Vuela Lookbook

New Arrivals: Kuppers & Wuytens Leather Goods

2.25.2015


We're excited to introduce the beautifully made handbags from under-the-radar line Kuppers & Wuytens. Based in Belgium, Jan Kuppers and Karen Wuytens are the designers behind this line of accessories, jewelry and home goods. They use the qualities of materials and specific processing techniques in their design, resulting in pure no-nonsense objects for man and environment. Featuring simple clean lines, high quality leather goods and no hardware, these bags have an air of modern elegance with a timeless quality. Working with local craftsmen in Spain, the design duo's understated and pared down design somehow makes an impact for the smallest details and quality material. An instant favorite this season, we love the size and versatility of these Kuppers & Wuytens leather bags-ideal for travel, outdoor festival while ready for a night out!

Designer photo from Kuppers & Wuytens

Designer Interview Part 1: Jacqueline Klassen

2.12.2015

Behind the beautiful products we showcase is a story of craft and inspiration. Getting to know the individuals and sharing our designers' stories are some of my favorite things about running our shop.

Given my strong affinity for all things ceramics, I couldn't be more excited to present our heartfelt and insightful interview with the lovely and inspiring lady, Vancouver-based ceramicist Jacqueline Klassen. Featuring her distinctive sculptural forms, playful patterns and textures, her collection of ceramics is a true objet d'art while functional at heart.


Your pieces have such distinctive forms, tactile quality and playfulness to them, how would you describe your design approach and creative process-from design, inspiration and the formation of your collection?
My design process is relatively unfussy and unplanned. Sometimes it starts with me sketching out an idea, but more often than not it’s something that begins when I sit down at the wheel. I’m thinking about new shapes and forms constantly, and so long as I have a vague idea of what I’m hoping to achieve at the beginning of the day, I’m able to hash out these ideas in a totally organic, experimental way when I’m at the studio. Once I have a piece I find to be aesthetically pleasing, I have to test out it’s functionality. After I get those kinks ironed out, I put it out into the world and see how it’s received.

My pieces are predominantly inspired by architecture and design elements (the interplay between colours, textures, and forms). However, I’m also greatly inspired by the relationship between natural and unnatural environments - that’s something that has stemmed from living in a buzzing city surrounded by mountains and sea.

I have such a weakness for ceramics. How did you get into ceramics?
I took a 6 week beginner course shortly after finishing my degree. I was burnt out and desperately wanted a change of pace before continuing on with more schooling. My infatuation was instant, and I found myself spending every spare minute I had in the studio. I ended up choosing ceramics over the art history program I had been accepted into, and I’m so glad I did. I had no idea that this would grow into what it has in such a short amount of time.
 


How has your design changed or evolved?
My process and my aesthetic has evolved significantly over the past couple years, and I want to continue to allow that to happen as I learn and grow. In terms of process, when I first started I was completely consumed by an end result, which didn’t really allow me much space to experiment and make mistakes. I’ve since become a lot more willing to enjoy the journey and the process that comes along with making a piece. In achieving this, the work I create feels so much more personal. Aesthetically, I’m starting to veer away from colours, and instead focus on bold shapes and forms, and textures.


Behind each piece is an intricate process.  So much of the process involves the combination of art, skill, time, hard work (mixing that glaze!), science and magic in the kiln? How does it feel to open the kiln and see the final pieces?
As you’d expect, it’s incredibly rewarding. There are so many steps in the process, and so many opportunities for things to go wrong along the way, so opening up the kiln and seeing a finished piece IN ONE PIECE is a massive relief. Of course, there are also days when I’ve been experimenting with glazes and I open up the kiln to see that my vision has gone terribly wrong. I try not to ever get too attached to pieces, otherwise I’d be breaking my heart on a bi-weekly basis.


I know it’s so hard to choose, but what are some of your favorite ceramic pieces to make?
I love making teapots. They require the most time and effort out of anything I make, but they are by far the most rewarding. Playing around with various spouts, handles, bodies, and lids to create something that is both aesthetically pleasing AND functional will always be my favourite challenge.

I really enjoyed collaborating with you! What's next for your collection or any new projects?
I have a bunch of collaborations in the works that I’m super excited about. I'm currently working on an exclusive teapot for Sight Unseen that will be available in their online store. In between projects I’m slowly working away on a dinnerware collection, and re-launching my website.

Running a business requires a lot of time and passion for what you do- on your down time, what are your other interests, passions or activities that you enjoy?
My favourite thing to do with my down time is to cook and bake. There is nothing better than pouring myself a glass of wine, turning on some good music, and setting to work in the kitchen. I’m also big into beach combing, reading, and cuddling cats.

Any irks and quirks you'd like to share?
I hate doing the dishes, and I’m incredibly forgetful. I also make a bad ass New York Sour.

What is your personal style or aesthetic? What are some of your favorite pieces and items you collect for you or your home?
I always try to invest in pieces that have a timelessness about them, both for my home and for my wardrobe. For my home, I love old pieces that look like they’ve lived long, full, and exciting lives. Most of my favourite pieces have been found at thrift stores and flea markets. One of my favourite pieces is a hanging lamp from an old ship. My boyfriend and I found it at a street market in Anacortes, WA this past summer. The light itself is attached to a metal pulley and the entire thing hangs from a metal hook. It’s intense. And so, so beautiful.

Any advice for someone who wants to explore and plunge into the world of craft and design?
Sign up for some classes, practice, practice, practice, and always keep your chin up. If you love what you’re doing, nothing else matters.

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Whether the conceptual design of a product starts with paper and pencil or actual construction, it is wonderful to learn not only the craft and creative process, but also the individual's journey in becoming a designer/maker. From taking the leap into the world of craft, it is a continuous process of research, learning, and skill building combined with the love for the craft. Thank you so much Jacqueline for share your inspiring story with us!It is a pleasure to get to know you and you know we'll have to visit your city soon. So grateful!And of course for the wanderlust in you, we will be sharing Jacqueline's travel tips for Vancouver in Part 2.

Studio and personal photos courtesy of Jacqueline Klassen

Fashion Love: Elissa McGowan

2.05.2015

Another amazing collection from our friends down under!It's wonderful to discover the beautiful collection by Australian designer Elissa McGowan. Combining beautiful fabrics and exquisite tailoring, she's managed to balance structured tailoring with easy flowing sillouhettes. After graduating from the Fashion Design Studio in Sydney, she launched her first collection in 2013. Fusing her interest in fabrication and textile development, she explores surface techniques and custom fabric development working with European textile mills.

I may not wear a lot of blazers, but I'm coveting the light muted pieces in her collection. I've been drawn to the black and white combinations, but there's something delightful when seeing accents of coral and light dusty pinks getting us ready for our spring season.




All images from Elissa McGowan


Design Love: Hunting and Narud

2.02.2015

What cool jars! The first thought that came to mind when I first saw the apex tables by London-based design studio, Hunting and Narud.  The Norwegian-born design duo Amy Hunting and Oscar joined forces to design objects and spaces that have a strong spatial impact. I love how they use of a variety materials in their line of furniture and objects.  The design studio creates products in a range of different materials featuring textiles, glass, wood or metal.




All images from Hunting and Narud
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New Arrivals from Forma Jewelry

1.21.2015

We love showcasing under the radar lines and the works of hard to find designers. Designed and created by Galit Barak, we're happy to introduce Forma, a collection of modern minimalist jewelry designs. I've been looking for the perfect drop or dangling earrings and came across her simple yet elegant designs. Inspired by nature urban landscapes and mechanisms, she crafts jewelry that integrates bold and rustic forms with clean and minimal elements. All jewelry is hand made in Israel in excellent craftsmanship, meticulously designed with attention to details. Oxidized silver jewelry pieces have been on our radar for some time and love how they look with Naoko Ogawa's necklaces. They're simple yet with unexpected details to elevate your modern wardrobe.



Coats, coats, and more coats!

1.06.2015

Happy New Year!Hope you had a wonderful holiday season. I spent some time up north over the holidays for a little getaway vacation. It was a little chilly (ok for a Southern Cal girl!) and made me want to invest in a great coat. It may not be coat weather here in San Diego right now since it's warmed up again, but just can't resist adding these beautiful coats in my closet wishlist. I'm especially loving the light grey palette spotted in my 2 favorite style blogs FIGTNY and My Dubio. Of course there's also the classic camel and most of the pieces are on sale... so hard to choose!


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Holiday Decor Favorites

12.22.2014


With Christmas just a few days away, it may seem hectic with all the preparations and last minute shopping. As a dose of calm and inspiration and since we're keeping our decor simple and easy this year, I'm loving all the simple holiday decorations around the web getting me ready for all the festivities.

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