Archive for the ‘everyday design’ Category

what to wear to work.

Sunday, June 15th, 2014

like, regular work.

When I graduated from college, all my friends’ parents bought their kids suits for interviews. I asked my parents….”Do I need a suit?” and they laughed at me and said”You are probably never going to need a suit.”

I never have needed a suit.

At every job I’ve had, since they’ve been in the fashion industry, I’ve worn whatever I wanted…and in fashion: expressing yourself, or even pushing the envelope thru experimentation and trying….well, trying everything, is not just okay, it’s expected.

For the past couple of years, I’ve been working either on popomomo or consulting for other companies. While consulting, going to different companies, stepping in for different types on lines (and also just growing up): I’ve simplified the way I dress. But, there are still no suits; and everything is still laid back.

But tomorrow, I start a new job: outside my “fashion bubble.” It’s an awesome and challenging role where I get to use everything I’ve learned in the past couple years. I don’t need a suit, but I’ll be riding an elevator with people who wear a suit (but to the creative floor). I need to change the game up a little bit.

Now, I have to figure out what tons of women have to figure out: how do you express yourself, look polished, and deal with a dress code. And I need to think about how I’d like to present myself, and how to make sure I feel like myself, no matter where I am.

It’s going to be a somewhat longer thought process…but I’ll be starting with something along these lines….all credits on my pinterest.



$10 Tomboy bench

Tuesday, May 13th, 2014

Lizzie at Tomboy Style made one of Project Room’s $10 benches yesterday, and made it look oh-so-great on her blog.

Hale County

Friday, March 21st, 2014

Thought-provoking piece about the impact of architecture, hope, opportunity, and reality in Hale County, Alabama.

Read it on Fastcompany.

new apartment, new ideas

Monday, February 10th, 2014

Isaac and I are moving to a new apartment soon. We wanted to just stay where we were till we moved to our house, but eh: what can I say: things like building a house take a long time and doing laundry at the laundromat sucks. So!

We’ve lived together for 12 years now and we want to make some actual changes in this next apartments, because things like our books, art and furniture don’t change move to move, and this is a good chance to mix things up as opposed to reinstalling our life in a bigger apartment with a laundry room.

Change 1.

No. More. Malm.

We bought it because it was simply designed and affordable, but I think I have scars on my shin from our Malm bed. And it’s huge! So, we are ditching the bed, and having a low mattress…but not in the way I used to (simplicity in youth looks a little slovenly, now that I think about it). We’ll go for something a little more like this:

Change 2. House Plants everywhere (and alive). I‘ll put in the effort to water, I swear!

I’m emotionally ready to have a ton of plants indoors: trees, philodendron, and some little ones for texture.

Change 3. Get low.

Our current apartment is so small that I always looked up: our dressers and bookshelves are tall to preserve precious square feet.

However, this next apartment is bigger, and has windows on three sides (four if you count the surprising and somewhat creepy ‘building hole’ window), and want to keep it looking wide open. We’ll be making low bookshelves and dressers throughout the house.

all images and their respective links on my Fifth From The Top Pinterest board.


Totally in love

Monday, February 3rd, 2014

with my Tomo navy leather sac from This Is Ground.

It’s for your tech, but it’s a casual-but-still-a-bit-luxe (amazing leather) update to the rectangular clutch I’ve been carrying for years.

When I heard

Wednesday, January 15th, 2014

a couple months ago that the Head Designer of COS was moving to the Gap: i was pretty psyched.

Anyone who reads this blog know that I love the Gap, or shall we say, the ideal idea of the Gap: a collection of simple pieces that become the building blocks you create a wardrobe around. Accessible, affordable pieces that you can keep and re-integrate each season.

COS is a pretty awesome simple and elegant line owned by H&M….it’s Jil Sander for everyone, or very tasteful Uniqlo. Honestly, it’s european dream Gap.

Rebekka Bay is the lady in question: and she’s awesome. Elle did a big article with her and you can read it here.


Sea Change

Monday, January 13th, 2014

I haven’t written in a bit for a couple reasons.

Mostly, I’ve been busy: I’m working a lot, stepping in with lines when they need fresh ideas and new ideas. I like the work and I like working a lot.

But, the real reason is that I’ve been….a bit bummed out maybe?

Lately I feel that some of the movements in design that I was excited, interested, and literally a producing part of, have become the same system of status that I’ve….been proud to not be a part of.

I went to a holiday sales event in LA that a couple of my extremely talented friends had a presence at. Their work is great. A lot of the work there was great. Their work is expensive, and has value: I know first-hand that making a small line and collection means that the product is expensive. There is value: and then, there is expensive.

A lot of the scene has become a checklist of status: get this ring, these shoes, this bag, this hat, yada yada: and now you look great: you look confident, you look like you aren’t playing the game: yet….you are playing the game: and you bought your way in. The same women who would perhaps mock a  Dior bag, marc jacobs bag, or rebecca minkoff bag, lined up in droves to buy a [fill in the blank] bag (and no, I’m not talking about a bag, really]: and we all look at our bag and their bags the same way the women eyeing their marc by marc or their neighbor’s marc by marc bag do.

The issue is not about money or the expensiveness of an object. It would be fantastic if everyone was ready to pay for quality of handmade and locally made objects. Quality, innovation, idea and product are worth a lot of money. A handmade piece where the money goes to the makers, and the item lasts for as long as it possibly can is priceless.

Buying status to me, however, has always seemed cheap.

That’s one part of my bum-out, the other part is about individuality from the point of the consumer, something I’ve always attributed to, loved about, and worn the flag of for small lines: it’s not about following a checklist to fit in.

The other issue is about individuality from the point of the producer. I understand these issues too. If everyone is doing indigo, soft leather, natural fabrics, moroccan rugs, and ceramics, and if you want to make a living: and you truly feel the pull of these themes: what do you do?

I’m feeling a little anti-everything right now. Going to this sales event made me want glass, plastic, tech, clean lines, hard fabrics (kidding, kidding, but also: not, not).

And yes, I know fashion pays for my entire life: and that status chasing is a part of what pays for fashion. Maybe I’m too idealistic. Or maybe this is what happens in your early 30s: movements seems to come from, and be for, you and your cohort. But maybe it’s always the same: everything is for sale: these items or ideas are just in your price range, your age range, etc.

Regardless: I’m feeling a bit ready for a sea-change.




Wednesday, December 4th, 2013

Check out this clever holiday video for Clashist’s Kickstarter…and maybe get a James franco tee or two for a crush of your own. Heather and I worked on developing the concept for this line and I’m really excited to see it moving forward!


One Kings Lane + Crafting Community + Project Room

Monday, December 2nd, 2013

We are super excited that Project Room is included in Karen Kimmel’s curated group of LA artists and designers for a special One Kings Lane sale.

Here’s a sneak peak of our Project Room pieces, launching tomorrow on One Kings Lane.


Tuesday, October 29th, 2013

I’m super interested in tech + fashion overlaps…and imagining all the possibilities of fabrics, changes in production, changes in distribution, etc.  This is my industry and I’m excited about the future.

Something that friends and I have been kicking around ideas about for a while is something that other fields already do…total customization. And since the tech world really likes to solve problems, it was only a matter of time till we saw something like Piol.

While the site has some skin tone stereotyping, and other use-ability issues it needs to work out, it will be interesting to see the customer reaction. Personally, I wonder about why none of the silhouettes are really fashionable, why pants (a major fit area) aren’t being dealt with yet, about the qualities of the fabrics,  and the scale of the prints.

The main question, I guess, is if it’s worth it to people. On the site, it’s 575 for a poly shealth, 545 for a cotton one. And it takes 3-4 weeks. But it’s made domestically, and to your measurements.

You could go downtown, buy 2 yards of nice silk ($40), nice lining ($20) buy a designer sewing pattern ($18) and work with a tailor (50/hour). Assuming five hours to make your dress and even 2 hours of fittings, you are already saving over $100. Or you could buy a nice dress on sale and have it tailored. Those options take time, though….filling out the website took 5 minutes.

I think there’s a huge opportunity to work with local tailors in a tech way. Just like Airbnb (or that horrible serf-making app I read about in Fast company a couple years ago Task Rabbit,) tech can connect people who were previously unconnected. You could connect customers to tailors, have them upload their measurements, what they are looking to do, etc, connect those people to fabric sales people: you can help the environment, the local economy, help people look their best and save money, etc.

we’ll see…just imagine the future:)