Friday, November 26, 2010

Shop Girl : Tree & Kimball

My Tiny Heart

I don't remember exactly how I stumbled upon Lisa's shop Tree & Kimball in the depths of all that is Etsy but I am so glad I did. Lisa designs and creates amazing lace pieces that have a distinct vintage feel. Each piece is handmade by Lisa in her studio in Pennsylvania using materials she's selected. You can tell her background in design plays a huge role in her new endeavor as the owner of two Etsy shops. 
Considering Color

The first thing that comes to mind when I think of lace is certainly not wearability. Lisa's pieces completely changed my mind about that. If I am wearing a very casual or menswear inspired outfit (as I tend to do often) her jewelry adds an unexpected softness and femininity that elevates the outfit to something completely different. She takes extreme pride in designing each one of a kind piece. While you may not think lace is within your style realm I strongly suggest taking a look through Lisa's shop. I think you will be surprised how she is able to make something so specific as lace jewelry be so versatile.  
I asked Lisa to share some of her story and design secrets. If you aren't convinced yet to take a look through her shop you might be after reading how qualified and genuinely lovely Lisa is. Check out her interview below and then go shopping. (Lisa is the little text.)
About Shop, In the Beginning:
I'm originally an Ohio girl, born & raised in Cincinnati (go Midwest!). After graduating university with a degree in Fashion Design, I relocated to Philly, along with my longtime boyfriend (now hubs) for a position with Anthropologie. My career there lasted for about 4 1/2 years & went through quite a metamorphosis within that time. I started as an intern in the Print department & ended up as the Blouse & Dress designer, with stints in the Embroidery & Skirt departments in between. It was a fantastic experience... from drawing embroideries by hand with my pup perched on my desk to traveling to Copenhagen, Paris, Amsterdam, & India, there was never a dull moment. I met nearly all of my best friends there & am so grateful to have had that time in my life. While I was still working at Anthro, I began to play around with lace jewelry as a hobby... I had amassed quite a collection of vintage crochet, tatting, & venise lace by way of flea markets & my Great Aunts' estate & wanted a way to incorporate these pretty bits into my daily life. I opened shop on Etsy after some experimentation & essentially, have never looked back. It's been a bumpy road from time to time, but honestly, I can think of nothing better than being my own boss while making things that I love for likeminded souls. Oh! And I have a vintage shop too... that's pretty straightforward: I'm a vintage junkie, plain & simple. I'll buy my lingerie & jeans new, but otherwise, nope! Just point me to a thrift store & I'm in heaven. And share it with other people? Even better!
Inspiration and Obsession:
I had two great aunts that were very dear to me -- Marg & Lib. They were sweet spinster sisters, had always lived together, & were ALWAYS tatting in their matching recliners (adorable, I know... may I remind you that I am from the Midwest?). That, teamed with the fact that my parents are extremely nostalgic & environmentally-minded people got me to where I am, I suppose. Just when I tell myself 'enough already!' with the lace, I stumble upon some other antique-lacy-something that I simple must have. Some people gamble, others drink... I collect lace. Could be worse, I guess. And my little row home is bursting at the seams with vintage apparel & apparently collecting things that aren't one's own size is bordering on crazy? (So says the husband.) I have resigned myself to this belief & have now acquired the aforementioned vintage shop to aid & abet this habit. (Still crossing my fingers that the hubs doesn't find the boxes of shoes (thankfully all my size) stashed in the corner of the basement -- he believes me to be in a vintage remission... silly (& lovably gullible) boy.)
It's pretty organic... no sketches, I just tinker with the materials I've sourced & see where it takes me. I did my fair share of sketching while at Anthro (understatement of the year), so working this way is really refreshing & rewarding for me. I am the number one internet vintage-finding-lurker/ shopper & am constantly searching for new (to me) materials. It's a bit of a treasure hunt & I absolutely love that about it. I've been stockpiling some antique cotton lace from flea markets as of late... I still haven't decided what to do with them, but am toying with the idea of creating some very special hand-beaded pieces for a future collection. We shall see!
The Future and The Favorite:
There have been some exciting projects & bits of press for Tree & Kimball this fall! I designed three exclusive styles for Anthropologie, which are available at select store now & the 'evadne' necklace was featured in the New Orleans gift guide in the December issue of Lucky magazine! Cincinnati magazine will have a piece on Tree & Kimball in one of their upcoming issues as well. I have some broader concepts for Tree & Kimball that I look forward to exploring at some point, but for now, I am content tinkering around with dye-baths & lace whilst hibernating for the winter with some cinnamon tea. My favorite piece would probably be the 'aphrodite' necklace, simply because it is what I wore on my wedding day & that day has yet to be topped in my book. As far as lacy bits go, I can often be found wearing the 'aurelia' necklace... the neutral color makes it easy to throw on with just about anything, while the fringe detail keeps it interesting & special.
Click on the pictures in this post to be directed to each original item. 

Beyond being an amazingly talented person, Lisa has a heart of gold. She has reached out on more than one occasion to offer me kind words and support. I can completely endorse and support her shop because I own two of her pieces and am contemplating which I would like to make my third!

As well as her lace jewelry Lisa has a vintage shop that is worth taking a look at. I always make sure I peruse her vintage finds before I head to other shops. She has a wide range of styles and decades in her shop but what make her finds exceptional is her ability to keep an eye on quality and wearability. 

Lisa, thank you so much for taking the time to answer all my questions! I'm glad I've met someone who is kind, interesting, and creative all in one. Hopefully some day soon we can take our relationship to the next level and chat in person.
Now that you've successfully navigated (or avoided) the crowds of Black Friday go pick up some unique, handmade, and vintage inspired pieces from over 60 designs Lisa currently has in her shop. She is offering 10% off your purchase from 11/25 - 11/28. Head over to her shop to grab the coupon code. Then start shopping for that distinct piece to wear to holiday parties or something special for friends and family! And remember it's great to support local and handmade no matter what time of year it is. Happy shopping!



daer0n said...

Gorgeous necklaces!!

Anonymous said...

I really like the dyed lace pieces...especially the one in gunmetal grey/blue.

In the Weeds and the Whimsy said...

Those are absolutely gorgeous--what a find you made. I'm in love with assymetrical necklaces right now. I think it's because you don't have to make sure that it's perfectly aligned all the time.

Thanks for sharing this gem of a shop.

SWF_Terra said...

Her pieces are so lovely. It's fantastic to hear someone creating their own success. Fantastic feature. Thank you!

Lisa said...

morgan, you KNOW i'm blushing after reading your sweet words. a super huge thanks to you for your constant support & for thinking of me for your wonderful shop girl feature. i so look forward to the fateful day when we finally meet face to face! xo

Jessica / Lola Vintage Clothing said...

such beautiful and feminine creations! I loved reading about the inspiration behind the work. Thanks for sharing, Lisa! <3

Bridget said...

yep, i like her even more now! thanks for showing me this, morgan!

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