Tuesday, June 16

Sfgirlbybay has up and moved to a brand new home.

Please find me at my new location
and bookmark the new page here at

Sunday, June 14

Sfgirlbybay Has a New Home!

Sfgirlbybay has up and moved to a brand new home.

Please find me at my new location
and bookmark the new page here at
NOTE: Please do not subscribe until next week
when work out some final edits. Thanks!

Friday, June 12

Oh, and happy, happy Friday.

Okay kids...it's finally launch time! If you haven't heard, sfgirlbybay is getting a brand new look and feel! I do hope you like it! We've worked long and hard on it, and it should make browsing the blog a whole lot easier, and well, much more intuitive and user-friendly.

On the new sfgirlbybay you'll be able to search by keywords, and there's a whole page dedicated to different categories, so say you're looking for a post about Etsy products or DIY, or Artwork - it'll be there under the Categories page - just click on the appropriate category and it'll take you to every post I've ever written on that subject. Also, that endless stream of resources on the left side of the blog...it has it's own page now, too - just click on Resource Links. And the blogroll? You'll find that under the Friends page. I'll explain more as we get there, but suffice it to say sfgirlbybay has a brand new home and it's simply www.sfgirlbybay.com. Bye-bye blogspot, you've been good to us, but it's time to move on! Hope to see you there on Monday, everyone!

Friday Flickr Faves.

I've decided I really like posting my set of Flickr Favorites on Fridays, so I'm going to post them each week. A little bit of inspiration going into the weekend, with my camera aimed and ready to shoot! This set reminds me of summer...to see the original photograph, click here, and then click on the individual images for a better view, and to see more of these talented photographer's work. Many thanks, as aways to the inspiring group of photographers on Flickr for the amazing photographs you take and for sharing them with us all.

For the Love of Letterpress.

Fellow blogger Jordan Ferney of Oh Happy Day, alerted me to some new summer letterpress classes she's teaching here in San Francisco. This sounds like great fun! Students send in a design themselves or choose one of the designs from here a week before the class and she makes you a plate. Then, the day of the class you can print 250 of your very own letterpress cards! The class costs $125 and is held in Jordan's art studio on Valencia Street in San Francisco. Attached are a couple of cards other students have printed. The classes are: Saturday, June 27th, Saturday, July 18th, and Saturday, August 8th. More information can be found right here.

Friday Food Files With Molly Watson: Cole Slaw.

I recently went strawberry picking and came home with an ungodly number of the bright red fruits. I saw my neighbor - who has done a lot to make our little San Francisco street a better place to live - in her backyard and went out to hand a pint of my bounty over the fence. She was grateful and wanted to give me something in return. She wondered if I might like a cabbage.

I'm sure is says a lot about me that I was super-duper psyched to get that cabbage, but look at it - it was gorgeous. The cool weather of San Francisco may be the bane of backyard tomato-growers, but it does wonders for the density and quality of cabbage.

I took it up the stairs to my kitchen, took this picture, and promptly trimmed and sliced it into shreds. Then I mixed some cream and malt vinegar in a large bowl, seasoned it with salt, pepper, and celery seed to make a dressing, tossed in the cabbage, added a grated carrot, and we had the best Classic Creamy Cole Slaw you can imagine.

Did you think creamy cole slaw has mayonnaise in it? That's okay. It’s what I thought until I was 29 and visiting my friend in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. We made cole slaw and I learned that the good stuff - that creamy, luscious kind that reminds me of the little container that would come with my Kentucky Fried dinner as a kid - is actually creamy. As in, it has cream in it.

I’ll let you take a moment to recover - this comes as big news to many people who never make cole slaw. Of course, I’m sure there are plenty of mayonnaise-laden versions out there, but the good stuff? Cream. Heavy cream.

You see, the acid in the vinegar thickens the cream into a dressing-like, some may say mayonnaise-like, consistency. You can also add some sugar to the whole thing if you’re one of those people who like sweet cole slaw. This cole slaw only gets better if it sits in the fridge for a bit and it could serve you very well this summer if you get invited to many potlucks or barbecues or, if you live in the 1960s, “patio parties.”

See how I served it over at The Dinner Files, or just check out the recipe at Local Foods.

P.S. Looking for fabulous summer reading? Even remotely interested in food? Check out a few book recommendations from yours truly.

Each week, the Friday Food Files are deliciously brought to you by Molly Watson. For more on Molly and her delicious recipes, you can visit her in one of many wonderful places:
Writer: mollywatsonwrites.com
Blogger: thedinnerfiles.com
Recipe Wizard: localfoods.about.com
Radio Girl: eatthatradio.wordpress.com
tweeter: twitter.com/mollywatson
teacher: mediabistro.com/courses/cache/instr404.asp

*Photos courtesy of Molly Watson.

Thursday, June 11

blissful inspiration

welcome to my blissful inspiration post for today.  my name is mrs. french.  lately most of my thursday posts have had a definite theme.  this morning I chose them simply because I find them just so pretty...oh and the melony, pink color is nice too...
~as always, please tap the stars...you will be happy you did...

thank you for stopping by...I am hoping to see you over at my bliss too...see you next week!  
xo mrs. french

Bespoken For.

That wonderful Mrs. French has gotten me all bicycle crazy, and now Jessica Hall Burns of Minneapolis-based design group Red Black Brown goes and taunts me with some more bike-love. It's a poster commission she did for Handsome Cycles (whose bikes I also think you would love, very cycle chic). It's a two-color limited edition screen print Jessica printed featuring the Twin Cities' skyline, dotted with flower-like gears. It's sort of an homage to the cities where we live and ride with a vintage modern feel. You can find this poster, and this other one I really love (below) also from Bill Burns of Red Black Brown, available at Handsome Cycles. Be warned, you make come away with a really cool bicycle, too!

Dialogue: It's All About Community.

I love Erin Loechner of Design for Mankind's Dialogue series, perhaps because as a blogger it touches on many day to day issues I confront working from home. And guess what? Today’s episode of Dialogue is sponsored by sfgirlbybay (hint, hint...and there's a sneak peek at my new site banner - look for the launch very, very soon!). This episode is all about community - virtual and real life communities and then that part that crosses over - which for me has been great. I love when the wonderful people I've met online become part of my real world, and I've met some really wonderful friends via this blog. So today's episode of Dialogue really resonated with me, and may with you too if you spend a lot of time online.

In addition to Erin's regular Dialogue contributors, Blanket Magazine’s editor Bec Brown is joining photographer Jen Gotch and artist Kelly Lynn Jones to weigh in on the topic of community. You can watch the video series here on Design for Mankind.

Wednesday, June 10

Vintage Finds for a Modern World: Shopping Etsy.

I seem to be on a vintage tangent these days...well, maybe most days. But, I feel like I need to refresh things around here. Out with the old, and in with some brand new "old". I'd like to replace some of my older accessories with some new vintage pieces, just to keep things interesting. But it's a few weeks away until the next big flea market here in San Francisco (I just missed the Alameda flea because I was out of town), so I went to my back-up source for vintage finds - Etsy. There's a whole lot of great vintage sellers on Etsy and sometimes a whole lot simpler and sometimes more affordable than shopping and bidding on Ebay. I just had to have this beautiful camera (above). Here's a look at what else I found shopping around on Etsy.

Shiny Chrome Kitchen Cannister Set from Rarae Aves.

Vintage Wire Storage Basket from Extra Virgin Home.

Antique Folk Art Wooden Bust from DomestiKate.

Wireware Wall Clock from The Vintage Supply Co.

Vintage Letters from Vintage Embellishment.

Turquoise Smith Corona Typewriter from Junk Culture.

French Bottle Carrier from Extra Virgin Home.

Franciscan Earthenware Serving Platter from Sparker.

Wonderful White Twig.

I stumbled upon these great looking pillows whilst perusing Etsy today, and yum! I love the really stylish designs, utilizing simple linen and mattress ticking fabrics. Trés chic, no? Karen at White Twig learned her sewing skills by watching her mother sew, as she would patiently explain to her what she was doing and why. Karen started White Twig as a way to express what has always inspired her, despite the trends, always inspired by nature and natural materials, modern and fresh design and simple country living. If you love these lovely pillows as much as I do, you can find more designs at the White Twig Etsy shop.

Time Out With Erin: Sew What.

I have no idea how to sew. I remember practicing as a child with the shoelaces and cardboard tools [you know the kind, right?], but nonetheless, I still couldn't wrap my head [or nimble fingers] around the concept.

BUT. Something tells me I need to face the music, bite the bullet and learn to sew. After all, wouldn't it be fantastic to sew a love letter to my husband a la Twig & Thistle? Or memorize scientific theories on a hankie? And stitch all cast members of The Breakfast Club?

Come on! The possibilities are endless. Off to dust off that Singer my grandmother gifted me years ago...

*And, in case you're unfamiliar, Time Out is another installment of a Wednesday column brought to you by Erin Loechner, Editor of Design for Mankind...dedicated to tearing you away from behind the computer monitor and on to enjoying the simple things in life. Enjoy! As always, thanks so much Erin!

Tuesday, June 9

Kitchen Cabinet Makeover: Lori Andrews.

Lori Andrews is a Calgary-based interior designer, and a favorite photographer of mine. Also known on Flicker as The 10 Cent Designer, Lori's beautiful, and often humorous, photography is admired by literally millions of flickerettes everywhere, including the infamous 'Stand on a Bench' Monday pool. Today, Lori is going to share her amazing kitchen cabinet makeover. Simply stunning!

Here a couple of "before" pics:

I like things done a certain way. When I bought my house it was completely trimmed in MDF (medium-density fiberboard) and even the kitchen cupboards were made of MDF. We liked the warmth but were continually frustrated by the poor finish that the previous owner had applied. My husband and I looked into purchasing all new custom cabinets but we had a very difficult time justifying it since the existing items were new and only had decorative flaws. We discussed painting them in a super glossy white and decided that would be our direction. someday...Well someday finally came!

I hired my favorite painter to paint out all of the wood trim in the house. That included the baseboards, the window casings, the base of the kitchen cabinets, some closets etc. It took him 4 coats and 8 full days to do this! Next, my husband and I researched what paint to use in order to get the super smooth, super hard , super glossy finish we wanted on the cabinet doors. After much debate we chose to go with a product that would do the job the best, and last the longest. Because I wanted an extremely durable surface that would not require repainting within the next decade, we chose a lacquer from Becker, who then matched the lacquer to our paint color for us - Benjamin Moore's, Oxford White. I looked at some water based products but they simply could not give the same quality of surface that we wanted.

The cabinets required a great deal of surface prep and my husband had to build special drying racks to stack them all (the cabinet fronts) out in our garage. He also had to rebuild several parts of the cabinetry that were not made of MDF. The microwave stand is one of the items he rebuilt. It is much smaller than the original, so we also had to buy a new microwave! He used a very powerful compression sprayer to apply the three coat paint system. We estimate it took nearly 40 hours to complete the cabinet fronts.

We loved our home before but now it is even better! My kitchen is easy to clean and my new white on white scheme just glows.

'Stand on a Bench' Monday in my home.

*Editor's note: Have you got a great makeover story? Send it my way!