Monday, August 31, 2009

Missing My Out-of-Towner

A little bit ago, one of my good friends moved and it just hasn't been the same without her around. It's amazing how you can meet someone and realize that you were buying the same clothes, living with the same neuroses and loving the same things without even knowing each other. Then, you meet and it's a friend that fits like a glove because you were practically living beside each other without ever actually meeting.

Well, I miss her. Not only do we not work together anymore, so we can't compliment each other everyday on the clothes that we would have bought if the other hadn't, but we can't even find time to chat due to massively busy lives and the demands of our respective careers.

So, I'm reaching out to her in one of the best ways I can think of. And more importantly, wishing that it's all going well for her. Despite everything.

Open a bottle and share a phone line soon?
(photo courtesy of Heather Clawson)

Virtual Shopping Binge: Fall Edition

Well. Not much has changed from the Spring, when I lamented about everything I wanted but couldn't afford. New season, new wonderful items, no money. BUT, what has surfaced is an immense pressure to look cool on my first day of school, and to do it, I might just have to splurge and buy a couple (well-priced) items. Why is it that things always look so much cuter when you can't shop? Water, water everywhere and not a drop to drink...

The 'Minnie' from J.Crew. Pretty sure everyone will be wearing them, but why wouldn't they? It's a damn good pant that looks hot with flats. And baby needs flats, I function in flats.

This wool skirt, again from J.Crew. I want to wear it with riding boots and tights. I want to rock it like it doesn't piss with rain and get cold in Seattle. But point of clarification: in black, and never the hell in rust colored tights. Jesus.

So it might be a 'Jenna's Pick,' but when a coat it good, it's good. The 'double-cloth camino coat' (again from J.Crew) is solid. It's got a floating back belt, half-dome buttons and the best collar. Plus, putting on a coat from J.Crew is an experiece that no other coat under $500 dollars can give you. For the money, their coats have amazing liners and great finishings. Perfect.

I'll stop with the J.Crew soon, but I die for this vest. Alone or with a white extra-long sleeve tee under it. And for going out, it's just low enough to be sexy in an understated "I'm really not trying to be hot, shit just happens this way for me" way.

I'll admit, I went ahead and bought these boyfriend jeans from Gap. I broke my rule of no spending and did it for two reasons. One: have you seen how much this look is selling for? I mean well over $100 and that was the sale price of the lowest-priced jean at the Nordtrom Anniversary Sale. And two: When I found these at Gap for an additional $20 dollars off, they were mine for $39. I mean c'mon. They have, in fact, been an amazing purchase since I have barely taken them off due to sheer comfort, and the addition of a new pair of jeans into the fat rotation was a welcome change.

I don't even have the words to tell you how much I love this sweater. THAT is how hot it is. Cashmere from Theory. How can I have this sweater? HOW!?

So awesome, and even more awesome in person, are these zip suede platforms from Loeffler Randall. They're definitely on the virtual list since they are boo-koo bucks and as previously mentioned, I do not work heels. Unless of course they somehow ended up in my closet (then I would feel compelled to wear them).

And so the list ends. Not due to a lack of wanting, but more due to the fact that I'm not a total masochist. I can't put myself through this exercise anymore for the time being. I guess I'll go try to squeeze in to last season's matchstick jeans and make it work...

I do. THIS way.

christy + christian from joel serrato on Vimeo.

It seems that I'm at the age where everyone is talking about weddings, and if they aren't talking about them, they're telling me they aren't free because they have one to attend. Well, let me tell you, nothing has really left an impression until this video of a Napa Valley wedding that was posted on 100 Layer Cake today.

Beautiful, from the dress and Louboutin's to the amazingly all white reception. Even the chairs are lovely, which let me tell you, is hard to do. Why is it that people always screw it up on the chairs? They pay out the ass for a dress and flowers and then make guests sit on the same chairs they had for confirmation class in their church basement? Stupid. Why not just use silk flowers and wear a denim skirt if you can't close the deal on the chairs?

The location was the Carneros Inn.

Yes. 'Yes' to Napa, 'yes' to Louboutin, 'yes' to peonies, 'yes' to white and apple green. 'No' to a wedding anytime soon.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Actually reading it for the article... I swear!

And it's mostly because I've already seen the nudie pictures of Kelly Wearstler. Who hasn't?! In fact, I'm hoping that it's the second thing they put on the overhead after "Welcome to Intro to Interior Design" on the basis that it's paramount to the education. (Do they even still have overheads?)

BUT what I never actually had read was the accompanying article. I can't imagine why I never read it before? But now that I have, I feel so much closer to Miss September 1994... totally awesome.

Kelly Gallagher

Miss September 1994

BIRTHPLACE: Myrtle Beach, South Carolina USA

BUST: 34" C

WAIST: 24"

HIPS: 35"

HEIGHT: 5' 6"

WEIGHT: 105 lbs


To own my own marvelous design and furnishings business.


Fabulous, intense minds, honesty, huge smiles and a man with a colossal heart.


Lack of communication, cruelty to animals, slackers, and bad design.


Breakfast in the boudoir, a bit of physical activity, trip to the museum for some mental and visual stimulation, a nibble for two to satisfy the palate and a trip to the beach to see the sun set and the moon rise.


Swap meets, blended coffees, Nicholson Baker novels & good loving.

(photo courtesy of Playboy)

Friday, August 21, 2009

Poor Design Girls

Looks like even the greats are having to get down with the masses, and by masses, I mean people who can still afford designers of a royal scale but were maybe turned away when the going was better.

This article in the New York Times features Phoebe Howard and Celerie Kemble amongst others talking about how they are having to change their business plans and (ahem) lower their caliber of budgets and clientele in order to keep the business going.

All in all, it features a refreshing take on the industry and an encouraging perspective, since we've all known that in order for designers to stay relevant, the model needed to change.

Monday, August 17, 2009

How to feel like a kid again...

In one of those wonderful acts of coming-togetherness, I found myself walking around Greenlake with my mom, sister, 4-year-old son of my other sister, and an 18-week old puppy. Aside from being the most haphazard walkers due to distractions caused by the puppy, distractions caused by the kid and occasional stops induced by Seattle puppy lovers, it was awesome. It reminds me of how lucky I am to have family nearby and how lucky I am to be around the kids in our family... and then thankfully bid adieu when the going gets tough and the screaming starts!

But more importantly, today I felt like a kid when my 4-year old nephew grabbed my hand and started skipping and for some reason, propably in an attempt to make him think I was cool, I started doing it too. And so, we skipped. Him in his little boy body, and me in my big girl body, skipping together & holding hands for good portions of our three miles together.

So if you want to feel young at heart and hopefully win adoration from a little one, skip. And if you really want to draw some attention, sing 'Skip to my loo' for two reasons alone: 1) Why not? And 2) to see if you remember the words.

You will.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Now Reading...

I saw the movie (of course) and now I'm inspired to read the book she wrote with her grandnephew shortly before her death in 2004. Having never been privileged to see the "French Chef" side of Julia, I really only knew her from her stint on Good Morning America, where she lit up our TV beside Charlie Gibson.

What an amazing woman. I'm inspired by the fact that she truly turned her passion in to a profession and did it at a 'late' age. AND, her relationship with Paul - wow.

Can't wait to curl up with my book in this overcast Seattle weather.

Monday, August 10, 2009

The Best (As I Know Them)

Since I haven't been buying many things lately, I've really started to appreciate the good purchases that I made back when I was rolling in dough and was not a student, living on leftovers and "borrowed" shelter magazines.

So here is the beginning of some of the best things I have ever had the pleasure of owning.

The Longchamp "Le Pliage Large" tote bag. I lived out of it for three months day in and day out and I'm still not sick of it. There's a reason that it's on the arm of every chic Parisian! It is a timeless bag. I've used it as a purse and and as an overnight bag and the quality can't be beat. I'm also waiting for the opportunity when folding it up and snapping it in a cute little bundle comes in handy, but mysteriously, it always seems to be full...

The Clarisonic. Looks like a vibrator, but cleans like a champ. I had wanted this little buddy for a good six months before I got it and it's lived up to the reputation. Clean face and according to my friend's mom, less wrinkles. It's like using a sonicare on your face and it feels FANTASTIC.

LuluLemon "Run: Tempo Crop" pants. With no picture available online, it's hard to convey just how amazing these are. I've never (I mean NEVER) felt comfortable wearing tight, clingy pants to the gym, but what I will say about these is that they actually suck you in. The tag boasts that the fabric is made to support muscles and joints while running, but what it actually does is lift the ass and hold all the squishy bits in. They're amazing. Seriously. I wouldn't go out in public if they weren't.

After I received the worst haircut known to man in April, the godsend who fixed it sprayed only this one product on my hair and it was amazing. All of a sudden, my hair stays straight if I flat iron it, doesn't frizz up if I air dry and it smells awesome. It might only be available locally, but it's from Seven, a salon in Seattle that I'm sure ships.

The hardest working little ballet flat. I took a similar pair to Europe and walked for days straight in Paris in them. The black is on my sale list at J.Crew, because I never pay full price there -- everything goes on sale eventually. Another reason I look like a walking catalog.

My Timbuk2 messenger bag. It's been with me for years of college, years of work, and now grad school and it's still going strong. Holds a laptop and my odds and ends and goes with anything, as long as you don't mind looking a little "dot com." Sure you wouldn't catch a Hepburn with it, but if they needed to carry a laptop, a lunch, school books and a change of clothes, they might consider it.

Bulgari 8008B's. The most glamorous pair of sunglasses - large and in charge with Swarovski crystals on the sides. Needless to say, I don't wear them boating, but I love them year after year.

I could have DIED when Nordstrom's put a similar Michael Kors watch on the Anniversary Sale (jerks), but I'll just take pleasure in knowing that my big gold watch elicited size envy from my old male co-workers in meetings and that it feels powerful on my girly wrist. I love the juxtaposition of a big gold watch with a feminine top. And if, occasionally, I am asked if I'm about to retire to Barbados, so be it.

And lastly, the Cole Haan "Fiona" boot. I ended up with two pairs last fall. It started with finally finding "The Boot." You know, the boot that we spend multiple falls looking for, one that fits our calves, zips (rather than uses that cheap stretch that never stays up), doesn't give us blisters, and makes us feel just the right amount of tall? Well, behold. It was just the black at first, until I met this little number. Brown/bronze snakeskin. They are a sight to see and kick so much ass. Wearing them to work over jeans made my cashmere sweaters feel more Angelina Jolie, less Ina Garten and with skirts and tights, come on.

So there might not be rain drops on roses and dresses made from curtains, but these are just a few of my favorite things, and if you have the means, I highly recommend them. They are so choice.

If only it were like this...

I've been noticeably absent from all of my regular non-phone communication methods for a few days now and I was starting to raise some eyebrows amongst my usuals on the email/g-chat circuit.

In response to telling my friend that I was at the Design Center, this is what I get back. Hilarious.

"I don't even know what that is.

I choose, however, to believe that it is your schools version of Save By The Bell's "The Max." I imagine lots of stereotypical design students with turtlenecks and black rimmed glasses sitting around Herman Miller tables eating square burgers. Then the Dean walks in and delivers the news that the 27th annual design dance is canceled because your rival school stole your mascot (Squarie the T-Square) and everyone has lost their spirit and there's no way you can win the big state wide drawing competition. At that point you and your friends embark on a poorly designed (pun intended) scheme to set everything right and along the way you end up learning a little about design and a lot about yourself. Then for some reason you film a PSA with the head of NBC warning kids about the dangers of speed."

Monday, August 3, 2009

Yup, Still Fat

It's official, I still have the Europe weight around the ol' hip region, but what I have gained is a new realization and it came to me like a bolt of lightning. Here is is: Nudists are just people who recently gained weight and have refused to go up a size.

I realized this when the best part of my day became unbuttoning my shorts, doing my first unrestricted deep bend and letting it all hang out. I'm pretty sure that nudists are people who had this moment and instead of taking it for what it is (fat smooshed in to clothes like a big human sausage), mistook it for a feeling of freedom from clothes and whatever hell else a nudist tries to sell their brand of crazy as.

So here's to all the nudists out there -- people who were one day just like you and I, but refused to listen to what their pants were telling them.