March 29, 2019

Alice Corning and Josephine Zeitlin

by Kiss of the Wolf in Women of Kiss

Best Friends

Friends are something women never outgrow. If anything, friendships become more important with the passage of time and all the shared experiences that brings.

Alice Corning and Josephine Zeitlin have been friends for 40 years. Kindred spirits, they get together for everything from mountain biking in Moab, Utah to sedate dinner parties and wine-tastings close to home. Every year, they attend the American Crafts Council Show in San Francisco. This is how they discovered Kiss of the Wolf and met designer Lori Bacigalupi.

Lori is the most extraordinary clothing designer. When we reach for something special in the closet, it is always Lori’s. We laugh about someday having a closet filled with ONLY her clothes. They are gorgeous, individual, and luscious to wear. ~ Alice Corning

Lori felt a sense of kinship and was very fond of them, as well. Several years ago, she invited them to come visit her studio in Norman, Oklahoma. They recently decided to take her up on it because, as Alice said, “This year just seemed like the right time.”

Lori’s care and reverence for her materials comes through in every inspired and confident design and stitch. Kudos to her and her loyal and capable team. I am spiritually elevated every time I wear her pieces. ~ Josephine Zeitlin

The Studio

The Kiss of the Wolf studio behind Lori’s house is part working studio, part office, and part shop. Rack upon rack of Kiss art couture greets you at the door. Alice and Josephine had the entire collection at their disposal for the long weekend. It was like going through your best friend’s closet with her- when your best friend is a clothing designer! Everyone had fun.

A Workshop

Lori had a special treat for her guests- a studio workshop, exclusively for them. With white silk stretched over a work table and a sumptuous array of dyes at their disposal, they experimented with mark-making and direct dye techniques. Then, Lori stretched a fresh length of silk, divided it in two and Josephine and Alice each painted a section. Kiss of the Wolf master tailor, Yan Lan, would later finish them into scarves to be mailed home to San Francisco.

Alice Corning, painting in the Kiss Studio
Alice painting in the Kiss Studio
Josephine Zeitlin, happily discovering her inner painter
Josephine discovers her inner painter

I am grateful for the unique experience in Lori’s workshop. Her unerring vision caused the painter in me to emerge. Her mastery and creativity prove her uniqueness over and over again. ~ Josephine Zeitlin

The Dinner Party

What do you do when friends come to visit? You throw a dinner party! The guests included some of Lori’s oldest friends, who also happen to work with her in the Kiss studio.

Lori loves feeding her friends and is an excellent cook. With an appreciation for Alice and Josephine’s superior knowledge of wine, she asked them to select the evening’s beverages. To everyone’s delight, they discovered some very choice bottles. Two of them had been bought more than 30 years before by Lori’s late husband, Marshall. They were meant to be aged, but it was anyone’s guess whether they would still be good. The wines turned out to be exquisite, as were the memories of Marshall brought up by this unexpected gift.

Throughout the evening, the conversation flowed. We told stories of our travels, of challenges and growth. We made toasts to old friends and new ones. Long after the dishes were cleared, the conversation went on.

Jennifer baked a Brie-filled Brioche for starters
Jennifer baked a Brie-filled Brioche for starters
Lori serves Lemon Chicken to Jennifer
Lori's Lemon Chicken
Lori Bacigalupi, Designer, Kiss of the Wolf
Lori enjoying her dinner guests
Ola made a delicious Tropical Cream Pie
Ola made a delicious Tropical Cream Pie

Home again

After a long and happy weekend, Lori drove Alice and Josephine back to the airport. Josephine and Alice’s bags were a bit more full, packed, as they were, with new selections from Kiss of the Wolf. With full hearts, their friendships deepened by shared experiences, the women bid each other goodbye.

All of us hope to see our friends again soon.

Clockwise from top left: Jennifer Robertson, web designer and writer; Candy Hewitt, business manager; Ola Molinas, Lori’s artist’s assistant; Ola’s husband, Asoka; Alice Corning; and Josephine Zeitlin
Clockwise from top left: Jennifer Robertson, web designer and writer; Candy Hewitt, business manager; Ola Molinas, Lori’s artist’s assistant; Ola’s husband, Asoka; Alice Corning; and Josephine Zeitlin

Alice and Josephine, best friends and Women of Kiss.

Alice Corning

Potter, Sculptor, Ceramic Artist

Alice originally aspired to be a poet, earning a degree in literature from Harvard University. Life led her, instead, to become an artist, translating poetry into clay. She began as a young mother with classes at a small Soho studio. Since then, she has devoted herself to deepening her understanding of the craft and its history.

Alice draws inspiration from clay’s rich cultural legacies, both practical and artistic. “The whole history of people working with clay is magical,” she says.

Alice works in her home studio in Mill Valley, north of San Francisco and east of Muir Woods. She has won recognition and awards at numerous juried exhibitions. Her work is represented in the permanent collection of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. She feels honored most of all by the many people who have collected her work over the years.

You can see more of Alice’s work at her website: https://www.alicecorning.com

Josephine Zeitlin

Actress, Model, Landscape Designer

Josephine divides her life between the glamour of a working actress and model and the earthiness of cooking and landscape design. She lives in Marin County with Denny Zeitlin, her husband of 50 years. A composer, jazz pianist, recording artist and psychiatrist, Denny’s life is a similar study in contrasts.

Together, they go mountain biking, collect wine, and travel. They have recently taken up ballroom dancing.

Josephine’s one of the most creative people I know, as a professional landscape and garden designer, as a photographer and as a gourmet chef… When we went on a restaurant safari in France, very few of these three-star outfits came up to her level. ~ Denny Zeitlin

You can see more about Josephine’s work on her IMDb page

Josephine Zeitlin in her painted scarf, Kiss of the Wolf jacket and pants
The scarf Josephine painted goes beautifully with her Kiss of the Wolf jacket and pants

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