the circus is in town…

June 5, 2013

…inspirations from Tantrum Kids, SF.

Though we aren’t technically sisters, my friend Al and I seem to share the same design DNA. Growing up, we delighted in, and yes often fought over, the same toys: “Alfie,” a microscopic bear, or the coveted purple cup. As adults, we never lost our joy of beautifully designed toys and wee bits of clothing. (Though, fortunately, we now channel any remaining competitiveness into scoring rare finds for each other’s children!) So when Al says that there is a new kids store that I just have to see, I know I’m in for a treat.

On my latest visit to see Al in San Francisco, she took me to her latest discovery Tantrum Kids. From the bold lettering on the sign to the curtained window offering just a glimpse of the world of wonders within, Tantrum immediately entices you with all the magic of an old-time big top. And no wonder, its theme is, after all, that of an old-fashioned circus.

The brainchild of South Carolina transplants Amanda and Richard Weld and their partner, Michelle Spear, Tantrum is a rare marriage of sophisticated style and timeless playfulness that makes it as much fun for grownups as for their kids. The store’s unique character stems from an eclectic mix of classic, mid-century style with the best of today’s handmade toys, all curated within the theme of a lively carnival.

So here are some of my shots from Tantrum (which you can read more about on Remodelista), interspersed with other tempting goodies for tiny tumblers and pint-sized clowns.

Discovered via another kindred kid design spirit, Deborah Beau of Kickcan and Conkers, the playful graphics of Pala Mino clothing definitely conjure images of an old-time circus.

At the entrance of Tantrum, a vintage seal ride sourced from Kiddie Rides USA tempts children who pass by.

Like antique frocks with scalloped necks and sailor ties, vintage-inspired collars by Claudine and Compagnie are for sale at Tantrum.

A playful mix behind the cash register features a vibrant vintage phone as well as a Martin Krusche moon print from Mokkasin.

Handmade knits by Misha and Puff are also on offer at Tantrum.

Of course, Tantrum’s business cards resemble tickets to the show!

Tantrum also sells handmade dolls from Petit Collage.

more playful accents and playthings at Tantrum

Pala Mino girl’s wear

Misha and Puff and Claudine & Co at Tantrum

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