holiday greetings + some news from the city of angels.
by victoria comment


holiday greetings + some news from the city of angels / sfgirlbybay

as you may have seen from my instagram feed, i’ve been down in los angeles for the past week, and will be here for the remainder of my holiday sabbatical — through january 4th. for the next two weeks i’ll be running some of my “best of” posts — the ones that you’ve really seemed to like over the years. and while i’m away, i’ll be visiting my family and good friends and just taking a much needed break from the blog, as i do each year at this time — to refresh and renew my creativity. my hope is that y’all are doing something similar — perhaps staying off the internets and the smart phones and instead devoting some serious eye contact to those you love (a few instagrams here and there to share your festivities are always most welcome!).

but what i haven’t said yet is that i may be moving back to my native los angeles, so i am also down here house hunting. there are a number of reasons for this potential and somewhat bittersweet move, not the least of which is that my mum has not been feeling well and she and i would like to be in closer proximity to each other. my mum has also generously offered to help me purchase my first home — a lifelong dream for me — and for someone who is as passionate about home and design as much as i am, it’s been one of life’s great disappointments thus far, not to own a home of my own. and although i have been saving my pennies like a mad woman, sadly, i cannot afford my beloved san francisco’s real estate market even with my mum’s help, so los angeles — particularly in the silver lake / echo park area — seems like the best idea for a multitude of good reasons. to be near my family, to be near dear friends and to finally own my very own home in a part of this city i’ve grown to love again.

so, it may be time to leave my heart in san francisco and move on to hear it beat in a whole new way. my book is coming out — See San Francisco, which is turning out to be my swan song and love letter to the city by the bay that i love so much. but my hope is that you won’t find it odd for “sfgirlbybay” to find herself in another city, and your readership will not waiver. so many of you have been so devoted for so many years, and i simply hope you’ll come along with me — let’s just consider it “sfgirlinla”. that works, right? one can’t live by their url alone. there will be so much new subject matter for me to share with you, and that really excites me and stirs my imagination. i grew up in los angeles, but haven’t lived here for 20 years, and never on the east side, so it’s an all new adventure for me, and in turn for you too, as i rediscover the city and take you to places we’ve never traveled together before. and, when i do find my dream home there will all that fixing up and decorating to share and that’s something i can’t wait for! so that’s what’s on my holiday wish this year — i’m hoping santa helps me find a house to call home, and that you’ll all join me for the ride. here’s to a very happy holiday to each and every one of you, and much love for the new year.

— xo victoria

holiday greetings + some news from the city of angels / sfgirlbybay

holiday greetings + some news from the city of angels / sfgirlbybay

holiday greetings + some news from the city of angels / sfgirlbybay

holiday greetings + some news from the city of angels / sfgirlbybay

holiday greetings + some news from the city of angels / sfgirlbybay

83 responses to “holiday greetings + some news from the city of angels.”

  1. victoria, i will still creep your blog even if you are lagirlbylake!

    i hope that your mom feels better. los angeles is a wonderful city — i lived in koreatown and miracle mile while there.

    you need your own home, for real. put down roots, fall back in love with the city, have a place to come back to haunt & redecorate —-

    happy holidays!

    • From one Victoria to another I was quite moved and touched by your cander in expressing your desire to move back to LA and find a home.. Your story is so similar to mine.
      I just recently closed on my very first house two weeks ago in the city of Pomona where I’m surrounding by Craftsman homes including my own. In fact I too recieved seed money from my mom to help buy my house. Honestly, as a first time home buyer I feel excited everyday it’s the most grown up I have ever felt. It’s nothing like buying one’s first home you feel such gratitude and a gigantic sense of accomplishment. So you are so lucky to
      be entering this new phase in your life and I wish you all the very best on your house hunt in Silver Lake (a cool spot) and on your new up coming book enjoy it all Victoria.

  2. Victoria – Congratulations on starting this new chapter in the book of your life. You will continue to be “sfgirlbybay” no matter where you are. Best of luck finding that perfect new home in LA!


  3. yes!!! LA is the best. When we lived there, Jovelle Schaffer was an incredible realtor specializing in exactly those neighborhoods. She bakes cookies for her clients… Look her up if you’re interested:)

  4. Congratulations on your move! Although SF is so beautiful, I’m sure you’ll be glad to be in LA! Right now, the city is BOOMING and you can literally feel like you’re on the verge of something big. Can’t wait to see your updates on our city!

  5. welcome back.
    it is a good time to live in LA, so much creative energy.
    as a long time reader I will miss your insight on SF but as an LA local, I look forward to your insight and perspective of LA.
    Good luck with the house search and happy new year.

  6. Congratulations on your new adventure. I moved back to my hometown two years ago to be closer to family and it’s one of the best decisions I’ve made.
    Happy Holidays!

  7. Change is hard. As a military child I learned this lesson very early. Even if it is change you want and look forward to, it is still very difficult to cope with. Please remember that this is all very upsetting for your mom too. She is having to deal with the loss of independence and physical competence that she has always taken for granted. You are both unsettled and in some degree of distress so be kind and understanding to one another. Agree to disagree when you need to and move on. This situation has the potential to lead to the most rewarding period of both your lives, but only if you are both determined to make it work. Remember that you are mother and daughter and you love each other. I am so excited for both of you as you move into this new adventure. I know it is going to be EXCELLENT! You know, as Bill and Ted would say………

  8. Yay for you, V! What a great time in your life for a brand new chapter! And how wonderful for your mom to know you’re near and able to step in when needed. Win-win. All the best to you in 2015!

  9. wow, what exciting news, Victoria! I can understand how bittersweet you are feeling, but change, while hard, can also be invigorating. Looking forward to the next chapter!!

  10. wow !! I have been reading your blog everyday for years and I was feeling this change coming on. so excited for you, it’s a big move. Plus, you will be closer to Palm Springs, and there is a lot of exciting Mid Century Modern design happening here.
    Happy Holidays to you and Lucy.
    Sheri Shay

  11. Exciting stuff. I left my beloved San Francisco for Portland, Oregon 10 years ago to buy a home, good public schools and better parking. One of the best things I ever did! I always tell people…there is life after moving away from San Francisco. You will have great friends who can host you on your visits back to The City and who will love visiting you in LA. And LA is totally hot and fun! Food, Art, Architecture and you can swim in the ocean!

  12. I’m excited to read about your experience of moving back to LA after living elsewhere for so long. You can experience your hometown through more experienced eyes. It’s been 10 years since I’ve moved away and I feel like it’s calling me back. :)

  13. sf will obviously, sorely miss you, victoria! i am so lucky to have connected with you during your time here. cannot wait to follow along with your new adventures! xo

  14. What a shock to hear you are leaving San Francisco. I have read your blog every day for years and will follow you to LA. Best wishes to your mother. I look forward to your new home and all the wonderful posts about LA. Congratulations and have a great 2015.

  15. Oh, so sorry to read that your mom is not feeling well, and very sad to see you leave the bay area. But I’m also happy for you. Change is always good and I’m sure great things await for you in LA. Crossing fingers that you’ll find a dream home for Lucy and yourself. Xx-

  16. Will always be a follower of yours!! I am a born n’ bred Seattle-ite but in LA for the holidays. What a change from Pacific Northwest… but I could get used to it! Good wishes for happy house hunting!

  17. Very, very exciting news, Victoria! I can’t wait to follow you along in LA! Enjoy your time off, spend it with your mum, family and friends and I’ll see you all fresh and ready in 2015 – you are my most important inspiration fix!! Sending you a big hug from Germany! Igor

  18. While I am sad that we are ships passing (as I move from LA back to the Bay Area), I am very happy for you and excited for the wealth of new ideas that are bound to come from a move to the city of angels. You now have a whole new world to share and i can’t wait to see what you discover.

  19. victoria – what exciting news! I love both SF and LA (I’m from LA though, and would love to see the city through your eyes!!). I’m currently in San Diego, so if you find yourself wanting to head south for some legit Mexican food, give me a shout!! Best of luck as you plan for this exciting, and of course bittersweet, transition. xx!

  20. damn. another reason i should move back to LA too!! ;) excited for you lady! and your OWN HOUSE!? duh. i’d take that offer head south in a heartbeat. hope that things with you and your mum are well, and i can’t wait to visit. holiday hugs & kisses. xo, c

  21. hope you will find what you are looking for and that your mother feels better soon and that you two (and your pup) enjoy many, many happy, healthy years together …


  22. That is quite a decision, but totally understandable and you’re right: you are not your url ;) It’s going to be a whole new adventure and to have your very own home is just the best feeling! I’ve always enjoyed reading your blog: your style will travel with you wherever you are, so I’m definitely in for the ride :) Good luck and I hope your mom will be well soon!

  23. that is such AWESOME news for you! i am so sorry to read your mother is not well, but glad you have the opportunity to be closer to her, and to fulfill the lifelong dream of home ownership. life has strange ways at times of giving us what we want – ways we’d not have imagined. i wish you the very BEST in your hunt for the perfect home, good health to you an your family and i most certainly will always follow along on your wonderful adventures.

    be well and happy in 2015 and always!

  24. I hope your mom gets better soon, it’s good to see you’ll be close to her again. And I don’t care what you call your blog, it will still be the same “awesome”. :)

  25. Such exciting news for you! I don’t care where you live, I’ll be reading your blog forever. Just TRY and get rid of me! :) I’ve lived in Los Angeles a couple of different times and I’m excited to see the city through your eyes.

    I’m so sorry to hear that your mom isn’t doing well. I hope things get better soon. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, Victoria! xoxo

  26. Victoria,

    That is amazing news! I have been following you since I met you in Summer House in Mill Valley taking photos telling me you were starting a blog on blogger called sfgirlbybay and have been following you (almost) daily ever since. You have always featured wonderful posts from all over the world so relocating back to LA where you can be closer to your mum and have your own home is wonderful. Sab Francisco will miss you but I can’t wait to see what you do with your home – your personal makeover posts have always been the absolute best – you are an inspiration!
    – Jennifer

  27. Exciting news! I’m a Midwesterner but love your blog and will follow you anywhere. Very best wishes for better health for your mom and in finding that sweet little house you’ve been dreaming of. My son lives in LA and I love to learn about the best places to visit, shop, eat and explore…good luck to you in 2015 and always!

  28. speedy recovery for your mom. am looking forward to your new adventure in LA. i grew up in california – long beach and fountain valley and now live in wisconsin. haven’t been back in many many years, have good memories of the good old days and am excited to see your southern cal pics.

  29. thank you to everyone who’s commented for all the positivity and good wishes! i will try and answer individually when i’m online more, but please suffice it to say that i am so overwhelmed and very grateful for all your kind support!! XOXO!!!

  30. Oh the fun you will have with your very own place! I’m a long time reader who will follow you wherever you call home, your blog is a wonderful place to be. Congratulations and a gift to us readers to be able to watch you make your new home your own. Tu casa es mi casa!

  31. Yay! This is so exciting! I live in LA and am so excited to see the city through your eyes! And extra hugs to you and your Mom, I hope she feels better soon and with you nearby.

  32. Bittersweet indeed Victoria! But congrats to you and I totally understand! I will miss you but will definitely keep on following! It’s like a good hair stylist — you follow them wherever they move, no matter what! :) Big hugs and best of luck finding that sweet home to call your very own.

  33. Hi Victoria!
    Yours was one of the first blogs I started reading about 8(!) years ago! I used to live nearby in Pac Heights, moved to DC and am now in LA myself. My husband and I recently bought in Glassell Park which is a neighborhood we’d highly recommend. Five min from Silverlake, Echo Park, Eagle Rock etc but more affordable due to not having a great shopping/dining area (yet).
    This one might be too modern for you, but a listing that has been on the market for a bit and could probably handle someone low balling them due to being a flip. If you need an agent, I’d recommend Liz Johnson of We didn’t use her, but would if we were to look again. She’s very familiar with NE LA.
    Good luck and best wishes for your mom!

  34. Victoria, I hope we will be able to see each other, even for a hot minute, before you take off for LA for good. I understand completely the desire to be with your mother and certainly the hankering for your very own(ed) nest. You are an inspiration and, of course I can’t wait to see what you have to show us in LA.
    xxoo always.

  35. I will look forward to your spin on my hometown … I would give my last nickel to live in SF but have to be in LA and it has it’s virtues as well. Always new places to discover. Good luck with the house hunting – hang in there – kind of rough lately but still nothing like the insanity of Bay Area. Welcome back to the Southland!

  36. Dear Victoria

    I love you blog and I love LA so I can’t wait to see it through your talented perspective! Buying your first home is so exciting!! I too have this dream and I know that one day it will come true. Just have to be patient. Happy holidays and enjoy your sabbatical!

  37. How bitter sweet…happy to hear you will be closer to your mom and how lovely to think so much of your mom’s compassion will always be with you in your new nest. I too dream of owning a patch of land one day, one that allows me to grow some roots. Dream big and happy nesting!

  38. Isn’t it funny how life takes us in all directions, and sometimes we end up right back at our roots? It may sound cliché, but I firmly believe that wherever you land will be for a reason. LA or SF, you are still you, and your blog is still fabulous! Best of luck to you on your journey, and well wishes to your Mom as well! xo

  39. Bravo Victoria! So glad you wrote your book when you did, and pledged your love to SF. Life is change and it’ll be amazing to follow you as you embrace it. All the best to you and your Mom! xox

  40. Very bittersweet but how wonderful that you will have your first home! I look forward to purchasing your book when it comes out. All the best to you and your mother.

  41. I’ve been reading your blog for a little over a year now, and can say that no matter where you live it’s your writing and perspective on life and design that keeps me coming back. As a new resident of Los Angeles (Los Feliz, hi neighbor!), I look forward to viewing the city through your eyes.

    Happy holidays and well wishes to your family, especially your mum, and best of luck on the house hunt!

  42. Victoria
    Happy Holidays. The Universe has a mind of it’s own. So Los Angeles is where you need to be! You are lucky to have family and your mum is lucky to have you close by. What a gift to one another.
    Personally, I can’t wait to start seeing regular posts from LA. As much as I LOVE SF I don’t get there much. I live north of San Diego. Since you’ll now be posting about places I can just jump in the car and visit… (for very selfish reasons) I can’t wait for you to move!

  43. I’m a Los Angeles native too (Santa Monica, born and bred!) and have been following your blog for several years now. THIS IS SUCH AN EXCITING MOVE!!!! My family and I left SF three years and moved to Oakland, where rent and space are a little more friendly these days. We contemplate moving back to LA constantly.

    So, as a loyal reader I want to say congrats on your move and best wishes in 2015!!! Xo

  44. I have a feeling the real estate market just got hotter after you mentioned you are looking in the silver lake/echo park area! You and Lucy will be so missed. LA is lucky to have you!

  45. Moving is hard. . . .it seems like that is all I have done this year:selling one house and finding another (91 years old), fixing it up-lots of fun, moving in 3 weeks ago with a multitude of belongings.Congratulations on being able to purchase a house . . .hopefully you will learn to become very handy-it will save a lot of money. Originally from LA also,have been in the Ptld area for many years-miss the warmer weather and ocean.-look forward to your posts from there.

  46. Good luck on finding a great fixer-upper in Lalaland. I grew up there too, and my mother is there (a native angeleno) so I get down there often. I know that SF is where the heart is, but you will thrive in the land of pink & bouganvilla.

  47. congratulations, victoria! i’ve been reading your blog for many years now. it’s one of the only ones i still follow. we have lots of artist friends in SF in common. but i hear you about the cost of owning a home here–near impossible for much of my beloved SF creative community. so cheers to you! for being bold. for letting change happen. for seeing dreams to reality. happy holidays. and i’ll definitely keep reading, even if it’s sfgirlinLA. xo

  48. Although we have never met in person, I absolutely love your blog and enjoy following along during all of your adventures. I couldn’t be happier for you and am thrilled to see what will come next. Being on the hunt for a “forever” home myself, (we just lost an absolutely perfect sweet little farm house we put an offer on in the north bay) I know how exciting it can be. And with your taste and style, even more so! I can’t wait to see what you find in LA. Wishing you a Merry Christmas, loads of luck and best wishes for an incredibly exciting 2015. Cheers to you Victoria!

  49. Victoria, your blog has been one of my favorites for several years, and though I rarely comment, I never miss a post :) I am actually excited for your move, because I am in San Diego, so it would be great to see you posting about life in SoCal. Being close to family is so important, and purchasing my own home is a life long dream of my own as well. Good luck in your new endeavor! Happy house hunting (so exciting!!!) And I cannot wait to read about all of your new adventures to come.

  50. Yours is the only blog i follow, just a quick squiz most mornings with my cup of tea and toast, such a lovely escape – Thank you! Looking forward to hearing about your move, all the best of luck finding a place, arohanui from New Zealand, kelly.

  51. this post just seemed so…refreshing! and so relatable…leaving the Bay Area, accepting the cross roads in life with the right attitude, stepping into c-h-a-n-g-e…

    blogs are interesting when the people behind them have interesting, honest, true moments that are unique to who they are. it is not about the name, but the content. i have read your blog off&on for many years ~ partly due to my SF connection, partly due to your aesthetic, partly due to your dogs :), and partly of course due to what you put out there of yourself. i enjoy reading blogs to check my personal compass against others, and I look forward to checking in now and again to see where your personal journey takes you. cherish the change!

  52. Totally understand the need to be near an ailing loved one. Priorities are in order. Good luck finding a cute little starter home. Picturing a bungalow or Spanish inspired house.

  53. I think that’s exciting news. While it’s always bittersweet to leave a beloved city, new home, new ventures and new experiences beckon and that’s always going to be exciting. I hope you find what you’re looking for, that your Mum and you enjoy your proximity and I, for one, can’t wait to see what the future holds for you! Happy New Year!

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