A Local’s Guide to Sacramento with Style Blogger Alicia Lund
As far as style blogging goes, it doesn’t get more OG than Alicia Lund, the voice behind the classic-meets-bohemian lifestyle site Cheetah is the New Black. Nine years in, Lund's journey has taken her from fashion marketing in NYC and LA to running her personal brand straight out of Sacramento, California—a city she's fallen madly in love with. Jetsetter checked in with Lund on where she loves to eat, shop, and drink in her hometown.
Tell us—how did your brand come about?
I started Cheetah is the New Black (CITNB) just as a creative outlet. I was working in finance at the time and wanted something besides watching reality television to do in the evenings (ha!). I used my blog as my resumé and landed a job at ELLE.com as their fashion and accessories editor while living in New York. When my husband and I moved back to California, I decided to focus on my blog full-time. Today, I work on styling and other creative projects involving CITNB, and what’s manageable for me right now as a mom.
What do you love most about living where you do?
I’m originally from Chico, in northern California (about two hours north of Sacramento), and lived in San Francisco out of college before moving to New York (both Manhattan and upstate) for a couple of years. My husband’s job eventually relocated us to Sacramento. At the time, I wasn’t excited about the move but I’ve grown to really love the smaller city and slower pace here. We’re at the heart of the farm-to-fork movement, surrounded by the river, great parks, and hiking trails. Sacramento has a lot of small-town charm for being a city, with a down-to-earth culture and community. I mean, have you seen Lady Bird?! Another perk to living in Sacramento is its proximity to Tahoe, Napa, and San Francisco.
Locals always know their cities best, so what places do you recommend to visitors?
I love The Citizen Hotel for its quirky décor (especially the striped wallpaper) and views of downtown. If you stay there, be sure to eat at the restaurant downstairs, Grange—its seasonal, locally sourced menu changes often and every dish is delicious. Another go-to restaurant of mine is Canon, a new hotspot in East Sacramento (my neighborhood). Bring a group of friends and share plates—I’d get the yellowtail crudo and ribs to start followed by the salmon, which is some of the best I’ve ever had. The bar there is always happening and a great spot to grab a pre-dinner drink, but I also love the moody vibe of Block Butcher Bar, in the heart of midtown. After dinner, head on over and order the Guy on a Buffalo (made with bourbon, ginger, lemon, and apricot and cardamom preserves).
Where do you love to shop?
My friend Ali sources the most beautiful Moroccan rugs during his travels to Morocco. Whenever I need a little inspiration, I stop into his shop, Kechmara Designs–the colors are unreal! The amazingly talented mother-daughter design duo at Design Alchemy helped my husband and I source décor for our home remodel. I love popping into their showroom to browse their latest finds, but they can also hunt down whatever you’re looking for. One of my favorite local boutiques for unique gifts and vintage finds is Miel in Oak Park. They stock everything from ceramics to bath salts, sage bundles, crystals, oil blends, and more. Walk up the block in Oak Park for more shopping including a great plant store called The Plant Foundry.
What would an ideal Saturday look like for you in your city?
A zen breakfast at Orphan. A long walk through our neighborhood to the park to play with my son or heading to the American River Trail. Grabbing a coffee or chai latte at Temple or The Mill. Drinks out with my husband and dinner at Canon.
You can follow Alicia on Instagram at @aliciamlund. This interview has been edited for length and clarity.