The Harder Edge of Fall 2016

You know what’s so great about this season? There’s a dark side. That’s right — amongst pretty palettes, soft silhouettes and airy textures is distressed denim, leather chokers and rubber soled platforms. Why? Because you need to have balance in your life. Rachel Comey mastered the contrast and so did Eckhaus Latta. Best worn with a big dose of attitude.

Creative Women To Watch: Agathe Singer, Jasmyn Burke and Djuna Bel

Some people just leave you in awe. Case in point: Agathe Singer, a Parisian illustrator who paints with a beautifully delicate aesthetic; Jasmyn Burke, the magnetic lead singer for Toronto-based art rock band Weaves whose distinctive vocals can be heard on the band’s recently released eponymous album; and Djuna Bel, a wardrobe stylist whose discerning eye has landed her work with the likes of Levi’s, Charlotte Gainsbourg and Zoe Kravitz. Talented, driven and totally playing by their own rules, Agathe, Jasmyn and Djuna are our current inspirations. We caught up with the three women to get the inside scoop on the source of their brilliance.

Summer Soundtrack: Beach Getaway

It’s travel month! So we’re swapping moodboards for playlists to inspire your next getaway.

Summertime and the livin’s easy, especially when you’re at the beach. The sun, the salty surf (and some sneaky beers, of course) — is there any better way to spend the last of the dog days? Nope. So grab your towel, suit up and hit the sand. And don’t forget to pack this playlist in your straw bag alongside your sunscreen and hat for good vibes all day long.

 

Summer Soundtrack: Country Retreat

It’s travel month! So we’re swapping moodboards for playlists to inspire your next getaway.

How do starry night skies, lakeside bakes under the sun and ice cold beers sound? Pretty good, right? There is nothing like running away to the country to recharge your batteries, where you can sit back, breathe in the fresh air (while picking up a whiff of barbecue) and appreciate the little things. Don’t have a ticket? This playlist will take you there.

The Fashion Girl’s guide to Houston

In Houston, at any given moment, you can feel like you’re in a different part of the globe. World-class art? Check. Covetable style? Check. Enviable international cuisine scene? Double check. Diverse, cultured and, of course, laden with signature southern charm, Houston’s unique qualities make it a seriously special place, not to mention a haven for creatives and entrepreneurs. We’re packing our bags already, but before we hop on that plane, we asked some of our local fashion friends to give us some tips on where to go and what to do in the Bayou City.

WHERE TO EAT

Oxheart @jonguz
Photo via @jonguz

In a place like Houston where there’s an amazing restaurant on literally every street corner, it’s hard to know where to go to tuck in. Luckily for us, we had the experts narrow it down.

“For Vietnamese, go to Huynh,” says Cecilia Marquez, creative director of inspired boutique Saint Cloud. “For Szechuan, go to Cooking Girl or Mala.” She also notes Cuchara for Mexican and Hugs & Donuts (below) for something sweet. “I could keep going….we really like to eat and drink here!”

Hugs & Donuts
Photo via @hugsanddonutshtx

Both Kate de Para, the designer behind minimalist label Evens, and Trang Nguyen, co-founder of Rice Village boutique Myth & Symbol, dig Oxheart (above). The menu is always fresh and the service is on point, Kate insists — probably why it’s such a popular spot. “Make sure to get a reservations at least a month in advance,” Trang advises.

Huynh Restaurant, 912 Saint Emanuel

Cooking Girl, 315 Fairview St

Mala Sichuan Bistro, 9348 Bellaire Blvd

Cuchara, 214 Fairview St

Hugs & Donuts, 1901 N Shepherd Dr #4

WHERE TO DRINK 

Public Services cc @alicialynette
Photo via @alicialynette

“I always love to visit 13 celcius for wine and Public Services for sherry or a whiskey drink,” Kate says. Public Services (above), with its art deco furnishings in Houston’s historic 1884 Cotton Exchange building, is also Cecilia’s go-to, while Trang recommends Anvil, which boasts a 100-strong list of classic cocktails alongside eight house originals.

13 celcius, 3000 Caroline St

Public Services, 202 Travis St Suite 100

Anvil Bar & Refuge, 424 Westheimer Rd. Ste. B

WHAT TO SEE

James Turell cc @calpaca
Photo via @calpaca

It’s a general consensus — if you go to Houston, you gotta visit the James Turrell “Twilight Epiphany” Skyspace (above). The two-level pyramid installation, sitting on top of a hill next door to the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University, has an LED light sequence that projects up towards an opening in the ceiling at sunrise and sunset. The way that natural light and the projection play off each other is nothing short of spectacular. 

James Turrell “Twilight Epiphany” Skyspace at Rice University, 6100 Main St

Trang and Cecilia both also list the Menil Collection, an art museum comprised of four buildings (who of which are dedicated to individual artists) and Buffalo Bayou Park Cistern (below), one of Houston’s earliest underground water reservoirs, built in 1926 and filled with tall concrete columns that are reminiscent of the cisterns of ancient Rome. The cistern is set within the lush, 160-acre Buffalo Bayou Park.  

Buffalo cistern
Photo via @krisgillentine

The Menil Collection, 1533 Sul Ross St

Buffalo Bayou Park Cistern, 05 Sabine St

A trip to Houston wouldn’t be complete without a stop at Canino Farmer’s Market (below), though. Kate recommends visiting this local treasure, which has been supplying the city with fresh fruits and vegetables since 1958.

Farmer's market
Photo via @teresathuy

Canino Farmer’s Market, 2520 Airline Dr

WHERE TO WATCH LIVE MUSIC 

White Oak Music Hall
Photo via @keppford

Texas has a longstanding musical history and Houston has been home to more than a few of the greats (Kenny Rogers, Lyle Lovett, and somebody called Beyoncé, to name a few). Checking out a show in the Bayou City is a must and there are plenty of places to do it. Trang says to hit the newly opened White Oak Music Hall (above), a massive venue that is made up of three, multi-level performance spaces and spans more than five acres.

White Oak Music Hall, 2915 N Main St

For Kate, Walter’s or the Raven Tower (originally built in the ’70s as a metal fabrication shop) are two of the best places to take in live music. 

Walter’s, 1120 Naylor St

Raven Tower, 310 North St

WHAT TO WEAR

evens
Photo via Evens

 

“Look, it’s hot as hell here and we’re all sweating together so we want as little fabric touching our bodies as possible,” Cecilia says. “That being said, Houston is a city where people want to look put together so we have perfected the art of being comfortable AND looking amazing at the same time. The keys are stunning accessories, great shoes, and breathable fabrics.”  

“I’d describe Houston style as super eclectic — at least in the art scene,” Kate continues. “There will always be something a little bit punk about the way people blend upcycling with high end design around here which I love.”

Houston’s style can be hard to define because it’s such a big and diverse city, Trang says, but one thing is certain: “We are the anti-New York: lots of colors and patterns,” she states. “Houston can be hot and humid so we all have a year-round summer wardrobe.”

HOW TO HAVE A PERFECT DAY IN HOUSTON 

Menil park
Photo via @sailert

With so many things to do and sights to see, how does one have a perfectly Houston day? Simple, Kate says: “It would go like coffee at Catalina, take a stroll around Sixth Ward, head to Menil Park and laze around with friends on a blanket, lunch at Brasil, walk to Tomo Magazines to browse some print media, maybe pop into Reeve’s Antiques to drool over some gorgeous MCM design or La Corazon for some cool Central American imported inspo, and hopefully have friends over for cocktails, a simple dinner and good conversation.”

Catalina Coffee Shop, 2201 Washington Ave

Old Sixth Ward

Menil Park (above), Branard St

Brasil Cafe, 2604 Dunlavy St

Tomo Mags, 1206 Hawthorne St

Reeve’s Antiques, 2415 Taft St

For Cecilia, her day revolves around her dogs and good grub. “Get up, grab a matcha latte from Morningstar Coffee & Donuts, take my dogs to Jonny Steele Dog Park (we call this place Disneyland for dogs — it’s amazing), take the dogs to meet friends for breakfast tacos at Guadalupana, hit up Tomo Mags for some hard-to-find publications, go to an afternoon yoga class and then head over to Boheme for a frozen mojito on their sprawling patio.  For dinner, meet friends at Weights + Measures and then an after dinner drink (or two) at Public Services.” 

Dog park
Photo via @erwin_htx

Morningstar Coffee & Donuts, 4721 N Main St

Jonny Steele Dog Park (above), 2929 Allen Pkwy

La Guadalupana Bakery & Cafe, 2109 Dunlavy St

Weights + Measures, 2808 Caroline St

Trang’s perfect day packs in a lot of culture — something Houston is filled to the brim with.

Houston museum
Photo via @hotfarts

“Checking out the Museum of Fine Arts Houston (they have a great [Yayoi] Kusama exhibit going on), then walking over to Hotel Zaza for a drink (and Volcano fries) and finally to the Miller Outdoor Theatre across the street for a show.” 

Museum of Fine Arts Houston, 1001 Bissonnet St

Hotel ZaZa, 5701 Main St

Miller Outdoor Theatre, 6000 Hermann Park Dr

 

The Fashion Girl’s Guide to Austin

They say everything is bigger in Texas, but in Austin, it’s the small-town feel that really sets this bustling city apart. A laid back place that celebrates community, encourages individuality and boasts gorgeous scenery to boot, it’s also a haven for creatives — that’s why we asked a few of our favorite locals to give us the lowdown on their hometown. Here, the top places to eat, drink, play and people watch.

WHERE TO EAT

Launderette
Photo via @brandypham

“The list of places to eat and drink can go on and on in a town like this,” says Jill Bradshaw, owner of Friends & Neighbors. “There’s something amazing in every category of cuisine.” She recommends Launderette (above) for their fun atmosphere and diverse menu. 

Launderette, 2115 Holly St

ARO boutique’s Leslie Hernandez agrees and adds Elizabeth Street Cafe to her list. “They both have incredible food, drinks and beautiful interiors.”

Elizabeth Street Cafe, 1501 S 1st St

For lunch, designer Miranda Bennett is all about the deli counter at Wheatsville, a grocer that sells thoughtfully sourced products. If it’s a special occasion, she has a couple favorites — Justine’s, a French brasserie, or Josephine House (below), the more casual sister of fine dining restaurant Jefferey’s.

Josephine House
Photo via @mmhaustin

Wheatsville Food Co-op, 3101 Guadalupe St.; 4001 S. Lamar Blvd.

Justine’s, 4710 E 5th St

Josephine House, 1601 Waterston Ave

“It’s rare that a week passes without several trips to Taco Deli for tacos,” admits Olive boutique owner Laura Uhlir, adding that she swears there’s not a bad one on the menu. She’s also been really into Unit-D (below) for Neapolitan pizza lately. “It doesn’t hurt that it’s a few blocks from my house too.”  

Tacodeli, various locations

Unit-D, 2406 Manor Road

Unit-d
Photo via @laurel_kinney

“You can spot us having a breakfast or lunch meeting at Café No Sé — a fresh and delicious restaurant in the new South Congress Hotel,” adds Stephanie Beard, designer of Esby Apparel. “We also love a great bottle of wine, house made mozzarella and handcrafted neapolitan pies at Bufalina for dinner.”

Café No Sé, 1603 S Congress Ave

Bufalina, 519 E Cesar Chavez St #200

WHERE TO DRINK

Weather Up 2
Photo via @miachelphotography

For drinks, sitting outside with pizza and a glass of wine at King Bee,” Miranda says, referring to the vintage detailed pub. Both Stephanie and Laura name Weather Up (above), an offshoot of the NYC bar, as one of their go-to’s — Jill agrees and adds drink.well., a gastropub known for its innovative drink menu, to her list. “Both make excellent cocktails and they change them up all the time,” she says. 

King Bee, 1906 E 12th St

Weather Up, 1808 E Cesar Chavez St

drink.well., 207 E 53rd St

Longbranch
Photo via @cardboardsea

Laura doesn’t need to go very far for a nightcap, though. She also recommends her “favorite dive bar across the street from the shop, Longbranch Inn, for cocktails.”

Longbranch Inn (above), 1133 E 11th St

“For drinks, I hit up San Jose Hotel and hang out at the pool area,” Leslie says. “It’s relaxing and I love that it’s hidden from the busy street of shoppers and feels like you’re walking into a secret garden with a pool.”

Hotel San Jose (below), 1316 S Congress Ave

Hotel San Jose
Photo via @bkosta

WHERE TO WATCH LIVE MUSIC 

Austin is nicknamed the “Live Music Capital of the World” for a reason and, as such, there are more than plenty of places to catch a show. 

Continental
Photo via @chelsea_vaughan

“The Gallery, which is above the Continental Club, is one of my favorite spots because it feels like you’re sitting in your cool friend’s living room,” Leslie says. “Hotel Las Vegas is good too for emerging artists, we recently saw a Brazilian band with our friends, the venue is a mix of indoor and outside.”

The Continental Club (above), 1315 S Congress Ave

Hotel Vegas, 1502 E 6th St

“On a nice night, I love going to Cheer Up Charlie’s or Mohawk to see a band because they have shows outside,” Jill says. Laura agrees completely. At either of those Red River spots, “You’re bound to catch something good.” 

Cheer Up Charlie’s, 900 Red River St

The Mohawk, 912 Red River St

“It’s also fun to take your chances on winning tickets to a live taping at ACL Live,” Stephanie adds. “They announce their upcoming shows here and you might be lucky enough to snag a pair of free tickets if you enter the drawing.”

ACL Live at The Moody Theater, 310 W. 2nd Street, Willie Nelson Blvd.

Sahara
Photo via @desertflowerdesigners

As for Miranda, her jam is Sahara Lounge (above), which has a Texas juke bar vibe with an African twist. “Bring your dancing shoes.” 

Sahara Lounge, 1413 Webberville Rd

Barton Springs
Photo via @candida

BEST WAY TO ENJOY THE OUTDOORS
 

It’s a general consensus: when in Austin, go to the water. “No matter where you are, as long as you are in or near water you’re having the best day ever,” Jill says. “There are so many places to explore, there’s no way you can know all of them even after living here 10+ years. Explore Texas, get in some water.” 

“Swim. Swim. Swim,” Laura insists. “Texas summers are rough. When I’m not at the shop I’m most likely in a pool or hunting down a swimming hole.” 

Miranda continues, “There are a ton of options, but I like to keep it simple with Barton Springs and/or the boardwalk on Lady Bird Lake.” 

Barton Springs Pool (above), 2201 Barton Springs Rd

Lady Bird Lake, Sandra Muraida Way and W. Cesar Chavez St.

Stephanie also recommends Barton Springs (“where the water is always a cool 68-degrees,”) along with the Greenbelt for shaded trails and refreshing swimming holes. “If natural bodies of water isn’t your thing,” she continues, “head over [to] the Deep Eddy Pool — a man-made pool that happens to be the oldest swimming pool in Texas.”

Eddy Pool
Photo via @deepeddypool

The Greenbelt, 3755-B Capital of Texas Hwy.

Deep Eddy Pool (above), 401 Deep Eddy Drive

“Sometimes just sitting outside on the patio at one of my favorite spots and having a drink with friends and family is the best way for me to enjoy the outdoors,” Leslie says. “It’s nice in the evening because it’s not so hot and Austin has so many unique places to go… It’s kind of our thing to go try new patio spots all over the city.”

WHAT TO WEAR 

Screen Shot 2016-08-11 at 11.44.12 AM
Photo via @jessicapages for Esby Apparel

“As Austin itself changes, I think it’s style changes as well,” Jill says. “Austin remains a very casual town, not putting a lot of emphasis on dressing up, but that’s slowly changing.  People are embracing their own unique styles.  As a shop owner who sells a lot of vintage clothing, I carry a pretty wide variety of styles from bohemian to modern, casual to dressy and there’s a customer here for all of it.  Everyone has a different style here and that’s part of why it’s so great.” 

Miranda agrees, describing the city’s style as “laid back and personal.” 

“Austin is growing fast, there [are] tons of people moving in from New York, California and from all over but I think this makes Austin an eclectic city when it comes to style,” Leslie says. 

“Austin style is pretty casual but the main rule here is anything goes,” Stephanie continues. “Because of the hot hot summers, we stay relaxed and cool in flowing dresses and comfortable slides. We love to accessorize with fun sunglasses and summer hats.”

And, of course, “Denim is always appropriate,” Laura adds. 

 

HOW TO HAVE A PERFECT DAY IN AUSTIN

Boggy Creek
Photo via @megtaft

According to Miranda, a perfect Austin day starts off with a bit of nature and ends on Congress Avenue at a music venue. “Walking my dog along Boggy Creek, meeting up for a swim at the Springs, frozen rosé in the courtyard of Hotel San Jose, dinner at Café No Sé and music and a night cap at the Continental Club,” she says. 

Froze
Photo via @thethriftypineapple

Stephanie also recommends frozen rosé (“frozé”) at Hotel San Jose (above), after spending time outside and tucking into some tacos. “Once awake, if it’s still cool outside, a stroll around the boardwalk with the dogs is ideal,” she says. “Afterwards, we love to grab a couple of breakfast tacos and an iced latte at one of the many local coffee shops. Afterwards, suit up and find some water.”

For Laura, it’s a no brainer. “Sleep in, the one-two punch that is coffee-tacos at Houndstooth and Tacodeli (brilliantly right next door to one another), pack up a picnic, head out to the Greenbelt or another swimming spot, spend the afternoon in the sun, grab a juice on the way home from JuiceLand, rinse off, drinks – while my hair’s still wet – somewhere with a great patio, gorge myself on sushi at Uchiko, wrap it up with a late movie at the Alamo and a salted caramel milkshake.”

Houndstooth Coffee, various locations 

JuiceLand, various locations 

Uchiko, 4200 North Lamar

Alamo, various locations

Uchiko
Photo via @uchikoaustin

Jill also cites Uchiko as an essential place to stuff your face, alongside homestyle eatery Mi Madre’s and Philly-style sandwich and soda joint, the Republic of Sandwich. First, though, “Sleep in,” and then “get brunch at Mi Madre’s, grab a sandwich to go from The Republic of Sandwich, drive to Krause Springs, hit up some antique stores on the way back, grab a happy hour cocktail (this town is filled with insane happy hour deals), then finish it off with a gourmet meal at Uchiko. Perfection.” 

Mi Madres, 2201 Manor Rd

The Republic of Sandwich, 2320 Hancock Dr

Krouse Springs, 404 Krause Spring Rd

“I’ve been antique and vintage shopping in Austin for years, when I lived in the East Coast, I could never miss hitting up my favorite stores when I came back into town,” Leslie says. “Finding some hidden gems and meeting friends for drinks would be the perfect ending to my day in Austin.” 

Summer Soundtrack: City Escape

It’s travel month! So we’re swapping moodboards for playlists to inspire your next getaway.

Sometimes, you’ve gotta let it all go and get lost in the bright lights of the big city. And there’s nothing more fun than getting dressed up for a hot night on the town — trying on a million outfits, swiping some color across your lips and then wandering the streets to get to whatever restaurant or show you’re just late enough not to be really late for. This little track list will add an extra finesse in your Rachel Comey-clad step, as it takes you from the cab to the hotel closet and straight to the dance floor.

Photo by Daniela Spector for our feature with Brooklyn babe Jessi Frederick.

Summer Soundtrack: Road Trip

It’s travel month! So we’re swapping moodboards for playlists to inspire your next getaway.

Picture this: dirty windows rolled all the way down, long stretches of highway, blurry green treetops, bluebird sky. Crumpled up candy wrappers and sticky soda cans. Sing-a-longs with your best friend and random pit-stops. There aren’t too many things better than a summer road trip and the memories that you make in that cramped little space in between your seat and your steering wheel. Here’s the soundtrack to your next one.

 

Seasick Mama on indie pop, stage style and disco

Marial Maher, better known as Seasick Mama, is a woman of many talents: singer, songwriter, performer and model, to name a few. The Brooklyn-based indie pop singer’s voice is as sweet as a summer’s day laced with serious undertones of badass. Her musical abilities shatter the notion of what it means to be a pop artist. Her first EP, Dead Like Money, is an awesomely playful experience where every track has its own story and genre. It’s hard not be intrigued by the siren. Her persona riddled with complexities lures you in: a self-proclaimed exhibitionist with a dash of the reserved. We chatted with Marial about how she got her start in music, her style and some personal stuff too.

HOW AND WHEN DID YOU START PLAYING MUSIC? When I was really young, my dad used to get me to stop crying by playing the blues on his guitar, throwing in poop jokes and not being very serious. So I think naturally, I have always taken a relaxed approach to music. I started to sing with him at local bars to build confidence. Then when I moved to NYC. I got a job at Sticky Audio Labs and I started writing songs.

ON YOUR LAST EP, ‘TIP TOP SHAPE’, YOU WORKED WITH SOME REALLY AWESOME PEOPLE: DAVID SITEK (TV ON THE RADIO), SAM FARRAR (PHANTOM PLANET), PETER WADE (MNDR), LESTER MENDEZ, AND JOEL SHEARER. HOW WAS THAT EXPERIENCE? It was a little stressful at first because they were strangers when I walked through the door. But at the end of the writing sessions I made some really cool friends – and really amazing songs! They all had their personal impacts on my life, especially Peter Wade. He is a great songwriter (we wrote “Man Overboard” together.) He definitely made lightbulbs pop off in my head.

Photographer and DJ Leslie Kirchhoff shares her favorite things

DJ, photographer, all around cool girl, we’ve got a major crush on Leslie Kirchhoff. Whenever there’s a fashion event in New York City, you’re likely to find her behind the decks. She regularly DJs parties for Dolce & Gabbana, Vera Wang, RVCA, and a whole lot more. Her day job as a photographer often has her shooting people like Pharrell Williams, Solange, Joan Smalls and Coco Rocha. Plus, you can find her interviewed for her style tips by Harper’s Bazaar, Vogue, Style.com, Nylon, and more on a regular basis. We have a feeling this is just the beginning for beauty who was born and raised in Wisconsin. So we asked and she answered.

WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE THING TO PHOTOGRAPH? I’ve always really loved shooting people, but recently I’ve gotten really into shooting food and playing around with more object-based setups. It’s a nice change of pace and a completely different style of photography.