Post image for a brand we love: the battalion

as a vegetarian, i often find myself in a bit of a conundrum when it comes to some clothing. i love the look and feel of leather jackets, and lately i’ve been thinking about purchasing one, but a part of me always feels guilty. am i a true vegetarian if i wear a leather jacket? is that hypocritical? sure i could buy a fake leather jacket…but they never seem to look as cool as the real ones.

the battalion has come along and solved my problem, by creating “vegan” leather pants and jackets that look just as good as, or better than, the real thing. i decided to find out a little bit more about the company and wow…i am in love.

the battalion specializes in knits and woven fabrics that are eco-friendly, primarily rayon, bamboo, organic cotton, promodal, recycled polyester, veggie fur, veggie leather, and cruelty free “peace” silk.

here’s a brief interview with battalion founder linda wong!

What inspired you to start the battalion?

I see clothes as something more than adornment of oneself but as the foundation of one’s creativity and personal expression.  I started The Battalion as a vehicle to communicate that vision.

Have you always been passionate about fashion and designing? How would you describe your personal style?

My first love is drawing and creating.  As I acquired the technical skills of clothes making, I fell in love with fashion design. My style is exactly like how I design.  It has to be comfortable but not boring.  It is relevant to popular and sub cultures, and full of narratives

What environmental issue are you most passionate about?

The Battalion is a member of The Nature Conservancy and 1% for the Planet.  We are passionate about preserving nature.  We also recognize that in order to make a fundamental difference with environmental issues, we have to encourage the right environmental policies to be in place.  We mobilize our fans via twitter, facebook to get out the vote for all issues that will better our environment.  Lastly and most importantly, we are promoting the benefits of wearing faux fur.  It is not only ethical, but it is more beautiful and alluring to wear something where no animals were hurt in the process.

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Battalion AW10 inspiration board

I read that the inspiration for the AW10 collection is landscape, desert and a wolf named Indio. Can you explain this a little bit more?

Years ago, my design partner worked in the costume department of one of Wim Wenders movies.  His movies were known for it’s beautiful imageries of Americana.  Recently I found a road atlas he left behind with detailed notes of routes he had taken during the scout.   So we went on a road trip, following the routes from Los Angeles, to Palm Desert, through Las Vegas, up to Monument Valley in Utah and down to Sedona, Arizona.   The collection is the reflection of our epic trip.  And yes, we met a wolf name Indio in the desert whom inspired our expanded faux fur collection.

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What’s next for the battalion? Is there anything you can share that you’re working on now and are really excited about?

For Spring 2011 we have some beautiful hand crochet pieces that are made in a very new way.  Instead if using yarns, we crochet our ultra soft and light weight jersey fabrics.

The results are beautiful and delicate looking tops and dresses with self-crochet details. We are also making new versions of our best seller, The Battalion knit pants with buckle trims, motorcycle details, and some secret ingredients.  More to come!

view the battalion items available at freepeople.com here.

thank you linda!

larissa -May 15, 2011, 5:50AM
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diana -Nov 12, 2010, 1:02PM
wow, this is great, I am also a vegetarian and I have the same problem as u, I just love the way lether looks and feels but I feel guilty every time I even think of purchasing such an item and this is just the fix for me, what an inspirational post:)

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Post image for thursday poll – edition 118

i’m normally not a big heels person but we have some amazing party shoes right now that i would absolutely wear if i could walk in them… which ones do you like best?

the velvet crusher peeptoe:

the sicily lace up heels:
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the luna pump:
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the foxy fabric platform:
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or the victorian lace ankle bootie:
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time to vote!

last week’s party lookbook poll had a huge turnout- i think the largest for any thursday poll! it was close between looks three and five, but five took it with 25% – i wonder if the cute pup had something to do with it? :)

kat -Nov 11, 2010, 10:17PM
seriously to die for.
Tiffany -Nov 11, 2010, 4:14PM
Love them all!!!!!!!!!!!!!! XOXO, http://outfitidentifier.com/

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Post image for how to style: the lace maxi

one of our interns from the summer (in the blue shirt and floppy hat) has done some modeling for us, and she was in the studio last week to do some special shots for our website. she asked her college roommate to come along and we just so happened to be doing a how to style session and thought… why not use both of them? they looked adorable and had such great energy together :) here they are showing different ways to wear the directions in lace maxi slip!

left: here the lace slip is worn over top of the point d’esprit maxi slip, with the familiar chambray shirt and disordered fur vest over top. accessorized with the janis brimmed wool tall hat (which our stylists added some feathers to – i love!), sullivan suede belt and roper field boot.

right: for a more “lou” look, pair the skirt with a plaid shirt and some stripes tied around the waist for an added clash.  she’s also wearing the thriller moto boot and slouchy beanie. pile on some cuffs on the wrists to toughen up the look!

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left: the lace maxi is worn over top of the patterned diamonds dress, accessorized with the beaded beanie, vintage obi belt and fatale platform boots.

right: you can never have too much lace! pair the maxi with the lace mock neck top and treasured days cardigan, with the lacey layering skort under the slip. she’s also wearing the sovereign crystal pendant. boots coming soon.

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here the slip is again worn over the point d’espirit maxi slip, with the seamless tupelo honey top and fp one season’s sparkle bralette, topped off with the fp one shimmers of holiday vest. she’s also wearing the lennon topper hat, sullivan suede belt, all dolled up anklet and solvang clog.

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and last but not least, the slip looks amazing as a dress! worn here over top of a seamless tube, with the twisted in chains necklace, adjustable admiral belt and velvet crusher peeptoe.

can you believe these girls aren’t real models? they look gorgeous!

karen -Nov 15, 2010, 10:34AM
the skirt aside which is fabulous, btw!~you are right- these gals are 2CUTE4 words! they've got it all goin' on there- tell them they should quit their day jobs!
Sarah -Nov 15, 2010, 9:41AM
oh! I really love the last look! Great how versatile this skirt is!

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Post image for The Equestrian Trend

I’m loving this trend right now. It’s perfect for crispy Fall days, over the knee riding boots, plaid shirts and knitted fitted jackets; I like the idea of smartening it up with velvet jackets and ruffle skirts in lace and paisley prints.

Now all I need is a horse!

Deb Siemens -Nov 11, 2010, 12:19PM
Veddy Cute!
fp julia -Nov 11, 2010, 12:04PM
i love this post!

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Post image for A Monday Thought

natalie

As shown by Rumi from Fashion Toast and Natalie from Natalie Off Duty

Supergirl -Nov 10, 2010, 10:20PM
i really love this attractive style! Who took the pictures? what camera was used? Technology is really good!
Fp Jemma -Nov 09, 2010, 2:49PM
totally up to you... whatever feels comfortable :) I wouldn't personally.

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Post image for november catalog chapter three: the sketchbook

“beauty begins when pencil hits paper… the sketch comes alive with swatches and trims, transformed into an enchanting ensemble. the muse is awakened. each design idea is created with the beauty of the free people girl in mind. she’s special, one of a kind.”

this is my favorite section of the book. i love the simplicity of the layout – studio shots against a white backdrop, highlighted by sketches of the designs and swatches of fabrics to draw you in.  i adore the little sketches – i wish i could draw like this!

swatches

this section features models suvi koponen and jessica mau, who were photographed in a new york studio by the amazing dan martensen – he also shot our february 2010 catalog in california and our april 2010 catalog in morocco.  these are two of my favorite shots in the entire book:

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his portraits always manage to exude so much grace and simple beauty.  here are some from his portfolio that i love:

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view the entire november book here.

kat -Nov 08, 2010, 1:32PM
So pretty, and thanks for always representing your photographers. It's the best, they totally deserve it.

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Post image for roommates

a lil sneak peek at something we did for the blog today :)

Post image for office style – twins!

hwe had a couple of twin spottings in the office yesterday! first, wearing the we the free motoring in fleece jacket:

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and next the directions in lace maxi slip:

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i love seeing how people style the same items differently!

Cindy -Nov 15, 2010, 2:22PM
Love the lace skirt! AND also loving the black boots she's wearing with the skirt in the "motoring in fleece jacket" pics. Is there a way to find out who they are by? LOVE Love love them.
katie -Nov 07, 2010, 5:51PM
are the girls just wearing tights under the lace skirt??

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Post image for holiday fashion show

a couple of months ago we had a big meeting at the home office with all of our store managers from across the country. as part of the meeting we had a free people holiday fashion show featuring some of the looks from our november catalog on models and on some of the girls who work here in the office. it was so fun seeing everything go down a runway – and now that the catalog’s out i can show you some pictures that one of the managers snapped during the show!

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they all looked amazing – but wee people stole the show :)

our holiday displays are going up in all of our stores next week and i can’t wait to show you photos, they’re breathtaking!

elaine -Nov 06, 2010, 3:34AM
what an excellent show!!! thank you lots for sending me the holiday catalog in the mail! :) i'm all sorts of giddy over it! xoxoxo
-Nov 05, 2010, 6:52PM
these looks are excellent!!!!!!!! thanks lots for sending me the holiday catalog in the mail!!! xoxo

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Post image for more behind the scenes…

from the belle of the ball section of our november catalog shoot!

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the one that got away

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scouting for locations

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this forest doesn’t even look real.

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crazy cats :)

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our makeup artist.

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hair and makeup.

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dinner at eglinham hall.

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the nearby town of alnwick – it looks like such a cute place!

stay tuned for behind the scenes of the other chapters in the november book coming soon :)

Eliza -Nov 04, 2010, 6:55PM
The first picture reminds me alot of one of Tim Walker's photos. Love his work.
jennifer Ruppert -Nov 04, 2010, 12:53PM
*GASP* THAT RED BEADED GYPSY PURSE. Where can I buy that !? So rad ! xxx jruppert.blogspot.com

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Post image for model off duty

jenny3

the always gorgeous jenny lopez off duty in our office this week, rockin some fp! she’s wearing the we the free tie-front long sleeve top and lara wrap waist belt, which i’m thinking i might need to purchase…

Jamie -Dec 06, 2010, 11:07AM
simply gorgeous!! ;-)
marianne -Nov 05, 2010, 5:37PM
Jenny is flawless! She is the best marketing tool at FP!

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Survival Kit

Post image for Survival Kit

 

Some items I loved from the studio the other day while I was up there prowling.

I decided to pick out some items that will see me through Fall along with little things I cant live without right now.

It’s coming close to my second Winter in the USA and maaaaaaaaaaaaaan I’m going to prepare myself this time around!

This year is all about learning from last year’s mistakes – there’s no way I’m going to let the cold weather get the better of me this time!

I’m taking the layering trend on board making it pretty and edgy with these lingerie shorts and boots (these black buckle ones are super cool – I will be ordering them next week) to protect me from the wet wet wet weather.

The vintage brown satchels that were featured in the holiday book are perfect and the ideal size to carry my ipad around which has become my BFF! I have also had a little addiction lately for collecting vintage camera straps to jazz up my plain bags.

and now… the comfort zone that will keep me happy when the cold starts to bite – Hot Hot Hot chocolate all the time and the most tastiest thing ever, Sara Happ’s Lip Scrub in Red Velvet = YUM!

This is the beginning of my Fall Survival Kit.

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