The Bizarre World of Harput’s
For being such a small city, San Francisco has an impressive number of boutiques with choice selections of everything from vintage to collector’s kicks. After living here for nearly two years, it’s easy to rely on the usual spots instead of exploring other avenues. Fortunately, I was introduced to Harput’s on Fillmore (two storefronts to the right of The Brooklyn Circus) by a friend of a friend visiting from LA. At first glance it looks like any other sneaker store with overwhelming window displays and fluorescent lighting. The store’s character becomes clear when you’re greeted by the store owner Bootsy — a charming certified Adidas fanatic whose pricing information seems masterfully improvised (and whose customer service is nothing short of entertainment). Beyond the disarming staff members, Harput’s boasts a fine selection of vintage Adidas and Nike deadstock. In a certain sense, the joint almost feels like a relic of pre-gentrification Fillmore. It exists in a rip in the time/space continuum. The combination of mixed fabrics, bright colors, jump suits and throwback accessories makes for an extraordinarily stimulating (and surreal) shopping experience. I should mention that there are several items of clothing cloaked in thin layers of dust and while some might find such wear and tear endearing others might walk away slightly turned off. Regardless, it’s the kind of place that generates immediate intrigue…you find yourself wanting to know it’s past, present and future. It was refreshing to want to aimlessly mingle in a store instead of run in and out (largely due to the strange warmth of the staff). We can all agree that retail employees often have a misguided sense of “customer service” consisting of snarky looks and gestures of indifference. Harput’s is a testament to the revival of service (may it inspire some of you other boutiques to step your game up). Check out the blog and online shop to see for yourselves. I encourage all the bay area heads to check it out: 1527 Fillmore St / San Francisco, CA 94115 415.923.9300 / Mon-Sat 11-7, Sun 12-6. Here’s a taste of the bold and bizarre pieces:
Peep the illustrious Bootsy in his element. I think I should interview dude, what do you think?