Busy women will gravitate to New York designer Alexa Chapman's sleek, modern works inspired by the geometric curves of women's bodies. Alexa Chapman is all about keeping style functional while retaining beauty and elegance, reminding us that women who have it all don't want their clothes to feel fragile or delicate — they want them to feel empowering, without sacrificing sensuality.
Listen, swimwear shopping gets a bad rap. The founder of Chromat, Becca McCharen-Tran, drew on her background in architecture to elevate swimwear shopping to a celebration of all things woman-shaped. Based in New York City, Chromat aims to democratize swimwear with designs focused toward creating durable, strong and flattering swimwear for women, femmes and non-binary people of all shapes.
Cut it out — Donna Mizani does. The NY-born, LA-based designer has been redesigning the clothes in her closet since she was a child, but it was a life drawing class in her teen years that married the beauty she saw in the female body to her love of fashion design. Mizani and her sister, who now helps her run her business, focus on quality above all else, and 100% of their work is crafted in the Los Angeles garment district. Mizani's work is characterized by her signature sexy, fierce cutout designs, and her commitment to the craft.
For more than 40 years, Elie Tahari has been crafting mens- and womenswear, and it shows. Recently, Elie Tahari's collections have expanded to include women's shoes, sunglasses and accessories, but he got his start in the New York City garment industry in the 1970s after emigrating from Israel. The years he spent scuffing his soles on New York City sidewalks are evident in his work — deep, elaborate and saturated with story.
Designer Amber Farr was inspired by her daughter Flynn's free-spirited, adventuresome nature to create Flynn Skye, a brand for the confident woman who knows who she is, where she's going and how she's getting there. Farr's pieces are made in Los Angeles, designed with both the beach and the city in mind.
fcuk fashion. That was the '90s tagline that turned fashion advertising on its head, while turning heads on streets all over the U.K. before they even got a look at the clothing. The brand's name came from founder Stephen Marks' connections to French textiles, which he imbued with unconventional spins on everyday designs. French Connection's identity includes a cheeky nudge, wink and nod to the idea of cheerfully undermining the fashion industry's connections to things like plastic or blind adherence to societal norms.
Kirk Pickersgill and Steven Wong, the designers behind Toronto-based Greta Constantine, find themselves rooted in the present while keeping an eye toward the future of womenswear. Pickersgill and Wong aim for a contemporary, modern silhouette, including plenty of longline skirts and tapered pants. Their love for color shines through in Greta Constantine's formalwear, including shades of fuchsia, royal blue and neon yellow. Greta Constantine's looks are always head-turning and fresh.
Designer Simona Marziala is focused on the here and now. Her designs at MRZ are crafted while keeping a contemporary, modern woman in mind, one whose mind is fixed on the bleeding, cutting edge of haute couture. Marziala's work brings in subtle sportswear elements and introduces them gently to femininity, flattering tailoring and unusual, quirky knits. Established in 2012, the brand's pieces are crafted in Italy but made to take over the world.
OneTeaspoon is all about getting the dirt and grit of rock 'n' roll and real life under your fingernails — and on your jeans. The Australian brand kicked off in 2000, after founder Jamie Blakey found herself unenthusiastic about her searches through store racks. Stirring a packet of sweetener into her coffee one morning, the name came to her from the side of the packet. In Blakey's own words, she can't resist "ripping stuff up" — like packets of sweetener, denim and the fashion industry's expectations.
Paige Adams-Geller was one of the top fit models in the country in 2004 when she decided to give up wearing other designers' clothes in favor of her own, becoming the first female founder in U.S. premium denim. After her women's line launched to critical adoration, PAIGE worked to unfurl men's, petites and maternity pieces, too. She and her designers at PAIGE eat, sleep and breathe to craft denim you'll want to live in, with perfect pairs that can take you everywhere.
The Peruvian-made, NYC-designed brand is led by its mission to promote ethical consumerism, offering fair wages and safe, healthy working conditions for all the workers in its single factory. Each piece is draped according to designers' individual taste, and designs begin with taking inspiration from architecture and cultural elements. From there, muslin is draped over mannequins. Port Zienna's designers leave pattern-making for last, to allow the fabrics to speak to them.
RAEN's signature handmade sunglasses are designed in California under the direction and inspiration of its two founder brothers, Jeremy and Justin Heit, and co-founder Jordan Percy. All three are surfers in possession of a good eye for design. The lack of artful eyewear on the market led them to use those eyes to help yours see better on bright, blue sky days, so your style doesn't skip a beat.
Shwood began with some woodworking tools and the dream of a modern product that embodies the uniqueness of nature. In 2009, the limb of a Madrone tree and a rusty cabinet hinge became the first pair of Shwood glasses. Production has evolved considerably since that first foray into frame-making, and it continues to evolve today. Makers have kept the wood standbys, and have incorporated stabilized seashell and beautifully oxidized metals.
Sadie Clayton specializes in post-apocalyptic chic — avant-garde, edgy styles with a bold punch of sex appeal. She graduated from Kingston University in 2013 with a degree in fashion design, perfectly poised to take the world by storm. She's passionate about finding creative materials to include in her work, including copper and holograms. She's collaborated with both big names and passion projects alike, including bespoke content for Adobe films, and a discussion with BBC's Radio Four about escaping the fashion world.
Solid & Striped cherishes memories of the great American holiday — sunlit photos of sandy beaches, picnic spreads and loved ones. The brand offers swimwear for both men and women, and uses fine fabrics from the world over. Taylor Swift has worn Solid & Striped at her famous Fourth of July parties — does that capture the aesthetic?
Everything old is new again at Stoned Immaculate. The brand's small batches of handcrafted, '70s-inspired pieces recall California's places of the mind and spirit — the Grateful Dead playing live in the park, long hair blowing in the wind against a backdrop of huge palm fronds. Like unforgettable melodies, Stoned Immaculate's unique, entrancing works speak for moments that will live on.
You know the kind of woman for whom Australian fashion house Third Form designs. You might even be one yourself. She's busy, often juggling three or four things at a time, including a coffee cup, her purse and a mental to-do list twenty items long as she heads down the sidewalk to check off just one. Third Form designs feminine, contemporary and beautiful pieces for urbane, busy women, using unique textures to bring out personality notes, and solid construction for women who don't have time for anything less. Designer Merryn Kelly established the brand in 2014, and has been lauded for the commitment her brands' fans have for the name.
Violeta Tentomas' stories are etched onto her soul, taking her from the meatpacking district of New York City to the sunny, sandy beaches of Sydney to form West 14th. There she designs ultra-luxe, supple and just plain bad ass leatherwear with leathers sourced strictly as a byproduct of the food industry. From biker jackets that give you that urban cool vibe to chic pleated leather skirts, W14th's styles will become your favorite way to stay warm.
Winston White yearns for freedom, and finds day-to-day rebellion in meeting challenges with a well-seasoned laugh. The brand was formed in 2013, and has become known for its sophisticated colors, quality fabrics and flattering, fun silhouettes. A mother, a daughter and a best friend — Chris, Brittany and Brandi — take inspiration from their relationships to each other and from life on the water, in their design studio by a lake in Washington.