Tag Archives: Lace

Intimate Insider: Sonata Lingerie Embraces the Belle Epoque

20 Jun

Using sheer, high-end laces, satin, silk chiffons and Swarovski crystals, designer Sonata Rapalyte has created multiple award-winning collections.  If you’re familiar with Sonata Lingerie, you have likely seen one of her luxurious lace bodysuits which Sonata says “is destined to adorn the bodies of those who want to be subtly reminded that they are deserving of only the very best.”  Sonata’s latest collection, ‘Belle Epoque’, is available in stores now and Sonata is excited to announce the launch of her recently re-designed website www.sonata-lingerie.com.  Intrigued by Sonata’s background and impressed by her hand-made designs, I interviewed her to get an intimate look at the designer behind the brand….

BraLaMode: What inspires you most?

Sonata: I love fashion.  I love good shoes.  Wearing good lingerie gives you the same feeling as wearing good shoes.  Wearing good lingerie makes a woman feel confident, attractive, and it gives them a real positive lift throughout the day.

BraLaMode: What did you do before starting your brand?  How did you get started?

Sonata: I moved to London quite quickly and started working for the uber-trendy lingerie designer Damaris.  I worked with Damaris as a seamstress and technical designer during the launch of her brand and throughout the early years.  However, I started to want to make my own designs.  My love for travel as well as my passion for lingerie then inspired me to move to the Sardinian coast for a while.  I ended up designing my entire first collection there.  I was surrounded by the unmistakable and breathtaking beauty on the island!  It was so inspirational.  I used to take a boat and sail out to the middle of the ocean, sit in the sun with the breeze and the waves, and just design.

BraLaMode: What’s the number one thing that differentiates you from other brands?

Sonata: It is a high-end lingerie line due to the quality fabrics and handmade aspects of the designs.  Sonata Lingerie is designed with fabulous women in mind everywhere.  I hate to think I have only one type of lady buying my designs.  I hope to inspire all ages from 18 to 80!  I just want to make women feel pretty, confident and sexy.  When you wear amazing lingerie, you feel amazing.  Basically, if I’ve achieved you feeling fabulous, then I’m happy with that.

BraLaMode: Where do you hope to be in 5 years?

Sonata: Sonata lingerie will take over the world!

BraLaMode: Tell me something interesting about you that isn’t lingerie related.

Sonata: My passion is cooking.  I always have my girlfriends around for dinner to try new types of foods or dishes.  We talk, we laugh, and they love my cooking!

Sonata Lingerie is available at www.bellabellaboutique.com.

Resources:

www.sonata-lingerie.com

@SonataLingerie

Happy Anniversary: Hanky Panky’s 25th “Anna-ver-Sui” Celebration

6 Oct

To celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the Hanky Panky Original Rise Thong (Style # 4811), the company hosted an Event on Tuesday night at the downtown event space simply known as “91” (located at 91 Horatio Street in the West Village).  The open space was converted into a Hanky Panky Wonderland for the Silver Jubilee, replete with Hanky Panky Thongs galore and an ample supply of sugary sweet treats including mini cupcakes from NYC’s Baked by Melissa.

The event, which was hosted by Hanky Panky founders Gale Epstein and Lida Orzeck, launched Hanky Panky’s latest limited edition collection developed in collaboration with designer Anna Sui and which features the “Anna-ver-Sui” floral print.  Sales of this collection will benefit Fashion Targets Breast Cancer, an international charitable initiative of the Council of Fashion Designers of America.  The limited edition collection is available at HankyPanky.com.

Hanky Panky Thong Bouquet

The celebration in honor of the World’s Most Comfortable Thong was a real blow out bash!  The main space was sparsely decorated with white and Lucite furniture providing plenty of room for guests to mingle while sipping Skyy Vodka custom cocktails such as the Hanky Panky Lemonade, Anna Sweet Cosmo or the Racey Lacey Fizz.  The adjoining room showcased Hanky Panky’s upcoming Spring 2012 collection.  You can expect to see neon brights in stores for Spring as well as printed lace styles in gingham, animal, paisley, bold floral, and multi-color psychedelic prints.  I am particularly excited about the new modal fabric daywear pieces they are introducing for Spring ’12. 

Hanky Panky's Spring 2012 Collection

The highlight of the event was the clever “photo opportunity” which allowed guests to express their creativity….  Models wearing the “Anna-ver-Sui” print Cami and Chemise posed with guests in a faux bed including plush pillows and comforter.  Guests could choose from an assortment of props including yards of Hanky Panky galloon lace, eye masks, teddy bears, books, fuzzy handcuffs, and of course, Hanky Panky Thongs (which ended up being worn in very innovative ways)!

The celebration honoring 25 years of legendary style and revolutionary comfort was a huge success….  The Hanky Panky brand is synonymous with style, innovation, quality, comfort, and fit.  These ideals were reflected in the details of the event.  And the company’s commitment to donate a portion of the proceeds of their limited edition “Anna-ver-Sui” collection to Fashion Targets Breast Cancer comes as no surprise.  Hanky Panky is no stranger to supporting social issues such as the environment and sustainability, and their dedication to sourcing and manufacturing in the USA is unrivaled.

Hanky Panky Founders Lida Orzeck and Gale Epstein celebrate with Hanky Panky Models wearing the limited edition "Anna-ver-Sui" print

Congrats to Gale and Lida for creating an American Icon….  Many have tried to copy the Hanky Panky Thong….  But there is only one “Original.”

About Hanky Panky

In 1977, as a birthday gift for her friend, Lida Orzeck, designer Gale Epstein created a hand-made lingerie set crafted out of embroidered handkerchiefs. Inspired by this ingenious concept, the friends soon became business partners and named their new company after the original design—Hanky Panky.

With the inception of the hanky set in the seventies to the thongs of today, Hanky Panky continues to influence trends in lingerie and sleepwear. Hanky Panky prides themselves on providing brilliant solutions for fashion fit issues by remaining dedicated to innovative design, comfort, quality, and US production.

Each garment is made from the finest fabrics, creating supple collections season after season.  Blending traditional with modern glam looks, Hanky Panky regularly appears in magazines and is a fashion favorite of countless celebrities.

In 1986, the first 4811 Original Rise thong was designed in NYC by Gale Epstein, Hanky Panky’s Creative Director. Since then, the 4811 and its younger sister, the 4911 Low Rise thong, have become classics. Many women wear these styles exclusively and wouldn’t dream of wearing any other undies.

Designer Profile: Kriss Soonik Loungerie

5 Oct

I was fortunate enough to connect with Designer Kriss Soonik while she was in New York City for Fashion Week early last month.  The Estonia-born designer hails from London but her designs are influenced by her home country and she produces all of her goods in Estonia using fabrics, laces, and other raw materials she sources from around the World.  While sipping tea at a midtown café, Kriss and I chatted about her background, how she got started, her passions, her current collection, the future for her namesake brand, and she graciously shared her advice for other independent designers looking to break into the business.

Designer Kriss Soonik

Kriss has been designing for over ten years.  However, it is only in recent years that she has considered it her life’s work.  Initially, it was a hobby for her.  She graduated from college in Estonia with a BA degree in Business.  And she moved to London just a little over six years ago where she studied Strategic Fashion Marketing at London College of Fashion.  Designing came naturally to her, but she was also passionate about the branding and marketing of apparel.  After finishing school, she went to work for the famed UK Lingerie company, Agent Provocateur.  At Agent Provocateur, Kriss was responsible for retail marketing and pr including the planning of in-store events worldwide.  Branding, marketing, and pr are passions of mine….  So, I was excited to learn how she plans to utilize her expertise and the knowledge she gained working at AP to make her own brand a success.

In the Fall of 2008 (as the recession first hit), Kriss started posting some of her designs on the well-known UK “chic lingerie boutique” site Glamorous Amorous.   The site features emerging lingerie designers, and Kriss felt this would be a great way to receive feedback on her designs before taking the plunge to venture out on her own.  By January of 2009, she had quit her job at Agent Provocateur, and her brand was officially born.  The first Kriss Soonik collection launched in Spring/ Summer 2010.   

Kriss’ friends and family thought she was crazy to leave a stable job to start her own business just months after the recession hit.  But Kriss felt the timing was perfect!  Production facilities were looking to fill their lines and retailers were looking for something fresh and new.  Very few people were taking risks at this time because of their fear of the economic downturn.  Kriss turned this into an advantage for her and capitalized on it.

When Kriss was initially developing the concept for her brand, most of the pieces she was developing were “experimental” showcase pieces.  But once she ventured out on her own, she discovered a more practical sense.  She had to think about how to wear them and how to make them; how to appeal to her target consumer without losing her brand identity.  She has found that her best sellers are the more practical pieces, her Jersey Knit items in particular.  Growing up in the colder climate of Estonia, she wanted to meld comfortable pieces with a more sexy, modern aesthetic. 

Kriss Soonik Kristel Jersey Suspender Top

Kriss says that her brand evolves as she evolves.  She defines her brand identity as an effort to connect comfort and seduction.  What exactly is “Kriss Soonik?”  Loungerie!  It happened by accident…  It was a typo, actually.  And as soon as she saw it on the screen, she knew this was it!  Loungerie is luxe loungewear.  Like lingerie is to underwear; loungerie is to loungewear….  Luxe Loungewear!  Kriss is working to give a unique look to loungewear and has adopted the “innerwear as outerwear” concept.  Her styles are multi-functional.  Her target consumer is the woman that is looking for something different, new, and fresh.  Although it is sold at a high-end price point, she feels her consumer is willing to spend the extra money for something unique that can be worn in multiple ways.  My experience in the wholesale intimate apparel industry proves the same notion.  When the economy first turned, consumers scaled back their spending and reverted to “generic” brands.  But now that we’re several years into the recession, consumers are back to spending.  But there is much more emphasis on “value.”  Consumers are willing to spend the money if they are getting something “extra” for their spend…. 

Kriss Soonik Diana Wings Wrap

Kriss’ current Fall/ Winter Collection really shows what it means for “innerwear to be outerwear.”  Kriss is excited to see how her consumer interprets her styles.  When Kriss and I met for tea back in early September, she was wearing a leather sheath dress AND her own Diana Wings Wrap (proving that her Loungerie can be worn as outerwear).

Kriss Soonik Loungerie is currently sold in boutiques and specialty stores (including ecommerce).  She has considered breaking into the department store tier but is concerned it may get lost there.  Her focus is on expanding her own ecommerce site which sells direct to consumer.  She says that her website is proving to be an important tool in defining (and maintaining) her brand image.  On her own site, she can show her consumer the various ways of wearing her styles.  Her website and other media (including social media) will be powerful communication tools in expanding her brand.

This trip to New York City was Kriss’ first venture into the US.  She really didn’t know what to expect.  She said, “New York is the Fashion Capital of the World!”  She couldn’t believe Fashion’s Night Out.  The feedback and response she received during her Trunk Show at Journelle on Mercer Street in SoHo on September 8th was tremendous.  She said her Susan Lace Bodysuits practically sell themselves.  They are multi-functional; they can be worn as innerwear or as outerwear (layering pieces).  They can be worn with the opening in the front or the back.  In fact, Kriss wore her Susan Lace Bodysuit in Orange (with black trim) over a graphic tee shirt with a pair of pants on Fashion’s Night Out.  Her Jersey Suspender Tops are top sellers as well.  The biggest surprise was the popularity of her Triangle Bras in both Lace and Mesh. 

Kriss Soonik Susan Motion Lace Bodysuit

Kriss already has brand loyalty to her “Classic Collection.”  She plans to continue this Collection into the next Season and will be introducing White as a new colorway in January 2012.  Early on, she made a lot of changes as the brand evolved.  But she quickly learned that once you discover what your consumer wants, you have to give them what they want!  She is still trying to determine the most efficient way of evolving season by season.  She wants to continue introducing new styles each season…  But she is still learning how to execute it- How many new pieces?  How many new colors?  When do we introduce them?  As time goes by, the assortment will likely get tighter and tighter and her brand identity will become more clearly defined.

What’s next for Kriss Soonik Loungerie?  Kriss let me in on a little secret….  But I can’t reveal all of the details yet!  But if you plan on being in London on November 10th– mark your Calendar and don’t make any other plans!  Kriss is preparing an exclusive “invite only” event for the evening of the 10th.  Remember, she was once responsible for planning in-store events for Agent Provocateur retail stores worldwide….  So, I’m sure her own event will prove to be exciting and unexpected!  You won’t want to miss it!  Kriss loves the excitement of these promotional events.

I asked Kriss if she had any advice for other emerging designers looking to venture out on their own.  She said “Be prepared!  Everything takes much longer than you think.  Be patient.”  And, “Initially, you’re on your own.  Trust your instincts.  Ask for help.  People are happy to help if you ask for it.  I’ve been lucky enough to be surrounded by great people.  But at the end of the day, it’s up to you!  The high’s are higher and the low’s are lower.  Ohhhh….But it’s sooo worth it!”

Kriss Soonik Susan Chic Lace Bodysuit

I can’t wrap up this story without letting you know the proper way to pronounce her last name….  One would think its pronounced “Sue-Nick.”  I was delighted to find out that it’s actually pronounced “Sonic.”  As in “Supersonic!”  Now, we’ll never make that mistake again, will we??  Kriss laughed as she told me that she has been inspired by superheroes throughout her career….  I have to say this was one of the most delightful conversations I’ve had in a long time as Kriss was smart and sweet, funny, charming, and willing to share so much about her journey…. Thank you for taking the time to meet with me, Kriss!  I wish you all the best in your career.  We’re all waiting to see what’s next for Kriss Soonik!  And I wholeheartedly support your efforts to expand your brand into the US market.

Resources:

www.kriss-soonik.com

Follow @KrissSoonik on Twitter

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Kriss-Soonik-Loungerie/135838919680

About Kriss Soonik

Kriss Soonik [son-ik] launched her first collection in 2008 introducing her signature talent for giving the “underwear as outerwear” concept a fresh and modern twist. When the traditional approach has been about corsets as eveningwear, Kriss Soonik has started a new wave – wearing velour gowns to a chic Sunday brunch.

In 2009 the term “loungerie” was born. Loungerie is luxe loungewear at its freshest, blurring the boundaries with fashion. It’s not cute and sweet, it’s sexy and powerful. It is loungewear with an edge.

With stockists and fans worldwide the London based designer never fails to produce a collection that is fiercely contemporary yet nostalgic. Over the years she’s taken inspiration from Manga comics, superheroines and cult film figures to challenge the traditional attitudes associated with lingerie and loungewear. All of her designs are finished with the trademark cat or beautifully plump bow in patent leather, satin, silk or perhaps chiffon.

Born in Tallinn, Estonia, Kriss stands by having all of her designs handmade in her native country and produced from the finest materials she sources from across the globe. 

Producing two collections a year, Kriss designs with the understanding that all women can be superheroes. This is lingerie and loungewear that empower, inspire and break the rules.

Fashion’s Night Out- In Lingerie Style Part II

3 Oct

For details of the first half of my Fashion’s Night Out journey, refer to the Blog Post “Fashion’s Night Out- In Lingerie Style Part I” dated September 15th.  The following notes are from the second half of my “SoHo Lingerie Crawl” on September 8, 2011.  I would love to describe every detail of every garment I beheld that night.  However, that would be virtually impossible.  So I have selected a few key collections to highlight here as a “taste” of my evening.  Enjoy!

I left Journelle on Mercer Street and headed south towards Spring Street.  I heard squeals and applause as I approached the corner.  The NYPD had the street blocked off to pedestrians.  I could barely cross to the south side of Mercer Street.  I was headed to my next destination, Kiki De Montparnasse.  But, apparently the Kardashian’s were making a grand “Fashion’s Night out” entrance into their boutique, DASH, on Spring Street.  I was forced to walk a few blocks out of my way to get to Kiki De Montparnasse, but it was well worth it.

Kiki De Montparnasse SoHo shop window

Kiki De Montparnasse is an elegant, high-end intimate apparel boutique with a downtown location on Greene Street in SoHo.  The store is sexy and sultry.  The ambient lighting sets the mood for romance.  I felt sexy and sophisticated just walking through the door.  I was delighted that the store was virtually empty….  Apparently, I was one of the few people patronizing lingerie boutiques for Fashion’s Night Out!  The atmosphere inside Kiki was in complete contradiction to the insanity on the streets just outside their door.  I was only a few steps inside the store when I was greeted by a sales associate who was kind enough to point out the latest collection, Le Fleur (new for Fall ’11).  This collection exemplifies fine, French lingerie.  It is constructed of French Leavers Lace in cross-dyed color combinations.  The colors are dusty and muted.  Like the colors used by Eniko Bazsa in her line Bazsarozsa, these colors are subtle, sophisticated, and ethereal.  Colors include Smoke, Black, and Nude with Periwinkle.  The lace is paired with a fine gauge mesh fabric and a delicate picot trim.  The details are impeccable.  I’ve found that it’s the small details that set apart fine, high-end lingerie from mid-priced, mass-produced intimate apparel.  Kiki’s Le Fleur collection is no exception.  Body styles include an unlined underwire bra, corselette bra, bodysuit (to die for!), thong, boyshort, cheeky “tanga” bikini, garter belt, and my favorite piece- the high-waisted brief. 

Kiki De Montparnasse Le Fleur Cami Bra and Tanga

Kiki De Montparnasse has also introduced a new color to its Soleil collection.  Although the collection is not new, the Ocean Blue colorway is.  The Ocean Blue colorway is best described as “almost navy.”  It is a rich color with a hint of “bright/light.”  They also added their high-waisted brief to this popular collection.  The Soleil collection is constructed of a beautiful, crochet-look galloon lace.  It is available in black, blush, and now ocean blue.  In addition to the high-waisted brief, body styles include an unlined bra, bodysuit, thong, boyshort, cheeky “tanga” bikini, and garter belt.

I am in love with Kiki’s Cashmere Loungewear collection.  The cashmere knit is the lightest possible…. It is like heaven- airy, light, soft, luxurious, and definitely special.  It is available in black, heather grey and pearly white.  They’ve introduced a few new styles in this collection.  Styles include a t-back tank top, lounge pants, deep-v-neck sweater, leggings, and a sweater with a large center back opening with an oversized dyed-to-match satin ribbon bow tie at center top back.  This collection is pricey but truly unique in its fabrication and unexpected styling details.

Kiki De Montparnasse Cashmere Loungewear Collection

I left Kiki De Montparnasse and headed north on Greene Street to La Perla.  Some would argue that La Perla Lingerie is the finest in the world.  Each season, they introduce unique collections with unparalleled detail.  Their Fall ’11 Collection theme is “The Roaring ‘20’s.”  One would expect each style to “roar” with flapper-esque influence.  However, the collections just subtly hint at that era, capturing only the indulgence, independence and rebellion of a period in history characterized by an economic boom, the cry for liberty, freedom and female equality, and the famed “Flapper” girl who challenged the social norms of the time with her new form of dress influenced by the jazz music of that era….. She danced provocatively, wore (and applied publicly) make-up which had once only been reserved for “ladies of the night,” she popularized the short “bob” hair style, she smoked and drank with the men, she did away with corsets and pantaloons in exchange for breast-binding, and attended illustrious “petting parties” as a means of demanding sexual equality as well. 

La Perla Indiscrete Unlined Underwire Bra and High-Waisted Brief

I was first drawn to La Perla’s new Indiscrete collection.  Even the collection name, Indiscrete, suggests a rebellious sexual attitude.  Like most of La Perla’s collections, Indiscrete is very seductive in a very tasteful manner.  The primary fabrication is sheer, “scratched” tulle with a delicate lurex thread.  The tulle is ruched and creates the illusion of an ice castle.  This tulle is accented with a dyed-to-match macramé-type embroidery which is patterned as glaciers in my mind.  The pattern is very elegant and also incorporates a lurex thread adding to the icicle effect.  All styles are trimmed with a silk satin piping or band.  One of the key features in this collection is the silk satin covered functioning buttons.  The Unlined Underwire Balconette Bra has cups made of embroidery.  The cups are then covered with the scratched lurex tulle which is ruched and finally gathered together at the center-front with a functioning button.  This styling detail creates a perfect peek-a-boo effect.  The collection includes signature logo elastics.  I love the Thong which has a ruched tulle waistband which is cinched at center front and center back with satin piping and the bustier has a wide satin band at its hemline.  Other styles include a fabulous bodysuit, triangle bra, push-up bra, a retro-style high-waisted brief, and a Brazilian thong.  It is available in white and black.

La Perla Indiscrete High-Waisted Brief Front

La Perla Indiscrete High-Waisted Brief Back

The other collection I was drawn to is the Lulu collection in print.  Lulu is characterized by an animal-esque feather print.  The printed silk fabric is accompanied by a guipure-look lace in a feather motif and a satin trim.  And my favorite detail is the tiny, picot-edge elastic used to finish the garments.  The Lulu print is in a neutral grey/black/taupe color combination with black lace and trims.  My favorite body style is the Babydoll which has a drop waist with a functioning self-fabric drawstring tie and buckle detail at top strap joins.  The hem of the slip is a wide solid black silk band.  This style is so sophisticated and elegant that I can imagine one wearing it as outerwear.  The Lulu printed Underwire Triangle Bra has guipure-look lace appliqués on the cups, mesh wings, a buckle at center-front, and continuous self-fabric straps.  In addition, the Lulu collection includes an underwire bra, bikini brief, and thong.

La Perla Lulu Printed Babydoll and Thong

La Perla Lulu Printed Unlined Underwire Bra

Moira Nelson with Hanky Panky's Glam Guru, JD Breen

After leaving La Perla, I decided to pop into Bloomingdale’s on Broadway to say hello to my friend JD Breen, Hanky Panky’s official Glam Guru….  No, really…. Even his business cards read Glam Guru!  Hanky Panky was celebrating Fashion’s Night Out on Bloomingdale’s Soho third floor.  If you purchased one of Hanky Panky’s Lace Thongs, Hanky Panky provided embellishments for free (on site!)  There was a line of women waiting to have the world’s most famous thong decorated with rhinestone placement hearts, stars, initials, etc.  It’s always great to see the Hanky Panky team.  And saying hello to JD was definitely one of the highlights of my evening.

I bolted out of Bloomie’s to venture back to Mercer Street.  By this point, the sun had dropped and the festivities had evolved into a full-blown party in the shops and on the streets.  I maneuvered my way back up Mercer Street to catch a quick glimpse of the live model in Agent Provocateur’s shop window.  As you can imagine, this drew quite a crowd with flash bulbs illuminating the sidewalk.  And the scene inside the store was very alive- everyone was fully engaged in the party atmosphere which had the aire of seduction and sex.  Agent Provocateur’s latest collection and ad campaign does not disappoint.   Always pushing the envelope, AP’s most recent campaign is the most erotic yet.  It is definitely not for the faint of heart.  Because of the crowd in the store, I was unable to get a real look at any one particular piece.  I made the executive decision to head out (with the intention of going back on another day).

I made another quick stop into Journelle to end my evening where it started.  By now, Journelle was packed with shoppers, tourists, and some of my fellow intimates industry professionals.  All were admiring the Trunk Shows of Kriss Soonik, Bazsarozsa, and La Fee Verte and appreciating the models that were bringing these collections to life.  My Fashion’s Night Out- In Lingerie Style had come to an end.  But I took away much inspiration from the various brands / collections and was so excited to be able to share it with you all….  I have to say, I love my job!

Resources:

Fashion’s Night Out

www.fashionsnightout.com

Kiki De Montparnasse

79 Greene Street

New York, New York

www.kikidm.com

Follow @KikiDM

La Perla

93 Greene Street

New York, New York

www.laperla.com

Follow @LaPerlaLingerie

Hanky Panky

Available at Bloomingdale’s

504 Broadway

New York, New York

www.bloomingdales.com

www.hankypanky.com

Follow @Hanky_Panky_Ltd

Agent Provocateur

133 Mercer Street

New York, New York

www.agentprovocateur.com

Follow @TheMissAP

Journelle

125 Mercer Street

New York, New York

www.journelle.com

Follow @ShopJournelle

Fashion’s Night Out- In Lingerie Style Part I

15 Sep

I was lucky enough to attend a number of events for Fashion’s Night Out.  There is so much I want to share with you all…. But it is definitely too much for one Blog Post.  The following chronicles the first stop on my Itinerary, Journelle on Mercer Street in SoHo.  Check back in the days to come for details of the remainder of my evening. Here is Fashion’s Night Out-  In Lingerie Style- Part I….

Premier Lingerie Store Journelle & Founder/ CEO Claire Chambers

On Thursday, September 8, 2011, cities around the globe celebrated Fashion’s Night Out.  The annual event coincides with New York Fashion Week and is a “shopping extravaganza.”  Retailers around the world (including over 1000 in NYC alone) keep their doors open late, offer discounts, and create a festive shopping experience like no other.  One can expect celebrity guests, gift bags and other giveaways, food and drink, music, and an overall party atmosphere including guest lists, red carpet entrances, and security guards checking your bags at the door.

I planned my Fashion’s Night Out itinerary days in advance (using the Fashion’s Night Out web tool to create my evening including addresses, mapped locations, and listings of each retailer’s scheduled events).  Although I did my homework, I was still not prepared for what was to come.  I selected a handful of Lingerie stores which were within the same vicinity so that I could bounce around and see everything I wanted to see.  My target destination was SoHo (downtown NYC).  Who knew this would be the mecca for Fashion’s Night Out shoppers seeking a glimpse of the Kardashian’s or a free goodie bag….???  Certainly not I.

When I emerged from underground at the corner of Spring & Lafayette downtown, I could feel a certain energy in the air.  It was only shortly after 5pm, and already the streets were crowded with fashionistas hungry for a good bargain and an evening of star-studded festivities.  It was certainly festive…  Who am I kidding??!!??  It was outright insane and chaotic!  The streets were blocked off.  Policemen lined the streets alongside their metal barricades.  People blindly crossed the streets without looking.  I was being shoved from side to side as I attempted to navigate towards Prince & Mercer….  But I must say, I was loving every minute of it!  I’m not a fan of large crowds (typically avoiding parades and mass parties such as New Years Eve in Times Square).  However, there was definitely a magic in the air on that night.  It was a warm night and slightly humid… but the temperatures dropped to a comfortable level by dusk.  The streets were full of people looking to catch a glimpse of “something.”  The retail parties spilled onto the narrow, cobblestone streets.  Outrageous displays welcomed you from one shop to the next…. Often blending together… 

3.1 Philip Lim "Girls on Bikes"

I finally made my way past 3.1 Philip Lim’s shop on Mercer Street (which had a mani/pedi truck parked out front… It was kinda like a taco truck… only they were giving gel manicures)!  Not to mention the dozen or so bicycles parked on the sidewalk as part of Lim’s “Girls on Bikes” theme….  I wandered into the first stop on my itinerary…. Journelle.  Journelle was an oasis from the chaos in the streets.  It’s a sweet & sexy lingerie boutique located just doors down from Agent Provocateur.  It was still early… Only half past five in the evening.  Honestly, I think I was the only customer in the store as the sales associated scurried around in preparation for the evening’s event which was to include trunk shows for three emerging independent lingerie lines- Kriss Soonik, Bazsarozsa, and La Fee Verte.  I knew I wanted to get a good look at these three collections, so I was glad that I entered the store early (and beat the inevitable crowd which was to pack the store within just a few short hours).

 

 

 

 

Designer Kriss Soonik and her model

The first line I looked at was Kriss Soonik.  Kriss’ collection is beautiful…. Modern yet classic.  She has multiple pieces which can be worn in multiple ways including several modal-feel rayon/spandex tops & tanks (surprise!….with suspender belts).  Kriss refers to her line as “Loungerie” which she defines as “luxe loungewear.”  I think she has accomplished her mission of creating a line of sensual pieces which can be worn as innerwear or outerwear.  My favorite piece is her Susan Chic bodysuit.  It is made from all-over lace with capped sleeves, a large slit back opening from neck to waist, a rhumba lace “back seat,” and contrast color velvet ribbon trim which ties at center top back (with sexy long tails!)  At the Journelle trunk show, Kriss wore her own Susan Motion bodysuit in bright orange with a graphic tee underneath.  Both of these all-over lace bodysuits can be worn throughout the day and into the night.  Truly unique and fun!  I’m looking forward to meeting with Kriss to further discuss her brand and her inspiration and direction for the coming season’s collections.

Kriss Soonik Susan Chic Lace Bodysuit Front View

Kriss Soonik Susan Chic Lace Bodysuit Back View

Designer Eniko Bazsa and her model

Across the Journelle shop, I found the Bazsarozsa Fall ’11 collection.  The Bazsarozsa line is designed by Eniko Bazsa and is a reflection of her personality.  Eniko is sweet and somewhat demure with a radiant smile and charming laugh.  Each style is simply elegant and fashioned for comfort.  Eniko said that she wanted to create “everyday basics” that were comfortable and sexy at the same time.  The styling is simple, but far from “basic.”  Each body style has unique trim details such as crochet-look lace trim and contrast color grosgrain ribbon straps.  Eniko said she wants people to be drawn to the collection because of its design & sensibility and then to be further enthralled with it when they discover that the fabric is locally grown organic cotton….  and the collection is produced in the USA too!  I love the dusty, neutral colors Eniko used in creating an ethereal feel…. Dusty Blush & Dusty Aubergine!  Love it!  Body styles include strappy camis, bralettes, cropped cami bras, hipster panties, and thongs.

Bazsarozsa Cami Set

La Fee Verte's Designer Adam Sakara and his model

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ahhhhh…..the elegance of La Fee Verte!  The third independent lingerie designer featured at Journelle’s Fashion’s Night Out Trunk Show was Adam Sakara’s brand La Fee Verte.  I was surprised to discover that the line is designed by a man because it embodies all of the things that I seek in a sophisticated line of lingerie, daywear, and sleepwear.  Adam knows what women want!  The brand is sexy, sultry, seductive yet classic, elegant, sophisticated, and timeless.  The fabrics and laces are divine.   The delicate details are impeccable.  The overall sensibility and aesthetic is clean, pure, timeless elegance.  I am in love with La Fee Verte’s Silk Romper in Navy with contrast color Champagne colorblocking at the neckline and at the hem.  The romper is sophisticated, flirty, and sexy with spaghetti straps and a tunneled elastic waistband.  This collection includes a Bralette, Tap Shorts, a Chemise, and a Robe.  My pictures don’t do it justice….

La Fee Verte Silk Romper

La Fee Verte Silk Robe

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Journelle was only the first stop on my itinerary, but was certainly one of the highlights of my night.  I’m thrilled that I was able to meet and speak with each of the designers showcased at Journelle.  Each line is unique and destined to be recognized as one of the finest luxury lingerie lines in the intimate apparel market.

I departed Journelle on a mission….  Kiki de Montparnasse, Agent Provocateur, La Perla, and Bloomie’s were up next!  Check back soon for Fashion’s Night Out- In Lingerie Style Part II.

A big thank you to the independent lingerie designers Kriss Soonik, Eniko Bazsa, Adam Sakara, and to the entire team at Journelle SoHo.

Resources:

Journelle

125 Mercer Street- between Prince & Spring

SoHo, NYC

www.journelle.com

Twitter @ShopJournelle

Journelle is the premier lingerie store in New York for the modern woman. With inspiration from the archaic French word journellement, which means “daily”, they’re passionate about helping women feel great from the inside out. They believe in wearing designer lingerie every day, presenting a tastefully-curated (rather than exhaustive) selection of lingerie, and providing customers with compassionate, expert assistance.

Fashion’s Night Out

www.fashionsnightout.com

Kriss Soonik

www.kriss-soonik.com

Twitter @KrissSoonik

Bazsarozsa

www.bazsarozsa.com

La Fee Verte

www.lafeeverte.com

Twitter @LFV_LaFeeVerte

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