Fresh Tangerine began as a hobby. To relax from her corporate nine-to-five, founder and designer Kim Kogane spent nights over a glass of wine rekindling her childhood jewelry-making hobby (note: wine was not part of that childhood pastime).
But fast-forward five years: Kogane and a tight-knit crew craft handmade baubles from a cozy Pioneer Square studio, using quality materials sourced from around the globe. The pieces are simple and playful, featuring geometric shapes, subtle sparkle, and delicate pops of color. Think stackable rings, body chains, and bracelets and necklaces adorned with glittering crystal droplets.
So next time you're in Pioneer Square, make sure to buzz the second floor of 89 Yesler, just above Cafe Paloma, for an inside look at Fresh Tangerine's cozy studio and showroom. The space is open and shoppable to the public Monday through Wednesday, and by appointment Thursday through Sunday.
Shop Talk: What you do love about being in Pioneer Square?
Kogane: “It has been so fun to watch the neighborhood come to life with new retail shops and restaurants over the past year. There's always a new place to try for lunch or happy hour. I also love all of the old brick buildings and being close to the water.”
Where do you go to grab coffee in your neighborhood?
“I love to go to Zeitgeist Coffee or Cone and Steiner.”
What is your earliest memory of designing?
“I grew up in Alaska where there's not a lot to do in the winter, so my mom would teach us different crafts. I started making jewelry using seed beads, and it was what I continued to do as a way to relax. I didn't make a formal collection until I started Fresh Tangerine in 2010.”
What do you do to get yourself in a creative or productive headspace when you’re stuck?
“When I'm feeling uninspired or need a break, I'll take a walk around the block and come back to the studio feeling refreshed and ready to work. I also like to look through the editorial spreads in old issues of Vogue.”
What are the five things you can’t work without?
“Coffee, a good play list, natural light, my Moleskine sketchbook, and some natural stones for inspiration.”
What is your favorite thing about your studio?
“My studio feels like home to me. I tried to make the space feel warm and inviting, and I used pieces that I've collected mainly from traveling and thrifting. I feel so lucky to have found my dream studio space in a neighborhood that I love. It all kind of happened by accident, but I couldn't be happier with the space.”
Where can we find your products, and where would you like us to be able to find your products?
“Everything is available online and our studio is open to the public during the week. It's a fun way for people to shop our jewelry and get to see how everything is made. We're also sold at Show Pony in Fremont and Moorea Seal in Belltown. I would love to see our jewelry in more local boutiques and at a larger retailer like Anthropologie.”