Vuela Lookbook

Fresh Picks: Leather Goods + Jewelry

3.24.2015

New arrivals for spring!We're thrilled to add the stunning utilitarian piece from Finnish line Month of Sundays: a backpack for your daily trek or travel to a far-flung destination. And new to our shop!We're proud to add the gorgeous jewelry collection from New York-based label Sayaka Davis.

Backpack Lifestyle photo by Susanna Vento

Vancouver: Travel Tips from Ceramicist Jacqueline Klassen

3.10.2015


Spring time is upon us (more like summer here in So Cal!) and I've been looking forward to a little spring break to my "must-visit" destination. Since Vuela is rooted in my love for travel and design, it's always exciting to highlight the locales our designers call home. We're thrilled to feature our neighbors to the north! Canadian ceramicist, Jacqueline Klassen, offers the best tips on her beautiful hometown of Vancouver sparking the wanderlust in us.

You are currently based in Vancouver, British Columbia. What are "must see" things or "must do" for those visiting your hometown?
Vancouver is such a naturally beautiful city. Nestled between mountains and the sea, the city itself is still pretty new and offers so much to explore. In general I’d say that you’ve got to experience a bit of it all when you come here. I’d recommend going to Third Beach in Stanley Park to fill the beach / park requirement, and perhaps a hike through Lynn Canyon to satisfy the mountain experience. But then, of course, my favourite thing about Vancouver is the food, and I could talk your ear off about that. Vancouver has an amazing craft beer and coffee thing going on right now, which I would HIGHLY recommend investigating. For beer: Brassneck, 33 Acres, and Strange Fellows. For Coffee: Elysian, Revolver, and Matchstick.


Matchstick Coffee
 What are off the beaten path local hangouts? Favorite neighborhoods, parks, etc.?
Crab Park is my favourite spot to have a picnic. It’s quaint and quiet, and it has a beautiful view of the orange gantry cranes, the water, and the mountains.  Le Marche St George is my go to for French crepes and coffee. It’s located in a super old house that is filled to the brim with beautiful (and delicious) treasures. The furthest point west you can go at Spanish Banks is my top choice for watching the sunset. Oh, and I also love the top of Queen Elizabeth Park. I like to go there in the spring and wander through the gardens, just as they are starting to come to life. The view from the top is pretty spectacular, and then there is the Bloedel Conservatory… a glass dome filled with tropical plants and birds. I go there in the dead of winter and pretend I’m on the other side of the world.

Picnic essentials + Lunch at Le Marche St. George
Bloedel Conservatory

Favorite places to shop: boutiques or outdoor markets:
For clothing, I love Community Thrift store. The prices are reasonable and I almost always walk away with a one of a kind treasure. I balance out my thriftiness by splurging on shoes. My favourite shoe shop is Umeboshi on Main Street. They have the most gorgeous, drool- worthy selection of shoes, and the sweetest staff. I also adore Old Faithful Shop, a store filled to the brim with gorgeous home goods. I would buy every single thing in that shop if I could. I do all my book shopping at Pulp Fiction.  Dressew on East Hastings is where I go to get any and all of my crafting supplies. It’d huge, so be prepared to lose yourself for a couple hours, even if you plan to only stay for 5 minutes.

Then of course there are all the wonderful farmer’s markets that pop up around the city throughout the year. We’re lucky to live in a place where we have a pretty decent variety of local produce available all year round. I’ve always found the farmer’s markets to be a source of inspiration and connection within Vancouver.
 
Image via Old Faithful Shop

Favorite places to eat or type of food:
Vancouver is absolutely loaded with incredible ethnic food. My favourites are Toshi for sushi, Phnom Penh for anything on the menu, Menya Japanese Noodle for Ramen, and Au Petit Café for Bahn Mi. Vancouver also has some really, really great pizza. Pizza is probably my favourite food on earth and I take it pretty seriously. My favourite spots are Campagnolo, Pizzeria Farina, and Nicli Antica.

Pizzeria Farina

Best mode of transportation to get around the city:
By bicycle! Or if it's pouring (which it might be), by foot (with umbrella in hand). Transit is always a last resort for me.
  
Easy day trips from Vancouver-cool places to see right outside the city:
My favourite day trips are the ones that allow me to really escape from the fast pace of the city. I love to drive to Squamish and hike The Chief (the second largest granite monolith in North America, I believe). It’s a challenge, but the view from the top is staggeringly beautiful. In the summers I love to visit either Lighthouse Park or Whytecliff Park, where I’ll always climb along the rocks and jump into the sea. I’m convinced that there is nothing better than that.

Whytecliff Park
 Favorite local designers or makers:
Olla Urban Flower Project- ethereal bouquets, informative workshops, etc. I go into their shop anytime I need a pick me up.
Lissu Linen - I’m a sucker for linens, and Lisa crafts the most clean and classic towels, napkins, and duvet covers I’ve seen.
Wylden – for minimal, timeless and elegant jewelry... it’s all I wear.
Hendrik Lou – for the coziest (and most gorgeous) knits
Charlotte Falk - I want to cover all my walls in her paintings.

Wearing Wylden Jewelry
Painting by Charlotte Falk
 For the wanderlust in all of us, what are some of your favorite places to visit? Where would you like to travel next?
I love to visit Ucluelet, BC perhaps more than any place I’ve ever been. It’s located on the west coast of Vancouver Island. Wide open ocean, and wild, rugged beaches… it is the place I go when I want some peace and perspective. I recently returned from Europe and I got to visit Portugal for the first time… I fell so in love. I haven’t stopped thinking about it since I got back. Next on the list though will be South Korea, Turkey, and Spain.
Ucluelet, BC
Jacqueline Klassen Inspiring Interview Part 1
Shop her collection.
______________________________________________________________________________

I'm truly grateful Jacqueline for giving us a wonderful travel guide to your hometown of Vancouver. Such a great resource! Some of my favorite things to do when I travel is to explore the local food scene. Even though I live in the west coast, I've actually only explored the east coast of Canada. I can't wait to visit and hang out especially to try out the great selection of food there. Thank you!

Personal photos courtesy of Jacqueline Klassen

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.

__________________________________________________________________________________

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. 

Shop Jacqueline Klassen's ceramics


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
im

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.



Simply Vuela All rights reserved © Blog Milk Powered by Blogger