These days being green is a bit of a trend.
Everyone loves to be able to say that they recycle, or carpool, or wear "sustainable" clothing.
But what does "sustainable" clothing really mean anyway?
Most of the time, even with the best of intentions, we're leading pretty wasteful lives.
So I was excited to be able to interview one of my favorite local designers, Nicole Lebreux, about her truly green line based out of Rhode Island!
Nicole's handmade line uses vintage and recycled fabrics and is manufactured locally in Bristol, RI and Fall River, MA to help continue the tradition of handmade craftsmanship in New England.
So you can feel good wearing her pieces because you know that they never harm the environment AND they help support our local economy.
What could be better?
As a designer you take pride in designing an eco-friendly line. What inspired you to be a “green” label? How do you ensure that your clothing is “sustainable”?
My love and respect for nature and the natural beauty of mother earth drives me to protect her as best I can. Not being sustainable was never an option; being environmentally conscious is how I live my life so it makes no sense for my business to be run any other way. I choose to be the change I wish to see in the world by running a fashion company that does not take advantage of our planet or the people on it. Being green isn't just about organic and recycling, its about doing the right thing. I ensure that my garments are sustainable by keeping a close eye on where fabrics are coming from, manufacturing techniques used by the sewing contractors I use (all my garments are designed, cut, and sewn in Rhode Island and Massachusetts I might add), and, well, I do just about everything else so there's tight quality control!
You’ve said that your favorite part of the process is buying fabrics. When looking for fabrics do you have a specific design in mind or are your silhouettes inspired by the prints and fabrics later?
The fun part about searching for vintage and mill surplus fabrics is that you never know what you're going to find! I've been collecting vintage fabrics for years and my eye tends to go towards big bold prints and bright colors so those themes are naturally found in most of my garments. Sometimes I'll ask the thrifting and auction gods to bless me with slinky knits or monochromatic silks or breezy chiffons if I'm sourcing for a specific idea or garment but most of the time I let the fabrics that I find inspire the garments. Fall 2012 went away from the 60's and 70's florals and more towards geometric and native cultured inspired stripes and motifs. I'm thinking that Spring 2013 will be a mix of florals and geometrics but maybe in a more subdued color palette.
For your Fall/Winter 2012 collection you created your first original screen print! What prompted you to try your hand on a print this season? Did you know, when you began your line, that it was something that you wanted to do? Can we expect to see more original prints in the future?
I did some screen printing in college at FIT and was really intrigued by the process and the possibilities of using printing techniques on fabric. I have always wanted to incorporate my own surface designs onto fabric but I wasn't sure how. Last fall I had a chance meeting with Molly of Moho Designs at the Sowa Open Market on Harrison Ave in Boston. She expressed her desire to move toward originally designed garments to screen print on and I told her how I would love to create my own printed fabric. The rest is history! We regularly trade pattern making for fabric printing retreats in her beautiful Berkshires studio. It's been a wonderful collaboration!
While I won't do another screen print in the next few seasons I will be experimenting with other fabric printing/dyeing techniques such as silk painting, tie dye, batik, and others I haven't even discovered yet I'm sure. Keep your eyes open for splatter painted layers of sheer fabrics on the runway for Spring 2013!
What inspired you this season? Many of the runway looks reminded me of “the far East” with lots of layers for the modern girl!
God I love layers! When I was designing the Fall 2012 collection it was the start of the cold months so I was wearing a lot of what I call "bag lady chic", which is basically 3 layers of tank tops and tees with various length sleeves, my signature long leggings, shearling boots, and topped off with a Lebowski-esque grandpa sweater. While that look suited me alone in my studio I needed to create more aesthetically pleasing versions for the runway. I also spent a lot of time studying Egyptian surface design and pottery. Egyptians encompassed such stunning organic geometric shapes and spiritual themes in their work which are so prevalent in today's modern search for meaning. I was very inspired by that which is evident in my screen print design along with the silhouettes and shapes of my Fall 2012 Collection.
Anyway, she couldn't have been nicer but from the look on her face in these pictures she's totally thought I was crazy! Oh, and if the other girl with us looks familiar its because she's Miss Massachusettes!
Such a sweetheart!
All in all it was a fun event and another great chance to see my favorite fellow bloggers.
National Jean has a huge selection of great fashion, not just denim, and the store is beautiful so definitely check it out on your next shopping trip!
I'm excited to announce that both The Loft Salon and Define Beauty will be on hand to provide guests with complimentary mini-makeovers! We're also having tea, cupcakes, gift bags for the first 25 guests, a give-a-way, and an exclusive shopping discount! Please come by!
Events in Boston: National Jean Company Grand Opening Hosted by Nicole Richie!
With summer quickly approaching I'm worried about the condition of my skin.
For those of you who don't know I'm incredibly pale and my skin is beyond sensitive so sun protection is always on my mind in the morning.
I was excited to give Vichy's new Capital Soleil SPF 30 Luxurious Protective Oil a shot since I've used many of their products in the past without any irritation to my skin. While it hasn't been super warm the past few days the sun has been out (remember its important to wear sunscreen every day- even when its cloudy!) so I liberally applied the oil after a my body lotion in the morning.
The bottle has a spray so you can easily spray it on those hard to reach spots. I always spray a lot onto my hand and then rub it. I think it gives me a little more control but at the beach its nice to just spray it on quickly.
Like all Vichy products it smells great with just a hint of that familiar sunscreen spell. While this isn't a self tanner it does promise an immediate "sun kissed glow" on application. I didn't use it on my face (the last thing my face needs is more oil) but I did notice a brighter tone to the skin on my arms and legs.
It also feels amazing without that greasy, sticky feeling that usually comes along with sunscreen. It honestly feels more like a body lotion than a sun protector maybe thanks in part to its white grapeseed oil, extra vitamin E and gelling polymer ingredients!
I've been using it for the past five days and even my extremely sensitive skin hasn't had any kind of negative reaction!
Purple lips probably conjure up images of high school goths, Halloween, and bad make up artist portfolios.
But I think there is way to do a purple pout with elegance and have it look almost natural instead of costumey. Not that I don't appreciate Gaga's beauty POV, and of course there are times when plum works, but I find the right color of lavender to be great for every day life.
For just a glimpse of purple I suggest going the sheer route.
Marilyn Monroe & Arthur Miller photographed by Richard Avedon
I try not to use Bostonista as a place to vent or to talk about my personal life.
It's a fashion blog, this is (obviously) not a personal style blog or a dating blog or my private journal, and I assume most readers come to see pretty pictures or enter contests.
I try to respect that.
At the same time, I don't really have any other outlet for my frustrations.
And I've been frustrated a lot recently.
A lot of things have changed in my life since the beginning of the year.
One of them excellent; Most of them life changing.
Around the end of February the man I thought I'd be with for the rest of my life, who I have waited (not always so) patiently for for the past 7 years, dropped a bombshell. It still, all these weeks later, feels like a twisting knife in my gut.
Then, said man, dropped back in to my life for a brief, incredibly painful hour with yet another revelation.
That afternoon, as he broke my heart over and over, my mom kept calling my cell.
When I had finally composed myself enough to use the phone I called her back and found out that my Nana had been taken to the hospital but seemed to be okay.
In a fit of fury at man #1 I went on a date with a new guy and over a few weeks we fell into an easy rhythm and I thought he'd be a good summer fling to help take my mind off of man #1.
Two weeks later my Nana, an ever present voice in my head, passed away.
Bostonista turned 4 and I forgot to celebrate or acknowledge it.
Happy Belated Fourth Birthday, blog!
Since the funeral I've been stressed out, prone to cry at anything, and somehow even more resentful towards man #1. You can't even send a sympathy card, you bastard?!
But at least I had man #2 to hang out with, right?
Today he decided that I want something more serious then he is willing to ever be (which I really, really don't) and so we should just be friends. The last thing I want after what man #1 did is a relationship.
Maybe I was too comfortable too quickly? Apparently, I'm not "fling" material to him, which is odd because every other guy I've ever met has always thought I was only"fling" material. I guess I could argue and try to change his mind but I don't care enough.
I'm honestly just bummed to not have a guy to hang out with.
I realize that the last paragraph doesn't help me come across as very sympathetic, or even very likable, but I'm bitter.
At least my hair looks really blond today.
Some pretty pictures so I'm not entirely off topic:
(For more gorgeous pictures, outfit inspiration, and visual candy check out Bostonista's Pinterest. It has 100% less self-pity. I promise)
I actually feel a little better.
Thanks for listening.
Maybe I should change the name of my blog to Bitter Blond!