Michele Carlson is an Oakland-based artist whose ink drawings and collages investigate the intersections of history, memory and popular culture. Her work adorns 8 pieces of Burnt Caramel chocolate and is the latest addition to the ongoing Artisan Series. To learn more about the artist, visit www.MicheleCarlson.com.
One of Berkeley's most popular shopping districts is Fourth Street. On Fourth Street in Berkeley you will find many independent stores, chain stores such as Restoration Hardware and Sur La Table, and a good mix of restaurants. The Paper Source, on the corner of Hearst and Fourth Street is an incredible store for cards, wrapping supplies and crafts. They also offer craft classes in the store. For more info, click here.
October 24th 6-9 pm
Impress your friends and yourself by learning how to make a traditional drop spine box. You'll learn to craft a box from scratch using archival bookboard and then cover it with precut decorative papers and bookcloth. By the end of this workshop, you'll have a multipurpose 5" x 7" box, perfect for photos, recipes & more.
Prior experience with basic tools such as a cutting knife and ruler is desirable.
Instructor - PS Staff
Location - Berkeley
This image represents samples made in this workshop conducted around the country. Please visit your local store for current class samples.
Once the Bill Cox Cadillac Dealership- Now the New Whole Foods
For the last two years I have been patiently waiting for Whole Foods Oakland...and drum roll please, it has arrived! Last Sunday morning I headed over for the grand tour.
I skipped the downstairs parking lot and parked in the upstairs lot where I immediately found a great park and stepped in to heaven. (If you didn't know, I am a big foodie, I graduated from the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco)
This is the best looking Whole Foods I've seen. It mimics a French marketplace with many specialty shops within the grocery store; cheese, meat, seafood, produce, chocolate, coffee and espresso, extensive beauty products, gelato, hot prepared foods and a Bistro.
So the bottom line is this, Whole Foods Oakland will increase the value of residential property surrounding it. Now all of the homes below Piedmont Avenue and around Lake Merritt will have a full service grocery store within walking distance. Prior to Whole Foods Oakland, homeowners had to drive to the Grand Ave. Safeway,(a store that borders the City of Piedmont) or the Safeway on 51st Street in Oakland for the closest stores. One of the biggest draws of living by Lake Merritt is the its easy access to downtown, BART and transportation. Now homeowners can actually live car-free.
My hope is that Whole Foods Oakland will be a huge economic success, enticing other big businesses to follow suit and set up shop here in Oakland.
With all of the residential and condo growth, Oakland needs the retail presence to balance.
Shop in a spacious and clean store
Bring home hot and healthy prepared foods
Don't forget dessert.
Extensive meat department, featuring beef from "green" ranchers
Handmade Chocolates both local and imported
Okay, I am a little biased, but Oakland is the place to be. Today I was driving on Broadway Street downtown, and I was overwhelmed by the potential and the energy. Only in Oakland do you see the diverse mix of artists, professionals, children, schools, sports, restaurants, cultures and beautiful homes.
As your Oakland Realtor, I am happy to show you the different neighborhoods and districts of this beautiful city!
Two Doors down from La Farine is a sparkling clean, extra large Peet's Coffee
Visit La Farine Bakery at 3411 Fruitvale Avenue
La Farine, a staple in the Rockridge District of Oakland for 25 years, now has a second location on Fruitvale Avenue.
Fortunately (and unfortunately for my hips), La Farine and Peet's Coffee neighbor each other on Fruitvale Avenue. With a quick five minute drive I can step into LaFarine Bakery, a Bay Area staple known for fresh french pastries, desserts and breads. You must try the Swiss Twinkie or the Morning Bun, they are perfect! La Farine never sells their products to grocery or specialty shops, so to sample their highly acclaimed morsels you must visit their locations on College Ave. or Fruitvale Ave. La Farine also donates there leftover product to local organizations that feed people in need.
For many of us Bay Area residents there is no place like Peet's. Forty years ago, Alfred Peet started the very first Peet's Coffee in North Berkeley on Vine Street. The Peet's on Fruitvale is clean, large and has a friendly staff, and currently it is less crowded than the Lakeshore and Montclair locations.
Drift Denim, a hip place to find denim for all occasions – People dining outdoors at Levende East
B Restaurant, Fresh Food, featuring a wood burning oven! – Jesso's Seafood, try the fried prawns and enjoy the live music
Air Lounge, the place to go for drinks and music. (I love the exposed brick walls.)
Last night the proprietors of Tamarindo, B Restaurant, Air, Jessos, Levande East, Drift, Mignonne closed the streets between 8th and 10th on Washington. They celebrated the NEW Old Oakland! This area is now becoming the second "Gourmet Ghetto" of Oakland. As a foodie and Oakland girl I am thrilled to see quality restaurants and shops take root. Last night folks came to honor the neighborhood, enjoy food, drinks and live Cuban music.
Tamarindo, B Restaurant, Air Lounge, Levende East and Jesso's Seafood have put together what will prove to be a party to remember. There will be a a huge outdoor bar featuring Skyy Vodka Cocktails, Bacardi Mojitos and Trumer Pilsner.
Music will be provided by Fito Reinoso http://www.latinpulsemusic.com/artists/show/24. Fito and his ten piece Cuban New-Wave Band will be performing from 5:30-9:00. If you love to salsa our just love to hang out and enjoy the sun, be sure to come down on Thursday. If you are taking bart simply get off at the 12Street Oakland Stop and walk down two and a half blocks to 9th.
Living in Oakland, means supporting Oakland's community events, count on your Oakland Realtor, Deidre Joyner to bring you local information about our community!
A fact about Oakland
The Oakland Larks were members of the short-lived West Coast Negro Baseball League in 1946, representing Oakland, CA
Among the Larks players was future Oakland Mayor Lionel Wilson, who became the city's first African-American chief executive.
Retrieved from "http://www.baseball-reference.com/bullpen/Oakland_Larks"
Over the last few months I had the pleasure of working with Liza and Matt. They are a newly engaged couple who knew exactly what they wanted in a home. They wanted a place to entertain their friends and family in a relaxed environment, with a good size yard for a garden and their dog Sadie. Oh, and they wanted the home to be within their budget and in Berkeley.
Yes, it is true that Buyer's have an advantage in this market, but it took some time for the right house to come along. Yesterday, Liza and Matt just closed escrow on their new home on Blake Street!
Congratulations! I want to thank them, as handing them the keys to their first home was sheer bliss to me. I feel honored to be a part of a significant event of their lives.
I am on Michael Recchiuti's emailing list and I was just sent this Ginger Snap Recipe. I love ginger cookies and this recipe looks yummy. Michael Recchiuti, a reknown San Francisco Chocolatier suggest you eat these cookies with vanilla bean ice cream and his burnt carmel sauce.
On a side note Michael Recchiuti now has his famous Peanut Butter Pucks available by mail order. Recchiuti's take on the peanut patty is are my absolute favorite candy! (Made with organic peanut butter!) Go the Recchiuti's website, http://www.recchiuti.com
Ginger Snap Recipe
50-60 2-inch cookies
2 ¼ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup granulated cane sugar
1 extra-large egg
1/3 cup dark molasses
1 ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract, preferably Madagascar Bourbon
Make the Dough
Sift the flour, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, baking powder and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
Put the butter and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on medium speed until the mixture is light and fluffy.
Switch the mixer to low speed and gradually add the egg, molasses and vanilla extract. Increase the speed to medium and beat until smooth.
Switch the mixer to low speed and add the dry ingredients in 3 additions, pulsing the mixer to incorporate each addition before adding the next one.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Knead a few times to incorporate any crumbs.
Divide the dough in half. Roll each half into a log about 1 ½ inches in diameter and 12 inches long. As you roll, gently push the ends toward the center to prevent air pockets and to keep the logs at an even thickness.
Wrap the logs in plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, at least 3 hours or up to 3 days.
Bake the Cookies
Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line the bottoms of two 12-by-18 inch sheet pans with parchment paper.
Remove the logs from the refrigerator and unwrap them. Using a ruler to guide you and a sharp knife, cut each log into rounds ¼ inch thick. If the dough crumbles as you cut it, reshape each slice. Place the rounds on the prepared pans, spacing them 2 inches apart.
Bake on the middle shelves of the over, rotating the pans 180 degrees halfway through the baking time, until set but soft enough to hold a slight indentation when pressed with a fingertip, about 7-10 minutes. Let cool completely on the pans on wire racks.
Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.
The Oakland Parks and Recreation and Council member Jean Quan are sponsoring, "Sunday in the Redwoods". Come to the Woodminister Amphitheatre for Sunday afternoon concerts. For more information go, www.oaklandnet.com/parks/sundays
Recently you might have heard about stricter requirements for home financing. If you are thinking of buying a home in the next year or so, it is wise to start working on your credit now. Many mortgage brokers will give you valuable advice on ways to raise your credit score. Feel free to contact me for a list of local,(Oakland and Berkeley area Mortgage Brokers) that are highly regarded.
Here are the numbers to the three major credit bureaus.
Experian: (formerly TRW) 888-397-3742
Mignonne Oakland is having a Labor Day Sale!
The entire inventory is 20% off until September 8th! Shop Oakland!
1000 Jefferson Street
Oakland CA 94607
5 1 0 . 4 4 4 . 5 2 8 8
Are you purchasing a home in Berkeley?
Have you purchased a home Berkeley within the last year?
If your home needs seismic repairs such as, bolting your foundation to the mudsill, improving a substandard foundation, or removal of an un-reinforced masonry chimney, you can now get a rebate back from the city!
Berkeley is giving a dollar for dollar rebate to new homeowners for up to ½ percent of the homes purchase price. The city is putting aside a portion of your city transfer tax and will give a rebate if the work is completed within a year of purchase. (That is $3000 for a home that was purchased for $600,000)
To qualify your home must be 5 units or less, have a wood frame, be built prior to 1989,plans must be approved by the city prior to the start of work and they must be done with permits by licensed contractors. (There are more requirements check with the City of Berkeley)
Click here to view more information on this seismic rebate.
For many of us our home is our only asset. Add strength to your investment and utilize this rebate, what a great incentive.
Coming September 16th, a satisfying Mid Century beauty in Upper Laurel! This 1957 home is perfect for someone who wants a move-in ready home with a sensible floor plan in an established neighborhood. I can’t wait to show off this impeccable home in the Upper Laurel District of Oakland. I can imagine the raised flower and vegetable beds that will bask in the sunny oversized backyard. I would retreat to the downstairs den to stay cool during the summer while I read a book or watch a comedy. How wonderful it would be to live worry-free in a home that boasts a new furnace, roof , hot water heater and more.
As soon as the final details are complete, including mid century staging by Form Vintage Modern on College Avenue I will post photos!
I was just blessed to have 5 days in Cabo San Lucas with the fam, and now I am gearing up for the first day of school this Monday coming up.
I promise new articles next week. In the meanwhile here is a picture of my son Miles and his best friend Jack after skateboard camp.
I love how you can see the wood grain, it adds warmth and texture.
When I went to the one year birthday party for Mignonne, (a French inspired home store in Old Oakland), Sheila Metcalf Tobin was a featured artist and in attendance.
Sheila is a Berkeley resident transplanted from the South. She creates inspiring drawings on wood. (Finely finished wood canvases that her husband creates.) Sheila's inspirations are the earths harvest and her family traditions. Some of Sheila's work are one piece of art divided into multiple pieces, much like a quilt. Her grandmother was a quilt maker and Sheila is making her grandmother proud with her modern take on a 300+ year art form. Check out Sheila's website at, www.SheilaMetcalfTobin.com
I love a home that smells good. Whether it is garlic and onions sautéing or cookies baking, nothing is as inviting as a heavenly scent. Sometimes when I visit open houses in the area, (Oakland and Berkeley), I see Realtors burning fragrant candles or simmering mulling spices on the stove. The purpose is to draw people in, and have them linger.
I am a candle addict and it is amazing how expensive candles are!!! Diptyque Candles are $80, imported from France and have a cult following. Is it worth spending so much money on something that will last 60-100 hours? We live in a society where luxury goods are in high demand. We really can't afford it, but we want it, so we charge it. My grandmother, who lived through the depression, had tapered unscented candles for special occasions only. Perhaps she had a few pillar candles for emergency purposes, but she would never burn candles while she was enjoying an evening at home! To burn candles essentially is like burning money.
So let me get back on track, I indulge in candle. I have tried dozens of brands and fragrances and I have two favorites. Slatkin Pamplemousse (grapefruit) for $28.00 and Bluewick GuavaPeel for $32.00.
These two candles give you the biggest bang for your buck, as their delectable aroma will fill more than a room.
If you live in the Oakland/Berkeley area take a trip to Rockridge Home on College Avenue. This is a fun and independently owned home furnishing shop. When you walk into Rockridge Home, the aroma of Bluewick’s GuavaPeel candle will draw you in. (They always burn this candle during store hours.)
At Rockridge Home you can buy several sizes of this amazing candle and you have the benefit of smelling it before you buy it. (Shop at Rockridge Home for wedding gifts, candles, sofas, coffee tables and more.)