In San Francisco? Do Not Leave Without Visiting These Home Decor Stores

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Update: May 2018. A year and a half later and I wouldn't change a thing. The stores below are still vibrant examples of community shops selling beautiful home decor. Now read on or go check them out!

October 18, 2016

Disclaimer: I in no way consider myself an expert on SF. I have been twice, and there is so so much I have yet to discover. That said, I have had the biggest blast and I would be doing a disservice to you if I did not share with you a few of the shops I recently visited. Because....amazing! And you should visit them if/when you come! Okay, enough talk. On to the good stuff! 

must see sf home decor stores

  • Stuff--Stuff has to be one of my favorite stores....perhaps ever. It has two entire floors of vintage furniture and decor. And sure, the vendors may be the same each visit, but the inventory changes all the time. New treasures await you each time. This time I saw the beautiful emerald green leather chair, a vintage secretary desk that I would have loved to ship home, a stunning jade cuff and oh so much more.

  • Heath Ceramics--I am in. love. with Heath Ceramics. The pottery is at once simple and elegant. Colorful and earthy. I could easily use their dinnerware exclusively. But for now, I treated myself to a bud vase. Baby steps!

And if you need further reason to love them, they've partnered with Hygge and West (I know, I tried to get one blog in without professing my crush on them) for an oh so stylish wallpaper line. I've already specified two different patterns for clients

  • Ginko Furniture--I cannot believe the absolute treasure that is Ginko Furniture. Lured in by the promise of sexy mid-century furniture, I soon discovered so much more. The furniture is not only gorgeous, but hand crafted and sustainable. The kicker is the price. I had to double check my arithmetic to make sure I wasn't hallucinating. Basically, they're in the same ballpark as your West Elm or CB2, but seriously? The opportunity to support the artist directly? Every time!

  • Aldea Home is one of those stores where you walk in and just exhale. Everything is beautifully styled, it smells good and it just exudes this aura of warmth and comfort. I am a bit of a bedding collector and I could do serious damage in this store. Everything is soft and sumptuous and I just want to wrap up and escape the world with these beauties.

Bonus points for carrying my favorite Orla Kiely scent, geranium. This store has something for everyone. Mother's Day, birthday, housewarming, hostess gift....you can't go wrong here!!

  • Aldea Baby--Aldea Baby is actually based inside Aldea Home. The thing that grabbed me right away? A play area for the kids with toys to entertain themselves right in the middle of the store! Littles will stay busy playing while Mom and Dad shop!

But the items they sell are so right on. As a mama and a preschool teacher I can vouch for the quality of Baby/Kiddo products sold. Highlights included unique, earth-friendly cribs, natural wood blocks (that I want to take home and play with) and the softest, softest baby clothes. There are so many fabulous things here, I could dedicate and entire blog just to this part of the store. A must for parents-to-be, grandparents, aunties, best friends......

  • Curiosity for Kids--sister store of Paxton Gate. I headed into Curiosity for Kids looking for souvenirs to bring home for the boys. And the only problem I ended up with was which NOT to bring home. Everything they had in stock was bright, inviting and (gasp) educational!

The store was divided into interest areas including dinosaurs, crafts, books. Take your pick; any gift from here would be welcomed. As for me, I took home a "make your own planet bouncy ball" kit and gorgeous space flash cards with trivia on the back. That bouncy ball kit looks so fun I might just pick one up for me to try too!

  • Paxton Gate--Paxton Gate, Paxton Gate. It could easily be called Curiosity for BIG Kids. When I made my purchases at Curiosity for Kids, they mentioned having another store further down Valencia. But I would have never. ever. picked these two stores as siblings. It is the coolest store.

he store is filled with all sorts of science-y curiosities. Everything from shark teeth to different sorts of coral and loads in between. They make you want to just sit down like a big kid and explore everything. The tiny magnifying glasses available invite you to do just this. There's also an entire gardening section in the back where you can browse greenery for days. Set a timer; you could spend an entire afternoon here and not even notice.

  • The Gardener--Do you suspect you might have the dreaded "black thumb"? The Gardener will totally convince you otherwise. Each selection is as beautiful as it is useful. Their website declares, "Everything necessary for setting a generous table and celebrating the season harvest from the garden". They don't lie. Take home a pair of their gardening gloves and you will feel like a new gardener entirely. Painting at left by Artist Colette Hannahan

 

the point

Beyond re-living my trip with you, I wanted to point out that these fabulous shops are out there. Some of these are the ones you'll hear about in the city guides. Some of them aren't. What they all are are businesses that celebrate the neighborhoods and the small business owners that call them "home". The ones that allow artists and craftspeople to work from their heart and live their passion. These stores are the stores I love to support. I like feeling like I'm impacting my immediate community in a positive way. Could I buy similar products elsewhere, potentially for cheaper? Possibly. But when I shop I like to make a difference. I'll pay more to invest in my community and the people in it .