July 27, 2011


Via Style.com
Via Style.com
Via Style.com
I’m not in the habit of posting runway images, but the Elie Saab Fall 2011 couture collection is simply divine.  It’s sure to be a source of inspiration for the upcoming Fall benefit season. Unlike Spring benefits; Fall benefits call for long gowns that command the red carpet. In a word this collection is ETHEREAL. Couture is a dying art, but these gowns are light, airy and modern. At the heart of this collection is the universal truth that sometimes a girl just wants to look pretty.

Each dress manages to be seductive without revealing too much. These dresses strike the perfect balance. They skim the body, but they don’t cling. What’s shown is just as important as what’s left to the imagination. I adore a designer who thinks about evening outside of the predictable strapless silhouette. There’s something refreshing about stepping out in something unexpected. Perhaps it’s a sign of true confidence.

Now we only have to wait for the Fall benefits to commence.

* You can view the complete collection HERE

July 24, 2011

Heat Wave

My Personal Photo

Heat wave doesn't come close to describing the intensity of this week's heat and humidity. The heat index in Central Park reached 113 degrees. It's hard to maintain a chic and professional appearance in such extreme heat. I rely on natural fabrics, light layers, easy pulled back hair and little makeup to keep cool. It also helps that I leave for work before temperatures soar and work in freezing cold air conditioning. 

I have always done better in heat than cold. I have had more than a few instances of hypothermia setting in, but no issues with heat. I didn't give the heat advisory a second thought when I headed out to an event I was hosting on the rooftop of Ink48. I quickly walked a few blocks up and over to the hotel. Upon arriving at the event I was preoccupied with greeting guests, making sure everyone had everything they could possibly need and educating people about the scholarship fund. After an hour and a half I knew it was time for water, but felt fine.

In a matter of minutes, I began to feel dizzy. I was in the middle of a wonderful conversation about education in the Mississippi Delta when I had to sit down. I started to feel nauseous and disorientated. The entire rooftop including the inside area looked pitch black. When I got up to grab a glass of water, I collapsed and fainted. Thanks to a fast acting doctor I was quickly diagnosed with HEAT EXHAUSTION and dangerously close to descending into HEATSTROKE. My core body temperature was 104 degrees. It was truly a scary experience.

I'm happy to say that I'm feeling better. I spent the weekend taking full advantage of my air conditioning, relaxing and sadly neglecting the blog a bit. Here's to happier summer thoughts:

Via Maya Villiger 

The fishtail braid is a relaxed and chic summer look. This lady looks fresh faced and crisp. Hot weather calls for letting your skin breathe. 

Via This is Glamorous
Cool, crisp, clothing from the always luxurious Celine.

My Personal Photo
As a strict vegetarian I welcome the abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables

My Personal Photo

At long last there's an Amorino in New York City. I can't have ice cream or Gelato, but I'm always up for grabbing sorbet with friends. So good.

July 20, 2011

The One That Almost Got Away

 My Personal Photos 

Miu Miu dress, Chanel necklace, Miu Miu shoes
At the end of this little outing we found ourselves at Bergdorfs. After leaving Lincoln Center we strolled around, but ultimately ended up here. My feet always scurry to the same familiar places. There's something about a well curated department store that gets me every time. A holiday weekend and an empty city provided the perfect browsing opportunity. 

As I browsed the racks, I instantly spotted this little dress. As much as I deliberate over purchases, I always know fairly quickly if I like an item. It's a matter of looking at the way a garment is constructed, the fit and feel of the fabric. This dress is exquisitely well tailored and nipped at the waist, which is a flattering silhouette for me. Cotton poplin is the perfect fabric to battle the intense New York heat and humidity. Not to mention the gorgeous navy color. I'm always on the lookout for dresses, because they can easily transition from a long workday (with a jacket of course), to a board meeting or after work event.  

Until recently, Miu Miu has always seemed to lurk in Prada's shadow, but over the past few seasons it has really come into its own. At long last, the brand has a unique identity. I tried on this dress and it fit perfectly, with the exception of a tiny alteration that needs to be made to the shoulders. The gentleman instantly exclaimed "you should buy that dress." The sales consultant conquered. The Summer sales were in full swing, but sale or no sale, this dress was perfection. 

I knew they were right. Yet, for a very ridiculous reason I left the dress (the very last one in the entire store) behind, knowing I would regret not purchasing it. Sure enough, I got home and knew I had to go back. It happens to the best of us. Further complicating the situation was the store's closure for the 4th of July holiday. So the next day, I made a point of heading to Bergdorfs during lunch and prowled around the third floor. Just when I was ready to throw in the towel, I spotted the dress. Sold. 

Do you have a favorite purchase from the Summer sales?

July 18, 2011

Stay the Course

My Personal Photo

When you find something that works you stick with it. You take it and make it your own. I have a penchant for Breton shirts. Ikat, floral and shibori shirts don't make my heart skip a beat. Polka dots are charming, but how many polka dot shirts does one need? When it comes to little stripy shirts I instantly come to a halt. Clearly, I wear my heart on my sleeve. 

The above is a sampling of my Breton shirts and sweaters. Each of these shirts is understated and demure. They can pull an outfit together without trying to hard. I wear stripy shirts year-round, but the summer provides more opportunities to don my favorite shirts. After all summer is all about being carefree! Long evening walks and chilly ocean breezes are the perfect occasions  to divert to my staple. Breton shirts speak to my desire to look effortless.  These shirts  are the epitome of Bon Chic Bon Genre.

It's undeniable that Breton shirts are one of my wardrobe basics, but basic doesn't have to mean boring. I love a Breton shirt with a subtle detail. The shirt at the far left has little gold buttons at the shoulders. A small detail, but one that makes a big statement. Parfait!

July 14, 2011

A Matter of Subjectivity

My Personal Photo
"What is beautiful for you may not be beautiful to someone else. Or what is beautiful here may not be beautiful there and what is sometimes beautiful today is not necessarily beautiful tomorrow. Perhaps this is the story of fashion and what makes fashion move forward, the fact that there is no decision whatsoever with what's wrong." Alber Elbaz, Creative Director of LANVIN 

Such a great quote from one of of my favorite designers and visionaries. A reminder that style is subjective. Style like fashion is constantly evolving. One of the things that I enjoy most about this blog is hearing your thoughts. We all have such different views on what we find beautiful. I hope that everyone continues to share. Some of what appeals to us is innate, but our lifestyle, backgrounds, experiences, likes and dislikes all serve as influencers. 

I came across Alber Elbaz's quote at the perfect time. Don't you love when that happens? I have a colleague who has taken to criticizing every sartorial choice I make. My pumps are "wrong for the most casual of casual Fridays" and my favorite tailored tweed jacket is "a bit too serious." I enjoy hearing  viewpoints other than my own, but at some point (when I'm being cornered for the umpteenth time, in the restroom no less) enough is enough. Clearly our tastes diverge and that is perfectly fine. I won't even begin to go into the comments on my body type and size. 

Being well groomed and polished is beautiful to me. Perhaps I take myself seriously, but that's my aesthetic. Having a refined sense of elegance is a large part of who I am. I carefully consider how I present myself and would rather err towards looking refined above all else. Someone else may have a completely different view on what looks beautiful and that's fine. After all, aren't our differences what makes life wonderful? 

July 11, 2011


Via Modern Hepburn

"You always look so cool." 
- The Great Gatsby 

Perhaps Daisy Buchanan said it best in The Great Gatsby. Cool is indescribable. It's the art of understanding the details. It's the little things you can't put your finger on. You know it when you see it.

This look is the very essence of cool. The loosely tousled hair, dewy sun-kissed skin and natural fabrics all look effortless. There is a quiet confidence. She owns this look. I don't own a single pair of  shorts. Every time I come close to purchasing a pair, I remind myself that there are few occasions where they are appropriate for my lifestyle.

Just when I had written off shorts as one of those items I happily admire from afar- I find an image that makes me re-access my reasoning. A crepe de Chine pair could be the perfect compromise. For now I'm keeping this photograph as inspiration. Shorts can be equal parts casual and poised. I can't help but think that this is an elegant way to combat the heat. 

July 9, 2011


My Personal Photo
My Personal Photo
My Personal Photo

My Personal Photo

Peter Soronen lace blouse, Azzedine Alaïa wrap skirt, Manolo Blahnik  pumps.
There are few designers that make you want to twirl. Azzedine Alaïa is one of them. It's undeniable that  Alaïa is one of the greatest couturiers today. The other day my friends and I came to the conclusion that his technical, draping and cutting skills are up there with the likes of Christian Dior. If you could have one designer design all your clothing (or at the very least your shoes), you would want it to be Alaïa. The silhouettes are always gorgeous.

Undeniably, Alaïa excels with the construction of his signature knit dresses. In my opinion there isn't a designer out there who works with knits in such a way. Some of his knit dresses barely resemble knits. I'm always awestruck by the way Alaïa  garments truly make women look beautiful. His clothing always strikes the right note- sensual and oftentimes clingy, but never vulgar. There is a misconception that Alaïa's garments are unforgiving. Truthfully, Alaïa's garments magically flatter all body types. This is the mark of a designer who loves women and making them look and feel even more beautiful than they already are.

Alaïa doesn't strive to fit into the corporate structure that fashion thrives on. Barneys was the first New York department store to stock the full line and Bergdorfs and Saks only started stocking select pieces a few years ago. It's no coincidence that Alaïa's boutique is located in a different area from the other names in international fashion. This is a designer who until yesterday had not presented a collection at a fashion show in years. Alaïa prefers to work at his own pace. There is an integrity to the way  he approaches his business. It's hard to define luxury today, but this sort of craftsmanship and attention to detail are determining factors to me.  

An entire Paris trip should not be spent shopping (there is so much to do and see), but a trip to the Alaïa boutique is essential. On my last trip to Paris I picked up a few pieces including this skirt. Alaïa's boutique, stock shop, design studio and atelier are all housed in close proximity to each other. Naturally, upon descending from a taxi (accidentally leaving the door ajar), I sprinted ahead of the gentleman who wasn't exactly sure which building I rushed into. Oh the excitement!

The skirt has one inside clasp, wraps around the waist and buckles at the back. I have yet to successfully wrap this skirt as precisely as the lovely sales assistant, but I still love it. There's a lightness that adds just the right amount of whimsy. Any motion or little breeze sets the skirt aflutter. This skirt is a great little edition to my wardrobe that is extremely versatile, but feels special.

PS- As old fashioned as I am, the blog finally has a Twitter! Cheers.

July 5, 2011

Take It Up A Notch

Via The Coveteur

"Elegance is innate. It has nothing to do with being well dressed. Elegance is refusal." Diana Vreeland 

Hope you all had a wonderful weekend. Happy 4th of July to all of you American readers and Happy Canada Day Canadian friends. If you had a long weekend I hope you enjoyed every luxurious minute of it. Summer is fleeting, so it's important to savor it. The highlight of my long weekend was the gentleman surprising me with matinée tickets to American Ballet Theatre's Swan Lake. 

The gentleman knows me very well. Surprise or no surprise, you're not going to get me to go anywhere without some sort of guideline on dressing. My instructive- "come as your elegant self" with a few examples tossed in for good measure. 

It's always so nice to see ABT perform. The ballet makes me nostalgic for pointe shoes, leotards, rehearsals, classical music and the all important révérence (bow or curtsy).  Having danced and been a gymnast for years it's the overall feeling of gracefulness and precision that I adore. 

There are few occasions that inspire people to take it up a notch and come completely turned out. Thankfully a trip to the ballet is one of those aforementioned occasions. Little white suits and cocktail dresses were the order of the day. It's nice to see so many people looking  polished. Vogue has the right idea with this week's "The Social Shopper: Simple Ways to Convey Easy Elegance." The roundup includes items that I consider summer staples- little dresses, pale manicures, and black patent pumps to name a few. Along with nude patent leather pumps that are on my summer shopping list. I think it's safe to say that elegance is here to stay.  

July 4, 2011

PS 2

Courtesy of Vogue (Photographer: Norman Jean Roy)

I received numerous emails regarding the little Proenza Schouler skirt I wore here. I enjoy wearing pieces that have a story. It makes a great piece all the more special. The other day I was flipping through an old issue of Vogue when I came across the editorial version of the skirt on Maria Sharapova. All the more funny since, I happened to be wearing my skirt that day. It's always nice to find yourself reacquainted with a familiar photograph.

It's not the red and navy version from the runway that went into production, but it gives you a sense of how many iterations of a piece there are. This version has the little square embellishments sewn all around the skirt and contrasting vertical ribbons running down the front. I never tire of looking at a piece that I own with fresh eyes. Most interesting are the changes that are made to pieces and items that never make it into production. It's infallible that each season I fall in love with an item that is never produced even though it appears in fashion magazines. Such is life, but it certainly makes the one of a kind pieces something to treasure.

What are your sartorial treasures?