Some fashion food for thought - A taste of Istanbul

Just wanted to share with you some great Turkish fashion, since I just got back from Constantinople, also know as the current European Capital of Culture, a point that makes locals quiver with pride. While Zara and Top Shop are Emperors, both in the blog world and on the streets (and in most of Istanbul's 70+ shopping malls!) there are several independent designers and ateliers that really shine through. Istanbul is literally brimming with amazing, unique, beautiful, thoughtful, and often hand-made clothing and fashion.

On this visit, I didn't get out that much (Winter = Hibernate), but I did my research! And when I could, I did a little "field-work". I made sure to check out some new places and old favorites.

One of the most unique designers I found online is Oyku Thurston, formerly of art.i.choke boutique in the Beyoglu neighborhood. The feel of her designs is very whimsical and ethereal - lots of light colors and soft textures, and everything has a really natural, organic tone - its the kind of clothing a woodland nymph would feel right at home in. Felt (don't let this word scare you, or evoke images of kindergarten craft-projects!) is mixed with silk, bamboo, merino, and soy fibers in a process that uses only olive oil and hot water, and every piece is hand-shaped.

Thurston, now 30, studied felt-making in Japan and got her degree from the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in Los Angeles, so her influences are truly international. That's my kind of girl.

Check out some of the designs -

Top: art.i.choke


Views of the store:

Outfit from the Impromptu Collection, Winter 2008:


Another great designer of whimsical clothes is Yasemin Ozeri. She is trained in architecture and fashion design, and currently runs a boutique/collective/studio/consignment store called Laundromat, which opened last September, with Oyko Thurston. It features the collections of various other up-and-coming designers. Its a great concept - it gives designers a chance to display and sell their pieces in an already-established boutique, plus it keeps the boutique's own merchandise fresh by constantly rotating (hence the name Laundromat) not only the wares but the designers. Genius!

Here are some pics from Yasemin's collection "On Being Insane in Sane Places", which features natural, subtle colors and textures with surprising and extremely thoughtful details:




These are from last year's "In Between" collection:

And some photos of Laundromat Boutique, which fuses modern simplicity with organic and natural neutrality:

(You can see some of Thurston's Japanese influence!)

Photos from Yasemin Ozeri

So there is some food for thought, and a little glimpse into Turkish fashion. I will post more later, when I am not jet-lagged. Some other designers and boutiques to check out are ParisTexas, Simay Bülbül, ümit ünal doors, 2. el (second hand), Lastik Pabuç, Lal, İkon, Bahar Korçan, Building, Antijen according to local fashionista and very helpful fellow blogger Seda.

And here is a bonus photo, totally unrelated, because I think it's a cool yet random shot and I am very excited about making this necklace, finally, and starting up my etsy shop -


  1. to your comment on my website: i would never never never do that, i love the usa... =) i want to live there... =)=)

    the necklace is gorgeous!

    thx for following us.. =)

    love cla

  2. heeyy! love to see that you had fun! and it's cool to see the beautiful thoughts of you about İstanbul.

    'local fashionista and very helpful fellow blogger Seda' you said about me, that's so sweet of you!:)

    hope to see you again in istanbul, enjoying all fashion and culture:)

  3. thank you for the great review. the art.i.choke is totally cool! i wish they'd shop to my country. ozeri is really talented. it's always fun seeing people talented in both fashion and architecture. just like zaha hadid. anyway, awesome tights! i bet they'll look real quirky when worn!

    the laundromat boutique seems like a must visit! i love shops dominated by neutrals.

    thank you for sharing, seriously, this widens my fashion knowledge and i really appreciate that :) have a nice day!


  4. The blog is great--- I am getting exposed to so many designers I normally wouldn't come across. Thanks for keeping me informed on what's going on in this world of ours!!

  5. It looks amazing! I love new designers like this:D

    follow me? please?:)

  6. I love the art.i.choke pictures, especially the second one.

    Interesting post! Makes me wish I could go shopping in Istanbul. :)


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