It's (almost) Leather Weather

Good morning, Tuesday.

It's starting to feel like Fall although tomorrow it's 90 and then back to 50 so who even knows what's going on. OK, I do. What's going on is a whole lotta leather for Fall (and judging from the Spring 2020 runways in Paris, the trend will continue into next year). Leather jumpsuits. Leather skirts. Leather dresses. Leather shirts. And if you don't wanna wear real leather, there's plenty of fabulous vegan options out there too. One thing's for sure- leather is having a bonafide moment this season. And let me tell you, I love it. I am such a fan- leather is sexy, rock and roll, completely cool at any time. Slinking around in leather pants might be one of my favorite cold weather past times but that's just me.  Oh and I'm gonna show you looks that are BLACK. Because that's what's up. There's nothing better. Look at a young Francoise Hardy above. Chic forever and ever.

Take this faux leather overshirt thing is fab from Zara. Wear it with jeans or thick black tights and high heeled boots and instant awesome ensues.

This leather midi skirt means business during the day, and can be vamped up for night. I love the button up front, and would wear this with everything from a slim ribbed sweater to a denim shirt to oh, I don't know- everything.


Oh and if you're feeling sassy, this faux leather jumpsuit may do the trick. I love this. I'd wear it EVERYWHERE. With sneakers, with heels, all of it. Everything. Love.

Black patent jeans? Ya. I love 'em. So exceptional with a black blazer and a tank. Very hot. Sure you best be fit to wear these, so if you can, do. I'll support you.

This faux leather slip dress is cute with a turtleneck underneath and some Gazelles. 

And if you're not yet convinced that leather is magical, I give you the McQueen show from Paris yesterday. I can't. I can. I want it all. How amazing are these pieces?

Loving on some leather this season and beyond. Classic rock and roll cool for all. Cause that's what's up this slithery Tuesday in the 212. Yours, in buttery goodness. XO






Fashion: A love letter to rock and roll gypsies and tuxedo queens from Saint Laurent (et moi).

Good morning, Wednesday.

Remember that post I wrote at the end of NYFW about how fashion is changing and it's no longer about the clothes, at least on the New York runways? Well Paris proved me right, because I mentioned that the European shows are still very much about the clothes, and yesterday's Saint Laurent show stands out in my mind as a tribute to women who STILL LOVE CLOTHES.

I still love clothes. I most likely always will. And though I'm trying to be more of a discerning (aka less) shopper, when I see a runway show like this, I feel my pulse quicken. Because these are heart thumping, fashion is still alive gorgeous clothes.

These are clothes for women that understand a YSL Ballet Russes reference.  These are clothes for women that look at Stella Tennant in a sequined le smoking and say "oui". Out loud. in earshot of other and not caring at all.  Also, to stage a show at the foot of the Eiffel Tower and close it with Naomi. I can't. But yes. Yes I can.

These are clothes for women to aspire to- of all age- because they contain an ageless sex appeal. I'm not going to pretend these clothes are for women of all sizes, because they're not. But women of all sizes can channel the vibe of these pieces. Every woman can rock a tux or a beautiful printed peasant dress with boots. Or something metallic. Oui. And oui again. A resounding oui.

And though I've never been an Anthony Vaccarello fan, this collection is dynamite. His clothes were always a wee too tight and too short for my tastes, but he's giving Saint Laurent the love it needs, the homage it's earned, and the legacy it deserves. I'm obsessed. And every single piece of this collection will be knocked off in Zara, so look out for that. In fact, I got the gold boot that looks to be a very direct descendant of the ones on the runway yesterday. Go me. I would show them to you but they're now unavailable and don't want to achy break your heart.

I love fashion and I love to have fun with it. It's in my DNA and that's the truth and sure it's frivolous and not the most important thing on Earth, but it gives me so much joy. Have a look and tell me what you think. It's not earth shattering in terms of inventiveness, but darn if most women I know wouldn't love to own just about everything on this runway. It has everything a woman could want- pretty dresses, sparkly stuff, all black everything. All hail the rock and roll gypsy. All hail the androgyne. All hail Saint Laurent with the serious 70s vibes. I'm a believer, baby. All day.

PS the hair. The hair is so good. Just how I like it. Rock and roll chop chop. Oui.

Cause that's what's up this fashion forward Wednesday in the 212. Yours, in French kisses. XO

I feel like I'm 25 again

Good almost afternoon, Thursday. There's a chill in the air, and my jazz-filled taxi ride uptown today gave me a sweet moment of pause. I do so love the Fall. It's my favorite.

But yea, about that headline up there.

I feel like I'm 25 again, but not in the way you're thinking. Lately, there's been a lot of stress-provoking challenges around me- nothing life-threatening in any way, so don't worry. Just things that make you think about how you navigate change when you're faced with it, and how toxic situations can really do a number on you. 

When I was in my 20s, I'm not ashamed to say I suffered from a tremendous amount of anxiety. I was living in New York and working really hard but incredibly scattered. If you've ever suffered from anxiety, you know how it is- everything feels daunting and freaky, and your nerve endings are firing and frayed. I feel those feelings creeping up on me again, but as someone who is almost 25 x 2, I feel more equipped to handle them. How much of the anxiety is PMS/hormonal? Some. That absolutely gets worse as you get older, I'm not gonna lie. But right now there's some stuff I need to handle that feels toxic, like if you were handling toxic chemicals but didn't know how to touch them. I'm getting there, and though I know the feeling is situational, it still kind of sucks. 

For the past few months, I've been feeling absolutely fabulous. Truly. There's blips and blops when I lack the luster but for the most part, so good. And then a few weeks ago after I got robbed I started feeling not so fabulous. It wasn't about the stuff per se, it just caused a lot of primordial yuck in my life and made me really uncomfortable. As a proud Cancerian crab lady, my home is my sanity and my sanctuary. So that all felt awful and started overshadowing all the good stuff that was happening. And then just like that- I'm a 20something angsty woman trapped in an almost 50something grown-up body. Weird, right?

My point is- I've been so relieved in this thing called life to get to feel as healthy and happy and confident as I do, even though as a woman I'm told my value is declining as I age by society. There is no way you could pay me to go back to my 20s. Or even my 30s. I'm so damn happy to be where I am that when something fucks with that, I don't like it. At all. PS- I can hear some of my more stoic friends muttering under their breath as they're reading this saying "yea, but that's life." Yea. No kidding.

But anxiety is not a state I want to live in. I'm feeling a great need for some softness. The difference between anxiety then and anxiety now is I think I'm better situated to cope and also know what I need. And right now a little warm and fuzzy with all the sharp angles would be just ducky. Truly. 

This morning as I was dropping off Khan's breakfast because I screwed up the days I would be boarding him (another anxiety-producing moment), I saw an older man throwing up on the street, which, let's be honest, is pretty gross. But so many people walked by him, and not one asked him if he was ok. He was crouched down by the garbage on the street, and I locked eyes with him and asked him if he needed some help. He told me he would be fine and suffers from acid reflux, and he "never knows when it's going to happen like this." Poor guy. I felt for him. I usually would feel sick to my stomach watching someone puke in public, but something about the tough few weeks I had made me want to be compassionate to someone else. It made me feel better to ask. Because at that moment, even though I was stressed trying to get my dog his breakfast, this guy was in much worse shape than me.

Like my friend with the reflux, nobody knows what's coming. That's the fun of life and the scary part, too. It's essential to feel all the feels, though. This much I know. And I find that actually talking about this stuff with other people helps (imagine that). I really used to be a girl who liked to keep it all in. I didn't want people to see my vulnerabilities because I was so busy trying to be tough. Right now, I'm a little raw. And I'm good with that. I'm eternally grateful for moments that make me remember that everything is going to be ok. Like jazz-filled cab rides at 7 am up Sixth Avenue. Or early morning chats with a friend and coworker about whether Murphy beds are appropriate at this stage in the game (I don't think they are, or at least not for me). Or simple things like little Khan letting me spoon him when I can't sleep. 

I'll be honest- I'm a woman who fears change. It seems counter to who I am, but I genuinely do, and I've talked about it here many times. It's not so much the change itself, it's more the anxiety around the who, what, why, when, and how. That'll do me in if I let it. But for now, as I sit here sharing this with all of you, I'm feeling ok. I'm not gonna let that 25-year-old back into my head. I'm grown enough to know that everything is generally solvable. I just felt the need to connect with you all here as I've been busy working and haven't had a lot of time to write my own stuff of late. Look for a retool of this blog coming very soon- on a bit of a delay, but it's a change I'm actually excited about.

Cause that's what's up this I'm ok, you're ok kind of Thursday in the 212. Yours, in bigger, better, and onward. XO

 

Maven pic: A fresh take on a classic denim jacket

Good afternoon, Tuesday. Howzit? I've been busy of late and haven't been here much but had to share with you something I've had my eye on for a minute that just went on sale for 30 percent off so here's your very own Maven steal and deal for the day.

I'm always on the lookout for a great denim jacket. Though I love my classic dark denim Gap version I've had forever, I also love to freshen up with a new piece when the feeling and fiscally friendly moment strikes.

So I was thrilled to see this unusual offer from Levis, really the best denim purveyor of all time as we all know. I spotted it first on
Bird's site (a local store in Brooklyn whose looks are soooo good) and fell in love with it. And then just like that, I got an email from Levi's about 30 percent off site wide, and there you have it. A new denim jacket for under 100 bucks. I'm still searching for a vintage Helmut Lang, but that's not here nor there...

So this one has a belt you can wear if ya feel like, or the oversized trucker feel is perfect for layering with a chunky sweater underneath. I like the capelike silhouette and can picture it with skinny jet black jeans or trousers and a pointy high boot. One and done. Thank you. Next. Give it a whirl. Why the heck not?

But one thing I won't be buying from Levi's? A jean called "The Ribcage Jean". You decide if that's a good thing. I don't think it is. Not at all no. Ouch.

Cause that's what's up this supercute Tuesday in the 212. Yours, in denim daydreams and Fall fashion. XO




Fashion Week is Dead. Long Live Fashion Week!

Good afternoon, Friday. TGIFFFFFFFFF.

So NYFW came and went and at the beginning of it, I remarked on Facebook that I felt the clothes were so stupid and ridiculous and to be honest, a ton of them were. But towards the end of the week, the usual suspects like Michael Kors and Ralph and Tom Ford came out with runways full of women that fit the brief of what I've known to be Fashion Week my whole fashion geek life- a long runway, models, a posh, aspirational crowd with Anna Wintour, celebrities, and big buyers like Linda Fargo from Bergdorf Goodman. And Marc Jacobs, who always ends Fashion Week, provided eye candy that delighted all of us who want to see him win. And win he did- with a dizzying array of kooky looks that celebrated individuality with his signature chic and cheek. Lovely.

Almost as genius as his show was this amazing review of it in the New York Times, written by Vanessa Friedman. Of course, she gushed over the Marc show, but she also showed me how the new version of Fashion Week should have us all rooting for fashion again. And if fashion is and always has been a barometer for the times, then it stands to reason it needs to evolve and change. And it has.

From the article:

"The gravitational forces of New York fashion are moving; its map is being rewritten and identity reinvented by a group of designers with a different sense of history and voices that demand to be heard. The conversation about race and power and gender is reshaping how we express ourselves and who understands that best".

So very true- the piece goes on to talk about how fashion is no longer about the ladies who lunch or "Wall Street wives" but an experiential, youth and creative-driven moment that speaks to fashion being more of a creative formula than just about the clothes.  It's about the shows that felt more like parties where young people could express themselves, however they identified or related or wanted to present to the world. And it's high time for it, truly. Because maybe it's less about fashion defining us, and more about the people defining fashion. Which is wonderful. 

And as Friedman states at the end of her piece:

"...what makes it American is not its roots in blue jean utility, but the fact it is free of the restrictions of heritage that make it so hard for European brands to change. It reflects the freedom of reinvention that the American promise was built on. It’s disruptive and messy and happy to color outside the lines. It’s not yet fully realized, but it is on its way".

So let the Europeans do their shows and let us gawk at the clothes and the models for their elegance (incidentally I too will gawk). Over here we're busy shaking some shit up. As a huge fan of style as a form of self-expression, I love this watershed moment in culture. Hooray for fashion. Hooray for New York. Hooray for young people demanding change. America is at it's best when we challenge the norm and reinvent culture. Let's keep going. Cause that's what's up this fashionable Friday in the 718, Yours, in changin' times and hemlines. XO

Maven Pick: The Only Vegan Leather Legging you need this Fall/Winter

Good morning Thursday this will be a quick hit as I'm a busy bee today.

I'm fairly certain I've shared my love for Emerson Fry, a fashion favorite brand of elevated basics made right here in NYC. I love their cool cred and classic/rock and roll vibe. I got an email from them this morning about the release of their vegan leather leggings for Fall, and I have to tell you- if you buy one thing this Fall, buy these. (You'll obviously need a top and shoes too, but you get my drift).

Their vegan leather leggings are a cold-weather go-to for this maven. I literally buy two or three pairs so I can wear them all season and switch them out.  I love to wear them with sweaters and blazers, and in place of tights under dresses for a cool look. I'm not sure if these are exactly like the pairs I have from last season, but I've been stocking up on these for the past few years since they've been making them and they are perfect and always a home run. They fit true to size and really have the feel of real leather. Link to buy here.

Go get yourself a pair, girlies. You won't be sorry. Fall is almost here, even if the NY weather says otherwise.

Cause that's what's up this quickie of a Thursday in the 212. Yours, in pleather report realness. XO



A Classic New York Weekend

Aloha, Monday. I say aloha because I had an anxiety dream last night about losing a gig and not being able to get to Hawaii (no idea) and being very sad about it. So aloha again.

This weekend can only be described as quintessential New York City. 

Was I prancing through Central Park, enjoying a late Summer day with my dog? Was I shopping for stylish sweaters in Soho? Or was I boozy brunching somewhere fabulous in Brooklyn? Um no. Not really.

Because instead, I was robbed on Friday night. Yes, robbed. Outside of my apartment hangs a set of hooks where my raincoats (including a Burberry trench) resided, and my husband's beautifully broken in Belstaff. Plus my cycling shoes and a sweet, giant beach bag I picked up from Target. We were home, watching a movie, and when David went to take Khan for a walk around 10:30, he returned to find the hooks picked clean. They left my wellies and all the shoes in the basket but took a bunch of outerwear. An outerwear thief. Bizarre. When the cops came, it was like central casting. Two beat cops who asked me why I had such expensive coats hanging outside. One of them called my Burberry a Blueberry. The sergeant who showed up later was a poor man's Michael  Peña, who could not understand why I needed so many fancy raincoats. He had a point, I suppose. As they left, I awkwardly thanked them for their service.
  
I live in a brownstone with one apartment on each floor, and I have no idea how anyone could have gotten into my building which is entirely secure, but they did. It's completely nuts. And horrible.

And then as we attempted to heal, Sunday rolled around and it warm and lovely, so we decide to take K for a walk in our neighborhood. That's when, at around noon, we found a HUGE crow, or perhaps a raven. Just sitting on the sidewalk and not moving. He was standing like a stone next to a parked car which, of course, had to pull out. It was a mother and son, and the son kept throwing Terra chips at it. No dice. No chip could move this poor injured bird. He/she couldn't fly, and both of us couldn't leave a sick animal in that state. We called a million vets and then found a place on the Upper West Side that rescues birds and other winged types. And then we took matters into our own hands. Literally. 

David being the scrappy Kentuckyian that he is found a banana box with holes in it and shooed our bird friend (let's call him Amity since we saw him at the corner of Amity and Clinton) into the box and I ran and got an old towel to cover it up, as per the recommendation from the Audobon Society (thank you Google). We then got into our car, Khan on my lap, and put the box in the backseat. 

I can tell you I have been in many panic-inducing experiences in my life, but few have ever made me feel more heightened than a dying bird flailing around in the back of my car. Or maybe it was when he stopped moving halfway up the FDR that I started feeling like I was going to throw up. Did we kill the bird? Turns out we didn't. But that was a long 45 minutes to get uptown. Possibly the longest of my life. I'm scared of birds a bit, particularly giant black crows. Apparently, they are sacred animals in many cultures, so think we did a real mitzvah.

When we got to the rescue, which incidentally, was not some sort of sanctuary but a storefront on Columbus Avenue, I exhaled for the first time in several hours. I stayed outside with the dog as David took Amity inside. He told me the space was insane- full of chickens and turkeys walking around and an abundance of birds. Kind of my nightmare but thank goodness for these bird lovers. Truly. We'll get an Amity update tomorrow, ps. Stay tuned. Incidentally, I ran into a work friend just outside the bird spot, and she seemed nonplussed by it all. It's tough to shock a New Yorker. Even with a giant crow in a banana box in the back of your car. True story.

Needless to say, I slept in and skipped the gym this morning. I feel like I've been run over by a truck. Robberies and rescues require relaxation. I'll need to catch up on that next weekend. Let's hope for a little less excitement. And I pray it won't rain. Because I no longer have the proper attire.

Only in New York, kids. Only in New York. Cause that's what's up this keeping it together kind of Monday in the 212. Yours, on a wing and a scare. XO


Don't ever say this to me.

Good morning, Thursday. It's been a minute since I've written here but I miss you and I miss it and I want to get back to our regularly scheduled program. I'm in the process of retooling this whole thing as you know, so stay tuned for that. 

So here's something. This past weekend I had a magnificent time at the beach with my sister. It was a glorious weekend and we laid in the sun, played Skee Ball, ate, drank, and generally had a lovely time. I've enjoyed my time at the Jersey Shore this Summer so much and I've been getting in a bit of a groove there when it comes to finding my favorite spots to eat, drink, and work out. 

One boutique gym, in particular, caught my eye as it had a class called "Power Barre" so I gave it a whirl earlier in the season. The class itself is taught by one of those women that could be 40 or could be 70. Her abs were bonkers good and she was a shouter. You know the type. I hate to be yelled at when I work out. Well, in general really. I don't respond well to yelling. Know that.

But the class itself was challenging and a little scary but I made it through, even though I vowed to never do it again because all of that Type A weirdness mingled with the uppity vibe of the other chicks in the class had me all meh. Also, the fact that for two days after that initial class, my right IT band was screaming in pain.

So here I was on Labor Day Weekend, conveniently forgetting the torture and signing up for another class with the treacherously taut one.

I thought the class was at 8:30, so I arrived at 8:20, only to find out it started at 8:15. As I quickly put down my things and took off my sandals, the male owner of the gym, looked me straight in the eye and said:

"Do the best you can".

Come again? Really? On what planet are you, sir, that you think it's ok to say that to me? Sure he may have been well-intentioned, but don't do that. Just don't.  Why was the assumption that a)I would do anything less than my best or b)I somehow wouldn't be able to hang with these Real Housewives of Margate, New Jersey? FUCK.

I couldn't help but wonder if he would have said this to a man- how many adult men have ever been told to do the best you can?. Or if the fact that I'm almost 50 that this comment bothered me more than it would have when I was 25. Needless to say, that set the tone for the class. Incidentally, I did really well for my 2nd time with this quite extreme workout, where the young girl next to me kept saying throughout "Oh God. Oh God". That's after the teacher told us a story of how two girls left her class because they were intimidated by the fact that "everyone in there looked like models". OMG. Who says such a thing?

But back to the initial source of my woe. 

Don't ever tell a woman to "do the best you can". Just don't. It's almost as bad as "calm down".  This is most important if you are a man. But in either instance, it's condescending and pretty shit. 

Because if I am at the beach and I am choosing to go to an early gym class vs. sleeping in or catching some rays, then clearly I am there to get it done. And I don't need anyone to backhand me into it. Or assume that I'm not going to make it through. I always do. And I always will.

And no, I won't calm down.

Cause that's what's up this keeping it real kind of Thursday in the 212. Yours, in giving it my all. XO




MTV aka Meh Television: Thoughts on last night's party

Good morning, Tuesday. Looking forward to a long weekend coming up. I know it's only Tuesday but still.

So last night was the MTV Awards and man, it really was something. And not a good something. Here's the thing. MTV is mine. And belongs to my generation. I feel some proprietary love for MTV because I was raised on it. My generation is actually often called the MTV Generation, so when they do awards shows I still have to watch them. But what's clear to me now is that the network is irrelevant. Completely. Or I'm irrelevant. Completely.  Whatever of those two poisons is picked, it's true. I just can't believe how shite it all is now. 

As a lifelong music lover, the link between style and music has always been a revelation.  I'm aware that this is pop music and lacks any kind of cool kid cred, but for real? Why did everybody have to look so awful?

Why are all the women so hypersexualized? Being vulgar isn't sexy. Or at least it's not to me. Cardi is but one example but there were many others. Make it stop. Please.

And why did they hold it in New Jersey? No offense to Jersey, but Jersey? I think the Jo Bros got the brief, ps. They looked straight out of the Sopranos.

I just wonder what happened to real, sexy style cred in the music world. Almost all of my fashion inspo comes from rock and roll or punk or funk or soul or disco. What's changed? 

Thank goodness for MIssy Elliott ps. Yes, she can still work it. And flip it and reverse it. Amazing. At 48, she knows a thing or two about what makes a great awards show performance. Because she's one of us. Her performance was the most buzzed-about of the night- watch it here and learn, children, learn.

I don't know but I'm bummed and I no longer want my MTV.  So awful all around. But leave it to Missy to show us how great it used to be. Oh but kudos to Rick Ross for stepping out in a Gucci bathrobe. I'm not mad at it.

Cause that's what's up this post-awards show Tuesday in the 212. Yours, in video killed the radio star. XO




I'll have what she's having: Julianne Moore KILLING IT

Good morning Friday and TGIF. 

I got my September In Style in the mail last night and all I have to say is that women of a certain age are having a bonafide moment. My fear is that this is a fad, but I'm hoping not. My girl Amber is all over the issue, but the star of the issue is absolutely Julianne Moore. A transcendent redhead and gorgeous woman. PS- she's 58. I asked Alexa. 

Her beauty is just astounding. And her in one of my favorite fashion looks of all time, that Tom Ford silk shirt and velvet pants. I can't.

I have no idea what she's done to her face, but whatever it is, I'll take it. Wow.

I love these pictures by Phil Poynter- such a great homage to fashion's best looks- particularly those of the 90s when I realized the potential of fashion upon first moving to this blessed city. And the issue takes a look back and lauds the more mature set like Jen Aniston and Jen Garner. I love this. Keep it up. Way up.

These pics, along with Amber's, have made their way to my internal mood board, and they're not coming down until I say so. Beauty all around. Let's hear it for a beautiful generation of women who refuse to be invisible. Lovely.

Cause that's what's up this fiftyish Friday in the 718. Yours, in magazine covers and ageless appeal. Oh, and redheads rule.  XO