We sat down for coffee with Carl Macar and Shaine Edmond, two Queer creatives, in their Bayview light-filled home in San Francisco, and talked all things sustainability, design, and lifestyle.
Thank you so much for inviting us over this morning! What brought you two to San Francisco and how did you meet?
Carl: We both came to SF for school and have been here since then. We actually met through mutual friends – I was looking for housing and Shaine had a room available in his beautiful Bayview home which was built in 1924! It worked out, I’ve been living in our home for three years now and Shaine four — I think it’s because we both have the same love language and *laughs* big personalities.
I’m originally from Istanbul, Turkey, and Shaine is from West Los Angeles. The creative spaces we operate in definitely brought us together, filled with likeminded queer people of color.
It’s so special that you found each other within your community and were able to create this beautiful space together. How did you make your home feel like a home where you can reset and relax?
Shaine: Our house is a place of solace — it’s sunny and lovely and a true space for creativity. We lead such busy lives, constantly working and moving around a chaotic city, but find true relaxation while at home. I manage Wasteland, a second-hand store in the Haight Ashbury District, and Carl works for Gravel & Gold in the Mission District, so we both commute to work in these busy neighborhoods. When we return back to the Bayview, we have this peaceful space that allows for rest and creativity, and is truly a home that supports us. One way we truly create a relaxing space is through the lighting and scents, and we always try to be intentional with our products. An easy path to relaxation is to use candles as lighting for warmth and coziness — good lighting makes everything better.
Carl: We are very intentional about the home and how we operate in our space. As artists, we pull design inspiration from different creative folks like Devendra Banhart and PJ Mattan, but still focus on making our space a true reflection of ourselves. Devendra did a similar interview with Nowness and had all these nic nacs around, which I loved — the stuff he had in his place made it his house, not reflective of anyone else's space. We did the same thing in our house, creating rooms that show our true personality. We always say ‘look good, feel good’ in reference to our home. When the house looks good, we feel relaxed and as if we’ve done our jobs at creating a positive space.
Most of the furniture is second-hand, something we feel pretty passionately about. I think we both lead pretty sustainable lifestyles — we both work in a sustainable fashion and lifestyle space, we try to shop locally, such as frequenting our local farmer’s markets, and cook seasonally.
That’s amazing– I can really feel that this space reflects you both. Carl, I know you work from home sometimes. How do you separate work from relaxation?
Carl: I actually love to work here. My job with Gravel & Gold is super creative and something that I am super passionate about so it is super fun. I typically will work in the kitchen which is cool because I get to cook and use the space super purposefully. I think I generally feel relaxed while working because of the space I get to work in.
What’s your favorite thing to make?
Carl: I love to pickle vegetables and also am a big salad person. I actually just made the best salad, it was Radicchio, Spinach, Watermelon Radish, Dill, Fennel, Pickled Onion, Tuna, Tahini, Olive Oil, Lemon, Salt, Za'atar, Hemp seeds, Flax Seeds, and date syrup — it was so good.
I’d love to loop back to the community aspect of it all — how did you find yourself amongst such a strong group of friends?
Carl: I feel like I made a lot of friends by being out and about in San Francisco, and also through social media. When I moved here I met people through school but no one really stuck like the people I shared real life experiences with out in the city. Our community is super supportive and creative and I think as a whole super resourceful.
What’s your favorite thing to do in your space besides cooking and spending time with each other?
Hosting! We’ve had really beautiful big dinners here in the living room actually — we’ve set up a long table, and maybe it’s just San Francisco, but everyones a good cook, and would bring a fabulous dish that was special to them. After dinner, we’d have this big mess across the table and around our home, but it always made us feel good — it was a happy mess, reflective of the memories we created together.
We also would have the most delicious leftovers after, so that was a perk *laughs*.
Thanks so much for taking time to chat with us! It’s been a blessing to see such a beautiful home, and to get to know you all better by learning more about it and your approach to crafting an amazing living space.
Shaine: Our home is a super special place to us. It’s changed over the years but always has supported us and we are grateful to call it home. We love our neighbors, we love the sunny Bayview, and most importantly, love San Francisco.