ON LOCATION with Fashion Curator Laura Camerlengo

At Coclico, we are interested in fashions that last. Materials are considered for their strength, comfort, and utility and are fastened by expert craftsmen with an eye for detail. We do this so that with the right care you can wear your shoes day-after-day for years. I recently met with another woman obsessed with clothes that stand the test of time, the curator of Costumes and Textiles and the Philadelphia Museum of Art and editor of Style, She Wrote, Laura Camerleno.   As we toured Philadelphia’s Old City together Laura let me in on her personal and professional take on archive worthy style.

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What makes for fashion that is worthy of the archive? Our collection consists of fashions that have been seen on recent designer runways that have been donated to the Museum as well as more rarified items with interesting family histories. In fact, the skirt that was the subject of a very famous Matisse painting was recently discovered in the family attic. That was a very exciting acquisition.


Above left: Woman in Blue, 1937, Henri Matisse; Right: Woman’s Skirt depicted in “The Large Blue Dress”, Made and modelled by Lydia Delectorskaya, 1937

What are your personal style-guidelines or rules of thumb? I believe in dressing for one’s shape and in clothes fitting properly. I’ve become much more rigid on the latter rule of thumb over the years. But I suppose that’s bound to happen when you spend your days styling mannequins to the nth degree for exhibitions!


Who are your fashion icons? I adore Audrey Hepburn. I’ve enjoyed her movies and her style since I was a teenager. Whether she was wearing a Givenchy gown or a simple shirtwaist, she always carried herself and her clothes beautifully.


Totally with you! We love Audry too. Now that it is finally warming up, what are 5 things you are loving for spring? I always love trench coat dresses and lightweight scarves in the spring. This season, cut-out ankle booties, like Coclico’s Farlen booties, drawstring leather bags, and crop top/skirt or short sets are also on my wish list. I also just finished reading Elizabeth Cline’s Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion. The book really made an impression on me and on how I intend to shop, so much so that I logged onto Cline’s website to review her ethical designer shopping list. I’m not sure if you are aware, but Coclico made her cut!   Screen Shot 2014-04-02 at 8.05.55 AM

Left: 1. Band of Outsiders Trench Dress 2. Joie Mabel Bucket Bag 3. Coclico Farlen Heels. Right: 1. Whistles Juno Flamingo Feather Print Copped Silk Shirt and Skirt 2. Graf Lantz 3. Jules Smith Americana 4. Erickson Beaman 5. Wildfox 6. Coclico Jaqen Wedges

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Do you wear Coclico? Yes! The Opal booties are my favorites; I’ve worn them non-stop this winter. They’re super comfortable and pair well with most of my cold-weather wardrobe.

What’s on the horizon? A professional goal has always been to organize a show featuring the work of one of today’s emerging fashion talents. I’m delighted to say that this project is actually going to be realized. I can’t reveal the details yet, but stay tuned! Update: Laura’s newest show Gerlan Jeans Loves Patrick Kelly debuts this month.

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We Heart Son Catiu Olive Oil

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What do Organic Olive Oil and Coclico have in common?  More than you’d think!  And its all thanks to one man, Esteban Ballester.

Estaban is the gregarious owner  of the small Mallorcan shoe factory that produces each and every pair of our eco-friendly and ethically made collection.  His passion for shoemaking is matched by his passion for his island home’s other famous export, Olive Oil.


Olive Oil had been a popular export of Mallorca since as early as the 15th century.   It is estimated that 90% of the trees on the island are over 500 years old.  Arbequina and Picual are the most plentiful varieties, the aromatic properties of these ancient trees contribute to the unique characteristics that distinguish the oils of the region.

Esteban’s interest in organic olive oil started 34 years ago at home, where he sought to make the most of the 600 ancient trees in his garden.   He began making small batches by hand in his kitchen in a wooden press.  Today Estaban farm’s more than 2000 trees and has his own label of organic extra-virgin good stuff, called Son Catiu.

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Making sure nothing goes to waste, Esteban uses the pits of the olives to fuel the heating and cooling of his business.  A practice that we can certainly get behind!  He has made a personal lifestyle commitment to keeping a small footprint.  His garden, replete with veggies, citrus fruits and egg laying chickens, stocks his pantry as well as supplies his restaurant. We feel a certain comfort knowing that while we’re often 4000 miles away from our factory, we have a Spanish partner that is  overtly conscientious of values we hold dear.

In addition to the Coclico factory, Esteban owns a local restaurant, and since 2008 an olive treatment center.  The center is replete with the most modern technologies that produce and bottle a pure organic oil.  From this facility he produces Son Catiu, as well as servicing local growers from all over the island looking to make any size batch of home brew.

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Esteban loads us up with his three varieties of extra-virgin oil to bring home from our visits.  Pop into our Nolita store any day of the week if you want to give it a try!




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Coclico Sample Sale is Around the Corner

Coclico is hosting a two-day sample sale on January 17 & 18 at our Showroom in Soho. Prices on beautiful, hand-crafted shoes will be marked-down up to 70%-off with most styles going for below $200.  The selection will range from fall boots and wedges to spring sandals and heels.  Below are just a few of the beautiful styles that will be up for grabs.  We hope to see you there! Location: 670 Broadway, Suite 502 Hours: 11:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m on Friday and 11:00 a. m 5:00 p.m. on Saturday.


Capote Ankle Bootie will be $179 instead of $465.00


Mori-powder-1 Mori Platform Cork Wedge will be $179 instead of $365.00

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Lupe caramel high-heel sandals will be $179 instead of $445.00



Hutton Leather Wedge with 1” platform will be $179 instead of $445.00

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Danno Espadrille Wedge is linen covered with jute trim and will be $159 instead of $350.00


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Coclico Wins the SOURCE Awards!

The Global Awards for Sustainable Fashion, or, the SOURCE Awards, shine a spotlight on best practices in the fashion industry, from field to final product. This year, Coclico is honored to have been named the winner of the footwear category.

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Since Coclico was established, we have had a passion to create footwear that is as ethical and environmentally responsible as it is beautiful. Key to this mission is sourcing, manufacturing, and embracing the natural look of raw materials. We use accredited tanneries that adhere strictly to EU regulations for water quality maintenance, efficiency, and chemical sequestration, and there is an emphasis on vegetable-tanned leathers that yield a unique patina with age.


Natural components such as wood and cork are not a façade, but solid throughout. Whenever possible, these components are sourced from regional suppliers, close to our family-owned production facility in Mallorca, Spain where shoes are made by hand,. We also purchase carbon-offset credits from Native Energy based on Coclico office and employee energy usage.

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Our dedication to eco-friendly production wouldn’t be possible without customers who also care deeply for the environment. Our standards of production, beauty, and utility are a reflection of the women who wear Coclico. Thank you to everyone who supports our mission!


We are so proud to have been chosen a winner in the footwear category alongside other leading eco-friendly brands.  Please see a list of other winners at here.  We also encourage you to follow the Ethical Fashion Forum on Twitter and Facebook for up-to-the-minute news about sustainability and fashion. Learn more about the SOURCE Awards in the below video.

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Co-Adaptive Architecture

Bobby Johnston and Ruth Mandl are co-founders of one of New York’s hottest young architecture firms producing efficient, eco-friendly design.  The firm was the obvious choice to head up the re-design of our Nolita flagship store.  We couldn’t be happier with the results. photo (1)

A few months ago Ruth and Booby invited me into their perfectly curated Brooklyn home, we had some coffee, chatted about design and sustainability,  and I took some snap shots of their beautiful home. Here are the results:

What made you decide to start Co-Adaptive?

Ruth:  We felt something was lacking in the industry, something we wanted to add to it. Architecture is how we interface with this planet, and we believe it could do a much better job at adapting to its environment.


Coclico also believes that taking many small steps toward sustainability can create big change. What kinds of sustainable steps do you incorporate into architecture?

Ruth: We try very hard to make sustainable decisions for all elements that go into a project – from trying to print less paper in the office, to choosing local products and recycling.

Bobby: We are very interested in building passive buildings which have much smaller consumption costs. Buildings that allow users to see his/her consumption of resources combined with technologies that adapt to user needs can go a long way to reduce environmental impact. For example, the Nest thermostat monitors how much and when you use your heating and cooling and adjusts automatically once it learns your routine. Architecture


How do you incorporate sustainability into your day-to-day routine? 

Ruth: Where I shop has become important to me. I buy either vintage or well-crafted /locally made clothes/furniture/products. I would rather buy one expensive piece a season that I love and have it forever, than 10 that fall apart within the year.

Bobby: We hardly ever buy water in a bottle, but filter tap water both at home and the office. We made a conscious choice not to drive in the city (or own a car) and support green alternatives such as Transportation Alternatives. We also get our power at home from Green Mountain which offsets our energy usage by supplying the grid with clean wind energy.


What recent innovations in design are inspiring you?

Ruth: I am really inspired by the passive house movement in Europe. My parents live in a passive house in Vienna, which I helped design with some local architects. My mum was telling me last week that while Vienna had its hottest couple days in June ever (37C), the temperature in their house only rose from 22C to 24C. No air conditioning! I dream about living in a city in which all buildings are self-sustaining, or even give back to the grid.

Bobby: I look to a lot of DIY technology out there. Things like Tweet-A-Watt and Raspberry Pi micro-controllers are very inspiring and economical means to monitor the ways we use spaces. 

use Ruth – How does being an architect influence your style and who are some of your favorite designers?

Ruth:   I think it is a real stereotype that architects dress in black. I used to dress really colorfully, and yet find myself drawn to neutral colors and black more and more. I think it’s because you want to recede into the background somewhat, and have your work do the loud talking. I have a few friends who work in fashion, and I love buying clothes that have been designed by someone I know. Recently I buy all my shoes from Coclico. I don’t know another brand that makes better quality, or more beautiful shoes. I love Carrie Parry’s classic clothes that are locally made and use sustainable materials. Some friends just launched Hazore, and they make amazing printed items – that probably means I could never be a stereotypical architect!


Bobby – What are your fashion rules of thumb?

Bobby: Keeping a classic and consistent appearance is important to me. My grandfather wore suspenders everyday – this tradition has stuck with me. I buy my suits from J Lindeberg which make a great classic slim-tailored suit. Local shop favorites are Unis and Raised by Wolves.

Healthy Addictions: what are 5 things you are each loving right now? 

Ruth: We are both really into Mad Men. (over now, buhu) It has a lot of parallels to our world, and yet it is a completely different animal. I love it. Cooking is a big one lately, we have two relatively new cookbooks by Yosam Ottolenghi. His food is just amazing, I think he’s an incredibly talented chef- and there isn’t one recipe we’ve tried and not loved. 


Bobby:  They are not really this season anymore – but we are into Plumen light bulbs. They are a great design item in the sense that they work with existing light fixtures, are energy saving and yet great to look at. I’m interested in design that can do that – not throw out stuff and start from scratch, but improve upon the existing status quo in some way. In a sense thats what we strive for in our current work.  We loved James Turrell’s piece at the Guggenheim. Simply amazing!

On my way out the door after a lovely afternoon with Ruth and Bobby, I snuck a photo of their shoe line-up in the front hall. Quite a few pairs from Coclico! 


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