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May 1, 2012

About a week ago I went up to San Francisco to work on a very exciting project with the owners of Cavalier by Jay Jeffers, an amazing lifestyle store that opens today in San Francisco.  They asked for my help in the merchandising direction of the store and I was so thrilled to be able to be a part of this special collaboration between these two amazingly talented friends of mine.  Michael and Jay have spent the past year planning for this project and have been buying amazing things from all over the world to stock their shelves.  Cavalier is a collection of bespoke vintage & contemporary furniture, accessories, artwork and other luxurious products for the home.  Jay Jeffers is a super talented and highly acclaimed interior designer and Cavalier will be showcasing the debut of his furniture and lighting designs as well which are really beautiful.

Cavalier sits in the front of Jay’s Design studio on Post street in the up and coming Tenderloin neighborhood of San Francisco.  The neighborhood is a bit “adventurous”, but only adds to the special treasure of this store when you find it.  Jay and Michael have partnered up with artisans from all over the world to make exclusive items for Cavalier.  Their concept is referred to as “warm minimalism” which translates to an eclectic mix of modernism, arts and crafts, vintage and traditional elements for the home.

The task was a bit daunting, we basically had an empty store and two and a half days to pull it together for the first of many press events that have been leading up to today’s grand opening. All of the goods that they had been collecting were displayed on tables throughout the studio and in boxes everywhere and we had to figure out how to make it all work together cohesively.  I was up for the task as I absolutely love creating merchandising stories from a mixture of un-associated items.  My house has a very similar aesthetic to the mixture of items that Cavalier bought; I love to mix different references together to create a feel rather than sticking to one particular type of style.  The challenge was on and Michael and I were the perfect pair to rise to the challenge.

"Before" merchandising

Vintage accessories

Modern sculpture from a Japanese artist

The boys have a thing for boxes 🙂

Michael and Jay really wanted Cavalier to feel like a home when clients walked in.  They wanted to create an experience and feel that isn’t like anything else out there in the market.  This is how we approached the merchandising and how the genius of this store was created.  Michael and I have worked together on a few creative projects in the past and we function like we are one person when we are creating.  It’s really quite fantastic.  I have collaborated with other artists and stylists before, but none have been as in sync with me creatively as Michael is.  Once we started with the concept of the first display shelf, we were on a roll and the magic unfolded bountifully from there.  For the next two days, we didn’t stop until the masterpiece that is Cavalier was fully realized.

Creative Director, Michael Purdy and I

The wall of art at the entrance to the space. We called this our "Tom Ford moment"

Loved the idea of this Alex & Lee piece on a English riding hat

I am very excited that Cavalier is carrying a major assortment of Alex & Lee product.  Michael fell in love with the artists when I took him up to Sea Ranch to meet them last year and we’ve been working together on pieces for Cavalier since then. It was so fun to incorporate a piece into each of the displays as each necklace was an integral part of the merchandising story we were trying to tell.

This display case had a mixture of random objects and accessories that we pulled together

A display of their beautiful inlayed wooden boxes

These amazing bespoke boxes were a collaboration between Cavalier and Paul Benson...AMAZING!!

The white on beige living room showcasing some of Jay's custom designs

A beautiful display of their collection

A mixture of elements from vintage art to alabaster, inlayed boxes, modern faceted vase, and a necklace and sculpture from Alex & Lee

A directional statement of ombre' colored glass above a moment of black and white.

Amazing box by Alexandra Von Furstenburg

The store also has a beautiful collection of soft goods for the home including gorgeous cashmere throws, pillows by Michelle Hatch (including some with the Cavalier logo) and woven pillows by Lance. I had a lot of fun building this section of the store.

The shelves on the right side of the store combine natural elements with modern sculpture from Italy and amazing black and white photography

I love the shark tooth black and white art pieces above by Yuval Pudik from the Silverman Gallery.

One of Alex & Lee's new men's necklaces plays back to other shark tooth pieces.

The continuation of the colored glass story and a beautiful collection of lamps

Cavalier also has the most creative collection of photography, fashion and art books.  I am such a big collector of beautiful books and I wanted one of every single book Michael bought.  It’s hard to find stores that carry more rare finds in the book department, and they definitely succeeded.

They have an exclusive collection of high end luxury teas by Bellocq from Brooklyn that exude the luxury that this store is founded on.

The display above showcases some of Jay’s custom designed ottomans.

Interior design follows the same trends as fashion, so we decided to make a Green statement for Spring combining all of their different elements.

Like I told Michael, this was one of the most amazing merchandising projects that I have worked on in my career and I am so proud to be a part of the wonderful world of Cavalier.  This store is absolutely on a next level and I guarantee that you have never seen anything like it before.  I am so proud to say that I know these two creatives and I am so grateful that they included me in their new venture.

Expect to hear alot about Cavalier in the coming months as the store is just opening today and the press is going wild on their hand-crafted concept.  If you happen to be in San Francisco anytime, make sure to stop into this hidden gem of a place and stay tuned to The Sche Report for more updates!

Cavalier's mascot and namesake, Kingsly

One Comment leave one →
  1. Kecia permalink
    June 12, 2012 9:53 pm

    The place looks AMAZING! Truly. Who is the artist of the large framed B+W chandelier painting / photo? (caption “Tom Ford moment”) Would really love to know. It’s gorgeous.

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