Archive for February, 2012

Photo Diary: The Artwork of Koh Suwa, from Studio to Window to Art Party Installation

Monday, February 27th, 2012

Meet the Staff: Andrew

Thursday, February 23rd, 2012

Name: Andrew Dallas
Current occupation at BKI: Customer Service / Photo Department
Hometown: Detroit, MI
Now living in: Kensington, Brooklyn
On my iPod right now: The Weeknd, Childish Gambino, First Aid Kit, Tennis, audiobooks and Nick Waterhouse.
Favorite books: How to Smash Everyone to Pieces by Mike Segretto, Go-Go girls of the Apocalypse by Victor Gischler, The Joe Pitt Casebooks by Charlie Huston, Anything by Jonathan Maberry.
Favorite BKI Tee: Ratio M t-shirt
How I Live, Work, Create: I’ve always been into photography, starting out with an internship at a portrait studio that specialized in a little bit of everything and I got sucked in.  There, I studied with a lighting expert and found my own technique and style.  For me, photography has been like a “gateway drug.”  I soon started drawing, painting, and sculpting.  Yet I always return to photography and was lucky to find a creative company like BKI where I get to continue working in the medium I love.
Favorite place to eat: Purple Yam in Ditmas Park
Best burger in Brooklyn: Dumont Burger
I get my coffee at: I’m a tea person. Bigelow is my brand.
Favorite thing to do in BK during the winter: Sleep and read
Favorite word: onomatopoeia
If I had a super power it would be… rapid regeneration (a quick answer but that is a very complex question).

Behind the Design: Tootsie Rolls and the Prism Pullover

Monday, February 20th, 2012

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

Special Delivery From a Mail Escort

Wednesday, February 15th, 2012

BKI’s Mail Escort Tee, as seen in the March 2012 issue of Nylon

With the mild winter this year, we’re excited about T-shirts already, and our new arrival, the Mail Escort tee. The shirt, while providing us comfort that our mail will arrive safely, also reminds us of one of our favorite New York classics – Midnight Cowboy. Here is some interesting trivia you may not know about the film:

-Midnight Cowboy is the only X-rated film ever to win the Academy Award for Best Picture.

-Sylvia Miles was nominated for Best Supporting Actress, despite appearing in the film for less than four minutes.

-Contrary to conventional wisdom promoting otherwise, the cab that almost runs over Dustin Hoffman during his famous line, ‘I’m walkin’ here!’ was planned.

-Jon Voight’s role was originally offered to Elvis Presley, but he refused, wanting to be taken ‘seriously’ as an actor.

-In order to have a convincing limp, Dustin Hoffman kept pebbles in his shoes.

We Dressed Up, Ate Donuts, Danced, and Crashed

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012

What a night! Our New York friends came out en masse for our Crash Into Spring Fashion Event during Fashion Week to check out the new line, installation and video art, feast on Dough donuts and Brooklyn Gin, and of course, boogie to some great music courtesy of DJ So Super Sam. We can’t wait for the next party for the summer line!

America the Beautiful

Saturday, February 11th, 2012

For the first time ever, the LGBT community in New York will be allowed to celebrate their love on Valentine’s Day as legally married couples. While tremendous progress has been made and the landscape is shifting to a more optimistic outcome, our designer illustrated this graphic for our Valentine’s day t-shirt to show just how much more work needs to be done. Here at BKI, the issue of gay marriage equality is very close to our hearts, and we stand firmly on the side of civil rights, equality, and love. For each shirt sold, we’ll be donating 10% of proceeds off the sale to our friends at the Ali Forney Center, who do a commendable job of providing homeless LGBT youth in the NYC area with housing and help.

We want to hear your voice. Visit our Facebook page to let us know how you are going to make America Beautiful in 2012, and enter for a chance to win an America the Beautiful t-shirt.

Below is a picture in front of our West Village store of the 2011 Gay Pride celebration, 2 days after gay marriage became legal in New York.

Nothing is Better than a Dough-nut

Thursday, February 9th, 2012

Last week, we stopped by Dough in Bed Stuy to meet pastry chef Fany Gerson and watch her create her amazing, colossal donuts that have become the standard bearer for sweets in the city, and particularly in our office. Gerson started her journey with popsicles, and used her experience with Mexican sweets to add doughnuts to her repertoire, which are all crafted with all natural ingredients… and have we mentioned that they are huge? The standards are there – like chocolate and cinnamon, but you’ll also find nods to traditional Mexican flavors, like café con leche and chipotle chocolate. The success of Dough rests on Gerson’s passion for sweets and her penchant for constant experimentation with new ingredients. Currently, she is working on a popcorn donut in the transparent, open kitchen that is visible to all visitors to the shop.  While moving into a corner that few were interested in provided some challenges, the neighborhood has opened up to this delectable outpost, drawing a steady stream of neighbors, nearby Pratt students, faraway foodies, and of course, policemen. “When you have heart and passion,” Gerson added, “people will appreciate it.” The best thing that could be said about the donuts however occurred on our subway ride back, when a stranger upon noticing our Dough boxes commented, “Nothing… is better than a donut.”

Check out some of Fany Gerson’s recipes from her James Beard award winning cookbook, My Sweet Mexico, and try her delicious donuts at our Crash Into Spring Event on Friday, February 10th.

Meet the DJ

Monday, February 6th, 2012

We’re thrilled to have L.A. native, and current NYC resident SOSUPERSAM DJ our Crash Into Spring event on Friday, February 10th at our Union Square location. She was gracious enough to talk with us about what she loves about her new adopted city and what she likes to jam out to when she’s at home.

When did music first start to interest you? Music has always been a huge part of my life since I can remember. I started dancing when I was three, playing the piano when I was five, and singing and doing musical theatre when I was 11. I evolved into a DJ in the last few years, and now I’m starting to get into music production. You truly start to understand music after you’ve experienced it in so many different ways.

You’re originally from Los Angeles. Why did you relocate to New York City, and what are your favorite things about living here? I’ve always loved New York, and made it a point to live here at some point in my life. I feel that the city speaks to my sensibilities and my pace. So when the opportunity presented itself to me, I took it, and I love it! Whereas LA is very spread out, I love how compact New York City is. Every neighborhood has a small town feel. You really get to know your corner deli, your UPS guy, your coffee shop. That’s rad.

You’ve DJ’ed both coasts – what other places have you played and where are your favorites?
I DJ’ed in Singapore last year, which was super awesome. There is an underground nu-disco and glitch hop scene I was pleased to discover. I always have a good time when I DJ in San Francisco, but it’s been awhile since I’ve been back there. I hope to DJ in SF again soon.

Your sets consists of an eclectic mix of 80′s, 90′s, dance, electronic, hip hop, indie, R&B, and soul. What’s your favorite genre to spin, and what do you listen to at home? My favorite genre to play is 90′s hip hop and R&B – it was such a great time in music. The R&B was so full of emotion back then – extremely happy, or extremely sad. There was nothing muted or understated about it.  At home, I’m usually listening to something mellow. I love the old soul greats, Al Green, Stevie Wonder, Prince, Otis Redding, Etta James. Adele, Amy Winehouse, M83, and James Blake are also in heavy rotation – really, really mellow at home.

What is your top 5 for 2011?
M83 – Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming
Jay-Z & Kanye West – Watch the Throne
Adele – 21
James Blake – James Blake
Childish Gambino – Camp

If you had a superpower, what would it be?
I want to be able to be in two places at once. Or even better to be able to live two lives at the same time.  But ONLY if I can wear a cape.

Besides music, how else do you Live, Work, Create?
I also do freelance fashion PR! And I’m learning how to cook.

DJ SoSuperSam will be spinning at our Crash Into Spring Fashion Event at BKI Union Square from 7-9:30pm on February 10th. To listen to some of her mixes, visit her website, or listen to the playlist she made for us on our Tumblr.