i am a fashion designer. gee
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click here to view my favorites from the archives. gee




are you a fonts enthusiast? a typophile?
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find the beauty on your daily walk! take time to notice the details of your landscape.
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there is nothing like seeing a great handbag in action.
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plastics are our future. how can you resist plastic? it is so shiny and pleasing. I have a penchant for plastics.
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chronicling my quest for the one true
Greek Cup
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have you ever noticed the similarity between nyc fire call boxes and benevolent Kannon, goddess of mercy?
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every design, fashion and art magazine I read lately features some important directional artist making big contributions to their genre. and where do they live? brooklyn!
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who says there are no more 'new ideas' in art and design? the newness is in the juxtaposition.
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this is how I really get things done. with my little green co-worker/task-master.
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my clothing & accessories design
east-meets-west minimalism

my site

the look
dressy utilitarian

my concept
useful, economical, modular pieces that can be mix-matched in numerous ways (because why can't fashion be useful and lasting? I think it can!) So I say Maximize your Minimalism!

Satin Karate Belt featured in Dec 06 Real Simple

Voted Best Designer 2006 Style Bakery
'On the Rise'

Daily Buss Feature

Luckymag.com Feature

in the blog press
midtown lunch
the girl who ate everything
queens eats
(into) the fray
funky finds
style document
gowanus lounge
far too cute
ethereal bliss
couture in the city
independent luxe
decor 8
funky finds
urban socialite
lady licorice
high fashion girl

more press...

furniture (especially chairs from the 50s and 60s), uniforms, repeating patterns, menswear, Oscar Niemeyer, traditional Japanese architecture, the Rimpa School and Ogata Korin's 8-Point Bridge, Matisse, bromeliads, succulents and other waxy flora

particular loves
bamboo, coral, moss, woodgrain, silhouettes & other cut-outs, plastic, low-resolution images, the photo copier, off-registration prints, Max Ernst's Lunar Asparagus, NYC fire call boxes that look like Kannon, Fauvist color sense, the Noguchi Museum, pretty much all of Abstract Expressionism

magazines of current interest
Domino, Elle Decor (British), ARTnews, Art in America, Wallpaper

favorite heel style
the wedge, but a sleek modern interpretation

second favorite
the stiletto

current shoe obsession
alas, the sneaker. (because I live in nyc and walk a ton!) but not too sneakery of a sneaker. more of a sneaker disguised as a shoe, like a mary jane style or a high-tech looking black one with a metallic accent. how about Royal Elastics? I must go try some on. I really like the non-sneakeryness of their styles.





cold vietnamese noodles

serve with extra crushed peanuts for garnishing individual servings

Did you try making the iced tea last night? (Weird. I just took a sip of my iced coffee after I wrote that and it tasted gross. I thought it was iced tea...but that doesn't really have to do with this post.) It has been suddenly very hot here lately, and our air conditioner isn't installed yet (because do we really want to run it starting in May? No, not really.)

My idea for natural air conditioning is iced tea and cold noodles. Here is my recipe, which I never write down, never remember exactly how I make it from year to year, and thus always make it a little differently. Hopefully this doesn't ruin the spontaneity of this dish. Oh well, I don't have to reread it, right? Try this dish tonight. It is really great. The vinegar is cooling. And the peanuts and tofu are filling in just the right way. I have taken the liberty of photographing some of the ingredients so you can find them more quickly in the store.

rice noodle packets come in hot pink mesh, Chinese rice vinegar

ingredients (serves 2)
3 packets thinnest rice noodles
Chinese rice vinegar
1 lime
soy sauce
Sriracha hot chili sauce
sesame oil or canola oil
fresh ginger root
pea pods
fried tofu
1 scallion
fresh mint

Sriracha hot chili sauce, fried tofu triangles

  1. boil water in a pot, then turn heat off
  2. soak noodles in hot water, stir for 2 minutes or so until they become a bit maleable and opaque (not too soft! they will disintegrate)
  3. drain and set aside
  4. wok the ginger (cut into short thin strips), carrots (sliced into small discs), peapods (cut into smaller angled rectangles), tofu (cut into short thin strips) in a pan with oil. add a bit of water to steam them towards the end of cooking.
  5. make your sauce in the bowl you will serve in as follows: if you don't have a lime, use 4 parts vinegar (if you do, juice of one lime, 2 parts vinegar), 1 part soy sauce, 3 parts Sriracha. stir.**note, if you like fish sauce, you can add it too, but it is too salty for me.
  6. cut the scallion and mint into small pieces, add to sauce.
  7. in a separate bowl, mix noodles and wokked veggies together. cut the noodles with scissors to be 4 or 5 inches long. this will help the noodles and veggies integrate.
  8. 20 minutes before serving, combine the noodles, veggies and sauce. toss with crushed peanuts. refrigerate to cool a bit, optional. **note: the vinegar will continue to "cook" the noodles, making them too soft, so do not combine too far ahead of time.

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more meditations on a grecian urn

Having finally experienced the aesthetic perfection of the real Greek Cup, I have come to like the copies better for some reason. Study this racey example above. Wow. On a coffee cup yet. Free from the constraints of perfection, the knock-off Greek cup can spread its creative wings. The mottled background is a nice departure from the original. As is the border shape for "It's Our Pleasure to Serve You." And the border color harkens back to the urn on the opposite side; a nice subtlety to tie the cup together...

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from page 16 of Domino

Check out Domino magazine's online "Daily Dot" which is bloggish in nature. They even pull information from other bloggers! I was hunting around on dominomag.com for the slideshow promised on page 16 of the June issue: "Which Vase for which flowers?" Not as easy to find as I thought.

Found it. But just by clicking on everything. I clicked on know-how, scrolled down to gardening and clicked on flower + vase pairs. That was not as easy as it should be. Here is the page for the slideshow. One more click after that.

The slideshow was not so inspiring. If you want great flower arranging ideas, go to any hotel lobby and check out their arrangements. They are always grand and inventive. Which reminds me, you can buy peonies for only $4 a bunch on the Uppper West Side!

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the unofficial start of iced tea season

This weekend was a hot one. Time to brew your own iced tea and cool off. Boil some tea bags in a pot. Let steep and cool. Pour into your favorite pitcher and fill the rest with water. Serve it tonight for dinner with a cold noodle dish! Here are three of my favorites.

Iced Mugi Cha (Japanese Barley Tea), $2.99/52 oversized bags
Find it at any Japanese market (in NYC: M2M, East Village)

Iced Oolong is so refreshing! $2.99 /100 bags
Find it at any Chinese market (in NYC: Pacific Markets)

Iced Chai is a spicy pick-me-up on a hot day. $1.99/50 bags
Find it at any Indian Market (in NYC: Patel Brothers, Jackson Heights)



last minute getaways

Want to go somewhere for Memorial Day, but you forgot that it is this Monday? Well, there may still be hope for you. Try typing your destination into Hotwire* or Hotels.com for some cheap rates in your favorite city. I found an $88. per night deal for Saturday night in Philly (great coal oven pizza and great dining too). Of course the Amtrak rails have to stay up and running to make that trip possible. Stay away from the beaches. You will just get a sunburn. And a great big dose of overcrowded.

*If you have never used Hotwire, here is how it works. You pick the city, or location within the city, and it shows you prices and stars. You can choose a 3-star for $88 or a 5-star for $250. You won't be told what hotel you have selected until you pay. Kind of a Russian roulette of trip planning. But I have used Hotwire 3 times to good effect. Good luck!

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his friend elaine

Check out this NYC restaurant blog where the author eats with his friend Elaine, who eats nothing usually. Sometimes a cheese plate. I would never eat nothing, nor would I ever order a cheese plate. I like this blog. Rather over the top with how many parties he goes to. Apparently he also likes Crumbs best; and The Girl Who Ate Everything seems to be one of his peeps.



a closer look at the cherry rancho

a stealthy picture of your new outfit

Official e-mails will go out on Tuesday about the new designs, so consider yourself a stealthy pre-shopper. I wanted to give you a closer look at the Cherry Blossom Rancho Skirt, with some views that the website may not show you. I am liking this skirt a lot (I already snapped up one for me which I will wear with these shoes.) It is stretchy, comfy, yet crisp and polished. Here are some extra details. Swatches are always available upon request. Free! And unlimited. Ask for whatever you need.


lines i like

I wandered into Saks last night on my way home -- a big treat, but I have only wandered in twice since I have lived here -- and as luck would have it, they were having an in-store event for Lacoste, complete with hors d'oeuvres and cocktails. That was nice.

So I thoroughly explored floor 5, and found some great labels I really liked. Have you ever heard of A+Eve? Or Tevrow+Chase? It seems the + is the new & for fashion labels, but makes it hard to search in Google. I can't find a website for A+Eve, but here is Tevrow+Chase, based in Toronto (a great city!). The examples I saw at Saks are along the same lines of my style, but double and triple the price. Check out their list of stores. Very impressive.



my e-mail to crumbs

I would love to speak with someone in
your corporate offices regarding your t-shirts.
I am a fashion designer, and tend to get a
cupcake every so often, because I cannot resist
them, at your Bryant Park store on my way to
buying fabric in the Garment District.

I was just writing about how delicious your cupcakes
are on my blog, when I thought of a great design
for your t-shirts. I think you could really sell a lot
of them!

Please contact me and I will send you the link
to my idea!


Elaine Perlov
i am a fashion designer.gee


crumbs merch

Just another quick thought about Crumbs. They sell t-shirts. But I think they are missing out on a great opportunity here. Their t-shirts should be an image of one single cupcake. Text below in cute French Script or some font like that should read:

my favorite is vanilla with sprinkles.

I think adding the period makes it funnier. And they could do a different shirt for each of their top-selling cupcakes, and thus maximize their sales. I think I should write to them with this idea. I think I will right now.

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healthy snack vs. crumbs cupcakes

Before you make your choice, let me elaborate. The healthy snack contains one small banana, 1 serving of plain non-fat yogurt with 5 (not 4 or 3) of the best bacteria, 10 roasted almonds (omega-3's! can't be beat) and 1 of your 8 daily glasses of water. All served on a pretty pink tray for presentation. Because you really are eating a visual, afterall.

The Crumbs cupcake, located near Bryant Park, close to the Garment District if you take the right train and get of at the right exit, contains vanilla frosting goodness covered in rainbow sprinkles all atop a vanilla cake. The small is plenty of a portion at $1.95 and definitely provides the same satisfaction as a rainbow sprinkle big cookie for $1.50 to $1.95 depending on where you buy it.

Now you have all the information you need. You decide.

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fashion as self-help

In the interest of full disclosure, I debated about posting about this topic, because I don't want you transforming my tees. But as Martha said today, don't go cutting up fancy tees. And as I say, these projects are for your old yucky ones that you keep shoved in the back of your closet.

I think this Megan Nicolay has an interesting angle to make some money, and make a name for herself. Nicolay was featured on Martha today for her book, Generation T: 108 Ways to Transform a T-Shirt, and her cleverness on how to turn a baggy old tee into a fitted fashionable conversation starter. Here is a pdf. Self-help books are always good sellers. She has a good idea here. (I guess so, because 99 Ways to Cut....Your T-Shirt into Something Special is also for sale on Amazon.) To close the show, Martha was up to her old Japanese t-shirt folding tricks again. Hey, if it worked once, why not.

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new new new


See? I told you I would show you first! Refresh your outfit combos with the latest mix-match modular options for Summer. Check the new Sumi-e Tank and Skirt. And the Cherry Blossom Rancho Skirt, a new option for your Geisha Top.

You also may want to <<REFRESH>> your page views while on the site. The new additions are so new, they probably haven't propagated yet. And the Bamboo Collection is still hidden, until tomorrow (but not for you!) Use these advance links to look around. Comments always welcomed!

BAMBOO, click here

SUMI-E TANK, click here

SUMI-E SKIRT, click here


still basking in last week's blog glory

Hey look, I have a star next to my name on decor8. I wonder what that means. I like it whatever it is. Check out this week's blog-of-the-week interview. Print + Pattern. She is a textile designer. Neat! Okay, so admittedly I have been kind of busy on the non-blog portion of my company. The analogue portion. You know, the making and designing and dare I say sewing? It seems that sewing is a dirty word for some designers. It is more proper that you would have a Kathy Lee-style sweatshop or something. Anyway, a website change is in the works, and then a few letters to the press to let them know about the new pieces. And a bit of planning about future selling venues. As soon as these new pieces are up, I know I am going to want to show them in person. So short haiku-posts are back for now. In Spring...



a sneak peak

How do you like this fabric? I rather do too. Stay tuned for a very cute tank and skirt ensemble later this week on the website. Don't worry, you will be the first to know when the new pieces are online.


decor8 readers!

go to decor8, scroll down and click

Decor8 readers, you have been such a joy! So devoted, and so plentiful! I really thank you all for reading and clicking over during this blog-of-the-week week. Bookmark the blog and the site if you liked what you saw. We are going to be introducing a few new pieces in the next week, so you can keep maximizing your minimalism! gee. Or you can always access the blog in the right margin of decor8, as shown above. Scroll to the bottom and click on over!

Many of you have expressed interest in acquiring a few of my pieces. Let me offer you this: a Promo Code to help get you started on your new East-meets-West modular wardrobe. Enter DECOR8 at checkout and receive 10% off your entire online order. I really thank you for your support!

(this offer is good through June 30, 2006)

a sample order on our checkout page, easy viewing



top sellers from sunday's market

That was fun at The Market NYC. My last of 4 dates was yesterday. But I'll be back sometime in June and July. Good sales and lots of good people watching. No super-shoppers like the first 2 weeks (national magazine editor-in-chief, and a publicist with a store in LA who wants to carry my pieces), but good sales. More of a casual crowd yesterday. T-Shirts outsold all of my other pieces.

Yesterday's Top Sellers:
  1. Bamboo Rancho Skirt
  2. Camo Dynasty T
  3. Labyrinth Top in black/black
  4. Labyrinth T in olive/silver

You can get them too, as usual, online!


food blogs

These links from friends and readers:
Did you go to the 9th Ave Food Fair this weekend? My favorites were this magical honey-soaked walnut cake from the Poseidon Bakery (Greek), and veggie-stuffed tofu with peanut sauce from Bali Nusa (Indonesian). And a great sangria from a Spanish restaurant' stand. Oh, and also a veggie tamale from a different place.





No I did not come up with the name. It is a blogish website. A blebsite. It seems pretty friendly. I kind of thought it would be an expose of haute couture as the silent killer of the upper 3% of the upper class or something like that. It sure made me click through.


what's in there?

Warehouse Brooklyn. I love to walk along and catch glimpses into the industrial spaces. What are they making in there? Last night we passed a movie set painter's shop with 6 people painting large pieces of wood on various sawhorses. Another housed all the craft services trucks for the motion picture sets. It may not always look pretty on the outside, but there are goodies to be found. For example, Acme! Today, from 8am to 1pm, is wholesale smoked fish day, by the way. I must go after my swim, come to think of it...

I passed this stone sculptor's studio on my walk home from Williamsburg. Maybe you know the artist.


blogging does beget blogging

I like when you type your title into the Blogger interface that it shows you all the similar ones you have used before. I have already used
  • blogging begets blogging
  • blogging begets buddies
  • blogging does beget buddies
This time I am talking about all the great blogging that the Decor8 interview has generated. One post from Kyria Abrahams. Another from Funky Finds. I like it!



lace pinstripe tank

Here is a closer look at a very popular piece: the Lace Pinstripe Tank (and matching skirt) keep selling out! We are restocking the quantites now and will have the full size range this Sunday. Get there early to try it on. Or snap it up online.


i chose this one

Randel Plowman, My Calculator, collage on paper, 5.2.06

Look at all the pieces that are now marked sold on A Collage A Day, including the one that I wrote about yesterday that wasn't sold at the time... I snapped this one up this morning.


i am a test pattern. gee (2nd edition)

First the Gilmore Girls are in reruns, and now me? Well, at least we still have their website to keep us going until September. Until my next post, please enjoy my top 7 favorites from the last few months.

  1. fontastic
  2. grow your own mini lawn
  3. in search of the greek cup
  4. cuatro de mayo
  5. shopping trip: a & g merch
  6. benevolent fire box
  7. 3 points about the geisha page

Fresh Episode of i am a fashion designer. gee coming to you later today!

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senju-kannon buddha-bot?

John Hansen's Buddha-bot

Yes you read that correctly. A Buddha-bot. Now this is rather interesting. Read more about John Hansen's work. Another person inspired by Senju-Kannon.

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benevolent fire box: comparison #2

First you may want to read this previous post illustrating my conviction that the old New York City fire call boxes bear a strong resemblance to Japanese Buddhist sculptures of Kannon, Goddess of Mercy. Pictured above, another similarity. The lotus dais upon which Kannon (this one a thousand-armed incarnation) sits. Senju-Kannon, Fujii-dera, Osaka, left. Fire box, Brooklyn, right.

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fantasy sandal #4

I know you are asking yourself, are espadrilles still in this season? Well of course they are. Do they ever go out? Just don't wear them on a rainy day or step in a puddle, because the sole will turn into an unpleasant, unflexible plank, forever. I found this pair and reconfigured the tie (shortened it and resewed). I don't really like something lacing up my leg, so I just tie them in a bow in the back. Short and sassy.

Espadrilles are a great basic to wear with your fancy-casual weekend wear. Perfect for outdoor patios, iced cappucinos, cupcakes. These shoes, with the right outfit, can take you from shopping to dinner! Try them with textured pieces like the Eyelet Tunic, Denim Skirt, Chungking Vest, or Embroidered Obi Sash, pictured below.

You probably have decoded the pattern from the last few posts that the footnote is where I dispell the fantasy and tell you if these shoes are really possible or comfortable or realistic. Espadrilles are. Find the right fit, and you can walk for miles (on dry land only, please).

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a collage a day

Randel Plowman, Zinnia, collage on paper, 5.15.06

You must check out this blog: A Collage A Day, where artist Randel Plowman does in fact make a collage a day, and sells them too, at a very reasonable price! I have my eye on a few. I just have to decide which one I want. (Naturally I love his use of pattern paper.) Each piece is just 4"x 4" making it easy to acquire, even if you are short on wallspace. Start perusing!



roses tee

Looking for a little Springtime on this rainy day? Check out the Roses T. To make this design I scanned in two types of roses from a gardening catalogue. And then I converted the photos into line drawings in Photoshop to use as point of departure to make my own drawings. I abstracted each variety (with pen and paper, not the computer. I am very pen and paper) until I came up with this flat, 2-dimensional representation. The final product is silk-screened. I like this tee. It is very flattering the way the roses wrap around the body. Definitely would be cute with the pink Pumas below.

Roses T, $36, available in brown & pink or tan & fuchsia. It also available as a tank, $30.


blog of the week!

Check out decor8 today and read the Blog of the Week interview! gee.



the best time for magnolia

Attention all self-employed people or others with flexible schedules. The best time to get yourself one of those delicious Magnolia cupcakes is during the weekday. Say 2 or 3 o'clock. Look, no line! I like to go in and just look and smell the delicious buttercream smell. Less calories that way.

Magnolia Bakery, 401 Bleeker St, 212.462.2572

look, you can kind of see the sprinkles in the window

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treasures at the pet store

Recently I was searching for new display ideas for my booth at The Market NYC (this Sunday, I'll be there). In my opinion, what better place to search out treasures than at the pet store. Have you seen how many colors those aquarium rocks come in? I use those for displaying these. These plants above might be good for something... I am not sure yet.

On my recent trip I found some great aquarium backdrops (hanging on rolls below). What would you use them for? I think they would be nice on the inside of your medicine cabinet (remove the glass shelves and apply a piece, cut to size, with small magnets). Or simply framed. One backdrop photo was monochromatic grey rocks (you can see part of this one on the bottom of the photo; dull for the fishies, but excellent for a table design). Another was a colorful assortment of coral. They had about eight different varieties. The photo quality is so flawless, it is like hyper-realism. And the paper stock is laminated, making them also perfect for placemats or table coverings perhaps...

These aquarium backdrops can be cut to size and cost about 18 cents per inch. I am keeping them in mind for some project or another. In the meantime, I thought I would share them with you.

hanging on rolls in the store

rotated 90 degrees so you can see the images



pumas revisited

I figured I would check out the Puma website and see if any of the sneakers I designed in my dream actually do exist. There are lots of cool sneaks on this site. I haven't seen these at David Z...

Look at these cool golf shoe sneakers. I am beginning to like this style. Is it me? Probably not. But I like the details. Very amusing.

Couldn't they be me in black? I really like them. What do you think? They could be cute in a sporty walking-around-town way with this outfit.

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