The Barbour story began in 1894 in the Market Place in South Shields. Today the 5th generation family owned business remains in the North East, with Barbour's headquarters located in Simonside, South Shields. Although it sources products from around the globe, Barbour's classic wax jackets are still manufactured by hand in the factory in Simonside and each year over 100,000 jackets are processed via the central, subsidiary and local customer service operations.
In 2004, Barbour began to work with Lord James Percy, in the design and marketing of its flagship shooting clothing range - the Northumberland range. Technically advanced and highly acclaimed in 2005, the Northumberland Range won the Shooting Industry Award for best clothing product, and more recently, the Linhope 3-in-1 won the Shooting Industry Award for best clothing product, 2008. More recently he was involved, alongside Vice Chairman Helen Barbour, in designing the new Barbour Sporting collection launched for Autumn Winter 2011.
Barbour now has 10 of its own retail shops in the UK, and a presence in over 40 countries worldwide including the United States, Germany, Holland, Austria, France, Italy, Spain, Argentina, New Zealand and Japan.
There are now over 5,000 products across the two seasons, and the collections now cater for Men, Ladies and Children. Broadening out from its countrywear roots, today the heritage and lifestyle clothing brand produces clothing that is designed for a full lifestyle wardrobe. As well as jackets and coats, the Barbour wardrobe includes trousers, shirts, socks, knitwear and a range of accessories.
Nevertheless, in whichever area the company now operates, it remains true to its core values as a family business which espouses the unique values of the British Countryside and brings the qualities of wit, grit and glamour to its beautifully functional clothing.
Here at Project Social T, we understand the importance of making an impact on the world around us, and we strive to connect with people who give back to their community. In 2011, we created a program called ‘Our Projects’. Every year we select four outstanding charities to partner with from across the U.S. Each quarter, we spend time getting to know the charities, their volunteers, and their mission individually, and we are able give a monthly donation of $5k to ensure they can continue their incredible work. But do you know what can be more helpful than funding? Awareness. We realize that half the battle that charities face is not having enough awareness surrounding their cause and their efforts. To help spread the word of small, yet mighty organizations, Project Social T has designed custom hang tags on each garment that inform you about our current charity partner. This way, you’ll know you’re buying more than just a tee, you’re improving the lives of others.
Based in New York, Designer Julie Brown is known for her vibrant colors, lush fabrics, and eye-catching patterns portrayed throughout her animated lifestyle collection of ready-to-wear clothing and accessories designed for special occasions. Raised in a family of artists, Brown was surrounded by art and fashion her entire life and has had a passion for design since she was a child. She began her career as a merchandiser at major fashion brands such as Ralph Lauren and Anne Klein and drew inspiration from the awe and creative buzz found in these projects to further advance her career. Through her work in merchandising, she gained an impeccable eye for high-end fabrics and unique patterns which lead her to the creation of Julie Brown.
Since the inception of Julie Brown, the collection has reflected Brown’s love for creating designs for her favorite people: her daughters, girlfriends, colleagues and mother, evolving into the well known brand it is today. Launching with only seven dress styles in 2001, the collection graced the floors of Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue and Bloomingdales among many other renowned retailers. Brown leaves no fashionista behind and offers a wardrobe that women can count on through all stages of life. Through its success, the line quickly expanded from patterned dresses into a full collection of accessories, women’s clothing, and ‘mommy and me’ apparel that illuminates sunshine through design and combine current trends with a subtle air of retro fashion forward style. Julie Brown offers an energized lifestyle collection in which each piece speaks for itself; no additions needed.
Julie Brown will be opening pop-up shops in major cities around the U.S. inviting sophisticated and chic women on an escape from reality into her world of whimsical color and design Julie Brown resides on the Upper East Side with her husband and two children.
We are so pleased to have her style at Blackbird East in East Grand Rapids.
ABOUT EMERSON FRY
Limited Production Runs Each Week!
Emerson Fry believes in the beauty of the individual. It is our intention to create beautiful, strong, functional pieces that enhance enjoyment of life.
We are a small independent family owned business. We focus on limited production runs each week of new and existing products.
Our line is produced domestically alongside smaller capsule collections using heritage techniques from carefully selected spots around the world. Our goal is to create jobs and support positive social, cultural and environmental shifts.
Our brand embodies a place that is chic, joyous, playful and fun,” says Gretchen Scott, founder, and CEO of Gretchen Scott Designs. Our mantra is: “Laugh More, Gripe Less, Ignore Critics, Say Yes, Order Dessert, Love Life.” These words are sewn into everything we make. We imagine people smiling as they read those words while dressing.
The brand was born in Gretchen’s living room when she began producing unique flowered baskets. Armed with glue guns, silk flowers, woven baskets, creative passion, entrepreneurial vision, and most importantly, determination, she began her journey. The company quickly outgrew the space and evolved into a lifestyle brand.
Gretchen worked in many different fields before starting her business. She was the former Market Research Director at Smithsonian magazine, sold advertising for Conde Nast, renovated and sold houses, and ran a decorating business. Gretchen says, “Having reinvented myself so many times, I’ve learned how important it is to evolve but to always remember the lessons. The lessons are what make you wiser.”
Travel influences Gretchen’s designs. She finds inspiration wherever she goes. Her designs reflect a global perspective. “India is an integral part of what I design,” says Gretchen. “Indian simplicity clarified even the most complicated design elements. Hand blocks, complex patterns, and vibrant colors define our look. India has taught me to keep my colors true and vivid.”
While Gretchen is always on the lookout for new inspiration, she also looks at the realistic needs of her customers and designs her clothes accordingly. “Clothing that packs easily, transitions from day to night, office to dinner or cocktails, carpool to the swimming pool. If we can provide that, with clean silhouettes and surprise elements – it’s a home run,” explains Gretchen.
Gretchen raises money for many projects. We donate 100% of our sales and cover our own costs. Our first philanthropic project was raising money for Elizabeth’s Hope, the founding root of the Children’s Brain Tumor Project at Weill Cornell. We designed and sold thousands of cotton blouses (now known as the Elizabeth’s Hope blouse, available online) and donated 100% of the proceeds.
Other projects we’ve funded include Loggerhead Marinelife Center, the Janeda L. Batchelor Foundation for Children, Me Strong, and various relief groups in New York and Florida. Currently, we are creating a scholarship program called Georgie’s Scholars at St. Lawrence University (Gretchen’s and her family’s alma mater) in honor of her father, George Sturtz’s memory. We will educate students with the proceeds from our new activewear line.
Gretchen currently lives in Bronxville, New York, with her husband and business partner, Lloyd Buchanan. Her family also includes her entrepreneurial daughter, Amanda, her 94-year-old mother, Helen, and a “mini zoo,” consisting of her boisterous Coton de Tulear named Digby (after the late professor E. Digby Baltzell), a rescue lab named Buttercup, a male cat named Lucy Petunia and an ever-changing menagerie of visiting animals.
Linda Bretti, the President of Linda Richards Inc. always knew she would be a designer. Since high school, she was determined to make a mark in this industry and impact the way women dress in the United States. Being a member of the B. Altmans Junior Fashion Board was a launching pad to what would become a lucrative career in the world of fashion.
Her first true foray into the fashion world was at the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) in New York where she won the prestigious Lucille Coleman Scholarship for Excellence in Fashion Design & Merit in Textile Science.
While at the Fashion Institute, Linda worked at Barney’s New York where she started in Designer Men’s Wear. Her responsibilities grew at Barney’s and with her keen sense of design and focus on customer service, she landed an opportunity to work as a personal shopper for famous Americans and to be a merchandiser for daytime TV dramas as well as a major motion picture.
After the Fashion Institute of Technology, Linda was accepted into the Executive Training Program at Bloomingdale’s where she eventually helped to open up Boulevard Four. Linda worked for the most part in women’s fashion as an assistant buyer focusing on the designs of Calvin Klein, Anne Klein, Jenny, Complice and Missoni. She also worked closely with Donatella Girambili developing a designer business in White Flint near Washington D.C. for Bloomingdale’s and co-bought one of the first collections for Donna Karan.
In 1954, our brand was born. Bringing together a new culture comprised of a variety of designers, merchandisers, artists and manufacturers from all over the world, Vintage Havana came to life. With a team of poised individuals, each personality brought to the table a new strength. The marriage of music, art, architecture, history, travel and fashion made way for a feminine spirit intertwining with courageous individuality.
Vintage Havana is a women’s streetwear company focusing on trends of the past, present and future. Our products range from novelty knit tops and sweaters to graphic tees, denims and printed dresses — and all offer a versatile assortment of fabrics and patterns. Our style translates as a fashion jetsetter setting trends from the east coast to the west coast and beyond. Our beautiful garments are premium quality that turn heads no matter what the place or time. The future of our brand is forever expanding and our vision is forever young. You can find us at Bloomingdales, Nordstrom, Fred Segal, Lesters and East Street Denim; as well as independent boutiques nationwide.
Bruun & Stengade... It might not be the easiest name to pronounce, but when it comes to menswear, we think we know what we’re talking about. And proof is in the clothes; modern, urban, wearable and stylish menswear with attention to detail and an eye on what’s happening. Over the past decade we’ve grown from a small Danish company to a recognised international brand and this goes to prove that when it comes to style, we all speak the same language.
— A BIT OF HISTORY —
Back in 2004, Niels Bruun and Peter Stengade established the eponymous brand with a modest collection of shirts and the intention to bring a classic but easy way of dressing to the self-conscious Copenhagener. We still consider our shirts the backbone of the company, but along the way the collection has grown, lots of product categories have been added to the assortment and Bruun & Stengade is now an all round menswear brand offering everything suitable for both work and weekend.
— WHAT WE DO —
Bruun & Stengade live - and design - by this. It’s all about looking good, feeling great and knowing that you’ve got it right. And details count in menswear! Every season we go through everything from fit to fabrics, trims to finishing, making sure each collection is composed of the building blocks from which every man can construct the perfect wardrobe. We don’t tell you what to wear, we just offer you the best and let it be up to you to express your own take on style and individuality, confident in the fact that we’ve done all the background work in terms of quality and price. It’s not about developing something new and different. We’re far from being the only ones making clothes, but our vision is simple — we strive to offer something better than what’s already out there.
— HOW WE DO IT —
Bruun & Stengade is totally independent and privately owned. We have a calm Scandinavian approach to business, but an international vision - a combination that has proved invaluable in growing the business strong and rapidly over the past decade. We think globally whilst acting locally, building strong relationships across the entire supply chain from our manufacturing partners in the far East to our retailers across the world. Fashion isn’t rocket science but it takes expertise, knowledge, a bit of daring and a good sense of humour. Luckily our success seems to point at us having an adequate dose of each.
ABOUT VELVET BY GRAHAM & SPENCER
It began in 1997 as an aspiration to create fashion forward tee shirts that embodied the laid-back luxe of LA style. Today it has evolved into full collections recognized for their meticulously crafted, clean elevated staples. Helmed by Creative Directors Jenny Graham & Toni Spencer, the collections are created using only the finest fabrics and are manufactured primarily in the United States. Velvet by Graham & Spencer can be found in boutiques and premiere department stores nationwide and internationally.
In 1955, an ambitious salesman named Abbot Pederson traveled to NYC on a sales trip for the Munsingwear brand. With time to kill before a flight home, he decided to pop into a local bar for a few whiskeys. Little did he know, his next steps would stumble into history.
Taking a wrong turn down a Manhattan street, he oddly enough found himself outside a taxidermist’s shop. Deciding he needed a drinking buddy for the flight, he bought a penguin and named him Pete. At some point during the flight, and after another cocktail or three, he accidentally knocked the head off Pete the Penguin.
A seductive stewardess Pederson had been enjoying throughout the flight removed his necktie and wrapped it around the penguin’s neck. She joked that such a dapper bird deserved to be immortalized, maybe even on a shirt. With that idea - an icon was born.
In a matter of years, the Munsingwear Golf Shirt embroidered with Pete’s likeness, was synonymous with a league of legends including Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Arnold Palmer, and Clint Eastwood. Today, Original Penguin embodies a mix of iconic American Sportswear with modern minded style into a diverse range of products for a full lifestyle brand. Made for originals, by originals.
FENINI is about style and comfort. The silhouette of FENINI style is simple and clean, yet design details are added to make FENINI unique and interesting, suitable for work or play. It is for women who enjoy life, fun, art and beauty. FENINI was established by two sisters, Fei and Sandra Yang, in June 1993. Fei is the creative director of FENINI, and Sandra oversees the production and finance of the company. Fei graduated from Otis Parsons School of Design in 1991. She enjoyed drawing ever since she could hold a pen. Since little, she has doodled on every type of surface around her – notebooks, newspaper, napkins, walls, and even on Sandra’s homework! Her artistic talent has earned her tens of drawing and design awards. FENINI is a realization of Fei’s childhood dream. Sandra graduated from University of Southern California with a Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering. With background in engineering, her detail-oriented training has helped the company’s production to run on schedule and to maintain quality control. FENINI is genuine America. It is proudly made in the United States with high quality standard.
John Eshaya is no stranger to trendsetter fashion. Former Vice President, Creative Director and Buyer for Fred Segal, Eshaya helped define southern California style.
Dubbed by many as a "fashion icon", his gifted eye for design and talent were instrumental to the ascent of Fred Segal as one of the most influential specialty boutiques in Los Angeles.
Eshaya's incomparable work ethic, and unique ability to marry street and runway fashion ultimately enabled him to launch his made in California Tshirt and denim line JET- John Eshaya in 1987.
In 2008, John Eshaya opened his first JET- John Eshaya flagship shop at the Fred Segal complex in Santa Monica.
In 2010 his first overseas JET- John Eshaya shop was opened in Tokyo. Now customers can enjoy shopping at the JET- John Eshaya store in Santa Monica, Osaka, Tokyo, Nagoya, JETJohnEshaya.com as well as 150 specialty stores worldwide.
His personal flair, coupled with the passionate certainty of celebrities such as Nicole Richie, Scarlett Johansson, Madonna, Miley Cyrus, The Kardashians, and Mary Kate Olsen.
John and his line have been featured in Vogue, Italian Vogue, BAZAAR, Time, and C Magazine. Flaunt Magazine stated, "Like a fashion clairvoyant, he seems to have a knack for knowing what everyone will be wearing before knowing themselves."