Since its opening in 2014, Third Planet has been a fixture of Downtown Bellingham, known for its eclectic collection of crystals, jewelry, clothing, and artisan goods. Owner David Jess was inspired by the people and creators he met while traveling in Bali, and opening Third Planet was a way to support Bali and local artisans through a wholesale structure.
As for the location, Jess’s partner is from Canada– and this fueled his desire to open a store in the Pacific Northwest, close to her roots. Manager and longtime employee Erika Millage says the store has added a lot to the downtown community since its opening.
“We love being downtown. It is the heart of Bellingham and has really started thriving again,” Millage says. “I think we have become a cornerstone of the downtown area. We are incredibly inclusive and truly have something for everyone.”
The team behind Third Planet is incredibly tight-knit, with only 10 employees. Despite the size of the team, everyone on staff has their own speciality.
“We are a really tight group and many of us have worked together for years,” she says. “We have minimal turnover in staff, which has allowed us to establish a positive and truly caring working environment. All of us are genuine friends!”
While the store values have stayed the same, the aesthetic has shifted since opening according to Millage. What began as a “hippy” store has since transitioned into a boutique and gift shop. While you can still find clothing and decor items, the atmosphere has changed to be more crystal, jewelry, and gift centered.
One thing that hasn’t changed is the focus on inclusivity. Millage says the staff at Third Planet takes pride in not just providing local goods, but a place where everyone feels like they can be 100% themselves.
“As someone who grew up in Bellingham, this community is incredibly important to me. I love that I have the opportunity to give back and create an inclusive space where everyone feels welcome, and for local artists to sell their creations,” she says.
An additional part of the store aesthetic is safety – with multiple new safety measures implemented since the COVID-19 shutdown in 2020. Third Planet adopted strict mask, social distancing, sanitizing, and capacity protocols upon re-opening, even nabbing a 2020 Scepter Award for their commitment to the health and safety of Downtown Bellingham.
What You’ll Find
The selection at Third Planet is a diverse one, with items from more than 500 different artisans and shops. The team sources and searches for new vendors at 10 or more trade shows a year, as well as from wholesale websites like Faire and from local artisans and creators.
At the shop you can find everything from accessories and clothing to bath and body products. You can also purchase local keepsakes, candles, decor, journals, plants, tarot cards, and everything in between.
The most popular items available are crystals, stones, and jewelry. The entire Third Planet collection is hand-selected at trade shows in order to assure quality, affordability, and ethical creation and sourcing.
“My personal favorites are the crystals and stones. It’s so much fun to help people find the perfect piece,” Millage says. “I love labradorite, smoky quartz, danburite, and frosted Himalayan quartz.”
200 W. Holly St., Bellingham, 360.778.3765, thirdplanetbellingham.com