The Kinfolk Folks, Part One


Salut! This is Gail O’Hara, the managing editor at Kinfolk magazine. Jen invited me to write a guest post about the Kinfolk team, so here are some fun mini profiles of the folks behind the magazine, events, new product line and more. Kinfolk is based in Portland, but most of us are from somewhere else. Our office is a mixture of crazy busy nonstop meetings, casual socializing because we have guests and visitors all the time, and pastries on parade (and coffee coffee coffee). Well-known internationally for its stark, minimal and lovely aesthetic, Kinfolk became famous online via Instagram (and founding editor Nathan Williams’ blog) but we’re very much devoted to print. We’ve also just launched a new brand and product line called Ouur (which Jen featured recently) and we’ll be announcing a new magazine later this year. We have a tiny new shop if you want to see the Ouur clothing and buy magazines!


What you do at Kinfolk? Editor in Chief, Creative Director Best thing about the office: White wood floors Your hometown: Magrath, Alberta, Canada Your PDX neighborhood? Vancouver, Washington What you want for breakfast every day: Dutch Babies (German pancakes) with fresh lemon juice and powdered sugar Favorite dish to make: Citrus Lentil Salad What you like to bake: Salmon Favorite photographer, designer, writer, artist (one or all): Kenya Hara What you read: More magazines than books Signature footwear: Arcoletta Top shop: Beams, Japan One adjective that describes you: Hungry 


What you do at Kinfolk? I eat a lot of pie, curate a lot of content and sometimes around deadline I can go a little nuts with red markers and erroneous commas. In other words, I’m the editor. Best thing about the office: The constant supply of pie (see answer above). Hometown: Melbourne, Australia. I moved to New York a year ago and was brought over to edit Kinfolk a few months later. Portland is a city that combines all of my favorite parts about my old home, whips them together, adds some more pork products and serves it in a chilled pint glass. Perfection. Your PDX neighborhood: North, just off Mississippi. I lucked out with my apartment–the listing sounded really dodgy, had no images and was stupidly cheap. It turned out to be a two-floor, one-bedroom apartment with high ceilings, wood floors and a marble bathtub (in the middle of the bedroom, oddly) in one of the oldest buildings in the neighborhood. And it was pink! I put down my deposit within 20 minutes. What you want for breakfast every day: Biscuits with jam and clotted cream. Yes yes, we’ve already established my Commonwealth roots. Favorite dish to make: Udon. From scratch. What you like to bake: I’ve always been a fruit-based baker. Vanilla and chocolate don’t excite me as much as finding huge gloops of marionberry in a pie. Fave PDX restaurants: Sweedeedee, Broder Nord. How typical! Favorite photographer, designer, writer, artist (one or all): That’s tough! I was really influenced by the journalists in the early ’70s that made narrative non-fiction a “thing,” but writers should really pay more attention to the New Journalism folk outside of Truman Capote, Hunter S Thompson, Joan Didion, Norman Mailer and Tom Wolfe. Source some articles by Gay Talese and Terry Southern–you won’t even realize you’re reading a news story. What you read: I mostly read contemporary fiction in my spare time nowadays. I’ve always been a Raymond Carver type of girl over the Bronte sisters. And on planes–anything with Jennifer Lawrence on the cover. Signature footwear: I own eight different pairs of Melissa shoes, which is a Brazilian label that’s really big back home. I know plastic shoes creep some people out, but I’ve been a convert for years. Top shop: You can’t beat thrift stores in small country towns. 95% of my wardrobe is vintage, which is a crazy percentage, I know. More than half of that 5% of new threads are by Australian label Handsom. Top 5 albums: Sam Cooke, “Live At Harlem Square”; Sufjan Stevens, “Seven Swans”; The Drones, “Havilah”; Leonard Cohen, “Songs From A Room”; Alt-J “An Awesome Wave”. Perfect summer day: An endless brunch on a sunny nature strip with friends, combined with endless mimosas. One adjective that describes you: Colorful. Very colorful. 


What you do at Kinfolk: Basically, I’m the managing editor, copy chief, web editor, press nerd and social media lady all rolled into one! I help edit down the content, lighten the tone, edit the text, simplify sentences, argue about commas, upload stuff, express my opinion!, communicate with the talent, write, edit and some other stuff. Best thing about the office:
 The constant stream of Salted Honey Pie, salty cookies and various other baked goods. We also love visitors! We started office stretching recently and that really seems to help! Quiet, calm, nice people. Hometown: 
Washington, D.C. PDX neighborhood: Hollywood/Laurelhurst What you want for breakfast every day: Whole-grain English muffin with cheddar and avocado or vegemite and butter or sunflower seed butter. I also love a big savory PDX-style breakfast (winter veggie hash at Screen Door, faux benedict at Blossoming Lotus, anything at Portobello Trattoria or Vita). Favorite dish to make: I make this baked mac and cheese thing that has a huge amount of roasted butternut squash and kale in it. Also love making cold noodle salads with lots of veggies and miso tahini sauce. What you like to bake: 
Peach Blueberry Crumble. Oatmeal Currant Cookies from Candle Café Cookbook. Fave Portland restaurants: Portobello Trattoria and Canteen Favorite photographer, designer, writer, artist (one or all): Cecil Beaton, Edith Head, Dorothy Parker, Joseph Cornell What you read: Fiction, old diaries/journals/letters, music biographies, fashion mags, obsessed with food, health and the environment. Your signature footwear: In A/W it’s mostly motorcycle-ish boots (I’m a brand loyalist to Fly London). In S/S it’s Converse slip-ons, Jack Purcells, Saltwater Sandals or Swedish clogs Top shop: Muji, Uniqlo, Madewell. Top 5 albums: The Clientele, “Suburban Light”; Chet Baker, “Chet Baker Sings”; Gal Costa, “Gal Costa”; The Zombies, “Odessey & Oracle”; Black Tambourine, “The Collected Recordings” The perfect summer day: It’s 75 degrees and perfect and sunny on the Oregon Coast with some BFFs and a ton of delicious food and nowhere to be. One adjective that describes you: Storied.


What you do at Kinfolk: Art Director Best thing about the office: Great people and a rotating cast of floral arrangements.
 Hometown: British Columbia, Canada
. PDX neighborhood: Woodlawn What you want for breakfast every day: Fruit, coffee or baked treats Favorite dish to make: I love a kale avocado salad. What you like to bake: I always take on pumpkin pie duty at Thanksgiving. Fave Portland restaurants: Navarre and Tabor Tavern Favorite photographer, designer, writer, artist (one or all): Fashion photographer Deborah Turbeville

What you read: Walter Scott’s comic, Wendy Signature footwear: Dark silver oxfords from Frances May Top shop: Opening Ceremony Top 5 albums: Top 40’s rap & pop compilations from the last 10 or so years. The perfect summer day: Swimming in a lake, snacks all day, a nap, forest walk, campfire. One adjective that describes you: Canadian


What you do at Kinfolk: Graphic Design Best thing about the office: I’m the only member not based in Portland, so I get to work from home–sometimes in my jammies. :)

 Hometown: Born in Kansas City, currently living in Chicago, Illinois. What you want for breakfast every day: Grapefruit Favorite dish to make: Grilled salmon is always my go to… with a roasted vegetable and salad on the side. What you like to bake: Bread

 Favorite photographer, designer, writer, artist (one or all): My husband just bought me a book of Vivian Maier’s work. We’ve been fans of hers ever since we saw a show of her work four years ago.

 What you read: The classics. I married into shelves and shelves of paperback books. Your signature footwear: I wear my Madewell Archive boots year round. Top shop: Muji, the paper goods and office supplies get me every time. One adjective that describes you: Happy


What you do at Kinfolk: Design Director for Ouur Studio Best thing about the office: It’s less than a mile from my house! 
Hometown: Houston, Texas 
PDX neighborhood: NE Portland (King) What you want for breakfast every day: A biscuit from Bushel & Peck. It’s so hard to resist. 
Favorite dish to make: I have to admit, I’m not much of a cook. My partner loves to cook, so I usually just help out here and there and steal tastes. I do make some pretty good guac though. What you like to bake: I like to bake chocolate chip cookies with a bit of cayenne pepper. That spicy sweet combo is the best. Favorite photographer, designer, writer, artist: Where to begin. There are so many talented, inspiring people (past and present), but Alexey Brodovitch always stands out in my mind. 
What you read: I tend to revisit classic fiction: Steinbeck, Hemingway, etc. But lately I’ve been getting into some biology-focused nonfiction by Robert M. Sapolsky. It’s the opposite of dry, really. Your signature footwear: I have a pair of oxford-style platforms that are kind of my go-tos. I’m the worst with heels, so I get to cheat with these. Top shop: Everlane. They’ve pretty much perfected basics. One adjective that describes you: I have no idea. Myers-Briggs says I’m an INTJ so how about “introvertive”.


What you do at Kinfolk: Contributing Editor Best thing about the office: All the plants that make it feel like a garden/jungle and the ever-present plate of sweet treats in the kitchen. Hometown: Seattle, Washington PDX neighborhood: A lovely pocket of SE Portland, dangerously close to Canteen What you want for breakfast every day: Eggs Benedict and delicious coffee Favorite dish to make: Bibimbap What you like to bake: Smitten Kitchen’s Double Chocolate Banana Bread Fave Portland restaurants: Ava Gene’s and Olympic Provisions Favorite photographer, designer, writer, artist (one or all):  Can I switch out photographer for filmmaker? Ingmar BergmanAlvar Aalto, Roland Barthes, Do-Ho Suh What you read: The New Yorker, various magazines, literary theory Your signature footwear: Nike Flyknit Lunars or Margiela Tabi flats Top shop: Table of Contents Top albums: Broadcast, “Tender Buttons”; Saâda Bonaire, “Saâda Bonaire”; Kings of Convenience, “Riot On An Empty Street” A perfect summer day: Wake up in Stockholm, have a slow breakfast, go out for coffee, explore museums and shops and galleries, have a picnic at Vitabergsparken, then fly to Järpen, explore the countryside, and end the day with dinner at Fäviken. One adjective that describes you: Particular

Thanks, Gail! Part Two of this post is coming up later this week!


PHOTO CREDITS: 1–3, 5, 7 & 10 are all photographs by Gail O’Hara. Photo 4 of Gail is by Kendall Meade. Photo 6 of Amanda Jane Jones is from her own collection. Photo 8 of Joanna Han is a photo her own.

Comments are closed.