Moms across Fairfield County might be disappointed to learn that the northeastern children’s clothing retailer, Rugged Bear, is going out of business. After outfitting kids for more than three decades, Rugged Bear filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy earlier this year. The Company announced this week they will be closing all locations.
The silver lining for area moms is that Rugged Bear locations will remain open until their existing stock is sold -- and at discounted prices. An employee at one of the Fairfield County locations said she anticipated area stores will be open through the spring. Find Rugged Bear in these Fairfield County towns: Darien, Fairfield, Greenwich, New Canaan, Old Saybrook, Ridgefield and Westport
Are you sad to see Rugged Bear go? Share your thoughts here, or on our .
Meredith Haute has the Midas touch when it comes to jewelry making. The pieces in her new, eponymous line are elegant but simple, bold and delicate all at once. Call them paradox pieces. They reflect the complex combinations of a woman’s personality.
“I started as an antiques collector and dealer,” says Meredith. “I specialized in Art Deco jewelry. Those pieces are old, so I had to learn how to rework and repair them. I had to learn about the metals and the beads and the tools. I’m a creative type, so it was only a matter of time before I decided to start making my own pieces.”
And just over a year ago, that’s exactly what she did. At first, she kept it quiet, showing mainly to close friends only. But six months ago, Meredith launched her line into the public eye. Since then, she’s enjoyed a reception worthy of a rock star. Her unique designs are in boutiques across the country. Meredith’s following stretches from Manhattan to Florida to right here in Fairfield County, where you can find her unique designs at Westport’s Suzie Creamcheese.
“I like to mix metals -- sterling, copper, gold. I use a lot of semi-precious gems. I love garnet and pyrite. For me, it’s about balancing the strong and the soft in a piece.”
This balance exemplifies Meredith, too. On her path to high-end jeweler and entrepreneur, this mother of two made pit stops working for Oprah Winfrey’s first website and as Meryl Streep’s personal assistant, just to drop a few bold face names from her resume. Working in the limelight isn’t for the faint of heart. “Being a celebrity assistant is tough,” she laughs.
With the spotlight now trained on her, Meredith is poised to take center stage, thanks to the delicate balance she brings to her art and her life.
Oh, baby, spring is almost here. And that means your wee ones will need to get outfitted. BabyBox of Darien is hosting a trunk show that can help. From sundresses to swimwear to shoes, this trunk show is loaded with labels like Bella Bliss, Little English, CPC Designs, Busy Bees Kids and Snapper Rock. With looks for kids ages 6 months to 16 years, there’s plenty to peruse at this show.
It’s all happening March 2-4. Unpack the BabyBox trunk show at 22 Tower Drive, in Darien. For more information, call Katherine Type, at .
Chelsea Tyler has style, and a fashion pedigree to prove it. A graduate of the Parson’s School of Design, she earned her professional chops doing public relations for chic labels like Yves Saint Laurent, French Connection and Nicole Farhi. She also did in-house time at fashion institutions such as Harper's Bazaar and Details magazines.
This haute couture heavy hitter is now in business for herself as a personal stylist at CJStyles. And lucky for you, she works right here in Fairfield County.
“I’m a stylist for women who want a wardrobe refresh, or who are just kind of stuck and don’t know what to do with what they have,” says Chelsea. “I help women choose from and improve upon on their current wardrobe.”
Chelsea’s clients range in age from 28 to 65. “I work mostly in Fairfield County, and sometimes in West Hartford. I meet a client at her home for an initial consultation and wardrobe edit. Then, I shop for her.” She doesn’t just get to have all the fun. Chelsea will do the heavy lifting for you, too. She’ll help you find the resolve to let go of those pieces you haven’t worn since the Reagan administration, and handle any necessary returns or exchanges of your new purchases.
The Women’s Group of the Darien Community Association is in the mood for spring, just like the rest of us. In honor of the milder months ahead, they’re putting on a fashion show. Models will show off looks generated from the Darien Community Association Thrift Shop, in support of their mission “to provide educational, cultural, recreational and civic programs; to generate funds for scholarship and other philanthropic works within the community; and to maintain Meadowlands as a community resource.” All featured looks are high-quality, couture style for spring, and will be available for sale at the show.
The show happens Tuesday, March 1, at 12:30 p.m., at the Darien Community Association, located at 274 Middlesex Avenue, in Darien. Make your reservation by calling . Tickets are $5 or members and $10 for non-members.
Are you ready to spring into the season in a thrifty way? Send me your photos and thoughts from the front row of this local fashion show at .
Maybe you won’t be walking the red carpet yourself this Sunday, but you can still dress like a star for your Oscar party. It’s an evening of glitz and glam and there’s no reason you should be left out. Pulling off your party look is simple, and you already have everything you need in your own wardrobe.
1. Get ready for your close up – the Oscars are a dramatic endeavor, so infuse a little drama into your evening with your hair and makeup. Go with a bold, smoky eye, or bright, berry-stained lips. Ditch the pony tail and do your ‘do right. Spend a few minutes with a wide-barrel curling iron and you’ll feel runway ready.
2. Shine on – the Oscars wouldn’t be the Oscars without bling. A sparkly clutch, a shiny, dangly pair of earrings or other bold, blingy accessory will leave you feeling like a star.
3. Go for the PG-13 rating, at least – Oscar night is sexy and your outfit can be, too. Pull out that great top with the neckline you’d never wear to the supermarket. Or what about that clingy wrap dress that hugs you in all the right places? Don’t be afraid to slip into something slinky on Oscar night.
As Joan Rivers would say, "Who are you wearing," on Oscar night? Even if it's pajamas, you can let me know here.
Mark your calendars, fashionistas, because local designer Jennifer Butler's spring fashion show is just around the corner. Jennifer's Made to Measure line is a collection of custom pieces you won't find anywhere else. And on March 25, she'll show all her latest looks at the Delamar Hotel in Southport. Looks will go from day to evening and casual to bridal, and all promise to bring Jennifer's signature flair.
Cocktails, hors d'oeuvres and plenty of mingling with the chic and style savvy make this an evening not to miss. Need another reason to go? Tickets are only $40 and proceeds for the evening benefit the Fairfield Library. Call to get yours.
The season is heating up! Which fashion shows are on your agenda? Email me at and maybe we can snag a spot together in the front row.
There’s nothing quite as stylish as helping those in need. March 4, Westport’s chic retailer, Mitchells, is pulling out all the stops for Near and Far Aid’s fifteenth anniversary spring gala.
This year, the evening is Carnevale themed, which means fashions will push the limits. Expect bold but wearable looks on display, and flirtatious Venetian masks at the door. Music, movement, dinner and dancing will make this evening to remember. Live and silent auctions on premium wines add to the evening's flair. And of course, it's all for a very good cause.
Mitchells is a longtime supporter of Near and Far’s commitment to eliminating the causes and effects of poverty in Fairfield County. "They're extremely charitable," says Weston resident, Heather Dermont, a Near and Far Aid supporter and Mitchells shopper. "And that's important to me."
This fashionable fête has raised $8 million for local charities since 2000. This year, at least 600 style makers and philanthropists are expected to attend.
Tickets to this elegant evening are still available. It's an evening to look good, do good and feel great about it all.
Mitchells is located at 670 Post Road East, in Westport.
Will you join the generous and chic at Near and Far Aid's annual gala? Share your thoughts on the evening here, or post your photos on our .
Doncaster turns 80 this year, but it doesn’t look a day over 35. I’m talking about the women’s clothier, of course. The family-run business has been dressing women for the better part of a century, but the spring line for 2011 is as current and contemporary as ever. Marjorie Barnes, the District Business Development Leader for Doncaster, walked me through the latest collection recently, which she was showing in her home. Doncaster doesn’t operate any brick and mortar stores, opting instead to offer highly-personalized attention from local consultants who work directly with customers. More than retailers, these consultants act as personal stylists. They work by appointment only, and are as well-acquainted with the clothes as they are their customers. When I visited with Marjorie, she shared some of Doncaster’s secrets for helping women look their best.
“One of the most unique things about our collection,” says Marjorie, a Westport resident, “is that we run a full range of sizes in all our styles. We go from size two to a size 24. Many women find that when you go to a store, they stop at size 14. But at Doncaster, we know women come in all shapes and sizes. We also carry a very good selection of petites.”
Doncaster’s sping line explodes with all the same colors, cuts and patterns you’ve seen on the designer runways. And the haute couture overlap doesn’t end there. “Our designer, Patricia Clyne, comes out of the couture market. And Doncaster has always been known for offering couture quality. Our fabrics come out of the same mills as some of the best designers. But our price points aren’t nearly as high. Detailing and quality are paramount,” she says, showing me a beautiful cotton/linen tweed jacket with smoke troca shell buttons and silk chiffon trim.
Shop. Eat. Save. is back for another round of shopping steals and tasty deals. Thursday, Feb. 17 through Sunday, Feb. 20, savvy shoppers will enjoy discounts at some of their favorite restaurants, and vice versa.
Here’s how it works. Go shopping at one of the participating stores and you’ll get 20 percent off at a participating restaurant. Or, enjoy a meal out, and get 20 percent off your retail purchase. Simple, right?
Your Home Town Online -
Dedicated to the Neighbors
Who Make Stamford Special