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Alexandra KnightAlexandra Knight

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What is your Favorite AK Item and why?

Don't own it yet.. but definitely the Long Corralita clutch - would want in cognac alligator or black.

I tire of putting my lipstick in Sid's pocket for evening - and this could hold chopsticks as well since it is so long! This is Sid's choice as well since he will be free from the lipstick responsibility - it is a win win.

What are your top 10 latest obsessions?

ANN MASHBURN cashmere funnel neck shaker-stitch turtleneck
Super luxurious and slim... I love a chunky sweater & we are finally making one thick enough for always-cold me.

ANN MASHBURN buckle shoes (in both flat & stacked heel)
I love as a ballet flat alternative... as old as the Pilgrims & now it is my turn! Very Catherine Deneuve in Belle du Jour... I have my eye on the blue suede.

ISABEL MARANT ETOILE SPRING 14
We have been big IM fans for ages & this is the first season we're carrying. Her French boho thing is so great... especially love the slim fit denim skirt - tucks in at knee super tight but has stretch so I can still run if I am being chased. We are also twins with bits of grey hair & I love that she is holding off on the coloring....

The Goldfinch by Donna Tart
Everyone on the planet has read it and I am loving it so much that I am taking my time to relish every word... I average about five pages every night on my iPad to r e a l l l l l y draw it out. I should finish by July bikini season.

Sun Valley
Love how low-key it is. Everyone is really there just to be in the snow.

Khong Guan lemon puff biscuits
Not too sweet. We are big Asian snack fans... I used to stock up at Pearl River in New York but recently discovered them at the HMart here so no need for suitcase crumbs....

UNIQLO heat tech turtlenecks
Skinny on body but keep you so warm!

LAN ANH TRAN TA
Our VP of product & head designer. Lan is a veritable genius & works harder than anyone I know... & she is one of nine sisters! I could not live without her (personally AND professionally).

My new house
I just moved into a really old historic Atlanta street into an old 1920's house. I grew up in a string of ranch-style homes all over the Midwest & have always romanticized the south once I met Sid in NY - I was all over his accent and his stories of his funny Mississippi small town... Honestly I never thought I would ever even LIVE in the south, much less on this street, which to me is the epitome of old Atlanta. It is very rambly and full of girls in leggings....

Houston!
I am also very guilty of romanticizing Texas as well... Our oldest went to UT and we loved it from afar... NOW we have an excuse to claim it as our own!

Your favorite place you have ever traveled to and why?

ROME
Though I have traveled to Italy over and over again for work with Sid, we went to Rome for the first time this past summer for a vacation weekend after work in Florence and Milan... Hands down the prettiest city in the world. We went everywhere on bicycles from the hotel - perfect city perfect weekend.

What are your top 5 prized possessions?

Husband
(Sid)

Children
(5 girls)

Baby teeth and first hair wisps.
It is verging on the very gross and very victorian but I have a tiny little china box with all my girls little lost teeth sitting on my dresser. If I squint it is like a box of chiclets... with five girls there are a lot of them.

Mothers day mementos
Just the week before mothers day this year I lost my own mother, and my sweet girls all made the most silly, sentimental, heart-bracingly beautiful cards. I found them in a box just the other day and sat and wept for a full 5 minutes in astonishment at their sweetness and sincerity.

Letters from husband over the years
He is very clever and funny and it is the closest thing I have to a diary since it marks so much of my life....

Personal Mantra or quote you tote around with you?

Say less, be more.

Can you tell us about your stores and how they came about?

All Sid ever wanted to do was create a place that really did not exist here in the US.. He has been a men's designer for his whole career and traveled all over... Paris, Milan, Tokyo, London... there were some incredible men's shops, but NOTHING that combined his memory of a great, old, American men's shop with all the attention to detail that retail in Europe and Asia provided.

I really give him credit for having the vision of our stores. Six years ago we just looked at each other and thought - it is time to do this.... I was terrified of course, but as it turns out, it was a wonderful decision. My store came along three years later and I was pushed along by my daughters who wanted a GIRL thing... it was a total feminist push that got the women's line going! We wanted to make and share all the things we loved in a very cool and welcoming space and that is really the gist of it.

We don't wholesale on principle so people can really only get our product here, from us... and we think our shops really feel like PLACES rather than stores. We just try to have really special product, great staff and a beautiful environment that makes people feel good....

What is your role at Ann Mashburn and what is your background?

Now that we are growing into a bigger company, my actual title has changed to CHIEF CREATIVE OFFICER. Practically speaking, I head all things creatively for both Ann and Sid Mashburn, clothing design for Ann Mashburn (Sid takes care of Sid...) store design for stores along with Sid, .. product buying... anything that comes my way I suppose....

I started in fashion working for Polly Mellen at VOGUE in the 80s... went on to become a fashion editor at GLAMOUR magazine... worked at J CREW doing photo styling for catalog in the 90s... and then leaned hard into mothering and raising 5 daughters before we opened our shops in 2007....

2 things that people would never know about you that you want to share?

I can ice skate backwards... Midwest upbringing.

I have won contests for both fried chicken (NYC Mississippi Picnic 1986) and apple pie (suburban CT 1992). I am very competitive.

What are you loving in the store right now?

So much... we have really, really great new ANN MASHBURN product... the cashmere is the best its ever been, and we've been doing a lot of really classic skirt silhouettes in leather for a bit of toughness. I live in my spread-collar shirt and blue jeans and chelsea boots... there are some really gorgeous long silk skirts... a fantastic green one that I am going to wear with a white t-shirt when I go to palm beach next month... with flat sandals just out to dinner! Oh... and I do love the new pajamas....

What makes the Mashburn stores unique?

We want our shops to feel like PLACES, rather than stores... we just try to have exciting product, great staff, beautiful environment. We have always had tailors IN the shop - our version of SPAGO in the 80's when Wolfgang Puck was the first to put the kitchen on display!

Sid feels that for men, tailoring is SO IMPORTANT... it should be out for all to see the true work that is done... our shop in Houston is the same... but different from our shop in Atlanta. The aesthetic carries through, but we want each store we open to feel special for the place that it is. In Houston, the architecture led - we love the mid century modern building that we are in - We play records, we have a ping pong table, we have a train set and little animals for children. It's a fun place to hang out.

Who are Sid and Ann Mashburn and why do we love them?

Ann is one of those people who everyone asks me if I know and then replies... "OH you should meet her, you will love her" and they are correct! Through mutual friends we were introduced when Ann was working on opening their Houston store. I like to think that we have more in common than both working at Vogue for the same boss... like über chic tomboy style, coolest mom ever, fantastic & stylish husband and the list goes on.

After I bought my first online order years ago of Tretorn tennies and a Safari dress ala Bridget Bardot in navy I was hook line and sinker. If you live in Atlanta you know them of course, if you live in Houston, run don't walk to their new store in River Oaks and if you live anywhere else well online shopping is the way to go as she stocks classics, chic basics and has a fantastically cool sense of style. Don't forget your boys as well as her husband's line, Sid Mashburn is now a staple for my hubbie. He looks cuter than ever now and loves the people and the store!

Sid and Ann Mashburn currently reside in Atlanta (after meeting on a beach at 23) where they manage their men's and women's lines and their stores and parent their five gorgeous daughters.

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