The DJ, stylist, and budtender at Portland's Farma dispensary on changing the stigma—one customer at a time.
AS TOLD TO GOSSAMER
I was born and raised in Portland—been here my whole life.
My family would move around Oregon about every two years, so I've been east and west, all the way from the suburbs to the city.
I didn't go to college or anything. When I turned 18, I got a job at the Apple Store and worked there for two and a half years. Then I worked part-time at clothing boutiques, like Compound Gallery downtown.
The owner, Katsu Tanaka, is awesome. He has this really amazing brand called Kiriko that takes Japanese fabrics and repurposes them. I was responsible for doing their consignment program. They import stuff from Japan and then resell it in the store. At the time it was the only store that sold streetwear. So Stussy, 10 Deep, Nike—all those accounts. It was great to be involved with that, just to see the transparency behind running the business and being a successful business owner. It was nice to be around that circle in Portland in 2011, 2012. The fashion industry was emerging a little bit more and the city wasn't as big as it’s grown to be.
There was a gallery upstairs and a store on the bottom, so they used to do these gallery opening parties the first Thursday of every month. Different artists and photographers and whoever would come by the shop. A bunch of different businesses around ours would also do gallery openings, so it was an opportunity for me to network with and meet people whom I normally wouldn't get a chance to cross paths at a young age. I developed a lot of really good relationships and friendships through that.