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You in DU: Urban Collegiate

3 Apr

I’ve always been inspired by vintage photographs from Ivy League campuses. Their effortless layering, mixture of prints and textures, and all around cool poise. I used these photos for inspiration for two Dredgers Union “urban collegiate” looks.

(Source: The Trad)

The ladies look is a layered, early spring style. Perfect for chilly mornings and sunny afternoons. Start with a good base, like the Shiloh Dress, it has a soft lining and fun skirt. Throw a lightweight flannel tunic on top. Our Dredgers Union Plaid Tunic is the perfect layering piece, and with pockets it’s also incredible practical!

Add a horizontal striped cardigan to mix up the prints, and add that effortless preppy look. Add easy accessories, like a necklace and clear frame sunglasses.

For the guys, I layered some crazy things together to get that easy going, college look. Start with a lightweight short in a fun color, like these RVCA shorts available in the store. Add a long-sleeved shirt, maybe even with a hood. Put a brightly colored plaid over it, this teal Dredgers Union Plaid Woven would work perfectly. Put a loosely tied silk necktie with it, because…why not?

Add a thick hooded sweater, chambray backpack, and geeky readers…and you are ready to go!

These are the final looks: Casual, and straight-off-campus cool!

speaking of walking in a park: NYC’s THE HIGH LINE

8 Mar

This is the High Line during it’s years of use.  (To mostly passengers between 1934 – 1960’s).  And Below are some images of what the High Line turned into after it’s last use (carrying a few frozen chickens in 1980).  Not to say it was not beautiful in it’s own romantic sort of way, but certainly not safe or functional.  (these images by Joel Sternfeld by way of The High website.)

In 1999 two guys who lived in the neighborhood of the High Line, started Friends of the High Line and their efforts to save the tracks and have them re-purposed as a pedestrian park were underway.  It didn’t happen over night but in 2006 the project was underway, led by world class firm JAMES CORNER FIELD OPERATIONS. 

Check out this video that much better explains this amazing project below:

ATTN: CLEVELANDERS:  Take note as FIELD OPERATIONS is the same firm that was commissioned to re-imagine our own PUBLIC SQUARE!  We too can have a world class park! Check out the PROJECTS section of their website then click on Cleveland’s Public Square.  Now look at the images below of the High Line today and take note of the billions of dollars worth of development that has been spurred on around this park as a direct result of this project.   We too could see the same kind of positive impacts, from a functional, beautiful, world class make over of our city’s center.

Below are images taken from the High’s website:

Below is a pic of the DU buying assistant, Jen Allanson and the RS buying assistant, Jennie Doran while on a recent trip to NYC and (of course) the High Line.

Anyhow, I just love the High Line and want so badly to be able to walk to Public Square on my lunch break and have the same sort of experience.  And I can’t help but think of all the amazing potential projects, businesses, buildings etc that would pop up around it.



NYC part 2: play

24 Feb

Each time I come to NYC I get a little bit better at knowing my way around.  Yet each time, I think to myself, ‘this is the best brain exercise!” because it is not quite instinctive and I have to always take a beat and think about where I am and where I am headed.  Wes and I were meeting up after work one day and he was walking to meet me in Chelsea and we realized we were walking towards each other on the same street just a few blocks away and he said to me “I’ll be on the North side of the street” and I was like…”um, without Lake Erie I don’t know where North is!”.

I am there about 6-8 times a year between work and seeing my bff who resides there.  But it was THIS trip that I felt that things really started to ‘click’ for my sense of direction.  I have to admit, the GREATEST GRID exhibit at the Museum of the City of New York, which my mom and I visited over this past weekend, really helped my understanding of how to navigate this city.

Turns out that while downtown seems to have been exempted to some degree from the grid plan of 1811, Manhattan is made up (mostly) of a series of North South Avenues (1-12) and East West Streets (1-155) (with a few distinctive and notable streets that are the exception to this -Madison, Lexington, Broadway also i suppose the addition of the alphabet streets of the lower east side).

Anyhow, this is notable because it makes it very easy to understand where you are in relation to where you are going and you can start to gauge the distance, which will determine if foot, train or cab would be the best form of transportation.  For awhile now, my understanding of the geographic relationship between neighborhoods has significantly improved my confidence in getting around, but I should have started with learning what the grid was here.  In fact, it is similar to Cleveland’s own grid in a few ways as we have numbered roadways running North South (4th st., 6th st., 9th st., etc) and east west streets cutting across them (st.Clair, Superior, Euclid, Prospect etc.).

I’m still going to have to calibrate my brain upon my next arrival to the big apple, but each time, it gets a whole lot easier, and a lot more fun subsequently.

Above is an image of the survey done of each of the avenues.  The exhibit is really cool because it shows how until the elevation of each road had been leveled out ( a HUGE issue and undertaking ). On one side of the street there would be rocky ledges right up to the street, which the city paid to level, and on the other side huge craters.  The city would pay for the streets to be brought to the correct elevation but required land owners to either excavate or fill in their own lands to get to the proper level.  It was really fascinating.

Below is a video I found on youtube of the exhibit.  Pretty cool.  Visit the museum’s website here.



BEHIND THE DESIGN: 216 event artwork

18 Jul

Every time I produce a MADE IN THE 216 event, I am asked WHO did this design?!?!  Well in the past, every year i had a different local designer do the artwork and i LOVED how different the artwork felt from show to show.

Somehow though, when I met the boys (Lee, Mark & Joel) at  Kiddo Design (TWITTER: @heykiddodesign) it just stuck!  I have broken my own rules and have hired them the last 2 events in a row.  Maybe it is just because working with Lee (TWITTER:@lazelenak) Mark (TWITTER: @marknizinski) & Joel is just so much fun!  Or they have wooed me with their use of animals knitting…either way, their ideas really capture the essence and the whimsy of what I try to create in 3 dimensions at the actual event.

The campaign these guys did for this year’s MADE IN THE 216 & Grand Opening of Dredgers Union party made it to an awesome design blog called design work life.  Check it out!

Below are the main image and supporting image from this year’s campaign as well as the artwork for last year’s Holiday Shoppe & grand re-opening of Room Service, which was the first work I had done by Kiddo.

Below are a few of my other 216 postcard favorites.  The “loveboat” by David Jurca and the red one by The Bubble Process.

thanks again for stopping by!  xoxox danielle

cinque terre

28 Feb

I am becoming very acquainted with the train system while I travel throughout Italy, and I could not possibly be a bigger advocate for high speed rail being the future of transportation in the US…WHY OH WHY DO WE NOT EMBRACE THIS FORM OF TRANSPORTATION HERE?!?!??!  all it is – is the PEOPLE making it a priority…do we want it?  HELL YES, we DO!

Ok, back to Italy…I left Venice for Genoa, a little dose of a NON-tourist town after Venice during Carnival was exactly the right idea!  Genoa is an underrated Italian town, the architecture is really beautiful.  From there was Cinque Terre.  The five little islands off the Ligurian Coast (Mediterranean sea or Italy’s Cote D’azur).

While I am a fan of the hot hot heat and love a coastal community in summer, this seemed to be the time to go, it was so sleepy and wonderfully perfect after the insanity that was Venice.  Just lovely.

So there is a walking path between all of the towns and they call it via dell’amore and from what i could tell this is where lovers go and they bring a lock, a symbol of their love, i imagine.  There were locks throughout the entire path…it was really sweet actually…see below:

I LOVED LOVED LOVED the Cinque Terre. DO yourself a favor and come here next time you visit Italy!  I am off to bed now, early train ride to Florence!



xoxoxoxo danielle

Venice Italy

26 Feb

Not much to say here.  Venice is an unrelentingly good photo subject.  I could have a blind fold on and take a good picture here, of this there is little doubt.  I just wanted to post some of my favorites from this morning’s walk.

It is carnival, so I will do a separate post of just that when I have time.  The costumes are outrageous and even I am dressing up for it tonight!


x oxo danielle


24 Feb

I am not terrifically well travelled.  I have managed to get to most of our 50 states having spent significant time in many and simply passing through others, but my international status is pretty pathetic.  It was officially pathetic, boasting only Northern Mexico and Southern Canada until my dream trip to Paris 2 years ago.

So when the French officials were so laissez-faire about the customs process, and were going to allow me to pass through, UNSTAMPED, I was NOT having it!  I needed the tangible evidence of my new international status, and insisted they stamp my passport!

These last few years I have been busy growing my business and time to travel other than to trade shows has been near impossible.

Knowing that when our store, Dredgers Union opens this June, vacation time is going to be a laughable notion, I have decided, despite being super busy with Room Service and preparing for DU, to squeeze in a personal vacation.  I am leaving in about 10 minutes and headed overseas to spend about 2 weeks touring around Italy.

I am bringing my laptop with the intention of posting favorite pics and recaps of my travels, so check back for all the pictures I cannot wait to take!

found here.

xoxoxo danielle


14 Dec

I love stop motion videos.  I admire the tedium of this medium (oh no i didn’t!).  I am in real need of a distraction today, I wish I had brought my camera to work to create my own stop motion video, but instead I will revisit this video by A FINE FRENZY, which I have always enjoyed.

It used to live on my old blog, that is, before I inadvertently lost 3 months of entries…oh well..enjoy:

xoxo danielle

the beauty of winter

9 Dec

Typically I am not a big fan of winter.   Yesterday afternoon, ironically enough, while it took me 2 hours and 25 minutes to make the 2 mile trip between my store and my home in downtown Cleveland (because of a severe winter storm) I actually was a fan. I sat in my car and relished the beautiful view of downtown being blurred by these seemingly giant white fluffy flakes relentlessly falling from the sky and later, while hiking through downtown on foot in my winter boots, I didn’t mind how those flakes piled up on the ground into impossible mounds and piles….no, it was really quite lovely and charming.  Below, back on my street, everyone seemed in such great spirits despite the inconvenience of inclement weather!

Earlier in the week I saw images online of Europe getting slammed with snow:

and today on one of my favorite blogs, there were simply the most beautiful images of winter I think I have ever seen!

xoxo  danielle

detroit lives…part 2 & 3

19 Oct

you may have seen my post on the DETROIT LIVES…PART 1 here…if not check it out now, but here is the 2nd part:

and here is the 3rd: