Recent Stories

  • Shop Talk: The ins and outs of Berkeley businesses

    THREAD LOUNGE Opening today in downtown Berkeley: Thread Lounge, an upscale fashion store offering discounted designer clothing for women, men, and children, as well as limited home furnishings. Owner Colleen Schmidt, a former buyer for Ralph Lauren and Donna Karan among others, already has two stores — in San Francisco and Chicago — and is testing the waters in Berkeley with a popup version of the bohemian-style shop in the old Fed Ex-Kinkos corner building at Shattuck and Bancroft Way. “We are like a designer sample sale,” Schmidt says. “We work with over 400 designers worldwide.” Local labels currently in stock include Laurel B (sweaters that retail for $250-$400 are $80) and Wendy Katlin ( $200-$450 tops and dresses for $50-$100). Schmidt works in partnership with her boyfriend, Jon Vohr, who creates the artwork and fixtures in the store, although Schmidt is quick to point out that the décor will be much more appealing if they decide to settle here. “Everyone asks me why I didn’t go to Fourth Street but I think there’s room for growth in downtown Berkeley. There aren’t a lot of fashion options here,” she says. Thread Lounge is throwing a “Meet & Greet” opening for the public with wine and appetizers on Thursday, Jan. 31, 7-9pm. Thread Lounge is at 2295 Shattuck Ave. Open: weekdays, 12-7, Sat. 11-7, Sun. 12-6. (more…)

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  • Berkeley-based Annie’s ‘pops’ 83% on NYSE debut

    Annie’s, the maker of organic mac and cheese and bunny-shaped crackers, among other products, had the most successful initial public offering of the year today. The company priced its shares at $19 yesterday, but popped — as market watchers like to say — to $31 when the New York Stock Exchange opened this morning. Shares later rose to over $36 before settling just below $35 a half hour before the market close.

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  • Shop Talk: The ins and outs of Berkeley businesses

    TIDY OPENING California Closets has opened a manufacturing and retail space at 1716 Fourth Street and will be holding an official grand opening on October 19th, from 5-8 pm. The company, which is a franchise operation, makes custom closets, and is taking over a mixed-use light industrial-zoned space that has been vacant for several years. The location will also be the company’s regional headquarters and is bringing new jobs to the city as it is currently hiring.

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  • Annie’s plans move from Napa to Berkeley

    Annie’s Homegrown, producer of organic and natural foods, will move its headquarters from Napa to Berkeley this spring. The company, with a turnover in the “low $100 million range”, will occupy the former Clif Bar offices at 1610 Fifth Street in West Berkeley. Clif Bar moved to Emeryville last year.

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