It was the spring of 2012 and two long-time, retired friends had just finished a cooking class in the Tuscany region of Italy. One of them had just bought a little cottage back home in Calistoga, CA, and lamented that the area needed an updated mercantile. While musing over a glass of wine, the two imagined what kind of store they might design in the tiny Napa Valley town. And thus, the idea of Blackbird was born.
In the weeks after returning to California, they received a sign that Blackbird was in fact meant to be: commercial space in the heart of downtown Calistoga - at 1347 Lincoln Avenue - suddenly became available and the rest, as they say, is history. The original concept from the start was to create an indoor-outdoor Napa Valley lifestyle: a place for everyone to find inspiration, from the garden to the home, and ultimately inspire elevated living. Hence, the carpets that live both inside and out. Lanterns, trays, and serving pieces that are as at home in the dining room as they are on the deck or terrace.
Along the way, the urge to add offerings for children couldn’t be resisted. We care deeply about the quality, sustainability, and health impacts of what we sell. In that spirit, we adopted a “no plastic/no batteries” criteria from the start and developed a nook for youngsters within the store. Next came jewelry, bags, and accessories - all spawned from the success of one little shawl from Nepal named Zig Zag. Our goal was to envision a collection of wearables that undeniably speaks to the California lifestyle.
It's hard to believe it's been over half a decade since we started this journey. In the world of retail, five years is measured in endless trade shows, International searches, countless rep meetings and lots of imagination - combined with long hours and sometimes really hard work! But in the end, this pursuit is what gave birth to Blackbird and ultimately delivers the unique shopping experience that inspires so many to return.
Blackbird is guided by a flexibility and commitment that only a small brick and mortar store could possess: the ability to find the unique - the best designs from around the globe - and bring just a smattering of it to our community here in Calistoga. We hope that you will join us on that journey, share our finds and come to us to share your own. We love being here for you.