And Just Like That, The Levi's Workshop Is Gone

Goodbye Levi's signage

It was only here for a few months, but in that short amount of time it managed to garner all sorts of polarizing opinions regarding its legitimacy and goals.  It also played host to a bunch of neat events, from rock shows and hands-on print screening sessions to talks by noted designers such as Stefan Sagmeister.

So, now that it’s moving to NYC and another Charles Phan restaurant is on the way to take its spot on Valencia, how do you feel about the Levi’s Workshop in retrospect?  Still convinced it was some nefarious plot by a huge business entity to infiltrate our “culture”?  Or were you impressed that a company like Levi’s would take the time to engage the locals?

Please tell us about your experiences there, whether they were good or bad, so the next multinational corporation with indie aspirations won’t make the same perceived missteps.  Most importantly, did anyone manage to create some cool shit there?  Please share!


What Do You Think About the Levi’s Workshop on Valencia?

Inside the Levi’s Workshop

A Saturday at the Levi’s Pop-Up

25 Responses to “And Just Like That, The Levi's Workshop Is Gone”

  1. joshua says:

    kids I know that took part in the Levi’s events enjoyed it. I don’t really care about what the organization is, if they’re trying to bring a community together, that’s A+. Anything that gets people out of their homes and gets the neighborhood together is okay in my book.

    But seriously, does the mission NEED another restaurant? Does it contradict what I said earlier if I say people should eat at home more?

  2. Danny White says:

    are you kidding? free printing! made these babies for my debut at amnesia: hung out in there for a long time too, cutting my posters, and it was a good vibe. sagmeister talk was a nice treat too.

  3. Susie C. says:

    Guess you guys don’t read the tip line, huh? I sent you a long email about what a terrible experience I had dealing with the Levi’s workshop at every step of the way, but I guess it wasn’t keeping with, what, the snarky spirit of this blog? Uh. Are you guys on the take or something?

    • Andrew Sarkarati says:

      susie, this post was written to allow folks like you (whose email we definitely read and found intriguing) to air either your grievances or support. if you would like to share, i’m sure the readers would love to hear what you have to say.

    • Vic Wong says:

      Look, I didn’t post your email because I didn’t think it was exactly the expose on corporate evil it was framed as.

      But since you’re being so confrontational, my perception of your email was pretty much: you booked time at the shop, you showed up 20 mins late, you got reprimanded, you got mad and left.

      Feel free to elaborate.

  4. Oh great, another place for rich yuppies to eat! Exactly what San Francisco needs!

  5. sean says:

    I agree with Herr Doktor. Nothing gives your neighborhood hipster cred like empty storefronts!

  6. chris says:

    Hilarious discussion guys. Personally, i was impressed by the extent to which a company will go to brand itself as ‘hip’ in our nefariously cool city. I mean to rent out the space, host all those events, give away stuff, and teach people printmaking skills..! A billboard just doesn’t cut it anymore. But, I call balderdash on anyone who bought into their ‘community’-minded practices. They couldn’t give two shits about our community, or any other – it’s an ad campaign.

  7. no.thanks. says:

    im sorta bummed that i never made an attempt to go in……oh wait, I’m not. No hate but it just didnt feel like something I would want to do or go to.

  8. Gilbear says:

    I thought it was a group of artist who came together with this idea and then got Levi to sponsor them? Who cares if it was Levi. The money’s gotta come from somewhere. It was a good addition to the ever-predictable strip.

  9. mzkk says:

    I thought it was pretty cool to be able to learn how to print using antique printing presses. Who cares that it was Levi’s. I don’t see anyone else offering free use and resources to operate the equipment.

  10. jinksy says:

    The problem I always had was understanding what the objective of the space was…advertisement? Promoting local artists? Just having some creative fun with your community? All of the above? I just never quite understood the point; I think they should have done more to state an objective so that we could understand why they were there. On top of all that, the last couple weeks (although, for whatever reason, not before), the parties got obnoxiously loud. Living over on Albion, the bass rocked the street pretty hard. Wasn’t a fan of that.

  11. steven broenberg says:

    …and then they left. Why didn’t they stay to “promote artists and the community?” Levi’s couldn’t afford the rent? One of the best ways to support a community is to leave it.