As someone who once dabbled in jewelry design, I was mildly intrigued when a fellow amateur jewelry maker made a point to tell me (and everyone else) that she always wore each of her pieces for a while before selling them. She said she wanted to imbue them with "her essence." Of course I immediately dismissed this new-agey, half-baked marketing gimmick as merely a less-than-prolific designer's way of selling off jewelry she'd gotten sick of wearing. But now I'm thinking: perhaps I was too harsh. Without saying the word "aura" (whoops!), maybe it's not so crazy to conjecture that a thing can be somehow changed when we wear — or touch or buy — it. When you think about it, it's not simply purchasing something that makes it ours; it's what we do with the things we acquire. A couture dress might look almost ridiculous on one woman, while another woman can wear a cheaper knock-off version and look utterly glamorous. The same can hold true for a lamp or a piece of furniture; it's all about context. Some people just have a knack for bringing together different, sometimes disparate, elements to achieve a look that's unmistakably their own.
These are the people we will feature in CUE. New Orleans may not be a design mecca or fashion capital, but there are some interesting things going on down here. And we certainly have more than our fair share of originals — individuals who aren't shy about letting a colorful personality or a distinctive personal aesthetic show through their work, their words, their wardrobes and their homes.
Whether we're following someone around for the day to find out what it's like to walk in her shoes, or following her into her closet to try to guess what inspires her choices in footwear, our aim with this publication will always be, quite simply, to bring out the best in what we see. And because it is vital that authentic style be allowed to flow freely, at CUE, we recognize that the line between fashion and decor is not always clear. And we're okay with that. In fact, we think it makes things that much more interesting.
We do hope you enjoy this first issue — look for fresh takes on shopping and beauty — and we welcome your comments and suggestions. If you know a person, place or thing that would be a great fit for CUE, we'd love to hear from you. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org.