Of a Kind

Caribou Duffle by Cook & Gates for Of a Kind

BUY / 30 of a kind / $158

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Designer’s Designer: Sara Gates of Cook & Gates Gets Naked (Label)

With highs in the 90s in NYC, today is no day for a motorcycle jacket. Luckily Sara Gates of Cook & Gates (see the awesome totes she made for us here and here!) knows how to get a leather fix, even in this heat. —julia silverman

“I am always searching for new ways to incorporate leather into my wardrobe, especially in the summer! This necklace by Naked Label is the perfect accessory for just that. The charm is actually a piece of crocodile that is cut and just shaped on the edges. It goes with everything, just like your favorite pair of black leather boots.” —sara

Click to see who and what some of our other designers are lovin’ this summer…

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Alumni News: Cook & Gates Gets Earthy

It’s officially time to get some dirt under your nails. On April 4, Sara Gates and her Cook & Gates crew are helping to celebrate the grand opening of Hayseed’s Big City Farm Supply, a pop-up shop in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, dedicated to urban farming. C&G has designed custom totes in colors like rusty orange and indigo—you know, for a back-to-nature vibe—and the space, open ‘til June, will host classes on mushroom growing, container gardening, and, for anybody way hardcore, beekeeping. Sweet. —poppy

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Next Level: Souped-Up Totes

If you don’t have the luxury of a car’s backseat to store your gym gear, reading materials, and shoe changes, a tote is (sad to say) your next best thing. Instead of carrying around the mucked-up freebies lying all over your apartment, invest in a bag that actually adds to your look, like these four winners. —erica

LEVEL I: Simple and clean, this apricot leather creation could be Céline but is actually Baggu.

LEVEL II: The top of this Chester Wallace bag folds over so you can sling that red strap across your body and carry the thing like a messenger if you so desire.

LEVEL III: With its black leather handles and graphic, hand-dyed design, the tote Cook & Gates made just for Of a Kind adds legit oomph to any get-up.

LEVEL IV: If you worry about losing track of your stuff in a bottomless pit of a bag, this appealingly loud version from Thomas IV is like a 2-for-1: The black leather pocket is like a tote all its own.

Get your “Next Level” fix right over here… 

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Alumni Sunday: Night Moon Bag by Cook & Gates

These days, when it feels right, we’re releasing special weekend editions from some of our most-loved designers—Alumni Sundays, if you will. And this graphic hand-dyed canvas bag from Cook & Gates? Well, it feels very right. I mean, how many totes have you encountered that actually make an outfit better? Plus, the black leather straps here add a certain sleekness and polish that just compound its appeal. —erica

BUY / 40 of a kind / $80

Read more about Sara Gates, the whiz behind the line:

+ On the screen-printing business that started it all.

+ On her hard-working Brooklyn studio.

+ On landing those bags of hers a gallery show.

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Mary Meyer Plays Well With Others

On why Sara Gates—another Of a Kind alum!—is an ideal collaborator.


Sara (left) and Mary, getting pose-y.

One of the coolest things about year one of Of a Kind: discovering just how interconnected some of our favorite designers are. Mary Meyer and Sara Gates each have their own lines—Mary making streamlined, edgy apparel, and Sara creating custom-dyed, attention-grabbing totes under the name Cook & Gates—but they are both integral to each other’s work. Mary sells Sara’s bags at her awesome store in Bushwick (more on that tomorrow); Sara does all of the screen-printing on Mary’s creations. Here, Mary breaks down their relationship and why it works so damn well.

Sara and I met coincidentally through the person who does this beauty-product line, Goldie’s, that I sell at the store. At the time, I was driving back and forth from Philly, having something screen-printed by an old friend of mine there for my spring 2008 line. That was the first time I did a collection with the type of prints that have become my hallmark. My friend Sarah T. told me that her best friend Sara G. had a print shop in Brooklyn.”


Goldie’s! By Sarah T.

“Sara ended up doing the production for the samples that season, and we have been working together ever since. It’s just been an amazing relationship. What I love about working with Sara is you can get her to do a T-shirt, sure, but where she’s really inspired is figuring out how to do something challenging. She’s more inclined to do a job that’s crazy and interesting where she has to build something to make it work. To print my leggings, she made a leg form, and she does these glass jars for Goldie’s that require a wooden frame to print.”


Cook & Gates bags in Mary’s store, by Sara G.

“I think it is also exciting to work together because we’re both self-taught. I mean, Sara went to art school, too, but we’re both these businesswomen who didn’t study business. And I think we have this similarity in that our businesses grew organically. She’s one of the only people in New York who does hand yardage printing, and she’ll get these really big exciting clients because of that.”

Kick off your Black Friday shopping with Mary Meyer’s edition! Get on our email for a reminder tomorrow AM.

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Of a Kind

God knows you can never have enough bags. And this one from Cook & Gates has genuine personality: It’s hand-bleached, with black leather straps sturdy enough to handle your laptop, emergency flats, and those hefty September issues (we’re talking about you, Vogue). —erica

BUY / 30 of a kind / $85

Read more about Sara Gates, the designer behind the line:

+ On a sand-filled Cook & Gates gallery show

+ On her kick-ass live-work loft

+ On the making of our killer tote

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Alumni News: Mary Meyer Opens Doors in Brooklyn

One very good reason to hit up Bushwick: Mary Meyer, the designer behind our Blue Hex Scarf, recently opened shop on 56 Bogart Street—minutes from the Morgan Avenue L stop. In addition to Mary’s stellar, graphic designs, expect to find some of our other favorites—the dye-centric line Cook & Gates that’s produing an edition for us next week, for example—at the boutique-slash-designer studio. The spot is just around the corner from Roberta’s, so doubling up is probably in order. —jiayi

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Of a Kind

Mary Meyer and Cook & Gates have collaborated on built-for-two beach blankets. We wish we had had one when we read HBS case studies oceanside in Montauk (because that happened). —erica

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Of a Kind

This crumple-dyed, leather-strapped tote by Cook & Gates is one of seven amazing, springy pieces we curated for Time Out New York, available only through TONY Shops. The other ultra-talented featured designers: Laurel Wells, Brooklyn Tailors, Wintercheck, Rachel Rose, Death & Texas, and Fischer—basically the newest of the new lines we’re psyched about. —erica

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