Beam & Anchor Discovery Workshop

Beam & Anchor is home to a talented crop of makers and designers. It is a workshop. It is a retail store. It is a craftsperson’s dream come true. Come explore this inspiring space, learn from high-caliber makers including Matt Pierce from Wood & Faulk, Leland Duck from Revive Designs, and Robert and Jocelyn Rahm who are the founders of this creative initiative. 

This WeMake discovery workshop includes a studio tour and hands-on activities to spark your creativity. We’ll learn about working with different materials including leather, upholstery fabric, and wood (just to name a few). Join us for an evening of shop talk, collaboration, and hands-on fun.

DATE: Thursday, May 16, 2013

TIME: 6:00-9:00pm  Check-in begins at 6:00pm, doors close at 6:30.

PLACE: Beam & Anchor, 2710 N Interstate Ave.

COST: $25

PROJECT: We will be using leather and upholstery fabric to create a unique iPhone or iPad case, as well as a wooden stand to hold your device.

REGISTRATION BEGINS: Monday, May 13th at 9am

RSVP on Eventbrite

When you walk in the front door at Beam & Anchor, you’re welcomed by a beautifully curated retail shop. Everywhere you look there is a hand-crafted, locally made, or thoughtfully designed product. Many of the goods are actually made upstairs in the Beam & Anchor workshop which is home to a diverse group of craftspeople making everything from soap and leather goods, to cabinets and reclaimed furniture. 

Beam & Anchor is the brainchild of Robert and Jocelyn Rahm who wanted to create a space that could celebrate and support local makers. I recently had the opportunity to sit down with Matt Pierce from Wood & Faulk and one of the residents of the Beam & Anchor workshop to learn a little bit more about this creative space.

When you started Wood & Faulk you were primarily working out of your home. How did the opportunity to work at Beam & Anchor come about?

Robert and Jocelyn reached out to me and asked if I’d ever thought about taking part in something like what they were creating. It was the perfect time for me because my business was growing. It was really wonderful to get into a space where I could be around other people and work in a space that could grow with what I was building.

Beam & Anchor currently lists nine makers on their website. Read more about them all to get an idea of the collection of people that have come together under one roof. With so many different projects taking place in the workshop, collaboration among the makers is a common occurrence.

Do you find yourself naturally crossing paths project-wise with anyone else in the shop or do you seek each other out to collaborate?

It’s been a really organic way of working together because everyone has very different disciplines. We all have our own ideas about how things should look. We seem to chat about new projects amongst the other people in the building and it’s been great for sparking ideas. 

How have you been inspired by the community of makers here in Portland? What is is about this city that makes it special?

It’s a wonderful little pocket of creativity. Cool people doing cool things. You can get inspiration from all types and all angles of the project. I don’t know why the magic occurs. But whatever it is, it’s been perfect for me and what I’m doing. I don’t think I could have started this and had the same success out of any other city.

For many designers these days, our work lives in a digital space. However, many people crave the experience of making something tangible. What is it about physically making a product that is so satisfying?

I think the satisfaction comes from making something that will last. Technology is always changing, campaigns change, and I don’t think any [digital] project that I’ve ever worked on lasted longer than a nine-month cycle. So as much as I love graphic design and web design, it’s nice to make something that you know won’t be a gone in less than a year. 

Does that effect the type of materials you choose as well?

Yeah, a lot of the materials we use are heavy-weight and long lasting. Things that age with the user or how they’re being touched, bent, or held. Leather and the way it changes with use is how I got into using it as a material. It’s very tactile and ages with you. 

The future of Beam & Anchor looks bright. The retail shop recently had its one-year anniversary and the collection of makers continues to produce stellar products that are favorites among the Portland community and beyond. 

How do you see Beam & Anchor growing and evolving in the future?

I think it’s going to turn into an incubator type of scenario. Many of us are growing beyond what can be contained within the building. It is an interesting idea to think about new blood coming through the building and launching new businesses. Our individual successes could never be replicated if we weren’t collectively working together in a space like this. It’s a really neat way to operate and exciting to think about what new things could develop. 

Beam & Anchor celebrates community, innovation, friendship, and quality goods—something WeMake is very passionate about as well. We are so excited for this opportunity to come together and see the shop, talk about collaboration, and spark new ideas.

If you’d like to join us, be sure to register for this event on Monday, May 13th at 9am. As always, space is limited so grab your spot early. 

DATE: Thursday, May 16, 2013

TIME: 6:00-9:00pm  Check-in begins at 6:00pm, doors close at 6:30.

PLACE: Beam & Anchor, 2710 N Interstate Ave.

COST: $25

PROJECT: We will be using leather and upholstery fabric to create a unique iPhone or iPad case, as well as a wooden stand to hold your device.

REGISTRATION BEGINS: Monday, May 13th at 9am

RSVP on Eventbrite