I love, LOVE fashion. I think it comes from being raised by my mother, who is not only fashion forward but is savvy enough to juggle basic pieces with fresh accessories while exuding confidence with her bold color choices. I remember when I was a small boy, how excited I would get when I found out my mom was heading out for the evening because it meant that she would put together a ‘look’ and I would get to watch her prepare it. And sometimes, I got to give my input or help with a zip of a dress or even fetch a pair of high heels for her. Made me feel like I was getting ready too!
When I moved to the East Coast a couple of years ago and was learning my way around the ‘bear’ scene in the gay community, a friend of mine told me he had interviewed a ‘bear’ couple for ‘A Bear’s Life’ magazine who had their own fashion label: Jeffrey Costello and Robert Tagliapietra. Could this be a dream mash-up for me? Bearish men who design clothing? Who work in the clothing industry, creating jersey dresses, silky skirts and body hugging suits for the modern woman?
I haven’t had much personal interaction with Costello Tagliapietra to be honest with you. I leave a comment, ‘Like’ some of the same things they do and read up on what they are doing on Facebook, and sometimes, they show their support by doing the same on my FB page. Who knows, maybe our worlds will bump into each other some day? Either way, they seem like nice guys and I do admire how they can work a pair of suspenders with a plaid shirt – something I’m still trying to figure out how to do myself!
What makes me LOVE their work even more is now they are collaborating with UNIQLO, a new-style Japanese firm that designs casual clothing for men and women. They only have one store in North America: a 30,000 sq. foot retail extravaganza in New York’s Soho. Their affordable clothing fits my Chinese-German- Irish body beautifully and I make sure to visit the store frequently. Think of it as a Japanese ‘Gap’ but WAY better fabrics and innovative, classic yet fun designs.
As a press release from UNIQLO, courtesy of PR Wire puts it: “NY-based designers Costello Tagliapietra has teamed up with Japanese-brand Uniqlo to create a line of work-appropriate jersey and cotton dresses. Whether cinched or draped, the warmer-weather pieces offer enough coverage and length for the office, but are fashion-forward enough to wear out with vertiginous heels and a big ol’ necklace during those cool summer nights, too. It seems that the line is already available in Japan, but we’ll keep you updated if the wares move overseas to our SoHo location. “ Well, those dresses are available NOW! Making me wish I was working gal Tess McGill (Melanie Griffith) from the movie Working Girl; hair all moussed and teased sporting a Costello Tagliapietra UNIQLO wrap-dress climbing the corporate ladder. Whose to say it can’t happen?
Tell your fashion forward friends and lovers about these talented, ‘woofy’ and creative designers, who are not only partners in business but also in life. And with Mother’s Day approaching, maybe its time to treat my mom to one of their designs? I think my mom would look fabulous in a v-neck, violet tie-front dress and she would know how to work it!
Visit Costello Tagliapietra’s Official Website HERE
Visit UNIQLO‘s Official Website HERE