New Direction – Customer Focused

Part Three Of A New Series: A letter from Designer, Stella Carakasi:

Now that we have launched our new Direct to Consumer business model we want to take this opportunity to say THANK YOU!

stella photoblog-3-2-tinyWe love and value your ongoing support and enthusiasm for our work. Nothing makes us happier than knowing we have touched your lives and made a difference in how you feel showing up in the world dressed in comfortable clothing that accentuates your unique beauty while supporting social and environmental change.

We are a fashion company that is using technology versus a technology company that produces fashion.

In our ever faster-moving world that is technology dominated, it never fails to amaze me that even young clothing companies have to “mask” themselves as being “tech” in order to succeed. I value technology, but I also value nature, the true artistry of design, high quality, mindfulness, intention, and the wide spectrum of beauty.

We believe that great companies are built one customer at a time, one relationship at a time. We are dedicated to helping you build the best “wearable” wardrobe you’ve ever had– and it doesn’t stop with your most recent purchase. We are centered on longevity and bringing value to your life every time you wear Stella Carakasi.

I invite you to sign up to be the first to learn about live product launches, fashion shows, community events and more!  Check out some of this season’s highlights:

Look for more exciting news, including opportunities for feedback and involvement. We’re in this together! Thank you for supporting what we do.

—Stella

Stella Signature

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New Direction – Direct To Consumer

Part two of a new series: A letter from Designer, Stella Carakasi

Welcome back! As I mentioned in my blog post earlier this week, 2018 marks our 25th anniversary and I am thrilled to share the exciting news that we are now a Direct to Consumer company!

DTC-Blog-2-image-1-tinyFor those of you that don’t already know, the Stella Carakasi Brand has primarily relied on traditional retail channels to sell our product. However, during the past few years, there has been a seismic shift in the retail landscape brought on by a fundamental change in consumer buying habits via online and in-store direct to consumer shopping.

To meet this demand we jumped in head first with the launch our own e-commerce site followed by the opening of our flagship store in Berkeley thus creating a shift in the way we do business. So much so that by the Spring of 2018 we have completely transitioned into a Direct to Consumer company.

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Without the middleman markups of the past, we can pass down significant savings to you without compromising on quality or design. For me, it means having a direct conversation with you, which has opened new doors to a community of women that share a passion for many of the same values that I hold closest to my heart.

Aligning our core values with our design and manufacturing practices enables us to make a bigger social and environmental difference.  

  • We strive towards becoming fair trade certified, using more sustainable materials and reducing our carbon footprint.
  • We offer quality over quantity and honor the artistry that is involved in creating clothing.
  • We believe in slow fashion because we know that less is more when less is better!
  • We are excited to bring transparency into our supply chain and share the stories of the people behind the scenes that create our clothing.

I look forward to taking this journey with you and thank you for your ongoing support

—Stella

Stella Signature

 

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New Year – New Direction

Part one of a new series: A letter from Designer Stella Carakasi:

New Year – New Direction

2018 marks our 25th anniversary and we are celebrating this incredible milestone by taking our company into a new and exciting direction that I will be sharing with you soon. I know 25 years is a long time so for those of you who have joined us more recently, I would like to start by out by inviting you on a short trip down memory lane.

In 1993, eco-fashion disrupter, Two Star Dog was launched by brothers Steven and Allan Boutrous. Shortly thereafter, I joined the team and together we created the first hemp clothing collection in the United States, which was very controversial at the time. We designed and trademarked “The Original Hemp Jeans” which quickly became a national bestseller and the company rose to the top of this niche market proving that sustainability in fashion was possible.

stella-editorial-image-1--tinyIn the mid-nineties, major growth opportunity came knocking with mainstream fashion paying attention to Two Star Dog. As the business grew, I found myself being pulled in many directions not only designing for our brand but for a myriad of other opportunities including department stores, catalogs…even wardrobe design for a few Hollywood movies.  It was easy to get wrapped up in all the excitement of the moment but I wanted to experience everything I could about the industry and all it had to offer. I think I must have traveled around the world ten times as the nineties came to a close. I learned about balance in those days, I learned about focus, I learned about priorities but most of all, I learned that time doesn’t stand still and the fashion industry somehow makes it move even faster.

stella-editorial-image-2-tinyThen, just as I thought nothing could stop us, the economic crisis of 2008 hit, taking a toll on the entire industry sparing virtually no one. During that same time, my daughter was born prematurely, sending me on a tumultuous roller coaster I was hardly prepared for. While facing the unknown, both personally and professionally I found my strength in knowing that we all have the power to change our lives with our thoughts and I chose to remain positive. Setting an example for my daughter to be a strong independent spirit became my priority, and sparked a desire to find deeper meaning in my work as well. After much reflection and contemplation, I resolved to take a stand by creating a lifestyle brand that reflected my core values, one rooted in social and environmental responsibility – a brand that would re-energize the market by inspiring women to express their individuality through design. 

stella-blog-editorial-image-3-tiny.jpgWith the help of my amazing team I began to lay the foundation for our new direction, and by Fall 2012 the Stella Carakasi brand was born. We quickly gained a following of high-end boutiques across the United States, Canada, and Australia. Not long after that, we launched our e-commerce site, followed by the opening of our flagship store in Berkeley, California – both of which created a direct line of communication with you, our customer. This conversation and sense of community have inspired me to change the direction of our business in new and exciting ways. Stay tuned for the second part of my letter on our blog next week!

Thank you for your ongoing support, it means everything to us!

—Stella

Stella Signature

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How To Pick the Perfect Lightweight Jacket

How do you pick the perfect lightweight jacket? At Stella Carakasi we are busy dreaming up key styles that can be worn year-round, in the office, or as throw-on-and-go travel essentials. Are you on the endless hunt for the perfect jacket?

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Go To Style JacketThe Go To Style Jacket. Need we say more? Constructed from hemp/tencel®, this all-season basic, is soft and rich to the touch. Why we love it: it’s lightweight and easy to layer from winter to summer, it goes with anything, and it’s asymmetrical styling sets it apart from other trench coats.
Style to Spare JacketThe Style to Spare Jacket, made from metal sateen, has a soft luster. It’s also waterproof, travel-friendly, and a notch above the crowd. We love the balance of the feminine fitted jacket with the on-trend of a motorcycle jacket. This little number is a keeper!
Made For Me JacketWearing this jacket you will know why we call it the Made For Me Jacket. Diagonal pin-tucks framed by zipper trim are the unexpected details that make this style distinctive. This is an easy to throw-on style available in a variety of neutral washes to complement your outfits from season-to-season.

Spring Style Event: Don’t Miss a Moment!

The team here at Stella Carakasi is excited to invite you to our Spring Style Event! We have customer-models walking the runway, delicious d’oeuvres, and a very special guest. We’ve created a handy guide for you to reference so you don’t miss a moment of our special event.

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5-6PM Nosh & Mingle, Sponsored by Whole Foods Market

We have teamed up with Whole Foods Market to provide bites and beauty tips for Spring! Here is a sneak peek:

Three Steps to Glowing Skin

Tips for Rosy Cheeks & Lips

Anti-Aging Skincare

Pro-Tip: Be sure to check out the skincare demo from Evanhealy. The first 50 guests will receive beauty goody bags from Whole Foods Market!

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6-7PM Spring Fashion Show

This Spring we are gathering inspiration from women who inspire us to be our best selves and encourage an air of whimsy. In this spirit, we are honored to introduce our special guest, author Alysia Helming. Through her her debut best-selling novel PROTOGENESIS she shares her imaginative world of Greek mythology seen through the eyes of her protagonist HeleneWe have crafted the perfect nod to her literary talent and the Spring season with our exclusive Protogenesis look inspired by Alysia’s book.  

Pro-Tip: Check out the preview of the “Protogena Jewelry Line” created by ANATOL, available on Protogenesis.com April 10th.

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7-8PM Book Signing with Alysia Helming

Get a chance to meet Alysia Helming and have her sign your copy of PROTOGENESIS!

RSVP for Free Here

See you there!

Refresh – Recharge – Inspire!

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Come away with us for an evening of fashion and enchantment as we show you our freshest new looks for Spring! Designer Stella Carakasi and novelist Alysia Helming 
celebrate a journey of discovery and transformation in an evening of collaboration through art and design at the Spring Style Event.

Alysia Helming, author of the novel PROTOGENESIS the first in a series: Protogena Chronicles crafts a young adult fantasy romance set in modern Greece, where ancient mythology and science fiction unite. Get to meet Alysia in person at an exclusive book signing session! 

Taking inspiration from her tale of female empowerment and mythology Stella created a unique look that channels the spirit of PROTOGENESIS.  Also, get an exclusive first-look at the Protogena Jewelry Line” created by ANATOL, available on Protogenesis.com April 10th.

Showcasing the best of her Spring 2017 Collection, fashion designer Stella Carakasi invites Bay Area fashion enthusiasts and the media to experience her latest designs.

This unique event will take place:

Friday, March 31st 5-8pm at the Stella Studio
1370 10th Street, Berkeley CA.

 

How-To Pack & Create the Perfect Capsule Wardrobe for the Holidays

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Is there anything better than a totally bespoke wardrobe created especially for you?  The capsule wardrobe is just that – the perfect micro-collection of clothing for any occasion.  With the holidays fast approaching we have compiled a capsule wardrobe and packing tips that will have you jet-set ready!

Our Capsule Wardrobe

Rare Form Cape: This cozy cape has a sweet surprise – it is reversible! The versatility of this cape makes it perfect for any capsule wardrobe. We also love wearing it in transit – it is both chic and comfortable for any journey.

Slimming Ankle Pants: The straight leg silhouette partnered with the vegan-leather front panels make these pants especially easy to pack (and forgiving on wrinkles!).  They also pair well with every type of shoe – from heels to flats and everything in between!  

Shape Shifter Top: This flattering top is an essential for any capsule wardrobe.  Not only does it work for layering but it is also timeless worn by itself.  Some added bonuses, it comes in four different colors, is made from organic cotton, and folds up easily for packing.

Tour De Force Cardigan: A cardigan….with edge!  The zipper detail and vegan-leather sleeve inserts add a layer of interest and style to any ensemble. Pair this cardigan with the slimming ankle pants for an added pop of leather.  

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Packing Tricks of the Trade

  1. Take Notes and Plan Ahead: A week or two before you travel start compiling a list of items you need to pack as you think of them.  This will help eliminate some last minute packing stress and enable you to build your perfect capsule wardrobe while you travel.
  2. Fold and Roll: One of our biggest packing secrets is to fold your clothing in half and roll it so it is neatly compressed.  The pieces in our capsule wardrobe work beautifully for this method of packing.  Not only will this save space, but it will create order in your luggage!
  3. Pack a Laundry Bag: A washable reusable bag or pillowcase make for an excellent laundry bag on-the go.  It also helps to stay organized while traveling.
  4. Keep Your Luggage Smelling Fresh: Slip a sachet or dryer sheets in with your luggage.  The scent will give you a boost while traveling and omit a fresh fragrance.