Wednesday, February 29, 2012

It's All About You

Happy Leap Day!  Also, apparently, Happy Propose To Your Dude Day.  Who knew?  I didn't til I checked out the details on this every four year event.

I thought I'd take advantage of the whole role reversal thing and let *you* do the talking for this post.  I know, I know, I've done this before...  trying to get you to open up and share what you like.  But when I check in to see who's checking out my posts (you're grouped by country, no individual stats, I promise you), I just get all excited.  Besides my usual guests from Germany, Russia and all over the USA, I've had drop-ins from South Korea, Taiwan, Israel, Latvia...  even Saudi Arabia and Australia!  (Note:  I think I know which stylish lady is popping in from Colombia ;)  It gives me 8th grade butterflies to know I've got an international crowd.

And I want to use today's "women proposing to men" angle to be the woman proposing to her readers to share what you like:  favorite store, designer, cocktail, accessory?  Do tell!  Instead of visually listening to me yap about what I love, it's your turn to lend a voice.  It makes things more interesting, and I welcome the chance to get to know *you* just a wee bit better.  Maybe we shop at the same stores?  Eat at the same restaurants?  Drool over the same designers?  I'm only sorry that I didn't pay closer attention to shops and brands whenever I was abroad:  Berlin, Seoul, Milan, Budapest, Nairobi, and Madrid.  Sigh.  If only I could go back in time and kick my younger self.

So, without further ado, I'm going to exercise the rare action of shutting up and letting you do the "liking."  Need a springboard?  Here are a few things I like:

DVF dresses, Botkier purses, Tory Burch ballet flats, Citizens of Humanity jeans, fresh lobster rolls, BBQ, house music, the McQueen show at the Met this past summer, traveling, Jameson on the rocks, old photos of the house I grew up in, summers in the Midwest, pocky, learning languages, Yoyamart in NYC, kalbi, Down East Maine, bourbon drinks, mezcal, pretty much anything fried (including sweetbreads), drawing, the bookstore in Marienplatz (in 1993), vintage Esprit & Swatch, all sorts of random things...

Your turn...

Image:  Boy, I had a hard time coming up with an image for this topic.  I ultimately settled on a picture my husband took from a concert we attended at Red Rocks a couple of years ago.  I'll just pretend it's all of you :)

Sunday, February 26, 2012

The End of an Era

I'm not a super mushy person, but tonight has left me feeling a little emo.  After nearly 6 whopping months, I decided it was time to leave the cozy virtual cocoon of my Missoni trading group on Facebook.  Like many of the members, I can't deny that life is tapping its toes impatiently, demanding that I quit yapping about now rarer-than-Sasquatch Missoni for Target sightings (in the stores) and other topics.  Patient but weary husbands, kids, and partners are hoping to reclaim most of our quality time.  And rightly so.

Yet, after nearly half a year of something that far exceeded simply trying to nab a coveted item, I felt a little lump in my throat when I clicked this simple Facebook button:

"Leave Group."

As I've already mentioned here, I've formed friendships, fallen in love with all the adorable photos of my pals' cats and dogs, and even helped raise money for causes ranging from autism to MS.  And in between, we've had many good laughs, as well as some supportive words for those who posted about some hard times.  

It's kind of like the end of a small but significant era.  I'm a little sadder than I expected to be upon leaving the group.  On the other hand, a number of us have crossed over from being friends strictly on that page to now being "regular" Facebook friends.

While I have many fashionable pals (including one of my besties, who recently relocated to Michigan - boohoo), I've truly enjoyed being a part of this group and sharing in our obsession of all things zig-zag.  And though this may mean I've closed a door to one phase in my life, it has certainly opened more doors of friendship that have grown beyond the material.

Images:  my own

Monday, February 20, 2012

Yeah, I Got Wu'd

So, I sort of promised myself that I'd sit out the Jason Wu for Target collaboration.  Even after browsing the look-book and finding a few eye-catchers (which I posted here), I figured I didn't need a repeat of the Missoni launch day:  frantic webpage refreshing, scribbling down store locations that purported to still have anything in stock (HA), and a whole lotta cussing.  Never again, I told myself.

As we all know, NEVER say never.

And so, while sparing you the details (and computer-swearing), I got rolled into the Wu.  I lay partial blame on the Missoni for Target community that I joined back in October (more on that group here).  But while I'd like to say they were the ones who got me to cave, I pretty much enabled myself.  Yes, I did find the cute Milu tote and scarf from my first Wu posting - actually through a friend from my MfT group.  I also found the trench in the store one day.  Cute, but as I suspected, it didn't look great on me.

Here are a few things that I passed over on opening day but ended up getting, thanks to my friends' enticing.

The gold top was cute online, looked weird (furry!) when I saw it on a hanger, then looked cute again when I pulled it into an ensemble with the pleated skirt (which was yet another "Oh, wait I like that!" piece).  Paired with an old (as in last century) Banana Republic belt and Delman pumps:

The red & blue stripe dress, with my owl belt (from this century, haha) from Anthropologie.  I think you definitely have to belt this one:

This dress drew raves from many of my MfT friends for its fit and overall look.  So I bit and got one.  Unfortunately, it was one size too big, and it's going back.  However, I'll admit it's cute.  I paired it with a red J. Crew belt here:

Now this dress looks great except for the flutter sleeves.  It transforms my shoulders from normal-looking into ones owned by a linebacker.  Oy.  But the pearl neck is unexpectedly sweet without being too grade-school-picture-day:

I felt the need to toughen it up a bit - so I threw on a black pleather jacket from Urban Outfitters.  Oh, and another J. Crew belt.  Much better!  

Wu offered a very, um, "pouffy" dress with a great lining that peeks out from under the skirt.  It comes with its own belt, so no need for the J. Crew this time around.  The exaggerated shape of the flare skirt scared me, but it actually looks quite nice on.  I'm channeling a 50's cocktail party, and I like it.  Now, where's the bourbon?

Well, shoot.  I liked the black party dress so much that I let a friend talk me into the same one in white.  This number drew the biggest thumbs up from my pals when I pitched the, "Which of these do I keep?" question:

Probably the most frustrating part of the whole Wu line was sizing.  Initially, I guess Target Style was reporting that the fit was comparable to juniors' sizes.  Then, as my friends started receiving their orders and trying things on, I heard everything from true-to-size, too small, and too large, depending on what the item was.  Obviously, since we're all built differently, that only added to the confusion.

I found I was pretty much true-to-size in the Wu.  Same for the Missoni for Target, more or less.  And, like the latter, I liked a lot more than I expected with the former.  All I had desired were a couple clothing pieces, a tote and a scarf.  Now, I've been sucked into the madness.  But it's nothing compared to the MfT.  Thank goodness Wu didn't expand his line to include things for the home.  

How about you?  Did you also get Wu'd?  If so, what did you get, and how did things fit?  Or did you stick to the cute bags and scarves?  Maybe you sat this one out, as I had planned to do.

Hey.  I just realized this is the first post where I actually tried to create outfits and make a meager effort at accessorizing.  Normally, I just post images from other sites.  Or toss in a few pics from the dressing room.  And truly, this was a fairly lazy attempt.  I nearly didn't post this entry, mostly due to the fact that the backdrop looks like my house barfed on itself.  I'm in the midst of pre-Spring cleaning, and to me cleaning = dumping everything into one pile.  Also, I'm still kind of camera shy, but I'll try and post a few of these from time to time...  I know there are many, many bloggers who do this exclusively, much better, and with a vastly bigger wardrobe and budget.  But heck, why not try it myself?  I actually enjoy the whole styling routine...  I just need to remind myself to step away from my box of neon bracelets and brooches from junior high.

Images:  my own

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Hearts Day

Just popping on here to wish you a Happy Valentine's Day.  Whether you had a date night with your honey, raised a glass with good friends to celebrate the platonic love y'all share, or split a bottle of cabernet with your cats (OK, maybe you drank their share ;), it's worth noting that today isn't just for lovey-dovey, "You're a schmoopy" sentiments.  I know I've said it before, but February 14th should be shared with family and friends, too.  And if you happen to have a "schmoopy," then hey, you can drink the Hallmark kool-aid without shame.  My husband and I did - and why not?  He surprised me at work today with this sweet gift:

"Oh look," you're saying (maybe all doe-eyed, or perhaps trying to fork stab your eye).  "He got her a cute little owl.  And some champagne."

Owl, yes.  Champagne, no.  It's better than bubbly - check it out:

That's right - Young's Double Chocolate Stout, and Boulevard Chocolate Ale!  I'm not much for flowers, but I do love chocolate - and even better in this form :)  Husband knows me well - he did himself proud here.

Our Valentine's Day also included the celebration of a friend's birthday, which included Mexican food, margaritas, and for the birthday girl:  a sombrero, a flaming shot, and a spin at the birthday wheel (which resulted in a gift card to the restaurant).

All in all, a very excellent day.  For me, my "schmoopy," and my friends.  And I hope for you, too.

And, should you not know what a "schmoopy" is, I'll let the legendary Seinfeld episode speak for itself:

Happy Hearts Day!!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Denim Developments...

I think it's time for another one of my "?" entries.  You know, the ones where I trot out a new trend and sort of give it the stink-eye treatment.  It's not that I totally hate it.  You just won't see me running out to scoop up a bunch of these guys.  But my limited taste doesn't mean you don't have to love these.  Maybe you're proudly sporting a pair as I type?

I'm talkin' 'bout all those printed jeans.  Stockists keep stocking them.  Maybe this is because it's like every denim designer has embraced the trend.  I've noticed what started as a steady trickle really ramped up to the fact that seemingly a third of Revolve's "New Arrivals" (posted on Tuesday night) consisted of said  denim dreams.  Seriously, that single post showcased stuff from nearly every one of their regular jeans brands.

Take a look, starting with AG Jeans:

The ikat pattern is everywhere...

Ahh, reminds me of the days of acid wash jeans...

Bleulab carries on the python trend:

One of my favorite denim brands, Citizens of Humanity, introduced these eye-poppers earlier:

Yep, you can show off your flower power in shorts, too!

Current Elliott's designs:

You can combine two trends here...

The most conservative of the bunch?

J. Brand's latest:

Joe's Jeans...

Relative newcomer Mother denim, which my friend and her sister adore for their softness, redefines "Yowza."  Patterns aren't enough for you?  You want a full-on landscape painted on your lower half?  Consider it done:

Lest we forget your backside:

They also offer those normal, boring patterns:

Rag & Bone gets all 80's on us...

Rich & Skinny...

And, closing out today's set, more shorts from Siwy:

How are your eyes adjusting?  Mine are still refocusing.  What's funny is that, as crazy as I was for Missoni for Target and all those zigzags, I just don't love any of the patterned jeans that I've seen.  OK, I kinda, sorta, maybe like the pink acid wash ones and the darker pink florals.

And while I think I'll pass on all the floral-y jeans by Citizens, they do give me a mild case of the warm fuzzies.  But perhaps that's just because they remind me of this:

Now *that's* what I'm talkin' 'bout!

Happy Thursday,

All images:

Sunday, February 5, 2012

The Sunday Evening Post

Hi guys,

I am still in the midst of an incredibly crazy, busy, stressful run.  And I'm not even talking about today's launch for the Jason Wu for Target line!  So I'm gonna be brief today.

First, I found some more old things in a box today.  Look familiar?


Did these images tug at some old heart strings?  Are you also holding onto some of your junior high trinkets?  Or did you toss them like flaming garbage?  If you chose to cling to them, like I have, why do you think you did this?  Because it reminds you of good memories of "way back when?"  The design?  Collector's habit?  Or pure laziness?  Am I the only one sitting on stuff like this???

Second, so what do you think of the Jason Wu launch?  My friends and I are still debating whether it's as nutty as the Missoni for Target collaboration.  While I have yet to hear about any websites tumbling down, some pals have reported a repeat of what the stores experienced on opening day:  lines out the door, pushing, shoving, snapping up everything in sight before others could, women eyeing other women's carts like circling vultures, and all that cray-cray jazz.

Did you partake or refrain?  Hit the stores or shopped from the safety of your home?  Maybe you just raised the big sign that says, "PASS" on it?  Or are you still thinking about your long strand of faux pearls from the Limited Express?

Whether your brain is idling in the era of telephones that were nailed into the wall (and had a long, curling cord) or trying not to fritz out with your iPhone 4S, I'm hoping my past neon brights or current speculations on the Jason Wu line will compel you to share your own two cents :)

Images:  my own