Yoga Tonight!

Screen Shot 2015-09-15 at 7.35.38 AMI’m lucky to be surrounded by very talented and successful friends. My friend Julie Ann is an amazing Yogi and she now has her certificate to teach the art of Yoga which is a pretty incredible accomplishment. Yoga is something she is extremely passionate about and she loves teaching as well. Let’s just say I’m not the most flexible person out there but I’ve attended a few of Julie Anns yoga classes and she teaches at a pace that is open to all levels. She takes the time to fix postures and to really walk through all of the movements.

Tonight, she is teaching a FREE yoga class at the Athleta on the Upper East Side in New York City. If you’re in the city tonight, definitely come to her class because it is absolutely worth it.

1517 Third Avenue
New York, NY 10028

Screen Shot 2015-09-15 at 7.35.32 AM Screen Shot 2015-09-15 at 7.35.46 AM Screen Shot 2015-09-15 at 7.35.54 AM ** All imaged borrowed from Julie Ann’s health and wellness blog – For healthy recipes, skincare tips and Yoga tid bits, be sure to check her blog!

Girl Power – Arkins

Simply put, we believe people and the planet are worth far more than profit. No matter how much money you amass as a company, at the end of the day you’re still just a person and you still only have this earth to live on. It’s shameful the waste and destruction that this industry induces. The more we grow as a company, the more we learn, and the more we learn, the more we feel the need to make it right.

– Germaine DeNigris, Arkins Co-Founder

Screen Shot 2015-03-10 at 7.55.24 AM{Germaine DeNigris – Image Via}

A few blog posts ago, I mentioned how fortunate I am to be surrounded by young & talented people. Germaine DeNigris, a friend whom I met in NYC, recently graduated from the Fashion Institute of Technology with a degree in apparel and fashion design. Since moving to NYC from Northern California, Germaine has not only become a successful model, working with brands such as Maybelline, L’Oreal and Macy’s, but she’s also started a very successful clothing company, Arkins.

Germaine creates and designs comfortable, easy to wear, versatile and sustainable garments, all made in Manhattan. Each piece is so unique and intriguing – extremely soft too, which is a huge plus in my book. Since I had been recently eying a few Arkins pieces via Instagram, Germaine was kind enough to invite me into her really cute & cozy Chelsea apartment to try a few on. I ended up leaving with a beautiful grey skirt and a really cute plaid shirt that I have already worn out and about. I am still eying this jacket though and may need to snag it sooner rather than later…

As we sat around and chatted with homemade brewed coffee in hand, Germaine was kind enough to tell me the story behind Arkins as I interesedly asked about her journey in launching this beautiful company – take a look here!

Styleline3*{Image Via}

1. What or whom inspired you to create a womenswear line? Have you always been interested in garments, fashion, the clothing industry etc.?

I was always in love with making things. When I was a kid, I would go to goodwill around the corner from my house, buy interesting garments, take them apart, and put them back together in different ways. I’ve always loved making art that you can wear and that is purposeful.

2. Arkins is a unique clothing line – you create garments from renewable wool, vegan leather, sustainable materials, that are all made in Manhattan. What made you choose to go that direction when creating your line?

We saw this as an opportunity to do more than just make art, we saw an opportunity to make a statement. People who shop with us want to make that statement too. Like us, they believe that our planet matters, that our people matter, and that these things deserve a different level of respect than the industry status quo.

3. Does your personal style reflect the clothing designs you create for Arkins?

I think so. I think my clothes relate to interesting, conscious, creative people who like to look put together but don’t want to fuss with their outfits.

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4. What does the name Arkins mean?

It was my Grandmothers maiden name. She was the epitome of the brand; community oriented, driven, artistic.

 5. What would you say is your best selling piece?

Our most popular piece has definitely been our Mandarin Kimono Dress. We’ve had people as young as 20 and as old as 75 place orders on this piece! It’s a flattering fit on anybody. The Mandarin Jacket has also been quite popular.

Styleline1*{Mandarin Kimono Dress – Image Via}IMG_9090{Mandarin Jacket – Image Via}

6. You have been able to grow your business tremendously over these past few years. What’s your secret sauce? In other words, how have you been able to build this company so successfully from the ground up?

I think it’s been a wonderful combination of loving what I do, and having a supportive partner. I honestly wake up some mornings and can’t believe this is what I get to do. It’s so much fun and it’s never the same. If I’m ever feeling overwhelmed, Niki is always there to help me make a game plan to divide and conquer.

ArkinsAboutImage (640x360){Germaine and Niki – Image Via}

7. What type of marketing and social media tools do you find most effective in terms of advertising Arkins?

Instagram has been our main focus because we like to use images to get our message across so it has yielded the best results, however Pinterest and Facebook are also great.

8. If you were able to do a collaboration with any company in the entire world, who would you choose and why?

I think a brand like Eileen Fisher could be interesting. They are a brand I really look up to in terms of what they have done for their local community and their commitment to sustainability is right on track with ours.

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9. Where can I buy Arkins? Do you have a store?

You can shop directly on our online shop, (currently having a 50% off sale!)  or our entire collection is also available in person at VCurated in Brooklyn.

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{Germaine DeNigris – Image Via}

After learning so much about Arkins, Germain’s philosophy on shopping responsibly, and the steps she’s taken to grow her business, all I could think of was WOW. I felt inspired and proud that a 20 something year old woman from my generation created something this kick ass. Hence where the blog post title comes in – Girl Power. Girl Power to me is celebrating girls who are awesome and girls who create something they really believe in, which I thought was perfectly fitting here.

As spring is approaching, I am really excited to check out Arkins Spring Collection and to see what Germaine has in store!

Ps. Don’t forget to check out, currently having a 50% off sale!

*Images Photo Credit: Christina Emilie