All Charlotte Olympia
Some people say they would rather spend money on experiences than the accumulation of objects. To those people, I say that the act of shopping is a beautiful experience.
Model: Sasha Pivovarova
Jimmy Choo pumps. Stuart Weitzman heels. Chanel heels, handbags and clutches. Charlotte Olympia heels. Sergio Rossi shoes. Christian Louboutin heels. Dolce & Gabanna shoes and handbags. Salvatore Ferragamo heels. Versace shoes. Rochas pumps. Valentino platforms. Brian Atwood heels. Haider Ackermann shoes. ShopBop handbag. Judith Lebier handbags and coin purse. Kotur purse. Arunashi ring. Monique Pean ring. Bulgari bracelet. Pandora brooches. Buccellati brooch.
“I’m pretty from afar, like a dark star.” — Lana Del Rey
Junya Watanabe Comme des Garcons top. Donna Karan skirt. Boohoo faux fur coat. Charlotte Olympia heels and clutch. Tatty Devine necklace. Chanel watch. Solange Azagury-Partridge ring. Flower ring from 1stdibs. Forever 21 ring. Les Petits Joueurs clutch.
DSquared2 top. Haider Ackermann skirt. Sophia Webster heels. Moschino purse. JW Anderson jacket. Sofie d’Hoore pants. Emporio Armani shoes. Yazbukey clutch.
“Looking back, my past, it all seems stranger than a stranger.” — Lana Del Rey
Erika Cavallini flower brooches. Rauwolf clutches.
“And I discovered that my castles stand upon pillars of salt and pillars of sand.” — Coldplay
Lanvin gown. Judith Leiber unicorn and castle minaudieres.
Laura Ciccarello has spent all of her life immersed in art and fashion. Growing up in Virginia with her brother and parents, her creativity was strongly encouraged. As a child she drew and painted constantly, and her family would often sit and draw together. Her obsession with gemstones was also fueled by her upbringing. Some of her favorite earliest memories are of digging through her mother’s jewelry box and wearing the jewelry – and not just for dress-up. “My mother said I could wear whatever I wanted,” she recalls, “and she had a collection of fine jewelry. So when I was in kindergarten, I wore chunky sparkly necklaces to school. I probably looked like a nut job, but I was happy.” She grew up to sell her oil paintings as a young teenager, win an international design competition by The Sak Company, complete pre-college at Pratt and college at FIT, design for multiple brands including Fernando Sanchez, provide fashion consulting services to major retailers, and found the company Red Lipstick Inc., under which she launched her eponymous brand Laura Ciccarello. Her creative origins continue to inspire the “glamorous yet organic” aesthetic of Laura Ciccarello Collection.
Laura Ciccarello Collection started with scarves, then extended to handbags. The product category Laura is most excited about right now is jewelry, which launched at the Accessories Circuit trade show just this fall. Every piece in her Metal Lace and Gemstone Jewelry collections is made of silver or gold, with the latter bearing evidence of her childhood gem fascination. She sees her jewelry as a bridge between costume and fine jewelry, two of her favorite things. Each piece is handmade in Manhattan’s Diamond District. Manufacturing close to home is challenging because the production landscape is dominated by ready-to-wear and it can be hard to find people who identify more with stones than cloth. “It would be cheaper to make the jewelry somewhere else,” Laura says, “but I like to do things the better way. New York is higher quality. Overseas uses ‘flash’ plating that wears off in two months and we use ‘heavy plating.’”.
Laura’s design process is serendipitous but clearly effective. “The process of creating a collection starts with me going out all the time and getting a lot of random ideas from what I see. The idea starts out with a sketch, and then I do more sketches, maybe change a few things, before doing the painting. Then I infuse photos I take with Photoshop and start to digitally print the fabric.” This process caters to our ever more technology-focused world with fabulous and luxurious results. With names like Queen of Everything and Diamonds Are More Than My Best Friends, the five scarf collections are full of motif surprises. These include Marilyn Monroe, Karl Lagerfeld, and even handcuffs, which have a subliminal feel when infused over her colorful abstract paintings.
“My perfect situation would be designing all day and making thousands of SKUs,” Laura says, “but that’s not the reality.” As a business owner, Laura spends much of her time on manufacturing and logistics in addition to design. When designing a collection, she chooses the best thirty or forty ideas to produce. The scarves and bags are manufactured in India and China, but Laura is seeing an industry shift to South American manufacturing, thanks to the Trans-Pacific Partnership and a growing workforce that is becoming more educated in patternmaking and manufacturing. Fashion has a reputation as one of the world’s fastest-moving industries, where everyone discusses Fall when it’s spring outside and work on a collection must begin a full year in advance. This is not an issue for Laura. “I am hyper-decisive,” she says, “so I take less time than average to complete a collection. I always like to be ahead of the curve, so I exceed my deadlines.”
In a volatile industry where a large number of brands are selling similar products to similar markets, Laura Ciccarello Collection stands out. “Individuality is the biggest trend that no one’s talking about. The woman wearing my clothes values individuality above all else. She wants something bold, something beautiful, not just trendy,” Laura says. “It’s about standing out, doing something different, and having a quality product. This matters more than artificial marketing and grey-area-press. Press and marketing are making major changes right now. The reality few are talking about is you don’t sell from publications anymore, you sell to people.”
Laura herself wearing the Kryptonite scarf
Laura Ciccarello Collection has received attention from many high-profile sources, like Neiman Marcus and Miss Universe. Laura tells me that her PR success comes from networking. “I like to go out, go to events, go to parties, and I meet so many people,” she says. “You need to be out and present. I have seen people pass up big opportunities because they stayed at home all the time. Home is a very comfortable place, but as a designer you’ve got to put yourself out there.” But she is quick to note that networking comes with a caveat. “My favorite show is VH1’s Behind the Music,” she tells me. “I don’t go crazy like the celebrities in Behind the Music. I have fun but I keep my priorities straight. I always want to be 100 percent on point. If I were swinging from a chandelier, I would be sending a business email from my phone with the other hand.” That might be the best advice I’ve ever heard.
Laura Ciccarello Collection has a website and a presence on Facebook and Instagram, but Laura’s ambitions for the brand center around wholesale. As someone with extensive experience designing for department stores like Saks Fifth Avenue, Bloomingdale’s, and The Home Shopping Network, pitching her own brand to high-end retail is a natural progression. She is excited about expanding into a new product category and “going outside my design comfort zone.” Can’t wait to see the results!
Maybe it’s because the place is called a “dorm” and not an “apartment”. Maybe it’s because “dorm” is short for “dormitory”, a word that makes me think of Hogwarts and other boarding schools for people between the ages of 11 and 18. Maybe it’s because the dwelling is used in conjunction with a specific institution (a university), as opposed to being a dwelling amongst the dwellings of people whose activities and occupations have nothing to do with yours. But for whatever reason, outsiders to the college experience, or even those people who graduated more than a decade ago, tend not to think of a college dorm as a home.
Yet besides being where the heart is, a home is a place where you live on a longterm basis. It is the place where you wake up in the morning, keep your possessions, entertain guests, watch TV and update your social media, spend quality time with a loved one, and curl up under the covers after a long day. For me, the place where I do all of these things is an NYU dorm in the East Village. At New York University (NYU) I live 3,000 miles away from all of my family members in California. And because Manhattan is the second most expensive region for housing in the United States, my plan was always to live in a dorm for four years. Now I am on Year Three, and my plan has been going well. Along the way, I learned the three most important ways to make your dorm feel homey:
1) Move as many of your possessions as possible to your dorm
2) Invest in interior design hardware that is compatible with dorm regulations
3) Use empty space in unconventional ways
I moved 90 percent of my California clothing items to New York and have purchased many wonderful things during my college years, and I keep all of it in one dorm room. I got the stuff out here by packing multiple 70-pound suitcases and shipping large boxes, but fitting everything in has been the greatest challenge by far. What changed everything was investing in command hooks and a portable clothing rack.
Besides being easier to use than a heavy hammer that could crush your fingers if you drop it, command hooks are great for college dorms in particular because they can be mounted and removed without leaving a mark on the wall (no paying for damages when you move out!). I have 50 command hooks in my dorm, and they can be used for every clothing item imaginable.
Lineup inspired by Christian Grey’s playroom
Command hooks work for all types of buckles:
Snaps (Forever 21) Hole punch (vintage)
Scarves of all lengths and shapes can fit on a command hook:
Infinity (Apt.9) Short (Ben Berger) Small square (Vintage)
Large square (Grand Bazaar in Istanbul) Silk (vintage Georgiou) Pussy bow (Payless)
Long and thick knit (Gap)
One standard size command hook can hold at least 13 necklaces
PORTABLE CLOTHING RACK
My dorm came with one closet, which is enough space for my jackets and coats. What about everything else? I found a two-rod,wheeled clothing rack for $27 at Kmart, and it is large enough to hold my dresses, jumpsuits, tops, skirts, jeans, leggings, and pants; in other words, everything that won’t fit in the standard closet!
MAKE USE OF EMPTY SPACE — THE TOP OF THE DRESSER
While I am not allowed to remove this dresser, I can use it to display my jewelry.
Bow from American Apparel; Blue watch made by my mother, gold watch, vintage; Dried rose given to me by a boyfriend in 2012; Box of rings hand-decorated by my sister; Purse by Magid (from my grandmother in Istanbul)
Earrings, street vendor in Berkeley, CA; Brooches: vintage, vintage, vintage, vintage, gift from my grandmother in Istanbul, vintage
All of my rings are kept in my ring box; a small purse can store bracelets when it is not being worn
The top of a dresser can also store shoes.
We line up our shoes on closet shelves, so why not desk shelves?
Nine West, vintage Linea Paolo, Rue21 etc!, Sbicca, Xhilaration
YOUR WORK SPACE
As you can see from the books, computer, and printer, this desk/shelving unit is primarily a space for me to do my work. Yet there are actually many ways to make your work space aesthetically pleasing, and even ways to store accessories!
My “fun books” (non school-related)
A vase of fake flowers is a romantic and permanent way to decorate a home. I found my four roses at PANY in Chelsea, a shop stocked entirely with fake flowers in hundreds of varieties. I found two matching vases for the flowers at Pier One. A vase without water also comes in handy for headband storage and display. Speaking of niche boutiques, Anna Belen in the Upper East Side is a cute shop that specializes in affordable headbands and other hair accessories.
The top of a long heater can be used as a shelf for shoes, provided that the vents are not on the top (mine are on the front side).
If your heater takes up this much space, you might as well make use of it!
I have lived in New York for three years, and I still do not have all of the subway routes memorized! A large subway map on the wall acts as a display piece and helps me plan my routes in advance (so I never have to ask for directions).
I can’t speak for every college, but NYU does not allow pets in a dorm, unless they are fish. So I bought a Grumpy Cat with an NYU scarf to keep me company!
Grumpy Cat hates this picture.
Once you are finished with all of your housecleaning, you can sit and relax!
I moved into this particular room at the beginning of the last Fall semester, and am staying here for the Summer term. By the time the Summer term is over, I will have lived in this dorm room for a full calendar year. Seems like as good a reason as any to make a request that I stay in this room as a senior!
No matter what school you go to, how many roommates you have, or how long you plan to stay in a dorm, there is always a way to make your space reflect your taste, and to make your dorm feel like home.
The lips are one of the most beautiful and expressive parts of the body…so it only makes sense that they would be picked up as a common motif in women’s clothing. Whether you crave the delicacy of a pale pink lipstick, the pop of an Andy Warhol piece, or the edginess of an Ed Hardy tattoo, in today’s trend landscape it is easy to find an item you will want to kiss as soon as you bring it home (just take your own lipstick off first).
1. Alice McCall dress, $440
2. Liz Black dress, $2,480
3. Romwe blouse, $14
4. Giles shirt, $420
5. Hallhuber t-shirt, $14
6. Philipp Plein t-shirt, $545
7. Choies sweatshirt, $27
8. American Retro sweatshirt, $291
9. MSGM jacket, $478
10. MSGM coat, $3,162
11. Choies skirt, $24
12. MSGM skirt, $310
13. Soho Girl jeans, $30
14. MSGM trousers, $192
15. Au Jour Le Jour shorts, $154
16. Adriana Degreas swimsuit, $329
17. New Look thong, $6
18. Mimi Holliday thong, $61
19. Mancienne sandals, $31
20. Rupert Sanderson sandals, $835
21. QQ Trend flats, $21
22. Philipp Plein sneakers, $814
23. Stephen Webster necklace, $4,100
24. Delfina Delettrez mono earring, $6,311
25. Solange Azagury-Partridge ring, $2,300
26. Lydia Courteille ring, $17,719
27. Alison Lou bracelet, $1,495
28. Overstock sunglasses, $10
29. American Retro scarf, $160
30. Anna Coroneo scarf, $325
31. Studio DKS by Deborah Shavlik carryall, $46
32. Diane von Furstenberg pouch, $158
33. Melie Bianco clutch, $35
34. Sarah’s Bag clutch, $1,645
35. Miss Sweety handbag, $21
36. Philipp Plein handbag, $2,985
37. M.R. backpack, $29
38. Manish Arora backpack, $747
39. Unique Vintage umbrella, $13
40. Diane von Furstenberg iPhone case, $48