Kenny Osehan and Chris Sewell.
Summer Style in S.B.
Dream Foundation Fashion Show, Arbor Boards, the Supply Room, and Lola
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Feet Dreams: So, once a year, the Dream Foundation—the S.B. nonprofit that fulfills the dreams of adults facing illness—throws an epic fundraiser that doubles as a fashion show and has wrangled such behemoths of the catwalk as Stella McCartney, Diane Von Furstenberg, and Roberto Cavalli. (There’s usually a cadre of shirtless men standing around, sporting angel wings, too. Just saying.) This year, they’ve announced that the designer du jour—the “jour” in this case being November 5—will be Salvatore Ferragamo, and the history will make any S.B. footwear fetishist proud: Ferragamo emigrated to Santa Barbara from Naples in 1914, where he worked in the family biz—shoe repair, natch—with his brothers at the State Street storefront that’s home to Aldo’s today. While in S.B., Ferragamo worked for the American Film Company for several years—focusing, naturally, on feet. (Of that time, he reported: “American feet were dreadful!”) He began to design shoes to address the effects of poor-fitting, American-made shoes, and then got fancy, creating the Roman sandal, the cage heel, and the wedge, and designing for the likes of Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe, and Sophia Loren—and even crafting the magical red shoes Judy Garland sported in The Wizard of Oz. There’s no place like home! And there’s no event like the Celebration of Dreams. (You’ll laugh! You’ll cry! You’ll eat! You’ll ogle the fashion … and did I mention the men?) For info, check out dreamfoundation.org.
Style on Board: Riders of snow, asphalt, and sea will love Arbor, a new shop that’s landed at 1221 State Street—the brand’s second showroom; the flagship is in Venice—after dominating the performance-focused eco-board biz for a decade and a half. Arbor’s boards utilize sustainable materials, including bamboo and Hawaiian koa, and while they’ve primarily focused on skate and snowboards ’til now, they’re beginning to get their proverbial feet wet in surf. And while performance and sustainability are important, you know I wouldn’t be writing about them unless they came with a potent dose of style—and that they do. And not just on the boards—which happen to be, for the record, works of art. They also deal in bamboo duds and their signature belt buckles—all of which demonstrate their acute understanding of board-sport fashion sensibility, and most of which come stamped with their trademark tree logo. They opened their doors to serious fanfare in early June (home-brewed beer, food, Soul Majestic upstairs at SOhO), but if you missed it, take heart: They intend to host community events regularly.
By Paul Wellman
The Supply Room
Spotlight On: The Supply Room
Kenny Osehan and Chris Sewell—whom you may know as proprietors of the Presidio Motel (1620 State St.; 963-1355, thepresidiomotel.com), which Lonely Planet describes as “to lodging what H&M is to shopping: a cheap, trendy alternative,” or as Mama and Papa to the dearly departed orgy of indie fashion that was Jill of All Trades (moment of silence, please)—have something new up their sleeve … and a great reason to stop moping for those of us still in mourning over the demise of JOAT. Their distinctive brand of edgy, modern style is reflected in the design of the motel itself, and it occurred to them, Osehan said, that when guests would ask her—after giving her a tidy once-over and logically assuming she’d have a list at the ready—where to go for some Osehan/Sewell/Presidio-variety shopping, there really weren’t too many places to send them. And, voilà—The Supply Room was born.
The cozy space, which once worked as, well, a motel supply room, has recast the soul of JOAT, in more minimalist (not to mention permanent) form, filling a screaming Santa Barbara void in the process. The one-day, once-a-year extravaganza was good training, though: As JOAT brought in thoughtfully sourced designers from all over, Osehan has scoured the style universe to stock The Supply Room with a supremely edited collection of interesting, just-under-the-radar talent you’d be hard-pressed to find represented elsewhere in S.B.(shoes by Rachel Comey from New York, Osei-Duro clothing from Ghana), in addition to some of our city’s best (Camilla Bourbon’s jewelry and Make.Smith’s leather wallets and pouches)—not to mention the stuff one tends to forget while traveling. Like toothbrushes … and a wild assortment of Japanese toothpaste. (Um, chocolate?)
True to Presidio form, they gave the same meticulous attention to the design of the space itself: The clean displays were built by Sewell, using driftwood for some and the glass from one of their own coffee tables for another, and the logo was designed by Kamma Shallenberger and hand painted onto the window by a curious character named Voodoo Daddy-O, who may well have been plucked from the depths of an acid trip. Or L.A. The July 11 soft-launch doubled as one of several of their Summer Music Nights series, featuring The Wild Moccasins and (our) Living Sacrifice—and tripled as the end of mourning season. Thank god. I look terrible in black.
Check Out: Lola
For StylePhiles who only bother to venture to Carpinteria for the Avocado Festival (green being the new black and all), you now have a reason to make the pilgrimage more frequently. That reason being Lola (871 Yucca Ln.), a new (to some of us—they actually opened in November) consignment shop and boutique that—in its nondescript location right behind Cajun Kitchen’s Linden Avenue outpost—is tough to find, but will reward you for your efforts. Here are three reasons why:
1) The owners—Nicole Green, Karen Bauer, and Teresa Collins—all cut their teeth working Wendy Foster’s various shops in various capacities, so this ain’t their first time to the retail rodeo. They know style, designers, and every clotheshorse in town, and have culled their—at this point, invitation-only—consignment pieces from the most enviable closets around.
2) While high-fashion consignment items are nice (and by nice, I mean nice; check the rack inhabited by the likes of Marni and Monique Lhuillier), they realize the importance of basics and have filled in their collection with lines including Age of Isis and Alternative Apparel—and feature goods from several local designers, as well, including leather clutches from Emily Rosendahl, pounded silver jewelry from Rachel Kett’s Hammered Hoops line, bohemian bracelets from Adesso, and studded leather cuffs from Kelly Peterson.
3) What pairs best with fine design? Wine! As part of Carpinteria’s First Friday series, Lola stays open late (’til 8 p.m.), and the ladies bring in one of their favorite designers to show off her work over some vino and neighborly chit chat. Wine and shopping …Who needs guacamole?
This story has been amended since its original posting to property credit the Presidio Motel logo.