Friday, December 26, 2008


No, not Michael Jackson's son (or is it daughter?), I'm talking about the warm, woolly kind. I've been wanting a really nice wool blanket to cover half of my bed--both as warmth and as a decoration. The look I'm going for is inspired by the Ace Hotel chain which has custom-made pendelton blankets gracing their guest beds like this:
Here's a few recent finds in my quest to replicate this look. Not sure I've quite hit it yet, but I may just have to get one of these.

LADAK blankets ($285) are made from recycled sweaters, blankets, jeans and parts of mattresses. They have been embellished with ribbons, rich fabrics and a lace finish and best of all 15% of profits from these blankets are donated to homeless shelters! These blankets are machine washable. Available from Reform School. 78"x54.5".

San Miguel Blanket

This San Miguel Pendelton blanket ($189.99 marked down from $278) from Sundance Cataolgue has been reproduced from authentic Navajo textiles. The simple cross design looks very modern and classic. Woven blend of wool and cotton, the blanket comes in great palette of cream and gray with a dash of red. I don't they expect they will last long at the sale price! 90"L x 86"W

Vintage Swiss Army Blanket

I love the swiss army logo. Yet another cross motif! Dating from the 1930's - 1950's, these thick wool swiss army blankets ($95) are the genuine article produced for the Swiss Army. Sundance carries them for $298, but I like the price tag on these vintage blankets from P.O.S.H. Chicago better! Dimensions: 57" x 82".

Yakima Camp Blanket

These classic Pendelton camp blankets ($108) were first designed to meet the rigorous demands of the Pacific Northwest. I love the stripes and muted palette. Tough enough for a camping trip and outdoor use, these blankets will last forever. 86% wool/14% cotton. Available in grey, brown and green. 90" x 90".

Monday, December 22, 2008

My Life has been a Tapestry

Peruvian Connection

I can't believe I did not know about this site sooner since it is right up my bohemian alley! These original designs are crafted by Andean artisans and craftswomen and feature great Peruvian textiles in pima cotton and alpaca.
I absolutely love this cotton, alpaca & silk skirt in a bohemian ikat print ($110). Great earthy color palette of navy, rust and gold that I can totally picture with my brown buckle boots and tights.

I also love this rich Indian sari-inspired skirt with gold metallic embroidery ($169) featured in Lucky Magazine. This skirt is also a cotton, alpaca, silk blend, but with more of a swingy silhouette.

Or, check out this Andean Chumpi belt ($69) handwoven and finished with fringe and tassels. It would be great with a pair of jeans and a simple white t-shirt.

For more including great sweaters, housewares and men's clothing check it out on

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Top Bay Area Stores for that Last Minute Gift

Only a few days left 'till Christmas. Are you ready? If not, here are my favorite stores in the San Francisco Bay Area for that special little thing that you didn't even know you were looking for!


This is one of my favorite stores of all times. You never know what you will find here, with all kinds of interesting home furnishings and accessories--mostly vintage. They also carry jewelry, ornaments and small gifts items. If anyone out there is looking for a gift for me, feel free to pick up something from this store!!

I just realized that Swallowtail has an online store front as well. Browsing through the online collection I came across a hammerhead shark which is exactly like the hammerhead shark on the wall of my country house. Only $2800, glad I've got one already! Visit them at: 2217 Polk Street(between Bonita St & Vallejo St) San Francisco, CA 94109(415) 567-1555

Park Life

This store in the Richmond district is chock-full of modern gift items, books, and t-shirts (I picked up a great owl t-shirt and a really cool old-fashioned bike horn). You can check out the Park Life online store and website here. Or, visit them in person at: 220 Clement St San Francisco, CA 94118 (415) 386-7275

Summer House
Summer House is a great boutique in Mill Valley--definitely worth the trip to Marin. I literally love EVERYTHING in this store. They've got great jewelry, candles, soaps, bedding, tableware, accessories. If you can't find a gift for someone in this store than I think you are beyond help. I wish they had an online store, but you have to visit them in person at: 21 Throckmorton Ave Mill Valley, CA 94941 (415) 383-6695

Maison d'Etre
I haven't been in this Rockridge boutique for awhile. I visited my cousin who lives nearby a couple weeks ago and rediscovered what a great store it is. Chock full of housewares and personal accessories there is something for everyone here. Check out their website or in person at:
5640 College Avenue Oakland, CA 94618

Tail of the Yak
This Berkeley boutique carries a great selection of ribbons, stationery and other paper goods. They also have a selection of vintage jewelry and lots of little toys and stocking stuffer type items.
2632 Ashby Ave Berkeley, California 94705 510 841 9891

Kiss My Ring
The main attraction of Kiss My Ring is Melissa Rallis's beautiful line of silver and gold jewelry. However, she also carries an assortment of other accessories and gifty type items--t-shirts, scarfs, wallets, etc.
You can shop the Kiss My Ring jewelry collection on the website, or visit in-person at: 2522 San Pablo Avenue Berkeley CA 94702

Molte Cose

This Nob Hill boutique carries an eclectic mix of new and vintage items. They've got a great men's department and a lovely selection of women's lingerie. Interesting knick-knacks and home decor items as well. 2036 Polk St San Francisco, CA 94109 (415) 474-3494

Did I miss a store that you think should be on this list? Leave me a comment! Vote for your favorite on this list at the right.

Killer Shoes

I love the latest influx of dangerous shoes--a little bit edgy, a little bit S&M with lots of straps, buckles, zippers, etc. Most of them are super high--4" or higher which gives me pause since I usually have to do a lot of walking. However, here' s a few I'm contemplating...

I like that these Report Signature heels ($185) are edgy without being over the top. I like the simple patch on the front and the little studs and velcro closure at the ankle. They would be great with a pair of cropped boyfriend jeans and a little black leather motorcycle jacket. They have 5" heels and a 1" platform, so not the greatest for walking around, but that's the price you pay for fash-on. Available from

These Twelfth Street by Cynthia Vincent wedges ($395) are a twist on last year's ubiquitous gladiator sandal and I have to say I like them much better. The 4" wedges would be easier to walk in and I LOVE the big zipper running up the middle. Available from Planet Blue.

Pour La Victoire Gladiator booties ($314) are pretty fierce as well. I like the additional perforated patch details which look a little more dangerous. I'm not as crazy about the 4" spiky heel, but maybe some of you out there have an easier time walking around in these than I do. Available from

Which ones do you think I should get? Cast your vote on the right.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

A Little Color

Inspired by the winter edition of Oprah's At Home magazine which is dedicated to color, Paloma and I are in the process of redesigning her room to be have a more tween/teen vibe. The core inspiration is this girl's bedroom with walls painted with Benjamin Moore Wild Orchid paint.

I love the collection of flea market paintings on the wall and how the bright blue contrasts against the purple. The vintage quilts on the bed extend the bohemian vibe. Purple is Paloma's favorite color so she already has a pretty good headstart in this direction with various purple and silver room accents like a dark purple shaggy rug.
I would love to find a great vintage or at least vintage-looking flower chandelier to add to the room like this one from Pearl kids ($518) only with less of a hefty price tag.

Or, maybe we'll go more in the direction of this clear acrylic chandelier from Urban Outfitters which is only $120! More modern in feel, but still would look nice I think.

Paloma's got a brushed silver daybed so we're working on adding a bunch of throw pillows to it like this faux-fur pillow from Urban Outfitters ($19.99).
If we can fit it in we may also add a little vanity table where Paloma can fix her hair and put on lip gloss. I love the price on this Target Simply Shabby Chic vanity--only $99!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Gifts under $25

Given the current economic crisis, I've agreed with my family to keep our gift exchange under $25 this year. Believe it or not there is a lot you can do for $25 or less. Aside from the many items already on this blog for under $25, here's a few more suggestions. It's a little bit late, but if you get it on it right away there may still be enough time!


There's all kinds of great jewelry to be had for under $25. I love this rosewood bracelet ($20) from the Curiosity Shoppe. Made out of a single piece of thin rosewood veneer. Great for the earthy nature-lover on your list.

Or, for a little glitz theseBlu Bijoux star and moon rings ($26) with enamel and crystal look way more expensive than they are. Available from Max & Chloe. I can't decide which color I like best.

Make a wish! These Brazilian good luck bracelets ($5) will make your wish come true when they wear and fall off. They come from the mystical city of Bahia, Brazil and have been known to grant wishes for the past 200 years. They come in a several different colors all with a qoute in Portuguese that reads "In remembrance of our patron saint of good luck in life." Buy 5 in all different colors!

Keep Warm
These wool reindeer socks ($19) are festive and warm for the holidays. Knit in a wool, cashmere, angora blend, they are available in three colors from Sundance.

Plaid is so trendy right now. Keep warm and on trend with this soft acrylic scarf ($28) from

Show me some love

Is anyone out there? In the spirit of the holidays, if you read this blog show me some love and leave me a comment! Let me know what you like, what you don't like, what you would come back to see/read...Or, better yet, become a follower by clicking on the link in the bottom right corner.

Happy Holidays!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Decked Out to Deck the Halls

The holidays are a great excuse to splurge on some glitz and glamour. Here's what I hope to be wearing as I deck the halls and ring in the New Year. I just need to find that secret stash of cash!

Sexy 70's

I am obsessing about this vintage faux wrap dress from Posh Vintage ($365). Deep purple flower print and a loose but sexy bohemian style. I would love to wear this to a holiday party with a pair of silver heels and a pashmina shawl.

I'm also digging this super tight and stretchy silver sweater ($115) from Posh Vintage that would be great for the holidays with a pair of black pencil jeans.
Unfortunately it's says it's a size 4 and I'm not sure it will stretch quite enough, but for you tiny ladies out there...
This gold and silver sequined cami ($145) from J.Crew has a delicate raw-edged silk chiffon edging around the collar and sleeve. It's available in two colors, but I definitely like this putty color the best (pictured). What's great about this sweater is that you can dress it down after the holidays and wear it under a jacket or with a pair of jeans for an unexpected flash of glitz.

Tuxedo Pants

I love the exaggerated proportions of these wool tuxedo pants from m/m. Originally $448 they are currently 30% off at Oak. What a bargain! The pants have a sash closure with metal d-rings in the back which allows for adjustable waist size. 2 1/2 inch cuff and wide silk tux stripe.
Kimono Shoes
I love vintage kimonos. In fact, I just picked one up at an antique shop in North Beach last weekend. Here's a great way to wear a kimono anytime with Hetty Rose handmade shoes (£290.00-£320.00). These shoes are made with gorgeous kimono fabrics in a variety of great styles that would instantly dress up the most simple outfit, but I would even wear them with jeans and a white t-shirt. I particularly like her latest collection 'kimono 2'. You can have a pair custom made directly from Hetty Rose. Or, you can find her shoes at The Natural Store.
Corset Belt

I've blogged about this leather corset belt ($250) from Etsy before and I'm still pining after it. Talking about kimonos reminded me that this belt would be ideal to pair with a vintage kimono, some super skinny jeans and some 4" heels. These belts are custom made to your exact size, so you do have to wait 6 weeks to get one. Probably too late for this year's holiday parties--but maybe get a jump on next year?

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Toast the New Year

If I have more than one glass of wine I find that I don't sleep well so I tend to partake sparingly these days. However, I love the taste of wine and champagne and it's nice to have a special beverage to go with a nice holiday meal.

Yesterday I tried a sample of White Jasmine sparkling tea and I think I may never miss champagne again! This isn't your average tea--for one thing it's sparkling. And for all those skeptics out there (you know who you are) I cannot urge you enough to try this. Seriously.

I've offerred other non-alcoholic beverages during the holidays like sparkling cider, etc, but they are really sweet and certainly no replacement for real wine or champagne. White Jasmine sparkling tea is completely different. It's pretty dry, with only a hint of sweetness. I would pair this with appetizers (I'm thinking seared scallops & arugula salad?) or a cheese plate.

You can find White Jasmine sparkling tea at Whole Foods Market. $12.99 for the large bottle. Hopefully the online store will be up on the Golden Star Tea company website soon. I think I'm going to order a case!

Golden Star Tea Company
111 Industrial Rd. #6
Belmont, CA 94002

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Crazy Sexy Wool

I just happened this great knitting site Wool and the Gang. Featuring knitting kits with "crazy sexy wool" from Peru and very cool styles and patterns that are still easy enough for those new to knitting.

I love, love, love, the super long vest in forest green wool called "Big Joe". The kit with with all the wool is $189. I'm not sure I personally have the patience to make this, but if anyone out there wants to knit it for me I'd be happy to receive it!

Actually, the site does offer readymade knitwear for sale as well. Big Joe is $298 if you don't want the hassle of knitting it yourself.

What a Man Wants

I'm actually not sure if these are things a man wants, but these are things that would be fun gifts to give for that special guy in your life this holiday.

Candi Factory

This Toronto-based company makes the most adorable handmade underwear for men and women, but it's really the men's briefs that I love. With contrasting patterns and strategically placed imagery these briefs ($30) would make the perfect stocking stuffers. Vist The Candi Factory. for their online store. International shipping is available.

Manly Man Gifts

Sundance actually has a section on their website dedicated to manly man gifts! There's all kinds of interesting gift ideas on this site. I love the Stanley flask ($25) that has the look of the workman's favorite thermos, but is a more unusual shape and size. Holds 1 pint of your favorite beverage.

Or, for the more literary guy on your list I love the manly man book collections. For $98 you get a set of 8 books by authors like Raymond Carver, Dashiell Hammett and Joseph Conrad. Two different book collections are available all with a great selection of must-read fiction.

Watch It

If you are ready to splurge a little watches are always great gifts. For the surfer I love this Freestyle watch ($150). It comes programmed with 15 years of tide information for beaches all over the world! Backlight for viewing in the dark and water resistant to 100 m. Available at Urban Outfitters.

For the less sporty look I love authentic vintage watches. There are all kinds of sites selling vintage watches out there. Prices can get pretty high for watches in pristine condition or vintage rolex's, but I actually like the look of a little wear. You can find great 1950's watches with new straps for under $300 like this Hamilton watch ($300) from Cool Vintage Watches.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Gifts for the Camera Buff

Here's a few gift ideas for the photographer in your life.

Bottle Cap Tripod

I just bought myself one of these super portable Bottle Cap Tripods ($10). Complete with an adjustable 15 degree pivot this little gadget is the perfect camera accessory. Screw your camera onto the universal tripod mount and then snap the cap on any bottle for perfect low-light shots or self-portraits. Available from

Poloroid PoGo

Print your digital photos on the go with this compact photo printer from Poloroid ($99). Prints directly from cell phones and digital cameras with Bluetooth and USB connections. 2x3 photos print in as little as 1 minute. Approximately $12.99 for 30 sheets of ZINK photo paper. Available from

Ikomono Camera

This tiny Ikimono 110 camera ($19.99) clips to a key chain or fits easily in your pocket. The Ikimono uses 110 format film and features illustrations of little creatures, called ikimono in Japanese, by Mika Sasaki. The resulting photos have a unique retro look and 110 film can print 3 x 5 or 4 x 6 prints. Available from Brooklyn5and10.

Camera Tee

Available in both men's and women's versions this camera tee ($45) from Sundance features a cool camera print on either a black or white t-shirt. The shirt has the word "focus" printed on the back. Also available with short-sleeves.

Camera Strap

There are a variety of different camera strap patterns to choose from on the site MyFunkyCamera. Regular camera straps are $32 with a a quick-release kit for an extra $5. I love this chocolate brown strap with purple and green flowers.

Even better (in my opinion) are woven camera straps. They remind me of the70's strap on my Canon AE-1. Kat Straps has an assortment of woven camera straps like this fuzzy red and black strap with rustic leather connectors. ($27) that I love. Their tie-dye strap is also really cool.
Camera Bag

Finally, if that photographer in your life is REALLY special, these leather camera bags from Jill-E are simply the coolest, most fashionable camera bags I've seen. The women's styles are great, but I actually like the new men's line even better. This medium brown leather bag ($239.99) is my favorite and reminds me of a vintage camera bag (without the moldy vintage smell!).