sf // coit tower + re:make festival

It's another sunny Saturday in San Francisco, and Lydia and I decide to head out for a walking tour. We were going to take the 10am tour of North Beach , but we would have had to be out of the house by 9:10am and let's be real: that's not happening. Instead, we opt for a slightly later tour of the Coit Tower murals, which we end up arriving late to anyway (not by much, though). Located in Telegraph Hill, Coit Tower is a 1933-built, 210-foot art deco edifice erected using funds given by Lillie Hitchcock Coit. Inside the tower is a collection of 27 murals painted by artists of the time (despite their extremely similar style, the murals are, indeed, by different artists).

Our guide is a charming elderly man who, despite being incomprehensible 90% of the time, still teaches us valuable information on the murals, their creators and their subjects. My favorite piece is Ralph Stackpole's Industries of California (shown in one of the photos below), which depicts factories with their employees hard at work. That blue, though!

coit tower san francisco murals

coit tower san francisco murals

coit tower san francisco murals

coit tower san francisco murals

coit tower san francisco murals

coit tower san francisco murals

We don't bother taking the elevator to the top of the tower because a) It's expensive and b) The line is long, and ain't nobody got time for that. Instead, we head back outside and enjoy the panoramic view from the lookout points around the Coit. As usual, we see the Golden Gate Bridge. From where do you not see it in this city?

We then trace back our steps and walk down the steep streets we have a hard time believing we've just climbed. After poking fun at the ridiculously long queue of foodies waiting to get brunch at Mama's, we turn onto Filbert St. and admire the beautifully ornate facade of Saints Peter and Paul Church. The inside of the church is equally worth seeing, particularly the mosaic detailing on the pulpit's staircase. Lydia and I note how fascinating it is to compare the many churches of this city, as each one is directed to a different cultural community. Saints Peter and Paul clearly caters to an Italian congregation, for instance.

After leaving the church, we walk along the diagonal Columbus Avenue, passing by a delicious-looking chocolatier, an intriguing club by the name of Bimbo's 365, and a contemporary triangular building that turns out to be the North Beach Library (note to self: make a trip here soon). We then turn onto Bay St., where we stop to admire some unexpected murals, and keep going until we make it to Fort Mason.

"Fort Mason  - again?" Well, yes. I was just there last week to volunteer at the Big Book Sale, where I loaded up on some non-fiction. Today, however, we are there to explore the Re:Make festival, an event put on by the popular SF-based blog Brit + Co. If you're familiar with Brit + Co, you know it is the reference for DIY inspiration on the internet. With its unapologetically colorful decorations and fun backdrops, Re:Make truly embodies the spirit of Brit + Co. The warehouse-like pavilion in which the festival takes place is definitely crowded, but not uncomfortably so. In fact, Lydia and I manage to move pretty breezily through its seemingly endless activity areas and artist popup shops. As can be expected, we pick up dozens of lovely business cards, stickers, pins and other freebies along the way, and our bags our quickly stuffed with these little keepsakes. We even take a watercolor workshop and get to bring our creations home!

Here are our favorite makers from the festival:

Upper Metal Class - dainty jewelry
Seoul Little - ditto.
Zelma Rose - woven cotton pieces
An Astrid Endeavor - embroidered, bright
Matters of Delight - cute jewelry and pins
Jayna Steffens - nugget studs
The Wilde Bloem - colorful wooden beads
Batsu Maru - delicate pieces


Nipomo - beautiful blankets - perfect for picnics, restorative yoga, and Netflix & Chill!
Dear Indigo - scarves, tablecloths
Juniper & Fir - indigo pillows
Noah Marion Quality Goods - leather bags, coasters

A R T   +    P R I N T

Ilootpapeterie - punny cards
People I've Loved - prints, sassy cards
Bethany Eden Art - beautiful watercolors

E V E R Y T H I N G   E L S E

Drifter Organics - Lydia's obscessed with their hand creams - and it's not just because they're vegan.
Penelope Co - candles
Live a Lot - superfood chocolate
Magic Carpet Yoga Mats by Sophie Leininger - the coolest yoga mats ever
Oh Happy Day Party Shop - all the disposables you really shouldn't be buying
Esselle - wood coasters + cardholders in pretty pastels
Loome - tools and kits for pompom-making (on my xmas wishlist)

Re:Make is so much fun that we lose track of time, and it turns out we spent a total of three hours there! Crafting is dangerous, folks. Remember: everything in moderation.



By the time we leave Fort Mason, it's already half-past four, and we've missed Cyndi Lauper's performance at the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival. However, we still want to see what this thing is all about. After all, Hardly Strictly has been the talk of the town for the past week, with major acts such as KT Tunstall, CAKE and M.Ward in its lineup. Once we get there, we realize that dude on the bus wasn't kidding: the event is packed. It's like the entire Bay Area's decided to show up - hippies, toddlers, mature couples, and even pets! After walking out to a few different stages to sample some unfamiliar bluegrass bands, we decide leave just before the end of the day's final performance, and manage to somewhat avoid the crowd's mass exodus home.

We come home drained from this incredibly fulfilling day, which we top off with incredible tofu-pesto-ratatouille leftover wraps, strange but not unpleasant black bean brownies, and a handful of Black Mirror episodes. Our kind of day.

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