Thursday, July 30, 2009

Pumps & Pleats: Live the life of a pop-up shopper

The FancySexyMe team plays tug of war

Story and photos by Michèle De Meglio

The newest fad in fashion is the pop-up shop. Brooklyn has done Manhattan one better by having a 10-hour shopping party featuring the coolest emerging designers the borough has to offer.

The first-ever Williamsburg Indie Designer Soiree, held at the Arsenal on Roebling Street, offered shoppers a chance to score the newest and sweetest apparel and accessories from local artists. Many pieces were even available at a discount!

Bob Bland, Arsenal’s founder and the soiree’s organizer, displayed wares from her unbelievably awesome Brooklyn Royalty clothing line ( The most mind-blowing pieces had to be the lime green bandana and matching top that changed color with the wearer’s body temperature. The bubble gum pink that appears makes for a Claude Monet inspired watercolor print. Talk about a mood ring for clothing!

I couldn’t resist the bold jewelry from Prospect Heights-based Brookadelphia ( The flashy necklaces are made of laser cut acrylic that’s reminiscent of mirrors. They range from $30 to $50 and come in a variety of colors, shapes and sizes. My favorites are the pink unicorn (oh, childhood memories!), a mish-mashed line of tiny black circles, and gold splatters that channel images of Nickelodeon’s famous slime.

The Red Hook-based duo behind Ruffeo Hearts Lil’ Snotty ( has created an 80s-inspired line of men’s and women’s apparel, including underwear in a color-block blend of purple, blue and brown, bright green and pink nylon short-shorts, and a super impressive blue sweatshirt featuring abstract shapes in various neon colors.

I absolutely adored the 60-inch-long necklaces from Williamsburg-based FancySexyMe ( The gold chains, $45-$60, serve as never-ending rows of glittering Swarovski crystals, which can be worn as one long strand or looped around your neck for three layers of bling.

Don’t count out Social Rebel ( Ever. The Williamsburg-based line brought an array of $25 T-shirts to the soiree that were emblazoned with a massive image of a woman’s head attached to a sharp blade. Designer Yana Galbshtein says the “Stella Von Dagger” persona represents women’s unrelenting strength. Fashion and empowerment — that’s a good pair!

Adding a dash of celebrity to the mix is Desira Pesta (, who recently auditioned for fashion reality show “Project Runway.” Although asked to come back for the show’s next season, Pesta’s creations are a hit in her Red Hook home base. In particular, a $220 cherry red sheath with oversized ruffles is made of a cotton Lycra blend but feels like the richest satin.

An intricate jewelry line from Karen Keith ( features the coolest creations reminiscent of vintage brass pieces. Keith uses recycled materials to create chokers and long chains adorned with dangling old-fashioned keys. Now that’s making trash work for you!

The second Williamsburg Indie Designer Soiree is scheduled for August 22 from noon to 7 p.m. at the Arsenal, 153 Roebling Street, studio 4B. Designers hoping to sell their goods at the event should e-mail, call 877-294-2728 or visit

Michèle De Meglio is a native Brooklynite addicted to all things chic. Check out Pumps & Pleats each week for more adventures as she scours the borough for fab duds and accessories.


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