Support These Local AAPI-Owned Businesses
The products listed here were selected by a member of the editorial staff. Should you choose to purchase a product through a link on this page, we may receive an affiliate commission.
Asian and Pacific Islander Seattleites have left an indelible mark on our city, from notable historic activists like Bob Santos to Wing Luke, the first non-white member of the Seattle City Council, to folks shaping the city today—many in the form of community-centric local businesses that prioritize sustainability, artistry, and, of course, Seattle.
This Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, we're celebrating AAPI-owned businesses at the Shops at Seattle Met, our ever-growing online marketplace exclusively dedicated to Seattle-area businesses. Any purchase you make directly supports these standout local entrepreneurs.
Own or know about another AAPI-owned business that's part of the Shops at Seattle Met—or should be? Contact our Shops editor, Zoe Sayler, at [email protected].
All of these businesses are part of the Shops at Seattle Met, the city's first online marketplace bringing the best local businesses together in one place. Any purchase you make here, or from these stores' Shops at Seattle Met storefronts, supports and comes to you directly from an AAPI-owned, Seattle-area shop.
Proudly designed in Seattle and manufactured in China from a plant-based plastic (founder Tiffany Jui believes it’s high time we rethink any recoil to products made abroad), each piece in Chunks’ bold collection of claw clips, barrettes, and headbands feels sturdy and does a way-better-than-drug-store job of staying in place, even for thick or super-fine hair. Everyone from The New York Times to actress Miranda Cosgrove counts themselves a part of the company’s fandom. But we’re pretty proud this trend started here.
Inspired by the Indian bazaars of her childhood, founder Nazia Siddiqui brings vivid prints, brilliant colors, and intricate embroidery to her brand of enduring dresses and separates. A sustainable ethos—plastic-free fabrics, a preorder business model—and pragmatic sensibility (Transcend dresses and skirts have pockets!) truly make this a clothing line fit for the women of today.
The Cura Co.
Founder Kiko Eisner Waters aims to make ethical consumption as simple as browsing The Cura Co.'s curated selection (pun intended) of carefully sourced, upcycled, and found clothing, home goods, and accessories. A steadfast emphasis on supporting artists and building community proves that truly thoughtful shopping doesn’t just look to minimize harm but rather to maximize good.
Downtown, BELLEVUE SQUARE
Cofounder and fashion industry veteran Liyin Kok's 2020-launched company—which just opened a second location at Bellevue Square—carries comfy closet essentials built to end our reliance on fast fashion. T-shirts, joggers, sweatshirts, and more are made from ethereally soft, sustainably sourced fabrics in a color selection—and at a price point—that rivals the biggest athleisure and basics brands.
Anna Learns Things
Anna Learns Things started as a blog where Anna Dong, then a UW undergrad, documented all the Things she was Learning how to make during the pandemic—a pair of cheerful orange earrings evolved into a line of one-of-a-kind beaded handbags, home goods, and, eventually, a full-time job. Though Anna Learns Things has grown well beyond its bloggy origins, Dong says the name’s not going anywhere: “It means more than just learning how to bead a fruit.” Learn more about Anna Learns Things here.
Jennifer Fujimoto Art and Design
After two decades in design roles at companies like Google, Starbucks, and Microsoft, Jennifer Fujimoto took a Pottery Northwest class that launched her career as a full-time artist. Inspired by Japanese folk art traditions, Fujimoto’s eye for graphic design feels present in planters giving cheeky side-eye or simple, cat-shaped wind chimes struck into song by dangling tails. She’s encouraged by the happy accidents—a stray mark, an unexpected shape—that give one-of-a-kind art its character. “It’s a subtle reminder that by abandoning unrealistic expectations, we open ourselves up to finding joy in the little things.”
Designer Paychi Karen Guh launched her namesake line of luxury knitwear in 2013 with one thing in mind: making cashmere an everyday thing. The result is universally complementary cuts and lightweight layering pieces that are as fitting for the office as they are for the sidelines at soccer practice.
Seattle’s local go-to for sterling silver jewelry since it was founded by CEO Suzanne Vetillart's parents, Boon and Chieko Chaya, in 1981, Boma carries baubles for everyone—from precious, dragon-shaped studs to fashionable, pearl-adorned necklaces. It’s also B Corp certified, with its own worker-oriented factory in TK's native Thailand, so you can feel confident that your purchases support both people and the planet.
Bezel and Kiln
Combine an art installation with retail therapy and you’ll get Bezel and Kiln, where founder Marlo Miyashiro's displays full of jewelry, housewares, and wearable art from international and local artists look museum-worthy—but each product can come home with you.
Tokki Gift Bags
You spend ages picking meaningful gifts for your loved ones. Tokki cofounder Jane Park believes the packaging you pick should reflect that thoughtfulness—and be sustainable, to boot. Inspired in part by her Korean grandmother's silk-wrapped presents, Tokki’s pretty reusable gift bags let you include a personalized message (plus a video, photo, or GIF) accessible via QR code; giftees can save the message, then record their own for the next recipient and pay the good feelings forward.
Elisa Yip has been making knitwear for years—at a hand-knitting Brother machine in Italy during a ’90s study abroad stint; designing accessories for Nordstrom—all before launching her own line of luxury knitwear, Sskein. She emphasizes high-quality and ultra-sustainable alpaca wool, alongside cherishable silhouettes: “I make sure I design for myself, because [if] I don’t love it, there’s no reason to produce it,” Yip says. “And I need to be obsessed with it.” Read more about Sskein here.