Portland Monthly

Here’s the recent article about Flutter in this month’s issue of Portland Monthly. Many thanks to Jill Spitznass and the Portland Monthly for including us in their fine publication!

Roadside Attraction
by Jill Spitznass

Flutter owner Cindy Rokoff admits that, as a teenager in rural Kansas, she was embarrassed by her mother’s then-unfashionable gift for junking. “She’d pull the station wagon over to see if an old chair had potential,” Rokoff recalls. “I’d say, ‘Can’t we just go the mall and buy things?’”

Today, surrounded as she is by the collection of intriguing home and body items at her N Mississippi Avenue shop, it’s clear that Rokoff inherited her mom’s eye for the unsung beauty—or the charming quirkiness—of an object. A jumble of vintage woodcut letters is strikingly handsome, for example, when displayed in an elegant glass jar atop an antique table, while a stunning milk-glass chandelier hovers above a wooden boxful of chrome trophies resting on the velvet cushions of a 1930s couch. Meanwhile, eight finches (Flutter’s de facto mascots) chirp and preen inside an oversize French birdcage, entertaining shoppers who peruse reworked vintage apparel, classic holiday garlands, and imported bath luxuries.

Now the mother of two, Rokoff concedes that history is repeating itself at home. “I recently found my 9-year-old moving furniture around the house, and I thought, ‘Oh, no—it is genetic!’

Published: December 2008

Flutter’s Holiday Party

It’s that time again…a Flutter Party! Just in time to celebrate the beginning of the holiday season, but we have much more to celebrate too. I am pleased to announce and unveil our exiting, new endeavors at Flutter. The first is Sonia Kasparian, our new clothing designer debuting her clothing and accessories line, Urchin. Sonia is a long time Portland artist. Check out her recent show at Butters Gallery. Her visions and creations will be a lovely addition to the store and the perfect compliment to the very talented Julia of Frocky Jack Morgan. I am so thrilled and honored to have 2 amazing designers/artists at Flutter.

The next exiting news, which you may have been reading about on our blog, is the new home accessories line being developed and designed by Susan Hashem and Sari Gunderson. You’ve seen some of Susan’s work in the shop already, but these 2 have teamed up to make the most intoxicating,amazing pillows and curtain panels. Silk Dupioni in luscious magentas, teal blues and chocolate, silk screened with peacock feathers, pagodas and chrysanthemums that are then sewn beautifully into drapes and pillows. My head is spinning just thinking about these beautiful creations at Flutter. The best news is you can custom order your own!

Hail Mary!! Another long time Portland artist Mary Tapogna will be gracing our Flutter blue walls with her spakling mosaic crosses. What an amazing shrine it will be and so perfect for Flutter.

To further your Flutter experience with visual treats, our holiday ornaments have arrived and turned the back wall cabinet into a spakling feast for the eyes! Oh and the Flutter holiday windows….Sara and Casea have been sketching the most beautiful Madonnas all lined in gold glitter, perched in the window and blessing those passing by.

It’s all so exciting. If all of this is not enough…Frocky Jack Morgan models, Swing Papillon and Peach champagne. I think we will be seeing you on Thursday!
Happy Holidays,

Well as you can see, we kept the election out of our blog posts until now. It really has not been too difficult. The shop/blog/website is such a natural distraction from every day life for me, politics just never really crossed my mind to write about. But, tonight I feel it and felt that I would like to write about it.

On the eve of our presidential election I feel somewhat calm. Yes, I have a vision of how I would like it to go and yes I have a candidate that I want to win. The calm is somewhat strange and uncomfortable. Maybe I think my candidate will win and I can’t believe that anyone could vote differently. What are they crazy…haven’t they seen the debates, it’s so clear of what direction the country needs to go? No, I don’t think that’s what gives me those calm feelings because there are so many out there that hold complete, opposing views and are heading to the polls tomorrow. Business has been incredibly good this past month and according to all reports it shouldn’t be. Are people spending nervously or do they just love my store?, so no that’s not giving me any calm vibes. My husband, Oliver said shouldn’t you be basking in your recent success especially since all odds are against you right now? I think I will just keep grinding my teeth, just in case my good fortune goes away tomorrow with the election. Gee doesn’t a small business owner ever get a good nights sleep? But, for some reason tonight there is calm…I don’t know is it that I can’t quite fathom another election being lost in my view? Can I really go to bed tomorrow night thinking it is certain, I mean after all it sure did change overnight in the last election. You go to bed thinking one thing and by morning there’s a whole new president. Just the thought of that should rock my calmness. No, I think for as corny as it may seem…I still believe in the American people. I believe in my Mississippi community and the city of Portland. I believe republican or democrat, we will come together and overcome our obstacles, build dreams for our future and our children. I have to….I have little ones. It’s what keeps me doing what I’m doing and builds their future to keep them doing what they are doing. What can I say, I’ve often been accused of seeing the glass half full, a sunny personality, blind optimist. Maybe so, but it sure makes my every day living easier along with a glass of wine or 2! We all have a voice and it’s important to express it in a respectful tone. Daily I do business with folks I enjoy, respect and admire their artistry and abilities, who clearly have a major difference of opinion from me on some pretty serious issues. I was asked the other night how I could do business with people who had this belief or had that belief? It was so easy for me to answer. We are free to think what we think and practice what we practice, is that not what our country was founded on? My tolerance and respect is great for opposing views as long as the tolerance and respect is there for me. That’s what Flutter is all about. Put it out there and put it out there well with respect for all to see, enjoy and ponder…it makes life a hell of a lot more interesting when we are all challenged in thought!

So with all my rambling on….the only message I have here is to vote and vote for the candidate who represents you, but please be respectful of those who vote differently than you and realize in the end we all have to come together and work together for the good of our country and our children.

please vote!
Cindy….the blind optomist

Inspiration from Time to Time

Ok…I said I would join in from time to time….
Yes, Nick was amazing on Monday night! It’s obviously a show and performance that will stay with me (and Susan) for awhile. I was so pleased to see so many Flutter customers and friends at the show. It’s been a steady stream of folks coming into the shop this week to say…hey I saw you at the show and it was so amazing and it took 2
days to get my hearing back!
Susan touched on the “old thing”….I think that was the beauty of the show for so many of us. It didn’t feel old…it felt soulful and fresh and quite inspiring to hear the new songs off his latest and to see the old songs that I’ve listened to for years come to life before me. It did take me back to years earlier when shows were the priority of my life, but I didn’t feel 25 again. I felt 40 and inspired (which by the way is so much better!)….it was amazing!
Ok…enough about NICK!!!

Many know that the shop gets rearranged into the wee hours of the night to the tunes of Nick. I usually need a little something to keep me going like “Your Funeral My Trial” or “Let Love In”. But no one can sing the sweetest of ballads like Nick Cave.
Here’s one of my favorites…Far From Me

New Flutter Blog

Hello everyone and welcome to the new blog for our store, Flutter. We’ll be sharing our news, ideas, visions and inspirations with you twice a week. Susan Hashem, our very talented Flutter Home Designer, will host the Home and Decorating portion of the blog and SaraKolp, our very witty copywriter and hipster extraordinaire, will host the everything else portion of the blog. As for me, Cindy Rokoff the proprietress of Flutter, I’ll be joining in here and there.

But first a little Flutter history…..
Flutter was created and opened May 2006. This is my third shop (the other 2 were located in Seattle) and if asked I would say this shop is the one closest to my heart, as it’s a place to put all my late night visions of imagination. Flutter doubled in size November 2007 and the online store followed shortly after in January 2008. The tag line for the shop is ” A delightful disarray of found objects and clutter”. There are many vintage and antique, one of kind pieces gathered from around the world. The shop is very feminine and feels like one large international boudoir, but with a bit of taxidermy and oddities to break up the girliness . Flutter is a store for the girl with substance and intelligence to back all that femininity up. It has several twists and surprises around every corner and many have described the feeling the store evokes, as what Alice must have felt like as she tumbled down the hole to wonderland.

What makes Flutter unique is that it is a store, where everyone feels comfortable to shop. The large birdcage in the back with the sweet little finches provides a nice background of sound in tune with the music and there’s always treasure to be found from large to small and expensive to affordable. The store is living art that is constantly changing and working as one big installation, but never too serious… there’s humor in it all! Flutter is an experience and a feast for the senses…a place to get lost on those rainy Portland days and find a “delightful disarray of found objects and clutter.

We’ve come a long way in 2 years and now we have windows! I couldn’t help but post a picture of the first day Flutter opened and my daughter, Lyla was lounging in the windows or I should say no windows. I’m sure many of you remember our first 2 weeks without glass panes for the windows and thankfully it was the clearest, sunniest May days that I have ever witnessed in Portland. There’s always been lots of luck on our side at Flutter!

We hope you find our new blog enjoyable…

Join FLUTTER and CHAP at the Mississippi Street Fair

Flutter is pleased to announce our parternship with the Children’s Healing Art Project, bringing the healing power of art to children in crisis and their families with a mobile team of teaching artists working in Portland’s children’s hospitals and CHAP’s post-hospital studio art camp in the Pearl District.

Be a part of CHAP’s MILLION BEAD PROJECT: an art experience that crosses all age, gender, religious, ethnic and social boundaries. Families in waiting rooms outside hospital surgery wards, moms living with their children on oncology floors during treatments, nurses, local high school students, Girl Scout troops and many more are all stringing strands of beads. With each strand you string, you are invited to write your prayers and thoughts in our journal. Each strand becomes part of a collaborative sculpture where private prayers become public art. This one-of-a-kind beaded glass sculpture will be sold to support CHAP’s mission to bring the healing power of art to children in crisis.

Join FLUTTER and CHAP at the Mississippi Street Fair – July 12 10-7 and create your own bracelets, necklaces, keychains at the CHAP BEAD FACTORY or Decorate CHAP’s Art Car all in support of this amazing organization.

…all proceeds beneft CHAP art services in Portland’s children’s hospitals!

Flutter’s Second Anniversary Party

To all our wonderful customers and supporters, this is a party for you, in thanks for making FLUTTER’S second year even better than the first!

Flutter’s Second Anniversary Party
Thursday, May 8th 5-9pm

Come celebrate our anniversary with 15% off everything in the store all day long! The party starts at 5pm with a night of fashion, cocktails and cabaret.
The always fashionable Frocky Jack Morgan models set the room on fire, while Portland’s own New Deal Vodka serve up cocktails in celebratory style.

Music starts at 6pm with Eric Stern from Vagabond Opera perched high above the doorway with his accordion singing songs about gypsies, tramps and thieves.

A guaranteed good time for all!


Come celebrate our new Men’s Line and have a beer and cigar on us. Twenty handsome Men will be strolling the store previewing Frocky Jack Morgan’s newest men’s designs including silk screened T’s and suits. Browse the newest men’s shaving supplies, soaps and colognes from France and Italy. Check out the latest books on subjects from vintage marvel to Eiji Tsuburaya’s Master of Monsters.

Michael Pappillo trio play at 6pm. playing classic Brazilian, pop covers (think Nirvana & Portishead meet the stand up bass) and of course some Gypsy Irish kind of thing to honor St. Patrick’s day!
We’re pleased to welcome the boys to FLUTTER!
Thursday March 13th 5-9pm