Tuesday, November 9, 2010

New look.....different ways to wear your accessories....

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Transform your wardrobe. Have fun, save that cash for something else.....

This is two of the elegant and very classic Leather Rose belts at Mano Bello, from the Flowers Collection.....Morphed into Couture goddess level funkiness....wrapped and worn as a harness, ascot or bib. A really feminine fashion restraint!
 Here again...the same two belts, wrapped & layered, coiled around as a lush bib, or decadent necklace edging it's way towards "scarf".
Love......not war! 
A morphed bandolier. Much better to arm yourself with roses.....

A single belt wrapped into an edgy halter......Any of these would carry any plain button down shirt, tee or fitted wool blazer to heights teetering on haute!

I am going to ask the StyleBubble girl to a friendly challenge of "styling with accessories"....let's see if she responds!

Monday, November 8, 2010

I'm working on photos to show the different ways to wear what could otherwise be an intensely classic leather belt.

Not only a belt, but a harness, a sash across the body diagonally, a choker, even a necklace with lots of leather ribbons to play with and intertwine. I think I could use the help of Style Bubble!
Although I am no expert, nor want to be, on designing leather accessories for bondage purposes....I do like the harness look with the belt, over a tee or a wool jacket.

I love versatility in wardrobe pieces...I love finding creative ways to mix things up and morph the intended purpose of a piece into something else that ends up quirky, funky, fun and stylish.
Shown with Chan Luu Cashmere dress, Rozae Nichols lace skirt, Der Dau riding boots & fingerless gloves, wool tights & thigh high stockings borrowed from J Crew.
Red Rose Ribbon Leather Belt     
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Wednesday, November 3, 2010

My target market.....

I've been getting sound business advice from specialized professionals in the fields of Photography, Business, Marketing & Advertising. I've leapt inside the web for hours, absorbing free information and tips from various resources.
I've learned that the "way to go" as far as becoming a successful Fashion Designer is actually pretty well laid out, with plans, strategies, predictable outcomes and how to reach them. Although not easy...it is possible and actually probable IF you have a great product AND you don't get discouraged and give up!
I have never been one to conform to "the way to go" in any part of my life. All of those "black sheep" cliches apply to me.
Just the other day, my trainer asked me why (and that everyone else wondered, too), WHY on earth do I keep my Thoroughbred's mane long? Ha! (I thought). My mare is in training for Dressage. There are strict rules and guidelines regarding manes, tack, dress, etc., if you seriously want to "make it" in that arena (pardon the pun).
Well, I said.....because it's beautiful AND I like it. It is, and I do. That simple.
I have always questioned everything and more often than not, have come up with different answers than the accepted ones. Not that I'm smarter, just a bit braver, maybe, and maybe a bit rebellious....? 
 Secretariat's great great granddaughter...."Jewel of the Cat".....(Storm Cat foal)

So, I need to reach my target market. Then, I need to seduce them with beautiful models, probably something sexy, maybe something edgy.....creating an image that the consumer will further along in their own imagination and fall in love....with my product. Then I will be successful and my products will be in high demand!
Sadly (to me) that's probably true. 
I won't go that way. I don't like what it says, what it portrays, how it teaches the public to be sheep.....herded and told what is good and what is not.

I happen to love my designs. Why else would I make them? Sometimes I won't sell one, because I just have to have it for myself. 
So, then all I have to do is find other women out there that are like me!
The funny part is that I do not like shopping, I do not like being told what's in and what's not, I happen to like keeping my cashmere sweaters year after year and my wool slacks and jeans year after year. I love finest quality textiles, don't mind paying for them....and they laaaassst. Classic styles, I find timeless...like Audrey Hepburn....and today, Rene Russo. Update the quality classics with the right accessories! 
I find myself,even, being seduced by some of the J Crew catalogs of late. They have the most beautiful models and photographs...I can't help but love cover to cover......but, I go no further, since they have all of their products manufactured in China. There's always an ethical element involved for me. I think.
So, I am adopting a slogan for my new shop. "Keep the wardrobe......transform it with the right accessories". It's better on the environment, on our wallets and on the battle to remain "in" which changes from week to week.
Take that black turtleneck and that dark gray pencil skirt to heights challenging today's fashion, with a beautiful leather bustle.....or a feminine trio of red roses at your waist.
Because YOU like it. Because it's fine quality. Because it's NOT available at Nordstrom's or Saks.

Designer or Business woman?

More Mano Bello Leather Couture Bustle belts
This is my joy.....CREATING  my designs...............
Although I love what I do, and I can't imagine NOT doing it, I need my skill to supply financial sustainability in order to keep doing it....If you take that a bit further, it just keeps going around in a never-ending circle!
Rearing it's scary & ugly head

(to creative people, anyway), comes the process of marketing and promoting to the world.
The need to be seen, to be a presence in the world of fashion, to be acknowledged as a real Designer. All necessary in order to sell my creations.

Daunting, scary and most of all, keeping me from actually designing and creating.....this task is.
I would love for someone to be all of these things for me. Be my photographer, model, director, promoter, spokesperson, marketer......  create my press kit!
Am I dreaming?

Monday, November 1, 2010

Models & Fashion on Etsy

Here's a compilation of things I love on Etsy composed into a Treasury list, which is somewhat like viewing a magazine page with all of my loved things on 1 page.....available at 1 place!
I am busy designing and creating my new line of Leather Belts which will be ruffled and somewhat like a bustle.
They are coming out beautifully and I should be launching them along with photos to my etsy shop by week's end.
In the meantime, here is a new necklace design featured recently in my "Flowers Collection".