Retail Spotlight

Meet the Shopkeeper: Jax Joon

Handbuilt bars and retro gear for guys in Ballard.

By Caitlin Creel August 29, 2011


In the long, skinny Ballard Ave storefront where his wife used to run Damsalfly, Jake Monroe now operates Jax Joon. Her relocated shop continues to offer up retro-minded women’s separates, cute housewares, and gifts for girlfriends, great aunts, and lots of in-betweens while Jax Joon supplies similar feeling gear for guys, vintage home decor, and Monroe-built bars that ought to serve the neighborhood’s growing condo and cocktail culture just fine.

WWW: What song is playing on your store’s sound system right now?
Monroe: “Charlemagne in Sweatpants” by the Hold Steady.

What was your first job in retail? What did you love or hate about it? How does it compare to what you do now?
This one is easy. This is my first job in retail. I definitely love it because Jenny (my wife) and I get to work together and make furniture and art to put in the shop. There’s really nothing to hate except that now our only “date night” is working together on Sundays.

What is your favorite thing in the store right now?
Tough one. It would be a close race between our custom built bars and some of Jenny’s artwork.

Where do you shop when you’re not at your store?
Well, I don’t shop much. We have two young kids and two businesses (Jax Joon and Damsalfly) and that eats up almost all of our time right now. I do however frequent The Re-Store and some of my friends’ construction and remodel job sites to get materials for building some of our custom pieces and display fixtures in our stores.

What do you love about your store’s neighborhood? What nearby restaurants, coffee shops, etc. do you recommend?
I love Ballard. It seems to have something for everyone. The beach, bars, you know—all of the places I wish I had time to go to. I have to say my favorite bar is The Sloop, and the back bar at Bastille is a nice spot, too. As for restaurants, we enjoy the deck at Ray’s.

What’s the weirdest thing that’s ever happened in your store?
To be honest, not a whole lot of weird stuff goes on down here on Ballard Ave anymore.

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