September 2 2014

styledotcom Yves Carcelle, longtime LVMH executive, dies at 66

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3 posts tagged "Phoebe Stephens"

Mexico City on the Mind


Prada, Anndra Neen, and House of Holland

Mexico City is rapidly emerging as a—if not the—hotbed for emerging art, fashion, and design. It boasts one of the globe’s highest concentrations of museums, features cutting-edge architecture (check out Museo Soumaya, a hull-like structure plated in honeycomb blocks designed by the firm FR-EE), and just yesterday, received attention in a front-page New York Times article about its increasing attractiveness for expatriate artists and entrepreneurs. It seems the metropolis has appealed to designers, too, as traces of Mexico City popped up on a host of Spring ’14 runways.

While such labels as Rodebjer and Rebecca Minkoff pulled inspiration from Mexico, the biggest splash belonged to Prada (as big splashes often do). Signora Miuccia commissioned a panel of muralists to paint her set with giant faces, which were replicated on dresses, skirts, and coats. Prada reported that political art out of Mexico—particularly the work of Diego Rivera—served as a strong source of inspiration, and the collection’s first look featured a print by Mexican street artist Stinkfish.

At House of Holland, Henry Holland paid homage to Baz Luhrmann’s 1996 hit Romeo + Juliet, much of which was filmed in Mexico City. Splendid hues and religious motifs weren’t compromised, thanks to prints—which nodded to Mexico’s deep Catholic roots—by L.A.-based tattoo artist Alex Garcia.

Considering that Annette and Phoebe Stephens—the duo behind New York-based jewelry line Anndra Neen—were raised in Mexico City, it is perhaps not surprising that notes from their childhood emerged in their latest offering. Spring ’14′s sculptural shields, triangular necklaces, and woven metal wares were reportedly inspired by Ron Fricke’s 1992 globe-trotting documentary Baraka. The designers, who produce the line in Mexico City’s Zona Rosa neighborhood, embraced not just Mexican artisanship but Namibian and MENA crafts as well. To top it off, the Stephens sisters showed their new range alongside their personal collection of Rivera works—the exact artist that led Ms. Prada, thousands of miles away in Milan, to her own effort.

Photos: Monica Feudi/ (Prada); David X Prutting/ (Anndra Neen); Marcus Tondo/ (House of Holland)

The Next Big Thing: Anndra Neen, Spring ’14


Everyone knows their Marcs from their Calvins. But as fashion month kicks into gear, we’ll be spotlighting the up-and-coming designers and indie brands whose names you’ll want to remember.

Anndra Neen

Anndra Neen, by Annette and Phoebe Stephens

Need to Know:
For Spring ’14, the New York-based siblings looked to Ron Fricke’s early-nineties documentary Baraka for inspiration. The film—which charts human activity across the world in twenty-four countries without narration—is a sweeping, nonverbal tour de force. It’s a fitting point of reference for two designers who first decided to go into business while on vacation together in Japan in 2009—and who have looked to locales as far-flung in time and space as medieval France (they were into early modern armor, to be exact), ancient Egypt, and their own hometown of Mexico City for inspiration in past collections. The pieces this season pull from a cornucopia of cross-cultural textiles, jewels, and designs: There are nickel-silver tube chokers evocative of traditional African necklaces, easy to layer or bold on their own; chain-link bracelets inspired by the patterns of Mexican rugs; and thin, armorlike breastplates that are light on the body but look ready for the battlefield. The label’s signature cage clutches make an appearance, this time made in two parts for a deconstructed finish. A minimalist, clean look (and the use of solely brass, copper, and silver) ties the handcrafted wares together. That they were presented in the Stephen sisters’ charming Gramercy brownstone-cum-atelier, alongside their collection of Diego Rivera works (he was a friend of the family’s, along with Anaïs Nin, José Clemente Orozco, and Frida Kahlo) and family photographs, brings it back home.

They said:
“In the film, you have these beautiful, strong images of a whole community praying,” reflected Phoebe. “Or you have…airplanes,” added Annette. “So it’s sort of the polar opposites. We’re inspired by all the different motifs.”

Where to Find It:
Fivestory, Opening Ceremony, Colette, Browns, Net-a-Porter, Moda Operandi, and more.

Photo: David X Prutting/

Meet The Muses: Annette And Phoebe Stephens


Girl-about-town Natalie Joos spends her days casting for shows like Zac Posen and Karen Walker and editorials for the likes of Mario Sorrenti and Mariano Vivanco, but her passion is vintage clothing. Joos’ blog, Tales of Endearment spotlights her “Muses,” impeccably styled girls and guys who share her secondhand obsession. In a new partnership with, Tales of Endearment’s subjects discuss their shoots right here on Style File.

“Our grandmother had an incredible collection of clothing and jewelry that we loved going through,” Annette Stephens, one part of the design duo behind jewelry line Anndra Neen, tells “She had her own handmade jewelry creations, amazing dresses, embroidered blouses, and crazy hats,” adds her sister and design partner, Phoebe. And their grandma Annette Nancarrow certainly knew a thing or two about art and fashion—she counted both Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo as friends. It was there, digging through their grandma’s treasure chest, where their love of vintage clothing was born. “It is interesting to us to find how elements of design evolve during the years—an amazing coat that is timeless will have slightly altered details if it is made in one era versus another, all based on what was happening in the time it was made,” says Phoebe. “We attempt to design jewelry with the same concept—pieces that will always be relevant to the moment.” Here, the sister act behind those chic clutches tells about their vintage inspirations and what’s next for the girls, who recently won this year’s Dorchester Collection Prize.

What eras are you particularly interested in terms of getting inspiration for your design work?
Costume jewelry from the seventies, Japanese textiles from the twenties, antique Anatolian rugs, 20th-century furniture, and architecture by Santiago Calatrava, Le Corbusier, and Louis Kahn, to name a few.

Do you collect specific types of vintage pieces?
We have been collecting vintage embroidered Mexican blouses and rebozos, filigree jewelry from the thirties and forties, vintage Bakelite jewelry, and Thierry Mugler, Claude Montana, Issey Miyake, and Yves Saint Laurent from the seventies and eighties. We collect items that capture our attention and that tend to be modern and classic at the same time. Continue Reading “Meet The Muses: Annette And Phoebe Stephens” »