We interviewed Michael Levy, buyer and visual director at Paxton Gate, a store that carries an eclectic mix of home and garden products known for sitting on the fringe of normalcy in the best possible way. Paxton Gate was one of our first stockists, something that means a lot to us considering how much respect we've had for this store for so long.
How did Paxton Gate come about and when?
In its original location in an alleyway off of Market Street, Paxton Gate was born in 1992 as the side project of owner Sean Quigley and his business partner, two landscape designers looking for extra income between jobs. Originally, the shop featured obscure and eccentric garden tools and ephemera. But soon after its inception, a predilection for the more bizarre side of nature became apparent, and oddities such as insects and taxidermy began to creep onto the scene.
How big is your store?
+/- 2000 sq ft
What's the neighborhood like?
The Mission is the historically rich and culturally diverse neighborhood that comprises most of the central eastern part of San Francisco. Valencia Street, where we’re located, is a rapidly-changing corridor that features a variety of restaurants, bars, and shops.
What types of things do you sell at your Paxton Gate?
We offer a curiously mind-expanding mix of treasures and oddities inspired by the natural world. Inside you’ll find taxidermy, skulls and bones, unique house plants, framed insects, fossils, minerals, as well as a selection of our favorite home and personal goods.
What makes your store special or unique?
Make sure to take a look at the greenhouse and garden in our backyard, a peaceful escape from the busy SF streets.
Any big changes coming up that people should know about?
We’re very excited about our website redesign, launching this holiday season. We also have some other big news in the pipeline, but we’d prefer to stay mum about that for now…
What type of music do you play in the store?
We play a bit of everything, but lately we’ve been hearing a lot of White Poppy, the Adolescents, and Erykah Badu.
Are pets welcome in your store?
Yes! And we promise we won’t stuff them. ;)
Blackbird Products Stocked: Blackbird Incense, May 18th Soap Sets
It's impossible to capture Paxton Gate with photos, but we tried to give you a tiny vision of some of their spirit. Go and visit, say hello, and tell them we sent you.
824 VALENCIA ST
SAN FRANCISCO, CA 94110
(415) 824 - 1872
THANK YOU MICHAEL!