Anne Johnston Albert Relaunches "Martin"

(Anne Johnston Albert in Harper's Bazaar)
Over the years I have lived many lives, each chapter totally different than the one that came before. People have come and gone from my life, not making them any less valuable or dear to my heart, but what comes with the ebb and flow of a life that has traveled down long and winding road. (Sounds like a bad James Taylor song.) I have recently reconnected with an old friend of mine - Anne Johnston (now Albert). We met as models in Milan, Italy - she just 17 and me not much older, although I thought I was so mature at the time. We both spent many years in Europe but both ended up in New York City, eventually living on opposite sides of Thompson Street in Greenwich Village. She was a wonderful friend in many ways, understanding what it was to live the life of a model, not all of it being particularly glamorous. But the thing that stuck with me - long after we had lost touch - was a period of six weeks in 1991. Anne was staying with me while in between apartments. I had just turned 30, retired from modeling, and been left by my husband - who had left a post-it note on my the kitchen table and gotten on a plane for London. (Long story I'm reserving for my life as a stand-up comic.) Anne was there for me - sharing my studio apartment, encouraging me to get out of bed in the morning and forcing me to push in my pull-out couch that I had been laying in more or less for weeks. She included me in her social life, letting me be third wheel while on dates with her boyfriend, encouraged me to eat three meals a day and put me on the path to healing. At the time I felt like she had saved my life. So enough about me...!
Several years ago before her daughters were born, Anne launched a clothing line named "Martin" (after her husband) out of a tiny store front in the East Village. She was the new trendy designer for the likes of director Sofia Coppola, model Gisele Bundchen and actress Sarah Jessica Parker. Her clothes were shown in Harpers Bazaar, Elle Magazine and British Vogue. A few years ago Anne and her husband decided to leave the big city to raise their two daughters in the country. Life with young children took precedent over trying to run a fashion business. Meanwhile, I had been searching for Anne - googling her name to death, trying to track down anyone who might know her whereabouts, when I emailed an old childhood friend of Anne's who is still in the New York fashion industry as editor at Lucky Magazine. Within a day I had a message from Anne in my inbox! We have plans to get together as we are now both living in the country, just an hour apart! Additionally, Anne is relaunching her own cottage industry, Martin from her country home. The fashion savvy of Manhattan can now breathe a sigh of relief...and me too, as little pieces of my life come full circle.
Model Gisele Bundchen in British Vogue wearing Martin


Gisele & Sofia Coppola in Martin

A favorite for Sarah Jessica Parker - US Magazine

Martin showing it's East Village Roots


Martin Redux!


Elle Magazine:"I make what I feel like wearing; clothes that look special and make you feel sexy, no matter what the trends are" - Anne


18 comments:

littlebyRD said...

Wonderful story! There is something so great about finding someone from your past - it has happened a few times in my life.

charmaine said...

thank you for stopping by. wow! what an inspiration your blog is. actually, i've visited your blog before and was amaized at how beautiful your post are. very lovely blog. i really enjoy reading your post. i look forward to visiting again.

charmaine

Sandra Ree said...

Marie Louise, I tried to leave a comment the other day but it wouldn't let me, I think Blogger was having problems. Loved this story! You said you were a model in Milan, Italy and since we're close in age, I was wondering if you knew a model with the last name "Broome". She was with the Ford Agency.

High Desert Diva said...

Anne sounds like the best kind of friend. So glad you have been able to hook up again.

In my next life, when I can wear a size two, I will be a fashionista.

Now, I'm off to check out Charmaine's blog as I'm always curious about women who share my name.

Gill - That British Woman said...

thanks for stopping by my blog, and explaining about the sizing on baby clothes........I figured it had to be something simple!!!

What a neat story and what a fantastic blog, mine seems so "plain and boring" compared to yours!!!!

I am liking it so much, that I am putting a link to your blog on mine, I hope you don't mind?

Gill from Canada

Denise said...

Hello there, thanks for stopping by. I'm so glad you have connected with your friend. I would love to get back in touch with mine, several of whom emmigrated to Australia (from England) way, way back, before I moved to the States. Your blog is very. very interesting and I too would like to put a link on my page as I would like to visit often, if that's okay?

Marie Louise said...

Gill & Denise - of course you can put a link on your page. I'm very flattered! You can be my English connection!

Hooked on Houses said...

What a fun post and amazing story. I was glued. What a good friend she was to you! We could all use more friends like that in our lives. -Julia

My Castle in Spain said...

Hi Marie-Louise! It's very nice to meet you and i thoroughly enjoyed reading your post. What a lovely story about friendship !

thanks for your comment about my work. it's nice to feel encouraged

see you soon
:-)

Laura @ the shorehouse. said...

You tell such a fabulous story and I loved this one (with the exception of post-it note part. YIKES.). Anne's style is amazing, and I love the black dresses, especially the one on Gisele (who I suspect looks slightly better in it than I would. Am I jealous? You bettcha.).

Savvy Mode SG said...

oh my gosh, what a story. the feeling to finding a long lost friend is beyond joy. I found my college good friend a few years ago after writing the univeristy as the last hope and she actually got my letter.

A World in a PAN said...

Love your story!

RoyalTLady said...

Marie dear

How do I remove the picture from your guest book? Its a wrong picture...wrongly clicked and please rightly remove...

I would post my own picture later...Thanks.

RTL

My lovely cottage said...

oh yes i could easly trade my noa noa clothes. martin is a fantastic style.

Lydee said...

what a fabulous story, and a great one to share! I enjoyed reading it.

katiedid said...

That is such a cool story(except the part about the dissappearing husband...that part....not so cool!)But to have a friend like that is priceless. I hope we get to hear about your reunion.

blue moss said...

Thanks for stopping by and your nice post. Loved your story--I had just read about the relaunch in Lucky. Your blog is so visually beautiful--I will be back! Michelle

Kathy said...

Anne sounds like a lovely person and a great friend, how nice you are getting to meet up again. The clothes look wonderful. Kathy.

"It's never too late to be who you might have been." --George Eliot