Staff Faves in the Boutique

Summertime brings us fully out of our winter nesting to play in the sun and tromp through glorious nature. As we emerge into the light, our summer desires for brighter colors, thin breezy layers, and flowery scents abound. Here are the summer delights in our boutiques right now, curated by our sweet front desk coordinators.

  1. The Popcorn Poncho: Meet Linda, our front desk coordinator. She’s a firm believer that for this price, you should get two colors! You can’t go wrong with this easy-breezy layer that will bump up your cool quotient exponentially.
  2. Bamboo Halter Top: Seriously, it’s a staff favorite. You are likely to see 1-2 staff members on any given day donning this gem (see Cynthia, above!). It’s soft as a kitten, flattering in all the right ways, short and sweet for summer, and will help you show off your buff yoga shoulders. Pair it with anything high waisted for instant success.
  3. Copper Bottle: Set yourself up right to stay hydrated this summer with the prettiest copper bottle around. Plus, there are all sorts of Ayurvedic benefits to drinking from copper — such as improved immunity and digestion, skin/hair/nail health, arthritic support, disease prevention, and detoxification.
  4. OmCali Rose Hydrosol: You know when you walk by a rose and you have to stop and smell it? That is the essence of summer. Take home a bottle of summer distilled, with this deliciously scented product by one of our favorite local herbalist product creators. It’s perfect for a late afternoon lift — just gently spritz the face.
  5. Paula Carvahlo Token jewelry: Bracelets and necklaces with chunky links and hand stamped tokens are a fresh and casual addition to your summer fashion.
  6. Long Weekend: This book by Richelle Donigan and Rachel Neumann is full of the inspiration you need to create your next summer retreat. You know self-care is good for you, so make time for it. This book will fill you up with ideas of where to go, what to bring, and how to set aside time with friends.
  7. Hipstirr Pocket Belt: For all your summer festival needs — keep your shoulders free to tan. These locally designed belts have all kinds of secret pockets for holding your valuables while you are hands free.

Swing by any of our locations to shop our summer mix. Follow us on Instagram to see our newest products!

 

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Fashion Transparency

Fashion Transparency — No, I don’t mean mesh!

We live in a fast paced society where “new” is highly valued and the pace of production, in so many arenas,  is even higher. When it comes to fashion, we don’t often think of how the fast cycles of fashion and the drive for cheaper and cheaper products impacts and shapes the goods we consume.

The fashion world is taking this moment to honor the way that clothes are made by celebrating Fashion Revolution Week, a moment to pause and consider how companies can be more obvious about their manufacturing processes.

Here at Namaste we are thrilled to celebrate two lines that are quite thoughtful in their transparency.

Groceries Apparel

Built as a vertically integrated company, Groceries is doing everything in its power to forward its values based agenda. They make sustainable clothing while providing sustainable lifestyles for their employees. They cut, sew, and dye under one roof, operating their own factory in the US, thereby providing fair conditions to their workers and limiting the carbon footprint of their garments.  They use only organic and sustainable fabrics, like eucalyptus and hemp, recycled plastic, and organic cotton.Groceries shares the stories of its’ workers, their backgrounds and experiences, pairing lives and  faces to the products they create. They walk their talk, and we are proud to share their product line in our boutique.

“Doesn’t it just feel better to wear clothes that you know are made sustainably and in a safe environment for workers? For me it certainly does! When I heard about Groceries Apparel mission to value sustainability and honor their employees, I instantly wanted to try their products – and when I did it was a game changer. From locally sourced materials, to using vegetable dye, to 100% organic cotton, these products feel like something different, something that holds meaning and encourages one to ask the question of how products are made in an ever-growing, fast-paced fashion industry. To learn the stories of their workers was moving and inspiring – to know the background of their experience made the product feel all that more personal. To have been wearing an item knowing that it was in the hands of caring, honest, and hard-working people who are being treated well and valued, made all the difference. ” — Rhiannon Valdez-Bevan, Front Desk Coordinator (shown here wearing Groceries dress in black, and Groceries crop top in white with Project Social T wide leg crop pants)

   

Beyond Yoga

Dedicated to fashion transparency and ethics, Beyond Yoga is another brand we are proud to support. They believe in sustainability and strive to produce many of their garments locally in LA. “From the growing and harvesting of Pima Cotton to the final sewing and all the processes in between, our approach is always clean and responsible. All of our global partners are WRAP certified, an independent team of global social compliance experts who are dedicated to promoting safe, lawful, humane, and ethical manufacturing. We value the rights of workers and believe in fair and safe workplace conditions.”

Plus this brand is body-positive, makes super rad apparel for movement, and is much loved by our staff!

“I love Beyond Yoga!! When I finally bought my first pair, I quickly bought a few more because they felt soooo good! It has become my favorite yoga apparel company. Not only is the clothing well made, super comfortable and flattering, they are also a company I can trust. They ensure that what they are producing is sustainable, humane and environmentally conscious. I feel good on the outside and on the inside. Win-win!” — Bekah Andrews, Yoga Advisor (shown below in Beyond Yoga tricolor leggings and bralette)

 

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Boutique Styles: Spring Trends Now Landing

I’ll be honest – I love Spring for bringing the lightness into our wardrobes again! Let our skin warm with sun rays and the breezes tickle. Spring is the transition zone, so of course, don’t forget to carry your extra layer. Pieces landing now in our boutiques speak to the following trends:

Match Set: Yep. Matching sets and jumpsuits abound. You know the best part of this trend? Less decisions to make when dressing!
(Berkeley Studio Manager Kelsey Garden in new Patrons of Peace jumper (above) and maxi dress (below), available at Namaste Berkeley.)

Maxi and more: Maxi dresses are a thing, especially over tees. We’ve got both flying in to our boutiques.

Pattern: Pattern is a go. Get out of the black and grey wintery doldrums with some sweet flower patterns.
(Below: Yoga Instructor Rosy Schlussel in Gypsy Junkies blouse, Kelsey in Gypsy Junkies flare pant, available at Namaste Grand Lake)

Soft colors: Just think of ice cream colors – sweet and sweeter.
(Below: Rosy in Gypsy Junkies blouse, available at Namaste Berkeley)

More spring /summer trends to come! This is what the future holds:

The Stripe: Is it a nautical thing? The stripe in summer just always feels right.

Silhouette: The silhouette of the season is crop tops with wide legs. Think you can get with it?


 Helene Cotton is our Namaste Boutique Buyer and Manager. She’s keeping her finger on the fashion pulse for all of us, plus taking lots of pics with our community to share our offerings with you.

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Keepin it Rheal

Featured Maker: Made by Rheal

Products we carry: Cast hands, coasters, concrete vessels, votives

Materials: Cast concrete objects

From the moment I saw these hands, I knew they were perfect for our boutiques. They speak of offering, they beg to have some precious object placed in them for reflection, they provide the sense of the sacred. Please don’t let this precious product pass you by. Bring a set home and let it remind you of what you offer the world every day. Or what you want to offer the world. The hands are a beautiful metaphor.

The hands were just the first step on my path of finding Rheal, the man behind the hands. He is inspiring! He is a local Oakland maker, with a little backyard studio on the Oakland/Emeryville border. He is immensely inspired by material – it is what lights him up. Currently concrete is the material he works with most consistently, but he veers off into resin and glass as well. He creates molds to cast his concrete menagerie. The concrete is amazing because it lends everything a weight, a heaviness. The cast object is actually there, in reality. You can feel it and touch it and fill it and empty it and start again. It’s earthy and feels grounding to hold in your hands.

I can’t get enough of his work, but perhaps you need to know what to do with it? It’s sculptural, so just enjoy it. But also…. I’m going to make you a list:

• Put the hands on your altar and put a precious object in them. A stone, a crystal, a leaf, an air plant, a flower, something seasonal, something that you value, something that represents your intention.

• If you get hands without sparkly touches, they are food safe. Offer your guests a dash of salt. Set a unique table.

• His “vessels,” tinged with a touch of sparkle, can be filled with soil and succulents. (Perfect wedding table objects anyone?)

• Clean up your workspace and upgrade to a really nice pen holder.

• Use a set of hands as an incense burner. I purchased a roll of charcoal discs and I break a little piece off of one and put it in the hands, light it up, and then drop little bits of loose flower-y incense on it. It’s heaven and perfect to set the mood before a little home yoga class.

• Moon coasters for your moon party!

Made by Rheal products can be found at both our Berkeley and Rockridge boutiques. Support local artisans and local businesses and shop at Namaste boutiques!

 

 

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Summer Reading List: Volume 2

Stay Curious! Summer is a great time to catch up on your active desire to read more and be inspired. Here, we’ve collected some top yoga-relative reading from your fave teachers. So, before it’s too late, pick a book up from our boutiques or load up your kindle with some of these brilliant recs.

[bottom left] Carpenter: Richard Rosen’s newest book, Yoga FAQs. Local Yoga Legend, Richard asked his students what they wanted to know, and he answered! Its a fun, accessible and yet remarkably thorough — and profound — collection and everything we always wanted to know about Yoga, its past, present and future.

[bottom right] Domonick Wegesin: One recommendation:  Stumbling on Happiness, by Daniel Gilbert.  It’s more of a mindfulness book, but shares psychological insights into what makes us happy.  Insightful read.

[top left] Baxter Bell: I love the books by Stephen Cope, The Wisdom of Yoga, and Yoga and the Quest for the True Self, as well as Richard Rosen’s Original Yoga and his newest book, Yoga FAQ.

[top right] Julia Alexander: I would recommend poetry – invoking our imagination, reviving the inspiration, speaking the language of the heart…Hafiz, Rumi (of course), Rilke…Mary Oliver, David Whyte…

[bottom left] Nubia Teixeira: Gita Wisdom by Joshua Greene, Yogini by Janice Gates

[bottom right] Siri Peterson:  Awakening Shakti by Sally Kempton, Disease Delusion by Jeffrey Bland

[top left] Vickie Russell Bell: The Mirror of Yoga by Richard Freeman, Yogabody by Mark Singleton (a controversial read!), Yoga FAQs by Richard Rosen

[top right] Claudia Florian McCaffrey: Bountiful, Beautiful, Blissful, by Gurmukh, Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth and Baby Massage, The Calming Power of Touch

Heads down people!

Learn more about our amazing teachers here.

(Including Jaimi Patterson, featured in pics in this post.)

Shop local and visit our boutiques where many of these books are available for sale!

 

 

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Summer Reading List: Volume 1

Stay Curious! Summer is a great time to catch up on your active desire to read more and be inspired. Here, we’ve collected some top yoga-relative reading from your fave teachers. So, before it’s too late, pick a book up from our boutiques or load up your kindle with some of these brilliant recs. Keep reading below to find your next favorite page-turner.

[We’ve asked Namaste teacher Jaimie Patterson to model some of our newest summer styles available in the Namaste Boutique. Perfect for lounging around with your favorite book!]

Bottom Left: ELANA MORGULIS, LMFT, E-RYT: Eckhart Tolle’s The Power of Now was the first big game changer in my life. I felt soothed and transformed just reading it. As I moved more into clinical work with people in my studies of wellness and mindfulness, Jon Kabat Zinn’s Full Catastrophe Living was an informative, experiential read.

Bottom Right: JERRY GIVENS Art of Joyful Living, by Swami Rama. I often recommend this book to beginning yogis who want to know how they can take what they learn in the classroom out into their lives, answering the questions “how do I live like a yogi?” I find it to be inspiring while remaining grounded with layman practical advice for anyone at any stage of their practice.

Top Left: JILL LINDSAY: Living Your Yoga by Judith Lasater!

Top Right: AVA ROY: any and all of the poetry by Hafiz.

Bottom Left: ANNA LANDAUER: A Path with Heart by Jack Kornfield

Bottom Right: MARGI YOUNGYoga of the Subtle Body by  Tias Little, Light on Yoga!!  by Iyengar, anything by Dohna Farhi, The Inner Traditions of Yoga-Michael Stone (in tribute), Atlas of Human Anatomy by Netter, Yoga Sutras by Chip Hartranft

Top Left: SIMONA BALANTrue Yoga by Jennie Lee, When Things Fall Apart by Pema Chodron, Healthy at 100 by John Robbins

Top Right: REBECCA ROGERS:  Buddha’s Brain by Rick Hanson, Coming Back to Life (2014) by Joanna Macy, Trauma Stewardship by Laura Van Dernoot Lipsky

Heads down people!

Learn more about our amazing teachers here. (Including Jaimi Patterson, featured in pics in this post.)

   

Shop local and visit our boutiques where many of these books (and clothes) are available for sale!

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The Scented Life: Meet Tracy of White Sage Wellness

In the spirit of this month’s theme of community, and OUR Namaste community in particular, I wanted to share one local line of delightful products in our retail boutiques. This line is so local that it is created by one of our very own students.

Meet Tracy, the creatrix behind White Sage Wellness (formerly Apsara) and a long time yogi at Namaste.

White Sage aromatherapeutic products represent Tracy’s artistic expression of the healing powers of plant medicine. Each spray, oil or smudge wand is inspired by the seasons, cycles and elements of nature and intended as a ritual tool for mindfulness and creating sacred space.

    

“I have my products stationed throughout my home and use them frequently to remind myself to take mindful moments, to complement my yoga and meditation practice, for energetic cleansing and home cleaning.”

As a graduate of Namaste’s Yoga & Ayurveda teacher training last year, she weaves these philosophies along with nature & art therapy into her holistic counseling practice. Learn more about Tracy at  www.whitesagewellness.com.

Shop local and support the members of our Namaste community! Learn more about our boutiques here.

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Take a Design Cue from your Yoga Studio

When you walk into the yoga studio and you get that special feeling — a sense of peace, or ease — what is it that creates that feeling? It could be the memory of savasanas past. But I have an idea that there are some design elements at play…Below are some design and decorating tips that we can take out of the studio and into our own homes, to carry the ease into our everyday existence.

  • Keep it simple, keep it spacious. Remember that less is always more, and leaves room for your thoughts and spirit.
  • Create a space for “intention” and place little reminders of beauty or happiness there. Like the altar in a yoga studio, create an intentional space to keep a few inspiring tokens on. Light it with candles sometimes.
  • Keep it low — integrating yoga bolsters and floor pillows into your decor provides for some fun recreation and feels like a more constant reminder of the life you want to live. Also — need a quick restorative? Grab that pretty bolster off your couch and just do it.
  • Choose meaningful art for your walls. A little daily inspiration goes a long way.
  • Scent is a powerful enhancer of experience and can bring you back to a remembered time and place. Keep a nice essential oil spray or palo santo on your altar to bring you back to that place of ease whenever you need it.
  • View it clearly. A little vista always sets the soul at ease. Set your furniture up with views to the outside, so that your soul can see what the future holds.

Check out our sweet boutiques at Namaste for some decor inspiration as you take charge of your spaces this Spring.

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Spring Staff Picks

We labor here all day, in love. We are the eyes of the studio and see everything that comes to fruition. We are the ears of the studio and hear all that is whispered.  We are the tongue of the studio and speak its truths. We are the heart of the studio and feel its pulse.

Want to see what we see? Here are some of our staff favorites. Visit our boutiques and find YOUR fave!

  

Kristen Swehla, Grand Lake Assistant Manager

I LOVE the deities.  I love all things God/Goddess and I feel good seeing them at work everyday.

#shakti #shiva
#divinefeminine #sacredmasculine
#archetypes
    


Tosha Beverlin, Programming Director

I LOVE our OmCali oils. I use them every day! And I switch up which scent I use each season. I’m using Dream right now 🙂 I also started using the oil face wash and it is a DIVINE experience.

  


Eliza Andrews, Berkeley Studio Manager

High waisted, full length, space-dye Beyond Yoga leggings… Sometimes I do laundry just so that I can wear them sooner!

  


Christine Blackmore, Operations Manager 

My current retail fave is my red Manduka Pro-Lite mat.
It is a beauty. Light, easy to break in, and it gives me a sweet and comfy ride in class. I love my mat because it feels like it will last forever and…i can feel all that juicy life love energy being absorbed with every additional class I take. It is cushiony without losing the feeling of being grounded down to the Earth.
In seated positions it provides just a bit more cush so my sit bones are more comfortable too.
I also think it is a good value, it feels like such a durable mat that I know I will be practicing on it for ages!

   


Grey Marcoux, Berkeley Assistant Manager

The opal star & moon necklace by Leslie Francesca is just dreamy! Plus take a peek at the opal heart and hamsa necklaces, equally as adorable.

  


Sunny Koh, Rockridge Front Desk

Hard to choose but if I had to, it would be the colorful and textured bolsters, zafus and pillows we have by Chattra. They’re fun and such a sweet way to liven up a space.

  


Kelsey Garden, Rockridge Assistant Manager

I would have to go with local artist (and Namaste student) Mary Siegfried’s one of a kind women’s pin.  I love the vintage feel it has & that we are bringing back wearing pins! March is also National Women’s History Month so I think it’s the perfect gift to give a strong, powerful woman in anyone’s life. Available at Rockridge studio only!

  


Ezri Chioma, Bookkeeper

The Melody Furry Scarf – I would have one of each color if i could!

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Yogi’s Choice: Holiday Gift Guide

Give gifts from the heart this year. Shop local and support local business. It is its own form of activism.

Here, some of our top picks from the boutiques.

  1. Manduka Eko-Lite yoga mat. This mat gets high marks from our staff. It’s sticky and eco-friendly, made from biodegradable natural tree rubber.
  2. Crystal candleholder. Made of natural crystal, it shimmers and shines in its beauty. Need I say more?
  3. Leslie Francesca Druzy studs. We’ve got tons of sizes and styles of these druzy quartz beauties to add sparkle to any outfit, or to fill those tiny boxes that make the best presents.
  4. Sueded Tassel earrings. Not to confuse the issue but there is long and short, necklaces and earrings, in 6 different shimmery colors.
  5. Engraved Palo Santo. Are you a fan of scent? This aromatic wood has been engraved with positive intention and can be burned for ritual or ceremonial purposes. Prepare to be covered in a cloud of heavenly scent. (Perfect stocking stuffer!)
  6. Affirmations Soy Candles. The candles are soy. The scents are crisp and fresh. The message is clear. (Perfect stocking stuffer!)
  7. Caraucci fingerless gloves. Keep warm in California style! Full color pallette to choose from. (Perfect stocking stuffer!)
  8. Gods and Goddesses card deck. Add a little intention and ritual to your life with one of our many card decks. From tarot cards to mudras, there is a deck for you.
  9. Don’t forget — the trusty GIFT CARD. Good for any service (yoga, massage, workshops, trainings) and product (yoga accessories, clothing, lifestyle stuff, and more).
    giftguide2016-c
  10. Aratta hand embroidered scarf. Wrap your loves up warm and cozy this season. So many scarves to choose from around here!
  11. Wood Engraving by Gneiss Wood. Each piece of driftwood treasure is engraved with a special and meaningful saying to imbue your days with grounding wisdom. Stop by to see our selection!
  12. Moon Deck. Straight outta Brooklyn, this sweet sweet deck of cards and guidebook comes with the triple goddess engraved on the lid of its wood box. An uplifting and empowering tool.
  13. Wild Unknown Spirit Cloth. A new addition to our Wild Unknown offerings, this cloth is printed with card layouts for tarot. For the seeker in each of us.
  14. Wild Unknown Animal Spirit Deck. Our bestselling deck of gorgeously illustrated animals. Purchase with the guide book for extra insight!

There’s more to come!! So be sure to poke around our retail areas to find those holiday gems.

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