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DJ Mia Moretti on Dark Whiskey Bars, Impulsive Decisions and Her New Capsule Collection With Pencey

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This Saturday, February 16, acclaimed DJ and young style icon, Mia Moretti is flying in to launch her capsule collection with Pencey, exclusively sold at Sofia on Walton. Prepping her for such a launch at such a hardballing boutique, we had the opportunity to talk and text a little over the past few days amassing intel on her capsule collection and its whiskey-fueled inspiration as well as a few other tidbits on life.

Racked: Last September when your Pencey capsule collection was previewed at Fashion Week, you explained it to the DJ for the 2011 Racked Awards, Steven Rojas who was covering Fashion Week for Paper Magazine. He's cute, no?
Mia Moretti: Oh, yes, but you're going to get me in trouble with my boyfriend.

R: You described one of the jackets in your new capsule collection for Pencey as being from the 1920s and 1930s, having an air of decadence and mystery--like a dark whiskey bar.
MM: The pieces aren't literal translations, it's just a point of inspiration. I was thinking, a woman didn't have an outfit that was as powerful as one a man would wear back then. Womenswear was not practical, it gorgeous and elegant. So I designed it as if that era existed right now, then this that they'd be wearing.

R: Do you have a favorite dark whiskey bar?
MM: Definitely Saint Maize in Brooklyn, on Sundays theres a jazz band that plays there. When I'm in Chicago I love Underground Wonder Bar. It's that spirit of a smokey lounge--an intimate portrait of strong people.

R: It's my understanding you and Christina Minasian, the designer of Pencey have been friends for years. Where did you meet?
MM: I was a DJ at The Eldridge in the East Village and Christina made these really adorable dresses for the waitresses. After we initially met, we became friends and she lent me some pieces for events. I always felt her clothes are easy to wear.

R: Are you talking about another capsule?
MM: It's so much more work that you think, and for me its hard because I have a full time job and I travel so much. So, not quite yet.

R: Who else would you love to do a capsule with?
MM: Im working on on a re-release of something from the past. It's not mainstream but it's something everyone's heard of.

R: Bow chicka wow wow OR um-tss-um-tss?
MM: Bow chicka wow wow, for sure.

R: You've described your mixing technique as being very instinctual. For you, is being impulsive the same as instinctive?
MM: Its similar--the nuances are different.

R: So what is the most impulsive thing you've ever done?
MM: When I was on vacation in Jamaica, I decided, within a few hours to take a boat to Cuba with no money. When we got there, I realized there was no way to get money and I stayed a week and had to have a production company in London wire money to get a ticket out of there.

R: You've traveled all over the world. Which city is your favorite, and which city has the best dancers?

MM: London because my boyfriend is there. But Paris has the best dancers because the whole city revolves around art. You have fabulous men in dresses and women not wearing anything. The people there are not afraid to be anything--they're open to everything, the more obscure the better.

R: Tell me three places in London to go; one restaurant, one shop and one club.
MM: For shopping, the new Opening Ceremony store. For a bar, I like Mascara Bar, it's a live jazz club on Sundays and open until 4M almost every day--it's tiny hole in the wall. And the street my apartment is on, Broadway Market is closed down to traffic--there's a place called Market Cafe that is open late.
· Mia Moretti [Official Site]
· Pencey [Official Site]