How I “did” the jeans….

Ever since Yomaira posted about our store “makeover” I’ve been asked repeatedly how I got my old Habitual skinny jeans distressed and bleached etc.

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Step 1: Find a jean that just needs an update. Preferably one that’s not so worn thin that it can withstand some abuse.

My 7 yr old Habitual skinny jeansGathered stitching.

Step 2: Decide where you want the bleaching or streaking and in those areas consider running a simple sewing stitch through to create gathering. (try to use synthetic thread but either will do). If you don’t care about a pattern or placement just throw those bad-boys in the tub/shower and get ready to bleach (“resist-dye”)

Step 3: I began using as prescribed on some crafting websites a solution of bleach/water of 1/10. I found that the high-quality of my Habitual denim (Same happened with my NSF by the way) was not allowing any change to happen! I gradually increased the bleach porportion until it was 1/1. I used a spray bottle at first but then eventually just found myself throwing the solution all over the jeans.

my supplies

my supplies

Step 4: Wait. I monitored carefully to make sure i didn’t go “too far” as i was using such a highly concentrated solution with bleach. I didn’t want to burn a hole in them (or did I….hmmm. next time!) I think I left it on at least 15 minutes but depending on the saturation of the original dye in the denim the time could be shorter.

Step 5: When I achieved the effect I wanted, i put the jeans in a bucket and used hydrogen peroxide as a “stop agent” to prevent further discoloring or even holes.

Lastly: I just washed alone on cold in the washing machine.

Oh, and as far as the paint splotches. You just have to get busy and do a little makeover on your own walls and undoubtedly you’ll get paint on yourself. Pretty silly.

There you go.

Post-buying feast at La Luncheonette…

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Worth a major mention is La Luncheonette in Chelsea. This French bistro has been around forever and has absolutely stood the test of time!  After 3 trade shows this week and looking at countless cashmere sweaters, skinny jeans, leather bombers, and fancy sweatpants (yes, on EVERYONE’S fall line) we decided to treat ourselves to a fabulous meal on the west side of Manhattan.

Our lovely hostess!!

Our lovely hostess!!

Melva, owner and wife of co-owner chef, was our hostess with the most-est! She clearly loves what she does and her customers (something I can relate to!!).

Our table had cassoulet, rack of lamb, frisee salad, steak au poivre, and a mushroom pate. Plus two bottles of cote de rhone and a fabulous chocolate dessert.

Where there's smoke there's fire!

Where there’s smoke there’s fire!

Here is where we brainstorm on cocktail napkins all our genius store plans and schemes.

From our table is where we were able to bribe Yomaira’s hubby, Tacuma, to come drive us home in exchange for a delicious take-out meal of roasted chicken.

On this kind of fun and productive night we know why we have all come to find ourselves working side-by side at Peper.

Come for the ambience, stay for the butter...

Come for the ambience, stay for the butter…

We even got a tour of the butter-chamber where they have stored the biggest block of what we were told was the fattiest butter available in the US.

Thanks La Luncheonette!! 130 Tenth Ave., New York, NY 10011
at 18th St.

Thank you Hoboken!!

It’s been tough to write what with my brain flooded with flood information etc etc.

I do feel like I need to talk about my beautiful store and my beautiful staff and my beautiful clients and friends….

When I was 26 yrs old I opened Peper Apparel here in Hoboken. The reasons I opened the shop ended up being completely different than the reasons I’ve kept at it for 17 yrs.  I dreamed of being local while working.  I had aspirations of having a space where I could be “all business” or be creative.  I saw my fellow shop owner (and now good friend!), Diane sitting with her husband doing crosswords at the cafe in the morning instead of rushing onto the bus to NYC.  I did always like…ok LOVE…clothes. And shoes.  And people.

As I look back at it all now I can still see where the shop has served the purposes I set out for it to. I now realize that Peper has been the most enriching, inspiring, stressful, joyous, life-defining thing I ever could have embarked on at 26.  The people alone who walk in my door are enough to make me want to get up in the morning. The things my staff have taught me will stay with me always. The community connection I now have to my absolute favorite city is so special. I have wealth beyond my wildest dreams in terms of these things.

I have to say thank you to all the lovely ladies (and men) who’ve shared with me and my staff their stories, lives, and patronage.  This would just be my “job” if it weren’t for you!

It also must be said that I have had the most incredible sales team any store-lady could want.  My lovely ladies warm my heart with their generosity, patience, humor, loyalty, and never-ending love for my kids.

Today I’m celebrating all that has kept me going through this long 17 yrs and I particularly toast my gorgeous team: Adriana, Arthur, Brenda, Courtney, Craig, Kali, Mayra, Tamara, and Yomaira.  I love you!!!

I look forward to years to come here at Peper and Parlor!!

what’s in her bag? peper girls reveal! (take it with typos…learning photoshop!:) )

So our darling Adriana (yes! Adriana is back!) suggested a fab idea for our readers! Since we are always interested in each other’s  varied accouterments, we thought it would be cool to share what’s in our bags.

We all jumped at the chance to “spill the beans”…

Adriana’s Beracamy Paris satchel:


 highlights: the bubble yum gum is a childhood throwback! plus, we love the preppy train satchel by beracamy, it has four compartments so its perfect to house all the “necessities” of the everyday chaos

Yomaira’s Clare Vivier crossbody:

highlights:  the Yarnz cashmere scarf (keeps this caribbean girl extra warm in the almost chilly weather), the marc jacobs shades are a staple at peper…by the way,  i love all things Clare Vivier?

Brenda’s sparkling Monserat De Lucca tote:

highlights: the linea pelle zip wallet (always in stock at peper), brenda’s gorgeous yarnz tapestry scarf, and the adorable cloth covered hairpins from montreal’s carolina villamarin (a peper exclusive)!

Anne’s 49 Square Miles carryall: 

highlights: the flashlight & hoboken parking ticket …just kidding! we love Anne’s gorgeous earrings from a peace treaty and she swears by the single strap 49 square miles super supple leather bag (an easy pick for a mom on the go)!

Show me your legs!(Anne’s favorite five… Vol. 2)

I LOVE hosiery. I do. I make up reasons to wear stockings, legwarmers, fishnets, knee-highs, texture, color, layers layers layers.

We now have the exclusive for Hoboken from Hansel from Basel, Lisa B, Philippe Matignon, and Hortensia Handknits.

Wool, Cashmere, Alpaca, Cotton….GORGEOUS!!!! Come by to see (and feel) for yourselves! priced at $18-$185.

Anne’s Favorite Five (give or take!) vol 1.

Often in the shop the question directed to me is: “What are you loving right now?” Well having had the shop for 17 years, at this point I’ve become very selective with what comes home with me (especially since we live in a one room apt now!) However, there are ALWAYS about 3 (or 4, or 5, or 6…) things that I think are MUSTS!! This week I introduce our newest pieces of what I think is well-done, wearable, delicious, well-fitting etc etc etc!! I personally OWN all these pieces and LOVE LOVE LOVE them!!

The BEST pencil skirt I’ve had in awhile. Just a little more interesting than black. Constructed of the stretch jersey that Butter by Nadia is famous for. Super flattering, totally versatile!

Hi-low cotton/cashmere sweater with leather sleeve trim from Mason. SEXY! Michelle doing anything with leather will get my attention every time!! Perfect light weight: I’m wearing it already!

Mother denim delivering the most comfy fitted skinny in the shop. Here in “Grand Sophie” which is like a light bluish black. Totally sexy. I got these because until lately I really haven’t been a big wearer of black but these seem a little softer, more subtle…

Crown Jewel henley is DELICIOUS! I swore off henley tees many years ago (not sure why…) but this one jumped into my arms on my trip to Fred Segal in Los Angeles and we’ve since ordered and reordered 3 times here at the shop!! Cotton/modal/lycra. Shape holds so well I can wear it twice without it looking stretched.

Enter: our little gems from Mei Vintage. I must confess I don’t yet have this one but I’m sure I’ll buckle within a month and order one for myself! Made in California of vintage kimono fabric and leather with a detachable chain. Perfect little bag to wear day or night!!

Lastly, Fab Buckle booties from Argila. Did a big debate with myself and wasn’t sure i could rationalize another bootie but yes, THEY ARE DIFFERENT!!! I needed them. I’m wearing (ie:loving) them right now…