Stella Spotlight: Nashville Boutique - MADE

If you're on my holiday gift list this year, chances are good you'll be receiving a gift from East Nashville's newest boutique, MADE.  This shop is truly a Stella dream.  It's super affordable and stuffed to the ceiling with tons of goodies made by local crafters, artists and some of our favorite designers like Amanda Valentine, Shea Steele and Shannon Lea. Our photog, Jessica McIntosh, said it best, MADE is like a real-life local Etsy.

Ashley Sheehan, owner of MADE, stocks the store with an assortment of art, housewares and jewelry, some of which is made by her, as well as a well-edited collection of vintage apparel for men and women.  She can even paint a portrait of your favorite pet in a suite.  This is one very busy lady!  Ashley graciously took some time out of her afternoon to tell us more about MADE.

What is your concept for MADE? I want Made to be a very accessible shop for both the customers, the crafters and artists. A laid back spot where you can find one of a kind gifts that were made right here in the ‘hood.

Describe the vibe of the store in five words or less. Quaint, cute and charming.

If MADE had a mascot who or what would it be? It would have to be a fawn, sweet and a bit mysterious. Deer have always inspired me.
Some of your own handiwork can be found around the store.  What goodies in the shop are 'made' by you? I have been embroidering a lot lately so the men's ties, the colorful embroidered necklaces, the pillows, the collage art, including animals in suits, along with other random pieces throughout the shop.

There are some fabulous gift items in the store.  What are some of your favorites? I love the candles from Alchemy of Sol, the handmade shirts by Shannon Lea’s People Like Art, Amanda Valentine's altered vintage dresses, the feather hair flair by Emily of Craftville, the totes and prints from Pine Street Makery, wow I just keep going…

Is everything in the store sourced from Tennessee? 95% of all the creations are made right here in TN.
What are five of your favorite places in Nashville? Southern Thrift, Gas Lamp, Silly Goose, Ugly Mugs, and Pre to Post Modern.

What inspires you? Grey Gardens (the documentary), anything from the 60’s, people doing good for others (a trait I have watched my parents carry out through the years), outsider art, vintage children’s books, great magazines like Lula,my favorite bands like Belle and Sebastian and the Magnetic Fields, my friends and sisters, the little things in life like a great laugh with great friends…

Visit MADE this Saturday, December 4 on the East Nashville Holiday Vintage Boutique Crawl.  Select items will be 20% off.  Make sure you receive Stella in your Inbox.  We have a coupon this month good for 20% off your purchase of $20 or more.

MADE

717 Porter (Portland & Eastland in East Nashville)
Hours:
Wed-Fri, Sun 11 am - 5 pm
Sat 11 am - 6 pm

For more photos from our MADE shoot, visit the Stella Facebook page. Photos by Jessica Rai Photography.

Warning: Mimosas Followed by Shopping May Lead to the UAL Impulse Purchase

Impulse purchase is defined as a spur of the moment unplanned decision to buy, made just before a purchase.  Research findings suggest that emotions and feelings play a decisive role in purchasing, triggered by seeing the product or upon exposure to a well crafted promotional message.  (Thank you businessdictionary.com.)  Consider me guilty as charged.  Our September Stella Spotlight Store, UAL, definitely lends itself to the impulse purchase and I have fallen prey too many times to count.  After posting our spotlight blog, I felt I needed to come clean about my most recent UAL impulse purchase.

That Sunday morning started innocently enough.  Brunch with my friend at Jackson's followed by a shopping trip to UAL.  I think this was her first trip to UAL which was exciting since I love taking new people there, and I was looking for a dress for my cousin's wedding.  We left Jackson's early enough that UAL wasn't open yet, so we decided to have a drink at Bricktop's before the shopping extravaganza began.  I tell you all of this, because I know that second mimosa made it that much easier for me to plop down my credit card for this dress... 


Yes, that is a train!


This Ivan Grundahl dress was hanging in the very back of a rack toward the front of the store.  It was the ruching at the side that caught my eye.  It was my size.  I had to try it on.


OF COURSE, it fit perfectly.  Everything about it was perfect.  There was discussion of different ways to wear it, dressing it down by cutting off the train and then some debate on whether I should really buy it.  Who was I kidding...I knew the second I zipped that zipper I was never cutting off that train and this dress was coming home with me.


Here's a look at the back of the dress...



And one more photo of the front.  Since the top doesn't have much structure, there's a million ways to wear it.  See how versatile it is? ;)







I have zero idea where I am going to wear this dress, which I now refer to as "my gown."  This wasn't exactly going to work for my cousin's wedding, but I just couldn't say no.  Are you ready for the price tag?


Designer: Ivan Grundahl 
Regular Price $850
UAL Price $159.99


$160?!  SOLD.  Even though I don't have one bit of buyer's remorse for this purchase, I know the mimosas made me do it.  That's my story and I'm sticking to it.  

 











Naked Without Us Fashion Event – The Originals

Saturday, April 24 Naked Without Us concludes an amazing week of fashion and music with The Originals Fashion Show at Mercy Lounge.  We are super excited for this show as it showcases some amazing local and national designers, a few of whom we've already featured like Valentine Valentine, Squasht and Clare Bare.  We had a chance to interview two other fabulous Nashville designers whose collections will be featured at The Originals Show, Amy Breen of Amy B Clothing and Shea Steele of White Rabbit and Local Honey fame. 

Amy B
Where do you draw your inspiration for your collections?
Inspiration comes from many things.  A place, a song, a dream, etc.  My sisters are always in mind for every collection.  They're a very big part of my inspiration.

What or who is your muse or inspiration for your Naked Without Us collection?  Can you give us a sneak peek?
This collection stemmed from the movie, "The New World."  Native American dress and feather necklaces.  I wanted a slight tribal feel to be present in the collection.  I stick with my usual black and white with splashes of color.  Using pleating, braiding and draping to create hidden details throughout the collection.
Yazoo's Hefeweizen label is the inspiration for one of your pieces.  Can you tell us what direction you're taking with this piece?
I'm going to go with a Grecian approach using that bright blue as my main palette.

























Who are your three favorite designers and why?
Alexander McQueen - always an inspiration, Stella McCartney and Aurelio Costarella, who I had the honor of working for in Australia.  An amazing person and designer.

What is your favorite color to wear and how does it make you feel?
Black.  It's slimming and easy to wear.  Plus, when you wear black you can use crazy colors in other areas.  Shoes, eye makeup and earrings.  I love my giant gold hoops.

Who are two of your favorite bands right now?
I've been listening to a lot of Billie Holliday and Santigold.

What are your five favorite places in Nashville?
I'm always ever at two places, Jackson's and Clothing Xchange, my two places of work.  When I do get out, I like Centennial Park, South Street, PM, Cosmetic Market and my apartment most of all, cause I'm never there.


Shea Steele


Where do you draw your inspiration for your collections?
Right now, I'm super inspired by children's artwork, but I draw inspiration from basically everything.  Being a super intuitive person and having a wild imagination, I can be inspired by something as subtle as a feeling.  Clothing is a powerful vehicle for expression, just like visual art, so using various combinations of color and shape can evoke a strong response.  I'm essentially a glutton for rich color and absurd graphics.


Who are your three favorite designers and why?
It's  hard to put my finger on any particular designer as a favorite.  It would be like trying to name three favorite songs.  There are so many people making clothes and so much evolution from collection to collection that I rarely pay attention to any specific one for a significant amount of time.  However, I can say Vivienne Westwood and Sonia Rykiel have caused a number of my deaths.

What is your favorite color to wear and how does it make you feel?
I am a lover of contrast and I currently have long vibrant red hair, so there is an abundance of blue in my closet.
Who are two of your favorite bands right now?

What are five of your favorite places in Nashville?
Brown's Diner.  Belmont Boulevard.  The Downtown Library.  The furniture section at the Salvation Army.  The home of any one of my endlessly creative and talented friends.

Also showing collections at The Originals Fashion Show are Shannon Lea and Jamie & the Jones.  Tickets are $10 and can be purchased in advance or at the door.  All Access Passes for the Festival are still available at Grimey's or can be purchased at the Naked Without Us Kickoff Party tomorrow, Monday, April 19 at Hard Rock Cafe.  Visit www.nakedwithoutus.com for more information.


 

Naked Without Us Designer Spotlight – Chance Warhol


Chance Warhol of Marti Mcfli Clothing and the hip hop band, N.O.B.O.T.S. is one of the featured designers next week at Naked Without Us.  Chance is pulling double duty performing tracks from his solo record, "Japanese Lunchbox: A Love Story" at the Kickoff Party on Monday night at the Hard Rock Cafe and showing his collection of Japanese-inspired, futuristic (yet still a bit retro, is that possible?) tees at Exit/In on Wednesday night for the Naked Without Us Street Tees Fashion Show.  He's also been busy working on the NWU theme song which debuted yesterday, called "Work It" featuring Loka LeFevre.  Listen to it here!

Where do you draw your inspiration for your collections?
 The Youth of Modern Tokyo meets the Pulse of Paris Electro scene.
  
What or who is your muse or inspiration for your Naked Without Us collection?  Can you give us a sneak peek at the collection?
My Album Japanese Lunchbox: A Love Story was my inspiration for this season. Yes the Digi-Heart design is basically a visual metaphor for playing games with ones heart. 

Who are your three favorite designers and why? 
Rei Kawakubo of Comme des Garçons, Nigo of A Bathing Ape, & Marc Jacobs. Their designs are always ahead of the curve and never cease to amaze. It's like art by way of clothing. 

What is your favorite color to wear and how does it make you feel?
I'm an Aries, which is a fire sign so I'm naturally attracted to red. I will wear just about any color though as long as it flows within the outfit.  

Name two of your favorite bands right now. 

List five of your favorite places in Nashville.




 
Other designs in addition to Marti Mcfli being featured on the NWU Street Tees Fashion Show are Mary Ink, Reign, Render, Legacy Ink, Lacey Argo Fusion and of course, Boy Meets Girl!  
Get your Naked Without Us All Access Passes at Grimey's before they sell out.  Visit www.nakedwithoutus.com for schedule information, contests, band profiles and more.  We'll see you Monday at the Hard Rock!

Naked Without Us Designer Spotlight – Boy Meets Girl

 

Fun, funky, flirty, functional...meet Boy Meets Girl®.  It's easy to see how these sweet silhouette tees, totes and hoodies have become celebrity obsessions and have been seen on shows like Gossip Girl, The Hills and Sex & the City.  I'm still secretly wishing I would've bought the tote bag I saw in the window at the Clothing Xchange last year.  It was ridiculously cute!

Boy Meets Girl® is one of the featured brands at next week's Naked Without Us Fashion & Music Festival, so we had the chance to ask founder, Stacey M. Igel, a few questions about her fabulous line. 

What was your original concept for Boy Meets Girl® and how has it evolved?
I knew I wanted to design a different line that spoke to an energetic, edgy and playful young woman with a confident and carefree spirit. In the beginning I was working out of my apartment. I was sewing, selling, promoting (even my first “showroom” photo shoot for Lucky Magazine’s “One to Watch” was actually shot in my bedroom), shipping and doing basically everything by myself.  I launched my line in Oct. 2001 at a small trade show called the Workshop and at this show I opened my first department store Bergdorf Goodman. Slowly (and I mean really slowly), I was able to afford to bring on a small team but we still worked out of my house. When I was finally able to afford my own space it was the size of a closet in Union City New Jersey. I took a small bus from port authority everyday with my computer on my back to a rundown building with no running water (the building has since been condemned). Needless to say, I appreciate my current space in the garment district complete with track lighting and a working elevator among other plush amenities. So that’s how I’ve grown. I really have not changed all that much…I still love to create it’s just that now I am creating a larger and more complex collection with many more moving pieces and personnel involved. 

HOW THE SILHOUETTE LOGO EVOLVED:
The first time I met my husband’s parents was for dinner at their apartment.  While they were giving me the tour, I noticed a picture frame containing silhouettes of their three children from when they were younger.  My parents had a similar picture of my sister and I when we were about the same age.  I thought about us and how we still both had these young, playful, carefree versions of ourselves inside of us and I knew right then and there my brand would be called Boy Meets Girl® and that I’d use our silhouettes for the logo.  The logo driven product came first and I have been growing the collection organically from there into what I call a lifestyle collection.

Where do your design inspirations come from?
I draw inspiration from a variety of eclectic influences such as vintage clothing, the vibrant New York art and music scenes and Hollywood’s glamourati. Stylistically, I’m going to give you my holy trinity of influences.  First, Coco Chanel, who famously said “Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, in the street, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening.”  I agree.  I am fortunate to find inspiration in many, many things.  I think that’s why I am so happy working as hard as I do – I’m so passionate about designing and so inspired by my work. Second, Kate Moss.  Of course she’s a beautiful and confident woman, but what I love about her is the way she effortlessly transitions from eclectic vintage to high fashion (and even mixes and matches within the same outfit).  She never looks like she’s trying to put an outfit together – everything looks like it just naturally belongs on her body.  Third, Patti Smith.  She’s stayed true to her edgy stylishness since the 70s.  She’s unflappable. 

What inspired the Spring 2010 collection?
SPRING 2010: Boy Meets MUSICian Girl
I always listen to music while designing.  For Spring 2010 I collaborated with six inspiring women musicians, each coming from very different musical backgrounds. They are Jackie Tohn
(plucky acoustic rock), Wendy Starland (electric world pop),  Eunice Quinones (get-off-your-ass dance music), Jillian Rhys (smoky soul-siren), Tha ToOoNz (intelligent hip-pop), and DJ KISS (hip-hop commando).  “Their music inspired me to create a collection that embraces individuality and a life well-lived.”  In addition to serving as my musical inspirations, these musicians-turned-muses served as my models this season as well – each was photographed with the man in their life for the Boy Meets Girl® Spring 2010 promotional campaign.




Check out the full Inspiration Book here.

Your design mantra is "Couture Comfort©."  Can you explain what that means to you and how it affects your designs?
My design mantra is “couture comfort©”. I don’t design for the runway.  I design for real people.  And what real people want is to be stylish and comfortable at the same time.

What is your favorite piece (or pieces) in the Spring 2010 collection?
The Boy Meets Girl® lexie romper available in stores in April. I love wearing rompers/jumpsuits it makes my life easy in the morning. Pull it on and I am set to go
. The lexie romper is made of fleece&burnout. It is comfortable and sexy. I will pair it with vintage cuffs (gold & printed) with statement shoes. I have my eye on the Lanvin Heels with chain details.

Are there any new musicians or bands you're listening to right now who you're loving?
Yes! Loving Soft Pack. One of my bff’s Deb Ruffalo(and the best acupuncturist in the world) is my go to for all new music. She turned me on to them and also XX, an amazing UK band. XX is a trio band with 2 boys and 1 girl.

 
What can people expect next from Boy Meets Girl®?
I’d like to accomplish three things in the near future.  One, I’d like to open up stores.  We’ve looked at some spaces in various cities and are figuring out how to get into retail without overextending ourselves.  Two, I’d like to have a larger international presence. Three, I’d like to get more involved in accessories and licensing – I think we’ve only just begun to scratch the surface there and the brand is iconic enough now to begin doing that slowly and smartly.  Ohh… and if you’ve read any of my social media sites, you know that I desperately want to be on Oprah before the show ends… it's always been a dream of mine (I am a Chicago girl building an empire in NYC), so if anyone out there can help me, get in touch with me on Facebook, Twitter, or via my blog.   


  



Boy Meets Girl® will be featured on the Naked Without Us Fashion & Music Festival Street Tees show on Wednesday, April 21 at Exit/In. We can't wait to see this collection come down the runway!  Visit www.nakedwithoutus.com for more information and to purchase tickets.
 

Naked Without Us Designer Spotlight – Modern Cowgirl

Shana Gibson is the founder of Modern Cowgirl.  Modern Cowgirl is a line of fun, edgy t-shirts and very cool jewelry.  She is one of the Naked Without Us featured designers holding a trunk show at Monkee's in The Hill Center during the Stella Shops Boutique Crawl on April 23rd from 5-8pm.

Here are her answers to the questions we asked her.

Where do you draw your inspiration for your collections?

Without a doubt I draw inspiration from just about everything around me.  I am constantly cataloging what I see and thinking of applications for it.  I typically gather all inspirations and adhere them to my creativity board in the office.  No telling what will make its way onto the board.  I never come up with the designs in my office.....  The open road/outdoors are typically where an inspiration hits me.  One of my best collections came to me when I was driving to an event in Denver.  I pulled off the road and noted everything I was thinking of.  

Who or what is your muse or inspiration for your Naked Without Us collection?  Will you give us a sneak peek at the collection?
Right now I am LOVING the over sized off the shoulder tee.  We are producing in Micro Modal (softest shirt ever).  The idea is to have a tee that is edgy, dressy, and feels amazing!  Incorporating our motto of inspiration and empowering I came up with a collection that I love.  Not to mention really cool edgy sterling silver chains and large stone jewelry.  No images yet.....still in production.  This line will launch in Nashville before we offer it to our boutiques.

Name three people you admire most.
My mother - She is the strongest woman that I know.  True to her convictions and an inspiration to so many people.

The small business owner - Nothing is harder & more rewarding than creating something from your heart and watching it grow and change.  Most designers and business owners have been faced with really challenging times as of late.  I applaud them for their courage and perseverance in sustaining.  My respect for them is profound.

Women - Cliche?  I know....but I do.  My company celebrates the strength of women.  We share, draw strength from, and inspire each other.  Not only are we moved to make amazing changes in this world by our friends and family, often times its the women we don't know and hear about that move us the most.  We are mothers, daughters, lovers, and fighters.  Our motto is "I Ride My Own White Horse"  empower your inner cowgirl.  We make changes and embrace the love around us.

What is your favorite color to wear and how does it make you feel?
I wear black all the time.  Classic. Edgy. Modern. Flattering.  Black is the new black!  I love to mix in pops of color with black, a cranberry purse, midnight skirt, red heels....
My favorite thing to wear???  Even though you didn't ask is a tee shirt.  You can dress up, dress down, live in it.  I guess that's why I produce them

What is your favorite movie to watch for design inspiration?
 I love Sex in the City.....but as I mentioned I really get inspiration from everywhere.  Right now I am loving the show Kell on Earth, and we just found out that our clothing is being worn in the Real Housewives of NJ.....

                  

We are loving what we have seen online from Modern Cowgirl and can't wait to see it in real life.  See ya at the Boutique Crawl & check out Modern Cowgirl's collection on the runway during the Emerging Designer show April 23 at Mercy Lounge. Visit www.nakedwithoutus.com for more info and to purchase tickets.


Naked Without Us Designer Spotlight – Squasht by Les

Reversible hats, flirty dresses and wonderfully rusched tunics....this is just a taste of Squasht by Les.  Based in Chicago, Squasht is the brainchild of Lesley Timpe.  Using mostly natural, vintage and/or organic sustainable fabrics, the Squasht collection is full of ready-to-wear, hand-constructed pieces that are the perfect "go-to" items that should be in all of our closets. 

We chatted with Lesley to learn more about what inspires her collections and what fabulous pieces she'll be showing us at the Naked Without Us Originals Show, Saturday, April 24 at Mercy Lounge.
Where do you draw your inspiration for your collections? 
Generally I draw inspiration from vintage fabrics and vintage silhouettes, but I always like to add a twist to the designs and modernize them. My favorite decades for design are the 1950s and the 1980s. Sometimes I like to combine the two together, like taking a New Look silhouette (1950s Dior style) and adding giant puffy sleeves, for example. I love puffy sleeves, petal sleeves, epaulettes, 1940s style pockets, modern pockets in which I invent a new shape (like a horseshoe shaped pocket), contrast trim and/or buttons, rusching, shoulder ties, loopy belts, princess seams and high-waisted flouncy skirts. These are some of my favorite design elements and my trademarks. You will see them all in the Naked Without Us Fashion Show. 
What or who is your muse or inspiration for your Naked Without Us collection? Can you give us a sneak peek at the collection? 
My muse is a modern woman who wants to stand out from a crowd, but in a good way, and while being comfortable. My pieces are designed to combine with each other or other pieces to make it easy for an individual to create their own style. My signature item is a reversible handmade hat which makes it easy to add a subtle sophistication to any outfit. I like it when women know what they want, and don't need hand-holding to figure out how to wear something. Lately, some inspiration for the collection has come from watching Mad Men. Although I have always created retro-styled apparel, the costume design for that show is just overwhelmingly inspirational. 
Who are your three favorite designers and why? 
Almost all of my favorite designers are independents. I really get motivated by seeing other indie designers taking risks, building brands, and going through the same processes that I am. I like designers who, like myself, utilize sustainable fibers and produce locally handmade apparel. Miriam Coffey is a friend of mine, she is a designer from St. Louis, who is very inspiring to me and I love her design aesthetic. Abigail Glaum-Lathbury remains an inspiration to me, she is a Chicago based designer who makes conceptual pieces. I own a couple of her pieces and they are cut very interestingly. OK, so for one who is famous (and not contemporary): Cristobal Balenciaga. He transformed fashion with his cutting edge silhouettes. And he gets tons of bonus points for being Spanish. 
What is your favorite color to wear and how does it make you feel? 
Grey. I am not sure how it makes me feel but I sure do own a lot of it! I like the way it contrasts with my new peachy-blonde colored hair! 
Who are two of your favorite bands right now?
Gogol Bordello, Passion Pit and M.I.A. Oops, thats three! 
Can you tell us five of your favorite places in Chicago? 
#1 Om on the Range Yoga Studio-- I am obsessed with Bikram Yoga to a point that borders on embarrassing. 
#2 Café Iberico-- I lived in Spain for three years and the owner of this amazing tapas restaurant is from Galicia, the region where I lived, so its very authentic and fun. 
#3 Promontory Point in the summer-- its a beach south of Chicago, so nice for a little get-away. 
#4 Urban Belly-- yum! Delicious Asian Fusion. 
#5 My new storefront in Ukranian Village, 2556 W Chicago Ave. Chicago, IL 60622. It will be opening in May. I am so excited! A Squasht By Les Store! The first one ever after five years of being in business, so its something to celebrate!
Stop by the Squasht by Les Trunk Show at Clothing Xchange during the Stella Shops Boutique Crawl on Friday, April 23!  
 
Purchase your All Access Passes for the Naked Without Us Fashion and Music Festival before they sell out!  Passes are only $30 and are available at Grimeys.
 

Naked Without Us Designer Spotlight – Clare Bare

Clare Bare is a Brooklyn based artist and designer specializing in eco-friendly lingerie made from bamboo jersey and vintage fabric. All of her pieces are made by hand in limited edition runs, and are structured to flatter your body in a natural way without the use of constrictive hardware. During her years at Parsons, Clare collected and drew inspiration from vintage textiles that eventually piled so high that there was no more space to work. Soon after, "Clare Bare" was conceived out of the need to give her piles of fabric a purpose, and to make good use out of a clever name. Today it is an ever growing business fueled by passion and created for passionate consumers

If you have not been to Clare's etsy store you may want to skip this interview and go straight to shopping.  Her designs are feminine without being too girly, edgy without being well too edgy, and look like they make you feel super sexy without feeling slutty.  Here is what she said when I asked her some questions.


Where do you draw your inspiration from for your collections?

My inspiration in the beginning came from my own desire to wear undergarments that provide light support without hardware that could be worn under skimpy tank tops and not look trashy. I always had trouble finding anything like that and found myself wearing bikini tops as bras all the time, so I figured if no one else was going to make them the way I wanted I was going to have to do it myself. Also, I feel like push up bras are false advertisement for who you really are (haha) and a lot of girls (and guys) I know don't like them. As far as seasonal inspiration goes, I pretty much start out with a blank canvas and go vintage fabric hunting. As I start pulling things I'll look in the cart and the theme starts to appear by itself. I always subconsciously pick up things in a color scheme, even when I'm shopping for clothing. For example, I'll pick things off a rack and realize everything I'm holding is either coral or beige. It also helps to live in the fashion capital of the world- I can go to the garment district and have a day of sensory overload, take everything in, and digest it. Specifically living in Williamsburg, Brooklyn (people watching capital of the world) is amazing for inspiration. Right now I'm sitting on a roofdeck overlooking Bedford Ave. on a beautiful sunny day watching hundreds of well dressed and horribly dressed people walk by!


Who or what is your muse or inspiration for your Naked Without Us collection?  Will you give us a sneak peek at the collection?

I always design things based on nostalgia. My muse is whatever person I imagine previously owning the curtains or whatever fabric I'm using to create the pieces, because I feel like the ghost of that person is somewhere inside of it- not to freak anyone out or anything! I just have a romantic vision in my head of a woman on a widow's walk waiting for her sailor or someone who was swallowed by the sea, and if you go there at midnight you can still see her ghost floating around up there longing for him. I picture this in blacks and pastels. I'm also always inspired by textures. I'm also a mosaic artist- I'm really into any kind of tactile art, and I see a connection between both of the things that I do through the textures of the materials that I'm using whether it's glass, ceramic, lace, or bamboo. I have a memory of a photograph that I loved of a model wearing lots of clashing textures (and probably colors) but it was taken in black and white so everything matched. So a lot of what I'm doing right now is black, white, and pastel textured.


Yazoo's Hefeweizen label is the inspiration for one piece in your collection.  Can you tell what direction you're taking with this piece?

I'm using vintage slip material for this piece in a gold/beige color, and lots of vintage daisy appliques!


Who are your three favorite designers and why?

My favorite lingerie designers are The Lake and Stars. You can wear their stuff like it's an accessory, and I like all the little details- little charms that they add and the unusual hook and eye closures. I have a pair of boyshorts by them that have gold fish charms dangling from them! I love Betsey Johnson- I feel like she transfers her good energy to her pieces! And I LOVE Rosa Cha bikinis because they are always avant garde and in their own world when it comes to what's trendy. I used to have one by them but I lost it somewhere!

What is your favorite color to wear and how does it make you feel?

Haha I love wearing grey! One of my friends said once that everyone looks good in heather grey, and I think she's right! I really love wearing red nail polish (Clambake by Essie) even though my hands are always getting so dirty, and I LOVE wearing light pink matte lipstick. Neutral colors with little splashes of red and light pink make me happy- I like little surprises that you have to look for.


      


Buy Online  

Clare Bare is one of the featured designers on the Ready to Wear Show, Friday, April 23 at Mercy Lounge.  All Access Passes for the Naked Without Us Fashion & Music Festival are on sale now at Grimey's for $30.

Naked Without Us Designer Spotlight – Amanda Valentine

Over the next couple weeks, Mizzie and I will be profiling the designers who will be featured during the Naked Without Us Fashion and Music Festival, April 19-24.
We're kicking off this series with a designer and stylist who is no stranger to NWU events, Amanda Valentine of Valentine Valentine.  Amanda will be a featured designer on the NWU Originals Fashion Show on Saturday, April 24.
All of Amanda's pieces are one of a kind and made from reclaimed fabrics and patterns.  She also makes super cool necklaces and rings.  (I have a bit of an addiction to her cocktail rings.  They're amazing!  I own three and I wear one of them almost every day.)
Amanda took some time out from her recent vacation in Los Angeles to answer a few questions for us.

Where do you draw your inspiration for your collections?

I love studying different cultures... from places I've never been.  I think growing up in the Midwest made me really curious about the world out there.... I'm really fascinated by the ancient cultures- Egyptians, Mayans, Incas... But I love the struggle of those rich ideas, textures, shapes, patterns transposed onto a modern garment.
Who are your three favorite designers and why?
This changes but my all time, constant is Yves Saint Laurent.  His work in the 60s and 70s defined the eras.  I saw his "Mondrian dress" when I was about 12 and I was hooked.  Also right now I love Alexander Wang.  He has a refined sloppiness that is so hard to nail.  I also love Vena Cava.  Two amazing girls who design for the thinking girl.
What is your favorite color to wear and how does it make you feel?
To pick a favorite color is like picking a favorite child.  Can't do it.
Name two of your favorite bands right now.
War Paint (new) and XTC (older).
List five of your favorite places in Nashville.
My studio in Germantown, Holland House, my secret favorite Goodwill, Mercy Lounge, Natchez Trace.

Here's a look at some of Amanda's amazing jewelry and a few photos from her recent Fight Club shoot with fellow NWU featured designer, Shannon Lea.

Naked Without Us All Access Passes are still available, but not for long.  They're only $30 and you can purchase them now at Grimey's.

Stella Travel Spotlight - Silver Screen Vintage in Tulsa, OK

Over the Holidays, I made the journey back to my home town as many of us do. Now Tulsa does not have much to offer me anymore, who am I kidding it never really did, but I have discovered as my love of vintage shopping has grown that Tulsa has some spectacular Vintage Shops, and Silver Screen Vintage is at the top of the list.  Located in a nondescript area of town hidden in a small strip mall this little store is like a vintage jewelry box full of fabulous treasures.
Can you believe these shoes?  Balenciaga!  Sadly they were for someone with rulers for feet. Very narrow.
Down the street from Silver Screen is a little scooter shop and this little lady was sitting right outside.

1.  Dress - Silver Screen Vintage; Silver Sequin Belt - Silver Screen Vintage; Shoes - Seychelles (from Nashville Clothing Company); Bird Pin - Vintage (From The Factory in Franklin, TN)
2.  Shirt - Silver Screen Vintage; Leggings - American Apparel; Boots - Bertie
3.  Slip - Silver Screen Vintage; Shoes - Vintage