Introducing Graciela & Grace
Graciela & Grace is a new American indie brand that just launched on November 11th. The new brand combines traditional craftsmanship and heritage techniques with modern fashion trends all with a lolita fashion twist. Their first release was of two colorways (Sunset & Bouquet) of their Fantastic Tweed bag.
For this bag, they used hand-made bobbin lace that they have color-coordinated with hand-woven Scottish tweed and velvet ribbon trim, and I agree with the series name, it is absolutely fantastic.
While it’s not the same, I grew up watching my great grandmother make tatted lace, which is a sort of handmade lace made of knots and loops using a single thread. Bobbin lace, by contrast uses many threads, and is worked on a special pillow form as you can see above. I’m far from an expert on either type of lace making, but what I do know from experience, is that the time and skill that goes into creating quality lace from scratch is enormous, and it’s really not something you typically see in lolita. Typically lace work of this caliber is seen more in couture garments. So, this is really something special. I love the way that they have matched the colors to the pattern of the tweed. The level of craftsmanship and detail, it’s really just on a whole different level. The bags are priced at $550 (which I think is really reasonable given their commitment to heritage techniques and ethical labor practices) and are currently available on their webshop.
On December 2nd, they launched a coordinated lolita suit set as part of this Fantastic Tweed series as well.
Each of the pieces in this suit set is available separately, and is made to order in sizes S, M & L. Each item is also tagged with a unique identification number and supplied with a certificate of authenticity. I really like this angle of presenting these pieces as wearable art (which they are), and including a way to authenticate them.
The suit is comprised of a jacket, skirt and blouse. The Jacket is made of organic cotton twill with a silk lining, and then it’s trimmed with the same hand-woven tweed, bespoke bobbin lace, and velvet ribbons as the bag.
I really like the way they did the cuffs with the tweed, and then a strip of coordinating ribbon, and then the lace, it’s really a lot of visually interesting texture. The jacket again comes in two colorways (Sunset & Bouquet) and is $525 on their webshop.
Next there is a skirt, which uses several colors of velvet ribbon that echos the colors in the tweed in a really creative and playful way. I like how it has that playful element in the bows and the the ribbon color, and the lolita silhouette yet still has that level of formality that you would expect from a suit set in the line and drape of the organic cotton twill.
The skirt is also MTO in S, M & L and comes in the same two colorways as the jacket (Sunset & Bouquet), and is priced at $450. I have to say the Sunset colorway has been totally winning my hear while I’ve been looking through all these photos. That rich blue is one of my absolute favorite colors.
Lastly, they have a blouse made from “splashproof” (water resistant) cotton twill. Initially, I was a little unsure about this material from the photos, but finding out that it’s water resistant (and therefore likely stain resistant), I have to admit I’m intrigued. Staining is traditionally a big issue with opaque lolita blouses, which shortens their lifespan, so to see a brand exploring different textiles as a way to address that is really cool.
It also features more of the velvet trim, small velvet bows and a super cute little bowtie made of the same hand-woven tweed. As with the other items, there are two colorways (Sunset & Bouquet) and it’s priced at $275 on their webshop.
All in all, I think the concept for this brand is really cool. While there are a lot of indie lolita brands, I don’t know off hand of any others that are hand making lace, and it’s really not common to see this sort of attention to materials and labor ethics with larger lolita brands.
I’m really interested to see the ongoing work of this brand, and how they develop and grow over time. I love the way they are playing with color in this series, and the way they have merged modern and classical to create something all their own.
If you are interested in any of these pieces, be sure to check out their webshop off of their website.
This post is not sponsored, but it is part of a (hopefully) ongoing series where I highlight new indie brands that reach out to me at no cost. If you have a new (or even not so new) indie brand and would like a shout out about your launch or your latest collection, please feel free to contact me via PM on Facebook. I love lolita and I love to see small brands thrive and grow. Please note there is ~1-2 weeks turn around time for posts, as I have a number of other obligations.