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8 Ways to Create a Romantic Homeon February 14, 2020 at 11:00 am

Posted on February 20, 2020 By In Uncategorized With disabled comments
8 Ways to Create a Romantic Home

Lonny

1. Bring home flowers

Stop in a grocery store or florist for some pretty flowers to create a few small bouquets in the bedroom and bathroom. I find affordable flowers at Costco and Trader Joes!

2. Tidy up the bedroom & bathroom

If the laundry piled up on the bed during the day, or the kids flung their pull-ups or undies across the floor, or if your cereal bowl is still on the bathroom counter, take just a few moments to freshen things up. Seeing unsightly reminders of your long day will kill the romantic ambience pretty quickly.

3. Set a pretty table

Are you eating dinner on plastic or otherwise ugly plates? Or, heaven forbid, eating in front of the TV every night? Bring out the pretty dishes and set the table! No need for fancy china. I collect lots of plates from discount stores like HomeGoods and TJ Maxx. Setting the table is a simple thing to do but it sets the tone for a more romantic home.

4. End the day earlier

If you tend to be tired in the evenings, do as your grandparents probably did and try having “supper” instead of dinner. Meaning, eat earlier if you can! The earlier you can eat and clean up, the more time you have in the evening to enjoy relaxation. And adjust the kids bedtime if you can pull that off! It is nice to have a couple of child-free hours in the evenings.

Another tip my husband and I used to use when our kids were young was to feed the kids separately once in awhile. Then we’d put them to bed and have our own dinner together, just like having a dinner date at home!

5. Freshen up the scent

If your house smells like leftover fish tacos after dinner, air things out! Clean the sink, use a diffuser with romantic scents, or bake something yummy for dessert!

6. Soften the mood

As the daylight starts to fade, turn down the bright lights in the house, too. Use lamps instead of overhead lighting. Once the kids have gone to bed, light candles or use battery-operated candles to lend a pretty glow to end tables. Find our favorite battery-operated candles here!

If you have a fireplace, use it! We have a gas fireplace so it is easy to flip on a switch for instant warmth and ambience. If building a fire is impractical or you have a nonworking fireplace or no fireplace at all, set up a bunch of candles to give off light and sparkle. Instead of flipping on the TV every evening to fill the silence, play some romantic background music instead.

I made a Happy Homebody Playlist recently, if you need some new tunes you can check it out here!

7. Get creative

Are you turning into an old married couple with a predictable evening routine? Gulp. If you usually clean up after dinner, put the kids to bed and then watch TV the rest of the night, try mixing up the routine by doing a puzzle or playing a board game next to the fireplace. Try reading out loud to each other curled up on the couch. Or, get really romantic and re-read your love letters or re-live your memories of your early dating days. At first you might think it sounds corny or forced, or you might think your old routine is pretty comfortable, but routines can get a little dull! And dull is not very romantic.

8. Decorate with romantic-inspired furniture and decor

Find a round-up of decor inspiration and sources below!

Speaking of romantic vibes, did you see the free Anthropologie-Inspired Diffuser I’m giving away this week? Check it out here!

8 Ways to Create a Romantic Home
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8 Ways to Create a Romantic Home

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Thinking In Pink: Pink Decorating

Pink Rooms & Blogging

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Posts You Might Have Missed + Home Style Saturdayon February 17, 2020 at 4:45 am

Posted on February 20, 2020 By In Uncategorized With disabled comments

by | Feb 16, 2020 | Decorating Inspiration | 0 comments

Posts You Might Have Missed + Home Style Saturday

Hey friends! I wanted to share four fun new posts you might have missed! I just discovered there was another technical difficulty in my emailed posts. GAH! If you are an email subscriber you may have received several emails in a row with a repeatedly incorrect subject line (Organizing + Home Style Saturdays!). It is a glitch with the email service I use. I’m so sorry for that confusion! They assure me they are working to resolve it. SIGH!

Here are the most recent posts plus a brand new Home Style Saturday post!

8 Ways to Create a Romantic Home

6 Simple Secrets for a Less Cluttered Home

Cozy & Inviting Coastal Living Room: Get the Look

Scroll down for a brand new Home Style Saturday post!

How was your weekend? 🙂

Posts You Might Have Missed + Home Style Saturday

On Sutton Place | Refrigerator Organization Ideas

Posts You Might Have Missed + Home Style Saturday

Shabbyfufu | Edible Flowers – 23 Gorgeous Recipes

Posts You Might Have Missed + Home Style Saturday

Southern Hospitality | A Winter Mantel

Posts You Might Have Missed + Home Style Saturday

StoneGable | 8 Reasons to Wear an Apron

Posts You Might Have Missed + Home Style Saturday

The Inspired Room | How to Find Joy At Home: A Simple Guide

Posts You Might Have Missed + Home Style Saturday

Designthusiasm | Simple Ways to Organize Your Under Sink Cabinet

Posts You Might Have Missed + Home Style Saturday

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Spring Doormats That Will Greet You With A Smileon February 20, 2020 at 11:00 am

Posted on February 20, 2020 By In Uncategorized With disabled comments

Hey friends, who is ready for spring? RAISES HAND SO HIGH! The sun was out in Seattle today and it felt so good. I couldn’t help but feel a little more inspired for spring :). I’m looking forward to a quick makeover of our front porch this year (I am thinking of painting the tired concrete and maybe even repainting the gray front door! EEK! What color will I choose? I’ll post some of my inspiration photos soon!).

I hope these cute doormats will bring a little sunshine and spring your way today.

Spring Doormats That Will Greet You With A Smile

Related Posts:

Simple Ways to Decorate Your Porch for Spring

How to Find Joy at Home: A Simple Guide

Listen to My Happy Homebody Music Playlist

The Inspired Room Shop (Shop My House & Latest Decor Finds!)

Have a question? Check out my new FAQ page!

the latest in the shop

let’s stay connected!

Follow for daily
Home Inspiration:

get my free decorating guide

home decor inspiration, free downloads,
and more, straight to your inbox

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Better Homes & Gardens Reveals 2017 Editors’ Choice Awardson January 3, 2017 at 3:00 pm

Posted on February 20, 2020 By In Uncategorized With disabled comments

DES MOINES, Iowa, Jan. 3, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Better Homes & Gardens, the leading lifestyle brand reaching 40 million readers a month, has revealed its third annual Editors’ Choice Awards. Chosen by Better Homes & Gardens editors, and technology and digital media expert Shelly Palmer, the Editors’ Choice Awards highlight the best of new and existing home and personal technology.

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“Smart technology is now a part of every aspect our homes – from our kitchens and bathrooms to outdoor living spaces and laundry rooms – almost every new appliance is or will be connected,” says Better Homes & Gardens Editor-in-Chief Stephen Orr. “We put an emphasis on products that we believe will help the modern homeowner keep up with the latest developments.”

The 2017 winners combine style and smarts and are proven to make the homes and lives of consumers easier and more efficient.

“It has once again been a great experience working with the Better Homes & Gardens team on this project,” says Palmer. “Together we were able to pick products with benefits that will really help consumers on a daily basis.”

Among this year’s picks are:

  • Google Chromecast Ultra ($79; google.com) – Stream up to 4K Ultra HD & HDR picture quality with Chromecast Ultra, a streaming device that plugs into your TV’s HDMI port. Mirror your phone, tablet, or laptop to your TV, or stream live sporting events, movies, or music. Don’t have a 4K TV yet? The Chromecast Ultra will automatically optimize its content for your TV’s best resolution.
  • Whirlpool Smart French Door Pantry Refrigerator with Infinity Shelves ($3,799; whirlpool.com) – Say good-bye to a dysfunctional fridge and hello to pantry-style organization with Whirlpool’s Smart French Door refrigerator. Its Infinity Shelves retract in the center to make room for tall items (wine bottles) while leaving half-shelves around the perimeter (no more lost yogurts) clearly visible. You’ll also get grab-a-snack sections, a produce drawer that fits a lettuce tub, and freezer dividers that hold frozen foods upright. An app alerts you to power outages and servicing needs.
  • Savant Remote + Host ($499; savant.com) – Savant Remote + Host is a media-centric home-control system. It controls over 380,000 entertainment devices (streaming, speakers, gaming consoles, DVD players, cable, satellite, and more), plus a super simple set of lamp controllers so you can set the mood for watching TV or listening to music.
  • Amazon Echo Dot ($49; amazon.com) The Amazon Echo Dot does everything the Amazon Echo does plus a bit more. The main difference is the smaller speaker. But – and this is important – the Echo Dot has a 3.5-mm audio output jack so you can attach an external speaker. This gives the Dot the ability to send its output to any audio system you have. It also can transmit sound wirelessly over Bluetooth.
  • Sony Playstation VR ($399; playstation.com) – The PlayStation VR takes gaming to the next level by putting you in the middle of all the action. It turns amazing games into virtual reality creating incredibly immersive experiences.
  • Lutron Caseta Wireless ($99; Lutron.com) – Caseta from Lutron is a lighting-centric control system that will work perfectly with your existing lights. There are both physical and app-based controls, which means you can operate your lights even if you left your smartphone in another room. That also means guests won’t be left in the dark.
  • Samsung Trio ($99 Gear VR; $349.99 Gear 360; Samsung.com) – Samsung’s Gear 360 camera, virtual reality headset and Galaxy smartphone work together in an innovative 3-D system. The phone and VR headset bring to life what you capture on the camera.
  • Canary ($200; canary.com) – When it detects motion, the Canary records HD video and sends an alert to your phone. It’s a great way to know (and see) when your child comes home. But if there’s an intruder, you can sound a siren and call local police. With a 147-degree camera span and night vision, you can always take a peek at what’s going on at home, day or night. It also monitors temperature and humidity.
  • Garmin Forerunner 235 ($269.99; garmin.com) – Serious runners need more than just a fitness tracker. With 24/7 wrist-based heart-rate monitoring, GPS, built-in activity tracking, and connected features, Garmin’s Forerunner 235 is a device built with athletes in mind. Track your distance, pace, time, heart rate, and more, and view all the data in real time. Download workouts and training plans that work best for you, track your progress with the Garmin Connect network, then compare and share with friends and family. It’s everything you need in a convenient watch-size package.
  • Sony 55-inch X930D / X940D 4K HDR with Android TV ($1,499.99; sony.com) – The biggest trend in TVs is 4K HDR (high-dynamic range). These new ultra-high-definition sets – such as this 55-inch Android TV by Sony – give you whiter whites and blacker blacks, they also offer 10-bit color, which displays almost infinite color space.
  • Ford Fusion ($22,120 Starting MSRP, $139 / Mo Lease; ford.com) – You don’t have to buy an expensive sports sedan to get state-of-the-art semiautonomous features. The Ford Fusion will practically drive itself in stop-and-go traffic, and it has adaptive cruise control, pre-collision assist, and pedestrian detection.

Additional winners from the 2017 Editors’ Choice Awards include: IT Bed by Sleep Number; Dropbox; LG Signature TWINWash/Washer-Dryer Hybrid; All-Clad 5-Quart Slow Cooker with In-Pot Browning; Apple Music; Netgear Nighthawk AC1900 EX7000; Blue Apron; Uber; Virtru

Full descriptions of the winning products can be found online at BHG.com.

ABOUT BETTER HOMES & GARDENS

Better Homes & Gardens serves, connects and inspires readers who infuse color and creativity into each aspect of their lives. Reaching 40 million readers a month via the most trusted print magazine, the brand also extends across a robust website, multiple social platforms, tablet editions, mobile apps, broadcast programs and licensed products. Better Homes & Gardens fuels our readers’ passions to live a more colorful life through stunning visuals, a balance of substance and surface, and a blend of expert and reader ideas. Better Homes & Gardens is published 12 times a year by Meredith Corporation, with a rate base of 7.6 million.

Additional information may be found at www.bhg.com | Facebook: facebook.com/mybhg | Twitter: twitter.com/bhg | Pinterest: pinterest.com/bhg | Instagram: instagram.com/betterhomesandgardens.

ABOUT MEREDITH CORPORATION

Meredith Corporation (NYSE: MDP; www.meredith.com) has been committed to service journalism for 115 years. Today, Meredith uses multiple distribution platforms – including broadcast television, print, digital, mobile and video – to provide consumers with content they desire and to deliver the messages of its advertising and marketing partners.

Meredith’s National Media Group reaches more than 100 million unduplicated women every month, including nearly 75 percent of U.S. Millennial women. Meredith is the leader in creating and distributing content across platforms in key consumer interest areas such as food, home, parenthood and health through well-known brands such as Better Homes & Gardens, Allrecipes, Parents, Shape and EatingWell. Meredith also features robust brand licensing activities, including more than 3,000 SKUs of branded products at 4,000 Walmart stores across the U.S. and at walmart.com. Meredith Xcelerated Marketing is an award-winning, strategic and creative agency that provides fully integrated marketing solutions for many of the world’s top brands, including Kraft, TGIFriday’s and NBC Universal.

Meredith’s Local Media Group includes 17 owned or operated television stations reaching 11 percent of U.S. households. Meredith’s portfolio is concentrated in large, fast-growing markets, with seven stations in the nation’s Top 25 – including Atlanta, Phoenix, St. Louis and Portland – and 13 in Top 50 markets. Meredith’s stations produce nearly 700 hours of local news and entertainment content each week, and operate leading local digital destinations.

ABOUT SHELLY PALMER

Shelly Palmer is Managing Partner at Palmer Advanced Media, a technology-focused strategic advisory practice that helps Fortune 500 companies and growth-stage companies with digital strategy, data science, marketing, branding, and business development. He is FOX 5 New York’s on-air tech and digital media expert and a regular commentator on CNBC and CNN. Follow him at @shellypalmer or visit www.shellypalmer.com.

SOURCE Meredith Corporation; Better Homes and Gardens

For further information: Rebecca Zisholtz: 212/551.7087; Rebecca.zisholtz@meredith.com

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Women Are Dieting Less But Eating More Healthy Foods According To New Better Homes & Gardens Food Factor Studyon January 24, 2017 at 3:00 pm

Posted on February 20, 2020 By In Uncategorized With disabled comments

Women Are Dieting Less But Eating More Healthy Foods According To New Better Homes & Gardens Food Factor Study

DES MOINES, Iowa, Jan. 24, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Better Homes & Gardens, Meredith Corporation’s flagship lifestyle, home and food brand, today announced findings from Food Factor: The Evolution of Eats, a nationwide survey conducted among U.S. women. The study took a comprehensive look at women’s motivations, attitudes and behaviors relating to food including cooking, shopping, and eating.

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Overall, the study found that women are moving away from specific diets, trends and tactics to more permanent, healthy lifestyle changes. In fact, while two-thirds of women polled say they and their households are eating healthier in the last two years, just over half say they do not follow a specific diet but have recently made significant modifications in what and how they eat.

“While women continue to be health-conscious, their approach to their diet has changed,” says Nancy Hopkins, Senior Food Editor of Better Homes & Gardens, “These women no longer want short term solutions from diet fads and tricks; they want to make meaningful changes that will last them over the course of their lives.”

This new approach has led to big changes in dieting in the last two years:

  • 63 percent of women are now focusing on eating healthier foods in general – compared to only 50 percent in 2014
  • Only 27 percent of women say they or any household member has followed a special diet in the last year – down 20 percentage points from 2014
  • 64 percent are paying more attention to nutrition than they did two years ago – compared to only 53 percent in 2014
  • 53 percent say they are working to make small, permanent changes in their eating, including:
    • 71 percent of women are eating more vegetables – up 14 percentage points from 2014, while 66 percent of women are eating more fruits – up 19 percentage points from 2014.
    • Half of women are now adding more salad to their diets, and 3 in 5 even grow their own fruits and vegetables.
    • While fruit and vegetable consumption is up, women are eating 33 percent less meat than before, with about 1 in 3 women having occasional vegetarian meals/days.
    • 85 percent say they consider the healthfulness of a recipe before selecting it, and 50 percent have changed recipes so that they’re healthier.

Food Factor: The Evolution of Eats was fielded in July 2016 and, in total, more than 2,000 responses were collected from respondents, U.S. women ages 18+. The 126-question survey was divided into 11 sections, with each respondent completing one to three sections, depending on the number of questions per section. Margin of error at 95 percent confidence level for 400 respondent base per question is +/- 4.9 percent, for total respondent base of 2K it’s +/- 2.2 percent.

This study is the fifth wave of the modern trending research that continues the 20+ year tradition of the Better Homes & Gardens Food Trend Study, providing insights into America’s food shopping, cooking and serving habits.

ABOUT BETTER HOMES & GARDENS

Better Homes & Gardens serves, connects and inspires readers who infuse color and creativity into each aspect of their lives. Reaching 40 million readers a month via the most trusted print magazine, the brand also extends across a robust website, multiple social platforms, tablet editions, mobile apps, broadcast programs and licensed products. Better Homes & Gardens fuels our readers’ passions to live a more colorful life through stunning visuals, a balance of substance and surface, and a blend of expert and reader ideas. Better Homes & Gardens is published 12 times a year with a rate base of 7.6 million.

Additional information may be found at www.bhg.com | Facebook: facebook.com/mybhg | Twitter: twitter.com/bhg | Pinterest: pinterest.com/bhg | Instagram: instagram.com/betterhomesandgardens.

ABOUT MEREDITH CORPORATION

Meredith Corporation (NYSE: MDP; www.meredith.com) has been committed to service journalism for 115 years. Today, Meredith uses multiple distribution platforms – including broadcast television, print, digital, mobile and video – to provide consumers with content they desire and to deliver the messages of its advertising and marketing partners.

Meredith’s National Media Group reaches more than 100 million unduplicated women every month, including nearly 75 percent of U.S. Millennial women. Meredith is the leader in creating and distributing content across platforms in key consumer interest areas such as food, home, parenthood and health through well-known brands such as Better Homes & Gardens, Allrecipes, Parents, Shape and EatingWell. Meredith also features robust brand licensing activities, including more than 3,000 SKUs of branded products at 4,000 Walmart stores across the U.S. and at walmart.com. Meredith Xcelerated Marketing is an award-winning, strategic and creative agency that provides fully integrated marketing solutions for many of the world’s top brands, including Kraft, TGIFriday’s and NBC Universal.

Meredith’s Local Media Group includes 17 owned or operated television stations reaching 11 percent of U.S. households. Meredith’s portfolio is concentrated in large, fast-growing markets, with seven stations in the nation’s Top 25 – including Atlanta, Phoenix, St. Louis and Portland – and 13 in Top 50 markets. Meredith’s stations produce 700 hours of local news and entertainment content each week, and operate leading local digital destinations.

SOURCE Meredith Corporation; Better Homes & Gardens

For further information: Patrick Taylor, 212/551.6984, Patrick.Taylor@meredith.com, or Rebecca Zisholtz, 212/551.7087, Rebecca.Zisholtz@meredith.com

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Better Homes & Gardens Magazine Unveils Seventh Annual September Stylemaker Issueon August 15, 2017 at 2:00 pm

Posted on February 20, 2020 By In Uncategorized With disabled comments

Better Homes & Gardens Magazine Unveils Seventh Annual September Stylemaker Issue

Annual Issue Features Influencers Including Joy the Baker, Lili Diallo and Barri Leiner Grant

DES MOINES, Iowa, Aug. 15, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Better Homes & Gardens (BH&G), the leading lifestyle brand reaching 40 million consumers a month published by Meredith Corporation (NYSE: MDP, www.meredith.com), today released its seventh annual Stylemaker issue, highlighting creative forces and tastemakers who influence the worlds of beauty, food, home design, and entertaining. The issue is available on newsstands today.

Better Homes & Gardens' seventh annual September Stylemaker issue

The cover features interiors stylist and author, Lili Diallo. Diallo joins 39 other Stylemakers from all ages and walks of life who shape the way we decorate, cook, garden, organize, dress, and celebrate.

“The Stylemakers featured in this issue embody the Better Homes & Gardens brand,” says Stephen Orr, Editor-in-Chief of Better Homes & Gardens. “Just as we do with our own content, these influencers were chosen for their ability to reach, engage with and inspire our readers in various aspects of their daily lives.”

The 2017 BH&G Stylemakers include:

  • Joy Wilson: Food writer and photographer known as Joy the Baker. Her blog attracts over 600,000 unique visitors a month.
  • Helen Norman: Fashion and lifestyle photographer and owner of Star Bright Farm in Maryland.
  • Lior Lev Sercarz: Owner of spice shop La Boite in New York and author of The Spice Companion.
  • Jean Brownhill: CEO of Sweeten, a company founded to help homeowners planning a renovation find the right contractor and navigate trouble spots.
  • Gregg Renfrew: Founder of Beautycounter, a nontoxic beauty brand that aims to get safer products in the hands of everyone.
  • Dallas Shaw: Fashion illustrator, style expert, and author of The Way She Wears It.
  • Kim Ficaro: Prop and interiors stylist who recently launched her own home collection with an e-commerce store, Totem Home, for which she collaborates with artisans in Mexico and Morocco on a range of designs.

To celebrate the issue, Better Homes & Gardens is hosting its sixth annual Stylemaker event at the 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge on September 28th. Over 80 top influencers and tastemakers are expected to join for a day of classes, workshops, and panels.

“Stylemaker is an annual event that brings to life the pages of Better Homes & Gardens with a day of thoughtfully curated panels and activities,” says Stephen Bohlinger, Group Publisher. “We pride ourselves on our ability to reach a wide audience who trust us for guidance on everything from decorating, gardening and food to health, beauty and fashion. Stylemaker is a way for us to showcase our strengths across all those verticals.”

Sponsors of the event include Bertolli, Gymboree and Torani.

For more information about Better Homes & Gardens Stylemaker go to: www.bhg.com/stylemaker

ABOUT BETTER HOMES & GARDENS

Better Homes & Gardens serves, connects and inspires readers who infuse color and creativity into each aspect of their lives. Reaching 40 million readers a month via the most trusted print magazine, the brand also extends across a robust website, multiple social platforms, tablet editions, mobile apps, broadcast programs and licensed products. Better Homes & Gardens fuels our readers’ passions to live a more colorful life through stunning visuals, a balance of substance and surface, and a blend of expert and reader ideas. Better Homes & Gardens is published 12 times a year by Meredith Corporation, with a rate base of 7.6 million.

Additional information may be found at www.bhg.com | Facebook: facebook.com/mybhg | Twitter: twitter.com/bhg | Pinterest: pinterest.com/bhg | Instagram: instagram.com/betterhomesandgardens.

ABOUT MEREDITH CORPORATION

Meredith Corporation (NYSE: MDP; www.meredith.com) has been committed to service journalism for 115 years. Today, Meredith uses multiple distribution platforms – including broadcast television, print, digital, mobile and video – to provide consumers with content they desire and to deliver the messages of its advertising and marketing partners.

Meredith’s National Media Group reaches 110 million unduplicated women every month, including 70 percent of U.S. Millennial women. Meredith is the leader in creating and distributing content across platforms in key consumer interest areas such as food, home, parenting and health through well-known brands such as Better Homes & Gardens, Allrecipes, Parents and SHAPE. Meredith also features robust brand licensing activities, including more than 3,000 SKUs of branded products at 5,000 Walmart stores across the U.S. Meredith Xcelerated Marketing is an award-winning, strategic and creative agency that provides fully integrated marketing solutions for many of the world’s top brands, including The Kraft Heinz Co., Benjamin Moore, Allergan, TGIFriday’s and WebMD.

Meredith’s Local Media Group includes 17 television stations reaching 11 percent of U.S. households. Meredith’s portfolio is concentrated in large, fast-growing markets, with seven stations in the nation’s Top 25 – including Atlanta, Phoenix, St. Louis and Portland – and 13 in Top 50 markets. Meredith’s stations produce 700 hours of local news and entertainment content each week, and operate leading local digital destinations.

Meredith introduces an updated market positioning and logo that reflect the strength of Meredith's national and local consumer media brands as well as its expanded portfolio of marketing solutions. (PRNewsFoto/Meredith Corporation)

SOURCE Meredith Corporation; Better Homes & Gardens

For further information: Rebecca Zisholtz, Senior Publicist, 212-551-7087, Rebecca.Zisholtz@meredith.com

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Better Homes & Gardens Unveils Eighth Annual September Stylemaker Issueon August 21, 2018 at 2:00 pm

Posted on February 20, 2020 By In Uncategorized With disabled comments

Annual Issue Features Influencers Including Ayesha Curry, Barrie Benson, Lauren Goodman and More

DES MOINES, Iowa, Aug. 21, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — Better Homes & Gardens (BHG), the leading lifestyle magazine reaching 40 million consumers a month, today released its eighth annual Stylemaker issue, highlighting creative forces and tastemakers who influence the worlds of beauty, food, home design, and entertaining. The issue is available on newsstands today.

The cover features cookbook author and television personality, Ayesha Curry. In the issue, Curry talks about balancing her roles of wife, mom, and businesswoman – all while finding time to put nutritious, high-flavor meals on the table for her family.

Curry joins seven other Stylemakers from all ages and walks of life who shape the way we decorate, cook, garden, organize, dress, and celebrate.

“Stylemaker is our favorite issue of the year because we get to take our readers into the lives of the trendsetters we are fascinated by on social media and see how they cook, garden and decorate in real life,” explained Stephen Orr, Editor in Chief of Better Homes & Gardens.

The 2018 BHG Stylemakers include:

  • Ayesha Curry – Author, New York Times best-selling cookbook The Seasoned Life and host and executive producer of ABC’s upcoming Family Food Fight
  • David Lebovitz – Cookbook author and former pastry chef
  • Barrie Benson – Charlotte-based interior designer
  • Lauren Goodman – Fashion stylist
  • Paloma Contreras – Award-winning interior decorator, tastemaker, and design blogger
  • Nick Olsen – Designer
  • Grant K. Gibson – Interior designer

To celebrate the issue, Better Homes & Gardens is hosting its annual Stylemaker event in New York City on September 27th. Over 80 top influencers and tastemakers are expected to join for a day of classes, workshops, and panels.

“Stylemaker is an event that we look forward to every year,” said Stephen Bohlinger, VP/Group Publisher of Better Homes & Gardens. “It is such a unique experience that manages to bring the best in home design, gardening, and food together with Better Homes & Gardens, the most respected authority in those areas.”

Sponsors of the event include: Garnet Hill; Maybelline New York; Royal(R) Basmati Rice; Tito’s Handmade Vodka.

For more information about Better Homes & Gardens Stylemaker go to: BHG.com/Stylemakers

ABOUT BETTER HOMES & GARDENS

Better Homes & Gardens serves, connects and inspires readers who infuse color and creativity into each aspect of their lives. Reaching 40 million readers a month via the most trusted print magazine, the brand also extends across a robust website, multiple social platforms, tablet editions, mobile apps, broadcast programs and licensed products. Better Homes & Gardens fuels our readers’ passions to live a more colorful life through stunning visuals, a balance of substance and surface, and a blend of expert and reader ideas. Better Homes & Gardens is published 12 times a year with a rate base of 7.6 million.

Additional information may be found at www.bhg.com | Facebook: facebook.com/mybhg | Twitter: twitter.com/bhg | Pinterest: pinterest.com/bhg/ | Instagram: instagram.com/betterhomesandgardens.

ABOUT MEREDITH CORPORATION

Meredith Corporation (NYSE:MDP; www.meredith.com) has been committed to service journalism for more than 115 years. Today, Meredith uses multiple distribution platforms — including broadcast television, print, digital, mobile and video — to provide consumers with content they desire and to deliver the messages of its advertising and marketing partners. Meredith’s National Media Group reaches 175 million unduplicated American consumers every month, including 80 percent of U.S. Millennial women. Meredith’s Local Media Group includes 17 television stations reaching more than 11 percent of U.S. households.

SOURCE Better Homes and Gardens

For further information: Rebecca Zisholtz, 212/551.7087, Rebecca.Zisholtz@meredith.com

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6 Emerging Designers to Know This Fashion Monthon February 12, 2020 at 5:03 pm

Posted on February 20, 2020 By In Uncategorized With disabled comments
Image
Credit…Portrait by BFA/Zach Whitford. Photo by Hatnim Lee.

Kenneth Nicholson, 37

Kenneth Nicholson debuted his namesake brand in January 2016, with an offering of subtle, nontraditional men’s wear: sand-colored linen tunics, wide-cut white linen trousers and billowy cotton button-downs in soothing earth tones. This week, he showed his first women’s pieces with a joyful mixed-gender runway show in New York. “From the beginning, women have bought some of my men’s pieces,” he says, “So it was a natural evolution.” Nicholson, who is based in Los Angeles, grew up in Houston, Texas, and knew from a young age that he wanted to be a fashion designer — although he arrived at this goal by an unusual path. After studying at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco, he joined the U.S. Navy in 2004 and worked on a military base in Afghanistan for a year; he later spent a brief spell in Phuket, Thailand, where he worked as an interior design consultant. These travels have deeply influenced his men’s wear, which has become known for its loose silhouettes, soft hues and fluid interpretation of masculinity. Nicholson’s new women’s pieces, which demonstrate his taste for unusual textiles, include a draped one-shouldered top made from soft-pink terry cloth patterned with white stars, a flared knee-length khaki skirt finished with a fringe of wooden beads and a matching white mesh top and skirt trimmed with a shaggy high-pile fabric that resembles upholstery fabric. The collection, which explored notions of home and heritage, was appropriately titled “From Grandma’s Couch.”


Wei Ge, 26, and Aoyu Zhang, 35

The idea for KEH was born in 2017 when friends Wei Ge and Aoyu Zhang were waiting in line at the opening of the Dover Street Market boutique in Singapore. The long queue gave the duo, both designers, a chance to discuss the next steps in their respective careers — and their shared ambition to start their own label. They’d met five years before at the Academy of Arts and Design, Tsinghua University in Beijing. Ge went on to become an assistant designer at the popular Chinese label Zuczug while Zhang earned a master’s degree in business from Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. After two years of development, the pair launched their own brand — choosing the name KEH simply for its pleasing sound — in New York in March 2019. From the beginning, they wanted to create gender-fluid clothing that represented what they and their friends wanted to wear. As Ge says, “KEH deconstructs and mixes elements from both men’s wear and women’s wear.” The brand’s fall 2020 collection, which the designers showed in New York this season, was inspired by the photographer Nick Knight’s surreal images of roses and includes tailored garments made from environmentally friendly cotton as well as a cape constructed from pieces of mottled gray wool arranged to resemble the petals of a flower.


Claire McKinney, 26, and Sophie Andes-Gascon, 27

Claire McKinney and Sophie Andes-Gascon both moved to New York in 2011 to study fashion design at the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn. McKinney grew up in Portland, Oregon, where, as a child, she would make costumes using pillowcases and blankets borrowed from the family’s linen closet. Andes-Gascon was born in Manaus, Brazil, but later moved to Maryland, where her father taught her how to sew and knit. For a time, the two classmates shared an apartment, and in 2015 they both landed jobs as design consultants for the brand Maryam Nassir Zadeh, where they still work. They each continued to create their own clothes on the side and eventually formed a partnership; in 2019, they launched SC103, which specializes in custom dyes and handcrafted elements, with a runway show in downtown Manhattan that was, in a departure from the traditional fashion presentation format, open to the public. “We reject the idea of exclusivity and embrace an open and democratic policy,” says McKinney. “We want to share this experience with people outside the fashion world.” The name SC103 is a nod to the pair’s personal bond: It’s derived from the first letters of their names, combined with the building number of their first shared apartment and studio. For fall 2020, the designers will show brightly colored hand-knits paired with workwear-inspired trousers, armor-like garments made from linked leather panels, and shrunken sweaters and pants designed to mimic ones that have been washed on too high a heat.


Nensi Dojaka, 26

Nensi Dojaka graduated from Central Saint Martins less than a year ago but is already presenting her third collection in London. She was one of five designers selected by Fashion East, a nonprofit organization that cultivates and promotes young brands. Born in Tirana, Albania, Dojaka grew up with a deep-rooted love of art; her family didn’t live near institutions with regular exhibitions, so she created her own imaginative drawings. Those early works tended to depict colorful panels arranged in puzzle-like formations, and you can see traces of similar abstract patterns in her clothing today. Dojaka moved to the United Kingdom in 2009 to attend high school and later studied at both the London College of Fashion and Central Saint Martins. Last March, her graduate collection — which comprised deconstructed dresses made from layers of different types of sheer fabrics — caught the eye of the Canadian luxury retailer Ssense and, with the store’s encouragement, Dojaka decided to continue and build her namesake label. “My woman is complex, she embodies a perfect marriage of severity and delicacy,” says Dojaka of her ideal wearer. “I try to translate this idea into my clothes, creating delicacy from severity and vice versa.” Her fall 2020 collection will include draped black jersey dresses cut to give them a subtle movement, and a series of mini dresses with thin straps and cutouts. The designer frequently turns to ’90s-era magazines for inspiration and nods to that decade will be as present as ever this season.


Amy Trinh, 28, and Evan Phillips, 28

Since meeting at Central Saint Martins, Amy Trinh and Evan Phillips have built impressive resumes: Trinh interned at Louis Vuitton, Craig Green and Stella McCartney; Phillips assisted Richard Quinn with his first collections before working on development at Simone Rocha. Both of their careers shifted course, though, when Trinh got engaged in 2018 and discovered that the type of unconventional wedding dress she wanted didn’t exist. “I realized there was something missing,” she says, “namely, dresses that could be worn more than once.” She reached out to Phillips to help her create a dress, and that conversation became the starting point for their bridal-inspired ready-to-wear label WED, which debuted last year. The pair’s goal is to create garments that can be worn both on and long after a person’s wedding day. “It’s about making bridal wear more sustainable and changing the mentality that a wedding dress should be boxed up and never worn again,” Phillips says. The pair also want to reimagine what wedding attire means in a world where the concept of marriage is changing and becoming more inclusive. Their new collection, which will be their second to date, will be shown by appointment in Paris. “The garment drapes are based on a swirling movement,” explains Phillips of the pieces, which include an A-line taffeta skirt with a dramatic spiral-like silhouette. This season, the designers have also collaborated with the 300-year-old English mill Stephen Walters, and have repurposed many of the company’s dead-stock fabrics, from a quilted jacquard to a striped satin.


Shuting Qiu, 25

Shuting Qiu was born in Hangzhou, China, and began dreaming up ideas for fantastical garments as a young child. Hoping to make those early designs a reality, she moved to Antwerp at 18 to study at the prestigious Royal Academy of Fine Arts. There, under the instruction of the designer Walter Van Beirendonck, the head of the school’s fashion department, she cultivated her eclectic tastes and love of unusual combinations of colorful prints. The collection she presented at the end of her bachelor’s degree in 2017 — defined by extravagant silhouettes and loud clashing patterns — was selected by the online fashion platform and store Vfiles to appear in its spring 2019 runway show during New York Fashion Week and she launched her own brand not long after. If there is a common theme between each of Qiu’s collections, it is references to travel and the traditional clothing she’s seen in parts of Africa, India and Southeast Asia. Accordingly, her prints — which range from floral motifs to vibrant checks and plaids — come in rich contrasting colors and are often finished with intricate embroidery. She will show her latest collection, which will include faux fur, by appointment in Paris.

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The Many Lives of Marc Jacobson February 12, 2020 at 8:10 pm

Posted on February 20, 2020 By In Uncategorized With disabled comments
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A portrait of Marc Jacobs, taken for T, on set at the Sun and Surf Beach Club on Long Island.Credit…Roe Ethridge

The Many Lives of Marc Jacobs

Through the fashion designer’s various identities and struggles, two things have remained consistent: his ability to predict a cultural moment and the pure emotion of his work.

“THE DRIVING FORCE in my life is fear,” Marc Jacobs said.

It was a November day in New York. I sat in Jacobs’s SoHo studio, in a room lined with oversize books about the history of fashion. The designer, 56, sat facing me, wearing black boots with platform soles as high as pylons. In his hands, fingernails encrusted with green and sapphirine rhinestones, he held a vape module — the Smok G-Priv — that looked like a piece of military equipment. His longish black hair was pasted down with gel and held in place with two barrettes. The extreme care with which he was dressed — black wool pants, a blue silk Hermès scarf tucked beneath the charcoal collar of his Celine pinstripe jacket — seemed, like the bright colors of certain animals, to be in part an armor against a hostile world, in part an invitation to draw closer. Against the somewhat stern aspect of strong classical features — a prominent jaw and nose, a short black beard — his hazel eyes were tender. My first impression was of both defiance and vulnerability. His candor was disarming; he was prepared to talk about all aspects of his life — “You can ask me anything,” he said — which made me wonder if he had given too many interviews, or whether, beneath his air of nightclubs and after-parties, hotel rooms and private planes, he had developed rich inner resources, the kind that have insulated him from the overexposure of being famous virtually all his adult life.

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The models Elibeidy Dani and Janaye Furman wear Marc Jacobs’s spring 2020 collection.CreditCredit…Roe Ethridge

THE JACOBS I felt I already knew struck me as that rare breed of designer whose talent has long intersected with the spirit of an age. If the reason for the emergence of such a figure every 25 years or so is always a little mysterious, it is because no one can anticipate the work they do until they have done it — think of Yves Saint Laurent putting women in trousers on the eve of the women’s liberation movement in 1966 — and yet, in retrospect, nothing seems more obvious. Jacobs belongs to that small tribe of people (as does, say, the director David Lynch, or the artist Lynda Benglis) whom the world initially greets with puzzlement, but whom, having proven themselves forerunners to so much else in the culture, no one can imagine the world without. He has lived so many lives, adopted and discarded so many avatars, that the poise and flamboyance of his persona make it easy to underestimate him. And yet, before the prurient self-regard of our present time, with its interlinked obsessions with reality TV, social media and auto-fiction, here was a man who understood the power of the projected self. Like a novelist who divides himself among his characters, one Marc Jacobs toiled away at making the clothes that would change fashion, even as another Marc, with the help of his former business partner, Robert Duffy, 65, transformed the business of fashion.

Jacobs was just 29 when, in 1992, he showed his infamous grunge collection, which recast streetwear as luxury. The sight of flannel shirts remade in Italian silks and polyester baby-doll dresses in silk chiffon was provocative enough to get Jacobs fired from his role as creative director of Perry Ellis (then known for its clean-cut American sportswear). That transformation of grunge into high fashion — complete with Kate Moss in combat boots — was only one of many instances when Jacobs would display his almost uncanny ability to identify the mood of a time, to give shape and form to what was yet unvoiced. It was on the strength of that collection that Jacobs and Duffy, who had formally established their company in 1984, debuted Jacobs’s own line a year later, forging one of the greatest collaborations since Saint Laurent met Pierre Bergé at the Cloche d’Or in 1958. In 1997, Jacobs was appointed the creative director of Louis Vuitton — a reign that lasted 16 years — thereby pioneering another dichotomy that is now commonplace, in which he simultaneously ran his namesake label while heading a large European house. Jacobs not only introduced women’s clothing to what was previously a traditional luggage brand but seamlessly blended art with fashion, collaborating with artists such as Stephen Sprouse, Takashi Murakami and Richard Prince on accessories that remain highly coveted to this day. His tenure reimagined a heritage brand in a manner that was as irreverent as it was confident. Its success suggested that faithfulness for faithfulness’s sake might be respectful — but it was also dull.

Throughout it all, he consistently managed to capture new moods that were just around the corner, creating pieces women never knew they needed until the clothes went down the runway: a bibbed, tea-length, Peter Pan-collared dress in a deep cerulean lace (fall 2004); a buckled, square-heeled Sun King court shoe (fall 2012); a short-sleeved pajama shirtdress, covered in iridescent pink sequins (fall 2013). He made American luxury newly relevant while also making it accessible. When he and Duffy launched their immensely lucrative Marc by Marc Jacobs label in 2001 — a lower-priced line of basics like army jackets, cotton prairie dresses and souvenir items such as logo T-shirts, as well as key chains and tote bags — they expanded the business to encompass both high and low. This was, in part, an appeal to prospective buyers of the company, but also a prediction of the direct-to-consumer retail experience that would later flood the market.

But Jacobs’s influence extended beyond the business of fashion, affecting how it was presented to us as well. For him, a runway show wasn’t just a means to an end: It was a foretaste of today’s immersive theater, the audience packed with celebrities as diverse as Beyoncé and Lady Bunny. And although now every big house, from Gucci to Prada, produces experiences equal in scale and spectacle, few replicate Jacobs’s emotional intensity. “When one thinks of all the years and all the productions, and the music and the scenes, and how he’s able to evoke so much emotion, season after season, year after year, it’s very hard. And he always, always does it,” said the photographer Steven Meisel, who has collaborated with the designer for more than a decade. Jacobs was aware that people leave his shows “feeling something.” A mood, a spirit: the menacing shadow a bolero hat can cast on a spot-lit model’s face; the commanding, heart-stopping regality of a hyper-ruffled, puffed-up blood-red taffeta sleeve; the romantic loneliness of a single feather bobbing atop a knitted cap accompanying a gown made entirely of ocean-gray plumes. “I don’t know how it happens,” Jacobs said to me. “I can’t weave joy into a cloth. I can’t drape joy into a jacket. But I think there’s something within the process where the energy continues to grow and is somehow amplified and transferred within those seven minutes.”

JACOBS EXUDES THE intimacy of a man for whom all forms of dressing up — preparing, as T.S. Eliot put it, “a face to meet the faces that you meet” — have always, quite literally, been a show, suggesting that if there is a true life to be had, it is backstage. His natural state, one suspects, is one in which he sits with an old friend in a post-show glow, his mood one of mingled exhilaration and fatigue, toes nibbling the edge of the sofa, tea and cashmere at hand, the conversation drifting between self-examination and gossip. When we met, we slipped quickly into a freewheeling conversation about the old Upper West Side (where I now live), his grandmother Helen, his first kiss (as a middle schooler, with a girl named Lauren Bongiorno at camp, which was more to impress the other boys: “The queen amongst you has become king amongst you!”), drugs, orgies and the Grindr-driven need for sexual novelty that can make gay life in New York so arid. But most of all, we circled around a primal wound inflicted on Jacobs as a child by his mother’s mental illness, which left him with a taste for high emotion and a heightened instinct for self-protection.

Jacobs’s mother — his sole legal guardian after the death of his father, a TV agent at William Morris who died of the chronic bowel disease ulcerative colitis when Jacobs was 7 — had bipolar disorder. “I saw things no child should ever have to see,” said Jacobs, referring to episodes when his mother would go off her medication. Sometimes he would wake up to find her catatonic and bloodied; other times she was being carted off to the emergency room. Running alongside these darker moments were terrific highs, which Jacobs, who has inherited his mother’s disease (along with his father’s ulcerative colitis), confessed he half loved. He would see her dressed up before going out, “wearing drag-queen-type makeup.” She once came home high with a boyfriend and they painted a mural on the bathroom wall, onto which she glued clumps of her boyfriend’s pubic hair. In another instance, in the grip of chemical enthusiasm, she decided they would open a modeling agency with her new boyfriend, whom she planned on marrying; she had already designed towels embroidered with her new initials. “I was, like, ‘O.K.,’” Jacobs said tentatively, and even in his retelling, one could feel all the alarm and wonder of a young boy growing suspicious of the pathological intensity of his mother, from whom he remained estranged until her death in 2011.

In the end, it was too much. The oldest of three children, he was forced to be a parent to his siblings. “It was not a job I wanted,” he said. “I did not want to be mother and father to my sister and brother in any way, shape or form.” When Jacobs was in his early teens, he went to live nearby with his paternal grandmother, who had an apartment in the Majestic, a twin-towered Art Deco building on Central Park West (his siblings, with whom he does not have a relationship, were taken into foster care). “It was the beginning,” he said, “of the life I loved.” Grandma Helen, who adored Jacobs, brought rules and decorum to his life. Spring and autumn clothes, with matching shoes and bags, were brought out and put away as the seasons changed. With some outfits she wore only black gloves, with others only white. She taught her grandson the virtue of owning one nice sweater rather than 10 not-so-nice sweaters. These early lessons in style, alongside her complete belief in Jacobs — she went about the neighborhood telling everyone that her grandson, who had already shown more than a practical interest in clothes, was going to be a famous designer one day — gave him the stability within which his own Dionysian nature could flower, safe from the danger of self-immolation. His grandmother was the first in a series of guardians, or protectors, that Jacobs would find — and need — throughout his life. “I always found my space,” he said. “I believed that I could create the world I wanted to live in.”

This world was invariably an enclosed one, governed by its own laws, in which the consolations of beauty and art could shut out the chaos beyond, the way a sudden downpour can put the roar of a city at a distance. What Jacobs seemed always to be in search of was a world within a world — a framing device, if you will — into which he could pour his reserves of creativity and emotion. Ricky Serbin, his friend and roommate while he attended the Parsons School of Design, and now a dealer of high-end vintage fashion, remembers an 18-year-old Jacobs, put in charge of a party for the Japanese avant-garde designer Kansai Yamamoto in 1981, renting a fish market on Canal Street. “Everyone,” Serbin said, “was given necklaces with clear plastic bags in which there was a live goldfish.” That playfulness, or “whimsy,” as Duffy described it, is at the heart of Jacobs’s work, and it is, in fact, a very serious thing. Like the Surrealist Salvador Dalí, who replaced telephone receivers with lobsters, Jacobs creates a hilarity that can also be philosophical. And in a business that takes itself as seriously as fashion does, this kind of wink reminds us that beneath the splendor of it all — the great sets, the beautiful models sparkling in their jewels and raiments — it is all vanity, all dross.

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Gray and checked peak-lapel wool blazers with oversize patch pockets and heavy stitch embroidery, along with matching wide-leg trousers, leather boots and grosgrain-trimmed wool fedoras. All looks from Marc Jacobs spring 2020. All hats are Stephen Jones for Marc Jacobs.Credit…Photo by Roe Ethridge. Styled by Carlos Nazario
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From left: an ocher-colored wool cropped-sleeve jacket with a sequin lining over a matching straight skirt; a canary-yellow peak-lapel blazer, vest and purple mock turtleneck blouse with matching wide-leg trousers. Both looks worn with floppy-brimmed hats.Credit…Photo by Roe Ethridge. Styled by Carlos Nazario

IF THERE IS one single attribute that elevates Jacobs out of the world of clothes and into the world of art, it is his process. This is a man who, armed with only the grain of an idea — what Henry James calls the “windblown” seed — lives for weeks in a state of formlessness. He recognizes from experience that the discomfort of that bit of grit lodged in his imagination is creativity, but that is all. He has to live with that and wait for it to reveal its inner promptings. Ever since he was a child, he has understood the relationship between chaos and form, when he fashioned realms of order and beauty that protected him from the disorder and violence of his domestic life; he knows that he must wait in a state of heightened anxiety and concentration for that first glimmer of inspiration to show itself as something real.

The first sign of articulation announces itself as color and fabric. Still, he has no real sense of what goes where. The story we are told of men like Valentino or Halston is of the designer sitting at his “very chic” desk, Jacobs said, making “lovely drawings, which he hands over to some assistant, who in turn gives them to the woman who’s going to drape them, or the man who’s going to do the tailoring. They go off, a muslin comes back. There is a fitting where a bolt of fabric is thrown over a model.”

“And that’s just not the way it is!” Jacobs said emphatically. “Or at least, it’s not like that here.” Instead, Jacobs and his team sit around a table for two weeks to a month. A process of collaging then occurs, in which his team goes out and collects fabrics from vintage clothing stores and couture mills. There are no directives. During this period, Jacobs doesn’t know if anything is right or wrong, and the eyes of those around him are as important as his own. “Because in his head,” Duffy said, “there is a vision. He hasn’t articulated it to anybody in the room yet. He hasn’t even articulated it to himself yet, but I see it coming together as he’s putting things together.” Throughout this process, Jacobs will maintain fixations: with forms, textures and fabrics. For his spring 2020 collection, for instance, he became obsessed with variations of 1960s-style high-waisted three-piece suits. Once the broad contours of his vision are determined, Jacobs goes, like a queen bee in her hive, to the other departments — hair, makeup and shoes — pollinating their imagination with the mood or feeling with which he’s been living. If things cohere, it is because a massive collaborative energy has swept through the office, cross-fertilizing the different departments. Speaking of the joy and abandon manifest in his spring 2020 collection, Jacobs said, “I woke up one day in Rye” — the upstate New York town where he bought a Frank Lloyd Wright house in 2019 — “and I remembered this song ‘Prepare Ye the Way of the Lord.’ I watched the video from [the 1971 musical comedy by Stephen Schwartz and John-Michael Tebelak, based on the New Testament’s Gospel of Matthew] ‘Godspell.’ And it’s so great. Because all these people are leaving their jobs. This model throws away her wig and portfolio; this ballerina is flipping down the street … and another guy is walking by. It’s the feel of ‘Godspell.’”

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From left: a check suiting double-breasted belted long jacket with an enamel buckle and buttons, and matching pleated-front high-waisted trousers, silk blouse, wool sweater and forest-green fedora; a leather trench coat draped over a fitted vest and pleated trousers and a brown wool cowboy hat.Credit…Photo by Roe Ethridge. Styled by Carlos Nazario
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A ruffled floral dress, with a guipure collar, in dusty hues of peach, green and burgundy; heart intarsia tights, ’60s quilted mules and a floppy straw hat.Credit…Photo by Roe Ethridge. Styled by Carlos Nazario

The resulting collection was a maximalist explosion of color and nostalgia. Here were tangerine dresses covered in crocheted white flowers, yellow stockings, floppy ’70s sun hats and red bowlers and great gowns covered in blush, pink and orange dahlias made from fluttering organza. Models had Raggedy Ann eyelashes, or glittery, beetle-green shadowed lids, or Elton John-style glasses with rims shaped like butterfly wings. It was a spring so euphoric that it felt as though Carmen Miranda had gone for a stroll along the sea floor and emerged with sponges, sea lilies and anemones clinging to her petticoats.

Jacobs became philosophical as conversation turned to the subject of a designer’s relevance and longevity. “This is where it’s all going to go dark,” he said, speaking of the cycles all designers go through. He raised the possibility that every creative person has a moment, and that maybe he has had his: “People want newness, and they want it from a new person. I understand that I’m not the 25-year-old who was given this incredible job at Perry Ellis, or who created the grunge collection, or who was the bad boy of the 1990s,” he said. “I am a 56-year-old man who still has the privilege of doing a collection.” But his voice was calm as he said this, full of acceptance and experience.

There is a side of Jacobs, no doubt a consequence of the trauma of those childhood scenes with his mother, that is drawn to the allure of personas and the refuge of fictitious selves. “There’s a part of me,” he said, speaking as if he was spectator unto his own life, “that would have been a great performer: I love this idea of creating identity, of playing roles and, you know, playing a part in this movie that’s my life.” One criticism often leveled at Jacobs’s work is that there is no signature. Yet there is: The signature is him. His emotional development, which has coincided with the arc of gay culture in this country, is the common thread running through his work.

LONG BEFORE INFLUENCERS and social media managers, Jacobs knew the importance of becoming a brand. Over the years, he has embodied a dozen sociologies related to gay culture, from the embrace of the body beautiful in the mid-aughts, when he famously shook off his chrysalis of flab and long, unkempt hair to reveal the hard sinew of an Instagram-ready body, of sex-positivity, of rehab and wellness, of marriage, and now, with his jewel-encrusted nails and rhinestone hairpins, of gender fluidity.

Jacobs said he was “never in,” though he couldn’t remember ever sitting anyone down to come out. He rode the bus to Parsons with the actress Maureen Stapleton and the milliner Mr. John, who made hats for the Duchess of Windsor. Dressed in button-downs and tiny bow ties, Jacobs began going to Studio 54 when he was 15 and was soon dating Robert Boykin, who was 17 years his senior and the owner of Hurrah, the first rock and new wave nightclub on the Upper West Side. Through Boykin, Jacobs got to know Debbie Harry, David Bowie and Andy Warhol. “He was practically a savant,” Serbin, who shared a fourth-floor walk-up downtown with Jacobs in the 1980s, told me. “He knew everything about fashion and knew everyone in fashion.”

In the late 1980s, Boykin was diagnosed with AIDS, and Jacobs, who by then had been with him for nine and a half years, watched him go home to Alabama to die. The era of sexual decadence was ending. Everybody had been taking drugs and having random sex, when, as Jacobs put it, all of a sudden, “Oh God, there’s this thing and a group of our friends are already infected with it, and it’s spreading, and you can’t behave that way anymore.”

During this period, Jacobs was, Serbin said, “decidedly unglamorous,” but by the aughts, after a period of careful eating and exercising as a way to treat his ulcerative colitis, he went from 21 percent body fat to 6.5 percent. “You could see my abs,” Jacobs said, “and I could flex and there would be a little bit of a bicep, and, all of a sudden, guys in the gym started paying attention to me.” He enjoyed the attention, too. But then a Jacobsian cycle, whose spiraling excesses I was beginning to recognize, ensued. Soon, he was on steroids and partying at clubs in Ibiza, where he would stay up all night on MDMA. “That started the whole Grindr thing,” Jacobs said. “I wanted more Grindr dates and better-looking Grindr dates. I didn’t really care about them. I just wanted sex.” He dated beautiful Brazilians, such as the entrepreneur Lorenzo Martone and the adult film star Harry Louis, whose best work, available online, shows Louis valiantly perfecting the yogic art of bottoming while simultaneously sloughing off the tyranny of the gag reflex. But last year, Jacobs married his longtime boyfriend, Charly Defrancesco, 36, a model, interior designer and entrepreneur. “I didn’t really care about marriage,” he said, but through the course of the five-year relationship with Defrancesco, “I realized how important marriage was to Charly.”

“Happiness” was a word that Jacobs’s friends and colleagues often used when discussing him. Everyone spoke of how happy he is now, how much easier in his skin. “Sober, settled, happily married,” Duffy said, adding of the designer’s life in Rye: “I never in my life thought Marc would be moving to the suburbs.” (Jacobs still keeps a Manhattan residence.) The word came up so much that I began to feel I was listening to a version of what the critic V.S. Pritchett once wrote of the personal happiness Edith Wharton found after marriage: “That happiness, it now seems, dulled her talent.” But no. Katie Grand, the house’s stylist since 2013, assured me that the moment Jacobs walks through the door of the seventh-floor studio on Spring Street, “all the Rye-idyllic happiness” falls away and “the anxieties hit, the insecurities hit.” And there are other anxieties, too: about money — Jacobs had recently sold more than 50 works from his personal collection of contemporary art, including one by John Currin and an Andy Warhol, at Sotheby’s — and about age, about the industry’s relentless pursuit of the new. “His creative process hasn’t changed, whether he’s been happy in relationships or unhappy,” said Grand. “His drive is still in his head to go and create something.”

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From left: a shrunken men’s vest, matching pleated pants and a silk button-down blouse, worn under a gabardine trench coat and paired with quilted mules and a felt fedora; a fitted blazer, vest and matching Swarovski crystal-embellished pants with a silk button-down blouse, a wool bowler hat and white wedge mules.Credit…Photo by Roe Ethridge. Styled by Carlos Nazario
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A red feather headpiece with a Dahlia and Blades gown made of blush pink and orange organza.Credit…Photo by Roe Ethridge. Styled by Carlos Nazario

“I TRY TO enjoy everything I have for the time I have it,” Jacobs said. “But there’s this dancing-as-fast-as-I-can fear that I have only got so much time, and I’m not going to get to enjoy this forever. Either someone will take it from me, or it will get lost, or I’ll lose it. So, impending doom and chaos is always there. That’s what I grew up with.”

At Marc Jacobs, the past five years have been difficult. The departure of Duffy in 2014 brought to a close one of the most creatively fecund and successful business partnerships in the history of the industry. A year earlier, Duffy and Jacobs ceded control of Marc Jacobs to LVMH in a restructuring deal that nearly coincided with Jacobs stepping down as the artistic director of Louis Vuitton. The company had more than 250 stores worldwide, along with a cosmetic and fragrance business, a men’s and children’s line and a bookstore. Duffy found himself sidelined. It was decided that almost everything except the women’s runway collection would be discontinued or scaled down: Away went the secondary Marc by Marc Jacobs line, with its popular candy-colored handbags and flared blue jeans and irresistible trinkets. “I didn’t understand that decision,” Duffy said with exasperation. “Why are you throwing away all the things that make money?” Duffy bought a house in Rhinebeck, in the Hudson Valley, where he spends his weekends. He’s now raising two children; Jacobs is the godfather to both.

Since Duffy’s exit, the brand has had two C.E.O.s: Sebastian Suhl, who came from Givenchy, and Eric Marechalle, who came from Kenzo and was appointed in 2017. Marechalle’s first big hire in February 2018 was John Targon, the co-founder and former co-designer of the American ready-to-wear sportswear brand Baja East, who was brought on to help Jacobs and his team design Marc Jacobs runway looks. Three months later, he was gone. Perhaps the only “name” designer at Marc Jacobs can be the man himself.

What’s certain is that the age of excess that witnessed the rise of Marc Jacobs — the person and the company — has now passed. In this new sober time, Jacobs’s career, with all its emphasis on joyful self-aggrandizement, feels a little like a cautionary tale of exuberance shading into shrinking profits, shop closures and a melancholy, if amicable, divorce from Duffy. Today the company maintains only five stores: three in New York, one in Los Angeles and another in Paris. Yet there have been moves to correct course, including the recent one-off Redux Grunge Collection 1993/2018, an almost verbatim 26-piece reissue of Jacobs’s show for Perry Ellis, released for the 25-year anniversary of the seminal collection. A resurrection of Marc by Marc Jacobs in the form of The Marc Jacobs — a mix of revived basics and new collaborations (the filmmaker Sofia Coppola, for example, helped Jacobs pick some of the pieces to bring back) — launched in May 2019. His past three runway collections have been hugely acclaimed, and critics speak of Jacobs once again as the face of New York fashion. They are reminders of how Jacobs’s shows have long been one of the main reasons European editors fly to New York for fashion week, where they once were kept waiting for hours for them to start. (These days, the shows mostly start on time.) As other brands — including Proenza Schouler, Altuzarra and Tom Ford — have experimented with presenting their clothes in Europe or in California, Jacobs has remained true to his city. His is always the last big show on the New York fashion week calendar, and his runway, though more austere now, resonates with the power of an older master — “venerable,” as he likes to say — one still able to arouse passion, still able to read the mood of the time.

And yet, one returns to Jacobs not out of nostalgia but from a curiosity to see how this man of prodigious talent, now shorn of the infrastructure of self-enlargement, is faring in a time out-of-joint. “When I think of American designers, there is a certain spirit that is inherent in American design. There’s tenacity, there’s a sort of can-do attitude, and Marc represents the best of that,” said co-chairperson Julie Mannion of the fashion public relations firm KCD and a longtime collaborator of Jacobs. “There’s that fearlessness of not being too pigeonholed by tradition.” Jacobs the artist is remarkable in his sensitivity, in his ability to pivot and meet the needs of a new era. For more than 10 years, he presented his collections at the Beaux-Arts brick fortress of the 69th Regiment Armory on Lexington Avenue, but in 2014, Jacobs moved west to the Park Avenue Armory, a Gilded Age building on the Upper East Side once known as the home of the “silk stocking” regiment for the high number of Roosevelts and Vanderbilts who served in the local militia. He has remained loyal to this venue, with few exceptions, ever since. His shows are now as spartan as they once were baroque: just the models, the clothes, the viewers and the building’s uneven matchstick wooden floors. For the spring 2018 season, Jacobs showed his intensely beautiful ’60s-style tunics, pinned turbans and one-shoulder gowns cut from batik-like fabrics and pastel florals in complete silence. The 460 onlookers, seated in uncomfortable metal folding chairs around the perimeter of the 55,000-square-foot room, heard only the beat of tinseled and jeweled sandals strutting and the swish of clothes heavy with sequins and beading. The effect was powerful in its simplicity, and in its suggestion of an older artist freeing himself from the noise and clutter of a younger self.

IT WAS A bright December afternoon, a week or so before Christmas, when Jacobs and I met for the last time. I waited in the reception area of his atelier next to a sculpture of Neville, Jacobs’s bull terrier, whom I had recently begun following on Instagram (he has over 200,000 followers). I thought I could finally understand why Jacobs commands such devotion from those around him. He exudes a precariousness that is deeply affecting to anyone even dimly aware of the mysterious connection between creativity and tragedy. If he attracts protectors, it is because one cannot speak at any length to him without feeling that, as Oscar Wilde wrote about his titular character in “The Picture of Dorian Gray,” “a note of doom runs like a purple thread” through “the gold cloth” of his talent. “He’s a beautiful, beautiful man,” Jacobs’s friend, the filmmaker Lana Wachowski said. She told me that during one of Jacobs’s “post-art-done depressions,” she gave him a copy of Albert Camus’s 1942 philosophical essay “The Myth of Sisyphus,” which led the designer and the filmmaker to get matching tattoos.

Earlier, Jacobs had shown me a slide of himself with his grandma Helen in Capri in 1980; it was encased in the red plastic of a vintage photo viewer. The slide was a stark contrast to the hard, distancing glamour of his appearance now; together, the two images of Jacobs were like the two panels of a diptych denoting innocence and experience. Peering down the viewer’s small convex lens, I saw Jacobs — gangly, laughing, 17 — standing next to his white-haired grandmother, herself the picture of bourgeois Upper West Side elegance. She was wearing a Claude Montana knit dress, with broad stripes of silver across a white background, which Jacobs had made her buy. He, in turn, had saved his earnings as a stock boy at the now-defunct Upper West Side clothing store Charivari to buy the men’s sweater version of the dress, which he wore with white trousers. To see the teenager with his chosen protector, the pairing of sweater and dress a proof of their bond, was to be reminded of the matching tattoos of Sisyphus that Jacobs would get decades later with Wachowski. The myth of the man condemned for eternity by the gods to push a boulder up a hill only to have it roll down again has long attracted those who know the solitude and futility of creative life. In the version of the myth inscribed on Jacobs’s and Wachowski’s forearms, five tattooed words of hope allow for human communion as a refuge in the enveloping loneliness. They simply read: “I will if you will.”

Models: Janaye Furman at the Lions and Elibeidy Dani at IMG. Hair by Akki at Art Partner. Makeup by Susie Sobol at Julian Watson Agency. Set design by 
Andy Harman at Lalaland. Casting by Midland. Manicure: Dawn Sterling at Statement Artists. Production: Hen’s Tooth. Lighting design: Jordan Strong. Photo assistants: Ariel Sadok, Kaitlin Tucker and Shen Williams. Digital tech: Jonathan Nesteruk. Stylist’s assistants: Raymond Gee and Erica Boisaubin. Tailoring: Thao Huynh. Hair assistant: Rei Kawauchi. Makeup assistant: Sasha Borax. Set design assistant: Lee Freeman.

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The T List: Five Things We Recommend This Weekon February 13, 2020 at 1:00 pm

Posted on February 20, 2020 By In Uncategorized With disabled comments

Welcome to the T List, a newsletter from the editors of T Magazine. Each week, we’re sharing things we’re eating, wearing, listening to or coveting now. Sign up here to find us in your inbox every Wednesday. You can always reach us at tlist@nytimes.com.

Visit This

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Credit…© Undine Pröhl

The Mexico City-based hotel developer Grupo Habita has long been known for its modern, design-savvy lodgings in unexpected places and its newest property, Escondido Oaxaca, set in a 19th-century colonial-style house in Oaxaca, is no exception. The architect Alberto Kalach kept the original frescoes and redesigned the property’s communal spaces around the central courtyard, including a rooftop pool and bar, a library and lounge, an Italian restaurant by the chef Saúl Carranza and four bedrooms, each with exposed concrete walls, pinewood furnishings and cement floors covered in handwoven petate mats. He also constructed a contemporary tower in an adjacent lot to house an additional eight rooms, all of which have a balcony or a patio. To fill the onetime house, Cecilia Tena and Lucía Corredor of the design studio Decada selected found objects like 1970s-era Miguelito chairs first made famous by the architect Luis Barragán, contemporary dining sets by the emerging local designer Taller Nacional and palm weavings and barro negro clay pots made by local artisans. The result is a hotel that feels like a home and is, as Corredor says, at once “timeless and true to Oaxaca and its artistry.” From $180, escondidooaxaca.com.


Eat This

“All the chefs eat here.” That’s how a friend described C.A.M. Import Export, a small-plates restaurant on the edge of Paris’s Marais district that feels like the polar opposite of the glossy, hi-fi bistros that suffuse the city. It was hands down the site of my most thrilling dining experience from last year. Located in an old Eiffel Tower souvenir shop (hence the name), the minimalist space is appointed with assorted houseplants and a rack of indie magazines. It first opened as a restaurant in 2017; less than a year later, its Korea-born, Le Cordon Bleu-trained chef, Esu Lee, left to study at the temple of the famed Buddhist monk and chef Jeong Kwan in Korea. C.A.M. reopened toward the end of 2018, and its new menu deftly weaves between Korean, French and whatever other flavors Lee feels inspired by on any given night; that might mean crisp daikon fritters in Sichuan pepper sauce, silken tofu served with hunks of Brie and salty pops of salmon roe or a melting chocolate bar sprinkled with olive oil and gochugaru. C.A.M. also has a tight wine list that you could drink through in a single evening (I did). Consider it an anti-bistro bistro. 55 rue au Maire, Paris.


See This

The octogenarian artist Ben Sakoguchi was only three years old when he was separated from his parents who were incarcerated during World War II at Poston War Relocation Center, a Japanese-American concentration camp in Arizona. This month, Ortuzar Projects in New York has mounted an unprecedented exhibition of his paintings. The show includes early work from the 1960s along with selected pieces from Sakoguchi’s “Orange Crate Label” series from the ’70s and ’80s that have a Raymond Pettibon-esque punk-rock quality to them. Most astounding, though, is a group painting called “Towers” (2014) that depicts scenes of various Japanese-American concentration camps, as well as a group portrait of residents of Poston’s Block 13 that includes Sakoguchi as a little boy in the front row. Sakoguchi said he only began painting the camps after the death of his parents, who had struggled to regain their life after the war; his mother had returned to their grocery store in San Bernardino with $1,000 she had hidden in her belt throughout her imprisonment. The painting has a surreal quality that is both devastating and matter-of-fact. “Ben Sakoguchi: Made in U.S.A.” is on view through April 4 at Ortuzar Projects, 9 White Street, New York, ortuzarprojects.com.


Wear This

In the world of men’s accessories, everything from sneakers to bags to wallets is touted as customizable; when it comes to watches, however, personalization has been limited to engraving and interchangeable straps. Enter Baume, the Swiss luxury brand that lets shoppers build their own timepiece online. There are four different models to choose from: Automatic, which is self-winding; Retrograde, with day and date indicators; Moonphase, which shows the lunar cycle; and Small Seconds, with a subdial for the second hand. Customers can then select the case size and finish, dial and hand color and strap material. (There are over 2,000 different possibilities in all.) Comfortingly, Baume uses recycled and upcycled materials like discarded skateboards and plastic retrieved from the ocean; next month, it will debut its second collaboration with the French ski brand Zag, featuring two new models with casings made from wood thrown out during ski-making and straps created from reused plastic. From $560, baumewatches.com.


Know About This

Taylor Patterson, the founder of the Brooklyn-based floral design studio Fox Fodder Farm, first started to think about a retail experience in 2017: “I wanted a space for people to breathe,” she told me. Come Friday, Patterson — whose wild arrangements are often found in the boutiques of the designers Ulla Johnson and Carolina Herrera — will open a full-fledged shop in a quiet section of South Williamsburg. Patterson worked with the landscape artist Brook Klausing on bringing the outdoors in, installing concrete flooring, brushed plaster walls, timber shelves and a bluestone fountain inspired by a Delaware creek near her hometown. While bonsais and premade bouquets are available, shoppers can make their own arrangements in hourlong sessions from a variety of blooms like poppies and flowering quince branches; for vases, they can choose from natural-toned ceramics by the Seoul-born artist Yoon-Young Hur or vessels from the Massachusetts-based one-man brand Pete’s Rocks, made with stones sourced from the North Atlantic coast. There’s also a broom for customers to sweep up their mess — as Patterson said, “It’s a work space, and things are going to get dirty.” 45 South Fourth Street, Brooklyn, foxfodderfarm.com.


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