Chris Yen, of Vintage Teamwear Shop Laundry, on his favorite Portland outpost
hone in Focusing on a childhood passion as an adult is an experience not many adults get to experience. Kris Yen is not one of those adults. In his vintage collegiate clothing store, the sports enthusiast and Phoenix native, Laundry, sell the same kind of tees, hats, and jackets he grew up wearing. Prior to the shop’s recent move to the Alberta Arts District, a laundry opened its doors in the Mid-Eastern Industrial District in 2017, and Yen later set up a shop in Chinatown in 2019. Although the move came with more space, it also presented its share of challenges. , including the lack of steady foot traffic and the lack of peace – Yen says he’s looking forward to “a return to normality here that I didn’t really enjoy downtown a few years ago.” What’s more, he says, “as much as I still love Chinatown, that neighborhood no longer fits the scale of my laundry aspiration.”
Regardless of the change of location, the laundry keeps the same energy—providing the City of Roses (plus celebrities like LeBron James and Odell Beckham Jr., to name a few) some of their most sought-after vintage sportswear pieces. “I think it was really surprising—no matter where we were in the city—the types of people that were able to find us consistently,” Yen says, noting that when it comes to luxury, “everyone is a potential customer.”
When did you move to Portland and why?
My wife and I moved to Portland in 2012. I was a little tired of Phoenix after nearly 30 years, and wanted to start a family.
favorite Place(s) in town to clear your mind?
I have always enjoyed visiting Lan Su Chinese Garden. The view is nice, and they have the nicest coffee shop.
Favorite part about summer?
You can wear jerseys and T-shirts every day.
Go to Portland A restaurant for take out towers?
My parents always want to eat at Nong’s Khao Man Gai when they visit. Nong was on the rise when she moved to Portland. Seeing her grow this business from such small beginnings has been inspiring.
A food/drink that you hate and everyone seems to love?
Which retail stores are Portland’s best kept secret?
Not many people will think it’s a secret, but I will say the index. I’m always surprised when someone comes in looking for sneakers and doesn’t know the index.
Windbird ChronicleHaruki Murakami
Your favorite binge TV showa job?
I’m troubled the wire The latest developments. Before that, Narcos. That’s when I grew mustache.
everlasting s playlistOng?
“Everything is everything,” Lauryn Hill
Oregon Favorite way tto cut?
I love driving to Cascade Locks. It is a winding road with a great view of the river.
local Your favorite summer dish?
Nikko ice cream. It’s a really interesting product, with a great brand and great people working there.
Who is your hero?
My wife, Erica, but I want her to be Devin Booker. Ask me again in July.
Best advice you’ve received?
Strike while the iron is hot.
The worst advice you’ve received?
The scariest moment of your career?
Quitting my job and moving to Portland with no job lined up
What is your motto?
Buy a ticket, take a ride.
Best gift you’ve ever received?
What excites you most about Portland’s future?
I’m excited that neighborhoods like our new home here in Alberta are thriving again. I’m excited to see families outings, people eating at restaurants, and living the kinds of lives we had pre-COVID.
Three words that describe Portland?
Small town drama
Three words describe you?
Gemini Old School