What is your favorite tattoo?

In celebration of National Tattoo Day, I wanted to share my own tattoo story and the stories of two local shop owner/makers. Tattoos are such a personal (and permanent) art form that I always find it interesting to learn about why someone decides to get one (or a few). Read on for the why behind some great tattoos.

Alana_Soap Maven_Etta + BillieMe, all soap geared up.

How many tattoos do you have?
Three total. One on my ankle, one on my abdomen and one on my forearm.

If you have more than one, what is your favorite tattoo?
My favorite tattoo is the newest one on my forearm.

Alana Rivera Makers Gonna Make TattooWhat is the story behind your favorite tattoo? Why did you decided to get it?
About two years ago, I purchased some amazing temporary tattoos from Tattly and one of them was “Makers Gonna Make” from the graphic designer Jude Landry. I was instantly in love. The use of traditional tattoo lettering combined with the phrase really struck me. It became my mantra, a reminder of my strength as an artist and maker (and lover of handmade things), that helped push me to keep growing and moving forward with Etta + Billie. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve seen me use it along with almost every photo of product being made or being wrapped. After wearing the temporary tattoo on multiple occasions, I finally decided to get the real thing.

Any ideas for your next tattoo?
Yes, I’m toying with a few different ideas for images that honor my grandmothers and family.

Nicholas Weinstein of Homestead Apothecary, Gardenista_TattooNic Wienstein of Homestead Apothecary

I had the very good fortune of connecting with modern community herbalist and advocate, Nic Weinstein, a few years ago when he opened the magical Homestead Apothecary in Oakland, California. His shop has an amazing collection of dried herbs, tinctures, healing objects, books and of course fabulous apothecary products. Nic is a wealth of knowledge about herbal healing and travels all over California giving workshops.

How many tattoos do you have?
I think I technically have 6. Half sleeves on both of my arms. One on each of my forearms plus one on the inside of my right forearm. My back and my chest.

If you have more than one, what is your favorite tattoo?
I think my Never for Money Always for Love tattoos but its a tough call!

What is the story behind your favorite tattoo? Why did you decided to get it?
Strangely enough my tattoo artist finished the lavender piece on my arm and she realized that it took her a lot less time than she anticipated so she asked if I wanted something else. I told her about the Talking Head lyrics that resonated so strongly with me and she loved it and it felt right so I went for it! So I got 3 tattoos in one sitting!

Any ideas for your next tattoo?
Working on a cover up. What can I say? I started young!

Homestead Apothecary
486 49th Street
Oakland, CA 94609
510.541.5225

Open: Monday 12:00 pm – 6:00 pm + Tuesday – Sunday 11:00 am – 5:00 pm

 

Tammy and David of RedemptionTammy Liu of Redemption

When Tammy reached out to me months ago about joining the stylishly curated makers in her Campbell, California based shop Redemption, I said “Hell Yes!”. Tammy and boyfriend, David, are extremely passionate about finding and sharing well crafted hand made goods with their community. I’m so honored to be a part of the their shop! Read on to find out more about Tammy’s collection of tattoos.

How many tattoos do you have?
7: 2 on back, both wrists, ribs, stomach and thigh.
Tammy Liu Tattoo RedemptionTattoo Close Up

If you have more than one, what is your favorite tattoo?
Thigh piece, as it represents my mother.

What is the story behind your fav/only tattoo? Why did you decided to get it?
It incorporates a picture of my mother and a dream catcher that she passed down to me. I got it done just before traveling to Australia for a year as a way to keep her close to me throughout my journey. The tattoo depicts her as a warrior/survivor and commemorates her optimism and positivity in overcoming her strokes.

Tammy Liu Redemption TattooAny ideas for your next tattoo?
My boyfriend and I are thinking about getting our store logo done!

Redemption
241a E Campbell Ave
Campbell, CA 95008

408.628.4877

*all photographs were provided and posted with permission from the artists.

10 Things I’m Coveting from Renegade Craft Fair

Renegade Craft Fair is the hub new and sought after handmade products from across the country. However, finding the most beautifully curated pieces among thousands on display can be overwhelming at the best of times (especially when surrounded by 1,000s of other shoppers). Not to worry! I’ve put together a little guide to some of my favorite items for this weekend’s Renegade Craft Fair in San Francisco.

Here are some of my favorite style pieces from Renegade Crafters. Why? I can wear any of these items at any time. Each piece is unique with a touch of attitude.
Renegade Picks  Part I1. Matters of Delight Arcus Cuff
2. Munie Essential Carry Messenger Bag
3. 3rd Season Shift Dress
4. Astrid Endeavor Bib Necklace
5. Kendra Renee Jewelry Tiny Facet Gold Studs 

For a foodie like me, Renegade has a plethora of fabulous items for the home – sweet to savory, modern to traditional. Everything is kitchen and table worthy, of course.

6. Lemonbird Preserves Rhubarb and Oro Blanco Grapefruit Jam
7. Nell & Mary Chambray Tea Towel
8. Nosh This Salt + Pepper Caramel
9. Drywell Art Old Fashioned Cocktail Print
10. Sven Ceramics Blue Mug

Did we fail to name any of your Renegade favs? If so, post links to your favorite items below AND check out our Renegade Pinterest page for more of my top picks.

Renegade Craft Fair
July 18 + 19
11 am – 6 pm
Fort Mason, San Francisco
Free to attend!

 

 

Pride is all About LOVE

Etta + Billie Soap Rainbow SF PrideIt’s officially Pride month! Yeah! A fantastic time to be in San Francisco. There is a festive mood about the city and rainbow flags everywhere. I’m always down for some rainbows and parties but Pride is really about celebrating diversity, love, expressing your individuality and having no f*&cks to give about what other’s might have to say about us. Pretty amazing.

A friend recently shared this fantastic video, that got me a bit teary. It’s all about love and acceptance. Love endures ridicule & prejudices. Love is universal. Love has no labels. It feels perfect for Pride.


Each of us has a responsibility to redefine how society views I applaud you for being catalyst for change. Keep spreading love and acceptance!

Edit: I’m am so proud of my country today. The Supreme Courts decision on marriage equality is a massive step in the right direction. Love is love!

Recipe: How to make Cold Brew Coffee

Cold Brew CoffeeI was excited when Alana asked me to guest blog for her. She knows I’m as passionate about coffee as she is about Etta + Billie. She also knows I don’t have a lot of time to spend doing fancy things with fancy equipment. So, when I say making your own cold brew is easy – it’s EASY. It requires no fancy equipment and it is practically no-fail. Now, let’s get down to the nitty-gritty grinds!

Why cold brew? Cold brewing gives you a wonderful, delicious cup of coffee without the bitterness and acidity that heating the grounds imparts. You’ll start to enjoy coffee for all the nuances and ‘notes’ your beans have. If you are sensitive to the acids in coffee this is a way to enjoy your favorite beverage again. If you love iced coffee it’s the way to go, incredibly convenient. I’ve even heard that some people will make an extra strong batch then add boiling water to make a hot cup. I haven’t tried it this way yet, but it’s an interesting idea.

For a basic set up you need beans, some sort of filter to put them in (like a nut milk bag, here’s the one I have; or disposable filter bags for tea), a 2 liter pitcher, and a refrigerator. I also like to use a mesh strainer to capture some of the sludge. Here’s a shot of mine.Cold Brew Coffee Setup

Today I’m using a nice dark roast from Paramo Roasters, Shadowplay. I’ll use enough beans for about 1.5 cups at a medium to coarse grind. Finer and you’ll have a lot of sludge. Here’s the beauty of all this, just about nothing you could do is wrong. You can’t really do too much or too little! If you make it too strong then you have a concentrate that you can then add water to taste.  Too little and no need to dilute, you can just drink it straight. Well, I suppose you could make it too weak, but that’s subjective.

The how:

  1. Grind your beans. (or get the shop to do it for you, even easier!)
  2. Scoop into filter bag. (use at least 1.5 cups for a 2L pitcher)
  3. Place in pitcher.
  4. Add water.
  5. Place in refrigerator overnight (or longer).
  6. In the morning remove the bag and give it a good squeeze.
  7. Set grounds aside for use around the house. (more on that later)
  8. ENJOY! – Add water, sugar, and/or milk to your preference

Cold Brew Coffee StrainedSome final notes:

If it lasts that long, cold brew will be good for up to a week-and-a-half in the refrigerator. If you run out of time the next morning and have to decide between catching the bus or straining your coffee grounds – go get that bus. Trust me, your cold brew won’t be ruined if left longer – I’ve done it, it’ll just be just more concentrated! I keep repeating myself on this, but there’s just about nothing you can do to cold brew to make a bad batch!

Some people think you should only use espresso roast. I disagree, I say use what you have on hand! This will work with just about anything. Do you have family who love you and know you love coffee but know nothing about it themselves? This could be the only way to salvage that nearly undrinkable bag of beans they gave you. Cold brew requires no special equipment. Some sort of filter bag if you want, but even then some people put the grounds straight into the pitcher and filter through a fine mesh strainer afterward. Can you get fancy equipment? Sure, but I say go lo-fi and spend the money you saved on something wonderful like Etta + Billie Ritual Roasters Coffee Soap or Mint Coffee Scrub!

What to do with all those coffee grinds:

  • Use the them in your plants. They’ll love the nitrogen, especially starter plants.
  • Use them as a natural pot scrub. Used grinds are great for scouring pots and pans. Just put a scoop on your sponge.
  • Also scrub your hands when you need a little extra power. They’re great if you’ve been chopping garlic or onions, too.

There you have it, cold brew coffee in a few easy steps.

About Dawn:Dawn at Grounds for Review

Coffee and chocolate are my two favorite food groups, the darker the better!  I can talk a lot about both, but prefer not to get overly snobby and pedantic about either. When I’m not discussing the finer points of ground cacao or coffee I am hanging out with my honey and two fantastic kiddos in the gorgeous Bay Area. You can follow my coffee adventures at Grounds for Review.

Retailer Interview – LEGION SF

 Legion-SF-Boutique-Etta-Billie-DisplayMeet Sydney Pfaff owner and curator of the lovely LEGION boutique in San Francisco. Sydney has a fantastic eye for stylish simple beautiful clothing, jewelry, bath and body goodies and art. Read on to find out more about some of her favorite things.

1. What is your favorite color? Sunshine yellow!

2. Favorite smell? Sandalwood.

3. Go to cocktail or beverage? Any kind of pilsner is a-ok with me.

4. What would you choose as your last meal? A chile relleno burrito.

5. Favorite thing to cook? Veggies with coconut curry.

6. Favorite dessert? Chips & salsa

7. Furthest place you’ve traveled? I don’t think it’s technically the furthest away, but the longest travel time was to Indonesia—also one of my favorite countries to visit. Japan is a close second and a much easier flight!

8. 3 Destinations/Experiences on your bucket list? Turkey, Morocco and Nashville.

9. Favorite memory with your grandmother/grandparents? I always loved hearing my grandpa’s stories about living in San Francisco as a kid. He grew up in the Outer Richmond and his father (my great-grandpa) was one of Muni’s first employees. He and his brother used to ride the trains for free all over the city. He always smiled so bright when he talked about it. I miss him very much.

10. Favorite book? I really like Dave Eggers. My favorite photo book is “California Trip” by Richard Blair and Kathleen Goodwin. I never get tired of looking at California’s incomparable beauty.Legion-SF-Boutique679 Clay Street, San Francisco

Where to follow Legion:

instagram: @legion_shop

facebook: https://www.facebook.com/legionsf

pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/legionshop/

twitter: @legion_shop

blog: http://www.legionsf.com/blog/

2013 Year in Review and Mantras for 2014

rejoice-sanfrancisco-mural-artIf you follow me on Instagram and Facebook, I’ve been a busy bee. The beginning of the year is always a good time to reflect, which I’ve been doing a lot of. I (like many people) have a tendency to focus on the things I didn’t accomplish rather than the things I did. So, I decided to share the things I’m really proud of from the last year and my mantras for the coming year. Now it’s your turn. What are your proud moments from 2013? What are you looking forward to in 2014?

2013:

  • No more day job (um yeah, that happened. I’m please beyond measure but freaked out at the same time. It’s kind of awesome.)
  • Launched my Etta + Billie website and partnered with over 15 new stores! I LOVE getting connected with other business owners and creating relationships.
  • Better work/life balance which = an adventure with my husband (see some of the Italy photos here)

2014:

  • Growth
  • Appreciation
  • Focus

Last Weekend with the Fam

Family Visit April 2013

I was lucky enough to spend last weekend with my family touring around San Francisco.  We had a wonderful time riding bikes in the sunshine on Angel Island, drinking some microbrews (guess where?) and eating up a storm.  It was great to have all of us together on such a beautiful weekend!