American-Made Giveaway

San Francisco's Tradlands has been on my list of American-made favorites for a while.

I wrote about their quality button-ups and small-batch production methods here, and my admiration for Tradlands as a brand seems to grow on a near-daily basis. Aside from everything mentioned above, Sadie and Jeremy of Tradlands are warm, friendly folks – something that's of extreme importance to my Southern soul.

This week, Tradlands teamed up with a few other wonderful American brands (Appalatch, Archival Clothing, and Gamine Co.) to offer an American-made giveaway package valued at $600. One winner will receive a Purl Scarf from Appalatch, a Waxed Twill Shoulder Tote from Archival Clothing, a Hemp & Fleece Raglan from Gamine Co., and a Button-Up Shirt of your choice from Tradlands. The prize will be shipped for free to the winner and is open to International entrants so London pals, you're in luck.

 

The American-made giveaway ends tomorrow night, Jan. 30 at midnight PST so if I were you I would enter, like, now. 

Good luck, guys!


Behind The Scenes With Monica Squitieri (Plus Giveaway!)

Last week, I announced the launch of Behind The Scenes – a new series that takes a look at the processes and inspirations behind the collections of some of my favorite emerging designers. 

I'm so pleased to present my second Behind The Scenes with California-based (and California-vibed) jewelry designer Monica Squitieri. Monica and I met through the world of Instagram, and I'm glad to now know her in addition to fawn over her work – she's a gem of a gal. 

With that in mind, today Monica is taking us behind the scenes into her California studio where she hand casts her line of rings, bracelets, earrings, and necklaces. 

Read on to  learn more about Monica's process (and scroll down to enter our GIVEAWAY): 

Monica's handmade jewelry line is inspired by her home of California. She's what I'll call a modern West Coast hippie who loves nature and Neil Young.

Gal after my own heart. 

Desert Rose Necklace by Monica Squitieri California Jewelry

"Being a designer means that I am open to my surroundings. It also means that I choose what sticks and filter the rest out. My favorite thing about being a designer is the freedom I have to make what I love based on the environment, my experiences, and our California culture."

Monica started her line by making one-of-a-kind pieces, but struggled when it came to production. As any designer knows, the issue with one-of-a-kind is that there's...just...one. This makes it difficult to sell in large volumes. Monica revamped her business, and now creates a line of jewelry that allows for her pieces to be unique and handmade yet still marketable to retailers (like Suite Hazen in the UK) as well as customers. 

"With this line, it was really important to me for the casted jewelry to have a truly unique design. I feel that they do – and they all have stories behind them as well."

On the biggest misconception about jewelry designers: 

"Making jewelry is not elegant or glamorous – my hands are always blackened from working. Before I meet a buyer or do a show, I take a day ahead of time to suspend myself from working so that I can get my nails done. It's not so appealing to have callused hands in front of a potential buyer or customer."

All of her pieces are made in the U.S. from recycled materials – sustainability is something she's passionate about. Monica talks about her design process:

"Typically something will inspire me during a road trip, or a walk – whatever it may be. From there, I take photos or sketch ideas, then start carving wax. This process can take me as little as a day (if i'm lucky) or as long as a couple weeks.

"I use the lost-wax process and have an amazing team of artisans helping me in LA. Once the piece is casted, we finish it (cut off the sprues, file the seams, tumble and hand polish). Many pieces take even more work post-casting, such as the Mojave Earrings and Desert Rose collection. I then solder any pieces that need additional components and do all of the stone setting myself, in the studio."

"Once the process is finished, I store them in sealed bags. Oxidation is a natural process for base metals. Keeping them sealed slows that process down."

Agave Studs by Monica Squitieri California Jewelry

And just for fun:

What’s one book everyone should read? One movie everyone should see?

 "Man's Search for Meaning" by Viktor Frankl and – can I pick TV instead? – "Breaking Bad."

 

If you weren’t living in California, where would you be?

Wherever I live, it must always be near the ocean. It's hard to think outside of my Cali state of mind, but my husband was born in Sicily, so perhaps somewhere along the Mediterranean Coast.

 

Favorite social media feed?

Pinterest is straight up eye candy. I find myself sitting down just to check the feed quickly and an hour later saying to myself "Oh my god. I just wasted an hour of my day staring at Pinterest." I'm certainly not addicted, but it feels like that sometimes.

 

GIVEAWAY:

-Follow both @monicajewelryca and @robinreetz on Instagram, and you could win your own Anemone Ring. -For a bonus entry, either repost the photo or tag us in your OWN photo using #MonicaXsff and tell us why you want to win

 Just in time for the holidays, y'all.

 

Giveaway ends at 11:59PM PT on Sunday, Dec 7. Winner will be notified on Monday, Dec 8. Sorry, but this giveaway is only open to U.S. readers. 


Giveaway: Win A Handmade Wallet!

Here in London, we use refillable plastic cards (known as Oyster cards) to pay for our public transportation fare. Since Oyster cards can be read through your wallet, choosing a card case is key.

So when Cristina of minimalist accessory line Clean Everything offered up one of her Stitchless Wallets for a giveaway, I jumped at the chance. 

Clean Everything Stitchless Wallet / Second Floor Flat
Clean Everything Stitchless Wallet / Second Floor Flat

All Clean Everything products are handcrafted in Romania out of leather from Italian tanneries. My Stitchless Wallet in White has gotten a loottaa use these past few weeks and I'm obsessed. It's are also available in Red and Green (hello, stocking stuffers) and sold alongside a slew of other products, including billfold wallets and bags

Clean Everything Stitchless Wallet / Second Floor Flat

Want one of your own? Here's HOW TO ENTER

1. Follow Second Floor Flat on Facebook and Twitter

2. Follow Clean Everything on Facebook and Twitter

 

Winner will be contacted next week. Good luck!


Giveaway: Win A T-Shirt From Maptote!

When I moved from New York to London last year, one of the best gifts I received was a Maptote New York City Denim Tote from my Refinery29 co-workers. Everytime I run errands, I wear it proudly.

Now Maptote is giving you the opportunity to do the same thing, this time by way of a t-shirt. And lucky you, I've teamed up with Maptote to offer one very lucky lady or gent a brand new shirt in the city of their choice!

Maptote T-Shirt / Brooklyn // Second Floor Flat
Maptote T-Shirt / California // Second Floor Flat

Which would you choose? I'm from North Carolina, grew up in Atlanta, will always consider Brooklyn a home, and now live in London. Hopefully you don't have as hard of a decision to make as I do.

Here's how to ENTER: 

1. Follow Second Floor Flat on Twitter and  Facebook

2. Follow Maptote on Twitter and Facebook 

For a second entry: let us know which city you would choose on either Twitter or Facebook and be sure to tag both Second Floor Flat and Maptote!

Maptote T-Shirt / Texas // Second Floor Flat

The lucky winner will get to choose the city or state of their choice - t-shirts are currently available in LA, Brooklyn, NYC, California, Texas, Portland, and San Francisco. 

Winner will be announced on Monday, November 11th. Sorry, this giveaway is only open to U.S. readers!

Annndd...go! 

Maptote T-Shirt Giveaway / Second Floor Flat

Blimp Rizzy Handmade Pouch Giveaway Ends Sunday!

Guys, Blimp Rizzy and I are giving away a super-snazzy handmade pouch (spring rolls not included):

The Volpe - Blimp Rizzy Giveaaway  secondfloorflat.com

Entering is really easy. All you have to do is: 

1. Follow Second Floor Flat on Facebook + Instagram 

2. Follow Blimp Rizzy on Facebook + Instagram 

 

The Volpe - Blimp Rizzy Giveaway  secondfloorflat.com

But hurry, guys - the giveaway closes on Sunday! Winner will be announced right here on Monday. 

Have a great weekend! 

Giveaway: Win A Blimp Rizzy Pouch

I first stumbled upon Blimp Rizzy like I find most things - surfin', bloglovin', scrolling through Pinterest, wishing I could buy everything I see.

But when I came across Blimp Rizzy's lookbook, I stopped in my tracks.  

The Volpe - Blimp Rizzy - Second Floor Flat

Perfect curation, perfect set design, great photography, not to mention the pouches themselves which are awesome. Blimp Rizzy (aka 'the Rizz' to owner and designer Michelle Maguire) is a clutch + pouch line handmade by Michelle in her Columbus, Ohio studio. The pouches are all limited edition, and toe the line between minimalistic and downright sassy. 
 

Needless to say, I'm pretty jazzed to be offering a handmade Blimp Rizzy clutch to one lucky reader. That's right - play your cards right and you just might win The Volpe  ($48 value). 

 

The Volpe - Blimp Rizzy - Second Floor Flat

TO ENTER 

1. Follow Second Floor Flat on Facebook + Instagram (if you have an account)

2. Follow Blimp Rizzy on Facebook + Instagram (if you have an account) 

 

Blimp Rizzy - Second Floor Flat

After that, be sure to look at Blimp Rizzy's other amazing clutches, and while you're at it don't miss Michelle's fine art. Aside from making clutches, she's also a painter, photographer, and a designer. See why I'm working with her?

 

Giveaway ends Sunday, October 20th with the winner to be announced on Monday, October 21st. Also, this contest is only open to folks in the U.S. Sorrryyyy everyone else!

#enter

 

UPDATE:  Congrats to Kelly on her win! Stay tuned for lots more giveaways right here, and don't forget to follow Blimp Rizzy for lots more awesome blossom stuff.