September 22, 2014

Clutch Move: Custom, Limited Edition Bags by BowensBergeron

The BowensBergeron Clutch Collection is just about everything we’d want an independent fashion line to be: each bag is made of eco-friendly materials and recycled wood in the U.S.A. in signed, numbered limited editions of 25. Designed by Tamara S. Bowens and handcrafted by A. Ray Bergeron, the clutches are custom made and take up to a month to produce. The result is streamlined style that pairs an earth-friendly ethos with modern, minimalist panache.

Available at Circle & Square, the bags ($750-$2,750) aren’t cheap, but they’re like little works of art that you can carry out on your adventures for many seasons ahead, thanks to their careful construction. We’re particularly enamored of the simply chic Jetsetter, sleek and curvy Aficionada and the architectural Trendsetter. Each features a wooden exterior, magnetic clasp and contrasting lining.

To view more of the BowensBurgeron clutch collection and scope fresh independent style by emerging artists and designers, visit Circle and Square online or in person at the Presidio Heights showroom (344 Presidio Ave., SF.).

***

This sponsored style series brought to you by Circle & Square, a San Francisco boutique and showroom offering the best in independent design and accessories from designers and artisans around the globe.

 

Fringe Festival: Triian Collection’s Modern Designs with a Tribal Twist

Cobra Head Necklace by Triian

Meteorite Ring by Triian

Silver Wing Necklace by Triian

Modern, hip accessories with a decidedly tribal twist? Why yes, we don’t mind if we do. A place to scope just that: the Triian collection by Lifetime’s Project Accessory winner Brian Burkhardt and Tricia Brookbank. Featuring hand-cast resin, Swarovski crystals and hand-cut leather, Triian pieces can take up to 10 days to create from start to finish.

Available at Circle & Square, the design duo’s jewelry is made in Burkhardt and Brookbank’s Miami studio and channels their equal emphasis on craft and style. Show-stoppers include the Cobra Head Necklace made of handmade resin snake head and alligator teeth adorned with Lavender crystals, finger baubles such as the luxe bohemian Meteorite ring and the Silver Wing Necklace, whose asymmetrical fringe design features a cascade of hand-cut leather strips in brown, tan and silver.

Add chunky bracelets, edgy chic earrings and pendants, and it’s a collection of independently designed accessories that stands out from the masses, but remains current – both qualities that helped Burkhardt achieve his television victory, which included a chance to design a capsule collection for Kenneth Cole.

To view more of the Triian collection and discover fresh independent style by emerging artists and designers, visit Circle and Square online or in person at the Presidio Heights showroom (344 Presidio Ave., SF.).

***

This sponsored style series brought to you by Circle & Square, a San Francisco boutique and showroom offering the best in independent design and accessories from designers and artisans around the globe.

Wood You Look: Sabi Collection’s Limited Edition Necklaces

We’re big believers in opposites attracting and more than a little in favor of bohemian earthiness mixed with a healthy dose of glam. So you’ll understand in an instant why we were taken in a glance by the Sabi Collection, a line of jewelery made by artist Jill McKeown using found wood pieces from specific locations and mixed with metals and chains.

Available at Circle & Square, necklaces ($70-$120) are available in series that carry the names of places where their materials were found. We’re especially enamored of the Bufalo 7, which hails from Buffalo, NY, for its clean shape and high-shine brass chain accent, as well as the dark imperfection of the Jersey Wood necklace and the glossy metallic sheen of the Boca Wood pendant.

A quietly luxe twist on the natural world, McKeown’s necklaces are the result of her science-meets-design background bolstered by degrees in both architecture and biology.

To view more of her work and scope fresh independent style by emerging artists and designers, visit Circle and Square online or in person at the Presidio Heights showroom (344 Presidio Ave., SF.).

***

This sponsored style series brought to you by Circle & Square, a San Francisco boutique and showroom offering the best in independent design and accessories from designers and artisans around the globe.

Look Different: The Perfect Transition-to-Fall Clutch

Transitioning to fall doesn’t have to mean a whole new wardrobe (in our dreams). Instead, stepping stylishly into the season ahead can be as seamless as finding an accessory that pops, but works with both your warm weather wear and the longer hemlines on the horizon. For that, we love the Willow Clutch by Bryna, an independent label with San Francisco roots.

Available at Circle & Square, this flat envelope clutch amps up its summery, woven texture by rendering it in cowhide and embossed ostrich accents perfectly in line with fall’s emphasis on hints of leather. With a roomy interior capable of handling the essentials for a night out during the busy months leading up to the holidays and an interior zip pocket, this is a bag that’s both chic and functional. The detailed construction and neutral hues dress this bag up enough to carry a polished jeans and t-shirt look or complement your next little black dress adventure.

For more independent style by emerging artists and designers from around the globe, visit Circle and Square online or in person at the Presidio Heights showroom (344 Presidio Ave., SF.).

***

This sponsored style series brought to you by Circle & Square, a San Francisco boutique and showroom offering the best in independent design and accessories from designers and artisans around the globe.

Jacamo: An Online Shopping Hub for Big Men’s Sizes

From the Flintoff By Jacamo collection (photo courtesy Jacamo)

For the variety of bodies on the planet, it’s amazing how limited the sizes are in retail stores. Head out shopping for men’s jeans, as I did with my husband over the weekend in San Francisco’s Hayes Valley, and you’ll be hard-pressed to find many options over size 32.

For women, the situation is far worse. Finding pants in a mainstream store that fit if you’re extra tall or larger than size 10 is much harder than finding an acceptable pair in sizes 4-8. But there are many more women who are size 12 and up. What gives? None of it makes any logical sense.

Given the number of people who need plus-size and big-and-tall clothing, there should be a much wider variety of options out there – and they should be easily accessible to shoppers. That’s just one of the very many, many things I love about shopping from independent sources: many designers are willing to custom make or custom tailor clothing to fit their customers’ preferences. But very few people can afford an entirely custom wardrobe.

As someone who thinks that shopping for sizes outside the 2-10 range should be made much easier on consumers (and much more fashionable, at that), I’m happy to have UK-based big men’s shop Jacamo as a supporter of SF Indie Fashion. While we’re working on helping to democratize fashion by putting a spotlight on small, independent designers, this online retailer is giving big and tall guys fresh, affordable, on-trend options for both daytime casual and professional wear.

They’re two different approaches to fashion democracy, but in the end, both mean more options for more people – not to mention happier shoppers.

And one last thing: if you’re new to Jacamo, the company will give you 20 percent off your first order on the day of your first visit to the web site.

***

This is a post sponsored by an SF Indie Fashion promotional partner. We love our sponsors and hope you will, too. They make it possible for us to keep bringing you news and features about San Francisco’s independent fashion community, designers and upcoming events.