Summer Fashion Trend Re-Cap

How has your wardrobe stacked up this summer? Do you have any favorite trends for 2015 that you hope will return next year? If you took a moment to notice, you may recognize two fairly polar opposite trends occurring. Whether you welcomed them or just adopted a few subtle influences into your traditional summer outfits, we break down the full spectrum of this year’s hottest trends and catalog our favorites:

Brazilian Bikinis

brazilian bikini

Teeny bikini trends continue.

The barely-there-Brazilian-bikini styles are ever present. As these itsy-bitsy bikini cuts become more popular year after year, courageous women who are neither model-skinny nor 21 embrace the style. (For those with less courage, try adding a beach sarong to tie around your waist – or a see-through netted cover-up dress.) Prepping for this swimsuit generally requires a spa visit for a service of the same name—or delicate work on your own—to keep unwanted hair discreet.

Baring a little more skin than usual might prompt some sunless tanning in advance. To feel more comfortable in the bathing suit you select, choose a color or pattern that complements your skin tone. Feel like you want to jump right into the style before testing the waters? Go for tribal designs. These are hugely popular, and it just so happens my new fashion line, Asher Marie features these colorful prints in a variety of beach-worthy tunics and travel dresses.

tribal fashion trend

One of our Asher Marie dresses (Full Spectrum Rachel Dress) with a tribal print on the runway at L.A. Swim Week, July 2015.  Click to purchase from Asher Marie Collection Now!


On the opposite end of the sexy-relaxed spectrum is the fairly new hybrid trend ‘athleisure.’ For those who have business-casual or casual dress codes at the office, athleisure might be a good fit. Athleisure styles offer a professional appearance and at the same time they could potentially be worn to the gym. I know for many working moms I’ve spoken to, they are thrilled with the growing trend of athleisure pieces that allow them to be comfortable, versatile and still look “put together.” Athletic apparel is appealing on a national level as more people gravitate toward healthier lifestyles and incorporate workouts into their day-to-day routine.


Athleisure items are catching on.

Ann Taylor LOFT exemplifies this trend through their Lou & Gray collection. According to their site, their latest styles pair casual and luxurious fabrics: “Luxe linen and pure silk hang out with slouchy joggers and cotton jackets.” Most of the styles translate easily from a casual business meeting, an after school picnic, to an evening jog.

If you are looking for more vibrant prints and patterns, Asher Marie is also launching it’s own athleisure pieces for Spring/Summer 2016. With spandex blend shorts and capris, our pieces will easily transition from the beach, to the gym, to a girls’ lunch date.

athleisure shorts

We debuted a forthcoming athleisure piece for Asher Marie on the runway at L.A. Swim Week, July 2015.  Coming SS16 in a few outrageously hot prints!!!

Of course, with the right accessories you can formalize almost anything! Overalls are tricky though, but those are not trending right now…and I am grateful for that!

Photo Shoot Details and Outtakes!

asher marie fashion

The girls taking a break from striking poses.

We want to share a few spontaneous shots before we release the formal stylized portraits and Look Book from Asher Marie Collection’s inaugural photo shoot. These will give you a peek at the styles and a little behind-the-scenes look at the talented individuals involved with the shoot.

fashion photo shoot

Even the Ferrari modeled for us.

How did the day unfold? From 8:30AM-10:30AM we dedicated time to hair and makeup. Thank you to Jamie and Jessie for your great talents! Then our models were styled and posed for the shoot from 10:30AM-3PM. We celebrated the official launch of the Asher Marie Collection through a party held at my home in the evening. As usual, Chef Michael Saunders and his team rocked it out of the park with crafty cocktails and endless delicious eats!!!

fashion models

Libations and snacks courtesy of Chef Michael Saunders.

Yes, you now have the privilege of seeing our designs showcased on models! But who are the Asher Marie models in our shoot? Our look book models included my beautiful sister Rachel (who you’ve seen in earlier posts on Her Heel Flops where she modeled her boho fashion style), and my sister-like bestie (and hopefully soon-to-be cousin-in-law) Sharice a.k.a. ‘Legs.’ (A term of endearment given by all of us who fall short of her beautiful, natural, six foot tall physical composition!) Sharice clearly has some experience modeling, but she would be the last person to tell you about it! Best friends, Desiree and Kim also joined in for our lifestyle shots and brought us great comedic relief with their one-liners, slightly inappropriate humor and always-honest opinions. I am beyond blessed with this group of women and grateful to have them in my life!!!

yoga fashion

Desiree posing yoga-style.

What about the talent behind the camera? That’s Christa Hook. Christa Hook is the photographer responsible for my beautiful maternity shoot, my son’s infant portraits, and many family photos. She used to live here in the Triangle-area, but she moved out to Colorado. Fortunate for me and many other clients—she flies back to North Carolina regularly for photo sessions! Very grateful for her time and talent!

fashion photographer

Thanks to photographer Christa Hook who flew to North Carolina from Colorado.

The largest challenge for the shoot was that the Asher Marie designs are intended for late spring and early summer. Our collection is made for women who like to travel and aspire to the wanderlust theme. However, the photo shoot was shot outside of beach season and over a hundred miles from the coast. We took creative steps in locating palms to decorate our set and “faking” it outside with a few coastal accessories. A friend of a friend was also kind enough to loan us her beautiful suburban estate for a poolside backdrop. Talk about braving it…the girls even dipped their legs in for a few summer-themed travel shots…it was barely 50 degrees! I continue to appreciate it!

resort wear

Can you believe they dipped their toes in the pool on a 50-degree day?!

Yes, this photo shoot required a tremendous collaboration. The owners of the estate were gracious to open their property to us, Rachel flew in from Florida, Sharice and Desiree from California, Christa from Colorado, and we had vendors in California as part of the fashion production process. Check out our earlier post about collaborating on a photo shoot.

One take away, our next shoot will definitely be a destination shoot, on location somewhere warm and sunny, perhaps with a bit of sand and salt in the air! 🙂

That’s a wrap!

Photo Shoot Collaboration

asher marie spring fashion

Models wearing items from Asher Marie Collection’s inaugural line. Who designed the clutches? Who took the photographs? We collaborated with great vendors.

Curious how to maximize your efforts and time when planning a fashion photo shoot? Here is the story behind how the Asher Marie Collection connected with vendors for our photo shoot launch: Best Ways to Collaborate for a Photo Shoot.

Check Out The Asher Marie Collection Website!

The delays between our posts have been for good reasons. The website for our fashion line the Asher Marie Collection is now live and quite active! What can you find there?

  • On our home page you can Sign Up to receive complimentary shipping on your first order. Scroll to the bottom of the home page for the form.
  • We have an ‘Inspiration‘ tab to show you the elements and places that have contributed to our style. Resorts, exotic destinations, beaches, and a sense of adventure coalesce in Asher Marie patterns and silhouettes.
  • Asher Marie is getting social! With our latest ‘Social Media‘ tab, you will be able to follow our most recent Pins, Tweets and Facebook posts.
  • Pre-orders are open, so hop over and reserve your favorite pieces before they become available to the public.

As an emerging designer, simultaneously while building Asher Marie from scratch, I have been targeting fashion shows, developing our samples, planning our photo shoot and launch party (both were thankfully super successful on March 13th) and getting materials together for our initial Look Book, which will also be available on our site very soon.

We are also tentatively planning to attend fashion shows in Charlotte, North Carolina, Las Vegas, Nevada, Miami and Tampa, Florida, and possibly Atlanta, Georgia. While we navigate the process for fashion show protocol we will be sharing inside details. Curious about fashion marketing? You’re lucky you subscribe to Her Heel Flops, and if you have not already – please click ‘follow’ on the right side to make sure you receive each new post as it comes.

We recently revealed a few pieces from the Asher Marie Collection’s inaugural fashion line. Today we are including another print as a sneak peek into Asher Marie Spring/Summer 2015:

emerging fashion designer

Launching a Fashion Line: Sample Production Process

Asher Marie fashionThe Her Heel Flops team wishes you a very belated Happy New Year and would like to explain the delays between posts. As revealed last fall, I’m starting a fashion line and subsequently, have been in the thick of scheduling photo shoots, planning a launch party (March 13th!), and finalizing all the last details for the Asher Marie Collection.

If launching a fashion line wasn’t exciting enough, we thought you may be interested in the nuts-and-bolts process should you be interested in following our fashionable footsteps.

Asher Marie Fashion

One of our pieces from Asher Marie’s inaugural collection. Read on to learn how it came to be.

How does a fashion line start? Beyond the initial creativity and sketches and years of perfectly organized card-catalogued tear sheets and mood boards, the sample production process is your big first move. It involves several steps. Do you find yourself doodling dress designs and outfits when waiting on hold? Do you have every fashion app on your phone? Did you follow #NYFW? Then the first step is right up your fashion runway:

  1. Sketch and concept. Gather your fashion sketches in one place. You may have dozens of ideas. For your inaugural line, choose 6-10 concepts or sketches. Consult with an established designer or stylist to get a real-world perspective.
  2. Tech designers. Technical designers in the fashion industry will take your sketches and translate them into workable designs to help create patterns. Tech designers work down to the finest details: The size and placement of enclosures, patterns of embellishments, and more. Manufacturing fashion is not possible without the proper design.
  3. Pattern maker. Now your proper designs make their way to patterns. Patterns are one dimensional cut outs of your concepts.
  4. Cut pattern. The patterns are then cut. Contemporary pattern cutting is highly accurate. If you have a great tech designer, today’s digital technologies let your designs come to life exactly how you envisioned them.
  5. Sew samples. Samples are then constructed from the pattern.
  6. Fitting. Then it is time to hire models and schedule the first fitting. The Asher Marie team worked remotely via videoconferencing from Los Angeles. It’s important to involve as many people as possible in the fitting experience to be sure all-important modifications and fit notes are conveyed. For example, the designer may be able to articulate their vision for the garment while the technical designer may work with the sample maker to ensure technical accuracy during the fitting. (Of course, be ready for technical difficulties. I managed to keep a virtual fitting going when one of our team member’s Skype connection cut out by using my smartphone and tapping them in through a regular call.)
  7. Repeat. Fashion is a tremendously collaborative experience and requires great patience. Sometimes the technical, pattern, sample and fitting process occurs two or three times before an actual garment is produced the way it was initially envisioned.
Asher Marie Collection

Another one of Asher Marie’s samples…You’ll have to wait to see the finished product!

More news soon about our upcoming photo shoot and very exciting launch party!

3 Surprises When Starting Your Own Fashion Line: My First Experience

fashion design

Here is what I’m learning as I launch my first fashion line!

How does one start their own clothing line? The first step is deciding to do it…and to be 100% committed to your vision. At least, that is how my current experience started. With my background in interior design and my personal love for fashion, merging my interests felt natural. The desire manifested itself for over a decade with a drawer filled with sketches, fabric samples, magazine clippings and proposed silhouettes.  In fact, I still have a handful of cocktail napkins where I scribbled concepts and ideas from the year 2001.  The timing may have been off in the past.  However, with a bit of grit and determination the stars strategically aligned this year.

I am beyond thrilled to officially announce my new clothing line, the Asher Marie Collection. Coming Spring 2015, the resort and lifestyle collection will deliver globally-inspired pieces at an affordable price point, graciously complementing today’s most dynamic women!

Asher Marie fashion

So how did the name come about? ‘Asher’ is my son’s name, meaning happy and blessed; and ‘Marie’ is a long-time family name with deep personal reference of grace and strength. Asher Marie fused together offers a piece of me and my family and a vision for my customers of strength, beauty and grace. I hope my pieces will inspire and deliver a bit of joy through color, pattern and silhouette and encourage women to be independently beautiful!

As I navigate designing, sourcing, and supplying my new clothing line, a few figurative ‘trips on the runway’ occurred. Below I include a few of my experiences that may help you:

Be conservative. Originally I was looking forward to introducing the Asher Marie Collection with fifteen or twenty inaugural pieces. However, after consulting with fashion industry veterans (including authors of NY Times best sellers and couture experienced designers) I realized my inaugural collection should be limited to less than a dozen pieces.

Not just fashion design. Creatively conceiving a few designs is not your only job when you launch a clothing line. It is up to you to source materials, check with textile suppliers, price fabric by the yard, find a sample maker, research stores and distribution expenses, and the list goes on. If having your own fashion line is your dream—be ready to be hands-on for business operations. You absolutely need to be all in and adopt a strong work ethic before you start any creative concepts.

Fabric! Speaking of business operations and fabric sourcing, all decisions were complete and materials scheduled to order over the summer. Then I received a call that the one of the fabrics we selected was only obtainable in bulk supply and not available for our limited initial collection.  Strike one.  Within days, I also learned that three additional fabrics had completely sold out.  Strike two and back to the drawing board.  Overall, this delayed production of our samples. I had to be resourceful and flexible in selecting quality replacement fabrics that wouldn’t compromise my overall vision. Fortunately, we found stunningly beautiful substitute materials – but accepting these changes early and moving forward without too much emotion has made the line even better.


Many fabric choices are available today!

Please stay tuned for a behind-the-scenes breakdown of more details as we navigate our way! Plus, a sneak peek of the debut collection, fun fabrics and the launch of the Asher Marie Collection website in just a few short weeks.