Local Designers Archives - Chitown Fashionista

Tag archive for "Local Designers"

25 April 2014 / By Nikia Jefferson

Chicago Designer Showcase at Sine Qua Non


14 local vendors, wine, small bites and salon services!

Clothing, Fashion, Local Gems

06 March 2014 / By Gabriel Charles Tyler

Katrin Schnabl Fall/Winter 2014-2015: Sophisticated Designs with Pajama Comfort


Katrin Schnabl [pronounced Kaht-treen SHNAH-buhl], the eponymous women’s designer brand by Katrin Schnabl, combines comfort and movement in the creation of sophisticated pieces that accentuate the nuances of women’s bodies in motion. For her Fall/Winter 2014-2015 collection, the German born educator and dancer-turned-fashion-designer uses luxurious fabrications, artisanal handicraft and ornate yet subtle detailing in the construction of a line that boasts couture with ease.

Katrin Schnabl F/W 2014

A view of Katrin Schnabl’s entire F/W 2014-2015 collection, featuring the Jane Gown in red silk charmeuse (on the far right).

The designer’s F/W 2013 collection featured vibrant colors, architectural draping and feminine silhouettes. Like last year’s collection, each piece in the brand’s latest effort seems to dance around the body. 

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Clothing, Fashion, Handbags, Local Finds, Local Gems, Shopping

05 March 2014 / By Antaash Umar

From Couture to Casual: The Many Faces of Swaby


Shernett Swaby

The newly redesigned Swaby Showroom in Humboldt Park makes quite the statement. The original look of the showroom was always beautiful, just understated. Now, the all-white interior, cascading chandeliers and seating area ooze modern luxe and opulence without being unwelcoming. Upon entering, clients are greeted by gorgeously clad mannequins displaying the design genius of the stores proprietor: Shernett Swaby, the woman behind the designs and production of every single piece purchased. The space truly features a complimentary aesthetic for the bold designs characteristic of Shernett Swaby’s couture collection titled SWABY

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Handbags, Local Gems

23 May 2012 / By Nikia Jefferson

MOTO: Unique Handbags by a Local Emerging Designer

As you know, there is nothing that excites me more than discovering a talented emerging designer. So, when Chicago-based designer Sheila Nkatha Oshuntuyi contacted me about her newly launched handbag line, MOTO, I was intrigued.

She offered to send over a handbag of my choice in exchange for an honest review.  The Enveudière clutch bag immediately caught my eye, with its rich butterscotch leather and lesso fabric trim.

The perfectly sized 11″ x 7″ envelope clutch is great for those days where you want to keep it light while still making a statement.

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Accessories, Jewelry, Local Gems

30 April 2012 / By Nikia Jefferson

Get "DRAPED" in The Valiant Life

DRAPES is a local jewelry line I discovered two years ago at Wicker Park’s Black Market Caviar. I was at the boutique for a t-shirt launch but was simultaneously sidetracked by the beautifully crafted fringe jewelry in front of the store.  Once I was informed of the designer’s name, DRAPES by Ashley Scott, I made a vow to own at least one piece of jewelry by the end of the year.  Fast forward to today, and I own two pairs of earrings and a brooch!
I have kept track of every DRAPES collection since that day in 2010. So, when I was recently invited to the trunk show for the latest installment, The Valiant Life, I knew I couldn’t miss it.

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Jewelry, Local Finds

21 March 2012 / By Nikia Jefferson

JAKIMAC: Leather Rings and Zig Zag Bling

I first discovered the coolness of JAKIMAC at the One of A Kind Show.  The leather two-finger rings caught my attention and had my twitter followers going crazy after I tweeted out the picture above. Then, when I found out that they were a Chicago-based jewelry line, it made my encounter with the brand even sweeter.

JAKIMAC utilizes leather to create a unisex collection of that is equally attractive to guys and gals. The rings are constructed with one strip of repurposed leather, studded with brass pyramid rivets and stamped with the JAKIMAC logo. Although there are several colors available, they are all neutral enough to be added to your personal collection with ease.

Red was my favorite until I recently spotted the fresh white one on their website.


The rings are definite standouts but the creative mix of zig zag leather and brass chains on the Spiked Punch earrings have me adding those to my wishlist as well.


Visit JAKIMAC.com to view the entire collection. If you prefer to check out JAKIMAC in person, check out their list of stockists, which includes four locations in the Chicagoland area. And with those affordable price points (most items are $30 and under), there’s no excuse to not walk away with at least two items. You know…one for you and one for me.

What do you think about JAKIMAC? Any personal favorites?

Clothing, Local Finds

08 December 2011 / By Nikia Jefferson

True Blessyn: Trunk Show Details, Insider Scoop & Behind-The-Scenes Photos

Everyone knows that I love to support emerging designers, especially when they produce quality goods.  Shani Brown, of True Blessyn, is one such designer. After years in the making, True Blessyn is ready to officially launch and will be celebrating with its first trunk show this Saturday!

Before you attend, here are some interesting facts and a bit of insider scoop…

A few months ago, Shani let me bear witness to her Spring 2012 lookbook photo shoot. It was then that I was able to check out the clothing up close, snap behind-the-scenes photos and chat with her about the collection.

Shani has dedicated the collection, entitled Dream Chaser, to women “doing what they have to do to make their dreams a reality”. Being from Jamaica has influenced Shani’s love for color. And it is certainly a prevalent characteristic throughout her collection.

Each look was photographed by Rachel Hanel and modeled by the insanely adorable Ford model, Lauren Johnson. Add to that the styling genius of local stylist, Tamika Martell, and you have the perfect formula for a spectacular lookbook.

Instead of waiting until the Spring, Shani has decided to make the sweatshirts available for immediate purchase. And what a great idea, especially for those of us looking for soft, warm layers to combat the harsh winter months. What impresses me the most about the True Blessyn sweatshirts is that each one has unexpected details like fold over collars, zippers, dipped hems and off the shoulder necklines. In addition to great design, Shani uses the best fabrics. Although you probably shouldn’t sleep in them, they are cozy enough to have you contemplating the idea.

*The hand painted shirts are Shani’s own sketches brought to life by a local artist.

I won’t reveal all of the details about the rest of the collection just yet.  Just know that it includes beautifully hand painted t-shirts, color-blocked dresses and a chambray suit that will have you emptying your wallet upon sight.

Here are some teaser photos to whet your fashion palate.

So, join me this Saturday for the True Blessyn Trunk Show! There, you’ll have the opportunity to buy one of these amazing sweatshirts as well as preview and pre-order the Spring 2012 collection. Check out the flier above for all of the details. And I hope to see you there!

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