September 29, 2009

Special Delivery

On Saturday afternoon, we were minding our own nevermind at the shoppe when someone walked in with this incredible floral bouquet, and said it was a gift for us! Megan from Letter Paper Flower, a new floral design company based in SF, was making the rounds, introducing herself and her beautiful arrangements to the neighborhood. Thank you Megan, best of luck! Check out her great site and blog for more info.

The perfect cup

I have finally found the perfect coffee cup to accompany my morning ritual of making a to-do list over breakfast! Now available at the shoppe.

September 28, 2009

Amelie moment of the day

Made this short video yesterday of some flower petals that were dancing on an invisible spider web in front of a neighbor's house. I love how Erik Satie music makes everything sound like a clip from Amelie.

September 24, 2009

"Spooky": This week's special Photo Assignment!!!!

We've mentioned more than once here on Smarts & Crafts how much we LOVE libraries!!! So you can imagine how excited we were when Rosie (who is lucky enough to actually work at the library) invited us to participate in San Francisco's One City One Book Project. For any of you not familiar with the program you can click here to find out more, but basically it's a fun way to encourage reading, conversation, and community. And of course it's great for all the amazing writers whose books are featured—sort of like San Francisco's version of Oprah's Book Club (only cooler!!!).

Well this month all of us here in San Francisco are reading "Alive in Necropolis" by Doug Dorst. We've just started it, but it's already reeled us in....not only because there are tuxedo'd zombies running around, but it just so happens to be beautifully written. Here's the blurb on the back to give you a little taste:

"Colma, California, is the only incorporated city in America where the dead outnumber the living. A "cemetery city" serving San Francisco, Colma is the resting place of the likes of Joe DiMaggio, Wyatt Earp, and William Randolph Hearst. It is also the home of Michael Mercer, a rookie cop trying to go by the book as he struggles to navigate a new realm of grown-up relationships. But instead of settling comfortably into adult life, Mercer becomes obsessed with the mysterious fate of his predecessor in the Colma PD, Sergeant Wes Featherstone, who seems to have spent his last years policing the dead as well as the living. As Mercer delves deeper into Featherstone's story, his own sanity starts to slip, too—either that, or Colma's more famous residents are not resting in peace as they should be."

Exciting, right?!? So head off to your local library and pick up a copy, SF residents can just click here....

So before next Thursday send your very best, most "spooky-iest" picture to We'll pick the one that gives us the biggest chills and that lucky person will get a free copy of the book, courtesy of our friends at the SF Public Library.

Thursday Photo Assignment: Suburbia

Thanks for your "suburbia" photos this week! Next week we have a very special photo assignment- stay tuned- we will be posting details later on today!!!

Derek's photo

Lauren's photo

Jonathan's photo

Sophia's photo

Jackie's photo

Audrey's photo

Lydia's photo

Andrew's photo

Lise's photo

September 22, 2009

Saturate Super Sale!

Attention, Bay Area friends! We are hosting a sale in the shoppe this Saturday that you won't want to miss. Our friend Kate of Saturate Design will be here selling her incredible silkscreened cards, notebooks and other goodies for up to 75% off. It's time to stock up!!

is a Berkeley-based silkscreened paper goods company, started by designer/architect Kate Lydon in 2004. Saturate's cheery, witty, elegant designs are sold in stores from Kate's Paperie (NYC) to Terrain (Philly) to the Curiosity Shoppe (SF). Their cards and custom work have been featured in Martha Stewart Weddings, Lucky, Real Simple, and a slew of now-defunct home decor magazines.

Saturate Back to School Super Sale!
Saturday, September 26th, 12-5pm
at The Curiosity Shoppe
855 Valencia St. SF, CA 94110

September 20, 2009

Wish We'd Known Ya...

Norman Seaman (March 21, 1923-September 2, 2009)
“He liked doing things to beat the system, and he liked to help people pursue their dreams on a budget.”

James Krenov (October 31, 1920-September 9, 2009)
“He worked with material rather than on material; it wasn’t a matter of conquering the wood. He had just a killer instinct for wood combination, the colors and textures, melding them to make works with an elegant simplicity.”

September 17, 2009

Thursday Photo Assignment: Window

Woowee!! So many of you were gazing at, out of and through windows this week! Thanks everyone for sharing their amazing "window" pics. Next week's theme (in honor of Derek's recent post on Bill Owens) is: "suburbia". Please email your photos to: before next Thursday if you want to participate!

Derek's photo

Lauren's photo

Lise's photo

Jonathan's photo

Audrey's photo

Lydia's photo

Alissa's photo

Rachel's photo

Beatrice's photo

Joelle's photo

Christine's photo

Kalli's photo

Tony's photo

Leigh's photo

Andrew's photo

Beth's photo

Align Center
Carrie's photo

John's photo

Conn's photo

September 16, 2009

September 15, 2009

We've got a thing for THE THING!

We've been longtime admirers of (and subscribers to) THE THING, the "object based quarterly publication" created by artists Jonn Herschend and Will Rogan. So it's a big big honor for us to be 1 of only 3 shops in the whole world to be offering Issue #7, The Chaldron Optical System, for sale! Yay us! And boy, is this issue a doozy...Conceived by one of our all time favorite authors, Jonathen Lethem, and created by world class designers Selima Salaun and Matt Singer, this one is particularly spec-tacular. Issue #7 consists of a case, a pair of super hot glasses with clear lenses that you can wear as-is, or swap out for your personal prescription, as well as a care and maintenance manual written in both English and French

Get your Thing now!


Photojojo is an awesome website full of tips, tricks, projects and reviews for photography enthusiasts (like us!) and we were super excited when they asked us to contribute a DIY project for their new book which is out today.

Our magnetic photo frame how-to is one of many inspiring DIY projects in this book, which also includes instructions on how to make a snow globe, a wallet, a lampshade, a wall mural and many, many more, all featuring your own images. It's time to get your digital photos OUT of the computer and turn them into creative, fun projects!

September 14, 2009

Back to School Shopping

Thanks to N.E.E.T. Magazine for including our awesome "Compositions" Birthday Card from Paper + Cup in their "School Days" post today!

September 13, 2009

Bill Owens country

We went to a gorgeous wedding yesterday in Livermore, California, right-smack-dab in the heart of Bill Owens country. I grew up not far from there, in the same sort of cookie-cutter neighborhood that served as Owens' muse in his fantastic books Suburbia, Working, and Leisure. His pictures are amazingly intimate, and funny, and moving and remind me so much of my own childhood that I swear he printed them from negatives of my memory.

September 12, 2009

TBDC San Francisco Chapter

We just got back from a meeting of the Taco Bell Drawing Club, organized by the super talented Jason Polan (whom I've mentioned here before....). It was loads of fun.