Discovered: GAIA

These days, more than ever, the pace of fashion can be almost exhausting. A single style, brand or trend can feel tired after a month thanks to an onslaught of photos in our feed. Because of this it is even more refreshing to discover a brand that feels completely fresh, positive, and slightly undiscovered.

I felt this flash of excitement when I recently discovered GAIA from Molly and Sally. I was immediately attracted to the brand’s story of empowering resettled refugee women in the Dallas area. An added bonus is the entire brand team looks to be made of passionate and smart women. Icing on the cake? The brand’s products feel unique and handmade without looking crafty.

flower-crown

This is the perfect day clutch with just enough color and print.

It took us nearly 4 months to finally find throw pillows for our living room. These are definitely a splurge, but they are beautiful and support a great cause.

The super oversized shape of this bag feels fun and dramatic.

For someone whose tote bag becomes a bottomless pit of receipts and chapstick, pouches can be a game changer. Also, this is the best color combo.

Discovered: Tricky Gift Guide

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I am not doing a full gift guide this year because, let’s be honest, I’ve barely started shopping. Maybe we’ll do a last minute list mid-month? Either way, while online browsing yesterday, I did come across one gift solution for all of those super-tricky-giftees this season. For me these include most of the guys in my life. Aren’t they always the hardest to shop for me? I think it is mostly due to the fact that they don’t always love clothing presents, which are my favorite gift go-tos. With this in mind I present…Uncommon Goods. This online shop is an absolute treasure chest of unusual presents for the quirky, off-beat, or just hard to shop for on your list. From indulgent ingredients to personal bar pieces and DIY sets I could spend hours adding to cart. Here are a few of my current front runners:

Perfect for… in-laws: These wine scented soaps are a quirky twist on a traditional hostess gift and would be beautiful in a guest bathroom.

Perfect for… your chef aunt: My mom’s cookbooks are caked in dough with pages constantly getting stuck together. Whether your cook uses books or an iPad this stand is pretty enough to leave out on the island.

Perfect for … your 20 something brother: My sister gave my dad a home brewing kit one year and he loved it. This IPA version is great for your hop loving brother.

Perfect for … your bourbon-loving beau: This stone drink dispenser is such a cool idea and would actually look attractive on your shared bar.

Perfect for… you tween cousin: DIY lip balm kit? I would have gone nuts for this as an early teen.

Perfect for…your college bound sibling: When your phone is literally docked in a larger phone they have no excuse not to phone home.

Perfect for… your foodie uncle: We recently added some black and grey salt to our spice cabinet and they make a simple weeknight salad feel so much fancier. Any foodie would love a full set of salty options.

Discovered: Gray Malin

Discovered is a series capturing new to me findings in fashion, food, beauty, and the fun things of life. They may be new, or they may just be new to me (and maybe you.)

Art really is the finishing touch to any room, in particular hanging wall art. While I love adding strange trinkets to our home (like a paper mache deer head) I’m pretty particular about photos, paintings, or prints that adorn our walls. I think this was instilled in me by my parents who have always decorated their home with art that was purchased on a trip, or that captures a special place, etc. It’s a practice that I’ve tried to keep in our home as well. This doesn’t mean they have to be ridiculously expensive or gut wrenchingly emotional. Rather I’ve found that a photo that evokes a great day on the beach, a beautiful walk, or the art fair where you had the most delicious chicken satay simply brings more joy when you catch it out of the corner of your eye than a random flower purchased at the mall.

I recently discovered Gray Malin’s work through Erin’s blog, and I immediately felt this sense of connection. Firstly, the beach is without a doubt my happy place. Add to that the fact that Gray captures specific beaches that I happen to love and have great memories of, and it’s a match made in stunningly colorful heaven.

I particularly love the people dotted images like this one of Manly Beach (very near where we spent four years in Sydney.)

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Cinque Terre is jaw droppingly gorgeous, and we had a pretty hilarious vacation here during our time in Europe.

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These lounge chairs in Santorini would take me back to our honeymoon in a heartbeat.

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P.S I love when people are flat out over the moon about their success, so I loved this Instagram – Congratulations Gray!

Discovered: PRIMARY

Discovered is a series capturing new to me findings in fashion, food, beauty, or the fun niceties of life. They may be new, or they may just be new to me (and maybe you.)

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This is really a lesson in rediscovery. I first came across PRIMARY on The Glamourai when she began styling their photo shoots years ago. As with many of the shoots Kelly styles, the lookbook was a cool mix of sophisticated edge, and led me to spend a good deal of time perusing their site. However, due primarily (no pun intended) to the price, I left the site as a source of inspiration rather than shopping.

Last week something led me to check out the site again, and I was pleasantly surprised by a series of updates. The first, and most noticeable change, is that the price of their pieces have dropped dramatically.  There are more than a few unique easily mixable pieces falling under the $150 mark. After noticing this I quickly hopped over to the about page to see what had changed, hoping it was not a shift toward lower quality fabrics and questionable manufacturing. What I found instead was a shift in the brand’s thinking of retail, how they would reach their consumer, and how their own fashion calendar would stand. In their own words…

The new PRIMARYNY.COM is here!  By Spring of 2014 we shipped our last apparel wholesale delivery.  By no longer wholesaling our apparel line we have effectively cut-out the middle man.  What does that mean for you? Higher quality fabrics, better garment construction through our all-USA manufacturing ( 80% is produced in New York ), much lower prices since there’s no retail markup, and monthly fashion editorials; that you can see now / wear now.  No more 6 months waiting for our collection to hit stores.  We are designing in-season, and producing small batches at our local factory in New York.  We will also begin to slowly add new designers to our shop this Fall; designers that excel in their specific category for a broader scope of the PRIMARY lifestyle; all united by aesthetic. 

Since working for Marla Cielo I am completely fascinated by local manufacturing and the New York garment district. Plus, although I may day dream seasons ahead, I am definitely of the buy now / wear now mindset! A few of the pieces that grabbed my current fall shopping brain were this semi sheer lace set, an ultra cool pencil skirt, and the pants that may convince me to give harem pants a whirl (love!)