When Jeffrey Levin and Bonnie Powers opened their Poet and/the Bench space on Locust Ave. in late 2015, they did so as the next step of a personal journey as much as a business venture.

As the couple saw it, their “lifestyle store and jewelry atelier inspired by and celebrating beautifully crafted objects and the narrative behind each one” was an extension of themselves, a walk through the life they’d created together, a celebration of craftsmanship, creativity and a love for the arts.

This week, three-plus years and many fantastic events showcasing both Levin’s custom jewelry and in-house collections as well as their curation of emerging and independent designers later, they’re taking the next step in that journey by moving to downtown Mill Valley. They’re opening in their new space at 11 Throckmorton Ave., in the space formerly occupied by Bossa Nova Clothing on the Throckmorton end of El Paseo Lane, with a soft launch at 12pm on Wednesday, Feb. 13. The couple will be serving up drinks and small bites to longtime customers and friends, old and new, from 5-8pm.

​”Mill Valley has welcomed us, made us feel part of the community and we’ve established a deep following here,” Powers says. “We’ve lovingly called Locust Ave. a “discovery” street and embraced that. Customers told us time and again how much they loved finding our beautifully curated shop.”

But while Poet and/the Bench came to anchor the Mill Valley Design District, the shop also had to deal with a series of storefronts around them going vacant during and after the 18-month Miller Avenue Streetscape project, followed by continued construction throughout 2018 by an alphabet’s soup of utilities: MMWD, PG&E, you name it.

It was during that time that Powers and Levin hatched a new plan, one that sought a new challenge in the community they’d spent the past three years. “The time came to step it up,” Powers says. “After more then 3 years building our brand, we really desired an area with high foot traffic to share the narrative of our emerging and independent designers with more people. We know we have something unique going on at Poet and/the Bench and it’s our continued intention to make this a place people always feel welcomed, where you can find gifts for self and others not otherwise readily around and share in interesting dialogue.”

The new space “has amazing light, energy and flow,” and “home goods, jewelry, scent, Poet and/the Bench exclusive atmosphere collection, found objects and art greet you” in the space.

“We’re super excited to be part of the downtown Mill Valley community,” she says.

The 411: Poet and/the Bench is at 11 Throckmorton Ave. MORE INFO.

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