Hi. Welcome to the Friends of Filly Bulletin Board. Come here to find out about the next Friends Tour or see pictures and read stories from the previous adventures.

Also check out Filly on Facebook if that is what you like to do.


I got home very late last night. The FOF tour took me to many homes full of their own distinct colors, smells, food and friends. More than once I marveled at my wild life. Not that it was actually so wild. I mean it was just Bello and me on a road trip that took us no more than 6 hours from home. But it was wild to find myself navigating little neighborhoods, back country roads and rainy Capital streets… looking for warm house full of eager bodies. A home full of people I don’t actually know. This is not like me! I am shy! Really. But apparently I am also bold. I knock, I enter all smiles, I chat and make myself at home. I bring in five HUGE boxes of clothes and kick back for the next three hours while women dig in. Before long we are close confidants. It is amazing what nudity and wine will do.

In Olympia I was hosted by Kaytlin, a young woman I met at the Helsing Junction Sleepover last summer. We were on cooking duty together and talked while chopping carrots. Connections are made where you least expect it. When she got home she ordered a dress and I asked her if she would like to host a FOF one of these days. She is a natural! She made a little flier and a table of decadent treats. She is wonderful and so, of course, are her friends. That’s how it goes.

Thank you to all of the hosts and houses that graciously allowed me to share an afternoon or an evening with you.



Get Ready! The Fall 2011 Friends of Filly Tour is coming up!

(If your city is not on the list but you live in the area and can host, email me at emily@fillydesigns.com)
(If your city is not on the list and you don’t live anywhere near me… email me anyway let me know you’d like to host someday…)

Thursday, November 10th
11-1pm, 6-9pm
My House
5335 NE Mallory Avenue
Portland, OR 97211

Friday, Novemeber 11th
Marissa’s House
17121 Hillside Dr. NE
Lake Forest Park, WA 98155

Saturday, November 12th
Annie’s House
1601 E. Street
Bellingham, WA 98225

Seattle #2
Sunday, November 13th
Aubrey’s House
2231 3rd Avenue
West Seattle, WA 98119

Sunday, November 13th
Kaytlin’s House
400 Rogers Street, NW
Olympia, WA 98502



My time in Bellingham was magical. I arrived just before the Friends of Filly was set to star and it was like I had never left. Here was the little house with the bowl of raspberries on the porch and the magnolia tree hanging over the walk. Bello ran right in with a “I’m home!” look on his face. I did the same. And there to welcome us was Annie and Aila and little 12 week old Clementine. I know these women (future women). They come from the same clan. When we see each other it feels like a reunion. I return to what I once knew and want to know again.

And the sale was rad! I loved that two sets of grandma / mom combos came to take turns holding the baby while the other tried on dresses. In fact I would say the theme of the day had to be babies and and baby bodies. There were a number of… “well, my boobs won’t always be this big. it seems that this would still fit after the baby comes. that makes you look hourglass again!”
But you can’t enter Annie’s house without another theme hitting you square in the face, chest, stomach, all the way down to your toes. Love. There is an abundance of everything that makes a human feel good and cared for. Food, baby animals, comfy sofas, berry bushes, pedicab rides, and the sleep-eyed warmth between Annie and her husband Chris. Smart and earthy, they pepper each other with local farm information, wordlessly hand off sleeping infant in exchange for breakfast prep, negotiate and bargain and smile inwardly at their shared luck. It is an inspiration and a joy to be in their presence. Too bad for me that they live in Bellingham where it might just rain even more than it does in my neck of the woods.



And we’re havin a party… join Bello and me in Bellingham for the only FOF this summer!

Friday 15th
6pm – 9pm
1601 E Street
Bellingham, WA

(whoa, Bell needs some summer sun!)



Hey, come on out! Bello and I are driving to Bellingham for a Friends of Filly!
Recap: Friends of Filly is an event I put on twice a year. I put out all of my backstock from previous seasons and you all come over and try stuff on. Recently I started holding these gatherings in other towns and other homes. Last September I traveled to Seattle, Bellingham, Eugene and Salem. This Summer I hope to follow a similar route.
Please join me next Friday evening at Annie’s house. There will be piles, stacks, heaps of dress and pants and skirts and tops! I generally sell them at wholesale prices. Yikes, too good to miss. Even if you only come and eat cheese and chat.
Friday 15th
6pm – 9pm
1601 E Street
Bellingham, WA



Hey! So Sarah and I are thinking of squeezing in a Friends of Filly tour before the summer passes us by. We will follow the same route as last fall: Seattle, Bellingham, Corvallis, Eugene, Portland. Dates: July 7- 11th. More details to follow.
Do you live in one of these towns? Would you like to host a gathering? I will invade your home for 4 hours and leave you with a Filly item of your choosing.


FOF Fall 2011 FACES

…some of the beautiful women I met on my travels. It was such a pleasure.



Last stop. Phew. Five cities. Five in and out with the boxes. Five times saying… “Filly is a clothing line designed in Portland and produced in the California Bay Area. My name is Emily and I am the designer. I design three collections a year and have been in business for five years. The collections sell directly to stores which does not give me an opportunity to see the clothes on women. And so I started this to be able to meet the women who wear Filly. This is my private backstock from all the collections over the last five years. Please feel comfortable here. There is no pressure to buy- just seeing you in the clothes is enough for me. So just have fun.
These girls had fun. I think they always have fun. Early twenties, in college, hanging out with boys, going to strip clubs?! and studying of course. That part I don’t miss.

I am looking forward to the drive home. Going to eat a pear and talk with Sarah about something good. What would I do without Sarah?



On Monday night Sarah and I drove into the town of Eugene and landed in the home of Jaylene and Jarrett. Yellow house, yellow flowers, little old Datsun truck in the driveway. Blueberry bushes the size of trees. The ghost of a 40 pound turkey. Advanced origami. Magic. A seamstresses’ lisp. Nipples, we can see them. Squirrel in a zip lock bag. Peels of laughter. Up too late to ride to work.
And yes, the FOF happened. Jaylene set out a platter of Stash Tea, Theo Chocolate and homemade honey cookies. We thoroughly enjoyed the company of neighbors, friends and fellow teachers and it was wonderful and satisfying to see the female form look so good.
When I was planning the tour Jaylene told us we could spend the night if needed. I ran this by Luke…” I might be too tired to socialize. I might want to camp. I can be shy…” Luke, the man who toured for two years straight, suggested I take her up on her offer- be out in the world, connect with people! And now all I can think about is how much I miss Jaylene and Jarrett.



Oooh Mama! This is my kind of living. I walked into a time machine and was transported back to Santa Cruz circa 2000. The little house. The young couple. The work. The community. The just-expired but still delicious food from the co-op plus crates of pears ripening on the back porch, home-made sauerkraut, raw goat milk and yogurt, dried plums in a huge mason jar, and fresh eggs from the turkey, duck and crew of chickens working hard in the back yard. The young couple might not be considered rich but if you are lucky enough to step into their lives for a couple of days you realize just how much they have.
I knew Annie’s league of women-folk would be super rad. Strong, smart, warm, and so naturally lovely. It was a pleasure.

Bellingham, you’ve got a good thing going.



Despite getting stuck in rainy rush hour traffic, we managed to get to Kat’s house in time to quickly unpack and unwind with a glass of wine and a bowl of vegetable soup hot on the stove. Kat was just so cute. Cute, gracious, helpful, soft and beautiful. It felt good to land here.
She arranged a canned food exchange to happen at the same time as the FOF event. Brilliant. Because if you don’t know what to expect and you are unsure of liking the clothes, then going to an intimate gathering where the designer is present can sound intimidating. But if peach brandy sauce is offered, well… maybe swing by for just a sec.
By the end of the evening the classic FOF scene had taken place: giddy women, partially clothed, feeling beautiful, feeling proud, feeling so super good.
I love my job.



The cast is all assembled. The fashion plate. The dowdy asexual best friend. (Sarah and Bello in that order of course) Packed and ready to go. I spent the morning cooking and preparing a series of meals for our journey. I am sure I spent more time and gave more attention to the food.
Off to Seattle!



I got up early and cleaned the house. I know you are not due to arrive until 5pm but I feel calmer knowing the house is presentable. There are boxes of clothes waiting to be arranged on the couch, on the table, the chest and the floor. I am trying to improve the lighting so that you can see how good you look. Oh right, I need to set out mirrors. Slipping out to a yoga class at noon but other than that I will be here preparing for you. Because you are important and I am so excited to welcome you to my home.
Tomorrow I will be the one welcomed into somebody’s home. Sarah, Bello and I will depart for Seattle around noon. We will set up shop at Kat Chapman’s house and join her life for the evening. This idea is both so simple and deeply experimental. She and I did not know each other before the planning of FOF. I still have not met her but we are now connected by the bond of exchange. I am trading my work and my art for her trust and generosity. And she is able to offer these precious gifts because she knows, by virtue of my designs, that I am already a part of her clan. I feel I am going to see an old friend.
I hope to meet many new old friends tonight for the Friends of Filly Launch Party at my studio in Northeast Portland. . 5335 NE Mallory Ave. 5-8pm.


Filly and the Friends of Filly Tour was featured in the Bellingham Cascadia Weekly! Check it out!

The Art of Fashion
By Amy Kepferle · Wednesday, September 15, 2010

If her life were being filmed as if it were a romantic comedy, Emily Christensen’s fairytale would go something like this: A young woman poised for financial success quits law school, becomes a bike messenger, discovers the joys of homesteading, meets cute with a new fella and rides off on her two-wheeler into the sunset to enjoy a life free from the restrictions of wearing an uncomfortable suit to the office every day.

Back up. Something vitally important has been left out of the story. Yes, Christensen did indeed spend that fateful summer of 2003 falling in love. But, guess what, the guy didn’t last forever. Instead, that particular boyfriend’s sewing machine ended up being the part of the relationship that went the distance.

Read More…

Come to the FOF Event in Bellingham
Annie Edone’s House
1601 E St.


Filly and the Friends of Filly Tour launch party was featured on the Portland Mercury fashion blog! Check it out!






Wow. That was cool. Michelle, the beautiful redhead in the lower righthand corner, contacted me a week or so back after seeing my dresses at the Together Gallery. I suggested she come over for a studio visit… well one thing led to another and suddenly I was hosting a bona-fide Friends of Filly Northwest. These FOF events have been happening for some time in Santa Cruz and always turn out to be blissfully overwhelming and highly stimulating. This was no exception. It is sooooo nice to see women in these clothes. I think they look so spectacular! Tall, curvy, big breasted, flat chested, long-legged, small wasted they all look perfect just the way they are. Seriously, I would have asked any one of them out. And what a sweet reminder to look at myself with that amount of appreciation. We are all just right.


FRIENDS OF FILLY Gathering SANTA CRUZ, CA: February 2009!


I will always be from this place- I have in me the ease of Santa Cruz. The ease of living in a truly beautiful spot on the earth- where the temperature fluctuates between 60 and 75 degrees and salt fills the air. Gentle.



It started with my very first collection. The store orders had gone out but there were still the overcuts of each style, all stacked in boxes and crowding the house. “Oooh, I love this one…” “Oh Emilyn, you should just try it on, it would look so good on you…” and before long this tradition of trying on the overcuts became a celebrated event.

Each season, my friends, and friends of my friends, and eventually just friends of Filly get together and try everything on. How fun! How comfortable! How unusual to “shop” this way. And ultimately, how satisfying for all of us: I get an opportunity to meet my customers and see the clothes on bodies! They get to meet the person who made the clothing and access to every style and color. We call it Friends of Filly and it is now the most rewarding part of my job- an intimate gathering of Filly faithfuls and a really good time (chocolate, tea, and naked bods!)

8 Responses to “Friends of Filly Bulletin Board”

  1. wendy marich said

    I LOVE my filly dresses and clothes! I feel really attractive and they seem to fit my body just right! I am now a huge fan of yours and my girlfriends are wondering where they can find you. I will let them know about your friends of filly event. It was so fun to spend the afternoon with you and Amanda trying on clothes after Pickathon – a great way to wind down after such an intense event. Thanks so much for that! Hope you are well –

    • Hi Wendy! I am not surprised to hear how good you feel considering how good the clothes look on you. I am really happy to hear they are working so well. Open studio try-on this wed at 5pm, spread the word!

  2. jessie stevens hess said


    I have been reading your sister’s blog of late and that brought me to yours… couldn’t help but notice you are in town. Are you doing any trunk shows or events while here?

    Sometimes I see your pieces at cameron Marks… but enough!!

    Jessie Hess.

  3. jessie stevens hess said

    Shit, I totally meant to type ” but NOT enough” in that last sentence, sorry.


  4. […] interesting to me! To find homes for her pieces, sometimes Emily does a cute and fun thing called Friends of Filly, where she’ll travel around a bit, holding mellow sale parties at friends’ houses. I […]

  5. What a wonderful idea..Love the concept. I don’t suppose you’ll ever get to Los Angeles..If you do, I’m up for the chocolate and the giggles!

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