Anna Sui and Vera Neumann at the Museum of Art and Design

Aspirational brands….

Sometimes I love to daydream about having a closet filled with couture. And sometimes I am just glad to have a piece of something special by a more approachable visionary.

That sums up my feelings about two new shows at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York: The World of Anna Sui and Vera Paints a Scarf.

To begin with the daydream:

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Welcome to the world of Anna Sui

More like a fever dream of color, shape, texture and print.

The exhibit explores Anna Sui’s couture through the personas she’s created to tell her stories. We want to try on some personas more than others – literally and figuratively. While many dresses are pretty and wearable, I am drawn more to the rocker and grunge personas nowadays.

It was fun to pore over her Mood boards – check out the colors and textures:

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Anna Sui mood board

And the croquis from her early days:

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The craftsmanship was undeniable too:

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I often feel that fashion passed me by – Anna Sui, Betsey Johnson, Alexander McQueen. When I was young and might be able to wear these styles, I was too poor to buy them. Now that I have the money, I am too old and don’t have the body for them anymore. Sigh.

So let’s look at something everyone can own a piece of:

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Vera Neumann paintings and inspirations

My husband’s grandmother introduced me to Vera Neumann when she gave me a few napkins of Vera’s design. Over the years, I have sought her works out at antique shops, eBay and thrift stores.

I was thrilled to see this display:

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Vera Neumann at MAD

Because look what I have in my dining room linen drawer:

My little napkin and tablecloth Vera Neumann collection

I guess I can say I own a museum piece after all!

(And I really need to press these things – sorry._

And I have this scarf – not in colors I wear much but it’s pretty and I use it as a belt once in a while:

Vera Neumann scarf

Vera’s designs are worth seeking out – you can find something fun and useful at any price range.


Author: shoes15

I live in Connecticut, USA with my husband and my dog, in an old house outfitted with a sewing room, a garden, an orchard, and a big liquor cabinet.

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