Converse Extra Special Value
Synthetic polymer paint on canvas
116 x 180 inches
Check out Converse Extra Special Value, above. That’s artwork featuring classic Converse All Stars by the late pop master Andy Warhol, mimicking his own early work in advertising. As an illustrator and graphic designer, Warhol sometimes drew shoes for ads. As an artist, he brought elements of ads into his pieces shown in galleries and museums, challenging people to see them in a different light.
If that were the only link, Converse’s new Chuck Taylor All Star Andy Warhol Collection sneakers would make sense by themselves. But it gets deeper. Adorned with Warhol’s beloved Campbell’s Soup cans, the Converse X Warhol sneakers are a swirl of classic American products-for-the-people.
In conversation with Carrie Dedon, assistant curator at Seattle Art Museum, we go even further. Among other things, we learn from Dedon that Warhol definitely saw himself as a product, and we find out what his exaltation of logo design had to do with his concept of democracy.
Images courtesy The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and Converse
Easy. No question. Can they make these harder, please?
The brand new fringe-front boots from Hunter take the fever for vintage-riffing, decorative edging out in the elements where, we have to assume, they help make the most of stomping in puddles and powering through urban snow drifts. Pair them with a ’20s frock or a pair of skinnies—either way, you’re vibing with Atlantic City showbiz hopefuls and aristocratic ice queens, and showing the weather who’s boss.
Shop: Hunter boots
The fashion world was rocked by the recent news of shoe designer and Nine West cofounder Vince Camuto’s death. Today, and going forward, Nordstrom remembers the man and his work.
“Many of us have had the opportunity to work with Vince over the years and we all feel fortunate to have known a true icon in the industry. He was an amazing partner to Nordstrom and was honored with our Partners in Excellence award in 2012. There are a couple things that come to mind when I think about Vince. He firmly believed that the people were the most important factor in building a successful business. He had a tremendous passion for helping his team to learn, grow and achieve their full potential.” —Scott Meden, General Merchandise Manager, Shoes, in an email to his team.
“What a great loss to our industry.Vince put the customer first and he valued his team and had great humility. He was a teacher and a mentor.” —Tacey Powers, Women’s Shoes Buyer
“We have lost a special person within the footwear industry. He was as talented a person as I’ve had the good fortune of getting to know. Interestingly, as each year passed he literally got more enthusiastic about the customer and the business. He loved being on the floor, talking to the customer, and because of his rich background and innate skills, he instinctively—season after season—came up with great product. We would talk every couple of months and I always got a huge lift from being on the receiving end of his infectious spirit for the business. Our family and team extend our thoughts and prayers to Vince’s family and co-workers.” —Blake Nordstrom, President, Nordstrom Inc. (in Footwear News)
“Something I admired the most is his enthusiasm for the business. He was really into the business. He was engaged and always strived to do more and to do better.” —Pete Nordstrom, President of Merchandising (in WWD)
L-R: Joan Rivers, Donald Trump, Ivanka Trump, Tacey Powers; image courtesy NBC
On Monday, January 19, Nordstrom’s Tacey Powers featured on NBC’s Celebrity Apprentice alongside the late Joan Rivers, Donald Trump and Ivanka Trump. Tacey is our VP Divisional Merchandising Manager of shoes and was a guest judge on the episode.
Below, see behind the scenes of the episode and read a Q&A with Ivanka Trump–that’s fashion entrepreneur Ivanka Trump, who happens to have an exclusive-to-Nordstrom shoe –about what Tacey brought to the episode, favorite wintertime travel destinations, and more.
Remember that one awards show last weekend? Us too. One red carpet image was burned into our brains: Jennifer Lopez–the forever-awesome J. Lo–in our Stuart Weitzman NUDIST sandal. Have you seen a sexier instep?
The shoe is killer, for sure, but it’s also all about J.Lo’s mad skills in putting it out there. To wrap our heads around this red carpet move, we talked to a pack of Nordstrom experts—Art Director Brett Wiseman, Photographer Barb Penoyar, Stylist Ricardo Martines and Model Andrew Shaw—about posing, and specifically, posing tips that we can use IRL, too.
Here’s how you can bend it like this babe:
-Angles are your friend. Turn your body just a bit to the side to appear trimmer.
-Always have a thought in your head, connect with the camera, smile with your eyes.
-Stand up straight, no slouching!
-In a group be sure you can see the camera. If you can’t see the camera the camera can’t see you.
-Push your chin just slightly towards the camera to create a clean jaw line.
-Practice! A couple of minutes in the mirror can teach you your best angles!
L-R: “Lance’s mom” (Gretchen Corbett), “Lance’s mom’s boyfriend” (Justin Long), “Lance” (Carrie Brownstein) and “Nina” (Fred Armisen); image courtesy Portlandia from “The Fiancée” episode
As a business which started in the #upperleft corner of these United States, we at Nordstrom have a special appreciation for IFC’s Portlandia. That would be the sketch comedy TV show where stars Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein basically teach a master class in how to mock life in Portland, OR. It’s all there: the passive-aggressiveness, the self-righteous savior complex, the questionable style choices. And yet the show, currently in its fifth season, is a love-letter.
“The Fiancée” episode aired Thursday, Jan. 15, and was partially filmed at the Lloyd Center Nordstrom. (That location is now closed, with every employee who wished to be relocated given a new home at a nearby Nordstrom). Key scenes in the episode occur at Nordstrom and feature Armisen’s character Nina, whose make-up is done by Jessica Needham and whose overall style is created by her sister, two-time Emmy-winner Amanda Needham.
We spoke with the sisters while the two native Portlanders sat in their car in deadlocked traffic. Topics discussed: Nina, Portlandia and good versus bad style.
As shoe styles from the resort season move over to make room for new spring arrivals—like these from Prada, the Alexander McQueen double-strap, Vince’s entire new suite and these Loeffler Randall slides (insert hearts-for-eyes emoji)—we’re really feeling the whole genre-mashing sportif angle. You know: socks and sandals all day long, and sneakers accessorized with anklets and slouchy knee-highs.
It works well with our Wellness Realness focus too, so we decided to hit pause on cold-weather boots and take a spin through a selection of street style snaps from our girl Crystal Nicodemus to examine how fashion’s best and brightest rock the look.
You think you really know someone … and then … well, then you realize you don’t know them at all; you’ve simply admired them from afar. That’s what happens to us, anyway—until we get our one shot at gathering three actual knowable things about fashion’s favorite icons.
The Thread: Let’s go back in time. What was the feeling you had when you started the resort collection, and what story did you hope to pass on?
Christian Louboutin: I admire beauty, grace and fairytale love. The dream is a major factor in my language of design.
What are you waiting to read?
I love reading Haruki Murakami. I hope to read his latest on my next holiday.
What’s for dinner?
I adore Indian food. My favorite meal is chicken tandoori and I love cheese naan!
SHOP: Christian Louboutin
Studies show shopping is at least 12 times more fun en masse. Our Try This On series is all about the camaraderie of sartorial group projects.
A.L.C. lace crop top | ASTR textured skirt | SJP leather pumps | Shiraleah embellished wool clutch
Of all celebrated occasions and festive dates, New Year’s Eve expects the most out of your outfit. Especially if you’re going to be in New York City, and especially if you’re writer/singer/style icon Hollis Wong-Wear.
No, the Seattle-based GRAMMY nominee and Macklemore collaborator isn’t performing in the final moments of 2014—or at least there are no plans for such a thing as of yet. But wouldn’t “always be prepared—and dressed!—for anything” be a good New Year’s resolution? And one to enact early? We took Wong-Wear into the dressing rooms of our Downtown Seattle store to dial in three versions of ready-to-go ready-to-wear to kick off 2015.
There’s something you need to know about Balenciaga shoes: they’re live on Nordstrom.com and in select stores as of … now.
There’s something else you should know: This is an exciting time for footwear within the already very exciting brand. For years, under Nicolas Ghesquière, shoes were outsourced to Pierre Hardy. Now that Alexander Wang is at the helm, everything from heels to boots to sneakers happens in-house.
Here’s to Wang and company owning it, and, perhaps, you owning a pair or two, also.
SHOP: Balenciaga Shoes for Women | Balenciaga | Women’s Designer Shoes