DBTV: Girlie Girl & The Brute at The Green Shows, Pt 1

September 24, 2009

The Green Shows were an extravaganza of sustainable designers showcased over two days during NYC’s Fashion Week just days ago! Check out part 1 of our series from The Green Shows, featuring yours truly, Chloe Jo Berman from Girlie Girl Army, and designers Bahar Shahpar and Lara Miller. Stay tuned for more!

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Looking Trashy, Recycled Kenyan Cowboys, & Vintage Ties

January 16, 2009

Kilakitu shirts come in 58 styles. Floral prints are big for 09, and these bold cowboy-cut tops are made from second-hand fabrics from the Kenyan marketplace. At 75$ a pop, a portion of the proceeds goes directly to a lunch feeding program for school children in Rongai (video). Also, Kilakitu plans to start a community cleanup & recycling business that will receive 10% of profits from Kilakitu – staff will work on cleaning up the environment in Rongai.

“Kila Kitu is a swahili saying meaning “everything” – our garments reuse discarded clothes from around the world and lovingly bring them back to you”.

What are the top 10 worst zoos for elephants? Find out if your city made the list HERE:

 This Bag is Garbage Messenger Bag [Brown/Black]

You will look totally trashy carrying this handsome messenger bag made from the plastic trash that litters New Dehli’s streets. The company, CONSERVE also provides a sustainable living for the poor women that make these bags, in addition to continually working to solve social, economic and environmental problems in the city of New Delhi.

$49.95 at Original Good.

https://i1.wp.com/img2.timeinc.net/people/i/2006/specials/sma06/openshirt/gorgio_armani.jpgGiorgio Armani has broken his promise not to use fur. A new video narrated by actor Gillian Anderson (X Files), shows rabbits kicking and screaming during slaughter. After the skin is ripped from the rabbits’ bodies, it is sold to designers such as Giorgio Armani—who uses rabbit fur in his new designs.

The selection of vintage neckties and bowties at ties2pillows.com is amazing. Everything from the classic skinny black tie, to high-contrast-plaid (big for ’09!) to narrow bowties can be found here. Most ties are only about $15 and you get 10% off your order just by giving them your email. Here’s a few of my selections:

A Little Bit Of Everything - 1970s Wide NecktiePenneys Towncraft Fat 1970s Fashion Necktie80s Pierre Cardin Vintage Skinny Peach NecktieSolid Pink - 1980s Vintage Skinny NecktieRooster Brand Mens Cotton Plaid Pattern TieRobert Talbott Plaid Straight Edge Bow Tie

If I had a bit of money to burn, and I wanted a gorgeous, rustic, recycled dining room set, this is probably the one I’d choose. It’s made from reclaimed railroad tie wood. $1468 for the table and 6 chairs, at VivaTerra.

Etro’s Regency Gypsy-Cowboy

July 19, 2008

In one year, I expect all of you Discerning Brutes to be pillaging the thrift stores to put this look together. Etro, known for a somewhat green approach to fashion (aside from the leather and silk in this collection) has hit a high-note with this eccentric, sexy, and gorgeous spring 2009 menswear collection.

Mixed paisley prints and stripes decorate nearly everything, scarves & ties as cumberbuns & belts – comfy and borderline-psychadelic. Offset these loose serenities with classic shoes, structured tailoring, and a fedora or wide-brim hat. This entire look can be completely achieved at a thrift store apart from non-leather shoes and maybe the hat…


For good non-leather shoes, check out these styles:

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Men's Borsalino Hemp Fedora - The Sicilian Fedora



Matt and Nat Mens Bags

Matt & Nat Mens' Bags


Every thrift store has more paisley, more ties, and more scarves than they know what to do with. Find a fitted pair of striped poly or cotton slacks, a well tailored jacket, and go nuts with the rest!

Sling & Stone in a Good Society

March 24, 2008
Sling&Stones Logo
When a group of Seattle professionals left their high-power jobs to change the world with “the most luxurious and best-fitting jeans”, they had no idea what they were getting Themselves into. Sling & Stones jeans are made from American-grown organic cotton. The pocket lining is organic, fair-trade Peruvian cotton. Their supplier programs in Peru help poor farmers, who previously were forced to grow cocaine, generate electricity for the nearby villages, and donate proceeds back into the local communities. Fair Trade ensures workers are paid enough to care for their families, put food on the table, and send their children to school. In addition, Sling & Stones provides doctors, subsidized housing, and living wages to their factory workers. If you don’t think they are doing enough, a percentage of Sling & Stones’ profits will be used to immunize villagers in Peru, fight teen suicide in Japan, and build an orphanage and youth rehabilitation center in India. Organic Jeans! Who knew?
Sling&Stone Jeans
Why Organic Jeans? Each year cotton producers around the world use nearly $2.6 billion worth of pesticides — more than 10% of the world’s pesticides and nearly 25% of the world’s insecticides. If all of our cotton clothing was organic, we could cut global insecticide usage by a quarter! This is staggering.
Cut: Daniel (Slim Fit) Denim: S&S Staple Japanese Organic Supima Denim
Sling&Stones Daniel Indigo
Cut: Daniel (Slim Fit) Denim: Natural Indigo Dyed S&S Staple Japanese Organic Supima Selvege Denim
Click HERE to find out where to purchase a pair.
Sling & Stone is also a participant in Good Society:
“Good Society is a loosely connected organic movement driving global change. The core value of this movement is the belief that in all things we must love, will, and do good. The Good Society label takes fashion beyond useless, and often-destructive pretense by presenting an affordably priced, forward thinking collection that is fully sustainable – both ecologically and socially. The label centers around its collection of fairly traded 100% organic denim with clean styling and a fit that ensures it will be the pair you wear to look good and feel great. Please visit www.goodsociety.org for more information.”
DB’s Etiquette Recommendation: If you care about ecology, animals, or other people – conventional cotton is your sworn enemy. If you are not familiar with the GLOBAL CATASTROPHE that is conventional cotton, click HERE and watch the video at the bottom.

Interview: John Patrick of Organic

March 17, 2008
John Patrick in Peru

New York-based designer John Patrick has a taste for rouge gamblers. He also approaches his clothing like an artist, a scientist, a politician, and an activist. From growing his own organic cotton, to building fair-trade, sustainable industries, to voicing skepticism of materialism, GMOs, and Free Trade policies, John Patrick is a force to be reckoned with. His vision of new school freedom and sustainability speaks to young people in a way that addresses the invalidity of tired, self-important cris de coeur. I interviewed John Patrick recently about his clothes, his involvement with the Green Revolution, and his plans for the future. Here is the interview:

DB: What is it about clothing that keeps your driven?
JP: Its one of the last “personal” spaces we solely occupy. but even then the consumer is dictated to as to what they are able to choose to wear. I am driven to keep the choices open and to create a dialogue that also includes the thought “you are what you wear”. Stop and think about it; textiles drenched in chemicals and dyes. 500 years ago you were lucky if you had a piece of cloth to wrap yourself in and a wooden or metal utensil to eat. So “you’ve come a long way baby” is still relevant, but creating relevant 21st century choices that are “smart” is what drives me.

Organic Spring 2008

DB: I’ve heard you grow some of your own organic cotton, how did this come about and why?
JP: I worked with 10 farmers in the amazon jungle who grow not only cotton but fruits and vegetables and roots. The jungle is the last “supermarket” to the world and needs to be protected so slash and burn farming doesn’t take over any more than it has. Free-trade agreements are disrupting the natural order of things drastically and the farmers know it outside of the USA. They know that cheap corn from North America will come, and so will GMO seeds and chemicals. We guaranteed a higher price for the 10 farmers for 5000 kilos of cotton, and in turn another 190 farmers were able to command the same price from bigger buyers who the year before paid very little per kilo. So, it became a win-win situation for an entire region. I am working on securing funding to make the project bigger in the future and hire an engineer to live and work in the jungle and help the farmers protect WHAT IS THEIRS. They are the stewards of the earth and without them the “green movement” is meaningless, in my opinion. I will be traveling this spring/summer to Georgia, and visiting a conventional cotton gin and trying to see if I cant start a small project with the gin to encourage them to transition to organic cotton. 1/100th of 1% of the cotton grown in the USA is certified organic. Small percentage, right? This is an area we need to change if we truly want to be able to say there is a Green Revolution.

DB: What was the inspiration behind the menswear in the Fall 2008 collection. Do any artists, writers, philosophers, etc.. inspire your work?
JP: My main inspiration was a rogue gambler who had a huge heart – who was compassionate about living life to the fullest and not being afraid to lose sometimes because in the end it was a huge win. Joseph Bueys is a great inspiration to me because he had many obstacles to overcome, yet there was a profound message in his work that is still being revealed today. I think that he was very forward in his use of organic materials in his art and traveling to New York and staying in a gallery with a dog. His “menu” is even more relevant today than ever.

John Patrick Fall 08

DB: How have other people (including press and other designers) responded to your use of organic, repurposed materials and your vision?
JP: I hope Organic inspires people to work hard on the ethical aspect of the design industry. From LEED Certified buildings to supporting CSAs (Community Supported Agriculture). I am just doing my work and what I believe in.

DB: Who are your clothes for? Do you have an agenda?
JP: My clothes are for the people who make them and the people who wear them. My agenda is to do the next right thing that gets put in front of me.

DB: You mentioned you have three offices and no computers. How do you keep it together?
JP: Good orderly direction.

DB: I noticed there was no fur in your collection. What is your opinion of the commercial fur and exotic animal-skins trade?
JP: I support the Animal Rights people.

John Patrick Spring 08

DB: It seems there is an entire generation of young people who want accountability and to redefine that “cool” is more than just the way things look. What is your definition of cool, of chic, and of luxury?
JP: In my opinion, those adjectives are from the late 20th century and have no relevancy in The Now. The Now is about sustainability, individualism and mindful thought as to how we are living. We can be who we are if we think about it. It takes thought to be a responsible consumer and citizen. The Now Generation has rejected the old school materialism in favor of a new school freedom. Just look at the streets of Williamsburg.

DB: If you could change one thing about the fashion industry, what would it be?
JP: It seems perfect in its imperfection. It allows everyone to do what they feel is right. There are a lot of amazing young designers now working and emerging who will push the change in the next 100 years.

John Patrick Fall 08

DB: What was the most recent book you’ve read?
JP: Ways of Seeing by John Berger. A quote: ” seeing comes before words. The child looks and recognizes before it can speak”.

DB: Where do you see your focus and creative development heading in two years?
JP: I want to continue my archeology and dig more and more and more and find the things that speak to me.