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November 7, 2007

Effie's Heart- Modern Clothes with a Vintage Touch

When I found the Effie’s Heart website one random day I was immediately in awe. It was as if a breath of fresh air had just been pumped into the room and I audibly gasped. The clothes are so breathtakingly beautiful. I fall in love each time I view them.

Then, the wonderful people at Effie’s Heart sent me some to die for samples and I was beside myself with glee. The supple and soft cream colored shirt with the two flappers on the front is somehow vintage but radical. That is exactly what Kimo, the designer, wants you to think of when you see the line. Practical and modern are the other words used on to describe this designer and her wares. The artists, Allison Connor and Paul Gallo, who design the images, have backgrounds in theatrical costume design; rely heavily on pencil sketches and use nature and the world around them to inspire their pieces. What comes out is sheer beauty and uniqueness in what is lately a bland landscape of cookie cutter clothing. Even the tags on the inside of the clothing have a design as well as the back of some of the pieces. That is the sign of true quality.

I looked over two very different pieces, the long Deco Cream shirt and the Peekaboo Cloche hat. It was instant love. The shirt is soft to the touch even before washing. There is a stretch to the cotton that makes it super comfy yet stylish and not at all sloppy. Each time I wear this shirt it gets attention. Even my husband who normally does not notice such things complimented me on it and asked where I got it. The delicate hummingbird design on the back of the shirt is exquisite. I just love all those small touches that go beyond the seamless stitches and zero loose threads. The sizes run true and the shirt hugs in just the right places without any lumpy fabric issues which makes it a great item to throw on with leggings or jeans. It’s a perfect fit every time!

The Peekaboo Cloche hat ($28) in the Black Typewriter design comes in S, M, and L. There are three designs and colors for the Peekaboo cloche. Made of soft, but sturdy denim (read 100% cotton) this hat screams “I am definitely not your average off the rack cover.” I love the retro typewriter design and large button closure. The Twenties look is big this year and it is never more lovely and accessible than with this hat. It also fits just like a cloche hat should. I have a small head so this is a hard feat to master, but it comes down snugly and fits well. I can actually wear it which makes me very happy and I plan to all over town.

What I find with Effie’s Heart is that the two artists who design the graphics as well as Kimo, the designer, really do take a look back. The pieces are inspired. There are tiny details from old architecture and clothing past that mix with ideas that are incredibly current today to form together into an inspired and fresh line. Just take a look at the fall 2007 catalog and you will instantly fall in love with not just the clothes but the models as well. They actually smile. They look like normal women you would be friends with instead of some hangers with tight faces. It is another reason I keep going back and can’t wait for the spring line from Effie’s Heart.

Do yourself a favor and update your wardrobe with one or five pieces from Effie’s Heart. You can thank me later. Just take a peek at the Working Girl tote in black a personal favorite of mine. The design is simple yet breathtakingly gorgeous it is only $34! Yet you can fit your laptop and some file folders inside! There are even compartments outside the bag for keys and your phone. For me that is such a plus. I loathe digging in my bag for keys so this may just be my next purchase from Effie’s Heart.