Tuesday, March 30, 2010


Im not sure if this has anything to do with what this blog is supposed to be about... in fact I'm not even sure what this blog Is supposed to be about, but there is just something I must get off my chest:

Dear JLO- Please, we get it, you're perfect. Your hair is perfect, your makeup is perfect, every last little stitch of every last over-the-top ball gown you wear is perfect. But for God's sake, all this perfection is making me nauseous. Calm it down, let your hair get a little dissheveled, lighten up on the makeup, maybe even let your (Gasp) natural color grow in a bit (who said that!?). What you're missing is any sense of effortlessness. Whatever the opposite of effortless is, that's what you are, and I for one just can't take it anymore! Its gross! And I must confess, its one of the reasons why I just can't bare to watch you in movies. Nothing about you comes across as real, you're just JLO playing a character that no one really believes. So I beg you, infact I plead with you- please, just be real! Being the glass doll in the ivory tower is not interesting or appealing, its annoying. I mean, I want you to win JLO, I even gave you a thumbs up on that cotton candy frock you wore to the Oscars, so help me help you and let's just tone it down a bit...ok?

Yours Truly,


Monday, March 29, 2010

How to: Get a Deal

I think the thing that is really appealling to me right now is the idea of affordable fashion. By affordable I don't mean shopping at Ross or TJMaxx and putting together one of those looks for less that you see in cheesy television shows. Although I have nothing against Ross or TJ Maxx persay.

What I'm actually referring to is the outbreak of designer collaborations. Target was the first to really blaze the trail for these low priced pairings. They have since done collaborations with everyone from Alexander McQueen to Rodarte to Jean Paul Gaultier which debuted this month and practically sold out in the same day it was presented. Online is always a good place to go for these types of things since different stores buy different pieces depending on location and buyer, but online will normally stock the bulk of it. Liberty of London is also set to be stocked for Spring 2010 so if you want to get your hands on that one camp out early. However, buyer be ware of online buying. Often times with such deals its a good idea to check the fabrics and textures in person before making a purchase. We all know what some good lighting and pinning can do for a outfit, so I'd say check the pieces in the store if you can still get your hands on them, and if they are out of your size head to the web.

More stores doing low priced collaborations with high end designers is Stella McCartney who has done a brilliant line for Gap Kids, my only complaint with this one is, Where is the adult line Stella? I actually bought one of the Stella for Gap Kids sweaters, its the light grey cashmere one with the tiger face on it, I know its not for 25 year olds but its an oversize sweater and I got the large. This is what I'm driven to with no options in my size.
Of course Topshop has been really great about collaborations and the great thing with Topshop is that the quality doesn't really suffer. Even though you're obviously not getting the same fabrics and detail as you would off the runway, its still a really nice version of the one you'd get from the designers boutique and at about 10% of the cost, and in a crowded party with dim lighting who can tell the difference anyways. Now of course if you are fortunate enought to afford the $2,000 Christopher Kane frock obv thats where you'd go, but I think its great that there are options for everyone now. While it is great to make things that are rare, and you know that you're paying for those hand sewn details and hope they will last you a lifetime, I think its also important that fashion not be exclusive, and before the advent of designer collabs, thats what was happening. High fashion was to be admired from a distance for most people. Now, most people can afford a chic Vena Cava or Alexander Wang look by turning to the Gap, or look to Topshop for a Jonathan Saunders, Ashish or Christopher Kane dress. And since the people who can't afford to spend thousands of dollars on high-end designers clothing are usually its biggest champions, I think its about time that designers are embracing all of their consumers. Its no longer taboo for a designer to produce a "defusion" line, so they are able to slash prices without forsaking the fine quality associated with the brand.

Outside of these store designer collabs, another great place to find a steal is sample sales. When Phi closed its doors last season they did a massive blow out sample sale, and had peices for less than $40 or $50, its not forever 21 cheap, but you know your getting the actual collection peices at a steal, and youve lost none of the quality. Often times at a sample sale you'll pay 10% or less of the original cost, and the great thing is designers have sample sales every season, so if you dont mind being slightly behind the trend its perfect. My advice is buy the peices that are classics so that you know you'll pull them out the following year, and years to come.

Now sample sales can sometimes be exclusive affairs, sometimes I get emails from the designers PR about their sample sale because I'm already in their email contacts, but even if youre not working in fashion you can still get inside tips on upcoming sales through a genius website called refinery29.com. The most important thing, when sample saling it is to get there early, the first hour of the first day is advised, but often times they open the doors the day before they are even listed, for friends and family, and if you drop by you may get a sales associate who will let you in on those days.

With the economy the way it is, the fashion industry is feeling it as much as anyone, and the truth is, it will probably never be the same as it was, but the verdict isn't yet in on whether thats a good thing or a bad thing. The one thing that is for certain is that it forces everyone to be a bit more creative with budgets and shopping, and for the everyday consumer, the same goes. Good bad or ugly, this is where we are, so we may as well embrace it, and I salute the designers who have already started that process by allowing ALL consumers access to their creations.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Fresh Face: Lais Rebeiro

I first took notice of Lais Ribeiro when I saw her walking in the Gucci FW10 show. I saw her in shows before that but it was that show that really made me wonder, who is that girl?

Who that girl is is a 6 foot tall, 19 year old stunner from Brazil. She signed an exclusive world wide contract with Women Management and was quickly plucked from her native land and thrown into the frenzy of fashion week, with enormous success.

Word around town is she is known for a certain stoic quality. One designer commented that she "looks like she's always got somewhere else to be", and a journalist noted that during fashion week she actually saw her yawn after turning away from the photographers cameras during the finale of a major show. Well be that as it may, with a debut season that saw her walk in shows for Galliano, Gaultier, Hermes, Gucci, Dolce and Gabbana and Bottega to name a few, its clear that if Ribeiro is bored, she's certainly not boring.

I'm not sure any Brazilian has made such a splash in the high fashion world, since Gisele. Brazil has exported plenty of beauties in the mean time, but it is rare that any model has the appeal to walk the wide line between high fashion and sex symbol. With Victoria's Secret girls now doing ever more fashion shows (Doutzen Kroes and Allesandra Ambrosi walked for Prada and Rosie Huntington- Whitley and Adrianna Lima did Louis Vuitton)  I think this is prime time for Lais to make her entrance, and if this first season is any indication, I think its time that other Brazilian bombshell makes some room for the new girl.


Saturday, March 27, 2010


Solange Azagury-Patridge is a London based jewelry designer with an attitude. She is a relatively new find for me. I discovered her delectable jewels on the aforementioned shoot for Elle through the aforementioned Polina. I borrowed Solange's "Broken Heart" ring for Kelis, who reacted by commenting that she was "so annoyed". In Kelis language, I found out, that means she loooves. Well for that matter, I am reeeally annoyed too Kelis, because Solange Azagury-Patridge (try saying that 5 times fast) is, as it turns out, the jeweler of my dreams.
MaryJane, Love, and Smartie Poison rings

She makes rings that, in swirly cursive, say things like 'love', or 'f**k off',  depending on one's mood of course (I'll take the latter), and her heart pendant necklaces are not the typical cookie cutter shape, but molds of the actual organ. Outside of that though she just makes jewelry that is incredibly thoughtful and honest. Its interesting and quirky and sassy, and that for me equals love. I just can't believe I didn't know about her sooner. The good thing too is alot of the jewelry is chunky so if you're looking for jewelry for a shoot you don't have to worry about losing it in a picture, this stuff is definitely stand-out. Aaand more importantly, if you're buying a gift for a loved one, (a very loved, very lucky, loved one) its so unique that you can buy for a specific person, personality or even in memory of some funny moment, because each peice is created so uniquely. The broken heart ring Kelis wore is actually two rings to be worn on neighboring fingers so that when you move your fingers apart...thats right- the heart breaks. Aaaaah she is so clever! :) She also makes cool rings to hold...ummm...sugar..?..in? Well whatever your poison, there is a flashy yet descreet ring for it. I feel like Solange is sort of like the Tim Burton of jewelry, its all a bit dark, (in mood not color) and seems like its been created with an odd sense of humor. Now if we could just get Johnny in on this equation I think we'd all be happy.

Broken Heart, Offering and Mirror box rings

Union Jack and Big Fringe
                 Random                                     Heart of Gold and Bleading Heart pendants
Ball Crusher earrings, Garden of Eden ring
Opal Fruit cuff (for the hippie in you)

Friday, March 26, 2010

Full of Grace

SO! Last night I finally caught up with the times and caught the fashion flick of... well... last year? I dont know, any ways the point is, last week I was working with my old boss, Polina Aronova on Elle, when the topic of "The September Issue" came up and I mentioned I still hadn't seen it. She promptly gave me the side eye, you know the one, like, 'seriously?' Her instructions were, don't rent it, buy it, this is a movie you should own (I'm paraphrasing). And I gotta give to Po, she was right. In case you weren't perusing around New York when the city was inundated with posters of Anna Wintour sitting front row at a fashion show in her famous blacked out shades, "The September Issue" is a movie about the making of the September issue of American Vogue.

It wasn't quite what I expected to be honestly, which is, I think what makes it so great. Truthfully I think the only way it stood a chance of being what I expected was if Anna Wintour said nothing the entire time, and just sat there throwing out evil looks, promptly sending designers into fits of tears. But actually it was quite a nice surprise. I like that they've given a glimpse into Anna Wintour's world, and showed that she is infact human, and beneath that icy exterior lies a vulnerable, loving (atleast with her daughter) woman. I found it pretty revealing when she mentioned that all of her siblings work in jobs that involve humanitarian or political issues and the plight of the underprivledged, and remarked that she thinks her siblings find what she does to be "amusing". Even if your Anna Wintour I guess you never escape that sibling comparison thing.
 Grace Coddington (L) and Karen Elson as Grace Coddington

The real star of this movie for me though, wasn't Wintour at all, it was the unsinkable Grace Coddington. With that firey mane of wild hair, and walking around in all black, protesting the editing of her stories and (GASP) dressing her own models, they show in this film that Grace is definitely a force, and to me was just as much of a force as Wintour. I love that she is older than most of today's eitors, but still just as passionate about her work as ever and is showing all of us spring chicken's the way its done. She just has a real hutzpa about her and sticks to her convictions even in the face of nay sayers, Wintour included. I found her to be quite inspirational, I think I may be DEEP into a one sided love affair. Something about her reminds me of a Sonia Rykiel or Patricia Field, perhaps its something about that firey hair and matching personality.

So all in all I thought this was a really great movie, definitely one to watch, if not own, especially if you're a fashion lover or employee, which, if you're reading this blog I can safely assume you belong to one of those two categories. My advice is run, don't walk...
Now- if I could just convince my mom to stop trying to throw out all my old Vogue's.

Photo of Anna Wintour, Grace Coddington, and Virginia Smith c/o Zimbio
Photo of Grace Coddington c/o Zimbio
Photo of Karen Elson as Grace Coddington c/o Fashionologie 

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Animal Magnetism

So before I was so Ruuuudely interrupted by Karl Lagerfeld and the Gang, what I really wanted to blog about was... Spots! Thats right spots, leopard ones to be exact. I have a general obsession with all things leopard, especially layering leopard; leopard on leopard like that Chloe suit Hannah MacGibbon did for Resort 2010.... Ooohhh so good. And it seems as if leopard is back big time, which brings a smile to my face that I wish you could see... :) 
Etro and Balmain
It is my theory that leopard is the black of the animal print world. Even though it peaks trend-wise in certain seasons more than others, it seems to never reeeally be out. Which is great news, because I'm always so tempted to buy say a leopard boot vs a black leather one, or dare I say, a leopard coat vs a standard black, but I hesitate knowing that I won't lose the black one to a trend two seasons from now, because lets face it, if your spending too much money on a pair of shoes or a coat, the last thing you want is for them to go out of style 4 months later.
Chloe's double's up for Resort 2010
But! The point of this crazy rant is to say, Fear not fashion babies! Leopard is here to stay! Never again should you hestiate at the register when choosing between pony hair leopard print booties or black ones. In a season of minimalist scaled back dressing, leopard was one extravagence that was not spared. And I'm taking this as a serious indication that my favorite kitty is a mainstay we can count on. I wish I knew how to make a heart on this thing.
Dolce does it right and Pucci's play on the classic print

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Lagerfeld Gets Low

Buzz around the Lower East Side is Karl Lagerfeld is shooting the Chanel FW10 campaign in the hood. And by buzz I mean the dozen or so locals whispering and taking pictures with their camera-phones while trying desperately to look unimpressed, on the other side of my local coffee shop window. The models were clad in what may best be described as furry mammoth boots, (you know the ones from the show with the ice block heels?) and fur woven tweed coats, along with an unknown male in this get-up...
So what brings Lagerfeld, along with Stylist Alex White, and models Freja Beja, and Abbey Lee to the corner of Orchard and Broome on a Wednesday afternoon? Thats what we'd all like to know. But my best guess is Karl Lagerfeld is attempting to drive home the point that Chanel is no longer just a label for Ladies who lunch... if he didn't already accomplish that feat with queen of angst pop Lily Allen performing at the SS show, and the endorsement of Leigh Lezark of the Misshapes DJ trio as one of many ambassadors, he's definitely attempting to cement it in our brains this time around. And how better to do that than to bring the campaign to the LES, a neighborhood that was once known for heavy drug trafficing and gang violence in decades past, (and not That far past) and is now synonamous with the hipster "downtown" fashion scene (whether 'hipster' is negative or postive term depends on who you talk to, so lets just make it neutral for the sake of this article).
Lagerfeld's ladies-Leigh Lezark and Lily Allen
Point is the Lower East Side is walking to a brand new beat, and that beat was likely made by a new indie band or hip downtown DJ. Take for example Orchard st, which is home to Alexander Wang who lives across the road from lil' ol' Yours Truly; "Still Life"- the dope custom hat shop (yes I said dope); and vintage shops aplenty. And just a couple blocks up, Refirmation, which does amazing reworked vintage; sister store Veda (the best place for leather anything); and shoe boutiques carrying independent lines up the wazoo. Despite quips by locals that this isnt the same neighborhood they once knew, I for one think its great that this has become a place where the young and the brave feel like they can spread their wings and really give-it-a-go. Some may thrive, some barely survive, and some go as quickly as they came, but nevertheless its exciting that their are places like this for dreamy eyed fashion kids to showcase their talent, and attempt to make it big in the city of dreams.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Gold Stars: The CFDA announces the 2010 nominees...

Ok, I know I've been conspicuously absent from the blogosphere for about a week now, but I'm back and hopefully so is my unpredicatble internet connection... And with great news! Yesterday the CFDA announced the nominees for the 2010 CFDA Awards! yaaaaaay! So before I get into what I think about it, here are the nominees:

Menswear Designer of the Year-
  • Tom Ford
  • Michael Bastian
  • Marcus Wainwright and David Neville for Rag and Bone
Womenswear Designer of the Year-
  • Alexander Wang
  • Marc Jacobs
  • Donna Karan
Accessory Designer of the Year-
  • Marc Jacobs
  • Alexis Bittar
  • Jack McCoulough and Lazaro Hernandez for Proenza Schouler 

Swarovski Award for Womenswear-
  • Jason Wu
  • Prabal Gurung
  • Josheph Altuzarra
Swarovski Award for Menswear-
  • Simon Spurr
  • Richard Chai
  • Patrick Ervell
Swarovski Award for Accessory Design-
  • Eddie Borgo
  • Alexander Wang
  • Dana Lorenz

Eugenia Sheppard Award – Kim Hastreiter, Paper
International Award – Christopher Bailey for Burberry
Fashion Icon Award – Iman
Eleanor Lambert Award – Tonne Goodman, Vogue
Geoffrey Beene Lifetime Achievment Award- Michael Kors
CFDA Special Tribute Award- Alexander McQueen
Altuzarra SS and FW 10
Now! You may be wondering, first of all, what is the difference between the Swarovski award nominees and all of the other nominees? Well, if you notice, the Swarovski Award Nominee's are generally much newer, and/or younger designers, that's because the Swarovski Award winners recieve financial backing from the Swarovski company in addition to the honor of the award itself, so this is quite a big deal for emerging designers who are still looking to build their brand and put their company on the map.
And in case you were wondering, nominees are based on the Spring/Summer and Fall/Winter 2010 collections of nominated designers, and all nominees, save the international award, are designers whose business is based and headquartered in the U.S.

Ok, back to the bloggy stuff- There are some of these designers who I am a huge fan of and really want to see win, and some categories which I actually think missed designers who should have been nominated. For Menswear obv Tom Ford is a clear choice, ever since Tom Ford for Gucci ended and Tom Ford menswear began he has been a staple for chic, expert tailoring and perfect menswear, any man I've seen dressed in Tom Ford looks impeccable, and this has just really been his year.
Donna Karan's FW10
Marc Jacobs FW10
As far as womenswear goes, the Thing is... I was actually going to give this to Donna Karan based on the consistency and stregnth of her collections, not only this year but in all years. She continues to grow and create within her same motif- its always Donna, but she still manages to surprise you and give collections that are elegant, beautiful, and ultimately very wearable. That said- I L-L-L-L-L-L-L-L-L-L-ooooooooooooooooooooooooved Marc Jacobs FW10 collection soo much, that I have deleted and re-written this particular review, because I just can't not vote for him. Maybe I didn't love SS as much, but FW alone is enough for him to take this category in my eyes... That's my story and I'm stickin' to it.
Simon Spurr FW10
In the category of accessories I would have to give it to Proenza Schouler. Alexis Bittar does some really great(!) accessories and they have become an editorial staple, especially if you need something edgy, cool and eye catching, aaaand I must say that I am a huge fan of the current Bittar ads with Joan Collins which I just think are genius. HOWEVER, Proenza has consistently produced accessories that are on par with the innovation and edgy sophistication of their collections. They're always fashion forward and while accessories may be an afterthought for some designers, it's clear that they are not for these boys. This moment really belongs to them.
I think Altuzarra, Simon Spurr and Eddi Borgo have it for Swarovski Awards, although I must point out that my favorite menswear designer, Robert Gellar, is not a nominee, who I think should be (but he has won in previously so I won't get all stingey about it). AAAnnnd Jason Wu may give Altuzarra a run for his money (literally) considering he has been all over the map this past year, and dressing the first lady consistently doesn't hurt either. But if it were up to lil old me, Joseph Altuzarra would take it. Who would you vote for?

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Miuccia Miuccia Miuccia

Speeeeaking of lovely things... Madame Prada debuted the Miu Miu collection last night and it was as magical as ever. She kept with the theme of young girlish innocence, but there's always something retro about her clothes and this collection was no exception. The word that comes to mind is sweet. The models looked literally like dolls, retro barbie dolls, reminicent of 1960's Twiggie, walking down the runway in their ultra girlish clothing adorned with flowers, jewels, bows, and ooo scalloped edges!
But it wouldn't wouldn't be Prada's show if there weren't some element of hidden sexuality. The skirts and dresses were cut straight across the buttom and flounced up with every step the girls took, the bodices were cut down to there and then adorned with a bow, and just for giggles I suppose, she threw in a lock and key belt to really preserve a girls innocence. The shoes looked like the girls were carrying a bouqet around their ankles and there were not just one, but two boes at the tip of there square toed shoes. These are small details, but then the splendor of Miuccia's collections always live in the details. Its what sets Miu Miu apart and make this line, at once, playful, innocent, sexy and forever young.