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2023 Best of the East Bay: Home & Garden | Home + Design








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KM Home




BEST DECOR STORE WITH INDUSTRY CRED

KM HOME, DANVILLE

What’s the next best thing to hiring an interior designer? Perhaps patronizing a store owned by one.

In November 2020, Kriste Michelini debuted a retail venture next to her eponymous interior design practice, which dates to 2002. “KM Home was born out of a desire to share the luxury home decor and gifts that I have sourced for our full-scale design projects,” she says. “The pieces are unique, timeless, and sophisticated. It is all about finding the finishing touches to complete and style your home.”

Pop into her Railroad Avenue store for pottery by Chico’s Alex Marshall Studios, R+D. Lab glassware from Italy, and resin works by San Francisco-based Tina Frey Design, as well as a curated selection of coffee-table books and original modern art. In addition to Soh Melbourne and Voyage et Cie candles, Michelini has an in-house line, with scents named after the locations of her store (Danville) and home (Alamo). Custom-made pillows and ceramics handcrafted locally ensure that shoppers can create singular rooms.

Most days of the week, Michelini darts between her two complementary businesses. “Customers can replicate the look and feel of the firm’s spaces that they admire by easily purchasing the same or similar items they see in our portfolio,” she says. “Conversely, customers drawn to the aesthetic of KM Home products may seek out our interior design services to achieve a similar look in their own home.”

In-shop and e-styling services are also available. Additionally the venue hosts events such as design workshops, sip-and-shop benefits for charity, and animal adoption fairs. shopkmhome.com.


READERS’ PICKS







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Abode Flooring and Finishes




FLOORING/CARPET

Abode Flooring and Finishes, Lafayette, abode-flooring.com.

Runner-up | Cole’s Interiors, Concord, coles​interiors.com.


FURNITURE STORE

Cole’s Interiors, Concord, coles​interiors.com.

Runner-up | Elsie Green, Concord, elsiegreen.com.

Runner-up | Roney’s Furniture, San Leandro, roneysfurniture.com.


HOME DECOR

Orchard Nursery, Lafayette, orchardnursery.com.

Runner-up | KM Home, Danville, shop​kmhome.com.

“[At Orchard Nursery, there are] always interesting gifts for the home and garden. I especially love their garden gifts. The perfect plant for the dining table, the perfect Valentine’s, Easter, Mother’s Day gift that enhances the home.”

—Patricia Murray, Orinda

HOME LIGHTING

Cole’s Interiors, Concord, colesinteriors.com.

Runner-up | Lamps Plus, Dublin and Pleasant Hill, lampsplus.com.


INTERIOR DESIGNER

Jeffrey Neve Interior Design, ​Walnut Creek, jeffreyneve.com.

Runner-up | Kelly Tivey Interior Design, Pleasanton, kellytiveyinteriors.com.

“Jeffrey [Neve] has an impeccable eye. His designs use texture and color in a very surprising and elevated way. We get so many compliments on our home!”

—Paige Carmichael, Oakland

KITCHEN AND BATH FIXTURES

General Plumbing Supply, multiple locations, generalplumbingsupply.com.

Runner-up | Cole’s Interiors, Concord, colesinteriors.com.

Runner-up | Luxe Home by Douglah Designs, Lafayette, luxehomebydouglah.com.


LANDSCAPE DESIGN

Ruth Bancroft Garden and Nursery, Walnut Creek, ruthbancroftgarden.org.

Runner-up | J. Montgomery Designs, Alamo, jmontgomerydesigns.com.








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Terra Outdoor Living




OUTDOOR FURNITURE STORE

Terra Outdoor Living, multiple locations, terraoutdoor.com.

Runner-up | Patioworld, Pleasanton and Walnut Creek, patioworld.net.








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Orchard Nursery




PLANT NURSERY

Orchard Nursery, Lafayette, orchardnursery.com.

Runner-up | Ruth Bancroft Garden and Nursery, Walnut Creek, ruthbancroftgarden.org.


SOLAR

Solar Harmonics, Brentwood and San Ramon, solarharmonics.com.

Runner-up | Diablo Solar Services, Martinez, diablosolar.com.


STONE/TILE

All Natural Stone, Berkeley and Dublin, allnaturalstone.com.

Runner-up | European Tile and Marble, Lafayette, etmtiles.net.


WINDOW TREATMENTS

Cole’s Interiors, Concord, colesinteriors.com.

Runner-up | Windows and Beyond, Inc., Fremont, windowsandbeyond.com.


EDITORS’ PICKS

BEST SPOT TO GET YOUR HORTICULTURAL AND CAFFEINE FIX

BLK GIRLS GREEN HOUSE, OAKLAND

In 2020, Kalkidan Gebreyohannes and J’Maica Roxanne opened their plant and specialty home goods shop, with an emphasis on collaborating with and supporting Black-owned businesses and creators. Among them is Natalia Carrera of Blythe Coffee, who purveys artisanal coffee and other drinks at the West Oakland establishment Friday through Sunday—the same days that Blk Girls Green House (BGGH) is open to the public. (Warm up with a rosemary-honey latte and a pastry from one of various neighborhood bakeries, or cool down with an elderflower spritzer.) In addition to its retail component, BGGH is a community space for events; Gebreyohannes and Roxanne also offer plant design, installation, and maintenance services. bggh.shop.


BEST SHOP FOR VINTAGE GOODS

MIGNONNE DECOR, OAKLAND

This College Avenue shop from designer and artist Johnelle Mancha is a treasure trove, brimming with textiles, lighting fixtures, furniture, decorative accents, and more. Need a new (to you) dining room buffet? Check out the 19th-century French demilune mahogany credenza with a Carrara marble top and brass details. Choose from a variety of antique Persian rugs to cozy up a room, vintage paintings to complete a salon-style grouping, or glassware to elevate happy hour at home. A shop visit highlight is exploring pieces that Mancha has beautifully reworked. Case in point: a circa-1930s art deco club chair with new emerald-hued cotton upholstery and contrasting French blue velvet piping and back. Customers can also bring in furniture for reupholstering, restaining, and other updates, or embark on creating custom pieces. mignonnedecor.com.


BEST NEW LIGHTING SOURCE

VISUAL COMFORT AND CO., WALNUT CREEK

Soon, East Bay denizens will be able to shop where the pros often go for their illumination needs. Visual Comfort (formerly known as Circa Lighting) is slated to open a showroom on South Main Street in late July. Browse the 4,500-square-foot venue for pendants, sconces, chandeliers, and more, from the likes of Kelly Wearstler, Michael S. Smith, and Barbara Barry. Oakland-based interior designer Laura Martin Bovard appreciates the company’s range of styles and price points, along with the responsive customer service. “We mostly use them for residential,” she says, “but when we did the Wolf [restaurant in Oakland], most of the lighting was from Visual Comfort.” visualcomfort.com.








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Jered’s Pottery




BEST ARTISAN TO ELEVATE YOUR TABLEWARE

JERED’S POTTERY, EMERYVILLE

Some of the Bay Area’s top restaurants turn to Jered Nelson for their dishware—and so can you. Ceron Kitchen in Alameda, Juanita and Maude in Albany, Mägo in Oakland, and the Slanted Door in San Ramon are clients. While Nelson was with Heath Ceramics prior to devoting himself full-time to Jered’s Pottery in 2010, he worked on the Chez Panisse line. According to Nelson, chefs initiating commissions arrive at his Emeryville studio with various inspirations—from a doodle on a napkin to an opening menu to a garment in the perfect hue. His plates, bowls, mugs, cups, and vases are available in solid colors as well as with ombré glazes and hand-painted motifs. Peruse them online or in person at his gallery, open Thursday through Saturday. jeredspottery.com.





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