Category Archives: Gallery

Behind-the-Scenes: Timbuk2 Launches Stylish New Lux Line, FEMME

The San Francisco-based Timbuk2 recently launched their latest collection, TIMBUK2 FEMME, a new lux women’s line that is very stylish, yet practical. I’ve always loved the Timbuk2 bags (my husband has one!) and have pegged them to be more outdoorsy and for men. Well, this new line proves me wrong.

Timbuk2 hosted a preview event to showcase the new line.  CEO Patti Cazzato, a veteran of the fashion industry, led us on a tour of the studio where the magic happens: from design boards, to rows and rows of fabric, to the production of the bags and essentially what are their offices, as well! She told us the story behind Timbuk2 and how today, it’s becoming more of a lifestyle brand with the launch of Femme.  The new collection was designed by Patti and Senior Design Director Andrea Chynoweth who has an impressive pedigree: Gemma Kahng, Vivienne Westwood, Levi Strauss.  Seeing the bags lined up on the racks, I feel in love immediately. The first thing that came to mind was how these would be perfect for work. My version of “casual” is more dressed up than most, and bags are a huge part of that. I’ve always used bags that are great for work but something that looks nice and can be brought out to dinner or an event post-work.  These new bags are that perfect bridge between work and something that works for the evening, as well: think wine night with your girlfriends, a dinner date, stopping by the mall, attending a work event, etc.  The designs feature a range of color-blocking: from my favorite, the “Black n Tan” to a dark blue and gray version.  I love the different fabrics used on the bags – the leather complements the other materials, adding a touch of chic. Prices for the bags range between $198 – $398 and as of now, come in four different styles:

Femme Messenger – Harkening back to Timbuk2’s hero bag but with a twist: all leather construction lends an elevated look to the everyday cyclists’ favorite bag.

Satchel Backpack – Inspired by the shape of a vintage Persian carpetbag, this luxe piece can be worn as a backpack or carried as a tote, helping to smooth the transition from work to play.

Fanny Pack – This miniature version of the classic Timbuk2 messenger is for women who want a chic hands-free bag with more compact storage: perfect for the festival or concert goer.

Boxy Tote – A modern and minimal shoulder bag with a slim profile that can carry everything you’ll need for the day and night.

Check out the beautiful lookbook and below are photos from the event and directly from the collection.

FEMME BACKPACK M_463-4-1182_Fall2015_Lifestyle007The Satchel Backpack. Photo credit: Timbuk2.

FEMME BACKPACK M_463-4-1182_Fall2015_Lifestyle018The Satchel Backpack. Photo credit: Timbuk2.

IMG_8139The Black n Tan Satchel Backpack (my favorite!) Photo credit: Yasemin Sussman. 

IMG_8145In the studio where each back is customized made. Photo credit: Yasemin Sussman.

IMG_8148All that denim!  Photo credit: Yasemin Sussman.

IMG_8149Endless fabric choices in many textures and colors. Photo credit: Yasemin Sussman.

IMG_8154Photo Credit: Yasemin Sussman.

IMG_8155Sneak preview of the Spring 2016 inspiration design boards for the new collection. Photo credit: Yasemin Sussman.

IMG_8156Design boards of different fabric choices. Photo credit: Yasemin Sussman.

IMG_8136The Satchel Backpacks on display. Photo credit: Yasemin Sussman.

IMG_8138The Femme Messenger (another favorite). Photo credit: Yasemin Sussman.

I always love supporting local companies and have added the Satchel Backpack in “Black n Tan” to my holiday “wish list” (or may have to get sooner!)

Happy Shopping!


Leave a comment

Filed under Fashion Trends, Gallery

West Oakland to Old Oakland

Trouble Coffee quietly opened a new location in West Oakland a few weeks ago. I have explored the many wonderful neighborhoods of Oakland but haven’t spent any time in West Oakland.  There have been a few stories about it being an area that’s on track for change. I do believe it’s headed in that direction, but I’m sure it will take some time.  There are streets with boarded-up houses and abandoned warehouses but there are also new developments popping up and signs of construction. This is a good thing and I hope the character, culture and diversity of Oakland that many of us love is kept, despite the slow gentrification of even this neighborhood.

Trouble Coffee is in a residential area,  located on a corner across from an old brick building.  Irongate bars surround the outside of the cafe, but as soon as you walk inside, you’re transported to a minimalist and zen dream.  All of the walls are white with natural light beaming in from the large windows surrounding all sides of the storefront.  In the corner, is a large white table with bench seating surrounding two sides of the table and additional stools at the bar. I ordered a latte to enjoy in one of their handmade white ceramic cups with a slice of their famous toast. As one of the baristas was preparing our coffee, another cut a thick slice of bread, toasted it and topped it with cinnamon and sugar.  There is no menu so you have to know what you want or ask what they’d recommend.

From West Oakland, we headed over to Old Oakland, the historic district of downtown Oakland. It is Oakland’s hidden gem. The beautiful architecture has been preserved and new boutique shops have continued to pop up, adding to the vibrant neighborhood.  Swan’s Market is a must-visit and one of my favorite places.  It’s a very small version of a food hall.  The large open room filled with beautiful wooden tables that feature a mix of seating for two, four or larger communal tables. It’s hard to have a favorite in terms of the food because each spot is unique – B-Dama, Cosecha, The Cook and Her Farmer, Miss Ollie’s, and other vendors that make this a foodie hotspot.

I love our new home in Berkeley and being that much closer to Oakland.




Looking inside Trouble Coffee in West Oakland.


The free outdoor library on Willow Street across from Trouble Coffee.



The brick lined streets of Old Oakland. 





The vintage-style bistro in Old Oakland serving seasonal Italian food.


Inside Ratto’s International Market & Deli. Amazing sandwiches!!!



The bar at The Cook and Her Farmer inside Swan’s Market.


Leave a comment

Filed under Food, Gallery

The London Plane and Bar Sajor: Seattle, Wash.


This is long overdue but we had such a great time in beautiful Seattle.  It reminds me a lot of San Francisco.  Great vibe, people, right on the water….and a great food and coffee scene.  We were there celebrating my sister-in-laws graduation (she’s now a doctor!) and then spent a few days touring around (in which the itinerary was based around restaurants and food!)   The first stop we made was for lunch at The London Plan (thanks to the amazing recommendation from Madison Ginnett of Dessert Pocket). It’s located on the northeast corner in Pioneer Square and is part cafe, part specialty foods grocery, and part floral workshop (wish we had time for one of the workshops!)  It’s a collaboration between the teams of Sitka & Spruce, The Corson Building, Bar Sajor, Old Chaser Farm, and Marigold & Mint.londonplane3Subway tiles and floral decorations inside The London Plane.

londonplane5The open kitchen is phenomenal.


londonplane4Part of the cafe where you can order baked goods to eat-in or take with you.

londonplane1For lunch, we started with the Spreads & Dips and got the sample of all four that included: caramelized cauliflower, caper & anchovy; beet hummus with harissa oil; lentil, carrot, feta & dill; roasted red pepper & cashew – served with the housemade naturally leavened sourdough with herb butter.  Second course was a trio of small salads that included: 1) honey-roasted carrots with chard leaves & stems, cumin & oil cured olives; 2) roasted asparagus & spring onions with pistachios & mint; 3) sprouting brassicas & potatoes with turmeric & mustard seed oil; 4) raw beets, fennel & radishes with ginger, lime & cilantro.  The food was delicious and the space was so open and bustling with Seattle-goers on their lunch breaks.



barsajor2Bar Sajor has a beautiful open kitchen with a wood-burning oven and an open wood fire. The space has so much rustic charm and the interior has palettes of white and blue with an Old Spanish World vibe. The ambiance is very lively – from the open kitchen to the bar and open seating.

barsajor1They start you with hot mint/stinging neddle/honey tea served in these gorgeous green and gold glasses.  The menu is very interesting and fresh and changes often. Chef/Owner, Matt Dillon, has done wonders with the food – known for his foraging, we had to get a dish with mushrooms. The night we were there, he was serving fiddlehead ferns that were cooked on the open wood fire


barsajor4Our Seattle visit was much too short and we’ll definitely be back to explore the many other great restaurants it has to offer (including Sitka & Spruce, which is on the list).


Leave a comment

Filed under Food, Gallery

Temescal Alley

Temescal1Donuts! There is a new generation of donuts – from Doughnut Dolly to Donut Savant, Dynamo Donuts and more. And I love donuts. They remind me of childhood – about once a month, my dad would go to the donut shop early Sunday morning and get my brother and I some of our favorites – old fashioned chocolate, maple bars and sprinkled donuts.  As you approach Temescal Alley, you notice a line and yes, it’s for Doughnut Dolly. It’s a cute, super small donut store. You enter and they have donuts in a basket – simple, sugar crusted donuts – and you have three choices for fillings that are piped in to order. On our trip to this lovely shop, we tried a lavendar honey filling – amazing!





Temescal6Temescal Alley is Oakland’s hip and vibrant that has a bohemian vibe with a range of small shops from artisan clothing to sweets to handcrafted jewelry.


1 Comment

Filed under Food, Gallery

Doors of Spain and France













IMG_2922As we traveled through Spain and France, September 2013, I noticed how unique every single door was in each town we were in.  We got “lost” in Barcelona, Girona, Montepellier and Lyon, wandering up and down streets and alleys. I began to take photos of the different doors, mesmerized by the different colors, style and architecture. It’s all about the little details.  Enjoy the “doors of Spain and France.”


Leave a comment

Filed under Gallery, Travel

Closet Visit

IMG_1374I keep many scarves out on my dresser for easy access. Living in San Francisco, I would say I wear a scarf about 320 out of 365 days of the year! The orange one is from Istanbul, Turkey.

IMG_1382An engagement photo, lamp from the lovely Target and a faux fur table cover that I’ve had since college. I found it at a fabric store in San Diego.

IMG_1387The top of my other dresser has perfume and jewelry. Always a small bottle of Jo Malone (right now – Grapefruit) and Hermes perfume (perfect for Spring).

IMG_1389I wear mostly necklaces and bracelets and I choose which pieces to wear depending on my mood that day.  Ranging from pearls to feather necklaces to gold chains to a David Yurman piece that my grandmother gave me as a wedding gift.  I love the small bowl that I found at Anthropologie – perfect for keeping various rings.

IMG_1395Most of my closet is arranged by color. A glimpse at some fur jackets, vests and blazers; all from stores that range from Jeremy’s Department store in South Park, SOMA to Theory from Bloomingdales to Banana Republic to H&M and more.

IMG_1398Another view of mostly blouses, jackets, skirts and dresses.  Bags hanging are Marc by Marc Jacobs (a leather bag I have had for almost 5 years now; the other is Brahmin)

IMG_1399I wear a lot of black.  It is so classy, stylish and sophisticated and I love to accessorize. From time to time, I do love to throw on something patterned or colorful.  The pink tweed skirt and the zebra striped skirt are from Banana Republic, a peak of a sequin tank from Nordstrom, a skirt from Antropologie and two leather skirts – the gold from Zara and the black from H&M.

IMG_1406I love jeans. My two favorite pairs are the dark Hudson jeans and my Rag & Bones jeans – the material is amazing.

IMG_1407And a few lighter and more colorful shades. Red jeans from GAP, colorful cropped pants from the lovely Target, green jeans from New Zealand and a few lighter washes.

IMG_1421My motto: Keep Calm and Carry On; paired with of course many Vogue, 7X7, San Francisco magazines and books. 

IMG_1426Black leather Michael Kors wallet, Paul Smith glasses, and my wedding bag – gold sequin Whiting & Davis.

I love the blog – Closet Visit. If you haven’t checked it out, you should. They visit closets of many people ranging from authors, editors, stylists, actors and more. I love everyone’s unique style and the way they shoot the “closet visits”. I was inspired to do my own and give you a glimpse into my creative, fashion world.


Leave a comment

Filed under Fashion Trends, Gallery

Channeling New York in All Black




I love this time of the year at our loft. The building walls are covered in ivy and I truly feel like I’m back in Costa Rica in the jungle! I love the ivy walls mixed in with the french windows and the industrial feel of the building and our loft. I went for all black today, wearing DKNY ankle tights, Bloomingdales skirt and a theory blouse with Steve Madden flats. I love color but love my black New York days.


Leave a comment

Filed under Gallery

Winter Outfits – Channeling Leather, Anthropologie & J. Crew


I love to mix and match leather! This is one of my favorite skirts (wearing it with DKNY tights from Nordstrom) and my black wool coat and scarf (also Nordstrom). I wear it with casual cotton tops to dressy silk blouses to a fun lace top. Perfect for dinner out in SF and meetings!


I sometimes go into Anthropologie just because being in there is relaxing. The smell of all of their amazing candles, combined with the music and beautiful cloths to bedroom sheets – it’s almost like stepping into a spa (in my opinion) just without the massage 🙂  When I saw this skirt there recently I knew that I had to get it.  Definitely more funky (I’m more and more embracing the ‘funky’).  It’s comfortable and can we worn with many different tops and shoes. I threw on an Anthropolgie top (one of my favorite black blouses with gold buttons) and black boots. Perfect chilly SF day outfit!



And talk about going all out there – I was really channeling J. Crew when I put this outfit together. One of their recent catalogs was ALL bright colors and pairing them together! Who would have thought that a bright purple cashmere sweater would look good with hot red pants?? I wore this on Christmas Eve and was just in a colorful mood all day! The sweater is from Nordstrom, white blouse is H&M, pants from GAP, Marc Jacobs bag with oxfords (my fav).



Filed under Gallery

Fashion + Food





A morning visit to the SFMOMA for coffee!


Leave a comment

Filed under Gallery


When it’s sunny in San Francisco – it’s even THAT much more of a beautiful city. It’s beautiful everyday, but with no clouds in the sky…it’s the best place in the world. We took a stroll on the Embarcadero by the boats and paused for a moment. I LOVE these camel sandals that I got at Zara – so comfy! Paired with black pants from H&M and a tank from Banana Republic. And I’m just loving camel so much I got the bag from Banana Republic (on sale!)


Leave a comment

Filed under Gallery