08 November 2010
The 12th Annual New York Fashion Conference is being held December 2nd through the 4th, and it's not to be missed. I have attended this intimate educational gathering of who's who in the arts, crafts and fashion world previously and share with you that you will certainly bump elbows with memorable names and be given the opportunity to ask questions from the audience. Founder Lisa Koenigsberg dares to ask, "What do we value in fashion and design? The rare? The classic? Or, the new? Do we value that which is eco-sensitive or the beautiful-but-scarce? Do we value a maker’s history of integrity, a corporate commitment to quality, a dedication to a tradition of craft? Or do we prize an object or garment irrespective of who made it or what went into creating it?"
Anna Sui Gowns and Storto Gloves
This years theme is Vintage, and the deliberate deconstruction seen in recent styling raveled edges and raw seams and the use of uncut stones, new new questions arise: How do we now define superior craftsmanship, fine materials, and creative design? Is the challenge of the 21st century reconciling the whimsical and the aesthetic with the sustainable, the fashionable with the serviceable? What does luxury mean in the 21st century? How do we define value today? These topics will be covered and more.
The event takes place once again at CUNY Graduate Center, Fifth Avenue @ 34th Street.
Presenters and panelists:
* Larry Pettinelli, president, Patek Philippe USA
* Hal Rubenstein, fashion director, InStyle Magazine
* Catherine Moellering, EVP, Tobe, a division of the Doneger Group and publisher of the iconic Tobe Report
* Designers Anna Sui, Koos Van Den Akker, and Fr. Andrew More O'Connor, founder, Goods of Conscience
* Hamish Bowles, European Editor at Large, Vogue and curator, “Balenciaga: Spanish Master”
* Jewelers Todd Reed, Prince Dimitri, Gregory Kwiat, CEO, Fred Leighton and Partner, Kwiat, and Adam Heyman, principal, Oscar Heyman Bros.
* Daniel Storto, avant-garde couture glove designer
* Women of style Patsy Tarr and Tziporah Salamon
* Amy Leonard, senior vice president, product development & sourcing, Levi Strauss
* Jess Lee, vice president, Polyvore, interactive fashion Web site
* David Wolfe, chief forecaster, Doneger Group
* Lincoln Schatz, photographer commissioned by Esquire to capture the 100 most influential people for its 75th anniversary
* Edward Maeder, former curator of costumes Los Angeles County Museum of Art and founding director BATA Shoe museum
* Juliana Cairone, owner, Rare Vintage
* Jan Glier Reeder, consulting curator, Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art
* Karen Augusta, founder, Augusta Auctions, America’s top auction house specializing in couture and vintage clothing
* Phyllis Magidson, curator of Costume and Textiles, Museum of the City of New York
* Laura Crow, award-winning designer for Broadway and off-Broadway
* John Davey, collector, vintage Hollywood costumes and couture
* Authors Joan DeJean, The Essence of Style and The Age of Comfort, Sandy Black, Eco-Chic: The Fashion Paradox; Pamela Keogh, Are You a Jackie or a Grace?; and Mitchell Owens author of a forthcoming book on Pauline de Rothschild
* Sara Reiter, chief textile conservator, Philadelphia Museum of Art
* David Ornstein, promoter, Manhattan Vintage Clothing Show; founder, Daybreak Vintage Clothing in Albany, NY. a costume house for movies and theater
* Patti Geolat, founder and CEO Geolat, Dallas TX, a widely-known authority on the appraisal and sale of fine jewelry
* Ann Lange, vice president, jewelry department, Doyle New York
* Angelina Chen, director, CIRCA New York buying office
* Edward Lewand, jewelry appraiser and expert
* Jonathan Scheer, president, J. Scheer & Co., a firm specializing in conservation, cleaning and preservation of wedding gowns, exhibition couture, and historic textiles
For tickets and further information, please contact: Lisa Koenigsberg at email@example.com; telephone: (646) 485-1952 or fax: (212) 935-6911.
See you there!
31 October 2010
Ladies if you are looking for real eco Couture look no further than Zero! Shpetm Zero, that is. His red carpet designs have graced the limbs of of Heidi Klum, Charlize Theron, Uma Thurman and Gwen Stefani. This fall 2010 his elegant, sculptural designs have a classic vintage feeling that speaks volumes to his work in the prestigious fashion houses of Christian Dior, Etro and Carolina Herrera. I had an opportunity to sit down with Zero in Hollywood recently and he shared with me a preview of next season. I don’t want to tip his hand, but can assure you that the best is yet to come from Z.
18 August 2010
n. pl. ac·ces·so·ries
a. A subordinate or supplementary item; an adjunct.
b. Something nonessential but desirable that contributes to an effect or result.
Charlotte Hosten’s hand crafted necklaces are anything but supplementary. These show piece necklaces have enough drama and flair to be the eye-catcher of any look.
Charlotte Hosten is a
She also uses vintage elements in her jewelry to give the antique materials a “second life”. Along with utilizing these second hand materials, she also recycles all of the used fabrics and scraps to be used later, in order to minimize the impact on the environment. The Sari collection, featured on Hostens web page showcases jewelry that has been made entirely out of these scraps and vintage items.
14 August 2010
Go from the wedding reception to the honeymoon without ever changing your clothes!
An unlikely collaboration between engineering and fashion design students at the
The students worked together to create a dissolvable wedding gown that completely defys our more traditional notions of the "white dress". The gown can be transformed into five different pieces. The initial full white dress goes through each stage becoming slimmer and more formfitting until it finally becomes a bodice lingerie piece. The five different dresses are currently on display at the University’s Furnival Gallery.
The dissolvable wedding gowns were created in response to the growing number of clothes being placed in landfills. Due to the ever changing fashion industry and the growth of “value retailers” the price of clothing in the
"The project is a union between art and technology which explores the possibilities of using alternative materials for our clothing. The wedding gown is perhaps one of the most iconic and symbolic garments in humanity's wardrobe and represents the challenges of 'throwaway fashion'.
"In order to reduce fashion's impact on the environment, the fashion industry must begin to challenge conventional attitudes and practices. The exhibition demonstrates what could be possible when design and scientific innovation combine forces." ~Jane Blohm, a lecturer from the
11 August 2010
Summer may inevitably be coming to an end, but it’s not too late to hold on to every drop of that beautiful summer sun with iWood designer sunglasses. These fantastic wooden framed, eco-chic shades are enough to make anyone want another month of summer.
iWood design company is a fantastic luxury brand that makes sunglasses with all wooden frames. All the frames are hand crafted and created from reclaimed wood. The materials used to make each pair are taken from wood used to decorate the interior of private luxury jets. All of the materials are certified by the Forest Stewardship Council and acquired using sustainable methods. Also, the glues and coating used to make the glasses are formaldehyde free and do not emit VOC’s. Lastly, the iWood headquarters is located in
The company strives to achieve the perfect union between fashion and function. Stephen McMenamin, founder and CEO of iWood designs came up with idea after experiencing consistent problems with the fit in his plastic designer sunglasses. McMenamin stared the iWood brand finally after 20 years in the luxury market with companies like Lacoste, Hickory Feeman, and Porsche designs. With all this experience with luxury products the glasses were bound to be a hit.
Aside from being completely eco-friendly, all of the glasses are unique and stylish. Each frame shape is inspired by classic sunglass silhouettes, or by silhouettes popularized by the fashion icons of today. The thick blocky frames are quirky and bold, bound to stand out on the beach without being too showy. These wooden glasses are fashion forward yet subtle, and are the perfect accessory for any summer outfit. Also, the glasses have been featured in all the fashion magazines from Anthropologie to Vogue.
Hold on to the remaining days of summer with these great shades. An accessory this cute, will last well into the chilly months to come too.
09 August 2010
If you haven’t read Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat, Pray, Love, try and do it this week—before the movie hits the big screen. Why such a following for this book? It’s a story of discovery, or rediscovery, as you follow Gilbert as she eats, prays, and loves her way through
The quintessential Little Black Dress
bamboo viscose "Energy Satin"
Fashion trends may come and go, but one item has been a staple of every woman's wardrobe - the cocktail dress.So sublimely simple, this “energy satin” cocktail dress beguiles with its clean, uncomplicated silhouette. Luxurious and polished with sophisticated construction, this dress infuses a modern architectural simplicity for an instant classic. Think Jackie O, Grace Kelly and Audrey Hepburn - invisible side seam zipper and wide sash tie removable belt. Designed to hit above the knee, pair it with fishnets and heels for a polished evening look. We dare you to find a place you won't want to wear this must have wardrobe addition, available at jonano.com.
The Perfect Shirtdress!
This highly tailored “energy satin” shirtdress is a unique option for trips to the office, Sunday brunches, and after work dinners, accentuating your great shape.
This version has a light ruffling at the elbow length sleeves flirts with femininity, while the double button mandarin font closure can be buttoned up or worn loose and open for versatile looks that will take you from day to evening. Layer it over jeans or wear it as a jacket. Double sash ties at the waist add just the right amount of unique detail without trying too hard. Pair it with your favorite heels for a polished look. or swap out the sash ties for your favorite chunky belt and cowboy boots for a chic and relaxed date night. I find the shirtdress another wardrobe must have also from Jonano!
It’s not just about what you remove from your wardrobe that helps “detox your wardrobe” and promote a healthier life long-term for you and for this planet we love. Making mindful choices is about making additions that are carefully chosen. Just as when we read labels as we go down the grocery isle, we can read labels in the clothing boutiques as well…it all adds up to positive benefits for our common Mother Earth. Life is long…yes I know that they say its short…but I must argue that its long and we all have so many opportunities to make a change and make a difference.
Visit our archives for eco fashion, design, style and more great ideas on living in sync with the planet.
31 July 2010
Opening July, 31st - January 9th 2011 you can learn all about the history of tie dye at The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco’s de Young Museum, “To Dye For,”exhibit, features over 50 textiles and costumes from the Fine Arts Museums’ comprehensive collection of textiles from Africa, Asia and the Americas. “To Dye For" not only highlights the museum’s impressive permanent collection of textiles, but also shows how cultures across the world have used similar techniques for centuries with results that are sometimes similar, and at other times startlingly different.
Oscar de la Renta Trench coat, 2005. Silk; warp-faced plain weave, warp-resist dyeing (ikat). Photo courtesy de Young Museum.
The end result is a stunning array of textures, patterns and color that is not to be missed.
Felt rug, 15th - 17th century. Mongolia. Wool; felt, stencil-resist dyed. Photo courtesy de Young Museum.
22 July 2010
Earlier this week I came across a wonderful jewelry designer on Etsy (where else) while I was searching for double finger rings. The accessories line is called Lunatic Art. I was immediately drawn to the natural, hammered look of the jewelry and their unique shapes and designs. The way in which the metal is shaped looks very artistic and organic, perfect for a more casual outfit, while also bringing some edginess to a very sophisticated look. There is a wide selection of earrings and rings all carrying the signature Lunatic Art style. Each piece looks very unique to the line and you would be hard pressed to find in a store. Some of my favorites are the Scratch Duo Ring and the Crop Circle Earrings.
Lunatic art’s founder has a very interesting tale. She started making jewelry throughout her travels as a means to survive and experience the world. Though she is mostly self taught, she also learned to make her jewelry by taking a silversmith course at the “Escuela de Artes Plasticas” in
Lunatic art jewelry is all made from recycled silver. Each piece of jewelry is created with metals from a refiner who refrains from purchasing the metal from mines. The sterling silver she uses is also either recycled or refined in order to avoid new mining. All the pieces are unique, beautiful, and completely eco-friendly.
19 July 2010
"Beauty, to me, is about being comfortable in your own skin. That, or a kick-ass red lipstick."
— Gwyneth Paltrow
Duwop’s latest experiment Private Red, strives to be “each woman’s personal red.
Private Red is a “mood” lipstick that changes color once it is applied. The idea behind Private Red is that the lipstick will adjust to each woman’s own lip color and skin tone to create the perfect red lipstick. With conditioning ingredients, the lipstick goes on smooth and silky, and adjusting to you lips after five minutes. The red pigment stains the lips leaving a long lasting color of your own behind. Also, because the lipstick changes to suit the individual, each woman has her own shade of lipstick that can’t be duplicated or copied.
The lipstick has received rave reviews on websites like Buzzillions.com and Sephora.com. It’s also one of the top rated products at Urban Outfitters and Beauty.com. Many of the customers stay that the lip stick really does adjust to their skin tone providing the perfect crimson color. Others say that the long lasting color can be worn all day with only a few touch ups after meals.
Behind the Private Red, color-changing technology, are three all natural, eco-friendly ingredients. These key ingredients are annatto, hibiscus, and henna. Annatto provides the rich, deep red color, while the henna strengthens the pigment promising a long lasting finish. Other natural ingredients such as beeswax, castor oil, and Vitamin E condition and moisturize the lips keeping the red color vivid and new.
09 July 2010
"In 1882 Ida Clark, then 30 years old and single, decided it was time to leave Deadwood South Dakota. After many years in the business, "golden haired and ravishing" Ida caught the morning train and disappeared forever, leaving behind a legend of firehouse balls, suspicious murders, and a missing trunk full of money and stolen jewelry. Using soft dusty pastel leathers, or striped canvas with microfiber lining (vegan), on a 2.5" Fellowship-hi heel and tunite Bellevue sole, this ankle bootie is already legendary.*"
This is how John Fluevog describes his newest VEGGIE VOG creation. I admit to be a bit of a John F Groupie myself...but you must admit that this is pure sole genius! John sees himself as more than just a shoe designer,
"I'm an armchair philosopher, an artist and a style monger, my shoes and messages are quite simply a part of me."
Thanks, John! I do think you are AWSOME!
...and by the way, John is running a 10th annual John Fluevog thinks we are all AWSOME too SALE right now so check it out for all of your JF cravings.
07 July 2010
Its like “lip gloss for your nails,” says the creative director Nonie Crème. Jelly, the new line of sheer, glossy nail polishes by Butter London, is perfect for the summer months. True to their name the translucent polishes can be worn as a subtle pop of color or they can be layered for a darker tint. The tangerine, grape, and raspberry colors are bright and refreshing, each labeled with a cute British name like chuffed or twee. The Jelly polishes were designed so that you can chose the intensity or your own nail color. Also, the different colors can be layered over top of one another to create unique summer colors of your own.
What could make these adorable nail polishes even better? All Butter London nail polishes including the new Jelly brad are three-free. You might be wondering, as I was, what three free-means? There are three very toxic chemicals in most nail polish and treatments, Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP), Formaldehyde, Toluene. These chemicals are harmful to the environment and the rival of any eco-friendly shopper. Many companies have recently tried to eradicate these chemicals from their polish formulas, some more successfully then others. Luckily, Butter London was one of the first to eliminate these chemicals and perfect their polishes.
Check out the new Jelly polishes as well as there existing line of polishes (which also come in beautiful, trendy colors) at Butter London!
19 June 2010
This setting is heaven on earth for the artist’s creative mind to emerge as evident in Kayrene’s latest creations.
Biker chic and Hippie hot? Why not! Any as Kayrene says, “If its not custom, why do you have it on?”
Kayrene chooses recycled and veggie tanned leather to fashion her lovelies and the the most vivid and beautiful turquoise one can find.
This leather and lace corset is a one of a kind to die for for any eco biker chic lady on the go.
We can't wait to see what is ahead for you Leather Girl!
While I was writing my last blog post about the Tecbor rubber, I became very skeptical of whether this process was truly eco-friendly. I have always been taught that producing rubber and plastic was one of the most harmful processes to the environment. If this technology is really "out there" why isn't being used all the time? So, I decided to do a little bit of research. This is what I found.
Tecbor is a new type of eco-friendly rubber made and produced in the Brazilian Amazon. The eco-friendly process of congealing the rubber without the harmful chemicals was first invented by Professor Floriano Pastore at the University of Brasilia Latex Laboratory. The key ingredient in this new technology is pyroligenous acid which is used to produce the rubber sheets. Before this technology the only way of coagulating the latex material was through acetic acid in combination with a substance derived from wood smoke. Also. this new process cuts the stages of grinding and rinsing, which in the past, used a large amount of water and electricity. The rubber tappers are able to dry the latex panels outside which saves a lot of energy.
Greenpeace, an environmentalist and peace associated organization, has collaborated with 40 rubber tapping families in the Jurua Valley, an extractive reserve in the amazon, to launch The Amazon Tecbor Project sponsored by the University of Brasilia, the National Council of Rubber Tappers, and the National Centre of Traditional Populations. Greenpeace chose this location for the pilot phase of the project because the region faces the threat of large scale logging operations. Greenpeace along with it's collaborators use this project as an example to prove that the rain forests can be economically useful while they're alive. The rubber produced during the first phase of this project was used by Greenpeace to produce completely eco-friendly mouse pads.
Using this process to produce rubber has also helped the small, native rubber tapping communities in the Amazon. The people of these communities have taken the technology and adapted it to their own practices in order to improve the rubber making process. The Brazilian rubber tappers are able to produce the rubber sheets on their own, eliminating the middlemen, which directly helps the residents of these communities.
Despite my initial skepticism, I have been completely converted after doing the research on Tecbor. It's a wonderful new technology that helps us use the rich resources of the rain forest without destroying it. Also, this technology helps the smaller communities rather then the large rubber producing companies. This research has also given me a new appreciation of Flavia Amadeu's rubber bracelets. She has found a way to make this new rubber stylish and fashionable.
14 June 2010
As I scanned countless pages on etsy, (with zealous I probably should have been directed towards the rest of my work), I came across an accessories designer that has a very new take on this popular spring trend. Flavia Amadeu, a member of etsy, sells amazing jewelry made from a rubber material produced in the rain forests of
08 June 2010
Like a proud mom, I set my favorite hand bag on the coffee shop counter. As I foraged threw my ole friend for some spare change for a morning joe, the very patient cashier complimented, "What a great vintage find!" Any compliment on a vintage find is usually a great start to my day, which would have been today, if I hadn't purchased my great, slouchy doctors bag last year, brand new. I could almost hear it whimper as I examined its well-loved shape beginning to crack and peal away. My favorite classic bag had become something of an old withering hag. I have never been one to replace an old friend with something new…..unless it is something really fabulous.
With upcycling on my mind from the latest ecoCouture post, I was searching the web for something new when I came across a great accessories line, Hoakon loves Helga. The Canadian designer, Andi Strand claims she’s, "obsessed with anything vintage", from her unique line name inspired by her grandparents to the her vintage-made-new bags. The Hoakon/Helga designer has a background in Fine Arts and Textiles and is also the editor and founder of online magazine, Antler Magazine. The magazine features different designers from all over the world who have the same flair for vintage and eco fashion. Antlermag is full of great editorials with vibrant fashion photography.
At Hoakon/Helga, Strand combines vintage and recycled materials to create chic, “new” eco friendly bags and clutches. For the designer's current collection, she hunts through thrift stores and vintage shops searching for vintage leather jackets that have been tossed aside as the base for her designs. She creates a variety of bags with similar styles and silhouettes; however, because of the nature of her design process, each bag is unique with its own identity. Each jacket has its own details which the designer tries to incorporate into her own bag designs. Strand says that she "strives to achieve a respect for the past and future using sustainable approaches." Each bag is one-of-a-kind with different colors and patterns as well as unique shapes and pocket styles. The bags and clutches range in price from $25 for a simple clutch to $129 for some of the larger more detailed bags.
While many of these eco friendly accessories might not be an option for the vegan customer, they are great for people who are trying to be cautious about their fashion impact on the environment. For those that don’t like the leather, Hoakon/Helga has a selection of bags made from recycled denim and other materials. Pair one of the “Furrow” totes from Hoakon/Helga with the Jonano “Bloom Puzzle” dress and you have a perfect, completely eco-friendly, day to night look.
I’m afraid I may have to give my sweet, old doctor’s bag a rest for a bit in exchange for something that was made to weather my busy days…and when a cashier commends my find I will thank her with a smile.
31 May 2010
If the eco fashion lines had one thing in common with the rest of the conventional collections strutting runways this spring, it’s that they could be just as outrageous, glamorous, and fabulous as the best of them. Yes, organic and sustainable clothing is breaking through the image of baggy beige pants and “I Heart the Earth” t-shirts, reinventing itself into the multi-layered, far-reaching and diverse aesthetic that is necessary for this once pocketed trend to explode onto the mainstream. From JoAnn Berman’s fierce and feisty upcycled streetwear designs, to Deux FM’s and Gary Harvey’s Hollywood gala gowns, designers have accepted the challenge that is a more sustainable style and are running, waltzing, and breakdancing with it.
One very brightly colored and visable trend to grace the greener runways this season is working with upcycled materials. Dresses composed of copies of the Financial Times, beauty cream sample packages, old laundry bags (laundered themselves, we hope), and knotted souvenier scarves from around the world were transformed into red carpet ready gowns by designer Gary Harvey. Joann Berman took a different take on the trend, stitching everything from old t-shirts to brightly painted football shoulderpads together for an electric look ready for bold rockstars to rock them. Of course one of the great or unfortunate things about these upcylced pieces, is that each is one of a kind, its own unique work of art defined by the limitations of what the dumpster, or bargain bin at the Goodwill, or limits of your creativity, allows as fabric fodder.
20 May 2010
Pittsburgh's Firehouse Lounge came alive with belly dancers, lady rappers and fine eco fashion and art at the Susan G Komen benefit party for the cure. A cornucopia of local talent, the night raised funds for the Komen Foundation, raised spirits of the survivors and supporters present, and raised glasses all around as part of Couchange's Drink for the Cure event.
Jonäno presented a fashion show showcasing some of the line's favorite classic pieces, such as the Convertible Bandeau Dress, alongside fresh blooming pieces from their 2010 Spring and Summer Collection. With amazing flower nymph inspired hair and makeup by innovative stylist Marta Anyse Napoleone, and a whimsical introduction by newly relocated rapper/storyteller Bamboo, the models helped highlight fashion that not only looks and feels amazing, but contributes to the healthier world we all work towards through Jonäno's sustainable growing practices and innovative textile production.
The show was capped off by an auction of three EcoLux lingerie looks in eye popping shades of raspberry, ocean aqua, and chartreuse, raising additional funds for the Komen Foundation, which works in the realm of breast cancer education, advocacy, and research. A favorite charity of designer Bonnie Siefers, who lost her mother to breast cancer at a young age, Jonäno raises additional money for breast cancer research year round through the sale of their Peace Silk and Linen Scarves available at www.jonano.com
Milano- It's green, it's fuzzy, it's ALIVE! Up and coming Icelandic designer Hafsteinn Juliusson's living jewelry incorporates growing moss into sleek, streamlined stainless steel rings and necklaces. Described as designed for the metropolitan among us, Juliusson's Growing Jewlery is a self described "experiment in drawing nature toward man, as nature being the presupposition of life."
As a designer with no claimed specific focus,
Juliusson's projects have a common
thread of simple subjects and fun outcomes.
One of my other favorite projects of his, "Ride it to Light", incorporates community, bikes, and light into one underscored ecological message that is both participatory and relevant to the streets of Milan. Head over to http://www.hafsteinnjuliusson.com/ to see more of Juliusson's innovative creations.
16 April 2010
The Story of Stuff
Earth Day is April 22nd. You can give some love to Mother Earth by changing simple things in your daily routine. Instead of trashing all of the stuff you no longer want take a moment to see if any of it can be recycled. Unplug your cell phone chargers. They use just as much energy dangling from the outlet as they do filling up your battery. Turn off the faucet when you are brushing your teeth. Most importantly educate yourself. Simply knowing the damage you are doing to the earth and yourself will make you think twice about your shampoo, dish detergent, the lettuce you ate for lunch...
Show how much you care this Earth Day and everyday.
Please watch this video
20 March 2010
04 March 2010
Jonäno debuted their first collection in collaboration with award-winning Design Director, Henry N Jackson, at New York Fashion Week this season. Jonäno’s signature eco fabrics and attention to sustainable and ethical practices combined with Mr. Jackson’s eye for sophisticated yet feminine design came together beautifully in a fall collection comprising signature ecoKashmere® knits and viscose from bamboo cocktail dresses, hemp denim and organic cotton herringbone ensembles in a collection that was inspired by the culture rich city of Vienna. M A Orito, Artist and Crafts person designed the jewelry pieces that accompanied the looks on the catwalk. Tones of heather gray mélange combined with mauve and pops of deep red rich indigo, complimenting the neutral palate Fashion Week goers saw at shows across the city.
Mr. Jackson yields from the world of couture and high fashion, dressing celebrities like Oprah Winfrey, Halle Berry, and Whoopi Goldberg for the red carpet in his designs. Coming on board with Jonäno as Design Director represents a new project for Jackson, resulting in a ready to wear line that all involved hope will “take green mainstream.”