Thursday, August 16, 2012
(Designer Stuart Weitzman)
On Tuesday, I was given the opportunity to interview designer Stuart Weitzman!
A Haverhill native, Mr. Weitzman is in town to celebrate the opening of his latest boutique at Chestnut Hill Mall.
He is iconic in the world of design, and long before I'd even attempted to pronounce Blahnik, Stuart Weitzman was the name I admired. As an adult, his beautiful shoes have played a huge part in the evolution of my personal style.
In March, when my Nana, a lifelong lover of shoes, passed away I treated myself to a pair of Weitzmans for her services. Some people may have felt them an odd choice for a wake and funeral but I knew Nana would have loved them and they gave me a lot of strength during a particularly difficult time.
So, I was beyond excited (and honored!) when I was invited to interview Stuart himself!
Your father owned a shoe factory here in Massachusetts while you were growing up. Did you always know that you wanted to be a shoe designer?
I had originally planned to conquer Wall Street right out of school, but unexpected circumstances led me to join the family business to help out and I have never looked back.
I know your designs are now produced in Spain but do you ever think of bringing the production back to the Boston area?
Ever since a group of shoes made in Elda caught my eye with their exceptional quality and workmanship… it became my home.
(Natalia Vodianova in Stuart Weitzman Fall 2012)
The Fall 2012 campaign is so beautiful! Why did you choose model Natalia Vodianova to be the face of Stuart Weitzman?
Natalia was chosen for our ad campaign because her personality traits mirror the brand perfectly: undeniable sex appeal yet approachable girl next door.
How do you continue to find inspiration and, yet, never repeat yourself?
I am inspired by everything around me …. I believe creativity can be sparked by the simplest details. Some forms of past, present and future inspiration for me have been things I have seen on the sidewalks of New York City, the Spanish countryside, a favorite old movie and the changes in nature within each seasons.
Is there a woman you consider your muse?
When I create the various ideas that make up a collection, I am thinking of the many diverse personalities of women – the fashionista, celebrity, career woman, the ultra chic and bride. By embracing each one individually, I have been able to satisfy the desires of each.
Why did you begin designing handbags? How does that differ from the process of designing shoes?
Handbags have always been a natural extension for me…I like to incorporate great design with functionality within the collection. Shoes are all about great style and comfort, but handbags are about style and functionality.
What can we expect from your Spring 2013 collection?
Now, you will just have to wait to see…
It's open now and I, for one, can't wait to go and try on all those amazing shoes!
Thank you so much to every one at Stuart Weitzman, especially Carter Boardman and Mr. Weitzman himself!
Wednesday, August 8, 2012
(Blo South End)
By now, you're probably well aware of my Lauren Santo-Domingo obsession.
Ever since my style icon told "Into the Gloss" that she never, never, washes her own hair let alone blow dry it, I've dreamed of the day when I, too, could be a twice weekly blow-out girl.
Now that Blo Dry Bar has opened it's door in the South End, I'm so much closer to living the dream.
I was super bummed that I couldn't attend their media day a few weeks ago during Blo's grand opening so when Blo Boss Gina invited me to come in yesterday I jumped for joy!
(The Blo South End team at the grand opening!)
If you're unfamiliar with the idea of a "blow out", let me explain. It will change your life.
You know when you see a celebrity on the red carpet (or even at the grocery store) and her hair is smooth and shiny but has that right amount of bounce and swing? She wasn't born that way and she didn't style it herself! Some lucky (or unlucky, depending on the celebrity) stylist took an hour or so to wash, blow dry, flat iron and possibly curl her hair to perfection.
Most of us only go to the salon when we need a cut and might be lucky enough to have freshly blown out hair for a day or two every six months or so. With a blow-out, the only thing your stylist does is wash, blow dry, and style. If you're not getting a cut most stylists at salons are not happy about giving you a blow out. It's too much work. And they'll charge you an arm and a leg to do it.
Blo, started in 2007 by some savvy Canadians, is the answer to the question,
"Why isn't there a place to get quick, affordable, catwalk quality blow outs?"
As soon as you walk into Blo South End, you know you've found a special spot.
While their slogans (Blo Me, Bro Job, Blo U) lean to the naughty-cute side, the bar itself is a sophisticated spot decorated in calming grays and whites with punches of Blo's signature hot pink.
Every one is super warm and friendly, so I felt immediately comfortable even though I wasn't dressed in my usual Fashion-Blogger-Finest.
(Blo's Front Desk & Candy Jars)
Fortified with a freshly made glass of pink lemonade and some pink & white candy, I sat in my "Bloer" (or stylists) chair and was handed Blo's Menu.
For just $35 (no matter how long, short, thick or thin your mane may be) you can pick from one of seven signature Blo styles. Usually, I want my hair to blown stick straight and smooth (known at Blo as The Executive Sweet) but I was feeling adventurous yesterday so I went with The Boho Braid.
(The Boho Braid and Holly Would styles from Blo's Menu)
As soon as I had chosen, I was whisked over to the shampoo station for my wash and conditioner.
Blo exclusively uses Unite hair products, a celebrity favorite that is PETA approved and certified vegan. I was little skeptical that an all natural product could tame my textured tresses but my hair is so unbelievably soft and smells so delicious that I have to admit that Unite really works.
(Comfy chairs at the sinks)
(I love that the space has a lot of windows and natural light)
Then it was back to my chair where my hair was dried about 80% with a diffuser before being sectioned off and straightened with the blow dryer and round brush. I have a lot of hair so it usually takes forever but my stylist has it down to such a science that I was surprised how quickly, it was dried! With a couple of snazzy maneuvers with the brush and flat iron I had smooth waves ready for Coachella and a perfect side braid pinned neatly behind one ear.
For a stylish woman on the go, Blo is a basic necessity.
They've only been open in the South End for about two weeks and are already building a loyal following. Count me in on this bandwagon!
Blo South End
437 Columbus Ave
437 Columbus Ave
Big thank you to Gina, Hilary, Emily, and especially the entire Blo South End team!
(All pictures in this post are by TheBostonista except for The Blo South End Team Shot and The Blo Menu Illustrations provided by Blo. My appointment at Blo was complimentary but the review is honestly my own.)
Tuesday, July 31, 2012
It's always great when I come across a new website or store but it's even more exciting when it's from a Boston-based company.
Recently, one of the companies I'm excited about is UsTrendy, an online marketplace devoted to cultivating new, smaller designers and providing them with opportunities to sell their designs.
If you're part of the Boston fashion scene you're probably already familiar with UsTrendy, one of the biggest fashion marketplaces on the web!
UsTrendy president Sam Sisakhti had watched a designer friend struggle with the business aspects of a successful line, and decided to find a way to support independent design talent while providing shoppers with unique, exciting design at great prices.
In 2008, he launched this idea as UsTrendy.
If you're an aspiring designer you can create a portfolio to enter into contests. Prizes include receiving funding to launch the line and promotion at international fashion weeks!
The fashion industry is often cut-throat so it's wonderful to see a local company helping to launch new, independent lines.
Not a designer? UsTrendy is also a bit of a social platform where fashion fans can shop unique items, vote for pieces you'd like to see produced, and set tomorrow's trends by providing personal feedback to designers.
One of their labels that really caught my eye is MonTree, with its emphasis on clothing for the modern, urban bohemian. I think sometimes designers see "urban" women as wanting black but MonTree designer, Monica Wontorski, infuses her pieces with bright colors and prints.
I'm particularly crazy for the Mexican Heart top with it's bat wing sleeves and printed heart. Plus, it's made from recycled polyester and bamboo meaning it's stylish and sustainable.
If black is more your game and you're looking for something elegant UsTrendy can satisfy that need as well with designers like FROCK Los Angeles. Frock is one of the labels that is growing quickly thanks to its design philosophy of ignoring trends. Instead, designer Victoria Tik, focuses on solid colors and timeless cuts for an overall minimalist asethetic. Like MonTree, Frock is also committed to being eco-friendly using only vegetable based dyes and certified organic materials.Abby Backless Maxi Tank Dress by FROCK LA)
So, if you're looking for something special and want to be able to support small labels and upcoming designers, USTrendy is the place to go! I love browsing their 14,000 designers and creating outfits especially since UsTrendy makes it easy for MY opinion to actually impact the store in a positive way!
Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Oh, Katie Holmes, I've had such a love/hate relationship with you since the 7th grade.
I hate your sideways smirk, but love the huge grin.
Joey Potter seemed so fun but Jen Lindley was always so glamorous.
You showed so much promise in Pieces of April and then I endured Mad Money.
I love Suri but Tom creeps me out.
Actually, you probably feel the same way about that last one, Katie.
But I have to admit, this "divorce tour" you're taking on the streets of New York this month has me captivated. You look amazing, Scientology is scary, and Suri is still the best dressed woman in town.
Besides, as a former student of The Sacred Heart, I'm thrilled that Suri will be attending Convent of the Sacred Heart in September.
Katie has been spotted wearing one of my favorite denim labels, MOTHER, a couple of times this month. I love her casual regular-mom-on-the-go style (as if there weren't dozens of paparazzi just out of the shot) with her MOTHER "Looker" jeans, Isabel Marant "Dicker" booties, and Henry Cuir "Charivari" tote.
(Pictures Courtesy of Just Jared)