Souldier Supplies


LOVE BRIGADE announced their relaunch with brand new Souldier Supply Kits, subscribable via their campaign here. 

Announcing: The Box That Changed The World, a concept by Alyssa J. Key and her team of likeminded creatives. Since I met Alyssa over 5 years ago, I’ve been a fan of her cool aesthetic, inspired by her powerful dynamic attitude and utterly charmed by her charismatic leadership.  What’s more is behind all of that is a kind, approachable person who keeps it 100% real.

Let’s check out LOVE BRIGADE’s assortment of goodies … pictured: examples of what you might expect arriving to your doorstep when you support the brand’s imminent relaunch. 


I am be-Yond excited to receive my first package.  In fact, if I were a high-roller, I would order one for each and every person I know.  That way, we could all stand together as Souldiers!  So a word to the wise: be nice, and you just might be the recipient of a limited edition gift! ; )


What we should be looking at in our clothes (But aren’t)

We are looking at the wrong things in what we wear.  Sure, we all love to look good, but what exactly is the difference between fast fashion & good fashion? Let’s take a closer look.

  • Quality fabrics: ladies, you should have at least 12 pieces of clothing that are made from silk. 5-6 tops, and 5-6 dresses.  They should run about $200-600 each or higher.  Know your silks: acetate doesn’t count.  Charmeuse is divine, chiffon can’t go wrong.  Don’t show up anywhere past 6PM wearing anything denim or jersey. Ever.
  • Finishing: There should be a special detail somewhere on your outfit.  Ether it’s dyed by hand, or a little bow sewn on by hand, or go crazy with head-to-toe sequins. But anyway hand-finishing is the sign of a beautifully made piece of clothing.
  • Avoid things that are priced too low, for what they are.  Usually this means that it was copied from a different designer and the designer wasn’t paid for the idea.  In addition you may assume any clothes priced too well were made by murderers and thieves.  We all know that cheap clothes are a major source of strife in the world, and this should stop with you. It’s not worth it and usually you end up looking like a slob or a dupe anyway.
  • We have seen some pretty extreme examples of labor exploitation lately, but there still is no end to it.  If you see that certain retailers have accomplished certain items at certain price points by badly abusing their workers, how do you think the rest of them are doing it?  Exactly the same way, they just haven’t gotten caught.  So as a rule of thumb, you should avoid buying low & middle market fashion goods entirely. 
  • Ecological impact: I cannot express this enough- the textile industry is among the top three sources of pollution in the world right now.  If you are against fracking, if you don’t eat GMO foods, why would you buy clothing that damages the environment? At the very least, avoid petroleum-based stretchy knits and plasticky push-up bras because that can’t be good for the earth.  Look for designers who are finding ways to reduce waste & are developing eco-friendly methods.
  • Just buy them: don’t wait for someone to launch a kickstarter campaign.  We all have goals & need your support to accomplish them.  It’s a little ridiculous when a designer has to hawk a particular item as part of larger crowdfunding initiative, when people should have been checking them out & purchasing the items anyway without the gimmick of some future goal that may or may not be attainable.  And enough with the sample sales- we can’t continuously provide items every season at below cost.  In what market does that make sense? Just buy good quality clothes at regular price.


image: Nude Girl Lounging in a box of rabbit fur, by University of Washington Libraries Digital Collections

You Can Make It

How to become a Real Life fashion designer

Often I hear from younger fashion & style enthusiasts asking me advice on how to become a fashion designer.  Not sure I’m the one to ask, because, well it’s more about being creative for me than anything else.

The fact is, the Fashion & Textiles industry’s seemingly impenetrable heirachy is ruled by heiresses to family fortunes in Europe, and child-actresses with golden noses in the USA.  If you’re an average young person without a fashion degree & have an avid interest in sketching, considering designing as a career can be daunting to say the least.  Here are a few suggestions to give you an early start to building an empire, and leaving a legacy akin to the Little Orphan Coco.  This one is for the young folks:

image by Alexander Thomson

SHOP AROUND There’s no easy start.  If you are a teen, or in your 20’s, get a retail job: the more specialized, the better.  The sooner you understand how clothing fits an actual body, and how each and every woman wants clothing that “doesn’t make her look fat,” you will then begin taking the steps to identifying your customer.

READ ALL ABOUT IT You may think that all women’s magazines are garbage: they teach you to hate your body and become a man-pleasing robot.  Pretty much, but take another good look at them individually.  Once you pay attention to each publication’s point of view, you will have a better understanding of how fashion is presented to the consumer.  You will also identify trends, influencers & appreciate the hard work of professionals who work in publishing.  As a fashion designer, how can you work with Vogue if you are not familiar with their content?

TALK ABOUT IT Start a blog, connect with social media, and voice your opinion on personal style & the latest fashion.  By participating in the ever-evolving discussion, you will develop your unique point of view, and start gaining followers who may shop your collections in the future.  You can also put your lookbook online free using wix utilising your tech-savvy skills to avoid waste & printing costs.

LEARNING TO FLY I can’t tell everybody to get library books about patternmaking & make their own samples, but that’s how it worked for me.  Even so, I admit seeing my first collection of samples is now embarrassing to me.  But hey, what’s IN one day may be OUT the next, so don’t worry about it too much.  Maybe you want to start with jewelry or some simple accessories for hair on etsy, and take it from there.  Be prepared to re-invest your sales into getting better materials and grow organically.

BFFS Look to your friends & family to get the word out first about your new creations.  Don’t be shy about asking people directly to share your items over facebook or host a trunk show or party once you have a good number of pieces.  Kickstarter seems silly to me, but some people recommend it.  It could work for you if you’re planning to go to the next level & upgrade materials or outsource samplemaking.

NEW BEST FRIENDS Join a trade association like Fashion Group International, they have chapters in most cities and are extremely helpful with a directory of resources in the New York Garment District as well as a very high-profile members directory, great for finding mentors.  Get Betsey on the phone please, let’s have Daiquiris!