Santa Cruz Good Times

Oct 08th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

Rivendell Revived

ae_rivenalDiversity, expert touch is the key to its success
I can mend anything,” says Patricia Moore. She holds a small weaving into the light streaming through a door behind her. The weaving is old, from Thailand. Moore is the proprietress of Rivendell, a store and gallery that spills onto an artful patio in front of the Santa Cruz Art Center at 1001 Center St.  Her back door opens onto Squid Row, the colorful alley in Downtown Santa Cruz where, in the 164-year old Enterprise Iron Works building, Moore and her business partner, Wayne Brennan, established Rivendell more than 18 years ago.

Rivendell is a destination for collectors and lovers of textiles, teas and cultural artifacts from around the world.

For years, Moore was the largest recycled clothing dealer in Santa Cruz County. Her clothing was impeccably clean and expertly restored. She also sold designer clothes from the San Francisco garment district. Growing up in high-tone La Cañada might have contributed to her taste, but Moore recalls her family’s later stay in Pennsylvania, “My mother shopped for me in the best stores she could, on a budget.”

Married out of grad school, Moore and her new baby moved for her husband’s work to San Luis Obispo, and then the couple parted. For a single mother with a toddler, “there were no jobs on the Nipomo Mesa,” she says.

“A counselor asked me what resources I had,” she says. “I had a source for Marimekko fabrics.” She also knew where to find high quality, affordable crafts in Baja. “He actually drove me to Baja, and I bought gift goods for Christmas.”  She opened a store in the old Mercantile Building in Arroyo Grande and sold local and Mexican crafts, used clothing, books and notecards that she produced through her own publishing company. “I’d travel up and down California and Mexico to find crafts for my Christmas shows.”  But Diablo Canyon Nuclear Plant fired up literally at her doorstep, so she moved with her son and new partner to Santa Cruz County.

The couple bought, remodeled and restored derelict properties and rented them out at affordable prices. After almost five years and many projects, they parted—and Moore, with business partner Brennan, opened the store on Squid Row.

“We opened with little furnishings we’d picked up at flea markets, and recycled clothing I’d restored. Wayne did men’s—he has great taste in men’s haberdashery. I had a box of textiles.  Within three weeks every dealer in town was coming in weekly and cleaning out the store. I raised my prices a little.”

Rivendell gradually expanded into larger quarters as space became available.  Brennan sold rare and healing teas. Their broadening clientele brought them increasingly higher-level goods, especially textiles.

“I don’t travel and shop,” Moore says. “You can’t buy much of this work abroad anymore, not for such prices.  I have three sources: my customers … colleagues who now live elsewhere … and ‘pickers,’ professional shoppers at flea markets and yard sales who search for an ethnic orientation when they look for me.

“The things I love have a certain appearance that is rich and hand-made. Wayne’s tea business is connected with quality and healing. I have a wonderful and varied clientele who like the same kind of things. I love my work.”

Rivendell, in its new location, focuses on textiles, tea, ethnic clothing, jewelry, furnishings and changing exhibitions of local artists.

Comments (2)Add Comment
written by Jamie Taylor October 18, 2011, October 18, 2011
Pat is a unique connosieur of all things eclectic. She culls the mundane and comes up with a seductive, mysterious, irresistable collection of enticing items that would be easily overlooked by others who lack Pat's discerning eye. A visit to Rivendell will awaken those curious parts of you that have been longing to be discovered.
written by Judith, August 19, 2011
She finds very interesting, lovely things. Have always loved her stores. Miss the one she had for a while in Felton. Glad to know she's open again.

Write comment
smaller | bigger


Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share


Hot in Here

This ain’t no Burning Man—the MAH’s GLOW festival flames on


Mercury Direct in Libra, Columbus Day, Libra New Moon

Mercury completes its retrograde Friday, poised stationary direct Friday evening at zero degrees Libra. Mercury begins its journey through Libra once again, completing its retrograde shadow Oct. 12. Things should be a bit less complicated by then. Daily life works better, plans move forward, large purchases can be made, and communication eases. Everything on hold during the retrograde is slowly released. Since we eliminated all thoughts and ideas no longer needed (the purpose of Mercury’s retrograde) during the retrograde, we can now gather new information—until the next retrograde occurs on Jan. 5, 2016 (1.3 degrees Aquarius), retrograding back to 15 degrees Capricorn on Jan. 25. It’s good to know beforehand when Mercury will retrograde next—Jan. 5, the day before Epiphany. On Monday is Columbus Day, when the sailor from Genoa arrived in the new lands (Americas), Oct. 12, 1492. This discovery by Columbus was the first encounter of Europeans with Native Americans. Other names for this day are “Discovery Day, Day of the Americas, Cultural Diversity Day, Indigenous People’s Day, and Dia de la Raza.” Italian communities especially celebrate this day. Oct. 12 is also Thanksgiving Day in Canada. Monday is also the (19 degrees) Libra new moon festival. Libra’s keynote while building the personality is, “Let choice be made.” Libra is the sign of making life choices. Often under great tension of opposing forces seeking harmony and balance. There is a battle between our lower (personality) and higher selves (soul). We are tested and called to cultivate right judgment and love. When we align with the will-to-good, right choice, then right judgment and love/wisdom come forth. Our tasks in Libra. 


The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program


Red Scars

Mao’s politics made personal in poignant Chinese family drama ‘Coming Home’
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments


Seoul Food

Santa Cruz’s new Sesame Korean is a great introduction to an ancient culinary tradition


Is there evil in the world?

Yes, some people don’t think right because they have been treated badly. Milo Robbins, Scotts Valley, Second Grade


Dos Aguilas Olive Oil

Aptos company is letting locals pick their own olives in October


What’s your biggest pet peeve?

When people say they’re “going down” somewhere, and they’re actually traveling north. Julia Ragen, Santa Cruz, Psychologist