Capitol Hill’s Niche Outside is not your average garden store. Nestled in between Kurt Farm Shop and Erica Burke’s Chop Shop at the recently opened Chophouse Row near 11th and Pike, it caters for every outdoor space—whether you have a sea of beautiful flowers in your backyard or a lonely potted plant on your windowsill. Created by Nisha and Amir Klein (who are also the owners of longtime floral studio Fleurish), the store stocks a mix of decorative and practical one-of-a-kind pieces by international and local artists, including Seattle's Jill Rosenast and Portland's Kati Von Lehman.
What song or album is playing on your store’s sound system right now?
We often have a Parisian cafe vibe going on. It is quiet enough to allow conversation with our customers while also creating an oasis from the noise of Capitol Hill.
What was your first job? What did you love or hate about it and how does it compare to what you do now?
My very first job was working in a flower shop when I was in the 9th grade and I’m still working as a florist today—at Niche’s sister shop, Fleurish. Working with flowers has given me a great respect for the natural world and I try to create as many opportunities as possible to integrate nature into daily life. That’s what we try to do at Niche Outside too. We aim to create a beautiful and serene retreat amongst the bustle of the city.
What’s your favorite piece in the store right now? Why?
I’m loving the Madrone Bud Vessels by Orcas Island artist Laura Yeats. Each one is entirely unique; hand lathed from fallen trees on her native island. We’ve custom fitted a glass tube for each vessel, so it’s ready to hold a stem. We also carry Seattle ceramic artist Jill Rosenast’s whimsical creations. She hand shapes beautifully intricate, tiny planters, votive holders, and sculptural bowls that are only found at Niche Outside. I love her juxtaposition of organic, textural form with just a little bit of glam in the gold detailing. They’re fabulous!
Why did you choose the name Niche Outside?
I was intrigued by the idea of carving out a space for the outdoors in an expanding urban area. I wanted to create our "niche," a space to celebrate objects inspired by nature, where someone could buy their very first houseplant, or experienced gardeners could expand their tool cache.
Where do you shop when you’re not at your store?
I really enjoy supporting local shops, so I stop by Red Ticking for bedding, towels, and everything French linen. Marine Area 7 is great for beautiful one-of-a-kind cookware.
What do you love about your store’s neighborhood?
It’s changing so much. It’s exciting to be a part of the fabric of an evolving neighborhood.
What nearby restaurants and coffee shops do you recommend?
We are incredibly lucky to have awesome neighbors next door (our shop opens into both!). Chop Shop on the left has a great juice bar and Kurt Farm Shop on our right has the best ice cream—with ingredients sourced almost exclusively from the owner Kurt Timmermeister's farm on Vashon Island. Just across the mews is Pettirosso for cocktails too.
What’s the weirdest thing that’s ever happened in your store?
It hasn’t been long enough to experience anything weird in our store since our opening on May 1, but something is bound to happen. It’s the hill and anything goes!