Santa Cruz Good Times

Sunday
Apr 19th
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

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Smells Like Team Spirit

The organizers of TEDx Santa Cruz don’t just talk about this year’s theme, ‘radical collaboration’—they live it

 

Pluto Retrograde, Aries New Moon, Lyrid Meteor Showers

As the Lyrid meteors, radiating from the star Vega in the Harp constellation, begin showering heaven and earth with light, Pluto, planet of transformation (or die) turns stationary retrograde (Thursday, April 16), 15 degrees Capricorn. Retrogrades have purpose, allowing humanity time to review, reassess, research and reinvent while returning to previous situations. Retrogrades are times of inner activity, seeds sown in bio-dynamically prepared soil. Pluto retrograde is the most serious and resolute of retrogrades—a pure tincture, or, as in homeopathy, a “constitutional” touching the essences of all that matters. Pluto offers deep insight into confusion or puzzlement and areas where transformation is still incomplete. It’s valuable to have one’s astrology chart to follow what area of life the major planets— especially Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto—are influencing. These outer planets have long-term and lasting effects on our psyche, inner/outer life events, how people see us and how we see and process our world. Pluto, retrograde for five months (until Sept. 24) offers deep earthquakes of change, awakens humanity to the task of building (Capricorn) the new culture and civilization, flailing our inner world about, deepening us until we transform and do things differently. Pluto is an unrelenting teacher. New moon (29 Aries) is Saturday, April 18. With the personality-building keynote, “Let form again be sought.” Mars anchors the new creative fires of Aries into our world. The New Group of World Servers participates together in the new moon festival, while also preparing for the Taurus Wesak, Buddha Full Moon Festival (May 3). Join us everyone.

 

The New Tech Nexus

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

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of April 17

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

Mighty Leaf

Radicchio from Dirty Girl Produce, wine etiquette fail, and a treat from Gayle’s

 

What would you like to see a TED talk about?

Hydrogen-gas cars that are coming this summer. Scott Oliver, Santa Cruz, Professor

 

37th Parallel Wines

I visited the Capitola Mall recently to check out the newly launched Third Fridays Walking Art Tour, and was surprised to find an impressive assortment of artwork from local artists.

 

New Bohemian Brewery

New Santa Cruz brewery focuses on European style lagers