A tribute to black

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January’s coming to a close leaving us with two more skin covered months to endure, with the winter blues just setting in by now. However, with each passing month we move closer to seeing some signs of life. Finding myself with nothing to wear during these blah months, black is always my go-to choice when I want to be head-to-toe in a chic ensemble. When the climate is questionable, I find it easy to get bored with my current state of closet. Let’s face it. This has been a strange, mild winter and the peculiar 2011-2012 season continues this week. But, black, you are always my friend.

The latest black piece that caught my fancy was a Zadig and Voltaire Deluxe black blazer emblemed with a crystallized feather on the back. I’ll be rocking it next week for fashion week so you will just have to wait to see it. ;)

Here is Alexander Wang’s T line for Fall 2012. T for Totally cool. I’ve been donning these looks lately, mainly for their sense of ease. Black and white, white and black. Easy breezy.

T by Alexander Wang Pre-Fall 2012, .

 With Pre-fall on the brain, I can’t help but admire (and envy) the black-clad chic Parisien women dashing from show to show with their Chanel totes in hand.
 

Here’s a peplum top rearing its gorgeous head at Celine. I love it worn with a pantsuit. Spartan yet divine.

Celine Pre-Fall 2012

Menswear fabrics and strict tailoring were Wang’s strong points for Fall. Less street this season, more seriously chic.

Alexander Wang Pre-Fall 2012

Check out all the different possibilities of how to be monochrome. All the fabric playing against each other just works.

Finally ..here is a reprisal of the jumpsuit from Spring 2011 but this time in leather. The collection was a reinterpretation of YSL’s past now modernized, destined to be a classics of today.

Whether leather or chiffon, it’s a fusion of feminine- looking function clothing.  It’s nice to see the non-committal way fashion is heading. I am definitely embracing this uniform way of dressing.

 

All photos: Jak & Jil and Style.com

 

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Fancy Feet

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Shoes: Alexander Wang. Pants: Zara

It’s about time I whipped these babies out of their box. I couldn’t find a better moment than today, a beautiful late-January afternoon to release the caped fur ball from hiding. The shadows paired with the light signaled a chance for them to strut their obligatory stuff.

And a little dose of inspiration here too, à la floral pants about to emerge from the underground. Happy pants. Forward thinking my friends.

So, here’s to Saturday night. May your weekend be filled with the hopes and possibilities that Mr. Big will sweep you off your feet. For real.

xo

 

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Mid-winter pick-me-up

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Reality check, it’s Mid-January. Almost tax time, not quite Valentine’s Day, no snow, but you still need to keep warm. Although the weather is as fickle as the stock market these days, it is always better to be prepared. On a dreary grey day like this, all I really want to do is crawl into bed and watch movies. But fashion never hibernates. So…I’ll do my best to brighten your day (and mine) and wear a hint of pink. Pink is one of those colors that a certain kind of city girl, often seen in all-black Rick Owens, wouldn’t be caught dead in. That would include me. The Spring 2012 runways just may change my mind and your mind alike with designers like Jason Wu, Peter Som, and Jenni Kayne using pink in the most modern ways possible.

I’m not really a huge fan of functional dressing but it’s on days like these that demand that I stay on my feet, run around town and try to keep warm when common sense gets the better of me. So for those mid-winter days when open-toe stilettos threaten to make a foot frostbitten, I encourage you to take a look at the photos below for cozy alternatives that can be worn at Sundance or strolling around town.

As you can see, there are a chock full of bundled-up looks from this year’s Sundance Film Festival in Utah. I love spotting my favorite A-listers in luxe layered-up ensembles, shiny puffer coats, chunky colorful scarves, sleek booties, and more.

If Kate Bosworth, Naomi Watts, and Elizabeth Olsen’s cold weather chicness isn’t enough of an indication of how to dress in icier climates, look into your closet. That usually inspires my glam winter style.

Pink shirt, J. Crew. Sweater, Calypso. Jeans, Isabel Marant. Parka, Prada. Boots, Dominion Sheepskin boots. (gifted)

 Bracelets, Calypso, Chan Luu

By the way, check out my new Artemis Sheepskin boots. Handmade in New Zealand, they are comfy, cozy, and furry. Remember the Ugg vaccine post? These are no Uggs.

And if you are as inspired as I am, you can get most if not all of these wintry items on sale. If you find you are in the market for some no frills footwear, jump right over here for those sheepskin boots you know you have your eye on. They are as comfy as they look. Really.  For now! xo

Boots http://www.dominionnewzealand.com/sheepskin-footwear/artemis.html

All photos by Superstar Julius Michael

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Get mesmerized

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If you have been paying attention to fashion lately, you might have noticed all the trippy psychedelic videos that have been appearing on your screen. No, nobody spiked your Koolaid. Its just a phantasmagoric moment in fashion videography meant to hypnotize us fashion zombies into it wanting (needing) all of the latest and greatest “out there” garb. It is “trance”  marketing so to speak, designed to put a spell on you and your Amex card. Protest is futile.

Prabal Gurung released this Pre-Fall video campaign last week and it is a kaleidoscopic rendering of his India-inspired stand-out looks. Set to the tune of DJ Pictureplane’s song “Body Mod,” the video features whirling, twirling metallic tweeds and cat-eyed shades that I die over.  Take a look at the clip here:

And Hudson Jeans is joining the party with a glowstick moment. Coming to a Jeans bar near you, the Lou Lou pant is the newest rendition in jeans that I have to say is a real head turner. At first glance, the design seems relatively innocuous, cut in red, green and navy with a simple stripe down the side. Yet, once the lights dim, that same tuxedo stripe glows brightly, transforming any outfit into performance art.

On February 10th (mark your calendars!) Hudson is planning a “Phosphorescent Invasion” in the Meat-Packing District for the launch of their Lou Lou pants. Commonly seen examples of phosphorescent materials are the glow-in-the-dark toys, paint, and clock dials that glow for some timeafter being charged with a bright light such as in any normal reading or room light, NOT on a pair of jeans!  During this Fashionese Invasion, there will be street installations, video projectors, and an after-party at Scoop NYC.  If you can’t make it in, don’t worry. Just watch this clip below and throw your own dance party. Glow sticks not included.

My new obsession over fantastic fashion follies has reached new heights.  I don’t want to miss a beat. Though I do think it’s time for me to get myself a pair of glasses.

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Looking towards the future

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Fashion is one endless cycle. Constantly regurgitating the trends and naming it THE DECADE OF ____ and then debunking it as a Multi-decade Mashup is kind of screwed up. Fashion is in a quandary. Never before have we been able to wear 60′s grunge, 70′s funk, and 80′s ostentation all at the same time. Like a blazer worn with a glitter skirt over pants. I was lucky enough to listen to a Trend Forecast Presentation presented by David Wolfe of the Donegar Group who delightedly spoke about color and trends by turning them on our heads and simplifying the makings of fashion into reality.

I too am guilty of succumbing to this potpourri trend as well. In this post I am wearing a grungy black turtleneck, a shredded black long See By Chloé sweater and skinny J.Brand Galaxy splattered purplish jeans and a vintage Moncler jacket. The Isabel Marant scarf just adds to the hippie vibe. I looked like I was wearing shmattes but it some crazy sense, it works.

And here I am guilty of 1980′s school-girl flavor where stripes marry plaids with just a touch of neon.

Here are perfect examples below on the Spring runways. Dolce and Gabbana showed a ultra- feminine fruity bra and pencil skirt with a floral celery-hued 3-D lace coat, and a structured bag. A modern-beauty with boundless sensuality based loosely on Sophia Loren in the 1950′s during an Italian summer.

Contrasted with Balenciaga’s boxy volumes of geometric pieces of stiff 1960′s fabric spun into luxurious scuba textiles for his Spring show. The graphic black and white dress paired with chartreuse cold combos makes this cartoon ready for space launch into another galaxy.

Ultimately, it is companies like Uniqlo using heat-retentive garments, and artists like Husein Chalayan and Gareth Pugh that are our fashion inspirations by using technological advancements in science that will be influence the tech-savvy styles of tomorrow.

This isn’t brain surgery folks, we are blinded by science and it is symptomatic of our FEAR of the future. We don’t have a present. The past + future = present. As Tom Ford says, Fashion needs to change when life changes.” We are ready to propel fashion forward and minimize referencing the past. Science and fashion is the engine that will move us forward. But we are not there yet. But will we be wearing this on the streets someday? Your bet is as good as mine.

Not so sure,  but we might be wearing tents so we won’t have to get dressed in the morning we will be ready for anything at the push of a button.

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The Headband

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The other night I tuned into the Golden Globe awards and as usual, all the celebrities in attendance were dressed to the nines. Head-to-toe in designer frocks, jewels and, of course, hair styles that were to die for, the stars showed up at this annual glam fest in the latest fashion armor. From strapless dresses worn by starlets Angelina Jolie, Natalie Portman and Jessica Alba to plunging necklines worn by Tilda Swinton, Rooney Mara and Evan Rachel Wood—no matter what the style, the hair completed the look for many of these leading ladies.

Hear ye, hear ye. The so-called must-have accessory of the moment trending on twitter, if you will is the #headband. Just in case you missed my live twitter feed on that hashtag, you can catch it here. The headband is really a chic way to put your hair back and still look youthful, feminine, and pretty. Look at Catherine Deneuve, a timeless fashion icon.

Catherine Deneuve

One of the glittery, vintagy, sleek headpieces shown on the red carpet was worn by über-stylish short-haired Michelle Williams. She donned this Fred Leighton number with a bejeweled brooch. A clean modern spin to this retro look. Do you think she looks like a baby girl? I love the Mia Farrow look.

Actress Busy Phillips wore this glittery headband, which showed off her angelic face.

And, my favorite by far, is Charlize Theron for donning this glitterized piece by Cartier and clogging up my twitter feed. Enzo Angileri, her master hair stylist, created this head-turning look which was the epitome of modern romantic glamour. Very causal, very soft. This look doesn’t work with stiff hair. In my eyes, she was the most beautiful of the night.

Ultimately it is the smile, the flawed skin, and all the busy-bee workers that fix, crimp, adjust, change, and make these celebs the way they “appear” on the red carpet. I wonder how many of them could roll out of bed and create this look themselves?

Instead of rehashing the hits and misses that were the dresses, this post focuses on the accessory of the night. If you find yourself wanting more, you can always plug in your vote of who wore what the best, by watching this clip from US weekly magazine which simplifies the do’s and don’ts, the winners and the losers.

So inspired by the nod from the headbands, I decided to flaunt my own version last night to a local trunk show, where I was dressing my client for her own important red-carpet bedazzled event. Here is a selection of my daughter Chloe’s headbands which I borrowed to add pizzazz to my outfit. :)

 

Chloe's rainbow collection of headbands

What do you think of this look? Is it too Claire-like or will you consider a headband? Tweet me, talk to me, and do share your thoughts!  Lastly, I am mesmerized by Brigitte Bardot’s look here. Just a simple black grosgrain ribbon adds just the right amount of oomph. I am on the hunt for the perfect headband.

Celebrity photos courtesy of ModernSalon.com, KeepitChic.com

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Accessorie Circuit Intermezzo Collections 2012

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This past week I was at the Accessorie Circuit at Piers 92 and 94 in NYC. Accessorie Circuit is a huge trade show with hundreds of exhibitors that draws buyers, editors, manufacturers, brands, and fashion bloggers (like me) from all over the country. Future trends, colors, mediums, and fresh designers are all showcased at the ENK Shows. I was able to peek at the jewelry vendors, which were showcasing new colors, and metal trends that are pertinent to the industry. I usually head into the shows with a plan of attack that ultimately fails. It fails because it is easy to spot new and cool collections. Plus, I get caught up in admiration of it all; ie. the clothes, the jewels, and the conversation. With names like Ainsley, Gypsy Junkies, and Pono, I was drawn to hunt for the flavor of the month.

I was able to preview collections from Vince, Milly, Joie, Graham and Spencer, Nanette Lapore, Parker, KAS New York, Rebecca Minkoff, and others before they hit the stores. Here is who and what caught my eye at the show.

Sachin and Babi. Hit me please. The fabrics marry texture and color like husband and wife. And, they truly are a fab hubby and wifey team. Check out the front sequin v-neck detailing and the open back with multi-colored sequins. Love it.

I paired this white and black graphic print top with lace hem with white leather shorts. J’adore!

Check out this bauble they are going to remake for Fall.

Glitter is a never-ending story that seems to be ubiquitous in every way, shape, and form.

I love these shorts from Leyendecker.

And this smoking jacket from Gypsy Junkies.

Neon continues to march on. Loving this hi low mullet neon skirt from Drew.

Brights from Ramy Brook.

Whaaaaa. The drop-crotch pant? Here’s a zig-zag print from Parker.

Snakeskin continues to sliver around. Here’s a take on that a la Tibi.

And finally, a one-of-a-kind pop statement necklace by Erickson Beamon that makes you go…

WOW.

On that note, go have yourself a glizzerized, neonized, accessorized fabulous weekend! xo

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On a shoestring

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Need a mid-week pick-me-up? Raise your hand. Well if you did, I can’t see it, but maybe soon I will be able to. Come Wednesday, I know I’m ready to do the happy dance. Especially when I see a pair of fabulous heels.

I don’t know if you had a chance to peek at any Spring shoes, but if you haven’t been browsing the internet lately, I’m here to announce B Brian Atwood’s new lower-priced shoe line. And it’s the shiz. AND very reasonably priced. Launched in 2011, the contemporary line is a mix of Upper East Side poshness, downtown hip, and Parisian sophistication. Inspired by the globe trotting fashionista, each design incorporates sexy and aggressive silhouettes. The Milanese-based designer, with a stellar rock star clientele, is habitually on my favorite list. Now, there is a reason for you and I go shopping and dress the part for less. In any case, the B Brian Atwood brand won the Footwear News “Launch of the Year” award in 2011. What an accomplishment.

Last season, his video campaign titled Sexy, Shocking and Seductive displays featured a model covered with vibrant  colored paint that drips down on her shoe ultimately leading to the final picture; the color blocked neon shoe for Resort wear 2012. It was in all the execution, it had me wanting more, and it was fabulous. And so is the shoe.

B Brian Atwood

So, in case you missed it, here is your chance to see my latest obsession, the B Brian Atwood spring lineup. No, I do not receive residuals from him, I just love this line! Available for pre-order, each pair of killer heels convey fashion confidence and style through details like chain fringe draping, metallic and exotic details. Check it out here.

So…take thirty seconds out of your day, and take a look at this video campaign. Tell me what you think of the snake-embossed  ’Cassiane’ sandal. The shoes are impeccably constructed, and unabashedly sexy. And if nothing else, its a way to get you off your desk chair and ready to dance! xo

 

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London calling

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I have an Anglophilic bug right now, actually more like Royal Fever. I just returned from the UK for the the long holiday between Christmas and New Year’s and am a little obsessed over everything British. That includes the coolest designers Alexander McQueen, Paul Smith, Joh Galliano, Vivienne Westwood, Stella McCartney, John Richmond, Matthew Williamson, to name a few. Although similar to New York, London is not as gritty, but rather more refined and proper. Similar to tweeting rather than sending a note on handwritten stationary. It is one of the world’s most creative cities and I can see how anybody would want to reside there including me and The Duchess Kate Middleton.

Bag: Cambridge Satchel

 

Kate Middleton in Alice Temperley

 

 

The London fashion hunter saw plenty of sales going on at HarrodsSelfridges, and the stylish boutiques, but even at 40% off the 3,000 pound prices, there were few bargains to be found. I did find some goodies at Bluebird and Whistles, and I got this great houndstooth jacket at TopShop. Oh yeah, and a great red jacket at Joseph.

One of my favorite spots was a place called Bluebird. It was a stylish emporium with everything from candles, shoes, and Chloe camera cases, to a manicure salon. One-stop fashion heaven for any Brit. see more

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A new start for 2012

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Happy New Year!

Did you make a resolution yet?  I did. I revisited last year’s resolutions, and while I cannot rewrite what was written in the books, I can rethink how to make a new chapter, and make this a great year. My New Year’s resolutions for the forthcoming year are as follows.

1. I want to be more spontaneous. You know…more passport stamps, more movies with friends, have more fearless moments. It goes like this: I can wear that, go there, write that, fly there, meet wherever.

2. I want to be more productive and set small goals for the week. How to do this? Being on a European clock doesn’t hurt. Early to bed, early to rise. Big resolutions never work out for me. I am better off sticking to the task at hand, and actually getting it accomplished (like this blog post). I would like to under-promise and over-deliver. This way I won’t disappoint myself or others. And have these as colorful inspirations right in my office.

3. I want to be the very best I can be. I want to dress more sophisticated and groovy, which means planning more outfits and streamlining those looks into uniforms. I find this trick so helpful especially with a freshly edited closet. All around London there were, oddly enough spring flowers in bloom, which got me in the proper mood for florals.  More on the London trip and bashed neeps in the next post. I especially love the bright florals from Erdem Pre-Fall collection.

I want to feel my best which for me translates into exercising, and eating healthily.

Feeling green with envy? Studies show its not that bad to be envious. As long as its the healthy kind. I am always inspired by a jade-colored fabulous manicure. Paint, paint, paint. Inhale those fumes.There’s a parallel universe here.

 

So while we look back at all that 2011 has brought and taken from us and we look forward to what 2012 has in store. If you want to make your mark, get yourself a style consultant. PS I’m available next week. And here’s a free tip; don’t be afraid of pink. They say it’s the new black.

Nina Ricci

A new year, a new you? On your mark, get ready, get set…GO!

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