In San Francisco, Winter Blues Become Winter Greens

The dreaded New York winter, bitter, cold, and dark, can sometimes make us want to sing the blues. One winter relief for all New Yorkers, is to plan a getaway to San Francisco. While San Francisco is famous for its windy summers, it offers mild and virtually wind-chill free winters. As an added bonus, the city remains green throughout the winter, and in more ways than one. It offers not only better winter weather, but great handmade and local shopping and the opportunity to live a more sustainable, greener life. All good things must come to an end, but before I leave San Francisco, I will share a few of its best green winter treasures.

1. Composting is the law

In addition to its citywide composting program, businesses in San Francisco do their part to reduce waste. Supermarkets and delis only give out paper or plastic bags upon request, coffee shops serve coffee to-go in compostable cups and forgo the plastic lids and ice cream shops use real spoons to give out samples and serve their ice cream in compostable cups coupled with compostable spoons.

2. Plants blossom in the winter

Despite the winter season, plants, trees, and flowers continue to blossom in San Francisco. And if that's not enough, palm trees are scattered throughout major boulevards and public spaces.

3. World-class thrift store shopping

Walking down Valencia Street, a commercial corridor in San Francisco's Mission district, one will come across at least one great thrift store every four blocks. These thrift stores are bustling shopping destinations. They are emblems of the strong "recycle and reuse" culture among San Franciscans.

4. Great-tasting local produce

If you have ever wanted to change your diet and eat vegan, San Francisco is the city for this change. Most restaurants and groceries offer a wide variety of great-tasting, locally farmed produce year-round.

5. Bicycling is safe and convenient

San Francisco offers some of the best urban riding around. Drivers and bicyclists respect each others rights-of-way, helping to make bicycling a viable and safe mode of transportation for all.

6. Local designer shops and co-ops are a main fixture on main streets

Local shops in San Francisco are plentiful and thriving. They have helped to revive many great neighborhood streets throughout the city. One of my favorites that I encountered was Studio 3579, which features the work of local designers Priya Sarawati, Joy Opfer, and Michael Stone.

7. Luscious parks and true public spaces

San Francisco's public spaces are top notch. They are open, vast, public and integrate seamlessly into the urban landscape. Among my favorites is Mission-Dolores Park, a great place to meditate, aimlessly wander, and unwind.

Ready to plan your green winter getaway? Start by visiting for info on sublets, bike rentals and other local deals.

Photo credits (top to bottom): Chloe at,, JB Warehouse and Curio Emporium, Jeremy Waiver, Dustin Jensen,, Carly Gordon

- Karla Quintero
Fernando Jewelry

Where to Find the {NewNew} July 18 + 19

From New York City to New Jersey to San Francisco, the {NewNew} is heating up the summer with great handmade products. Check them out at the venues below!

For all of our West Coast fans, you are in for a treat with two {NewNew} members heading to San Francisco to sell at Renegade this weekend. Check out pCharming, prismPOP, and Karen's Monsters enjoying the Bay Area vibe.
Location: Fort Mason Festival Pavilion. Saturday and Sunday, 11am - 7pm.

The Brooklyn Flea is known as one of the best craft markets in the nation. The {NewNew} will be back participating in this Brooklyn staple at Fort Greene on Saturday and DUMBO on Sunday. Fort Greene {NewNew} vendors include Better Than Jam, Jantar, and Box of Joy. DUMBO vendors are Wabisabi Brooklyn, Nordea Soaperie, and Yania Creations.
Fort Greene Location: Bishop Loughlin Memorial High School, Lafayette Avenue between Clermont and Vanderbilt Avenues, Brooklyn. Saturday, 10am - 5pm.
DUMBO Location: Water Street and New Dock Street, under the Brooklyn Bridge, Brooklyn. Sunday, 11am - 6pm.

Artists and Fleas, located in beautiful McCarren Park, is a terrific independent artist and designer market that works in collaboration with the Open Space Alliance of North Brooklyn. This week, {NewNew} artists at McCarren are Nordea Soaperie, Pulp Sushi, and Yania Creations.
Location: McCarren Park (adjacent to the McCarren Field House in the northwest corner of McCarren Park). Saturday, 10am - 6pm.

The Handmade Faire is a 100% Handmade Art and Fine Craft show. Aside from fantastic artists, the Handmade Faire will have food vendors selling a variety of tasty festival foods, as well as a great sampling of music all pulled from the 60's and 70's era in honor of the "Summer of Love" theme. Feel free to wear your tie dye and long skirts! {NewNew} artist Collective Elements will be selling at this hip fair, so be sure to check out her fun paper goods.
Location: Freedom Park, 86 Union Street, Medford, NJ. Saturday, 10am - 4pm.

Have a lovely weekend!