By Barbara McMurray, Special to the Independent
Local shopping mavens rely on a handful of shops as their mainstays for gifts, tasteful home goods, chic fashions, and sumptuous bedding. A newcomer on the 300 block of Ocean Avenue offers all these, plus witty banter, an optional current events update, thoughtful service, and stories of the makers behind the goods it offers. Good Together House at 311 Ocean Ave. is arranged like the well-appointed home of a friend with great taste and a sense of humor. The exterior flower boxes are a preview of the garden section inside the front door. New and vintage kitchen and dining goods populate the next section, which, naturally, includes a miniature ceramic pitcher shaped like a goat’s head. The living room area is stocked with art, throw pillows, ceramics, and a few handcrafted furniture pieces. By the time one reaches the bedroom zone in the back, it’s clear this store is the creation of proprietors who relish putting together a cozy but sophisticated home.
Those homebodies are Dana Marron and Kristin Winter, whose partnership springs from a shared interest in design and a fascination with the artisans who craft their products. Marron, a former vice president of design for Roxy Quiksilver, founded a branding agency, Good Together Collective, and co-created the women’s clothing store Laguna Supply. Good Together House is in the storefront of the former Brass Tack, where Winter was half of the duo behind that fair trade and vintage home store.
Good Together House opened its doors on June 5, introducing customers to fine linens and textiles, woodworking, homewares, and ceramics. Several Laguna artists are represented, including John Riley of Gunner + Strut, which upcycles vintage WWII Army-issue goods into soft pants, jackets, and other garments. On the wall are colorful paintings on pages from old books by former Laguna resident Julie Wolfe. Alix Jarrard, who works at the store Fridays and Saturdays, makes tie-dyed napkins and tea towels. Mary McDonald of Double M Pottery recently dropped off her brand-new ceramic lamps that no other store yet carries. Mike Gilles’s stacking bowl sets, serving pieces, and coffee mugs quickly sell out. Gilles was introduced to his craft in Laguna Beach High School art teacher Bill Darnell’s classes, and his daughters now attend school there.
“We want to showcase the colorful, the unique, the fun, and happy. We all need that after COVID-19,” Marron commented. Shoppers won’t find fast fashion here. “We offer things that are solid, useful, and everlasting – items that you won’t tire of and that are different from other shops in town. We want to respect other stores’ inventories and stand out for our distinctive collection.”
Good Together plans to hold pop-up events that highlight its artists and will participate in Art Walk.
“Dana and I really believe in Laguna Beach and want to make our downtown better,” remarked Winter. “We want our customers to feel at home here, knowing they’ll discover new things and find what they need.” And should a customer need help putting together a cozy home, it’s all good: Good Together also offers design services.