The Austin Chronicle

After a Fashion

By Stephen MacMillan Moser, December 1, 2000, Columns

THE WHOLE HOG It's not tough to find unusual gifts this season, just avoid the mall rat race and seek the local and independent. Hog Wild (100 E. North Loop, 467-WILD) is a store with a distinct personality ... make that two distinct personalities -- reflections of the two owners, John Dorn and Christiane Noah. Dorn is responsible for the vintage toy aspect of the store, a jaw-dropping trip down memory lane for those, like myself, plunging into uncertain age. Shelf after shelf of relics from decades past -- from the sheer artistry of vintage Barbie to the original mass-marketed Star Wars trinkets -- command very pretty pennies now. I have enough trouble keeping what I already own under control -- the last thing I need is to start collecting toys, but it's very tempting. (True, I do have a Barbie collection, but that's strictly for my design research, of course ...) Then, there's Hog Wild's vintage clothing section, very cleverly separated by decade: So if it's some cigarette-leg Jordache jeans you crave, you don't have to paw through Twenties chemises and Fifties cocktail dresses to find them, just go to the Seventies. Noah stocks beautiful accessories, as well. Needless to say, both sides of the store offer multiple holiday gift ideas in a spacious, well-organized, and shopper-friendly environment. Nice job!

THAT GIRL Being beautiful during the holidays isn't really any different from being beautiful any other time. There are just more occasions and more new products! New on the make-up front is the collection from Girl Cosmetics, offering products for the lips, cheeks, and eyes -- dazzling, dreamy powders and potions to make the night sparkle. With slick and stylish packaging (see, and available locally at Back Pocket and Pink Salon, Girl Cosmetics are the brainchild of Shawn Haynes, brother of director Todd Haynes (Velvet Goldmine). While helping his girlfriend prepare for a role in his brother's movie, Haynes experimented with a number of formulas until he came up with the right combination, producing luscious, glossy lips that looked puckered for Studio 54, but with a totally modern feel. An entire concept was born. Even the names of the products are fun! Deevine Lipstick is available in 12 colors ranging from frosty Rave, to glamorous Ab Fab, to the dark and daring Wildchild. Also for the lips, but in liquid brush is Hi-Fi Lipslick -- sheer, sexy color in four shades, from white-frost Frequency to deep and luscious Funkytown. Somewhere in between is Lover Lips, with oddly intense yet muted shades of Bliss and Lust. There are Glitter Eye Pencils in silvery Lightyear and Nightstar, Velvet Eye Shadows in 18 colors from Angel to Inferno, along with Glitter Highlighters, Spacedust Glitter, and so much more. Looks like we have some new essentials for drop-dead glamour.

LOCAL SHOTS December brings an exhibition of the work of a veritable pioneer in Austin photography. "5405-A Joe Sayers" at Gallery 68 of the wonderful Flatbed World Headquarters (2832 E. Martin Luther King Jr., 633-0546) is selected photographs by Todd V. Wolfson, who has chronicled the local scene for more than 20 years. The opening reception, featuring Experimentation in Sound by 3 Guys, is Thursday, Dec. 7, 6-9pm.

TONIGHT! Introducing the newly formed Central Design District Association, composed of 19 local merchants in the furnishings and home décor businesses, Come See the CDD is their first event, tonight, Thursday, Nov. 30, 6-9pm. (Aren't Thursdays becoming the nights for style-related events?) Members, whose businesses will be open late and serving refreshments for this event, include Anjely Antiques & African Art, Artworks, Bella Home, Central Homegoods, Cities, Cush Cush, Davis Gallery, Durham Trading, Elegante, Fortney's, Jaya, Marco Polo's Attic, Shabby Slips, Spazio by Lytle Pressley, St. John's Garden Design & Embellishments, Tipler's Lamp Shop, West End Consignment, Wildflower Organics, and Zanzibar. The CDD wants to be recognized as "the premier destination for home décor shopping in Austin." Cooperation and organization among like businesses seems to be a growing trend in town. It's so smart for these folks to be able to work together and enjoy their "strength in numbers," especially in preparation for the onslaught of consumerism that is happening all over town. Good work, guys!

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