Shop Like a Local
Flowers are the go-to for Valentine’s Day so why not get a little creative when it comes to your bouquets? According to an informal study (translation: we asked around the Velvet offices), not everyone wants roses as a declaration of love. Plus, with so many gorgeous flowers out there, and this being the season for everything from tulips and lilacs to daffodils, there’s really no excuse to not give something unique and meaningful. To inspire our green thumbs and fingers we asked the lovely Madison Karsenty, owner of the newly-opened Flower Firm just down the street from our Culver City headquarters, for her tips on how to give an arrangement that really says something. Just like the object of your affection is one-of-a-kind, here are her tips on how to make your Valentine’s Day gift equally amazing.
You’re hosting a holiday party! The date is set. Invites are sent. Time to prep, starting with the most important details. What to wear? We've got you covered, in satin, sequins, and chiffon. Beer and wine are solid standbys, but cocktails can really get the festivities going.
It’s been said that Texas isn’t just a state, it’s a state of mind, so we hunted high and low to find our fave spot in the Lonestar State. Just north of uptown Dallas lies the Knox-Henderson area, a unique neighborhood known for its cool mix of food and shops, as well as wide sidewalks and foot-friendly culture so there’s always tons of good people watching and strolling. Also, just like Southern California, this state has some serious long, hot summers so, in a way, we fit right in. Here’s where you’ll find us.
Gemma—Napa Valley transplants opened up this light and airy California-inspired restaurant that’s our pick for dinner, or pop in for a glass of wine and some baked oysters from their late night menu.
Houndstooth—This cool, modern coffee shop takes it’s beans seriously and is one of our must-visit buzz spots to start your day with a custom pour-over and locally made muffin.
Alamo Drafthouse Cinema—A cult-status theater specializing in a quirky mix of indie and foreign films, as well as in-theater food and cocktail service. It takes “dinner and a movie” to a whole new level.
Henry’s Majestic—Their motto is “good food, strong drink” and we couldn’t sum it up better. Decked out in lots of dark wood and vintage tin and metal ceiling tiles, this place feels cozy even in the middle of summer. Don’t miss their shrimp and grits, or fresh oysters.
High Fives—One of our favorite things about this casual spot is its dog friendly patio. Other highlights are that they take tater tots very seriously (there’s a special section on the menu), have one of the best weekend brunch menus in town, and are also open til 2 am.
Top Pot Donuts— These handmade donuts are deceptively addictive, we’ve been known to get a takeout box full of Old-Fashioned Glazed, Feather Boas (cake donut with icing and coconut shavings) and Maple Bars. The coffee is equally great. Breakfast of champions.
Beauty Bar—Yes, a cocktail bar where you can dance and also get a manicure. This drink spot has the coolest, retro decor with mod, orb chandeliers, a pastel checked floor and bar chairs that look straight out of a 60’s sitcom. A super fun night out.
Louie’s Pizza—This place is an institution in the neighborhood and we never say no to a great thin crust pizza with a DIY list of add-ons. It gets busy so either come early or late since they don’t take reservations. We suggest sitting at the bar (if there are just a couple of you), ordering a martini and a pie.
One of the best things about fall (aside from oversized sweaters and mulled wine) is that it’s the time of year when all the big (and small) book publishers release their must-have reads for the holidays. Just down the street from us in Culver City lies Arcana Books, a light-filled indie book haven that was not only designed by the genius architecture team at Johnston Marklee —they also created our gorgeous velvet freestanding stores—it also carries the most swoon-worthy assortment of everything from out-of-print and rare to the newest in art, fashion, design and music tomes. So, to help you on your quest of cultural enlightenment, eye candy and gift giving, we asked owner Whitney Kaplan (who runs this amazing indie retail spot with her husband Lee), for her top coffee table picks.
Sory Sanlé: Volta Photo 1965–85 (Reel Art Press/Morton-Hill)
This is the first monograph of West African photographer Sory Sanlé. Stunning portrait photography from an under-the-radar but critically, politically and professionally revered snapper.
The Moderns: Midcentury American Graphic Design (Abrams Books)
For any design aficionado. This book introduces the men and women who invented and shaped Midcentury Modern graphic design in America.
Radical Women—Latin American Art 1960-1985 (Random House)
This gorgeous tome examines the work of more than 100 female artists in the fields of painting, sculpture, photography, video, performance art, and other experimental media.
David Hicks Scrapbooks (Vendome Press)
Famed British interior designer, David Hicks, wowed the decorating world with his bold use of prints, color and quirky furniture combos. Here his son, Ashley Hicks, has put together the most inspiring pages from his late father’s scrapbooks.
Alec Sloth: Sleeping by the Mississippi (Mack)
Photographer Alec Sloth takes large format portraits of the people, landscapes and interiors along the Mississippi River. First published in 2004, it has sold through three editions and this new release is still as hauntingly beautiful and ever.
Here’s where we showcase everything we’re loving this minute. From great reads to must-try trends to inspiring people we’re crushing on, it’s a peek into our lives here at Velvet. Also updates on contests, collabs and where our newest stores are cropping up. Enjoy!