While at A+R Store today, i couldn’t resist these lovely Manymals silver necklaces. Sleek simple shapes ~ Bat, Sloth, Gorilla, Bulldog ~ designed by Markus Diebel. And as if i didn’t love them enough then… they teased me with the packaging, which is so AWESOME! I nearly didn’t want to open it, but i was dying to wear my new bat tonight! Sleek black packaging molded out of 100% recycled paper. Playful typography on the back panel describing each creature… and 5% of sales go to WildAid! Ok but beyond how pretty the pieces look, you have to see how cool the packaging is on the next page!
As emails came in today, i was taken by the Net-A-Porter mailer about their latest spread Rebel Rebel with Rick Owens’ spring collection. Beyond the gorgeous images, the quotes were what really grabbed me in their interview with him. Both quotes embody much of how i like to see the world ~ and once i found out he is a SoCal native currently living and working in Paris, his perspective makes perfect sense. Take a peek at a bit more on the next page.
This post is the second in a series of 4 posts sponsored by Syfy’s Caprica focused on Future Technologies. As usual, our fun advertisers enable us do our thing around a theme by trusting us when it comes to content!
Ryan Mc Sorley just sent over some images of his product design final project at Central Saint Martins - Skin by Chanel. While at first glance it seems bizarre and perhaps even more low tech on the surface than you’d expect for a “future tech” post… it really sparked some playful conversations on where skincare may take us in the future. But first, here’s his concept! It plays with the idea of skincare and branding ~ looking at the skincare market and how far people go to primp their skin, “Just as we can define ourselves through the brands of clothing we wear, or the brand of mobile phone we have, we can now define ourselves by the brand of skincare product we use. If you are using skincare by Chanel, you want people to know that your skin is by Chanel, in the same way that Chanel handbags have clear branding, why shouldn’t our skin.” In his design, in addition to your cleanser, toner, lotion, you can also leave a logo impression on your skin! Yes, the type that appears when you sit in short shorts on a rattan chair for example. It fades in a few hours, but you look pretty silly until then.
While i can’t say i buy in to the logic, nor do i love overly branded goods, it did get me thinking about the future of branding and technology. Imagine if the lotion itself had the ability to create those branded impressions. Or if the samples created a brand on your cheek… unlocking the full version gave you the full experience brand free? Much like software? Or what if tattoos came in creme form? Or imagine if you are what you eat, and small symbols appeared on the skin of your wrist showing what you are made of ~ fun motivation to get some eating healthier? So many random ideas keep popping up… see more picture of Ryan Mc Sorley’s Skin by Chanel project on the next page!
So i’ve been getting a little double, triple booked lately ~ trips overlapping ~ but all so tempting i try to do them all. Until i can’t. So i’m trying to find some help! Thank goodness, NOTCOT’s new features editor + giveaway coordinator + writer + friend + inevitably more to be added to this list shortly, Marcia Simmons, was able (and willing) to pop over for two nights in Paris with a mere few days notice. While we’re still working on finding a nice pretty new way to show you posts my friends share with us on NOTCOT, for the moment, we’ll first get you the great content ~ and time + energy permitting, we’ll transition in to some new way to denote it. For now you will have to just bear with silly introduction notes from me! So on the next page, we have a bunch of pics and stories from Marcia of her whirlwind adventures in Paris for the first Maison Martin Margiela Perfume launch! And i’m already envious of the amazingly packaged press kit (with flowers!!! and feather pens!!! and books!) ~ and the stunning presentation of the new perfume. I’ll have to sniff the goods myself next time i see her in person!
p.s. i adore that they went all dot matrix ascii art print out on the press kit. TOO FUN.
On more exciting holiday features ~ a first time i’m trying out having our friends at some of NOTCOT’s favorite companies share some stories and behind the scenes look into their worlds ~ here’s a look at the Unearthen Watches at Forward Forward, the luxurious high end sister store of Revolve Clothing… I love hearing about how these watches were discovered, and what it was about them that pulled them in! See the full feature on the next page!
I am mesmerized and fascinated and suddenly feeling the need to pick a color and dye things. Don’t mock, but i’m SO giddy because i think i’m finally nearly caught up on email for the first time in… YEARS? 1300 to under 100!!! Took me something from 11am to 6am yesterday… but nearly there! and in it i just found this gem from a friend…
“I was in Paris last week and I spent 2 hours in the 180 grammes store in la Bastille and I thought it could be of interest for you. They are making painted clothes and shoes. They have a deal with Nike and are making super cool shoes. In the store, the clothes they have (for men and women) are amazing and custom made. I bought a pair of nike and pants but frankly, with more money I would have bought everything. Apparently, they are submerged with request from people… it was tough to have make my pair of shoes in 1 day!”
On Stockholm discoveries ~ between all the Absolut festivities, while chatting with the global PR lady for Absolut, couldn’t help noticing her lovely dresses all weekend ~ and it turns out they are made by the up and coming Swedish line, House of Dagmar! Who have an great story of being founded and run by three sisters with perfectly complementary skills - “Dagmar was founded by the Swedish sisters Kristina TjÃ¤der, Karin SÃ¶derlind and Sofia Malm. Kristina TjÃ¤der is designer, educated at ESMOD Ã‰cole Superieur de la Mode in Paris. Previously, she has worked for Christian Lacroix, H&M and other Swedish brands. Karin SÃ¶derlind supervised purchasing and product development for H&M during eight years and has been operating as a brand manager and PR-consultant for many years. Sofia Malm, a textile economist, is Dagmar’s head of sales with many years of experience in retailing.” On on crazy coincidences, they also happened to be the her neighbor, so in addition to checking out their collection when i wandered NK, Karin SÃ¶derlind joined us at the Absolut event and we had a lovely chat about the line and design philosophies while perusing the Absolut Art! And on how the name came to be ~ “The principal source of inspiration - and muse - is the sisters’ late grandmother by the name Dagmar. She was herself a tailor and inspired the sisters to develop their interest for fabrics and design at young age.”
I love their style ~ which they describe as “arty chic”, but that is a very swedish, clean, modern arty chic which i adore. Not to mention the photography for their collections is so fun too! Take a peek on the next page of some of my favorites from their new Spring/Summer 2010 collection.
p.s. Upon realizing the brand felt familiar when i got home ~ of course you can find it at Revolve Clothing and Fred Segal ~ and in addition to many swedish awards, it has also won a 2007 fashion show by Gen Art-NY during NY Fashion Week!
Some packaging just makes you smile. Almost doesn’t matter what’s inside… this line of adorably illustrated bears on the Life NK line of bath and body products are too cute not to share. See them all on the next page!
NOTCOT Exclusive!!! From our awesome friends at Hard Graft ~ they have been kind enough to share it with us first! Check out their latest bag, the 3Fold! It can play portfolio case, laptop case, AND overnighter… ready for the juicy details? (I’m loving this new one! So tempted by it!)
“3FOLD multi-use leather laptop bag - Three bags in one - the 3FOLD is a slim LAPTOP BAG, a sizable A2 PORTFOLIO BAG and a spacious OVERNIGHTER. Just switch to the configuration you need, this bag is as flexible as your lifestyle demands. The function of this bag speaks volumes. Clever hooks (traditionally used for heavy duty hiking boots) make varying between the different styles possible. The 3FOLD is handmade from a bespoke vegetable tanned Italian leather which is dyed through and hand finished in grey with a hint of teal. This is juxtaposed with a chestnut brown leather shoulder strap which can be used in all three configurations. The leathers are coloured with natural dyes which enhance the look over time and use. Each limited edition 3FOLD is individually numbered and carefully assembled by a family of leather artisans in the rolling hills of Tuscany, Italy.”
Take a peek at pics and specs on the next page!
Yes, i totally impulse bought myself a TAD Gear Titanium Rescue Ring last time i popped by the store. But it’s really for safety reasons! I mean, how do you know when you might need to bust a piece of glass to escape from who knows what? And its just so light and beautifully, simply designed with the little removable stainless steel glass breaker tip! And you can even swap on an optional compass! And so nicely thought out, there is even a little keychain loop to hold that tip when you’re just wearing it as your titanium ring… the real question is, who doesn’t need one? See more pics of mine up close on the next page ~ it has cute packaging too!
Stuck in a flight ~ thought i’d share some fun from NotCouture! So, click the pics to find out more! Hopefully touching down in SFO soon.
On products that i’ve put through the paces a bit more than usual before sharing with you, when i was up in SF the guys over at Rocket World gave me one of their new Ronin softshell jackets ~ it was hot that day. Super sunny out. But i was curious, it felt incredible, lightweight, thin, warm, and i was about to embark on one of my whirlwind trips (remember i just did LA-Paris-Reims-Paris-London-NY-LA?) ~ and those are all cities you never know quite what to expect in when it come to weather! Luckily it was primarily gorgeous out the whole trip ~ but on those days when it got iffy (which was at least one or two on each leg of the journey!) ~ the Ronin definitely came through. Like when they say to be ready for “all weather” for the Veuve Clicquot harvesting… oh yea, basically any time i didn’t need to be in heels and looking a bit more polished? You’d find me in the Ronin, tank top, and jeans. This unisex jacket fit beautifully (my sister and i both love the XS ~ that’s her modeling it in the pic in the Hazlitt’s room so i could get images of the patches to share with you) ~ and while i always loved that you could put any velcro patches you wanted on ~ with this latest jacket i almost don’t want to because the detail of the sewn in skull and paw print are so subtle and awesome. As with all Rocket World gear, the Ronin is of the highest quality, the subtlest branding, and really the details will blow your mind in person ~ every zipper, every pocket, every little headphone jack hole, every angle of the hood… is meticulously thought out. If you’re looking for something sleek to get you from running around the city ready for anything to exploring the great outdoors with some understated styling… i’m definitely smitten with the Ronin and its versatility, definitely making it on my “must pack” list for unexpected adventures! … take a peek at more pics on the next page!
OH! and i nearly forgot, while supplies last, they come with the SUPER adorable IWG Black Bear Mini Figure!
On fun brands and packaging, after visiting the Mr. & Mrs. Smith HQ in Chiswick ~ grabbed a lovely brunch with my sister and couldn’t help popping into the ever adorable and enticing Cowshed. I won’t lie, the mix of black and white vector prints with just a splash of single color, combined with cheeky names like “horny cow” and “knackered cow”, lovely scents, and even custom lined hunter boots… of course i loved it. But beyond that, it was fun to read up on the background of the company which launched in 1998 originally for use in the Cowshed spa in Babington House, Somserset, is actually part of the Soho House Group, and is used in all of their venues (including NY!)… and i was delighted (amidst the fever boiling up within me) to happen across the one airport location you can find them last night as well… Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse Lounges!
So take a peek ~ while the shop girl panicked slightly a the idea of letting me take pics in the store to share with you, you can see the few i picked up to try (and they were SO fun and awesome as tested out in NY) ~ and an overview of the packaging style on the next page!
While its fascinating (and exciting!) that Evisu is evolving once again ~ and this time with newly appointed CEO/Creative Director, Scott Morrison, at the helm. As a former Paper Denim & Cloth junkie ~ it’s hard not to be excited to see what Morrison is doing to reinvent Evisu while looking back to their heritage… For those who forgot, Morrison was also behind Paper Denim & Cloth as well as Earnest Sewn. While initially those Evisu Seagulls on the back pockets make me envision a denim lifestyle that never quite fit my own… when they sent over a few, i fell in love. They denim feels incredible as ever, just softly broken in enough, yet hugging you in all the right places… and the subtlety of the back pocket designs was just enough to grab your attention, but not enough to slap you in the face like so many can lately… (yes, i’m a little over the over embellished pockets, but also like pockets to have a bit of character!). Perhaps the most fascinating aspect of Evisu when i started looking into their heritage, was the evolution of the Seagull… and how the line came to be. It’s fun to see Morrison looking back at the heritage of the japanese line even with the separation from Evisu Japan.
The full story can be read on the next page, as well as lots of pics of the signature pocket designs… but for the short version: Hidehiko Yamane, a love of fine denim, founded the company in 1991 in Osaka. Having a hard time finding the finest quality pre-WWII selvege denim, he found a 50’s american shuttle loom and started the “replica movement” ~ his originals mimicking the Levi’s Original Red Tab 501XX… and my favorite part? He personally hand painted his Seagull logos on each pair! What i love about what Morrison has done with this, is he’s taken that hand painted logo and distressed it to a perfectly worn in subtlety, so noticeable, yet so understated. Take a peek at them on the next page!
Last year when i was in Paris, i fell in love with Penhaligon’s Artemesia ~ and while in London this year i had to make a pit stop to check out their stores… always exquisite with their packaging, and perfume being a bit of a pain to travel with, i fell for the Penhaligon’s Artemesia solid fragrance in the silver plated compact ~ perfect for my purse, and such a nice weight to it too… so on pretty packaging details, and a beautiful gift to keep in mind next time i’m stumped on gifting… take a look at the details on the next page. And it smells divine, and the solid fragrance has an ever so subtle shimmer to it as well…