Thursday, September 24, 2015

Swapping style ...

Clothes swaps are the ultimate shopping experience. One coming up is the @SuitedForChange and @DCEcoWomen clothing swap Oct. 8. Here are my top 5 reasons you should host a clothing swap

1) Do you really need a reason to get together with other fashionable women and drink wine while playing dress up?
2) All left over clothes are donated to a great charity like Dress For Success or similar
3) You get to freshen up your wardrobe without spending a cent AND you are helping other women freshen up their wardrobes -- one woman's junk is another woman's treasure they say
4) It saves you a car trip to the Goodwill to donate clothes
5) It saves you the frustration of putting clothes on e-bay or Craigslist

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Taking our cue from Genovese sailors ...

I'm not a big fan of jeans (i.e. denim). Mainly because denim started off being part of a Genovese sailor's attire because it was so rugged -- read the history of denim here. Nowadays we don't need the ruggedness of denim for our everyday living like Genovese sailors did. However, I do like to see different fabrics in my shoes -- case in point, the denim, leather and cork of the shoes shown above. Obviously, the only thing to pair these heeled sandals with is a pair of jeans.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Fashion can sometimes hurt ...

A clothes steamer burn. Hey it looks like the Eiffel Tower, that is Parisian and that is fashionable right?
People think that fashion is all glitzy runways, glamorous models and rich celebrities. The real truth behind fashion is that it is hard, sometimes painful, work. Models are constantly scrutinized for their looks, weight, actions, etc. Try doing this critiquing in a normal office environment and you would win a roundtrip ticket to the HR office for sensitivity training! But it is completely acceptable in the fashion world. Behind the scenes, barely-paid show organizers and designers' unpaid interns as well as a slew of volunteers are busy prepping clothes, props, accessories, backdrops, etc. for the show. Most of the time, they get through a show with only a few needle pricks from last minute hemming or blisters from ill-fitting shoes. But sometimes, they get worse injuries like deep cuts from opening boxes with box cutters,  burning their arm with a steamer, or knocked unconscious after being hit in the head with a flying stiletto. Just remember, when you attend fashion shows, what you see walking down the runway is not the whole picture. There are a lot of behind the scenes activities that go into making those clothes look fabulous. Respect!

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Fashion show no-no's ...

It's no secret I was at NY Fashion Week this weekend and happy to be so. But as much as I pride myself on my etiquette, I was appalled at some of the fashion show no-no's I encountered at some of the shows. I think every person should attend at least one fashion show in their life. Of course I'm not saying you have to go to the IMG Mercedes-Benz premiere shows (notably because these are closed to the public as they are for industry people only) but there are lots of fashion organizers who sell reasonably priced tickets to attend emerging designers shows. Regardless of the fashion show, here are some simple (if not obvious) rules about attending:

  • Arrive early -- unless you are Anna Wintor of Vogue fame, you are not the most important person in the room and not entitled to be tardy
  • Dress appropriately -- I know its NYFW but don't try to outdo the designer's clothing or dress in something so outlandish that it takes two extra seats in the front row to accommodate your hat and shoulder epaulets. On the same note, if the event website says "cocktail" do not arrive in jeans and a T-shirt.
  • Eat something before you go -- Unless you bought the VIP tickets for $3000 a seat, you won't be getting to nosh on the champagne and canapes after the show. 
  • Go to the restroom before the show begins -- this is why you arrive early. Fashion show seating is usually in one long row (about 2-6 rows on each side of the runway) made up of anywhere between 15-40 seats long depending on how long the runway is. It is NOT cool to be seated in the middle of the row (and no, you can't ask for special seating) and ask everyone to excuse you while you interrupt the show to do your business. Unless you are truly sick, do not get up. 
  • Turn your cell phone off/vibrate -- Don't be one of those people who checks their phone or talks during the show. Some shows will let you take phone photos but some don't. Check with the registration person or the ushers when they show you to your seat.

  • Take up the seat next to you with your purse, hat, etc. -- you paid for ONE seat, only use that one seat.
  • Wear a huge hat/clothes -- Remember that people are likely sitting behind you and photographers are trying to get different angles of the runway. Its difficult to see the runway when you have to go around a person wearing a big hat or outlandish clothing.
  • Bring food/beverages -- this isn't an office meeting where you bring your coffee and donut into the briefing with you. Eat before you attend unless you purchase beverages at the show (some shows allow for cash bar drinks to be taken to your seat).  
  • Get up during the show -- as said before, unless you are sick, do not get up during the show. That is rude. But if you do need to get up (it better be a really good reason), leave and don't try to re-seat yourself when you feel better. Sometimes the ushers will let you stand in the back, sometimes they won't but that is a chance you'll have to take.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Another mutton-to-lamb dream ...

William Wilde
I know, I know, this is a mutton-to-lamb dress (i.e. a dress that should really be worn by a 20 year old and not a 40 year old). But just because I'm 40-ish doesn't mean I can't look and ooh and ahh over it! This fabulous creation is from William Wilde based out of London. It's made of rubber and is incredible! William Wilde will be showing his new rubber collection at #NYFW Saturday at the High Line Hotel so don't miss it. Or visit to see other fabulous designers who will participate in #NYFW Saturday.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Move over Gucci, Prada, Tom & Coco ...

Cornelia Turcu
Tessa Paaymans
I love fashion shows.  I love the clothes (even though most of them are so stupendously expensive I would NEVER own them even if I could afford them -- even I have a fashion comfort zone). I love the feeling of cool-kid-ness as I sit in the front row and ooh and ahh over someone's idea of fashion (we all have our own ideas, some are a bit more down to earth than others). And, I love seeing what the famous designers like Chanel, Tom Ford, Gucci, Prada, etc. pull out of their fashion bag of tricks each season. But I especially love emerging designers. You know, the ones who are just now getting into the biz or are fresh out of design school with big dreams and even bigger ideas?! I love them because they haven't been jaded by the business or crushed by the big fashion houses. I love them becuase they still see the value in quality clothes made with quality materials for a quality price and not relying on selling items because of name recognition. That is why I am so excited to be attending New York Fashion Week's Off Schedule Shows where I will see Cornelia Turcu (Moldavia) and Tessa Paaymans (New Zealand). Want to sit next to me? Get your tickets here:

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Veiled elegance ...

Some days when your make up is just not working out according to plans or your cheeks have lost that youthful glow, I find its great to wear a fabulous hat with a veil. Not only do you turn heads by simply wearing a hat in today's bare-headed society but you look mysterious and elegant because your face is shrouded with tiny net. And who doesn't want to look mysterious and elegant some times? This hat is from SJB Millinery, who will be showing its line at New York Fashion Week Sept. 12 at the High Line Hotel.