On The Line- Maneater Threads

- your name, name of your store, year opened

Tanya Zilinskas, Maneater Threads, website launched in November of 2005.

-tell us a bit about your shop and what was your inspiration to open

It was a pretty short trip from thinking I could launch a store to actually launching it. I think really the biggest inspiration for opening the store were the clothes themselves – all along I was compiling this mental list of designers whose pieces I found to be amazing who weren’t necessarily carried at a lot of stores. I remember very distinctly one day, while I was still working at a nonprofit in L.A., when the idea of a store with the name Maneater Threads and a shark logo came into my head, and it dawned on me that there was no reason that I couldn’t or shouldn’t open my own web store. People always ask, “so when is the brick and mortar coming?” but that really has no appeal to me. I love the idea of the wide reach of the internet combined with designers that are perhaps not so well known, or simply unavailable in someone’s geographical area.

-what item is currently on your covet list? What item could you not resist buying for yourself?

I’ve been putting together the store’s spring lookbook, so I have been drooling over all the stuff that’s coming in over the next few months: an asymmetrical Ziji dress, a Stella & Jamie jumpsuit that I’m intending to starve myself into, these adorable Vanitas’ shorts, pretty much all of Webster and Les Prairies de Paris’ items. A couple of the things I got for myself for fall were Les Prairies de Paris’ Raphael Coat and Geren Ford’s Sailor Cocktail Dress, both of which are classic enough to last me forever. Most recently I stole one of Made Her Think’s Zodiac necklaces for myself. They are so fun, and at $75, I didn’t feel too guilty about it. Meredith of Made Her Think is definitely designing my favorite jewelry pieces right now, and I do have to resist not pocketing her\nother pieces that we carry.

-who is your personal "it" designer right now?

Oh, tough question. I notice that I end up wearing a lot of Burning Torch –it’s just immaculately constructed, really easy to wear on a daily basis, and the recycled cashmere pieces are perfect for chilly San Francisco days. I love the outright glamour of Rami Kashou’s pieces, and the wearability of Kara Janx’s. Candice Held makes these perfectly gorgeous beach-y pieces, and I love that she’s been with me basically since day 1. I am getting a fair amount of new lines in for spring that I am really excited about as well: Lundgren & Windinge, Laila Azhar, Fluet, and Stella & Jamie,just to name a few.

-what is your advice for designers who want to be carried in your store?

More than anything, it really depends on the lines themselves – how they appeal to me as a buyer, and how they fit in with the store. However, there are certain basic ways that you can introduce yourself as a designer to a potential buyer that are better than others. First and foremost, make sure that your line is appropriate, or rather, in keeping with the general idea of the store that you are contacting. For example, I once got an e-mail from a designer who wrote me saying that her line of racing-inspired women’s clothing would fill in the gap of racing clothes on my site. Of course, for me, there is and never has been any such gap. Yikes! Bearing in mind that a first impression might be the only one, it’s important to create a brief but compelling presentation of your work…it can be an entire lookbook, or just a few jpegs of your items and a description of your line. It’s also good to keep in mind that if you don’t get an immediate response, it’s not necessarily due to a lack of interest. Buyers, particular buyers who are also store owners, are pretty much inundated with e-mails on any given day. Following up periodically, or checking in with a buyer for a new season, is never a bad idea, within reason, of course. Sometimes it’s simply a matter of being in the right time at the right place, and even if it’s not the right fit for that particular store, it doesn’t mean that the buyer doesn’t like or appreciate your work. Getting your name out there is never a bad idea.

-what is the biggest trend that is currently impacting your buying decisions?

I don’t know that I really dictate my buying according to one trend or another. I want people to be able to wear pieces from my store for years to come, and I think that boils down more to style than trendiness. Naturally, there are trends that emerge each season that you can see predominantly in many lines,for example, bright patterns for spring 2007. Ultimately, I’m more interested in picking up items that are classic with a twist, and I love small details: an asymmetrical neckline, contrast stitching, oversized buttons, an unexpected use of color. I do think inspiration can come from anywhere:seeing a well put together outfit on the street, patterns in nature, an interesting work of art, and that in turn influences future purchases. Of course,there always ends up being some frivolous piece that’s simply too fun to resist, but isn’t that what’s great about fashion? It can be wearable art, a witty statement, strictly utilitarian, or just a silly little whim.

tanya, owner/buyer Maneater Threads


aGain NYC

I'm posting eco-friendly designers with renewed frenzy after seeing "An Inconvenient Truth", but it's also great to see the strides that have been made in merging good design with sustainable fabrics. I foung aGain through eco-boutique Kaight. Designer Allison Teich started her handbag collection out of frustration with the amount of garbage that is produced daily; she uses repurposed fabrics to create these cute clutch bags along with a few other styles.


Chan Luu

I came across designer Chan Luu in a fabsugar post last week and fell for her accessory collection. Made up of fine, vintage and one of a kind styles, what I love most is that although modern, no piece is "plain". The sterling fish head pendant (above) has such an artisan feel present in most of the collection. Chan Luu also has a RTW line launched in 2004.


From Somewhere

Launched in 1997, London based From Somewhere was one of the brands at the helm of the eco friendly movement in clothing. They have taken a unique spin on recycled fabrics by using the fashion industry's waste (off cuts, end of roll, damaged fabrics) to create vintage inspired garments. Distrubution seems to be in Europe mainly, but it seems they are welcome to stateside retailers.


Passenger Pigeon

From my store interviews, I've been learning quite a bit about retailers favorite designers; if that isn't the ultimate compliment... to be worn by the people who see it all. Here's a designer that Erin listed among her favorites; Passenger Pigeon (formerly calledyourbluff) is an eco friendly label utilizing organic cotton, hemp, and bamboo. Styles are classic silhouettes with details and patterns that subtly suggest the labels mission; fashion forward yet environmentally responsible.


On the Line- Sodafine

- your name, name of your store, year opened

erin weckerle, sodafine, opened oct 2002 in philadelphia, moved to fortgreene, brooklyn february 2004, moved to williamsburg, brooklyn august2006

-tell us a bit about your shop and your inspiration to open

Sodafine boutique specializes in innovative and unique handmade clothing and accessories by indie designers and artists. We also carry lines utilizing eco-friendly fabrics and sustainable labor practices, and a small selection of vintage clothing. Many of the items you'll find at Sodafine are made by individuals who call themselves artists and see their production of clothing/accessories as just one facet of theirartistic process.
Most of our handmade items are one (or some) of a kind and our attitude is very D.I.Y. inspired. Sodafine hopes to provide an interesting model of the intersection of art, craft, and fashion.
The inspiration for opening... well, i had recently graduated fromart school, and was obsessively knitting. I was selling my wares in boutiques in Philadelphia and was asked to take over the backroom space of Vagabond Boutique as my own shop.
So i sort of happened into it actually, it found me! Sodafine started out as mainly vintage (and with2 business partners- Emily Geddes and Rebekah Maysles) but also with handmade stuff from myself and my friends, and it sort of grew organically from there.

-what item is currently on your covet list? What item could you notresist buying for yourself?

There are so many things at the shop that i covet all the time! Rightnow, it's Feral Childe's Holeotosis Dress, a super cute Hodge Podge hot pink fleece tunic with crocheted detail, Talla's silk woodgrain printdress, and the Passenger Pigeon Mod Herringbone Dress with the treeprint. Somehow i was able to resist the Chie Mihara boots, and now mysize is sold out!
There's actually a lot of things that i couldn't resist, and right after Christmas, i allowed myself to indulge in a Sodafine shopping spree. I got: Chie Mihara Amore pumps (so 1940's glamorous!), Passenger Pigeonbell sleeved coat made from recycled army blankets, a Talla t-shirt, She-bible overall's romper, and a Panda Snack bamboo tank top. I also have the Loomstate cords, and the flux jeans in current, a Fortes woolstripey tunic, and Matiko's Laura flats. That's a lot i guess!!
-who is your personal "it" designer right now?

That's a hard question! There's so many! I'm really looking forward to carrying Bahar Shahpar this spring. She used to design for Agricult and just began her namesake line. It's eco and beautiful! And of course, Chie Mihara continues to astound me with her quirky take on classic footwear. Plus her construction is impecable and the leathershe uses is so lush.

-what is your advice for designers who want to be be carried in your store?

Check out the shop in person if you live near Brooklyn, or the online shop if not. Really get a feel for what Sodafine is about before sending a linesheet. I'm very picky about what i'll carry because of my ideals as well as the size of my shop.

-what is the biggest trend that is currently impacting your buying decisions?

I'm extremely happy with the direction of eco-fashion in the past year or so. Suddenly there's so many more interesting and fashion forward lines, whereas before it seemed like all that was available to the ecoconscious customer was yoga wear.
erin, owner/buyer of Sodafine boutique
119 grand street
brooklyn, ny 11211


Lela Rose Spring 2007

Lela Rose shows off what she is known for with her Spring 2007 collection. The collection showcases her impeccably tailored and detailed pieces and is infused with shots of bright yellow, red and green. Beautiful indeed.


Aiko Machida

I came across this designer on Joy's site some time ago and wanted to share. Aiko Machida hand constructs accessories and hand bags from leather. Quite a few pieces would make great accessories for the home, but in particular I think the charm necklaces (shown above in the hair also) would be a unique addition to any jewelry collection.


Ryan Kundrat

Industrial designer Ryan Kundrat's decision to move into jewelry is music to the ear lobes of many women. His pieces blend industrial materials with oxidixed silver, 14k gold, and most recently freshwater pearls. This is definitely the line to wear when you don't want your jewelry wearing you. Contact Ryan here to stock or learn more.

CarolAnn Wachter

CarolAnn Wachter is a multi disiplined designer whose work includes paintings, millinery, and recently a clothing collection. It's so interesting to see an artists take on clothing design; I find often the result is lovely patterns as can be expected, but also clothing that is intent on form and structure. See all three mediums here.


Blush B-lush

London based Tara Gelpey is the designer of bag collection Blush B-lush. Started as a purely self indulgent business, Tara used her costume design background to create the beautiful bag she was constantly searching for. While it may be your one ornate bag among many simpler ones, there's something quite striking about the intricate details.

photo credit: shopbop


Rami Kashou

Fall 2006 from Rami Kashou; as is expected the collection is very feminine, emphasizing fit and exceptional tailored details. I love all the color tones and the fact that the line includes a few gowns.

Sweet Tater

Nolita boutique Sweet Tater launched a small collection by the same name in Fall '05. Following the vintage vibe set by the boutique, the collection includes the most rocking selection of high waist pants and now famous shirt dresses. The grecian inspired shirt dress has been drawing followers since introduction in Spring 2006 and is available in a variety of fabrics, colors and styles. This is one "sweet tater" I don't mind indulging in daily.


Dru New York

Very sweet shoes from designer Tiffany Chantra of Dru New York. The collection was launched Fall 2006 with a small selection of shoes that are designed with the urban woman in mind; comfortable and cute. Catch up with Tiffany here...these are a must have.

Karen Zambos

Karen Zambos' Vintage Couture collection could easily be full of lace and doilies if you relied solely on the name. In fact, it is comprised of no-fuss pieces that have a spark of nostalgia; everyday vintage to be exact. Karen is also the designer of Elegantly Waisted, a collection of belts that accentuate the hourglass in all of us.


Refinery 29 Shops

Refinery 29 launched their much anticipated shop last week to the dissapointment of none. The shop features some of the best independent designers, and visitors can search by designer, store, or category. They haven't forgotten about the guys, kids, or home either....check it out.



I ran across Rokdarbi on Etsy and couldn't help perusing these gorgeous necklaces. Exceptionally well priced, these are described as a combination of Czech glass, Austrian crystals, Phillipine wood and Himalayan seeds. It's the United Nations of a collection, but it is beautiful.


Elizabeth Cole Jewelry

Stephanie Owen designs her collection of costume jewelry under the brand Elizabeth Cole. The pieces are fun and witty with an antique feel; an easy compliment to the cleaner styles that are surfacing.


Daily Candy featured new Kate O'Riley bags this week and I just had to post. The Ko.Des collection features roomy totes in rich tones, and the dangling charms add a little kick. See the collection and contact Kate here.


Clift NYC

Former costume designer Orondava Mumford is behind the fab label Clift NYC. The Pratt University grad made the leap from milking cows in North Carolina to designing from the heart of NY fashion in his soho studio. The collection features beautifully tailored pieces offset with tiny details; true to his costuming background the collection begins with the needs of the "character". Not that I needed a reason to be a fan but that's a good start.

The website is visual only, but to see a great article on the designer visit muse magazine.

I'm it...

Apparently I've been blog tagged...or blagged maybe?? Here is how it goes...1- get tagged (thanks Joi ! ) 2- spill five things about myself never mentioned on the blog 3-tag people I'd like to know more about...or people least likely to kill me for tagging them.

So 5 things...

1- I've been an account executive in the fashion industry for 6 years (surprise!)
2-I'm from the only English speaking country in South America (which one???).
3-Just looking at shellfish makes me expand like a blowfish...I've never had lobster.
4-I want to move to California...now
5-I buy 99 cent gossip magazines whenever I'm getting on a plane...for shame.

I'm tagging Andrea.

Melanie Dizon

Welcome to your next fetish>>> Melanie Dizon launched her collection of bags in 2001 and has followed pure perfection with...shoes. Pairing fabrics with butter soft leathers and sexy yet structural details, she has created a highly covetable collection.

Thanks to Andrea for being too stylish for my own good!


Antoinette Lee

A new designer to the handbag scene, Antoinette Lee lends a glamorous touch to her collection. These are featured at Stars, but the new collection on her site is based on a little bit of sparkle. I love the simplicity of these pieces most of all.

Tracy Watts

I met Tracy Watts a few years back and got a glimpse of her operation; for such a small object, there is a lot of work that goes into making a quality hat. A trained milliner, Tracy begins with gorgeous fabrics and shapes her creations into sexy, classic works of art. Her easy going pieces make me want to entertain a few more bad hair days.


Black Sheep & Prodigal Sons

Look closely and you'll see that time is an ever present reference in the Black Sheep & Prodigal Sons collection. Designer Derrick Cruz uses porcelain, silver, and pre-ban ivory piano keys in each piece to emphasize 'longevity and antiquities'. Horned creatures, old keys, and scrimshaw give an almost mystical sense to the collection, which is truly a must see. Derrick also packages items in old bibles, lending to the lost and found aspect of Black Sheep.

Metal Garden Factory

These delicate earrings are designed by Nicole Savoy; who references her biology classes for inspiration. Using silver, copper, steel and other found materials, Nicole creates very intricate pieces for her collection Metal Garden Factory. Check her out at her Etsy shop.


Lara Miller-Fall 2006

Lara Miller is back for Fall with her "wear it your way" sustainable collection. This season is infused with rich plum, brown, and green...along with a slight play on texture with lightweight sweaters. I'm biased at the moment because I want nearly every piece, but I can start with the one above.

Camille Hempel

Unique jewelry from Brooklyn designer Camille Hempel. Camille sculpts her one of a kind pieces wih the intent that they become heirlooms. Her work just happens to be exceptionally well priced to boot.

Jack & Marjorie

Toronto based designers Meghan Parson and Manuel Opp launched Jack & Marjorie in 2005. Inspired by the style in old family photos, the line has a sweet vintage feel. There is a major element though that makes it unique; it is comprised of military surplus materials (wool blankets, parachutes) which are then paired with vintage lace, silk, and brocade. Truly unique in style and concept.


Three year old Australian label Lover already has the following of most brands twice it's age. Citing influences from Francoise Hardy to Iggy Pop, the brand has a distinctive look that becomes easily recognizable....and quite loveable if I may be so obvious. For you must-have-it readers....the fab Elizabeth Charles has the collection on sale.


BMF Jewelry

The artist is for now a bit elusive regarding descriptions of his/her work...and even a name as a matter of fact. It's understandable; the urge to create substantial pieces that speak for themselves. In this case, the follow through is astounding with inspiration such as plants, manuscripts, and beetles. The artist behind BMF (aka Brittany Jewelry) describes the creation process as 'keeping my hands busy while my mind wanders'. Must see more here.

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