2009 Riverside Dr, Los Angeles, CA | Directions 9003934.099272 -118.249348
Neighborhoods: East LA, Echo Park
Citysearch Editorial Review – Equally intoxicating to crafters and Francophiles, this charming slice of Provence hidden on an anonymous Silver Lake strip is stocked with new and vintage textiles, notions, ribbon and stationery. The soothing scent of lavender permeates the air, thanks to pillows, sachets and laundry detergent made with the fragrant flower. Crafty ladies happily chat around a pair of tables where instructional workshops are held on everything from paper lanterns to charm necklaces. In the back, a quaint kitchen area offers tea, lemonade, fresh fruit, Madeleines and the like, while another area is where antique furnishings are stocked with everything from heirloom-quality vintage textiles to French General’s collaborative fabric collection with Moda. You’ll also find cute totes and aprons, natural hemp bedding and soy candles. On the opposite wall, shelves are lined with endless glass jars of new and antique beads and notions assorted by color. Or, if the endless options give you sensory overload, pick up a ready-made jewelry kit. Elsewhere in the shop, nooks are stocked with stationary, flea market finds straight from France and a selection of books that include owner Kaari Meng’s titles, “Handmade Soirees” and “Treasured Notions.” Even if you don’t have a crafty bone in your body, prepare to be inspired.
Lovely Linens – Not for everyone - this hidden shop - open only on Fridays now - is filled with a collection that is simply mouthwatering. Step inside and you will feel as if you are transported back to the rural French countryside. I hear this shop is in danger of being torn down for development - what a shame. I hope that the owners find another special spot to move their collection. This kind of shop does not come around very often - I am so glad I have found this secret craft store!
Hidden Gem – A hidden oasis in Hollywood! This is the first place I go to when I come to LA from London - it is the most wonderful concept shop I know of. I buy all of my linen sheets from Kaari - she has the most wonderful collection of old French textiles. Bravo!
Best Vintage Craft Classes – I love this shop! I discovered it while visiting Los Angeles last summer. They offer workshops on the weekend - jewelry making, sewing and other creative classes. Call for a complete listing of classes since they are not always listed on their website. I also love, love, love their lavender laundry home care line - it infuses your home with the natural scent of lavender!
This is my new favorite shop in Los Angeles!!
Hidden in Hollywood – The first time i heard of French General- I was a struggling stylist working for some of the decor and design magazines in New York City. When I craved inspiration or needed a bunch of old glass stamens for a prop, I headed down south to an old cobblestoned street that dead-ended into a street named Howard. French General was an eclectic mix of old American ironstone, French hemp sheets and Japanese glass pearls. I was an immediate fan. One day they packed up and disappeared into the sunset - literally. They drove West to Hollywood and set up shop in an old studio bungalow. When I finally found their new location - I was curious to see if they could capture the essence of their first foray into the curated retail experience. After entering their Hollywood home - I immediatly began to feel a craving for all things rural French. The natural hemp sheets, the essential oil balms and the overwhelming scent of lavender had me suckered once again. After spending way too much on an early 19th c. sheet - Kaari charged me an extra $50 to custom dye it - to match the deep red velvet pin cushion on my mantle.
This shop is not for everyone. But it is for the person who appreciates an interesting collection of old decorative craft items, and household generalities. I wish I could offer a retail comparision to give you the direction of this shop -- but I cannot think of one. French General is refreshing in a comfortable sort of way.
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