You Have the Right, To Be Well Accessorized
Coco Chanel made infamous the quote: “Before you leave the house, look in the mirror and remove one accessory.” It’s hard to resist style advise from such a classy lady, and Coco clearly acknowledged not only the importance of accessories but being well-accessorized. This wisdom also rings true during Phoenix Fashion Week’s runway shows, beautifully styled by many talented local designers focused on the art of proper accessorizing.
I had the opportunity to catch up with our Official Accessory Designers to find out what they have been up to since PHXFW!
Designer Valerie Ostenak brought her sculptural, one-of-a-kind pieces to life on the runway during fashion week, featured in such collections as Ofra Style. As the perfect compliment to a basic outfit or dramatic evening look, it’s no surprise her brand has taken off in a big way since Phoenix Fashion Week. “I received lots of kudos for the pieces I designed for PHXFW. My Shore Break Collection was on the Style Fashion Week LA runways just three weeks after PHXFW with Bri Seeley’s Escape Collection. Previous collectors were thrilled and the Fall sales in the gallery were fabulous!” Ostenak said. With this, her goals have shifted, and she has recently set her sights on creating a production line to be carried in luxury retail markets and also for small boutiques. “I realize there is a market for a broader audience who wants something different, but not necessarily one-of-a-kind. I want to reach the demographic that may not, or does not, walk into art galleries to purchase art to wear, yet still wants the feel and look of exclusivity.”
Be sure to take advantage of OSTENAK Studios’ exclusive offer for ONUF readers during the holidays! Two of her beautiful neck pieces from the Passages Collection (and seen in the OfraStyle runway show) are 40% off! This offer is only available until January 20th!
Seen in the Phoenix Fashion Week designer runway shows and shopped by guests in the Style Villa Marketplace just a few months ago, it’s amazing to witness the incredible growth of this local accessory brand. “After PHXFW, I presented my collection in the Bella Argentina Tango runway show at Santa Fe Fashion Week. We’re expanding into a new studio space, and I also will be branching into the wedding industry by showcasing my designs in the Scottsdale Wedding Walk fashion show and the Sedona Bridal Fair in Spring 2013,” said designer Courtney Williams. PHXFW not only opened many doors for Williams, but helped her realize there are no limits to what her brand can do or where it can go. “The exposure and support provided by the PHXFW experience have helped to propel my brand forward. It was a transformative experience.” What should fans expect from Bella Argentina for 2013? The newest collection she is designing is a mix of “bold, feminine styles, that are seductive and colorful…more stone and chain elements that will surprise and delight.”
Like Bella Argentina on Facebook! Shop the gorgeous selection of bracelets, earrings, and necklaces that you saw on the PHXFW runway at bellaargentina.com. Enter the exclusive code -PHXFW12- at checkout for 15% off her gorgeous designs!
There’s nothing better than an accessory that can not only be worn multiple ways, but has the ability to completely change the style of a look. This just happens to be what REMIX Watches is known for, as each of their silicone analog watches has a band and face interchangeable with many different colors, allowing hundreds of color combinations. Since showing at Phoenix Fashion Week as an Official Accessory Designer, REMIX Watches has grown immensely and achieved numerous goals crucial to their brand. “We’ve been involved in a ton of charity events that have benefited the Make a Wish Foundation, The Boys and Girls Club, as well as lots of events in California. We have focused on our online presence and nearly quadrupled our social media fans and followers since PHXFW,” said owner Ryan Town. Perhaps the biggest achievements thus far were the launch of their new website and effective integrated brand packaging. These undoubtedly prepared them for success and came in handy for a few of their particularly huge exposure opportunities. “We were recently featured on Yahoo.com as #5 in the list of top watches, which increased our daily orders from 10 to over 100! A group of the contestants on the current season of X-Factor also wear our watches,” Town said.
For 2013, Town plans on taking REMIX to the next level. “We will be introducing 3-4 more categories, along with Spring/Fall colors. At this point, our brand has to be about more than just colors, because our customers crave uniqueness. Our next big goal is to get into collections and collaborate with talented designers and visionaries to create a truly uniquely designed product.”
Just for our readers and fans, REMIX Watches is offering a FREE BAND with any order on http://www.remixwatches.com when you use code -PHXFW12-
Originally from Dallas, Texas, Melis has been designing accessories mirroring her country roots and city flair for over 10 years. Bringing her smart design aesthetic to the Phoenix Fashion Week runway shows, Melis drew a great following of fans and new customers through her trendy accessory design. “The reception at Phoenix Fashion Week was absolutely amazing. I have made so many connections with other companies in the industry to work with in the future,” Melis said. Like the success of our other accessory designers, Melis is working to branch out and expand her line even more, hoping to secure it’s presence in luxury retailers such as Nordstrom and Neiman Marcus. “I am focused on simplifying my lines for my wholesale market to keep it simple and to combine the accessory lines for ease in merchandising and wearability. I am also doing a collaboration with a streetwear brand and looking forward to all that it will bring.” Along with creating bigger exposure opportunities for her current line, her next big goal is to have her all new mens line up and running by 2013! “I have actually branded MELIS for the first time since I began my company many many years ago. I only have PHXFW to thank for this…without their guidance and help, the brand would not be where it is today.”
To receive a 30% discount off your next purchase on http://www.melis.com, use code FASHION.
Giulia Castellini, an Italian accessory designer that moved to the United States just two years ago, blends classic Italian glamour with modern day practicality in order to design a line of handbags and clutches that are as fashionable as they are functional. These luxurious accessories were featured in many of Phoenix Fashion Week’s shows, including Los Angeles designer Suzanne Lay, and were a hit among attendees and designers alike! “Fashion week really opened our eyes to all of the local AZ talent, and we are now putting more focus into marketing our brand here in AZ. We are actually collaborating with a few of the designers from fashion week, so look for exciting updates regarding this soon,” Castellini said. Since fashion week, Castellini has kept busy with attending trade shows and building their brand along the West coast. “Our 5 year goal is to establish ourselves as a luxury Italian leather bag company both here and in the US, as well as Italy. We are working at these goals by placing our bags in US boutiques as well as setting up some pipelines for selling in Italy.” What’s in the near future for Castellini Handbags? “Expect to see a mens line in Fall 2013, as well as some fun new product lines that we are working on!”
Use code: -Fbfriend2012- for 20% off your next purchase!
Article by Lauren Pfingstag for Phoenix Fashion Week
“The Resource For All Things Fashionable”