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Saint Laurent's Nu Pieds 05 vs Zara's leather cross-over sandals on Island Atelier

Every so often a particular shoe or accessory takes over a season and can be found everywhere and on everyone. We wrote about the phenomenon when it involved Valentino's Rockstuds back in 2013 and then again with Aquazurra's Wild Thing sandals two years later. This season's version appears to be Saint Laurent's Nu Pieds 05. These leather sandals are available in brown or black and are neutral enough to go with almost everything. The versatile slides have become so ubiquitous this summer, you may have a hard time getting hold of a pair even at their $600 price point. But fear not - Zara have done a pretty good version at one-tenth the price. Both sandals are made of leather and feature intertwining straps that create an effortlessly chic design.

Marc Jacobs x Anna Sui capsule collection on Island Atelier

It's a little unusual to find a collaboration between two clothing designers in this way, but Marc Jacobs and Anna Sui have been friends since their days as students at Parsons School of Design. Both designers bring their brand of quirky and apparently compatible styles together in this joint capsule collection which features illustrations by Will Broome. The collection includes tote and cross-body bags, sneakers, keychains, pouches, tee- and sweat-shirts.
Misioo Ball Pool on Island Atelier

Years ago we owned a simple inflatable ball pit which provided hours of entertainment, but we would have gladly swapped our rainbow-coloured one for this ever so tasteful version from Misioo. These luxury ball "pools" as they are now called, are made of foam and come in square or round versions with various finishes including velvet. For additional thrills, the ball pit can also be used with a slide.

Cave House, Harbour Road, Bermuda on Island Atelier

We featured this landmark property six years ago. At the time, we mainly used external photographs to illustrate the post, but the house recently came on the market which has allowed us to have unparalleled access to its interior and gardens.
Stüda by Studio NINE on Island Atelier

It happens to the best of us. That bare foot that somehow inexplicably always seems to find the errant LEGO piece that's been left behind specifically to impale us and cause maximum damage when we least expect it. And while a search of Google or Pinterest will turn up any number of examples of furniture designed to corral and contain those pesky pieces, the designers over at Studio NINE have taken this idea one step further.

The Italian company have created Stüda, a modular furniture collection made of LEGO bases for furniture manufacturer MOOW.  Constructed of Corian, a composite material that is both durable and easy to clean, the collection consists of a credenza and an open storage cube in three sizes. It is subtly and stylishly done; it's not obvious at first glance that the pieces in the collection are LEGO-compatible, but this provides the added benefit that they can be customised using standard LEGO bricks to create a truly one-of-a-kind piece. 

Stüda comes in white or yellow finishes on steel supports and the pieces can be purchased individually or as a set.

Traditional Bermuda Cedar Handle Bag on Island Atelier
Most people know the Bermuda Short, that iconic and oft-times baffling piece of fashion that to those in the know provides a functional yet stylish solution to the long, hot summers found on the island but not everyone is as au fait with the Bermuda Bag. This traditional tote rose to popularity in the 1970s and is made of fabric often embroidered or handpainted with local or tropical scenes. With simple button clasps, the original bags featured carved cedar double handles but these were later replaced with ones made of less expensive wood which were simply rendered.

Ben Medansky x Koio trainers on Island Atelier

This collaboration between Ben Medansky and New York shoe brand Koio is the perfect study in minimalist symbiosis. Based in Los Angeles, Medansky is known for his ceramics which feature speckled glazes, geometric clusters and repetition of angular shapes with touches of "Yves Klein blue". These inspirations were incorporated into the design of the sneakers in several clever ways: the bright blue of the sole is offset by the blindly white speckled leather uppers, both of which harken back to Medansky’s ceramic works. The addition of a ceramic accent on the laces was the perfect touch to tie (no pun intended) everything together. The use of this natural material, which the designer has termed "shoellery" as it forms jewellery for the shoe, into the overall design is an unusual but beautifully executed detail.

Street Lux by Charda Simons on Island Atelier

The Bermuda Fashion Festival ended last week with the local designer show and subsequent showcase. Held on July 13, it featured a line up of seven designers who were shortlisted to be mentored by fashion insiders and to show their collections on the runway under the main tent. This year, two designers shared the podium but the winner in our opinion was undoubtedly Charda Simons' The Original Collection made under her Street Lux label.

After a number of years that have seen a decline in the quality of the designers' output, Simons' offering represented a dramatic and most welcome about face. From fabric choice to colour palette to silhouette, this was a collection that made us very happy. It was cohesive, thoughtfully put together and flawlessly executed. The cut and finishing of the items were some of the best we have seen in the entire history of the Fashion Festival. The restricted palette of beige, white, green, and black featured hand painted lettering and logos, a gimmick that could easily have tipped over to craft, but in this instance was beautifully done and added just the right amount of elevated interest. Cropped tops, track pants and dresses were not overwrought or complicated but interesting nonetheless.

Simons has been designing for about five years and while she studied fine art, is self-taught in fashion design and the pieces were manufactured for her either in Bermuda or Atlanta. Not all collections have to use the island as their muse and this trope is often done too literally to be elegant or interesting. Simons was clever enough to recognise this fact and branched out. She eschewed this idea, and was quite open with the fact that she took her inspiration from the 1990s and urban street wear. Focusing her collection on such a commercially viable area of fashion should not be disparaged; instead it is savvy and will ensure that there is a demand for her pieces. This, coupled with the fact that the clothes have interesting but restrained touches that add interest and are well made, should ensure her future success.

UKB chair by Base 10 Furniture on Island Atelier
Designed by Jennifer Yoko Olson, the UKB chair by Base 10 Furniture is a mix of traditional Japanese craftsmanship and relaxed and refined contemporary lifestyle. Its minimalist silhouette and precise alignments are made possible only through the intricacy of hand-cut joinery. The broad radius and clean lines pay homage to Streamline architecture and the sweeping horizontal landscape of Los Angeles, where Base 10 Furniture is located.

The idea for the UKB chair started with a trip made by Base 10 Furniture's founder Joshua Friedman to Japan in 2017. Together with Olson, a New York-based industrial designer born and raised in Tokyo, they visited a series of master craftsmen, touring studios and observing techniques. Olson approached the project with a clear goal: to design a chair whose form expressed the unique possibilities and personality of Japanese joinery. This tradition, developed over centuries, creates enduring structures without the use of any hardware, relying instead on the perfect alignment of wooden joints. The geometries of the UKB chair are intentionally unforgiving to highlight the precision of this craft. Friedman's hand-cut joinery, completely invisible from the exterior, provides hidden strength that makes the surprisingly spare structure of the chair possible.

Bang & Olufsen BeoSound Coloured Speaker on Island Atelier
Image | BeoSound
This uniquely coloured set of sound pieces were originally made for the launch the BeoSound 1 in 2016. Each unit is one-of-a-kind having been made of anodised and dyed aluminium. They are engraved with "1/1" to highlight their uniqueness, but in all other respects are identical in functionality and output to the standard BeoSound 1.

The units are available via Sotheby's at a starting bid of $3,000. The auction closes tomorrow.