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West 3rd Street's EM & Co gave new meaning to the term "recession chic" at its January exhibition launch, held Thursday night. In the true spirit of shopping your closet (or kitchen cabinet), owner Eveline Morel asked local artists and designers to create original work using nothing but plastic bags and other recycled materials.
We were totally impressed with the results, which included jewelry designer Khatia Esartia's pleated, draped and otherwise manipulated grocery bag canvases; One Four Five One designer Ishi Glinsky's creepy produce-sack-and-electrical-tape hoods; and artist Julia Sergeon's wall installation, which combined reclaimed wood, braided Home Depot bags, mussel shells from that day's lunch, and a shoe whose mate was eaten by her dog.
But the pièces de résistance were three plastic bag dresses designed by Morel herself: Ethereally shredded creations that reminded us a little of Rodarte. "I'd love to see someone wear these on the red carpet!" she exclaimed at the opening event. Pay attention, Rachel Zoe.—Erin Magner
· EM & Co [Official Site]