Fashion, Film and the Jacket



Those who want to stick it to the man are generally bound to have a good jacket. In this list we chart the best threads in our characters’ arsenal for kicking ass – from the snakeskin and fur coats of blaxploitation cinema to the ubiquitous leather of the American rebel, and we come out the other side with the ultimate postmodern symbol of the consumer fetish in that scorpion jacket in Drive.

The leather jacket, which features heavily in this list, has a rich cinematic history – from the American outlaw biker epitomised by James Dean and Marlon Brando to its female equivalent in the leather-clad dolly bird Marianne Faithfull in The Girl on a Motorcycle (1968) and Madonna’s cult ’80s look. Finally, it reemerges as a sleeker ’90s number in Fight Club.

Most of the characters on this list have one thing in common – on the fringes of society and facing pressure from The Man, they’ve finally had enough. Here’s to fighting the revolution in a leisure suit.

The Wild One (Laslo Benedek, 1953)  
It seems appropriate to start with the quintessential film jacket to end all film jackets. This leather number (a Schott Perfecto, if you’re interested, marked with the insignia of the Black Rebel Motorcycle Club) led to a surge of popularity and sudden banning of leather jackets in schools around the country. The jacket was thought to inspire a threatening new demographic – the teenager, in their pursuit of wild kicks. “What are you rebelling against, Johnny?” “Whaddaya got?”

Cleopatra Jones (Jack Starrett, 1973)

The Amazononian kick-ass babe Tamara Dobson plays Cleopatra Jones, a high fashion government agent trying to sort out some drug traffickers – all while keeping cool in a fur bomber jacket, with flares and heels.

Wings of Desire (Wim Wenders, 1987)

Demel (Bruno Ganz) is an angel hovering high above the city of Berlin. As he falls in love with trapeze artist Marion (Solveig Dommartin), and surrenders his angel immortality, the long black coat of the angels is replaced by a bright and mismatched second-hand jacket. He wanders around awkwardly. The coffee is too hot. The perils of an all-too human world besiege him.

Scorpio Rising (Kenneth Anger, 1964)

The iconic biker’s leather jacket is reinterpreted in Anger’s beautiful experimental film, as we follow a gang of gay nazi bikers as they wreak havoc and get into fights. The sequins on the jacket double up as the opening credit sequence, too.

Rebel Without A Cause (Nicholas Ray, 1955)

Another iconic little number here: James Dean’s bright red jacket seduced audiences when it first hit the screen, setting his character apart as a man of passion at odds with society, and irrevocably changing what teengagers perceived as ‘cool’. This may well be the most good-looking jeans-and-white T-shirt combination in cinema. Go on, show me a better one.

Wild At Heart (David Lynch, 1990)

“This here jacket represents my individuality and belief in personal freedom”. Little known fact: Sailor’s famous snakeskin jacket was actually Cage’s own.

Shaft (Gordon Parks, 1971)

Private detective Shaft (Richard Rowntree) is a man in charge of his own destiny, and looks badass doing it in a series of leather jackets from black to suede. As “the cat who won’t cop out, when there’s danger all about”, Shaft patrols the streets of a rather dingy looking early ’70s New York.

Miami Vice (TV show, 1984-89) 

’80s pale-coloured power suits are clearly the name of the game. The sheer volume of pastel shades (Crockett and Tubbs wore about 5-8 outfits in each show, ranging from pink, blue, green and fuschia) was meant to replicate the Art Deco style of Miami’s architecture.

The Baader Meinhof Complex (Uli Edel, 2008)

When not sunbathing topless in a terrorist bootcamp in Palestine, the RAF like to show off their radical chic credentials in a classic take on the leather-jacket-and-shades combination. Violent revolutionary Andreas Baader (Moritz Bleibtreau) at one point chucks his beloved jacket at a young revolutionary. Possessions are evil, man.

Pulp Fiction (Quentin Tarantino, 1994)

As prizefighter Butch Coolidge (Bruce Willis), that suede jacket cuts a mean shape whether he’s jacking motorcycles, or murdering a sadistic shop owner with a katana in a sex dungeon. “Zed’s dead, baby, Zed’s dead”.

Drive (Nicolas Winding Refn, 2011)

A white satin bomber jacket with an embroidered scorpion technically shouldn’t work. But when’s it hanging off the chiselled frame of Ryan “Least Convincing Badass in Hollywood” Gosling, it looks pretty darn good. The film’s costume designer Erin Benach based the look on Gosling’s love of Korean souvenir jackets from the ’50s. The scorpion came later as a tribute to Anger’s aforementioned Scorpio Rising. Rest assured you can buy yours at one of several online retailers.

Desperately Seeking Susan (Susan Seidelman, 1985)

Susan (Madonna)’s jacket – with its exotic gold pyramid design with an eye on the back, provides the link between her and Roberta, as identities mix and collide, inextricably linked in the plot through the very jacket. As Laura Mulvey, in 1998, observed: “The jacket will provide the means of transporting Roberta into the other world where she in turn will get caught up in danger and romance by temporarily ‘becoming’ Susan”. The gold pyramid reflects the exotic life that Roberta associates with Susan, while resembling the dollar bill. Like the scorpion jacket in Drive, this look will come to make big bucks.

Midnight Cowboy (John Schlesinger, 1969)

Joe Buck (Jon Voight) is a naive and well-meaning Texan, whose assertive Southern masculinity is emphasized by a cowboy hat and boots, and that fringed suede jacket. Unfortunately, in the late ’60s New York “scene”, this translates as camp kitsch, and he winds up hustling men in old cinemas.

She-Devils on Wheels (Herschell Gordon Lewis, 1968)

A key fashion item of any gang is the labelled jacket (see here). Also seen in The Warriors andGrease, the colourful varsity “Maneater” jackets of this fearsome all-female biker girl gang The Man Eaters, would make a cracking look for a hen night.

The Runaways (Floria Sigismondi, 2010)

Costume designer Carol Beadle did a great job at capturing the glam-rock style of ’70s girl band The Runaways. Joan Jett (Kristen Stewart) wears some great leather jackets here, but it’s this hot pink power shoulder number that steals the show, effecting a move away from the band toward her solo career.

Kill Bill: Vol. 1 (Quentin Tarantino, 2003)

Uma Thurman’s bright yellow biker jacket holds out as a pretty iconic look for being a badass bitch.

Superfly (Gordon Parks Jr.,1972)

Costume designer Nate Adams coordinates some awesome threads for this follow up to Shaft – expect sweet sheepskin and snakeskin and suede for sticking it to the man in style.

Fight Club (David Fincher, 1999)

Tyler Turden (Brad Pitt)’s stylish, worn red leather jacket resembles a contemporary take on James Dean’s in Rebel Without A Cause. Its origins are disputed – either costume designer Michael Kaplan bought it at Decades vintage shop, or it was a one-off original design.

Blue Velvet (David Lynch, 1986)

Dean Stockwell plays Ben, a camp drug dealer pimp in a super sweet paisley satin smoker’s jacket, ruffled shirt and smoking from a cigarette holder. Though only in one scene, he owns it with his rendition of Roy Orbison’s “In Dreams”.

Mystery Train (Jim Jarmusch, 1989)

There are two defining jackets for the price of one here: Screamin’ Jay Hawkins blinkingly bright red suit number as the psychotic Memphis night clerk of a rundown hotel, and the labelled leather jackets of an Elvis-obsessed Japanese couple (played by Youki Kudoh and Masatoshi Nagase). It seems appropriate for a filmic homage to Elvis, the man who made the lary sequin jacket a quintessential part of costume history.


Saudi “Non-Feminist” Revolution…

Saudi Arabia’s first ever anti-domestic-abuse ad.

When it comes to women’s rights, Saudi Arabia takes baby steps to a whole new level of infancy. (In utero steps? Spermy steps?) Sure, the King Khalid Charitable Foundation launched the country’s first ever anti-domestic-violence ad last month, but women are still unable to defend themselves against those same domestic-violence cases in court. In 2013. 

One other huge breakthrough that I’m sure would have Susan B. Anthony setting off streamers in her grave is new legislation that allows women to ride bicycles. Granted, they still have to be supervised by men—but bicycles! Think of the endless freedoms that come with finally being able to cycle around Riyadh, a city not built with cyclists in mind whatsoever!

Oh, also, girls in private schools are now allowed to play sports, but girls in state schools still can’t. So, much like in other parts of the world, the amount of rights a person gets depends entirely on their wealth. 

Despite these forward-thinking changes, Saudi Arabia was still ranked 131 out of 134 countries for gender parity in the 2012 World Economic Forum Global Gender Gap Report. So recent, optimistic reports of Saudi Arabia going through a “feminist revolution” seem a little off the mark.

I spoke to Nouf Alhimiary, a 20-year-old photographer from Jeddah, about the challenges she faced when trying to put on an art exhibition about Saudi women in a country where basically every minutely inflammatory art piece gets banned from public display.

VICE: Hey, Nouf. How come you were only allowed to display half of your exhibition?
Nouf Alhimiary: You know that thing where you take a picture of your outfit every day and post it on Instagram or Twitter? I thought it was interesting that a lot my Saudi friends do that when they’re out of the country, but can’t do it here because they have to wear the exact same thing every day: the abaya. I wanted to create a parody of that by photographing women wearing the same thing in different places. I wanted to call it What She Wore/ What She Wore Underneath. The plan was to take pictures of all these women in the abaya, take pictures of whatever they were wearing underneath, and then display both pictures together.

But you weren’t allowed to do that?
The curator for the Mostly Visible show told me I couldn’t do it because the government would have rejected it. In Saudi Arabia, the government has to look at every art project that’s going to be exhibited to decide whether or not it can be displayed. The curator told me that if I included pictures of women outside their houses not wearing the abaya, they wouldn’t display it.

So what did you do?
I settled for What She Wore, which I actually like because it makes you ask, “Why do all these women look like they’re wearing a uniform?” But even though I only displayed pictures of women in the abaya, a lot of people at the exhibition came up to me and asked, “Why are you trying to change women?”

Are you trying to change women?
I’m not really trying to change anything. I’m just asking for the option to either wear the abaya or not. I’m not asking for tradition to be diminished, I’m just asking to be able to make that choice for myself and not have other people do it for me.

Were you angry that your work was censored?
Being born in Saudi as a woman, I’m used to it. I wasn’t really outraged. I kind of saw it coming.

I imagine these photos have a different impact on people who aren’t from Saudi Arabia and don’t see a whole population of women dressed like this all the time.
To someone who’s not from Saudi, it looks strange because you’re not used to people looking very similar. If you’re from Saudi, you’re used to seeing women dressed in the same thing. But seeing these pictures together makes you think, You know what, maybe we’ve taken it too far. Saudi men have the option of wearing traditional outfits or jeans and a shirt, and women don’t have that choice.

A lot of the Western press is saying that Saudi Arabia is going through some kind of feminist revolution, what with the release of the recent anti-domestic-violence ad and the change in bicycling laws. What do you make of that?
When I heard about the cycling law, I thought it was ridiculous. I mean, come on, you can now ride a bike with a guardian? You might as well be driven in a car. The streets in Saudi are not made for cycling. It’s like the government is saying, “Look, we’re giving you something! Shut up, women!” No one wanted this. No one demanded the right to cycle.

Do your friends share your opinion?
Everyone jokes about it. Everyone thinks it’s really ridiculous. As a woman in Saudi, you’re always a minor, no matter how old you get. You always need a guardian watching over you. Even if you need surgery, a man has to give you permission. I also know a lot of people who want to travel outside of the country, but they can’t because their guardian won’t give them permission.

Do you think your photographs will help to change things at all?
The change is very slow and there are a lot of obstacles standing in its way. Young, educated women are trying, but most people are too brainwashed to think for themselves. But I do think art is the most useful tool when it comes to promoting feminism in Saudi Arabia, because you can speak about so much and still be vague.

How did you get into photography?
I started doing photography when my dad bought me a camera in middle school. In Saudi, you don’t really hear about photography that much. I used to look at pictures in magazines, but the people in the magazines we had didn’t look like the people around here.

What was different?
You wouldn’t see pictures of women in the abaya. Even in Arab magazines, the pictures you’d find were westernized. So I started taking photos of things around me and tried to make them look like the stuff I saw in magazines.

And now you’re exhibiting in Venice?
Yeah, I’m doing Venice with an arts initiative called Edge of Arabia right now. I’d love to exhibit more abroad; it’s given me an insight into what Saudi culture is like to other people. I think it’s interesting as a cultural experience.

Thanks, Nouf. 

Beauty Notes by Lily McMenamy


Beauty Moment: 
Lily McMenamy on Modeling, Makeup, and Designer Marc Jacobs

by Jane Herman Bishop


Lily McMenamy Kristen McMenamy

Lily McMenamy
Photographed by Jeremy Allen

Model of the moment Lily McMenamy is sitting in the lobby of the Dream Downtown wearing a long-sleeved black-and-white striped T-shirt with a short, full black skirt, and a black denim jacket that has her name sewn in red, high above the breast pocket.    
Raised in London and now based in Paris, she has recently arrived in New York to shoot the Marc Jacobs fall ad campaign—a dream job, she admits cheerfully, that kept her at work “in Central Park until 2:00 a.m.” the night before last. Perhaps you recall the model who wore only a pair of pin-striped shorts, opera-length gloves, and black patent heels in Jacobs’s fall 2013 show? That was McMenamy, covering her chest with her right arm in what was only her third runway appearance, ever. “First I couldn’t really believe that they were asking me to go topless, and then they were, like, ‘We’re being serious,’ and so I was, like, ‘All right. Fine,’ ” she explains with a laugh. “Marc and I talked a lot about my hand positioning. I wanted to do this.” She presses both her palms to her T-shirt. “But he said it’d be much classier with one hand. Like, ‘Oh, Mr. Produuuucer.’ I had to walk three times. When I came backstage after the first, I said, ‘Marc, was it all right?’ and he said, ‘Amazing.’ So I thought, okay, I can do it again.”  
That easy, game-for-anything spirit—combined with her refreshingly unconventional beauty—has already made McMenamy, 19, a burgeoning muse to designers like Jacobs and Hedi Slimane. It’s a quality she may have inherited from her mother, Kristen McMenamy, the grunge-era supermodel whose similarly hard-to-put-your-finger-on good looks have made her one of fashion’s most enduring faces. (Nearing 50, Kristen McMenamy still models with terrific frequency). When asked if there are any on-the-job tips she’s learned from her mother, McMenamy says, “We don’t really talk about modeling stuff.” Though, when it comes to beauty tricks, there is one thing: apricot kernel face scrub. “My mum uses it every morning and every night. I just started, but only once a week.” Otherwise, she keeps her skin-care routine simple. “I use this foaming wash from Clarins. And I do Cattier’s Masque Argile Verte. Do they have that here? It’s the number-one beauty thing in Paris. You get it at a drug store. It’s like clay. But you can’t leave it on too long or your face turns into a rock.”  
How else has becoming a model––practically overnight––changed the way McMenamy thinks about beauty? “I’ve had to tone down my makeup. I can’t exactly show up to a casting with Amy Winehouse eyes. But I do love a cat eye. I do love lips––burgundy red, never orange, and never pink. I do love lips and eyes at the same time, totally.” As for her hair, “when I started, it was down to here,” she says, pointing to her waist. “That was a bit of an issue because whenever I’d need a wig they’d have to wrap it up for, like, four years.” She eventually took a few inches off the bottom, which seems to have had the effect of making her want to go even shorter. “Did you see the Louis Vuitton show?” she says wistfully. “I really want a black bob.” Stay tuned.



Final Cut: Director Emily Kai Bock Collaborates with

Final Cut: Director Emily Kai Bock Collaborates with New York City Ballet for Vogue’s Punk Stories

by Mark Guiducci




When director Emily Kai Bock thinks punk, she apparently thinks pointe shoes. At least, that’s how she decided to approach her commission for “Punk Stories,” the film series Voguecommissioned in advance of this year’s Met Gala. “The punk genre has a very hard edge in stance and structure,” Kai Bock says. “Ballet is the opposite; it’s about flowing forms, fluidity, and grace . . . I thought it would be interesting to use ballerinas instead of models to see what could be done with that kind of cultural jam.” 

The filmmaker and Vogue turned to the New York City Ballet for both dancers and a choreographer who could collaborate with Kai Bock in directing their movement. The top choice was Justin Peck, a 25-year-old NYCB soloist whose early choreographic accomplishments have already inspired comparisons to his boss, Peter Martins, and landed him a People Are Talking About profile in the May issue of Vogue. After Peck signed on, he cast three of his young colleagues—principal Tiler Peck (no relation to Justin), soloistLauren Lovette, and corps de ballet member Emilie Gerrity—to join him on the project, which filmed on the eve of New York City Ballet’s international spring tour. 

On the day of the shoot, after having gathered before dawn for the motorhome trek to Long Island, master makeup artist Mark Carrasquillo announced that the full effect of the punk transformation he was imagining required bleaching the dancers’ eyebrows. “We’ll dye them back at the end,” he promised. “And they’ll look even better than they do now!” The dancers gamely participated, laughing and snapping iPhone photos of each other all the while. Other aspects of their metamorphosis included tangled, tousled ballet braids by Orlando Pita,pointe shoes dyed black with leather ankle straps, and deconstructed corsets by Undercover that an assistant had picked up at U.S. Customs only hours before and which were to be shipped back to Japan that evening. The result was a goth take on traditional ballet accoutrement subversive enough to make Natalie Portman’Black Swan look like a Bolshoi prima doing Giselle.



Choreographer Justin Peck of NYCB
Photographed by Arthur Elgort, Vogue, May 2013

Perhaps the only thing more unexpected than the ballerinas’ look was their setting: Long Island beaches still showing damage from Hurricane Sandy and a decaying roller derby replete with a decrepit disco ball, no doubt smashed over the years by airborne hockey pucks. “We were looking for a space with wooden floors so that the ballerinas could dance en pointe,” Kai Bock says. “The roller-skate arena . . . has an undertone of trespassing.” Trespassing, it seems, is a theme for Kai Bock, who has shot in the midst of motocross rallies and football games (for Grimes’ “Oblivion” video) and a deserted ice-skating rink (for Grizzly Bear’s “Yet Again”).

Making the roller derby all the more exhibitionist was the fact that it opened for daily business halfway through Kai Bock’s shoot, leaving the professional dancers to deftly brisé, jeté, and pirouette around children and their parents, many of whom seemed as if they were wearing roller skates for the very first time. Taken together with the other spontaneous aspects of the shoot—the pair of bikers with whom Tiler posed on the side of a busy road, the near-freezing winds that whipped across the beach, the fourteen-hour day—it’s safe to say that Kai Bock’s film is as punk in spirit as it is in aesthetic.

Quest for the Beautiful Mythical Unicorn Art Exhibit!


A mysterious, one-horned creature endowed with mystical powers, a favored companion of artists, poets, and children, the unicorn has pranced through some 2,000 years of world history, always at the edge of consciousness and the Western imagination. The touch of this elusive beast’s spiraling horn was said to purify water and heal wounds; a paste made of its liver, mixed with egg yolk, was once touted as a cure for leprosy. Today, an exhibition of Medieval and Renaissance art, “Search for the Unicorn” opens at the Cloisters museum and gardens, marking the 75th anniversary of its founding as home to the Unicorn Tapestries. 

In 1922, it took art collector John D. Rockefeller, Jr., all of “about five minutes” to decide on the purchase of seven exquisitely detailed masterworks in twisted wool and silk, interwoven with gold and silver thread, depicting the unicorn being hunted and in captivity. (The tapestries hung in two rooms of his West Fifty-fourth Street town house for more than a decade, before the museum opened in 1938.) Are they celebrations of matrimony or allegories of Christ’s suffering and resurrection? Are they one or a combination of series? Scholars have puzzled over their meanings for centuries, drawing no firm conclusions. 

This new exhibition gathers images of the unicorn in art and science, from a Medieval English bestiary, to a Persian illuminated manuscript, to a magnificent Florentine tray painted with tempera and gold leaf, where Renaissance maidens look tenderly upon a pair of tame unicorns drawing a golden chariot. The unicorn is depicted as native to various far-off regions: pilgrims sighted them near Mount Sinai and in the vicinity of Mecca; others, imagining the delights of a newly discovered continent, considered them typically American. For contemporary observers, their true habitat remains the wilder shores of invention. 

“Search for the Unicorn” opens May 15 and is on view through August 18 at the Cloisters museum;


Vivienne Westwood Recycled Bags

When Vivienne Westwood launched the Ethical Fashion Africa Project back in January 2010, the initiative’s line—created in collaboration with the International Trade Centre—offered up three shopper bags, handmade in Nairobi out of completely recycled materials, and sold out in a flash. The project was an inspiring challenge for the environmentally conscious Westwood, as her team was forced to work with tent cottons, electrical wiring, and plastic bags. “It was important to use recycled and end-of-the-line materials from Kenya. We wanted to buy as little as possible,” she said. “Working with whatever was available and finding solutions based on these restrictions was interesting.” But the project wasn’t just beneficial to the environment; it also helped struggling women in Africa lessen their dependency on aid. “We wanted to work with various communities with different skills and resources,” said Westwood. “For example, adding metal logos, wire zip pulls, or other detailing helps create employment.”

Now the designer is taking things a step further and expanding the line (just in time for summer vacations and trips to the beach) to include weekenders, men’s shoppers, clutches, and printed iPad and laptop cases—they’re all available exclusively on the eco-friendly shopping site, But you’d better hurry if you want to get your hands on one–if the last batch was any indication, they won’t last long.

Available exclusively at

Music_SpotlightOn_KiloKish_480x720Florida native Kilo Kish — née Lakisha Kimberly Robinson — talked to us about her music, style and her stint channeling a certain genie in a bottle.

The story behind my name…
It comes from a rapper named Kilo Ali, who was popular in the Nineties and made Atlanta bounce music. I was really into him so I made my twitter nameKilo Kish. This was before I started making music, but when I did start, my friends were, like, “Ok, I heard that new song, Kilo Kish.”

My music is…
Very organic and natural. Pretty conversational. I don’t really write songs with anyone so it’s all my own ideas about everything. I just want to sound like me and my personality. I try not to force things.

I write about…
I’m a big people watcher. I love to go to dinner by myself, sit at the bar and watch. I’ll notice a couple having a conversation and I’ll think about what they’re talking about. I’ll try to figure out what they do or what kind of life they live when they go home. I’m also really visual — I mean, I went to art school — so I try to describe places as best I can in my music.

For example…
My song Creepwave came from seeing the lonely people at a bar during the daytime. You wonder what they’re doing there and why. And I got a kind of creepy vibe from, like, old dive bars and stuff. So I created this wood-filled bar with hazy yellow light….

Best places to people watch…
Lucky StrikeCafe SelectLa Esquina Taqueria.

Artists people should be listening to more…
Toro y Moi. And Kilo Ali, for sure.

The last album I downloaded…
Rihanna’s Unapologetic.

My style is…
Comfortable. I just love skinny jeans and t-shirts. Sometimes it’s a little preppier — I love button-ups, sweaters and all that. If I need something quick that’s sparkly and girly, I’ll go to Top Shop.

And my style onstage…
On stage I love wearing these sparkly Doc Martins I have — black with black glitter. They’re like little Michael Jackson shoes. And I love wearing dresses or sequins. Something shiny on stage always works.

If I wasn’t doing this…
I’d love to design stuff for home — I love color and pattern. In school [Fashion Institute of Technology], I never really wanted to be a fashion designer. If I had a store line, it would be a bunch of random objects, like coffee mugs, stationery, toothbrushes….

Best advice I ever received…
Just do you. Just do whatever you want and don’t worry about what everyone else thinks of it.

As for my brief stint in an Orlando all-girl band…
I was in the fifth grade and our whole class was, like, “the fifth grade girls are going to start a group!” We ended up with a girl group, D*Angelz, that dwindled from 13 girls to me and three other girls. And they could sing — I could not. I talk to those girls now and they’re, like, it’s so weird that you ended up doing this — you were the least involved. I was so shy then. The only thing I really wanted to do was help write the songs and delegate tasks.

And we sang…
Christina Aguilera covers. Really, that’s all we did.

Liya Kebede on Philanthropy

MothersDay_LiyaKibede_480x720Model and mother-of-two Liya Kebede talks to us about life lessons and her lemlem collection, which supports artisans in her native Ethiopia.

Greatest lesson you’ve learned from lemlem in the last six years…

That you don’t have to have all of the answers at the beginning before you start something. Sometimes the most important part is just starting something.

What have you learned from the men and women you have met and worked with through lemlem?

Working alongside the men and women who conceptualize, design and handcraft lemlem has given me a greater appreciation for the scale of both the work and the love that goes into a collection. I adore that the handcrafting of lemlem results in every piece being different. This reinforces, for me, the need to preserve originality in the fashion industry and prevent products from becoming too similar. It’s been wonderful to be able to experience how much lemlem has grown from the beginning and the ways that it’s continuing to evolve over time.

What do you hope to teach your children?

I love traveling with them and opening their eyes to other cultures. It is very heartwarming to see them blossom and grow right in front of my eyes. Ultimately, I hope that they will cherish family, health, freedom, respect and creativity as much as I do.

What’s your life philosophy?

We all have the power to create change. If you have an idea, see it through. No matter how silly or daunting.

First children, then women and home. What’s next for lemlem?

I feel like there are no limits! The inspiration for creating lemlem was to preserve the traditional art form of weaving while simultaneously creating job opportunities. Our hope is to add a sense of diversity to the fashion market, while fueling prosperity in another. Seeing our weavers’ pride in their work and how it is received internationally is an incredible inspiration to keep designing.

We love the bohemian look and feel of lemlem —
who are your bohemian style icons?

Jane Birkin is the ultimate bohemian style icon for me.
She was fearless and fully embraced her individuality.

Favorite places to go in Ethiopia?

I adore the Merkato; the sights and smells are always an inspiration to me. The patterns, fabrics and colors are so bold and unique. Also, every time I travel back to Ethiopia and visit some of the projects that we are working on at The Liya Kebede Foundation, I meet incredible women who want improvements in maternal and child healthcare, and who need options and possibilities. That inspires me and fuels my energy to accomplish that.

Photographed by Noa Griffel

Sally Singer- Vogue’s Digital Creative Director on “Being Bohemian”

SallySinger_Collage_960x620The Vogue Digital Creative Director shares her bohemian
inspirations and getaways.

The bohemian lifestyle is…

Setting your own rules and living well on very little.

And to live it, you need…

An open mind, a clear heart and the ability to pursue one’s whims while staying connected and part of a larger society. You can’t be irresponsible or merely a gypsy; that gets really old and really lonely really fast.

My bohemian icon…

Mabel Dodge! I have always thought that to be one of the great Greenwich Village hostesses in the early 1900s must have just been the chicest thing. That said, no doubt she was insufferable.

Ultimate bohemian getaway…

Well, it has to be someplace inexpensive, unpretentious and totally undiscovered, where what you wear isn’t really relevant because no one is looking at you. I think it has to be a place that is overwhelming and intoxicating, and where the world swirls around you so that you don’t think about commerce, real estate or banal trends or status. This can be anywhere that opens your eyes. Recently I had such a nice time with my sons in Barcelona; a city with a beach, a cuisine, a healthy graffiti/skate culture and a medieval quarter is pretty hard to beat.

And what I pack…

I always pack RepettosLevi’s, gingham shirts and vintage dresses — anywhere, everywhere. I also like to throw in one long Thirties dress, usually in a floral. I also love a gorgeous papery silk kimono that I found in Glasgow last October; it is quilted and feels like a cloud.

The best beach in the world…

Kovalam Beach in Kerala, India. It’s grotty and un-manicured, full of hawkers and fishermen and chaos, all on a slender crescent of sand. But it is my favorite place in the world.

The one book I’d bring with me to a deserted island…

Impossible to answer. Maybe Ulysses because I could finally bring myself to read it?

Clockwise from top left: Ulysses by James Joyce; Kovalam Beach, India, photographed by EyesWideOpen/Getty Images; Tory’s Ravello Dress; Mabel Dodge Luhan, photographed by © Bettmann/Corbis; Sally Singer, photographed by Paul Jasmin

This model’s practically synonymous with a certain hippie-chic wanderlust

This model’s practically synonymous with a certain hippie-chic wanderlust — and she’s a certified kundalini yoga teacher to boot. Here, we chat about what it takes to be a true bohemian.

My mantra to living the boho life…

Walk your own path — don’t be a follower.

My bohemian icon…

Johnny Depp

Music I play to get into a bohemian state of mind…

Brian Jonestown Massacre

Best bohemian read…

A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway

A true bohemian drinks…


Bohemian essentials…

Vintage furniture, candles, a record player, good books, backgammon board, bottle of wine and interesting friends.

Ultimate bohemian getaway…

Romania, home of the gypsies.

And what I pack…

Nothing — you get it all there.

The best beach in the world…

Bali, because it’s magical.

To be bohemian is to be…

Unconventional, artistic, eclectic, expressionistic, original.