Design Talk With Kim SchalkMay 02, 2016




Washington DC designer Kim Schalk lets us in on what she’s loving right now, who inspires her most, and what to binge watch next on Netflix!


Whose style do you admire?

My Business Partner Bridgette Chavis and I both love Emma Watson.  Who knew Hermoine was such a good dresser? We Also love Rick Owens and Ulyiana Sergenko!

Do you have advice for juggling work + family? How many hours a week do you work?

Honestly not really, I constantly feel like my head is spinning. But we do the best we can. And as far as how many hours a week we work…  The clock is always running. We don’t stop.

What is your favorite piece of apparel in your wardrobe + why?

On a day to day bases I am in tank tops and sweatpants( I’m a gym-yoga rat!), But when it’s time to look nice, I go to versatile pieces.The convertible jacket is awesome because it has removable sleeves and i can wear it with shorts or a killer pair of pants. And the 3-way dress is the only thing you need pack for vacation. So if i had to pick anything, it would be those two!


Tell us a little about what inspired you and when did you start teaching yourself?
I’ve always been inspired by nature,  all things beautiful and unobtainable.  Also great architecture can influence my design.  The Deco dress was inspired by the Chrysler Building
20 years ago  when i  worked at Barneys NY I would make my clothes and the buyers constantly be asked were I got them , and if I could sell them there.  
What is your favorite fabric to use and why?
Its hard to narrow down just one , wool suiting with a touch of lycra and a wool jersey for fall but for spring my new found love is linen.
What do you like to do on your days off?  
What’s a day off?
Do you have a favorite book/ movie?
Outlander is where it’s at.  Have you seen it this season?  The clothes are amazing!
Margarita or Mojito?
Not a big drinker, but I do love dr. pepper!
Mountains or Beach?
Beach at low tide, I like to look at the sea life in the tide pools and watch the tiny shrimps and fish.
Soft Taco or Hard Tacos?
Hard!  The crunchiness with the softness of the cheese-yum!
Thanks Kim, we have enjoyed getting to know you a little more. Now we are craving tacos for dinner and feeling inspired to bring our A-game. I am loving the Deco Dress.
We are looking forward to hanging out with this inspirational lady Saturday May 7, 2016. If you can't make it in the shop that day, our first delivery of Kim Schalk designs are in the shop now.

2016 SPRING TRENDSApr 11, 2016


If you Google Spring fashion trends, you will find all sorts of inspiring reads from Popsugar to Glamour to individual fashion bloggers. What do I have to add to this topic that hasn’t already been said?! Being a shop owner, I get to see what fashion trends work on real women including myself, and I’ve been thinking quite a bit about it these days and how the current trends translate to the 45-year-old woman that I’ve become --- yes, I really did just share that on the Internet.

The funny thing is, I’m embracing my age more and more lately. I’m half way to ninety after all! As I reflect on how fast the past 45 years have gone by, the present seems more important than ever. I want to be the best version of myself, taking care of both the inside and the outside. Taking time to look good seems more important than ever, and dressing the part puts a pep in my step!

Trends come and go and come back again, refreshed for each new decade. How should you incorporate these fun new takes on fashion each season and make them your own?

At Silk&Burlap, we believe the number one rule for incorporating a trend into your wardrobe is to choose the trends that you feel most confident in, whether that means a match to your personality or a fit that flatters your figure. You can be told a million times over that you look good in something, but if you don’t feel good in it as well, you will inevitably feel awkward wearing a style that is not true to you.

That being said, trends should take your wardrobe of tried and true up a notch and add some fun to it.

With most of our spring apparel deliveries currently in the shop, I am tempted - like many women - to give my wardrobe a complete overhaul. With all the enticing pretties that come through our door daily, the S&B staff surprisingly does not shop like fiends. We are busy thinking about store plans, visuals, inventory ordering—and of course we are practical moms that keep our budget in mind as well.

With that in mind, here are a few of the trends I’m currently crushing on and what’s on my personal shopping list to give my closet a little fashion update:


  1. DENIM-

I’m especially thrilled by all trends related to denim at the moment. For the past several years, it has been the “skinny jean takeover”. Women (and men) have been rather reluctant to give up this versatile cut of denim. Skinny jeans are not completely gone, but we’re seeing more options and creativity in the denim world, from tailored boyfriend jeans to boot cuts and flared leg silhouettes. The more options the better since denim is such a staple for anyone’s wardrobe.


Insider Crop Step Fray

I'm obsessed with this jean. I love the cut, length, wash and how fun they are. Dress this jean up with heels and a pretty top or take them to the beach with a breezy knit pullover and flip flops.


Check out Saule's Instagram page to see  the inspiring ways she wears denim to include this adorable shot of the Insider Crop Step Fray


Mother Denim High Waisted Looker

Really now, who needs another black skinny?!

I do, you do, we all do when they are this magical! These have the perfect amount of stretch and structure, creating a very slim silhouette. In addition to looking sleek and foxy, they are easy to move in and comfortable enough to take me from soccer mom to shop girl.


I love how easy this denim top is, "What? This old thing?"... #wokeuplikethis
Throw it on with a pair of your favorite black skinnies or white denim jeans for effortless chic.



Velvet by Graham & Spencer Jenny Boyfriend Jean in Salt

White denim is on it's A-game right now. Once known as a staple in the summer, white denim is now relevant year round. The possibilities are endless. Brights and pastels pop off the white, black and white is always a crisp combo, but I am especially fond of soft pinks, creams or camel with white for a sophisticated look. Saule rocks that very look on her Instagram page below.


TR Designs Eyelet Combo Jean

A little bit of whimsy plus a nod to the 70's equal a whole lot of fun. A great pant to take me through spring and summer. I want to wear these with sandals or a pair of heels and a graphic tee.


Mother Denim The Cruiser in Partners Undercover

I love a good flare or bootcut pair of jeans. They elongate the leg, accentuate a feminine curvy shape and are just straight up cool! They look great with a tailored close fitting top, especially if the jeans are high waisted but I also like them paired with a little boho blouse as seen below on my Instagram page for a look that is easy and feminine.


Could my sidekick be any cuter!? A born fashionista.



Now, we’re not talking cowgirl or biker babe here. A little goes a long way, but the impact is foxy! The fringe and mesh trend work similarly. Choose a mesh sweater or an accessory with fringe to add texture, movement or a subtle, sexy little detail to your outfit. I for one love subtle yet sexy details, not overt but enough to add a little mystery and fun. Think Jennifer fashionista meets girl next door!


Jenny Bird Artemis Cuff

Does this killer cuff really need explanation!?  Everyone should have a little piece of foxy, badass and this is the piece I am currently coveting. What's not to love about leather, mixed metal chains with a fringe of hanging chains? Looks great with a simple tee and jeans or pair it with your LBD for a little element of surprise. A little "tough & tender" as Saule likes to say. If that is not enough, it's named after a super cool Greek Goddess.  I'll skip the toga but this cuff is a no brainer!


Margaret O'Leary  Ivory Crew Pullover

Simple, feminine and pretty. This crisp white sweater looks and feels soft enough to touch with the texture of the mesh-like knit. I love the 3/4 sleeve, the tight stretchiness of the knit and the brightness of the white. This is the little sweater that layers in with so many outfits you'll be asking yourself why you didn't own one like it before?  



Blush pink is not only a “darling” in the fashion world right now, but it is showing up in home accessories as well. Hailed as the new neutral, blush pink offers versatility with a strong dose of femininity. I personally can’t get enough of this color, because it reads both sophisticated and youthful at the same time…is it possible for a color be an oxymoron!?


Moroccan Leather Pouf 

There are plenty of cheap versions of the pouf out there which are not worth your time or money. These however are handmade in Morocco. Beautiful details and stitching on supple leather set them apart from the imitators. I want this for my home office but I'm afraid it may spark a total re-do. 

Ceramic Pineapple

While the pineapple is without a doubt having it's moment right now, it is a timeless symbol steeped in tradition that will never go out of style. It has long been a symbol of friendship, hospitality, status and luxury. I love this pretty version with the soft blush pink topping the  clean white base. I want this for my office on a shelf above my desk. Oh yeah, I'm definitely thinking a revamp of the office is in order!!

Beautiful Stories Evelyn Powder Rose Dress

Hello versatility! I want to wear this in the summer as a dress, to the pool as an easy but foxy cover up or over a pair of white skinny jeans with brown leather sandals. Now if only Mother Nature would cooperate with some warm weather and someone would invite me to their backyard BBQ I'd have all the more reasons to if I really needed any!

Keepsake Reality Dress

The color combo of blush pink and mustard yellow plus the hemline of this dress has me resembling the heart-eyed emoji every time I walk past it in the shop. It's currently in our shop window as seen below and I'm in love with the whole set up.

Follow Silk&Burlap on Instagram @silknburlap

There are several more gorgeous trends that I’d love to chat about, such as bold floral prints, off the shoulder and cold shoulder tops or dresses and everything 70’s inspired. However, as mentioned before, this is my personal list (currently, that is) and there is that, ahem, small detail of the budget to manage.

So until next week's deliveries arrive, it's time for me to make some shopping decisions!





Obsessions of a Shop Girl: Holiday StyleDec 11, 2015


Being a shop girl means holidays are a frenzy of:  hustle bustle at the boutique, kids' christmas programs, holiday parties, decorating, baking, and making sure Santa deliveries on his promises.  And after we have ensured our customers will be turning heads at their next holiday event, it doesn't leave us shop girls with much time or energy to pull ourselves together for our next after work holiday soiree.

But, as all shop girls do, I can't help obsessing about and justifying with no uncertain terms why I need a full party wardrobe upgrade, or even just a slice of celebratory fashion to brighten my holiday spirits. 

Here is a very short list of some of my favorites currently at the least until I pull the trigger and take one of these home with me--but never fear, there will be something new each week to fall in love with....

1.  Red Draped Jersey Maxi Dress with Rope belt by Rachel Zoe.  Va-va-voom. (no explanation necessary).

2. Fold over Leather Gold Metallic Clutch by GIGI New York.  So obsessed with this fold over design.  For me it is a nostalgic nod to the paper bag lunch made up in luxurious leather.  Something familiar turned into something incredibly new and fabulous!

3.  Pearl Trim Cocktail Dress by Rachel Zoe. In a way this feels far too sophisticated for my blue jeans and t-shirt tomboy self, but this is a complete slam dunk. From the silhouette, to the fun trim detail this is flattering, easy and needs no accessory!  And did I mention it is made up in my favorite colors? Black and White--LOVE.

4.  Crystal Fringe and Chain Earrings by Rebel Refined.  Um. Yes please! Rock Star earrings go with EVERYTHING!

5.  Stacked Crystals Cocktail Ring by Rebel Refined.  Timeless, simple, statement.  Every girl needs to own a WOW cocktail ring.

6.  Short Sleeve Mock Neck Dress by C/MEO Collective.  Winter for me brings the dreadful feeling of constantly being cold.  I love that this simple dress sports a short sleeve and is a bit heavier in weight to take the chill off at my next cocktail party.  And the fun flirty hemline is youthful yet sophisticated. Business on the top, party on the bottom--a fashion girl's response to the mullet. Touche mullet heads.

7.  Getaway Key Tag by Various Key Tags.  Every Bond Girl needs a getaway car.  Do I need to explain?

8.  Stone Cocktail Ring by Kate Hewko.  This reminds me of rock candy.  I have a sweet tooth. I would like to eat this ring.  Conversation starter, no brainer, super fun...

9.  Python Leather Clutch by GIGI New York.  I never met an animal print I didn't like.  And this one is laced with gold and adorned with a fringe tassle.  There are many things I can resist, but a good clutch is not one of them.  I will own this one day.  Rockstar cool, dressy enough for evening, edgy enough for pairing with a ripped up pair of jeans.  Must have.


Happy Holidays,



Obsessions of a Shop GirlMar 23, 2015







Being from California, winters in Maryland chill me to the bone.  As spring approaches, there are always days that give you a taste of what's to come, but only to be followed by pure disappointment when temperatures plunge again.  As March winds down, no one can deny that warm sunny days will soon be in abundance and I can officially pack the parka away until winter returns again.  One of the joys of living where there are seasons is the changing of the closet, like the changing of the guard, my seasonal flip comes with great pomp and circumstance especially when the transition is into warm weather wears.  This celebration is of course echoed at the shop and this season, there is a never ending abundance of fresh fashion that has me itching for a warm summer day and a party on my back porch.  


Here is a short list of things I can't get out of my head:

1.  Graphic Tees are my go to on any given day, like a plate full of comfort food, they are my happy place.  Could be the tomboy in me, or the quirky sayings, or the nostalgic reminder of something that makes me smile, but whatever it is, I find a way to wear them with just about anything in my wardrobe.  Our current selection of Zoe Karssen T's has me rearranging my wish list to accommodate just about every one.

2.  Midi rings are a trend I have not been able to embrace until our newest delivery of A Peace Treaty rings arrived recently. The adjustability factor is the link that has been missing for me and I am ready to jump feet first.  Midi today, gone problem, just re-adjust....

3.  Have you noticed real matches are getting harder to find?  The lighter wand seems easy enough, but what happened to the match?  We recently started carrying matches I have imagined having at the shop for years--just couldn't find the right ones.  They are just perfect.  Fun, whimsical, colorful, cheery.  Too cute to tuck in a drawer, leave them out--they are sure to put a smile on your face.  The perfect accompaniment to an amazing candle.  It really has me wondering, what was wrong the match?? Buh-bye lighter wand.

4.  I was skeptical when I set aside these high rise flares in the fitting room (in fact I thought it a great opportunity to make the shop girls laugh at how ridiculous they would be on me), but lo and new obsession.  The Siren jean from MOTHER is just as described.  Want legs a mile long, extra control in the middle, an alternative to the skinny leg, all wrapped up in perhaps my favorite fabrication?  This is your jean. Buy 2 pairs.

5.  Spring brings as much excitement around the house as it does to my closet, and in my imagination, I would be able to shake the house out like a dusty throw rug, ridding it of memories of winter: dust, cobwebs, cold nights, snow shovels, mismatched mittens and all.  This bronze mini kiss from Kelly Wearstler is a sweet reminder that I will gladly be kissing winter goodbye.

6.  My youngest daughter was recently at the shop with me and stopped me in my tracks when she brought me this graphic pillow and suggested she probably needed this for her bed. Duh. Yes you do. And Yes! we should probably cuddle now. Stop and smell those sweet roses whenever you can, no matter the season.

7.  I am short. I would love the wear heels.  I must wear comfortable shoes, especially at the shop.  Platform, wedge, all leather, comfortable sole.  BED STU. I LOVE YOU. 



Hope to catch you around town soon,

I'll be in the graphic tee... riding my cruiser with my besties... after a good cuddle...






What do you wear when you're feeling ho-hum about the current season (ahem, winter) and you're ready for warmer weather and fashion trends? Look no further than the midi skirt to take you from one season to the next. This versatile little number can be dressed up or down but can always be counted on to look feminine and fun! Saule, a style mentor in the shop, shows us how to effortlessly with this look she pulled together one Saturday for a day working at the shop.



















I'm inspired to pull together a similar look...confident, fun, feminine, a little edgy. Now go girls, go rock that midi now and have fun changing it up as the temps go up, can't wait!!

Thanks Saule!



Michael Stars Fedora
Yoana Baraschi similar James Jeans Ponte Moto Jacket 
Saule's graphic similar Zoe Karssen Tee or By Luciana Tee
Saule's Express midi similar Wells Grace Midi Skirt 
Ceri Hoover handbag or Ceri Hoover handbag
Saule's Frye similar Bed Stu boots 




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