COOL THING WE WANT #442 | This Small, One Room Cabin Deep In The Topanga Wilds

September 2, 2014 


This tiny retreat in California’s Topanga Canyon was built by Mason St. Peter over the course of 2 years (it was worked on two weekends of every month). Between us, we think it would look a lot better here in BC, perhaps on one of the Islands, its lovely deck shadowed by an arbutus or two…


GOODS | Music Direction’s Late Summer Playlist For New “Kit And Ace” In Gastown

September 2, 2014 

Scout Series | Kit+Ace | from Music Direction on 8tracks Radio.

The GOODS from Music Direction

Vancouver, BC | The playlist designers over at Music Direction share their late summer tracks that are part of Kit and Ace‘s branded soundtrack. A gorgeous room filled with Technical Cashmere clothing, art by Andy Dixon and fresh tunes? What’s not to like? Their music program – featuring Rufus, Kygo, and more – will make you want to linger. Tracklist after the jump… Read more


September 1, 2014 


Puddle Vision | Social/Phenomenon | The act (or art) of ignoring and avoiding things – especially surprise human interactions – in the rain.

Usage: “Never ask a Vancouverite with puddle vision for directions. Their innate desire to help combined with their natural gift for avoidance could give them a fatal aneurysm…”



September 1, 2014 


Gene Pool | Slang/Place | A snobbish nickname for Gene Cafe on Main Street. Employed only by those who see its clientele as being too homogenous for their elitist tastes.

Usage: “If I had a Macbook Pro and a closet full of thrift, I’d probably hang out at Gene Pool, too…”



September 1, 2014 


ScanBC | Social Media | A twitter account maintained by an attentive local who listens in on emergency frequencies and regularly posts the details of robberies, shootings, fires, accidents, et cetera. For example…

Usage: “I read something gruesome on ScanBC last night…”



September 1, 2014 


Table 111 | Code/Place | The black three-seat bench out front of L’Abattoir restaurant in Gastown.

Usage: “Let’s meet at Table 111 and then make a plan from there…”



September 1, 2014 


Bedroom City | Phenomenon/nickname | What do condos, noise complaints, no fun city, and ego-density all have in common? They’re each a consequence of Bedroom City — a downtown core jam packed with residences.

Usage: “Condo residents move in next to a skateboard park and complain about the noise? Welcome to Bedroom City…”


GOODS | Pop-Up Purveyor The Chinatown Experiment Set To Rebrand On September 1


thisopenspace is located at 434 Columbia Sreet in the heart of Chinatown | 778.839.2828 |

The GOODS from thisopenspace

Vancouver, BC | Our little Chinatown storefront recently got a facelift and new signs installed. If you walked by today or have been following us online, you’ve probably guessed it by now, what used to be The Chinatown Experiment is re-launching as thisopenspace. We’re putting the final touches on the site and can’t wait to show it all on September 1st.

There’s been lots of change since we started two years ago. What was once an abandoned store is now a pop-up ready space; our flagship storefront has been transformed into over 70 pop-up concepts since September 2012. The space has been home to elopement style weddings, a café that repels cell phone signals, art exhibitions, fashion label launches, designer furniture, online retailers, and plenty more. The cool and the creative happens here, and it’s received international press coverage. The people we’ve worked to make it all happen are what keep us going.

But the flagship storefront, our idea playground, is only one part of what we do. This year, we started helping brands and artists find other temporary pop-up ready spaces around town. We’ve connected them to spaces in Gastown, South Granville, Mount Pleasant, and Fraserhood, Recently we’ve also helped clients with promotion and press for their pop-up. We’re proud to have brought new brands to Vancouver for the first time including Alberta’s Knifewear and Wheat Kids & Babies. We’ve also brought experiential strategy as part of the Niche Co Lab team to produce the first pop-up in a residential Vancouver home at Vanglo House. Growing out of the little Chinatown storefront means that we need a new brand name and identity to better represent what we do. Our new website launches on September 1. Find out all the latest details @thisopenspace. We’re beaming with excitement and can’t wait to share it all with you next week. Read more

HONOUR BOUND | Help DTES Kids In Need Through The Amazing “Writer’s Exchange”


The Writer’s Exchange makes literacy exciting and accessible for inner-city kids through free mentoring and creative writing projects. We have seen first hand how they work to benefit the lives of local children, but they can’t do it without a lot of help. To date, 17 generous people have contributed $50,800 towards their $100,000 goal for the 2014/15 school year, which is to say that they’re already halfway there.

Consider what your donation could do:

- $2000 supports a class of inner-city kids and their teacher as they create a publishing project with the Writers’ Exchange.

- $1000 runs a fun summer literacy program for 12 at-risk kids, tailored for their needs.

- $500 pays for a month’s worth of healthy snacks for the 85 kids in the Writers’ Room after-school program.

- $250 covers essential writing and art supplies for a four-month workshop for 15 kids.

- $100 provides a safe space for one child to receive after-school literacy support and homework help for one month.

- $50 helps buy books that inspire kids to love reading.

We’ve still got 15 days to meet our $100,000 goal before our fall programs begin, so please take a few minutes now to join the amazing group of people who make reading and writing fun for inner-city kids, and donate today!

Honour Bound details the many cool things that we feel honour bound to check out because they either represent our city extremely well or are inherently awesome in one way or another.

GOODS | New Corbie Fieldwalker Video Documents The Essence Of “Aloe Designs”

The GOODS from Aloe Designs

Vancouver, BC | Anyone who knows husband-and-wife team Caitlin and Owen Black, founders of landscape design studio Aloe Designs, has heard them describe their work, revealing their passion for what they do. But landscape design is essentially a visual expression, and the hard-working couple had been wanting to document and share their work in a way that allows people to really experience the spaces they create. Enter Corbie Fieldwalker, videographer extraordinaire. In under three minutes, he managed to capture the essence of Aloe Designs, expressing what they do and how they do it. This little video showcases some of company’s favourite projects to date. “It reminds us why we are in business for ourselves,” says Caitlin Black, landscape design consultant. “We’re truly so proud of these designs and the video shares them in such a magical way.” Press play above and learn more about Aloe Designs after the jump… Read more

NEIGHBOURHOODING | Out The Front Door In Chinatown With Art Director Jill Southern


by Maya-Roisin Slater | Scout’s new Neighbourhooding series is part of our expanding HOODS project. It explores Vancouver’s myriad neighbourhoods through the eyes of the people who call them home. Jill Southern has lived in Chinatown for 5 years. She’s an art director by trade and the founder of Pender Keefer Georgia, a series of Chinatown guidebooks. We recently caught up with her on East Georgia Street, just a stone’s throw from her apartment…

What or who do you think is a defining fixture of your neighbourhood?

Chinatown streets, any given day from 9 to 6: produce bins are wheeled out to the sidewalk, trucks unload new pig carcasses and containers of fish, parking is near impossible, and the sidewalks are an obstacle course of tourists and old lady carts.

Where’s your favourite place to get breakfast?

Matchstick weekdays, Pazzo Chow Saturdays, Kam Gok Yuen on special occasions.

Tell us about your favourite hideaway…

New Mitzie’s Restaurant on Pender — a classic Chinese-Western diner with endless coffee refills, booth seating, and entertaining people-watching.

What’s the best mom and pop place in the area?

That’s the great thing about Chinatown, it’s full of mom and pop shops. Some of my favourites: Fresh Egg Mart, Golden Wheat Bakery, Chinatown Supermarket.

What sets your neighbourhood apart from other areas in Vancouver?

Chinatown looks and feels like no other neighbourhood in Vancouver. Its distinct culture and history are visible in its buildings, residents and community, while its changing identity makes it fun and fresh. This neighbourhood never bores me. I love how I can feel like a tourist in my own town.

If you could describe your neighbourhood in a haiku, how would it go?


If you were walking through your neighbourhood while courting a lady/gentleman where would you take them to set a romantic scene?

There are a couple of rooftop parkades where, if you know your way around, you can sneak a stellar view of the city.

What’s the scariest thing about your neighbourhood?

The constant fear of getting shat on by pigeons.

What’s your favourite piece of architecture in the neighbourhood?

It’s a tie: 1. Sun Yat Sen gardens (pay the admission fee to see the best of it). 2. [Bob] Rennie’s stunning re-do of the Wing Sang building.

How do you think your neighbourhood will change and develop in the next 5 years?

It will unfortunately become less unique. New businesses and condos will continue to flow into the neighbourhood while hip, modern spots replace unfashionable, old spots. There is a lot of new growth in Chinatown, which doesn’t strike me as entirely bad or good. Chinatown has a very resilient way of dealing with change.


1656107_782797201749497_2092174545_n (1)Maya-Roisin Slater speaks English, and is doing her best to turn that into a career. Beyond Scout, her words and photos can be found in publications such as BeatRoute, Discorder, and Lotusland Mag. She also enjoys writing nauseating poetry, pretending that gluten-free-vegan slop is actually food, and bullying her customers at German sausage empire Bestie.



Addipak | Brand/Paraphernalia | Those little blue plastic vials that you see strewn about the DTES aren’t midget glow-sticks, reusable tampons, or any of the other items of myth and lore you may have gotten false wind of. Before they were discarded, the little plastic bullets contained saline solution. They are given to heroin users – some of whom are evidently serial litterers – so that they don’t inject Chinatown Gutter Puddle water into their arms. Known by the brand name, Addipak. The more you know…

Usage: “There’s a Strathcona crafter girl at work who uses all the Addipaks she finds to make raspberry quinoa freezies at home…”




O.D.B. | Abbrev./Slang/Species | Short for Off Duty Bartender. A harmless but sometimes insufferable Gastown wanderer who can’t get through his/her first drink at a bar without letting the house barkeep know that he/she’s also in the trade, and to a very respectable degree indeed. Known to ask if anything is being barrel-aged. If the answer is no, attempts to stump the bartender with vague classics to establish dominance, much in the same manner a lion sprays urine (“I’ll have a Savoy Corpse Reviver, that is if you know how to make one…”).

Not to be confused with Ol’ Dirty Bastard of Wutang fame.

Usage: “An O.D.B. came in last night and went on a Prohibition crawl without leaving his stool…”


VANCOUVER LEXICON | The Real Housewives Of Vancouver

The Real Housewives of Vancouver | 2012/13 TV Series | A mercifully short-lived reality television program that sought to give Vancouverites “a glimpse inside the world of some of the most affluent women in the country [...] as they enjoy the lavish lifestyle of luxurious wealth and pampered privilege [...] where being seen and who you know is everything.” What it really gave us was further evidence of the fact that money buys neither class nor happiness. Oh, and a reason to cancel our cable.

Usage: “The Real Housewives of Vancouver ties with the Stanley Cup riot as the most embarrassing thing to ever be filmed in Vancouver…”


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