How lucky am I to have Sarah, Style Sleuth Extraordinaire + dear friend give me a tour of all her favorite haunts in the East Bay + SF. Her discerning list included Erica Tanov, The Gardener, The Voyager, MAC, Tail of the Yak and if there was time pop into the De Young to view the Gaultier Exhibit.
Next MAC, short for Modern Appealing Clothing, one of Sarah's favorite. And for very good reason. When we arrive she is greeted like the Rock Star she is, by MAC owners, brother + sister, Ben + Chris Ostipal.
Many quarters, energy + an insatiable love of design + discovery is needed for a day sleuthing with Sarah. Sadly we did not make the Gaultier Exhibit...another time.
The first time I met the charming Serena Armstrong was in Napa Valley the week after the BFF Bag Launch Party. She immediately ordered a Hudson Bay Messenger. I immediately liked her + thought yes a kindred Haute Bohemian soul.
Serena, a mother of two, a lover of home design, fashion, fabrics came to her present metier late. But it seems to be her destiny. After moving to Marin + renovating a home or two she started a home design blog to document the renovation. http://www.farmhouseurban.com/ Next came a few satisfied customers which morphed into Serena Armstrong Interiors. And finally her delightful atelier/shop on Magnolia Street in Marin. Where she both sees private clients + 3 days a week has the store open for retail shoppers.
The store is a not too overwhelming a mix high/low. Items such as chairs below + chaise lounge are given a facelift of elegance + usefulness. Modern fabrics + treatments of materials breathe new life into what had become stodgy pieces. Serena has a terrific eye + focused point of view. I would love to have her come to my home + spin her magic. Nothing seems too forced, just lovely + fresh. You can see some of her work in this month's issue of RUE Magazine.
And what is a visit on a Sunday morning to a home store sale without scrumptious enticements? Serena with her good taste had pastries + coffee from the
The SweetLife Bakery in San Anselmo on hand. Visiting the Farmhouse Urban Home Store, chatting with Serena Armstrong + savoring an almond croissant is truly THE SWEETLIFE.