Winter outerwear at Tasha Polizzi.

There are four shows we attend: Project & Stitch at Mandalay Bay, WWIN at the Rio, Magic at the Las Vegas Convention Center, and Platform which is also at the Las Vegas Convention Center. Each show represents fashion in a completely different light- which is never for the faint of heart.  Project & Stitch house high end designer labels like Johnny Was, Old Gringo, and Tasha Polizzi. This show is always a jaw dropper, leaving us thirsty for all the promises a new season brings as we open our doors to future trends. Platform is specifically for footwear. This show is HUGE, & takes over an entire days worth of walking the booths to see everything. Appointments are made with our best selling brands like Liberty Black and Freebird, but we always leave room to walk the booths in search of new brands to invite in to the store. The Magic show is full of trendy favorites & affordable lines such as Dear John Denim and PJ Salvage. This is where we do a huge bulk of our buying for summer, targeting our tourist traffic and summer essentials for our regulars. Straw hats, long breezy dresses, & bra friendly basics were important for us this year- and we left happy. The WWIN show keeps us on our toes with our long time labels like Last Tango & Vintage Collection. With multiple show rooms, it’s a must stop for us. Plus, they provide complimentary wine after 6:00. ????

Left: Half the Platform show at the LV Convention Center. Right: Half of the Magic show in Vegas.

Our days typically start at 8:00 and end around 10:00. We like to power through and only leave time for the essential coffee pit stops (toting snacks are VERY important as there is never time for an actual meal). After a day at Market we like to find the closest bar and talk about our days work over a drink, discussing “slam dunks” (Joanne’s words, lol) and orders we were really comfortable with. Usually, we all have different things to be excited about. This year, we all were elated with Old Gringo & their amazing handmade boots. Hands down: they are wearable art. Who can say no to wearing art for your feet?!

One thing I love to do at Market is text our clients pictures. In the end, you are the reason we go to market, and it’s important to get feedback. It helps to get direction, and it’s fun to get our clients as excited as we are about new trends and future arrivals! There’s nothing better than texting a client a picture and getting this response: “OMG, momma likes!!!”. Or, “Omg, I love that!! Totally me!” Yes, those are actual responses, lol.

Driftwood & their iconic embroidered denim. Plus, Central Oregon Summer essentials at Scala Hats.

This market had a HUGE variety of trends. In some ways it was almost a time machine. The 60’s, 70’s, and 90’s have collided in a big way. Which we are actually kind of excited about. Lots of faux suede, chunky knits, metallics in footwear, western inspiration (TURQUOISE & BUCKLES, oh my!!), nautical chic with embroidery (navy striped everything), flares, and distressed relaxed denim are a must in every closet. Embroidery is still a big statement, along with patchwork and faux fur.

Market is hard work. Our carry-on bag of catalogues and orders weighed 35 lbs, that’s a lot of freaking paper. However it really is one of my favorite parts of managing desperado with shoes &…there’s nothing more inspiring than the beginning of season, and all the ways you can grow your clients wardrobe. It’s incredible to share such a passion for fashion with so many wonderful and life changing people, which fuels every day at Market.

Collage images of LV Market.

Double D & Greeley Hat Works Team Up

Collage images of double d hats with greeley hats works.

It can only be called a match made in heaven when you gaze upon Double D Ranchwear’s newest collection of handmade western inspired hats. That’s because Double D has teamed up with world-renowned hat maker Trent Johnson of Greeley Hat Works. The two companies each bring to the table a level of expertise that is unprecedented in this type of business venture.

We caught up with Damon Smith, the head production manager of Greeley Hat Works, to hear the back-story of this incredible collaboration. “Double D’s design team searched all over the world for inspiration on this hat collection,” Smith shares. “We worked together in-house to design each hat to reflect that inspiration”, he adds. Combine that attention to design and the craftsmanship of Greeley Hat Works and you have created nothing short of wearable art. Smith has been making hats with Trent for the last 13 years. He says Trent inspects every hat that goes out his door. “Trent puts his name on these hats so you better believe he looks each hat over before they leave here.” Collage images of double d hats & Trent Johnson of Greeley Hat Works.

The project started last year and its spring collection just arrived at Desperado with Shoes & More. Owner and proprietor Joanne Sunnarborg says, “Our stores’ roots started in Western and Americana fashion so this line of hats is a good fit for our bohemian and lifestyle boutiques. She adds with a smile, “This collection blends lifestyle and fashion and they’re beautiful enough to hang on your wall when they’re not on your head!” Desperado with its new footwear and accessory store, Shoes &… also continues to carry hats from Double D & Greeley Hat Works debut line, which came out last fall. “These hats are timeless. When a customer tries one on it’s fun to see the smile appear on their face. Then they start inspecting the workmanship and design and you know they’re hooked”, says Sunnarborg.

Each hat is handmade on the bench with the same tools and techniques used for more than a century at Greeley Hat Works – the company started in 1909. Presidents, celebrities, and lots of cowboys wear their hats, and if you act quickly you can too!

The Double D/Greeley Hat Works Collection is on the floor now at Desperado. All hats currently available at the store and on the website are sized 7 1/8, but sizing is available upon special order. Please allow 8 to 12 weeks for special orders. All returns on special orders are subject to exchange or store credit only.Collage images of double d hats with greeley hat works.

Images courtesy Double D Ranch & Greeley Hat Works.

 

desperado with shoes &… Celebrates 20 Years!!! October 7-9

Image of Johnny Was clothing.It’s hard to believe what started out as a western lifestyle store in the heart of Portland’s historic Pearl District 20 years ago has morphed into one of Bend’s best boutique shopping experiences. Desperado with our new footwear and accessory store Shoes &… is pulling out all the stops to celebrate our 20th Anniversary!!! Do not miss this extraordinary event from Friday, October 7th through Sunday, October 9th – same weekend as BendFilm. We will be featuring Trunk Shows from every line of Johnny Was. No kidding – we’ll have some 300 garments from Johnny Was, Biya, JWLA, Pete & Greta, and 4Love & Liberty. Our dear friend and JW expert, Erin Honaker, will be here from LA to help women find that perfect treasure. All garments will be available for special order with delivery before the holidays!Image of Liberty Black boots.
And that’s not all… we’re also flying in Greg Neighbors from Liberty Black Boots for a Trunk Show experience like none other. We’ll have enough boots to seriously overload your wish list. These boots have their roots in traditional Mexican craftsmanship with some 200 steps to create an authentic and well made boot you’ll cherish and wear for years to come!

Image of Doc Ryan & Wychus Creek Band
And of course it wouldn’t be a desperado party without lots of food, libations, festivities, and giveaways! Friday night come for our kickoff party featuring the Americana sound of Doc Ryan & Wychus Creek Band from 6:00-7:30. Whisky tasting from Central Oregon micro-distiller Cascade Alchemy with bottles of their fabulous line of libations available for sale. These signature spirits have become a premier micro-distilled alcohol in the Northwest and include tempting varieties like vodkas infused with chai tea, apple pie, and hot peppers. Bourbon and gin will also be available for your tasting pleasure & purchase.

Festivities & Trunk Shows continue all weekend!!!
Friday, 9/7 – 10:00am-8:00 pm
Saturday, 9/8 – 10:00am-8:00pm
Sunday, 9/9 – 11:00am-6:00pmGraphic logo of Cascade Alchemy.