FA2L is for anyone who cares about beautiful things–clothing, shoes, accessories, home furnishings–and the interconnected tribes of those who make, sell, market and desire them. If something speaks to you, buy it now or hold your peace: there are links in each story, so the item you want is just a click away. I'd like to hear from you, too: please view my profile, use the email button and send me your comments.MG

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

SWIMS: Beach-Bound, or Just Singin' In the Rain

Here at Fashion As a 2nd Language, we tend to champion items that are beautiful, rare and often handmade, but we also understand there's a time and place for practicality. Especially when we're heading to the beach–or, perhaps, forced to walk the dogs in the rain. Water is one of fashion's great levelers: it ruins fragile fabrics and fine leathers. But no one wants to wear ugly clothes or shoes, just to accommodate inclement weather. That's where the Norwegian company SWIMS comes in.

SWIMS accomplishes quite a feat: the perfect marriage of form and function in the design and manufacture of footwear, bags and outerwear. For example, the 24-Hour duffle is made of water-resistant nylon (with a waterproof zipper), but its chic straps are cut from vegetable-tanned leather. The Fabio sneaker has a nylon upper and that all-important rubber sole–but it's lined with leather and canvas (meaning it breathes). We happen to love both in bright orange, but there are plenty of options (as well as a full range of shoe styles). Remember: when it rains, it pours–and now you can be prepared.