Category Archives: louisiana

Such A Doll

Do you love bold accessories? Have a love of feathers?  Then I have an Etsy shop you have to check out.  I had the pleasure of interviewing Jessica Reeves Tullos of Automatic Doll. Automatic Doll is an Etsy shop that sells unique hand-made accessories that are made in Lafayette, Louisiana.  Jessica’s accessories are absolutely adorable and will have you feeling like a doll!  Check out her interview below and then go to her Etsy shop by clicking here.
Tell us how you got into designing your unique accessories.

It all started with my desire to have beautiful accessories to wear, even though I could not afford to buy them in stores. I started making myself flower crowns resembling the ones I loved at Rouge Pony, an Etsy store owned by the beautiful and talented Karin Kirsten. When I wore them to festivals or outdoor events, people loved them. It got to the point where every time I wore any of my handmade pieces, I would find myself explaining to people that I only made it for myself and that they were not sold in stores. So, finally, I decided to create my own Etsy store.
  
You feature a lot of feathers in your pieces, what type of feathers do you use?

I use mainly rooster tail feathers in my neck pieces and epaulettes, but in my headdresses I use pheasant, peacock, or ostrich feathers as well. The pheasant feathers have beautiful stripes in them, and of course there is nothing as beautiful as a peacock tail feather!


What are your most popular items?

My most popular items are definitely the feather epaulettes. They are meant to be worn either as a pair, or as a single piece worn on one shoulder. They are bright, large, and have a tendency to become the focal point of any outfit. People love them because it instantly transforms the article of clothing you are wearing into a bold, and dare I say, costume piece for the everyday!
Since you are an Etsy shop and you don’t mass-produce your items do you sometimes tweak the colors if the customer request certain colors?

Absolutely! The beauty of hand-making everything by myself lets me give each person who buys a piece from Automatic Doll a unique and distinct wearable work of art. Since it is Mardi Gras season right now in Louisiana, I get special requests from buyers who want feather pieces in the Mardi Gras colors of purple, green, and gold. I love to think I was able to help some one to create her own one of a kind Mardi Gras costume!


Describe the woman that would wear your accessories.

The woman who wears Automatic Doll  is an individual who likes to stand apart from everyone else in a crowd. She is bold, yet whimsical, and wants her look to make that statement. She approaches her personal style with a sense of adventure – ultimately, she is the girl who asks herself before dressing for any occasion, “What costume will I wear today?” 


Since your pieces are so unique do you have any muses?

Yes, I have so many! I have always been in awe of the designs of indigenous cultures. I love the color palettes, patterns, and jewelry made by Mesoamerican, Native American, and African cultures. I love the idea of ritual and ceremonial objects. These sacred objects are aesthetically beautiful, and though the pieces I create are by no means sacred in any way, they are inspired by such objects. Also, Karin Kirsten, the designer behind Rouge Pony, is a huge inspiration to me in terms of my floral headpieces. Her work is effervescent! Lastly, but perhaps in the largest sense, my work is a product of the sort of women Tennessee Williams wrote about. They are women who are full of passion and color, beauty and spunk, innocence and rage. They are the essence of what it means to be an Automatic Doll, and I imagine many of those women would have worn such accessories.
What is your future plans for Automatic Doll?

At this time, I am in the process of making lots of pieces in order to have a portfolio to show to local boutiques and merchants in the hopes of putting my accessories into actual stores. I will be selling Automatic Doll pieces at bazaars and festivals in the upcoming months, and I am excited to see how my work is received. For now I will keep blogging and selling on Esty. 
-Brandy Gaspard
All images via Automatic Doll


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What I Wore: A Trip to the Zoo

This post was written by JeLlyn Morvant, one of Slow Southern Style’s interns. You’ll get a chance to meet her in the upcoming weeks but for now check out her blog, Bayou Bohemian, and be on the look out for her bio soon.

Hello from Lafayette! A New Orleans neighbor. A short drive across Lake Pontchartrain, across the Mississippi River, on the other side of the Atchafalaya Basin and a small town rich with culture welcomes you. Rather you are in The Big Easy or Cajun Country one things the same our southern locale temperature fluctuates regularly, even drastically. As all of us southern belles know well it can approach freezing one day and reach comfortable ideal temperatures before that week ends.  This past weekend was one of those ideal weather days. We spent a beautiful Saturday morning at the zoo and this is what we wore.


< papa >
cream linen pants from Banana Republic
thrifted embroidered ethnic cotton tunic
< mama >
thrifted vintage denim shirt 
black dress and black leggings from Target
grey suede fringed ankle moccasins by Minnetonka
Essie russian roulette red nail polish from Target
< baby >
thrifted overalls
pearl snap plaid long sleeve from Goodwill
thrifted brown suede shoes
denim news boy cap from Target
I seriously enjoy and sincerely recommend a good thrift store, previously owned, or vintage find. There is something so rewarding about scoring a great find at an incredible, sometimes unrealistic price. Even better when you unveil a find that is vintage and clearly from another era.  Having a variety of new and old in your closet and adding vintage pieces to an outfit can allow for an individual statement that sets your look apart from ordinary with a splash of unconventional.
from one southern gal to another,
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Fashion Week New Orleans Top Designer Competition



With Christmas come and gone and New Year’s Eve, the Superbowl, and Mardi Gras all in the near future who’s thinking about March already? If you’re an aspiring fashion designer, maybe you should.



Fashion Week New Orleans (FW NOLA) is currently accepting applications for their Top Designer Competition, which is part of their fashionable festivities March 21st-25th. Ten designers will be given the opportunity to compete for the title of top designer and a chance to win a 90 day in-store presence at Hemline, a professionally designed website, and a photo shoot of the winning collection. Deadline for applications is January 15th, 2012 and judging by the talent from last year such as Anthony Ryan Auld (of Project Runway fame) you wouldn’t want to miss out on this chance.


Designer: Alicia Zenobia
2011 Top Designer Alicia Zenobia

Alicia Zenobia, winner of the 2011 Top Designer Competition, feels the opportunity afforded her served as a springboard to get her designs into the public eye.


“This was the best opportunity to showcase the uniquely wilder flavor of New Orleans fashion in a comprehensive and well produced fashion event. I was so happy that my out of the box creations were not only understood, but also celebrated by the judges and audience at New Orleans Fashion Week and consequently the press and people of New Orleans, and beyond!”




Designer: Alicia Zenobia
Alicia Zenobia’s striking designs
 FW NOLA’s primary objective is to showcase the skillful individuals that comprise the burgeoning New Orleans fashion scene. The Gulf Coast region is known as a destination for food, music, and an entire film industry, so why not fashion? We’ve got the fashion designers, make-up and hair artists, models and the boutiques willing to carry the clothing, so we might as well nurture it and show the world what we have to offer.

Interested applicants should contact Mallory Domingue at mdomingue@fashionweeknola.com



Fashion Week New Orleans 2012 Schedule and Locations:

March 21, 2012 kick off party, Twist Lounge inside the Lafayette Hotel
March 22 – 24, 2012 Runway Shows and Top Designer Competition, The Sugar Mill
March 25, 2012 Bridal Runway Showcase, The Westin at Canal Place
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Haute and Handmade: A Recap

Make no mistake, I’m certainly not a model. I’m about a foot too short, my cheekbones weren’t chiseled by the hands of a Renaissance sculptor and the only way I’d fit into a sample size is if it were socially acceptable to wear a dress around one’s upper thigh.  Aside from my prototype setbacks I was pleased and quite honored to model Alabama Chanin’s intricate designs as part of Haute and Handmade this past Friday. Each of Natalie Chanin’s pieces are hand stitched with nary a sewing machine in sight. You have to really get up close and personal to inspect and appreciate the labor and love that goes into each garment. They are truly a work of art with needle and thread.


 Along with six local designers, Andrea Loest, Grayson Gold (he’s 12 years old!), Lorna Leedy, Kerry Fitts, Amanda Loest, and Rebecca Rebouche the Ogden Museum of Southern Art served as a pantheon of handmade looks, all designed below the Mason-Dixon line. I’m told there were over 400 people in attendance that evening, a great testament of support for southern based fashion. It was interesting to see which the similarities and stark contrasts of each designer but the common theme throughout the evening was a commitment to quality and originality. 


For more photos go to the Slow Southern Style Facebook page and many thanks to Leslie Almeida for taking pictures of the evening while I was backstage being prepped.
My friend Chanel wearing a Bayou Salvage dress

Fancy Ponyland

Fancy Ponyland

Bayou Salvage

Amanda Deleon

Alabama Chanin

some random girl

oh wait that’s me
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Objects of Adornment Opening Night

Copper, feathers, and fur from Lacey Dupre

I can’t believe how great opening night for Objects of Adornment went! Since its inception two years ago Slow Southern Style has been all about showcasing Southern based designers and I was thrilled with the opportunity to share four of my favorites in an intimate setting. 



While the internet is the easiest, fastest way to discover fresh talent it is an entirely different experience seeing the work in person. We had every aesthetic represented, from Alicia Zenobia’s experimental hair dresses, classic style courtesy of Ben Azevedo’s bow ties, fanciful headpieces from Kaci Thomassie and swamp art thanks to Lacey Dupre’s nutria and bone necklaces.


I want to give massive amounts of thanks to Du Mois Gallery for helping me bring a little fashion to Freret Street, Lazy Magnolia for providing the beer, and the mannequins on loan from Armoire Boutique, Buffalo Exchange, Denise Lyons, Gera Kirkland, and Rachel Elizabeth Adams.

There are tons of photos from the evening on the Slow Southern Style Facebook page so make sure to check those out as well! And don’t forget that Objects of Adornment will be at Du Mois Gallery now through the end of October. All artwork on Freret Street is tax free for an extra incentive to add a wearable work of art to your collection, handmade right here in Louisiana.


Objects of Adornment
Du Mois Gallery
4921 Freret Street
New Orleans, LA

My good friend Rebecca with her boyfriend Nick

Kaci Thomassie and her boyfriend. It’s sort of ridiculous how cute they are together, right?
Fiber art headbands by Kaci Thomassie
Antique sewing machine, bow tie work station
Selection of luxurious silk bow ties from Ben Azevedo

Sweet blush fascinator by Kaci Thomassie
Lacey Dupre with her incredible nutria fur necklaces

Posing with Alicia Zenobia’s incredible hair dresses
My sister’s favorite piece from Lacey Dupre

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kc thomassie designs

Ladies let’s face it, nothing makes us feel glitzier than a tuft of frivolousness sitting atop our head. Southerners are known for their fanciful headgear, from the Kentucky Derby, to church hats even the crowns our Mardi Gras queens wear we love resembling peacocks.Recent Samford University graduate Kaci Thomassie satisfies cravings for the fantastical with her handmade, one of a kind creations here in Louisiana.
.Tres Femme KTD Couture Headpiece

Drawing from her degree in theater with a concentration in costume design and inspired by vintage clothing Kaci works with a variety of materials including feathers, leather, unique fabrics, vintage buttons, and beads. It’s no wonder why her fascinators are sought after by brides to be, especially on the North Shore. Check out her work in person at this Saturday’s Objects of Adornment at Du Mois Gallery on Freret Street. Can’t make it to the opening? The show will run from October 8th until the end of the month.

KTD Couture Pink and Black Feather Fascinator
Peacock Statement Necklace

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Guest Post- The Posh Pearl

Slow Southern Style is going to be featuring a few guest bloggers each Monday to liven the place up and get some fresh voices on a variety of subjects. This week Meganne Parker of The Posh Pearl is filling in . Interested in guest blogging? Contact me at nolagurl at gmail dot com.

Hello lovely readers of Slow Southern Style! I hope you are all doing wonderfully this Monday! I am Meganne, from The Posh Pearl. I am so thrilled to be guest posting for Christy today!

This outfit was my first attempt at color blocking. I’ve been seeing this trend all over sites like Chictopia and such. I’ve had a hard time trying to accomplish this look because everything I own has some sort of pattern, mostly florals. Today, I looked in my closet and these three pieces jumped out at me. They worked quite nicely together, I do think.

I found this skirt at a Goodwill store. I think it’s quite possibly my favorite item in my entire closet. I love the coral of it and the blue color of my sweater together. It reminds me of the ocean, where I would kill to be right now!

Even though I absolutely love this skirt, I think my favorite part of the outfit is the shoes. I’ve been looking for a pair of platform sandals like these all summer. On a shopping trip to Baton Rouge, I FINALLY found a pair at Urban Outfitters. Sad thing is, these shoes actually broke after only a few hours of wear, but I managed to repair them with a little bit of crazy glue. Thank God!

Well, I hope you’ve all enjoyed my little outfit post that I put together. I sure did enjoy doing it! I’d like to thank you all for taking your time and reading this post, and I would also like to thank Christy for allowing me to guest post on her wonderful blog! Thank ya’ll!
-Meganne
Twitter: slowsouthstyle Facebook: Slow Southern Style

Festival Season In Louisiana

Today’s post comes from guest blogger Jamielyn from Seams That Way.

As the full two months of “Spring”  have come and gone, the city is picking up steam with all things that consume our social calendars of events that force us to enjoy the outdoors. The days seem to grow longer,  the hot, sticky embrace of this humid city awaiting with arms wide open.  Yes, ladies and gents festival  season is in full swing! Personally, it is my ultimate favorite time of year.

What are my favorite things about festivals? The abundance of local food vendors showcasing,  brass bands gloriously blaring and the migration of big headlining acts.  It’s the kickstart that sets the tone for a fun summer. Of course I also love watching the sizzling hot fashions on parade as everyone tries to manage through the tightly packed crowds; libations and food in hand. It is a perfect formula for our love affair with the transitional season.   

  
                                                       
With that being said, as we try our best to beat the heat there’s no denying that at this time of year  our inner haute hippie takes over. This look is quite practical , yet we are  still well concealed beneath our garments for all the crawfish bread we’ve managed to devour.

For this Spring 2011 Season, the ‘70s have dominated and it’s“THE” trend that everyone can get away with. The best part?  There’s two  aesthetics to this look we can play with: boho and glam. What more could a lady want?  Typically for Spring we expect lots of pastels and the standard floral prints along with  nautical stripes, but for 2011 this season is going in a wilder direction. Go bold or go home! The brighter the better.

You’ll expect to see visually intriguing pieces influenced by the hipster chic lifestyle with lots of texture. Crochet, macrame, eyelets, fringes, oh my! It’s also all about the bottoms. Aside from the chunky,  bumble stripes, midi skirts to the floor- grazing pleats, the hemlines are getting  fancy.
While distressed denim cut offs might be your go to choice,  opt for scalloped hems or a tribal print cotton skort-like bottom. You can even try colored denim shorts paired with a cropped tee for a comfy funday attire. Unsure about the midriff revealing top? Try a shark tooth trapeze top. You can’t really go wrong either way.

As some of us may be more  into a feminine state of mind, maxi dresses and skirts are here to stay. They’ve definitely come a long way from when we first started taking notice three spring seasons ago and now we can’t get enough.  From one-shouldered looks to the deep plunging v-neck lines, again, it’s all about the prints. Let your tribal instict come out with Native American inspired prints.  Throw some turquoise jewelry or feather  accessories into the mix and you get effortless chic at it’s finest.

 Whether you choose to get on board with the love child craze or go with the flow of the breezy silhouettes, comfort is key.

“While our inclination with the warm, sunny weather is to go with the open toe sandals, try a closed toe, chunky, rugged bootie. ” says Nicole Hershey, a sales associate of local high-end shoe boutique, Shoefty.
“People are always spilling stuff and you don’t ever know what you might step in”, she quickly adds.
“Also, no matter what, you should get inserts. They soak up the sweat and add support”, on  a wise footwear tip. Point well taken. Now slather on the sunscreen. Throw on your wide brimmed sun hat and drinks lots agua and let’s get to lots of fun in the sun! Happy Festing!!
(Images courtesy of LF.com & FreePeople.com)
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Lacey Du- A Louisiana jewelry designer

I haven’t featured an Etsy artist in a while, simply for the fact that I’ve been inundated with other projects but I still love unearthing talented Southern designers and artists to feature here. When Lacey Dupre, an environmental scientist from Lafayette, Louisiana contacted me about Slow Southern Style I was delighted to share her handiwork with y’all. Here’s what she had to say:


I’m from Louisiana and adore the swamps. I fnd a lot of inspiration while I’m canoeing or atop my stand-up paddleboard.   The sunsets on the Atchafalaya Basin amaze me, with the creaking cypress and dripping moss and I draw lots of inspiration from them. Aside from the grandeur of nature, I get most of my ideas in the spur of the moment. For example sometimes I could be conversing with someone  and a picture morphs in my head, which turns into a ceramic piece or jewelry!  

Citrine and Saffron FUR necklace

As a child, and throughout college I painted, then I became interested in ceramics and now I love making jewelry.   I do all three now but my main focus is the jewelry.  I use lots of natural materials: bone, claws, leather, amethyst chunks, deer antler slices, pyrite, clay, porcelaine, and fabric remnants.  I also incorporate my ceramics into my jewelry; blending these disciplines causes me to dream and expand my collections. 


Amethyst Slice on warm brass by laceyDU


 My latest collection features Nutria fur!  Yes, real, guilt-free fur.  Nutria are an invasive species to our beautiful land here, they tear up the marshes and wetlands with their destructive feeding and are one of the biggest problems associated with coastal erosion.  They roam free and wild until they are put to good use as food and clothing.  Yep, food too!  I’m with a collective called Righteous Fur in New Orleans and many of the other members make coats and hats and such.
Aside from my art, I am an Environmental Scientist and an aspiring Practicioner of Chinese Medicine. I also am really into slacklining, which is akin to tight rope walking combined with a trampoline.  Traveling has also been a focal point of my life, I spent much time in Europe and recently, have been visiting Asian countries.


White howlite charmed by laceyDU



Visit Lacey online at www.laceydu.com,  or one of her two Etsy shops, www.laceydu.etsy.com for handmade jewelry and vintage finds  she discovers on her travels and www.atelierdu.etsy.com for Lacey’s  fine  art photogrpahy and prints. 
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