Creating Jewelry That’s Unique and Personal

Some jewelry pieces evoke warm memories, have an important story, or once belonged to a loved one. These pieces are cherished as a family treasure that is passed on through generations. That’s the life jewelry should have, says Phyllis Harrison. She’s the co-owner of LeRoy Jewelers and The Art Stop with her husband, Steph Farber. “We believe jewelry should be deeply personal and be made to last lifetimes,” Harrison says.

That philosophy is at the heart of each piece of custom jewelry created at LeRoy Jewelers in downtown Tacoma. Harrison spends time learning not only about what the customer might want, but also why. She shares an example:

“A groom wanted a simple white gold wedding band, but also somehow wanted to use a yellow gold ring that was his grandmother’s. The groom’s grandmother had raised him and was a significant figure in his life.”

Harrison and Farber proposed casting a new ring around the old ring. The finished piece, from the outside, looked like a simple white gold man’s wedding band. On the inside his grandmother’s ring was clearly visible, including the engraving.

Another couple wanted matching wedding bands, but had differing ideas about what they liked. By learning more about them, Harrison found that the schwa (a vowel symbol that looks like an upside-down letter “e”) was meaningful to them. With the help of computer-aided design software and a 3D printer to create molds, Farber crafted matching rings that were beautiful and unique. These are characteristics that have described the workmanship at LeRoy Jewelers for more than 75 years.

“We can do just about whatever a client wants,” notes Harrison. That starts with finding the spark that sets the initial design concept in motion. Working within the client’s budget, the jewelers determine the best methods to achieve the desired outcome.

“We really pride ourselves on helping our clients tell their stories the way they want them to be told,” concludes Harrison.

JULIE LEYDELMEYER

For Additional Information

LeRoy Jewelers

940 Broadway, Tacoma

253.272.3377

ljewelers.com

Home Spotlight: Creating a Forever Home

This family home is tucked away ideally in the woods atop a hill in Orting. But the owners wanted a larger space for their growing family. “Our vision was to be in our ‘forever home’ and have a place large enough and set up for entertaining. It was also important to have lots of room for the kids and their friends. We wanted it to be cozy and inviting, and that’s exactly what was created,” the homeowners now say.

Work began on the remodel in April 2017, and the updates were completed in January 2019. The remodeled home now has a new entryway with a custom tile “mat.” On one side, a glass double barn door opens to an office. On the other is the new dining room. The ceilings soar to 20 feet as you walk into the great room with a stunning stone fireplace. The grand space easily accommodates a reading nook and component cabinets.

The white window and door casings are a custom design, contrasting with the black metal window frames. The generous-size kitchen houses a 15-foot island for adequate seating. With a full-height tile backsplash and premium appliances, this kitchen checks off everything on the homeowners’ wish list.

The five-piece master bath features a freestanding tub surrounded by a vintage pattern and a fully custom-tiled walk-in shower with a bench and recessed space.

The second story now houses a bonus room, game room and fourth bathroom, making it a perfect place for a game night or sleepover. Bedrooms received new carpeting and the staircase was opened with railings for a more spacious feel.

In the end, these homeowners did not have an address change but almost everything else changed for them to realize their “forever home” vision.

LEAH GROUT

For Additional Information

American Dream Design Build

americandreamdesignbuild.com

Home Remodelers: Jim Burbridge & Scott Overby

Designers: Amy Moore & Michelle TallentImages by Leah Shimanskiy

FoxFire Salon and Spa Celebrates 35 Years

Tenacity and perseverance are two traits that have helped FoxFire Salon and Spa reach an impressive milestone—35 years in business. “It was never my intention to be a business owner,” said Karin Walker, founder and owner. “I just wanted to work with my friends doing great hair and having fun in a really nice environment.”

“I was 26 years old and needed $25,000 for the build-out of my first location,” Walker recalled. “I kept getting turned down because the bankers didn’t think I knew what I was doing, and they were right!” Young and fearless, the aspiring salon owner kept applying. Eventually she found the right lender, who by happenstance was also her client. Walker’s parents offered their home as collateral.

The founder’s vision of a high-end salon was the catalyst for FoxFire. The business opened on Feb. 14, 1984, in leased space at the intersection of Center and Orchard Streets in Tacoma. Walker credits her six original employees with playing a huge role in the salon’s overall success. Two still work with her in a staff that now numbers close to 30.

Though Walker describes her start as unintentional, she has kept a keen eye to the future. In 2001 she moved the business to its Fircrest location. She built this salon from the ground up. In 2009 she heard a rumor that a prime location in the Proctor District might soon be available. She contacted the building owner to say she was interested. Just a few months later, she opened this second location.

“It’s been quite the journey, but I’ve enjoyed it,” said Walker. “I’m a people person and have enjoyed working with my team.” She is also proud of the many awards the salons have earned over the years. Most memorable was being recognized in 2013 by Salon Today, the top business publication for owners of salons and spas. FoxFire made its list of the top 200 salons in the country.

JULIE LEYDELMEYER

For Additional Information

FoxFire Salon and Spa

1912 65th Ave W, Tacoma

2701 North Proctor St, Tacoma

253.565.7765

foxfiresalon.com

Body Condition Scoring for Dogs & Cats

Many dog and cat owners may not be familiar with body condition scoring. But Amanda Evans, manager at Mud Bay Pet Supply, uses it regularly to evaluate her own dog’s health. We talked to Evans about the concept and about evaluating your own dog or cat’s weight.

MB: As humans, we often use the scale to evaluate our weight. Why use the body condition score at Mud Bay?

AE: The body condition score is about the shape of your dog or cat. Healthy weight is about having a proportionate body. A Basset hound that weighs 60 pounds is going to look different from a Labrador that weighs the same. The body condition score is a more effective way to talk about weight.

Humans, too, consider height, and also body mass index. We look at where we’re carrying weight and if that weight is muscle or fat.

MB: Let’s say I want to evaluate my dog or cat’s body condition score. How do I figure out if she scores a healthy three?

AE: It all comes down to appearance and feel. Look at the top of the animal and look for a clear “waist” definition. An animal should have some curve when looking at the back. It should not have just a straight line from chest to hips. You also want to see an abdominal “tuck” from the side. The stomach should form a diagonal line from chest to the back legs and hips. Feel for the ribs. Dogs and cats have varying amounts of hair, but you should be able to feel the ribs as clearly as you can feel the bones in the back of your hand. If the ribs are really obvious, the animal is scored under a three. If you can barely feel the ribs, or can’t feel them at all, the animal is over a three.

MB: What if I don’t feel comfortable assessing body condition on my own?

AE: Take your animal to someone in animal health care that you feel comfortable talking to, whether in a store or at an animal hospital. Don’t be ashamed if your dog or cat gets a bit over a three or is a bit under. It is easy enough to fix. At Mud Bay, we care about weight because a healthy weight can dramatically increase an animal’s lifespan and its quality of life.

COURTESY OF MUD BAY

For Additional Information

blog.mudbay.com/quick-tips-for-figuring-out-your-dog-or-catsbody- condition-score

Linnea’s Unique Boutique Continues to Grow

Linnea Grantham dreamed of one day following in her father’s footsteps. “My father owned a European gift shop just outside of Boston and my sisters and I practically grew up in the shop,” recalls Grantham. “I always wanted to have a gift shop of my own one day.”

Grantham’s opportunity came knocking in the fall of 2015. Capital Medical Center in Olympia was looking for a vendor to establish an independently owned gift shop at the hospital. Grantham, who also owns a successful promotional products company with her husband, enthusiastically answered. “It was one of the scariest and most exciting decisions I’ve made because it had always just been a dream,” she says. “But I knew I had to try.”

Linnea’s Unique Boutique, opened in December 2015, quickly garnered rave reviews from hospital staff and the general public. The shop’s 300-square-foot space is filled wall-to-wall with fun and eclectic gifts, a little sarcastic humor and plush animals. “I only stock things that I would personally buy,” the owner explains. “I love everything in here.”

About a year after opening, the shop’s popularity got the attention of Overlake Medical Center in Bellevue. Grantham was invited to open a second shop. “I’ve always said that Linnea’s is not your typical ‘hospital gift shop,’ but a gift shop that happens to be in a hospital.”

The Overlake space is more than twice the size of the Olympia location. Their distance apart of nearly 70 miles, with a lot of freeway traffic, makes running the two locations geographically challenging. But, says Grantham, “I have a wonderful, supportive staff at both shops, who I can’t say enough good about. They make it all possible.”

In April, Linnea’s opens in a third location, the Lacey/Hawks Prairie area. Customers will be delighted at the new shop, says Grantham. They will find items that are offered only in the Lacey shop.

JULIE LEYDELMEYER

For Additional Information

Linnea’s Unique Boutique

3900 Capital Mall Dr SW, Olympia
facebook.com/LinneasDreamOlympia

1035 116th Ave NE, Bellevue
facebook.com/LinneasDreamBellevue

6715 Martin Way E, Lacey
facebook.com/LinneasDreamLacey

Buckle Up for the Great Race

This is the first time the Great Race, the world’s premiere old-car rally, will take place entirely on the West Coast. It will start in Riverside, Calif., on Saturday, June 22, and finish in Tacoma on Sunday, June 30. The 2,300-mile adventure will bring 120 of the world’s finest antique automobiles to 18 cities in California, Nevada, Oregon and Washington.

Teams and cars from Japan, England, Australia, Canada and every corner of the United States will converge with vintage automobiles dating back as far as 1916. Cars built in 1974 and earlier are eligible. Most entries will have been manufactured before World War II. “We are pleased to be working with our friends at America’s Car Museum to host the finish of the 2019 Great Race,” says race director Jeff Stumb. The race has started and ended in Tacoma before, he says, “but this will be the first time we have the honor of holding the race in conjunction with America’s Car Museum.”

The event was started in 1983 by Tom McRae. It takes its name from the 1965 movie The Great Race. The comedy is based on the real-life 1908 automobile race from New York to Paris. The “race” is actually a time/speed/distance rally. The vehicles, each with a driver and navigator, are given precise instructions each day for every move down to the second. They are scored at secret checkpoints along the way and are penalized one second for each second either early or late. The lowest score wins.

If all goes according to plan, cars start and finish one minute apart. Organizers say the biggest challenge for the teams, other than staying on time and following instructions, is getting an old car to the finish line each day. Each stop on the Great Race is free to the public. Spectators may visit with participants and view the cars. Kids may even climb in some cars for a firsthand look.

“When the Great Race pulls into a city it becomes an instant festival,” Stumb says. “Last year we had five overnight stops with more than 10,000 spectators on our way to having 250,000 people see the Great Race during the event.” Luckily this year the event will end with the Shine Time Car Show at America’s Car Museum.

The Shine Time Car Show is free fun for the whole family. There’ll be hundreds of collector cars, plus food trucks. The Great Race will finish at America’s Car Museum on June 30 between 1:30 and 3:30pm.

LEAH GROUT

For Additional Information

greatrace.com

americascarmuseum.org/event/shinetime

960 Degrees of Cool

Cocktails are making their mark in the South Sound. The craft cocktail scene is enjoying quick-pour growth, both in quantity and quality. Matriarch, En Rama and Devil’s Reef are just a few of the first-class, cocktail-first bars that have opened in the past year-plus. The latest addition to this superior party pack is Bar 960.

Inside Hotel Murano, this newest highlight opened in March. Bar 960 is a glowing, glass-art-themed bar to complement the Murano’s unique, colorful hotel experience. The newly designed bar was inspired by the tones and inflections of Murano glass. (The Venetian island of Murano has been an expert artisan glassmaking center for more than 700 years.) The bar is aptly named for the temperature of glass-cooling ovens.

Bar 960 opens to the hotel lobby’s expansive windows, giving guests a view of the radiant space as it shimmers and reflects onto the sidewalk outside. Inside, custom wall sconces and warm tones are complemented by a cozy fireplace. A leathered granite-top bar is the heart of the space. It is surrounded by upholstered leather sectionals to sink into with your favorite (or new favorite) cocktail and good conversation. Custom geometric wool rugs soften underfoot.

The menu features light-fare, must-try shareable plates. These include freshly shucked oysters and the 960 Burger made with wagyu beef. Top these off with a refreshing selection of microbrews and creative cocktails. The chai-infused Spiced Sidecar, for one, is a perfect partner for a craft cocktail adventure.

Hotel Murano is Tacoma’s most artistic lodging. It pairs comfortable guest rooms with a collection of glass art from around the world worthy of exhibition. The vibrant downtown location is close to museums, fine and family dining, and the waterfront. Relax after a long day of meetings or kick off a big night on the town with a stop at Bar 960.

EMILY HAPPY

For Additional Information

Hotel Murano
hotelmuranotacoma.com
253.238.8000

Summer Camps & Kid-Friendly Activities

DAY & OVERNIGHT CAMPS

Summer camp offers children an experience all their own without Mom or Dad supervising their every move or decision. Yes, camp counselors are keeping a close watch. But kids away from home become more resilient and learn how to do more things on their own. Summer camp helps kids have enriching experiences, be a part of a special community, form new relationships and grow. For parents, the best part is watching the kids become more confident because of activities they were doing at camp.

A summer full of memories, growth, experience, and friends—what could be better?

Camp Fire Orca campfireorca.org

Cascade Christian THRIVE cascadechristian.org/thrive

Coding with Kids codingwithkids.com

Harbor WildWatch harborwildwatch.org

PenMet Parks penmetparks.org

Pierce County Park Camps piercecountywa.org/1423/Camps

Salvation Army Camp Arnold tsacamparnold.org

YMCA Summer Day Camp symcapkc.org/camp/summer-2019

YMCA Camp Seymour Overnight campseymour.org

SUMMER FUN FOR FAMILIES

If summer camp isn’t your thing, or you prefer to spend time as a family, there are plenty of activities, programs and classes to keep you busy this summer. Choose from a wide range of recreational activities for all ages and abilities—early childhood, youth, adult or people with disabilities. Whether sports, fitness and wellness classes, or other activities, there is plenty of fun for everyone!

Auburn Kids SummerStage auburnwa.gov

Hands On Children’s Museum hocm.org/summersplashfestival

Kindermusik at Kiddos & Kin kiddosandkin.com

Lattin’s Country Cider Mill & Farm lattinscider.com

Museums & Nature Centers metroparkstacoma.org/attractions

Music Off Main rhubarbpiecapital.com/event/music-off-main-9

Open Arts Studio openartsstudio.com

Puget Sound Estuarium sseacenter.org

Star Center metroparkstacoma.org/star

Tiptoe Through the Tidepools tacomanaturecenter.org

Tunes @ Tapps ci.bonney-lake.wa.us.org

KELLY LENIHAN

“Night Out” – Kristina Kuzmic

Everyone needs an evening of laughter and inspiration once in a while, especially parents. On Friday, July 26, the comedian Kristina Kuzmic will share her experiences as a mother and overall cheerleader for her family. The performance will begin at 8 p.m. at the Pantages Theater in Tacoma.

Kuzmic has gained millions of followers on YouTube and Facebook through videos about raising children, being an immigrant and more. Her videos are hilarious and inspirational at the same time. They provide viewers with a sense that they’re not alone, while also letting them laugh.

Since her first video in 2011, Kuzmic has received critical acclaim for her videos on the Huffington Post, People magazine, Cosmopolitan, and the San Francisco Globe. Video topics include parents’ relationship with their children, breastfeeding in public and why she’s “totally cool” if her children are upset with her. In 2011 she was chosen from 15,000 applicants as the winner of “Oprah’s Search for the Next TV Star.” Kuzmic went on to have a reality show, The Ambush Cook, on the Oprah Winfrey Network.

Now she’s ready to share her parenting advice and comedy with a live audience. Her Hope and Humor Tour is taking her throughout the U.S. The comedian considers this a “night out” show. According to her website, Kuzmic “might wear actual pants or she might be in week-old dirty pajamas, depending on the intensity of motherhood that week.”

A self-described “sanitation engineer, chef, chauffeur, and conflict resolution guru” for her three children, Kuzmic says she struggles with parenting just as much as anyone. With wit and charm, she works hard to help parents and others know they’re not alone.

Tickets for the Pantages event range from $29 to $39. A VIP package for $75 includes a meet-and-greet with Kuzmic before the show.

JORDAN MARIE MCCAW

For Additional Information

tacomaartslive.org

McMenamins Elks Temple to Start Making Magic in Tacoma

Tacoma had been holding its collective breath in anticipation. The long-awaited McMenamins Elks Temple finally opened for business in April. It is the only McMenamins hotel property in the South Sound. Yes, it’s a 45-guest-room hotel, but so much more is at the heart of the enchanting experience you’re sure to have. The 700-personcapacity Spanish Ballroom is an epic live music venue. Among the five craft cocktail bars are a tiki bar with an “interactive waterfall fountain” and a hidden bar for adventure-seekers.

You can quench your thirst at a seven-barrel brewery with a 16-tap tasting room. McMenamins purchased the historic Elks building in 2007. But construction on the crumbling and waterlogged structure didn’t get into full swing until a decade later. (Tacoma has been holding its breath for a very long time.) An enormous amount of renovation and restoration has transformed the 1915 eye-catcher into an inspiring gathering spot for both locals and tourists.

Prepare to be wowed by the striking architecture of É. Frère Champney that landed the Elks Temple on the National Register of Historic Places. Besides the grand Spanish Ballroom, there’s a spectacular atrium and expansive views of Puget Sound’s Commencement Bay and Thea Foss Waterway. Outside, the adjacent Spanish Steps down the hillside were modeled after the Scalinata di Spagna in Rome.

McMenamins enlisted regional artists to bring the seven floors to life. They even preserved large graffiti that had accumulated during the temple’s previous decades-long vacancy. Glistening down from above throughout the temple is quite possibly the best collection of lighting fixtures and chandeliers on the West Coast. McMenamins spent more than five years gathering the collection from far-flung locales like Morocco and New York. There’s also a local beauty from the shuttered Orpheum Theater in Seattle.

So don’t forget to look up! Look for McMenamins’ magic in every corner. Follow the right footsteps or white rabbit and you may even find yourself in the secret bar.

EMILY HAPPY

For Additional Information

mcmenamins.com