Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Still Shopping? Give the Gift of the Snowy HCH Cotillion Collection!

It's almost Christmas, which means if you're anything like me, you're still shopping. Lucky for you, a few pieces from the new Honey Cooler Handmade collection are ready to ship, including the Cotillion Chemise and Cotillion Knickers in sizes Small, Medium and Large!

Both are sewn from an impossibly soft cotton blend Dotted Swiss with sheer Point d'Esprit panels. The delicate corset detailing is a sweet, unfussy nod to the HCH Ribbon Corset.

You can shop for both pieces on Etsy or BigCartel, but hurry! The cutoff for US Christmas deliveries is tonight - place your order by midnight and get it time for Christmas!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Black Friday Sale!

Thanksgiving is upon us, which means food, friends, family and fun. It also means that Black Friday is tomorrow and the HCH Etsy shop is your perfect holiday shopping destination if you're looking for a deal!

Through December 1, score 20% off any ready-to-ship item in the shop by entering coupon code EARLYBIRD2013 upon checkout.

Happy Thanksgiving from Honey Cooler Handmade!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Corset Trunk Show at Dollhouse Bettie, December 5th 2013

The past year has been a really wonderful one for HCH, thanks in no small part to my ongoing collaborations with San Francisco lingerie powerhouse Dollhouse Bettie. I've been fortunate enough to sell my Ribbon Corsets in their lovely shop, as well as make pieces for their Deja Vu Dessous line, and now we are collaborating on an exciting trunk show just in time for the holiday shopping rush!

Join us for bubbly and shopping galore. If that's not enough to tempt you, Dollhouse Bettie will be among the first to debut pieces from my new Deco line. I'll have a bunch of Ribbon Corsets in a rainbow of colors on hand - they make the ultimate luxury gift for you or your significant other.

Be sure to RSVP here and we look forward to seeing you there!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Three 'Grams: Color of the Year

I've been so busy lately that blogging has taken a major backseat for me, but don't think for a second it means that things are all quiet here in my neck of the woods. I'm working hard to launch the first cohesive and official HCH Collection in the next two weeks. I've spent the better part of the last few months drafting, draping, fitting, sewing, organizing and doing all the other grunt work entailed in apparel design. From costing to hand grading, I've had my hands in dozens of different pots and I've loved all of it! There's so much on the horizon, so for now I wanted to take a quiet moment to throw out a Three 'Grams post.

Emerald was Pantone's color of the year and my recent Instagram shots have seemed to fit the trend pretty well. 

Our Hitchcockian room at The Burlington Hotel in Port Costa

Ribbon Corsets in progress for my trunk show with Dollhouse Bettie

 Chicken soup that helped fix this week's wicked cold

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Three 'Grams: Happiness Is...

What a month. Actually, what a last-few-months.

Working on developing my collection as a one-woman show has proven quite the task: fun, challenging, exhausting, exhilarating. My big official lookbook shoot was this past Sunday and I can say with no hesitation that it was a perfect marriage of talent once again. My photographer Antonette Streeter is literally my aesthetic soulmate and made the whole shoot an absolute dream. Stylist Dominique Guillen, hair and makeup artist Rebecca Taff, model Alexis Hutt and videographer Tim Prestoza made up a pretty exquisite team. As we began to sneak peeks of the photos and video in progress, each of us found ourselves shaking our heads in amazement. The initial raw images are so exciting that I was almost in tears when I first saw them - though that could also be a symptom of the inevitable emotional exhaustion that comes after a project of this magnitude!

In the week gearing up for the shoot, I made sure I had a bit of fun to temper the stress. A potluck and an afternoon full of drinks at my favorite watering hole ensured that the weekend would go smoothly. And smoothly it went. Take a peek at what made me happy this week - and while you're at it, hit up my Instagram page to see even more sneak peeks into Sunday's shoot. You won't be disappointed.

Potluck setup

Alexis is a neo-pinup at Sunday's shoot

Trick Dog's phenomenal cocktails remove all symptoms of stress,
especially when paired with girly pow-wow time.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Three 'Grams: Evening Romance

Autumn has has made her magnificent entrance and the season is really off to a fantastic start. I just got back from New York a few days ago, where I witnessed one of the loveliest weddings I've ever attended, that of Sharin and Ryan, both very talented opera singers. The wedding was the highlight of the trip, but seeing a bunch of close college friends was a close second in significance... being in New York always reminds me just how much I miss the East Coast and all the great friends I have there.

As the summer has wrapped up, I've noticed a lot of my Instagram photos are darker, possibly because all the fun I've been having has been at night!

A birthday bonfire at Ocean Beach

 HCH Ribbon Corset headed to Dollhouse Bettie

True love at the Hudson

Monday, September 23, 2013

Fashion Love Affair: Lena Dunham's Emmy Gown

Yesterday, Lena Dunham made a splash on the red carpet at the Emmys, wearing a pretty phenomenal Prada gown. While her choice has landed her on quite a few worst dressed lists, I really love it. The color combo is electrifying (reminiscent of Hitchcock's disarming use of red and green in Vertigo) and I've always adored bright red juxtaposed against lighter, cooler hues. Yes, it's a risky choice, but what fun is playing it safe anyway?

Clockwise from left: Dita Von Teese Bon Bon Maxi Dress, Oscar de la Renta Faceted Necklace,
Prada gown, Olympia Le-Tan Handcrafted Heidi Clutch, Valentino Absolute Crystal Suede Scallop Pump

Lena's Prada gown reminded me of Dita Von Teese's delightful powder-blue Bon Bon Maxi Dress which was released a few months ago. While the styles are fundamentally different, both are absolute show stoppers. While matchy-matchy accessories would undoubtedly be overkill with gowns like these, I couldn't resist picking out a few of my favorites.

What did you think of Lena's gown?

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Honey Cooler Handmade at Urban Air Market, September 15th 2013

The time has come once again for Urban Air Market! Come stock up on HCH lingerie in Hayes Valley this Sunday September 15th. I'll be at booth 34J on Octavia at Ivy Street and I'll have plenty of new pretties to peruse and a sale rack full of beautiful pieces discounted for one day only!

Be sure to RSVP here and bring your friends. If the weather's anything like it's been over the past few weekends, it will be the perfect day to get a head start on your holiday shopping in the SF sun!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Three 'Grams: Ivory Everywhere

HCH Collection Bralette

Saturday morning fog before the 20th Street Block Party

The original Edwardian ribbon corset I used to draft the HCH version

Friday, August 23, 2013

Let's Party!

While regular trunk shows are pretty fun, I'm especially excited to participate in NoisePop's 20th Street Block Party this Saturday the 24th from 12 - 6. Not only is it in the neighborhood I'm proud to call home, but it will also be chock full of local businesses I adore.

Flour + Water, Central Kitchen and Rhea's are all participating. Local indie superstars Two Gallants will be performing along with other awesome music acts. And remember that fantastic shoot I did at a local watering hole a few months ago? Well it turns out that the bar in question, Trick Dog, is not only participating, but that its parent company The Bon Vivants is a partial sponsor. In true flapper fashion, I adore a good cocktail and Trick Dog has 'em in spades.

I'll be sharing my space with my dear friend Kelsey of Rose La Mer Headpieces, so visiting our spot on 20th between Harrison & Alabama guarantees more bang for your buck. Swing by, say hello and listen to music in the summer sunshine. Find more details about the event on its Facebook page. Hope to see you there!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Three 'Grams: Pink & Green

My favorite color combination is pastel pink and light green, and this week's Instagram photos boasted quite a bit of both colors. Tomorrow I head to Las Vegas to check out Curve, so it's possible I'll have some glitzy pics to share next week! Happy Sunday evening, everyone!

The newest addition to my vintage collection, worn at a birthday party last weekend

Private Eye Sleep Mask detail

In-progress Deja Vu Dessous for Dollhouse Bettie

Saturday, August 17, 2013

New Deja Vu Dessous at Dollhouse Bettie

Though I haven't yet mentioned it on the blog, I've been creating pieces for Dollhouse Bettie's exquisite Deja Vu Dessous line for the past few months. It's been so exciting to collaborate with Michelle and the Dollhouse Bettie team, and wonderful to see how well the pieces are doing in the shop.

Here are a few of my most recent sets, and there are still more to come!

Snag yourself a set either in-person at Dollhouse Bettie's Haight Street shop or online, where you'll find tons more lovely lingerie to adorn yourself in.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Three 'Grams: (Not) Neutral

This week's Instagram photos were almost all neutral in color, but the week left me feeling anything but beige. I finished the first samples for my silk collection, set to release later this year. My first fitting with my lookbook model is next week, so I'm heading into the weekend with a huge sense of accomplishment. In the collection, you'll find updates of old HCH styles and a few new ones. A sneak peek below along with other shots from this week, including a peek into my previous life as a dancer who loved to play dress up - So... not much has changed!

Duck fat peach blackberry pie for a birthday party

New style: HCH Garter Belt

Steph in middle school

Thursday, August 8, 2013

I See London, I See France...

...I see a new stash of HCH Papillon Knickers!

My newest style has been a bit of a hot seller, so while I've been working on my official collection, I made sure to sew up some new colorful pairs for the shop. Check them out and snap up a pair or two for yourself (or your favorite leading lady).

Clockwise from top left: Nea Papillon Knickers ($60), Georgia Papillon Knickers ($50),

There are even more new pieces in the Knicker section of the HCH shop than ever before, including larger sizes in beautiful colors and laces. The Papillon style is going to be a staple in the official collection, and I'm so happy it's gotten so much attention so far. My current favorites are these, which feature a gorgeous silver elastic and velvet bow!

Which are your favorites from the new Knicker stash?

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Three 'Grams: Making it Official

I'm kicking off the weekend with a brand new feature (actually the only weekly feature) on the HCH blog: Three 'Grams. Instagram has become a huge part of sharing my creative process and I find myself posting tons of photos throughout the week. For those of you who aren't following me there, you can tune in right here to see my three favorite shots from that week. Enjoy!
* * *

Line illustration

I've hinted over the past few months that I would be changing things up here at the HCH atelier. And it's official: changes are underway. I'm now in the throes of sewing up samples for smalltime production. What does that mean? Big factories? Warehouses of fabric? Not quite.

It means that for the first time, I'll be buying fabric in (modest) quantity, grading all of my patterns and offering a set selection of pieces in a range of sizes and colors. Lace motifs will be duplicated for the first time - using the same lace from piece to piece. That means that when you visit HCH either online or in person in the future, you'll actually be able to buy your size made-to-order in whatever piece you like. Because this is a big scary step for me, initially the size range will be S - L, but it will broaden over time if things go as hoped and planned. As always, everything will still be made by my own two hands and I'll still be doing custom work, so if you don't fit into the S - L range, I've got you covered. And as if this all wasn't news enough, I'll be adding new products to the range in addition to adjusting the fits on all my patterns. Whew! So in addition to working on an official HCH collection, I'm officially a little overwhelmed, officially a little freaked out and yes, officially, excited.


My lookbook shoot is scheduled for early October, so I've got a nice chunk of time to work out all the kinks in my patterns and sewing. So far, though, so good.

First samples

Friday, August 2, 2013

3 Ways to be Your Most Beautiful

Louis XV's mistress Madame de Pompadour was onto something when she said "Champagne is the only wine that leaves a woman more beautiful after drinking it." Having consumed quite a lot of wine in my days, I can definitely attest to the validity of Mme. de P's claim. Red wine leaves me flushed and tired, white wine leaves me loopy, but champagne just makes me smile. And we all know smiles are beautiful.

This weekend, Elizabeth Street Cosmetics, SIGH Sonoma and Honey Cooler Handmade present three ways to make yourself more gorgeous, all wrapped in one trunk show:
  1. Flirtatious lingerie from Honey Cooler Handmade will revamp your undie drawer.
  2. Champagne and bubbles from SIGH lend a sexy effervescence to any ensemble.
  3. Sultry new lip colors from Elizabeth Street Cosmetics will pump up your beautiful smile
Combine all three and you have the makings of that je-ne-sais-quoi that will make you feel your most irresistable as you navigate this gorgeous summer weekend. And don't take my word for it; both The San Francisco Chronicle and Refinery29 are singing our event's praises.

Swing by and get pretty! Saturday, August 24th from 2 - 5pm at SIGH, 29 East Napa Street, Sonoma.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

HCH in Chaos Magazine, Summer 2013

While I often loan lingerie pieces out for photo shoots, it's rare that the final product gets published, no matter how impressive the photography. But when Spain-to-SF-transplant stylist Anna Fortuny contacted me about having my pieces as part of a Chaos Magazine shoot, I had a feeling I'd be seeing HCH in lights, and boy was I right!

Two of my Deco Camisoles were featured as part of Chaos Magazine's Dolls Issue in an editorial titled Friendship, Love and Truth by photographer Reese Herrick.

On model at left: Penelope Deco Camisole

Download the full magazine here - it's all-out gorgeous and well worth the $5!

Photography and Styling: Reese Herrick
Assistant Stylist: Anna Fortuny
Makeup and Hair: Tara Abrahams
Models: Aspen and Haley at Cast

Friday, June 28, 2013

New Style: Papillon Knickers

Yes it's true! There's a new style available on the HCH official site and on Etsy: Papillon Knickers. The drafted pattern is similar to that of my traditional Knicker style, but with more room and gathered stitching in the seat. It's an extra-sexy style that gives more definition to your rear and is sure to attract attention.

The name "Papillon" comes from the French word for butterfly. When laid out, these lovelies remind me very much of a butterfly's wings!

Check out the three new pairs available: Lovella (featured above - dachshund motif silk jacquard, size medium), Dierdre (polka dot lavender silk jacquard, size large) and Philomena (green floral motif silk chiffon, size small).

HCH Papillon Knickers are perfect for a a sexy striptease, leisurely lounging or just about anything beyond and in between, don't you think?

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

HCH Private Eye Sleep Masks Get a Facelift

One of the great things about running Honey Cooler Handmade as a tiny enterprise making one-of-a-kind lingerie is that when my customers make requests, I can often address them without hesitation. There are currently no patternmakers to consult (other than yours truly) and no size runs to adjust, so changes are easy to make.

While my Private Eye Sleep Masks have been a best selling style since their inception, I've also had more than a few requests as of late to make the band bigger. I'm happy to announce that every new Private Eye Sleep Mask is 2" bigger, with average full resting circumference of 17", stretching all the way to a roomy 26" or 27". Even bigger brained? Not to worry - custom work is a snap. Just email me with your stats and we'll take it from there.


I just finished up a sexy new stash of Private Eye Sleep Masks which are in the official HCH boutique and on Etsy right now. My personal favorite is the red Scarlet Private Eye Sleep Mask, which features a gorgeous dragon lace chevron. Also making a reprise is the Leona Mask, which boasts a sphinx and pyramid motif lace chevron. Each Mask is beautiful, versatile and spacious: the perfect gift for your favorite Sleeping Beauty.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Red, White and Blue

Ever since I returned home from Europe I've been playing catch-up at HCH HQ, part of which has involved re-taking my Knicker, Bloomer and Garçonne Tap Short photos. Those of you who follow HCH on Facebook and Twitter know I've been struggling with photographing bottoms on a mannequin for the past few months. Two agonizing paint jobs, hundreds of discarded photos, a purchased (then abandoned) lightbox, and a tripod later, I feel like I may have finally nailed it!

So, just in time for the inevitable patriotic run-up to July 4th, here's a sample of what's been going on on the HCH site and Etsy in red, white and blue.

What do you think?

Monday, June 10, 2013

Honey Cooler Handmade featured in the San Francisco Chronicle

I'm delighted to announce that Honey Cooler Handmade was featured in the San Francisco Chronicle's Style Section this past weekend. San Francisco fashion designers dream of scoring a coveted spot in the Style Section, so when what I thought would be a small blurb turned into a full-on article on the third page (!) which was also advertised on the first page (!!), I was a little taken aback. Below, the article by the very awesome Maghan McDowell. The online version is here.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Au Revoir, Europe!

I'm finally back in San Francisco after three weeks in Europe, a trip my husband and I had been waiting to take together since we graduated from college.

We spent the last few months planning our journey, one that saw us from Reykjavik, Iceland all the way to Barcelona, Spain. We spent all 21 nights in twelve separate, beautiful locations, each with its own specific charm, language and climate. (Let's just say I'm glad I packed both heavy duty galoshes and diaphanous dresses - we saw our share of both freezing rain and warm sunshine!)

What a wonderful adventure, and thankfully I was able to take some truly fantastic photos of our explorations - here are a few of my favorite Instagram shots, and there are plenty more here!

Thingvellir National Park - Iceland

Victoria & Albert Museum - London, England

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Antwerp, Belgium

Hotel le Clos Raymi - Epernay, France

Tuileries Garden, Louvre - Paris, France

Palais Garnier - Paris, France

Me in our Paris apartment

Amboise, France

Galerie des Glaces - Versailles, France

La Boite aux Huîtres - Bordeaux, France

Biarritz, France

San Sebastian, Spain

Basque countryside, Spain

Zaragoza, Spain

Casa Batlló - Barcelona, Spain

Though each city and town was special in its own way, I found myself really drawn to San Sebastian - a big surprise, since I thought Paris would be my favorite place out of all of them.

Where's your favorite place to travel?