Meet Krrb member Rebecca Wiener, artist, graphic designer, magazine editor, cat lover and all around good egg. After helping to steer the ship at Index magazine as it’s managing editor (among other impressive gigs) she headed back to grad school to pursue her love of design, emerging with an esthetic that is optimistic without being sappy, and sophisticated without being smart alecky. Read on to learn more about what makes this talented newcomer tick!
Where are you from and where do you currently live?
I am originally from swampy Houston, Texas and now I live in sometimes-swampy Greenpoint, Brooklyn.
What is the most awesome thing in or about your neighborhood?
Greenpoint is still pretty authentically Polish and there’s amazing pierogis and pickles everywhere. But there are also fantastic restaurants like Five Leaves and great bars like Manhattan Inn. Plus it’s relatively quiet and peaceful, which really makes the neighborhood feel like home.
What are your favorite place you go locally to discover hidden treasures? Why do you love them?
We got our beautiful mid-century couch from a charming vintage furniture shop on Meserole Ave., Vintage Modern. That place is great and exceptionally curated. I also love Franny & Roey, on Grand Street in Williamsburg. The owner—I’m pretty sure it’s Franny—is so sweet and helpful and has excellent taste. I’ve gotten dresses, shoes and tops there for very sane prices.
What blogs or websites do you visit regularly?
All of them! I frequent a lot of design, fashion and personal style blogs. One of my favorites is closetvisit.com, which features the closet of a stylish “real person” from L.A. every week. There’s always tons of vintage clothing and jewelry, and the women featured have enviable taste and useful tips. I also really enjoy designworklife.com for graphic design and illustration inspiration. I’m newly engaged, so I have to admit that I’ve been checking out a few wedding blogs, too. My friend calls stylemepretty.com “pure wedding porn,” which is an excellent description. Finally, the amazing designer who made my engagement ring, Caitlin Mociun, has a great tumblr with images of things that inspire her, from fabrics to cat gifs.
As a kid, were any of your toys and clothes hand-me-downs? Stories please!
Oh my goodness, yes. I had 2 older sisters, so that accounted for some. But actually most of my hand-me-downs were straight from my mother’s own closet. I had a ton of T-shirts from fun runs that would be super cool now, but were not so hip when I was 9. In middle school, I sometimes wore tweed skirts, sweater vests and polyester blouses that my mother acquired in the ’70s. Again, seems like I was fashion forward, but you can ask any of my former classmates: tweed was not really cutting it in the 1990s.
Today, how often do you go to garage sales, flea markets, etc.? What is your modus operandi? Any personal tips you’d like to share? Got a favorite?
Now that it’s the season, we find ourselves at a flea market or garage sale almost every weekend. We’re lucky enough to get to go upstate from time to time, and I love stopping by the antique stores there. Often, that is where I find the best stuff. We bought some old painted arrows for a steal last year, and recently I’ve seen similar ones in New York boutiques selling for hundreds of dollars. Of course, the Brooklyn Flea is always a delight, even though it can be absurdly crowded. The best tip I ever heard was that if something speaks to you, buy it. If not, don’t. Simple but smart.
Have you ever taken home an object you found in the street or dumpster? If so, what was it? And where is it now?
Yup! I’ve saved a lot of things from the street, but one dependable white bookshelf is the only thing that has survived multiple moves.
Are you a hoarder or a minimalist?
I am a minimalist who hoards between purges.
What is your most cherished thrifted, secondhand, vintage, upcycled object you possess? What’s the story behind it?
This is a really hard one because almost all of my most cherished objects are thrifted or secondhand. Those arrows were one of the first things Andrew and I bought together, so they are very special. And I have an old wooden deer head that was the first purely decorative home purchase I ever made. I also have two turquoise vintage melmac lunch trays that I have outsized affection for because I bought them in an effort to live by the “if it speaks to you, buy it” mantra. They still speak to me, I just don’t know what to do with them.
Do you create/make things? What are you working on these days?
Yup! I’ve always loved to draw and I studied art in undergrad. Just this May, I finished my MFA in graphic design at Pratt. I’m freelancing here and there, and gearing up to find a full-time situation as a designer.
By the way, what’s your day job?
See above! TBD!
The Short List
All photographs courtesy of Rebecca Wiener unless otherwise noted.