Get the inside scoop on San Francisco's vast artisanal goods market with Homepolish designer Nina Jizhar's top five sources.
If you live in a big city, it can be easy to get swept up in the modern way of life that’s dictated by grids and systems. It’s even easier when you live in San Francisco, the heart of the ever-booming tech world. If you’re feeling the urge to break out of the mold, we’re right there with you. Homepolish designer waxes poetic on her design must-do’s and lets us in on some of the best-kept secrets on what’s what on the San Francisco artisanal scene.
1. Heath Ceramics
2900 18th St., 415-361-5552; www.heathceramics.com
Despite the questionable condition of San Francisco’s streets, the city’s design personality is defined by earth-friendly, carefully-crafted pieces, with clean silhouettes and color palettes reminiscent of the Indio Valley, SF’s neighbor to the south. Jizhar recalls having a design “voice” from an early age, and her aesthetic has since evolved into a vibe that perfectly matches that of the city. The Mission District’s Heath Ceramics offers a curated selection of furniture, cookware, and accessories that have the perfect, unmistakable look of handcrafted goods. Even more impressively, the shop offers beautiful made-to-order tile for anything from your kitchen’s backsplash to your bathroom’s mosaic.
2. De Angelis
573 Valencia St., 415-861-9800; www.1stdibs.com/dealers/deangelis
Cool and contemporary lay an elegant foundation, but a true San Francisco native knows you have to pay homage to the city’s decadent architectural history in one form or another. Jizhar’s design mantra is to go forth fearlessly in mixing and matching pieces from different time periods, and this philosophy is entirely embodied in DeAngelis. The store, previously known as Monument, straddles the border between the Castro and the Mission… and the aesthetic mirrors that mix of mid-century with ultra-sleek contemporary. With pieces that could have practically been found in a City Lights reading nook back in the day (albeit, for a bit more dough) and treasures that would fit effortlessly in a modern home, DeAngelis serves up the best of both worlds.
3. Big Daddy’s Antiques
1550 17th St., 415-621-6800; www.bdantiques.com
When you’re living in the world of tech, sometimes you just want to be rooted in nature. Big Daddy’s Antiques can be found in the Potrero Hill area that’s known for its reputation as an “unofficial” design district. As the name might suggest, Big Daddy’s is a massive, cavernous warehouse filled to the brim with rare antiques made almost entirely of natural fabrics. In Jizhar’s opinion, traveling and expanding your horizons can be a wonderful way to foster creativity and hone your aesthetic. With Big Daddy’s massive collection of vintage furniture, accents, and accessories that hail from all over the world, you know that you’re getting genuine pieces that were intimately perfected and customized by their in-house team of welders, woodworkers, and refinishers. You can get that well-traveled look without leaving home.
402 Cortland Ave., 415-282-2212; www.thesucculence.com
Once you’ve got the big-ticket items over and done with, it’s time to pay attention to the little things. Even though San Francisco’s countless beaches, forests, and mountains make it one of the granola cities in the U.S., who doesn’t want more greenery in their home? Succulence, naturally, is located in a small oasis of calm in Bernal Heights. You can find traditional succulents and colorful pottery to go with them, but we can’t get over the fact that they’ll create custom, one hundred percent real living moss walls for any space you feel needs an earthy touch. They even offer classes for those of you who want to learn how to be an urban pseudo-gardener.
5. General Store
4035 Judah St., 415-682-0600; shop-generalstore.com
Last but certainly not least, what would a California design guide be without General Store? The shop, which has locations in both San Francisco’s Outer Sunset and Los Angeles’ Venice beach, is quintessentially New Age Californian. While you won’t find Gwyneth’s much-beloved crystal eggs in the incredibly chic store, there’s a plethora of vintage and hand-crafted textiles, ceramics, and accents that will ease the hippie inside of you.