Last Thursday, San Francisco’s Bloomingdale’s transformed into a Chinese New Year celebration to behold, complete with an undulating dragon and noodle cutting (so much tastier than ribbon cutting). The collaboration between Westfield, the Asian Art Museum, and M.Y. China celebrates the Year of the Horse in all its galloping glory. The kick-off cocktail party featured an array of products designed to get you in the spirit of the holiday, from horse-themed home decor to blazing red frocks.
There are more Year of the Horse celebrations to come at Bloomie’s , including lion dancers, tea tastings, and a contortionist. The pop-up shop pictured below is only open through February 1st, so be sure to stop by this week to check it out! The other celebrations culminate on February 15th, the date of the annual parade. It’s been a few years since I’ve attended, but I’ll definitely be there this year! If you haven’t been before, get there early with a large thermos of coffee and purely functional footwear (yes, I know, this is me saying this. Trust me).
Many thanks to Bloomingdale’s for being such a fantastic host and celebrating such an important part of San Francisco’s cultural traditions. A Happy Chinese New Year to all, and to all a good night!
A new year, a new store. Last Thursday, Italian designer Salvatore Ferragamo opened a new store in downtown San Francisco, nestling in to a block of Post Street chock-full of high-end boutiques and specialty shops. The new boutique opening served double duty as the kick-off event for the Mid-Winter Gala, one of San Francisco’s major philanthropic fundraising events. A percentage of sales from the evening benefited the Fine Arts Museums.
The store’s lofty two-story layout lets it play around with the different facets of the designer’s collections. The feminine downstairs features a display of heels and handbags that would make Carrie Bradshaw swoon, while the masculine upstairs boasts enough ties and structured work bags to please the most discerning fashionisto.
Blame it on my Midwestern upbringing, but I can’t help stopping well-dressed women to compliment them on something beautiful that they’re wearing. From structured shifts to frothy, floaty skirts, nearly every person I stopped was dressed in Ferragamo. It’s one thing to see a design on a mannequin, but it’s twice as inspiring to see it on a vibrant, champagne-sipping guest.
Even if the closest you come to Ferragamo is a trip through San Francisco’s best thrift stores, it’s well worth your while to peek into the new location. Part art museum and part retail store, the visual merchandising alone is well worth a visit for any fashion lover.
Photography by Drew Altizer (except for the last one!).
It wouldn’t surprise me if shopping eventually became registered as an Olympic sport. Sure, there isn’t a ball to juggle or uniforms required, but ducking and weaving around passerby while wielding a 10-pound bag of clothes certainly requires dexterity, physical prowess, and a fierce competitive instinct.
Powell Street is part of the big leagues, with brightly-colored, name-brand stores competing with clanging cable cars for attention. I’ve had a love-hate relationship with the area for years, associating it with the magic of my first days in San Francisco as well as an obnoxious part of my commute during my frazzled department-store-shop-girl days. Love it or hate it, it makes an impression as it draws hordes of tourists as well as locals.
I purchased this scarf during a half-year-long expedition to India, and seeing it always transports me back to the flurry of sights and sounds I experienced. I’ll never forget huddling underneath it as our open-air bus traveled through the Himalayas or wrapping it around my neck to keep off the desert sun.
Wearing it seven years later in the heart of San Francisco, it reminds me of all the places I’ve traveled and all the adventures I have yet to experience. Even though Powell Street and the alleys of Mumbai couldn’t be more different, I’ll never cease to be awed and inspired by the energy and the sheer volume of people that come with living in the heart of a city.