i am a fashion designer. gee
click here to maximize your minimalism!

click here

click here

click here

click here to view my favorites from the archives. gee




are you a fonts enthusiast? a typophile?
read more

find the beauty on your daily walk! take time to notice the details of your landscape.
read more

there is nothing like seeing a great handbag in action.
read more

plastics are our future. how can you resist plastic? it is so shiny and pleasing. I have a penchant for plastics.
read more

chronicling my quest for the one true
Greek Cup
read more

have you ever noticed the similarity between nyc fire call boxes and benevolent Kannon, goddess of mercy?
read more

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!
read more

who says there are no more 'new ideas' in art and design? the newness is in the juxtaposition.
read more

this is how I really get things done. with my little green co-worker/task-master.
read more

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.





let there be lox

2 kinds of lox + sliced grape tomatoes, sliced red onion

The scallion tofu cream cheese from Pinnacle Bagel is the best. 3rd Avenue/45th St

Reminder to all: 2 days until Acme Wholesale Fridays! Don't forget! Get yourself some nice-looking lox and have a bagel party. Yes, I think I will do just that. Acme opens at 8am.

Labels: , ,



my first review on endless

I have never ever ever reviewed anything on a Website before. Before today. I got my Tretorn silver boots in the mail yesterday from Endless (my favorite shoe Website of all-time) and felt compelled to add my two cents. Mine's at the top! Neat-0. (Endless lists reviews in reverse chronological order.)

Read it here. Why doesn't anyone else bother to be humorous? My secret reviewer's tag is "fashiondesigner" from Brooklyn. Yup.

This brings a whole new level of meaning to the phrase, "self-published."

Just in case, for some reason, it gets lost on Endless -- like the product goes away or something -- you can read it below, preserved forever.

Silhouette like an UGG
posted by: fashiondesigner (Brooklyn) posted on: Jan 21, 2011

I read all the reviews, and understood them in a way I wanted to, because I really loved the look of these boots from the Endless photos. Now that I own the boots, and see them in real life, I have a different visual. The silhouette is extremely wide, and makes your foot look like an elephant paw, like an UGG. I don't love that silhouette. I'd prefer a slimmer line. However, the fit is excellent and the furry inside (which at first comes off on your pants -- you'll need a lint brush -- I'm hoping this goes away over time) has kind of sold me on it anyway. I really wanted something comfortable and unique. Well, it's comfortable for sure, and the unique part is that it looks like a Japanese construction worker space boot. If you like that look...

Labels: , , ,



the ballet is a harsh mistress

Natalie Portman as Nina in Darren Aronofsky's Black Swan
[image via Fuzzy Typewriter]

ATTENTION: Don't read this if you intend to see Black Swan. It spoils everything.

Of the four films I’ve seen by Darren Aronofsky, two have been about obsession/mental illness, and two have been about drug addiction. Black Swan, like Aronofsky's first film Pi*, is clearly about obsession/mental illness – schizophrenia, among other issues, I would imagine. As Natalie Portman’s character, Nina, moves through this film, her mental state degenerates. She is metaphorically and actually provoked to split in two by her deep desire to dance both leads in Swan Lake – she moves from light to dark, good girl to bad girl, White Swan to Black Swan.

There are two early scenes which set up the film. One is Nina's dream about dancing the lead. (After the film is over, and we learn what ultimately happens to her, we realize the seeds of her mental split have already been planted.)

The other is on the subway, when Nina is coming home from rehearsal, dressed in white. She looks through the window to the next car. She finds another young girl dressed in black. Nina is fascinated, obsessed, and continues to gaze at the other girl. Perhaps she wants to know her, but is separated by the cars. I believe Aronofsky is using the subway window as a device, alluding to Corinthians 13:12:
For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.

He continues this device to the end of the film, when Nina basically tries to throw her own self through the mirror -- to step through the mirror to the other side and know her whole self, both light and dark together. But this too much for her mind to handle. She gets caught in between. Her fatal wound is caused by the mirror shard.

But back to the action. When Nina runs off the subway towards the scaffolding, we see a dark figure. She seems to pose a threat. Then we get a confusing flash that the dark figure is Nina herself. At that point in the film, it is almost fantastical. We don’t know yet that it is a preview of coming attractions.

The director casts Nina in the lead, and continues to push her to feel more, to “let herself go.” Little does he know that he is pushing her to let go of reality altogether. Her mother is worried that the stress of this role will push her to madness, as Nina has shown signs of this condition all her life, manifested in her incessant scratching. We also learn from this stifling mother-daughter relationship that the mother is a little mad, and also barely holding herself together.

Towards the end of the film, when Nina gets to the point of scratching and pulling barbs out of her skin, we realize that those barbs are black feathers! She perhaps has had this desire to dance Swan Lake all of her life. Back to Corinthians: but then face to face/ but then shall I know even as also I am known. Her two selves (inner dark self and outer perfect child) shall no longer be separated by her skin. She will scratch through that barrier. She will marry her two selves into one being. She will grow feathers.

Once we have decoded the meaning of the scratching, we realize that this is probably Nina's ultimate purpose in life -- to dance this dual lead in Swan Lake. It may be the culmination of her career and total realization as a dancer. It is. She dies having given a Perfect Performance. She has given herself totally and completely to her art, trying to discover the truth of herself through her art. But then shall I know even as also I am known. “I am known” refers to being known by God, and knowing both selves through God. Nina dies as the White Swan. It is suggested that she is redeemed in death.

*I totally recommend watching Pi. It's about Math vs. Kabbalah. Watch the preview on YouTube

Labels: ,



does it really have to come to this?

No I don't think so. I don't think I have to duct tape my rubber boots back together, do I? Well I did. After I discovered a rip in the back seam of my right boot on the way to work yesterday morning. Oh what a mess it was out there! I wondered why we didn't all just stay home under the covers. Especially the bus driver. That couldn't have been a fun job for her. Or for the guy who delivered my lunch. I felt bad for him too.

Before I got to work, I stopped at the hardware store in the Garment District and bought some black duct tape. I did both boots, so you won't necessarily think that I duct-taped my boots. I know it's not going to hold for long, but at least it would give me confidence until my new boots arrive. I ordered these Tretorns on Endless. My co-worker was wearing them in black yesterday. I was desperate. And hopeful. I hope they fit.

Tretorn Women's Skerry Vintery Shiny Rubber Boot, $49.99 on Endless
They're fleece-lined! Oh happy day. [images via Endless.com]

Labels: , , , ,



paris sandwich

The #10 from Paris Sandwich is delicious!

The #10 from Paris Sandwich in Chinatown* (Grand Street, Manhattan) is my current favorite Vietnamese vegetarian sandwich. What did they do to the tofu? Is it char-grilled? So much flavor! And yes, just $4.25. That's more like it.

My other tofu sandwich favorite is from Nicky's Vietnamese on Atlantic Avenue ($5.50), and my other-other favorite is from An Nhau on Bedford Avenue (N 7th/N 8th) in Williamsburg ($5.50), just in case you want to hit all the tofu hot spots. I have 4th, 5th and 6th favorites, but we'll save that for another post on another day.

*Not to be confused with Paris Baguette in Koreatown.

Labels: , ,



pierogi gallery

There will be an opening for the exhibition of new work by Patrick Jacobs Friday, January 21, 7-9pm. I will go so far as to say that whatever Pierogi Gallery in Williamsburg shows, it's worth going to see.

Thanks for the email, Pierogi. This will definitely be part of our Friday plans.


177 N 9th Street (Bedford/Driggs Avenues)
Williamsburg, Brooklyn
T. 718.599.2144

Labels: , , , ,


key ingredient to sushi

I can't even believe Amazon sells the key ingredient to my hand-rolled sushi party: the wood bowl used to cool the sushi rice while imparting delicious natural wood flavors. The sushi hangiri! Um, I sort of got rid of mine when we moved, believing something this large would not fit in our Brooklyn apartment. I was wrong, we had the space. But oh well. I can always buy it again on Amazon, and for a great price too.




maria luisa on the corner

As I mentioned recently, thecorner.com is another great shopping site to find European fashion. Also all mysteriously on sale. This site is part of the YOOX Group, so once you come to love one site, you'll come to love the other. I found this great sweater by Maria Luisa whom I haven't thought about in years. Let's just say, in Paris, she's a very important person in fashion, yet virtually unknown in the U.S. She's selling her many lines online exclusively on thecorner.com. So if you can't get to Paris...

Labels: , , ,



'wich flavor do you like best? malt? classic? pb?

hot chocolate by 'wichcraft is open in Bryant Park!

At last, this cute little hut in Bryant Park that they've been painting and repainting every shade of green for at least the past five months has opened! I was so excited to see it open on Wednesday after the snow storm that I started snapping pictures without even realizing what they sold. Hint: a very very very delicious item that is a perfect compliment to ice skating. Hot chocolate! And not just your average hot chocolate, because 'wichcraft is never average. Malt hot chocolate! Peanut butter hot chocolate! I can vouch for both flavors, because the kind sir who was running the booth gave me samples. And yes, it made my day. There's also classic and handmade marshmallows. I'm guessing they're square marshmallows, because that's pretty much the trend in New York.

This cute little 'wichcraft hot chocolate outpost in conveniently located right near the entrance to the ice skating at Bryant Park. Enter on the 40th Street side and you'll see it, nestled in the snow. And if you want to know a bit more about skating The Pond, read this previous post. I'm a big fan.

hot chocolate by 'wichcraft
Bryant Park
closest entrance: 40th Street or 6th Avenue

hot chocolate by 'wichcraft
3 kinds of hot chocolate: classic, malt and peanut butter (chocolate)
3 sizes: S $3.50, M $4.50, L $5.50 + marshmallows
25 cents

I watched them build these curious protrusions everyday on my way to work.
They kept adding more and more texture. I figured it wa
s going to be a florist
because it resembled cacti or something. I think in total, there are 4 shades of green.

But surprise, the interior is lavender! I love the front door, complete with
garage door hydraulics. I wonder what shade this wood will become?
Or will they leave it raw?

Labels: , , , ,


fashionable on the m platform

I haven't seen this bag before. Marc by Marc Jacobs. Well at least he takes the mystery out of who made this bag. I do like the print however. And the fact that it's waterproof. It's important to be fashionable in the snow, right? She probably should have gone with a brown coat though.

I could file this under In Hot Pursuit of a Handbag, but since she was standing still and an easy mark, I will file it under Fashionable on the Subway Platform. Check out both series' if you'd like to see more good outfit ideas walking around on the streets of NYC.

Labels: , , , , ,



sushi party!

Tada! Sushi Party!

My current rice and vinegar of choice. Easy-to-store packaging.

Smoked salmon is what we're calling the Nova we got from ACME
for this sushi party. Wholesale!

Preparing the J omelet in the J egg pan.

Well we didn't get a snow day, my husband and I, but we did have a delicious sushi party after work yesterday, just the two of us. It was totally worth it to lug the 4 pound bag of Japanese rice from Midtown to Brooklyn. I'd do it again. You see, I told you pics would surely follow.

J omelet, cukes, smoked salmon, seaweed sheets

And a little sake, why not.

Lettuce, wasabi, sesame grinder, prepared sushi rice, egg

Roll prep: rice, J omelet (mixed with soy sauce & cut into strips), cukes,
smoked salmon, Boston Lettuce all arranged diagonally on a 1/4 seaweed sheet

Then rolled up into a hand-held sushi trumpet. Dip and eat.
In Japanese, temaki zushi

Labels: , ,


another inspiring piece from costume national

I just love the designer selection on YOOX.com. Love love love it! Where else can you really find Costume National and Martin Margiela? And a lot of it. And on sale. This kimono-style dress is so amazing. Both the cut and the fabric are so striking.

Labels: , , , , ,



two more snowy bryant park pics

I didn't post these on the Bryant Park Facebook page, just the previous two, which they liked by the way. That's kind of gratifying.

Labels: , ,



Calexico is new on Manhattan Avenue in Greenpoint!
The quilted metal facade gives a nod to their street cart beginnings.

Calexico Hours. Open plenty late. Closed Mondays.
Take note.

The sputnik chandliers. LOVE!
And the recessed tin ceiling is great too. Along with the original poles.
I am guessing turn of the (last) century. So great.

Lighting is always key for me. I love what they put together here.

Excitement in Greenpoint. A new restaurant opened last month (although we just saw it for the first time on Sunday). It's Mexican, has tofu aplenty, margaritas, good prices, and excellent decor. Yes, they had me at tofu, but the sputnik-style chandeliers totally drew me in. Calexico, named for a town near the California/Mexico border where the owners (3 brothers, Dave, Jesse and Brian Vendley) are from, is doing a great business. The tables and bar are packed, so come early if you want the seat of your choice. Take-out customers come in all night, have a drink at the bar, and go merrily on their way. The service is speedy, but not rushed.

This Greenpoint-based Calexico is Brooklyn restaurant #2 for the Vendley brothers (the first location is 122 Union Street in Carroll Gardens) who started their Cal-Mex business running street carts 3 years ago. Hence the speedy delivery of your food. Also hence the quilted metal exterior of the restaurant. Decor à la food carte. Very clever.

The food is great, the vibe is great, and Paulie, the bar manager who works every night except Sunday, is a very refreshing non-pretentious non-hipster, who will treat you like a person and treat you well. Some nearby establishments should take note, but they won't, so scratch this last line.

645 Manhattan Avenue (@ Bedford Avenue)
Greenpoint, Brooklyn

That's Paulie, bar manager. He gave excellent service to everyone who walked in.

Happy Hour special, $5

Where else can you get a mint jalapeno margarita? I'm hooked. $10

Very fresh chips, guacamole, hefty portion, $10

Tofu Torta (sandwich), very delicious, $10

Tacos, $4 each, black bean [L] and tofu [R]

Labels: , , , , ,


pretty bryant park

Bryant Park always provides beautiful scenes. How I love it. I took these on my way to work this morning. I think I'll post them on their Facebook page. Why not.

Labels: , , , , ,


sushi anyone?

mini rice paddles at-the-ready
it will be
temaki zushi (roll-your-own)

Last night on the eve of Impending Blizzard #2 I thought it be cool if everyone who worked in the Garment District got a call from the CFDA tomorrow telling us it's a Snow Day. Is the president still Fern Mallis? Oh, it's Diane von Furstenberg. It was never Fern Mallis?

Well, I didn't get my call from Diane von Furstenberg this morning, so the sushi party for two will have to wait until after work. Pictures will surely follow.

Labels: , ,



impending blizzard #2

A garbage truck lays in wait in Brooklyn at 8pm

I can just imagine how the Mayor is going to show us how great the city is at snow removal this time.

Garbage trucks outfitted with plows and chains. That is, apparently, how we remove
the snow in NYC. Who noticed? I never noticed that the Department of Sanitation
is responsible for the snow removal. So strange.

Labels: , ,


oops, product overlap

Don't you think this Kate Spade ski hat is suspiciously similar to the eyeglass case by Jonathan Adler? Kate, while your reinterpretation of Jonathan's design is pretty cute, I'll give you that; I think in all fairness to Jonathan, you should give him a nod. Like call it the Jonathan Adler Ski Goggle Hat or something. Signed, the design police.

Labels: , , ,