Ushering in a New Year with Angela Tafoya

Angela and her daughter, Tallie, photographed by María del Río

For as long as she can remember, design and lifestyle editor Angela Tafoya has been captivated by the art of storytelling. At seven years old, she recalls “seeing the headlines on the covers of magazines and thinking how cool it was that someone got to write them.” Studying journalism in college, then, was a natural progression—as were her early positions writing and editing for publications like PopSugar, Refinery29, and Lonny. Now serving as Editorial Director of Branded and Talent at Domino, Angela lives in the Inner Sunset district of San Francisco, where the bustling energy of the city is complemented by lush nature, with her husband Eric and their two young children, Tallie and Alo.
Recently, the couple teamed up to renovate their century-old craftsman—a home passed down for generations through her husband’s family—adding personal touches and updates while preserving the original details that make the space so charming. We sat down with Angela to talk about thoughtful interiors, motherhood, the importance of intention, and some of her favorite tips for sprucing up a space at the start of a new year.

How would you describe your design sensibility? What qualities do you feel most drawn to in a space?

My sensibility changes based on where I’m at in my life; what season I’m in. I’ve always been a person who loves color and prints, so it’s hard for me to resist those. But, lately, I have been approaching my space with more consideration for mood and ease—I think you have to with kids. So, I guess my sensibility is bringing in personality and all the things I love, but with more intention. Thinking about that saying: “only bring items into your home that you truly believe to be beautiful or useful.”

I am most drawn to spaces that promote mood. Spaces that are designed to maximize well-being, and where you also get a sense of the person. I think the pandemic permanently shifted the way we approach our spaces, and consideration of how you function in a space is so important. Rooms that feel like a big exhale, that elevate the everyday, are incredibly appealing. A well-designed space really has the power to transform. I don’t think it has to be overly thought-out, just done with intention.

Instagram can be such a rich, deep well of design inspiration. Who are some of your favorite people to follow these days?
The social media accounts we follow matter so much, because they have such an impact on the content you’re consuming and subsequently how you feel. I love following accounts where I feel inspired in my own life or learn something new.
I’ve been into Kerrilynn Pamer, the founder of CAP Beauty, for how intentional she is in every facet of what she shares. Whether it’s a beautiful, pared-down interior, books she’s reading, or a new skincare product—I really love her approach.
I’m into astrology and mysticism, and I love Casey of Wanderer’s Tarot. Her content is a nice reminder when I’m scrolling to stop and take a second. She writes really beautiful new moon and full moon missives that I always look to for guidance for any rituals.
I’ve also been very into Malika Yasmin for creative meal-planning ideas!

Any recommendations for refreshing or sprucing up a space at the start of a new year?

Pay attention to where energy flows. What areas do you find yourself most drawn to? Is it the corner of the couch near a window? A particular chair you always sit in, a kitchen tool that makes you happy when you use it? I think noting these moments and then thinking about what it is about these spaces that raise your vibration. Dissect it. From there, see how you can bring this energy into other parts of the home. Because how we move through a room matters. Clutter traps energy and keeps it stagnant, so moving things around and getting your organization on is never a bad idea—I’m currently working on that one myself. Start with a small area or nook (a 15-minute organizing challenge!) and don’t get bogged down with the need to overhaul every inch of your space. Tiny victories go a long way.

What do you love most about living in San Francisco?
I’m in love with this city. When I think about San Francisco and how many iterations of myself have come to be while living here, I thank it with my entire heart. She raised me, in a way, and brought me to the life I have today—surrounded by the people I love. For me, it’s the intersection of city life and nature that keeps me so tuned in with it. The green spaces, the beach, the hidden parks—just when you think you know the city end-to-end, you discover something new.
Do you have any New Year’s rituals or traditions? Anything you’re looking forward to most this year?
I have a tradition with a few girlfriends that I look forward to each new year. We all get together and journal on our past year and set intentions for the upcoming year. There is so much power behind saying your intentions out loud. I feel like it actualizes it, and it’s so cool to see when we catch up on what goals or intentions became reality from the year past. It’s such a supportive, inspiring few hours. Before I had Alo I had so many rituals and daily practices in place, and over the last six months, I’ve drifted away from them a bit—which is totally fine. But it’s nice to know that they are always there, and to understand how to reel them back in—so that’s another goal for me. I want to start to integrate some of my practices, like journaling and meditation, back into my life.

How has life changed with two children? Anything that you learned from being pregnant with your daughter that informed your day-to-day life as you prepared for the arrival of your son?

I had Alo about six months ago and wow, has life changed. The shift going from one to two is definitely just that—a shift. I partly knew to expect this based on conversations with people with multiples but I don’t think you really know what it’s like until you’re in it. The nitty gritty stuff—like less time, more exhaustion, and busyness—is all true, but in so many ways, things are also next-level amazing. I look at that little face and just melt and root myself in gratitude. I’m so happy to be here with two beautiful children who remind me, simply with their existence, of what I value in life. If I’m having a rough day, there is something grounding in taking a step back and looking,big picture, at what’s important. They say for every birth, there is also a rebirth. And, I feel that. I am not the person I was before having him, and I can’t wait to see how this new dynamic and perspective unfolds.

Angela wears the DÔEN Heirloom Isadora Cardigan and the Shep Jean, Tallie wears the Little Woodland Coat

Angela wears the Vittoria Dress, Tallie wears the Octave Tee and the Chesnee Pant

Angela wears the DÔEN Heirloom Northerner Duster, Tallie wears the Little Woodland Coat