Seamless in Seattle Winner: Malia Peoples

This local designer channels the lights of Tokyo in her whimsical designs, which took "Most Playful
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Malia Peoples

Line: Lady Konnyaku
Available at: ladykonnyaku.com, ladykonnyaku.etsy.com

The creative spark: Though she grew up in nearby Olympia, Peoples’ formative design inspirations are Far East, not West Coast. While living in China during her teen years, she became fascinated with her Japanese pals’ closets. “They always had the weirdest, coolest things tucked in there and would wear them in wild pairings,” she says. Thus goes her lively, colorful wear that channels the streets of Tokyo, pairing kooky vintage patterns with out-of-the-box details like balloon sleeves or bell bottom pants.

The collection: A former nonprofit worker, Peoples, 29, often looks to the tube, citing eye-candy shows like Soul Train (hence, the bell bottoms) and old kung fu movies as her inspiration. “I really like to play with color, texture and pattern. I find all my fabrics at thrift stores or through estate sales, and  throw it in a pile, looking for pieces that shouldn’t go together at first glance, but then actually do.”

First garment ever made: “Before I went to fashion school in 2007, I had never sewn anything, and I’ll tell you, learning to sew was harder than learning Chinese. So my first garment was for a class project, a little black dress with an appliqué of a cloud on the skirt.”

Biggest fashion faux pas: “When I was living in China, the fad was to braid your hair, bleach it, perm it and let it all out in this frizzy Afro. It looked so, so cool for four months. But then it grew out, and I was left with 8-inch grow-out with horrible silver tips and just flat on top. I had to wear a bucket hat for an entire summer.”

 

2016 Cookbook Gift Guide

2016 Cookbook Gift Guide

Three essential local culinary guides for holiday gift giving
| FROM THE PRINT EDITION |
 
 

COOKBOOK OF THE YEAR: Chef John Sundstrom is one of the Pacific Northwest’s culinary icons, winner of the James Beard Award for best Northwest chef in 2007 and a semifinalist for outstanding chef in 2014. His latest cookbook, Lark: Cooking Wild in the Northwest (Sasquatch, $30), published in August, is an updated version of 2013’s self-published Lark: Cooking Against the Grain. But, in addition to the rustic Northwest takes on French-themed classics that put the consistently great First Hill restaurant on the map—bacon-wrapped quail, mustard-roasted chicken, silky Meyer lemon parfaits—the new paperback version includes a chapter on Sundstrom’s favorite everyday staples: recipes for pasta, ricotta, vinaigrettes, breads, syrups and pickles. To some, the cover, with its haunting image, looks more like the cover of a book by Bainbridge Island author David Guterson than that of a cookbook. But the contents? One word: essential. 



SOUTHERN COMFORT
: Fancy yourself a baker? Big Food Big Love: Down-Home Southern Cooking Full of Heart from Seattle’s Wandering Goose (Sasquatch, $25) will send you running for your mixer. The new cookbook by North Carolina native and Capitol Hill restaurateur Heather Earnhardt features 130 recipes, including ones offering up the secrets to her towering layer cakes, like the top-selling Brownstone Front Cake; brunch favorites worthy of those long weekend lines, including the famed corned beef brisket bubble and squeak; and comforting dinner favorites, such as Loaded Chicken Pot Pie and Smoky Meat Collards. Did we mention Earnhardt shares all 10 of her biscuit recipes? Now that’s Southern hospitality.  



THE ULTIMATE COCKTAIL GUIDE
: In The Canon Cocktail Book: Recipes from the Award-Winning Bar (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $28), owner-bartender Jamie Boudreau spills the beans on what has made First Hill’s Canon: Whiskey and Bitters Emporium one of the world’s 50 best bars, according to Drinks International magazine (it consistently makes Esquire’s lists as well). Instead of clamoring for one of the bar’s coveted 32 seats, tuck into Boudreau’s 352-page book which features all of Canon’s signature cocktails, from the stenciled Banksy Sour (with Peychaud’s bitters) to the smoky Khaleesi cocktail. Boudreau reveals his “golden ratio” cocktail philosophy and promises you won’t need his $1 million whiskey collection or a trace of liquid nitrogen to wow your friends.