Sunday, May 4, 2014

Santa Fe Shopping

My last post talked about visiting Santa Fe and hanging with Fiber Friends. That post discusses some of the intangible delights of Santa Fe - the friends, the snow, and the art.

This post (Santa Fe, Part Two, as it were) talks about some of the more materials joys of Santa Fe. Namely, shopping (and snoop shopping).

Santa Fe has marvelous shopping! It reminds me of Carmel, California, but at high altitude and with adobe.


Fabric Shopping!

Nancy and I, with our modest purchases

I spent my first day in New Mexico in Albuquerque, with Nancy and her husband, Tony. Nancy took me to a delightful fabric store in Albuquerque, called Nob Hill Fabrics.

This is a small, but nice fabric store. I bought a piece of fabric that I knew Margy would love. After meeting Margy at the airport, I showed her the fabric and we decided to head straight back. On the Nob Hill Fabrics website, they mention that they carry Silverado fabrics. This is a company that manufactures home dec items. Nob Hill re-sells their extra yardage, which is what a jobber does. My favorite fabrics in this store were from Silverado.

The Silverado fabric I bought at Nob Hill, which inspired Margy to head there

I stopped at Santa Fe Fabrics two years ago on my way to DOL, so I knew that it was worth another visit.

And it was!

I bought 4 fabrics. Not too excessive, but they were a bit bulky (two were wools), making my suitcase a bit overstuffed and causing Southwest Airlines to label it, on the return trip, as "Dangerous to Lift"!

Nancy and Liana study a made-up shawl at Santa Fe Fabrics

Other Shopping!

The shopping in Santa Fe is legendary! If only I had unlimited funds...

My first purchase was a pair of Fly London Shoes from Street Feet. This was my first pair of Fly Londons, but they will not be my last! They are sooo comfy. Margy also bought a pair, but in a different color.

I decided to break out of my routine, shoe color-wise. I just love these mustard yellow shoes!

The original shoelaces were beige - not my favorite color. Margy and I headed to the Five and Dime store to buy some black laces, but it would be fun to replace these with something more whimsical!

I then bought a polka dot purse (of course) at Leathers with Style.

I was hoping that it would fit my laptop, but it doesn't quite. That's ok, I love it, anyway.

That is all I purchased, though I there was a necklace that I coveted. I visited it every day but, sadly, it was far outside of my budget.

Pretty pretty!

Snoop Shopping!

Santa Fe is particularly wonderful for snoop shopping! We checked out many stores, but the store that we returned to over and over (at least 5 times) was Santa Fe Dry Goods and their new "sister" shop, Workshop.

These stores feature European and Asian designers, like Issey Miyake, Rundholz, Eskandar, Elm Design, Avant Toi, and Meiko Mintz. But, for this trip, the most compelling clothing was from Dries Van Noten, Uma Wang, and Isabel Benenato.

It was such a delight to try on these garments, and study the fabrics and construction up close. We went in so often that the sales people recognized us. They were all wonderful, but we especially enjoyed talking to Bethany, who appreciated our appreciation of these works of art.

Bethany (center - photo from their website)

Isabel Benenato

First up, there was a linen jacket, $995, from Isabel Benenato. The workmanship and detailing on this jacket was superb and it is definitely worth the price.

Isabel Benenato Linen Jacket

This jacket used a beautiful quality linen and there were almost no visible stitches. When I first saw it, I thought of Armani's silhouettes. The unlined jacket was finished with Hong Kong bindings and the center back seam was on the outside of the jacket. There were small flanges on the shoulders that extended from the armscye seam. The welt pockets were beautiful. The large button is decorative. Another, smaller, button on the other side of the jacket front closes the jacket.

Uma Wang

Somehow, I had overlooked this designer. Uma Wang, from Shanghai is a favorite of Margy's. Uma uses wonderful fabrics in her designs and fun silhouettes.

Bethany suggested I try on this orange, cotton/lurex, $3045 coat, which I quite liked, and it reminds me of a long OOP Issey Miyake pattern.

Margy wanted to try on a beautiful wool vest by Uma, so Bethany brought me one to try also. I knew that this would not be "my" silhouette, but it was fun to try. (It looks similar to a Katherine Tilton vest that Margy has made.)

Bethany graciously took a photo of Margy and I in the Uma Wang vest. The vest looks great on Margy, but is not for me. (On me, it hangs from the bust, which makes my skinny legs, extending from below, look out of proportion.)

So much cuter on Margy! The double-sided fabric is gorgeous.

Dries Van Noten

Both Margy and I particularly loved the Dries Van Noten clothing from the Spring 2014 RTW line.

I don't have pics, but I tried on this coat, which is stunning:

I don't know how the fabric was made, but it is leather and the areas between the red "leaves" are semi-transparent. Gorgeous gorgeous and it looked good on my body.

I loved these $800+ shoes. They are red and black (with a shot of turquoise). They featured a tassel at the back of just the right shoe.

I couldn't find another photo of these shoes, but the following shoes are similar, but in a high-heeled, yellow/black/red version:

The Dries Van Noten clothing also featured a lot of chiffon. (All of the Spring collections are featuring a lot of chiffon.) I loved a simple, tiger striped, red and black chiffon top. It was underlined with a coral knit and they were sewn together at the hem to create a bubble hem.

There was also a very simple top, made from black chiffon and embroidered with a barbed wire design. It was so fun and so whimsical. It was too small for me to try on, but the fabric is similar to the (non-chiffon) Dries Van Noten fabric in this jacket:

The embroidery is very three dimensional.

Also, do you notice the cowrie-and-tassel tribal belt that the model is wearing in the previous picture? They had that, too.

It was fabulous on Margy, as a necklace. (It was a bit too wide for my neck, though I loved the look of it.)

That's my summary of Santa Fe!

I'm quite busy, back in the real world. I have some big work deadlines coming up later this month. I also have some sewing-related deadlines, but more about that later.

This weekend I spent some time hanging out with my youngest daughter and writing these blog posts. But now I must get back to my current project, which is a jacket. I've printed a pattern, taped it, and am now muslining it.

I never have enough time anymore!

Santa Fe Getaway 2014

Table of Contents:

(I've already mentioned going to Santa Fe, but here's a bit more info.)

Two years ago, on my way to Design Outside the Lines in Taos, New Mexico, I squeezed in a lightning fast visit to Santa Fe. (I wrote a blog post about it.)

And I loved it!

I was thrilled to have another opportunity to spend more time in Santa Fe. Last weekend, a small group of sewers rendezvoused in Santa Fe at the La Fonda hotel. Margy, of course, I have spent time with, but the others I knew only in cyberspace.

It was such a delight to meet Ann, Liana, Nancy, Patti, and Jan, in person!

It was four days of great food and drink, great shopping, great conversation, beautiful art, comfy accommodations, excellent company... and even some singing.

Here are a few pics.


Nancy, Liana, Patti, Ann, me, Margy, Jan
Hanging in the La Fonda bar

With Ann, Margy and Jan

Lovely Ann, owner of Gorgeous Fabrics

Nancy and Liana

Stopping for Prickly Pear Arnold Palmers while shopping


We had nice weather in Santa Fe.


On our last day, Margy and I decided to walk to Canyon Road. I love Canyon Road. It's approximately half a mile from downtown Santa Fe and it's a long street full of art galleries, restaurants, and shops. There are many outside art installations along this charming street and I love looking at them.

It was a chilly morning and, while I didn't bring any really warm clothes, I bundled up as best as I could.

As we left the hotel, I noted the flower petals that were gently falling. I was enchanted by these petals. We walked the half mile to Canyon Road and the petals continued to fall. After half an hour or so, Margy pointed out that these weren't flower petals, they were snow.

I didn't believe her.

For one thing, it didn't seem cold enough for snow.

For another, this was totally unlike any snow I have experienced.

I walked up to several of these "petals" and started squishing them with my thumb. They were large, like tapioca beads. But they were snow! Little beads of snow. I squished them (this was not icy, like hail), and they were dry and crunchy.

I have never experienced snow like this before.

Margy called it Tapioca Snow.

Is that a thing?

Margy is sporting beads of snow in her hair

The snow "petals" are a bit harder to see on my jacket

As the day progressed, the snow started coming down harder and harder. We stopped for lunch at a charming cafe called The Tea Room where we had panini, soup, and salad in front of a fire.

Outside the snow was coming down more insistently. It was difficult to believe that it had been sunny the days before.

After lunch, it was coming down quite hard. As we walked into the snow (it was now falling into my boots, into my mouth, and up Margy's sleeves), it was starting to sting, more like hail.

But I loved it - I was completely enchanted. I kept stopping to take pictures and then I'd run (in my Trippen boots) to catch up with Margy.

The snow settled on my "shelf"

We returned to the hotel for some coffee and a roaring fire.

Margy makes a mean fire!

What a magical experience! I never thought I'd be in Santa Fe during snow! Especially not at the end of April.


Santa Fe is just chock full of art. Art is everywhere - inside and outside. I particularly love the outside art!

About the enter one of the galleries

Others have also posted about the weekend:

Prickly Pear Margarita at Blue Corn Cafe.