April is unbridled energy and pop. It’s a horn’s loud note and rock turned up. Nature’s punk attitude shines in full glory—lime, yellow, pink, magenta—irreverent, with just enough sweet charm to take the edge off.

We capture this zest in our April issue, with a focus on spring style, design, and individuality that blazes new trails. We’re interested in not only forward-thinking ideas, but also the designers taking creative risks. There’s an undercurrent coursing through Southern cities, that of distinction, intention, individuality. Rather than settle for the status quo, innovative minds are creating what they want to see, use, and wear. The results are eccentric, fresh, and boundary-pushing.

By way of Nashville and Portland, Oregon, Greenville designer Lauren Winter is simultaneously grounded and spritely, much like the loose, free-flowing clothing she creates. With sustainability in mind, Winter’s dresses, tops, jumpsuits, and pants retain a certain purity without zippers, clasps, or buttons. It’s as if she gives the fabric just enough direction and shape to allow the wearer to tell the rest of the story. Her designs are fluid and functional, elegant and earthy, like Winter herself (“In the Flow”).

Kathy Harris is owner and chief designer of retro-inspired line, köttkömm. Harris began sewing at the foot of her mother, and would lug her sewing machine on business trips. Her first atelier is now open on Pendleton Street (“Sew Fine”).

Wedding gown phenom Carol Hannah Whitfield cut a swath through the crowd at age 23, appearing on Bravo’s Project Runway in 2009. The Anderson, South Carolina, native is now celebrating ten years creating her Carol Hannah and Dearheart Bride dress lines, with her studio and flagship store in New York City. Whitfield’s dresses are an artful expression of simplicity, intricate design, and elegance, with a bohemian bent (“Gown Glory”).

Hair stylist and painter Emily Wilson’s passions for pop culture, eclectic style, and interior design have fused in her own home. Wilson integrates her larger-than-life portraits of celerities in music, film, and sports, such as Dolly Parton, Willie Nelson, Frank Sinatra, and Kobe Bryant, into her room schemes. The result is a mirror of Wilson’s dynamic persona, as fun as her funky interpretations of pop icons (“Modern Pop”).

These women and others are creating in bold ways and carving fresh paths. Newness is unfolding in each moment. Open your eyes and mind to the rush of it all.

blairsignature

Blair Knobel
Editor-in-Chief
Twitter / Instagram: @LBKNOBEL

Portrait by Will Crooks