|Green Passport DC Spotlight - Trohv, Takoma Park|
|Written by Eric Vermeiren|
|Thursday, 26 April 2012 11:28|
This week's Green Passport DC destination is Trohv; Takoma Park's gem of a home goods and gifts store. Trohv specializes in collections of rare new & vintage finds.
Trohv is one of forty-eight participating locations in Green Passport DC , a game that Clean Currents is hosting through the month of April that encourages anyone and everyone to visit some of DC's best wind-powered businesses. There's no cost to play Green Passport - all you need is a mobile phone and the Facebook application. Simply register for Green Passport DC by clicking THIS LINK and then visit any of the 48 locations throughout the city, check in, and earn CASH!
Nicole: I first visited your other location in Baltimore last year, and as an antique/quirky/historical item person (blue mason jars are totally my thing), I instantly needed a moment of silence and stillness to honor the awesomeness that is Trohv. How do you manage to always have such great things?
Ben: Thanks! Well, for starters, we really try. We are constantly on the lookout for great new items whether it be through national furniture and gift shows, regional and local craft shows, vintage markets, barn sales, or a few pickers that work on our behalf. We also have a really great and incredibly artistic staff that has a great eye and can spot gold in an otherwise discardable pile of junk.
Nicole: What are some of the most interesting items that you’ve ever found or carried in your store(s)?
Ben: We carry a number of re-purposed vintage industrial items, including various dining tables and desks made from vintage machine base legs (usually from the 20s and 30s) and reclaimed wood tops. The wood tops have been made from old butcher blocks, barn timbers (some over 150 years old), bowling alley floors or other reclaimed, old growth hardwoods. My favorite dining table of all time was made from some decorative machine base legs dating to the 20s and a butcher block top from a bakery in upstate New York. The butcher block top also dated back to the 20s and had a large, smooth dip on one end that had been formed by 80+ years of kneading bread on that end. Beautiful, useful, and reclaimed with an amazing story.
Nicole: Do you have a “favorite find” story? Oooo,oooo, tell us tell us.
Ben: The table mentioned above was one of our favorite finds. Another of our favorite finds were some large, industrial, rusted cast-iron canning baskets. The baskets were used in the industrial canning business and were used to sterilize the cans and/or cook the canned foods. The baskets were about 36" in diameter, 24" high and weighed 150 lbs. or so. The tops and sides were perforated with 1" or so holes and made for an amazing coffee or side table. They also made for a great fire pit. We also came across a large lot of German school charts through an international picker/importer friend of ours. We had some amazing anatomical charts of chicken, fish, frogs, human anatomy, etc. Our favorite chart is a huge (4' x 8') evolutionary chart that depicts geological, plant and animal evolution. The scale, organization, illustrations and colors make for an amazing piece - so amazing that it is a permanent fixture behind the check out in the DC shop! Some stuff is so great, you just can't let it go.
Nicole: What inspired you to purchase renewable energy?
Ben: Why not? We can't deny that as a retailer that we contribute to the consumer culture, including the sale of some disposable items here and there. That said, to the extent we are able, we try to pick items that are made in an environmentally sustainable way, whether it be through reclaimed, recycled or recyclable materials or from environmentally friendly producers and resources. Not all of our items fall into that category, but if they don't, we try to find items that have some potentially longer lasting value than the items you'd find in the mass marketplace. We hope that most of the items we sell will have a long and useful life. Purchasing renewable energy is consistent with our general and overall hope to enjoy life and use what we need, but leave a growingly smaller environmental footprint.
Nicole: What do you like about Clean Currents?
Ben: Clean Currents has made it easy, seamless, and pain-free to effectively purchase and use renewable energy. It's an easy option. I'm sure we could purchase clean energy credits if Clean Currents wasn't around, but I'm not sure we would go through the effort of making that happen. I also like that Clean Currents is working with retailers like us on a community level to promote clean energy and the businesses that use it.
Nicole: What is something that you would love people to know more about Trohv and/or what you do?
Ben: We'd love for our customers to know that we actually love what we do and that we genuinely enjoy connecting people with things they want or need - whether it be a small baby gift, a card for that impossible-to-buy-for person in their life, or a one-of-a-kind vintage conversation piece. We aren't here because we have to be; we are here because we want to be. It's our hope that that is clear the moment you walk into the stores.
Nicole: Anything coming up on the horizon for Trohv that we should know more about? New stock, continued awesomeness, and the like?
Ben: We are always on the lookout for new stuff. We just returned from a furniture buying trip and will be incorporating a couple of new furniture lines into the store over the coming months, including Gus* Modern, an environmentally friendly producer of versatile, "right-sized" modern sectionals, sofas and chairs. We are also getting ready to go on a few sizable vintage buying trips and will be returning in late May with a huge new collection of vintage items, which will likely include a bunch of blue mason jars!
I'm like many mothers I know, concerned about the planet our kids will inherit and overwhelmed by daily life. Clean Currents made it simple and affordable to switch to 100% wind power, without breaking my back or the bank.
- Residential Customer Michelle Culp