Snips & snails and puppy dog tails that what’s boys are made of. But be nice, boys and listen up! Sugar & spice and everything nice is what a girl wants, what a girls needs…, sing it with me!
Valentine’s Day always get me in the mood for love and all things romantic and pretty. Yes, clichés and all, I’m a fool for love, and a sucker for a red dress with a swish, like this Missoni-knit number. Swoon-worthy heels from Charlotte Olympia amp up the glam factor any day of the week. Macaron soaps are a sweet treat. This La Perla bra and undies has just the right amount of sugar and spice. And anything from Tiffany & Co. will get any girl's pulse racing! All this is the kind of swag that makes hearts wag. So gentlemen start your engines V-day is right around the corner! And single gals, put on some Michael Bublé, pour some champagne, kick up her heels, pamper yourself and shop a little! I know that’s what’s I’ll be doing.
It is evident in one look that Kelly Wearstler approaches clothing design in the same way she approaches the chic interiors she designs. One can see the love for tapestry of her interior design aesthetic literally woven into the fabrics of the geometric patterns of her sweaters for instance.
For her Resort 2013 collection, prints and fabrics are paired as novel-y as she might toss the chicest of pillows onto one of her own couches. Mind you, the pairings are always unpredictable, distinctive and unmistakably luxurious.
This season on the runway, Wearstler layered wild pairings of jungle-safari prints in bright yellows like fashionable camouflage with pinks, tweeds and more ladylike touches. One could imagine the models blending right it to the scenery of her luxe spaces filled with chic pink-foiled wallpaper and animal-print throws and rugs.
What I love most is that her obvious well-trained eye for design also delights in a wild-child side. Rock n’ roll always plays as much a part in her collections as does the more exotic bohemian influences. Here, geometrics and harem pants play nice with edgy yellows, paint splatters, brights, camouflage, denim, slashed tees, leather boots and skinny jeans, all seeming to draw from 80’s punk and modern-day rock.
All the-while the sophisticated, feminine and ladylike touches of the well mannered, well traveled and glamorous are there. In Weartsler’s vision, a woman would be just as comfortable stomping it out in the concrete jungle or politely taking tea. Either way she’s more than put together. See more of Wearstler's chic interiors in her books Hue, Modern Glamour and the soon-to-be-released, Chromatic Rhaposody. You can shop her current collection at Saks Fifth Avenue.
I hope you think of The Artful Shopper as your very own personal shopper, who happens to be on her own fashion journey, always ready to share inspiration and stylish discoveries along the way. My blog aims to bring you “Carefully Curated Finds For Your Closet & Home” which means I shop it all so you don’t have to!
With each post, I gather all the latest fashion for you and wrap it up in a pretty bow, i.e. my posts with shop-able content all in one place: sale alerts, diy, fashion, home & beauty inspiration. And while on my journey to create my dream nest, complete with a carefully curated closet of my own including all the classic staples, plus of-the-moment accouterments, that means I not only scout and curate my most artful finds online, but also take to the streets and the malls to browse, hunt, dig and shop.
So, with that here’s some highlights of what the Artful Shopper discovered this weekend.
NEW ARRIVALS AT J.CREW
J.Crew has a new men’s store and redesign to the woman’s floor at The Mall at Short Hills that made for a fun new twist to my usual shopping trip. I discovered some new arrivals including the very nautical shorts and striped skirt and supercute Tippi heart sweater. I also swiped up a July catalog Superga where I discovered Superga's metallic lamé sneakers in the The sneakers seem to be sold-out already at J.Crew but you can find that at Bloomingdales here.
Also, at Bloomingdales.com, a fab little lookbook from Kate Spade showcasing new summer arrivals. Need I say more?
NEW ARRIVALS FROM KATE SPADE
Shop Kate Spade New Arrivals at Bloomingdale's
In super sale news, I found so many sale styles to love at BCBG. I went a little crazy in the dressing room trying on dresses, see snapshop at top, but scored a few at 40% off! You can shop the sale in stores and online here.
Coachella may be over but don't bury your boots at the back of your closet just yet! The boho vibe of casual kicks is here to stay thru summer's laid-back days. Ankle boots are an abbreviated way to don an edgier look in the summer especially when paired with skirts and shorts and are equally flattering with cropped pants. To get the most mileage out of your pair, think wedges and flat boots in neutral taupes and greys for comfort and versatility. Of course, peep-toes are best for hotter days and to flaunt that pedi! Here's a round-up of the best boots for stomping it out in the summertime.
The Little Black Dress is a staple every woman has on-hand for attending parties, going out on dates, or any event really. The LBD is the go-to item, like running shoes (only slightly more fashionable), getting all the wear and tear in our daily lives. The Little Black Chanel Jacket–that’s another story.
Since the 1920’s, Coco Chanel’s black-and-white designs and gold-tone logo are as identifiable as Coca-Cola, to any follower of fashion, in the U.S., Paris, Milan, Japan, worldwide. Yet selling for over $1000 today (a guess since a jacket is not sold at online retail), it is a piece not every woman can own, unless of course you are Sarah Jessica Parker or Carine Roitfeld. But while Chanel may be noticeably absent from our closet that doesn’t mean we haven’t felt its allure, or hold out hope that one-day too, it might be ours.
The Little Black Chanel Jacket is like forbidden fruit.
Unlike the LBD, that comes in varies incarnations (see my must-have LBD’s post here), the history of the Little Black Chanel Jacket’s design is largely unvaried. As Lagerfeld reminds us in a behind-the-scenes video on Chanel.com (you can watch below), that’s exactly what has elevated it to its singular iconic status. Mr. Lagerfeld says, “The Chanel Jacket is a man’s jacket which has become a typically feminine piece. It has crossed that boundary. It has become the symbol of a certain feminine elegance, nonchalant and timeless which means for all of time.” To his point he dresses many male celebrities in the jacket for the exhibition including designers Riccardo Tisci and Olivier Theyskens, shown below, and rapper Kanye West.
Ms. Roitfeld goes for slightly more relatable in her remarks behind-the-scenes: “It’s like a jean jacket but more elegant…A ballet dancer could wear this jacket.”
Actress Virginie Ledoyen who is styled to look like Marie Antoinette in her Chanel, points to Chanel’s timelessness, saying she is certain a contemporary of Marie Antoinette would wear this jacket.
An anticipated moment of this body of work will certainly be fashionista and Chanel disciple Sarah Jessica Parker. She calls her Chanel jacket a prized-possession. And she doesn’t disappoint--or does she? Watch the video below and tell me what you think. As you can see, Jessica Parker is fashioned in a midriff-bearing version of the jacket, pencil skirt and jeweled crown made piecemeal from the jacket’s sleeves. The whimsy of the styling is unmistakable. What's even more striking to me is how much reverence the viewer holds for Mr. Lagerfeld’s brand of magic. With Jessica Parker he styles the unimaginable: a woman wearing a jacket on her head. It’s verging on ridiculous and we go along with it–as art, as fashion, as religion even. Along with Parker, Lagerfeld pulls off a crazy fashion hat trick—pun intended. Most of us wouldn’t want to wear a jacket of shrunken tweed the size of a bralette. Yet, we do want to. Never mind, the thought of cutting up a Chanel jacket. Sacre bleu!
Sarah Jessica Parker
Roitfeld says that a ballet dancer could wear a Chanel jacket and it’s well-paid dancers, actors, models, rock stars, socialites, tastemakers who own a Chanel in the real world, that wear Chanel for us in these photos, reminding us The Little Black Chanel Jacket is certainly a symbol of status. Roitfeld’s point on the verstality of the jacket in one's wardrobe is taken but Lagerfeld’s homily, if you will, on symbols for “…tous les temps” is the word for Chanel devotees, elevating the jacket to something outside the realm of fashion. To see how sexy, elegant, Rock n’ Roll, androgynous and sacrosanct one piece of clothing on 109 personalitites can be is remarkable. If only this blogger owned one Little Black Chanel Jacket. The infinite style possibilities! It would be an eternal life of style so to speak.
The Little Black Chanel Jacket is like style salvation.
But for all my adoration, with the notorious snobbery of Lagerfeld's public remarks on skinny models and recent buzz that his cat gets mani/pedis and has it's own Twitter accountI couldn't help being slightly annoyed by SJP's photo and the inaccessibility of it all. Yet, as a fashion blogger, I'm doting all the same. Fashion is supposed to be fun for everyone! So I can laugh and get lost in the fantasy of this very special exhibition of art and still long for a Chanel jacket. But don't get me wrong I won't be following Mr. Lagerfeld's cat on Twitter. Well, then again lil' Choupette @ChoupettesDiary might have some nail tips & tricks for me!
And I hate to think that for most of us the Little Black Chanel Jacket is locked up tight in a look-but-can’t-touch exhibit or confined to the pages of a coffee table book. But that is what aspirational fashion is all about. And again that is mysterious pull of Chanel. As inaccessible as it might be, we can't help but revel in its charms. So for the rest of us, there’s the coffee table book, and, this tiny Little Black Chanel Jacket brooch pictured below that I found on farfetch.com (even tinier than Sarah Jessica Parker’s and slightly more affordable)! Oh, but wait, it’s sold out. To own a Little Black Chanel Jacket, that would have been farfetched. I guess we have to hold out hope that in some version of a fashion heaven, Coco is there waiting at the very pearly gates to let us all in.
Nicole Miller's site has up to 70% off styles, sporting some of the best statement-making neon, stripes and arrowhead prints of her collection. The colors pop. The stripes zig and zag. The silhouettes are sexy and body-con. Make a beeline now before they're gone!
Half moons, crackle, glitter, galaxy: while this may sound like I'm talking rocket science, I'm actually talking manis! That's right! Artful nails inspired by the night sky and other painterly pursuits are all the rage. Manis have seemed to take an artful turn not only in Paris, Milan and NYC's fashion weeks but all across the blogosphore and on the stylish streets. There are so many designs you can do yourself at home! I've rounded up my favorite nail art on Pinterest and tutorials for your here.
You know that feeling when you discover something really special and you want to keep it all for yourself but then it starts popping up everywhere. Well that’s what happened with me when I discovered Norma Kamali. In my latest shopper’s fantasy, I wistfully daydreamed I might splurge on one of Norma Kamali's swimsuits, don it poolside at some chic soiree, where everyone would just have to ask: "Where did you get that ultra-luxe swimsuit?" Well, it seems I may be a little fashionably late to “the party” as everyone from LadyM for Madonna to J.Lo, including M.I.A. and Nicki Minaj is donning Ms. Kamali's stunning designs. You can see the latest Who’s Who wearing Ms. Kamali's fashions on Norma’s blog here.
Read more and see how Niki, Madonna and J.Lo all wear their Kamali after the jump...
The Sunnies Outlook: The forecast looks good for summer’s It-accessory. Sunnies are really having their, well, day in the sun with so many fun styles to try on! Here, in a supersized edition of my shoppable trendspotting feature, I've collected and curated everything from retro, pin-up-worthy pairs and jetsetting stunners to sporty, neon and quirky, patterned picks, like bohemian ikat and sweet florals. So, which styles will be the focus of this season’s editorials and street style shots? I’ve zeroed in on six key trends to look out for: Retro-Rounded, Pastel, Neon, Cat's Eye, Printed and Embellished Luxe.
I spy my favorite -- the purr-fect pink cat's eyes from Kate Spade--do you see yours?
Featured top to bottom:
Row 1 Retro Rounded: House of Harlow Round Dainai; Victoria Beckham Round; Diane Von Furstenburg Elizabeth & James Wooster at Shopbop
In case you haven't heard, Tangerine is 2012’s Pantone’s color of the year and a bright orange-y coral hue got the royal treatment in March when Duchess Kate Middleton cut a stylish form in a casual pair of JBrand skinny jeans. In fact the world was all atwitter! Across social media, bloggers swooned, posted and pinned, and media outlets didn’t blush in the least to broadcast her pic as the news of the hour. Kate is truly the People’s Fashion Princess and her pick was definitely right on trend as usual, as reddish/orange shades rule all summer long as the season’s hottest hues for lipstick, home decor, denim, bags and more.
Here's another installment of my new feature Fashion/House where the latest trends in fashion inspire our wardrobe and surrroundings! Take a look around at everything from Anthropologie housewares in coloful coral patterns to adorn your walls, deck out your dinners or brighten your bedding, or, if you've got a serious yen for orange skinnies just like Kate Middleton's I've gathered a bunch for you to shop below.
So, what are you waiting for? It's time to get your coral on, royally...
I've always loved Kate Spade's fun, quirky and ladylike approach to fashion, but I'm crushing even harder now that she's expanded her line to include swimwear as a result of a collaboration with swim design maven Malia Mills, and with gorgeous patterns from Florence Broadhurst! Ms. Spade's website has been lauded as the best design in town, peppered with all sorts of fun links and now with two too-good-to-be-missed promotions: a free pool ring with swim purchase and a chance to win a Florence Broadhurst patterned Vespa scooter! All you have to do is let your imagination run wild and create a pinboard on Pinterest about where you'd scooter off to looking so chic in Ms. Broadhurst & Spade's colorful designs! Read more about the contest, Kate Spade & Malia Mills collaboration, and follow The Artful Shopper on Pinterest here!
When it comes to hemlines it’s all about the high-low drama! Designers couldn’t quite make up their minds this season opting for maxis cut short, minis and pencils that are well, midi i.e. a tad longer than usual, grazing just below the knee, or, hems that are altogether asymmetric. Luckily, the new statement-making lengths are all decidedly pretty and are the perfect complement for not-quite-warm spring days and breezy summer afternoons. There is a bevy of sunny hues, bold stripes, abundant florals and crisp pleats to choose from. Here are three of my favorites ways to try on the trend. Plus, shop more of the season's hottest hemlines below. Tip: Add a wedge heel, ankle-straps sandals or even knee-high boots to high/low, half-moon shapes for the most drama!
After a long day of "pinning" away on the virtual pinboard site Pinterest, I am seriously pining away for one of my favorite finds, this Monique Lhuillier tie-dye gown, with frothy lathers of silk, inked out in dreamy, deep blue waves.
But when it comes to fashion, The Artful Shopper is not one to rest on her fashionable laurels merely daydreaming. So, I've assembled some fetching finds for your closet and home in a new feature called Fashion/House, that will turn my style "pinspirations" and yours, into a very shop-able reality! So, if you like what you see, be sure to follow all of my boards on Pinterest!
Here are ten pieces to bring blissful beach vibes into your surroundings daily. You can get the look on your own by incorporating deep indigo and tie-dye, of course, but also with silver mercury, shells, raffia or anything that reminds you of the elemental magic of the sea.
Espadrilles, huaraches, raffia wedges & heels in cool under-the-cabana brights rope us in with their charms conjuring tiki huts and margarita mixers in the sun. I’ll be wearing mine with Essie’s Go Overboard polish & some Colbie Caillet playing on the radio.
Every girl loves an arm party but sometimes a strong singular cuff is all you need to make a statement that’s chic. Sleek gold or silver polishes things up or get a bit edgier with the latest hardware encrusted with semiprecious stones, crystal, druzy and pyrite. Kelly Wearstler’s Pyrite Cuff is my absolute fave but check out Max & Chloe’s pyrite offering for a slightly more affordable version plus see more of my top picks for the season's best statement-makers below. And be sure to tell me what you think as I'm thinking I'll make Artful Alternative a regular feature!
So, I don’t know about you, but I’m in the mood for love! Especially, after seeing Tracy Reese’s Spring 2012 Ready-to-Wear collection! The palette of salmon-y pinks is soft but so electric, the drape and sheerness of the fabrics so airy, it’s like that heady feeling of new love personified! I have the dress on the right and it's airy, romantic and wears like a dream which is always the case with Tracey Reese.
I’ve got a crush on the bow. On Alice & Olivia’s “Miranda” satin pumps a polished black beauty of a bow sits coyly at the back of these sexy satin heels as if to say “hey, I’ve got a sweet side too.” While this lovely little add-on seems to come and go, designers are bringing back the bow this season on dresses, bags, baubles, collars and every accoutrement in between. So, what is it about the bow that has us all tied up in its charms? Worn tightly prim or left lush and loose, tie one on and a bow lends a playful twist that ranges from quirky and cute, to delicate, polished, even showy. While the boys may borrow the bow tie, and make a dashing display themselves, like sugar & spice and everything nice, nothing’s so decidedly-girl as the bow. Kate Spade, Tory Burch and Betsey Johnson are just a few of the designers who make a show of it this season. Here’s a look at some of my favorites and a little bow-how on where this adornment best makes its mark.
Vests, boleros, shrugs & teddy coats! Faux fur is bearing down on stylish ladies everywhere, on shoulders, wrists & feet, as adornments on hats, boots, gloves and and every other accessory you can think of this season. Play the heiress with a shrug, get Nordic with a vest, go boho with an oversized teddy coat or play a modest hand with fuzzy gloves & not a touch more. I've compiled some pretty little fakers and some that are the real deal. There are certainly a ton of sumptuous options out there, but it's cool to be kind, so why not go faux?
When considering living room furniture or how to outfit a small space you hope to entertain in, seating is an important piece of the puzzle. Ottomans, poufs and storage cubes are three ways I've found maximize space while maintaining design quality.
Poufs are by far my favorite way to add some savvy style to a room, as they are not only on-trend, but are totally versatile. Look for leather, metallics and velvet for a Moroccan flavor on a patio --or in any chic space for that matter, as a plush footrest, and comfy addition to a living room or child's nursery. See Petit Tresor, here and here, Serena & Lily, and Posh Totsin particular for some charming options that work well for children's spaces.
Donna Emma and Larry Davis’s Manhattan apartment, designed by Adam Rolston
photo credit : Josh Mchugh for ELLE Decor
An ottoman is a great traditional coordinating piece with a sidechair, to rest your feet, but also serves well as extra casual seating, pulled up next to a coffee table for a party or intimate gathering with the fam, and is super-cozy and inviting beside a fireplace. Ottomans are great in grand spaces as well and can add drama too, as shown below in ELLE Decor's feature on Nanette Lepore's home, who is absolutely one of my favorite designers! Jonathan Adler designed most of the space, which is so feminine and effortlessly chic, like Ms. Lepore's clothes, and so Parisian! The poodle is optional of course. But I've got mine so I like to think I'm halfway there!
I discovered storage cubes and storage ottomans offer a practical and pretty alternative at a vanity table. I bought mine, a lovely buttoned style in ivory for my vanity table (currently sold out but see Urban Outfitters for some cool affordable choices), from Rachel Ashwell's Simply Shabby Chic line at Target. It stores my hairdryer, hair accessories and more, and is comfortable and compact.
Nanette Lepore's poodle Bunny in the Dressing Room of her Manhattan home
photo credit: William Waldron for ELLE Decor
Nanette Lepore's Manhattan home designed by Jonathan Adler
photo credit: William Waldron for ELLE Decor
Ottomans get really glamorous in larger sizes or in velvet or with fringe, in a bedroom, dressing room, living room or even a closet. Under a window, in a pair at the foot of a bed, or as a table stacked with some lovely reads, are all chic ways to arrange ottomans, poufs and cubes when not in use. I'm craving the floral-lined storage ottoman by Lily Pulitzer shown at the top of this post as its made to store many a glamorous pair of heels or I'd love a dramatic plush velvet one like Ms. Lepore's but first I need to supersize my closet! Until then, my vanity cube from Target works as an affordable buy & nice alternative to a traditional chair. Now, pull up a seat and have a look at some of my favorites ottomans, poufs & cubes out there now.
all photo credits this post (except noted): Andrew Schwartz/HBO
As you probably have heard, Kate Winslet scooped up her first Emmy for 'Mildred Pierce,' but have you seen HBO's four-part remake of the 1940 classic? The acting, drama & fashion of this film noir are all superb and should definitely not be missed! Since The Artful Shopper is devoted to bring you artful fashion in its many forms let's take a look at Mildred Pierce's period looks for the art of Dressing circa 1931.
From the start Kate's character, Mildred, impressively plucks herself up by her T-straps, reinventing herself from housewife to working waitress to business owner --all after a divorce that leaves her without substantial income. Accordingly, her costumes start as modest fashions and subtlely become more glamorous as the picture, and Mildred's wealth progress; the pinancle being a beautiful lame gown shown on Winslet above. All of her looks possess great vintage detail by costume designer Ann Roth, including fox fur, feathered cloches and nods to Schiaparreili.
I’d like to share with you some pretty, fanciful ways I display jewelry and accessories, using hooks, jewelry trees and shadowboxes to save space & decorate a bit at the same time. Not only is it unique and utterly girly, but it gives a bedroom a boudoir-y, glam dressing room kind of feel. Or, the vibe can be very boho depending on what type of accessories you use, like printed scarves, hats or beaded necklaces versus shiny pendants and pearls. Anthropologie and Urban Outfitters, where I bought mine, always have great hooks for this purpose. And I think the Pottery Barn shoe ladder is a pretty way to display my most prized heels! Don’t you? If you’re looking to save space in your jewelry box or have a few extra pieces that just won’t fit, a jewelry tree is the way to go. You can see some of my own jewelery displays below. Tell me what you think.
I like hooks displayed alongside my closet for ease and a vintage vibe. I created a corner, that I'd like to think, Penny Lane from Almost Famous would be comfortable in, using hats & scarves hung next to some oversized dark blue velvet drapes. I got this last idea to line shadowboxes with wallpaper hung over my bed from one of my favorite blogs, Ish and Chi, out of Australia. I took the idea one step further though using pretty scrapbooking paper then pinned some shiny danglies and floral studs for a fun twist. Shop more gorgeous ways to display your jewelry below.
The Alice & Olivia fall collection has arrived at Shopbop and they are featuring a fun little clip of models in all their fall finery. And finery it is, as a return to glamour is back! Designer Stacey Bendet, calls it "uptown-chic and ladylike but in a fun & playful way." And one can see the finer details of several fashionable eras at play in this collection: a throwback to dalliance of '60’s sophistication, '70’s chic and '20’s & '30’s glamour. Glitz, glam & polish are the key to these pieces that radiate fun while being fabulous! Take a look! And in keeping with The Artful Shopper's Artful Philosophy, remember, "Life is a party! Dress up! Fashion is serious business. Wear it well."
The Artful Shopper has made the Independent Fashion Bloggers weekly roundup of the best 20 link submissions this week. I attended IFB's Blogger Conference on Sept. 7 and had the chance to meet some blogging all-stars including Nubia's Nonsense of IFB, who provides me with weekly inspiration, the witty I'm Too Fancy, who made the roundup below, and Marley Simone who gets the Most Fashionably Dressed award for the day from me & at Fashion Week from New York Magazine here, plus blogging trailblazer Grechen of Grechen's Closet! The Artful Shopper was in some great company that day and in this week's roundup below. Read on to discover some great new blogs (I discovered Fashezine, LUV!), street style, and if you're a blogger yourself, how to participate!
The Artful Shopper
Inspired by IFB, FNO & NYFW!
Edited by: Taylor Davies
The week of New York Fashion Week is one of the busiest of the entire year for the industry. It’s also one of the most inspiring for the IFB community. This week’s Links a la Mode features helpful posts about blogging that remind us of topics from our IFB Conference, as well as fun round ups of Fashion’s Night Out, NYFW shows, and designer inspiration.
The IFB Weekly Roundup: LINKS À LA MODE: September 15th
If you would like to submit your link for next week’s Links à la Mode, please register first, then post your links HERE. The HTML code for this week will be found in the Links a la Mode group will be published later today. ~Jennine