Tag Archives: style

Fashion Nomad

June 12, 2018 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

In the fashion world, often known for inflated egos and shameless self-promotion, it’s easy to forget that not everyone is in it for money and fame. 

Up-and-coming local fashion designer Paige Modlin isn’t buying into those ideals. And, like her clothing, it’s downright refreshing. 

In person, her demeanor is quiet. She is hesitant when speaking about herself and her sentences occasionally trail off. One look at her social media tells a different story, though. When modeling her own clothing or just hanging out with friends, her confidence in herself and her personal style is clear. 

Her style, by the way, is very street. She says she likes to focus on shape and silhouette, though color clearly plays a key role in her designs. But most importantly, she likes to make clothes that people feel comfortable in, no matter their gender. “I definitely design clothes for men and women, but that either gender could wear.” 

She adds that her personal style is “sort of all over the place.” One day, she might be feeling the sporty look, the next she may want to do super preppy. Or maybe she’s just feeling a certain color. 

“I was trying to wear all pink today, but I didn’t really have the jacket for it.”

Modlin says she got interested in fashion as a sophomore at Westside High School, from which she graduated last year. She says it’s “crazy how good the program is” there.

She says she was already interested in clothing and shopping, so she decided she “might as well try” making her own. 

Her mother, Pam Modlin, says Paige is the artsy one out of her five children. She was the one who liked to draw or wanted to play the flute. However, “It wasn’t until high school when she started sewing that she really blossomed on the art scene.”

“I’ve always known I wanted to be an artist, but ever since I started making clothes, I was over painting,” says the 19-year-old Modlin. 

She says she finds inspiration everywhere. For her clothing designs, she especially enjoys searching thrift shops, which she visits at least once a day. And of course, “definitely the internet,” specifically Instagram, where she tends to follow others interested in vintage clothing.  At first it may be difficult to see where that vintage inspiration is represented in her designs, but she says it’s usually in the color palette. “I like the bright, retro jumpsuits.”

Modlin says one of her favorite creators is Belgian fashion designer Raf Simons, which makes sense once you’ve peeped his classic yet contemporary designs. While they both emphasize the structure of a piece, Modlin’s clothing is definitely more colorful. That bit of inspiration stems from her affection for Japanese streetwear and designer Takashi Murakami. 

Her love of fashion also drives her to travel. She recently visited her father in Mexico, and before that she travelled to Europe to “self-study” fashion. She was in France and Italy during fashion week, though she didn’t get to attend the actual shows. But she says she found the street art very inspiring, although she did think the lack of color was odd. 

“All the young kids were wearing black or neutral colors, and I was wearing these bright colors. I stood out so much,” she says. “I have this picture [taken] in Rome of me wearing one of the shirts I made and everyone in the background is wearing a black coat…like I’m some crazy girl.” She adds that the people in Amsterdam were more relatable and “way nicer.” 

Next up on her travel list is Japan. “Streetwear is very big in Japan, and that’s where a lot of my inspo comes from.”

When it comes to the future, Modlin says she will continue to study fashion, and she plans on taking classes at Metropolitan Community College. “They have a lot of fun classes there,” she says. Besides fashion design, she also really enjoys photography. Graphic design is another medium she would like to get into more. Plus, she adds, it would be a good skill to have to fall back on. Not that she plans on falling. 

“I want to be able to make my own brand and sell it, and graphic design would definitely fit in with that.” But for now, where she’ll end up is a mystery. “I don’t know,” she says. “I never know!”


This article was printed in the July/August 2018 edition of Encounter. 

See more on the designer’s instagram instagram/@__unknown.jpg

Dressed to the Hilt in a Kilt

May 17, 2018 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

Nick Moore has a specific and well-developed personal style—obvious when he wears a kilt on golf and hunting trips.

The 31-year-old clothing aficionado and professional clothier for Tom James Co. began cultivating what he calls his “British Town and Country” style aesthetic in high school. “I think in another life I was part of the English landed gentry; I would have loved to have lived in Downton Abbey, post-WWI in the English countryside,” he says.

Along with his appreciation for kilts, Moore admits to having a love affair with tweed jackets. For boots, he prefers Australian R.M. Williams. Belts are another obsession (his favorite is an alligator-leather Martin Dingman belt with a personalized brass monogram buckle).

But the Nebraska-born style consultant says he is just as comfortable in torn jeans and muddy boots as he is in black tie.

You’d be hard-pressed to find Moore in old, tattered denim, though. His elevated sense of style even translates to his active pursuits, including hunting, fishing, and golf.

He says he abhors much of the newer tech and sporting gear, so he wears clothing he would normally wear every day for his outdoor activities. And yes, that includes tweed jackets.

“It’s not like I have a completely separate wardrobe like most people do,” Moore says. “I don’t have one stitch of camouflage. I’d rather wear a tweed jacket than an Under Armour microfiber camo-techie sort of thing.”

His day-to-day and activewear wardrobe consists of an abundance of tweed and natural wool in the fall and winter, and cotton and linen pieces in the spring and summer.

The “master of it all,” Ralph Lauren, Moore says is a key inspiration for his style and was even the focus of his capstone during his MBA studies at the University of Nebraska-Omaha.

“He [Ralph Lauren] is able to create his own narrative through clothing. He was a very active guy, being outdoors and doing fun sports,” Moore says. “He picked that medium and he sort of created a movable feast of self-expression. And I love guys—speaking of movable feast—like Hemingway; I loved the way guys could look good and be active.”

For special occasions in the field—such as the opening weekend for pheasant hunting in South Dakota—Moore breaks out a kilt. It started with Moore wearing a tie adorned with pheasants on one trip a few years ago. From that fashion statement, a competition of style-wits emerged between Moore and his hunting buddies.

Reaching back to his Scottish heritage on his father’s side, Moore decided to take his hunting attire to the next level. He surprised his companions one year after asking his grandmother to sew him a kilt for the hunt.

Since then, the sometimes tartan-clad hunter has expanded his wardrobe to three kilts (including a formal one for black-tie occasions).

“It’s an impractical thing to wear hunting, but it makes people happy,” he says. “It gives a little levity to something that a lot of people, I think, take too seriously.”

Moore says he enjoys having the right gear for the right moment. He appreciates the details of a custom fly rod, the grain of wood on a shotgun, or the hand-stitching in a garment.

“I just love the details. And I think that’s probably where I get most of my excitement in clothing,” he says. “In all elements of style and design, in life, are the details—the little things that maybe no one else will notice. But I will.”


Individuals wishing to contact Moore for style consultations can reach him by email at n.moore@tomjames.com. Visit tomjames.com for more information.

This article was printed in the May/June 2018 edition of Omaha Magazine.

Kathy and Joe Italia

December 22, 2017 by and
Photography by Heather and Jameson Hooton

These autobiographical pieces and corresponding photos are part of a special edition of 60PLUS featuring local residents who prove that fashion has no age limits.


Kathy Italia, 67

I was born and raised in Sioux City, Iowa. I’ve been in the beauty industry for the past 27 years and presently work at Creative Hair Design. I am a licensed esthetician and nail technician.

In my 50s, I went back to school while still working to become an esthetician. Skin care has been a passion of mine since I was a teenager. It was quite an accomplishment to train my brain to learn a new business, study, and take tests again. I love what I do and appreciate the relationship I have with many great clients whom I consider friends. I feel very grateful to work at the No. 1 salon in Omaha.

When I’m not working, I love to spend time at our lake house in the Ozarks.

My motto has always been to grab all the gusto of every day…and not to get old, but to fight it all the way! We have the choice to keep a young attitude and look our best at all times. There is no excuse not to.


Joe Italia, 69

I was born and raised in Omaha. I’ve been in the fashion industry for 42 years and presently work at Lindley’s Clothing.

After attending Benson High School and UNO, I served for four years in the United States Air Force. I am the proud father of two sons.

My family—especially my granddaughter, Lilly—brings me much happiness. Maintaining good health, playing golf, having good friends, good food, and good wine are other sources of joy in my life.

My advice for living life is to promise yourself to be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind, be too large for worry, too noble for anger, and too happy to permit the presence of trouble.

The key to growing old gracefully is to consider yourself advanced, but not old, and dress in modern fashion.

This article was printed in the January/February 2018 edition of Omaha Magazine.

Mary Jochim

Photography by Heather and Jameson Hooton

These autobiographical pieces and corresponding photos are part of a special edition of 60PLUS featuring local residents who prove that fashion has no age limits.


Mary Jochim, 67

I have joy in my heart. I am a very positive, can-do person. When nothing is going right, I’ll go left. I am 40 years old plus shipping and handling.

My favorite childhood book was The Little Engine That Could. I believe in possibilities not only for myself, but for others. Nothing is more gratifying than helping someone find options that make the impossible possible. If you aren’t happy where you are, move—you’re not a tree. I’ll be glad to help.

My career has been in the world of investments. I didn’t realize when I started that it was such a non-traditional career for women. It still is. Fewer than 30 percent of financial advisers are female, and less than 12 percent operate as I do, as registered investment advisers. After 19 years in the business, I started my own company, Sterling Financial Advisors. This year I will celebrate 40 years in the business and Sterling will celebrate 20 years.

I am very proud of the way my four brothers and I took care of our mother in her life. She raised us as a single parent against the odds. I’m proud that I do not cuss, ever. (Thanks, Mom!) Together with my favorite cousin, Linda Dorothy of Omaha, we have rejuvenated our annual Glesmann family reunions. Instead of 20 people, we have more than 80 relatives attending. We’ve had German luaus, Texas round-ups, “Vegas Baby,” and a road rally. In 2016, the reunion was called “Nacho Ordinary Reunion.” Last year, it was “Our Big Fat German Wedding.”  We’ve even held a Halloween-style picnic in our family cemetery. The reunions, along with social media, have helped us to build a close family feeling—the most important thing to us—that extends to both coasts.

I like to build community, whether it is in my neighborhood, at work, with people waiting in line to license their car, or one other person in an elevator. I want people to feel better about who they are after talking to me. I also like to entertain, especially with theme parties. I’ve even had a “20,000 Martinis Under the Sea Party.”  The total eclipse in 2017 was a phenomenal opportunity to gather friends. The entertainment was out of this world!

Begin with the end in mind (because no one gets out of life alive). I want to play the long game—the really long game: eternity. My desired destination is heaven. Making that commitment provides me the structure to work living my life backward. If I keep my destination in focus, then it is a matter of making good choices between now and then.

Negativity is like drinking poison. It will show in your face. The best makeup is a smile. Lastly, never cut your own bangs!

This article was printed in the January/February 2018 edition of Omaha Magazine.

Les Zanotti

Photography by Heather and Jameson Hooton

These autobiographical pieces and corresponding photos are part of a special edition of 60PLUS featuring local residents who prove that fashion has no age limits.


Les Zanotti, 81

I grew up in a small Iowa farming town with a population of 400.  I attended the University of Iowa on a baseball scholarship and graduated with a business degree. After serving in the military and working two sales jobs, I started an executive search business here in Omaha at age 31. After almost 34 years, I sold my business to one of my employees and retired.

At age 81, I don’t really feel any different from how I felt 20 years ago.

Our daughter and her husband have blessed us with three grandchildren, who are all honor students and have competed in various sports all through high school. What great fun and thrills for Grandpa and Grandma!

I am happiest when busy—whether alone, with great friends, or with our beautiful family. Food and wine are the common denominators with our best friends. Most of them have great cellars and all like sharing.

“You don’t look your age” is what I like to hear. I have a brother who is 12 years older and doesn’t look 93. Maybe it’s the genes.

I am the same weight as in high school. We eat out quite a lot, so it’s hard to eat healthy foods always; however, I do try to avoid fatty foods.

I suffered a heart attack in 1999. Ever since, I have taken a brisk two-mile walk every day, first thing in the morning.

If you want to look your very best at any age, I feel that you must be active and keep moving the best you can—and drink wine!

This article was printed in the January/February 2018 edition of Omaha Magazine.

Kate Geiger

Photography by Heather and Jameson Hooton

These autobiographical pieces and corresponding photos are part of a special edition of 60PLUS featuring local residents who prove that fashion has no age limits.


Kate (Laux) Geiger, 80

I am proud of my Duchesne upbringing. It was part of my daily life as a student, and it continues to be part of my daily life to this day.

I married Jerry Geiger, an ophthalmologist, on Dec. 31, 1960. Jerry served two tours as a flight commander in Vietnam.

After his internship at the old Methodist hospital, we left for Pensacola, Florida. After that, we went to Newport, Rhode Island, and then Coronado, California. We moved to upstate New York for his residency in ophthalmology, and we moved back to Nebraska in 1975. We traveled a lot for medical meetings and spent many winters in Arizona.

During our time on the East Coast, we sometimes took weekends to drive around the historic mansions of Newport, Rhode Island. One was the Auchincloss Mansion, where Jackie Kennedy grew up. We once saw President John F. Kennedy and Mrs. Kennedy playing golf. They waved and said, “Hi and welcome.” I held up our two boys and said, “We have a John-John also!” They were very gracious.

I love to cook. When the kids came home from school, they would open the refrigerator and ask who moved to town, was sick, or died. I always made twice what we needed. It became a running joke.

When I am cooking, I am the happiest. I’ve enjoyed hosting parties for 50-to-100-person crowds, friends, and people I love.

One time, I was cooking a beef tenderloin (the same way I had done for 30 years), and Jerry came in the kitchen three times. He asked, “Is this the way to do this?” I waved the knife in the air and said, “I’ll tell you what. I will go to surgery with you tomorrow and help you. Need I say more?”

I’m very proud of our four children—two boys and two girls—and nine grandchildren; they are all remarkable young adults.

Jerry and I have adjusted quite well to each other after 57 years. Love and faith help.

 

This article was printed in the January/February 2018 edition of Omaha Magazine.

Evelyn Zaloudek

Photography by Heather and Jameson Hooton

These autobiographical pieces and corresponding photos are part of a special edition of 60PLUS featuring local residents who prove that fashion has no age limits.


Evelyn Zaloudek, 86

My family moved to Omaha in 1945 from a farm in Woodbine, Iowa, where I was in the 4-H Club. My project was raising two Hereford steers, one of which won the grand champion of his class at the Harrison County Fair. I showed him at Aksarben, and he won a blue ribbon. It was a sad day when he was sold with a group of other blue-ribbon calves to a hotel in New York City. Of course, in those days, they sent the calves right over to the packing house and then shipped them back East. That was the end of my farming days.

I graduated from South High where I met my handsome, hardworking, successful husband, Eugene Zaloudek. We have been married 66 years and counting. We have a son, Steven, two daughters, Wendy and Kris, and six adult granddaughters. I am blessed with nine great-grandchildren, four boys and five girls.

Because of the Korean War draft, Gene enlisted in the Navy in 1951 and was stationed at the Olathe Kansas Naval Air Station. We lived in Bonner Springs, Kansas. Gene received orders to go to Guam, where I joined him with our 11-month-old son. Guam was quite an experience. There were Japanese guns still on the beaches and Japanese soldiers hiding in the hills. Our daughter, Wendy, was born in the new military hospital just three days after it opened.

We left the island by ship in January 1955. After 18 days at sea, we docked at Oakland, California, where Gene received his discharge. We returned to Omaha by train.

We bought a home in Papillion, where our daughter Kristen was born. All three of the children graduated from Papillion high schools. We built a home in Bellevue in 1974 and still reside there. I love the area, with all the wildlife, trees, and good neighbors.

I worked at Mutual of Omaha for 10 years, the Sarpy County Court judge’s office for 10 years, and in the Sarpy County office of Dakota Title & Escrow Co. for 26 years. I sat on the board of directors of Midlands Community Hospital for five years in the 1980s and saw the hospital come out of receivership. I have volunteered in the gift shop for over 35 years.

I have wonderful happy memories of skiing in Colorado, sailing on Gavin’s Point Lake on weekends, wintering in Florida after retirement, and the great trips we have made. Many of these memories include family and good friends who are no longer with us.

We adopted a nine-year-old rescue westie, Stella, who is now 13 years old. I cannot help laughing when I call her to come into the house; it reminds me of Marlon Brando in the movie On the Waterfront. I hope I outlive her.

My advice for others? If you have a talent, share it, even if it is a green thumb. I have given away many varieties of hostas that I have collected over the years.

This article was printed in the January/February 2018 edition of Omaha Magazine.