Tag Archives: san francisco

open studios : heath ceramics

May 23, 2011

this weekend was on of the busiest ive had in a very long time & there wasnt even a wedding, well not one i was working on at least. 

it was glorious to have the entire weekend and i took advantage of every second. there were loads of things happening in and around the bay area, so many the city was running shuttles around to the different event so that people could try and pack in as much as possible. 
saturday was spent at the heath ceramics open studios (thanks jane for the heads up!) with lunch at cavallo point. this amazing bay area hotel is filled with the photographs of local artist and we strolled around taking advantage of the amazing art on view. i just wish we could have seen into the rooms, each features the work of a different photographer.
in the evening it was off to try a new pho place (a few of us here have a passion for this big bowl of vietnamese soup and travel around the city trying out new places) we finished with Artpad – an art showcase put on at the phoenix hotel
phew, and that was just saturday! 
it was a lot but i wanted to share some photos i took at the beautiful heath ceramics studio in sausalito. 

the two types of clay used at heath – a lighter and a darker base clay, rolled out in slabs and ready to be turned into beautiful objects. 

the seat of the master mold maker at heath, i couldnt help but love him all the more as he sits each day in a hot pink old eames chair – amazing right?!
a few shots of the various stations along the way, handles are attached, lids are made, pieces are dried

testing out some new glazes & a the new house numbers. i love the final shot of the classic bud vases in various stages of drying. look how much smaller the vase is when it is finally finished (1st on the left is a finished piece) 
many of the original designs first created by edith heath (who also went to the san francisco arts institute, where i did my masters!) are still in production today, a tribute to her vision and the beauty of her work. 
i treated myself to my first piece of heath too! a bud vase of course, in cream. i thought it would be perfect to place the little floral stragglers that are inevitably left after i make an arrangement – to give them a sense of grandeur.


February 21, 2011

another week begins. the start of this one feels crisper and cleaner than others have this year. I booked a trip for the middle of march to go off buying for the shop. I feel like i need to get away from seeing all of the things im slowly becoming accustom to at the markets here. clear my head and eyes just for a minute to gain fresh perspective. 
it stormed friday night and all day saturday and on into the evening. it was my first time seeing rain with such combination of force and longevity since moving to san francisco. i cant help but imagine this huge storm as it swelled and tossed out across the wide open pacific before finally crashing on us.  we spent almost all of the day curled up inside with books and blankets and huge cups of tea. if we had a fireplace i have no doubt that it would have been roaring, but our trusty radiator did its job faithfully though with less ambiance. i worked my way through much of the Great House, nicole krauss. i am pleasantly surprised not only with the story but with the writing itself – drawn in by the novels focus on objects imbued with the memory of many individual and many generations (go figure, i know.) with a few sections left i am eager to finish. 
it was nice to awake this morning to a bright blue albeit chilly sky. wrapped in this lovely, i headed to the farmers market. It was a treat to find bundles of thin fresh asparagus there. brown bread was made and a huge pot of veggie stock with all the unused bits i squirreled away in the fridge during the week. i also spent some time with an amazing old cook book i acquired a while ago, but it deserves a post of its own. and i report a disasterous molasses taffy attempt. 
i  finished the whole thing with a long cold walk at the beach. its proximity to the pacific and sand  is one of the great luxuries of san francisco and i loved spending as much time there as i can. 

a love-ly dinner

February 15, 2011

last night we spent a truly lovely night at home. we are lucky to live in a city that offers a bounty of beautiful ingredients and we feel like on special occasions its nice to take full advantage of this bounty.  

 we started the meal with a sampling of charcuterie from the newly opened Fatted Calf store in Hayes Valley. they use high quality and local ingredients and all of their meats are cured and prepared by hand.the flavors and exquisite pates and salumis surly show case this delicate art. they also offer classes so you can learn these skills for yourself. YUM! 

on the right side of the board are a few cheese we picked up at Cheese Plus. they are always so helpful and have an amazing variety of artfully crafted cheeses from around the world. the blue cheese was by far the favorite. a goats milk blue from france: blue du bocage goat. its excellent. the best part is we have enough left for dinner tonight. this makes me very happy. 

finally – mussels from SwanOysterDepot. a long standing sf fishmonger. they have been at it been around for decades. they have an oyster bar which looks like it hasent changed since the place opened and you at 9am you can see people happily slurping oysters, eating huge bowls of clam chowda and drinking anchor steams – its looks like so much fun. i still have yet to partake. but their fish is amazing! its the only place i will buy seafood from in the city. you can call ahead to order or just get there early. but i suggest getting in before 10 to have prime choice. 


2 1/2lbs of fresh mussels. scrubbed and debearded

1 large fennel bulb. cored and diced. fronds reserved and chopped aprox 1/4 cup. 

1 large onion diced.

2 cloves garlic diced.

a few sprigs of fresh thyme

tbsp of red pepper flakes 

1/2 cup white wine

1/4 cup vodka

1 1/4 cups of fish stock, or other stock if you prefer. 

1/2 cup of fresh chopped parsley 

2 tbsp evoo

1 tbsp butter

salt and pepper. 

in a large dutch oven or heavy bottom skillet heat oil and saute fennel, onion, garlic and thyme. until softened. aprox 8 mins over medium heat. 

next add red pepper flakes and saute another 1 minute 

add vodka and wine and bring to a boil. reduce 3 mins. 

add stock and bring to a boil. when it is boiling add mussels. cover and shake pan or gently fold bottom mussels to top.  until mussels are opened and cooked. aprox. 7 minutes. discard any unopened ones. 

while mussels are cooking i placed a large le cruset baking dish in the oven at 300. when the mussels were cooked i carefully transfered them into the warm lecruset and placed it back in the oven. 

i then added the last dollop of butter, chopped parsley, fennel fronds, and salt and pepper. i melted the butter and reduced the sauce simmering gently for 3 minutes. removed mussels from oven and poured the sauce over the top. 

served w. big hunks of crusty bread. 

day tripping – angel island

May 26, 2010

i took a little outing this weekend – a very short but pleasant ferry ride from pier 41 to angel island. a strange vestige of american military history ranging from the civil war to the late 1960 – i HIGHLY recommend packing a picnic lunch and spending the day!
a little civil war era chapel –
the old hospital – i have a little dream that this would make a perfect B&B – its such a shame that all these old buildings are going unused because they are truly beautiful

i want to live here – look at that view!! hope you enjoyed this little virtual tour of angel island for more info click here
by the way i got to fire that cannon up at the top while out there! haha

simple sundays

April 4, 2010

i simply love this little old hand painted sign – i walk by it most mornings on the way into the studio and i love is straightforward presence. “LUNCH” and then barley still readable below it says Bar-B.Q.
enjoy your easter sunday!