When it came to putting together her first book about creative types and the very workspaces that inspire them, Habitually Chic’s Heather Clawson immediately thought of J.Crew’s own Jenna Lyons and Frank Muytjens. “Even though Jenna’s office has been seen online and in magazines before, it never looks the same,” says Heather. “It had even changed from the time I stopped by to take scouting photos to the day I shot it for my book.” She describes the assortment of subjects, which includes jewelry designer (and past J.Crew collaborator) Dana Lorenz of Fenton/Fallon and auctioneer Richard Wright, as “a chic mix of uptown and downtown, young and old, established and up-and-coming.” Heather says almost all of the people she profiled have offices filled with incredible inspiration boards that offer a glimpse into the subject’s head. (Clearly Jenna and Frank were no exception!)
For her first book signing in New York City, Heather wore our traditional British-inspired hacking jacket in sheer mint—one of her favorite cool-weather staples. Shop it here.
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For the visual displays that appear inside specialty shop Lane Crawford, our head of creative services, Ruth, was inspired by a toile-style wallpaper she’d first seen inside the historic building at 50 Hudson Street (now the J.Crew Ludlow Shop) in New York’s Tribeca neighborhood. From there, the design team riffed on the idea and decided to create a life-size cityscape inspired by J.Crew flagships throughout Manhattan to serve as a fanciful backdrop for the clothing on display.
The store design team, which includes Brandon and his assistant, Ellie, created the initial miniature renderings (which remind us of the dioramas we created in grade school) using reference images of the storefronts and architectural blueprints. Brandon and Ellie then turned their workspace into an artist’s studio, spending several weeks filling in the illustrations—which were anywhere from 6 to 9½ feet tall—by hand, using watercolor paint.
—FLORA AND FAUNA—
As part of the display, Ellie collaborated with artist Rebekah Maysles to create spot illustrations of various plants and animals one may encounter in Manhattan, including mice. (“But cute ones!” Ellie insisted.)
Ruth, Brandon and Ellie traveled to Hong Kong in advance of the opening of J.Crew at Lane Crawford to install the larger-than-life displays, which were shipped over in gigantic crates, to outfit the 2,700-square-foot retail space. The team worked through the night to ensure the display was properly placed to create a playful cityscape effect reminiscent of the Manhattan skyline.
Our set design team recently collaborated with paper-wielding wizards Nick Andersen and Julie Ho of CONFETTISYSTEM, who have been working with J.Crew since 2010.
Nick and Julie, both Martha Stewart Living alums, work out of their New York studio where each design is meticulously crafted by hand. (We’re perfectionists, obsessed with building and refining,” Julie says.) In the case of the flower garlands they designed for J.Crew, two days were spent creating more than 200 individual flowers and leaves for each strand. They worked with our set design director, Tracy, to carefully select the tissue-paper color based on the wedding and party dresses used in the shoot. “We’re really inspired by simple materials,” says Julie. “In the end, we just really want people to have fun with what we create.”
Next month, look for flower garlands by CONFETTISYSTEM in the store windows of our bridal boutique at 91 Fifth Ave in New York City. Shop our full weddings and party collection here.
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FABRIC WITH HISTORY
Oxfordshire-based mill Marling & Evans’s fine woolen cloth is renowned for its refinement—it was first established as a hand-weaving shop in the 16th century in the West of England.
READ BETWEEN THE LINING
The inside of our topcoat has a luxurious Bemberg lining, a bespoke-inspired detail you’ll recognize from our Ludlow suit. We like the Bemberg lining because it has an extra-silky hand and is favored by suit makers for its breathability and moisture absorption.
MARK OF DISTINCTION
The red design on the logo is the merchant’s mark, which hundreds of years ago would have been stenciled onto the cloth bales before they left the mill to be exported across Europe.
Ours features an exterior ticket pocket, a detail borrowed from traditional topcoats. Nowadays it’s handy for storing modern equivalents, like MetroCards, your iPhone or tickets to the Giants game.
Rika Magazine... “This magazine is a recent discovery—I love that it’s so pretty and feminine. There are no
credits inside—so it was a happy surprise when I looked online and found it was French!”
—Julie, associate art director (and resident Francophile)
The Gentlewoman… “This is a favorite read of mine because of its viewpoint
and refreshing take on fashion.”
—Gayle, head women’s stylist
Pin-Up Magazine… “I’m a total design nerd and I love the playful layout.
Not to mention it has killer photography!”
—Heather, graphic designer
See more here