Tuesday, July 31, 2007

San Francisco: Part Three - A Magical World

One of the highlights of the trip for me was visiting a store my mother-in-law has boasted about for years. Since she and I share an appreciation for the cute, obscure, and European, I knew I would love it. Founded in 1988, Bell'Occhio is on Brady Street in an area of San Francisco called Mission. Specifically, it is at Nos. 8 & 10 Brady Street, which is a side street. First picture is of the outside, the second one is of a ribbon shelf in the store. Lastly, my batch of fun purchases.
So, at first I went in gingerly stepping through the intimate store, half in disbelief that I was actually there. The inside is truly amazing, fully staged to showcase the lovely items. After about 10 minutes of ooh-ing and aah-ing, I came out empty-handed, stunned by beauty I guess. J. looked at me, shocked, and said, "You didn't get anything?" I turned on a dime and went back in - that was a sign! I had not bought anything yet on the trip, and of all the places to indulge, this was it. I came back out with a wonderfully packaged collection of items. A darling set of tissue papers for wrapping that say Toilettes des Chats (the Cat's Bath!), some vintage onion skin envelopes (very delicate and light blue), a French, linen, checked dish towel, six chocolates (flavors like Lavender, and Noir with Fleur de Sel), and the pièce de résistance, a pair of enamel owl earrings - okay, they looked cat-like to me (which were wrapped in the little blue box!). Even the invoice is beautiful: light blue with red lettering (these were the colors of my wedding to J. - I carried a small bouquet of light blue hydrangeas with a few very dark red (almost black) roses mixed in).
If you EVER get a chance to go: go, go, go! It truly is a magical world, and the proprietor, Claudia, was very helpful. The day I was there she was wearing this really pretty white, full, longish skirt with black floral embroidery, and ankle-tie ballet slippers - as magical as the world of Bell'Occhio.

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