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Stories of Design Magazine features stories from the world of British design. Designer interviews and product design, events and books

Ana Maria Muñoz | Port of Raleigh

Originally published as New Stockist for Block

Block's latest stockist, Port of Raleigh in North Carolina, is the kind of store that could inspire an international trip. This is neither flattery nor exaggeration; there is something special about Port of Raleigh that inspires people, both locally and globally.

port_of_raleigh_26-1
port_of_raleigh_26-1

Block are delighted to be represented in this expertly curated lifestyle store with products from our new homeware and desk collections; and it was with great pleasure that we were able to catch up with founder, Ana Maria Muñoz, and to find out a little more about what makes Port of Raleigh so unique.

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Screen Shot 2016-12-17 at 18.34.21.png

Born to Colombian parents in Australia, raised in Los Angeles, and most recently transplanted from Kuala Lumpur via London, Ana may be an adventurer but she insists that her interests are local: Raleigh is the city she has chosen to call home.

We are design and wanderlust enthusiasts bringing the world to Raleigh through modern and timeless designs

Home for Ana is, 'a special place that should have special things in it; no matter how permanent or temporary the living arrangement may be.’ Citing William Morris, Ana embraces the designer's Golden Rule: have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.

'We believe in whimsy and utility, in beauty and durability. We curate products for the modern home, for those who want to play and grow creatively through design. Our goods from far and near range from investments that will effortlessly elevate your décor to ingenious wares for everyday use.'

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Port-Of-Raleigh-Grand-Opening-Party-copy-1.png

Please share with us a special moment for Port of Raleigh

Our grand opening party. I felt what kind of impact our little shop could have on our community, just by sharing the things that I’m passionate about. People were excited, intrigued, engaged, and I felt hopeful that we could build something that is lasting and goes beyond.

The shop is becoming more than a “port” for design-driven goods from around the world. Because of our location next to the city’s convention center, downtown hotels, and a very popular restaurant for visitors and residents alike, I find that via the shop I get to meet people from all over the country and world, welcome them to Raleigh, and offer tips for their stay in area. We’re a small but growing city.  People are curious and excited about what’s already here making an impact but also what’s to come.

port-of-raleigh-interior
port-of-raleigh-interior

Tell us about your favourite detail of Port of Raleigh

Big Yellow! Our mock shipping container makes everyone smile when they walk in and adds playfulness to an otherwise very neutral setting. The street we’re on is heavier on drive-by traffic than pedestrian so the yellow “shipping container” also serves as an eye-catching piece when zooming by. I can’t tell you how many people come in saying so.

Big Yellow provides the backdrop as you enter our shop. It is a play on the “port” idea of the shop. At first I thought I’d paint it black, grey, or white but the color pop was just too fun to pass.

port-of-raleigh
port-of-raleigh

Finally, we’d love to know which is your favourite Block product

I’m loving the Clipboard Frame! So versatile and simple. They let whatever you clip to it be the feature, be it a photo or a note.

Port of Raleigh | Big Yellow
Port of Raleigh | Big Yellow