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April 29, 2007

Weekend Photos

Me, my new haircut and Charlie Brown:

Jon and pro cyclist Levi Leipheimer:

April 27, 2007

24 Hours of Flickr

I just found out about this on Mighty Girl,* and can't wait to join in the photography fun. I'm glad the project is going down on a Saturday, because really, no one wants to see pictures of my cubicle and break room. I'm not very good at picture-taking, but maybe I'll get lucky and manage a few good photos to share.

* If you don't already read this blog, you totally should. And pick up Maggie's book, No One Cares What You Had for Lunch: 100 Ideas for Your Blog. I got my signed copy a few months ago and have been meaning to craft a post based on one of her ideas. Soon ...

April 25, 2007

Tord Boontje Book

tordTord Boontje — the book — is now available in stores!

Lavishly illustrated with over 300 sketches, concept renderings, and photographs, the book is a comprehensive visual document of the designer's work and an art object in itself, featuring a number of custom printing effects-stencils, perforated and die-cut pages, and textured and woven details-that capture the intricacy of Boontje's approach to pattern-making.

Hot Stuff

Yay! Today's "Hot Stuff" column in the Chronicle includes two very talented local ladies: Meg wrote a profile on artist Diana Fayt.

Meg is the perfect writer to dig up hot stuff material, so hopefully her byline will pop up more often in the Chron. And I have one of Diana's 2007 calendars at work, and just looking at it makes my 9-5 a little better.

April 24, 2007

I Love Lists

I admit, bulleted lists are sort of an easy out when it comes to blogging. But it's all I've got in me right now.

  • New magazines that are taunting me because I haven't had a chance to peruse them yet: Craft (full of Japanese-inspired projects!) and Blueprint.

  • "King of Queens" has replaced "Friends" as my favorite re-run.

  • After finding out that my favorite aunt died in a car accident over the weekend, I didn't sleep much last night. I keep running through all of these great childhood memories I had with her.

  • Jon made a special stop at the Dutch Goose tonight to get me some spicy deviled eggs. He knows how to cheer me up.

  • Since I'm doing more freelancing these days, I'm starting to save all of those work-related receipts so I can write off expenses later. After talking to Jill about this, I came home super-excited about all of my potential write-offs — gas! magazines! even travel and meals! Jon asked if I knew what "write off" meant. Honestly, I didn't really. It just sounded cool. Don't worry, he explained it. And it's still cool.

  • I am putting together my notes from Decorator Showcase, in case you all can't make it. Or don't want to pay the $30 admission fee.

  • The Visa application for Russia asks for a ridiculous amount of information.

  • A house that I'm writing a profile on was featured on MTV's "Cribs" the other day. It's interesting to see how they edit material and what they choose to focus on. A day of filming whittled down to just eight minutes of footage.

  • I'm such a sap. I got a little teary-eyed when I saw Jon's graduation announcements.

  • I need a haircut.

  • And some sleep.

April 23, 2007

Decorator Showcase

I just got back from a special sneek peak of the Decorator Showcase, which opens this weekend. If you are deliberating about whether or not to go, let me make this simple for you: GO. This house is so fantastic. The views alone — of Alcatraz, the Golden Gate Bridge, downtown SF — are well worth the price of admission.

Even though the mansion on the corner of Broadway and Baker is massive, there are still lots of design ideas that the rest of us small-space dwellers can steal.

April 22, 2007

48 Hours


  • Good: Friday's Alive at Bay Meadows is awesome. $1 admission, $1 beers, $1 hot dogs. And usually a cheesy (in a good way!) cover band.

  • Bad: Friday's event marked the last one. Ever. The race track is scheduled to close in the fall — and will eventually be replaced with more commercial and residential developments.


  • Good: Meeting up with Jill and Ed at the DWR sample sale ... and then bumping into Meg and her family in line as well.

  • Bad: There was a long line, and none of us found anything worth buying.

  • Good: The long line allowed us all plenty of time to catch up.

  • Bad: There was a long wait for brunch at Universal Cafe.

  • Good: There was no wait for brunch at Atlas Cafe. Mmmm ... grilled apple and gruyere sandwich.


  • Good: Brunch at Crepes Cafe.

  • Bad: Lots of laundry.

  • Good: Jon's all done with his studying for the weekend, so we can watch "Sopranos" and "Entourage" together tonight.

April 19, 2007

Steven Miller

I was perusing local designer Steven Miller's web site and came across the guest bedroom he created for last year's Decorator Showcase in SF:


In a home that doesn't have molding like this — like mine — I think it could be faked with a good stencil.

April 18, 2007

Inside Out

It looks like West Elm has taken its insanely popular overlapping squares chair and created an outdoor version. Looks the same, but made of metal. A dining table and coffee table are also available for your balcony or backyard.


No Boy Toys For You

Last night, we were very disappointed to pull into the McDonald's drive-thru and learn that they were all sold out of boy toys. Not that we even knew they were in the business of offering up attractive young men to the public:


Crappy photo courtesy of the lousy camera on Jon's Treo. Bad grammar (I would've gone with "Happy Meal boys' toys") courtesy of the employees of the McDonald's on Woodside Road.

April 17, 2007

Peep Show

There are a lot of wallpapers out there that I really love, but worry they're a bit too funky — and maybe I'll get sick of them down the road. But Droog's Wallpaper Peep Show may be able to help, as it can tone down an otherwise over-the-top pattern.


April 16, 2007

Write Now

On Saturday, the SF Chronicle ran my story on renovation blogs. The homeowners I interviewed for the article were all so generous with their time and information. So this was probably one of the easiest pieces that I've done. And because their projects are so interesting, I now find myself checking in regularly on several of the housebloggers I interviewed.

Elsewhere: Starting today, you can also find my writing over at Apartment Therapy: San Francisco! Excited is an understatement here. I'm really looking forward to being a more active part of the community that Leslie and Lisa have done a fabulous job of cultivating over there.

April 13, 2007

Bread Winner

The Bay Area has so many bakeries offering fantastic loaves — Tartine, Noe Valley Bakery and Acme come to mind — that they deserve a proper breadboard, right? I'm thinking of getting one of these, available at A+R in Los Angeles:


April 12, 2007

Xenia Taler Tiles

I've gotta get me some of these tiles by Xenia Taler! (at Rare Device)


April 11, 2007

Thomas Paul in the Office

This week's paycheck is clearly going to See Jane Work. Check out their new Thomas Paul collection:

tp8  tp5  tp4
tp3  tp2  tp1
top row, l-r: mailing labels, desk tray, stationery set
botton row, l-r: notebook trio, pencil cup, mousepad/notepad

April 10, 2007

Design 100 Goes Green

The May issue of Metropolitan Home features the magazine's "Design 100 Goes Green" list. Here are a couple of products that I especially liked:

#6 - David McLimans' Gone Wild: An Endangered Animal Alphabet - Each letter of the alphabet represents a different endangered animal (e.g., the P is a piping plover).

#17 - Scandinavian stool - Bent and lacquered birch plywood is stained brown or white, and paired with a cushion covered in a Josef Frank fabric.

The list also includes a mention (#85) of "Design for the Other 90%," an exhibit opening May 4 at the Cooper-Hewitt — which happens to be one of my favorite museums. And, I happen to be going to NYC next month, so I am definitely going to check it out.

#86 is a "floating pool" that's coming to the Brooklyn waterfront. A former cargo barge has been transformed into a pool — 4' deep and 82' long, with seven swimming lanes. There's also a snack bar and dressing rooms. How cool is that?

And I love that #95 is glass artist Dale Chihuly's live-work complex in Seattle. Also not to be missed: the sod roof that's featured for #98.

April 09, 2007

Just In at Jonathan Adler

I really like his new lighting! Left to right: capri bottle pendant, capri teadrop table lamp and capri genie pendant.

GY634 Capri grey glass shape 1 OR630-OR632 Capri Shape 1 and Shape 2 orange tables BL633 Capri shape 3 blue

Oh, and how cute is this turtle box? And does this mean that turtles are going to follow birds, owls and deer as the new "It Animal"?

The Weekend

This weekend was all about the three F's: friends, family and food.

Markets closed on Friday = my office closed on Friday = no work on Friday! So I spent my morning driving to Fairfield for a house tour that I'll hopefully write an article about. I was a bit early, so I popped into the local Starbucks. I mention this because this particular Starbucks had a ridiculous amount of pastries. Like mango-papaya empanada. Crazy, right? Later, on my way home from Fairfield, I decided to stop in Berkeley. Lunch was at O Chame, which serves up delicious, steaming bowls of udon noodles. That evening, Jon and I went out to dinner with friends at Sebo in Hayes Valley (amazing sushi — I'd never had monkfish liver before!), followed by a trip to Bi-Rite Creamery for dessert (flavors I loved: roasted bananas and salted caramel).

We went to the last Sharks game of the regular season. Sadly, they lost. But the hot dogs at the HP Pavilion aren't bad! There may have been a Dippin' Dots incident that involved my six-year-old nephew getting super-excited when the Sharks scored a goal. Ice cream pellets flew everywhere, resulting in little pools of cookies'n'cream.

Our friend Nick's parents host a somewhat-annual Easter Egg Hunt in Santa Cruz. There's usually an awesome curry egg salad, as well as other good eats. This year was no exception. And I did not fill up on too much candy. Earlier in the day, to fuel up for the Hunt, Jon and I lunched at the Crepe Place — which is one of my all-time favorite restaurants in Santa Cruz. I go partly for the food, and partly because I just love their patio/garden area. When I was a student at UCSC, I ate here all the time, so I suppose there's a bit of nostalgia at play as well.

Guest Blogging

I just published my first guest post over at Victoria's SF Girl by Bay blog. If you're a fan of Orla Kiely's work, you should definitely check it out.

April 05, 2007

Rain Bird

I need this:


According to the NY Times, the Rain Bird is made of a gel that is 98 percent water and 2 percent cellulose. You place it near a plant's roots and — depending on whether you get the 30- or 90-day tube — it gradually releases the water.

Oh, also in today's Times is this very good question: How high over my dining table should I hang the light fixture?

April 04, 2007

Traffic Court

So that speeding ticket I got a few weeks back? Because I was detected (by aircraft!) going more than 30 mph over the speed limit, I was forced to actually show my face in traffic court. I was totally freaking out about it because I thought the judge might give me a stern talkin' to, or worse, increase my violation to reckless driving (which is a misdemeanor).

I forced Jon to go with me to downtown Redwood City this morning, where the doors for the traffic division open at 7:30am. We were not the first ones there — not even close. There were about a dozen folks in front of us. But some of them were just coming down to pay fines (why they didn't mail it in or go online, I don't know). We checked in, and then went away for about 45 minutes because the actual courtroom doesn't open until 8:30am.

About half of the people on the arraignment calendar whose names were called before mine were not present. It was a random lot in the courtroom. One guy ended up with fines over $1400 (and got credit for time served for some offense) and was put on an 8-month payment plan. Another guy showed up yet again without proof of insurance and was told he had one more chance. I was called up around 8:45am. The whole thing was over in about 2 minutes — after I plead guilty and accepted my fine (which, by the way, Jon did not think he should have to pay half of, but too bad).

Jon said if I get another speeding ticket, he's going to personally restrict my privileges so that I can only drive to/from work. Maybe I should get one of those Smart Cars, since their maximum speed is 85 or something.

April 02, 2007

Flintstones vs. Barbapapa

Okay, anyone who has ever driven on 280N has seen this house — just north of the Eugene Doran Bridge, on the east side of the freeway:


Last week, Jon and I noticed that the house has been painted a deep terra cotta. The new coat of paint brought some renewed attention to the house, so I just learned that it's called "The Flintstone House."

Huh? Flintstones?!? I've always referred to it as "The Barbapapa House." See:


The Flintstones lived in a stone structure made with large rocks and slabs. There's definitely a stronger resemblance between the Hillsborough residence and the Barbapapa house.

(Top photo from some random site that I can't remember, but there was no photo credit.)

On Cable

Can I just tell you how very bummed I am that I do not get Showtime. "The Tudors" started last night and I so wish I could watch it! (I did recently re-watch "Match Point" to get my Jonathan Rhys Meyers' fix though.)

At least I have HBO and — mark your calendars! — "The Sopranos" and "Entourage" are coming back THIS SUNDAY.

April 01, 2007

Simple Sewing

My sewing machine is kept in our home office, which has become Jon's domain for the past seven months. But since he was on the East Coast last week, I saw my chance and got a lot of sewing done. The magazine holder and the placemat with chopstick pocket are two of the many lovely designs in Lotta Jansdotter's new book: