All original work © Jason W. Wong. Please ask for permission to reproduce any work.

All original work © Jason W. Wong. Please ask for permission to reproduce any work.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

I heard you on the wireless back in '52...

Well, it's been about three years in the making, but thanks to some vacation time off from Ye Olde Dayjobbe I was finally able to get my website up--just in time for the New Year!

I was having a teal moment, and in the true Retrograde spirit of embracing those things that kind of repel me, I decided to use it for the website's background color. And I used the same shade to update this blog, so things would match up. (Still trying to work out the kinks of embedding my blog feed into the website though.) Who knows--in a couple of months I might embrace yellow, or chartreuese

Thanks to the support at Wix for making it relatively easy and inexpensive to get this website up!

Check out my homepage:

Let me know what you think! Thanks to everyone who's been part of this exciting journey over the last three years!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Hazy Shade of Winter...

Over on Facebook I've been doing a 12 Days of Christmas Countdown, ending with today's post. Here's a recap in case you haven't been able to get over there:

Day 1: Start a tradition (like going out for Chinese food on Christmas Eve)
Day 2: Make a musical mix (holiday/seasonal or otherwise)
Day 3: Make some treats to share (and no, they don't have to be made from scratch!)
Day 4: Wrap it up by reusing interesting papers (magazine photos, wrappers, tissue paper, etc.)
Day 5: Give back (by donating food, money, clothes, or even volunteering your time)
Day 6: Give it away (clear out clutter in your home while donating to charities)
Day 7: Stay in shape (turn walks or runs into time with your friends and loved ones)
Day 8: Let it go (accept that nothing has to be perfect--it's the thought that counts)
Day 9: Savor the season (indulge in seasonal treats--as long as you also stay physical!)
Day 10: Trade it (have parties themed around book or other exchanges--a great way to share what you love)
Day 11: Just do it (family visits can be a good thing, despite all the stress)
Day 12: Relax (take a moment to reflect, or do something for yourself)

As I said in my Day 12 post on Facebook, you are surrounded by love at this time of the year, whether you know it or not. Tap into that good feeling and have a great holiday!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Christmas Wrapping

Hey readers, check out my Facebook updates in the sidebar--I'm doing a "12 Days of Christmas" holiday countdown, with ideas for gifts and things to do leading up to the big day.

The page is public, so you should be able to check it out even without a Facebook account.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

You can't always get what you want...

I'm always telling people to get/invest in/go for art that means something to them, whether it's a story or if it relates to some experience. Most of the art in my own home is like that, and it doesn't have to be expensive, precious, or fancy--in some cases I've just enlarged some text from a book, page number and all.

I recently gave in to the hype and emails from and gave them a try. I mean, it looks pretty cool, right? also has kiosks in major museums like the MOMA and the DeYoung, where you can order prints of pieces from the museums' collections. I recently saw a piece called Caius Marius Amid The Ruins of Carthage by John Vanderlyn (1807) at the DeYoung and thought it was really cool.

I ordered a print and had it framed in a really contemporary bright white modern frame--I thought it would look really bright and masculine in my home office. But when the piece arrived, the print was really dull and smudgy.

Here's the print I received:

 And here's a shot of the original painting from my iPhone:
The quality of the print is obviously not so good. At the DeYoung, Caius looked like one damn fine Roman. My print made him look like a caveman. 
For those who ever wonder, a giclee print is basically a fancy inkjet print. has different levels of quality for the prints you can purchase, but I'm afraid that even if I had paid for the most expensive print, there would still be fuzziness and quality issues.

The good thing about is their return policy. I'm going to have to test it firsthand and let you know how it goes....

Stay tuned, folks!

Monday, December 3, 2012

What do the lonely do at Christmas?

They make mixes for parties, lounging, and sharing, of course!

Here are 10 songs that are on my heavy rotation list for the holiday season:

1. Matt Pond - "Holiday Road"

2. Paul Weller - "Wishing On A Star"

3. Emotions - "What Do The Lonely Do At Christmas?"

4. Chris Isaac (or in this case, Bing Crosby) - "Mele Kalikimaka"

5. Pizzicato Five - "Strawberry Sleighride"

6. Cyndi Lauper - "Home On Christmas Day"

7. Aimee Mann - "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas"

8. Bob Marley- "White Christmas"

9. John Lennon - "Happy Xmas (War Is Over)"

10. The Waitresses - "Christmas Wrapping"

Any songs I should add to my list? Let me know!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Edge of Seventeen

As I help out my cousin furnish her new house, I've been looking for some budget-friendly pieces that are also scale appropriate to fit in an older home. It hit me when I was looking for full-sized headboards and bed frames--what about hip teen/kids furniture?

Not everyone lives in a big house. I even have friends in the 'burbs who choose to live in older, smaller homes with period details and charm. So what can fit through those smaller hallways and door frames?

Here's a colorful, well-priced headboard from Crate & Barrel's junior site:

This chest from PB Teen could look really great in an entryway or Living Room, with lots of useful storage:

And this reproduction pediment from Restoration Hardware's Baby & Child department is priced really well:
I don't care how old you are--these modern, graphic fairy tale posters are just cool. And are already framed:
I have no shame shopping in the kids' department. If it fits, why not?

Sunday, November 4, 2012

It's a family affair...

Sorry no post last week, folks--I was actually meeting with my cousin's sister-in-law to see how I could help her with her new home in the Sunset. After my last post about the cool shops in the Outer Sunset, I thought it was kind of funny that I seem to be drawn out in that direction again...

Anyhow, here are a few before pics of her dining and living room--she's keeping the finishes that were left there by the last owner/stager:

And here's our game plan--warming up the space with golds, reds, and raspberry tones. I'll keep you posted with how it ends up.

In the meantime, does anyone know of a good square or round 36" - 42" dining table? A little rustic, either wood or metal? Space is always an issue in most San Francisco homes...let me know if you have any recommendations!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Take a walk with me down by the sea...

Hanging out with relatives over by Ocean Beach yesterday and discovered how much the neighborhood has changed. I lived out there for several months when I first moved here almost 14 years ago and now it seems like lots of hipsters are taking shelter and setting up shop where the rents might be a bit cheaper.

Saw lots of people eating at Outerlands and getting java from Trouble Coffee. I stopped into the General Store and was amazed by their lovely back garden:

My partner stopped into the Carville Annex book project and bought a few things:

Even the local medical clinic had a hipster reclaimed vibe!

So much going on at the end of the N line!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Girls on film...

The interiors news is kind of slow right now, so I thought I might just report on some cool things I've been seeing lately.

Last night we tried out Farina Pizza and had a pretty good time. The interior space was cool, with character cards from Italian comic Diabolik decorating the ceilings. (For those of you who don't know, I'm a major comic book geek!) I loved it.

FYI, Farina Pizza doesn't take reservations!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Umbrella, -ella, -ella, -ella...

Yesterday I was helping out some friends position artwork and family photos for hanging and of course I told them about the "rule" of hanging things around 54" to 56" from floor to center of frame.

But today I just totally broke that rule!

My partner's dresser is pretty high, 56". So the anniversary present I wanted to hang above had to go pretty high, too. From our bed, it looks pretty good. And I repositioned a few accessories to complement the new piece. Check it out:

I really like the piece--it has a Yoshitomo Nara vibe to it, but more cheerful. And a little less sinister.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Because when the sun shines we'll shine together...

It's been a couple of weeks, but this weekend I was busy celebrating my wedding anniversary even though it's not officially till this week (my friends made sure I never forgot the exact date with a gift from my bachelor party...;-)

Anyhow, one of the gifts from my partner was this pastel painting/drawing we spied (and admired) together from Stuff on Valencia Street. It reminded us of our trip to Japan several years ago.

I'll show you how it looks hung up in our bedroom very soon!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

All the small things...

It's been a while, but I'm trying to get back on track, especially after the long weekend!

Recent finds:

The most adorable leather coin box (in the shape of an owl!) from Community Thrift.

A tiny fish box from One Kings Lane.
And here's a little Separated At Birth comparison:

One of my favorite prints from Scalamandre is available as ready-made pillows. I thought they would be ridiculously expensive, but they're not!
And if you wanted to mix it up with a companion pillow, Dwell Studio has their homage:


Sunday, August 19, 2012

Beat on the brat with a baseball bat...

Maybe it's the weather or just that time of the year, but in the past few months we've been plagued by an abnormal number of unexpected nightly visitors. It used to just be the odd neighborhood cat that would land on our doorstep, but recently there have been several human intruders that have wandered to our doorstep--the scariest one was the intruder who tried to put his key into our front lock and open our front door.


Luckily, the would-be intruder was drunk as hell and thought he was somewhere else--just a little misunderstanding. Same goes for the young woman who tried to scale our side wall after a night of partying. Or the two guys who were staying with neighbors and got locked out. For some reason, people seem to think my door is the magical portal home. Beam me up, Scotty!

Surprisingly enough, this is the first home my partner and I have had that doesn't have a locked front gate or common lobby area. We do have handy-dandy panic buttons linked to the police, and after a quick trip to Cliff's, bought a really inexpensive wooden axe handle that also doubles

We also have a few other tricks up our sleeves in case anyone wants a piece of us. Any tips from readers? What do you do to make your home more secure?

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Hong Kong Garden

Yesterday my partner and I went to lunch at the heroic Boulevard Cafe in Daly City before our suburban shopping extravaganza--basically our quarterly Target run, with a first-time-in-a-decade stop at JC Penney's (since I'm beginning to think it's important to support the retailers who support your community.)

Anyhow, while we over there, I saw this AMAZING apartment complex...I couldn't describe it. 1970s Asian? Each cluster of buildings was slightly different, some where Asian, others were Neoclassical (maybe a nod to the Greek community?) And all had varying takes on fretwork on the balconies.

Needless to say, I loved it. Would I want to live there? I don't know...I live in an Edwardian flat right now because it feels like San Francisco. But if I lived in someplace like LA, I think I'd totally want a home in a heroic complex like this:


Sunday, July 29, 2012

If I live to see the Seven Wonders, I'll make a path to the rainbow's end...

Took a walk today for some inspiration. I moved to San Francisco 14 years ago and had never been to Corona Heights until today. I had come close, driven by the Randall Museum, visited nearby friends, but never actually walked/hiked up to the peak.

On the way back down, we walked past this collection of midcentury houses. It was so sunny and clear (and surprisingly hot in my retro poly-cotton t-shirt) that it felt like I had been transported back to Palm Springs for a second!

And then down the street I saw this amazing stone wall and doorway...

The rustic quality reminded of the side of this building I snapped earlier in the day, up around Pac Heights:

All in all, I had a great afternoon!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

There's a stain on my notebook where your coffee cup was...

So a couple of weeks ago I showed you some before and after photos of my latest project. It featured some great functional wall hangings I made from pre-stretched canvas and burlap coffee sacks I got from my local cafe.
It was really easy--I started with some a bunch of coffee sacks from Four Barrel, right by my gym. I saw them throwing them out one morning and snatched them up! You could probably ask your local cafe if they'd be willing to give them to you...

And then for the sake of time, I used some pre-stretched canvases. You can find them at any art supply store like Blick, but I got mine from Cliff's Variety.

To help make them functional bulletin boards, I added a layer of thin quilt batting before stapling the burlap over the canvas.
In some cases, the effect was purely decorative:

But in another case, the board will actually be used for hanging some jewelry:

I really liked how the green accent of this coffee sack matched the jewelry box above the dresser. It's going to look great with necklaces and earrings pinned to it--a fun and glam way to use burlap!