Honeywood Boutique and Workspace
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Name: Honeywood Boutique and Workspace
Location: Highland Park; Los Angeles, California
Size: 900 square feet
Years worked in: 1 year
Honeywood was first conceived as an online shop in 2006 by bohemian designer and vintage collector, Vanessa Dingwell. After realizing that her boyfriend, musician Charlie Overbey, had a similar love of vintage and was also “addicted to the hunt,” the fantasy of opening a physical shop started to become more of a reality. It was a random stop at the Highland Park post office that lead Vanessa to the storefront on York Boulevard. “It was a gamble and honestly we just went for it,” she says. “I think if we had really planned it out and pondered the ‘brick and mortar’ concept, I would have backed out. The decision was very intuitive.”
Honeywood carries an impressive selection of vintage embroidered ethnic textiles and clothing as well as a dreamy selection of vintage jewelry. The boutique also carries Vanessa’s own line of beautiful handmade one-of-a-kind dresses, deerskin overnight bags, and capes. Charlie’s “Dude Shop” corner of Honeywood caters to men and all things “dude,” including vintage denim, motorcycle jackets, rare vintage rock and roll t-shirts, and vintage Playboy magazines.
Apartment Therapy Survey:
Our Style: Honeywood’s origin was heavily influenced by the handmade and hand-embroidered ethnic clothing of the 1960s and 70s. We are very attracted to clothing that represents its culture and is visibly handmade as well as pieces that have a history. There is something so much more interesting about wearing an article of clothing that has storied history and is a handmade work of art rather than a mass produced item that has a limited life span.
The store is a blending of masculine and feminine energy so there are both influences at play but it’s definitely a curated mix of ethnic Bohemian, South Western, Rock and Roll and Urban Hippie.
Inspiration: Creative personalities, musicians, artists, and bohemian culture. Our ultimate style inspirations would be Stevie Nicks, Frida Kahlo, and Gram Parsons having cocktails in the Joshua Tree desert as the sun sets.
Favorite Element: We are pretty fond of the whole space, starting with the surreal mural by Mexican muralist Chuy Vasquez on the exterior of the store, to the textile wall showcasing the vintage rugs and beautiful blankets of many ethnicities. We also love a framed photo that was a “shop warming” gift from close friends, of Gram Parsons standing in front of Burrito King on Sunset Blvd in Echo Park.
Biggest Challenge: The neighborhood is definitely going through a lot of changes. There is rapid gentrification, which has its pros and cons. We are very much aware of both sides of this situation. As a newer storefront in the neighborhood, it’s a delicate balance supporting the inevitable economic change yet respecting and preserving the long history of this great multicultural neighborhood. The store is small so it’s also a challenge to keep it organized and not look too cluttered and yet maximize the space we have.
What Friends Say: “Where are we? What year is it…? Can I stay?” The store has become a hangout for our friends, which is great as it’s a bit of an extension of our home.
Biggest Embarrassment: We try to be forgiving with ourselves and not think of things as an embarrassment. We’ve worked very hard and we have to remind ourselves it’s all a work in progress.
Proudest DIY: The dressing room! Charlie did an amazing job and was inspired by our bedroom, which is also Charlie’s creation and design (it can be seen in our Apartment Therapy Home Tour). It’s a bohemian circus tent of sorts with 1920s piano shawls and vintage crochet pieces suspended from the ceiling with a large rusted metal chain.
Biggest Indulgence: The three piece set of organic wood pieces in the style of George Nakashima, two freeform chairs and a large table. They were indulgent but we knew we would never see anything like them again especially in a set and they became the anchors of the store.
Best Advice: Trust in the journey. Have faith in yourself, intuition is a powerful tool.
Dream Sources: A world tour of flea markets…..!
Resources of Note:
From flea markets, to road trips, to antique stores, there are so many spots and random treasure haunts that it’s hard to pinpoint exactly where everything came from. The truth is that we have been collecting for a long time, perhaps even subconsciously gathering for the store for years so it was not hard for us to fill the space.
Thanks, Vanessa and Charlie!
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