SUIT UP 2013 ~ a visual diary ~ Artful Gentleman and Cari Borja/clothesmaker

“We sometimes encounter people, even perfect strangers, who begin to interest us at first sight,
somehow suddenly, all at once, before a word has been spoken.” ~ Dostoevsky


c29How do we get from there to there, and now here? Those three points for Jake Wall, the designer for Artful Gentleman and myself are the SNOW runway show we met at January of 2013 (left), the first Human Right’s Campaign SUIT UP FOR EQUALITY  runway show last August of 2013 (images below), and right now, a week before the second HRC SUIT UP show. Of course there are points in between, but I’m always filled with wonder at how two people can meet, a relationship begin and continue, and all that is produced in between, for us that means suits, gowns, separates and ideas, admiration, respect. Inspired by a trilogy of Hitchcock’s films ~ To Catch a Thief, Strangers on a Train and Notorious, last year’s runway show was filled with stunning wool suits, and dresses made from the silk linings of the suits. For this year’s show I use cotton ~ plaid, striped, herringbone. Below is a visual diary of some of my favorite moments that brought the collection to life through different prisms ~ on the runway, backstage, and editorial shoots shot by Kelly Puleio. With collaborators that ranged from hair and make-up to models, choreographers, dressers, writers Sylvia Rubin, Leah Garchik (lead photo by Leah) and Tony Bravo, and all the many others it takes to put on a show. We’re so excited to see it all come together once again on the third floor of the McCroskey Mattress Factory in San Francisco, August 14th, 7-10pm. For tix ~ $45 General Admission, seated VIP ($65/95), and after party at Daniel Patterson’s ALTA ($85).


Above ~ photo: Kelly Puleio, shot on location at the Legion of Honor, SF. Featured in the SF Chronicle.


   aa13b14dfd764c8c5a8ccfe94ab7c277    tumblr_lr5yx5Zl6p1qm5b1no1_500   To-Catch-a-Thief_Grace-Kelly-Cary-Grant_Black-beach-wear_side_bmp

Above ~ Hitchcockian inspiration…


“What is drama but life with the dull bits cut out…” ~ Hitchcock


Above ~ Charleston Pierce directing models.


Above ~ Artful Gentleman’s Jake Wall and Nathan Johnson and I making decisions…

1209187_628872483803248_1859285261_n   1234302_628872560469907_2128527765_n   1186142_628872753803221_1860564752_n   1185049_628872680469895_1414599250_n

 1478954_10152117982870815_773902861_n  1185298_628881607135669_1783828994_n  1003215_628881000469063_96611276_n



558591_630465476977282_2097894359_n  1234366_630465553643941_1026559341_n  1186750_630465656977264_1337764806_n  541782_630465316977298_1993844890_n

1185463_630465146977315_1401302938_n  1240136_630468930310270_213716324_n  998630_630467490310414_1326874133_n  1233402_630468463643650_944338755_n

1236454_630467380310425_275347871_n  1187097_630467090310454_3893783_n  996567_630464643644032_672297484_n  1175293_630465080310655_1289037672_n



39  53  27


Interpretations, by Kelly Puleio

“If I won’t be myself, who will?” ~ Hitchcock

1908048_713582401998922_1353416701_n  1656091_713581888665640_40854055_n   1891127_10101142378650888_656089403_n

1508525_713582541998908_1926680438_n  1656321_10101142281216148_1590482124_n  1621730_713581585332337_1720210262_n




“In the end all collaborations are love stories.” ~ Twyla Tharp




Special thanks ~ Jake Wall and Nathan Johnson of Artful Gentleman ~ for inviting me into this collaboration…Robin Azevedo of McCroskey Mattress Factory, Heather Freyer of HRC; photographer Kelly Puleio and asst Nicola Parisi; Tamara Costa; my assistant designer Racheal Matthews, assistant Joy Brace and intern Anna Kell; choreographer Charleston Pierce and all of his amazing models he brought into the production. Lead dresser Mary Elyse; Hair by Rebecca Rebecca Beardsley for the show, and by Pretty Parlor for the editorial shoot. Make-up by SFIEC for the show, and Casandra Salazar for the shoot. And thank you to the lovely models, in particular Kimberly Rosselle, Mellissa Gray, Amanda Alicia, AC Carlsbad, Yulia Riera, Robert Sydney Mull III, Cory Schisler, Helena Martin, Beanie and the many other collaborators in front of the camera and behind the scenes …



1 Comment

  • Reply August 7, 2014

    Mira Musank

    Cari, this is so awesome! Can’t wait for next week’s fashion show!!


Leave a Reply