Maison d'Etre

Location: Oakland, CA
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Maison d'Etre is one of our very favorite stores. We were trying to pinpoint what makes shopping there (or merely browsing) such a satisfying experience: it's a domestic sensualist's delight. As its website so perfectly says: Maison d’Etre playfully suggests the store’s reason for being: to celebrate life at home. Owners Patty Brunn and Fred Womack -- artists, florists, ardent cooks, parents and pet owners -- have created a unique environment focusing on all things home.

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The shop is full of color: striped cafe au lait bowls, Sweep Dreams brooms, table linens, flip flop doormats, texture bedding, Abyss towels, big French straw shopping bags, and Josh Jakus felt bags. There are wonderful scents from the Votivo and Diptyque candles and their soaps. There are also notebooks, greeting cards, books for kids and food lovers, glassware, tableware, vases, Oliver Hemming's Nio tea and coffee set, and hanging lamps.

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There really and truly is something for everyone, and for every price range. On top of that, the staff is friendly, which is all too rare these days.

(Edited from this post originally published 12.4.06)

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