Archive | September, 2010

What’s Good? Elin Nyström, Founder of Stylein

29 Sep
Elin Nystrom, Founder of Stylein

Elin Nyström, Founder of Stylein

“The simple things are the hardest to do,” remarked Stylein founder Elin Nyström, while sitting gracefully on the concrete platform outside of the Rendez-Vous New York contemporary fashion fair in one of her own designs. It was Wednesday, September 22nd, the last day of the fair, which united dozens of designers, press, and hundreds of buyers from around the world. While the rest of the designers were breaking down their racks and packing up for the night, Elin decided to take a cigarette break with Retail DJ.

With her small cup of celebratory champagne in hand from having made several essential sales, Elin shared her inspiration for the Stylein Spring/Summer 2011 collection, her take on modern yet simple style, and the history behind her line. Clean lines and smooth fabrics are key for Stylein, but Elin warns that “simple” shouldn’t be interpreted incorrectly. Simplicity, she notes, is something people need to respect more in fashion, particular in that it provides the wearer with “variety and space to add the styling herself,” something that’s missing in so many lines as of late with such inflexible, era-specific trends.

The growth of the line in less than a decade is a testament to the strength of Elin’s vision and Stylein’s versatility over time. Though Elin sells at several boutiques in the US (in NYC, for example, her pieces can be found at Eva NYC, Sweet Orchid, and soon, Oak, among others), Stylein is already a household name in Sweden, particularly Gothenburg, her birthplace and home to the official Stylein concept store. Beyond Sweden and the US, Stylein can be found throughout Europe, North America, and Asia, with continued expansion in the works. Yet despite all this success, Elin remains grounded and a true example for people trying to make a living out of their creative passions. Much like the mantra she reminds her interns to follow, Elin sees the opportunity before she sees the obstacles, and fashion world is much luckier for it.

So press play and take a moment and find out What’s Good? with Elin Nyström, Founder of Stylein:

What’s Good Retail DJ Interview of Elin Nyström, Founder of Stylein by RetailDJ

(click to play; click the small arrow on the right to download)

*music: La Fleur – Plant House Mix

“A big part of styling is what music you present it with. . . Music, art, and fashion are all similar ways of expressing energy. Music is one of the most important elements in life. To present a new collection, we always do it through the catwalk, and a very important angle is how you present it through the music.”

“We tend to have this one side that is very feminine and very sensual . . . and then there is a side that’s…a lot more urban…almost punk rock-ish. They create a beautiful contrast. There could be a harmonized meeting between those two sides.”

“In the beginning, it was very playful; very creative in the way that I was not really thinking about a market at all. . .more inspiration clothes. But nowadays, it’s a line that’s working in the stores.”

“I work a lot with energy and life in general. The energy of Spring/Summer is smooth harmony, and luxury.”

“I never want to present anything that I don’t believe in 100% . . . I only do designs that I would wear myself.”

“I think there is a need to have things that are consistent, not the mass-production, easy buy, fast buy, something you buy and throw it out a couple of weeks later. Some of the us in the business are really seeing the potential of doing clothes that are going to be fashionable and beautiful in 7 years  . . designs that are kind of classic.”

“Before, I wasn’t really comfortable being the image [of Stylein]. I wanted to be in the background. But I realized that in order to do this, there definitely has to be storytelling, and I’m comfortable with that now.”

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I Love Mondays: Teach Me How To Ring The Alarm

27 Sep

DJ Shomi Noise just put together a sick mashup of Beyonce’s “Ring the Alarm” with Cali Swag District’s “Teach Me How to Dougie” that is perfect for helping you get through the Monday afternoon slump. Though I normally post a mix, I couldn’t help but post this single. It seriously was more than enough to wake me up. Before I even played it, I knew it was going to be golden. Enjoy!

Teach Me How to Ring The Alarm (California Swagg District vs. Beyonce) by ShomiNoise


– Retail DJ

EZRAKH – “77 Theme”

24 Sep

EZRAKH sent me this video at the crack of dawn when we were talking shop. It’s of a completely original track he produced called “77 Theme.” It’s a bit like what would happen if the music of Tacteel, Thomas Bangalter, Roska, and Moodymann had a baby and left it on the doorstep of a talented producer and DJ from Rahway, New Jersey. Fortunately, their offspring would be in good hands considered it would be well cared for by a young man whose creative genius is endless. Check it out:

– Retail DJ

Funk on a Friday: Extra Credit

24 Sep

I often find myself thinking that music is coming to a standstill. After listening to hundreds of tracks and mixes on a weekly basis, things begin to sound the same, creating a sonic plateau of bleeps, buzzes, and bass-heavy repetition. It seems like electronic music hits a wall here and there, each DJ or producer simply parroting one another, either due to lack of originality or an inaccurate interpretation of mimicry as inspiration. But from the depths monotony, a few DJs truly provide a beacon of hope.

One such example is DJ duo Homework, whose work I’ve lauded here on the site before, but whose consistently excellent mixes will continue to earn them continued praise. In their latest mix for the Made to Play Podcast, there is not a single dull moment. This time around, the boys of Homework devote their energy to old school soul, funk, house, and an overall slick set of beats that work for just about any act taking place on a weekend night, particularly Friday.

In some ways, Friday has become a bit like a Monday for me in terms of energy levels with all the week-day dancing. This mix is certainly a pick-me-up, providing the perfect amount of motivation to push me through all the steps needed to make Friday night solid. I hope that you all enjoy it as much as I do (I use present tense as I am literally enjoying it for the 6th time today, if that’s any testament to its excellence). Cheers for an A+ well earned.

Homework – Made to Play Podcast No. 011

(click to play; right click + save target as to download)


– Retail DJ

Trendspotting: Monks and Spats

24 Sep

Fold me over and color me camel and cognac- not necessarily my personal directives, but it certainly seems to be the route fall fashion has gone with a slew of spat boots at every turn. 

With thick folds of worn leather, these layered boots are perfect for those of who want to stay warm in the coming months and who feel the need to add a little bulk to their lower limbs. Spats, of course, are not for everyone and I have a feeling a few people might take the trend a bit too far, wearing them with EVERYTHING, including even bulkier legwear, when they are meant to be the accent pieces themselves (i.e. over thinner leggings or stockings). Nevertheless, boots are always a welcome addition to the set of fall trends, as long as they’re not peep-toe (fashion doesn’t have to make sense, but that is just stupid and a waste of money).

In other trends, I’ve noticed that quite a few new haircuts coming up, particularly the bowlcut, in its various forms. A nice replacement for the one-side shorn, asymetrical bob that everyone and their mother is rocking these days, the bowlcut offers a little bit more hair to play with and fits right into the 60s and 70s looks that we’ll see in the spring (Designers, can you push anything else so hard down our throats? We get it. The 60s and 70s are back, the 80s are out). I’ve seen basic bowlcuts, bowlcut bobs, and even a complete monk cut, with the sides and back completely shaven and only a mini-bowlcut on top. It won’t work for everyone, of course, but it’s nice to see a little variation to the punk-do that’s gotten a bit played out.

So for fall and winter, there will be a little more coverage below and, for some, more coverage above as well (afterall, bowlcuts serve as lovely means of protecting the ears, if on the longer side). Either way, with warmth as an overall goal, each option is a win.

– Retail DJ

I Love Mondays: Hardhouse

20 Sep

Hardhouse Banton

I had a phenomenal weekend thanks to the one and only Runaway (whose Let’s Play House party on Friday changed my life), a lot of relaxation, and the Brazilian restaurant Beco, where Kristal and I jumped headfirst into the planning stages of the 1-yr anniversary party for Retail DJ. It’s going to be a very busy week, and I need some good music to usher me through it.

Though I have the day off to do some fashion-related coverage, I still need something to motivate me through the day (and in this case,  help me as I get ready as well). Fortunately, Hardhouse Banton, with his Fabriclive Promo Mix came to the rescue.

I just found this mix on, having been released a mere 4 hours ago. This is a super new mix, with a fresh sound to match. Hardhouse Banton switches seamlessly from dancehall, garage, tech house, UK funky, and back,  making it the perfect mix for everyone’s roughest day. Enjoy this, and happy Monday!

Hardhouse Banton – Fabriclive Promo Mix

Hardhouse Banton FABRICLIVE Promo Mix by fabric

(click to play; click the small arrow on the right to download)

tracklist after the jump

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Friday Fashion Fail: Ug(g)ly

17 Sep

No. Just . . . no.

Emu Australia made a big, tall dud with this one.

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