Wednesday, July 22, 2009

We Snuck In....

my friend Michael and I cooking up a plan...

...and found a treasure upstairs from our studios. They are renovating the late Mayor Phelan's offices circa 1907. I found out that when Macy's occupied this floor they covered up the windows, walls and floors to protect it. The entry doors are curved with glass transoms and the original windows are actually in front of the modern windows that were added later. There is even a full shower off the main room!

detail of one of the columns

James Phelan was the mayor of San Francisco just before the 06 earthquake and later a Senator. There is a secret mini penthouse on the roof that was built for his mistress and I snuck up there as well years ago. It feels like a grand little dollhouse with small columns, a fresco on the domed parlor ceiling that is peeling and there are french doors out to the deck. They rented it out to a photographer and his wife back in the 60's but it has been vacant ever since. It is my fantasy to have them rent it to me for my studio someday.

this is a tiny door next to the normal sized curved entry door....

Phelan saw himself as a sort of Medici of San Francisco who wanted to create a Paris of the West--not a bad plan for a small town ravaged by an earthquake and started with gold rush money. I would love to rent the space for our 20th anniversary 'Vernissage' for my new collection ( I just learned this word) ...but first I will have to see what the building management says about that idea...


  1. just learned the reason for tiny door: Senator Phelan had a very short 'manservant' who lived in this little room off the main office(!)

  2. wow jeanine, you weren't joking about this space; it is absolutely beautiful. i hope all your vernissage fantasies come true! kindly, alexa @ little otsu

  3. This space is perfect for you. Unique with timeless beauty, like your jewelry!