Spring is here (wouldn't you know it from all the rain), and with the season, new styles are blooming, just waiting to be plucked and arranged in our closets. Among the dreamier looks so far are the flowing desert- and ocean-toned kaftans, harem pants and blousy tops of The Podolls' latest collection.
Known for their effortlessly chic staples, San Francisco husband-wife duo Josh and Lauren Podoll appear to have a case of wanderlust this season: The couple's spring collection is ready to sashay with us on our next adventure, be it around the swimming pools of Palm Springs or through the markets of Fez—the clothes' soft lines and billowing fabrics evoke that moment of casually rolling out of bed and padding barefoot to breakfast (and beyond) as we can only do when we're on vacation.
Inspired by the California costal landscape, the tones and textures of the line are designed to exude "the beauty, the rawness, the freedom" of California, explains Lauren, whose 14-year-old brand looks to global sources for its fabrics, including textured cottons from Japanese mills and hand-loomed-and-woven Khadi textiles from India, where the industry was first cultivated by Ghandi as a way to empower rural workers in areas without power or running water.
The tie top ($143) is made of double face 100 percent cotton gauze.(Courtesy of The Podolls)
This season's pieces rely heavily on double face cotton gauze, which lends plenty of versatility and texture to the harem pant ($150), Muir quilted jacket ($325), and breezy dresses that can be worn on the day-to-day but can also be "styled for summer parties or weddings," she suggests.
Dyes are also all natural (drawn from nettle plants, madder root, and so on) and seasonal, imparting the essence of the sky and sea in deep blue tones, "the green grasses after rain, the warm browns and pinks of the hillsides...We named our spring line "Live Free or Dye" as a nod to the West Coast vibe of expansiveness and rebellion."
If you couldn't tell, the Podolls are all about honoring traditions and giving them a modern spin, using time-tested techniques that promise authenticity in each piece. You can expect imperfections since each item is handcrafted by humans, not machines, with lovely irregularities coming from traditional Indian block prints that are stamped by hand, and unexpected results from using natural dyes that Lauren says adds to the charm. For the shibori-inspired Dot Dash print, they began with a piece Lauren indigo-dyed herself in the studio, and then digitally printed onto sand-washed silk.
"You see the places where the indigo was more rich and where it was more cloudy. These variations in the pattern indicate they are made by hand and echo the natural process. This inconsistency and imperfection speak to the slowness of the process we embrace."
And slowness is exactly the vibe we get when we imagine ourselves gliding about the season's long kaftan ($198). Shop the looks at The Podolls' Noe Valley boutique.
// The Podolls, 3985 24th St. (Noe Valley), shopthepodolls.com
"When paired with our new quilted Muir jacket, the [harem] pants become part of a relaxed suiting look perfect for casual adventures," says Lauren.(Courtesy of The Podolls)