SS15 RUNWAY SHOW FEATURING BEN SOLLEE & FRIENDS

We chose to hold our Spring/Summer 2015 fashion show in the Refectory, the same place we debuted our Fall/Winter 2014 presentation back in February. Located in The Highline Hotel in New York’s Chelsea neighborhood, the Refectory features exposed brick and stained glass beneath rows of chandeliers. Originally the dining room for the General Theological Seminary, located on the same block; today, students still gather there for lunch.

Another thing that didn’t change this season: Billy’s commitment to having the models walk to live music – specifically, the 1977 Heart song “Love Alive,” re-interpreted in a special arrangement by Kentucky-based cellist Ben Sollee. A trio of his Brooklyn-based musician friends rounded out the mix: Clay Ross on acoustic guitar, Melissa Tong on violin, and Jeremy Kittel on violin.

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Billy Reid + Alabama Chanin Cotton Project

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Billy picks cotton from our organic 7-acre field we shared with Alabama Chanin in 2012. Photo by Rinne Allen

In May 2012, we partnered with fellow CFDA designer and neighbor Alabama Chanin to plant a seven-acre cotton field in Northwest Alabama near our Florence headquarters. That fall, with the help of over 300 friends, family members and colleagues, we hand-harvested our organically grown cotton and celebrated the pick over barbecue by our friends at Jim ‘n Nicks. Photographer Rinne Allen’s piece in last week’s New York Times T magazine documents our collaborative cotton journey from harvesting to spinning to final garment production. The project has been one of love, learning and slow anticipation that has come full circle with our limited run of 100% Alabama grown and sewn organic Cotton Project Tees, sold in stores and online by both Billy Reid and Alabama Chanin.

“It is something we are very proud to have accomplished and to have been a part of with Natalie and everyone at Alabama Chanin,” Billy said.

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Ben Sturgill of Everything Magazine

Craftsman

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Everything magazine editor and stylist Ben Sturgill, in his home in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. Photos by Chad Davis

Born in West Virginia, Ben Sturgill has been working in New York as a stylist for over two decades. During that time, his work has appeared in a wide range of respected magazine titles as well as visual campaigns for fashion companies, including Billy Reid.

Last month, we were honored to have Ben work on our FW14 image campaign. While chatting on set, we learned that he was much more than just a talented stylist: Ben is the founding editor of Everything, a thick, photo-heavy magazine that clocks in at almost 300 pages.

As New York was ramping up for Fashion Week last week, Ben was gracious enough to carve some time out of his schedule to answer a few questions we had about his first publishing venture and to welcome frequent Journal collaborator Chad Davis into his beautifully appointed apartment in Brooklyn’s Greenpoint neighborhood to snap some pictures.

Journal: Everything magazine is a unique concept in that there is minimal text; photography dominates the entire issue - uncommon for any publication, even one devoted to fashion. What was your inspiration for the format?

Ben: Honestly, when I look at fashion magazines, I mostly just look at the photos. So I wanted to embrace that. I liked the challenge of speaking in a purely visual dialogue. The magazine is laid out in a way that each “story” or portfolio speaks to the one that follows it in an abstract way. The “reader” can find their own narratives by studying how the images are placed next to each other. I liked the openness of that.

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FALL/WINTER 2014 PRINTS

Billy’s Design Notes

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Fall/Winter 2014 prints are designed in-house and are featured on several pieces in both the men’s and women’s collections. Photos by Fred Mitchell

Our prints are designed in-house, and for the Fall/Winter 2014 collection, they play a more prominent role than ever before in both the men’s and women’s collections. Billy works closely with textile designer Drew Botts in our Florence design studio to carry the first hint of an idea through the process of developing from original pattern to printed fabrics to finished garment.

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Tom Colicchio

Made To Measure

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Tom Colicchio, wearing a custom suit from Billy Reid’s Made To Measure program, takes a breather in the lounge at the Sunset Tower Hotel in Los Angeles before leaving for the Emmy Awards ceremony on Monday, August 25. Photo by Amy Dickerson

Celebrity chef Tom Colicchio has long been a Billy Reid fan. He’s worn Billy’s designs on television and in his personal life for years, and for the 2014 Emmys ceremony this evening, he chose to have a Billy Reid suit custom made through our Made To Measure program.

A few short weeks ago, Tom was filming an episode of “Top Chef” - for which he has been nominated in the Outstanding Reality-Competition Program category many times, including this year, with a win in 2010 - a couple of blocks from our New York City Bond Street store. After the wrap, he stopped in and a Billy Reid associate took measurements, suggested fabrics and sent a rush order out to our factory in Boston. The fashion world all but shuts down for the month of August, so our production team had to perform a small miracle to get Tom’s suit patterned, cut and sewn in time for the big event.

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Shindig No. 6

Last weekend, Billy Reid celebrated another year of fashion, food, music and friendship at our annual Shindig celebration. Hundreds of guests descended on The Shoals for the fun, which kicked off on Friday afternoon with music in Florence’s Wilson Park, featuring Dan Dyer, Dylan Leblanc, T. Hardy Morris, Nikki Lane and the legendary Donnie Fritts. Headliners Wild Cub and The Apache Relay played the Shoals Theater later that evening. Saturday morning started with a hearty cajun-inspired Big Bad Breakfast by our friend Chef John Currence followed by a panel discussion about the intersection of food and fashion with guests Ashley Christensen, Kerry Diamond, Billy Reid, Andy Ticer and Michael Hudman. Drolly titled “Chicken & Dressing,” it was moderated by John T. Edge of the Southern Foodways Alliance. Barbecue by Jim ‘n Nicks fed hungry guests at the lake party Saturday afternoon at the lovely home of the very generous Allan Rappuhn. An after-party candlelight performance by Phosphorescent and the mother-son team of Madisen Ward and The Mama Bear finished out the weekend.

Highlights from Shindig No. 6 are captured in this short film by our Court Street neighbor Wes Wages of Armosa Studios.

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Billy Reid’s Florence

Tour Guide

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Billy sits outside Pegasus Records on Tennessee Street. Photos by Abraham Rowe

As we ready ourselves for Shindig No. 6 this weekend, we wanted to share some of our favorite restaurants, music venues, shops, and things to do and see in and around Florence. There are many reasons Billy established his flagship store and corporate offices in North Alabama, and a strong-knit community is definitely one of them. As you see from our list of independently owned and operated businesses, many of the proprietors are friends with a shared vision for building and maintaining our beloved Shoals. Here’s a brief guide to our Florence, Alabama (and beyond).

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Danny Clinch

Shindig Special: Craftsman

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Danny Clinch gives his new book a once over at his studio in Manhattan. photos by Nina Westervelt

Our annual Shindig is a celebration of the creative culture that informs our company culture and serves as a touchstone for our overall aesthetic. Music and photography are integral to the experience. So asking famed photographer Danny Clinch to exhibit work from his upcoming monograph at this year’s gathering was a no-brainer.

Lucky for us: Danny, one of his generation’s most prolific photographers, having shot generations of rock groups and world-class icons over his 30-year career - think Johnny Cash, Pearl Jam Tupac, Tom Waits, Bjork, and Bruce Springsteen, to name a very few - was more than happy to play along.

"Still Moving" is both the title of the book and the public installation at our Florence store that Danny very kindly agreed to share with our community and weekend guests next Friday and Saturday. As an added bonus, on Saturday night the studio will host an artist Q&A with Danny moderated by noted photography expert Susan Sherrick, partner and director of Sherrick & Paul, a new gallery opening this fall in Nashville.

The show will hang in the photography studio attached to the store at 114 North Court Street in Florence, on Friday and Saturday, August 15 & 16, from 10 am to 5 pm. The Q&A will take place at 7 pm on Saturday. All events associated with the exhibit are free and open to the public.

In advance of his show, Danny was happy to welcome fellow photographer (and our friend and frequent Journal collaborator) Nina Westervelt, into his NYC studio for a little shoot, not to mention indulge the Journal in a pre-Shindig Q&A session. Consider it a warm-up for next Saturday night’s festivities…

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Taylor and Griffin Goldsmith of Dawes

Craftsman

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Taylor and Griffin Goldsmith of Dawes. photos by Abigail Ross

Earlier this summer, we had the pleasure of sitting down in Nashville with brothers Taylor and Griffin Goldsmith of Dawes while they were on the road with Conor Oberst. We were sitting on Conor’s bus outside The Ryman, where the same week a year ago Dawes themselves had played an epic show to a sold-out crowd. That was a magical night, and it ended with everyone dancing and jamming on stage at The 5 Spot in East Nashville until the wee hours.

It was a special feeling, then, to be back talking with these guys about their lives as artists and true craftsmen for the Journal. The Goldsmiths are some of the kindest gentlemen you’ll come across, and they’re very humble about the success they’ve achieved.

Below, an edited version of our chat, accompanied by wonderful photography from Los Angeles-based photographer Abigail Ross.

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Taylor Tehan’s Austin

Tour Guide

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Checking out the record selection at End of an Ear Records. Photos by Matt Rainwaters

Growing up in rural Texas, Austin was the place in which those who were strange went to find solace from their conservative counterparts. Naturally, I gravitated to Austin at an early age. The city is changing rapidly, but the bones of what have always made the city ‘weird’ still remain. There are so many places and people that I have grown to love over the years. To list them all would take far too much time. Here are a few.

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