The So-Talented Kyyote Designer Shows Off Her Pottery Skills

A jewelry whiz who most definitely breaks the mold.

Silver and beads might be jewelry designer Amanda Loos’s bread-and-butter, but clay is a big part of her life, too. “Ceramics has always been my escape. Working with clay is so cathartic and pure—it’s the one thing I find I can do in a wholly unpremeditated way,” says the Kyyote mastermind. And, man, is she good at working with the material. Take a look at a few of her most prized creations—real stunners, all of them. —alisha prakash

image

“My work in ceramics has always been a complete departure and welcome reprieve from my deliberate work as a jewelry designer. I walk into the ceramics studio and play. That leads to such wonderful things—I don’t have any pressure to produce something that will sell. In one sitting, I might make fifteen pieces without any worry as to what people think of them. Out of those, I’m happy if I am in love with two or three. These two serving bowls sit on my dining table and are such an interesting pair, full of pattern and texture.”

image

“In the beginning, I was obsessed with bowls. I think I threw close to 200 the first semester that I took ceramics. My mom and I both have an awesome collection of small bowls that I’ve made over the years that we use daily.”

image

“Hand-building ceramics is a really awesome thing and doesn’t always turn out the way you intend. When the clay dries, it warps, moves, and cracks. It has always been a reminder that, in life, things don’t always go the way you plan. But there are such happy accidents.”

image

“I’m slightly obsessed with giving my large, more time-consuming pieces another purpose in life. This slightly organic, stalactite-shaped mountain doubles as a cookie jar. As you turn it, it’s completely different—each side is unique.”

image

“This piece that took an awfully long time to produce. It turned out completely different from how I intended, but that is the inherent beauty of ceramics—in the end, the minerals and fire have the final say.”

Score Amanda’s rad hand-dyed quill earrings right this second!

comments, reblogs & likes

Notes

9 notes

Trek Through Some Rad L.A. Landscapes with Amanda Loos

This has us California dreaming in a big way.

“I’m constantly inspired by the California spirit and vibe—endless summers and bright colors twelve months of the year,” says Kyyote’s chillaxed jewelry designer, Amanda Loos, who spent her teen years in La Crescenta and has since hopscotched around L.A. “I lived downtown in the Arts District in three different lofts,” she says. “My first next-door neighbor there was actually George Herms. Google him.” Now, she’s gone all one-with-nature, settling down in the San Fernando Valley. Check out the awe-inspiring spots that are basically in her backyard. —alisha prakash

image

Haines Canyon Reservoir is less than two miles away from my house. When I need a quick hike and moment to myself, I’ll sneak away and sit near the water to watch the ducks.”

image

“The Deukmejian Wilderness Park is such a gorgeous place—you really get a sense of the true California desert landscape here, and there are some really scenic hiking trails. A small snake was sunning itself on the trail as I walked up. This park is three blocks from my parents’ house. They’ve done so much to restore it in the last few years.”

image

“On my drive from Haines Canyon to Deukmejian Park, I ran into a few adorable little neighbors and had to pull over. There were seven little baby deer that were walking across the road. I’ve also had mountain lion sightings and tons of coyotes—kyyotes!”

image

Descanso Gardens is another oasis nestled into the mountains in our foothill community. In contrast to Deukmjian, this garden definitely feels more like a true forest, albeit a dry, desert forest. I love bringing my lunch and walking amidst the beautiful Coast Live Oak trees—some of them over a hundred years old.”

Don’t miss Amanda’s turquoise quill earrings—they’re gonna fly.

comments, reblogs & likes

Notes

1 note

Of a Kind

If you need to sell someone on *simplicity*, you should probably show her this Agnes Baddoo bag. —erica

comments, reblogs & likes

Notes

22 notes

Of a Kind

This All Hands bag is called Space Station. Yup, that feels exactly right. —erica

comments, reblogs & likes

Notes

54 notes

Of a Kind

Cut-Out Cuff by Winifred Grace for Of a Kind

BUY / 50 of a kind / $107

comments, reblogs & likes

Notes

10 notes

Swing by Winifred Grace’s Airy New Chicago Store

First shop = HUGE milestone.

“Since I have long said if I was not a jewelry designer, I would be an interior designer, this whole process has been a dream come true,” says Winifred Grace, of the boutique-slash-studio she opened in May 2014. Even better: It’s just four blocks from her home in Chicago’s Andersonville. “Since everything is mobile, it can be transformed so easily. Eventually I’d like to offer the space up for parties,” she says. See what else she has in-store (heh)—and pick up some décor tips along the way. —alisha prakash

image

“This is an old German woodworking bench. Its sleek size fits perfectly in the front of the store, and it also serves as a great display for belts and small trays of jewelry. That carved Moroccan mirror was a consignment store purchase in Naples, Florida, and it is a great size—it’s almost full-length.”

image

“Vintage wooden letter trays—from Roost Chicago—make the best displays. They give structure to a small collection of pieces, whether it’s jewelry, scarves, or leather goods. As my inventory changes, I can easily switch them around to accommodate different product. I cut a piece of brown leather to fit the bottom, so the jewelry has nice padding and didn’t slip and slide on the wood.”

image

“The long wooden table is actually an old folding wallpaper table, also from Roost Chicago. It is a great height for my cashwrap but is lightweight and mobile enough to be moved around the store as things evolve. Oh, and that blue wall is actually completely mobile—we built it on wheels so we can move it around the store as needed.”

image

“The floors are the original terrazzo, which I adore. There are slim brass divider strips that run throughout—a very subtle reference to my jewelry. It was one of the things I fell in love with about the space. I bought that rug for $35 at the Sandwich Flea Market. It made my three-hour trek there and back worth it!”

image

“I wanted to come up with as many creative solutions as I could for the space. This included using an old wooden toolbox as our toilet-paper holder and a well-worn vintage cigar box for our feminine products!”

image

“A small wooden stool on top of the sleek Ikea table helps create different heights in an unexpected way. The vintage wooden clog is a charming way to display slim cuffs—although my production manager still thinks I’m crazy for buying it.”

image

“These stained wooden slabs are my pride and joy. I went to the lumber store and picked out some scrap—for which the gentlemen kindly did not charge me. I spent two days staining two coats on these bad boys and couldn’t be happier with how they turned out!”

image

“The metal Platner chair was one of my first purchases when I moved to Chicago in 2000. It is a personal favorite, and at least once a week someone offers to buy it. Sorry, not for sale! I purchased that rose-colored round mirror over ten years ago at Robin Richman on Damen Avenue.”

image

“We removed the glass doors from this old white bookcase, which made the merchandise much more accessible to customers. The shelves on this piece are adjustable, which is key as our inventory changes.”

image

“Those glass doors we removed from the white book case? There they are—hanging in the front window! They really help frame the store logo in a welcoming way.”

image

“The glass cloche rests upon a vintage gear mold. I like the drama of showcasing just one single piece of jewelry under that cloche. It makes a strong statement in the front window. The painted table is another transplant from my house—it was originally purchased at A New Leaf on Wells Street in Chicago.”

image

“Oh, how I love this light fixture! It is actually two half-circle topiaries wired together. This was one of the first things I purchased for the store. I just knew I had to have it. The metalwork just made too beautiful of a reference to the jewelry, and I couldn’t pass it up.”

Man, did Winnie knock it outta the park with this cuff!

comments, reblogs & likes

Notes

24 notes

Three Design Books That Winifred Grace Can’t Stop Flipping Through

Hear that? It’s your coffee table calling.

If a picture is worth a thousand words, Winifred Grace’s design-book collection is worth a mill. “I see something different every time I look at them,” says the Chicago jewelry genius. Take a look at the trifecta she reaches for over and over again. —alisha prakash

image

House & Garden’s Complete Guide to Interior Decoration
“I have always said that if I weren’t a jewelry designer, I would be an interior designer. I share this passion with my mother, who I stole this book from several years ago. I love that the rooms are not overly designed. They are incredibly personal and really showcase who lives in these homes—there’s an eclectic mix of artwork and patterns and different influences from around the world. The book was published in 1970, but I think all of these rooms are so timeless. I guess all really good design is, right?”

image

Joseph Cornell / Marcel Duchamp…In Resonance
“This book chronicles the relationship between artists Marcel Duchamp and Joseph Cornell and celebrates their fascination with the connection between art and the found object. This book makes me want to crawl in to the pages and explore all the wonderful handwritten notes, torn newspaper scraps, old photographs, and paper packaging. The beautiful part about it is that it gives these potential pieces of trash lives of their own. It glorifies them, giving them a story and importance. It’s like going through your grandparents’ drawers filled with memories and nostalgia and realizing they had lives before you.”

image

Printed Matter / Drukwerk
“I bought this Karel Martens book while I was a graphic-design student, and it made my heart sing upon first glance. Rich with color, there is a cadence to these juicy works and how they are displayed—the chaotic business of images layered on top of one another, jammed into one small space, or the quiet respite of a clean page with a just a few examples of work. It was an awakening for me to see information displayed in such an emotive, robust way.”

Winnie made a cuff that lets your wrist show a little bit of skin.

comments, reblogs & likes

Notes

6 notes

Couple Up: Madonna and Sean Penn

image

Oof, were these two trouble. Their nickname was S&M, for chrissake, and during their time married in the mid-eighties, his rap sheet was possibly as long as his list of IMDB credits. I mean, they look like they’re up to no good, right? Course that was also their appeal. —erica

Madonna: A blacker-than-black Wendy Nichol bag, a lace-up shirt c/o The Kooples, and striped shorts from Thakoon Addition. 

Sean Penn: A slim Todd Snyder polo, a leather jacket by Nudie Jeans, and charcoal Rag & Bone pants.

Dip into the “Couple Up” archives.

comments, reblogs & likes

Notes

7 notes

Of a Kind

It’s probably time to introduce your button-down shirts to a button-down skirt, brought to you by Tess Giberson. —erica

comments, reblogs & likes

Notes

12 notes

The Insider: Rachel Webber

image

Something you should know about Rachel Webber: She’s based in New York but splits her time between NYC, Los Angeles, and Helsinki. Yes, Helsinki. Doesn’t that alone make you want to know everything about her? Well, combine that with the fact that she works for the company that brought us Angry Birds—and that she’s just plain lovely. So much goodness on that front below. —monica freeman

Q: Can you tell us about what you do for your 9-to-5-ish?
A: I head up Rovio’s video business, which means looking after the kids’ and family streaming video channel ToonsTV we built on top of our Angry Birds games and distribute on connected platforms. It’s like our own mini Hulu that offers fans our own original series as well as programs from top kids’ entertainment partners. We also partner with TV networks around the world to program our original series on their networks.

Q: Speaking of Angry Birds: Which apps are you obsessed with?
A: Twitter and Instagram from the moment I wake up ‘til I go to sleep. Secret is my new procrastination tool, and I get WUT messages coming in all the time but have no idea who they are from! I listen to the Boston NPR station I grew up with, WBUR. and my favorite Australian indie-music station, triple j, on TuneIn Radio, and Spotify in general for music. I’m a big Foursquare checker-inner—and now Swarm—and I’m addicted to LINE, the Japanese chat app, because of the insanely fun sticker packs. I’ve spent a lot of money on stickers…

Q: What’s your number one guilty pleasure? Doesn’t have to be guilty, of course, but you know what I’m getting at.
A: Hmm…besides LINE stickers?! Listening to Robyn’s “Hang with Me” on repeat. Rag and Bone boots. Finnish glassware. Buying iTunes season passes—for my many hours on airplanes—to Parenthood, The Good Wife, Scandal, The Americans, Sherlock, Orphan Black.

Q: Since you’re a real travel pro, if you had to travel the entire perimeter of any country, which would you choose? 
A: Probably Sweden—but only in summer—because it’s an archipelago, so it would be very fun to navigate through all those tiny islands. And Stockholm in the summer is magical.

Q: Where are your favorite hole-in-the-wall spots to eat in the places where you visit regularly-slash-live?
A: In Helsinki, Kuurna is the best.  In NYC—these aren’t really hole-in-the-wall, but the stretch on 9th and 10th between 22nd and 25th with Sullivan Street Bakery, El Quinto Pino, Tia Pol, Izakaya Ten, The Red Cat, and the new-ish Empire Diner is a locals’ paradise. In L.A., there’s this very dive-y Szechuan spot I’ve gone to with friends on the way back from Palm Springs holidays called Chung King.  

Q: What books are you itching to read?
A: I actually just bought Lydia Davis’s new collection of stories in hardcover, so that’s next. And then Americanah because did you hear the author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie in her NPR interview?!  Wow. And then of course she showed up on Beyoncé’s album.

Q: If you could swap jobs with anyone, who would you choose?
A: Maybe a Janet Jackson back-up dancer during The Velvet Rope tour.

More rad peeps right here!

comments, reblogs & likes

Notes

4 notes