Remodelista at Heath SF


Of all of the beautiful markets that pop up around the holidays, the Remodelista one may be my favorite. I don’t think there was a single vendor whose wares I didn’t admire or covet. The prices tend to be higher, the assembly a bit more aspirational—but the selection also tends toward heirloom, so it’s inspirational as well.

Are you familiar with the site Remodelista? I subscribe and have to confess that there are too many posts each day for me to keep apace. But I can never bring myself to unsubscribe because it’s so full of gems. The founder, Julie Carlson, launched the site as a digital guide to home design and so on any given day you’re as likely to find a round-up of well-designed faucets as you are a minimalist home tour. If you don’t own a home or aren’t remodeling a kitchen, it can be easy to scroll past. But they’ve got a talent for finding beauty in the practical, and I love seeing who they bring to their market.

This year, we even got a babysitter and made a date out of going into the city to visit!

Some highlights…

Up top: Silvia Song‘s gorgeous carved wood (smooth as butter), greenery at the terrain booth, and ceramics by Sarah Kersten.


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Let’s Party! Welcome, Madewell.


Madewell is coming to Sacramento! And they’re having a launch party this Tuesday night that I’m co-hosting!

It’s no secret that I’m a big Madewell fan. In fact, when they called to talk about launching their new shop, I glanced down and realized that I was—at that moment—already wearing no less than three items from the store.

So while I’ve clearly had no trouble shopping the online site, I was super excited to learn that they were opening in Sacramento’s Arden Fair Mall. I’ve missed browsing the denim bar, trying on a dress or some shoes, stacking rings from the accessories table… just that tactile experience. Now they will be about 20 minutes away!



They were kind enough to let check out more of their fall line in anticipation of the event. I love the detailing on what are, ostensibly, basics. “Skinny skinny” knee-rip jeans with just the right whiskering on the rise, a swingy tunic with pin-tucks (and pockets!), and a blazer with long arms and a bit of stretch that’s easy to dress down.

I asked Raymond Kim to take a few photos over coffee at The Mill—a new-to-me favorite coffee spot to work or meet at in midtown. (See? So many exciting new things happening in Sacramento.)



Madewell’s Sacramento grand opening event is Tuesday night from 7pm-9pm at Arden Fair Mall and, if you’re local, you should definitely swing by and check out the fall line while the DJ spins. (I’ve got my eye on these oxfords and this hat as well.)

I’d love to meet you—and toast the opening together! Help me welcome them to town.



Photos by Raymond Kim.
Most clothing courtesy of Madewell. Also pictured: Billie Boot, Pivot Pendant, Bracelet cuff & Transport Tote.
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Have you heard of Sarah Bryden-Brown, a wonderful person I’ve met through blogging, recently founded the online marketplace which aims to compensate all involved—the maker you love, the tastemaker you trust.

Essentially, “tastemakers” (bloggers and the like) curate their own shops and do all of the selling, so that the makers are left to making and creating rather than to marketing and selling! It’s a lovely concept and everyone is invited to join. In support, I’ve chosen some favorite items to feature today (and of course, they’re all available in the boutique I’ve created as well.)

Leather Switch plates // Scarf // Bookends // Leather Tote // Giraffe Chalkboard // Draw Your Own Postcard // Cork Planter // Cushion // Bowls and Cutting Board

Check it out! And if you’re a maker and you’re interested in selling on, here’s how to apply.

Have a great weekend!

[All images via makers on Here’s the link to my boutique. And to shop at large.]


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5 Hats for August


Heading into balmy August (it’s right around the corner!), here are five easy summer hat styles to keep the sun out of your eyes on warm afternoons in the park, on the beach, on vacation, or in your own backyard.

These Ecuadorian hats are made with tremendous care, woven from the leaves of the toquilla palm at night-time only, to protect the material from the sweat of the workers making them. The hats have a long and colorful history that includes cameos from Teddy Roosevelt (who wore one while visiting the Panama Canal), and a slew of stars from both past and present, including Ernest Hemingway, Jon Hamm, and Diane Kruger.

  1. Madewell + Biltmore Panama hat, $58
  2. Metal-accented Panama hat, $42
  3. Clyde pinch Panama hat, $248

IMAGE:  Sincerely, Jules photographed by Temoc Gonzalez.

Did you know that the bowler hat—and not what we recognize as the traditional cowboy hat—is what was known as the “hat the won the West”? It wasn’t until the 1860s, when John Batterson Stetson created the very first cowboy hat, that the modern iteration was born. (For inspiration on keeping cowboy hats current, visit Refinery29, here.)

  1. Straw cowboy hat, $19.95
  2. Palm Straw cowboy hat, $29.95
  3. Mixed braid cowboy hat, $28

IMAGE:  Arizona Muse photographed by Craig Arend.

Elegant and ultra-feminine, the wide-brim floppy hat is perfect for days when there’s not a cloud in the sky. Wear one with a dress and sandals (or just a bathing suit or a beach cover-up) for instant polish.

  1. Terrain Newport hat, $68
  2. Serena Straw Floppy Hat, $38
  3. Floppy hat, $22.94

 IMAGE: Blair Eadie of Atlantic-Pacifc, photographed by Bess Friday for Who What Wear.

Traditionally a men’s hat, the boater is made of stiff straw and comes encircled in ribbon. Best known in the past as a political accessory or as part of school uniforms, the boater has been making a unisex fashion comeback as of late—Forever21, Urban Outfitters, and ASOS have all thrown their respective hats (sorry, couldn’t help it) in the ring.

  1. Straw Boater Hat, $22.86
  2. Black straw boater, $30
  3. Straw Roll Brim Boater, $13.34

IMAGE: Amy Nelson on Chictopia.


Baseball caps date back to the mid 1800s, and were designed to shield players’ eyes from harsh sunlight. They’re still worn on the field today, but non-athletes can get in on the fun, too, with patterns and prints and a variety of textures (chambray or straw in the summer, wool or felt in the winter).
  1. Chambray baseball cap, $34.50
  2. Polka-dot cap, $29
  3. Cotton baseball cap, $88

IMAGE: Sara Strand photographed by Janka Polliani.

[Top image: Photo by Kara Rosenlund via Design*Sponge]

P.S. This summer’s perfect Summer Sandals? (Though these are probably still my all-time favorites.)

Many thanks to Shoko for her help with this post, and to Lily for the graphics.

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In My Bag: Carry-on Pouch of Essentials


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I’m starting to think about what I’m going to pack for our flight to Florida this weekend, but there’s one thing I never have to think about: my carry-on essentials. I keep a little pouch packed and at the ready to toss into my bag. Actually, in general, the contents of my larger carry-on have varied dramatically over the years: glossy fashion magazines have been traded for childrens’ books and a buffet of finger foods—even if I usually still pack a few in my checked bag. But there’s always a pouch with a few key items that’s waiting to be whisked off at a moment’s notice (and stashed in the seat pocket in front of me).

If you recall, one of our favorite strategies for flying with very small children is staying off the plane as long as possible. Aron usually gets on the plane first and grabs some overhead space, takes care of gate-check, installs the carseat and whatnot. He’s the one who has decide what goes at our feet (or solely in the seat pocket, if we happen to score the bulkhead), which is all the more reason for making sure that what I need at my fingertips is easy to grab when the seatbelt sign goes on.

Here’s what I like to keep at the ready:


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Shopping Sacramento: Scout Living


I’m still pretty fresh when it comes to unique , local shopping in Sacramento (and am open to suggestions!) despite having lived in Midtown for one year after college. But one spot I’ve returned to on multiple occasions now is Scout Living. (We found the Eames chair that some of you spotted in our dining room there!) It’s definitely my favorite shopping find so far.


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Hither & Thither Gift Guide: For the kiddo


kids num
  1. We love this Classic Balance Bike at our house.
  2. Personalized photo games by Pinhole Press: memory, puzzles, and more… (We made this one.)
  3. Max the Raccoon (or another handmade cutie) from BRIKA
  4. This all-wood Fold-and-Go farm reminds me of the one I had in the ’80s, by Fisher Price.
  5. A playful wink in their bedroom—the Howkapow dog lamp.
  6. A Larry Gets Lost book about your hometown or someplace you’d like to visit—the pup gets lost everywhere from Los Angeles to Seattle, New York City to San Francisco…
  7. Stacking blocks that kids will love and that look good, too.
  8. Eco Dough, the closest you’ll get to the homemade playdough alternative, rumored to be less likely to dry-out.
  9. The Brio Pull Along Dachshund does an incredible job of staying upright, no matter how much he’s jerked around. No other brand of pull-along toy has compared.
  10. This Skootcase looks to be a case of “everyone wins!” at the airport. (I’ve been intrigued for a while.)
  11. Janod Story Box Farm. The French company makes various themes of these sweet boxes of wooden figures (which are perfect for travel). We picked up the Firefighters Story Box in Paris, and Hudson loves it!
  12. Mahalo Ukulele makes a great gift for kids, precisely because it’s not designed to be a toy.
  13. Such a great price point for a classic moccasin: Minnetonka for JCrew Baby.  (The entire new collection for babies is adorable!)
  14. An attractive Playmat—for under a baby’s play gym or a toddler’s train set.
  15. Who wouldn’t love The Original Slush Mug?
  16. Ubbas bath cups, to match their family’s form. (Here’s Hudson with ours.)
  17. Playskool Digital Camera and Projector. How fun to get a glimpse of the world through a little one’s eyes!
  18. And, not exactly for the child, but new parents would love this beautiful Baby Milestone heirloom set.

P.S. Last year’s Gift Guide for Kids. Those Connectable Drinking Straws were (and continue to be) a verified hit with our then 4- and 7-year-old nephews!

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Maternity clothing basics


Maternity clothes you actually needDress for pregnancy
It’s been my experience that while you don’t need to buy a lot of maternity clothes, you’ll be a lot happier (read: more comfortable) if you get a few key pieces that don’t make you feel like you’re waging a war to squeeze into your wardrobe every day.

Here’s what I think you really need (for cooler temps, with links to my go-to sources)…


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Alameda Flea and the 15 best flea markets in the country


Best Antiques and Flea Markets in America


I don’t always make it, but I have a standing appointment in my date book for the first Sunday of every month at the Alameda Point Antiques Faire. If you’re in (or near) the Bay Area, it’s worth checking out. The food trucks and view of the San Francisco skyline would be enough to tempt me, but I usually have a few other goals in mind. One month, it was chairs. This month, it was art and textiles.


Just be sure to dress in layers: I was excited to break out a new Old Navy Color-Blocked sweater for the cool morning. But once the fog lifts and the sun comes out, one remembers that fall is the Bay Area’s summer!





Hudson discovered the joy of a tape measure and wanted to stop at every rug which, fortunately, was pretty convenient. Otherwise, I must admit, it’s gotten harder to truly scower the market, with a curious toddler in tow. He usually makes out best of all. (Remember the fire truck? There’s a new-old bulldozer in our midst now.)



In the mood to go on a treasure hunt yourself?
Here are the 15 flea and antique markets that are routinely named best in the country:

Long Beach Outdoor Antique & Collectible Market
Rose Bowl Flea (Pasadena)
Alameda Point Antiques Faire (pictured)

Scott Antique Markets (Atlanta)

All Night Flea Market (Wheaton)
Chicago Antique Market

Shipshewana Auction & Flea Market

Brimfield Antique Show

New York
Brooklyn Flea (location varies by season)

North Carolina
Raleigh Flea Market

Springfield Antique Show & Flea Market

Portland Expo Antique and Collectible Show

Nashville Flea Market

Austin County Flea Market
Canton First Monday Trade Days

Several States
127 Corridor Sale (654 miles along the highway, from Jamestown, TN, to Gadsden, AL)


How many of these have you been to? Any other favorites?

Aron and I furnished our first apartment almost exclusively with Rose Bowl Flea finds, and have loved visiting the Brooklyn Flea (indoors and out).


On me: Old Navy Color-blocked Crew-neck Sweater, Gap infinity scarf, Ray Ban Wayfarers, Vintage men’s jeans, and Brogues by Skin & Threads.
On Hudson: Old Navy Uniform Zip-Front Sweater, American Apparel sailor shirt, Zara jeans, and Converse classic Chucks.
This post was sponsored by Old Navy. Check out Old Navy’s latest fashion lineup in store or online at

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PSA: H&M is online!


Patterned Kimono by H&M

Remember that first trip to New York I told you about? The one where I went to H&M over and over because there were only a few stores in the U.S.?

Well this is a game-changer… all of H&M’s merchandise is on sale online now. Even the maternity, and the kids, and the home sections! I looked up the shipping and return policy, and it’s $6 each way with 30 days to return. Not bad!

[Shown: Patterned Kimono]

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Vilac toys and Le Bon Marché


A few months ago, at the Alameda Flea, Hudson fell in love with this vintage pedal car, Vilac’s Fire Jeep. Look at that determination!

I found myself admiring all of the Vilac toys while we were in Paris this past week. While expensive, the beautifully painted, all-wood toys seemed like such well-made little treasures. The company has been making toys in the Jura mountains of France since 1911.


The children’s floor in the grand, old department store Le Bon Marche had me looking for excuses to bring home presents. If you’re looking for a fun place to shop in Paris with a little one (a place where you’ll be equally enchanted with the adult sections), I recommend a stop.

[The above were all sourced on Amazon, however: Vilac Race Car Toy; Vilac Large Garage; Vilac La Petanque Balls with Stripes; Vilac Mini Wooden Bus; Vilac Old Fashioned Sports Car Toy; Vilac Baby Car with Handle; Vilac Metal Car; Vilac Balloon Powered Wood Boat; Vilac Harmonica; Vilac Pull Toy, Dog]

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I am a superhero

BRIKA and a Well-Crafted Life


BRIKA is a new online shopping site that features makers—artisans and designers—of modern craft by sharing their stories alongside their products with the hope of creating a connection between buyer and maker. The site’s founders hope to celebrate the value following one’s passions and building a beautiful life through well-crafted, everyday objects. I’ve been making note of some favorites.

Mariah Rich, for example, makes beautiful leather clutches, hand-cutting, sewing, and finishing them in her Portland Studio. After eight years of designing leather goods for other big fashion companies, she broke out on her own.

(Sidenote: I really need to come up with more occasions to travel light, and carry just a clutch. So beautiful.)

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And Kristen Lombardi of Manimal makes the most adorable baby shoes. She found a Boy Scout’s manual at her local library that had a chapter on how to make moccasins; she sewed her first pair and was hooked.

Right now,

BRIKA is offering a $15 credit to all new customers who sign up through this link.

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(Which means that this infinity scarf–that artist Annie Duong made with her own daughters in mind–will cost under $10.)


This is a sponsored post. Thanks to BRIKA for supporting Hither & Thither.

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J.W. Hulme Mini-Excursion Bag


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I wandered into the accessories department at a high-end department store the other day and started browsing around among the Pradas and Proenza Schoulers… the “we start at $1300”-bag section.  I remember thinking that one day, when I was a real grown-up, I would buy myself one of these beautiful, buttery bags, but that was when the highest number in my imagination was what seemed like an astronomical $400. Who knew?! Such a shame because the PS1 bag is really very lovely.

I asked the salesperson “what makes the $1500 Balenciaga bag cost that much” (even though I sort of figured I knew what she’d say: labor, quality of materials, label… the usual) “and the also fancy Marc Jacobs cost that much?”

She looked at me like I was crazy and then glanced at my bag (presumably to check whether it was vinyl). She practically spelled the name: “Balenci-aaaa-ga was Spanish. The bags are made in Italy.” Oh, but of course!  That’s why!  Aron and I were laughing about the rationale when he claimed: “now if there was some sort of lifetime guarantee… maybe then…” 

Which is when I remembered that my other high-end dream bag DOES have a lifetime guarantee!

hither photos

Isn’t the leather beautiful? Such a pretty color, and I can imagine the patina getting better with age.

J.W. Hulme bags are expensive, too (my favorite, the Mini-Excursion Tote on the left is $590 and the Legacy Shoulder Bag on the right is $370) but brand guarantees each of its handmade bags for life.

Umm, Aron?

[top image via J.W. Hulme site; bottom left photo by Joyce Lee; bottom right photo via Style Extraordinaire]

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Ideal Summer Sandals


Best Summer Sandals

I know I may be getting ahead of myself, but it was 80 degrees and sunny in Southern California this past Saturday and it got me thinking.

Do you have a fashion image you have pinned on Pinterest and just keep coming back to, over and over again? This one’s mine. There’s something about this combination of cropped, slim army-green pants, tanned feet, and natural leather, gladiator sandals that says summer to me. And it’s what I’d like to be wearing come warmer days. Pretty please.

I think Gap and Jcrew have some pants that might fit the bill. The right sandals, however, can be more elusive. I’ve done some sleuthing…
[Note: the rest of this post has been updated as of July 2015]


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To & From


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My new shopping habit, Luvocracry, asked me to suggest a Valntine’s day gift I’d like to receive for the latest issue of To & From–they just released their 2013 Valentine’s Day gift guide. You can find the feature, here, on pages 10 and 11.

Here are a few other things I’d be happy to have on any gift list…

valentine's day  gifts-001

Teuscher Champagne Truffles (my favorite chocolates)
A bejeweled clutch (and somewhere special to take it tucked under my arm)
Something shiny and delicate with my loved one’s initial
Something shiny and less delicate (ideally with a romantic inscription)
Anything with “A Love Story” in the title (but especially this book)
A preview of summer (with plans for somewhere warm to wear it)
A bouquet of sharpened pencils (because you know I love that movie)
Body glow oil (because I’d never buy it for myself but would probably like to)
Underwear both of us can appreciate
A honey jar (even though I’m already so sweet–ha!)
Classic, valentine red drop earrings
Or A bouquet of paperwhites and a romantic movie.

P.S. Request an invite to Luvocracy.

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Los Angeles: Two favorites on Third Street


We used to live in the Fairfax district of Los Angeles, so walking the strip of shops between Fairfax and La Cienega on Third street was a regular routine (in between pancakes at Doughboys or a cheese board at Joan’s). One must-stop is always OK on Third (I hear they now have a location in Silverlake, too); and since we left, one of our musts from Nolita in NY moved in–Haus (oddly enough, not far from an outpost of NY’s Magnolia bakery).

OK Store
8303 West Third Street

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8211 West Third Street

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Garde Los Angeles


A lot had changed since the the last time we were in Los Angeles, but the strip of Beverly between Fairfax and La Brea was still reliably packed with design store gems–Heath, Lawson-fenning, Modernica, Ige… Most are more aspirational than realistic, but at least I can afford the food to be found there, too–BLD, El Coyote, Milk, Buddha’s Belly, Terroni…

A new favorite shop had emerged: In a space once occupied by an electronics repair shop, Scotti Sitz has opened Garde, a carefullly curated selected of home goods and apparel. Everything had a stripped down, natural look–minimal without being cold. It didn’t surprise me to later learn that Sitz once worked for Calvin Klein. We spent a long time browsing; I was trying to bookmark all of the designers’ names in my mind when, thank goodness, she pointed out that everything is online.

We especially fell hard for these flax-rope lighting fixtures. I think they would look so awesome with our headboard, but I’m not sure I’m quite good enough at being neat-and-clean for the coiled rope on the floor to be appreciated as intentional.

Garde, 7418 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles

More favorite Los Angeles shopping stops coming right up… 

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Vintage Shopping in San Francisco


I’ve asked Mai Le–the street-style blogger and photographer behind the Fashionist–for some advice on shopping vintage. Mai and I met at Camp Mighty, where I found myself wanting to start every conversation with that cliché phrase “I love your shoes!” Her travel stories were as interesting to me as her gorgeous eye shadow and I was so happy when she agreed to school me in vintage shopping–with specific recommendations for San Francisco. 

I don’t shop often, so when I do, I’m careful about what I buy and where. When I proposed highlighting my three favorite vintage shops in SF, Ashley suggested I provide tips for vintage shopping (which is different from thrift shopping, since items are already carefully chosen by the vintage shop). If you’ve never shopped for secondhand clothes, but are interested in affordably adding one-of-a-kind items to your closet for the new year, choosing a nearby vintage shop is a great idea.

Before I go shopping, I often look at magazines or to check out silhouettes and colors of the current or next season. It’s a small thing, but knowing what fit and or color palette you like will help guide your eye when deciding what to buy. Sure you won’t be able to find an Acne cocoon coat in this season’s brown, but it may be possible to find a lovely heather gray cocoon coat with the same silhouette (and pairing it with your Acne boots–you’re golden).

Beyond that, look at a vintage just like you would a new item: fit, no stains, well made, could wear as is (unless you sew, but try to not buy anything at a vintage shop that you have to work on extensively), and fabric. Ask yourself if you will wear it and if so, do the math needed for how many wears for it to be “worth it.” And remember to factor in if the item needs drycleaning. My amount is usually $2/wear or less (only for clothes though, I do different math for shoes).

Hopefully these tips will help you find many wonderful new items in 2013. You look gorgeous already!

no shop
389 Valencia Street, San Francisco, CA 94103
(415) 252-9982

Amber and Leah and their consignors do a great job of staying ahead of the fashion curve in this cute shop located on Valencia Street. I was going in there so much, I started consigning as well. Most clothing items are in the $15-$40 price range.


651 Larkin Street, San Francisco, CA 94109
(415) 795-3633

Kristin finds designer items from the 80s and 90s mixed in with clothes that are vintage in modern silhouettes. Located in the TL, she also hosts art shows in the shop and live music shows downstairs. She hosted my photo show in August and I’ve borrowed items for styling in the past. Items can range from $10-several hundred for her vintage designer goods.

Clothes Contact
473 Valencia Street, San Francisco, CA 94103
(415) 621-3212

Clothes can be bought by the pound ($12/lb.) and specific decade. More digging has to happen here than at no or Vacation, but in 2009 I was really into 80s era Laura Ashley dresses and no other vintage shops carried them. So, if you know that you want a specific vintage item that is not fashionable (at all) you may be able to find it here. Also, if you’re into vintage gowns a la the Golden Girls, this shop might be for you. They have a lot of clothes by the pound and some have price tags that hover around $10-18.

Thank you, Mai!

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