Today is a special day for me, dear readers, because I’m sharing an exclusive chat and home tour with the one and only SFGirlbyBay, Victoria Smith, a creative entrepreneur from Los Angeles with a style that I simply love. I haven’t had her home on my blog since 2008 (see it here), which seems like a lifetime ago. I’m so happy after 11 years, she’s back to tour us of her home again only this time, it’s in a completely different city - LA!
But first, a little background about this lovely lady. Victoria has worked as an art buyer and stylist producing photo shoots for ad agencies (when I met her way back in 2006) but is also a journalism major with an Advanced Arts degree in Interior Design. Once she left the ad world, she started off as a blogger like me and ended up as a content creator/photographer/shop owner with a book (See San Francisco - my review of her book is here) and a beautiful online vintage shop Super Marché (and a loyal following of adoring fans.
Victoria has been blogging for 13 years and was always known as the “San Francisco Girl” because that is where she got her start in social media. However, she’s since relocated to LA and bought a home, so her reach goes beyond the bay area to include inspiration from all over the west coast, her favorite parts of the USA and sometimes even her impressions and inspirations from Europe and Australia, all in the modern Bohemian style that her readers love her for.
Today, we’ll tour the home that she owns in LA and talk to her about what home means to her, what she loves most in her space, the music she’s into at the moment, some of her favorite Instagram accounts, and more.
But first… An overview. Victoria’s home, which she shares with her dog Lucy, is 1,100 Sq. Feet (approx 110m2) with 2 bedrooms (one is used as her home office), 1 bathroom, kitchen and an open plan dining and living space plus a downstairs Rental Studio which she rents on AirB&B in case you want to stay, do it!
Victoria defines home as her sanctuary and as a, “pretty strong creative reflection of who I am.” As a long-term renter, she admits that her greatest joy in life currently is owning her own home (shown throughout this post) and to be able to get as creative as she wants without holding back, “decorating (and redecorating it!) to suit my ever-evolving taste.” Let’s continue my chat with Victoria below…
Tell us, what do you love most about your home?
It's up on a hill and I have a really large garden and backyard area with an outdoor dining space. I spend a lot of time out there with friends. I also installed what I call a 'cowboy pool' and when it gets hot in L.A. I float, reading all weekend long. I love it.
What would you like to change?
I'd like to install french doors from my kitchen and from my bedroom out to the garden. I'd especially like those black industrial steel frame doors but I need a fairy with loads of money to afford them.
I really love Boy Smells in their Prunas and Kush scents.
Favorite flowers and plants?
I love my outdoor garden and especially Lemon and Olive trees. And I have tons of Rosemary and Lavender planted all over my hillside. Peonies are a favorite flower, but I absolutely love Cherry and Quince branches when they're in season.
Favorite thing to do at home?
Read in my garden or in my cowboy pool. I also love to host dinner parties.
Favorite meal to cook and why?
I make a Mediterranean chicken dish with loads of lemon and tarragon from the Jerusalem cookbook from Ottolenghi that is amazing and everyone loves. I usually serve that with flatbread, grilled artichokes, and an orzo salad with tomatoes, capers and kalamata olives. It's pretty healthy but doesn't taste like it and it's very comforting.
What’s on your playlist right now?
When you have people over, how do you entertain them?
Usually, I cook and we eat outdoors in my outdoor dining 'room'. I have a built-in banquette with a pergola over it and it's a nice, cozy spot for dinner. We've just started doing a game night, too playing Cards Against Humanity. It's pretty hilarious! We've also been having an Eastside Supper Club with a bunch of girlfriends and it's a fun potluck where we all bring wine and a dish we've made from a favorite cookbook.
How do you hope your guests feel when they visit your home?
Comfortable and relaxed -- like they don't ever want to leave.
Your dream piece for the home?
I'd love an Eternal Dreamer Sofa from Ochre. They're so beautiful!
How would you describe your style?
Very eclectic and constantly evolving. I dislike matchy-matchy and generally love a mix of lots of vintage and modern paired together for a very layered, unexpected look.
What is important to you when you visit someone else’s home?
I love seeing their artwork, bookshelves, and collections, and I honestly just love seeing how other people live. It's fun to be a voyeur in someone else's home.
Favorite city to shop and why?
I suppose I'd have to say Paris because I love shopping all the small boutiques in Le Marais and I love the street markets full of vintage finds.
Your favorite Instagram accounts at the moment are…
@humansofny - I love reading the personal stories that accompany his photos of random strangers. Sometimes heartbreaking, often very inspiring.
@jessechamberlinmarble - She's a super talented photographer and her photos are just filled with color and joy.
@designlovefest - Bri's a close friend but she also shares so much inspiration. I'm always like "why didn't I think of that?!?". She also shares other people's feeds and I always find someone new to follow.
@c_l_o - Another very unique feed that shares images that are more often than not really inspiring and thought-provoking for me.
@commentsbycelebs - Because it's hilarious to see what celebrities comment on other celebrities' posts. It always makes me laugh out loud.
Where can we find you online?
Wow what a home! Thank you so much Victoria for this home tour and a little glimpse into your thoughts on home and what matters to you.
(Photos with permission from Victoria Smith)