Friday, August 1st, 2014

Le “No Brainer”

Eileen Fisher sweater and jeans, leopard flats

It’s good to have a “no-brainer” outfit or three on deck for those times when you want to look pulled-together, but don’t want to have to work at it. The neckline and boxy shape of the sweater + the big hoop earrings + the slim ankle pants + the pointed flats all come together to suggest a late 50′s/early 60′s style vibe that really appeals to me. The sweater is linen and surprisingly cool, even on warm summer days.

Earrings: Argento Vivo, similar // Sweater: Eileen Fisher // Jeans: Eileen Fisher, similar // Bracelets: Stella and Dot here and similar // Shoes: Stuart Weitzman, several years old, similar.

Easy weekend outfit

What’s your “no brainer” look? Bon weekend!

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Wednesday, July 30th, 2014

Clothing Sizes: The Good, The Bad And The Sanity

Two current J.Crew stylings...now with less wackadoodle.

Two current J.Crew stylingsNow With 40% Less Wackadoodle™!

While the swirl of sputtering disbelief, occasional outrage and relentless ridicule that initially greeted J.Crew’s announcement that it was adding “XXXS” sizes has subsided (turns out it wasn’t about pressuring women to be smaller, but rather to serve a more diminutive customer as J.Crew plans to extend their retail reach to Asia), at least one side-effect of the move is now manifest: J.Crew has expanded their Petite (under 5’4″) offerings to include jeans and some tees and knits. That THUMP you just heard was the clumsy end result of me attempting a happy cartwheel.

There’s been a lot of ink lately dedicated to the vagaries of vanity sizing, but as the New Yorker article linked above explains:

…the notion of “vanity sizing”—whereby retailers deliberately increase the measurements of each clothing size so that women feel better about the number on the tag and therefore spend more—is a myth, at least as it’s usually described. Because Americans have gotten heavier over time, retailers have had to adjust their sizes upward to keep their “medium,” which today corresponds to a size eight or ten in the U.S., as the most popular size. (To use fabric efficiently, Fasanella said, “you should be selling two mediums for every small and every large.”) If your weight has remained constant over many years, you might wear a smaller size today than you did ten years ago.

So it doesn’t sound like the Fashion Fairy will be granting our collective wish for universal, consistent sizing anytime soon. I’ve come to the conclusion there’s some Bad News/Good News in all of this.

Bad News – Sizes Are Meaningless.

You’ll continue to experience sizing inconsistencies between retailers, and often between styles among a single retailer or designer. You still won’t be able to walk up to a rack of pants and pick your waist/inseam measurement the way men can. You’ll still have a wardrobe in multiple sizes. You’ll still often have to take several sizes to the dressing room, or order and try on at home, to get the right fit.

Good News – Sizes Are Meaningless.

You are not a size. You can let go of the angst and value judgments about that number on the tag and can finally drop those last vestiges of measuring self-worth or success based on what size you can squeeze into. You can look at size labels as a starting point, nothing more. It won’t affect the quality of your day or week when you find out you need a different size today than you did last season. You can quit worrying about numbers and focus on FIT.

How do you deal with sizing inconsistencies? Have you found any retailers whose sizing seems to be more consistent?

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Monday, July 28th, 2014

Street Style, Beverly Hills Edition

Quite literally, "street style."

Quite literally, “street style.”

I resisted the urge to title this post, “Why Don’t We Do It In The Road.” ;-)

This street is near my dentist’s office, and every time I drive past it I think what a great backdrop it would be for an outfit shot. So Saturday evening as le Monsieur and I were on our way out to dinner, I grabbed the camera and asked him to make a slight detour. He was very jumpy about me (and the camera) poised in the middle of the street even though there was minimal traffic, so it was a very rushed photo session.

That’s the Theory top I picked up at the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, and it’s definitely a winner. (Even though the style is currently sold out in Black in most sizes, keep checking back if you’re interested. Often items become available again once people start returning wrong sizes, etc.) The silk is opaque enough that I don’t need a camisole underneath, but lightweight enough to not stifle. This one’s definitely going with me on our Hong Kong trip in a few months.

The glasses are the same pair I’ve been wearing the last few months, but as I’m often too lazy to switch back and forth between regular glasses and sunglasses, I had the “Transitions” lenses added which automatically darken in bright light. Sometimes function wins out over form, but I think these look good as sunglasses too.

Clare V leopard clutch bag, Metal Pointu's bracelet

I’m usually not a clutch gal, but had picked up this one from Clare V.  last year with a gift card and it seemed the perfect bag for the outfit. The bracelet is one of the two I purchased in Paris at the Metal Pointus boutique in the Marais.

Earrings: vintage from Beladora. Similar style with emeralds. // Top: Theory // Jeans: NYDJ purchased last year, similar (and on sale!) // Clutch: Clare V. purchased last year, similar // Bracelet: Metal Pointus. Similar shape in silver // Shoes: Belle by Sigerson Morrison.

Belle by Sigerson Morrison wedge heels

These Belle by Sigerson Morrison wedges are quickly becoming one of my favorite pairs of shoes. They are comfortable, walkable, and look great with just about everything.

What’s the craziest place you’ve ever posed for a photograph?

I’ll be linking up (bien sur!) with Visible Monday at Not Dead Yet Style, because it doesn’t get much more visible than standing in the middle of the street!

PUT IT TOGETHER…

Tops:

Jeans:

La-la-la-Leopard! small bags:

Shoes:


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Saturday, July 26th, 2014

Samedi Matin

20140726-061733-22653109.jpg

Posting this morning with the iPad, as the relatively new trackpad in my laptop is doing a St. Vitus’ dance again. So hi ho, hi ho, it’s off to the Genius Bar I go. Fingers crossed there’s still some warranty action as the current one was just installed a few months ago.

The scene above is from our wanderings in Paris in May. Loved this little street in the 6th (I think).

It was interesting to see how my post on Home Ec became in part a discussion of hunger and food shortage in America. This is a real problem, and a systemic one. It isn’t simply a matter of people learning to shop and cook. To help, I’d encourage you to find out what local food banks and programs are active in your area and what their needs are. (One of the food banks we donate to asks for non-perishable items that don’t require cooking, as so many of the people they serve don’t have regular access to a kitchen.) Some organizations may be able to make better use of money than donated goods.

If you work for or know of a good organization in your area helping to alleviate hunger please share in comments.

Bon weekend!

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

Shop Like A Parisienne

Shopping Like A Parisienne

French women love les soldes, but also have a reputation for shopping wisely, being discriminating and not buying just because something is on sale. They look for pieces that can fill a wardrobe gap, replace basic well-worn and loved items, and perhaps update and freshen their wardrobe. While les soldes are only held twice yearly in France toward the end of the season, we’re fortunate here to have more frequent sales and markdowns. Below are some classic wardrobe items from the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale that une Parisienne might be delighted to add to her fall wardrobe.


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