Archive for the ‘Hot Shoe Deals and Steals’ Category
Last month I had a short telephone call with Courtney and Philip Mason, the owners of a young art-to-wear brand named ‘Studio Jellyfish’. Call it a mini-interview, if you wish.
And, despite the writer’s block that has been for some reason confounding me on this article (this is at least the 3rd draft I have worked on thus far), I am determined to finish this today. Luckily, the hand-painted artwork of these shoes and handbags is striking enough to speak for itself, so I’ve decided to start with a few images to ‘get the conversation going’.
These painted ladies all have their own personality – and names. Names like ‘Golden Goddess’, ‘Blueberry Girl’ and ‘Bubblegum Girl’. You won’t find any generic style numbers here.
Of course, with every pair carefully embellished by hand, would you expect anything else?
Per Courtney, each ‘girl’ has been designed prior to appearing on a shoe or accessory, and is then free-handed onto the fashion canvas using a paint pen medium. The handmade nature of the creative process makes each pair of shoes subtly unique.
When asked if she had a favorite, Courtney answered without a bit of hesitation, “Bubblegum Girl, and some new ones that are in the works.” (Bubblegum Girl is on the second row at the left.)
According to Philip, one of their goals is to bring fine art into everyday accessible fashion. “all day, every day”. And it looks like they have a growing consumer fan base that agrees. In fact, in the just over 4 months that they have been operating their various websites (online shopfront & etsy.com), they have had orders ranging from the United States to Ireland, London, and Saudi Arabia. They also have plans in the works to expand into more mainstream fashion which will include denim and shirts and will continue to feature their signature ‘girls’.
So, who are their favorite designers or other influences? Ferragamo was immediately mentioned for classic appeal and style. When I mentioned how much their visual style reminded me of the bold simplicity of Patrick Nagel’s works – but with a hint of Gwen Stefani’s Harajuku Girls, Philip agreed, saying, “You pretty much nailed it on the head.” He also noted in a separate comment that “We have twelve years working as graphic designers. We love what we do. We wanted to do something for ourselves and it seemed like a natural transition to move that onto shoes and fashion.”
Oh, and about the name; why Studio Jellyfish?
(Politely interrupting each other)
“That goes back to when we first met. We both loved, still love the ocean. There was this South Beach hotel with a jellyfish tank in the lobby. It reflects our love of the sea and has a lot of our past and memories in it.”
So, writers block defeated. Plus, there’s even a small positive to come from it; Studio Jellyfish is now holding a spring sale which ends on March 30th.
Want a closeup of those thigh-highs?
Meet “Sassy Sally“:
If you are one of those (not me) tall gals who can wear high boots, these won’t be around forever. Truly a statement shoe if ever there was one.
If you are the Bay Area this weekend, you should make it a priority to attend the annual Oakland Museum White Elephant Sale (Saturday 3/6 and Sunday 3/7 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the White Elephant Sale Warehouse located at 333 Lancaster Street, Oakland, CA). Yes, the deals are as good as the crowds are crazy, but where else can you find Ferragamos for $10? The shoe selection is amazing and surprisingly well-organized. Now, I realize that many people are opposed to used shoes; however, the White Elephant Sale is not a dingy thrift store. Volunteers are actually rather picky about what they’ll accept in terms of quality and condition. This means that shoes are either gently used or new. The gently used shoes can be easily cleaned up by a reliable cobbler (I like Paul’s Shoe Repair located at 2281 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley, CA).
Earlier this month, I went to one of the sale’s preview days and bought a gently used pair of Ferragamo’s for $20, a pair of vintage pumps for $7, and a brand new pair of Tretorn flats for $15. On the same trip, my shopping companions found shoes by Ferragamo and Michael Kors for $10 to $15. During the sale in previous years, I’ve seen Chanel, Cole Haan, and Stuart Weitzman shoes.
Here’s the scene in the “designer” shoe section (a very small part of the total shoe department) during my visit on a preview day (I was trying to take photos without anyone noticing).
And here’s my haul! Three pairs of shoes for $42! Oh my!
And, while the color contrast of the rainbow backing fabric was too busy for some people, the flawless detail of the leather with it’s peakaboo cutouts has never lost it’s charm to me. I almost forgot to breath when I first saw this shoe; you just don’t forget when you have that kind of gut reaction to something. Oh, and there was a matching roll clutch…just amazing.
So, while I could never justify $700+ on sale for this particular variation, the last 3 years have seen more companies entering into the laser-cut detail arena. This, to my mind, is a good thing.
I was reminded of this shoe the other day at Nordstrom Seattle when I saw this shoe on display in the Shoe Salon area:
Another peek-a-boo, window-paned shoe with a little more color subtlety than the Cavalli. This time the cutouts are flirting with the signature Burberry plaid and successfully abstracting it in the process!
When I checked online, I found it was also available in a both peep-toe pump and a ballerina flat.
I can’t help but find the whole effect to be rather charming. If that qualifies my taste as a little over the top, I can live with that.
This is a rather embarrassing confession being that I write for a blog about shoes, but until today I had never shopped at 6pm.com. Then, while watching the Olympics and shopping for shoes (yay multitasking!), I came upon 6pm.com and the prices blew my mind! The sales are incredible, and the selection of sizes is impressive! After a few hours of shopping, I narrowed it down to my favorite shoes with amazing prices to match. And, of course, I had to share!
These heels by Faryl Robin fulfill all my 1940′s dreams!
I can always use another pair boots, especially Frye’s. The burgundy leather is so stylish!
Recently, I’ve been loving all of Michael Kors’ shoes. These red flats are so sassy!
This week I am traveling on business and wish I was packing these Cole Haan slingbacks!
And finally, the cutest pair of kitten heels courtesy of Delman.
Today is Valentine’s Day. A day which is, for many, all about romance. It is celebrated with chocolate, roses, and romantic dinners.
However, today was also the start of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. As such, I suspect there were more than a few couples who, as NASCAR fans, spent a cozy afternoon together watching today’s race. And, at an unusually long 6+ hours, that’s a lot of time to get cozy.
In honor of those dedicated women out there who spent today ensconced with their race-loving honeys, here are some of the cuter clearance-priced choices from the NASCAR shoe line that debuted a few years back (Some of the styles offered were outright hideous, which probably explains the mixed reception and limited success of this particular shoe line).
Nonetheless, these are statement shoes for the Stiletto-loving NASCAR gal.