Cheek-ie is a jewelry line started by Angela Barrow two years ago. Even though the name implies ripe, round bumbums, it's visions of titties that dance through Angie's head.
Cheek-ie is a jewelry line started by Angela Barrow two years ago. Even though the name implies ripe, round bumbums, it's visions of titties that dance through Angie's head. For those of you out of the know, Cheek-ie's retinue consists of knotted belts and bracelets, braided headbands and earrings, long dangling necklaces, genius suspenders--pardon, sass-spenders--and, my personal favorite, Cleopatra-style armbands. Excluding a couple recent outtings in metal, most of the pieces involve gorgeous fabrics twisted and stuffed into versatile tubes that can be tied or transformed in just about any way imaginable. It's the kind of jewelry that makes most girls slap their head and yell at their brain, "Why didn't you think of this first?" But Cheek-ie's simplicity is deceptive. This ain't just another girl making chintzy Etsy-quality baubles out of fabric scraps. Angela closely guards her knotting technique. If you really want to try out clasping and balancing eight different weights of fabric until you stumble on the secret, by all means be my guest. But believe me when I say, you just booked your ticket to the City of Being Very Frustrated. Back to the tits, though, this year to showcase her holiday collection, Angela gave birth to a bouncing baby boob calendar. It's called "Tits y Totes" and features a bunch of topless girls with tote bags over their head. There's supposed to be sort of an eco-message there about not using plastic bags, but we'll forgive you if it gets lost in the headlights' glare. I hung out with Angela at her house, helped her proof the calendars and asked her a few questions: Vice: Why a boob calendar? Angela Barrow: My photographer friend Henry Hargreaves is a boob slut. He has a website that chronicles his obsession with milk juggs of all sizes. We decided to make a calendar last year just as a joke, and people really liked it, so this year I decided to sell them. I also will donate a sizable chunk to the North Brooklyn Compost Project (NBCP)! What's more important, the boobs or the message? Chicken and egg. The seed has been planted and hopefully people will pick up a trick or two on how to salvage stuff, while looking at perfectly natural, legal age of consent boobies. OK, now that we've got the tit part accounted for, how'd you come up with the totes? I was firing off "tit-les" for the calendar and it just came to me in a moment of genius. Actually, I figured out the whole "cause" aspect afterwards. I compost and I love the NBCP but they are only available May-Nov. So I thought, tits, waste-less, compost! What's your titty shoot soundtrack like? Lots of Grace Jones, Guns n Roses, 4 Non Blondes, Bruce Springsteen, and 90s shit. Having bags over the girls heads can be read as kinky or degrading, what do you say to that? Psssh! It's so hard convincing my friends to pose, let alone topless, I had to compromise last year and cover the face with masks, flowers, and umbrellas and stuff, Shit gets old after the month of May. OK now, where can one pick up this calendar? Fom my webstore, at Spoonbill & Sugartown books on Bedford Ave, Fluke (169 Wythe Ave, Brooklyn), Dossier (244 DeKalb Ave, Brooklyn), Plum (124 Ludlow St), Fox and Fawn (112 Suffolk Street). If you are still boob-hungry, there is a launch party for the Tits and Totes calendar at Fluke on Friday. Refreshments, tunes, and titties will be provided plus deals on Cheek-ie goods and previews of new items from Angela's upcoming collection. BEVERLY HAMES PHOTOS BY HENRY HARGREAVES