by Ariadna Zierold

steve ferrera, sculpture, creatures, monsters, surreal, berkeley, upper playground

Steve Ferrera received his BFA from UCSC and his MFA from SJSU both with an emphasis in sculpture. His work crosses many disciplines including film, television, stop motion animation, children’s books, and collectible toys. Often inspired by mythology, religion, cartoons, and make believe, his curious and absurd creatures exist in their own cosmic events, lurking on the fringes of fairy tale and folklore. He lives in Berkeley California with his one-eyed cat.

steve ferrera, sculpture, creatures, monsters, surreal, berkeley, upper playground steve ferrera, sculpture, creatures, monsters, surreal, berkeley, upper playground steve ferrera, sculpture, creatures, monsters, surreal, berkeley, upper playground steve ferrera, sculpture, creatures, monsters, surreal, berkeley, upper playground steve ferrera, sculpture, creatures, monsters, surreal, berkeley, upper playground steve ferrera, sculpture, creatures, monsters, surreal, berkeley, upper playground

Nigel Sussman To Publish Alphabet Book Featuring Seek-and-Find Illustrations

Illustrator Nigel Sussman, a winner in the Upper Playground Walrus Drawing Contest, will self-publish his first book, Alphabet Compendium; An Illustrated A-Z of Things. The Berkeley, CA resident is creating an extensive illustrated alphabet book of objects, as all twenty-six letters will have an original visual representation. Sussman states, “The entire book is basically a giant visual alliteration”.

Creating an Alphabet book has been a goal of Sussman’s for several years. With the first four letters complete, the artist continues to work through illustrations for the 22 remaining letters. Nigel has launched a Kickstarter campaign, where he explains his vision for the book and gives people the opportunity to contribute to the project.

Check out the first four pages of the book below and view Nigel Sussman’s Kickstarter HERE.





Upper Playground’s 15th Year – 50% Off Anniversary Sale

It’s really hard to believe it has been 15 years. Since our inception in 1999, we have seen so many changes within our neighborhood; the clothing industry, street art, the size of our company, our employees and most of all our fans and supporting customers. Originally we weren’t going to do the sale this year but 15 years seemed to warrant something big and 50% off has been a big hit in the past. So here we go, thanks for all of your support over the years.

In store ( SF, Portland, Berkeley ) Friday Feb 6, Thursday Feb 7.

anniversary sale, san francisco, portland, berkeley, upper playground


Online Saturday Feb 8, Sunday Feb 9!

Upper Playground’s Small Shop Saturday 20% off Sale!


Tomorrow Only: Upper Playground shops in Portland, Berkeley and San Francisco will be having a Small Business Saturday Sale with 20% off select merchandise at all three locations. Our San Francisco shop will be open tomorrow from 10am to 8pm to accommodate shoppers. Visit any of our locations and get a head start on your holiday shopping list!

Our Top 3 Favorite Castles in California

Posted from The Citrus Report

We are not going for the obvious here. Sure, maybe on everyone else’s list Hearst Castle would be number one, but not ours. Not that we don’t think Hearst Castle is cool, they just don’t even let you swim in the pool.

1. Vikingsholm Castle on Emerald Bay, Lake Tahoe

2. Berkeley Castle or Bowles Hall at University of California, Berkeley

3. Sleeping Beauty Castle in Anaheim

Posted By The Citrus Report


Posted from The Citrus Report

This story of Pho, or better known as our favorite food of the past 13 years, starts with Bob’s Oriental Food To Go in Berkeley, California, on Shattuck near the corner of Hearst. We say 13 years because we have been eating at Bob’s for that amount of time, and the Pho has been our staple. Sure, we have dabbled in crispy ginger tofu, and the cashew, tofu, chicken over rice, but vegetarian Pho is the meal we come back to, the cure of any cold, throat ache, or headache. Bob’s is the remedy of the soul. We mean that.

Bob himself is somewhat of a champion. Bob moved from Vietnam over 30 years ago, opened up Oriental Food To Go shortly thereafter, and over the years, has been able to send his 3 children to and through UC Davis. Hard work, good food, and a cult-like following has made Bob a celebrity in the Berkeley Pho world, and trust us, with the amount of Vietnamese restaurants near the UC Berkeley campus, that is a major accomplishment.

Pho is the national dish of Vietnam, served as breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Wikipedia says that pho “is a Vietnamese noodle soup, usually served with beef (pho bo) or chicken (pho ga). The soup includes noodles made from rice and is often served with basil, lime, bean sprouts, and peppers that are added to the soup by the consumer.” Our preference has always been vegetarian, substituting meat for chunks of tofu.

This is a picture of pho from Bob’s Oriental Food to Go:

Its looks great, doesn’t it? This is your cure all, the best soup one can buy. You garnish the pho with lime, basil, cilantro, jalapenos, and bean sprouts. Drop a little Sriracha in there, and your stuffy nose becomes a runny nose, and you are good to go.

Now, we recommend you go to Bob’s today, get yourself a vegetable pho, maybe a potsticker appetizer, and if Bob feels like it, he may actually serve you the appetizer. You will definitely get your pho, though, and it will be worth every penny. Prices vary depending on how Bob’s wife, June, wants to charge you, so consider your pho in the $5-$8 range…

On to the pictorial of pho….

Posted By The Citrus Report

Arcade Fire x Burlesque: California Dreamin’

As you may know  by now, the good people of Burlesque have been working a lot with the good band of Arcade Fire. So there is a lot to take in here.

On October 14th, Burlesque will be releasing all THREE of our Arcade Fire California posters:

1. Oct 2,3 / Berkeley, designed by Mike Davis
2. Oct 5 / Big Sur, designed by Wes Winship
3. Oct 7 / Los Angeles, designed by Wes Winship

Each print will be available individually for $30 (includes shipping in the US / $35 international). And…

It gets a tad better… There is the CALIFORNIA DREAMIN’ COMBO that includes:
– all three Calfornia Arcade Fire prints
– a mystery Arcade Fire Scratch + Dent print of our choosing. It may date all the way back to 2005!

The special combo will be $80 (includes shipping in the US / $90 international)… it doesn’t last forever, so get on it.