Coco Videla

Tuesday, June 12th, 2012

I think this picture says it all: this girl likes to have fun, she always has time for a laugh (and a friend) and is the bomb. She’s also Latin (by way of Venezuela) to her core – something I love in a lady (might be why little Beba is so dear to me). If you’re lucky you might meet her when you pop in: she’ll be the one with five tiny puppies trailing behind her. I told you she’s awesome.

Photo by John von Pamer

Favorite recipe?
I’m terrible with recipes (and instructions, and rules in general), but I do make a mean omelet with basically whatever’s in season.

Last great book you read?
50 Shades…

Summer drink of choice?
Oban is a favorite all year-round, but on a warm summer day nothing beats a Billecart-Salmon Rosé (perhaps while reading 50 Shades).

Your Animals-names and breeds?
My dog Kika got knocked up by a Venezuelan hottie on New Year’s Eve, and now I’ve got 5 little rascals running around my house: Pepe, Manolo, Lola, Jagger and Benicio. Puppies anyone?

Do you exercise? What do you do, if so?
I wander for hours- that counts, right? And I love dancing (alone, on the dance floor, in the gym, on the streets….anything goes).

Salty or sweet?
I ask myself this question every day.

Who inspires you and why?
Everything I needed to know about being a woman I learned from my grandmother’s red lipstick and the click of my mother’s heels.  One inspired me to embrace my femininity and rejoice in all things beautiful, and the other taught me that as long as I had brains in my head and feet in those heels I could get to wherever I wanted to go.

Pool or ocean?
A bubble bath, preferably overlooking the ocean.

Favorite city?
New York is my soul mate. Paris, my lover.

Last great vacation?
No matter where in the world I go, a great trip for me involves a road-trip, getting lost, meeting fabulous strangers, connecting with old friends, laughing lots and dancing plenty. Brownie points if I get to sing to Chavela Vargas (or any song, really) off the top of my lungs.

Favorite tv show?
Right now I’m loving “Girls” on HBO

Weirdest job you’ve ever had?
When I was an interpreter, many, many moons ago, every job was an adventure. Once I spent 3 days with a Spanish biologist dissecting sturgeons and learning the correct method of extracting caviar. Another time a radio station hired me to interview Mike Piazza and Rey Ordóñez in the old Shea Stadium…what I didn’t realize is that the interview would take place inside the men’s locker room, while the players were getting changed. Priceless.

Favorite restaurant?
L’Artusi on W10th. Crazy good.

Favorite object in your home?
My bright-pink chaise longue next to my old Simon Says.

Favorite piece of clothing?
A beautiful Mary Katrantzou dress. Just looking at it makes me happy.

Favorite blog or website?

Something you’re scared of?
Monsters under the bed.

Favorite record?
@50songsofgrey by Kerrilynn & John.  So sexy.

Favorite popsong?
Billy Idol’s Dancing with myself. Talk about dancing like no one’s watching!

Your Ideal day?
I think it was Charlie Chaplin that said, “A day without laughter is a day wasted.” He was onto something.

Favorite gift you’ve ever received?
I might be getting it this week. I hear every woman should have one.

Favorite flower?
The Flower of My Secret (a film by Pedro Almodovar).

Favorite scent (perfume)
My only scent, Jasmin 17

Astrological sign?

What do you do for a living?
I work in advertising with a bunch of mad men.

Where do you live?
West Village

Your lucky number?
I’m always doodling the number 8 so it must be lucky? Or extremely hypnotic.

What piece of art would you buy if you had ab
There’s a fantastic photograph of Rossy de Palma wearing a Louboutin stiletto on her head as a fascinator. That would be fun to look at every day.
Also, anything by Yoshitomo Nara.

What do you like most about yourself?
I laugh often and much…




Friday, March 16th, 2012



In the summer of 2011, photographer and dear friend Takahiro Kaneyama ventured to the distant shores of northeastern Japan to visit and photograph Mt. Osore. Literally translated as “Mount Fear,” this active volcano is one of the holiest destinations in all of Japan, believed to be the final passageway as one journeys to hell. This spiritual site often attracts visitors to console and remember the many lost souls. It is believed by some that here you will be able to spiritually connect with lost ancestors. A visitor himself, Taka was able to capture the essence of both fearful and tranquil elements of this holy land through his gift of photography.

Taka’s hauntingly beautiful images are currently being featured in an exhibit at Miyako Yoshinaga art prospects entitled Shades of the Departed. So many thought-provoking themes and ideas are addressed throughout this series of images, yet their understated manner still provides a pure beauty that we may not necessarily expect alongside a representation of the underworld. Truly magnificent! The photographs perfectly combine darkness with inspiration, despair with reflection, and life with death.

The exhibit will run through April 21 and I highly recommend taking your own journey to these riveting landscapes of Japan through images, which delicately yet powerfully evoke emotions of all sorts. Taka’s talent is spectacular and this is absolutely a show worth seeing! Perhaps I should add Mt. Osore to the list for my next Japanese adventures…

SEE: Fashion matters – why?

Monday, June 20th, 2011

Why does fashion matter? Society has been grappling with this question seemingly since Eve discovered the wonder that is Grecian draping around the dawn of time and promptly converted Adam. Who can blame her? It’s very figure flattering.

In more recent history, this query has often taken on a rather dark and usually politically charged undertone, especially during periods of economic instability such as that from which we are ever so slowly emerging. There are certainly those among us who would categorize fashion as being superficial and irrelevant.

Naturally, we at Castor & Pollux do not share this opinion and have long championed the idea of “creating a decoration conversation, recognizing that the act of getting dressed directly corresponds to the books on our shelves, the foods we eat, the scents we wear, and the way we set the table.”

Furthermore, who can discount the immense cultural importance of the creation of sportswear (thank you, Coco “We’d be catching the bus in a corset and hoop skirt if it weren’t for you” Chanel), the wrap dress (we are indebted to you, Ms. Von Furstenberg), or the modern tuxedo jacket (Yves, without you we’d be lost)? Innovations in dress such as those previously mentioned are undoubtedly just as vital to our modern selves and the evolution of our society as the electric telegraph, the Model-T Ford and the X-Ray. They become cultural benchmarks, providing us with insight into a people, place, and time that might otherwise be lost.

Perhaps Nigel says it best in The Devil Wears Prada: “Halston, Lagerfeld, de la Renta – what they did, what they created, was greater than art because you live your life in it.”

Given our strong feelings on the issue, we were obviously delighted when the iconic Manhasset luxury retailer Hirschleifers invited us to participate in their online forum, aptly titled Why Fashion Matters – a year-long project created in honor of an astounding 100 years in business, as well as a way of paying homage to the fashion industry itself.

The site provides a space through which fashion lovers, in addition to movers and shakers in the industry (including such influential persons such as Jason Wu, Sharon Edelson of WWD and Ashley Olsen of The Row), can expound on the importance and relevancy of fashion in their lives and the lives of others. Here’s what a few contributors had to say:

Kerrilynn Pamer (Our very own!):

“It gives you a platform to play around with – whether you choose to or not. Even on days when the idea of dressing can seem daunting, you have the ability to tell others a little something simply by what you are wearing.”

Sonia Rykiel:

“Fashion offers a dream to women as well as a tool for their needs. It is a living statement of the times.”

David Neville of Rag and Bone:

“Fashion matters because the last time I looked nobody was walking around naked. The clothes you wear are a personal expression of a part of who you are.”

Can I get an Amen? 

– Rebecca Elliot

Paper & String & Castor & Pollux!

Thursday, June 9th, 2011

So many ampersands, so little time! We wanted to thank our neighbors at Paper & String for the lovely shout-out that they gave us a few weeks back. Their intrepid reporter Whitney Port (yes, Whitney Port!!!) very kindly declared her adoration for our Gary Graham duds and Castor & Pollux Maggie bracelets, among other things. We like that she is obsessed with all of our favorite West Village snack spots, too – we have a pretty bad One Lucky Duck habit here at the store and have been known to finish their Cacao Latte in seconds. SECONDS!!!

Big ups to Paper & String for its support of independent retailers and neighborhood businesses in NYC. Viva la West Village!

Toast of the town.

Wednesday, May 11th, 2011

Contrary to popular belief, summer is a time for leather. Not the icy black or gray or white variety that ensconces us during winter, but the warm, broken-in caramel of basic brown. Found on the beaded belts that snake through the loops of cut-off denim shorts; on braided huarache sandals that camouflage the chips of your two-week old pedicure, and on leather cords that suspend shells, bones, horns, antlers, and other natural ephemera acquired on camping trips, hikes, and coastal ventures. The hue can also be found on the new Castor & Pollux wallet that arrived in the store today, in the beautiful, rich, long-awaited shade that falls somewhere between walnut and coffee with just the right amount of milk in it.

We don’t have any photos yet, but we created a mood board of sorts. Enjoy.

5 PM on a spring afternoon

Wednesday, April 20th, 2011

I will never cease to reap the joy of daylight savings. You’d think after 27 years of being exposed to the elements and the passage of time, one would become accustomed to the extended sunny hours of the spring and summer months, but no. You can find me standing on West 10th Street, transfixed, basking in the sunlight like someone new to Earth.

The store looks beautiful right now, illuminated by the afternoon glow and the keen motor skills of our wonder-merchandiser, Becky. I feel compelled to share. (Excuse the less-than-stellar photos!)

The bell jar houses mysterious scents from Coqui-Coqui.

The Easter tree! The Tucker butterfly-print dress!

Gabriela Artigas Swarovski-crystal necklaces look best when exorbitantly piled.

The turban’d horse.

Get thee to a funnery!

Oxalis, the wonder plant.

Hyacinths and tulips courtesy of our neighbor, Madame Matovu.

Elizabeth Schofield

Wednesday, April 13th, 2011

When Fashion’s Collective founder and editor Elizabeth Schofield was a denizen of the West Village, Castor & Pollux was “one of [her] favorite places to shop” – but it was only after she’d moved out of the neighborhood that we got to know her a little better. A recent piece Schofield wrote for the aforementioned site focused on what we like to think of as the Castor & Pollux specialty – our obsession with sharing the detailed back story behind every piece in the store with our customers. We were extraordinarily pleased to see that Schofield shared our enthusiasm for the history of objects, so we emailed her with a plea to join the expanding roster of hyper-genius beauties that comprise the Ladies of Castor & Pollux.

Fashion’s Collective was born just last year as a blog, when Schofield’s ad-agency job gave her an insight into the unique challenges that the free-for-all internet posed to luxury brands who had historically used their limited accessibility to build cache and attract customers. “Luxury is based on exclusivity,” says Schofield, “and the internet is the opposite of that. The way people interact online is so different – they want transparency,” and the mystique and corporate infrastructure of the older, more established brands does not easily translate. Compared to other industries, she points out, “fashion has been the slowest sector to embrace online and social media.”

The blog started out as many successful websites do – as a “personal project and a creative outlet” for Schofield’s observations about the industry. Fashion’s Collective is now a full-fledged, content-rich website with numerous contributors covering luxury brands, social media, and ecommerce, and is a full-time job for Schofield, who quit her 9-to-5 a week ago (!!) and is traveling to Bali to speak at a TEDx conference. She is also – drum roll please – the 28th Lady of Castor & Pollux!

Photo by John von Pamer

Favorite recipe?
This always changes, but right now it’s truffle mushroom risotto. It impresses guests and no one ever suspects I can make it in my rice cooker.

Last great book you read?
Freedom, though I think I may have been the only person who wasn’t a fan.

Summer drink of choice?
Anything sparkling, any time of year.

Your animals: names and breeds?
A butterscotch French bulldog named Luella. She’s not real yet, but she’s been
my “one day” dog for years. Maybe this will be the year we finally get her.

Do you exercise? What do you do, if so?
Yoga, pilates, dance class… Every so often I’ll hop on a treadmill, though I think that most gyms actually look like torture rooms.

Salty or sweet?
Sweet, without a doubt.

Who inspires you and why?
My parents because they are so different but both incredibly strong, smart and loving people. Female entrepreneurs, especially those on Bravo like Rachel Zoe and Patti from The Millionaire Matchmaker. The fact that they are confident doing what they love and that success only fuels their drive to work harder is really inspiring to me.

Pool or ocean?

Favorite city?
I have a love affair with New York. The only city I would every betray New York for is Rome.

Last great vacation?
Most recent was Italy and Spain, but I’m really excited about going to far away places like New Zealand and Bali. I’ve heard being somewhere that far away just feels different.

Favorite TV show?
It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.

Weirdest job you’ve ever had?
I’m so embarrassed, but I worked at the Renaissance Fair in Sterling Forest, NY, as a garland girl when I was 13.

Favorite restaurant?
This is always changing, but right now I love Flex Mussels in the West Village; the Parma mussels and then the donuts for dessert… heaven.

Favorite object in your home?
Authentic Givenchy sketches that were a gift from my fiancé. So cool and inspiring.

Favorite piece of clothing?
This is always changing, too. Right now it’s a Risto knitwear piece. It has the most amazing colors that just make me happy.

Favorite blog or website?
I think The Man Repeller is brilliant. Svpply is always great for curated, on-trend items. I also love the The 99 Percent for inspiring productivity and ideas, NOTCOT for a mix of inspiring design and AHAlife for items that are truly special.

Something you’re scared of?
I’m super afraid of snakes.

Favorite record?
Right now it’s the new Adele album. She’s incredibly talented.

Favorite pop song?
Currently it’s “Firework” by Katy Perry.

Your ideal day?
Waking up at the beach, making coffee and reading in the morning. Easy lunch picnic with all of my family and friends, lounging on the beach and playing in the ocean. Everyone hangs out until a more formal dinner on the beach is magically prepared for us. Good wine.

Favorite gift you’ve ever received?
A bookmark that says “Happiness isn’t a destination, it’s a way of life.” It’s such a small thing, but it was the first gift my fiancé ever bought me a couple weeks after we started dating. I love it.

Favorite flower?

Favorite scent (perfume)?
Blonde tobacco.

Astrological sign?

What do you do for a living?
Founder and editor of a publication for fashion and luxury brand marketers called Fashion’s Collective.

Where do you live?
Long Island City.

Your lucky number?

What piece of art would you buy if you had absolutely no budget?
A Robert Dutesco piece from Sable Island. They are these amazing photographs of wild horses that live on a small island off the coast of Nova Scotia.

Japan, Maggie Bracelets and more press.

Saturday, March 26th, 2011

Lately we’ve been fortunate to be getting press from people that really understand and appreciate what we are trying to do over here at C&P.
We are greatly committed to our intention of bringing beauty to the world and making the experience as pleasurable and memorable as possible, because, after all, shopping does have the ability to make people happy, inspired and curious.  And, although we know that retail therapy won’t solve world events we will be donating 10% of the Maggie Bracelet sales to Japan for the month.  Maggie’s Mother and Father (my Grand-Parents) lived in Japan for quite some time and I’ve held Japan close to my heart since I was a little girl (for some time I only wanted to be addressed as Tomoko, ate with chopsticks and wore kimonos!) so this seemed like a logical way to show our support. And, with the way that the Maggie Bracelets are selling currently (graduation gifts, Mother’s Day gifts, wedding party gifts) we hope to donate an amount that makes a difference in someone’s life.
And, here’s the piece that Elizabeth Schofield wrote about her experience here at C&P that so succinctly describes shopping at it’s best. Thanks, Elizabeth!
PS. Upon reading Elizabeth’s great article we asked her to grace the Ladies section of our blog, which she happily agreed to. We’ll have her post up in the next month and you can get a chance to see what interests and inspires her. Good stuff.

TASTE: Sort of

Friday, March 18th, 2011

Recipe Friday this week is a pretty simple one considering I’m on day two of a twenty-one day cleanse. The cleanse involves a whole lot of green juice, about any vegetable I can get my hands on (and try not to cook) and some super grains thrown in for good measure. All of that adds up to this: I am abstaining from meat, alcohol, sugar, wheat (always do, so that’s an easy one) and anything pre-packaged. I’m following the Kris Carr cleanse that she so happily describes in her book, Crazy Sexy Diet. She also has a great website, Crazy Sexy Life that is chock-full of advice on living a cleaner, simpler, healthier life. I’m ready for it with spring around the corner,  consider this just a little spring cleaning for the insides!
Tonight on the menu is:
Shaved Kale and Avocado Salad
Red Quinoa with Broccoli, Carrots, and Tahini Dressing
Coconut Water
I’ll let you know how the whole thing goes, but if today is any indication I’m feeling pretty good already.
Here’s to Spring weather, to spring clothing, and to spring meals!

Rebozos on the horizon!

Saturday, December 4th, 2010

This photo doesn’t do justice to how beautiful this new rebozo from Hacienda Montaecristo is -we’ll be getting them in this spring – I can barely wait. We were lucky enough to hang out with Francy and her lovely family while in Mexico last week. It’s quite a life down there in the Yucatan Peninsula – something to add to your want list if it’s not already on there – go to Tulum!

ARCHIVE: Inspiration