unexpected guests: windy chien.

unexpected guests: windy chien / sfgirlbybay

i’m delighted to take you on my first home tour and introduce you to windy chien—a vibrant and very talented product designer based here in san francisco’s mission neighborhood. victoria and i had the pleasure of meeting and getting to know windy during a recent trip to tulum. i was thrilled she was part of our camp, as i was already a fan of her edgy wooden spoons. with an interest in elevating the daily rituals of life, windy has designed her first collection of truly unique objects, which includes the hand carved wooden spoons with heavier ergonomic handles (which she nicknamed “fat bottomed girls”), a set of bad ass brass rings that go with every outfit, macrame dog leashes that are both stylish + durable, and beautiful macrame corded lamps (which hide the long plastic-covered wiring.) she originally made all these pieces for herself and then shared them with her friends, a creative bunch who have been honing their crafts for years and are a constant inspiration.

before launching her products, windy studied filmmaking (even presenting her work at sundance), owned and operated sf’s aquarius records for over a decade, and also worked for apple’s itunes and app store. in addition to being a product designer and maker, she’s also an iOS consultant.

i hope you enjoy getting to know windy and her very colorful home feature!

unexpected guests: windy chien / sfgirlbybay

how long have you been living in san francisco and in your current home?
i’ve been in SF since 1989, when the city was full of freaks, punk rockers and artists. i have always proudly lived in the mission, first in a 2BR apt on bartlett street for 20 years, and now in my own house in a quieter part of the mission for the past 5 years.

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

what are a few things about san francisco that make you call it home?
my friends and my history here. i’m immensely proud of my 14 years with aquarius records, helping build it into the world-class music shop and telling the world about the great music we loved. the store is still there, proudly holding it down on valencia street.

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

what is the best way to get to know your neighborhood?
just walk. i like to see how folks have painted their victorians, who has dug up their sidewalk and planted, who’s walking their dog, and what kind of bikes are hip nowadays.

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

what has inspired/influenced your décor style?
the house is old, built before the 1906 earthquake, so its age tells me what to do with it. for example, i kept a section of the walls bare and raw when we uncovered layers of plaster and lathe found under the last paint job, and even put gold in the cracks. it’s my favorite part of the house. i also try to balance out the old victorian architecture stuff with mid century thrift scores, my own ‘70s-inspired macrame hangings, and lots of art made by my friends. there’s a mural painted directly on my dining room walls by the local artist amy rathbone. recently i’ve become obsessed with the memphis milano style, and am constantly on the lookout for crazy pieces in that new wave, primary color style.

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

what is your most favorite room and why?
i can’t pick just one! this is truly my dream house.

my closet, which is an entire room with a doorless hanging rail and tons of open shelving again made with the floorboard reclaimed from my attic remodel. i hate closets with doors —how can one see anything? so my closet is a proper dressing room with everything out in the open and natural light.

my attic bedroom. you get there from a circular stairway up through the dressing room on the ground floor. the attic is the entire footprint of the house in one gigantic room. here i have all my books and cds in the long, low open shelving i’d always wanted, and an open half bath with ferns and skylights. the attic is a perfect place to wake up.

my combined dining room/kitchen, because i spend all my time there. the dining room is filled to the brim with art made by my friends amy rathbone, virgil shaw, chris corales, jim haynes, and jeremiah maddock. the kitchen is a bright and happy place made more open by the open shelving i constructed with the floorboards from the attic remodel, which replaced the old and heavy closed cabinets that were there before.

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

what’s currently on your turntable/pod/phone?
cosmic space disco from lindstrom, italian horror-soundtrack prog rockers goblin, and ‘70s improvised jazz folk from mike cooper.

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

where have you traveled recently and what did you bring back?
i have a beautiful white knotted hammock found in tulum, mexico, and a blue and white rug from morocco.

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

where would you like to travel to next?
i greatly need to go back to bryce canyon and zion national park in utah. my happy nature places.

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

is there another talent or hobby you’d like to master?
i’d like to play guitar better. and learn to surf.

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

any secrets about the city you think we should know about?
the best chinese food in the city is not downtown, it’s in the other chinatowns in the sunset and the richmond. also, dog heaven, a.k.a. fort funston.

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

what bores you to death?
working on something i don’t care about.

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

future plans or projects for your home?
later this year we’re going to paint the front of the house just like the back of it already is — in a gradient probably in sunset colors, from yellow to coral to red. i’m always amazed that more people with victorians don’t do this! a great way to make an old facade modern. my inspiration for this is that beautiful rainbow-painted house on clipper street in noe valley.

unexpected guests: windy chien  / sfgirlbybay

to learn more about windy + get a peek inside her backyard studio, check out this feature here. and if you have any questions for windy, feel free to leave them in the comments section and she’ll happily get back to you.

thanks for joining me! i look forward to sharing another home visit with you soon.

• all photography by leslie santarina.

finders keepers.

Finders Keepers Concept Store / sfgirlbybay

this is such a lovely space, created by finders keepers in copenhagen — a shopping destination to source original artworks by Denmark’s emerging artists. much like the apartment by the line in new york city, these kinds of pop-up concept stores are all the rage, and work quite well since you can see artwork in an environment close to home. The concept is simple — creating a stylish home environment, where everything is for sale. Whether it’s the towel in the bathroom, skin care products in cabinets, pots on the balcony, kimono are on the hanger rod – or hanger rod itself!

Finders Keepers Concept Store / sfgirlbybay

Finders Keepers Concept Store / sfgirlbybay

Finders Keepers Concept Store / sfgirlbybay

Finders Keepers Concept Store / sfgirlbybay

Finders Keepers Concept Store / sfgirlbybay

Finders Keepers Concept Store / sfgirlbybay

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft.

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft / sfgirlbybay

every once in a while i get invited to throw a party to help celebrate a new brand, and those events are definitely a favorite part of my job. so when SKYY Barcraft asked me to introduce you to their new line of flavored vodkas, how could i resist? pretty and delicious cocktails, gorgeous flowers, globe lights, fantastic food with great friends in a beautiful space — i’m in! last week we took over the lovely gallery event space AvenueSF and transformed it into a summer cocktail lounge — fine art by gail lehman created the perfect backdrop. complete with SKYY Barcraft’s Margarita Lime; Watermelon Fresca; and White Sangria flavored vodkas. SKYY Transforms the Process of Making Cocktails into Two Simple Steps – SKYY Barcraft plus Soda or a favorite mixer — so simple to make, we thought it’d be fun to let our guests get their barcraft on with a DIY Cocktail Garnish bar and dress up their drinks — so much creativity! so much fun!

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft / sfgirlbybay

to dress up our SKYY Barcraft cocktails we used gorgeous glassware from frances lane and i enlisted ashley rose to put together some super pretty garnishes — from your ‘must-have’ drink umbrellas and pretty striped straws to fresh fruits, like watermelon balls, lime & orange wheels, blackberries and raspberries, and fresh mint — but the pièce de résistance? edible flowers! they added the wow in some already really delicious and delectable looking SKYY Barcraft drinks! scrumptious appetizers like crab cocktail and empanadas from kitchit complimented our cocktails to perfection, christine herrin made our beautiful chalkboard menu, and the fabulous emerson and benjamin at ampersand flower shop and design studio helped bring our summer party to life — their arrangements were just over the top stunning — from big huge bouquets to wandering vines along our globe lights — everything looked magical.

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft / sfgirlbybay

Without needing additional bar equipment or the skills of a seasoned bartender, SKYY Barcraft is providing us the ease of enjoying mixology at home without a lot of fuss. SKYY Barcraft Margarita Lime delivers the tangy-sweet taste of a true margarita without having to slice a single lime. White Sangria captures the favorite libation of Spain without wine or a trip to the fruit stand. And, Watermelon Fresca allows you to experience the fresh, cool taste of watermelon all year long. essentially, SKYY Barcraft has hacked the modern cocktail! if you’d like to see more from our dressed up drinks, follow @SKYYVodka on instagram and check out the evening’s hashtag #barcraftbybay.

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft / sfgirlbybay

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft / sfgirlbybay

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft / sfgirlbybay

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft / sfgirlbybay

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft / sfgirlbybay

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft / sfgirlbybay

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft / sfgirlbybay

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft / sfgirlbybay

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft / sfgirlbybay

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft / sfgirlbybay

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft / sfgirlbybay

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft / sfgirlbybay

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft / sfgirlbybay

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft / sfgirlbybay

a summer fête with SKYY Barcraft / sfgirlbybay

• photography by cindy loughridge for sfgirlbybay.

This post made possible in partnership with SKYY Barcraft but all opinions and thoughts are my own. thanks for the supporting the brands that make sfgirlbybay possible.

good reads: est magazine.

inspiring interiors from est magazine / sfgirlbybay

est magazine continues to be one of my go-to good reads for interior inspiration. they recently featured The White House, a charming guest hotel designed by Lynda Gardener of Empire Vintage in Melbourne, australia. her guest cottage, in Daylesford, is a lovely private studio apartment set back on a private lane and decorated in an über inspiring industrial vintage style. for the full tour, visit est magazine.

inspiring interiors from est magazine / sfgirlbybay

inspiring interiors from est magazine / sfgirlbybay

inspiring interiors from est magazine / sfgirlbybay

inspiring interiors from est magazine / sfgirlbybay

inspiring interiors from est magazine / sfgirlbybay

inspiring interiors from est magazine / sfgirlbybay

inspiring interiors from est magazine / sfgirlbybay

inspiring interiors from est magazine / sfgirlbybay

inspiring interiors from est magazine / sfgirlbybay

• photography courtesy of est magazine.

around L.A. / apolis.

Around L.A. / Apolis Global Citizen / sfgirlbybay

apolis : global citizen. this lifestyle brand created by brothers Shea and Raan Parton, seeks to harness the power of business to create social change. their collaborations with makers, designers and innovators across the globe has resulted in a fine collection of menswear, travel accessories and gifts which can be browsed at their flagship store in L.A.’s Arts District, and smaller collections found within like-­minded shops in their Nomad Market. a certified B corporation, apolis strives to remain socially and environmentally conscious, using their online journal and sharing films that provide a unique transparency for their clientele. their most recent collaboration Tokyo, California, created a clothing line to benefit the 2011 tsunami victims in Fukushima.

Around L.A. / Apolis Global Citizen / sfgirlbybay

Around L.A. / Apolis Global Citizen / sfgirlbybay

Around L.A. / Apolis Global Citizen / sfgirlbybay

Around L.A. / Apolis Global Citizen / sfgirlbybay

Around L.A. / Apolis Global Citizen / sfgirlbybay

Around L.A. / Apolis Global Citizen / sfgirlbybay

Around L.A. / Apolis Global Citizen / sfgirlbybay

Around L.A. / Apolis Global Citizen / sfgirlbybay

Around L.A. / Apolis Global Citizen / sfgirlbybay

Around L.A. / Apolis Global Citizen / sfgirlbybay

Around L.A. / Apolis Global Citizen / sfgirlbybay

Around L.A. / Apolis Global Citizen / sfgirlbybay

Around L.A. / Apolis Global Citizen / sfgirlbybay

Around L.A. / Apolis Global Citizen / sfgirlbybay

• all photographs by lily glass.