We’re loving Janie Bryant’s 1960s-inspired shoe collection for Shoes of Prey–that’s Emmy-winning Janie Bryant, costume designer for Mad Men. And Shoes of Prey, for the uninitiated, is the Australian brand where all the shoes are customizable by height, heel type and color.
Currently the Janie Bryant X Shoes of Prey collection is available in three physical Nordstrom locations–Bellevue, WA; Fashion Island, CA; San Francisco Centre, CA–with three more to come by the end of 2015: Paramus, NJ; Pentagon City, VA; and Oakbrook, IL.
We spoke with Bryant on the phone about the inspiration behind her collection, about what was considered vintage cool in the 1960s–and about this rad, old band she’s into called The Cake.
[We also spoke to Bryant about Mad Men. Read that part of the interview here.]
For adventure-ready sunglasses, we’re loving the TOMS Traveler: clean design, bendable SOLAFLEX construction. Throw them in your bag and speed off into the horizon, no hard protective case necessary.
Plus, built into every purchase is the brand’s famous one-for-one philanthropy.
Just like how buying a pair of TOMS shoes helps a person in need, TOMS ensures each pair of sunglasses sold results in sight-giving assistance to a different person who could use help paying for glasses or ocular medical attention.
We spoke to travel hounds and witnesses to TOMS’ good works John Whitledge, creative director and designer for TOMS eyewear, and Darin Dennee, TOMS eyewear director. They gave us insights (pun intended) into TOMS’ programs in Paraguay, which islands they’re surfing next and where to go when you’re in Shanghai.
And they confirmed the virtual unbreakability of these shades.
Shop: TOMS sunglasses
Here we have a little behind-the-scenes action from the photo shoot for Magic Hour, our new Pop-In@Nordstrom. For the uninitiated, Pop-Ins are recurring boutiques curated by our director of creative projects, Olivia Kim, which exist in select physical Nordstrom locations and, of course, online.
Magic Hour refers to the time at a music festival when the sun sets and tame gives way to turnt. Snapshots and a detailed statement from Olivia below.
Shop: Magic Hour Pop-In@Nordstrom
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.