Located on 1st Ave N in Birmingham’s Woodlawn Neighborhood, is a small vintage and skate shop called The Wood. The shop is new to the neighborhood, and one of the many businesses emerging out of the COVID era.
The Wood is owned by Cam and Jason, who have been working together for two months. Cam started selling vintage at pop-ups and on Instagram before opening the store front. The Wood was only vintage for the first few months, before Jason moved in to sell skateboards, which he makes by hand.
“So The Wood has been here for four months, going on five. We started off as a vintage clothing store and then we branched off to the skate shop.”-Cam, Co-Owner
“I make these all from scratch, so I needed a place to sell them and this was the perfect opportunity.”-Jason, Co-owner
Cam, like others, was drawn to the Woodlawn area due to its recent growth as an arts community. New murals line buildings, local artists sell at the Woodlawn Market, and a few community art spaces have popped up.
“I’ve always been attracted to this area knowing its growing up to be an art district. And ya know it’s a pretty big popular area to the black community, and me being black i want to have a part in the growth of the community.”-Cam
Jason added that a new bar, restaurant, and theater are slated to open soon, as well as a new bus station.
Since opening, The Wood has become a popular destination for Birmingham residents. The shelves are stocked with vintage shirts, jackets and sweaters. Boxes of shoes line the floor, and an assortment of hats, trinkets, and collectibles surround the store. Customers can shop clothes or customize skateboards, all while enjoying the laid back and welcoming atmosphere.
“From college kids to Birmingham people just driving by, it’s brought a lot of different diversity.”-Cam
“From what i’ve witnessed people are really excited about it. And when they realize it’s here it’s nice to see everyone light up about it, because this is pretty unique to the area.”-Jason
However, what is quickly making The Wood a community staple, is their Monday night event, “Scratching the Wood.” Essentially a weekly block party: a DJ plays live music, Cam cooks, and they skate in the street for several hours.
“We do scratching of the wood on Monday nights, every Monday night. We have a DJ who comes in and sets the turntables up and everyone is welcome to use them. We usually have an open mic. And then we skate in the street. Usually a few people show up and we try to battle the traffic and take over the street as much as possible”-Jason
“It’s kinda like a big block party and we invite everybody.”-Cam
“If you got wheels it doesn’t matter what you’re doing, sometimes more bikers show up. Its a good time. That definitely brings a lot of people together.”-Jason
Their all-are-welcome approach has earned them a loyal following of locals, while also bringing in large crowds of newcomers.
“A couple of weeks ago we had people- I didn’t know any of them- there were a whole bunch of people here that we were just like ‘woah, who are all these people’, cause usually it’s the same 15-20 folks show up. But last week, there were a lot of people.”-Jason
The Wood may be a part of a larger vintage movement, but they are set apart by their welcoming store front, boutique skate-shop experience, and love for their community. Quickly becoming a Woodlawn staple, they truly live up to their motto, “Vintage for the People.”