Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Fall 14 Skins–Leather and Suede

I'm seeing lots of texture out there.  I love leather, suede, fur, fluff, puff–all that shape and texture, the stuff that says, "Go on, pet me."  It's wildly seductive and often practical. I've put together a short list of "softies" from the Carlisle / Per Se collections that capture the trend.

Meet Our White Label
Portobello Suede Jacket

Check out this Cognac suede number below. It has a detachable peplum that give you two jackets in one. It's peach-fuzz soft and the color is different, sort of a light oxblood.

Hello Cognac

Black, quilted, leather, belted trench. A forever "spy chic" piece. 

Oracle (for the bond girl in you)

Fluffy! A circle of the softest rex rabbit (sheared) fur to 
wrap and wrap and wrap around your neck.  Cozy!

Infinity $395

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

There's a lot of good stuff in this magazine!

I was psyched when editor Carolyn Worthington of Healthy Aging magazine asked my to write the spring fashion feature for her magazine.  It would feature the Carlisle, Per Se and Per Se White Label collections that I work with every day.  These clothes marry well with my favorite theme, travel + style. It's fashion easy to love. The biggest problem my clients are having this season? Deciding what not to buy.

What I didn't anticipate was how much I was going to enjoy the rest of the magazine once it was published.  First, Sheryl Crow is on the cover.  I'm a fan.  Then there's an article on castles including the one in Downton Abby. I'm a ridiculous fan.  There's an article about a couple who reinvented themselves, horsey style.  Plus lots of food, wine and recipes and, oh, something on tai chi...

Check out Healthy Aging here.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

The Pattern Maker

When designing or crafting is a group effort, there always seems to be the unsung hero.  A behind the scenes guy that only the relevant few know about. I found myself awe struck by the pattern makers at the Carlisle design facility.  They quietly cipher a design, engineer it, coax it, manage it.  The end game is a garment that actually works on your body.  It fits, bends, moves and stretches. Repeats in the fabric are managed, pattern pieces are laid out keeping economy, fit and beauty in mind… Most pattern makers have a design back story of their own.  They come from a family of tailors or they obsessively made doll clothes as a child.

Here's a video of the Carlisle / Per Se pattern makers at work.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Creating Per Se

I recently toured the Carlisle/Per Se design and production offices in New York City.  Obviously, I'm committed to the brand.  I wear the clothes. I sell the clothes. I believe in the quality. I love the design. Now, I love the clothes all the more! I fully understand and appreciate what it takes to create the collections. Besides that, it's just really cool to be able to wear the clothes of a designer you've met and gotten to know!

Here's a few video clips and some pictures of Susan Klope, the designer of Per Se. You get a feel for how she works and her level of passion for all things that make up a garment; lace, weaves, yarns and buttons.  Look carefully, several of the background pieces will end up on next winter's Per Se runway!

Monday, October 14, 2013

Tuesday Night I Saw Puglia, Italy on West 16th Street

The lead singer raps about tomato sauce, wine, parmigiano, olive oil.  The band gives him a funky base sound to dish out his rhymes.  They’re on stage at the Highline Ballroom in Manhattan and behind them is a movie featuring food saturated with color.  Food that slops, pours, spills, splits and dances on the big screen.  What is he poetic about?  Puglia, a region in Italy that is the heel of their boot, sexier that a Louboutin pump, beloved for its olives, full-bodied red wine and coastal beauty.

This is how Latitude and ENIT (The Italian Government Tourist Board) spread the word about Puglia.  They have my attention!  I’m awed when the machismo lead singer moves from microphone to table to make pasta from scratch.  He starts with eggs and flour, rolls the dough several times through a pasta machine, boils it and tosses it with vegetables and some sort of light sauce, also made from scratch, in less than five minutes!!!

If this is what Puglia is on West 16th Street, it must be amazing in Italy! 

Thanks you Latitude and ENIT for a very creative teaser to this region, I’d like to pack my bags right now and head to Puglia for the real thing! 

Monday, August 12, 2013

Christina Binkley's Reporting On the Comeback of the Power Suit

I'm a Binkley fan.  I read her fashion column in the WSJ whenever I can and I'm usually both informed and impressed.  She can write about fashion without sounding vapid or snobbish, not easy. In her article The Leaner, Meaner Power Suit she give a great little crash course on the history of the power suit for women and peppers the article with some good statistics as well.  Apparently some 3.9 billion women's suit will be purchased this year, their market share up 27%.

Ahead of the trend, Carlisle / per se has been doing some great suiting for the last several seasons that is "powerful" and provocative, for a woman who is, well... a woman.  Clients are usually scared of being matchy, matchy, so I've been breaking suits up, but lately I'm feeling like this is less of an issue.  Executive women are actually gravitating towards the whole suit.  Finally!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Go Get Arty


Gallery hop NoHo, lower east side–After fuel at La Colombe walk down Mott street to Broom Street and view the Esther Rosa installation at S Artspace Gallery.       Ms. Rosa has done a series of calming abstract paintings that are layered, organic in feeling and materials and decorator friendly, in that they'll work in most any room.  I'm sure that's not the reason to buy art (and most artists would sniff at me for saying so), but it's always something that comes to my mind, "Can I live with this? Will it work in my living room? Will I always love it?"  

Rosa's large sculpture made entirely from coffee filters, all dyed to varying degrees using coffee, and of several different sizes, is weird, wonderful and completely unexpected!  This was what I wanted my friends to see.  I think it is a daring piece to host and bodes well for creative happenings we can anticipate from this gallery.    

Gallery owners Elizabeth Rosso and Catherine Testorf make the art, the space, the experience that much more inviting with their enthusiasm for this particular artists and the others they have, and will be showing.  

Side note: At another gallery (un-named here) we practically had to use a cattle prod to get the gal to tell us about what we were seeing...

Walk east to Woodward Art and check out "DETAIL."  It's no surprise that I loved Susan Breen's  little cut-out painter's palette dresses, charming.  In fact, it seemed this show had a little something for each of us to relate to and appreciate and want!

Question: When did Orchard Street become gallery land? I bought my first business suit there from a Hasid who knew about fit and sensible style.  In the late 80s I cut the skirt too short, but the slim jacket, a woven tweed, looks like one from Ralph Lauren's fall collection. Ha!