I view the holiday season as an opportunity to expand my empire of place settings and nice napkins and silver—all the lovely things I am too cheap to buy for myself the rest of the year. Every year I "need" to feed 17 (or so) for Thanksgiving, and in December I "need" to throw a big holiday party.
This is the sort of thinking that led me, the other day, to wander into Sue Fisher King's eponymously named shop on Sacramento Street in San Francisco. Julie was with me, and you know what that means:
Photography by Mimi Giboin for Remodelista.
Above: "Those napkins would look great in your kitchen," Julie said, in what can only be described as an enabling tone. She rubbed a Liberty of London print between her fingers. The napkins were on final sale, and there were tons of other prints (at $37 apiece) also available. I can attest to the fact that Liberty Napkins wash beautifully (no ironing necessary, unless, like me, you find it a pleasure to iron crisp polished cotton). The silver plate flatware, by the way, is Chambly's pattern, Baguette; $295 for a five-piece setting at Sue Fisher King.
Above: Next, Julie made a beeline for a shelf displaying tabletop pieces by local ceramicist Lea Ann Roddan. They come in several colors, but Yellow Salt Glaze is particularly pretty. Sue Fisher King came over to weigh in: "They're enormously cheap, given that they're handmade by a local artist," she said. A dinner plate is $40, a small plate is $33, and an eight-inch saladier is $44. For more information, see Sue Fisher King.
Above: Three serving bowls. Note the pleasing variation in color in the glaze. Prices range from $26 for a small serving bowl to $66 for a large serving bowl.
Above: "Sometimes people come in and want a whole set—place settings for 12—but then, when the order comes in, they say, 'It doesn't look like the one I saw in the store,' " says Fisher King. "This is the nature of one-of-a-kind handmade pieces."
Above: A mug is $26 (shapes vary). Did I buy any? Well, it is the holiday season. I "need" to keep a supply of pomegranates on hand, on the countertop, don't I?