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Friday, March 27, 2009

Lori's Interviews Ty McBride of Jeffrey Campbell

Continuing our love affair née shoe-crush with Jeffrey Campbell, Lori's recently bandied words with Ty McBride, the brand and style guru of the company. We've always loved Ty's irrepressible personality (we often visualize him bouncing off the walls as he types to us). So we followed suit: several strong coffees later we hammered out some insouciant questions and sent them over to get a glimpse of what's doing in the land of Campbell.

Describe a typical day in JC Land.

Ty: That’s the best part about my job – no two days are alike!! I spent the majority of today in client meetings all over NYC. I spent the balance working on a TEEN VOGUE request for a fashion shoot and answering emails from Jeffrey Campbell clients. Oh, and I leave for China at Midnight. Still gotta pack!

Where does the inspiration come from? Give us a tour of the process.

Ty: Well, I work with and for Jeffrey. I concentrate on branding and styling, taking cues from what girls are wearing, blogging, dreaming and wanting! I do a lot of people watching and thrifting. I also have a young intern. She keeps me in the loop on what's cool!! This is helpful now that I am, well, getting older. (31!!) We take cues from every place possible. We shop Europe. We look to our favorite celebs and the stores we love as well.

How do you think the economic climate is influencing how people dress? What kind of trends are you seeing?

This is a great question and I think one that has several answers. People are being careful, cautious and spending wisely, but let's face it: the ladies want their shoes! We are finding that FUN ITEMS for us are really checking. Updated classics that pop and are FRESH. Items that when she sees them at Lori’s she thinks, “Hmmm, I don't own this already ... " I feel that, at JC, we are at a perfect pricepoint, if there were one, for a time like this. We keep it real. We keep it affordable. We still try to pass on comfort, trend and the Jeffrey Campbell edge that our clients have come to trust.

And how will that affect how you design for the next few seasons?

Ty: When the economy took a turn, we just looked at it and thought that this was our time to prove who we are and to do our shoes the most fun and fashion-forward way possible. The response has been good; we like the fashionista in everyone! We are just trying to put out items that shoppers see as fashion, fun and affordable while remaining unique and true to our brand vision.

What is your current favorite style? … And dress it for us.

Ty: Our favorite shoe style ... hmmm. We love AMERICANA meets MASCULINE items, shoes included. We love looks that involve Pendleton Wool shirts, structured looks and classic American throwbacks remixed for the 2000s. We like how women are bending proportions with oversized and superfitted items and then truly using shoes as accessories.

Describe Jeffrey Campbell, the collection, using only gerunds.

Ty: If I had to choose a few: Winning. Working. Doing. Getting. Giving. Entertaining. Moving. Making.

Ty is holding the Hatcher, named after Teri Hatcher and available online.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

In the Buff

I recently talked with Jeffrey Campbell after shopping the Milan shows. It's fascinating how much everything there looked unmoving. No activity in the stores, no leaps ahead in terms of design and risk. Seems the global upheaval has put a weight around the neck of retail. It reminded me of how we Americans always assume the Europeans (especially the Italians) are our sartorial masters. To be in Milan and Venice is to be reminded how much they are influenced by us as well.

I was surprised at the lack of shoes. All was boots, boots, boots, as Jeffrey would later confirm in Madrid. In the store we've seen a growing demand for closed-up footwear -- pumps, ballet flats and clogs -- but not quite sandals. (If it ever warms up in Chicago, we'll definitely see this change.) The color of the moment is definitely nude. It is everywhere. I was too early this fall with neutral colors. Never pays to be too early.

The interest for next fall is cowboy. Short, roughed-out, distressed, hand-washed but not too extreme. The colors are tortora, fango ... any natural color. Navy seems to be trying to be the new black. We shall see.

Platform interest is still evident. I did see a lot of crepe in Milan (which does not sell here). I saw blockier heels, man-tailored oxfords and buckle shoes. Over-the-knee, riding boots and lace-ups remain important for next fall.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Kit and Kaboodle

Special thanks to Kristi and the folks over at Kaboodle.com for comparing our Melie Bianco grey sling clutch to ... Chloé! While the aesthetics of the argument are up to the individual, we'll readily concede we win on the affordability front. (And extra thanks to the reviewers who also tossed in a comparison to Jerome Dreyfuss.)

Shop Melie Bianco at Lori's

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Even More JC Love

We thought our love affair with Jeffrey Campbell couldn't get any more passionate ... then brand specialist Ty McBride interviewed the brains of our operation, visual merchandiser Corree Hamilton, about her favorite trends and Jeffrey Campbell sightings. Take a read on their website and please don't mind the typos! ;-)

Jeffrey Campbell Interviews Lori's Shoes's Corree Hamilton

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Happy Happy Winners ...

We're pleased to announce the winners of the Ann Demeulemeester Picklock Charm Necklace Giveaway!

Becky G. from Chicago, IL
Janet W. from Corning, IA
Estelle S. from Chicago, IL

Congratulations! For the rest of our contestants, you still have a chance to win. And please remember to keep an eye on your spam folders: if we do not hear from winners we notify within one week, we pick a new set of winners.

You may also want to follow us on Twitter for advance notice of giveaways.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

We Heart JC Even More ...

There are many reasons to love Jeffrey Campbell (33 reasons and counting in our catalog), but we've just discovered one more: they love us back! Nothing says "I love you" like a blog post from one of our favorite vendors that's all about us! We excerpt:

"Winter is still alive and well in CHICAGO–but that isn’t stopping LORI from www.lorisshoes.com from busting out the newest and hottest styles of sandals from team JEFFREY CAMPBELL. Check out the TIER, available in a TON of colors—which is available for your viewing pleasure at LORIS. The mod inspired upper is 100% leather and outlined in contrast leather piping–I cannot even begin to tell you how cute this style is on the foot!! I mean…seriously people."

Seriously, indeed. The TIER is a hot skimpy mod number that puts the pizzazz back in an outfit after months-that-seem-like-years of dreary weather. We are especially fond of the fuschia and blue colorways for the bright pop they put on the pavement.

Read the full post at Jeffrey Campbell.



Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Spring Trends: Gladiator Redux



Last year's gladiator explosion was strong enough that the reverberations are still felt this spring. Logically, we're calling this trend Gladiator Redux. Really, it's hard to fault the return of a style that was current when Tarquinius was chased from Rome.

What's the rumpus? Gladiators, like a hammer, the Appian Way and the Aeneid, is a form perfectly suited to its purpose. In that sense these sandals are never so much out of style as simply out of the spotlight, the way nailguns, superhighways and James Patterson novels may have the attention of their genre but not the genesis.

The gladiator follows the lines of the foot. Starting at the toe they sweep up the arch, cup the heel and wrap the ankle and shin. While this may have been perfect for securing a legionnaire's greaves or keeping the heat and dust of the forum under control, for us it means a form that is tantalizingly form and space, skin and covering. Gladiators draw attention to your feet, ankles and legs by revealing and concealing them, all the while providing ventilation and a secure fit.

For spring 2009, we are seeing some exciting tinkering. The basic form of the gladiator remains, but it has been abstracted into something seemingly more contemporary. Look for sturdy heelcups and wispy strapping from Sam Edelman or greaved uppers from Steven and lots of embellishments on top of the form, as with Dolce Vita.

The reason galdiators never really go away is because they are perfectly suited to life in the warm weather. Grab a pair. They are bound to stay in style as long as the sun is shining and footwear is the status quo.

For larger sizes, visit Barefoot Tess Barefoot Tess for larger sizes.