Trending: Painterly Pops

Splashing onto many-a retail canvas this spring and summer is the watercolor trend .  Joining the color-blocking and ombre looks of last year, the painterly patterns of 2012 bring even more color to your closet.  Makes me want to paint or, at least, go to an exhibit… Enjoy!

Abstract Print skirt at a-thread

Hand-painted Taika Flats by Leifnotes at Anthropologie

Geological Cutout Mini Dress- Treasure by Samantha Pleet for Anthropologie’s Made in Kind

Kimono by Abraxas Rex- I think I would frame this! (Warning: high price tag)

Australian Tapestry Workshop

One of my all-time fav Kelly Wearstler interiors

P.S. The first picture is from an episode of Mad Men, when Mr. Cooper’s installs his newest painting by Mark Rothko in his office.  Made me giggle.

Anthro ‘Weblights’: Made In Kind and Magazine

I love looking at the Anthropologie website because they’ve always got something creative and interesting going on.  Currently, the folks at Anthro are showcasing some brands that the company carries (Made In Kind) and, a mini magazine!

Made In Kind presents us the name behind the label.  Each of the designers has made something special for Anthropologie.  You can see a few of their pieces styled on models, read a short bio of each creator, and find out their inspiration in making your super cute new blouse or palazzo pants.  Tracy Reese, Charlotte Taylor, and Karen Walker, just to name a few.

A little striped number from O by Organic (John Patrick)

Donkey print shift from Charlotte by Charlotte Taylor (LOVE her)

the MAGAZINE is a fun little feature on the us site that shows us behind the scenes of the wonderful world of Anthro.  From how those jaw-dropping window displays were crafted to the story behind the monthly catalog to more product profiles, the e-zine is definitely a place to see trends in the making.

Tasty tasty watermelon margaritas in the settled confetti tumbler. Find the recipe in the MAGAZINE.

Isn’t it neat to have a little knowledge of the things we buy?  It can be difficult to keep track of all the new designers out there, especially if you buy boutique or vintage.  It’s one of the reasons I loved working at Anthro… you really knew what you were selling!

Fabric swatches from Gregory Parkinson’s line

P.S. If you’re in Europe, the link will redirect you to the .eu site… simply click ‘us site’ on the bottom of the homepage, et voilà. :)

All photos via anthropologie.com.

This shoe- Repetto

If you love yourself a good flat, chance are you’ll love Repettos.  The iconic Parisian shoe brand was created by Rose Repetto in 1947 ( a good year- The House of Dior was also opened).  Repetto’s son, Roland Petit, begged his ‘maman’ for a store full of ballet shoes… and so his wish was granted.

Repetto’s first ad (1952)

Repetto was transformed from professional ballet wear (slippers and pointe) into a comfy shoe that took to the streets.  In 1956 (another good year-my mom was born)  Brigitte Bardot wore the brand’s <<Cendrillon>> or ‘Cinderella’ flats in Roger Vadim’s film <<Et Dieu créa la femme>>, “And God Created Woman”.  Soon after, all the world’s prima ballerinas were shopping at Mme. Repetto’s first shop (opened in 1959).

BB wearing her ‘Cendrillons’ in “And God Created Woman”

In the 1970s, Serge Gainsbourg finds a perfect fit with Repetto’s ‘Zizi’, a shoe made for the dancer Zizi Jeanmaire.  Gainsbourg becomes a sort of ambassador for the company.

M. Gainsbourg in his ‘Zizi’s’

The founder, Mme. Repetto, died in 1984 and the company experienced a downfall in sales.  In 1999, Repetto was bought by Jean-Marc Gaucher (former head of Reebok’s in France).  Finally, the company’s original vision was salvaged and brought up-to-date.  Designers from the past 15 years to have collaborated with Repetto include Chanel, Comme des Garçons, Yohji Yamamoto, and Issey Miyake.

Comme des garçons collab with Repetto

The company still makes shoes for professional dancers using the traditional methods.  Yet, we see everyone from actors to designers to heads of state donning the iconic ballet flats.

Kate Moss in Repettos

A pregnant Sophia Coppola in Repettos

A pile of Repetto dance shoes. Pretty pretty.

AG Jeans- Saving the World, One Jean at a Time

AG Leopard Leggings available at Anthropologie.com (or Anthropologie.eu if you’re roaming in Europe)

Jeans.  Gotta love ‘em.

While working at Anthropologie, I was exposed to a wealth of fantastic brands.  Many labels carried or created by the company are seasonal.  Others are Anthro ‘classics’ constantly in stock, albeit refreshed to favor the current trends.  One such company is AG (Adriano Goldschmied) Jeans. Any gal or guy who has worn these jeans knows the denim has a lot to offer, including many flattering fits and authentic washes.

I started noticing the tags on the AG jeans which proclaimed, “eco friendly process”.  I decided to investigate.

So, not only are these jeans quality made, but they’re manufactured using Ozone Technology.  This is a process that uses significantly less water, chemicals, and dirty energy compared to conventional denim.  How?  The pants are ‘ozonized’ (yes, with air), a dry process that disinfects the garment and cleans up the indigo without the need for excessive water, energy, and chemicals.  The company also runs a vertically integrated factory in Los Angeles and another, its sister facility, in Mexico.

All-American style and easy on the Earth?  Yes, indeed.

AG Spring 2012 Lookbook

AG Spring 2012 Lookbook

AG Spring 2012 Lookbook

The AG Stevie Straight at Anthro

neon pastels for Spring available at agjeans.com

Cut and Re-Sew: Hermès and Petit h

The collier d’air necklace (previously scarf scraps). Via tmagazine.blogs.nytimes.com

Several months ago, I read an article in the New York Times Style Magazine showcasing Hermès’ Petit h project.  The company, long revered as a top French luxury brand, came out with a collection of whimsy objects in Paris last year.  The objects are ‘recycled’ from bits and pieces off the Hermès scrap and defect floor.  This past October, a third collection was made available in New York and Beverly Hills. The next sale of Petit h objects is April 23-May 12, 2012 at the boutique Hermès Kurfürstendamm, Berlin– The presentation and sale of the pieces is a nomadic one, so watch the Hermès website for updates.

What kind of objects are we talking about here?  Pascale Mussard, the director of the project (and the great-great-great–granddaughter of Thierry Hermès), has thought up some very beautiful pieces.  Take the sea-foam green dresser, embellished with pretty terry cloth trees which were previously part of a beach mat.  Or how about the life-size Bambi, stitched from Birkin bag scraps?  My favorite is the crocodile skin race car, outfitted with a trailing piece of iconic scarf.

Perhaps Hermès isn’t the most forward thinking in regards to green production in today’s fashion industry.  Even so, I commend the brand for realizing how a beautiful and functional item can spawn from what was, presumably, ‘scrapped’ in the past.

Sale in Japan (via juliettemerck.blogspot.com)

A racecar… my favorite! Via tmagazine.blogs.nytimes.com

coffee cup holders from croc skin (eepps!). Via tmagazine.blogs.nytimes.com

The Porte-Gallet paperweight/doorstop. Via tmagazine.blogs.nytimes.com

Rosewood/cotton woven folding screen + giant Pandy bear. Via tmagazine.blogs.nytimes.com

Terrycloth drawers. Via ecouterre.com

Bestiaire. Via zegreenweb.com

Do The Bootstrap

Fun Bootstrap Project logo (via thebootstrapproject.com)

I recently hap’d across this awesome not-for-profit called The Bootstrap Project.  Their movement uses the trade of handmade goods in poverty-stricken villages to better the life of these communities.  And when I say ‘goods’, I mean ‘so goooods’.  Where, unfortunately, many products today are created with poor quality plastics and metals, the artisans working with Bootstrap make beautiful items with natural components by traditional methods. Take Robiya Qayumova from Tajikistan- her stylish ikat pillows are made from handwoven silk and cotton.  Sodiqjon Amonov is a talented woodcarver also from Tajikistan.  His fun and exotic footstools are a unique item on the market due to their colorful pillow tops (stitched by Amonov’s wife and mother-in-law) and intricately carved bases.  Bootstrap brings these craftspeople to a profitable market where these one-of-a-kind pieces will be appealing.  It’s great to know that these traditions are still around.  Sometimes here in the Western world, I forget that not everything is made a dime a dozen.

Robiya’s ikat pillows.

Sodiqjon’s footstools. Too pretty for stinky feet!

Rose Phiri’s lovely poufs. Again, almost too great to sit on.