Category - People

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Designer- Elene Cassis
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Michaela Kuechenhoff- Designer of Micha Designs
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Matt Kaye- Designer at Bazango Creative

Designer- Elene Cassis

I had the chance to sit down with and view the Fall/Winter 2010 of New York designer Elene Cassis. Elene is a graduate of Parsons and felt very prepared and driven to start her company right after. This June will mark the one-year anniversary of the start of her company. She defines her style, inspired by Chanel and Ralph Lauren, as “classic beyond belief with a modern twist.” Her clothes have a general color palette of black and white and have a European meets Jackie-O meets London feel. She uses natural fabrics and all the pieces are lined with silk. She is extremely detail-oriented in that she checks the quality of every piece before it goes out to boutiques. Her pieces have been seen on Booker T. Washington’s daughter, the Shannon twins, Stephanie Pratt, and the ‘Linda’ dress has recently been worn on Cheryl Burke.

The classic silhouette was evident in the collection I viewed. The dresses are very versatile in that they could be worn during the day and then jazzed up a bit to wear out on the town in the evening. They are also structured to fit curvier women as well. Elene believes that “everyone should feel special and wear designer clothes.” Prices range from $300-400 and are available in boutiques around the country (one being Petro Zillia here in LA). Her NY showroom is located at 252 W. 38th St. (between 7th & 8th Aves.) and her office number is (212)784-0696 and fax is (212)784-0699. Check out www.elenecassis.com for online shopping and more information.

Special thanks to the designer, Elene Cassis and Carla Bate of Spin Shoppe PR!

Michaela Kuechenhoff- Designer of Micha Designs

While I was at the Focus Fashion Show, I was introduced to a bubbly designer named Michaela. She showed me her jewelry collection, which consisted of  handmade, one-of-a-kind, avant-garde necklaces made from vintage watch pieces, belt buckles, brooches  feathers, etc.  Let’s just say- I was HOOKED! Her company was founded in 1997 and her mission is “Go Green.” She uses recycled and vintage materials while also using ‘offbeat’ materials like: leather, feathers, lace, door knockers, brooches, fabric roses, scrabble pieces, doilies, etc. Her mission “is to show that you do not have to compromise beauty to ‘go green’.” She gets inspired by materials, odds and ends from swap meets. She does not work from a sketch, thus allowing the creations to develop organically, draping materials over a mannequin. A few of her signature pieces are: “What time is it?”, “Buckle Up” and Hardware Deluxe Designs. She sells her pieces at numerous style houses, boutiques, Nordstrom’s, Bloomingdale’s and trunk shows. Her price points range from $40-300. Her necklaces are very popular with celebrities, including: Jessica Simpson, Kourtney Kardashian, Fergie and Audrey Kitching. I look forward to seeing more of Michaela’s unique pieces on the red carpet or out-and-about. For more information or to purchase, go to her website or contact Michaela at micha@michadesign.com.

Matt Kaye- Designer at Bazango Creative

Bazango Creative was the name that first popped into comedian Matt Kaye’s head when thinking of names for his apparel company. He is an eco-friendly company that takes thrift and new apparel  and turns them into works of art. The idea came to him during the ten years he was a house painter, people would offer money for his paint-splattered pants…and so it went from there. He found an investor and so, this past February, Bazango Creative was born. He paints a menagerie of colors and draws Johnathan Winters-type cartoon characters on jackets, shoes, tees, pants and dresses for men and women. He can paint on most types of fabrics, except coarse materials found on sweaters; but loves working with Dickies, which holds paints well, like canvas. Matt finds inspiration while looking through Juxtapose, graffiti magazines and the art of Jean-Michel Basquiat (*1960-1988* Of the Warhol era). He is currently selling online and at Monogrammit on Robertson Blvd, but wants to ultimately sell to more boutiques. His jackets and pants go for $390.00, long sleeve shirts go for $155.00 and tees for $120.00. For more info and to purchase a one-of-a-kind Bazango creation, simply check out the brand on Facebook!

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