Flax is an icon of everything San Francisco. Quirky, funky and fun! They have the best selection of art supplies I've ever seen in one place and the staff is really informed on how to use everything they sell. You just can't find that kind of service anywhere else. The Paper selection is totally off-the-hook. I often do collage work and if I can't find what I'm looking for at Flax, then it simply isn't available in the Bay Area. This place is a must visit for creative people and even the creatively challenged.
Find any art related item you may need at this store. Not only is the place mesmerizing, I can track down just about any supplies I need because the staff at this store are nice enough to go out of their way to help your every need. Prices are at least competitive, and usually better than other art supply stores in San Francisco, but watch out because you can lose track of time (and your budget) here. Excellent customer service by the way because they also take care of you even after the transaction.
Employees were exceptionally nice, the stock is fantastic and their sales are phenomenal! I got an amazing $90 portfolio for $8! They also offer a discount for students and teachers. Seriously, this is the best art supply store around. Definitely check it out if you are an artist or just like pretty papers and paints.