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Artisan wares and unique spa products at Burbank gallery and boutique

Posted By Karen Young On September 10, 2009 @ 11:50 pm In Featured,Lifestyle,My Daily Find,Shopping,spotlight | No Comments

amandatraxler110x110BY AMANDA TRAXLER

When searching for a retail location, Amanda Vernon, Diane Jackson, and Jennifer Hardaway knew exactly what they were looking for.

“It was very important to us to have a small, pure space,” Vernon said of the corner spot that now houses Mindfulnest, a contemporary artisan gallery that recently opened in Burbank which shares its space with co-operator Klean Bath & Body, a line of spa products created by Hardaway.

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All goods in Mindfulnest are by North American Artisans. Shown above are Scrabble tile necklaces. Photo: Gabriel Acevedo

“It felt so right, like it was just waiting for us,” Vernon said, “and there was a little teeny lease sign that the owner had tucked away—knowing the right person would find it.”

Bright and airy with a wood-slatted ceiling, Mindfulnest features the creations of about 75 to 100 North American artisans, who Vernon and co-owner Jackson have not chosen haphazardly.

The store carries

Frame made out of reclaimed barn wood. Photo: Gabriel Acevedo

“Our name is Mindfulnest for a reason,” Vernon said. “This isn’t mass-produced, disposable stuff. It comes directly from people who make it. Their hearts are in it.”

As is oodles and oodles of exuberant creativity.

As one of the first customers put it, a little bit of Abbot Kinney has come to Burbank.

According to Vernon, the shop is the gift-giver’s ultimate destination, offering possibilities for those pesky individuals who seem to have everything (and no charge to gift-wrap).

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Handmade pottery made by a North Hollywood artist. Photo: Gabriel Acevedo.

Because they probably don’t have a chandelier made of syringe needles, a vinyl record clock, a Scrabble® tile necklace, or—for the Wizard of Oz aficionado—the bottled undies of the Wicked Witch of the West.

For those not so brazenly artistic, one might choose a more-traditional, rustic picture frame made of reclaimed barn-wood and adorned with metal roses; a pine needle and ceramic basket made by a North Hollywood artist; or a Spiritile™, a line of luminous pieces handcrafted of molten glass on precious copper whose exquisite imagery truly complements—rather than trivializes—the famous quotes that run on each piece’s sides.

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Klean Bath & Body are a line of spa products in delicious, natural scents made by Jennifer Hardaway Photo: Gabriel Acevedo

Or they can mosey to the back of the store, where Hardaway can easily create a customized fragrance with a personalized label on it.

“I make everything to order,” Hardaway said, adding that custom blends can be whipped up in no time.

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Located on the western end of Burbank just east Hollywood Way. Photo: Gabriel Acevedo

Klean Bath & Body features a dizzyingly sensual array of scents (Lemon Love or Roasted Nut and Orange Peel, anyone?) for its sugar body polishes, diffusers, shea butters, perfumes (which are available as roll-ons, solids, and mists) and lotions.

And, coming soon, a line of shampoos and conditioners.

Despite the economy, Hardaway says she is pleased with how the store has fared since its July 25 opening—and has realized even more in hindsight how perfect the store site really is.

“I didn’t realize that maybe this city was hungry for it,” Vernon said.

Mindfulnest and Klean Bath and Body are located at 3319 W. Magnolia Blvd., Burbank, and are open Monday through Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. and Sunday 12 to 5 p.m. For information, call (818)840-0123 for Mindfulnest, (818)521-9390 for Klean Bath & Body.

Amanda Traxler is an L.A.-born writer with degrees in journalism from the University of Kansas and creative writing from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She has been rediscovering her roots since she returned to the area three years ago from the wintry Midwest.

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