Styled by Jenn Rosado \\ Hair and Makeup by Sarah Fiorello, Kristen Ruggiero, Erica Long \\ Digital Tech by Emilie Fong
Let the New York Times tell it, Brooklyn is having a moment. To them, it began just a few short years ago. But this is just a moment in a long history of revolutionary design, culture and influence that dates back to before the jazz age and the birth of hip-hop. And with this revolution comes a tension between who and what was, what is inevitably to be, and what will be gained and lost as a result.
As with every renaissance, at the center of it all is a community of artists, thinkers, builders, healers and activists. Fifth generation natives colliding with newcomers establishing outposts for faraway cultures. All of them blending, uniting, building new monuments amongst the old, evolving the culture and becoming the new idols. And all of them using their art and knowledge to uplift the people of Brooklyn and those far beyond.
This season, we decided to really spotlight and honor these idols – local Brooklyn designers and shop owners making strides in the community. We’d like you to meet them here. Inspired by a long lineage of portraits of artists and their muses, we featured these creators paired with models showcasing their culture and beautiful wares. Our goal was to capture an intimate, painterly portrait of an ever-changing Brooklyn in this moment in time. We hope you enjoy this tribute as much as we do.
Lindsey White (left), a Bushwick resident for seven years and designer behind LM White Jewelry, makes metalsmith magic with her sculptural, yet wearable art. Rarely using molds or casting methods, Lindsey's unique approach blends conceptual freedom with skilled expertise to create raw, multi-faceted statement pieces.
I'm fairly obsessed with the idea of startled beauty...There's something really fresh about those things that sneak up and quietly demand your attention.
Plasma Ruby Earrings by LM White Jewelry (above) $115
Sarah Williams (left) opened Rituals + Ceremony in the burgeoning neighborhood of Crown Heights in November of 2017 with the goal of creating a space where people can come to grow spiritually and practice self-care – especially people of color. Born of her own desire to find a space where she could find tools to create some zen, learn about crystals, and pick up self-empowering books, the shop is now a neighborhood favorite.
I wanted to create a space to foster self-love and help others create their own sacred space.
Italian-born sculptor, Ippolita Ferrari (left), handcrafts and handpaints jewelry and housewares out of fine porcelain and gold-filled metals. Though her hometown roots are apparent in the magical shapes and symbolism of her artwork, Brooklyn's multicultural structure, culture, and arts have served as a strong source of inspiration and undoubtedly shaped her work. She currently splits her time between a studio in Bushwick and Upstate New York.
My inspiration comes from the aesthetics and traditions I absorbed growing up in Italy and the visual stimuli of living in Brooklyn.
Basque Country-bred Izaskun Zabala (left) takes inspiration from organic shapes in nature and transforms them into the most refined and elegant statement jewelry. After almost two decades in New York, where she says she ultimately became a woman, she also launched her own jewelry line and currently works out of her home studio in a historic brownstone in Bed-Stuy. Zabala's elegant pieces strike the perfect balance between contemporary, yet timeless classics.
New York has shaped my sensibility and my creative expression in all senses.
Protection Necklace by Izaskun Zabala $245
Shana Luther (right) handcrafts ethically and domestically made leather bags and accessories that sound almost too good to be true, given that they're also stylish and surprisingly affordable. Her BKLYN and NYC collections are a sort of love letter to her home, where she's currently raising two kids in Carroll Gardens. She's constantly looking to the real women of New York to influence her designs and takes her leather work seriously, making everything in-house with the utmost care and craftsmanship.
I work with minor scars to show my customers that even though there’s a slight blemish, it’s beautiful and natural.
Perforated Waist Bag by Shana Luther $165
Jewelry designer behind Lady J Jewelry, Jessica D'Amico (left), is truly a pioneer of championing local, indie designers before it was hip. In 2012, D'Amico opened Lady J+1, her boutique in Crown Heights that was the first "Brooklyn-only" showcase featuring local indie artists. Pulling influences from cultural events around the neighborhood as well as her personal interactions with residents and patrons, her community is reflected in much of her metalwork designs. Using raw elements from the earth, like stones and vermeil plating, D'Amico creates mystical, modern, and edgy pieces that have won accolades and become a local favorite.
I’m worried that if the non-conformists and creatives don't have a space to sell and create, we will live in a homogenized culture.
Claw Blade Necklace by Lady J Jewelry $119
Big Eye Graphic Tee by MILES Culture $44
I’m in the company of so many other small business owners. That energy and those connections make every day special.
With roots in Philly's urban scene, Ty Holloway was inspired to open MILES Culture, a streetwear shop specializing in graphic tees, leather goods, and tactical gear. The brand's cool conversation pieces are designed, made, and sold in Crown Heights, an up-and-coming neighborhood in Brooklyn. Ty is pictured here with friend and neighbor Sarah Williams of Rituals + Ceremony.
(Image by Zandy Mangold)