Friday, October 21, 2011

SF Weekly's 4th Annual DISH Dining Event

Take a moment and close your eyes. Imagine a Sunday afternoon in the beautiful city of San Francisco. You're with your family, friends, or perhaps that special someone? Regardless of who you are with, you are happy. And why are you so happy? Well, aside from the fact that you are alive and well, you are spending your Sunday afternoon eating foods from over 35 of the city's most delicious and culturally diverse restaurants.  That is what I did, one lovely Sunday afternoon earlier this month, when I attended SF Weekly's 4th Annual DISH Food and Wine event. Four levels of non-stop eating and drinking. Heaven? Well, it was pretty darn close to that. Here are a few photos from some of my favorite stops along the way.

Gussie's Chicken & Waffles 1521 Eddy Street
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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Wisdom Wednesday

"Timing is everything; take it slow and you'll get there on time." -- The Daily Love

Hilary Rhoda by Lachlan Bailey for Harper's Bazaar US, June/July 2011

Earlier today, I read this tweet from The Daily Love (which by the way, if you love daily inspiration as much as I do, you must follow them on Twitter). I  couldn't help but read it over and over throughout the day, as I thought about all things going on in my life. Lately, my head has been in a bit of a jumble. I have all these thoughts, ideas, plans -- you name it -- going on up there, pulling at me from left and right. If there's one thing you can probably figure out about me, it's that I am constantly thinking and planning. My Moleskine is a scary sight for some, not because it's color coded and has post-it's up the wazoo, but because I'm constantly filling it up with all the little things that pop into my head.  Sometimes it honestly feels as if my mind is going a mile a minute. So, when I read this simple sentence from TDL, I realized that I just need to live my life day by day, enjoy the little moments and not worry so much about pressing the fast forward button on all my plans. My goals and my dreams, they'll happen, no doubt. So for now, I might as well take the time to enjoy the journey I'm on to get there. I mean, what is the rush, after all? The best part about getting to where you want to go is the journey you take to get there. So, be sure to take your time and enjoy the sights along the way. If you need to make a few pit stops, do so, as long as you keep going. Don't worry about how long it takes you to get there - you'll get there when the time is just right.

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Monday, October 17, 2011

pancakePROFILES: 10 Questions for Jess, Founder of StyleSays

By now, you have all heard of StyleSays. If not, you're either living under a rock, or just missing out on the good stuff on the web! But, just in case you are in that select few who might not have heard of it, StyleSays, a new web start-up, is the first social shopping experience designed for you and your friends. What does that mean exactly? Well, for one, StyleSays brings together all of your favorite stores in one place and allows you to shop online, while directly chatting with your friends about what it is you are shopping for. Still need to know more? Check out this video:
StyleSays 101 from StyleSays on Vimeo.

Okay, but what's more exciting about learning about a new start up, than learning about the people behind it?? That's where Jess comes in. I met Jess last month during Fashion's Night Out in San Francisco. Shortly after, we sat down for lunch at The Blue Fig in the Mission and got to know each other over a delicious meal. Sadly, I forgot to snap photos of our delicious food, and of Jess, so for now you'll have to settle with the fact that I will get these photos during our next meet up. For now, I'll leave you with some questions that Jess, the founder of StyleSays, so graciously answered for me (but mostly for you).

1. Introduce yourself! Where are you from, what brought you here, and what do you do for StyleSays?
My name is Jess and I grew up on a farm in Oklahoma. I came to California for the weather (and college). I stayed for the people and food. I work on anything related to the wonderful people using StyleSays. This can ranges from marketing, focus groups, and user interviews, to adding lots of cool clothing to the site!
photo c/o Jess

2. So, what is StyleSays?
It's a place for friends to meetup online and shop hundreds of curated stores. 

3. How did you come up with the concept for StyleSays and what makes your site different from everything else that is on the web right now?
The biggest difference is that we provide really fun tools for people to interact in real-time, that recreate the experience of browsing stores in Union Square or the Marina. We have a chatting feature that allows shoppers to view and talk about the items they're shopping. It's also integrated into Facebook so all your friends are already on the site when you sign up. Lots of other sites focus on sharing with strangers but we built an experience for people who would actually shop in real life together.

4. StyleSays seems to have a very female-dominant audience. How does being a male affect how you think about your site and concepts associated with it?
A lot of people are surprised to learn that most of the team behind StyleSays are guys. I kinda think it's an advantage at times. In the beginning we didn't know anything about women's shopping or fashion. We didn't have any biases or make any assumptions about what would work best. This allowed us to start clean and learn by observing. All the features have come from brainstorms with our users and female friends. They inspire and teach us everything we claim to know. I still feel like there is so much to learn and that really excites me.

5. Some people would argue that San Francisco lacks a lot when it comes to the fashion scene. Since StyleSays is based here in the city, how are you hoping your presence here will help others think differently about our city? Are you doing anything that's special to SF?
I've always heard that SF lacks a fashion scene but I've been continually impressed by this city's style. We're doing a lot to promote local boutiques and designers. Right now we're doing a giveaway with Azalea and they're quickly catching the eyes of people from all over the country. As our site grows we want to do a lot more of this for the SF fashion community, especially our blogger friends who have been so supportive. 

6. I know StyleSays launched not too long ago, but what is one goal you are really hoping to achieve before the end of the year?
We've been brainstorming an iPhone app that I'm really excited to get into people's hands. It's going to really blur the lines between online and offline shopping. Personally, I'd love to be retweeted by a reality TV star, but I'm just weird like that. 

7. So what does your personal style say?
My personal style definitely reflects my demeanor. I'm pretty monotone, but I throw in quick one-liners that you have to be listening for to catch. I like to wear comfortable, non-descript outfits with hints that say I might actually know what I'm doing. To be fair I do enjoy splashes of color, as you can see on my profile. Who doesn't love a little attention?

8. What is your favorite place in San Francisco for: Food? Drinks? Shopping? People Watching? And..any other hidden gems from our city that you would like to share? 
Food - Papitos in Potrero Hill. Get the duck confit quesadilla, unreal. Also it would be rude to leave out Blue Barn, they're sandwiches are tough to beat. I know because my friend is a major panini snob. 
Drink - Farmer Brown's. Try the Napper Tandy, it's the one with ginger beer, and hang out before catching a show at the Warfield. Soft spot for Butter, reminds me of home on the farm. 
Shopping Neighborhood - I'm a big fan of Hayes Valley. Grab brunch at Frjtz and hit up the little shops down the block. 
Shopping Store - I would have chosen American Rag (rip) so I'll go with Wasteland in the Haight instead. 
Hidden Gem - Maybe not too hidden but the Kabuki Theatre for a luxurious night at the movies and Mighty if you feel like dancing. 

9. If you could be any kitchen appliance, which one would you be and why? (Interestingly enough, I love to ask this question of people because it's so very telling!
Crockpot. It's the fastest way to my heart. But actually, those things can cook anything.

10. What is your advice for others who are thinking about launching their own start ups? 
Today is the best day to start a company. Tomorrow you'll probably be too busy, so start doing anything and everything to make it happen.

Bonus. And of course, what is your favorite pancake flavor and why?
Bacon. One time while working at a summer camp someone asked for a bacon waffle. I was pretty intrigued so when I saw bacon pancakes on a menu one day I jumped at the opportunity. Pretty incredible breakfast mash-up I must say. If I'm feeling vegetarian it would have to be wheat pancakes with strawberries.

And there you have it! Now you know a little more about StyleSays and its founder, Jess.  So, what did I take away from this? Well for one, that I'm a terrible pancake enthusiast, as I didn't know that BACON PANCAKES existed. But, more importantly? It's no wonder that StyleSays is doing such an amazing job so far, because they have such a unique thinker behind the scenes! I, for one, am definitely looking forward to more from the StyleSays team, and if you don't have them on your radar, get them on there now. Even more incentive to check them out?? Well, right now they're hosting a GIVEAWAY with ShoeDazzle, so don't be shy - enter to win!

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Friday, October 14, 2011

Chloe Rose Boutique

Chloe Rose Boutique 1824 Union Street, San Francisco

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A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of attending Chloe Rose Boutique's One Year Celebration. It was a night filled with cupcakes, wine, delicious treats, and an amazing photo booth! It was wonderful meeting and chatting with so many beautiful San Franciscans. The Chloe Rose Boutique is absolutely adorable and anyone who walks in can instantly tell it's a store that was made with lots of love and care. Congrats to Marissa on one year! It's inspiring to meet so many who have taken risks to do what they love each and every day. Special thanks to Lindsay, of @FashionPRSF for the invitation!


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Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Wisdom Wednesday

"If you don't go after what you want, you'll never have it. If you don't ask, the answer is always no. If you don't step forward, you're always in the same place." -- Nora Roberts

"Urban Bazaar," Fall 2011 Look Book, Threadsence

Hello my beautiful blogger buddies. Happy Wednesday to you! Can you believe we've hit another month? October already?? Which reminds me, a pancakeLEFTOVERS post shall be heading your way! But, on to today's Wisdom Wednesday. I spent most of September pretty stressed out and a majority of my days were filled with complaints. Yes, even though my weekly Wednesday posts are filled with words of encouragement, sometimes it's terribly hard for me to follow my own advice. It wasn't until the very end of September (seriously, like the LAST day of the month) that I sat at my desk at work and thought, "Seriously, Chandamheer, what do you have to complain about?" I have a great job, a great apartment, an even greater family, and truly wonderful friends. I am so very lucky for all that I have been blessed with. So, this self-realization at 5:00pm at work lead me to come up with something I like to call, my "90-day wellness plan." Right about now, you're probably thinking, what in the world does this have to do with anything?? Well, patience, grasshopper, it will all come together...

There are a lot of things that I have complained about in the last month that are all within my power to change. And, like the saying goes, if you can't change something, change your attitude about it, right? So, for 90-days, I'm going to work on all the little things I can change to improve my overall wellness - mind, body, and spirit. That means: finding an awesome yoga studio in my neighborhood and getting my workouts back into my regular schedule, taking time to read all the books on my reading list, going out and exploring the beautiful city that I live in and taking advantage of all the awesome events that go on more often than not, and most importantly, taking time to do all the things that I genuinely love to do. Of course this list merely scratches the surface of all the things I am planning to work on for these next three months, but I figure, I'll take it all one step at a time. So, this Wednesday, my wisdom for you is to move forward, one step at a time. You don't have to do it all at once. But if you don't do it at all, then you'll always be in the same place. And I don't know about you, but I like it when there's a change of scenery.

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Monday, October 3, 2011

Vitamin Water Fashion Show

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A couple weeks ago, thanks to my job, I was lucky enough to sit front row at VitaminWater-inspired Fashion Show put on by VitaminWater & 7x7 Magazine. It was a night filled with beautifully designed & brightly-colored gowns, delicious treats, VitaminWater cocktails, and Mondo Guerra. Yes, Mondo from Project Runway. While my favorite look that night was the black and red, Black Swan-esque dress, the winner of the Fashion Show was the bright yellow number. Personally, I think my favorite  look was robbed of the $1000 cash prize, but hey, I'm no Mondo Guerra.


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