Sunday, February 27, 2011


I just got back from the ski slopes in the Rockies -- spectacular views and fabulous skiing!

Style-wise,  Snow Boarding has had a huge effect on slope fashions.  Everything is now puffy, baggy and boot cut.

It gave me nostalgia for the Ski Bunnies of old, when ski wear was sleek and pants tucked into boots.  You might imagine a Bond Girl in a chase scene down the alpine slopes.

Bogner Ski Wear
Elaine slim ski pant

Thank goodness ski wear designers like Bogner still make slim, stretchy ski pants.

Katherine Thomas, London
tailor-made ski wear

Don't forget, Bond girls wouldn't leave their fur collars behind while racing down the mountain.

Friday, February 18, 2011


I'm off this President's Week for some skiing in Colorado.  While I am contemplating slope styles, I leave you with some images from New York's Fashion Week for Fall 2011.

Nothing too inspirational.

I did like the bohemian layers of Rachel Roy (next 2 photos) which are practical and fun in the fall:

Herve Leger always does strong and sexy (next photo):

But what will women (especially the over-45 set) actually wear every day?  Michael Kors always seems to know (next 2 photos):

Fashion Weeks are hopping over the Atlantic.  I will keep watch over a cup of hot cocoa.

(All photos from

Sunday, February 13, 2011


Valentine's Day is around the corner.  What mood are you after?  Are you trying to evoke sentiments of Juliet in your Romeo?

Warm, fuzzy feelings are kindled by soft, flowing fabrics.  Think georgettes, silks and chiffons.  It is amazing how a little ruffle here and there elicits the protective instinct.  Leave the slick, structured, power shapes for another time.  (Mood killers.)

Magenta chiffon dress,
tiny ruffle and lace detail on shoulders

Don't believe in the psychology of clothes?  A few chilly days ago, I put on a vintage coat straight out of a Hitchcock film.  The gallantry surprised me.  Doors were held open.  Even the barrista at Peet's Coffee etched a foam heart on my cappuccino.

Soft fur, wrists peeking out of 3/4 sleeves
lend femininity to this vintage coat

Of course, if "helpless" isn't your thing, finish it off with vampier details. A black, over-the-knee boot sends a strong message, as does a wide, leather belt for a more body-conscious silhouette.  Honesty is preferable to the old bait-and-switch.

If you are past the romancing stage, go full steam ahead on the sultry and glamorous looks.

Prabal Gurung

Monday, February 7, 2011


Spring is in the air.  That is, here on the West Coast.  Our thoughts begin to turn to vibrant colors, or the perennial springtime combination, black-and-white.

A surprise trend that came off the Spring runways is Color Blocking.  Nothing new, mind you.  Back in 1965, Yves Saint Laurent drew from the Art world and blocked out the famous Mondrian dress:

Mondrian Dress
by Yves Saint Laurent, 1965
from the Metropolitan Museum of Art

Stefano Pilati built on YSL's heritage and put forth some graphic black-and-white color blocking for Spring 2011.

Yves Saint Laurent Spring 2011

But other designers, including the very young and fairly new Prabal Gurung, showed geometric color blocks.

Prabal Gurung Spring 2011

down to the shoes

Nicholas Kirkwood for Prabal Gurung, Spring 2011

Even the tried-and-true Christian Louboutin went color-wild (beyond the fire-engine red soles) in his Spring 2011 collection.

Christian Louboutin Spring 2011

For those used to monochrome looks, particularly of the black hue, this may be a stretch.  But you may be ready to infuse your winter wardrobe with color.  This is simpler than it seems.  In fact, it's much easier than introducing prints.

Hint: Contrast solids across your outfit (see Prada below) and there you can begin.

Prada Spring 2011
See the dyed green fur

Thursday, February 3, 2011


If you have ever read the New York Times, chances are, you've glanced at Bill Cunningham's On the Street snapshots.  Cunningham --even now -- bikes around NYC to capture the sartorial trend of the moment.  This beloved photographer posited that the real fashion show was on the streets, not the runways.

Now, Zeitgeist Films presents "Bill Cunningham New York," a film by Richard Press.  As Vogue Editor, Anna Wintour, says in the preview, "We all get dressed for Bill."

Here's a preview of the film, opening on March 16th:

Cunningham photographs kooky old ladies and socialites alike.  The great equalizer is definitive Style.  Now in his 80s, it's high time someone documented his trailblazing street photography.  The Sartorialist and numerous other bloggers owe it all to him.

(* Press photo and Film Preview from

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