Mara & Mine

mara-and-mine-billy-bull-loafers

I discovered these rad skull loafers from Mara & Mine a few years ago (via instagram, obviously) and was so excited to meet the founders and see the studio when I was in LA. Mara & Mine was started by Jasmine Yarbrough and Tamie Ingham, Australian friends who live in Los Angeles. Jasmine & Tamie both got their start in fashion – Jasmine as a model and Tamie as a stylist – and their hectic studio jobs led them to search for cute, fashionable, and flat shoes they could wear all day.

They sourced leather for their shoes in the US and were planning to produce in Portugal and Spain (high-wage countries known for shoe-making) when they found a factory right in LA that could create the shoes that they were looking for. The collection is now in it’s fourth season, beloved by all of your favorite celebrities, and includes espadrilles, sandals, and bags – with more amazing options to come this fall. (the slip on sneakers in these photos are seriously incredible)

Shoes are hard to buy online… which was part of the reason I hadn’t invested in a pair of Mara & Mine loafers before visiting the studio. But the loafers are amazing – the materials and detailing are incredibly luxe, and the lambskin lining means the shoes will mold to your feet. And if you aren’t sure about which option to buy, Mara & Mine has recently launched a customization option, so you can create your dream shoes!

Thanks, Jasmine and Tamie, for taking the time to speak with me and show me your studio… and for proving to me that you can look extraordinarily chic while still being comfortable!

mara-and-mine-gem-skull-loafers

WHAT INSPIRES YOU?

Travel. Each season is based on where we travel together or where we would like to go. The architecture, the foods, the color, the materials that we see during our trips.

mara-and-mine-inspiration-board

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE PLACE TO TRAVEL? WHERE ARE YOU HEADED NEXT?

Harbor Island in the Bahamas – the people are so incredibly friendly, and we loved the local music. Next we are headed to Paris for trade shows.

WHAT GETS YOU THROUGH THE DAY? THROUGH THE WEEK?

Eachother (answered simultaneously!)
Coffee – Tamie. Green Tea – Jasmine.

mara-and-mine-los-angeles

WHAT WAS MOST IMPORTANT TO YOU WHILE YOU WERE SOURCING YOUR LINE?

Finding a great manufacturer, where we could control quality. We love that he hand makes everything.

WHAT ARE YOUR STYLE ESSENTIALS?

A blazer, Mara & Mines, sunglasses, leather pants, and a good tee.

mara-and-mine-made-in-los-angeles

WHAT’S NEXT?

Custom loafers and our fall collection. We’re working on some collaborations, including baby skull slippers we are really excited about! (adorable!)

WHO IS THE MARA & MINE GIRL?

Confident, well-traveled women. Fashion-forward, can be creative. A bit quirky. Like to have fun with fashion but still take it seriously. Also, very confident men who like to make a statement – we’ve heard that our loafers work as great pick-up lines for men! (even Ludacris wears them!)

mara-and-mine-sandals

Original images by The American Edit.

Mara & Mine is a TAE A-list brand. Follow along:

The Edit : Steven Alan

Steven Alan is one of those websites that is consistently up on my laptop – but for some reason I keep forgetting to share my favorite American made picks! Today most of them went on sale, so I decided it was time.

My favorites are above, but there’s also this Clare V. pouch, this Katie Ermilio Jacket, and tons of great stuff for dudes (and dads!). Happy shopping!

The Introduction: NSF

I was perusing Barneys yesterday (as one does – and as you should – there are some incredible things on sale right now!) and came across these amazing jeans… I’ve been searching for the right pair of skinny + slouchy + distressed white jeans and now I’m dreaming about being able to pull these off (which, unfortunately, is unlikely).

The jeans are NSF – which also happens to be the brand behind this tee that I picked up during a sale a few months ago and have been wearing constantly. Definitely a brand to watch!

About NSF:
“Our approach to denim has been to design what we love without worrying about whether or not it was going to be accepted. Our denim is classic, straightforward, with a little bit of dirt and a sexy tomboy slouchy straight fit. Every pair of jeans is made in Los Angeles, with hand executed washes, some with 15-20 steps each. Our approach to quality craftsmanship and authentic denim washes stands out.”
– Jamie Haller, NSF Creative Director and designer

SHOP NSF:

Kieley Kimmel

I came across Kieley Kimmel’s incredible knits last fall (and still regret not buying a sweater!) – and her spring collection is even more incredible. The pieces are deceivingly simple – but the collection is built on incredible fabrics, prints and structural (yet still soft) details that make all the difference.

Read on to learn more about the inspirations behind the collection and what we can look forward to… this is a line I’m so excited to watch. (ps – my favorite online shop Mille has some Spring 14 pieces on sale! I’ll be forever envious if you buy that sweater!)

kieley-kimmel-made-in-la

WHAT IS YOUR BACKGROUND?

My background is in Painting and Textile Design with a concentration on History, Philosophy + Social Sciences. I studied at Rhode Island School of Design.

WHAT INSPIRES YOUR COLLECTION?

I gather inspiration from my immediate surroundings and various theoretical texts. I’m mostly drawn to complex textures, materials and surfaces.

WHERE DO YOU DESIGN?

I design all of my collections at Kieley Kimmel Studio, Downtown Los Angeles. But the design/inspiration process is constant, no matter where I am.

WHERE DO YOU ESCAPE?

I love to take day-hikes + adventures on the outskirts of Los Angeles. There a ton of hidden rivers, pools and waterfalls in the Angeles National Forest. Also, Marfa TX is my dream space escape, but I haven’t been back to visit for over a year!

kieley-kimmel-ss14

WHY DO YOU MANUFACTURE IN AMERICA?

I’ve sourced some great LA manufacturers who are able to maintain a hand-made quality to their work, especially with garments that are focused on the fabric + textile. It’s a matter of quality control. I also prefer a more personal relationship to my production team.

WHY IS YOUR COLLECTION DIFFERENT?

I think the line appeals to a broad audience, and I always try to include a mixture of different styles/personalities in each collection. A little something for everyone. The textiles are custom designs, using very fine materials. I’ve noticed that the quality of fabrics are what people are initially drawn to.

WHAT’S NEXT?

I’d love to focus on my knitwear + possibly a Kieley Kimmel Unisex/Menswear line. Art direction for small-scale film projects has also interested me lately.

kieley-kimmel-sweater

Images c/o Kieley Kimmel. Follow along: