Thursday, April 26, 2007

Passion for Fashion

I attended Shanel Regier's Fall 2007 fashion show in Milwaukee this past weekend. The crowd was young, well dressed and the drinks were flowing. And once again, the show didn’t disappoint. The large, open hall had a runway right down the middle of the room and models could be seen up close strutting their stuff. Regier’s chosen color scheme was more subdued and reflected chillier temps: black, brown, taupe, mint green and cream. Once again, Regier incorporated ruffles (one of her favorite design elements to use) and fitted silhouettes, but inserted a few flowy, oversized shapes too. Looks ranged from a swingy mint-green overcoat to a seductive (and see-through) black lace top with black silk pants. My show favorites included the swingy overcoat, a sweet tailored shirtdress with a flounce on the bottom and the beautiful one-of-a-kind dresses that opened the show constructed of brilliant green and brown silk. A few of Regier’s corset tops were even spotted on audience members who are no doubt loyal fans of the designer.

Get the Guide

Our annual City Guide just came out. This year’s “Ultimate Guide” focuses on food, drink, entertainment and more. But since this is a shopping blog, I wanted to point out to readers that the 2006 City Guide focused on “47 Ways to Shop Local” written by yours truly. I discuss all kinds of stores ranging from foodie favorites to a swank stationery shop. I think the guide is still useful, timely and relevant to our shopping scene here in Madison. Click HERE to read last year’s City Guide.

Made With Love

I stopped in at J. Kinney the other day and spotted some beautiful handmade jewelry near the register. The five artists’ work they sell (one of which is local) range from ribbon bracelets adorned with vintage buttons and beads to sleek disc earrings rimmed in gold with vivid capiz shell centers. There were also some cute chunky rings decorated with vintage accoutrements and pins made out of actual buttons. The various brands even have some interesting backgrounds. Kinney says the capiz shells used in the Origin jewelry are cultivated in the Phillipines. The Firefly brand jewelry is designed in L.A. and additional work is done in Guatemala where the workshop employs fair trade practices. Elizabeth Markey is a local jewelry maker and sells the adorable ribbon bracelets. Check out these brands: Elements by Jill Schwartz, Lisa Tolland, Firefly, Origin, Katie Bird and Elizabeth Markey.
Also check out J. Kinney’s Caldrea sale. These earth-friendly cleaning products smell great and have beautiful packaging. Pick up a sample from the store, use it, then bring back the package to receive fifteen percent off of one Caldrea product, twenty percent off two and twenty-five percent off three or more. Without the package customers still get ten percent off Caldrea products. Sale runs through April.
J. Kinney, 1835 Monroe St., 255-7500. Click here for JKinney's website

Monday, April 16, 2007

We Did It!

This month’s wedding photo shoot turned out spectacularly, and I hope you think so too. This endeavor was months in the making, and we can’t be more pleased with how it turned out. Once again, many, many thanks to John Urban (photography), Tim Burton (Mad Mag’s art director), MMoCA and Fresco, “I Do” Cakes by Betty, Studio Bloom (flowers), Premiere Couture (our lovely dresses and tuxedos), ANiU Salon Spa & Yoga (hair and makeup), our lovely models Annie Nelson, Joe Thomas, Abby Simmons and Paul Standring, and Mad Mag interns Abby and Jessica. Click HERE to see our exclusive behind-the-scenes video of our photo shoot at MMoCA. Hear what I have to say about the planning of the shoot, as well as hear our models’ take.

My Kind of Market

I’m also looking forward to a new store opening on Willy Street: MoCo Market. The concept sounds fun: a hip, modern store that will peddle food, wine, beer and specialty food. The location and idea sound perfect for this area, which is chock-full of shops and restaurants that cater to very specific clientele, namely customers who desire cuisine and products that can’t be found elsewhere in the city. For example, Pick More Daisies has a hippie-ish vibe and offers new and used gifts and housewares in a relaxed setting; RP’s Pasta sells their yummy homemade pasta to take home as well as eat on the spot at their Fork and Spoon CafĂ©; heck, there’s even Hempen Goods if you’re into that kind of thing. This is a great shopping area that really offers shops off of the beaten path, and MoCo Market sounds like it will be a positive addition. Click HERE for MoCo Market

A Shanel of a Different Name

I’m getting excited for Shanel Regier’s fashion show on April 21st in Milwaukee. I first became interested in the Milwaukee-based designer when I attended her March 2006 “Parisian Roots” show. The show featured, among other things, live music, fashion and fanciful Milwaukee Ballet dancers that danced interludes between collections. This year’s show will be held at Turner Hall, which holds twice the capacity and promises much of the same entertainment. There will be a DJ, cash bar, Design Within Reach lounge area, fashion installation, and of course, a runway show. Check out the after-party at zenden, the show’s sponsor, in the new InterContinental Milwaukee hotel.
Regier, 25, puts her stamp on her sexy, one-of-a-kind Victorian pieces with corsets, skirts and fitted jackets constructed out of heavy upholstery fabric. Her background in sculpture is obvious, and Regier likes to emphasize womanly curves.
The young designer has also garnered mentions in Women’s Wear Daily, the foremost authority on fashion trends, as well as the Chicago Tribune, the Chicago Sun-Times and Chicago Magazine.
For now, Regier is primed for her next challenge: her show.
“It’s satisfying for me as an artist. Every time I do a show, I push myself to do something new.”
Hope to see you at the show!

Click HERE to read the profile on Shanel in Madison Magazine’s April 2007 issue.

Find Shanel Regier’s pieces in Madison at Lady Moxie, 6706 Odana Rd. 826-4268

Shanel Regier Fall 2007 Collection, April 21st, doors open 7 p.m., show starts at 8:15 p.m. Historic Turner Ballroom, 1034 N. 4th St., Milwaukee. Tickets: