Southwestern style isn’t all leather and turquoise — meet one of the women who’s bringing a fresh fashion sense to our corner of the country
Photography by Steven Bundy
Ashley Arabian unexpectedly fell in love during an earthship internship. The San Francisco native came to Taos four years ago to get away from the crazy city hustle and “I was instantly won over by the region,” she says. “I was still living in San Francisco, but I found myself coming back here once a month long after the internship was over.”
Eventually, the pull of Taos proved to be too strong, and Arabian moved to New Mexico permanently this year.
What gave you the final push to move to Taos?
“After years of doing pop-up shops in San Francisco, it just got to be tough,” she says. “It became such a big challenge, with the prices of everything skyrocketing — Taos was a breath of fresh air.”
How was your shop, Wanderer, born?
“Taos has great shopping, but I noticed there weren’t a ton of shops catering to the more fast-fashion, boho vibes of the Southwest,” she says. With a fashion-forward combination of fringe vests, printed jumpsuits and stylish yoga wear, Arabian hopes Wanderer can provide a shopping destination for both locals and tourists alike.
Can shoppers find pieces by local designers at Wanderer?
“We currently carry bags by Artifact Urban Design — the super soft buckskin bags are made by local designer Skylar Hodgson,” she says. “And we’re definitely on the hunt for more local designers.” Arabian also plans to host monthly parties with local artists and bands on display, giving people a chance to shop while they shindig.
What’s the story behind the name Wanderer?
“I’ve always been one! I’m one of those people who get itchy feet or have wanderlust,” Arabian says. “I’ve gotten a lot of flack for it, but in Taos, most of the people are like that. We embrace our need to see the world and gain new experiences. We think it’s a beautiful [thing] to wander, so the name just fit.”