Six Questions With Pamela Baker-Miller

by Tina on October 27, 2009

Agenlina Rennell from Beklina helped us debut our “Six questions” behind the boutique interview series a while back and next up is Pamela Baker-Miller, one of the masterminds behind Frances May in Portland Oregon and who coincidentally listed Beklina as one of her favorite online shopping spots…oh how we’re all connected! Frances May’s mix of under the radar indie designers like PAM, Dusting and Moth Love blends seamlessly with their bigger labels like Alexander Wang and Rachel Comey. But I’ve merely listed a few designers, they carry a lot more, all of which are listed online. The semi-recent online extension is clean, pretty and full of goods to lure you in, I find myself visiting their Website daily it’s that addicting.


Pamela is super sweet and had some exciting news to share, like what she’s wearing this fall, and the prospect of an up and coming store label!

SB: Do you have any favorite new designers for fall?
I adore the new Therese Rawsthorne. I find her designs to be so inventive and amazingly wearable. Rachel Comey is always a favorite; her patterns are unbeatable. I also really love Church & State; their attention to detail is superb.

Screen shot 2009-10-27 at 9.50.49 AMSB: Name five must-have items from the shop you’ll be wearing this season?
APC Button-Up Cardigan– This cardigan is so much more than just a sweater. It is fully lined, super soft, and warm enough to be your winter coat in milder climates. Cardigans are apart of my everyday uniform so this piece is like Christmas for me.

2. Bodkin Lover Dress-I’ve already worn mine three times since I bought it a week ago. It looks fabulous with black tights, flats, and oversized cardigan.

3. Rachel Comey Husband Flat-Perfectly understated men’s inspired shoe. I have really big feet and therefore have been forced to wear men’s shoes for years.  To finally have a pair that feels like I’m not wearing my dad’s shoes is a pleasant surprise.

Screen shot 2009-10-27 at 9.51.33 AM4. Church and State Shirt Dress-Triple pleats, ¾ length sleeves, rounded collar, and dusty rose herringbone fabric; how could it get better?

5. No. 6 Leather buckle clog boot-I have been waiting all fall for these! We should receive these any day now. They are the perfect mix of comfort and style.

SB: What is the best selling item or designer in the store? Most popular trends this season so far?
PBM: Pendleton plaid, floral prints, and menswear for women. Favorite designers are probably Rachel Comey, Lover, Lewis, Vena Cava, and Church & State.

SB: Other than Frances May, where are you shopping online? How about locally in Portland?
PBM: Beklina, Totokaelo, Creatures of Comfort, Anica, and Bona Drag. I check these sites daily. In Portland, my favorite shops are UNA (I adore Giovanna’s ablity to create an inviting and comforatable space while at the same time pushing the envelope for avante-garde clothing), Odessa (one stop shop for all my favorite lines or at least the one’s I don’t carry), Lille for lingerie (a nice bra is imperative for the open back/ exaggerated armhole tees), Frank James for fun trendy pieces, and Winn Perry (to spoil my boyfriend with lux attire and products he would never buy himself).

SB: What is your favorite thing about owning your own boutique?
PBM: I enjoy curating a space that my customers get excited by. Bringing new lines to the shop creates a fresh feeling while also supporting artisans in their chosen medium, clothing. I also enjoy traveling to New York 4x a year to visit with old friends and even making new ones (hopefully Paris will be in the near future). And of course being my own boss.  You can’t beat it. The extra work is well worth it.

SB: What’s up next for Frances May? Any plans, trunk shows or collaborations in the works?
PBM: A Frances May line. I’m currently working on an in-house line. I’ll let you know when it debuts.

Frances May is located at 1013 SW Washington Street Portland, Oregon 97205 telephone : 503.227.3402.

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