San Francisco Day Trip and “Stuff”

Many decades ago, in another life really, I lived in San Francisco for a three years. I was young and it was fun. I still like to visit from time to time and a few days ago my husband and I did just that. We noticed odd things on this visit however–the sidewalks seemed dirtier and the blocks were longer! (Dang, we’re getting old!) Still it was a good day and the weather was perfect.

The view from Twin Peaks.

Love the art on this garage door on Church Street.

So appreciated the people who managed to grow wonderful things in their tiny bits of dirt. This plant (morning glory?) was cascading over a fence on Dolores Street.

The historic Mission Dolores was just a block away from one of the apartments we lived in.

And of course the trip wouldn’t be complete without at least one visit to antique or thrift store. I had done some research beforehand and decided on the one I really wanted to peruse–Stuff at 150 Valencia Street. It had 60+ dealers on two floors and is “the largest Collective in San Francisco and beyond in the Bay Area, much cleaner and hipper than an antique mall or antique collective.” And it was fabulous. All the dealers had amazing items and I found dozens of things I wanted to buy for our home.

Loved this Austrian copper teapot.

But with such great stuff and knowledgeable dealers I wasn’t really finding anything with “meat on the bone” to resell online. Not surprising. So what did I do? I picked the homeliest little lump of a handmade fat-lava-style brown vase dated ’67 and bought that. Honestly. Something about it appealed to me. My husband thought I was joking. My daughters think it’s hideous. I was going to keep it, but everyone else hates it, so I may try to sell it. Which could be a challenge! Could two people in the world possibly like this??

I also bought a small sterling silver Jewish kiddush cup that was marked down. The little cup won’t make much, but it was something! That particular dealer had beautiful things in a locked case and everything else I pulled out was in the $200-$400 range. Even with the 35% off sale, I doubted I could make any money. One of my favorite things from this dealer was an antique chest dated 1724, priced at $4,500.

It was grand perusing here (tons of great mid-century modern items) and well worth a visit if you’re in San Francisco. Next time though I’m going to try my luck at the thrift stores!

Happy hunting,



  1. I grew up in the Bay Area and I live about 90 minutes from SF now, but haven’t been there in years! I miss it and hope to spend a day there soon, thanks for the tip– I will have to check out 150 Valencia Street. Good luck with the brown vase. Actually, I think my Mom might like something like that, she was always one for interesting pieces. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Retrodee. You’d love it at Stuff. A few vendors had vintage clothes too. I found a fab flowered chenille jacket (probably a bed jacket though I’d wear it out) for $45, but it was too small.

    The vase…well it’s a weird one!!

    – Karen


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