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‘Twas the season to indulge, friends, but now ‘tis the season to atone. Throughout the month of January, we’ll be bringing you all sorts of Wellness Realness—information and inspiration you can use to get out of lax mode and into good-for-you mode. Or at least stop eating cookies for lunch and skipping your morning run.


For one moment, try not to focus on the ’80s arrogance, the crotch-shot pose and the pants tucked into socks. Amazing as all those are, direct your eyes instead to homeboy’s footwear. Fresh, right?

Classic, actually. Those same New Balance sneakers are in stock today so don’t say we never told you how to walk and/or hike in style–or showed you how to post up properly in a photo.

Shop: New Balance Elevation Collection


L-R: “Lance’s mom” (Gretchen Corbett), “Lance’s mom’s boyfriend” (Justin Long), “Lance” (Carrie Brownstein) and “Nina” (Fred Armisen); image courtesy Portlandia from “The Fiancée” episode 

As a business which started in the #upperleft corner of these United States, we at Nordstrom have a special appreciation for IFC’s Portlandia. That would be the sketch comedy TV show where stars Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein basically teach a master class in how to mock life in Portland, OR. It’s all there: the passive-aggressiveness, the self-righteous savior complex, the questionable style choices. And yet the show, currently in its fifth season, is a love letter.

“The Fiancée” episode aired Thursday, Jan. 15, and was partially filmed at the Lloyd Center Nordstrom. (That location is now closed, with every employee who wished to be relocated given a new home at a nearby Nordstrom.) Key scenes in the episode occur at Nordstrom and feature Armisen’s character Nina, with makeup done by Jessica Needham and overall style created by her sister, two-time Emmy winner Amanda Needham.

We spoke with the sisters while the two native Portlanders sat in their car in deadlocked traffic. Topics discussed: Nina, Portlandia and good versus bad style.

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January 12, 2015

New! Nike Air Max Tavas

‘Twas the season to indulge, friends, but now ‘tis the season to atone. Throughout the month of January, we’ll be bringing you all sorts of Wellness Realness—information and inspiration you can use to get out of lax mode and into good-for-you mode. Or at least stop eating cookies for lunch and skipping your morning run.

Our post-holiday goals in 2015 include increased food discipline and headphones-enhanced running (call these goals resolutions if you must). The gym is cool, but for those of us who are able, here’s to also simply exploring outside with our homies more often this year. Because the world is beautiful and walking definitely counts as exercise–and IRL relationships matter.

Enjoy these behind-the-scenes images from the upcoming Los Angeles episode of Nordstrom’s Sneaker Project: Sneakers in Your City. Of special note: the achingly fresh, soon-to-be-released Nike Air Max Tavas–brother of the classic Air Max 1, cousin to the tech-y Huarache.

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January 9, 2015

Listen Up! Vice

‘Twas the season to indulge, friends, but now ‘tis the season to atone. Throughout the month of January, we’ll be bringing you all sorts of Wellness Realness—information and inspiration you can use to get out of lax mode and into good-for-you mode. Or at least stop eating cookies for lunch and skipping your morning run.

A lot of professional, up-all-night deejays consider walking to the mini-mart for Red Bull “exercise.” But just days prior to talking with us on the phone from his home in Los Angeles, jet-setting Vice (Eric Aguirre) was in Tanzania climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. So…yeah. To put it lightly, let’s say this big-room deejay, producer and entrepreneur is up for a challenge and dedicated to staying healthy.

An avid runner whose fans RSVP and join him while he trains for long races, Vice makes continuous mixes that reflect his lifestyle and can be ideal exercise accompaniment: hip-hop, dance and pop music melded into a zooming combination. He created the one below for “my running following” to aid them in finishing the recent Las Vegas Rock ‘n’ Roll half marathon. He ran the race too, but as he does when he runs, listened only to his heartbeat.

More about how Vice rolls:

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How should you shop our ongoing men’s sale, where drastic, half-off discounts abound? It’s about looking past the racks on racks on racks–and seeing what’s really present. At our flagship store, a salesperson advised a deep dive for AG denim: “It’s there if you look. It only goes on sale a few times per year, if that.”

Rare gems with commentary from a recent walk-through:

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Time was, only sneakerheads demanded spotless athletic footwear. You could find them obsessively toothbrushing their Jordans indoors while regular people walked through mud puddles outside. But now we all understand, with clean sneakers increasingly a part of our daily style and the adidas Stan Smith trending hard (the classic version best worn WHITE like burning magnesium)–freshness is a must when you care about your sneakers. So: How to keep your white sneakers white? It takes a little elbow grease. And tools.

Los Angeles-based Jason Markk is the go-to name in sneaker-cleaning for a reason: the brand’s stylish brushes, microfiber towels, protective sprays and cleaning fluids (made from coconut and jojoba extracts) get the job done handily, enabling you to breathe a sigh of relief the next time someone smudges your Smiths–or god forbid, the white suede on your Sambas.

The man himself was a cool customer on the phone–that would be Jason Mark Angsuvarn, aka JBoy, entrepreneur and also DJ in the Moodswing Crew going back to ’96. He shared a little backstory and a lot of useful info:

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‘Twas the season to indulge, friends, but henceforth ‘tis the season to atone. Throughout the month of January, we’ll be bringing you all sorts of Wellness Realness—information and inspiration you can use to get out of lax mode and into good-for-you mode. Or, at least, stop eating cookies for lunch and skipping your morning run.


Image by Chris Cantino

We go hard on the elliptical machine to their DJ mixes and feel all emotional while playing their pop/hip-hop/dance album “Push Thru.” But at this moment, we mostly respect the hell out of the guys in the duo Magic Fades–Portland, Oregon, musician-athletes Mike Grabarek and Jeremy Scott–for their success as curators of Health Goth, the influential Facebook page that in 2014 propelled them to recent meetings as consultants with Adidas.

They’ve done it all with some in-house digital design (in partnership with Chris Cantino and Jan-Peter Gieseking) but mostly just their own taste and the belief that they know what’s dope, and a lot of passion for sneakers like the Nic Galway-designed Adidas Tubulars and these wet-looking Air Maxes. On the phone, Grabarek and Scott talked to us about their partnership with Adidas, fit-for-life attitudes and how Health Goth represents an attack on Portland’s dream of the 1890s.

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‘Twas the season to indulge, friends, but this ’tis the season to atone. Throughout the month of January we’ll be bringing you all sorts of Wellness Realness—information and inspiration you can use to get out of lax mode and into good-for-you mode. Or at least stop eating cookies for lunch and skipping your morning run.


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Maybe it’s a party where a tuxedo is the move. Maybe it isn’t. You’ll know. Either way you’re going to look sharp and somebody’s going to kiss you. These ten items can’t hurt.

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December 26, 2014

Brands to Know: ZANEROBE

Justifiably well-known for  jogger pants, Australian brand ZANEROBE also supplies knits, button-ups, sweatshirts and bags, all swirling between the realms of street and sport. You can dress this stuff up, but basically it’s meant for movement, for choosing one’s own adventure. Like the brand’s North American General Manager, Dan Maynard, does. When he spoke with us, he said he was hyped on “everything, all the time, without sleep.” (FYI: he’s not the model above; he’s this guy in the Top Dawg Entertainment hat.)

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