A fashion and lifestyle magazine and blog produced by Students in the Design and Merchandising program at Drexel University

Friday, April 11, 2014

Space Ninety 8

Urban Outfitters launches a new concept store in the trendy neighborhood of Williamsburg, Brooklyn.  Located at 98 N. 6th Street, between Berry Street and Wythe Avenue, Space Ninety 8 takes inspiration from the LA retail experience store Space 15 Twenty and brings it to the East Coast.  Space Ninety 8 occupies a four-story warehouse building in the heart of Williamsburg.  The unique space combines retail and dining experiences as well as provides a place to gather.
             Currently in the Market Space are two permanent exhibits called Local Made and Urban Renewal as well as the traveling exhibit Slat Surf. Located near the entryway of the ground level of the warehouse, is the Local Made section.  Local Made will showcase local designers and independent makers  from throughout Brooklyn. Brands such as Brookes Boswell, Dusen Dusen, Cold Picnic, Lynne & Lawrence, Jessica Barensfeld, Lila Rice, High Gloss, Dear God It’s Me Isaac, Horse Cycling and Brooklyn Herborium are just a few of the over 40 designers who’s work will be featured in this space. The Local Made section will function as a pop-in shop type of exhibition and will feature merchandise ranging from apparel to jewelry, ceramics, apothecary, zines, custom bikes and even surfboards. According to it’s website, “Local Made is a collective of the best of tomorrow’s talent in one place. Local Made aims to add new names to its roster and will live as an evolving showcase for new talent in the future.”  The initial pop-up will be a collaboration between Brooklyn-based artist Jason Woodside and Adidas and will be available from April 3 - May 7. 

            The second permanent exhibit in the Market Space, is the vintage designer section called Urban Renewal.  The Urban Renewal Concept is a line of one-of-a-kind pieces crafted from vintage, deadstock and surplus materials from around the world.” Urban Renewal will also showcase vintage collections from venders such as Spanish Moss, Just Say NativeRaggedy ThreadsBandana AlmanacScoutGypsy Hunter and Hym Salvage.  Additionally Salt Surf will be featured in the Market Space and will be available from April 3 – May 2.  Salt Surf is a Brooklyn based surfboard, apparel, and accessories company that makes all of their products domestically.  

            In addition to the usual selection of Urban's womenswear, menswear, and home and tech products, Space Ninety 8 will also be home to The Gorbals Restaurant and Bar. The Gorbals that will soon be bringing the LA restaurant concept to Williamsburg will come complete with rooftop views and outdoor dining. This new space has something for everyone! Weather you are in the mood to wine and dine, go shopping, and check out local designers be sure to check out Space Ninety 8 open now. 

Friday, April 4, 2014

The Latest Fast Fashion Brands to Join the Activewear Trend

The past year has seen an extensive expansion of the new trend of fashionable activewear. Victoria's Secret seemed to be the first mass fashion retailer to kick-off the trend in late 2012, with the international chain's introduction of their activewear collection, VSX. Originally only available in select locations, their activewear quickly found popularity and became available in nearly all locations under a new name of Victoria's Secret Sport. Two years in, the brand's success in activewear is stronger than ever and motivating other specialty retailers to follow suit.

A look from Topshop's Collaboration with Adidas
British retailer Topshop released their activewear collaboration with athletic apparel mecca, Adidas, two weeks ago. The 20 piece collection was a very well-rounded one that included both apparel and footwear in the typical silhouettes of Adidas while incorporating the stylish patterns of Topshop's trendy aesthetic. The collection appears to be a commercial success, with only a limited amount of sizes of 11 pieces left on Topshop's website.
Forever 21's Latest Activewear Collection
Forever 21's NBA Collection
Meanwhile, the more affordable fast-fashion store, Forever 21, has recently launched both a trendy summer collection of activewear, as well as a collaboration collection with the NBA consisting of both activewear and loungewear. Teams featured in this collection include popular choices LA Lakers, Miami Heat, and Chicago Bulls along with the Los Angeles Clippers, Boston Celtics, and New York Knicks. Each team featured in the collection has its own style of a bodysuit, crop top, sweatshirt, sportsbra, boyshort, and track short, all available for under $20. Their latest activewear collection boasts a bright and colorful palette of accents to accompany the mostly black and grey leggings and capris. Women who choose to purchase the collection will definitely gain envious looks at the gym while sporting the apparel which includes the current trends of geometric and aztec prints. The activewear tanks also seem to feature these patterns along with stylish design details such as open backs. While fast fashion retailers may have once never been a place you would consider to get your athletic apparel, they are now well on their way to becoming a go to destination for activewear.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Bring the Entertainment and Check Out LNS Philly!

Are you ever looking for something to do on a Thursday night? Or maybe you want to see a live show but you do not want to pay? Check out Late Night Series Philly here at Drexel—every Thursday in the Flux (the basement of the Intercultural building) from 8:30 pm to 11 pm!

Last Thursday was my first time attending the open mic night. There was a stage on the left wall of the basement with amplifiers, microphones, and speakers. A couple rows of chairs were lined up right in front of the stage and plenty of tables with chairs for more seating. To my surprise, the place was pretty much full when I arrived!

A single man, Post Midnight, who welcomes the group of attendees and performers, hosts the whole show. His humor and mockery of random current events gives the place a feeling of comfort and just plain fun! Midnight introduced every individual or group by first sharing some ridiculous occurrence that just happened in the news in the last week in order to break up the acts.

The talent up on stage impressed me. The night consisted of several different singers with their guitars, a beat boxer, a female rapper, a male rapper, and even comedians. The audience reacted so kindly and graciously toward the performers! These young adults have talent and they aren’t afraid to show it! LNS provides them with a place to display their abilities without ridicule or shame.

There is even a feature every Thursday!  The featured band was Temple Riot when I attended. The group is a trio that consists of a female singer, a bassist/keyboardist/harmonica player, and a lead guitarist. The band’s sound is a blend of blues, country, and rock—which if you like any of those genres, you would enjoy Temple Riot! The lead singer, Kelley, has a very strong and powerful voice—similar to someone like Kelly Clarkson or Miranda Lambert—that blew me away!

Their set was about 7 songs long, which was a change of pace than the previous performers who were five minutes each. Temple Riot’s lead guitarist played an acoustic guitar and the bassist played an electric bass. During some songs he played the harmonica, and others he played the keyboard. The group has an array of talent in each member and the variety of songs they played included a self-written song by the lead guitarist, Will, called “Will’s Song,” covers from Creedence Clearwater Revival—“I Heard It Through the Grapevine,” and even “No Rain” by Blind Melon.

It was a great show and really made me regret never having gone before! The Drexel community has incredibly talented individuals that have a perfect outlet to display their abilities: LNS. Check it out! You might end up enjoying it more than you would think!


Target recently ran Photoshopped images of overtly skinny models wearing their bathing suits on their website. From a distance, it just looks like your typical size 2, skinny model. If you take a closer look, you can actually see the Photoshop errors of the image. The images received a massive amount of criticism from the media nationwide and the photos went viral on the Internet.

Target was quickly apologetic on the matter “This was an unfortunate error on our part and we apologize” They thus removed the images from their website following their statement. When asked how the mistake occurred, a company spokesman said, “It was the result of a photo editing error on our part.” Well, DUH!

Target went too far when it came to editing the gap that exists between our thighs. The error on the image is so extreme that it looks like part of the model’s pelvis is missing. The error also occurred on the same model in the space between her arm and body, wearing a midkini.

So why is this scandal such a big deal? Doesn’t everyone know that marketing images are edited before being advertised? The only thing worse than photoshopping adult models is photoshopping juniors, who specifically market to young girls and promote a certain body image. This scandal should make consumers more aware that not everything they see is real, and that you are beautiful no matter your size. 
Watch the following video and you can see the power of Photoshop.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Tips From Experienced Freelancers

Ever thought about freelancing as a career? It sure does seem appealing- control over your schedule, choosing whom you want to work with, and no need to report to an unappreciative manager. The independent lifestyle seems great, but kick-starting your self employed career is not as easy as it seems.

The recent “Senior Series- Freelance Panel” presented by the Steinbright Career Development Center at Drexel University was packed with diverse and knowledgeable freelancers. From the film and video industry, to fashion, event planning, and graphic design, the panelists were all eager to share their various experiences and insight. Here were just a few of the tips shared by the experts.

Find your Niche
All of the industries mentioned above have an abundance of skilled workers. To ensure a growing business as well as upcoming projects, set yourself apart by determining your competitive advantage; and then market that to potential clients.

Prepare an Elevator Pitch
You never know when you may meet a potential client- on the subway, at happy hour, or waiting in line at Starbucks. Therefore, it is essential to have your elevator pitch ready at a moments notice. Nail your pitch by expressing it with confidence and conviction.

Create a Pricing Structure
Do this ahead of time! Go into a meeting or phone call with potential clients with a set pricing structure. One panelist suggested determining your costs per month and looking into what others charge for the same services as a starting point. From there, create a pricing structure for friends and family, non-profit companies, and for profit companies; you will be prepared for all budgets and expectations.

Brand Yourself
One panelist pointed out the powerful combination of a business card, website, and Twitter handle. Use these platforms to create a cohesive image and reputation for yourself. Clients will be impressed by your professional and engaging presence.

Consider a Part-Time Job
Particularly for novice freelancers, your network will be small and you may not always have another project lined up, meaning your income will greatly fluctuate. Consider getting a part time job to buffer monthly expenses when there is a shortage of work.

Networking is essential no matter your industry or work environment, but for freelancers, it is the main source of projects and income. One panelist suggested going alone to events. This will prevent you from taking comfort in a companion and shying away from conversation with strangers.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Joe Fresh and the Fast Fashion Fix

With a slew of retail stores currently catering to a market idealizing the latest trends, ‘fast fashion’ has become a term most Americans are familiar with. It’s the notion that trendy clothes do not have to be designer to make the cut and can be purchased by your Average Joe (or Jane) without breaking the bank. It gives the consumers the flexibility to try out different styles and personas while allowing them to make rent as well. This fast fashion notion works well for businesses like Zara, H&M and Forever21, all of whom cater to a wide demographic and feature the latest trends right off the runway. Styles in these stores don’t last long, and passing up on a purchase means that within a few weeks that clothing is gone for good. The production is fast and the turnover is fast.

Canadian company Joe Fresh is the latest clothing store to enter into the fast fashion world, with currently about 700 locations around the US. They plan to expand more around the country and have a bold plan for building a plethora of stores overseas as well.  The company has big plans to open stores in 24 countries altogether in the Middle East, Europe, North Africa and South Korea. Founder and Creative Director Joe Mirman says they want to be meaningful in foreign markets, starting with Asia, and will be opening its first Asian store in Seoul this upcoming spring before opening stores in the Middle East.

These major plans are surprising to those in the fashion industry and business alike, with Joe Fresh only selling e commerce in Canada and having only six stores in the US that are not located in malls or shopping centers.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Your New Favorite TV Show, Kitten.

If you haven't watched an episode of RuPaul's Drag Race, stop what you're doing RIGHT NOW and view an episode.  Seriously. You are missing out on one of the greatest reality television shows on at the moment.

Monday, February 24 is the beginning of a brand new season of the cult-favorite show.  Season 6 is going to be bigger and better than any that have come before it.  14 new queens, more fabulous guest judges, and ever crazier challenges.  Not to mention, as a D&M major, the show is a major dose of DIY fashion and couture realness that will inspire you to perk up your own wardrobe.

Here's your crash course in Drag Race Herstory, hunty:

The premise of the show is to win and become "America's Next Drag Superstar" - a title that RuPaul Charles claims (and will keep forever).  14 drag queens compete in mini and main challenges to win immunity, fabulous clothing/jewelry prizes, and basically eternal glory.  Along with the title, the winning queen comes away with $100,000 and a lifetime supply of cosmetics from a specific brand. Constant judges include Michelle Visage, former girl-group member, and Santino Rice, a runner-up in Project Runway.  Rumored guest judges this season include Khloe Kardashian and Adam Lambert, as well as many more (sometimes up to 3 per episode).  You also can't forget The Pit Crew - hunky men (usually only clad in underwear) that come in to hand out props and offer the queens cocktails.  On the whole, it's about 45 minutes of sheer diva glamour.  After the episode, a short feature called Untucked is shown, which shows the queens backstage throwing shade (making fun/dissing) and telling the T (the truth, darling) about whatever is on their mind.  Many times, episodes end in tears or fights - many queens have emotional back stories or big egos/personalities.  However, by the end of a season, there are 14 sisters instead of strangers.

So the final word: tune to LOGO on your television on Mondays at 9pm for 1.5 hours of self-love and a high dose of diva. Then, come find me and kiki (gossip) about the drama on the latest episode.