Weather Vain: Barcelona, Spain - 63 With a Chance of Rain

Right about now, NYC weather is making us wish for more temperate climes…and, ok, papas bravas. Here’s what we’d love to be rockin’ in Barcelona today. —erica

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Clockwise from top left:

+ An easy, no-nonsense M. Patmos dress that can handle too many tapas at Quimet y Quimet.

+ The sort of Jérôme Dreyfuss bag that Gaudí would be allll about.

+ An Iro jacket fancy enough for some shopping in Eixample.

+ The sort of Acne boots that would fit right in at the bar Hook—as in, the movie (and, ok, lots of other places, too).

+ Fortune Favors the Brave studs—the sort of easy-to-pack jewelry that you can wear every damn day.

+ A Nettie Kent necklace that feels as polished-but-quirky as the city itself.

More forecast-dressing goodness! Over here!

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Asia Ragland Gives her Spanish a Workout

She travels to dig up inspiration and really fly local jewelry.


Asia at the Tikal Mayan ruins in Guatemala—a little excursion during a trip to Belize.

After a college study-abroad stint in Spain, Asia Ragland, the lady behind the super-slick metal-and-enamel jewelry line Feliks + Adrik, got the itch to explore Latin America. Here are the places she’s visited (slash fallen in love with) and a look at the amazing souvenirs you can land if you steer clear of the touristy spots. —courtney mccarroll

Score the ring Asia made for us that’s influenced by some of her adventures. These suckers are going to go fast.


Spain
“I studied abroad my second year of college in Salamanca. For spring break, my friends and I made our way south to the coast of Cádiz. It looked like something straight from a cinema still. There, I found the quintessential seashell: perfect in shape, not a crack or piece missing. The owners of a Chinese restaurant—believe it or not, there are so many in Spain!—gave me a piece of waxed rope string. I tied it to the back of the shell, and it became a keepsake.”


Costa Rica
“I’ve been to Costa Rica three times, and Manuel Antonio National Park is now a favorite place of mine to visit. The beaches are pristine and surrounded by rainforests. I met a young couple from Buenos Aires there who had been traveling throughout the Americas mining for stones and applying them to silver rings they crafted. I sat with them on the beach, chose a stone and a shape for the ring, and met them at the market the next day to collect my piece, engraved with their signature.”


Belize
“My first time to Belize holds a very special place in my heart. My girlfriends and I were lucky enough to get a private boat ride out to the barrier reef where we got to snorkel and drink rum punch while listening to our Rastafarian captain share stories of his adventures. My token from this trip was a ring purchased from a local artisan walking along the beach one evening. I selected the stone while my friends and I played with his children as he told us all about his craft.”


Mexico
“I spent the last few days on my trip to Mexico last year in San Cristóbal de las Casas, and the city took me by surprise—and introduced me to a Mexico I hadn’t experienced. Indigenous populations like the Tzotzil and Tzetzal tribes that still speak in their native tongue and live in villages on the outskirts of town, venturing into the city to sell their wares. On my last day there, I purchased this seashell and seed necklace from woman and her daughter, and it’s become the inspiration for my spring/summer 2013 collection.”

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Meet Blanca Monrós Gómez

Come on in—the jewelry is fine.

Blanca Monrós Gómez started big—industrial-design big. When she went to school—after moving from Barcelona to Boston and living there for six years—she studied the field, focusing on furniture and sculpture. “I thought that way I could do a little bit of everything,” recalls the designer, now a Brooklyn resident. “But then I started doing silver- and goldsmithing. I don’t know—something about the scale of jewelry-making felt right. And also the time frame: I could sit down and make something and finish it. I’m not very patient.”

Just as Blanca settled on her new direction, she moved to New Haven for her husband’s architecture program at Yale. “I was a little bit scared. I wanted to do jewelry, and we were going to a little town in Connecticut,” she explains. “I was very lucky to find Derek Simpson—he has a jewelry store there and took me under his wing. He’s one of those truly old-fashioned craftsmen who fabricates everything himself.” And on top of skills, he gave Blanca the contacts she needed to score some of her amazing stones (like rare gray diamonds) in New York’s Jewelry District.

Though her first designs were bold, playing on her sculptural training, once she got going, Blanca’s work became tinier and tinier, and she started incorporating bits of nature into her pieces, casting seedpods for a ring or branches for earrings in gold. “I’m one of those people who picks things from trees and find things on the sidewalk—other people are like, ‘What are you doing?’” The fine jewelry transformations of these scraps—well, they get a different response. —erica

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Of a Kind

I’m not daring enough to wear leggings as pants, but damn it, this pair by We Are Selectors is making a convincing case for the other team. —jiayi

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The spring lookbook from Masscob—by a Spanish couple with coordinating law degrees—sells a monochromatic look hard. Head-to-toe rust/chartreuse/cobalt, you guys. —erica

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Of a Kind

Barcelona-based Deux Souliers makes the kind of sandals you can wear every single day—even those when you’re in dire need of a pedicure, thanks to the cut of the peep toe. —erica

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