New Studio / Textile Classes

Posted by ADRIENNE ANTONSON on

When STATE moved into its new studio space in downtown Thomson, GA a hand-full of months ago, we did so with several goals in mind.

 First, that we had a space that could afford us our desire to expand production and bring sewing in-house.

Second, that we had space for the Secret Catalog to grow into its own entity.

And third, we wanted to give this beautiful community something in return for being so welcoming to us when we first moved here two years ago.

 I've always thought of STATE as a collaborative effort and been happiest when working with friends and people I respect. Now we have a chance to make STATE a collaboration between a clothing company and a community. Since moving to rural Georgia, I've been interested in bringing STATE's center of gravity to rest here, meaning that all of my smocks and as much of my clothing as possible is sewn here by a small batch of ladies. Now, the STATE team is working to use our platform to show all of you some of the amazing goods that are made here- regionally- and to make those goods available to the Thomson community at large.

 We are excited to announce that STATE's storefront will be opening within a matter of weeks! We will house our STATE collection, some of our favorite must-have goods from the Secret Catalog, and a host of other finds. We’re sending out the call, though, to those of you who live and make regionally. We want to know about you so that we can show our community what you do.

It’s a frightening and uncertain time for many of us, and we intend- in every way- to show up for our fellow small business makers; whether you have a bizallion instagram followers or you’re a grandma who crochets in her free time, reach out to us and show us what you do. We want to show others.  

 Which brings us perhaps the most exciting piece of this new pie: STATE classes. Creativity is a lovely antidote to fear, and we want to spread creative thought, exploration, and action as far as we can. We will be hosting a series of classes for adults and children at the new STATE studio; from indigo tie dye to batik, felting to marbling, come hang out with us, learn a new skill, and fortify your innovative spirit.

Photos by Isabelle Selby.

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The Winter Secret Catalog

Posted by ADRIENNE ANTONSON on

The Secret Catalog was born three four years ago in Brooklyn, NY out of my desire to collaborate with all of the strikingly talented and creative people I was meeting, spending time around, and working with. As an artist, I’ve continually struggled between my desire to create new, boundary-pushing work, while balancing customer expectation and demand. It can be a hard tight-rope to walk, and so The Secret Catalog seemed like a project that could inspire everyone involved - me, the other designers, and our customers.

The Secret Catalog aims to bring surprise and joy to the people who invest in her. A new take on the classic mail order catalog most of us loved as kids, the SC shows up in your mailbox brimming with things you didn’t know existed, and, hopefully things that make your life more beautiful. Just as SC customers don’t know what awaits them, neither do the designers who contributed; the Secret Catalog team curates all of the artists’ goods into 70 pages of photo spreads that are photographed by some of the South’s most brilliant photographers. All involved anticipate the catalog arriving in the mail, and nothing makes us happier!

Recipients of the catalog receive the top secret password that grants access to the online store the day it goes live. There you'll find every item in the catalog for sale. Clothing, accessories, home goods, jewelry, and body products, all made exclusively for our pages!  When you shop from the Secret Catalog, you’re supporting small individual-owned businesses that are brave in their ethics and creativity.

STATE always contributes special one-of-a-kind products as well. While we will save some element of surprise for the day of, I wanted to fill you in on a couple of our favorite items that will be exclusive to SC4.

First, THE robe. At least that’s how we all think of it- in italics. I hand-painted one of STATE’s newest designs, the flannel robe, with a smattering of hand-mixed textile colors. It’s truly striking, and we know you’ll want to wear it at home and out in the world.

The Gold Foil Smock. We took one of our classic white linen smocks and transformed it-- tens of hours and a roll of gold foil later, our shining gold smock is begging to be someone’s forever New Year’s Dress.

Painted Origami Pants. I’ve been getting question after question about my personal pair of origami pants for the better part of a year. They’re what I wear in the studio while painting, knocking around the house, or working on STATE’s new studio space. Because so many of you loved them, we thought we’d get some started for you. My studio assistants and I wore new pairs of origami pants straight from the factory while working on our painting projects. While not as intense as mine, we trust you can take it from here.

We also made a lot of creative gifts that are perfect for everyone on your list!  From tea towels to fun collaborations with our favorite brands, the winter catalog is some of the most fun shopping we've created!

I hope you’re as eager about the Winter Edition, as we are. When I say it’s a passion project, I am sincere. We work untold hours to make it as beautiful for you as we know it can be, and it’s on sale now HERE. We’d love for you to go check it out, play along, and support the 40+ contributors that collabrorated to this issue.

 

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Thread Caravan

Posted by ADRIENNE ANTONSON on

Earlier in the year, Caitlin and the Thread Caravan team reached out to us at STATE wanting to collaborate. If you don't know Thread Caravan, know this: their team orchestrates picturesque and educational trips to art and craft centers around the world. Artisans of various trades teach and mentor Thread Caravan travelers, which means those artisans aren't pressured to focus so much on selling their goods, but can focus on the art and process of their craft. 

STATE loves all of these ideas: artists should be able to focus on process and make art for the sake of art; cultural and community centric crafts should be supported, propagated, and handed down; women and men should be well compensated for their hard work; our spending should have a positive impact on some community, even if it isn't our home community. 

Thread Caravan was kind enough to bring us back the most gorgeous Guatemalan textiles you've ever seen. For the first few weeks we had them in studio, the STATE team essentially took turns draping ourselves in the fabric and dreaming up ideas for each piece.  

Ultimately the pieces were used in two projects near and dear to STATE's heart: 

The rocking alpaca was by far one of the biggest projects in the Secret Catalog, and was a collaboration between Adrienne of STATE and her parents' wood working company, August Lohr. It started as a dream gift for Adrienne's daughter's first birthday, and now a second one is in production and will be driven to its new home in New York at the end of the summer. Although the Alpaca is pretty dang cool, she wouldn't be the same without her Thread Caravan adornments. 

Sunday pants are a STATE classic, and this pair sewn with Thread Caravan textiles is one of the most comfortable pairs ever. They sold like hot cakes in the Secret Catalog, and we envy whatever lucky lady bagged them. 

 

Thread Caravan and STATE are a match made in heaven, and we feel so lucky to have worked with them. Hopefully many more collaborations await us in the future. 

PLUS check out Caitlin of Thread Caravan rocking a STATE smock in Oaxaca, learning the process of making mezcal:

*le sigh*

 

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ace&jig collaboration!

Posted by ADRIENNE ANTONSON on

What a dream...

When ace&jig reached out about this collaboration, I literally danced around the studio. I can't think of a brand I love more, and their proposal seemed like the most fun project ever. I was able to hand paint 25 dresses for them, and there were no rules.  Meaning, each one is a little different from the next, making them all like wearable paintings. They explode with color and pattern, and will be a great addition to any wardrobe for ever and ever.

ace&jig's textiles are all handwoven in India, making them so unique and luxurious. I have a growing collection of their pieces and they wash and wear so well. These dresses are no different!  I used a light textile paint that was heat set and washed / tumble dried before we sent it out. They're super soft and machine washable!  I even experimented with some blingy gold foil that is pretty AMAZING. It is sooooooo metallic, and it's washable too!  

Here are some shots behind the scenes as I painted them. It was a heavenly period where I was covered in paint head to toe – my favorite state. :)

Head to ace&jig to check them out and scoop one up!  They hit their site on Friday July 3 at 12 EST.  There's only 25, so goooooo! 

 

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the Secret Catalog III

Posted by ADRIENNE ANTONSON on

There are few things I love more than curating the Secret Catalog. It’s a project that is dear to my heart and it’s a total thrill putting it all together. This year will be the third catalog, and it’s by far the biggest and best.

For those of you who are just now joining us, allow me to give you some backstory...

A few years ago, while living in NYC, I was meeting the most incredible designers and makers. I was so inspired by my new friends, I wanted a way to collaborate with them all.  (I’m a huge fan of collaboration and always say ‘normal people hang out, creative people collaborate’ - it’s true, it’s how I have made all of my adult friends!) So, I knew a huge project was needed.

Meet: the Secret Catalog. A mail order print catalog that features limited edition goods by my favorite brands.

The goals of the catalog are threefold:

  1. To create a project that inspires the participants.  Each year I use the catalog as an excuse to make work totally outside my box. Things that scare me, things that thrill me, and things that are very unlike anything else I make for STATE.  And I love giving the other designers the same freedom – make something new, surprise yourself, go nuts!
  2. I adore making something special for YOU. We all spend so much time mindlessly scrolling through feeds, look books, online stores, we forget what we’re looking at. The catalog is intended to make you excited and present. To hold something in your hand, and to truly connect with what you’re seeing.
  3. As the #1 fan of Snail Mail, and huge supporter of the Post Office, I get giddy at the thought of sending excellent mail. The catalog –with all of its extra surprises and treats– is a supreme mail-opening-experience. I love imagining people everywhere waiting for it to arrive and then finally ripping open the envelopes.  It’s such a treat for me, and I hope it’s a treat for you too!

 

So, after taking last year off to have Edla, I’m back this year with gusto. The Secret Catalog III is twice the length of the previous catalogs and has 3 times the designers: 21 total! We’re so excited to have some of our favorite brands – Ace & Jig, Gamma Folk, Camellia Fiber Co, Proud Mary – mixed in with some super special new brands and makers that you’re going to be happy to know about!  It’s a gorgeous group and I’m beside myself curating the shop.

 

SECRET CATALOG III FEATURES PRODUCTS FROM:

Ace & Jig
Adrienne Antonson / STATE
August Lohr
Becca Barnet
Beth Coiner
Camellia Fiber Co.
Carleen
Caroline Kaufman
Fuzzco
Gamma Folk
Han Starnes
Hillery Sproatt
KORDAL
Maria Renna
Michelle Kohanzo
Nettie Kent
Pop Craft + Pattern Faantastique
Proud Mary
Shelter Protects You
Study NY
Thomas Chamberlain
;
;

We’re working with two insanely talented photographers and shooting in magical and rural southern locations. I promise you, it’s going to be drrreeeamy and just the eye candy you want this summer.

You definitely don’t want to miss this year’s catalog!

Visit the site and sign up for our mailing list. The catalog pre-sales start mid-May, and they'll mail out in June.  

(images from Catalog II, with the exception of the painted fabric which we're making into dresses for this year's collection)

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