Just a Fabulous Tapestry

woven wall hangingI’ve been looking for a macrame piece for above our bed for a long time, and I think I’ve finally found it at this Etsy shop called Jujujust. It’s not technically macrame but it’s the perfect blend of modern boho ’70s fabulous for our heavily shag-carpeted home. Her jewelry and accessories are also wonderful, check out some more of her work below. Choosing a color is the hardest part!

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A Couch at the Dining Table

dining with couch

I’m currently obsessed with finding the perfect couch to pair with our dining table. I’m dreaming of it doubling as a place to hang out and read during the day (even though that may not happen until Frida graduates from toddler-hood), and seating for guests at the table when we have dinner parties. And I found plenty of inspiration online to fuel my obsession. What do you think? Kind of a great way to do a dining table, no?

dining

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A Room of the Little Munchkin’s Own

fridas room 12

All photos via Apartment Therapy

I wrote a little while back about my bedroom dilemma. Frida, our 18 month old, was still sleeping in our room with us. She had graduated from our bed to the crib, but she was waking up fairly often in the middle of the night and ending up in our bed. Plus, we were thinking maybe it was time for some privacy for all of us? Still, I was resistant, because I love cuddling with her any chance I get. [Read more...]

Apartment Therapy

apartment therapy

Nothing will motivate you to whip your house into shape like an impending visit from Apartment Therapy. I was a maniac and probably evil to my poor husband during the two weeks leading up to the day the lovely Theresa Gonzalez visited our Pacifica home. But look how happy we are now that it’s all finished! I managed to arrange the baby’s crazy room with the closet sticking out of the middle and the child-size waterbed left behind by the landlords. I cleaned up my closet and got my shoes in order. Got most of the clutter put away! Our retro-in-a-bad-way kitchen even looked half decent. But there was nothing I could do about our wall-to-wall  shag carpet, and Apartment Therapy readers had very visceral reactions to it. I understand, so did I. But the view, more than doubling our space for less rent than we were paying in the city, and the awesome fireplace trumped the sea of shag. And actually, we’re super thankful for it now with a toddler.

Anyway, it’s awesome to see our house photographed so beautifully by Theresa. And thank goodness this happened or Frida may never have had a room!

In the Bedroom…

bedroom

Here’s a little sneak peak of our bedroom, which we’ve been working on a bit over the past few months. It’s finally looking like a grown-up bedroom. We got a new bed frame, new mattress (king!), some awesome pillows and a tapestry from my mother-in-law, and a rug will be delivered any day now. But do you notice something not so grown up ? Yes, that’s our child’s crib. And that’s our child, who is about to turn one and a half in a couple days.

My family and friends have been telling me for months I need to get her into her own bedroom, stat. And my entire life I scoffed at the idea of having my kid in my room with me. Yeah I thought I knew everything about having kids when I didn’t have one.  We’ve made progress, though! We’ve gone from  having her IN the bed most of the night, to just part of the night, and now, she usually sleeps through the night in her crib. So it seems to be a good time to transition her into her own room, right?

Right, only I can’t stand the idea of her not being there when we wake up. Her room is downstairs! And she’s so schnoogely in the morning—even though her favorite word upon awakening is DADDY. I’m OK with that. But there is the matter of ROMANCE to be addressed. That room has seen very little of it in the past year and a half. Let’s just say the husband is finally willing to see how she’ll do in her own room.

Anyone have experience with this kind of transition? Any tips or tricks? How did it go?? Wish us luck.

Skull Bags in the Making

These leather skull bags, handcrafted by Chinese designer Xun Wang, are completely blowing my mind. Here, she takes us through then painstaking process of creating the pattern, then cutting out puzzle pieces and sewing them together to build these incredible, 3-D skull handbags. They are a little bit Alexander McQueen-ish and 100 percent amazing!

I’m a handbag designer. I LOVE bags. From the time I was a little a girl I was captivated by them – day bags, evening bags, satchels, totes – all of them captivating. Nothing completes an outfit like a handbag. The handbag you carry speaks volumes. 
My bags always start with a tiny kernel of an idea, and then a spark. Once that idea formulates, I find my sketch pad and begin. Because I work in leather, I have to think through the angles, how the hides will take shape and what finishes I’ll need. My Skull bags are my current favorites!
After the sketches I create the pattern; it’s like creating puzzle pieces. The pieces allow me to see the parts individually. Working with leather is an old tradition so I use modern techniques to help me focus on the decorative effect of the leather.
I take my pattern, the puzzle pieces, and trace them onto my chosen medium, leather. I then cut them out, and place them roughly how’ll they’ll be sewn together.
Then I begin sewing.
The leather requires much more work than fabric does. Tooling, bending, shaping and hammering.
I mold the leather and have to stitch the more intricate pieces by hand. After the molding is complete, the leather has to dry for 24 hours. The final steps of the hand-finishing process: curling, leather treatment, adding studs, cone reaming, and the hand-stitching. This is my labor of love.
Nearly finished, the Skull Bag takes shape and life. I like to pause here and look at my paper pattern, my tools, my material. All the steps in my process…
You can see the other skin colors I want to make this bag in in the back: metallic gold, brown and hot pink. Cheeky and unique! Each color and each bag will require the same steps. My craft involves me, my ideas, and my tools. Each piece is handmade and, due to its intricacies, cannot not be machine produced.

San Francisco Family Business Supports African Weavers Who Make These Gorgeous Textiles

Petel bag

Petel bag

Image via Petel Design

Petel bags and pillows

Petel bags and pillows

Julie and Ibrahim Wagne's adorable daughter, introducing the new family biz.

Julie and Ibrahim Wagne's adorable daughter, introducing the new family biz.

Julie Wagne in her amazing vintage African fabric skirt. Get in line for one coming soon!

Julie Wagne in her amazing vintage African fabric skirt. Get in line for one coming soon!

One of those vintage scarves!

One of those vintage scarves!

Petel pillow

Petel pillow

Petel pillow

Petel pillow

Petel pillows

Petel pillows

Petel bags

Petel bags

Petel pillow

Petel pillow

Petel Africa launch party festivities

Petel Africa launch party festivities

Petel Africa runners

Petel Africa runners

Petel cofounder Julie Wagne sporting her amazing vintage Fulani skirt

Petel cofounder Julie Wagne sporting her amazing vintage Fulani skirt

Petel bagPetel bags and pillowsJulie and Ibrahim Wagne's adorable daughter, introducing the new family biz.Julie Wagne in her amazing vintage African fabric skirt. Get in line for one coming soon!One of those vintage scarves!Petel pillowPetel pillowPetel pillowsPetel bagsPetel pillowPetel Africa launch party festivitiesPetel Africa runnersPetel cofounder Julie Wagne sporting her amazing vintage Fulani skirt

Yesterday I had the pleasure of checking out a brand new textile line called Petel Africa. The gorgeous, vibrant fabrics are imported from Africa by Julie and Ibrahim Wagne, who threw a launch party for their new line yesterday at Kappa Zakka boutique in Hayes Valley. Super wonderful story: the couple, who now have two daughters, met while they were both serving in the Peace Corps in Mauritania, Ibrahim’s home country, and the place where Petel textiles are handcrafted by members of his tribe, the Fulani. But the art of creating these beautiful fabrics is labor intensive, and despite the beautiful results, it’s a dying craft. So Julie and Ibrahim launched Petel to support Fulani textile makers. All proceeds from their sales will go back to the tribe for training in how to weave using traditional wooden African looms. The word “Petel” translates to “little spark” in Pulaar, the Fulani language, and that’s exactly what they hope their startup project will be for the men and women who hand loom these fabrics.

Sales will soon be live on the Petel site, until then contact the founders by phone or email, or you can buy (what’s left from their launch party!) in person at Kappa Zakka. And stay tuned for their next shipment: vintage skirts like the amazing one Julie is wearing at the party (I have one reserved already!) and vintage scarves taken straight from the necks of “rugged African men.”

“We’re taking their old ones and buying them new ones, because the vintage fabric is so great!” Julie said. Genius!

An adorable little trick-or-treater parade led by a trumpeteer from Seesaw down the street stormed the place as the party wound down–luckily they had plenty of candy on hand!

Fogfest Is This Weekend! Time for a Road Trip to Pacifica for Beach Chic Wares

I’ve lived in Pacifica for more than a year now and I love it. Our swingin ’70s pad (shag carpet and all), which is a five-minute walk from the beach, amazing sunsets, and truly lovely neighbors have made me fall for this town. OK yes it’s foggy, I HEAR YOU! But probably not as much as you think. All the other good stuff makes up for the misty days (which I’ve actually grown to find romantic). In any case, the forecast says it will be 80 degrees and sunny this Saturday!

If you’d like to get a little taste of what I’m talking about you should come visit this weekend for Fogfest. It’s happening along Palmetto road this Saturday and Sunday from 10am until 6pm. There will be food, drink, crafts, and 25 bands on three stages! Check out how much fun I had last year.

One of the highlights will be just up the hill from Palmetto where my lovely and amazing neighbor Candace (superstar babysitter in a major pinch, we love you Candace!!) will host the “Beachstring Public Boutique.” [Read more...]

Viv & Ingrid Celebrate Their One-Year Anniversary With Discounts, Macrons, and Free Jewelry!

Viv & Ingrid, purveyors of lovely jewelry and accessories perfect for weddings and whatever other events you might have lined up this summer, have been at Oxford Hall in Berkeley for a year already! To celebrate their anniversary, they’re taking 25 percent off their limited edition pieces as well as some current styles. The sale starts on Saturday, July 21 and continues all week until Saturday July 28. Plus, on both Saturdays, enjoy blueberry macaroons from Emmacakes while you shop. On the weekdays, shoppers will gifted a free pair of CZ Posts! We’re pretty sure you’ll go home with some pieces to keep your new earrings company: Viv & Ingrid’s designs include covetable selection of unique jewelry pieces, bridal accessories and personalized gifts.

If we had our druthers, we’d take home the Viv & Ingrid pieces below:

Viv & Ingrid turquoise bobby pin, $36

Viv & Ingrid turquoise bobby pin, $36

Gold necklace with white pearl chevron fringe, $235

Gold necklace with white pearl chevron fringe, $235

Gold and white pearl peacock chandelier earrings, $216

Gold and white pearl peacock chandelier earrings, $216

Viv and Ingrid at Oxford Hall

Viv and Ingrid at Oxford Hall

Viv & Ingrid turquoise bobby pin, $36Gold necklace with white pearl chevron fringe, $235Gold and white pearl peacock chandelier earrings, $216Viv and Ingrid at Oxford Hall

Viv & Ingrid are local ladies all the way—best friends who share a calling to design and create beautiful jewelry. But their collections are also sold around the globe as well as at their store in downtown Berkeley. The celebrations are happening at 2142 Oxford Street in Berkeley and they’re open Tuesday through Saturday from 11am until 6pm.

This Week’s Racked San Francisco: Summer Artwalk, Heath Ceramics Opens and Lots More to Celebrate

Image via Heath Ceramics

Hello, San Francisco and Greater Bay Area readers! If you like sales, indie designers, pottery, jewelry, or anything else you could buy at a store in these foggy parts, take a gander at this week’s Racked SF over at Curbed. I’ve collected a short list of fun things to buy or just look at, including a couple of events to get you off the couch in the coming week. For me the highlight is the Divisadero Art Walk, which is tonight and will feature a mini Indie Mart with 25 local vendors. A close second in the opening of Heath Ceramics in the Mission! Enjoy!