brooklynbased.com March 21, 2018 March 22 2018, 0 CommentsEveryone needs to to spend this perfectly crafted 10 hours in Crown Heights. 5:30 PM - Suzette LaValle Boutique
Interview with BLUSH Magazine 2017 September 04 2017, 0 Comments
I step from the subway – it’s one of those days that’s golden, sun-dappled and cool, unseasonable for late July when on any day you could fry eggs on the sidewalk. Crown Heights, in Brooklyn, a neighborhood without the recognition, the skinny-pants populace or the cheesemongers of Williamsburg, is up-and-coming.
I don’t see any hipsters, although on my short walk, I do see sundry coffee shops, bagel stores and a cafe that I’d bet serves bottomless boozy brunch.
Finally I get where I’m going. Suzette LaValle’s eponymous little store seems like it traveled on a Jitney from the Hamptons. It’s breezy, beachy and every cotton romper or T-shirt I see could be the light, whisper-soft togs costuming my next getaway. But with its novelties, artsy Etsy-like merchandise, colorful retro artwork shelved for display and sale, jewelry and the cutest handmade greeting cards you’ve ever seen, this isn’t a store you can put in a box. The store is bright, vibrant and warm – there’s music playing, funky jams from different gamuts; Brazilian, reggae, the blues. It’s a feel-good store. You’d buy birthday gifts for your friends here, but you’d might just pick up some MOMA zigzag placemats or sequined pillow for yourself while you’re there, too.
I had the luck and happiness of getting to meet the store’s owner, Suzette, and pick her brain about fashion, style, Brooklyn and her career “wearing different hats” and presiding over the fashion industry.
Q: How’d you get into fashion?
A: I got into fashion directly after high school. I made a decision not to go to college – I was just so into the idea of working. I couldn’t really wait to get out of high school. I wasn’t really digging the whole high school scene – you know, high school is a time of conformity and I realized then that that wasn’t something I felt comfortable with. I couldn’t wait to leave, I didn’t want to do anymore schoolwork. I wanted to branch out. So I went directly into the city. I grew up in Long Island, and I headed into the Big City. I did a little time modeling and realized that was going to be a waste of my time because I didn’t fit all the criteria. So then I got into – now we’re talking in my early twenties – I got into production first, I worked for this product development company.
But I didn’t particularly care for it; it was really behind-the-scenes, it wasn’t interesting enough for me. Then I got a job working an area of the garment center which is kind of like the Société, which was developed in France, where you do cash and carry. And so I worked for this French company and from there, somebody picked me out and hired me to work at their company, working in production. He had this little store on the Upper West Side, and one day he put me on a plane to go to Paris and buy. I was very excited, very young and very scared, but it turned out to be a regular thing that I would do almost maybe twice a month. I would go by myself with a checkbook. But I made friends fast and they sort of took me under their wing. And so I was with [that company] for four years. After that I decided I needed a break. I went down to Miami, and I saw all these photoshoots going on. Not tons-tons but I stumbled upon a lot of them and I thought ‘that looks really cool.’ So then I decided I wanted to be a stylist. So I went back, I quit my job, and then I went through all the pains of putting a book together. It was at a time when it wasn’t as saturated as it is now; it wasn’t easy but it wasn’t as difficult as it may be for someone just now getting into it. So I became a stylist for thirteen years, and during that styling time I also sat on the seat of being an editor for some magazines. I did everything, I did fashion shows, editorial – lots of editorial, catalogs, advertising, everything. Then I went back to work for the same man who hired me as a buyer, now he had a store in Soho and so I stayed with him for six years as a buyer [again]. After that I left to become a freelance merchandiser – during the crash of 2008. He closed the store, he’d given it to somebody in the family but he took off and we all left out of necessity.
I had to reinvent myself and decide if I was going to be be a stylist again. I didn’t. So I became a freelance merchandiser, and I got accounts throughout the city – I’d go into stores and I’d overhaul, I’d go that 2-3 times a week. Still to this day, I do [visual merchandising] for a store on the Upper East Side called Pookie and Sebastian. I really enjoy merchandising – visual merchandising – because merchandising, as you know, can be broken down into so many fields. It’s the largest word in fashion, I think. While I was merchandising, I started building for [my store]. I worked with the small business association who taught me how to put business plans together, build my credit and at the same time I was doing some street festivals on the weekend – a medley of things. I found this space through a friend of a friend and fell in love with it, put it together, designed it. There’s a lot of love in here [laughs]. That’s how I got here.
But I love styling – I’m looking for a new agent to get back into it; when I was doing the FIT Future of Fashion Show, it brought back some intense high-octane moments that I fed off of – and also the creativity that goes into it, it’s really challenging. It’s constant creation. In a creative sense, styling is working with a fantasy and you’re hoping it’s something others can appreciate, love and identify with however they interpret it. You’re kind of just a little director.
Q: How did you get involved with the FOF show?
A: The woman who produces the show is a woman I worked with quite often when I was in my heyday. We still stay in contact, and she’d been asking me if I’d be interested from two years ago [to now]. I was a little apprehensive because I hadn’t styled in so long, and it was a big account. I was a little concerned that I wouldn’t be able to handle this big job but she convinced me that I was so good [laughs] and that I’d be great, perfect for the position and so I took it on.
Q: As a fashion stylist for the show, what was your role?
A: I think that there’s a difference between being hired as a stylist to do a show for a designer [and] being hired to do a show for the Future of Fashion because you’re dealing with 70-90 different designers. Each one of them has their own view of design, and it can be a little difficult to find some cohesiveness to put a show together. But somehow there is something that brings it all together and you try to find that one element of design or color or balance or texture – and then you just try to bring it together, to put some cohesiveness to the entire show, even though it is 90 different designers with their own visions.
–Did you attend the shows?
Absolutely! The student show was great. It provides a window into what the show’s going to look like later. You can detect if something didn’t work, so you can go out and change it and perfect it for the Big Show.
-Did you have a favorite designer?
There were things I liked –
Photo Credit: Salven Vlasic/Getty Images for FIT
Some designers really stood out, to me and what I like – but they’re all amazing. The knitwear always stands out for me. It’s not often you see how sweaters and knitwear can be produced – the textures, fabrics, it’s all pretty fascinating.
Q: What’s your day-to-day like as a store owner?
A: I’m up at 6-6:30, I use that time to do all my billing, emailing and I strategize the day’s goals and what needs to be done. I go into the city in the early morning to go to a showroom appointment or pick something up in the garment district, whether it’s supplies or maybe something for myself. That’s the hour I have before the store opens – my week is packed with appointments before the store opens. Then I come to the shop; I work with customers throughout the day, I merchandise my store – I spend a lot of time on my windows. It’s one of the more fun things I do, as an artist – my windows. I’m here seven hours a day. I also look for other different projects to work on, I’m always dabbling in something- either writing for a blog, or my own blog, or researching new designers.
Q: Do you notice fashion trends tend to differ from Brooklyn to Manhattan?
A: Yes, absolutely. I find the women in Brooklyn dress for comfort, not to make a statement but for practicality. When I go to the city, there’s a lot more showmanship [and] thought into style. It’s a little disappointing having a store [in Brooklyn] that you somewhat feel would do so much better in a city that likes to dress for style. But you learn to work with your community. It’s your job to help them see [that] they can be a little more adventurous – letting them do what they’d do normally, but helping them add to that to discover some things that they never would’ve done before.
Q: How do you choose your merchandise?
A: The merchandise is chosen based on what will appeal to my neighborhood, my customers. I think about them, but I also have to think about something that’s more original. I think about my customer, what I like, and what’s different [and] innovative. Something people might not find where they normally shop. I always have to think within a certain price point which, if I was in the city, I wouldn’t worry too much about, but being in an up-and-coming neighborhood in Brooklyn there’s a lot that has to be thought about as far as price point, and that can be very limiting. The buying can be very challenging – you have to think about price point, originality, comfort, practicality – and I also have to be happy, too. I get [my merchandise] all over from walking trade shows. They’re great places to find a ton of talent. I schedule my entire day to scope them, very carefully. I take notes, narrow it down, edit and bam! A good portion of what’s in my stores come from the trade shows, or several Brooklyn designers that I support.
-What are you favorite trade shows to go to?
The main ones that happen here in New York. Coterie, The Fame Show – the only problem with the Fame Show is that the majority of everything sold there is made in China, but I have to go because it’s affordable. I do them all.
Q: Do you have any bestsellers in your store?
A: I think my jewelry is the best category of bestsellers. I’ve dealt with accessories for a very long time. It’s where I began in fashion – I worked for a buying office. There used to be a lot of them, years ago, little boutique buying offices – I used to go around and take pictures of jewelry at different showrooms. And then [the buying office] would take the pictures, put them in a book, and then the stores would look at the pictures and see which companies they liked. But then, I took the very same pictures and presented them to – this was when I worked for a magazine, called Sportswear International, a trade publication – so I approached them and said “I’m being paid to take pictures of accessories in the industry, maybe I [can] use those same pictures to do market editing for your future stories.” They agreed to that, and so I would go around looking for cool things that would fit their editorial concepts for that month. I was doing both, at the same time. Jewelry was really my first love.
Q: So you’re involved with all aspects of your store – buying, marketing, visual merchandising? You do it all?
A: I do it all. I just hired a writer to help with my blog. But I’d like to – I’d like to get a column in a newspaper. I just submitted a story to a local newspaper. And [I’d like] to keep my blog separate from my website. And marketing, I’ve been doing it on my own, but I look forward to the day where I can hire someone to help with that. I think it’s essential to have a marketing team outside of your own ideas.
Q: Do you have a favorite store to shop in?
A: I do, but I don’t think it’s cool enough to tell. [Laughs] It’s not cool! I mostly get my things from my store, but if I need some staples, which is all I’d really buy outside the shop, I’d do either Banana Republic or Club Monaco. I mean, I’d love to [shop at] Barney’s everyday but –
I love the merchandising at Club Monaco, it’s really nice to go in. And I do like Banana, too. For staples. And they’re always like giving half the store away! 30% off this, 30% off that, I end up with five things for $50. But it’s good quality merchandise, good basics, good T-shirts.
Q: Can you describe your own style?
A: I think I found a way to incorporate my love for so many different genres of clothing. I can be everything. I can be a rock ‘n’ roll girl, I can be a little flower child, I can have a boyish look sometimes, I could be very glam. I love so many genres of fashion. I’m everything. I don’t have one particular style. I have a lot of fun being different people at different times. I do believe that all of us hold those different genres within us and it’s nice to know that we can pull some of them up, and not just be, you know, this conservative dresser or this rock ‘n’ roll girl or this punk rocker. It’s nice to flirt with different kinds of clothing. It’s endless.
Q: Any style tips?
A: Be adventurous. Do things you wouldn’t usually do from time to time. Try on things you wouldn’t normally try on. You change; your maturity changes, your body changes – that’s always room to explore and be someone different as you go on in life.
Q: What are you excited about right now?
A: Again, I just found a writer. I’m looking forward to doing some writing, submitting my writing to different publications. I used to do a little writing when I was editing. I did [just] make my first pattern, I met up with a pattern-maker who is going to FIT right now! I’ve wanted to put a collection together. In the future, I’d like to have a collection of 12-18 pieces that more or less stay the same. [They’re] the best pieces I’ve put aside from all my years. I’d just change the fabric from season to season. Then I’d add [one or two] novelty pieces every year. It’d be signature pieces that I think fit and look great on everybody. So I just made my first pattern, or somebody made it for me! So I’m looking forward to that. That would probably maybe launch within, I’d say, a year and a half. That’s definitely going to happen – how broad will it get, I don’t know. But it’ll definitely be in the store. That’ll be interesting. I’m definitely looking to expand with another shop within that same period of time – to have another location somewhere.
'F Is For' An Interview by Jeanne Theresa, October 12, 2016 November 22 2016, 0 Comments
This past Monday, I was meeting a friend for coffee at a darling little cafe (Little Zelda) in Crown Heights after work and was running a little early. (Anyone who knows me knows this is generally the case with me, having been raised by people who drilled into me the "if you're not early, you're already late" ethos from a young age.) As I was walking down Franklin Avenue, I slowed when I got near the boutique next door,l. Lots of cute and stylish pieces caught my eye and I assumed that it would be too pricey for me--most of the time, places that cool are--but I headed on in anyway.
Suzette LaValle Boutique Brooklyn immediately draws in the shopper with stylish designs, approachable fashion and really great displays. The clothes had a definite cool factor going on and it was a little like shopping in your hipper, more together best friend's closet. (You know the one: She has one of those curated wardrobes where everything goes together in the best, most stylish way and she always looks fabulous and never too trendy.)
A black scarf with bright crimson red horses immediately caught my eye. There had been a similar one in mustard and crimson with elephants on shoedazzle.com (of all places) two years ago that I'd been obsessed with, but never purchased before it sold out. I searched for the price and didn't see a tag, so I asked the women behind the desk. "$24," she said, " and scarves are buy one get one half off."
"Great deal!" I thought to myself.
Not wanting to indulge my #FOMO (fear of missing out) any further, I picked that one up and pretty immediately found another that was navy with lighter blue birds to buy with the first. As I was checking out, I started chatting with the woman behind the desk. Turns out, she was the owner of the boutique and had been a stylist in the fashion industry for more than a decade prior to that. (The maker of the scarves, a local textile designer, was also a stylist, it turned out.) I asked if she was interested in being profiled here on F is For and Suzette became my third #W(BO)CW. (Woman (Boutique Owner) Crush Wednesday).
JT: When did you open your store? And when did you get involved in the fashion biz?
Suzette: My shop has been open for close to two years now and I've been in the industry for about 25 years. After a very brief modeling stint, I realized getting a 'real' job would be more gratifying and less damaging to the psyche, so I began working for a company that sold wholesale fashions and had the very tiniest shop on the Upper West Side, as well. I worked mostly selling the wholesale collection until my boss told me one day that I was headed to Paris on a buying trip. I was very young, but that one trip led to several monthly and we expanded into having three shops before I left and began my styling career.
JT: What inspired you to start the store?
Suzette: ...I spent so many years, buying, styling, and merchandising for others that I was determined to one day open my own shop.
JT: How has it changed since opening?
Suzette: As I approach my second year, I'd have to say I'm more more relaxed and confident with my business decisions.
JT: What makes your shop unique? Describe your aesthetic.
Suzette: I wouldn't so much as to say that my clothes, individually, are so unique, but rather the selection of what I chose from season to season appeals uniquely to a broad audience. And the novelty pieces I select are just tame enough to be approachable for those who are feeling a bit more adventurous.
JT: What inspires you to keep it going year after year?
Suzette: My great love of fashion and a deep sense of "cool factor". During my 14 years of styling, I was locked in a world that was driven only by fashion. I went to sleep and woke up every day with fashion dictating every job, every shoot, really, every move I made. I formed a love affair with nearly every style of dressing. Classic, conservative, rock & roll, punk, designer, bohemian, The list goes on and one. So I would have to say my style and the shop's aesthetic will now and forever be a combination of all of those styles combined. If it's cool, I think women should wear it.
JT: What can women look forward to about your store?
Suzette: Change. I love change. Fashion is ever-changing and re-morphing every single day, every minute of the day . Fashion requires the influences of art, culture, music, youth, politics and personalities. And fashion couldn't exist without these influences or the fluidity of style.
JT: What's your favorite look for this season?
Suzette: This season I think it's all about layering and combining the unexpected: Look for contrasting prints, colors and textures.
JT: What's your favorite current trend?
Suzette: I'm still very much in love with Western accessory pieces: Layering lots of them on all styles of sweaters. It's so much fun. I'm also in love with capes this season.
JT: What trend could you do without?
Suzette: I think some of the new sunglasses designs that have surfaced within the last two years are hideous and not truly flattering on anyone, which reminds me of something I have always disliked: following any trend just because you see a celebrity in it. So many bad trends have stemmed from this tendency in our culture to blindly follow the famous.
JT: Who is your ideal woman/customer?
Suzette: I have the most fun dressing women who have always enjoyed fashion as a unique way of expressing themselves.
JT: What's your favorite part about what you do?
Suzette: Helping a woman discover or introducing to her a new style or a look she would have never considered. And having her become very excited about it. I love being the gateway for women to authentically express themselves through fashion.
JT: What's your least favorite part?
Suzette: I sometimes miss the high intensity of my styling days. Retail's a little more laid back.
JT: Where can I find your clothes?
For now I have one store location and you can shop on my website (though I only usually have about 25% of my total inventory online at any given time). Suzette LaValle Boutique Brooklyn is in Crown Heights at 726 Franklin Avenue. Hours are M, W, Th, F 1pm - 7pm; Sa 10am - 7pm and Su 11a - 6pm. The store is located off the 2,3, 4, 5 and C trains.
JT: Anything else?
Suzette: I also still do styling. Check out my website for my contact info. And since you're a queer blog, I wanted to mention that we're a really safe space for our trans sisters to explore feminine style. I love watching any woman find her personal style, but it's especially gratifying to see trans women embracing cool style and finding their self expression through clothing.
Shop at Suzette LaValle Boutique Brooklyn before December 31, 2016 and get 15% off all fashion and 20% off combined fashion purchases of $200 or more if you mention "F is For dot com". Also, they're having a fashion show on October 27. RSVP to shopsuzettelavalle at gmail dot com and tell them F is For sent you!
The Birth of Cool... And The Meaning Now June 05 2016, 0 Comments
The Birth of Cool, And The Meaning Now
Coul, coole, koole: How We Got From Cool Temperatures To Cool Cats.
Being cool is hard. Staying cool is harder. It’s an elusive quality, in part because it’s an elusive word with layers of nuanced meaning that peel off as we travel back through the centuries.
Exactly when, and where, cool aspired to more than mere composure—to an alluring mix of style, hipness, poise, and who knows what else—is impossible to determine, but there’s a tantalizing piece of evidence from the 19th century. In 1884, a professor at Washington and Lee University named James A. Harrison published an article titled “Negro English” in Anglia, a German journal about the English language. In it, he discusses African-American dialect with the panting excitement, and racist condescension, of a man who has discovered an alien culture in his own backyard. The Negro, he asserts:
… deals in hyperbole, in rhythm, in picture-words, like the poet; the slang which is an ingrained part of his being, as deep-dyed as his skin, is, with him, not mere word distortion; it is his verbal breath of life.
In Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Theseus tells his Amazonian bride-to-be, Hippolyta:
Lovers and madmen have such seething brains,
Such shaping fantasies, that apprehend
More than cool reason ever comprehends.
Hamlet, disheveled and ranting at the ghost of his dead father, frightens his mother, Gertrude, who cries out:
O gentle son,
Upon the heat and flame of thy distemper
Sprinkle cool patience.
By the 1920s, though, cool is firmly fixed as an unambiguous term of approval and even reverence. In 1924, the singer Anna Lee Chisholm recorded “Cool Kind Daddy Blues.” In the early 1930s, Zora Neale Hurston, in her short story “The Gilded Six-Bits,” wrote of a male character:
"And whut make it so cool, he got money 'cumulated. And womens give it all to 'im."
By the 1940s, “cool cat” clawed its way into the jazz scene, and the word has had currency ever since.
Getting at the nature of cool is further complicated by the fact that it’s become fashionable in recent years to boast about not being cool. Perhaps the word is being pushed into its next stage of evolution by the freaks and the nerds, whose childhood unpopularity is a badge of honor and whose brave new world of geekery is vindication. No matter what you think of it, coolness cannot be claimed for yourself, say, in a job interview, like diligence or punctuality. If you call yourself cool, you most certainly are not. Only other people can render that judgment, and who’s to say their notion of cool is one that you subscribe to?
Coolness is a fleeting shadow, a flickering light. You may have it today but you won’t tomorrow, and, despite their protestations to the contrary, your parents never did.
Written By: Mike Vuolo
..... And The Meaning Now
Cool for me started at a very young age. My Uncle was a big towering man, who introduced me to the infinite sounds and genres of music.
Starting when I was about five or six, I started spending my summer vacations at his house in Queens. He had a room built with a quadraphonic stereo system ( very hi-tech for back then), and he would randomly call me into the room "to check this out". And I would sit and listen to the likes of Phoebe Snow, Al Green, 10CC, Iron Butterfly, Led Zeppelin, ELO, and the list went on and on. And to me he was definitely the first "Cool Cat" in my world.
As I grew older, cool began to expand from music to fashion. One of my first jobs in the city I worked in a boutique on the upper east side of Manhattan. The manager of my shop was by far the coolest chic I had ever saw. (Next to Madonna). I mean she wore baggy overalls with fluorescent paint splattered high tops. That was cool!
I just knew that one day I'd dress and be just as 'cool' as she was.
As my career developed deeper into the fashion industry, , cool became everyone's ultimate destination. Your perception of cool determined your successes and failures. It gave you rank. It was your boss, your co worker, and your lover you took to bed every night.
Cool was edgy, deconstructed, and every picture taken of Kate Moss.
But, ultimately since cool is always based solely on ones own opinion how does it then become the same opinion of many?
Personally, I 'm convinced that cool is a gene that we are born with.
You can't learn cool .
Unfortunately there are way too many people /personalities in this world, that despite the mass attention they receive daily, haven't got one cool natural gene in there body. Their reckless attempts at being 'cool' can be a painful experience to watch.
So how will cool continue to evolve? Will the word ever be replaced?, or will it continue to be the everlasting slang that best describes the people, the music, the art, and the fashion that moves us all to our deeper core?
I hope so. Cause Id like to pass down that gene one day. - suzette
Remarkable World of Denim Part 3 March 31 2016, 0 Comments
Selecting The Perfect Fit
1-When trying on jeans, if they go on easily, you should go down a size.
Kicking your way into the legs isn't unusual.
2-The waistband should be snug, if you can fit two fingers down the back that's good.
3-There should be no 'grab' room at the crotch when trying. The jeans should be nice
and firm when you buy them, and loosen with wear.
4-When buying jeans with super stretch, buy them firm but not overly tight.
Look for a higher cotton content in the fabric. If you have 'seam strain' down
the legs, there are possibly too tight.
5-Curvy ladies who like skinny jeans should consider a higher waist style
- it elongates the leg and slims down the hips. Apple shaped ladies should
look for plenty of stretch in a straight leg. If you are tall, mid to low rise keep
your waist at the right height, whereas petite ladies, high rise styles,
accentuates the waist and elongates the leg.
6-Alterations can give you the perfect fit.. When having your jeans
hemmed makesure the tailor always measures from the back of the
leg,(at your heel).
7- If you like the baggy look , your best bet is a one piece.
Jumpsuit or overalls.
Remarkable World of Denim Part 2 March 29 2016, 0 Comments
Treated & Deconstructed Denim
Of course we have all rolled our eyes to some of the prices that are being asked
for on a pair of treated denim. Some well over $200. Well perhaps I can shed some
light as to why.
Jeans are thrown into a wash with special soap that helps break down the fabric
and contrasts the blue and white yarns.
Spinning the jeans in an industrial washer filled with pumice stones, creates
abrasions, specifically on the pockets and hem edges.
They are rinsed in cold water to eliminate soap and residue.
Placed in a water extractor.
At this time jeans are slightly stiff yet moldable, where at this point jeans
can be deliberately creased.
Once desired creases are created they are placed in a large big bag and
heated to 170 degrees. The heat 'cures' the resin, then transferred into
330 degree oven for 15 minutes to 'cure' further.
Jeans are placed on mannequins to begin sanding and creating local
The jeans are dipped in chlorine to make the sanded edges 'pop'
Yet again the jeans are washed to neutralize chemicals and clean residue.
Finally if desired the jeans would go through one more process of
browning and aging detail, which is accomplished with a torch.
The entire process washing,stoning,curing,and desired levels of
abrasions takes about six hours.
Remarkable World of Denim Part 1 March 24 2016, 0 Comments
Denim', was developed in a French town called "Nimes".
The contemporary use of the word "jeans" comes from the French word for
Genoa, Italy (Gênes), where the first denim trousers were made.
Denim initially gained popularity in 1873 when Jacob Davis, a tailor from
Nevada, manufactured the first pair of “rivet-reinforced” denim pants. His
concept for making reinforced jeans was inspired when a lady customer
requested a pair of durable and strong pants for her husband to chop wood.
When Davis was about to finish making the denim jeans, he saw some
copper rivets lying on a table and used the rivets to fasten the pockets. At this
time, clothes for Western laborers, such as teamsters, surveyors, and miners,
were not very durable Soon, the popularity of denim jeans began to spread rapidly
and Davis was overwhelmed with requests. He soon sold 200 pairs to workers
in need of heavy work clothing.Nevertheless, because of the production capacity
in his small shop, Davis was struggling to keep up with the demand . He then
wrote a proposal to the dry goods wholesaler Levi Strauss & Co. that had been
supplying Davis with bolts of denim fabric.Davis’s proposal was “to patent the
design of the rivet-reinforced denim pant, with Davis listed as inventor, in
exchange for certain rights of manufacture”.Levi Strauss & Co. was so
impressed by the possibilities for profit in the manufacture of the garment
that they then hired Davis to be in charge of the mass-production in San Francisco.
Denim jeans are typically constructed of 100% cotton and they are dyed with
a man- made indigo. Manufacturers usually buy ginned cotton,(cotton that
has been separated from the cotton seed), that goes through a series of
machine process's until it is twisted into yarn.
Unlike most other types of clothes, the yarn used to weave denim is dipped
and dyed before it it woven. In the mass production method of machine dyed
indigo,dying only occurs on the yarn's surface,, which is why the core part of
the yarn is still white,..hence why denim 'fades'.
Brooklyn Celebrity January 03 2016, 0 Comments
This was amazing to see shop owner Suzette LaValle rushing to the train to make a movie date with some local young ladies from the block where she owns Suzette LaValle boutique on Franklin Ave if your in the hood stop by and say hi ... A Brooklyn Celebrity if you ask me.
Native America November 03 2015, 0 Comments
There's a new style trend that has been stirring among us.
Inspired by the Native Americans, fringes, feathers, and eagles
are all making an appearance in this seasons apparel and accessories.
Native Americans were the first people to live in the New World.
Fringes were used regularly as a decorative part of their clothing.
The eagle feather headdress, surely the most recognizable of all
Native American clothing, were worn only by those who earned the
privilege during warfare.
The eagle is the animal that flies the highest in the animal kingdom,
therefore many tribes believed them to be the most sacred, being
the deliverers of prayers to the Creator. Additionally, the eagle feather
as a gift is considered the highest honor to be given.
It's no wonder why we love the symbolic feather as much.
SEXTILLS August 17 2015, 0 Comments
In 753 BC, August, the sixth month of the Roman calendar was named Sextills.
As we know it today the eighth month of our calendar year, August was renamed
in 8BC in honor of Augustus.
Known to be the month for the highest birth rate in the USA, August also symbolizes
summer at its peak. Flowers are high bloom, the ocean at the perfect temperature,
our skin silky golden, and we all have that summer twinkle in our eye.
But as September begins to encroach upon our steamy sunsets, we all begin to
become a bit unsettled. Our sandals we bought late May are now scuffed and have lost
their original charm. All of our favorite new summer clothes have become too familiar and
And so we are faced with the question , do we go out and buy something new and dazzling,
or be patient and respect that fall is soon approaching?
Well I like to remind all of you, August has 31 beautiful days and September doesn't go below
70 degrees until it's last week.
August is the best time to shop for summers best deals on clothing and accessories.
Last year I purchased 3 pairs of the cutest sandals at an incredible price. Styles and trends
change gradually from year to year so you will thank yourself for doing some August summer sale
shopping when you first open next years Spring box.
Flowers! Flowers Flowers! April 12 2015, 0 Comments
What else says "Spring" better then flowers?
This season a variety of floral bouquets are blooming everywhere.
My favorite prints are in pastel colors and more feminine.
I'd like to share a shot of two stunning Oscar de la Renta dresses from this season's runway.
If done delicately adding a little floral touch to your spring wardrobe will certainly make you feel just a touch more prettier.
This beautiful dress below you can currently purchase at the boutique.
Enjoy the sunshine and watching the spring flowers bloom.
Grand Opening of the Suzette LaValle Boutique March 01 2015, 1 Comment
As I sit here within my new shop, I was just reflecting on an outfit I wore back when I was about 15. See if you can imagine it.I had just walked into a super market.
I had on an old fashioned one piece long john, (ya know the one with the built in men's crotch.) (Crazy)
On top of that I had some cool ripped t-shirt ..(I think it was like a dirty dancing t-shirt), a skinny black punk leather belt wrapped around my hips,my favorite white captains hat, big orange and silver button earrings, and a pair of white leather capezio dance flats ( that anybody, who was anybody, that went out dancing back then had a pair of.)
I remember a little boy that couldn't have been more then five look at me and turn to his mother and say," wow she's cool "
To to all my friends, family & loyal customers, I couldn't have done it without you.
726 Franklin Avenue
Thank you. Suzette
Mixing Metals December 02 2014, 0 Comments
" I do silver "
" I do gold"
That's what we were all used to hearing.
Well, not any more.
Trending now everywhere is mixing metals.
Bracelets, earring's, necklaces & rings are all joining forces to get de-segregated!
Personally, I love the look, and I would love all of my followers to experience a piece of
mixed metal jewelry.
Stumbled upon this article from the LA Times.
GIVING July 14 2014, 0 Comments
This is why giving is so rewarding......
We met at the Astoria street fair last weekend 7/6.
I wore the gorgeous tunic I bought from you, and still have on the turquoise
stretch bracelet you gave me with the anchor charm on it:
love it & get many compliments.
I've blessed you many times for your kindness.
Hope to see you soon at another fair!
Pretty In Pink June 09 2014, 0 Comments
I think there are very few women
in this world
that don't look pretty in pink.
Whether or not you like the color,
( i think most women do).
I'm certain it is the first color we are
introduced to as little baby girls.
And then slowly develop a yearning
for everything to be in pink.
But why not?
Well OK, so the world all cant be pink.
That's too bad.
But luckily our clothing and
Pink jewelry is just so fun to look at and
always create's a smile.
Wearing pink makes you feel like the little girl
we will always still be in our hearts.
So, treat yourself to something pink
Celebrate your Authentic Self! April 22 2014, 0 Comments
What influences what you wear?
Is it your friends?
Others on the street?
All of the above?
NOW, the real question is....
What determines what you will actually buy?
Sadly, only a few women dare to be different.
This season I'd like to encourage everyone to be
a bit more adventurous with their own style!
The best way to to begin is by experimenting with accessories!
Or introduce yourself to a new color that you have always attracted to.
Try on some hats this spring!
Add a touch of glitter to your day wardrobe!
Have a make-up party with your girlfriends and experiment
with new colors and eyeliners!.
Have fun being a girl!
Celebrate your own authenticity!
Spring In Vogue April 16 2014, 0 Comments
WINTER December 13 2013, 0 Comments
A Grey Summer
A dull winter in December night
The city falls asleep with snow white
Many arrogant boys and girls dream away
Sick and tired of a bleak sunny day
Breaking the winds with all their might
In between the snow, we fall and fight
We live to tell the glacial flare’s light
In an obscure night where angels pray
In a dull winter
When summer goes away in spite
When winter candle becomes bright
Spirits and kids come outside to play
Dancing around the sky wearing grey
Finding a path in between a glacial tray
In a dull winter
Hosiery December 03 2013, 0 Comments
Having a beautiful variety of hosiery in the winter is a must.
Spending a few extra minutes to coordinate a novelty
pair of hosiery can really spice up an outfit, and also add's a gentle touch
of sex appeal as well. Smaller prints and textures are more chic then larger
textiles.( they maintain the design integrity better too.).
Mini florals,& jacquard's, are great for daytime .
Sheer hosiery and fishnets should for the most part be kept for
evening looks only.
Never pair up a sheer pair of hosiery with a chunky shoe, its visually unbalanced & unflattering.
Sometimes with a boot to the knee it works.
Decorative sheer hosiery and fishnets make any evening dress look richer and
Brianna Davis November 05 2013, 0 Comments
Hey Suzette ! My names Brianna ,
I met you a couple of weeks ago at the street fair in Islip .
How are you ?
Well first I have to say I love my new accessories lol
I get compliments all the time and am letting people
know about your website \blog .. It's adorable! ... My boss
snapped a shot of me working and happened to get a perfect
shot of the necklace , thought I'd forward u the photo ! And that
client is obsessed w the necklace .. Do you have any more ?
GET IT! October 10 2013, 0 Comments
Something that i see happening way too often amongst
women..and men...is the lack of courage to try
something different from time to time. It's not common
to have a customer initiate trying a hat or a pair of shades
that may be more fashionable than what they may be
accustomed to wearing...and look fabulous!...only to hear them
sadly say..."well I don't know". "I'm not a hat person", or" hats never looked good on me"...well ladies (and
gentlemen)...with time...faces change...styles change...and
so therefore attitudes should change too!...Please, if a
stylist or a close friend/family member etc. suggest you look great in
something you're not accustomed to wearing...do all of
us a favor!...GET IT!!!
Sunglasses October 06 2013, 0 Comments
Just as sunglasses play an important role in the summer, Just as sunglasses
I believe they are just as important in the winter months as well.
I would like to recommend that you experiment with different frames at least once a season.
Some shapes can definitely carry through future seasons, but adding a new shape every season keeps a fresh updated look to your wardrobe.
Sunglasses are not only functional accessory but also make a strong style statement. I believe its the finishing touch to any outfit. When selecting a pair of sunglasses its always first important to make sure they have UV protection.
I believe a woman should have at least two pairs of sunglasses that suit her. One pair of metal frames and one pair of acrylic frames. Choose the metal frame based on the tone you wear most.ie: silver or gold.
Black frames generally look fabulous on women with jet black hair, and fair skin. The same philosophy applies with acrylic... if you tend to wear more brown and earth tones, I suggest tortoise shell or chocolate, though if you wear black more often..shoot for black. Personally I generally think tortoise shell looks great look on everyone because its so savvy.
As far as cost is concerned with sunglasses, anything under $10 is probably made from cheap plastic, therefore they will look cheap. However there are some good eyewear designers that sell good quality sunglasses, keep up with the trends, at an affordable price. Naturally you can find them on my website, and there is no need to spend any more the $25.00.
Designer glasses are extremely expensive, and given the amount of times that we lose our sunglasses, personally its not worth the suffering that follows.
Dos & Don'ts August 27 2013, 0 Comments
Always take a quick minute to listen to the morning weather report. There’s nothing more
unfortunate then a lady improperly dressed for the weather. Not only do you protect your
clothing and accessories from getting unnecessarily damaged, but avoid embarrassment
by perhaps a job recruiter or potential love interest.
Please ladies when wearing leggings (unless you’re on
your way to a good work out), always wear a tunic or dress long enough to cover your derrière.
The appearance of leggings worn without enough coverage is to revealing and unattractive.
If you’re looking for an alluring look, wear the tunic or dress just under the derrière and it’ll create
a much nicer shape and look.
Attitudes August 24 2013, 0 Comments
One of my most common problems I see with women,
(including many models that I have worked with in the past)
is lacking attitude when getting dressed. Now I don’t mean, giving attitude…
I’m talking about not allowing the clothes to ‘wear you’ once there on.
You should always bring a sense of strength and confidence when
getting dressed. In a sense you’re working the clothes…. Otherwise you’ll
continually feel uncomfortable, uncertain, and ultimately unhappy about the
way you look. Which in some cases could spoil your whole day.
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