Mercury Clothiers makes edited collections of vintage-inspired glamorous suiting and dresses for professional women. We believe you should be able to celebrate your femininity and your clothes should empower you to feel fabulous and in charge. A Mercury Clothiers piece represents an investment in your career and a commitment to overcoming any obstacle.
I am a professional woman balancing work and family — something I have always wanted. I strive to be taken seriously and driven, because I am driven.
Suits are the professional uniform. I love putting on work clothes. I can feel the transformation in how I carry myself and how I think of myself as a professional as I leave the family breakfast table and head into work.
I will never be that person who wants to telecommute in my pajamas. In my mind, I always picture Wonder Woman twirling around as she transforms into someone who can conquer any obstacle.
As much as I love putting on a suit, over the years I have found options available for women are flat-out boring. They are derivations on a man’s suit and once I had a work-week’s worth of suits, how many more did I really need? They all looked basically the same. Where were the variety of fabrics, styles, colors, and prints?
I would see gorgeous suits on my Pinterest feed and in vintage movies with Katherine Hepburn and Lauren Bacall. Those suits channelled those tough, no-nonsense women whom no one doubted had formidable intellect and capability.
I finally decided to stop waiting for someone else to create a collection of glamorous suits that I would love to wear to work. As I dove into the entrepreneurial process, I also wanted to ensure that I supported women-owned and operated businesses.
Supporting other women is an important ethos of Mercury Clothiers. In my journey I have discovered and worked with a variety of incredibly talented women. These women have been more than clients and business partners. They have become mentors, cheerleaders, and even friends. This an amazing testament to women who, contrary to the stereotype as catty and petty, are eager to support and build-up other women in business.
These women have been Wonder Women to me.
When I was developing a name for my brand I first focused on Roman mythology. I have always loved the strong independent female figures like Diana, Athena, and Juno. I was also a Latin student for many years and wanted to nod to that part of my past. However I felt that going the goddess route was a bit too obvious and trite. I was taken by the imagery of Mercury - one of my favorite male gods as a bit of a trickster who marches to his own drum. I also like the imagery of Mercury as an element, with its clean, fluid lines and evocative of Art Deco design in my mind. Mercury is also the English version my great-grandfather Mercuri’s last name. My great-grandfather was an Italian immigrant to New York City in the 19th century who was a clothing designer in NYC during the early 20th century. My family has many photographs of his creations and I feel a strong connection to this legacy of design in my family.
My paternal grandmother, Yolanda, was born and raised in New York City. I remember her as always incredibly stylish, even in her casual clothes. Yolanda was also a formidable woman, tough, opinionated but also kind and generous with her time. One story she told me about her life always sticks with me and shows how far we have come as women in the workplace. In the 1930s, Yolanda graduated from school with a teaching degree but no teaching positions were available in New York City. Her father (Vincent Mercuri) helped her land a position in the buying department at Saks Fifth Avenue. She worked there for two years and loved the job. However, when a teaching position became available her father argued that Yolanda would never have a meaningful career as a woman in the fashion industry. So she left her position as a buyer and went on to teach, but she told me she always regretted leaving. She relayed this story to me while I was in graduate school and talking about career options. It was probably the same day she was pursing her eyebrows at me for my grunge-era fashion choices. Yolanda is one of my great inspirations for her strength and her unfailing commitment to style at any age and occasion.
My maternal grandmother, Dorothy, is another formidable woman in my life. She was born and raised in Minneapolis, and loved clothes from an early age. Dorothy taught herself seamstress skills as a teenager to make clothes she could not afford to purchase retail. She made clothes for herself, and eventually her children in later years — in part because she enjoyed it rather than for economising. I would explore her attic as a teenager, examining beautifully made 1930s velvet evening gowns, 1950s party dresses, and 1960s day clothes. I was lucky enough to be able to wear some of her creations, and I always felt special wearing something unique and vintage. Dorothy was also a career woman with an advanced degree in an era when few women earned their college degree let alone a masters. She authored scholarly journal articles and even hid the fact that she was married from her school since they would not employ married women at that time. Dorothy’s commitment to her career was always inspirational to me, as much as the blatant sexism of the time outraged me. Dorothy’s intellect and drive, along with her love of a beautiful dress continue to inspire me.
A must for me those days I need to feel a little more persence. Besame has many different reds from actual vintage formulas. I love Blood Red from 1922.
I love finding unique pieces that cost far less than “real” jewelry. They help me stand out from the cookie-cutter professional uniforms. I love Miriam Haskil’s triple strand pearls with gold Deco accents that pair equally well with a suit and a dress.
I love to treat red as a neutral, using it as a pop of color against a monochrome look. I use red shoes or a red bag to stand out. I am also experimenting with a deep green and yellow as a neutral.