Pint-sized style: What's new in kids fashion in Pittsburgh
May 23, 2016 12:00 AM
Garbella T-shirts for infants and children are for sale at the new Brambler Boutique in Lawrenceville. Garbella is a Lawrenceville-based company that screen-prints apparel by hand for women, men and babies, along with other accessories.
Inside the new Brambler Boutique at 3609 Butler St., Lawrenceville. It specializes in apparel and products for infants, toddlers and children through age 6 as well as essentials for their caregivers.
Brambler Boutique is nearing its two-month anniversary on Butler Street in Lawrenceville.
A look inside Brambler Boutique.
Kathy Wolfe Photography
Fashions by Depression Couture are handmade from recycled materials.
Kathy Wolfe Photography
Children's apparel by Depression Couture, a Pittsburgh-based fashion line.
Courtesy of Depression Couture
Handmade bibs by Depression Couture will be available in June at Splurge in Fox Chapel.
Courtesy of Kid Jet
The Kid Jet line by Pittsburgh-based designer James Houk debuted in March at fashion week in Los Angeles.
A dress from Kelly Lane's spring/summer 2016 "Rivers & Bridges" kids collection.
By Sara Bauknecht / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
You’re never too young to tap into your personal style.
Whether your kid is a wild child or a girly girl, Pittsburgh’s boutiques and designers have something to suit them. Here’s a look at some of the latest places to shop for budding fashion enthusiasts and kid-friendly creations by local designers.
When Andi Calcagno and Kati Fishbein found few places to shop for kids in Lawrenceville, they decided to open one.
Brambler Boutique (3609 Butler St.), which is nearing its two-month anniversary, specializes in apparel and products for infants, toddlers and children through age 6 as well as essentials for their caregivers. It also carries gift items ideal for baby showers or birthdays, and there’s a play area for kids to enjoy while adults shop.
“We try to find things you couldn’t find everywhere,” Ms. Calcagno says.
The store has a soft spot for smaller, independent brands (many of which are run by moms) and includes in its inventory a couple of local clothing lines, Garbella (known for its Pittsburgh-centric “P is for pierogi” bibs and onesies) and Everyday Balloons. Store owners also attend fashion shows in New York City to scout the latest and freshest trends. Come fall, Brambler will stock some international clothing brands, Ms. Calcagno says. All clothing is fair trade and made from organic materials.
Store hours are noon to 7 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays; noon to 8 p.m. Thursdays; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sundays. Information: bramblerboutique.com or 412-682-1327.
Summer styles by Depression Couture. (Kathy Wolfe Photography)
Depression Couture by Kathleen DeMartino
What do you do with children’s clothes once they’re stained, snagged or just too small? Kathleen DeMartino of Fox Chapel turns them into handmade patchwork skirts, dresses, jackets and more for her girls’ apparel line, Depression Couture.
The name’s a nod to the practice of housewives during the Great Depression repurposing things that no longer fit. For Ms. DeMartino, it all started when her daughter wouldn’t let her throw out some chocolate milk-stained T-shirts. She turned them into a skirt, which other moms “oohed” and “awed” over.
Fast forward about six years, and Depression Couture is now churning out styles for babies, toddlers and girls through age 16. She’s also doing home decor and accessories (think table runners and shabby-chic bibs with a vintage vibe), as well as custom requests such as baptism gowns. Her creations are as unique as the fabrics they’re made of. Many are made from leftovers from other designers and interior design projects along with thrift store finds.
“I love doing it,” Ms. DeMartino says.
Pieces can be purchased through Etsy (visit depressioncouture.com for more details) and at several local shops, including Picket Fence in Shadyside, Lullabye Landing in Upper St. Clair and SoMe at Hartwood Towne Center in Indiana Township.
Graphic tee from the new Kid Jet line by Pittsburgh-based designer James Houk.. (Courtesy of Kid Jet)
Kid Jet by James Houk
When it comes to fashion, James Houk of Brookline has been there, done that. He’s dabbled in denim and designed apparel that’s made the likes of Barney’s NY and Saks Fifth Avenue take notice.
His latest endeavor is Kid Jet, a casual children’s line of graphic tees (most $24-$32) and caps ($14-$20) that debuted in March during fashion week in Los Angeles.
“I’ve wanted to do a kids line for a really long time,” he says. “The type of designs I did are really clean and iconic. I thought they’d be a nice change for kids.”
The fledgling brand has landed a spot in The Dressing Room, a leading showroom for children’s selections in Los Angeles, and has been picked up by Dillard’s department store.
Mr. Houk is also working on expanding the brand’s reach across the country and soon will be launching an online store at KidJet.us.
Children's apparel from Kelly Lane Design's new "Rivers & Bridges" collection. (Photo by heredwelling)
Kelly Lane Kids by Kelly Simpson-Scupelli
To commemorate a decade of Kelly Lane Design, Kelly Simpson-Scupelli (the woman behind the Lawrenceville-based fashion label) wanted to honor her Pittsburgh roots.
The “Rivers & Bridges” collection has something for women, men and, of course, kids for spring and summer. She came up with its muted color story and abstract prints from the shades and scenery she sees along the Allegheny River near the 40th Street Bridge. Fabrics are made from organic cotton that’s milled in the South.
“Since I have a 4-year-old boy, I’ve been learning what are my go-to pieces for him throughout the year, just like simple shirts and things that are very comfortable,” she says.
To cut down on waste and to streamline the production process, Ms. Simpson-Scupelli is taking a break from wholesaling. Apparel is made to order in her atelier at Ice House Studios (100 43rd St., suite 108). Shoppers can stop by to place an order — hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Mondays through Wednesdays or Saturdays by appointment — or shop the collections online at www.kellylanedesign.com.
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