What started out as an art endeavor where the owner made Victorian-themed anthropomorphic taxidermy dioramas eventually evolved into a storefront in San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury district. Loved To Death still specializes in taxidermy, but also sells a line of jewelry, accessories, and Victorian antiques and art.
"All animal parts used in the jewelry and art are acquired from ethical sources and have all been professionally preserved," according to the store's website. "No animals have ever been killed for use in our work. They are Loved To Death by us and hopefully by you too!" And that's where the store's name comes from: Loved To Death.
In a round-up of stores in the area that focus on Victorian art and antiques, the San Francisco Chronicle described Loved To Death as a rewarding experience ... if you can stand a few "somewhat spooky displays of death." "Victorian commemorations of love, sadly, were often posthumous in the form of memento mori - or mourning - jewelry, fashioned from strands of hair and tiny photographs," according to the paper.
Spooky or not, visitors to Loved To Death seem enchanted. "Every item there is beautiful, I don't think I've seen something that I did not love and want in my own home!," one visitor wrote in a positive review of the store. "The layout is very charming, and a little kitschy. The floors are wood, and everything is kept very clean and tidy. They sell everything from antiques and vintage furs, to handmade goods and the most unique oddities." Among those unique oddities are animal skeletons, stuffed dead animal heads, bone jewelry, faux shrunken heads, and more.
Know Before You Go
Between Belvedere and Cole in the Upper Haight.
- Yelp: Loved To Death: http://www.yelp.com/biz/loved-to-death-san-francisco-3
- San Francisco Chronicle: "Where Victorians Left Their Mark" (February 2011): http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/object/article?f=/c/a/2011/02/11/TRHI1HI5R8.DTL