Stitch and Burn: Bag Workshop

Guiding a 9 year old to sew is completely soul satisfying for me.7 sew smile

The happy accomplishment, with a practical product at the end is enchanting. This was a 4 hour workshop. The idea was to keep him engaged (fun), have a finished workable product, use our heads to engineer the idea, and never spend a second fussing about perfection. Continue reading

New at Swankety Swank: The Thistle Sideboard

Thistle 004
“Thistle,” according to our friends at Wikipedia, ” is the common name of a group of flowering plants characterised by leaves with sharp prickles on the margins, mostly in the family Asteraceae. Prickles often occur all over the plant – on surfaces such as those of the stem and flat parts of leaves. These are an adaptation that protects the plant against herbivorous animals, discouraging them from feeding on the plant.”

This Thistle sideboard also protects your belongings in a similar manner! Continue reading

A Swankety Swank Faerie Tale

Ladies and gentlemen, creatures of all shapes and sizes, persuasions and intentions, allow me to introduce to you A Swankety Swank Fairy Tale!

Narrator STORM tells the tale

Once upon a time in a deep dark forest, there lived a princess who created original handmade faerie fashions. She and her friends loved to dress up in the clothes they made, dancing and storytelling until the early morning. Continue reading

Indie Artist Sidewalk Sale This Saturday!

sidewalk sale August promoThis Saturday, come visit the Swankety Swank Sidewalk Sale to see work by amazing local independent artists!  Be at 289 Divisadero at 11 o’clock am until 4 pm to immerse yourself in handcrafted art, fashion and more!

What kind of goodies can you expect?  Allow me to introduce you to three of the best designers in San Francisco:

Artwork by Maria ZhalninaMaria Zhalnina has worked as an art director, designer and illustrator.  She has art directed six magazines and created designs for other publications.  Her illustrations have been used in books, magazines, and calendars, and she also works in fine arts in painting, graphics and installations.

Chechnja by Maria ZhalninaThe above sculpture is titled “Chechnya” and is from Zhalnina’s “Maps of the World” series.Tif of Wayward Shifties Tiff Rojas of Wayward Shiftys makes magical clothes and accessories for everyday wear!  Known for her quirky sense of style and a penchant for fun that rivals the faeries, Tiff’s designs are sure to enchant you!  Try on one of her pointed hats or a frilly skirt!
Wayward ShiftiesTiff models the coat she made for her Wayward Shifties clothing label.  Tiff’s clothes are all one of a kind (and I mean that in the most literal and figurative senses), just the way we like it at Swankety Swank!
Artwork by Cara TuckfeltArtist Cara Tuckfelt works in printmaking, bookbinding, sculpture, and painting!  She says “Printmaking helps me find my voice as an artist through mixing varied techniques and experimentation often to the point of aesthetic destruction…Aesthetically, my work is earthy, dark, and visually complicated, owing to the many trials, errors and countless hours spent on each piece.”
Cara Tuckfelt bookAlso a bookbinder, Cara reveals, “Each book that I complete is an exploration and manifestation of my own technical abilities. The books that I choose to bind reflect their respective cultures and trace the evolution of bookbinding.”

After you meet these artists (and others!) whose goods will be along the sidewalk, be sure to come indoors to check out the new 2 women show, Perth: Something Hidden, showcasing the hauntingly beautiful paintings by Emily Lounsbury and the evocative pictorial compositions of Eartha L. Goodwin! We also have new clothing by DAS, gibbous and Zunique!

Swankety Updates: Trunk Sale wrap-up and new merchandise by Yabette, gibbous, and Rykovich.

As usual, it was an exciting week at The House of Swankety Swank.  A warm, mostly sunny afternoon brought lots of shoppers and artists to Saturday’s Trunk sale.    Old favorites and new guest artists provided a variety of unique, handmade products for our customers.   If you missed July’s trunk sale, fear not!   Just stop by Swankety Swank  Tuesday through Sunday to shop these artists and many more!  While you’re here, check out some beautiful new pieces from Yabette, Rykovich, and gibbous.   We’d love to see you, so come on by.

Trunk show street view with Kim of Krafty Kitten

Trunk Sale wrap-up

One of our longest working artists, Amy Barrios of ICJ designs, with us from the first year in our old shop on McAllister Street,  brought out some of her beautiful, classic jewelry.  Amy is a self-taught artist and former English teacher!  In fact, the name of her line is a play on words related to her past profession.  “ICJ’s name (Independent Claws Jewelry) is an allusion to grammar because the strands are just like independent clauses – they work independently or with dependent clauses (the pendants and clasps.) The hooks on the ends of each strand are called lobster claws; hence the name.”  Using  high-quality materials and stones, Amy’s necklaces can also be worn as bracelets or seamlessly combined with other strands to create your own unique, beautiful combinations.   If you didn’t get a chance to see Amy’s work at the Trunk Sale, please stop by and check out her jewelry at Swankety Swank.

Amy Barrios of ICJ designs
Table detail Amy Barrios of ICJ designs

We also  had several talented guest artists participate. Katya Khan of  Urbanomad with twine jewelry and other accessories, and Tiana Saul of Sayuri Designs (below with feather hair clips) both brought more unique and beautiful accessories to Swankety Swank’s customers.

Trunk sale guest artist Katya Khan of Urbanomad
Pretty display by trunk show guest artist Tiana Saul of Sayuri Designs

Adrian of Salvaged and Stitched brought these super cute salvaged pillows in whimsical designs.   Salvaged and Stiched is a local family-run business.  His pillows “are made with upholstery remnants, and have either upholstery or apparel fabric  appliques. Vintage buttons are used for eyes, leather or suede for beaks and thick wool or mohair yarn for delightful long slender legs.”  You can now find his work everyday at Swankety Swank.

Adrian of Salvaged and Stitched now found in Swankety Swank.

Kim of Krafty Kitten, makes the cutest, sassiest,  bones and flowers hair accessories.  A recent graduate of Art Institute of CA-San Francisco, Kim has been making work as Krafty Kitten since 2007.  She calls her grandparents her inspiration since they fostered her passion and skill from a young age.   Her grandfather passed on sewing skills he learned as a young man in Mexico, so her work continues a line of family tradition.  Some other inspirations are rockabilly, cholabilly, psychobilly, pin up, punk and mexican culture.   You can find more of Kim’s Krafty Kitten work at Swankety Swank.

Kim of Krafty Kitten helps a customer
Krafty Kitten table

New furniture by Yabette, clothing and accessories from gibbous and Rykovich

Yabette recently finished a lovely new table.   Turquoise blue with a hand-painted, green leaf adorns the top.  This piece, like all Yabette’s work, is a well-built piece of furniture that was in need of some TLC and refurbishment to bring it back to life and ensure it’s use long into the future.

Yabette Blue table with hand-painted green leaf, $250
Yabette Blue table with hand-painted green leaf, $250

Artist Kurtis Rykovich’s pop-surrealist style fits perfectly at Swankety Swank.  Kurtis has participated as both fine artist and a designer, and now he has some beautiful one of a kind, hand painted summer blouses and t-shirts, each with a custom, removal broach.   His hand-painted t-shirts come in sizes from Small to 3X.

Rykovich embellished blue blouse, $98
Rykovich embellished blue blouse, detail removable pin, $98
Rykovich sandy giraffe tee, $75
Rykovich sandy giraffe tee, removable pin detail, $75
Rykovich orange silk blouse, $80

We had heard that the designers at gibbous were passing a summer cold between them, so we were extra surprised when they re-stocked the store with quite a few newly created pieces.  When design calls, nothing can keep the designers at gibbous from answering!  We hope y’all at gibbous will be getting back to %100 soon.

gibbous calls themselves “a miniature fashion house of hearts and hands” that collects cast-offs of the past to create your re-newed, favorite, how-did-I -live-without-this fashion pieces.  I should warn you; much like a tatoo, once you get your first gibbous piece, you’ll want more and more.  The collective of 4 designers re-uses a variety of materials, victorian clothes, stained silk slips, buttons, coins, keys, to re-fashion material menageries, sans patterns, into unique items you’ll never find in any department store.  like all of our designers, gibbous creates pieces you can wear with pride.  they strive to undermine disposable fashions manufactured in far-off sweat shops one stitch at a time.

gibbous hat, detail 1, $60
gibbous hat, detail 2, $60
gibbous Hannah Patch Skirt $180
gibbous white blouse with pink details, $60

And a final reminder, stop by to see the Team Valor show, curated by STORM, before it closes.  This is your opportunity to see some original artwork by some of the Bay Area’s best comic book artists.

Team Valor show opening

Photographs and writing by Aurelie Sandrine

Indie Artist Trunk Sale This Saturday!

Swankety Swank Fashion Forward, March!
At Swankety Swank, we are bustlin’ with excitement about the vendors we have participating in this Saturday’s Indie Artist Trunk Sale!  Here are a few items by their respective creators so you can get a sampling of some of the amazing one of a kind handcrafted work that will be available to you!

Kim of Krafty Kitten has been sewing since she was 8 years old and is inspired by rockabilly, cholabilly, psychobilly, pin up, punk and mexican culture.  Above, Krafty Kitten showcases a blue and white polka dot halter dress.

Sayuri Designs creates handcrafted feather accessories for hat and hair!

Salvaged and Stitched produces unique hand made home decor!

Ryan Humphries creates etchings, woodcuts, screenprints, monoprints, drawings, ceramic sculpture and oil paintings. His work combines disciplined, delicate draughtsmanship with unihibited imagination.

Satin Corset creates jewelry that evokes vintage, antique and Victorian nostalgia.  They describe their work as “Sweet, vintage chic. Victorian opulence. Charmingly antique, rustic redux. Flowers, pearls, glass, antique brass, little details, sparks of color & whimsy.”

Father’s Day Finds at Swankety Swank

Still haven’t found the perfect gift for Dad for Father’s Day?   Swankety Swank has got you covered!  We carry some amazing hand-made art, fashion, and decor pieces that any dad will love and use for years to come.  Check out our gallery of great pieces any dad will be happy to receive.   And remember, shopping local supports not only artists, but the entire community.   The folks at the 3/50 Project have discovered that for every $100 spent in local establishments, $68 of  the money stays in the community, versus $43 spent at a national chain.  Another great reason to shop for Dad at Swankety Swank!


Photographs and writing by Aurelie Sandrine