Thursday, July 16, 2015

Love, Love, Love: Philadelphia Independents

If you're visiting Philadelphia for a stretch of time, at some point you will find yourself meandering through the lovely streets of Old City to see the well known historic sites, such as Independence Hall or the Betsy Ross House. While in the area, you will experience some of the best shopping that Philly has to offer. On a drive home from DC to Connecticut, my sister Shana and I stopped by Philadelphia to say hello to my long time friend Ashley Peel Pinkham. It had been 11 years since I've seen my dear friend in person, but she's one of those warm people that make you feel like no time has passed at all with a smile and hug. On the drive up, I'd been eagerly anticipating visiting Philadelphia Independents; a shop that Ashley and two of her friends had opened last spring in Old City. 
Ashley and me - So happy together!
Upon entering the space, the first thing you notice are the beautifully displayed, well-curated goods. The shop is chock full of jewelry, handbags, ceramics, baby gifts, items for the home, prints, t-shirts, greeting cards, and much more. The open layout is very shopper friendly and encourages you to browse. On that day, Ashley and co-owner Jennifer Provost were there and filled the shop with smiles and laughter. What I appreciated most about Jennifer and Ashley was how knowledgeable they were about their goods and makers. As any artist can tell you, being represented by a shop that says glowing things about you is a wonderful thing!
Philadelphia Independents welcomes you!
Jennifer Provost and Ashley Peel Pinkham
Philadelphia Independents got its start when the stars aligned for three friends. Ashley, Jennifer, and Tiffica Benza were separately seeking out the opportunity to open a handmade shop. Jennifer and Ashley struck up a conversation at a local market, where Ashley was selling her jewelry. When Jennifer shared that she and Tiffica were thinking about opening a store, Ashley jumped on board and the rest was history. The shop just celebrated its one year anniversary in May. Way to go ladies!
Show some Philly love!
What works so well for these three entrepreneurial gals is that their diverse backgrounds, schooling, and work experience lend themselves so well to starting a shop. Ashley has a BFA in photography and vast gallery experience, Jennifer has a BS in fashion apparel management and strong background in retail, and Tiffica has a BBA in marketing and a lot of business know-how. When you combine their super powers, you get the perfect recipe for a successful, unique, Philly-centric shop.
pillows for home and gifts for baby
a little bit of something for everyone
paper, ceramic, wood, and much more
You can find Ashley's gorgeous jewelry line, INDICAN, at Philadelphia Independents. Ashley got her start in jewelry design back in 2012, when she couldn't find exactly what she wanted in a necklace available in stores. Ashley studied jewelry in art school and always had a special place for it in her heart. INDICAN takes inspiration from many diverse cultures including African, Indian, Native American, Mayan, Incan, and Hmong. Her pieces are bold, chunky, and colorful and include many natural elements such as wood, bone, horn, coral, stone, and glass. My favorite part of her design is her signature coin that dangles off an extender chain in the back. The coins are from different parts of the globe and pay tribute to her worldly inspirations. Ashley's necklaces make a powerful statement with simplicity and elegance. Her classic shapes lend themselves to both casual and formal attire, which offers the wearer many options. Make sure to look for INDICAN necklaces when you swing by the shop. You may even catch Ashley making pieces on site if you're lucky.
Philadelphia Independents offers unique local jewelry, including INDICAN by Ashley Peel Pinkham.
Love the INDICAN signature coin.
bold color and strong shapes
One of the spaces at Philadelphia Independents is dedicated to their 5 X 5 Gallery. Currently on view is Monica O: They Came in Gold. Monica's wood burned images of historic Philadelphia buildings and themes are intricately detailed and have an enchanting quality. The 5 X 5 Gallery features a new artist every 2 months. View the gallery schedule here. In addition to this special exhibition space, Philadelphia Independents participates in First Fridays and will be sponsoring the Old City Festival on October 11th. You can also find them set up at the Franklin Flea. If you're in the area, keep a lookout for their events.
Monica O: They Came in Gold

Before my sister and I headed home, I just had to treat myself to these Philadelphia Independents goods:

My much-loved purchases from Philadelphia Independents
Next time you're in Philadelphia, be sure to take a little piece of The City of Brotherly Love home with you made by local, talented hands. You will be charmed by this new shop in Old City and by the sweetest shop owners around. 

Philadelphia Independents
35 North 3rd St.
Philadelphia, PA 19106
(between Market and Arch Street)

Shop and view online: Website, Facebook, Instagram

Did you hear the big news? Twitch and Whiskers will be moving! We're opening a new website by the end of summer. For the month of July, we'll be offering sales, contests, and giveaways. Come celebrate with us and take part in the fun on Facebook and Instagram

All items in our Etsy shop are currently on sale. Use code: movingsale for 25% off your purchase between now and July 21st.
July is a time to celebrate!
There is one more chance to catch us in person this summer. Swing by the South End Open Market at SoWa in Boston on Sunday, July 26th. We will be bringing in special sale items to the show. Hope to see ya there!
Twitch and Whiskers will see you on July 26th!

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