Monday, November 29, 2010

Cyber Anyone?

On the Friday after Thanksgiving I like to avoid retailers in the same manner I avoid leggings. Apparently hell has frozen over, because last Friday, I found myself in a BJ's, some massive warehouse grocery store I had only heard suburban rumors about until last week. Save for the fact that I now have enough paper towels and lemon-lime Canada Dry to last me until 2012, the experience was shell shocking, and not one I look forward to repeating (and don't let me get started on what people we were wearing to this BJ's, since I'm trying to be nicer in the spirit of the holidays. I didn't know slippers doubled as outdoor footwear.)

Unlike the shameful running of the bulls that our country undergoes on Black Friday, Cyber Mondays are relaxing and anonymous, the way many prefer to shop these days. The depth of the discounts signal the health (or lack there of) for the different retailers. For example, you can get 40% off and free shipping at Ann Taylor and all related stores, but a measly 15% off at all Gap companies (it would appear the tables have turned this season). Savings will continue until midnight, so those who worked with heavy internet firewalls all day can come home and indulge from the privacy of the micro suede couch.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

All About the Whale

Do you relish the present season for the food? The fashions? The tweed? How about the corduroy? This past weekend while watching my Husband's Sunday morning news lineup, I was fascinated by a segment on a group (or cult?) call the Corduroy Appreciation Club.

I mean I love a pair of cords as much as the next. I stick with the 5-pocket boot cut classics, and the more modern 'toothpick' ankle skimming variety. I even have a wide-whaled hunter green blazer from fall 2008 that I never miss an opportunity to wear. But I never considered there might be an entire gaggle of fans who meet, sing, write, and hail the cloth.

The club meets on 11/11 each year in the City (since the repetition of '1's' most closely resembles the whale of the beloved corduroy). Their mascot, is of course, the whale (they chant and give praise to the whale). Poets gave readings, songwriters sang their hearts out, and thousands of fans (3,500 current members of the club) cheered them on. I appreciate any such enthusiasm and dedication to fashion, no matter how specific or obscure it may seem. I see a kindred spirit in the cord club.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Barely Legal

Though fashion and law intermix often these days, its not often in the way Above the Law reported last week. Brooklyn Law allowed Diesel to shoot an ad in their library, which, anyone who is familiar with the denim brand knows, is not exactly an easy fit. (My good friend is a Brooklyn Law grad, and since she, like me, prefers tailored separates to Euro-trash as an aesthetic, you can imagine her reaction.)

Calling Diesel 'fashion' is almost a stretch these days, as its more akin to tacky lingerie than style fit for the world outside the bedroom. I remember the days I would order a pair of the $180 jeans from my dorm room at college, and run excitedly back from the mail room when they'd arrive. A night at the Jug was infinitely more fun in a pair of hip-hugging, boot cut Diesels ('straight' and 'skinny' didn't come into vocabulary until the year I graduated from college). My friend from my days at Ann Taylor left the style stalwart to work at Diesel in 2006, and when they passed out colorful condoms to everyone on Friday afternoons, she knew she had made quite the culture shift.

Perhaps the ads will give law students a needed distraction in the days before final exams (a time I now relish and won't even read for pleasure during).

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Party Ready

My affinity for J.Crew is hardly unique. When the catalogue comes each month, I seldom toss it aside without crafting at least one new outfit for the week. You can imagine my delight when I read about the debut of the brand's long-conceived new line line, 769 (named after the flagship Madison Ave store, where, of course, you can exclusively find the new digs. Perhaps its a good thing for my bank account that we left our Murray Hill apartment which was a stone's throw away).

Elle's Whitney Vargas describes the collection as "dressy ready-to-wear," which basically calls to mind most items from the last few seasons of the classics. Creative Director and company President Jenna Lyons calls it "the J.Crew girl turned up a notch." Regardless of the prose used, the pieces make the anticipation of holiday invitations even more palpable. (I'm not sure I can pull off a pair of $650 sequined harem pants, but I do love to look at a picture of Katie Holmes in them.) The roughed-up pretty look of jacquard and denim, argyle socks and satin platforms, is irresistible and kinda makes you think. Rather then reaching for the cardigan and black pants, a sparkle belt or bejeweled tank can loosen things up a bit. (And if you have the legs, I'd love to see some knee socks!)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Boot

Much the same way that you can't help but stare at an accident in the opposite lane on the LIE, I was flipping channels last night and came across Steve Madden on HSN and couldn't turn it off (at least not right away). I of course recited the name of each boot that he shamelessly peddled, and found it difficult not to offer commentary along with each style that traipsed down the faux runway (none of which was G rated).

Regardless of my residual angst and heart palpitations at the sight of the SM logo, I happen to love flat boots more than any other article of footwear (an artifact of a childhood spent on horseback, decked in traditional English sportswear?) Since I can no longer wear daily denim, fitting the classic flat riding boot into my weekly wardrobe is more of a challenge than in previous years. My favorite pair is still a score from Cole Haan at Bloomingdale's that I got in exchange for several off-registry wedding gifts that my Husband would sooner part with than pay out of pocket for new boots for. The ever-loathed legging comes in quite handy when trying to avoid jeans and still enjoy the tall boot (by 'legging' I refer to J.Crew's Pixie Pant, the most acceptable form of a leg-hugging skin I can manage).

Since each season calls for at least one new pair of boots, I've been browsing the under $200 selections, in the spirit of saving money for our impending move the suburbs in a few weeks. The pair from Ralph Lauren pictured right is quite a deal for the style and quality. (Steve Madden happens to offer a bunch of boots under $200, but I just won't go there.) Happy shopping!