Journal

Mendocino in 15 Photographs January 14 2014

Though we love a good long distance road trip, admittedly some of the most scenic views and stunning settings exist right on our very own Northern California coast.  In 15 photographs taken by Brit on his vintage Leica M5 we hope to show off our backyard for once.  Come on out and see it for yourself and stay in one of the quant Bed and Breakfasts in the town of Mendocino to discover the outdoorsy hikes including the Pygmy Forest, shopping handmade local goods, and of course ... the people watching is quite fun.  For us this was more of an inspiration trip than a buying trip so we hope to inspire you as well.  You can practically smell the salty air.


Half Hitch Rolling Shoppe December 29 2013

Well folks, the road met the rubber, and also a vintage rare truck outfitted with some custom walnut wood shelving nestled in pristine white metal frames.

Starting in this December, we took our online shop on the road selling our curated assortment of gifts, necessities and provisions from our 1985 VW Vanagon Doka T3 Transporter.  More details and photos to come on the buildout process.

 


Festive Collective - Freda Salvador Pop Up 12/13 - 12/14 December 10 2013

Visit us this Friday 12/13 and Saturday 12/14 at the Freda Salvador Flagship Store on Union Street for a holiday shopping experience in San Francisco!  11 AM - 6 PM


Goody Goody Gift Swap November 26 2013

We are loving this great holiday gift swap concept.  Please consider joining, we did!  It is a gift exchange for creatives meant to pull us away from our devices and technology for a minute and help us connect & receive physical homemade, thoughtful or inspiring objects.  Sign up and pass it on!


The Hill-Side Joy Ride - Modified Herringbone Fabric November 15 2013

Sandy & Emil Corsillo went on a joy ride to slow things down.  They drove down to Virginia to meet up with Bob the weaver and explore the making of their Modified Herringbone Fabric used in this beautiful scarf.  Check out their journey in the below video.

 


Sweet & Spark Contest November 12 2013

Our friends over at Sweet & Spark are celebrating their first anniversary, we are helping them celebrate by pitching into their contest on Facebook.  They are giving away a bundle of great items from some great new companies including our MCMC Perfume Oil and a $50 gift card to their own site which showcases a curated collection of vintage jewelry from the 1940's-90's.  Check out their great pieces and click on the flyer below and enter to win (ends monday 11/25/2013 so hurry)!


The Hill-Side Old Virginia Modified Herringbone Scarf November 06 2013

One of the new winter scarves in our collection by The Hill-Side this holiday season is the "Old Virginia Modified Herringbone" pattern created by "Bob the weaver" in his backyard on a Crompton & Knowles shuttle loom that dates back to the late 1930's.  Bob's family has been weaving fabric in Virginia since the 1870s and he invented this complex pattern himself.  We hope you appreciate it as much as we do and please enjoy the story in this clip. 


Fall/Winter The Hill-Side Collection Has Arrived October 23 2013

Today we are excited to introduce our Autumn/Winter assortment of The Hill-Side scarves to our site.  We honed in on a navy and forest green trend and we think you will love these as great unisex scarves to keep you warm this holiday season.

Below are some great photos from the newly released The Hill-Side lookbook titled "Twelve Brooklyn Apartments" which was shot by photographer "Backyard Bill" featuring shots of their textiles across 12 apartments in Brooklyn incorporating the personalities of the people who live there through their furnishings and personal items that you see integrated in the photography.  The lookbook gives a light-hearted look at the new collection in its natural environment. 

Old Virginia Modified Herringbone Stripe Scarf

Diamond Quilted Gauze Stripe Scarf

Border Stripe Flannel Scarf

Asagi Turquoise Chambray Scarf


Gifting Can Actually Make You Happier October 21 2013

After attending Brit Morin's Re:Make conference a few weeks ago, one of the speakers, Kacie Hultgren mentioned that she heard someone say that being generous and gift giving actually can enhance one's mood and happiness.  Well, that resonated with me.  As a seasoned gift giver and the owner of a mail order gift boutique, I did a little bit of digging into this topic.  I found that about four months ago the Harvard Business Review posted an interesting article written by Elizabeth Dunn and Michael Norton, where they dug into the topic of generosity by doing a series of small experiments and short-term studies. They found that while money does not necessarily buy happiness, "modest forms of generosity can make us happy" and that "spending even a few dollars on someone else can trigger a boost in happiness".  I wanted to jump up and down for joy reading this, as this is one reason I dreamt up Half Hitch Goods: Spread the happiness that I feel when I have found someone the perfect little gift.  So take a few minutes to gift someone something, because "spending even a few dollars on someone else can trigger a boost in happiness".  Odds are, you won't regret it, in fact, it will make you feel good.

 

Photo by Front & Main


Kinfolk Flower Potluck October 15 2013

After returning from a short weekend trip to Boulder, Colorado we found so much inspiration in the turning leaves of fall. Here is a great idea to host a flower potluck and share seasonal branches you find or pick up at the market.  If everyone brings something fresh, seasonal and interesting, and then when you share the bundles, everyone goes home with something beautiful.  Even better, lift your spirits by giving your bouquet away to brighten someone's day. 


Trunk Show 10/5 @ Re:Make October 01 2013

Come on out and shop the artisan market at the Fort Mason Pavilion in San Francisco this Saturday October 5th for an event hosted by Brit + Co.  There will be over 80 vendors selling mainly handmade and artisan made goods including scads of local products.  The event runs from 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. and its FREE.  Oh and don't miss our shout out on Refinery29...


Kinfolk From Above September 26 2013

Patient video by Kinfolk Magazine capturing a patient hot air balloon ride and the view from above.

 


TRUNK SHOW 9/29 @ SF Jr. League Home Tour September 24 2013

Buy tickets to the Junior League Home Tour for Sunday 9/29 from 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. and gain instant access to the amazing homes of Pacific Heights San Francisco.  We are participating in the "block party" on Greenwich St. between Lyon & Baker with a Half Hitch Goods curated trunk show to showcase our giftable goodies all day and donating 20% of our sales to charity.  Please come visit and shop till you drop while feeling good about money well spent!  


Trunk Show 9/17 At Firehouse 8 September 11 2013

We hope to see you all at Firehouse 8 Tuesday September 17th from 6-8 p.m. for a Half Hitch Goods trunk show.  We will be joining Modern Citizen and Sweet + Spark so bring friends and enjoy drinks and nibbles! {1648 Pacific Ave. between Polk & Van Ness in San Francisco, CA.}

 


Vintage Collection: Heath Ceramics September 09 2013

As much as we love the modern editions to the Heath Ceramics Collection, there is something very special about vintage Heath Ceramics pottery.  Check out this great reflective piece by Cathy Bailey (Part Owner, Heath Ceramics) on their Blog reflecting on recently unpacking 120 boxes of archived vintage ceramic pieces dating back to the 1950's and understand why we are always collecting vintage Heath to showcase as part of our collection at Half Hitch Goods.  (Top two photos from the Heath Ceramic Tumblr).  Bottom two photos are pieces from our Half Hitch Goods collection.

Some of our vintage pieces for sale:


Apolis Global - Bangladesh Project August 29 2013

Our Jute Utility Tote was a design partnership with Kinfolk Magazine and Apolis Global Citizen.  Watch this video to learn more about the Bangladesh Project and the ethical female co-operative manufacturing the bags and empowering women.  Use your purchasing power to change the world, one gift at a time.


Erika Honig - Marin, CA August 01 2013

It's a sunny late afternoon in Marin, CA and as I arrive to her studio, Erika Honig is finishing up with a Swedish friend of hers who is picking out a birthday gift.  I'm peeking over her friend's shoulder to a table covered in precious bracelets ... so jealous and wanting every piece for myself!  I carefully looked at each style and lusted over their detail and craftsmanship as Erika told me about her story.

Erika grew up in Northern Sweden's Arctic Circle termed the “Land of the northern lights and the midnight sun."  There, when she was a young girl, she learned the unique handcraft of Lapland jewelry making from a neighbor.  The skills Erika has are not easy to learn, making it impossible to mass produce these gorgeous creations.  Each piece is delicately and carefully made by hand in her Marin, CA studio.  Pewter thread is intricately braided and then secured to veggie tanned reindeer hide and fastened with a reindeer antler button resulting in the most unique and one-of-a-kind piece of jewelry you will ever own... not to mention a piece of folklore and history.  Due to the high quality craftsmanship and lasting design, traditionally these bracelets are given as gifts celebrating landmark events like birthdays, graduations, and communion.  Events to remember for a lifetime.  

Erika is always innovating with new braids, patterns and designs, but her Saami bracelets embody a unique blend of classic Nordic handicraft with modern simplicity.  Truly, these are just what we love, style with a story.  Check out each of her designs in our collection and swoon: Boden, Pelle, Tundra, Ren and Siljan.



Jess Brown - Petaluma, CA July 17 2013

Brit and I made the easy trek in the Doka, up to Petaluma California to meet artist and entrepreneur, Jess Brown and team.  We had the honor of peeking into their studio to hang out while they worked.  A clean long wooden worktable was piled high with women's sweaters ready for final details and dolls waiting to be dressed.  The back room was stacked with future doll bodies, as well as scads of beautiful miniature dresses, lace, scraps, and stoles.  We sat and visited with Jess and her talented team, watching and drooling while they meticulously hand-crafted each doll.

Jess started making rag dolls after she and her husband committed to making things for their kids by hand to emphasize the importance of handcrafted gifting and creativity. When I asked Jess about the inspiration for her signature rag doll and the significance of her look, she told me she labored for months over the doll's construction before landing on the distinct heart-shaped mouth and star eyes.  A few years later, she was going through old keepsakes at her parent's home and came across a rag doll that she made for her youngest sister when she was just a kid.  She had completely forgotten about making the doll and low and behold, it had the same face as her current signature Jess Brown Doll: heart shaped mouth and star eyes.  It makes you wonder, are the things we create as young children coming from a deep and authentic creative place, a place we sometimes forget as adults?  Like Jess, I believe we can all tap into our inherent creativity by pursuing what we love.

Please check out all of the dolls we are offering (Pantaloon Girl  |  Party Girl  |  Jumper Girl  |  Floral Dress Girl  |  Coco In Lace) and enjoy our behind the scenes photos from our exclusive meeting.  For the next 6 dolls we sell we will give away a free gift with purchase.  A set of 9 Hand Letterpressed Paper Dolls with totally unique Jess brown outfits ($39 value).


Southwest Part VI - Roswell & Santa Fe New Mexico June 27 2013

On our way back west we couldn't help but check out Bottomless Lakes National Park and take a dip.  Established in 1933 and located along the Pecos River, it was New Mexico's first National Park, where 9 small deep lakes were once caves that formed in ancient limestone reef escarpment.  As the river eroded, the caves collapsed and the river runoff formed the series of beautiful deep blue lakes.  Great for swimming if it weren't for the little snake I spotted on my way out!

Roswell was a funky town.  Not bad for vintage hunting.  In 1948 something crash-landed on a farm on a property in Roswell, NM.  The U.S. government claimed it was the debris from a top-secret space mission.  Townspeople seemed to accept that explanation until 30 years later, in the 70's folks started questioning.  Suddenly people recalled it was a UFO from outer space and claiming alien autopsies took place by the government that were being covered up.  Investigations in the 90's trumped these rumors but still no one is really sure what hit Roswell.  Whatever it was put the town on the map.

By the time we got to Santa Fe we were ready for a little more of the outdoors so we camped in Hyde Memorial State Park which was very convenient for trips into town and not to mention trips to the infamous 10,000 waves Japanese-style spa.  Mainly we spent our time hunting for vintage and great Native American crafts, but we did not skimp on the hiking and were very impressed with the breathtaking views of the old pueblo town from the mountain tops of the state park we called home for a few days.

The Turquoise Trail Indian reservations and Route 66 were fabulous on the way home and as much as we love the road we agree with Dorothy of OZ when we say, "There is no place like home".


Southwest Part V - Austin, TX + Hotel San Jose June 19 2013

We rolled into Austin after a 14-hour drive from Big Bend and started out on the right foot with Elizabeth Street Cafe for dinner.  The quaint little French/Vietnamese pho house welcomed us to the little funky southern town graciously and we slept soundly at the infamous Hotel San Jose.  Even Mason was pleased with his comfy "George" dog bed, bowl, and treats on the house.  At Hotel San Jose no detail is spared, everything has been thought of and everything is glorious.

We kicked off our first day with a stroll on Lady Bird Lake, followed by some great vintage hunting, and shopping at Stag Austin and JM Dry goods to say "hi" and get some inspiration if only by osmosis.  We scarfed BBQ for lunch...and dinner and in just a day or so, we easily fell in love with the neon signs and funky fashion.  Keep on keeping it weird guys.


Southwest Part IV - The Ghost Town of Terlingua, TX June 17 2013

Near the banks of the Rio Grande and just around the corner from Big Bend National Park nestled in the Chisos Mountain Range is a little ghost town called Terlingua.   Dominating the beautiful views of nature is an infamous guesthouse (of sorts) called La Posada Milgro where we stayed.  We rolled in at the same time the wind did later in the afternoon just as the locals flocked to the "porch" in front of the general store in town for what seemed like a daily tradition of social hour.  Terlingua was once a mercury mining town bustling with inhabitants.  With disease and the eventual lack of market for mercury (once used for dynamite and hat making etc.) the town dissipated and by the 1940's was nearly empty.  Today churches and homes sit in a state of disrepair but sometime in the 1970's some hippies found the beauty in this off the grid town and stayed, leaving the original homes in-tact and creating new settlements.  We found this to be a lovely detour and really, there is no other place like it.


Marfa Brand Soaps - Marfa, TX June 12 2013

It was a quiet Monday in Marfa when we had the opportunity to meet with Ginger Griffice (and her poodle Lenny Bruce).  Ginger is a classically trained mixologist of essential oils and a self-taught natural soap-maker with a company she started in Marfa called "Marfa Brand".  Her products are nothing short of divine.  Almost edible in scent, these bars are nearly otherworldly.  She has a small collection of naturally fragranced soaps that she dreams up and makes in her studio.

While we visited we discussed her dream of having a little retail space in her studio and as we kicked around ideas of layout and customer experience, Lenny Bruce quietly laid at our feet.  Ginger loves what she does and above all seems to love what Marfa symbolizes––a place where folks can live, do what they love, and let things fall into place naturally.  All small town gossip aside, it's pretty near the perfect place to thrive as an artist and maker.  Ginger has a great passion for her craft and is experimenting with new potions and ways to develop her products in the future.  While we chatted, she mixed me a custom face oil for the dry Texas weather.  

When we had to part, Ginger got out a little treat for Lenny.  He literally told us "I Love You."  Lenny Bruce, The Dog Who Talks.  Just another cool thing about Marfa.  So check out Ginger's soaps and try a bar.


Southwest Part III - El Cosmico "Hotel", Marfa TX June 07 2013

El Cosmico isn't your typical hotel with room service and wake up calls.  It's more like hipster camping ... or as we like to call it "glamping".  Choose your shelter: premium vintage airstream with private shower, teepee, safari tent, or B.Y.O. tent and share a bathroom with the rest of the "glampers".  The maids service the "rooms" with clean linens in a tiny little old mail truck - cute as can be!  We stayed here on our Marfa trip and enjoyed a safari tent and all of it's stripped down glory.  It sure beat sleeping in the truck bed, so we were feeling like it was a luxury.  El Cosmico is definitely a new take on a vacation; a little bit hip, a little off-beat and a whole lot of rustic.  


Southwest Part II - Balmorhea State Park & The Town of Marfa, TX June 05 2013

Admittedly Marfa could be perceived as "just another tiny town" in the middle of America.  But it's really much more than that.  It is a place with the quaintness of a small rural village, the taste level and sensibility of a chic modern art museum, and the people are nice as can be.  

On our way into town we stopped at Balmorhea State Park where you can swim in the world's largest spring-fed swimming pool (1.75 acres) which remarkably stays at 72-76 degrees year round and with crystal clarity in its 25 ft. depth.  The pool is fed by the San Solomon Spring and you can swim amongst the fish as 22-28 million gallons of water naturally flow through the pool every day.  

Heading into the town, we were struck by every simply beautiful little moment we felt, and every little scene that was set.  In fact it felt just like a quiet little movie set filled with kind people who all seem in the know all about each other.  The pictures really tell the story the best, but the experience of Marfa is so sensory with the food, smells, folks, and visuals - it's really a must visit destination.