BEHIND THE CURTAIN- Linda's blog

  • having a MOMENT

    June 1, 2016

    Everyone has their own big life moments, and on June 1st, the Stars seemed to converge to give me mine.  Sure, it's not everyone's dream to be photographed by Bill Cunningham for the New York Times Sunday Styles section, but it became mine, and the confluence of events on this day had a profound effect on my life. 

    You see, fashion has been my passion since I was a child, playing with paper dolls, sketching, and dreaming of a career as a famous designer.  Well, life is a twisting and turning road, with lots of hazards, dead ends, and big forks along the way.  Career choice #1 Teacher, because it's a good career for women (until you have your own).  Career choice #2 Interior Designer, because you can be artistic, draw, create, and ultimately materialize a functional and beautiful environment for your clients. 

     Career choice #3 Proprietress PEARL wonderful clothing, a revisit to my childhood dream of becoming a "fashionista", and creating a space where women could come together, experience a sense of community, and become more fully who they are.  You see, I believe in the power of fashion to enhance, cheer, transform, and even heal.  I believe in fashion as an art form.

     Which brings us back to June 1st, 2016, the day I turned PEARL wonderful clothing over to my associate Cristine Salzner, the day I was photographed by Bill Cunningham for the New York Times, and the day I started my new life as a lifestyle consultant.  I will still be at PEARL for you several hours a week, for personal styling, fashion chitchat, and lifestyle advice.  Career #4 is already in motion.

     All the Best,

    Linda

  • Coast to Coast

    What do wine and Handbags have in common?
    Women ADORE both.

    This spring I was able to experience these passions blending at the Historic Maidstone Inn in East Hampton, where I have been a persistent guest for the past 2 months.


     Front Porch at The Maidstone

    Everything about the Maidstone is stylish, and fun, including it's self proclaimed "Soul Manager and Passionate Foodista" Sophie Berlin. (shown here with her sweet puppy).


    Hanging at the Cozy Bar

    Sophie and her husband have brought a mid-century Scandanavian vibe to this nineteenth century inn, suffusing it with color, comfort, and pizazz. Their dining room cuisine rivals our favorite Napa Valley haunts in it's fresh and inspired offerings.

    Last month, Sophie's friend, and PR dynamo Mia Nevado teamed up for a night of socializing, shopping, and of course, drinking a little wine. It was at this fun event that  I met Joey Wolffer,
    a chic boho girl, after my own heart. Joey and her brother Marc have taken over management of the Wolffer Estate Vineyard in East Hampton. Their summer rose portfolio and Friday night parties are legendary.  And, Joey makes handbags! Her Handbags are unique, expressive, and made by hand with lots of heart.
    Linda and Joey taking a break at The Maidstone
    I couldn't resist a black suede shoulder-to-clutch
    with metallic embroidery and big tassels (so Yves St Laurent!)

    Meanwhile, back on the left coast, PEARL has two fabulous spring bags just arrived from Figue in shop. Either of these handmade totes will perk up your spring and summer basics. Come and get yours before they're gone!
    And watch for a new batch of coveted Falorni bags arriving at PEARL soon.
  • To LIVE and DYE in LA

    Those of you who know and love PEARL also know I will (and do) go to the ends of the earth to bring our clients the best of the best. This week I just needed to journey to downtown Los Angeles to preview and curate our Isabel Marant Etoile collection for fall.

    Downtown L.A., with its grit and grime, its abandoned storefronts, pawn shops, and taco stands, may seem incongruent with the luxe boho French style epitomized by Etoile. The old center of Los Angeles has always been home to the garment district, but now it is booming with hip new life. Lofts and luxe apartment buildings are sprouting out of abandoned parking lots, chic restaurants are appearing in vintage spaces, and lots of high end retail is setting up shop.

    To get the full feel of this Renaissance I camped out at the ACE Hotel, once a grand Hollywood style movie house on South Broadway. Here's a peek into my buying trip adventure.

     

    A vintage guitar and old school turn table

     

    A bath with a view (of downtown streets!)

     

    Drinks and bites up on the roof.

     

    Coming Soon from Isabel Marant Etoile

                   It's the bomb(er)            She wore Black velvet       The White (red+black) Stripes

    And MUCH MUCH MORE!

     

     

     

  • SUMMER Hamptons Style

    For decades the social swans of New York have flocked to the pricey stretch of Long Island from South Hampton to Montauk which comprises the heart of the Hamptons. From the gorgeous white sand beaches that span the coast, to the vibrant cornfields of Sagaponack, and the quaint village of Sag Harbor, the area is rich with beauty, both natural and manmade.
    There is never a dull moment from Memorial Day to Labor Day, as the afternoons are bathed in sunshine, and the nights sparkle with gala events for the well connected. The event of the season is held at Water Mill Center for the Arts, and I was lucky to attend, enjoy, and report back on the scene.
    The event at Water Mill is more than a walk in the park. It is a happening in the woods, like no other. The Center, founded in 1992 by Robert Wilson, was created as a laboratory for unique artistic expression, and it pushes the boundaries between everyday life and art.
     
    We began our experience with a coconut mango margarita, and a stroll through the manicured forest, where we encountered plenty of new and exotic species, including half naked men taking hatchets to mysterious white boxes mounted on trees. We progressed to a man perched in a treetop on a huge white cone of unknown origin (a volcano, a bird's nest?…). There were singers, dancers, and an active body painter, using his hair (and other body parts) as a paintbrush. Colorful and avant garde to say the least.
    The attendees were almost as colorful as the artists, a feast for this fashion maven's eyes. Vibrant color was in evidence throughout the crowd, a beautiful summer change from the all black wardrobes so prevalent in the city.
    The summer neutral of 2015, black and white gingham, was worn with aplomb by the most stylish attendees, including my "date", handsome Glenn Fuhrman, shown posing, and being interviewed by the style reporters of the New York times. He paired his slim Etro suit with a white polo tee, and leather trainers purchased in Venice, for a perfect casual/sophisticated balance.
    Gypset glamour and a saucy 70's vibe seemed just right for this evening. I loved wearing my ditsy print Derek Lam maxi dress, and swooned over my friend BJ Topol in her Derek Lam Fringed gown. An artistic and enchanting evening was had by all.
    Have a happy summer!
    but remember, there's no place like our Napa Valley home.
  • There Will Always be PARIS

    Seduction at Prada
    Design by: Milena Canonaro at Prada, Paris

    Sometimes the more things change the more they remain the same. A case in point; my recent buying trip to the "city of lights". I hadn't been to fashion week in Paris for a while, and as I am ever in quest of the latest and greatest, I needed to check out this most magical (and fashionable) of cities with a fresh pair of eyes.

    Paris never disappoints. Yes, there are more and more international "chain" stores, from H&M to Louis Vuitton. There is a certain sameness about their offerings. One could be in London, New York, or Hong Kong. But I never tire of visiting the Hermes flagship store on Rue de Faubourg St. Honore. From the elegant 19th century stone building, to the impeccable sales staff, and the magnificent selection of handmade leather goods, this is a retail experience like no other. If you plan ahead, you might even arrange a private visit to the vintage model of the city, clothed in leather gloves, which is secreted on the top floor.



    The genius of Miuccia Prada provided a bright and new highlight to my visit with a fantastical art installation in the Paris store. Executed by, and celebrating, the costume design of Milena Canonero (who won an oscar for her work in the Grand Budapest Hotel) the astonishing in store vignettes featured ethereal and magical scenes, merging fashion and contemporary art. A fitting venture for a designer at the peak of her powers, and committed to bringing contemporary art and culture together.



    There are other "only in Paris" experiences that set my heart aflutter. I spent a number of hours at Laduree, dining on the most delectable suppers, washed down with a nice Sancerre or Bordeaux, and topped off with the most delicate and tasty macaroons in the world. Once you are seated upstairs, and far from the clamoring line at the boulangerie below, it is like an elegant private home, each room a different salon filled with antique furniture and art. One evening I shared a few words with Brad Goreski, grabbing a quiet and civilized bite before fighting through the paparazzi to get to the next fashion event. Stay tuned Fashion Police fans.



    The shows I attend take place in rather romantic places too. One day I searched for jewelry and accessories in a large room under the great Pyramid at the Louvre. Another day the shows were in tents next to the grand Carousel de Louvre. I did find treasures that were irresistible, placing orders for three brand new jewelry lines for PEARL. The first, from Caths, Belgium will be in store in May.
    Its chunky and well priced layering pieces channel the 70's and speak of the African and Ethnic vibe in vogue for spring and summer. I also met Christophe, a frenchman who had abandoned his life in Europe to settle in Morocco, and design the most divine and cheerful scarves. The caravan of scarves will be at PEARL in July, just in time to punch up your favorite summer outfits.



    No visit to Paris is complete without tea and a little something at Le Marriage des Freres. Buddha Blend is my favorite, available right here at Dean and DeLucca. But the ambience is ONLY in PARIS!.
    xox

  • Behind The Curtain

    Mad for Max
    Perhaps the very best part of my job as proprietress and buyer for PEARL is searching out and discovering fresh new lines for our customers. There is inevitably a compelling story which emerges as we sort through the collection, and begin to
    catch the narrative. My latest fashion crush is for SUNO, a bright, bold luxe contemporary line with a modern ethnic vibe.


    I first met Max Osterweis, or at least got a glimpse of his creative prowess, long before he teamed up with Erin Beatty to design his New York based women's wear line. Max grew up in an enchanting and artistic Victorian home in San Francisco with his uber chic mother Suno (namesake for the brand) and his financier father John. Touring the boy's room, I noticed it was spare, edited, and neutral, far from the usual baby blue child's decor. The walls were painted in blackboard paint,
    so the creative Max could doodle and draw to his heart's content.



    Flashing forward to the early 21st century, Max witnessed post-election violence in Kenya as a young adult, and wanted to become more involved with the culture which had produced the vast collection of Kenyan Kangas he had been collecting for years. Erin and Max launched SUNO in 2008, and have received rave reviews for their collections ever since, including being finalists twice in the Vogue/CFDA Fashion Fund.


    SUNO utilizes the local talent of Kenya, India, Peru, and New York to create a collection featuring unique prints, textures, and embroideries. It is a perfect blend of art and craft, and represents the best in fashion with a conscience. We hope you will honor
    the creative part of you, and delight your senses with a piece or two from SUNO.


    At PEARL now, with new collections arriving monthly.

  • BEHIND THE CURTAIN

    Every fall I experience it, the BACK to SCHOOL shopping fever. There is something about the earlier, cooler evenings, and the aroma of crushed grapes that gives me an insatiable taste for new clothes that will see me through fall and winter in easy style.

    But fall also brings the busiest season of the year. Calendars are filled to overflowing, and the holidays are approaching. "Running Around" is the order of the day (no matter how much advance planning I do). So….I want to run around in STYLE, and that is just what 51 INC delivers.

    Jin Seo uses her vast training and experience (she designed for Ralph Lauren Sport and taught at FIT) to create practical and stylish pieces that stand up to the daily rigors of a busy life.

    I have my favorite go-to pieces, which span the seasons, and each collection brings new shapes and colors that magically work back with the pieces I have at home. It is so easy to put together a chic outfit that will feel cozy and comfortable all day long. You LOOK like a million dollars, and FEEL like you are wearing your most comfortable exercise clothes.
    MODERN and BRILLIANT!

    descriptions opposite photos:

    Ultra plaid crop top in indigo/cream
    Luxe sweatpant in indigo
    with Vince skate shoe

    Seamless turtle in persimmon
    Ruched legging in jet


    Napa Shrug in indigo
    Double front tee in indigo
    Skinny d-cord pant in jet
    Suede bootie in anthracite from Vince.
     

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