Friday, August 27, 2010

Pure Lust--DandG...How I Adore Thee

I love hearing about my friend's aspirations to marry a duke (or insert any other title of royalty), live in a castle, never tally another billable hour, and traipse in your magnificent gardens with a Victorian novel.  Okay--let's get real.  She wants to live as a character IN a Victorian novel.  Me?  Sometimes I wander off in thought... and ponder how wonderful it would be to have a limitless credit card provided to me by some rich husband/father/old senile relative, and magically, the bill would be paid off in full after every month.  As I daydream in these late afternoon hours to the soft whirring of my space heater (yes, it's August--but damn, it's freezing) in my office, I think... would I even be an Ideeli member if I had such vast financial opportunities?  No, but Ideeli sale or not, I would covet this dress all the same.  Dolce and Gabbana's Trim Detail Dress is magnificent.  And yes--in this alternate universe--I would be about 20 lbs lighter (and maybe a few inches taller) so that I could properly pull off this silky number.

Buster v. Bargain--Dots are Hot

Dots ARE hot... I will be the first to admit that I have an unhealthy adoration for polka dots.  I like them on tops, skirts, dresses, bags, headbands... you name it.  If I want to enjoy multiple items in this fun little print, I have to get them cheap.  When I opened the Nordstrom site this morning, this ever-so-cute Michael Kors Ruffle Front Silk Blouse beckoned me to splurge, despite the $80 price tag.  Then I remembered--I had a eerily similar looking print on a blouse I threw in my shopping bag the other day.  I logged on to my Forever21 wishlist... and voila!!  While the tops are not identical, you may find that Forever21's Sheer Dotted Top will do the trick in attaining the look of the Michael Kors version.  It is also hard to ignore the $15.80 steal.  If you pair it with a pencil skirt, a pair of peeptoe pumps, and throw on a brightly-colored yellow cardigan for the office, less discerning pairs of eyes may hardly notice the difference.

Fall Friday Preview--Payless Bogo Sale

When I was a little kid, I remember hating it when my mom would drag me to Payless or Kohl's for new shoes.  At the time, it seemed like all the other little kids were donning the latest kicks by Nike or other nicer department stores.  I didn't appreciate the frugality back then, but now I do.  Payless has been doing a great job staying current with its line every season.  To be honest, I have not noticed too much of a quality drop in their products either.  Therefore, I take advantage of its BOGO sale ("Buy One Get One Half Off") quite often.  I have bought numerous pairs of different types of shoes: gladiator sandals, cage heels, dressy platform laser cut sandals, boots, and cute clutches for going out.  My shoes get abused in the various arenas I spend much of my time--during the commute or poking around in bars with dirty floors--and I get many compliments on my footwear despite the smaller price tag!  I'm not sure whether it's because I felt the first cool breeze this morning in several months, or the fact that I just love shoes... but I did pick up a few pairs of the items highlighted below.
Upon sending a link to the Lela Rose Chop-Out Suede Bootie to a dear friend of mine, she purchased them immediately in black.  I don't really blame her.  If they were available in my midget feet size, I would have snapped up a pair too!  The rich red shade of the Lela Rose Chop-Out Flat is perfect for the transition into fall weather.  You can wear them now with your summer whites and brights, but add them on top of tights for a pop of color as the temps cool down.  Again, Ms. Rose seems to discriminate against small feet, because all of her shoes start at size 6.  While I would have loved the hilarious challenge of me trying to patter around in the Fioni Kaput Platform Sandal (bottom left) in its black suede glory, my size was not in stock.  What the store did have in stock, I bought.  The fun purple suede Dexter Lilliana Ruffle Wedge also comes in black suede, and trust me--I was tempted to get both.  I love the regal look of the Fioni Infinity Rosette Pump.  I think they will look great with fall/winter apparel.  Last, but not least, I'm very excited for the arrival of my Fioni Ghillie Slingbacks.  Their design will lend well to many different outfits.  I was a little disturbed to find out that after my recent purchase of the above-mentioned items... I saw this as I was adding the hyperlinks to this post.

Lord have mercy.  They released another version of the Ghillie--the Fioni Jo Ghillie... in all its purple suede glory.  Is it too late to add something to my order?  Pretty please?

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Trend to Try--Local Designers

As I was perusing the Fashion & Beauty section in the Washington Post the other day, I happened upon an article about rising local talents in the fashion design arena.  Amidst my feelings of longing and envy for the lives of these young style stars, I had some time to admire the men's dress shirts at Hugh and Crye, who recently opened a small brick and mortar in Georgetown.  While most men (and women for that matter) cannot afford the exquisite bespoke tailoring from the likes of Savile Row, a well-fitting dress shirt can take a guy a long way.  Hugh and Crye takes it one step further than standard department store sizing with their wide array of body type choices, and the absence of true custom tailoring keeps the prices reasonable.
My favorites are the Teddy Shirt in its stark white classic glory, the Girlfriend Shirt for its beautiful blue and snappy description for its alternative use, the Cartesia because of its traditional check pattern, and the New Boheme for its purple and blue take on a traditional pinstripe.  Maybe some lucky guy I know will find one in his closet, because the urge to buy a guy's clothing item as I browse Hugh and Crye's stock is surprisingly overwhelming!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Res Ipsa Loquitur--What Kind of Preppy Are You?

So--someone recently called me a preppy dresser--and I didn't take much offense to it because I consider preppy dressing to be smart, snappy, classic, and stylish.  But recently, I started wondering what types of clothes are considered "preppy" by the general masses?  Is it Gap?  Banana Republic?  JCrew?  Ralph Lauren?  Tahari?  If that's the case, by all means, I'm wholly on board.  BUT--if "preppy" means the style of clothing traipsing about in places like Annapolis and Georgetown by the hoards, then dude... I. AM. OUT.  I will admit... designers like Vineyard Vines and Lilly Pulitzer can come out with a cute item once in awhile, but I do not want to be associated with that style of preppy.  Why?  If you see below, THAT is why. 
Sooooo~ yeeeeeeeah.  Good.  GOD.  I was innocently browsing Ruelala's Afternoon Fix Sale (okay--maybe not so innocently, because I MAY have come away with a cute LBD--but that's besides the point)... and I came across the Lilly P section.  The women's side was hardly as offensive, so I didn't bother with its own horrible images.  All I can think when I see all five of these clothing items staring back at me is... do people ever wear any of these things... TOGETHER??  I ask because that monstrosity of a tie was located next to the shirt on the site.  These "seafaring" fashion items seriously need to be thrown off a nearby cliff.  Ugh.  I can feel my corneas shriveling back into their sockets trying to hide.
**If you so desire, read about the origins of Vineyard Vines and Lilly Pulitzer on good ol' Wikipedia.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Buster v. Bargain--Too Cute to Boot

Fall is coming... and we are all praying it comes ASAP thanks to this absolutely miserable summer.  Rather than slogging through another sweaty commute, we can all dream of the autumn beauty ahead--changing leaves, cool temperatures, and that weird smoky smell that is omnipresent in the air (even though you don't see anyone burning any sort of kindle).

The bootie is still hot--thank goodness... because I still have several pairs from last year that I never had the chance to break out.  The B v. B this week isn't very extreme (i.e. the "expensive" pair is still under $100), but hey.  This comparison was just too hard to pass up, especially given the fact that Alloy's version is half the price!  Endless' XOXO Quebec Bootie ($79.99) comes in two luxe suede shades--the black being quintessentially biker chick, and the navy that gives off the vibe of faded denim.  The studded detail and the abstract cone heel add sophistication to something that might tip too far into mullet world.  :)  Alloy's Trinity Bootie ($42.90) feminizes the bootie a bit by adding a more slender cone heel.  I'm really diggin' grey in all varying shades for the upcoming fall season, so of course, I adore the soft light grey suede in Alloy's version.  It's too bad that these adorable little things start at size 5 1/2, otherwise I'd snap up a pair right now!

Monday, August 23, 2010

WTF--You've Got a Mouse Running Around Your House

Okay--so one of my favorite DC fashion blogs was venting about weird animal-oriented clothing awhile back... and, indeed, all the things she posted on her site were hideous (even though they were from Anthropologie).  The above image was an item I encountered while scouring the Marc by Marc Jacobs event at Gilt Groupe... and it really made me say aloud in my office... W. T. F.  and then... proceed to send it to all my friends to join in my private mockery session.  The thing that bugged me the most??  This fugly p.o.s. was sold out in all sizes.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Luxe and Less--Second Glance

I saw this dress and I immediately fell head over heels.  I love that you can utilize it in a professional outfit for work... with a structured jacket or cardigan and those peeptoes and simple pearl studs, you're all set!  Want to head out to happy hour afterwards?  Take off the cover-up and throw on a glam pair of earrings.  Another great thing about this ensemble?  You pair some luxe items with a cheaper dress, but no one can tell.  Cheers to that!
*Asos - Printed Frill Sleeve Dress
*Endless - Butter Cleo Tan Patent Peeptoe Pumps
*Nordstrom - Nadri Chandelier Earrings in Gold

Sale Mail--Time Your Online Buys

I had no idea that there were certain days that were more advantageous to buy certain types of apparel or shoes.  Maybe it's cuz--well--I just shop all the time and don't pay attention.  :P
  • Mondays: Best for buying men’s and women’s dress pants. The average sale is about 48 percent off.
  • Mondays: Also great for purchasing sunglasses. The average discount is 55 percent.
  • Tuesdays: Best for buying men’s apparel. The average discount is 42 percent.
  • Wednesdays: Find lowest prices on shoes. The average discount is 38 percent.
  • Wednesdays: Also find best deals on kids’ clothing. The average discount is around 40 percent.
  • Thursdays: Best for buying women’s handbags. The average discount is 36 percent.
  • Fridays: Biggest sales on accessories like jewelry, belts and scarves. The average discount is 42 percent.
  • Saturdays: Best sales on intimates (37 percent off) and jackets/outerwear (51 percent off).
  • Sundays: Buy your swimsuits for an average 52 percent off!
For the full article, click here.  Happy Shopping!!  :)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Men--Thou Shalt Not--Dress Poorly

Like any individual who works in D.C. and commutes via metro, I see a healthy share of fashion blunders by men and women alike.  While FleurStyle has spent all of its time harping on female eyesores, I wanted to take a moment to give a shout-out to all the men out there whose style choices drive me batty.  Don't get me wrong--I don't generally expect all men to dress like they stepped out of GQ--but c'mon man.  Some of the sh** I have seen... just. don't. fly.

1.   Buy Sh** that Fits
      Okay, so WHY is it so hard for men to buy clothes that fit them properly?  Is it because they lost weight and just haven't gotten around to buying new clothes?  Is it because they think they look good with baggy apparel?  Is it because they just don't care?  WHAT. IS. IT??  I see this on a daily basis on the metro, and while I'm out and about ANYWHERE in the D.C. area.  It drives me insane.  Shirts (dress and casual) that have shoulder seams that nearly touch elbows, gaping spaces between necks and collars, pants that are creating accordion puddles above shoes, and... just... general shapelessness.  Guys aren't the only people who like to see the female form highlighted by well-tailored clothing.  Girls also enjoy a man who wears sh** that fits.  I don't care if your clothes are from Target or Neimans.
2.   White Socks with Dress Shoes
       Don't do it.  'Nuf said.

3.   Ties that are... Gross
      When you don't take the effort to carefully select ties, it shows.  I hate to break it to you guys, but when you buy ties that are from the bargain bin... well... they look like they are from the bargain bin.  I am not saying that all guys need to rush out to Zegna and spend a cool K on ties, but GEEZ.  My corneas cannot take anymore of ties that look like the ones above.  They are scarily omnipresent in the D.C. commuter crowd.  If you're not sure whether your ties are fugly, ask a girl.  She will tell you.  Better yet, call me.  I'll be happy to accompany you on a shopping jaunt.  But no--we will not be going to Kohl's, which is where the majority of the offending ties below originated.

4.   Pleated Pants
      See those hammer pants?  Remember the 80s?  Do you want khaki pants that automatically cause bystanders to conjure up images of you as a one-hit wonder sliding across the dance floor in an unattractive manner?  No?  Then leave the pleats out of the pants equation.

5.   Mandals
      Our dear President caused some fashion strife when he was spotted outside the White House wandering around in some holy hellacious black synthetic mandals.  To see horror, click here.  Yeeeeeah~ as if the mandals weren't bad enough... this outfit made it in two counts of this list.  ***Sigh***

6.   Jorts
      Why would any guy think it's okay to wear these?  I just... I just... don't get it.

7.   Outdated Jeans
      See #5.

8.   Manpris
      I think the only time I have deemed manpris appropriate is when I went rock and wall climbing with some people in Atlanta.  Did this trend start when Rafa started wearing them for his Nike line?  Or was Rafa jumping on the trend's bandwagon.  Thank GOD he stopped.

9.   Socks with Sandals
      Ew.  Just... ew.

10. Unkempt Tees (or anything else)
      We started with a general rule, so we'll end with one.  Didn't your mom teach you not to leave the house in soiled clothes?  If not, I'm telling you now.  Stains, holes, and nasty smells emanating from your apparel is not right.  Do your laundry, buy new clothes, do whatever you need to do.  This includes guys that sweat like a gorilla on the metro, but somehow find the white undershirt too much of a chore.  Right.  Good luck with that.