Eko-Lab: Fashion artists

I cannot tell you how long I’ve been meaning to write about my dear, beautiful friends at Eko-Lab. We’ve been working out of the same studio space for about a year and a half and the more I get to know them, the more I appreciate their work. Melissa Kirgan and Xing-Zhen Chung-Hilyard are a rare breed. They are artists whose medium happens to be what is typically one of the most careless and wasteful industries- fashion.

These ladies don’t follow trends and they don’t mass produce. They do what comes from their hearts and create beautiful, unique works of wearable art.

They often collaborate with artist, Jennifer Wen Ma, who will sometimes come in and hand paint a limited number of garments.

For pieces with a larger production run, they might hand silk screen Jennifer’s art onto yards of fabric. All of this happens right in our studio and it is so beautiful to see in action.

Eko-lab have recently been focusing more on accessories. They make one-of-a-kind jewelry pieces, often using recycled materials such as slices of glass from bottles and other found objects.

They have also recently started working with laser cutting felted wool to make beautiful stoles which were sold at an exhibition Jennifer recently had in Beijing.

These ladies are truly inspirational and I am so lucky to know them. Check out their shop and facebook page.


Herriott Grace: an inspiring craft company

I first found out about Harriott Grace several months ago and I’m so inspired by them. A father-daughter team in Canada, Lance and Nikole Herriott have been making and selling the most beautiful hand-crafted home goods as a company for about three years. Lance makes the products in his workshop and Nikole handles the styling, photography, shop updates and sales… as well as the lovely blog. Have a look at the above video. It’s beautifully made and really gives insight into what they do. There are also some great bits of wisdom from Lance.

A great film on creative culture

The other night, I watched the documentary, PressPausePlay . It’s a beautifully made film that talks about how the creative industry has changed and allowed so many people to become self-made designers/artists/musicians/film makers due to the pervasiveness of personal computers and the internet. Moby spoke much about the evolution of the music industry and there was this incredible Icelandic musician/composer named Ólafur Arnalds who was followed as he prepared for a performance in Manchester. I’m really loving his music and above is a stunning video that is mentioned in the film. (It’s not so new as it has 1.3 million views already!)

Toys for contemplation by Ingrid Hulskamp


This is Ingrid Hulskamp‘s beautiful graduate project from Central Saint Martins. Her goal is to pursue time for daily contemplation in an intuitive way. She says:”these objects remind us of the candid fun we had as a child, when we fully got caught up in the moment.” She wanted those toys to catch our attention, to afford us a poetic moment with different sensory experiences: tactile, visual and sonorous.

So beautiful and so necessary.


My sweet ride

My bike got stolen (as often happens with bikes in NYC) last year and I suddenly found myself thinking about what my next ride would be. I was so tempted to get the beautiful, handcrafted in England, Pashley, but I knew I would be so heartbroken if it ever got stolen (that’s how we think about bikes in NYC) and they are just too heavy to carry up the stairs to my apartment. I then considered the very fashionable Linus, but after a lot of research, mainly on a great blog called Lovely Bicycle, I decided to go with an old Raleigh and fix her up.

I found my beautiful 1964 Raleigh on Craigslist for $190 – which is high, but this is NYC after all. I scrubbed her clean, using steel wool on the chrome parts, til she sparkled. I then got a basket, rear rack and saddle baskets,  new cork grips, a sweet little bell and some better brakes. A couple of months later, a very dear friend got me to most amazing birthday gift. The gorgeous Brooks saddle in honey was icing on the cake.

I love love love this bike and it is such a sweet ride. My pride and joy and the best way to commute around Brooklyn.

St.Vincent is my new hero

Photo by Tom Dennis/Buffablog

Friday night, Ed & I went to the Brooklyn Academy of Music for a music festival called Crossing Brooklyn Ferry, curated by brothers, Bryce and Aaron Dessner, of The National.

The two bands we were mainly there to see were The Antlers and St.Vincent. I’d seen The Antlers play before, when they opened for The National almost two years ago, but had not seen St. Vincent live.

Can I just tell you – AMAZING.

St.Vincent was so much more than I ever expected. She (Annie Clark) is such a talented musician, trained at probably the most prestigious classical music school in the country, yet a punk rocker at heart. Just when I started to think her sound reminded me of Bjork or The Breeders/Throwing Muses, it changed and threw me off completely. Her sound is so individual and omg, the way she plays electric guitar… oh my gawd. This chick even came out into the audience and CROWD surfed!

Seriously, this was the best show I’ve seen in a really long time. We’ve been playing her music pretty non-stop at home all weekend.

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