Oh Joy

{field trip} a+r store... 17 Feb 2015

A+R Store / Los Angeles

I'm often so virtual these days that I tend to do most of my shopping online. But I miss the ritual of going into an actual store and seeing and feeling the pieces in person. Even if I'm not actually shopping to buy, there's still something so much more enjoyable about window shopping in person. I love imagining—even just for a second—how something I see in a store would look in my future dream home.

One of my favorite online modern home decor shops, A+R, has an actual brick and mortar store here in Los Angeles. It's rare to see independent shops that exist both online and in person these days, so I love seeing how a website comes alive in a real live space.

A+R Store / Los Angeles

A+R Store / Los Angeles

A+R Store / Los Angeles

A+R Store / Los Angeles

Full of modern, colorful, functional, and quirky pieces for the home, this shop makes me want to hang the coolest lights from my ceiling and paint my desk in an awesome, fun color!

A+R | 171 South La Brea Avenue | Los Angeles, CA 90036 | 800.913.0071 x 3

{Photos by Casey Brodley for Oh Joy}

{field trip} zuzii studio... 15 Jan 2015

Zuzii Shoe Studio

Zuzii Shoe Studio

As a designer and small business owner, I have a true love and appreciation of seeing how other small businesses are run. Whenever I have an opportunity to visit the studio of a fellow maker, it’s a serious treat. In partnership with American Express, we recently visited the new Downtown LA studio of Zuzii, a family-owned and operated shoemaker that makes beautiful, handmade shoes. I brought along my little sidekick (and shoe-lover) so she could see the shoe-making process in action.

Zuzii Shoe Studio

Zuzii Shoe Studio

Zuzii Shoe Studio

I first learned about Zuzii last year and have loved following their growth ever since. What started as a kid’s shoe line has now evolved to a brand with items for grown-ups, too. Ruby loved seeing all the shoe samples and all the materials that go into making the shoes.

And because I am always so fascinated by how each business runs differently, I asked Ryan, Alex, Nickie Campbell (a mother and two daughters) a few things about how it all comes together…

Zuzii Shoe Studio

What’s your biggest joy in being a small business?

We love our connection with our customers. All of our management and production is done by the three of us, so we really get to be consumed by the entire process including interacting with our customers. We have so many wonderful customers that show us love on a daily basis. Our favorites are those wonderful customers who take time to send us a photo just to tell us how much they love their new shoes. It truly is a special experience for us to be able to take the order, craft the shoes, pack and ship, and a few days later be able to see them on the customers feet. I know it is said often, but we really couldn’t do it without them. As a small business we also have a unique opportunity to really get to know our customers (especially thanks to social media). We have so many long-term customers who have been around since the early days. Zuzii has basically grown up along with some of them, it makes it such a sweet experience considering our start as an infant shoe brand. 

Zuzii Shoe Studio

What are the pluses and minuses of having a family-run small business?

We are all equal co-owners of Zuzii, which is a great thing but at some points also makes things a little challenging. It was really important to us that we make collective decisions between the three of us. We have many commonalities that can sometimes overlap and make things tricky, but for the most part we all have our own strengths that complement each other and allow us to work together to figure things out and get things done. It took a couple years to get used to working together inside this setting, but it has bonded us in a way I think most families don’t ever get the opportunity to. 

Zuzii Shoe Studio

Are you inspired by customer feedback/requests when creating new designs?

This has been a key part of growing our business. When we began Zuzii we only had intentions of creating infant shoes, it was a lot of thanks to our customers who pushed and drove us to continually expand our size range. It was funny, every time we launched a new size we would immediately have customers coming back and asking us for even more! We launched our Women’s line this past summer, and almost immediately we had requests for a men’s line which is now in the works for this coming summer!

Zuzii Shoe Studio

Thanks so much to the Campbell family for giving us a peek into their wonderful world!

This post is in partnership with American Express – committed to connecting small merchants to more customers through the Shop Small® movement. 

{Photos by Casey Brodley for Oh Joy}

{field trip} reykjavik outpost in eagle rock... 29 Oct 2014

Reykjavik Outpost Los Angeles

We always love it when new, inspiring shops pop up in the area and recently stopped by Reykjavik Outpost in the Eagle Rock neighborhood of LA. Everything in the shop is sourced from Iceland-based artists and designers. With hand-drawn fabrics and hand woven shoes, every piece is beautifully made by hand.

Reykjavik Outpost Los Angeles

Reykjavik Outpost Los Angeles

Reykjavik Outpost Los Angeles

Reykjavik Outpost Los Angeles

Reykjavik Outpost Los Angeles

Inspiring and lovely and full of amazing colors, patterns, and textures, it's a place to go for a truly special treat for someone.

P.S. Here's a special Oh Joy reader discount for their online store for 25% off through November 5th. Simply enter RVKOHJOY25 at checkout and see more past field trips right here...

Reykjavik Outpost Icelandic Design Store | 4680 Eagle Rock Blvd | Los Angeles, CA 90041

{Photos by Casey Brodley for Oh Joy}

{field trip} olive & june... 16 Sep 2013

Oh Joy | Olive and June Nail Salon

Oh Joy | Olive and June Nail Salon

Oh Joy | Olive and June Nail Salon

My last few field trips have been to textile shops or companies where their customers shop for beautiful textiles or home goods. Today's trip is all about merging beauty and pampering into one. I visited the recently-opened Olive & June nail salon in Beverly Hills and was blown away with the beauty of the space. I mean, have you ever seen a nail salon that looks like this?!?

Oh Joy | Olive and June Nail Salon

Oh Joy | Olive and June Nail Salon

Oh Joy | Olive and June Nail Salon

Founded by Sarah Gibson Tuttle, a former Wall St. exec who left her fast-paced job to open a business she felt passionate about, Olive & June has just the right mix of warmth and design. I love the bright, airy, and modern space mixed with the natural and organic materials used in the decor. The tiny kids chairs that the nail technicians sit on are crazy cute and so chic. It was seriously so relaxing and a great place to take an hour out of my day to just relax...

Olive & June | 430 N. Canon Drive | Beverly Hills, CA 90210 | 310.247.0500

P.S. More retail space inspiration...

{Photos by Oh Joy} 

{field trip} en soie in silver lake... 26 Aug 2013

En Soie in Los Angeles | Oh Joy

En Soie in Los Angeles | Oh Joy

En Soie in Los Angeles | Oh Joy

One of my favorite shops here in Silver Lake is En Soie—a family owned and operated line of clothing, textiles, and home goods that originated in Zürich, Switzerland, in 1894. Every pattern is hand-drawn and hand-printed to create bold and beautiful pieces.

En Soie in Los Angeles | Oh Joy

En Soie in Los Angeles | Oh Joy

En Soie in Los Angeles | Oh Joy

This is one of those shops that make you want to save up for a special treat for yourself or a really beautiful gift for someone. The two dresses I have from En Soie (this one and this one) are seriously my favorites, and they both fit so well. And I asked the owner, Eleonore, to show me how she wears her scarves because I knew the result would look both effortless and beautiful. The colors and patterns are just so ridiculously good.

En Soie | 3333 Sunset Blvd. | Los Angeles, CA 90026 | 323.662.0985

{Photos by Oh Joy}

{field trip} hedley & bennett studio... 7 Aug 2013

Field Trip with Hedley & Bennett | photos by Bonnie Tsang

Field Trip with Hedley & Bennett | photos by Bonnie Tsang

Recently, I've gotten to know Ellen Bennett, a talented chef who recently started her own apron-making business called Hedley & Bennett. And despite being in business for just a year, Ellen's aprons are now worn by some of the top chefs in L.A. and across the country. I spotted her work at Poketo a couple months ago and loved that her aprons combine function with a style that both men and women can wear. So Ruby and I went on a little field trip to the Hedley & Bennett studio to check out Ellen's process and to have a couple aprons made just for us!

Field Trip with Hedley & Bennett | photos by Bonnie Tsang

We talked about our favorite fabrics, what kind of pockets we like, and Ruby pretty much went to ribbon heaven with all the supplies in Ellen's studio. And, we started dreaming up what our aprons would look like...

Continue reading " {field trip} hedley & bennett studio... " »

{field trip} marimekko store in beverly hills... 3 Jul 2013

Marimekko-beverly-hills-8

Marimekko-beverly-hills-3

Marimekko-beverly-hills-6

Sometimes I get so tied to my desk—I get in the work zone and forget to leave my office all day. So, a few weeks ago, I decided that on Friday mornings, I'd start to make a habit of going to visit a shop, showroom, or other inspiring location that I've had on my "must-visit" list. It's a way of forcing me to get away from the computer screen and get inspired by real things in real life. And after two of my friends, Bri and Amy, mentioned loving the new Marimekko store in Beverly Hills, it was time to pay a visit....

Continue reading " {field trip} marimekko store in beverly hills... " »

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