A Selective Inventory of San Francisco’s “General Store”

When thinking about the sourdough bread, the SFMOMA, and Beach Blanket Babylon, it’s hard to figure out a way to make San Francisco any better. At least that was up until I stumbled on a well-known local treasure.

General Store - Assortment of Goods & Wares

General Store – Assortment of Goods & Wares

General Store, run by Serena Mitnik-Miller and Mason St. Peter, is a small shop that houses pretty much anything one could want, need, or justify for daily life. Given the store’s interest in supporting artisans, I was thrilled to find a large number of handmade items throughout their inventory – many of which come straight out of the studios of craftspeople who reside locally in the Bay Area.

Though it’s worth taking a moment to check out the store on your own, I decided to curate a small list of my six favorite handmade goods from General Store. While scrolling through, be sure to visit the artists’ own websites when available!

Hand Carved Wooden Spoons – Jon Shade

Hand Carved Wooden Spoons by Jon Shade

Handwoven Textural Scarves – Lookout Wonderland

Handwoven Indigo Scarves (Java) dyed by Lookout Wonderland

Hanging Ceramic Planter – Collaboration between Kat Hutter & Roger Lee

Hanging Ceramic Planter by Kat Hutter & Roger Lee

Wooden Cutting Boards – Luke Bartels

Custom Wooden Cutting Boards by Luke Bartel

Sixteen Barrettes – Sioux Tribe Members 

Sixteen Barettes Made By Members of the Sioux

Tooled Leather Coasters – Commune Design 

Tooled Leather Coasters by Commune Design)

If you ever find yourself in the San Francisco or Venice area, be sure to drop in for a visit. Because their goods are procured from vintage sources and contemporary studios, there is always something new to discover!

A Man’s Guide to Anthropologie

Let’s face it, the best part about going to Anthropologie with your girlfriend is not about her buying clothes… it’s about cataloguing the bored and maudlin faces of your fellow mates as they wait outside the dressing rooms for their significant others. Sure it’s a moment of schadenfreude, but every guy has been there. Luckily there are things to enjoy about the entire experience.

Anthro certainly does not cater to a male clientele, but there are some choice items that might appeal to a more masculine aesthetic.  You obviously won’t find any clothes, but here is a small collection of home goods which (surprisingly enough) could look great in a  bachelor pad.

1) Decker Coffee Table

Decker Coffee Table

Decker Coffee Table

This piece is not only made with clean lines and attention to detail, but is gender neutral to boot. Personally, I think the table would look best with a nice bottle of bourbon and a GQ on top, but it could just as easily store some Jane Austen novels on the lower shelf.

Decker Table - Mango Wood Detail

Decker Table – Mango Wood Detail

But whatever you put on top of it, be careful not to completely cover up the mango wood surfaces as it features an interesting grain. The entire piece is held together by an iron frame and finished off with caster legs for your convenience.

2) Churned Stemless Wine Glass

Churned Stemless Wine Glass

Churned Stemless Wine Glass

Nothing says ‘manly’ more than a cultured sort of crudeness. What better to embody this character trait than enjoying a Chateau Margaux from a thick, off-centered, stubby wine glass? Adding to an already inherent beauty, each one is hand-blown from recycled glass to help diminish your environmental footprint.

3) Lostine – Color Blocked Bread Board

Lostine - Colorblocked Bread Board

This cutting board is completely handmade in Philadelphia from 100% Pennsylvania-grown sycamore trees. After employing food-safe milk paint to achieve the color variation, each one is then coated with natural mineral oils for longevity. Even if you don’t use it, it would be a winsome addition to any counter or tabletop.

Lostine - Bread Board Detail

4) Mark Rothko Coffee Table Book

This might be a more immediate necessity whilst in the store. The book contains countless color reproductions of Rothko’s work, some interviews, and several essays written about the artist and his place in abstract expressionism. Even if you don’t buy it to put on top of the Decker Coffee Table you just bought (above), this book will help kill time when waiting on your lady.

 5) Menlo Lamp

Menlo Lamp

Menlo Lamp

This iteration of the exposed bulb lamp straddles the fence between a traditional and contemporary feel. Crafted from Sheesham wood, glass, and nickel, this piece is as simple and straightforward as it gets.

6) Hidalgo Bed

Hidalgo Bed

It’s not your everyday purchase, but this bed embodies a refined sort of ‘shabby-chic.’ In case you are environmentally conscious, the Hidalgo bed frame is hand crafted from sustainably harvested and reclaimed wood before it is finished with natural wax. As an added bonus, it even looks like you made it yourself.

Hidalgo Bed - Backboard Detail

Hidalgo Bed – Backboard Detail

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