Monday, February 25, 2013

THE OSCARS (what they should have worn)

 L to R: Jessica Chastain in Marchesa, Amanda Seyfried in Elie Saab, Anne Hathaway in Christian Dior Spring Couture, Jennifer Lawrence in Ulyana Sergeenko and Naomi Watts in Zac Posen

The Oscars were a big fat HO HUM when it came to fashion this year. I mean, don't get me wrong, everyone looked...pretty. Pretty and safe. There were enough pale strapless fishtail confections to blanket the Dolby Theater and not one risk-taker (unless of course you count John Travolta's lace front wig). If I were styling the stars, they would have walked the carpet in looks decidedly less forgettable. The Spring and Fall runways provided plenty of non-pale, non-champagne colored options for red carpet wear, so I fail to see why every starlet on Oscar night opted for such snooze worthy "safe" and "pretty" looks. I can honestly say there wasn't one standout in the bunch. Everyone looked great, but nothing moved me. So I photoshopped people's heads (poorly) onto a few of my favorite looks from the Spring Couture and Fall Ready-to-Wear collections. Voila!

luxury items

Chanel shoes (secondhand), vintage Lucite and plastic bangles, vintage Monet necklace, Seiko watch, vintage ring
Miu Miu pumps

As I try my hardest to avoid cheaply made, chain store clothing bought en masse to soothe some kind of psychological deficiency, I'm turning more and more to consignment shops and sale sites to buy a few, quality pieces in their stead. I've been finding some great designer items bought on the cheap(er) thanks to local sample sales, consignment shops, and of course, the greatest store on earth, the World Wide Web. The Miu Miu pumps on the bottom are from Shop Hers, a new curated ecommerce site where you can buy and sell gently used designer pieces. All items are shipped to the Shop Hers HQ first to ensure authenticity, and then shipped to the buyer. There are some dangerously inexpensive Chanel bags on there. Inexpensive, meaning of course under $2K. Let's hope tax season brings with it a bounty of returns.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Céline (not dion)

 Céline blouse, T by Alexander Wang sweater 

When I bought this vintage Céline blouse from Joy Bianchi's House of Helper's Couture, Joy taught me how to tie the neck sash with the collar up to create a kind of turtleneck ascot look. She told me her mother always used to say that for dinner parties, it's important to get dressed 'from the waist up.' I suppose this advice holds true for work wear as well, since you spend most of your day trapped behind a desk or at a conference table. I like to think this little peek of snaffle-printed silk lends me an air of blue-blooded authority, but that's probably just wishful thinking.

Monday, February 18, 2013

duly noted: Edwardian dresses

Vintage Edwardian dresses via Neon Navajo ($175), VeraVague ($350), Decojumeau Antiques ($125), and Neon Navajo ($200)

Blame it on Downton--I'm suddenly noticing the postwar white cotton ankle skimming dress like, everywhere. BCBG's FW 2013 collection showed a fairly modern version paired with the Fall '13 topper of choice, a wool beanie. An unnamed street style subject paired hers with Charlotte Olympia kitty flats and a classic Chanel bag. And hours of etsy searching has unearthed a few lovely options-- the only catch being that most of them have 22 inch waists and hefty price tags (especially for the sturdier pieces). I may be able to save up, but it's unlikely that I'll ever squeeze into something that small without a can of Crisco, a pair of forceps, and an iron-clad pair of Spanx.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

IMPRESSED: eudon choi

Eudon Choi FW 2013 via Fashionising

When I'm scanning Fashionising or The Cut for the latest from Fashion Week, I'm usually drawn to looks that fit into a larger vision and collections that tell a consistent story. With nods to Russian Folklore, the 'it' color of the season (red) and some refreshingly elegant slouchy low-waisted leather pieces, FW 2013 collection of Korean-born Eudon Choi definitely stopped me dead in my internet tracks. I'd take one of each please and thanks.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

big puffy hearts

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wearing J. Crew dress, vintage Monet gold chain

I'm so glad those awkward grade school days are over when you had to give every kid in class a valentine's day card so no one felt left out (Lisa Simpson, I know you feel my pain).  Adulthood brings with it some pretty awkward Valentine's day traditions as well (edible arrangements, edible underwear, $600 Eres crotchless panties) but for the most part, as long as you've got dinner plans and some decent wine, it's smooth sailing.

Hope your day is filled with bon bons and whatever else floats your boat--and if you're feeling really randy, how about this dildo-shaped $10,000 chess set courtesy of Kiki de Montparnasse:


Monday, February 11, 2013

Joy Bianchi's Helper's Couture House

Took a long overdue trip (pilgrimage, really) to Joy Bianchi's world-famous 'Helper's House of Couture'. I had long heard the rumors of the appointment-only Helper's House with its veritable treasure trove of donated vintage designer items, and it did not disappoint. The foyer is all Chanel costume jewelry, the dining room is filled with $10-$99 pieces, and the living room is chock full of vintage shoes, bags, and signed jewelry. Upstairs is an entire room dedicated to black tie formal wear, a small room with seriously drool-worthy vintage furniture, and a bedroom filled to the rafters with dapper men's clothing. To say I was overwhelmed by the entire thing would be an understatement. I pretty much ran around like a madwoman with my pupils dilated and my palms sweaty. I was afraid I'd wake up and it would all be just a dream.
I tried on a deep purple Alexander McQueen dress that could have stopped traffic (and my bank account) but came home with this most magical of items--a vintage Céline blouse. Oh be still, my beating heart:

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I want Joy to adopt me and I want to look exactly like her when I grow up. The thick rimmed black glasses are her signature. I also had to snap a picture of the beautiful Camellia she had in her hair--and a picture of her as a young woman on the wall:

And here I am with Joy and my friend Laurel, who I am eternally indebted to for showing me this place. You rock, Laurel!

More items from the shop (ahem, Alaia) after the jump!

Monday, February 4, 2013

2 easy pieces

You know what your Monday needs? Pictures of me pretend-reading and staring into the upper right corner of the ceiling:
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Really though, I'm just showing off the lovely doily on my back courtesy of my sister (thanks, Rach!) from my favorite vintage store south of the Mason Dixon line, Lili Vintage in New Orleans. I was having trouble styling it until I realized it doesn't need any styling at all. Any item of clothing that would be quite at home in the Dowager Countess of Grantham's drawing room can stand on its own.

Also very happy I finally caved and got these Sam Edelman suede ankle boots. As predicted, they've become closet MVPs because they're insanely comfortable and go with goddamn everything.

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Friday, February 1, 2013


Received a holiday party invite in December for a Gothic Christmas Party where the dress code was emphatically described as: "Nosferatu goth, not Nine Inch Nails Goth.' (Confession time: I'm still not clear whether they meant Nosferatu the movie or Nosferatu the band). In 1999 you may have found me and my bestie Tara in a similar look (photographic proof below) but it's been awhile since head-to-toe black and burgundy lipliner were de rigueur elements of our wardrobe. Luckily it turns out being goth is a lot like riding a bike, but of course way less conformist.