DIY Gold Chain Rings from A Pair and a Spare

I have been into really thin rings in a big way lately – I keep spotting them on blogs and tumblr, and I love how delicate they look. Rumi rocks two little gold bands in the left photo, and on the right are a set of three that my dad gave me for Christmas (it’s crazy – he has the best taste in jewelry). Read More

2011: A Look Back

Our catalog team traveled around the world…


…and us bloggers got to go to our shoot with Sasha Pivovarova in NYC – definitely a highlight of the year!


We worked with so many beautiful models…


We debuted FP Spun and Vegan Leather, and launched a special line of Limited Edition Dresses! We celebrated with pop-up shops in NY and LA, where Jade Castrinos performed at our store.





We fell hard for extreme flares, monochromatic dressing, birkenstocks, turbans, sweater dressing, fancy collars, western boots, friendship bracelets and bright nails, flatforms, mixed prints, color pops, polka dots and more…



We were influenced by decades past…


…and by trends like mod and grunge.


We brought you festival coverage from Pitchfork and Outside Lands


We shot our July catalog with Alexandra Valenti and the Happen-Ins, and we had such a great time we went back and threw a party to celebrate the catalog release! We also threw a party at our 5th ave store for Fashion’s Night Out and had a blast.


We made so many lovely blogger friends!


Many crafts were made, and we held our first crafting events in Cambridge and NYC!



And, some new furry faces popped up in the office :)


2011 was a good year :) Here’s to making the next one even better!

Happy New Year!


Free People

Blogger Picks: Claire Geist of DeLune Blog

The final series in our blogger picks for grunge comes from Claire Geist of DeLune Blog. She’s a little pixie redhead who you wouldn’t normally think of as a grunge girl. Because of this, she brought an interpretation to the trend that was fun to see. It felt fresh and very downtown. The ditzy print of the Floral Shirt Tail Pucker Dress came alive when she paired it with the Vegan 3 Eye Gibson Shoe and ankle socks. The result was grunge but she brought an elegant and feminine twist to the table.

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From all of the grunge items she saw that day, Claire told us which her top five must haves are for the trend: the Ramsey Oxfords, Vegan Leather Double Breasted Jacket, Tattered Flag Scarf, Caldra Layer Pullover in Sherbert, and the Cutoff Denim Vest.

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I couldn’t agree more with her choices. And now, her favorite sweet treat, what’s on her holiday wish list and other insights into Claire’s personality….

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Guest Post: DIY Fishtail Maxi

The lovely and creative Geneva of A Pair and a Spare contributed this amazing guest post for our blog!


Fishtail skirts have dominated the recent SS12 runways and are oh so sexy. What better way to jazz up a thrifted skirt than by creating your own fishtail style? Follow my steps below, it’s incredibly simple!

You need:

A thrifted skirt (I picked one with some subtle pleating)
A pair of scissors
needle and thread
an iron.

How to:

1. Put your skirt on and mark where you want the front, and shortest, part of the skirt to finish.

2. Take the skirt off and fold in it half down the front of the skirt – so rather than the back and front lying against each other, it’s the two sides that face each other – the way you might fold trousers before you put them on a coat hanger. Make sure the fold is directly in the middle of the front of the skirt.

3. Lay the skirt on the floor and cut out the front of the skirt – you want a straight line for the first 30cm or so to create the mini part of the skirt, then tapering down to the back and bottom of the skirt.


4. Try the skirt on to see if the cut out is big enough. I did this a few times, cutting more away to suit what I wanted it to look like. It’s always best to take this part slowly and do small amounts at a time.

5. Once you have a cut out that you like, fold over the edge of the skirt about 1cm and iron. You may want to double over twice but my skirt was made out of a fabric that didn’t fray too badly so once was enough.


6. Sew a small stitch all the way around the hem.


7. Iron flat again.


Voila! All done.


Now wasn’t that simple? I absolutely love how this style moves around when you walk! Now that I’ve tested the process I’m going to make a few different coloured versions too.


Amazing!! thank you so much Geneva!

For more DIY Fashion Inspiration visit her blog: A Pair and a Spare. Also be sure to check out our new DIY Projects category!

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Guest Post from Tolly of Austin Eavesdropper!

another guest post from one of our austin friends, tolly of the blog austin eavesdropper! tolly is awesome and i wish we had more time to hang out with her in austin, she’s so much fun :)

The 5 Things I Love About Austin, Texas

By Tolly Moseley

Free spirits. Hippie maidens. Band groupies and mustache-wearing gents. These are our kin here in Austin, Texas, where Free People came to play recently.

When I found out that Austin band The Happen-Ins would be the stars of Free People’s July 2011 catalogue, and that they’d be shooting at some of our favorite clubs in town, I squealed in delight. Where better to celebrate the delicious lazy days of summer than in Austin, a city where even the suited CEO’s loosen their ties for a rock concert? Where you can take your lunch break at a swimming hole, or bust out vintage cowboy boots regardless of seasonality or dress code?

I had an awesome time meeting the Free People girls when they came to town for The Happen-Ins show, and wanted to show them everything there was to see here in Austin. I also want to show you. Here are my 5 favorite things about my beloved city, a place I hope you get to visit sometime:

1. Even when we’re fancy, we’re a little hippie.

It’s true. We can’t resist vintage. The entire zip code of 78704 in South Austin has been officially zoned for the selling of hip, recycled clothing. I’m kidding. But the great thing about Austin is that we never see an occasion NOT to rock a gently used frock, be it SXSW or a gala. So if you’re ever here and have a hankering for vintage, check out some of my faves: Feathers Boutique (for boots), Laced with Romance (for dresses), or tweet my girls Homebody Vintage for accessories/home stuff.

2. We like to play dress up.


Austinites love a good dress-up party. That’s me above, dressed as David Bowie. Isn’t the resemblance striking?

3. We make things.


DIY is huge here. That applies to crafts, food, and even businesses. I wish I could tell you I knit-tagged that whole car above … but I didn’t, it’s the handiwork of Knitta Please, one of our local craft artists. You’ll find her knit-tagged objects scattered about all over Austin, from parking meters to statues, and they reflect how much we adore handmade – not to mention the creative spirits behind it.

4. We can’t get enough live music – ever.


In terms of survival, music is second only to air. For Austinites, I mean. We’re the city who invented Austin City Limits (the show and the music festival), Spoon, Stevie Ray Vaughn, and of course The Happen-Ins! Stroll down Red River at night, by The Mohawk, Club DeVille, Stubb’s, Emo’s … and your ears will fill with honest-to-goodness rock n’ roll, screaming guitars and pounding drums. This city is a music-lover’s dream, and if you’re ever here, chances are a friend of a friend of a friend is playing the same nights you’re in town. If we’re not a musician ourselves, we’re probably dating one.

5. We welcome visitors and vagabonds with open arms.



I have a personal belief that Austin chooses people, and if you’re reading this post, chances are she’s chosen you, too. You can find me here, and if you ever venture down to Texas for a visit, I’d love to show you around. We’ll bask at Barton Springs Pool, eat tofu and/or bacon (we are equally enthusiastic about both), and find multiple excuses to play dress up.

All photos by Tolly except for last one (Austin Motel sign) which is courtesy of Ellen Jo Roberts.

guest post from NYC: jack is in his corset, jane is in her vest…



…and me i’m in a rock and roll band.

Actually, my name is Liz. I am a young designer, a recent graduate from Parsons The New School for Design, and a current associate at Free People in Soho, NY. I started crocheting these vests this past year and asked some of the Free People girls to rock them for me.

This past season I looked to craft and the charm in handmade objects for inspiration. I had just moved into my new loft in Brooklyn, NY and found my place was a collection of crafts. My most prized possession is a yellow chevron pattern crocheted blanket my mom made when I was young. I owe all of my talent to my mom, who taught me how to crochet. As for the vest itself, I focused on creating a piece that would complete every outfit in my closet. My style is that similar to that of the Free People girl. I look to Pamela Love and Erin Wasson for style inspiration, who both share that endearing, yet individualized free-spirited vibe. I feel like a vest is something you can wear year round: in the winter, I’m always looking for another layer and in the summer, it’s great with a tank and shorts or just over a bathing suit!





thank you so much for sharing liz!!! not only did you quote one of my favorite songs but the vests are amazing and i’m insanely jealous of your rooftop garden…xoxo

guest blog post: brooklyn hawaii

brooke dombroski is a photographer and designer who lives in hawaii, on the island of oahu where our may catalog was shot.  the second i saw her tumblr, brooklyn hawaii, i was completely enthralled with her laid-back surfer girl lifestyle – and brooke was kind enough to share some photos with the blog to give us a little peek into her life in hawaii! needless to say, i am beyond jealous…

Location: North Shore of O’ahu, Hawai’i
A 7-mile stretch of the best waves in the world!

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What I love about living in Hawai’i:
We are the most isolated island chain.
Life is so simple. Nature can keep us entertained for a lifetime!
Surf + Sand + ROAM + Shells + Waterfalls + Crush Sunglasses + Bare feet + Hand-sewn Bikinis + Coconut water + Fresh fish + Mountains + Ocean + Sun + Friends + Ohana (Family) + ALOHA

be sure to check out her beautiful tumblr here:

guest blog post: the gold coast

australia’s gold coast is located in south east queensland, on the country’s eastern shore. with 35 miles of coastline that includes some of the most popular surf breaks in australia and the world, the area has been a huge draw for both tourists and surfers all over the world. it was also inspiration for a special shop launching today on our website that is our nod to surfer girls everywhere – denim shorts in bright colors, easy knits, bathing suits, summery shoes and pops of neon, its a collection that screams summer fun and adventure.

for her second guest post for us, mandy of the amazing blog oracle fox went down to the gold coast and took some beautiful photos to capture the atmosphere there. i am thinking a trip to australia is definitely in order!

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all images by oracle fox – thank you so much mandy!

and here’s a little collection i made inspired by the gold coast. click on the image to go see more details, and check out our gold coast shop here.


Australia Guest Blogger: Lauren Brooks

My friend Lauren has lived in Australia for a couple of years now. She is British and has settled into the low key lifestyle Australia has to offer perfectly. She has an adorable blog that she uses as an online visual diary – sharing her thoughs and inpiration with the world. She let’s us take a peek into her lifestyle there. Below she shares her thoughts on Yamba one of her favourite beaches.

Here’s her Blog Baumbach

The Yamba Story.

I live in the land of sun and sky, beaches and beauty. I moved to Australia from the UK just over two and half years ago and have based myself in Brisbane.

Just over three hours drive from home and I can be in Yamba. One of Australia’s best-kept secrets, same beauty and wonder as Byron Bay but imagine it before the travelers took over.

One pub perched on the cliffs overlooks the beach and a perfect place to sip beer and soak up the views. The home of Billabongs creator and a pro surfer attraction with the famous Angourie surf break just down the road.

Yamba calms me, it has a presence and a serenity that I search for and haven’t found anywhere else yet. Beautiful coastline, perfect for learner surfers like myself to practice my surf skills and to get tossed around by the waves.

back your bags

Pitching a tent and spending a few days is all you need to unwind and escape from the city.
Yamba I love you with all my heart, one day when I have made my mark I will buy a plot near the beach and call you home.