absolutely adorable Guest Hunter, Ami Pak. Ami was born in South Korea, raised in Minneapolis, went to college in Northern Ohio and Southern California, and now resides in Brooklyn. The fact that she’s lived all over the world explains her strong sense of individuality. I mean, the girl grew up composting and gardening vegetables in her backyard with her parents and 4 siblings (she has a brother and 3 sisters). Now if that’s not badass, I don’t know what is. She’s got style, creativity and smarts. A pretty amazing combination which can be seen in her hobbies; like printmaking, making kimchi, her obsession with design collectives, and emerging fashion. Ami is currently a Senior Program Manager at frog Design and has worked at a bunch of other reputable companies such as luckymag.com, HBO.com, MTV.com, Razorfish, and Dreamworks Records. In addition to her work and her hobbies, she’s always down for good comedy, adores her nieces and nephews, loves her friends, and feels fortunate to be living in the “Golden Age of Brooklyn”.
We’re lucky to get the inside scoop from this talented lady, so keep on reading – you’re going to be cooler for doing it. Guaranteed.
This is a beautiful and slightly hidden (you can easily walk by and miss it) flower & antique shop, Saffron can be found in Fort Greene, right across the monstrosity known as the Atlantic Center Terminal.
I stumbled upon it when it opened in October 2009 by the Togashi family (mother Mihoko and her children, brother & sister, Shunya and Kana). It instantly became one of my all-time favorite spots. They carry the most amazing and rare selection of flowers and their small vintage collection of clothing; accessories and house wares are thoughtfully and tastefully curated.
Everything is well priced and they are the sweetest people. It’s my go-to place when I need a gift, lovely flowers for my apartment or if I just want to say “hi” and hang out in a beautiful space on my way home.
31 Hanson Place (Between Saint Felix & Fort Greene Place) Brooklyn, NY 11217
Hours: Mon – Fri: 12pm – 8pm & Sat – Sun: 11am – 7pm
This is a wonderful way to update to those index cards with your family recipes on them. I have been calling my mom on the phone to get instructions on how to make her yummy food. I can keep them on these attractive cards, so I will have a way keep the family recipes for myself and also have to hand down to future generations.
More than a few years ago, I was at the mall in California, shopping with my mom who told me that I needed to start looking like a lady (“Thanks, Mom”). She told me that she would buy me some makeup and I was keen on finding a bright pink lipstick. Instead, I discovered the Rouge Coco lipstick line by CHANEL. I tried on many shades, but I applied the perfect red shade, Paris and I was in love. It has amazing staying power without drying your lips and as the day wears on, I still get compliments. But really, thanks mom…for making me look like a lady.
I spent some time traveling in South of India last fall and being the product whore I am, of course I discovered more than a few wonderful Ayurvedic products that they are so famous for and had to bring them home. My favorite and one that I use daily is the Saffron Dew by Biotique. I mean c’mon…SAFFRON! Are you kidding me? It is this wonderful peachy/golden color, smells glorious and isn’t too heavy. It also makes your skin feel like it has been perfectly kissed by dew, without making it look like an oil slick. And it really couldn’t get any more affordable. Win-Win!
Black, leather, webbed…insane. These accessories will make any woman look amazing and fashion forward. I own the Seed Pouch and everyone asks me about it multiple times a day. It also helps me look ultra-stylish when I ride my bike.
I get weak in the knees for a man who knows how to build things and think that there is nothing sexier than being handy and helpful. So when you are in a dilemma about what to gift your boyfriend, partner or husband for their next birthday or gift-giving holiday, how about a leather tool belt? Help them help you.
I have nieces & nephews and my close friends all have recently had babies, so I am familiar with some kids stuff. I have been giving Taro Gomi books (Everyone Poops) since my nieces were born (in the late 90’s) and am also particularly fond of the board books (My Friends, Bus Stops and Spring is Here). Babies like them because they are colorful and according to my friend’s baby, Sharper (15 mos), they apparently taste good. I like them because the watercolor illustrations are eye candy. So talented that Taro Gomi. Love him!
Fried chicken is my favorite food on the planet. Period. I have been many places in Manhattan & Brooklyn, and while my search is not entirely thorough and certainly not over, my current reigning favorite is Peaches Hothouse in Bed-Stuy. They make Nashville Style Hot Chicken that is served on top of piece of white bread, with a side. I always order the Hot Chicken (it comes in Mild, Hot and Extra Hot), with a side of creamed corn, bacon & scallions. I get crazy just thinking about it…
415 Tompkins Avenue (corner of Hancock)
ph. (718) 483-9111
I grew up eating a lot of my mom’s Korean home cooking. Many of the ingredients we used came from our garden in our backyard. I crave fresh vegetables and I go to Eat in Greenpoint to get my fill. This is better than the “market to table” stuff you get everywhere these days, this is the closest thing you will get that is “farm to table” in Brooklyn. The space is always changing and breathtakingly beautiful. You can sit next to the veggies you are about to consume and their in-house made pottery on display makes the ambience even more lovely! Chef Jordan Colón treats the ingredients so simply and with such respect, everything I have eaten here has been delicious, soul-satisfying and left me feeling that I have done something really good for myself.
124 Meserole Avenue
Greenpoint, Brooklyn 11222
SISTERS DOING IT FOR THEMSELVES
Women doing art, it’s a great thing and something I wholeheartedly support. When I am just browsing the internet, I like to surf around for upcoming talent. These are two women who are doing amazing things with illustration, painting, textiles and color.
Jen Uman Uman is self-taught artist and started doing mini-portrait paintings about 5 years ago. She has since expanded her love of art & painting into larger-scale paintings, as well as illustration. I love, love, love her unique sense/POV and curiosity for finding the juicy bits of obscure life in other cultures (Her first book is about a man named Jemmy Button) and humor that she finds in everything (see her blog). She is one of the bravest people I know and could not be more proud to know her.
Mansi is just rad. She is graphic designer for websites by day and a textile maven and illustrator by night & weekends. I love her sense for patterns and colors and her passion for printmaking.
Check ‘em out! They rock my world!
This amazing app is just like Google Maps, but for bike paths in the city! It gets me safely from point A to point B going the right way and makes me feel really lucky that I can enjoy the views of the city from my bike.
Photos: Thimali Kodikara, Ami Pak, Etsy, Chanel, Pure Herbal Cure, Devang, Medford Tools, Amazon, Ami Pak, Ami Pak, Jen Uman, Mansi Shah, Spokes NYC