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Monthly Archives: March 2010

Stephen, me and mom. Mom had such GREAT style. Photos by Dad.

Hey Bearny, just wanted to wish you a Super Happy Birthday! Hope you have some great adventures, meet interesting people and have a fulfilling year; may this be your best year yet!!

-wEn

March 26 is my little brother Stephen’s birthday! He’s on the other side of the world now, living and working in Shanghai, but I wanted to give him a proper shoutout.

We didn’t always get along as kids. There were times when we’d blackmail each other, get into fistfights, or even chase each other around the home with butter knives(!). But then there were sweet stories… he’d be a good sport and play Barbies with me; his doll’s name was always Vanilla… or we’d flip the couches upside down, throw blankets over chairs and pretend we were living in caves… I could write a novel about our misadventures (our poor parents)!

As we grew up, our perceptions of each other changed and our relationship grew. We partied together, went on snowboarding excursions, developed a great friendship. Now we’re super tight, even if we’re separated by 7,000+ miles.

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Like many siblings, my brother and I have a special way of communicating. We developed a slang where anything cute or supercool is referred to as “bear” or “shonshon,” which is the phonetic spelling for bear in Mandarin. He’s a main influence in why this blog is called shonshon8. Also, the reason why he’s stuck with the silly nickname “Bearny.”

Bearny, you don’t get Twitter in China due to censorship, but here’s a special screenshot for you.

WOW, this is quite candid of me; I am typically not a mushy person. I suppose absence does make the heart grow fonder. Hope to see you soon, Bearn!

P.S. hey readers, join me on Twitter… let’s start a dialogue and inspire each other…

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photo: Franco Folini, via Flickr

I’ve always been fascinated with Haight Ashbury’s notoriety in the ’60s, as the epicenter for the Summer of Love, a time of cultural and political rebellion. Decades later, it’s gone through major changes and gentrification, yet it retains a Bohemian feel. There’s still many independent, local shops in the area, and I was delighted to discover some of my favorite brands’ headquarters are in The Haight.

Here are my highlights of shopping on this famous street:

I stopped by the Goorin Bros. hat shop at 1446 Haight Street, which is their flagship store, with a hat-making studio in the back. This is what I bought there.

I really love the inside-out, basting stitch aesthetic.

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Skunkfunk boutique at 1475 Haight Street, has a very fresh design aesthetic. Very modern, environmental, utilitarian and futuristic. Here are some items I was eyeing.

I learned that each Skunkfunk store is not a franchise, but an independently-run store with their own identity, with the support of the Skunkfunk brand. I was pleased to find out there is a Skunkfunk store in NY, in the LES. I’ll definitely have to check it out, especially since there may be items unique to that store.

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I felt very peaceful and happy when I walked into Loyal Army on 1728 Haight Street. The store interior has a lot of eyecandy, an invasion of Japanese-inspired crazy, colorful characters! A very creative San Francisco-based company.

Ok, it’s obvious I have a soft spot for all things kawaii (cute in Japanese).

Burger dude with caps (or braces)?

Mikey working behind the cassette tape counter.


A taco dress!

Cheesy, but fun tourist moment.

This is what I bought from Loyal Army.

I’m a fan of houndstooth and fangs. 🙂

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Taking a departure from Haight Ashbury, I want to mention an interesting spot in Mission, a few blocks from Howong’s studio: This “hiphopsicles ice cube tray” I bought for Beegi is from fabric 8, a store + gallery and online shop. fabric 8 “features unique, quality goods by urban independent designers” and supports creativity, as well as DIY businesses.

I may have to work these hiphop ice cubes into a photoshoot.

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Ok, enough shopping. Time to get some nightlife in! My friend Howong is part of a DJ crew called Slayers Club. They had an event happening while I was in town, so I went to check it out. Slayers Club music is best described as “San Francisco electro funk glitch-hop dubstep breaks cumbia dancehall fidget:house bmore.”

Uh-huh, we know how to party!

DJ Lokae sporting a cool-ass t-shirt.

I’m obsessed with these damn fuzzy lamps by the door. Bijules engagement ring.

Howong and his friend. Howong, better known as Howie, is a VJ and takes photos for Slayer’s Club.

If you’re ever in the San Francisco area, you should definitely check out a Slayers Club event. A great crew who brings you good, clean grimy fun! You can find out about their events and see more photos at the Slayers Club website.

A good nightcap to my evening before heading to Lake Tahoe.

photos: me, Howong

To see previous entries from my trip out west:

TRAVEL AND BEYOND: San Francisco, a postcard-perfect city {part 1}
TRAVEL AND BEYOND: Japan Town, SF + NEW PEOPLE {part 2}

Wednesday, March 10 was The International Day of Awesomeness, and it was pretty awesome indeed! My friend Minnie and I went to a fun LIVE art show for Shin Tanaka, hosted by New York-Tokyo and Frank’s Chop Shop at B.East in the LES.

Shin’s intricately designed, bold-colored paper and vinyl toys were displayed on candlelit tables and projected on a video screen. Here are some moments from the event.

Me holding one of the paper toys. Note my fascination with cute, well-designed objects!

Artist Shin Tanaka.

That backpack might claw your eyes out!

Later in the evening, Shin dazzled the crowd with his live art session: people wrote their names
on post-its and Shin tagged the names on a yellow canvas. A very interesting progression.

Presto, we have art! (My name’s on there somewhere.)

I met some cool people that night, including BOM76, an original B-boy and graffiti artist. I was very inspired to hear he’s been traveling around the world, living in places like Japan and Korea and collaborating on creative projects; an awesome artist in his own right!

For more info. on Shin Tanaka, check out New York-Tokyo’s interview.
If you want to make one of his paper toys, scroll down to the bottom of Shin’s website for more details or go to New York-Tokyo to download the Tobio snowboarding toy, exclusively created for New York-Tokyo Sports.

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The craziest thing occurred at work earlier that day; most of my department showed up wearing blue! We spend SO many hours at work together that somehow we must’ve telepathically notified each other of the color scheme for the day. :X I found this so bizarre that I had to document this.

(from left): me, Monica, Heather, Leslie, Jessie and Mark; photo by Mitch

Hey, it’s Mitch!

Our production department is simply awesome. Why? We ALWAYS get the job done no matter how crazy the deadlines or the multitude of projects we juggle at once. On top of that, everybody is creative and quirky in their own way. Oh yeah, AND we match. Yep, we kick ass!

unless noted, photos: me

Coming soon… SF {part 3}: more shopping + night life
So… the duration of my vacation was a lot shorter than the length of time it’s taking to post about my trip! What can I say? I’ve been busy juggling deadlines at my day job and freelance gigs. However, there’s still more interesting experiences to share, so I plan on posting about the rest of my vacation this week.

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