In the age of Spotify and Netflix, this 24,000-square foot Haight record store goes way beyond the deep tracks of American music. Vintage concert posters, a bin hunter’s vinyl trove, VHS rarities, a trade counter ready to buy your oldies, and staff that channels High Fidelity.
1855 Haight St, San Francisco, CA 94117
This men’s fashion brand was launched in 2008 by longtime friends (Michael Armenta, Barrett Purdum, and Michael Maher) with New England roots. Their aim? To design the perfect slim-fitting button-down shirt. In the years since, they’ve used a crowd-funding model to build out a full line of men’s and women’s clothing.
383 Valencia St, San Francisco, CA 94103
This Pac Heights ode to all things kitchen, pantry, and tabletop is a dreamland for shelter aesthetes. Il Buco Vita glassware, Silvia Song wooden bowls and platters, and Ann Ladson forged flatware are just a quick sampling of March’s hand-hewn and highly curated taste. And if copper pans or iron seed grinders don’t suffice, the team at March also offers full kitchen design services.
3075 Sacramento St, San Francisco, CA 94115
Owners Rod Hipskind and Kelly Ishikawa have curated their modern general store with a bent towards celebrating California heritage. They catalog their goods into three groups: Kitchen, Apothocary, and Lodge. And in this handsome shotgun space, the collection evokes a feeling akin to John and Louie Muir shopping for holiday favors.
728 Divisadero St, San Francisco, CA 94117
A modern naturalist curio spot, Paxton Gate is wonderful in the true meaning of the word. Framed butterflies, crystal clusters, dinosaur teeth, sea-life discoveries, and of course, a robust collection of taxidermy specimens, from springboks to pufferfish. Also of note: They offer an excellent set of classes and workshops.
824 Valencia St, San Francisco, CA 94110
Formerly a practicing architect, Bill Stout now focuses on his Jackson Square collection, which includes theoretical tomes and futuristic hypotheses, as well as stacks upon stacks of odes to California legends of design.
804 Montgomery St, San Francisco, CA 94133
The husband-and-wife duo behind Union Larder opened this wine, cheese and gourmet provisions shop in 2011. Go for the daily sandwich specials on Acme bread or to stock up on picnic sundries for nearby Washington Square Park.
1541 Grant Ave, San Francisco, CA 9413
Four accomplished artisans share this woodsy Outer Sunset studio space, and each blend throwback techniques with a modern eye. Gorgeous walnut surf boards from Danny Hess; one-of-a-kind salvage-wood furnishings from Luke Bartels; Josh Duthie’s next-level affinity for the art of chair making, old and new; and Jeff Calham’s signature approach to sign painting and design.
3725 Noriega St, San Francisco, CA 94122
Mission-based chocolate makers opened shop in 2010, roasting, cracking, winnowing, grinding and tempering small batches of beans and handwrapping every bar. Stop into their factory cafe for a hot chocolate and full measure of expert commentary on each bar.
740 Valencia St, San Francisco, CA 94110
Heath has been synonymous with classic tile and ceramic design since it first fired a kiln in 1948. Owners Robin Petravic and Catherine Bailey have led the historic company since 2003, expanding from its original Sausalito home base to an inspired factory floor, retail hub, newstand, and creative commons. In many ways, this Mission HQ has become the center of San Francisco’s boom of design entrepreneurs.
2900 18th St, San Francisco, CA 94110
Sausalito and Mission
A Japantown neighborhood mainstay, Soko is far more than a hardware store. It feels more like a window into another culture, from its paper lanters to Japanese gardening tools. The Ashizawa family has run the shop since 1925.
1698 Post St, San Francisco, CA 94115
This modern take on the classic mercantile and sundry shop is a sunny destination for the stylish sort. Their stock of design magazines, small-batch apothocary, handmade home goods, and a laidback collection of clothing has a distinctly New California vibe, a mix of Joan Didion’s sensibility and Alice Waters’ taste.
4035 Judah St, San Francisco, CA 94122
Unionmade carry some of the most beloved (and hard to find) clothing brands in their respective spaces. Think Raleigh Denim, Gitman Vintage and Barbour at the former. And Imogene & Willie, Folk and Older Brother at the latter.
493 Sanchez St, San Francisco, CA 94114
This indigo-walled jewel box offers a mix of vintage and new, brooches, rings, necklaces, pins, lockets, bracelets, and more, all “heirlooms of a new age,” as owners Trina Papini and Sheri Evans describe. If a last-minute gift is in order, Metier is clutch.
546 Laguna St, San Francisco, CA 94102
Proper began as a feeling, not as an idea. The feeling was something akin to empathy; an acute awareness that despite the current proliferation of “boutique” and “lifestyle” hotels and residences, there were precious few properties designed for and around today’s global creative nomad. Many in our milieu share the same daunting challenge: staying fresh and focused, energized and inspired—all whilst bouncing between London and Hollywood and Austin and San Francisco and Portland and back again. For them, intuitive service is a given. Mere table stakes. What they need and seek beyond accommodation, even at its most luxurious, is an inspiration. From the elevated and often surprising interiors imagined by Kelly Wearstler. From the sense of immersion in, and connection to, the vibrancy of the local culture. From the highly curated amenities. From the inspired collaborations with the city’s best and most innovative chefs and mixologists. From music and art. From every detail, every interaction, every moment. This is only Proper. And no one else.