home & garden : bar cart styling (under construction)

I recently acquired this super-awesome vintage industrial bar cart from Rachel (who is making way for high chairs!). I’m pretty stoked about this buddy & have been collecting inspiration for how to style it.

Some of my favorite bloggers with their gorgeous bar setups:

Love the feminine details on this sweet bar cart from Camille Styles


Designlovefest’s bar cart is bright & fun!

While not a bar cart, Coco + Kelley’s vibrant table hack is genius & so cute, too!

I’m just getting started playing around with mine — hence (under construction) in this post’s title! — but I’m already having lots of fun! I busted out my silver tea server (collected from various thrift stores) to get in the holiday entertaining mood.

bar cart

I’m excited about filling up the cart with our cocktail gear, recipe books, stripey straws maybe some fruit or flowers.

xo, S.


make: homemade twig wreath

First of all, HELLO!

We’ve been so absent in this season of life, but we have not forgotten you. I’m so happy to be posting again amidst all the Christmas craziness & my brand-new baby niece (that’s right – Rachel had her baby girl!).


I’ve been wanting to make my own wreath for a while, and putting together this blog post for work just added more fuel to my fire. I had a lot of fun making my twig wreath, even if it’s *ahem* a beginner’s wreath.

No, seriously.

I started by buying 14 gauge wire at my local hardware store & gathering twigs up at Joaquin Miller Park. I wanted my wreath to be literally made in & from Oakland. Because I wanted a spare look, I made my own single-wire wreath form so I could easily conceal the form.



For the base, I used floral wire to attach the first round of twigs. After that, I use wire for the next layer or so, then I switched over to hot glue. I also attached the pine cones from Michael’s with floral wire.


Finally, I topped it with a navy ribbon for Thanksgiving time…


and a white, red and green ribbon for Christmas!


Please note: if you notice less sticks in the Christmas version, you’re not crazy. We had a huge windstorm, and the wreath underwent some serious damage!

Making a wreath was much easier than I expected, and I’m excited about getting better & making an even more ornate one.

xo, S.

home & garden : newlywed nest (part 1)


I’m so excited to share some photos of my in-process apartment! I debated waiting until it was ‘more finished’, but that’s the point, right? A home is a continual work in progress!

Roland and I are very lucky to live in a sweet (ie, 650 SF) apartment near Piedmont Avenue in Oakland. We sacrificed space for safety (and killer bars & restaurants!), and we love it!







I’m really happy with how our living space has proceeded. It seemed crazy to have the desk in the living room at first, but we couldn’t fit it through the bedroom door, so I just worked to make it coordinate with the other furniture.






Eek, that brown thing. I almost didn’t post this, because it’s SO ugly. We were going to trash it, but then it fit perfectly. I have great plans of painting it and doing something to cover up the awful wood paneling above it.

Stay tuned for part 2!

xo, S.

Ps, Where I Got My Furnishings:

  • Framed art – by family & friends
  • Vintage loveseat & side table – grandma
  • Cocktail glass cabinet – handmade by friend (Studio Black)
  • Yellow lamp – friend
  • Record player – Crosley
  • Other lamps & white bookshelf – IKEA
  • Coffee table & coat rack – in-laws
  • Green pedestal bowl – antique store
  • Globe – aunt
  • Typewriter – Amazon
  • Roll-top desk – Out of the Closet
  • Orange desk chair – Thrift Town
  • Burgundy chair – Urban Ore
  • Vintage scale – yard sale
  • Brown storage piece – street score

home & garden : sad couch, happy couch!

The little things can make the biggest difference!  We’ve had this couch in our family room that has needed some love for awhile.  This weekend I decided to change things up and make this sad couch a happy couch!



I already had the golden yellow & grey pillow on the left, as well as the purple throw blanket.  The other two pillows I snagged at Target this weekend.  I just love the way our colorful, happy couch looks now!  What a difference!


NEW image



things we love : rex ray


One of my favorite artists is Rex Ray, from San Francisco.  His prints are scattered throughout my house and I just love the designs and colours he uses.  Our place is full of cool, pale-coloured walls and we love to decorate with fun, bright accents like these.  Here are some photographs from our living room which has pale-lavender colored walls, dark furniture and a grey tweed couch.

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The portrait was done by another artist – my fabulous sister, Elizabeth Zanzinger.

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You can even buy Rex Ray postcards from Chronicle in San Francisco – Love these!

Aren’t those colours great?

xo, R.

home & garden : staining brick

When we purchased our first home last year, we knew we were buying a house full of potential, much-needed upgrades and DIY-projects . . not a ready-made abode.  We have done a good amount of things to it in the past year, but still have far to go. It’s a process, but the transformation is SO worth it!

One of the biggest eyesores we found living in our house was this fireplace that was added in the 1980′s. Honestly, who thought that a used-brick fireplace was a good idea?


Anyway, I avoided looking at it for nearly a year, not wanting to paint it white, but not knowing what to do! Once I stumbled upon Anna Moseley’s tutorial on staining brick, I found my answer! Isn’t the transformation amazing?


I’ve included a link to this tutorial up above, but a few personal notes from me if you’d like to try this yourself :

-I used Behr’s Concrete Stain in the color Loden, available at Home Depot

-Anna’s tutorial recommends using a roller, but for me this was much too messy . . the stain is a VERY thin liquid and it was just too difficult for me to not make a giant mess this way and completely ruin my grout.  I simply used a paintbrush the same width as the bricks and hand-stained each one.  A little bit more tedious and time-consuming? Yes. But definitely worth it!

-My fireplace was in pretty bad shape, but I did it over the course of three days and it took about three coats total! Voila!

(PS. I plan on replacing the old fireplace insert with a modern fireplace cover and staggering some white shelves at varying heights on the fireplace as opposed to the typical mantel. More photos later!)

xo, R.

home & garden : door story

We have a skinny closet in our living room right by our front door that houses our coats, shoes, and a bunch of games like Scrabble, Lie Detector, Monopoly, & Jenga.  Since we go in & out of here several times a day to get shoes out & put shoes away, I thought it might be fun to do something special to this door.

Awhile back I purchased this “book” called Stencil 101 Decor and have been waiting to find the perfect space to stencil.  So.. you guessed it – I stenciled the door!  It turned out great and is an easy DIY for anyone to do.


I used a “quatrefoil” style stencil and an alphabet letter as an accent.  Also, I did not want the door to be a focal point, but rather a special detail, so the paint I used was the same flat paint I used on the surrounding walls.  It’s best to use something like a foam brush (I used a make-up sponge) and to do several coats, as opposed to one thick coat.  Check it out!

xo, R.