We’re thrilled to introduce Letarte Swimwear!
Aloha is how Letarte greets the world. The iconic Maui-based label, created by sisters Lisa Letarte Cabrinha and Michele Letarte Ross, debuted the elite designs of swimwear in 2000. Their bikinis and cover ups blend a bohemian island essence with chic global aesthetics that the sister duo have made recognizable around the globe.
Why we chose Letarte Swimwear:
Lisa, who lives in Maui, infuses her jet-setting island and the spirit of Aloha into Letarte’s signature trademarked prints, intricate adornments, and lavish detail. Over the past decade, this coveted brand has developed a devoted fan base of loyal customers around the world, including endorsements from Hollywood’s finest and acclaimed media.
Enjoy *free shipping on your order until Friday, April 19, 2013 -
*$4 handling fee will apply
Just as I sat down to write this we learned of Lilly Pulitzer’s death. She was loved and cherished by all, especially here in Palm Beach, and it won’t ever be the same without her. Her children and grandchildren are also a big part of the fabric of our community, and no doubt this will hit our little island hard.
My original idea for this week’s blog was to share a bit about Palm Beach’s quirky history and some of the colorful characters and fanciful surroundings which influence us as designers. Naturally Lilly was going to be the first person I mentioned. I had my first job working for Lilly in her Newport , RI shop, and later, when I moved to Palm Beach and had an exhibition of my paintings, I was really touched by Lilly’s strong words of encouragement.
At 16 I took a summer job for Lilly when her designs were at their peak late 1970′s exuberance. We sold fabric by the yard as well as a full collection for men, women and children including those adorable mono-kini’s. And new at the time were terrific bikini’s named for her daughters, Liza and Minnie. There were Lilly printed jeans and short-shorts, knit tank dresses, tee shirts and I always used a couple of yards of fabric as a sarong for the beach. And if the prints weren’t bright and happy enough for you by themselves – there was the Lilly madras which combined dozens of prints at a time into a crazy quilt of shocking color.
My father was not one to be shy of pattern or color, so he soon became one of my best customers, sporting Lilly ties, swim trunks and his personal favorites – turquoise and lime pants printed with lions drinking martinis. Long before we partnered in CJ Laing, Jack too was greatly influenced by Lilly’s whimsy and color sensibility. Back in 1975 he wore yellow Lilly pants with pink giraffes, and when he first started CJ Laing, his early designs included embroidered pink sea horses, lime green starfish, hot pink cosmopolitans and hula dancers with multi-colored fringed skirts. Even today, if you live and work as a designer of any kind in Palm Beach it goes without saying that Lilly’s influence is as ever present here as the hot pink hibiscus in your vodka Southside and nothing makes us happier than to hear that someone sees a little Lilly in CJ Laing.
Perhaps most of all Lilly will be remembered for her sense of fun and her generosity of spirit – in her special way she made all of us feel like family, life was a party and everyone was invited. For us, she leaves the inspiration to celebrate all the good and beauty that surrounds us, to truly enjoy each other, and most of all, to just have fun.
Have a wonderful rest of the week from the two of us at CJ Laing,
Jack Laing and Ali Russell
Quit being a wallflower and start standing out in a crowd. This spring we recommend taking it up a notch with these bright, bold and fashionable finds!
Pictured above, top row, from left:
This bag works for everything from a black tie affair to a night out in jeans. The colors and intricate beading make it a work of art and the ultimate statement piece.
Goshwara’s “Gossip” Cluster Ring embodies spring with its flirty combination of shapes and colorful gemstones.
The Parker Blouse by Jules Reid is truly a classic. And even better? It’s on sale.
This sparkling diamond anchor with vintage colorful African vulcanite discs can be worn by itself or mixed in with your other favorite bracelets. Act fast because it’s one of a kind.
2nd row, from left:
Everyone needs a pair of statement heels. We think these bright multi-print Manolo Blahniks do the trick!
This dramatic chartreuse Irish linen tunic has hand embroidered details on front and on each sleeve. It’s also a CJ Laing exclusive import, so don’t expect your friends to have the same one!
This hand embroidered sling bag combines the tribal trend with a touch of neon.
Glamourpuss NYC’s Island Breeze Shrug would make the perfect beach cover up for when the sun starts to set.
Spring is finally here, which of course means that we’re due for a little rain. Look like a bad weather pro in our favorite looks for a rainy day.
Pictured above, clockwise, from left:
Yeohlee’s modern take on the raincoat is so elegant that you could wear it to dressed up at night. The scarf can be tied or draped in the front, making it that much more versatile.
This clear rain hat from Susan van der Linde makes every hood look downright frumpy. We love the pop of orange!
Barbour does outdoor gear better than anyone, so it’s no surprise that hit the nail on the head with this tartan umbrella.
Richard Sexton’s “Rainy Day at the Beach” is a lovely print that celebrates that quiet time when the beach clears out for an afternoon shower.
Swims makes stylish waterproof shoes for every occasion. We love the color combination and shape of the Helmut Desert Boots.
We’ve all heard stories of amazing outcomes that could have been very different if not for a tiny twist of fate. Perhaps we’ve even experienced it. But what about someone who told you that her life was changed forever by a tunic?
A few years back, a woman came to our store, ecstatic to have found us – “I have to tell you how your tunic completely changed my life.” Several years earlier she had lost her husband, and after some time had passed, her daughter bought her a trip on a cruise in the Mediterranean to lift her spirits.
When she got the brochure it recommended ”resort chic” evening attire. She didn’t have a clear idea of what that might be, so someone suggested she try CJ Laing. She picked up a tunic we made at the time, black with white trim in a Moroccan-inspired design.
The first night of the cruise she was feeling very alone and self conscious. She got dressed and walked to the grand dining room wearing her new tunic. While she was waiting for the maitre d’ to seat her, there was a group of couples also waiting for a table. One of the other ladies turned to her and said, “That’s the prettiest top I’ve ever seen, where did you get it?” So she told her the whole story. “Oh, don’t feel self conscious,” said the lady. “Come and join us and we’ll have a great time.” Well she did, and they did. They had such a great time that they sat together every night and became dear friends. When the cruise was over, they stayed in touch, and to this day every year they all go on a trip together.
We loved her story and were so touched to have played a tiny part in it. Then she looked through our collection and decided to get another top. In fact, for the next several years, she has come to us once a year to get one new top. But there’s more. Last time she came by with some news. “You know what happened? I went to my high school reunion wearing the blouse I got last time.” (The Paris Market Blouse in black eyelet) “I ran into my high school sweetheart and it was love-at-first-sight all over again!”
His favorite thing for her to wear became that eyelet blouse. So she decided to get another one, this time in periwinkle blue. “How could I not? You’re my lucky charms.”
We’re so happy for her, and just can’t wait to hear how the periwinkle worked out.
Have a great rest of the week from the two of us at CJ Laing and we’ll be back writing next week,
Jack Laing and Ali Russell
We’re in love with the sheer and translucent trend that is popping up everywhere this spring. Sport it in small or large doses and you’ll be sure to turn some heads!
Pictured above, top row, from left:
These nude leather and mesh booties by L.A.M.B. are the perfect piece to help you transition into spring. An added bonus? They’re on sale.
The Monte Carlo top by Anatomie features panels of taupe mesh. We think it’s a welcome update to the basic striped shirt.
This feminine top by Antik Batik is more delicate than the majority of the sheer trendy items. The blue lining is a perfect compliment to the girly pink flowers.
The Budah dress does a great job of combining the sheer trend with the black and white trend. We also love the deceptively sexy hemline.
Second row, from left:
This Translucent Jacket by Yeohlee is water repellent, making it ideal for spring showers. Why should you have to hide a great spring ensemble behind a coat when you could show off the jacket and the outfit beneath?
Every jewelry box needs a little bit of “mod”. This lucite necklace has the clear and geometric elements that made it trendy then and now!
This loose knit sweater by Helmut Lang looks especially edgy when worn over a dark top (as pictured above). We love the asymmetrical hemline.
This mesh one shoulder swimsuit by Keiko may be last, but is certainly not least on our list. The shape and cutout create the perfect balance of edgy and classic.