Tag Archive for 'Topshop'

The British Are Coming!

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I admit it.  I’m an Anglophile.  I’m a sucker for a British accent.  I love The Tudors (between Phillipa Gregory and Wikipedia, there’s not much I don’t know about King Henry VIII); Are You Being Served, Keeping Up Appearances, As Time Goes By, Rosemary and Thyme, and just about anything on Masterpiece Theater are always on my DVR; I rarely make it to the movies, but I just saw The Young Victoria; and I’m totally smitten with many of the London High Street shops.   And believe it or not, one of my new favorite stores really is TopShop – great value for money, definitely on trend and just so British it makes my heart flutter.  And then of course there’s the online store As Seen On Screen a.k.a. ASOS whose mission is to provide John Q. Public with clothes similar to the styles seen on celebrities. (They just added a line called Curve for plus-size women which is pretty fab).

Strolling down Lincoln Road last weekend in Miami, I stumbled upon another great British find – AllSaints Spitafields.  Apparently, I missed their boutique in Bloomies; I’m not mad that I’m late to the party though.  The fantastic opera coat on display when I walked in the door took my breath away.  As I weaved my way through the racks, I swooned over a few dresses, sweaters, jackets and leggings.

AllSaints is high-end high street Brit brand known for its sophisticated cuts, edgy yet pared-down aesthetics and muted tones.  Definitely hip, decidedly downtown – my kind of store!  Imagine my elation when I read that AllSaints Spitafields will be opening in SoHo in April.  If April can’t get here fast enough for you and if you’re not in Miami or Los Angeles, check out their online store.  And for a peek at what’s to come, check out  one self-proclaimed global shopper’s review of one of their London outposts at Haute World.

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[image from AllSaints Spitafields]

Fur!!!! Glorious Fur!!!!!

J Mendel fur

I’m obsessed with fur.  Plain and simple.  Have been since I was a little girl growing up in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.  I remember going to Dittrich Furs with my mom as she amassed a nice little collection of furs – there was the silver 3/4-length mink wrap coat with the notched lapels (I loved the coat, she had a great pair of silvery-grey high-heeled boots she wore with it – Mom, where is that coat?!?!?!); the racoon jacket that she’d wear during the week when she drove my dad’s Corvette and look oh so chic; and then the beaver full length coat for those really really cold Michigan winters. I think her love of fur was a direct result of my grandmother’s love affair with fur – it runs in the family (my Aunt Kay had a fur fetish too, I was lucky enough to inherit all of her furs when she moved to Florida).

My mother initiated me into all things fur when I was 20.  I was home from college for Thanksgiving; we were at Dittrich’s picking up her furs.  There was a great full-length opposum coat on sale. Perfect for a young lady my mom said.  So, it became mine.  I loved that coat.  I’ve now passed my first real fur on to one of my young friends, she’s been initiated into the way of all things fur.  It was the least I could do.

Now, let’s be clear – I love all kinds of fur – faux, vintage, new – I don’t discriminate.  Yes,  I’m aware of the ethical issues and I’ve worked those out for myself.  If you have issues with fur, you do and you’re not alone.  I’m not writing this posting to convince anyone to drink my particular brand of koolaid on this point. However, I am writing it because wearing fur, faux or real, is a luxurious experience.  This season the retail industry has done a bang-up job of providing those who don’t believe in fur, along with those whose bank accounts may not ready for fur, with a plethora of fabulous options.  The folks at TopShop get STYLEpoints  for having the most penny-saving stylish faux furs out there this season – Kate Moss has designed her butt off. H&M, Tory Burch, and Rebecca Taylor are on the bandwagon too.

So, if you’re on the fence – try a faux fur.  If you’ve been hankerin’ after a real fur but weren’t sure of the direction to head in – go for it!  Any questions about what to buy, where and how?  Shoot me an email.

Be FURablous this Winter!

[image from Style.com]

Looking Your Best This Holiday Season

Is your calendar literally filled with engagements from now until the beginning of the year?  In addition to coming up with a stash of hostess gifts, you’ve got to figure out what you’re going to wear to each holiday dinner party, office party, drinks with friends, tree trimming party and of course to the big events themselves.  Godforbid if you’ve got a formal or two to go to as well!

There’s no time like the present to start recycling the goodies you’ve got stashed away in your closet.  Now, if you’re related to the Rockerfellers and can afford to go out and buy a few key pieces to spice up your holiday wardrobe, by all means please do and just pass this posting along to one of your less well-off friends!  If however, you’re trying to figure out how to do it all (holiday travel, shopping and party-going) with limited funds, here are some tips for looking your best this season without breaking the bank.  It’s simple, Shop In Your Closet (or your friend’s if yours is low on sparkly items). It’s all about looking like you spent a fortune when you haven’t spent a dime.

Dressing for the Holidays a la Your Closet:

  • Locate the following items and put them on your bed: (1) LBD; (2) Black wool slacks; (3) Black cardigan; (4) Black turtleneck.
  • Go through your shawls and pull out the black one of course and any festive looking shawls you may have. Put these on the bed too.
  • Now, pull out the jewelry box and locate your most sparkly items – necklaces, cocktail rings, bracelets – everything that’s too much for work, you know those pieces you’ve been saving for the right moment or the ones that someone gave you and you just weren’t sure what to wear them with. Lay the pieces on your bed.
  • Go through your stash of clutch bags and pull out the black one and any sparkly ones you have. These go on the bed too.
  • The same goes for your heels – pull out your black dressy heels (peu de soie is fine, the everyday work ones are not) and any glammy shiny heels you own (the more color, sparkle, sequins or feathers the better!). Yup, on the floor next to the bed.
  • Now, go back to your basics listed in the first bullet point and begin to mix and match your outfits.  Nothing needs to be matchy-matchy.  Your foundation is basic black which is sleek, slimming and sophisticated.  Your accessories regardless of how you combine them will dress up your basics and help to get you in the holiday spirit.  And remember, it’s the holidays so it’s ok to go a little over the top.
  • Once you’ve matched your outfits, think about what you are going to wear to which events so that the day or evening of you’ve got nothing to do but make sure the items are clean and get dressed.
  • Finishing touches – If time permits, and your budget allows, stop by H&M, Ann Taylor, Aldo, Forever21, JCrew, TopShop, Claire’s or some other such store and buy a sparkly headband, hair clip or a fun feather number just to take things to the next level.
  • Top it all off with your regular wool coat (this is where one of those colorful shawls can be helpful in transforming your everyday coat to a little bit something more) or if you’ve got a fur or a fun fur (whichever is your preference) now is the time to show us what you got!

Have fun this holiday season!  Eat, drink and be merry.

What’s In a Name?

High end designers are designing for the masses.  Thought you’d never be able to afford a pair of Jimmy Choos?  Guess again.  Do you love Anna Sui but not her prices? What about Temperley of London? Alexander McQueen? Jill Sander? Kate Moss? …  It’s a bandwagon just about anyone who’s anyone in the design world is jumping on.  Target and H&M are at the forefront of this movement, but it’s a party many are likely to attend.  And why not?  Consumer dollars are more precious than ever, why should a designer restrict him or herself to only a fraction of that money when offering clothes at a variety of price levels insures money in the bank and not just a layout in Harpers Bazaar? Cha-ching!!!!

Target was definitely the leader of this trend – Do you remember Swell by Cynthia Rowley and Ilene Rosenberg?  Great comforter and sheet sets for your dorm room or the stylish teen?  CR now has a line of home goods at Target called Whim.  Liz Lange’s maternity duds available at prices that you don’t have to be an UES (Upper East Side) mom to  afford?  Or Michael Graves’ beautiful kitchen appliances and do-dads that even made the folks at Alessi salivate?  Then Target threw the gauntlet down when it hit us with its Go International line featuring emerging designers. Target has had partnerships with everyone from Luella Bartley to Thakoon.  Not to mention Target’s accessories collaborations with designers like Devi Kroell and Erickson-Beamon.  And now, their Designer Collaborations available for a limited time and featuring established designers who draw inspiration from a muse or creative elements – think Anna Sui and Gossip Girl.

And then there’s H&M (f.k.a. Hennes & Mauritz), the Swedish conglomerate focused on fashion domination with 1,800 stores in 34 countries who’s goal is to bring its customers fashion and quality at the best price.  Their designer collaborations began 5 years ago with the father of haute couture, Karl Lagerfeld and as recently as a few weeks ago Jimmy Choo’s line for H&M was revealed.

Everyone’s in the game – Christian Siriano the winner of Project Runway 4 is designing for Payless and even Earnest Sewn, the Manhattan denim company, is collaborating with designers like Van Cleef & Arpels, Repetto, Trovata and knitwear designer Victor Glemaud.

Other stores have bought into the concept too, look for designer collaborations at Uniqlo (Jill Sander), TopShop (Christoper Kane) , Walmart (Miley Cyrus & Max Azria)

With all of these designer duds available at a fraction of the cost, you too can be stylishly FABulous at a fraction of the price!

Workin’ Day and Night . . .

MJ never said truer words.  How many times have you planned to go home after work to change clothes before going out only to realize that there’s no way you’re going to make it home AND make it to the restaurant, bar, or your PTA (sorority, board, [you fill in the blank]) meeting on time?  The thing about going from work to play is that you don’t necessarily want to look like you just came from the office when you meet your blind date for the first time.  You want to look professional, but more like a night time version of your professional self, right?  We’ve all seen the woman at the bar or restaurant, waiting for friends or her date, who looks like she must work at an ad agency or in PR because there’s no way she could be that fly and work at a law firm or a consulting firm.  You might be, right, she may have one of those cool creative jobs or NOT.  She just may be one of those people who knows how to go from day to night in a jiffy.  You too can be that woman.  All it requires is a little planning on your part.

Rule No. 1 – The IT Factor.  If you cant afford the latest “IT” bag, find a small funky purse or clutch bag to hold your essentials.  Check your tote or briefcase when you arrive at your destination if leaving it in the car is not an option.

Rule No. 2 – Get a Leg Up. Bring a pair of heels with you (no, not your work heels. Going out heels).  Take those Manolos, Jimmy Choos or Jessica Simpsons out of the box and bring them to work with you.  A nice pair of heels gives shape and definition to the leg and immediately dresses just about any outfit up. (If heels aren’t your thing, try Insolia shoe inserts to take the weight off the ball of your foot and make standing in heels much more comfortable).

Rule No. 3 – Change the face.  There should be some distinction between your daily face and your going out face.  If you don’t wear make up regularly,  put on some blush, lip gloss and mascara to brighten up your face a bit.  If you do wear make up regularly, re-apply and do something a little different – rather than a nude lip, go with color or go with a smokey eye, for example.

Rule No. 4 – The Sweet Smell of Success.  Spritz on a bit of perfume stashed in your Desk S.O.S kit to freshen up a bit.

Rule No. 5 – Accessorize, Accessorize, Accessorize.  Let go of the safe “work” jewelry and funk things up a bit with a cool necklace, headband, bracelet or earrings that might border on wrong for work, but will be great for going out.  JCrew, H&M, TopShop and Forever 21 have some great moderate to low priced options to select from.

Rule No. 6 – Go out and have fun.   “Easy breezy” is your mantra.

London Calling …

 

Topshop SoHo

Topshop SoHo

Kate Moss’ much anticipated Topshop opens today in SoHo. By all accounts, having Topshop in NYC will help to satisfy the hefty palets of New York’s Recessionistas.  Their British counterparts are dumbfounded by the mania surrounding the opening of what many consider to be a mid-budget fast-fashion chain store that can be found on most London high streets. Young fashionistas on this side of the pond , however, are clamoring to buy the unique London street clothes the waif-ish Moss and her designs for the store have helped to make more popular than ever.  Just a little FYI, a credible UK source told me that the prices in the US will be higher than in the UK.

Of course the queues will be long (i.e., lines for those of you not up on your key British phrases), with this kind of hype what else do you expect?  But, rumor has it that Pinkberry will be served to those waiting in line.  Queue up I say!

Topshop, 478 Broadway btwn Broome & Grand.