BEHIND THE Q

Welcome to the second BEHIND THE Q, a monthly feature showcasing behind-the-scenes visits with select stylemakers. In entertaining venues, we explore, through both video and editorial content, their style quotients and insight into their creativity. I am thrilled to introduce this month’s subject.

Liz Lange is a name synonymous with style. In 1997, she single handedly changed the face of maternity fashion forever launching her eponymous line. Finally fashionable mothers-to-be everywhere had sophisticated sartorial choices. Everyone, from celebrities to stylish suburban mothers, counted on Liz Lange Maternity (then available at 3 flagship boutiques) to keep them looking chic those nine long months. Ten years later, after having also developed a line of maternity active wear for Nike, the maternity line for Target (still a best seller there), and authoring a book on pregnancy style, Liz sold the original company.

Not one to rest on her laurels, she designed her first non-maternity collection, Completely Me by Liz Lange, this year for HSN. In addition, many of you know her from the fun shopping site, Shopafrolic, she co-founded with sister Jane.

I caught up with the busy entrepreneur recently in New York where we spent the day visiting some of Liz’s favorite haunts in her upper east side neighborhood and grabbed lunch at the chic restaurant Orsay where we had a chance to chat.

BEHIND THE Q: Liz Lange from Quintessence on Vimeo.

Our first stop was Milly, the chic young label of designer Michelle Smith, who opened their flagship store this spring on Madison Avenue.

The shop has a distinctively chic design and beautifully merchandised. Every detail is thoughtfully considered – even the changing rooms are incredibly stylish.

In additional to colorful, vintage and Parisian inspired clothing, the line now includes the charming children’s collection, Milly Minis, as well as fashion jewelry and handbags.

It was difficult to choose just one thing – so we stretched the rules a bit!! Liz loved this Ribbon Mini skirt – perfect for summer.

In keeping with Liz’s taste for bold jewelry, she picked this fabulous Beaded Teardrop Necklace. It actually looked perfect with what she was wearing. Liz and I both love navy and I seconded her vote for this Beatriz Day Dress – a classic go anywhere piece.

It must have been my color karma influencing Liz’s choice of this beautiful orange Slim Haley Dress.

Even though Liz’s daughter is too old for the line, she couldn’t resist showing off a couple of items from the charming Milly Minis collection. How adorable is the Milly Minis Party Dress or my personal favorite, the Milly Minis Combo Dress.

Around the corner we stopped by Via Quadronno. An upper east side institution, this restaurant and paninoteca is the perfect spot for a quick pick me up!

Calypso is the place to shop for an upscale shot of boho chic. From flowing caftans to  casual chic separates and distinctive accessories, St. Barth’s style has never been so accessible.

The color coordinated displays make putting pieces together a breeze!

Liz spends much of her summer in the Hamptons where this fun tunic could do double duty from beach to casual lunch.

Nautical chic never goes out of style!! With white bottoms and gold jewelry, this top is a perfect versatile addition to a summer wardrobe.

What a perfect summer shoe for almost every occasion. A roped wedge espadrille is a seasonal must-have!

Our final stop was Gale Grant, one of Liz’s hidden jewels. In a convenient midtown location, this small store is jam packed with an incredible collection of traditional and trendy fashion jewelry. Since 1947 they have offered a wide selection of high-end costume jewelry from both well and lesser-known designers.

The choices are overwhelming. Everywhere you look you see something new!

 Liz picked this fabulous sparkling cuff – so perfect to dress up any outfit!!

These looks similar to a drastically more expensive version. Wear as many as you like together for everyday or evening.

Liz actually owns a pair almost identical to these that she has sported for black tie. Who’s to know they’re not the real thing!!

One of the store owners, Paula Grant, pointed out her best sellers. These flexible sparklers are so reasonable and easy to wear – no wonder they’re so popular!

And for all you fashion and style mavens who can’t ever get enough of Liz’s sage advice, we have a little bonus. Pay attention as this month’s stylemaker outlines her five wardrobe essentials!! And don’t forget to check out Liz and Jane’s picks on Shopafrolic.

BEHIND THE Q: Liz Lange Bonus Feature from Quintessence on Vimeo.

See you soon for the next installment of BEHIND THE Q.


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32 Responses to BEHIND THE Q

  1. Karena says:

    I adore Liz Lange! She has the greatest taste and style. I love that she likes feminine looks and Accessories that stand out! It looks like you had a fab time!

    xoxo
    Karena
    Art by Karena

  2. Love the video! A real look at Liz and her personality! Well done Stacey! And who wouldn’t like a shopping day with the two of you??!!?? I like the store choices, items selected and restaurants! I feel like I was with you.
    Ridgely

  3. Wonderful piece on LIZ! A fashion icon of mine….The video is excellent, and I love what Liz says about taking a risk and putting some pieces together! I try to live by this…Rachel

  4. She is just adorable and chatty… love her!! I could buy almost everything at Calypso and must check-out Gale Grant. A really fun Behind the Q! Have a great day Stacey! oxo

  5. LOVE THIS!! What a fun day, love her style, Milly, Calpyso two of my favorite lines too. That Gale Grant I have not heard of but am definitely looking into, those baubles made my heart go pitter patter!! Beautiful and well done!

  6. Such great style! love her look, and her shop is beautiful!
    what a fun post!!
    joan

  7. very stylish lady and what a fun day of fashions and shopping…
    she is definitely into orange as many of her selected items were orange..
    maureen

  8. The Zhush says:

    WOW! great post! Loving this series so much! From having my first child on the UES in 1999 to my third (and final!) in 2006 in the burbs, I have followed and worn ALL of Liz’ s clothes, from the original Lexington ave. capsule collection to the Target line…BIG fan!

  9. Such a fun series! I feel like I just spent an afternoon on a shopping spree with some very stylish friends. Love getting to hear from Liz Lange, and a peek in the Milly boutique! One of my favorites. Thanks for a great “afternoon out”!

  10. Stitchfork says:

    Great post Stacey! Liz is a treasure!
    xo Cathy

  11. You have completely outdone yourself! The videos are fabulous and I just loved this feature on Liz. All I can say is WOW!

  12. Jennifer says:

    Can’t get enough of this fun series! Amazing job! Loved both Liz and the neighborhood tour. I am so tempted to get a few of those sparkly bangles, they are so gorgeous!

  13. You selected several favorites for this next piece in your series, no doubt about it. I am a longtime Milly fan, and so tickled the new store is open, also loving the mini-Milly! (Both things I did posts on, that’s how much I adore them!) And I also think the world of Liz: her design talents, her way with words, her fashion and style sense, all of it.

    BTW, the post Tina did on you was simply wonderful, I loved every bit of it!
    tp

  14. Why am I not surprised that Liz is warm, wise and fun? I only know LL from communicating via tweets, but I remember initially how warm and down to earth she is. I see Liz’s very clever maternity line every time I step into a Target and I fell in love with her Westchester home designed by by her college chum, Jonathan Adler. Liz would be the ideal BFF. She’d keep you styled perfectly and encourage you to bring out your personal flair. I have thoroughly enjoyed Behind the Q, a tremendous addition to your already top-notch blog. The video’s, & the music mix you choose, are always clever.
    Thanks Stacey and thanks to Liz for the great advice.
    x Deb
    P.S. – Liz has phenomenal legs.

  15. Loved it. She is adorable, stylish of course, great down to earth way of communicating and some fabulous legs. I’d would only wear skirts and dresses if mine looked like that :).

    I really enjoy this feature, as with all you do, it is excellent.

  16. Stacy,
    You have just raised the bar so high! What a fabulous post – love the vimeo addition. Really brought Liz to life!

    When I lived in the city (before I moved to Charlotte), I was pregnant with my first child and my entire pregnancy wardrobe was Liz Lange Maternity. I remember going into the store and being so happy that I could look professional and chic in my classic, well made outfits.

    Kudos to you and to Liz for this delightful look “behind the Q”!
    xo Elizabeth

  17. Fine Life says:

    Great post, Stacey! Your collaborations with Liz and the gang at Shopafrolic continue to delight me, and it is a joy to hear Liz’s story straight from the source. Behind the Q is a fabulous feature!

    All the best,
    Kathy

  18. I love her style (and yours too of course). What a fun post! xx

  19. What a fun day full of stylish finds! I love Gale Grant – my go to place for a little bling and anything Milly has me in a flutter. Liz revolutionized the maternity fashion industry and I would never have made it as a pregnant banker without her chic collections. Bravo Q for another great Behind the Q!
    xxoo

  20. Jessica says:

    So nice to meet Liz! I love when you do this feature…it’s so fun to live the vicariously through you this way! Love the shoes and the bangles…where’s my plane when I need it?!
    xo J~

  21. Loved meeting Liz and her sense of style is fabulous! All the fun shops and restaurants have me just dying to get to New York. Missed my trip this year and this is just killing me. This is a wonderful series. I look forward to each and every one. Being a real visual person, it’s a great way to learn more about your guests. Hats off to you and Liz!!!

  22. Shari Markbreiter says:

    Another fantastic “Behind the Q” feature! Great hot spots — right here on my own neighborhood. Way to go Ms Q!

  23. Jessica says:

    What fun you two had! What delightful finds! Lunch again? Our little Lady’s group… perhaps in September??!

    XXOO Jessica

  24. Stacey, I’m late coming over to see you for BTQ…but I won’t miss any of them! Such a fun feature, giving the non-locals great information and a vicarious thrill too.
    xx’s

  25. I was just telling my son
    yesterday how much I
    love NYC and this interview
    sums up why; the people,
    the places, the energy! So,
    until I make a return trip,
    it’s great fun to step into
    YOUR shoes and meet
    interesting people like Liz.
    And wowzer, she rocks
    that short dress…..won’t
    see that length here in the
    Midwest!!
    xx Suzanne

  26. First of all, love, love, love Liz Lange. I may not have survived being preggers without her. Of course, I was carrying twins and totally enormous so really … how chic can one be? But the answer is definitely much more chic with Liz than without!!

    Second, hello, Milly flagship! I had no idea. Must plan my next NYC trip in the not-too-distant future. Where is it on Madison? I have my 5th / Madison path down, so I need to make sure I don’t miss it. And I am so hitting these other stores, especially Gale Grant. So fun!!

    Thanks so much for this, Stacey!

  27. mary jo says:

    Great interview, and I love the video–it just adds so much more! Liz Lange has a great line, what a fun guest!

    xo Mary Jo

  28. Kelly Market says:

    Love it, love it, love it!! So excited to meet Liz and especially loved the video – great editing btw :) Just booked a last-minute trip to NYC for my birthday next weekend and this has me super pumped! I’m definitely going to make a stop by Gale Grant…OMG. I am drooling over those earrings. Wonderful post Q – can’t wait to see the next installment!
    x Kelly
    p.s. Yay for Pollyanna! Love Liz’s positive spirit :)

  29. Amazing job-such a lot of work you put into all these behind the Q posts-I really enjoyed the videos. pgt

  30. WHAT a feature! I really enjoyed looking though the images as well as watching the video to follow… I definitely agree with so much of what was said—I adore dresses and skirts, too, but definitely need a cashmere piece or two :)

  31. Lisa Porter says:

    Well how much fun was that!
    Liz is delightful.
    Great interview and I’ve taken notes for my trip (hopefully) this Fall.
    Looking forward to your next Behind the Q!
    Lisa

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