Meredith Wendell’s Glass Act
Confession: I’ve been fully reveling in all of the urban warriordom that’s dominated the Fall collections so far. We’ll all need something lean and savage to wear to the econ-apocalypse, right? But discovering
the happily ultra-vivid new collection Meredith Wendell created has turned my head. Designer Meredith German—Wendell is her husband’s first name—worked on accessories at Marc by Marc Jacobs for the past five years. She attributes her highly attuned color sense to a childhood in Lewisburg, West Virginia, a town with a Dorothy Draper-designed resort and denizens; indeed, the grandparents who raised her dressed daily in their bright, eclectic best. At the heart of German’s line of belts, jewelry, and bags is colored glass, crafted specially for her in a factory in Indiana that originally supplied Louis Comfort Tiffany. “With glass, you get the feeling of it being art teacher-y,” says German. “But that’s not what I’m doing.” In fact, quite the opposite. Framed in matte 18K gold, her rainbow of glass is sliced into flat dots that embellish little suede pochettes and belts, or the graphic shapes that form the super-chic leopard design on the wrist strap of an evening clutch. She terms her aesthetic “uptown awkward,” but there’s something infectious about her slightly-off combinations, like olive glass on rich magenta suede. My favorite is the pleasantly lightweight jewelry, which also riffs on German’s skeletal leopard motif. Prices range from $245 for a plain belt to $945 for messenger bags. It’s not in stores yet, but German had a full slate of appointments in New York, and starting today will be in Paris seeing buyers at the Ritz through Wednesday.