Posted in Design - Home DecorApril 8, 2011
Since graduating in Textiles from Manchester Metropolitan University in 1999, Jennifer Collier has been working as an artist. She undertakes exhibitions and commissions, selling her work through shops, galleries and shows. Want to learn how to work with paper? Jennifer runs art workshops in schools, colleges and galleries. More info on www.jennifercollier.co.uk.
Photos by Gana
The real life story of Alexandra Darcissac and children’s brand La princesse au petit pois (The princess and the pea) could start with “Once upon a time”. In 1992, two years after the birth of her first daughter Siam, Alexandra started her children’s line. When she told friends and family around the name she came up with for it, everybody thought it was a crazy idea : at that time brand names had a maximum of two syllabes. But she resisted, convinced that the name was right for her line. A choice that she doesn’t regret and that brought luck; the fairy tale is so deeply rooted in our culture that the name rings a bell in every little girl’s head. For Alexandra, La princesse au petit pois is only the beginning a long long story.
In 1994 Alexandra opened her store in South of France and two years ago she started a beautiful blog. Brand, blog and boutique are a real success in France and beyond, with an incredible number of fans. Lovers of La princesse au petit pois include talented photographers who have worked on the great images featured on this post. I’ll let Alexandra tell us more about herself, and about the story behind the photo shoots.
Alexandra, home side
A person that you admire Not a person in particular, but all the ones, ordinary heroes who spend their life saving others
Your favourite movieThe piano by Jane Campion
Your favourite book Belle du seigneur by Albert Cohen
A place you visited that stays with youKerkennah Island, Tunisia
A great bedtime storyDis moi combien je t’aime (Guess how much I love you) by Sam Bratney and Anita Jeram
The last purchase you did for a child A Waldorf doll “Sous le figuier” (figuierdesophie)
The best place for a holiday Winter Anywhere as long as it’s next to a fire place with family - Summer : at the back of my garden, in my hammock. But I also dream of taking a barge tour along the French canals
Alexandra, business side
How would you describe your style I stopped figthing against the backward-looking spirit of my brand. I draw inspiration from painting and illustrations from the past. They are, in my opinion, ideal to reveal the grace and beauty of childhood, particularly though popular or peasant scenes. As for my personal style, is there time for a life for someone as busy as I am?
Can you tell us more about the photos The work that photographers do around children’s fashion is for me a source of constant marvel. In regards to the collaboration with Gana (photos on top), I was transfixed by the beauty and personality of her daughter Themis, a particularly charismatic child (Themis is a model for Milk Magazine, Doolittle, for Belgium brands and others). Gana and her children are have the attention of very established brands and magazines, but she agreed with a collaboration when I presented my project to her. I gave her carte blanche and I was very happy with the result as she perfectly highlighted the retro and childish aspects of that part of my collection. The photographs of Clause Blaser are very moving and it was my dream to see my work through her eyes. I shyly asked her if she would consider photographing my collection and she immediately got enthusiastic about the idea. I think that Claude is, creatively speaking, my soul sister and the result of her work is beyond my expectations.
Photos Claude Blaser
New and fun : the Spring/Summer catalog of Noeuf, the baby concept store, photographed by Jean-Paul Lefret. Just added to the brand assortment are Ambitoys, Mini Rodini, A for Apple, Moon et Miel, Airdeje, Marchand d’etoiles. Click here to flip through the pages…
After birds, it’s the dog‘s turn to become recurrent decoration icons. Look around, you will start seeing them pictured everywhere.
Holy Smoke animals are handmade from natural linen and vintage textiles, drawn with hand stitching and raw edges to convey expressions of humor and pathos. No two animals are the same and their sizes are variable from 25cm to 50cm in height.
I’ve seen them in real, and I can say it’s hard to resist their fragile features and their hyper real look! holy-smoke.co.uk
Posted in Parent & Child interviewsApril 4, 2011
I met Stella at Bubble New York, when she was a little girl, playing with other exhibitor’s children at the show. I saw her again last month, still in NY, but this time she was helping her mother Jess with her booth at Playtime. Time really flies, she a demoiselle now, who is obviously is taking after her mom and wants to be in fashion!Read more
Posted in Mood of the dayApril 3, 2011
Happy mother’s day (Europe) ! – Creations by Kathleen Hills www.kathleenhills.co.uk
Posted in Design - Home DecorApril 2, 2011
We were offered a set of the Grimm blocks when the children were born, and they are probably the toys that we played the most with. They are still part of the fantasy land of our 5 years old Iris; she finds all sorts of uses for the curved pieces : bridge, boat, bed… This is when I don’t steal the blocks to add a bit of color to our living room. In other words : a must have!
“Discover a world of color and creative play with these fantastic nesting and stacking blocks by Grimm’s, made of natural wood in beautiful rainbow colors, in the style of educational Waldorf toys. Blocks to inspire creative play and develop motor skills among budding artists, architects, builders and craftspeople. Made in Germany. At sweetwilliamltd.com“
Posted in Parent & Child interviewsApril 1, 2011
Posted in Retail - WindowsMarch 31, 2011
Tada!shop is a great place to shop, especially for who likes to mix and match : young designers, hard to find labels, high end fashion, established brands, high street fashion. I picked up products from Talc, Atsuyo et Akiko, Namhee, J.Crew, flora & henri, Kit + Lili, Winter Water Factory for my spring shopping list. But you can also find Gap, Lego, Adidas, Chronicle Books, Smiling Planet, Makie, Oeuf, Lucky Wang…and much more. A wide array of styles, product categories and more important, price range through tada!shop.
Click here for the editor’s picks
Caletha Crawford is an expert in the children’s apparel. Former editor in chief of Earnshaw’s magazine—the leading US children’s trade publication, Caletha is a consultant for children’s wear brands as well as a part-time faculty at Parsons The New School for Design. There, she equips students with the fashion industry knowledge needed to become entrepreneur designers. On March 9th, Caletha Crawford gathered industry insiders at the Parson School of design and asked them to speak about what consumers want now.
The panel of industry professionals represented all facets of the market, including recruiting (represented by Polo Ralph Lauren); design (Ralph Lauren, J Crew’s Crewcuts and Tawil Associates); retail (Yoyamart) and sales (Thread showroom and Playtime trade shows). Throughout the hour-long discussion, the panel provided valuable information on how to break into the industry but one of the most interesting aspects of the conversation centered around defining who today’s customer is and discussing how she ultimately determines what ends up in stores:
· The economic outlook is improving, but consumers are still demanding value. “In Europe, we all have the feeling that we’re working more for less so you have the feeling that you have to give more to people. Everyone’s asking for more these days.” — Sebastien de Hutten, event director for Playtime, a juvenile products trade show with editions in Paris, Tokyo and New York
· The market is evolving, incorporating more contemporary styling into this age group—as a result a new customer is emerging for tween clothes: Moms! “People are a lot less conservative than they used to be, especially at the luxe level. At mid and mass, things tend to be more traditional.” —Amy Pang, design director for 7 for All Mankind Kids at New York-based Tawil Associates
· Grandmothers continue to be the No. 1 consumers to court, especially in the smallest sizes. —“She’s got a lot of income and a lot of time to fill.” —Ashleigh Crawford, vice president of children’s design at Ralph Lauren
· The woman who purchases high-end better goods for herself buys the same level of goods for her children. “If mom isn’t going to wear a rayon sweater, she has the mentality that my kid’s not going to wear it so it justifies buying $200 Loro Piana cashmere for their kid.” —Michelle Copelman, accessories designer and brand buyer at Crewcuts
· There’s a market for everything from $795 jackets to $20 T-shirts and from preppy to boho, it’s just up to retailers to know their customers and buy accordingly. “It’s like music. Anything goes,” stated Fazio. “You can mix hip hop and rock these days. You can mix California laid-back with European collections and Crewcuts accessories with your Ralph Lauren riding boots.” — Terra Fazio, owner of the Thread Showroom in New York
View the event in its entirety on YouTube
Caletha Crawford consults with designers to help them better understand the industry, communicate their positioning through branding and public relations, and grow their market share. Her contacts within the industry span independent start-ups to multimillion-dollar design firms. She’s a regular at domestic and international trade shows and market events. Learn more at calethacrawford.com.