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Spain’s Most Famous Fashion Designers

Spain’s Most Famous Fashion Designers

I must admit, people in Spain dress with a certain elegance. They dress up to go out at night, they don’t “flaunt what they have”, they are dignified and slightly conservative. Modesty is still valued in this country. These observations are not to say that the Spaniards’ style of clothing is boring, definitely the opposite holds true.

There are many Spanish designers that have influenced the world with their wonderful renditions of a simpler way to live and wear clothing. I have listed a few of my favorites.

Mariano Fortuny was considered to be a Renaissance Man. Painter, printmaker, lighting designer, textile and fashion designer, he made the most exquisite fabrics. He was known for his pleated fabrics and especially for his Delphos gown, which became a sensation when it was introduced in 1907. It freed up women who wore corsets at the time, as it was an unconstructed, flowing design. He dipped each piece of silk or velvet fabric in dye, and then placed the fabric on porcelain rollers to develop the pleats. The dresses were twisted and then packed in small boxes to maintain their pleats. To wear a Fortuny was to wear a work of art.

Cristobal Balenciaga was born in 1895 in a Basque fishing village in Spain. His mother was a seamstress and he worked by her side, learning much of the basics. He was one of the few designers of his time who could cut, drape and design his own patterns. He was most known for his cocoon coat, the sack dress, the babydoll dress, the bubble skirt and the pillbox hat. His designs made women feel beautiful.

My absolute favorite Spanish designer is Manolo Blahnik. What girl doesn’t love shoes!!! He was born in Spain’s Canary Islands in 1942 and at a young age showed a flair for shoe design, dressing his pet dogs with shoes he designed. His hallmark is a light, feminine touch and he sketches each shoe design and creates the prototype by hand. In describing his shoes, Manolo Blahnik once said, “This is what I try to do, make women feel like princesses.” Wow, has he succeeded!

Madrid Adventure – Sorolla Museum

Madrid Adventure – Sorolla Museum

What a fabulous trip we had to Madrid and Barcelona! Over the next few weeks I will be sharing with you the highlights.

I dragged my husband to many museums in both cities (more about that later), but the Sorolla Museum, a hidden gem, was my favorite.

Joaquin Sorolla (1863-1923), was considered to be one of the major Spanish painters of his time. When he passed away, his widow, Clothilde, bequeathed his estate to the Spanish government and asked them to turn their home into a museum and to feature her husband’s work.

When you arrive, the gardens surrounding the museum are works of art. Surrounding the home are amazing greenery and flowers in the Alhambra style. When you enter the villa, one of the first things you experience is the love that Sorolla had for his wife and muse, Clothilde. Portraits abound of her and their children and there is a special temporary exhibit entitled, “Clothilde” running through October of 2012.

This painting is entitled, “Clothilde Seated on a Sofa.”

As the New York Times mentioned in 1909, during an exhibition in New York where Sorolla exhibited 356 paintings and sold 195 of these paintings before departing the United States, they named him “the Spanish painter of sunlight and color.” This characteristics of his painting style is so true. He continuously looked for new ways to paint people and objects and often painted them outdoors. When his gardens matured, he used them more and more often in his portraits of friends and family.
The following painting is entitled, “My Wife and Daughters in the Garden.”

Joaquin Sorolla ‘s work is represented in museums throughout Spain, Europe and America, including the J. Paul Getty Museum in California. If you have the opportunity, please see his amazing paintings.

This painting is entitled, “Walk on the Beach.”

Happy Mother’s Day Lorraine!

Happy Mother’s Day Lorraine!

This is a photo of my Mom, Lorraine, having more fun playing with my doll’s stroller than I did. To my mother and to all mothers: I wish you all a very Happy Mother’s Day. Love you Mom!

Mother’s Day Sale continues — take 10% off everything. Just type in SAVE10 at checkout.

The Boys and Mother’s Day Sale

The Boys and Mother’s Day Sale

 

How To Have a Great Sense of Style

How To Have a Great Sense of Style

“Fashions fade, style is eternal.” Yves Saint Laurent

Most people feel that style is only about your outward appearance. I disagree. To me, it’s about who you are and what you want to be. It is the inner you that is reflected on the outside. It’s your adventures, your highs, your lows, your life experiences. Are your born with style, or can it be learned?

1) Style is personal. What works for one person, may not work for another.

2) No trends! You don’t want to start looking like everyone else. Where is your individuality? On the other hand, don’t play it safe. Boring!

3) It’s important to buy the basics – a great bag, a little black dress, a trench coat, a great pair of jeans, a white shirt and cashmere, cashmere, cashmere (my fave)!

3) Be confident. How you feel on the inside will reflect how you look on the outside. For example, Rooney Mara dresses in a minimalist, sometimes severe way, but it works for her. Sara Jessica Parker has great style and her looks are considered striking, not pretty. She is an icon in the fashion world because she wears what she feel looks good on her and pulls it off. Remember how Manolo Blahnik shoes took off because SJP wore them on “Sex and the City.”

4) Mix it up. Blend high and low. Mix different types of styles together, such as classic with modern. Be imperfect.

5) Don’t forget to accessorize. A lovely pair of earrings or a chunky bracelet, something vintage perhaps.

6) Find clothes that make you feel elegant and effortless.

7) Above all else, show your spirit!

Spring Trend – Cameos

Spring Trend – Cameos

Arm Candy

Arm Candy

Spring is supposedly around the corner (not in Massachusetts, but who am I to complain about a little snow). With spring comes sleeveless attire, or 3/4 length sleeves or short sleeves, or anything but heavy sweaters, and of course, lots of skin!

I am ready. Ready for Arm Candy! Big chunky bracelets, small, delicate bracelets, cuffs, clampers, charm bracelets, bangle bracelets, snake bracelets, cameo bracelets, scarab bracelets, pearl bracelets. Vintage, modernist, antique – you name it and it’s going to be on my arm this spring.

The fun part of arm candy is the stacking and mixing. Don’t be afraid ladies! Remember, pop on a dress, add a pair of strappy sandals and don’t forget the arm candy.

Holliston, MA Antiques Show

Holliston, MA Antiques Show

Please join us at the Holliston, MA Antiques Show this Saturday and Sunday, February 25th & 26th at the Holliston High School Gym. Hours are: Saturday, 10am to 5pm and Sunday, 11AM to 5pm. The address is: 370 Hollis Street, Holliston, MA 01746.

I have many new and unusual pieces of jewelry.
Looking forward to see you!

Vintage & Antique Jewelry Valentine’s Day Show

Vintage & Antique Jewelry Valentine’s Day Show

Please join us at Beacon Hill Athletic Club in Wellesley, MA on Thursday, February 9th between 8am and 11:30am. We will be showcasing fabulous vintage and antique jewelry. Treat yourself this Valentine’s Day.
Hope to see you there!

Spring Jewelry Trends 2012

Spring Jewelry Trends 2012

2) Chunky Cocktail Rings – The bigger the better.

3) The Flapper Era – The Great Gatsby, starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Carey Mulligan will be released in 2012. Fashion designers have been showing the fringed flapper dresses for spring. Too much of a coincidence? I think not.

4) Fringe – These tassel-like chains were seen on handbags, belts and jewelry. Fringe was also attributed to the Jazz Age, which is popular for 2012.

5) “Small” Chandelier Earrings – Small versions of the chandelier earrings are back. More modestly sized, these earrings are shorter and not the shoulder dusting variety, but still make a fabulous statement.

6) Tangerine Tango – Pantone’s 2012 color of the year, you will be seeing a lot of orange this spring.

I will be bringing you updates throughout the late winter and spring season. So, stay tuned because I will be adding to my list and if you have any thoughts about the trends or want to add your opinion, please do so. I look forward to hearing from you.