• Built by Wendy Scrapbook

    Established 1991: First 20 years of Built by Wendy

  • (1991)  When I was in college in Kansas I spent all my waking hours outside of class pretty much designing and making clothes.  My style at the time was very punky-prep Swiss Miss and I would make tons of these corduroy skirts with ric rac and floral trims.  I would sell them on consignment at record stores, like Wax Trax in Chicago, since those were the only shops I liked.  At the time I also did sewing alterations for students to pay for more corduroy. My first Built by Wendy label was trying to be a cooler version of those sewing labels your grandma used that said "Made with Love by Grandma".  Check out my pre-computer graphic design, pretty sweet.  

  • (1992) I used to sell clothes I made each week on a clothing line on my front lawn in Kansas. I literally hung them from a clothesline and people thought I was having a yard sale and offer me like $1 for a dress I made.  Here is another homemade flyer.  Yikes! Check out the bumble bee with top hat.  I think the reason why this was a "blowout" was because I was moving to NYC in a few weeks to study at FIT to get more "real" skills. My mom taught me basic sewing but I wanted to learn more patternmaking.  I was actually a childrenswear major there because it seemed less scary.  Here's a photo of me and my mom: I made that flannel plaid babydoll with corduroy peter pan color but what's up with my mom's outfit??  

  • (1993) I remember going to a show at ABC NO RIO and thinking it was the scariest neighborhood I had ever been to. I soon moved a block away. The good thing was that I discovered TG170 on Ludlow St. and started selling my line there. I'm not sure how much of a "line" I had. I pretty much was just experimenting with different fabrics and shapes like this spandex western style empire waisted minidress!!??? My friend was studying graphic design at Cooper and did this classy logo for me. I got a job at a record store called Rocks in Your Head on Prince St.

  • (1993) This year I met Judi (Judi Rosen NYC) and Nika who owned 3 Jills and a Jack on 9th St. Our friend, Christy Bush took these photos of us which appeared the following year in Interview's Ones to Watch section. It was my first press piece!  

  • (1994) I knew Thurston from Sonic Youth because he would shop at Rocks for vinyl. He interviewed Liv Tyler for Bikini Magazine in my mini shop.

  • (1994) I started making guitar straps as a reaction to all the women who were starting to pick up the bass or guitar.  I hand silkscreened the vinyl labels which doubled as a pocket for your pick. I contacted K Records to sponsor the picks. My first sale was to Dave Stewart of the Eurythmics for his wife Siobhan of Bananarama.  Not bad.

  • (1994) Most of my friends at the time went to Cooper Union.  We had my first fashion show in one of their lofts on Bowery.  I think I had like 5 outfits.

  • (1994) One of my Cooper friends was a photography student and we decided to do a shoot around the East Village in some bars and my friends practice space.  Irony free zone.

  • (1994) I had heard that Kim Gordon was doing a line for X-Large called X-girl so when I ran into her at Brownies on Ave. A I asked her if she needed help (I knew her a little through Thurston).  Here’s a shot from the guerrilla show staged outside the Marc Jacobs show on Mercer St.  Chloe Sevigny was in the “bride” outfit in a white minidress.  That’s J. Mascis of Dinosaur Jr. in the black hat.  I remember it was either the day after or day before Kurt Cobain killed himself and I was in Kim’s apartment working on the collection.   Everyone was weirded out and sad.

  • (1995) My friends opened a record store on Ave. A called Adult Crash.  I worked there and they also let me have a corner to have a mini shop.  Here is another one of my really Kool flyers.  

  • (1995) They had a belated grand opening party at Under Acme where I had a fashion show and I think DJ Spooky did the music.  He shopped at Adult Crash.  My Cooper friends built this backdrop to look like a record.

  • (1995) Being written up in the New York Times was so exciting.  It was an article about music and fashion i.e Kim Gordon designing X-Girl and me selling clothes in a record store.  I also became friends with Mike D of the Beastie Boys so I helped design some men’s stuff for X-Large.

  • (1995) I was friendly with Melissa Auf der Maur, who played bass in Hole.  She gave one of my straps to Courtney who wore it in a music video and on tour.  It seemed like around this time so many bands wore my guitar straps.  I have made every single one by hand.

  • (1995) By this time I was selling to a few stores and it was difficult to work all day and sew every night. I had worked for a few months after FIT in 1993 at this lame junior sportswear company in the garment district.  I became friendly with the lady who sewed their samples.  I quit (after they copied some my designs I showed them) and she followed soon after.  One day she called me to say she is starting her own factory and would sew my line.  She still does to this day!

  • (1995) Steven Alan had come into Rocks and ordered some of my pieces to sell in his Wooster St. shop.  I introduced him to some other young designers and told him of the need for sales representation.  Soon after the Steven Alan Showroom launched.

  • (1995) )  Wow check out my look!  That’s me MODELING in the New York Times magazine.  I try not to model that much anymore, sorry world.

  • (1996)  I had a fashion show in the windows of TG170 with Alleged Gallery.  Everyone stood out on Ludlow St. which turned into a giant block party.

  • (1996) Bill Cunningham rode up on his bike and covered it for the Sunday Times.  He said to me “You’re gonna make it here”.  I imagine him saying “kid” at the end but I don’t think he did.  Either way, he made me truly feel part of NYC.  It was around this time I met my really good friend, Robin Tunney when she was hosting a wrap party for “Kids”.  She also modeled in this show and has continued to model for me over the years.  Wait is that pre-Vmag Stephen Gan?!

  • (1996) The clothing that I showed was mostly vintage-y looking styles in calico florals, and preppy gingham, and dotted swiss- kind of a nod to my Kansas days.  We shot this with my friends modeling in their apartment.  Before digital it was so expensive to do photography so I don’t have that many photos.

  • (1996) Around this time I started meeting more up and coming famous people like my friends Jeremy Davies (yeah it's the dude from Lost) and Samantha Mathis (remember her from Pump Up the Volume?) I got them to model for me.  My friend Christy Bush took a lot of these photos from back then and also modeled for me.

  • (1997) Spring 1997: This is what I consider to be my first real Spring collection since I was expanding my business and really wholesaling now to boutiques all over the US and in Japan.  The look was still very much influenced by my Midwest and Kansas roots:  plaid, gingham, bias binding, and fancy stitching.  We shot this in my boyfriend's apartment on Ave. C using friends as models.

  • (1997) Fall 2007: I went back to my love of corduroy. I focused on textured cord and printed cord - both which I still love!  I also was honing my perfectly fitted women's button down shirt which back then was hard to find. My first Barney's order was for these rose appliqued dresses. This was shot in my friend Les' studio on Mercer St.

  • (1998) This was the year when I opened my shop. It was/is on Centre Market Place in between two gun shops.  The gun shops closed but I’m still here! I was still influenced by children’s/ nature book imagery.  The horse logo was the first of many animals representing Built by Wendy.

  • (1998) I think this was the first shoot I did using a “real” model.  OK she’s my 9 year old daughter – kidding!

  • (1998) Spring 1998: I had this fashion show at Westbeth Theater with a bunch of my friends modeling.  It was tons of fun!

  • (1998) Fall 1998: I had my first fashion show during NY Fashion Week. The collection was a mix of my versions of classic American brands Wrangler, Woolrich, Pendelton, etc. I was getting nostaglic for my midwest preppy roots.

  • (1998) Tons of my friends showed up and it was very 90's rock -- members of the Beastie Boys, Sonic Youth, Pavement, Blonde Redhead, Cibo Matto, and Jon Spencer Blues Explosion were there. I actually used to make custom pants for Jon and also styled a couple Pavement videos.  

  • (1999) Here’s some pieces from my Spring 1999 line – you can see where I got my horse logo.  

  • (1999) Spring 1999: I held a fashion show out on the street in front of my shop during fashion week (which was in the Fall of '98).  It turned into a big block party!

  • (1999) I had my friends model again.  They popped out of silver a curtain from inside my shop. 

  • (1999) Fun times with gingham and ric racked canvas!

  • (1999) I had my friend Dave's band play and served kegs of beer. No one really knew about this street so we were able to do it without being busted.

  • (1999) Fall 1999: I was part of a group fashion show at Bowery Bar.

  • (1999) I still think this wool tweed hooded pullover holds up!  I had a CB jacket like that so I wanted to do a fancy version.  I think I was doing a sophisticated Little Red (in Grey) Riding Hood thing here.

  • (1999) It was in this collection that I could finally afford to use nice fabrics like boiled wool, wool jersey, and even silk!

  • (2000) Spring 2000: I kept up with florals, plaids, and canvas playing around with shapes.

  • (2000) Fall 2000: I had a fashion show at Fez, under Time Café.  My friend, the artist Marc Swanson, painted this background for me.  I think it was around this time I changed my logo to be a cardinal to represent Illinois, which is where I am from.

  • (2000) More corduroy and ric rac!  Oh and me in a hot pink corduroy new wave jacket that I made.

  • (2001) For Spring I did a shoot with my friend Ricky Powell in his backyard in the West Village.  It was this collection where I started getting into my preppy and nautical roots with lots of cotton pique and stripes.  I designed my own prints for the first time too - the stripes really did my head in.  I love the lower corner fisheye lense shot - so classic Rickster from his Beastie Boys days.

  • (2001) Fall 2001: I had a show at Mirabelle Marden’s loft on Bowery (it was her dad, Brice’s old studio).  I got to cast real models this time with names like Malin.  

  • (2001) The collection was inspired by my favorite book/movie To Kill a Mockingbird mixed with the feeling of Thanksgiving and toy musical instruments.  I also did some t-shirts using Boo and Scout.  

  • (2001) Oooh who’s using fancy fabrics!  I got to design that floral stripe – kind of a more sophisticated version of my Swiss Miss days.

  • (2002) Spring 2002: this collection was my love letter to all that is preppy and nautical mixed with my personal obsession with summer camp.  Kathleen Hanna from Bikini Kill, Adam Horovitz from the Beastie Boys, and James Murphy (pre-LCD) dj’ed.  AND a Thin Lizzy cover band called Fatt Elizabeth played after and I died.

  • (2002) I had plenty of Sperry Topsiders and Minnetonka moccasins mixed with seersucker and stripes.  Basically this is my fantasy version of what I wore at camp in Wisconsin.   My friend, artist Marc Swanson painted the background for me again.  This show was postponed because of 9-11.  I was actually doing the final touches on an outfit when I went outside and watched Tower 1 fall.  I was in such shock I went back in and just kept sewing for hours until I realized there would be no show.  I completely forgot about that until now.

  • (2002) More red, white, and blue nautical prep looks.  I styled the models with those sailor rope bracelets that I wore in summer camp.  You had to wear them in the lake to shrink to your wrist and you would cut them off at the end of the summer.  Jane Magazine wrote about how I used them and later they became pretty trendy…just sayin’.

  • (2002) Fall 2002: this collection was about me in junior high in '81.  What I wore, what my mom wore, what my stoner neighbor who invited me to see Neil Young wore.  It was this collection that I solidified my love of plaid shirting and quilted paisley printed duffle bags and jackets.

  • (2002) More sweet fashions.

  • (2002) Plaid and piping.

  • (2002) Here are some models waiting to go down the runway -  kind of looks like Karen O and Lizzy Trullie - oh wait that IS Lizzy.

  • (2002) Around this time I became mostly inspired by growing up in suburban Chicago.  I made this Risky Business tee because everything about that movie I loved and it fully captured my teenage life…minus the prostitution.  I also made a dress inspired by Rebecca DeMornay from the movie a couple years ago.  She continues to be my muse!

  • (2002) I ran this ad in the Onion. It was an idea so specific I think maybe like 5 people got it, which I think applies to a lot of ideas I do. When I was growing up Mr. T moved to Lake Forest, IL, a beautiful wasp-y wealthy suburb known for it’s trees. He cut down all the trees on his property because he was allergic. I think this image came to me in a dream or maybe I was just spacing out either way I think I traded my friend Arik Roper a pair of jeans to draw it for me. He thought I was weird.

  • (2003) This year I launched my pop culture influenced t-shirts starting with some scenes from one of my favorite movies "Bad News Bears".  Soon after I did "Willy Wonka", "Gene-Gilda", and "Little Darlings" (aka Smoking & Drinking) with a bunch more over the years. Check out my t-shirts section.

  • (2003) Here's my shop with my cardinal logo. I used this for a few years until I decided nature was out of fashion - kidding!

  • (2003) Spring 2003: this collection was a mix of earthy pieces in linen stripes and muted colored denim.  Then I also threw in very 80's Ton Sur Ton sweatshirt style dresses and tops and some pastel terrycloth colorblocking.  Something for everyone?!  

  • (2003) This skirt is very this season Celine if it were made out of leather!

  • (2004) When I was at camp we always went fishing and sat on those rag woven mats. I had my own  little box of bobbers. I wanted to capture that summer-camp-in-Wisconsin feel that I had. At the time I did my own version of LL Bean ragwool sweaters and Hudson striped blanket jackets and shirts. I still have my duckboots from the ‘80’s.

  • (2004) Spring 2004: for this collection I continued doing BBW versions of preppy classics like golf shirts and jackets using my cardinal logo in the way Polo uses it's horse embroidery.

     

  • (2004) I started doing a little bit of menswear throughout the years - sort of bits and pieces whenever I felt like it. I got my friend David Cross to model this shirt that is embroidered with a drawing Marcel Dzama did for me.  I love this photo because it shows the store wall which I painted to be like SAT scantron forms and I glued wood greek alphabet letters on the wall.  I was sort of obsessed with schooling like boarding school, prep school, and fraternity stuff.  I did a men’s sweat jacket silkscreened with Greek alphabet running up the sleeves.  It wasn’t a big seller.  I also did my "Hi" shirt where the word is embroidered on the collar- made for my shy guy friends as a conversation starter.  Dudes from Hawaii like it too (HI). 

  • (2004) Fall 2004: for this collection I did an English countryside boarding school vs. American Prep school vibe sort of like Woolrich vs. Barbour. I had a show at the local public school in Chinatown. I made tops with an SAT scantron print and did a t-shirt called Bloody Faced Boys which was inspired by the rite of passage for any boy – getting socked in the face-in some of my favorite coming of age movies such as Flirting, Harold and Maude, If, and My Bodyguard (not Whitney Houston). Please watch all these movies!!

  • (2004) Amy Sedaris did this hilarious shoot for us. I still to this day can’t believe I dressed her up and she busted into different characters just for me - all day!  She is the coolest. Around the same time my friend Jauretsi interviewed me for Jane Magazine about which classic established brands I would love to collaborate and reinvigorate.  I gave a list of my faves: Woolrich, Barbour, Sperry, Keds, Pendelton, LL Bean, Wrangler and a bunch more.  Wrangler called me up and Wrangler 47 launched in the Fall.  Sweet!

  • (2004-2006) - I was hired as creative director by Wrangler to design a premium denim line for them. It was called Wrangler47. It was a ton of fun.  I did everything -  concept, design, patternmaking, fabric design, casting, styling, art direction --I mean seriously everything except sew the garments myself.  It was a huge success.  I look forward to doing more collaborations like this. 

  • And it was fun to take the Wrangler brand up a notch and try a modern take while still offering updated vintage reissues.  

  • I loved this shoot- we did it in LA to give a 70's Kris Kristofferson Topanga meets Nashville vibe.  

  • It was fun to design a bandana print with their logo and also offer the classic Wrangler leather patch in white leather- hot!

  • White hot.

  • Oh I love that mini leather patch, so cute. 

  • We shot this out at Robin Tunney's friend Andy's ranch in CA.  He's a real cowboy. The shoot practically art directed itself!

  • My friend Athena modeling some cute gauzy summer Wrangler.  

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  • (2005) I opened a store in Williamsburg. Originally it was my warehouse and I would pull a curtain across to create a tiny storefront open on weekends. Things picked up around there pretty quickly and I ditched it as a warehouse.

  • (2005) Soon after I opened a store in LA on 3rd St. near the Farmer’s Market.  I had a nautical theme going on that season and wrote out Built by Wendy in sailing rope on the wall.  I also made giant God's Eyes for the walls as surveillance.

  • (2005) For my LA store opening we had a big party. My friends band Early Man played heavy jams in the back and celebs like Busy Phillips, Jack Black, Catherine Keener, and Spike Jonze showed up. Then of course we all got crazy and ended up in the pool at the Chateau – JK!

  • (2005) Spring 2005: this collection was my ultimate mix of all the things I love: Pierre Deux Provencal prints, nautical Saints James stripes, Japanese Ikat, Hudson blanket stripes, and Greek decorative detailing a la the classic NY deli coffee cup. Oh and mixed with a reggae colored dreamcatcher which I embroidered on the back pocket of a bleached out jean.  FYI I think I actually still have some of those left…is 6 years ago considered vintage yet?  

  • (2005) It doesn't stop!

  • (2005) For some reason, I will introduce concepts together that can be questionable like combining an NYHC (New York Hardcore) logo with Japanese branches on a terrycloth beach coverup dress?

  • (2005) For the first year of Record Store Day my friend Will Oldham ran around the city playing live at four record stores then played at my shop.  We cleared out all the merchandise in the NYC store and they set up in the window for a crowded store and street.  Here’s me and Will as white people. 

  • (2005) Fall 2005: this collection was about ice skating and hockey in the Midwest and Canada meets Native American culture.  So basically it was Chicago Blackhawks Hockey team, Neil Young, and my favorite ice movies "Ice Castles" and "Slapshot".  I designed this digital native american blanket inspired print which I actually did for Fall 2003 (I can't seem to find pictures from that entire collection- ugggh) and recolored for this season.  I actually did it again currently for Fall 2011 in new colors.  I love this print.  

  • (2005) I had my friend, artist Marcel Dzama (and a Canadian who loves hockey), draw up an image of a native american shooting an arrow at a hockey player for me which I silkscreened on blouses that looked like hockey jerseys.  I also did shirts with the lyrics from "Tonights the Night" printed on them.  I gave one to Neil Young when I met him, wait sorry, I mean when I ate cheese fries with him after his show...just sayin'.

  • (2005) I was really into ice skating growing up. Ice Castles is to girls what Slapshot is to dudes. I was so psyched when I wrote Built by Wendy in braille on this card which was also a t-shirt I made. 

  • (2006) Spring 2006: this collection is one of my favorites. I did a splatter paint dress print like this as well. 

  • (2006) I worked with my two great friends Robin Tunney and photographer Melodie McDaniel on for this shoot. So much fun!

  • (2006) The collection was comprised of many of my print designs: a Marimekko inspired print of eagles flying that looked like clouds in the sky in an ikat style (love to all that is Marimekko,  I wish could design for them!), a print called "No, YOU broke my heart", and a beachy stripe with bleach stains all over it. I also brought back 80’s punk style bleached jeans which I tried to make preppy with this weird tennis vest.

  • (2006) My first sewing book, Sew U is released. It was the first of 4 in a series I authored.  As a self-taught sewer it was fun to be able to share what I have learned over the years.  

  • (2006) Also at this time I was approached by Simplicity to develop a line of commercial sewing patterns. I used to collect vintage patterns from yard sales so doing my own patterns was  DREAM!!  I had to micro-manage a mini anxiety attack just being in SImplicity's offices.  The line was called Built by You, which still makes me laugh.  My good friend Beci Orpin illustrated all my sewing stuff. 

  • (2006) Fall 2006: this collection was a mix of my versions of classics inspired by hunting and military gear.  It is still a constant reference in many of my designs mostly because I always shopped at army-navy stores as a teen.  Here is my hunting jacket done is a super large buffalo plaid which I super sized even more and my Peace in the Middleast tee worn with painter pants.

  • (2006) I did a military disasters theme which was inspired by Graham Nash's "Military Madness" and a commentary on how ridiculous war and violence is. 

  • (2006) I’ve always been a big fan of Toiles so it was fun for me to do postmodern version substituting futuristic imagery. I also did this Empire penguin print - they are so cute!

  • (2006) My friend Amy Poehler modeled for me. She is so awesome! I also worked with her designing the UCB theatre 10 year anniversary t-shirt.  

  • (2007) Spring 2007: this collection was classic nautical and beach again - it was titled Where the Wind Takes Me and the print to go with it was a sailboat without the boat part.  It was kind of how I felt at that time.  I also did more sporty inspired pieces like this dress inspired by Rugby jerseys using white rubber buttons.

  • (2007) I did more Saint James stripes in various shapes and did my own version of the  Fila patch using my cross arrow logo.   Plus I did anchor embroidered dresses, white fishnet tanks, more classic grey gym class fleece, canvas motorcycle jackets, and striped beachy bajas in luxurious fabrics.  

  • (2007) Here's more of me doing my versions of classics - i.e Varsity jackets and Osh Kosh style painter pants. I also made this tee shirt called Bi Polar, which makes me happy (and sad).

  • (2007) Fall 2007: this collection was all about Greenwich, CT.  My friend Annabel Mehran shot this at a family friend's house up there - this house was self art directed, incredible.

  • (2007) I was going for an Ice Storm vibe. I wanted to make clothes for school and for when you had to dress up because your parents were having people over.  

  • (2007) For the shoot I wanted to capture that feeling of reading in your room, the doorbell rings and your parents call you to come downstairs.  

  • (2007) I designed more textile prints this season including one of my favorites, Swan Lace. I was really into the ballet and Swan Lake (pre-Black Swan!)

  • (2008) Spring 2008: I was really into Hawaiian prints after a trip to Kauai but again mixed with my more personal memories like this Wet Paint shirt which is a version of one I had as a kid that said Ice Cream. I also did a dress to look like an LL Bean tote bag with BBW monogrammed on the chest, and some more bleachy Ton Sur Ton vibed chambray and frayed seams ala ‘80’s.  I also used some of my giant God’s Eyes from my LA store décor as props.

  • (2008) So many of my faves mixed together: florals, provence, denim, buffalo gingham, bandanas and bandeaus - what!!!

  • (2008) We shot this up at my friend Jean's house in Nyack.  

  • (2008) I was really into the Police in junior high (just up until Synchronicity). I always love the Ghost in the Machine album cover and when I found it one day shopping for used vinyl it inspired this print. Next season is Purple Rain floral - look out Fall 2012!

  • (2008) I opened another shop – this time in San Francisco. Looking at this photo makes me sad because the store was open for 5 minutes then I closed it because I got cold feet with the recession. I closed LA too. Bye bye CA!

  • (2008) Fall 2008: this collection was called "Winter Light", and it was inspired by classic family films such as Pippi Longstocking, Swiss Family Robinson and The Sound of Music. Liesl Von Trapp singing “I am 16 going on 17” sort of became my muse for this collection.  It was a mix of Scandanavian and German influences. 

  • (2008) It was all very luxury apres ski vibe - Alpine sweaters, corduroy knickers, boiled wool anoraks, plaid flannel smocks, blanket stitched sweaters and Edelweiss floral print dresses.  This is one of my favorite collections infused with so many of the things I love - it's pretty and formal, yet relaxed and warm. A lot of it was inspired by memories of childhood.  

  • (2008) I imagine myself wearing these looks during family holidays sipping hot cocoa by the fire at our home in Stowe, VT. That or ordering Chinese take-out by myself in my 5th floor walk up on the Lower East Side, whichever. 

  • (2008) I held a presentation/party for this collection during NY Fashion week at a friend's gallery on Great Jones Street. I did slideshow projections on the wall using vintage images from exotic winter vacation spots like Gstaad and the Swiss Alps that I bought on Ebay and served hot spiced cider and Tobblerone candy. Joanna Newsom played harp. Cute boys popped by like my friends Justin Theroux and Ryan Adams. It was solid.

  • (2008) This year I also designed uniforms for my friend Erin's bakery, Babycakes NYC.  I hope everyone has had their donuts, seriously.

  • (2009) Spring 2009: this was another great shoot I did with Melodie McDaniel in a rented mansion to look like the South of France. It was LA. The collection was inspired by Eric Rohmer's movie La Collectioneuse and I cast the model to look like the woman in the movie. 

  • (2009) I wanted to give a feeling of summer with a little bit of a 60's feel. 

     

     

  • (2009) All things relaxed, rich, and summertime in Provence. 

  • (2009) Fall 2009: for this collection I sort of did a meeting of East and West; taking inspiration from sources like Bernardo Bertolucci’s The Last Emperor, from Roman Polanski’s Tess, and from the photography of Guy Bourdin.  

  • (2009) I wanted to design a collection that called to mind both the subdued elegance of a Parisian boudoir and the dramatic flair of Asiatic aristocratic grandeur. Ok I had my English major cousin write that. The floral print of the dress to the right  is a copy of the wallpaper in a Guy Bourdin photo (scroll through a couple more and you will see it in my fashion show collage) and the other dress is my “To Life” print - Le Chaim in an 80’s new wave/asian style (I used to have a crop tee from Limited Express like this except it was Japanese letters- this is my jew-y version). Is Limited Express now just called Express?  Wait what happened to The Limited?

  • (2009) Some more looks!  I love this model- Nasrin- she was so cool to work with.  

  • (2009) This was the first fashion show I had in awhile. As you can see for the last many years I focused on just doing my stores and making clothes.  I don't really love doing shows,  I kind of figure my job is done once I've done my photoshoot.  Anyhow, we built this set to recreate elements of the Guy Bourdin photo that inspired part of this collection.  That was pretty cool. We had a fun after party at my buddy Frank's restaurant, Frankies.

  • (2009) In the fall I was a guest on the The Martha Stewart Show! I showed her how to make a poncho using a frying pan as a measuring tool.  I think we really hit it off and from what I heard Martha doesn't love all her guests.  She even asked to keep the poncho so she could wear it while riding her horse over the weekend. She was really cool!

     

     

  • (2009) Through a collaboration with the Director's Bureau, two Built by Wendy fans/friends of mine - Kahlil Joseph and Gia Coppola/Tracy Antonopoulos - made short films using my 99 Red Balloons Dress and my Negative Dress (aka Filmstrip Dress) - a portrait of late cinematographer Harris Savides.

  • (2009) My friend Sofia Coppola used my baja striped tennis dress for Elle Fanning'scharacter in her movie Somewhere. It made the poster!

  • (2009) My dog Julie was born to model.  Then she became totally high on herself.  She actually hit me over the head with a shoe because I didn't send "one of my dummies" to get her a juice on the last shoot.  

  • (2010) Spring 2010: this collection was called "Still Life". I drew inspiration from the foundational elements of creative practice—sketching, painting, sculpting.  We did this shoot at the New York Studio School, which has a rich history - The Whitney Museum had studio spaces there back in the day.

     

  • (2010) I designed a bunch of prints and graphics like this one called "Still LIfe" to look like pencil sketches. I also used stripes inspired by Bridget Riley and soft pastels inspired by Agnes Martin.  

  • (2010) As usual I like to add some world culture inspired pieces which I refer to (internally) as World Beat (haha) such as Chinese frog closures, Provencal “Arles” print dresses, Greek sailor pants, Abstract tribal knits and prints, Out of Africa style crisp white shirtdresses and rumpled linen safari jackets, Blue and White/ Delft China printed blouses, and Indian mirror embroidery pieces. 

  • (2010) The muse for the collection was a mix between my artist friends and the fancy girls who work at galleries.  They are worldy, educated, stylish women bustling between studio visits, openings, and Art Basel-- and probably spent the summer at Skowhegan. 

  • (2010) Fall 2010: this collection was inspired by architecture and design of post-war Germany's Bauhaus movement and the photgraphy of Josef Koudelka. His black and white images of eastern European youth-in-revolt really provided a dramatic backdrop. The collection was entitled "Building of the Future".  My friend Jesper took this photo of our friend Johan's office.  I thought it really captured the feeling I was looking for.  

  • (2010) My friend Glyis Arban shot this.  I love the muted feel.

  • (2010) Some of my favorite pieces- a cashmere version of a long john union suit (I think Stella did one similar in 2011) and a sweater in a menswear herringbone. 

  • (2010) In high school I always wore a bomber so it was fun to recreate it on a luxury level (I think Chloe got the same idea for 2011).  

  • (2011) Spring 2011: This collection was inspired by Maria Schneider from The Passenger. She and Jack Nicholson are on the run, driving through Spain in a convertible. Her style was casual, sexy and unintentional.

  • (2011) I designed more prints this season such as this floral print named Marbella after the luxury vacation spot plus more dotted swiss prints (as usual).

  • (2011) I also did a Batik style print and this Marrakesh print inspired by some tiles I have in my kitchen. 

  • (2011) At the end of the summer I gave my NYC flagship store a much needed facelift! We re-opened our new doors a couple months ago.  I wanted to make the space more earthy and simple to shine more light (literally) on the clothes and reflect my personal aesthetic more. All the furniture is actually from my apartment.  

  • (2011) My website also got an overhaul!

  • (2011) Fall 2011: this season I pared down my collection to things I just want to wear.  I did some basics like my overalls pants, cable knit sweaters, and herringbone coats.  But I also added some shiny gold details in the form of linings and collars plus introduced some new prints like my paint spot + stripes print that sort of looks like animals but it's actually paint AND recolored my classic digital blanket print for the 3rd time since 2003 (I figure why not since Proenza Schouler made it in fashion this season).  

  • (2011)  I brought back my child lap tee from 2008 that was so popular but this time in plush Japanese cotton.  I also figured out a new way to do painter overalls (throughout the years I have used this classic style as an inspiration for pants, tee shirts, dresses, jumpers, and skirts) by make it into separates.