Tag Archives: downtown Los Angeles

The Library Store featured in Los Angeles Magazine!

Just found out that Christine’s store, aka The Library Store, is going to be featured in February’s “Hidden L.A.” issue of Los Angeles Magazine as one of their best “below-the-rader boutiques”.  Hooray!

Cooler still is the fact that the magazine only chose six stores to feature in the retail section of the issue. That’s right, amigos…of the hundreds, if not thousands, of super cool retail haunts in the Los Angeles metro area, The Library Store is one of the top six picks. How cool is that?

Oh yeah, and on top of all that, The Library Store was also voted Best Bookstore last year by the Los Angeles Downtown News. And, as anyone who has shopped there before can tell you, unusual books are only one of the many, amazingly-eclectic gifts on sale at The Library Store.

I dunno, I might be a little biased here, but, I don’t remember rad things like this happening before Christine took over the buying. So, rock on, sweetie. You and your super cool staff deserve every honor you receive!

For those of you who haven’t checked out the awesomeness for yourself, The Library Store is located in the heart of the historic Richard J. Riordan Central Library at 630 West Fifth Street in downtown Los Angeles.

And if you can’t make it there in person, check out the scads of groovy gifts available on their website here. Long live The Library Store!

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Renegade Craft Fair: Los Angeles

We might not have made it to Comic Con this weekend, but we did spend the afternoon hanging with some insanely-hip DIY geeks at the second annual Renegade Craft Fair: Los Angeles, so, I’m not complaining.

A twisted sister of sorts to the home-grown Unique L.A. independent design show staged twice yearly at the California Market Center, the Renegade Craft Fair is being held this weekend, June 24th and 25th at the Los Angeles State Historic Park (aka “the cornfield”) in downtown L.A..

Unlike Unique L.A., which highlights mostly local artists, the Renegade Craft Fair is open to hip, crafty vendors from all across the country. So, while you do get a little of bleed-over — we saw a lot of the same stuff we saw at Unique L.A. this past April — the Renegade Craft Fair definitely had a grittier edge.

It might have been the open air venue (which was gorgeous!) or the free-flowing concert-in-the-park feel (several of the vendors we browsed were shirtless and maybe a little high too boot!) but the stuff on display was all very cool, so, though we got a bit dusty on the drive in and out (again, just like an all-day concert) the groovy, laid back feel of the event made everything A-OK.

So, if you’re looking for some fun, outdoorsy shopping, or even just browsing — seriously, there was some truly stunning one-of-a-kind art on display here —  slap on some sunscreen and head on down to the Renegade Craft Fair: Los Angeles.

Oh, and parking and admission is totally FREE, gotta love that! For more information on the event please click here.

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Unique L.A. starts today!

Longtime readers are probably sick of hearing us rave about how cool the Unique L.A. independent design show is, but for the rest of you, please trust me when I tell you that Unique L.A. rocks, yo! This weekend will mark our third trip to the show and if history holds true, we are sure to come home with loads of groovy stuff and tons of great ideas for projects of our own.

Most of Greta’s favorite outfits and toys — not to mention a good chunk of the super cool artwork in her nursery! — were purchased at the last two shows and though we came home with dozens of bags, the prices at Unique L.A. are beyond cheap. Seriously, there are deals to be had here, amigos. And best of all, you’re supporting local artists and designers instead of, you know, Target and shit.

So, if you’re looking for art, clothing, home goods, jewelry, hell, even just some rocking-good food, Unique L.A. is the place to be this weekend. We’ll be there all day Sunday, so, if you see us foraging through the sale bins at Misha Lulu, by all means, stop and help us. Seriously. The more hands, the better!

Unique L.A. is being held today and Sunday, December 5th & 6th, at the California Market Center in the heart of downtown Los Angeles. For directions, hours, parking, vendor and ticket information, please visit the Unique L.A. homesite here.

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Unique L.A. – May 2 & 3, 2009

Good news, amigos! This weekend, May 2nd and 3rd, 2009, Unique L.A., that super cool “independent design and gift sale” that rocked our world last December is returning to downtown Los Angeles. Yay!

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I never got around to blogging about how awesome this rocking two-day event was, but now that it’s coming around again, I gotta tell ya, Unique L.A. rules! Not only do they feature work from over 230 artists, designers and musicians, but they also feature said artistry at a totally reasonable price!

Last time we came home with bags full of cool baby duds from Misha Lulu, some killer prints for Greta’s nursery from Etsy artist Brigette B., incredibly-cool little burp cloths from Baby Eggi and a pair of free frilly panties from our friend Nic’s kick ass line of fancy panties, Knickerocker. Thanks, Nic!

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Actually, Nic and her equally-talented husband, Dan, are the ones who turned us onto Unique L.A. in the first place. When we heard Nic was displaying her wares there last December, we were there in a heartbeat. And while we knew Nic’s stuff was gonna rock, we had no idea how groovy the rest of the show was gonna be.

I mean, seriously, there was some really hip, one-of-a-kind shit on display, and almost all of it was totally affordable. Even cooler was the fact that you got to actually meet the artists who made the stuff since most of them were manning their own booths. Way cool!

So, if you’re in the market for some truly unique art, jewelry, clothing or even music from some swinging local hipsters, check out Unique L.A. this weekend at the California Market Center Penthouse.

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For information on tickets (which are a total steal at only $5 per person!) and parking, click here. We’ll be hitting the showroom on Sunday afternoon with the stroller in tow, so, hope to see you there!

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Clifton’s Cafeteria, Los Angeles

Located at 648 South Broadway, in the heart of downtown Los Angeles, Clifton’s Cafeteria is the last of a once thriving chain of depression-era cafeterias. And though I had never been there before, Christine, having worked downtown for so long, is something of a Clifton’s veteran.

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So, when our friend Ginger said she wanted to eat somewhere “a little different” on her last visit, we knew exactly where to take her!

Founded in 1935 by Clifford Clinton, the crazy cool Clifton’s is actually known as Clifton’s Brookdale and is designed to resemble a giant forest scene. Having spent several summers as a young man in the Santa Cruz Mountains — my home turf, right on! — Clinton wanted to recreate the magic of a beautiful redwood forest indoors. And, man did he ever!

Clifton’s Brookdale has a 20 ft. waterfall and stream, stuffed and mounted moose and deer heads, a log cabin and even a fishing grizzly bear. And as if that’s not enough, there is also a tiny cave-like chapel — yes, I said chapel! — where you can sit in front of a diorama of a forest and listen to a scratchy recording of “The Parable of the Redwoods”. So cool!

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And with a vast selection of cafeteria staples to chose from, the food is just as varied as the decor. Of course, like most cafeteria food, it was pretty bland, and the fried chicken I had was downright deadly. Really bad stuff!

Ginger and Christine both fared much better with the macaroni and cheese and a fairly tasty sliced roast beef with au jus. But I think all three of us agreed that if we had to do it over again, we would probably eat somewhere else first, then come to Clifton’s for coffee and dessert.

Yes, amigos, it’s true…despite my ice cold skirt steak, I would totally go to Clifton’s again. If not for the food, then surely for the atmosphere, which seriously kicks ass. And aside from being a kitsch-lovers paradise, Clifton’s is positively gigantic. I’m not kidding, you could explore it for days.

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To start with, Clifton’s is a whopping three stories tall. Yep, three stories of faded, backlit nature photos and fake trees! Awesome! And though the third level was closed to the public that day, the manager kindly let me sneak up there with my camera for some quick pics.

Much more refined than the lower two levels, the third floor has kind of a vintage ice cream parlor meets red-walled whorehouse thing going on that is really groovy. There are tons of cool mementos up there too, not just from Clifton’s Brookdale, but also from it’s far sexier cousin, the long lost Clifton’s Pacific Seas. Man, wish we could have seen that place in it’s prime!

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So, if you find yourself downtown with a couple of hours to kill, you gotta check this joint out. Seriously, there is no place in Los Angeles like it.

Clifton’s is open seven days a week from 6:30AM to 7:30PM, for directions, menu and parking information call: (213) 627-1673.

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