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Our blog has moved to http://brooklynindustries.tumblr.com/. Come for a visit, won’t you?
Kentucky Flood by Margaret Bourke-White
The initial interest in the design of Brooklyn Industries’ new Click Bag line stemmed from our CEO and photographer Lexy Funk’s interest in the historical position of women in photography. Since photography was considered more picture making than an artform in the early days, women were better represented in the field compared to other artforms. Working commercially as documentarians, images from photographers like Dorothea Lange and Margaret Bourke-White, the first female war correspondent are now considered artistic treasures.
Our bag designer was also inspired by the boxy camera bags these women carried that seemed timeless in style. The brown color was a nod to more classic, vintage camera bags, while the patent red and blue bags were more of a nod to mod.
The Click Bag - Made in NYC
Current occupation at Brooklyn Industries: Multimedia Designer
Hometown: Austin, Texas
Currently living in: Williamsburg, Brooklyn
Favorite burger: Dumont Burger
Some people spend money on purses. Others fancy cars and Champagne. My big bling spend is Dumont’s $16 dollar burger. Might have to make a necklace out of one to wear around.
Currently Reading: The Power Broker, Robert Caro’s behemoth about Robert Moses.
On my iPod right now: Azealia Banks
Current obsession: Canon’s 40mm Pancake Lens
At a very affordable price, the image quality for this little portable guy is fantastic. I love how the fixed lens makes you move back and forth like a dancer to frame your picture, putting the photographer back into the picture making process. Most of these photos were taken with this lens.
Secret NYC spot: Cubana Social
Ok, it’s not soooo secret, but while everyone is wasting away their days in line for brunch at Egg or Five Leaves, this place always has a table open. Their cubana coffee with a copy of the Times also makes it my Favorite coffee spot.
Favorite BKI item: Oliver Twisted Trouser
It’s not coming out until next month, but I’m definitely gonna pick these bad boys up. Probably going to throw in that toggle coat in the bag too.
How I Live, Work, Create: Taking in Brooklyn
Nothing inspires me more than walking around Brooklyn. There’s such a wild mix of creative influences here, and I think that that’s what makes the work coming out of Brooklyn so strong. That and the incredible amount of openness and sharing that goes on within the community. Most of these pics were shot on a 15 minute walk around the neighborhood.
Last week, we loaded up our bikes on the A train and headed out to Ft. Tilden/Jacob Riis/Breezy Point on Rockaway to get inspiration for our clothing and bags line for summer of 2013. The day was unusually cold and wet for a summer’s day, but the cool aqua blues, grays, and brown were quite remarkable in their own right. The weather plus a completely uninhabited July beach gave us plenty of space and freedom to examine shells, driftwood, makeshift encampments, and even machine gun bunkers. And Rockaway Taco – definitely had to stop for fish tacos.
To launch our Spring 2012 line, we wanted a shoot that would wrap up the narrative of our last campaign, which centered around the novel Crash by J.G. Ballard. So what better place to shoot that story than at the Brooklyn Public Library? Unlike a book or a movie, it can be much more difficult to convey a story through photographs, so we crafted a loose narrative about a girl encountering a guy at the library, who eventually leads her on a journey of discovery, leaving room for the viewer to interpret the photographs individually or collectively.
We started the day in the Historical Room of the library, where old maps of Brooklyn across centuries were archived in flat drawers and oversized books. Those of us who remember the pre-computer days of furiously finger-flipping through the Dewey Decimal System were treated to dainty, wooden drawers of card catalog cabinets. The contrast of the academic, and sometimes nerdy environment with striking models provided a pleasant, prurient sensibility to the library.
Right outside the Historical Room is a hallway that overlooks the main atrium of the library. We immediately took a liking to the monolithic greens and oranges of the walls and the simplicity of the Fascist architecture, reminiscent of Marcello Piacentini or Albert Speer. Our photographer, Courtney Chavanell shot pictues of the models peering coyly across the vast expanses, furiously switching back and forth between regular and zoom lenses like a golfer exchanging out clubs. A studio shoot, this was not.
After photographing the two models in our BPL collaboration T-shirts in the rows of bookcases and stairwell by natural window lighting, we were allowed access to a normally off limits part of the library – the rooftop. The sunny day, dramatic vistas, and vast space looked like a huge, unfinished set in the middle of New Mexico. We had our best shots on the roof against industrial materials and textures like concrete, steel beams, and large metal and aluminum machinery, backdrops we’re very used to seeing in the Brooklyn landscape that also serve as an inspiration to our namesake. Being out in the sunny air was making us really excited about shooting outside again for our next shoot for the summer collection.
The Prism Pullover, Spring 2012
Spring means sweater time! My goal was to create a fun, transitional piece in a user-friendly silhouette. I needed something that would relate back to the rest of our colorful, print-driven spring collection. First, I chose a 12-gauge cotton/modal yarn blend that has a warm, soft hand feel. Twelve is a fine gauge, but the yarn is lofty and has a bit of fluff. This sweater could be great layered or worn alone.
Secondly, I wanted to do something unusual with the color blocking. I chose to do it only on the sleeves, giving it a slightly 70’s vibe without looking too retro. For color inspiration I let candy lead the way. Some of my fondest childhood memories revolve around obtaining fruit flavored, Life Savers. For some reason that was the only candy my parents would knowingly let me have; perhaps the word “fruit” in the title made it sound remotely healthy? Really I just I loved the colors! Thinking about Tootsie Rolls led me to design a color blocked sleeve. It’s fun and classic just like the candy. –Dale, Senior Designer
When we see a woman shrouded in our white Zermatt coats, we immediately think about the girls from James Bond movies, conjuring up images of the mysterious and exotic women passing microfilm, sipping martinis, or firing Kalashnikovs at 007 from a pair of skis. In honor of these classy, yet brazen Bond ladies, our design team brings you our favorite spy movies.
A View to a Kill- John Glen, 1985
Growing up in the 80’s this classic Bond film was my introduction to the sleek action espionage series. My favorite spy/Bond girl in this film was May Day, a kick-ass villainess assassin played by Grace Jones. This Amazonian femme fatale was trained in the martial arts and genetically bred with super strength to become a ferocious and beautiful killer. Her outfits were what appealed to me the most – over the top glamour, yet still riding the edge between femininity and toughness. I can picture her in our Zurmatt Coat, freefalling off the Eiffel Tower with Duran Duran playing in the background. -Aaron
North by Northwest, Alfred Hitchcock, 1959
There would be no 007 in my opinion without Hitchcock’s stylish masterpiece, North by Northwest. Leading man Cary Grant is sharp-dressed, and seems physically unable to complete a sentence without a wisecrack, a trait often associated with James Bond. While all of Hitchcock’s movies are a delight to look at, his visual imprint over the look and feel of NXNW shows a director at the peak of his career. Most people recognize the movie for its iconic airplane chase scene over a spacious cornfield, but my favorite shot is of Cary Grant running away from a murder outside of the United Nations building from a bird’s eye view (pictured above). The film also features great kinetic typography from one of my graphic design heroes, Saul Bass. -Teddy
Hopscotch, Ronald Neame, 1980
Hopscotch is a surprisingly underrated movie. Walter Matthau plays an ex-CIA agent who threatens to write a tell-all book. Although the fashion is generic, late 70’s corporate wear (short ties and wide lapels) the clever dialogue and ever changing plot line holds your attention all the way to the end. –Meagan
From Russia with Love – Terrance Young, 1963
This is my favorite James Bond movie because it take place in the early 60’s and has the best costumes and locations! The music is iconic, the plots are still fresh and SPECTRE plays a great nemesis, seeking to avenge the killing of Dr. No. from an earlier film. Action, adventure and glamorous ladies set the standard for later movies of this genre. Sean Connery is also my favorite Bond! -Dale
Sean Connery is simply a badass in this film. This is one of my favorite 007 movies! -Koh
Aaron from Design and Travis from Merchandising sporting corduroys.
As the temperature drops – some people just throw on sweat pants and hibernate. For the more adventurous who prefer to function through the winter – there are corduroy pants. We took took our tried and true Fade Pant fit, slimmed it down, updated it in corduroy, and added vintage-inspired, five-pocket detailing.
Nic from our photoshoot at Sleepy Hollow
We were inspired this Fall with a little mix up, fabrics that normally need to be separated formed a mini uprising to join forces in our Brooklyn Industries Outerwear. For men the Excel 4 pocket jacket combines heavy duty wool with nylon on the shoulders for “I’m going to storm Wall Street and cause a revolution” coat. For women, the Portland Parka is no less subdued. Chunky marled wool trim meets canvas twill to say “and I will write your manifesto.” They are flirtatious and serious. Maybe the bankers will listen.