Thursday, September 30, 2010


There seems to be a cycling revival.  Part eco-conscience, part healthy lifestyle, people are (again?) riding their bikes to get from A to B, to do a little bit of groceries, to cart their kids around.  Even NYC now has 200 miles of bike routes!

A decade ago, the only people on bikes were the city messengers or people training for Iron Man.  Now, as in a century ago, people are back to being in their suits biking to work.

from Italia Vogue
Vintage enthusiasts ride around in pretty dresses and proudly show that little basket in front of their bike. No more pressure to dress like Lance Armstrong.

Zooey Deschanel in press photos for "(500) Days of Summer"
I posted a blog photo on Athletic Style last month with Ellen Page in urban cycling chic

Ellen Page from
with the reminder to PLEASE wear a helmet.  Fortunately for fashionistas who wouldn't be caught dead in a regular bike helmet, YAKKAY cleverly makes chic helmet covers!

Paris Herringbone from

Tokyo Denim from

I also love the elegant look of the classic equestrian helmet.

Velvet Hunt Cap from

Whichever you choose, it is nice to remember those first Biker Chicks from days gone by when all you needed was a flowered sun hat.

Poet Girls from

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


Fashion's focus has moved to Italy where designers are currently showing their Spring/Summer 2011 collections.  The palette still seems to be neutral - black or grey or shades of navy - though some whimsical labels, like Moschino Cheap & Chic, stuck to eye-popping colors.

I liked the electric energy of the Missoni collection.  It was Tribal on acid.  Of course, they also showed a few pieces that were classic Missoni-of-the-zigzag-knit.

Missoni Spring/Summer 2011
Missoni Spring/Summer 2011

Missoni Spring/Summer 2011
a more typical Missoni Look

On the other end, Dolce & Gabbana stuck to a nearly all-white palette.  Some pieces were reminiscent of leading ladies' wardrobes from a Fellini film.  Others were very girly in their use of lace.

Dolce & Gabbana Spring/Summer 2011
like a lady out of a Fellini film
Dolce & Gabbana Spring/Summer 2011
Either way, there are plenty of options on how to approach your Spring look next year depending your own personality and style!

Thursday, September 23, 2010


I haven't had time to blog because another Fashionista close to my heart - my beloved Grandmother - passed away on Monday.  She was born close to 100 years ago and was stylish from day 1.  She owned a design and tailoring business and loved nothing more than to outfit her grandkids in her own designs.  So this blog is for her!

One trend reprised in last week's fashion shows was the Slouchy Trouser.  See these from Catherine Malandrino's show:

Catherine Malandrino Spring/Summer 2011

Catherine Malandrino Spring/Summer 2011

We saw this beginning 2 springs ago.  This Slouchy Trouser look - harem pants, jodhpurs, MC Hammer style - has trickled down onto the fast fashion stores like Topshop or Forever 21.  Should you wear it or not?

street scenes from prettysmartblog

These pants are so comfortable but can also end up being a Fashion No-No.  As most trends go, this is most easily carried by the tall and thin.  But there are ways to wear them - carefully!

an Indiana Jones take on harem?

For most people, the baggy runway looks (above) will make them look short and squat and 15 lbs. heavier.

Opt instead for tailored versions of the harem pant.


Seen on the street are pants with sleeker calves or overall slimmer fit.  The important note is to emphasize slim ankles and a tall pair of heels to add the illusion of length.

A fitted shirt and a tailored jacket can balance out ballooning both on top and bottom.  The slim, beaded bolero in Catherine Malandrino's example makes the overall look sleeker despite the harem pants.

When done right, this Look can be comfortable as well as very put together!  But tread carefully lest you get into Fashion Victim territory.

Victoria Beckham in silk harems

Monday, September 13, 2010


OK, the Fashion Editors have voted and they were all raving about Jason Wu's latest collection.

JASON WU 2011 Spring - JASON WU Collections on

While pretty, I wasn't quite moved by its originality as I was when Phoebe Philo put out a minimalist, neutral collection for Celine last Fall that changed the direction of fashion.  Still, his signature "Look" with the cinched waist - popularized by First Lady Michelle Obama - was evident in several of the outfits.

Jason Wu Spring 2011
The Look Michelle Obama popularized

We can expect the First Lady to carry off many of the outfits quite nicely. Some of my favorites from the collection:

Your opinion on the collection?

Thursday, September 9, 2010


Summer has barely gone by and we already have designers showing their Spring 2011 wares.  Fashion Week was opened by Mayor Bloomberg - this year, in Damrosch Park at the Lincoln Center, moving the tents away from Bryant Park.

Lincoln Center complex, photo by Nils Olander

The usual line up of big names are coming up.  But the first fashion show of the season was by an unknown - at least to me - design duo (why are they always duos?) of Nicholas K.

Nicholas K,  Spring 2011
Not a bad opening. This drapey zipped tunic can go from summer dress to tunic with skinny black jeans to layered vest in the fall.

Monday, September 6, 2010


The New York Times Style section last week commented on San Francisco's unique neighborhood styles.  See  The Tribes of San Francisco.

One of the interesting things about that article was the emphasis on outdoor fitness in the West Coast as a Style symbol.  Truly, as an East Coast transplant to the West Coast, I see how naming your extreme outdoor sport is much cooler here than naming the latest gym class you go to!   Of course, the Pacific Coast is blessed with natural beauty for residents to hike, bike, and mountain climb.

from the Title 9 athletic wear catalog
For those of you who are serious outdoor athletes that want to look good doing your sport, I find that Athleta and Title 9 are very good sportswear catalogs.  Fabrics are performance material, yet the designs are chic enough to walk around town in.

Ice Climbing, from Athleta
For those of you who prefer to bike around the neighborhood in a dress, we can take a cue from Ellen Page in the photo below.  Just don't forget to wear a helmet.  A stylish equestrian helmet is better than nothing.

Ellen Page from 
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