Monday, April 05, 2010

1477 McAllister St.

Edited to add the link for renting information: Click here to find out how!

Hi Knitters,
I have to share with you the amazing flat we lived in for a few days while we were in San Francisco. We all absolutely adored this fresh and homey spot. As we pulled up the owner's mother was outside sweeping the steep steps leading up to the humongous red door of our flat. She was French and lovely and welcoming. The houses were all connected in a row, sharing walls. It was picturesque and colorful. We couldn't wait to get inside.

Above you'll see my girls sitting at the table. We spent a lot of the time we were in the house at this table. TC is working on a latch hook square that is a swirled rainbow of sorts, you can see my knitting bag filled with yarn from Knitty City on the table and my other daughter (and all of us) spent loads of time reading on this trip. I love the fact that we are all such lovers of books. It was so quiet and fun at that table.
The ceilings were about 12 feet high which was wonderful for my 6'5" husband. That must feel so good to him, I can't imagine. The walls were painted a soothing green and soft shades of white. We were struck by the incredibly long narrow hallway sprinkled with so many doorways. At the back end of the hall was the kitchen and dining table, a nook-like area.
At the front end of the hall was a sitting room that was warm, gorgeous and comfy. The decor was sparse but clever and sort of just right. Thoughtful you might say.
The high ceilings were adorned with chandeliers, some with missing lightbulbs, but all with incredible moldings. The detail took my breath away. There were enormous pocket doors and secret passages that connected all of the rooms. The doors never seemed to close all of the way or just right but that added to the fun.
There were large windows and nooks everywhere. You can see the cables that run over all of the streets for the cable cars. I think after awhile you wouldn't see the cables but I noticed them every time I was walking or driving around the city. It is like living under a web of wires.
Books were stacked horizontally on most of the shelves. It was interesting. The floors in the rooms had old worn hardwood that I loved.
The flight of stair coming from the front door had this railing along the top. The hallway went in both directions from the top. My kids talked about counting all of the stairs but I never heard a number. It wasn't even the number of stairs so much as how incredibly steep they seemed.
This was looking down and out the front door. You always seemed to be going up or down in this city.
The kitchen was modern and clean and roomy. I especially loved the faucet. It was a statement. The double doors just beyond the sink held a full-size washer and dryer. Every inch of the flat was used in the most economic way possible.We had a tiny balcony off the dining area which I loved. Everything is so tight and compact but people get very creative with small spaces in true city living. I love the blue laced spiral staircase next door and their courtyard with toys strewn about. My kids were intrigued at the thought of having the little tiled space as your backyard. We saw kids playing catch on the sidewalks by our house. People adapt and make due wherever they live and that's what makes the world go round. I love that.
Looking down on the other side of the balcony was a postage-sized zen garden. It oozed a meditation-like feeling. It was beautiful. I am obsessed with the cracked cement and the green cushiony covering on the ground. Look at the vibrant green next to the gray. The leafy vines and ornaments added to the peaceful feel of this tiny space.
Every space had something interesting to look at or to think about. These beautiful natural rocks sat on the window ledge in the bathroom. I loved this thoughtful touch. I wonder where the rocks were from. Since I was a child I have been enamored by rocks. Love the rocks for some unknown reason. Look at those rustic colors all in a row. Perfection.
The doors above were the bathroom double doors from inside of the bathroom. They really didn't close right and they certainly didn't lock. It was kind of funny. My older daughter didn't like that fact at all. However, the shower swept you away. It was like standing in a sweet, warm rainfall. It made you feel so good.
Here is our gigantic front door. Love the deep shade of red. Love doors in general. They hold all of the stories inside.
The freshly swept steps going down from the front door were the best. The kids bounded up and down taking several steps at a time. Look at the checkered cement sidewalk. Delicious. Cement.
There were flowers everywhere. We were only a block or two from Alamo Square. There was a huge tree blocking the view of our house from the street so I couldn't get a great direct shot. There was a tiny garage and steep short driveway.
These houses were right next door and our house looked similar to these. I don't know the exact age of our house but I love all of the Victorian painting and colors in the neighborhood.

San Francisco is colorful in its buildings and in its people. There is fantastic eye candy everywhere you turn. I could hardly soak it all in. I was in love with all of it.
Perspective is everything. We all loved our flat in San Francisco so much. I would go back anytime and I hope it happens someday soon. We were on the run the entire time just trying to see and experience everything the city had to offer. I would love to have a longer time to stay in San Francisco in the future.

By the way, there were people on the streets wearing incredible knitwear at every turn. Long looping scarves worn loose or wrapped several times and scrunchy hats both knit and crochet were all the rage. More to come on the knitting scene later....

More to share soon!
Have a super Tuesday, Knitters.
best, susie


Trisha said...

What a cool place to stay in a very cool city!

barb said...

I would have a hard time sightseeing if I was staying in such a wonderful place. It looks like you and the family are thoroughly enjoying yourselves. Continue sending us little glimpses of you trip. I am loving it.

Mrs. Clarke's Blog said...

Oh, I looooove San Francisco! I definitely left my heart there!! :)

marlono said...

Great pictures - I absolutely love visiting SF because there are all of these interesting little places to explore!

And I love your photo and comment about the door. I have a fascination (obsession?) with doors too. I took dozens - maybe hundreds of pictures of doors and archways when I was in Morocco a few years ago. Each one seemed to tell a story...

-Marlon in Philadelphia

Allyson said...

I've never been to San Fran but have always wanted to go! I've always been in love with spiral staircases and that blue one one is out of control!

Nancy said...

Not sure, it's been a long time sence I was in SF, but I think you were in the area that they call the Painted Ladies. All Victorian houses in a row. A beautiful part of a beautiful city.
So glad you had such a wonderful time.

Kate (KnitsInClass) said...

I want to move right into that flat! Glad you had such a fantastic vacation -

Andrea said...

San Francisco is such a fun city to visit! Thanks for all the pictures. It makes me miss California. :) Can't wait to hear about the knitting scene!

Marie Irshad said...

Oh god! Your post has made me yearn for San Francisco so much! I used to go every year but haven't visited there in nearly five years.

I've always loved the houses there and it was wonderful to get to look inside one. What a gorgeous place to stay!

I really have to try and go back to SF soon.

Kekumukula said...

OMGosh! You stayed about eight blocks from where I live.

Julie said...

Thanks for sharing! What an awesome place!

Judi A. said...

There is no city anywhere that even comes close to comparing to San Francisco! It's stolen your heart in one visit, just as it's done to so many before you. You'll go back some day, guaranteed! :-)

Sara in WI said...

Thank you for taking the time to write this beautiful post, Susan. I left at least part of my heart there a long time ago.

knittingknirvana said...

What a gorgeous house! Thank you so much for sharing it. I love seeing homes. glad you had such a good time!! :)

Charles said...

Love your description of the house. You certainly have an artistic eye, and make it come alive.

And what fun that you say you are all readers...I wonder what you are all reading besides knitting patterns? My kids are older now, but when they were home for Christmas we had a huge book exchange. Very eclectic from Winnie the Pooh to Doestoevsky...Makes for great memories.

k brownlee said...


k brownlee said...


Jennifer said...

How fun to go on your little vacation with you and tour the house. Thanks for the peek. Hope San Francisco was as dreamy as it looked.

KatJobson said...

I just love San Francisco!

MarieAnge said...

It certainly sounds like you and yours had a fantastic time! I really love the photos of the houses along the street. They remind me of Alice in Wonderland strangely enough. Not sure why, color, form, the riot of colors and shapes all competing for attention. That wee zen garden... Love it!
You gave me a very different insight of Frisco. Thank you!


Lindsey said...

Nice post. The apartment was lovely and very San Francisco.
Those were power poles and lines for homes and businesses, not for the cable cars. The cable car cables run under the streets and the cable cars grip the moving cables and get pulled along.
Some of the overhead wires are for streetcars.
Glad you loved San Francisco. I was born there and grew up in the environs.

prpltrtl946 said...

Did you all look at the books?

I love to see what books are in pictures and I recognized one. There was a book on the fireplace mantel called "Material World." Do you know it? The same people put out another book called "Hungry Planet."

I have them and they are both great books for talking about different cultures and our place in the world. It would have been fun to see what you and your family thought of it.

Gina said...

Lovely place.

The owner and her mother weren't named Sylvie and Sabine, were they?

It's a longshot, but I had to ask.

Emma said...

I am knitting the baby doll from itty-bitty toys. I noticed that when knitting the body, the instructions say to knit for three inches after increasing and before decreasing. But when knitting the head, the instructions say to knit for three and a half inches after increasing and before decreasing. It seems like the head is bigger than the body. Is it correct, or is this a typo?

Susan said...

The instructions are correct. The body is longer at the top because there are more rows between the decrease rows which elongates the shape. The head is decreased quicker to create a rounder shape.

Hope that helps.

Jaime said...

Beautiful! I want to go to there! I've always wanted to go to San Francisco and knowing how much you loved it makes me even more excited to go! xoxo.