present joys

Sofia Stephens & Victoria Fayad


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Sofia Stephens & Victoria Fayad

Sofia Stephens & Victoria Fayad are the owners of Bucatini, an Echo Park based provisions shop offering Mediterranean imports for the pantry and home. Yes, their space is incredibly charming and the curation a delight, but what makes us ultimately swoon is how they’re able to do all this with such warmth and generosity. Whether it’s by sharing unique finds with us lucky Angelenos or throwing the loveliest events to foster connection, Sofia & Victoria are hands-down the hosts with the mosts!

Palm Tree Tinsel

In the late afternoon, the sun falls in line with LA’s countless palm trees and turns their fronds to tinsel. I’ve always felt like the beauty of this city isn’t something that’s immediately striking, it’s something you find in small moments. This was one of the first moments of beauty here that I found and have cherished ever since. Every time I drive by a sparkling tree, I feel immense nostalgia and joy.

Everyday Treasures

When my husband Dan and I travel, we try to find little things to bring back home (or to Bucatini) that we’ll actually be able to use. It feels like a way of brightening what would otherwise be overlooked or just everyday, and is a fun alternative to the average souvenir. I always stop by the local grocery stores, corner markets, and pharmacies – gold mines for finding those ‘mundane’ treasures. Whether it's a pack of gum from a tiny tabacchi, or a chapstick from the local pharmacy, there are countless objects to be discovered.

When we went to Switzerland a couple years ago, we fell in love with these toothbrushes we found down the street from our hotel. We bought a bunch for ourselves and our friends, and were so excited to gift them (with Swiss chocolate). I’ve since been able to source the brand stateside, but every morning and evening when I pick up my toothbrush, I am reminded of our trip. It is definitely this feeling that inspires the sourcing behind Bucatini and makes the job so special.

Snail Mail

I can’t be the only one that loves getting a postcard in the mail. It’s such a wonderful surprise to me that I’ve been making an effort to send postcards to my friends and family to spread the same joy. This is one from a recent trip to New Zealand, the land of sheep.

Chair Army

If you’ve been to Bucatini, one of the first things you’ll notice is the overwhelming amount of chairs we have in the store. It doesn’t stop there – the chair addiction is also very present in my home. Dan and I live in a place just over 650 sq ft and currently have about fourteen chairs in our living/dining room. We are addicted to the hunt! Our current obsession: bentwood.

The Last Bite

Everybody knows that the last bite is the best bite. When the last bite is gifted and you’re the recipient? Victoria puts it best: “that’s love.”

Fish King

When we first moved from Echo Park to Glendale, we were pretty bummed to leave all of our beloved food spots behind after being in our neighborhood for almost a decade (even though we are literally only 9 minutes away and I’m in said neighborhood almost everyday because that’s where Bucatini is). Over the years, we’ve found new local slams and one of our absolute favorites has got to be Fish King. There’s nothing better than bringing home a bunch of fish and shrimp tacos back to the house on a sunny afternoon. Sofia and I have also eaten them out of my trunk in their parking lot a few times to refuel during errand days. Their selection of fresh fish is unmatched, this place is truly a treasure. If you’ve never been, what are you waiting for?!

My Loewe candle

Fun fact about myself is that I was raised in corporate fashion. My first real job was at VINCE. working in production. I have been a fan of Loewe for a while now, and always dreamed of treating myself to something. After I stepped away from my tech job to go all in on Bucatini, I bought myself their oregano candle to celebrate this new chapter of my life.

Tomatoes from my garden

Tomato season is very special to me, as there are few things better in life than a homegrown tomato. I truly believe I am a happier person during these fruit filled months! “My garden” is really Evan’s garden. He built our first garden at our last house on Bonnie Brae, and built this one at our “new” house, too. It’s about ten times the size. All I really do is pick out the vegetables to grow and cook them. It actually works out pretty well. Unfortunately, last year’s season was cut short due to losing a battle to the local squirrels while we were away for a week, but we are prepared for this year—the squirrels don’t stand a chance. We’ve always grown sungolds, and one of our traditions is to make this Pasta with No-Cook Sungold Sauce, with the first round of tomatoes!

Taking photos of my husband, Evan

I don’t say this enough, but I really love my husband Evan. We’ve been together for over ten years and he makes me so happy. I was really into film photography when we first started dating (summer of 2013), and he immediately became my muse. He’s a patient subject, and is pretty easy on the eyes. I’ve probably taken thousands of portraits of him over the years. It never gets old. Maybe I’ll publish a book one day, or host a gallery showing for a birthday when we’re old and gray.


To say that I love pasta is an understatement. I basically am pasta at this point. I snagged the Instagram handle @bucatini years before Sofia and I first opened our business in 2020 because it was my favorite pasta shape (and I thought it was a fun word). I grew up vegetarian and pasta was one of my main food groups. I taught myself how to cook via different pasta dishes in middle school, and got decently good in high school. By college I was cooking for friends and having big dinner parties. The center of every meal was always pasta. Some things never change…

A few more joys from Joyce and Michelle...
Present birthday

We celebrated our 3rd birthday as a studio this week!

Eagle Eyes

Enjoying the Big Bear Valley Bald Eagle Cam although it’s looking like the eggs are past their incubation period this year. Nature is incredible.

Date Chocolate

This more than mildy addicting chocolate coconut date bar.

Foraged finds

Scavenging the remnants of the wild wind this past week to create a (likely temporary) at home install for a corner of the house I’m not quite sure what to do with.

Skincare Sampler

Wishing skincare wasn’t so expensive because this little sampler just hooked me.

More Bruce related things

A cap my friend Tiffanie bought for him + a dachshund shaped wine screw from Dredge House.


Nancy Silverton’s recipe is a two-day commitment but well worth it.

Byrd Baylor

A joy to discover children’s book author, Byrd Baylor, and her sweet book Everybody Needs a Rock (read here).

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