Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Cheryl Shops...the Mayle sample sale
When it comes to sample sales, there's the bad and the good, and there's very little in between. For the former, for example, I went to the Alexander Wang sample sale last week, which I had been very excited about, and while there was some cute stuff, very few items were available in anything above a size 4, plus if you wanted to use a credit card, you had to spend $500--credit-card minimums are a personal pet peeve of mine, by the way, and they are technically illegal (and I'm sorry, I don't carry around $300 in cash). Sample sales can be disappointing for a lot of reasons, but when it's a designer I really admire and appreciate--and, yes, I really dig Alexander Wang, and he's a West Coast designer!--when the sale sucks, it's a huge letdown.

Which brings me to the good. I love Jane Mayle's clothing. It's feminine, it's a little retro, and she uses beautiful fabrics and detailing that you don't see anywhere else. Mayle used to be somewhat affordable, but in the last few years, it's spiraled a little out of my price range--I'm talking $400 for a sweater, $600 for a dress. So it was with a bit of trepidation that I approached today's sample sale--I was expecting a madhouse and prices still out of my reach. Thankfully, I did not have to wait in line to get in, which was good sign #1. There were a lot of girls stripping down to their undies and trying stuff on left and right, but nowhere near Barneys Warehouse Sale levels of mayhem. In short, they had a lot of merchandise--from this season, even!--and it was cheap cheapity cheap. Tops (including sweaters) are $70, skirts are $40, pants and shorts are a mere $25, dresses are $100, and coats are $125; there were a lot of huge shoes (I'm talking size 11) and some of the leopard-print handbags that are on sale at Barneys at the moment. I seriously had to edit my selections; what I wanted to do was say, "I'll take one of everything." But I ended up with a mod shift dress (pictured here and currently $645 at Steven Alan), a leopard-print mini (not as trashy as it sounds), a pair of high-waist wool trousers ($25, man!), and the April "Calendar knit" sweater from Barneys. The best part? For all four items, I paid less than what I'd pay for one Mayle sweater on double markdown at her boutique on Elizabeth Street. And considering that prices had been marked down once already, I have a feeling they might go down again tomorrow. Seriously, if they get any cheaper, they'll be giving the stuff away.

Have I not convinced you yet? Go, go, go to the sale! Thursday is the last day! It's at 95 Canal Street (between Eldridge & Forsythe) from 11-7. Believe me, it's worth the schlepp to Chinatown. What are you waiting for? Go!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Websites of the week
Being five-foot-seven and a single-digit size, finding clothes that fit and flatter me is not terribly difficult, and I will admit I take it for granted. Of course, like anyone, I have my issues--I'm extremely short-waisted for one--but all things considered, I have it pretty easy. For those of you who don't, here are two blogs that might come in handy.

When I hear "size 0," I tend to think of starved fashion victims. However, there are a lot of girls out there who are simply petite--shorter in stature and small-boned--and who are naturally this size, and, god almighty, do they have trouble shopping. Thankfully, the excellent blog Serafina is devoted to helping fellow petite women find clothes that fit. From what stores and websites stock small sizes to bridal-dress tips, Serafina is a thorough and well-written resource for the petite gals who love fashion.

On the other end of the spectrum, and far more typical nowadays, are plus-size women--after all, the average American woman is now a size 14. (Side note: By day, I work for a major retailer, and our fastest-growing business by far is women's plus-size clothing.) Considering this, it seems both nonsensical and frustrating that most "mainstream" women's fashion is only available in up to size 12, and plus size women are unfortunately relegated to their own departments or stores. To help you navagate this cold and lonely world however is the Plus Size Clothing Scoop, a blog devoted to highlighting sales, fashion finds, and new labels for girls with more to love. Plus-size girls may have the cards stacked against them, but the Scoop helps you play a better hand when it comes to fashion.

Monday, June 25, 2007

The week in shopping
Rebecca Taylor's feminine dresses and separates are $120 and up. 6/27-6/28; 8-8 Wed., 10-7 Thurs.; 336 W. 37th St. (8th & 9th Aves.), 11th fl.

The sale I've been waiting for all season: A.P.C.'s quintessentially French summer collection is up to 50% off. Thank god. 6/27-7/17; 11-7 weekdays, noon-6 weekends; 131 Mercer St. (Prince & Spring Sts.).

Meatpacking District showroom Scatola Sartoriale has Vivienne Westwood and Nine Lives on major sale. Through 6/29; 9-8; 33 Little W. 12th St. (9th Ave. & Washington St.), ste. 213.

Recent website of the week Te Casan is offering a suspiciously good deal: 50% off the first pair of shoes, 60% off each additional pair. I'm there. 6/29-7/3; 11-7, noon-6 Sun.; 382 W. Broadway (Spring & Broome Sts.).

The pride of Fort Greene, Stuart & Wright has Cheap Monday, Loeffler Randall, and A.P.C. for 30%-75% off. 6/28-7/1; 10-8, noon-6 Sun.; 85 Lafayette Ave. (near Fulton), Fort Greene, Brooklyn.

Project Runway alum Kara Janx makes flattering dresses in bright colors; get 'em here for 20%-70% off. 6/27-6/28; 11-7; 130 W. 37th St. (Broadway & 7th Ave.), 3rd fl.

Julie Haus' silky dresses are 50%-80% off. 6/28-6/29; 11-7; 545 W. 34th St. (10th & 11th Aves.), ste. 5C.

Subtly sexy lingerie from Only Hearts (plus dresses too) is $5 and up at this excellent two-day sale. 6/29-6/30; 11-7; 230 Mott St. (Prince & Spring Sts.).

Travel-friendly leather bags from Hansengross are up to 70% off; markdowns increase as the sale progresses. 6/28-6/30; 4-8 Thurs., 11-7 Fri. & Sat.; 100 Grand St. (Greene & Mercer Sts.), ste. D.

Cheryl Shops fave auto is having a Summer Sale with 20%-40% off select merchandise from Marimekko, Paul Smith, Matta, and others. Through 7/15; 11-8 weekdays, noon-7 Sat., noon-6 Sun.; 803-805 Washington St. (Gansevoort & Horatio Sts.).

Head to the Adidas store for a special sale on Y-3; prices are still $100 and up-ish. 6/27-7/1; 10-7; 599 Broadway (at Houston), 2nd fl.

Petit Bateau's supersoft tees are up to 40% off. Through 7/31; 10-9 weekdays, 10-8 Sat., 11-7 Sun.; 1100 Madison Ave. (82nd & 83rd Sts.).

Brian Réyes, Mischen, Lerario Beatriz, and the awesome Maria Bonita Extra are 40%-80% off at Fifty Two Showroom. 6/27-6/29; 10-8; 52 Walker Street (Broadway & Church St.), 5th fl.

Evisu's Japanese denim has a strong cult following; worship it at 50%-80% off. Through 7/1; noon-7, 11-7 Sat., noon-6 Sun.; 76 Greene St. (Spring & Broome Sts.).

Trendy downtown vintage store No. 6 is having a rather good sale: dresses are $50, skirts are $25, and tops are $30. Plus, cocktails on Friday! 6/29-6/30; 5-8 Fri., noon-5 Sat.; 6 Centre Market Place (at Grand St.).

By Francine Collection plus Ogle, Languaage, Tricia Fix, and Dolan are 20% off, with samples priced $15-$40. 6/28-6/29; 10-6; 250 W. 39th St. (7th & 8th Aves.), 4th fl.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Website of the week
Summer is the season for traveling. New York City gets so hot and stinky and crowded with tourists, I can't get out of the city fast enough. Unfortunately, I don't have any close friends with a vacation home nearby, but for those of you who do, etiquette dictates that you should bring a gift for your host and/or hostess. And while magazine editors tend to pooh-pooh candles for being too impersonal, I don't know anyone who doesn't love them (well, any girl, at least). I therefore endorse Pacifica as an excellent source for hostess gifts. Pacifica is perhaps best known for its candles--for the environmentally conscious, all candles are available in eco-friendly soy wax--but they also make soaps, creams, and perfumes based on their lovely botanical scents. You can find 'em at Ricky's (bonus points for convenience), and while Pacifica candles aren't as fancy as, say, Diptyque, they're much more affordable and I've found that they actually last longer. My favorite is the lush Mediterranean Fig, but from the sweet Persian Rose to the spicy Tibetan Mountain Temple, there's a scent for everyone. Not sure what to get for your host? Head straight to the gifts section.

The Fruits of Paradise set contains Bali Lime Papaya, Hawaiian Ruby Guava, and Brazilian Mango Grapefruit candles, all good enough to eat.


If your hostess is a bit more girly, the Princess Flowers set might be in order--this set, like many others, is also available in soap form.


The Autumn soap set is a little spicier, with the rich Tuscan Blood Orange, Mediterranean Fig, and Madagascar Spice.


Or, of course, you could just take a chance and go for a big pillar candle, like the gourmand Indian Chai scent.


Orders over $50 ship for free, so you might as well stock up for all your summer travels. After all, the season's just getting started.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Cheryl Shops...Montreal
So, a little burned out from work and general NYC living, MW and I decided to take advantage of Continental's ultra-cheap web fares and fly to Montreal for the weekend. Our main goals? To relax, to eat, and to shop. Montreal is a fun city in which to do all three--Canadians are definitely laid-back and friendly, and the city reminded me of a cross between Chicago and [insert any European city here]. Since we were only there for about two full days, we didn't get to see a ton of the city, but here are my impressions.

Rue St. Catherine is kind of the main drag of Montreal's city center; our hotel was a block off of it. The street is home to many department and chain stores--many familiar ones, like the Gap and Canadian export Aldo--and, by night, lots of strip clubs (Montreal is a popular bachelor and bachelorette party destination--who knew?). The fun part is that there are all of these indoor malls along the street, and you can walk from one to another underground if you so choose (a smart thing to do in the winter). I was happy to see Mango, which I feel is now in every North American city except NYC. Local to Canada, however, is Jacob, a Club Monaco-esque chain featuring streamlined basics and work-friendly looks. I really loved Bedo, however--it carries a lot of glam, club-friendly clothing but also suits and other more practical things. It reminded me a lot of Zara (which is a bit farther down the street). For more upscale shopping, Ogilvy is a big Neiman Marcus-esque department store, and further up the street is Canada's famed Holt Renfrew, a more fashion-forward, Barneys-esque store (think Chloe, Balenciaga, etc.). They were having quite a sale when I was there, but unfortunately the American dollar is quite weak, so I refrained.

North of Sherbrooke Street, Rue St. Denis and Rue St. Laurent are a less touristy, more boutiquey shopping stretch. There are a lot of vintage clothing stores on these two streets (Canadiennes call vintage "fripperie"); I loved the one on St. Denis near Sherbrooke (the name is escaping me right now), and Mount Royal Friperie was also quite good, and a bit more affordable. The other stores I liked were Lola & Emily, a boutique that felt like a home and had totally cute stuff; MO851, a store with luxe but affordable sleek leather bags and coordinating clothing; U&I, a pricey but well-edited clothing store with APC, Anglomania, and the like; and Bella Pella, a Lush-like store with homemade skincare and bath products, where I dropped a lot of Canadian dollars on soap (I love handmade soap).

One of my favorite parts of Montreal was the touristy old city--like I said before, it's a lot like the old part of any European city. MW and I were there in the late afternoon on Sunday so many of the shops were closed, but there appeared to be a lot of chic boutiques on Rue St. Paul (the tourist shops are on Rue Notre Dame). Unfortunately, we didn't make it to Westmount, which is supposed to be super-chic. Oh well, maybe next time, eh?
The week in shopping
Catherine Malandrino's spring/summer collection is up to 80% off. 6/21-6/23; 8-8 Thurs., 10-8 Fri., 10-6 Sat.; Metropolitan Pavilion, 123 W. 18th St. (6th & 7th Aves.), 5th fl.

Jonathan Adler's lovably wacky pottery, textiles and furniture is on sale. 6/20-6/24; 10-8 Thurs., 10-7 Fri., 10-6 Sat., 10-2 Sun.; 72 Greene St. (Spring & Broome Sts.).

My big boss went to Alexander Wang's last sale and got some awesome stuff, so I'll definitely be there this time--his innovative knitwear is now wholesale and below. 6/21-6/23; 3-8 Thurs., 10-8 Fri. & Sat.; W Hotel Union Square, 201 Park Avenue South (at 17th St.), 2nd fl., studio 3.

In the Hamptons this weekend? I'm jealous, because you can hit Hollywould's one-day VIP sale, where shoes, handbags, and dresses are up to 60% off. 6/23; 11-5; Mecox Gardens, 257 County Road 39A, Southampton.

Thread Social's adorable dresses are $100-$500 (usually $400-$1,000) at this sale. 6/20-6/21; 9-8; 26 W. 17th St. (5th & & 6th Aves.), ste. 301.

Sexy, low-key jersey pieces from Olga Kapustina are 70% off. 6/21-6/23; 10-7, 10-5 Sat.; 161 W. 22nd St. (6th & 7th Aves.), 3rd fl.

Score pretty (slightly damaged) art books for up to 75% off at Taschen. 6/21-6/23; 11-8; 107 Greene St. (Prince & Spring Sts.).

Perfect for summer, Miguelina's boho-chic tops and dresses are mostly $100 and below. 6/20-6/22; 11-6; 20 W. 36th St. (5th & 6th Aves.), 6th fl.

Boho-chic summer staples from Matta and Pastec are up to 75% off. 6/20-6/23; 11-8, 11-7 Sat.; 459 Broome St. (Mercer & Greene Sts.).

Big-bust-friendly tops, swimwear, and dresses from Shoshanna are mostly under $100. Through 6/20; 10-6; 231 W. 39th St. (7th & 8th Aves.), ste. 422.

Dress yourself like a lady in an ensemble from Carolina Herrera, Nina Ricci, or Rena Lange, for up to 85% off. 6/24-6/26; 9-6:30; 317 W. 33rd St. (8th & 9th Aves.).

Bikinis and swimwear--need I say more? Okay, swimwear from Lenny and shoes from Costanca Basto are 60% off, now $50-$205. 6/20-6/22; 9-6, 9-4 Fri.; 580 Broadway (at Houston St.), ste. 1011.

For all the girly girls out there, Tracy Reese and Plenty by Tracy Reese are on mega-sale. Through 6/20; 8-7; Loft Eleven, 336 W. 37th St. (8th & 9th Aves.), 11th fl.

Simple, chic Blibetroy bags are 30%-70% off. 6/22-6/24; noon-7; 112 S. 1st St. (at Bedford St.), Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

Take 20% off anything you wish when you enter code 6 WAYS at checkout at Searle through 6/25. Promotion also available in stores.

ABC Carpet & Home's furniture is up to 40% off and rugs are up to 75% off at this mega-sale. Through 7/22; visit website for store locations and hours.

Stock and samples are up to 80% off at New York Dog's sale. Through 6/22; 8-8; 133 W. 25th St. (6th & 7th Aves.), ste. 9 east.

Celebrate the relaunch of Cheryl Shops fave Feng Junk by taking 25% off when you enter code makeover at checkout through 6/21.
I just got back from a weekend in Montreal
...so I'm too tired to post anything tonight (aside from this post, of course). Sales and more to come tomorrow. Please check back then!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Object of desire
So, I am still looking for a new scent. To bring you up to speed, my favorite fragrance, Alien by Theirry Mugler, started to smell funny on me, so I began to search for a new one. I fell in love with Creed's Imperial Millesime--a citrusy scent that's very summer-appropriate--and even ordered a (very pricey) bottle...only to discover that it lasts about 30 minutes on my skin, then evaporates. So, back to the drawing board. One perfumerie I am definitely keeping in mind, however, is Bond No. 9. From the gourmand New Haarlem to the fresh Eau de New York, the line creates amazing fragrance after amazing fragrance, and with just one whiff, you can tell they're made with super-high-quality ingredients (um, or you can look at the prices--a 50 ml bottle is $120). There are so many, however, that it's going to take me a while to find my favorite. Which is why the Bon-Bon Box is such a great idea: It features .20 ml vials of 18 of Bond No. 9's delightful scents, which, if you haven't noticed, are named after New York neighborhoods and/or streets. It's a object of desire because of its price: $240, which is not awful, all things considered, but kind of a lot if you figure you're paying for 18 deluxe samples. So in the meantime, I'm going to keep swinging by Bond No. 9's stores (and Saks) and sampling until I find my new signature scent.
Website of the week
When it comes to vintage, you have two choices: Shopping a huge, warehouse-like place requires patience and a good eye; or you can shop at a smaller vintage boutique with a well-edited selection of merchandise--and pay dearly for it. For people like me who love vintage but have neither time nor money to spare, the key is finding a good balance of style and price, and most of the time, it comes down to the store's owner and his or her philosophy. So when I come across a site like Vintage Amore, I think I'd like to go shopping with the owner--in this case, a lovely lass named Suzy. The site has a small but focused collection of vintage clothing so current, you'd swear some of the stock came from H&M or Forever 21 (of course, being vintage, everything here is much more well-made). And that's one of the best parts about shopping vintage--not only are you getting a look that was inspiration for what the designers are currently knocking off this season, you're also getting a totally unique look that you won't see on anyone else.

This bright yellow gauze dress captures summer's boho-chic vibe with the full shape that's so popular this year.


I also like the mod look of this striped dress--the yoke and a-line shape are very current--but I'd leave the belt at home.


How sexy would this sheer babydoll top be with a pair of skinny jeans and peep-toe heels?


This groovy velvet clutch reminds me of the Anna Corinna city tote.


I absolutely love this heavy chain necklace--a much nicer and more unique version of something I've seen at F21.


The best part? Nothing I featured here is over $30--in fact, most of the items on the site are under $20. Sure, it's not as cheap sifting through the Salvation Army, but at these prices, who can complain? If only all vintage shopping could be this easy.

Monday, June 11, 2007

The week in shopping
Lauren Moffatt's girly dresses, tops, and more are on sale. 6/12-6/14; 10-7:30; 214 W. 29th St. (7th & 8th St.), ste. 1503.

Zero Maria Cornejo's sculptural clothing is now 35% off. Through 7/15; 225 Mott St. (Prince & Houston Sts.), 807 Greenwich St. (at Jane St.).

Save 40% at Kirna Zabete's summer sale. 96 Greene St. (Prince & Spring Sts.).

This week, Clothingline has Tory Burch, Rag & Bone, Iisli, and more. 6/12-6/15; 10-6:45 (Tues. & Thurs.), 10-5:45 (Wed. & Fri.); 261 W. 36th St. (7th & 8th Aves.). 2nd fl.

Dress like an It girl with a frock from Marchesa. Sizes 0-12 are available. Through 6/13; 9-6:30 Tues., 9-4 Wed.; 140 W. 57th St. (6th & 7th Aves.), 9th fl.

Accessibly luxe Botkier bags are up to 70% off. 6/14-6/17; 11-7, noon-6 Sun.; 72 Greene St. (Spring & Broome Sts.).

Everything from jeans to runway pieces is 20%-50% off at Diesel. 6/14-7/24; check website for store hours and locations.

Rebecca Minkoff's buttery leather handbags are up to 50% off. 6/14-6/15; noon-8; 340 E. 18th St. (1st & 2nd Aves.), ste. B.

The sale at ultra-hip downtown boutique Opening Ceremony starts Friday; items like Cheap Monday jeans are 30%-60% off. Starts 6/15; 11-8, noon-7 Sun.; 35 Howard St. (Broadway & Crosby St.).

Jill Stuart's flirty spring/summer collection is 30%-50% off. 6/14-6/30; 11-7, noon-6 Sun.; 100 Greene St. (Prince & Spring Sts.).

Score bridal gowns from Alberta Ferretti, Monnique Lhullier, Angel Sanchez, and more for 20%-75% off at Mark Ingram Bridal Atelier. 6/13-6/14; 11-8 Wed., 11-7 Thurs.; 110 E. 55th St. (Park & Lex).

Issey Miyake's avant-garde Japanese clothing is 40% off. Through 7/31; 119 Hudson St. (at N. Moore St.), 802 Madison Ave. (at 67th St.).

OnGossamer's lingerie and sleepwear is 50%-70% off. Through 6/13; 10-4; Carole Hochman Design Group, 135 Madison Ave. (at 31st St.), 6th fl.

Fancy French linens from D. Porthault are up to 40% off. Through 6/23; 10-6 (closed Sun.); 18 E. 69th St. (5th & Madison).

Shoes by French master Robert Clergerie are at least 30% off. Through 7/1; 10-6 (closed Sun.); 19 E. 62nd St. (5th & Madison).

It won't be private for long--Bloomingdale's three-day private sale starts Tuesday.

Save up to 60% at Saks' summer sale, online now, and in stores starting Wednesday.

Spend $200 on fragrance or beauty and get a sample-filled case from Felix Rey at Bergdorf's through 6/24.

Gucci's summer sale is now in effect.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Father's Day Gift Guide
The annual June dilemma: What to get for the second-hardest person to shop for (after your mom, of course)? Here are my top suggestions for dear ol' dad.

For the old-school dad
John Allan's simple, old-fashioned three-piece set keeps your dad well-groomed without giving him any metrosexual anxiety.


For the dad of leisure
This travel backgammon set goes from the living room to the deck to the lake house to the plane with ease. Plus, the bright, aesthetically pleasing color scheme will appeal to Mom.


For the well-read dad

He won't have to hide his Playboys from your mom if you get Dad this Playboy 50 Years - The Cartoons book. after all, he doesn't read Playboy for the articles--he reads it for the cartoons!


For the dad with a sick sense of humor
Because sticking his knives in this Voodoo Knife Holder is much more entertaining than slipping them into any old butcher block.


For the handy dad
What's not to like about this screwdriver set? Dad can use it to fix everything from that wobbly table to his reading glasses, and--added bonus--it's small enough that he can bring it over to your apartment and help you fix stuff.


For the handy dad, part two

If your dad's like mine--he thinks anything can be fixed with duct tape--he'll appreciate this humorously sturdy duct tape wallet. (Uncommon Goods, by the way, is an excellent gift resource.)


For the gearhead dad
If you want an earful, ask my dad about his Thunderbird. Or you can give him this Car Design book, sure to bring back old memories.


For any dad
When in doubt, I buy my dad booze. He's a brandy drinker, but for more mainstream tastes, who's going to turn down this Loch Lomond Inchmoan 13-year Scotch? Bonus: Astor Wines & Spirits is the lone U.S. distributor of this fine beverage.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

CFDA Awards fashion
Last night was the Council of Fashion Designers of America awards, and while who won the awards is of note (you can read about it here), the most important part is who wore what. Now, while this event isn't quite as glamorous at the Met Costume Institute Gala, there is strong emphasis on defining one's design point of view in the fashion universe. In other words, it's all about branding! So, here's who made an impression on me.

Designers are doing it for themselves
Maria Cornejo is incredibly talented, and her designs deserve far more attention than they tend to get. This purple dress has color deep enough to draw attention, but the architectural, interesting shape of it is completely evocative of her typical style.


I wouldn't particularly wear anything from Tory Burch, but I admire and respect what she does, and by wearing this very Palm Beachy dress, she's her own best advertisement. Well, except when Oprah raves about her ballet flats.


Erin Fetherston is another designer where, when you see her wearing her own creations, it all makes sense. I love her ethereal, fairy-princess-like style.


If you're a guy, get a model/socialite to wear it
Swarovski Award for Womenswear winner Philip Lim brought model Irina Lazareanu, who definitely did his gorgeous dress justice. Lim is incredibly talented, and his award was well deserved. Also, don't you think this would make a lovely wedding gown?


One of my favorite designers, believe it or not, is Yigal Azourel, who is a genius with jersey. So I'm glad to see he was representing at the event with socialite Byrdie Bell, whose dress and jacket combo I feel totally captures his design aesthetic.


I think Alexander Wang is certainly a designer we should all be watching; here's Shannan Click (a model, perhaps?) in a dress that's simply chic. Also, didja notice that all the dresses in this section were white? Trend alert!


...or just get a celebrity to wear it
Say what you want about the Mulleavy sisters; I think they're getting more press-savvy by the day. Case in point: the adorable Jenny Lewis, who turned up in Rodarte's appliqued frock.


I haven't been entirely impressed with L'Wren Scott's line of pencil-skirted dresses thus far, but Ellen Barkin is changing my mind--the dresses seem perfectly suited for women of a certain age, who happen to be in good shape.


I tend to call dresses like the one Claire Danes is wearing "Look at My Womb" dresses, due to the emphasis of the seaming, but I have no criticism for this Peter Som frock, which looks absolutely stunning on her.


A tale of two Olsens
Mary-Kate wore a white jersey dress from Elizabeth and James, the twins' new contemporary label; Ashley showed up in a coatdress from The Row, their higher-end line (which I thought was just jersey pieces, but apparently not). Which twin looks more age-appropriate to you?


















Good attempt, wrong event
Amy Astley's Oscar de la Renta dress would be quite lovely in, say, November. But red and black, plus black opaque tights and patent leather closed-toe shoes, aren't exactly appropriate for early June, especially when it's 80 degrees outside.


I love Hollywould's creator Holly Dunlap, especially because she's all about having a cocktail. However, in this dress, it looks like she should be sipping a margarita at a Southampton pool party. As for Chloe Sevigny, whom I also admire, her dress is also too casual and unfortunately unflattering--it's kind of bloated, post-rehab Stevie Nicks.
Websites of the week
As I mentioned yesterday, I spent some time in Soho this weekend, much of it just walking around and browsing. I'm trying not to spend too much money at the moment (ha!), since I'll be moving shortly, so I played a game I like to play when I'm on a tight budget: I call it "If I had $1,000," and I basically go into a store and decide what I'd buy if I had $1,000 to spend. (Try it--you might find it either pleasurable or torturous.) Anyway, I found two (fairly) new stores where I had the most fun playing my little game.

The first store, Te Casan, got quite a bit of attention when it debuted six months ago, and I'm a bit ashamed to say this was my first visit to the store. I'd been holding off, though, because as you know, I love shoes, and I just didn't want to tempt myself. To refresh your memory, Te Casan features exclusive, limited-edition shoes by seven designers who work only for the store. The salespeople are very attentive and knowledgeable, but the true stars are the shoes themselves, which reflect a variety of trends and styles--some are very baroque, others are totally '80s. I found that my favorite designer is Fay Baldock, who, according to her bio, worked with Dries van Noten, a designer I also admire very much. She designed two of my favorite shoes in the store, this mod Mary Jane and this nude pump with gorgeous, unexpected peacock-inspired detail at the heel.


My other favorite designer was former Alexander McQueen employee Gaetano Perrone, whose shoes are architecture-inspired. They're also incredibly sexy, as you can see in this pair, a patent nude pump with trendy square toe and concealed platform, sure to give you mile-long legs.


Those three pairs of shoes pretty much take me to $1,000. In other words, Te Casan's prices are "moderate"--most are in the $200-$300 range--which makes them a doable splurge. Well, one pair at a time, that is.

The second store I discovered was Pinky Otto, which MK and I were attracted to based on the adorable dress in the window. And once we got inside the tiny store, we found dresses upon dresses, all completely and utterly adorable. The great thing about the store is that they carry no more than three of each style, so if you buy a dress there (everything is private label), you won't be seeing it on every other girl south of 14th Street. The catch is that the dresses come in one size...which is small. But don't be discouraged by that--I can wear a 6 or an 8, and everything I tried on fit me; MK, who's a bit smaller than me, looked great in everything she tried on as well. Hey, it's like the real-life equivalent of The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants! Now, supposedly you can shop online, but that function doesn't appear to be working at the moment, so I can't show you what I'd buy with my imaginary $1,000 (to give you an idea, it would probably buy you about five dresses). Nevertheless, I highly suggest checking out the store, especially since this is the year of the dress. I can't wait to see what Pinky Otto comes up with for fall.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Cheryl Spots
So, I was in Soho both Friday and Saturday afternoons last weekend and managed two big fashion-celeb spottings: Friday, outside Dean & Deluca, I noticed a guy wearing Free City sweatpants. I nearly lost my own pants when I realized the wearer of said pants was...Marc freaking Jacobs, my idol. I had to pull over and compose myself before I continued walking down the block. I wonder if he noticed I was carrying one of his (several seasons old) bags. Probably not. Either way, I am happy to report that Marc is tan and healthy-looking.

If I hadn't seen MJ himself the day before, I probably would've been more excited about America's Next Top Model's Jay Manuel, who was walking on Prince, just west of West Broadway, on Saturday afternoon. He was walking on the wrong side of the crowded sidewalk and just as he was about to get all up in my grill, he offered a lispy "sor-ry" and got out of my way. Let me tell you, I saw him half a block away--he has the strangest spiky silver hair, and it is by no means "fierce."
The week in shopping
Shop early and shop often at the ultra-popular Diane von Furstenberg sample sale; dresses are $150. 6/5-6/8; 9-6 Tues., 10-7 Wed. & Thurs., 9-3 Fri.; 260 5th Avenue. (28th & 29th Sts.).

It's time for the women's Theory sale; you pretty much know the drill by now. Through 6/7; 10-6, 10-7 Tue. & Thurs.; 261 W. 36th St. (7th & 8th Aves.), 2nd fl.

6/3–6/7 Nothing beats new sheets; treat yourself to some fancy Frette ones for up to 70% off. Through 6/7; 9-6:30, 9-5 Thurs.; 317 W. 33rd St. (8th & 9th Aves.).

Downtowny Mint by Jodi Arnold clothes are more than 50% off at this sale. 6/5-6/7; 9-7, 9-3 Thurs.; 230 W. 39th St. (7th & 8th Aves.), 2nd fl.

Invest in Valentino before the legendary designer retires; since men's and women's clothing and accessories are at wholesale and below here, you can almost afford to. 6/10-6/13; 9-6:30, 9-5 Wed.; 317 W. 33rd St. (8th & 9th Aves.).

Shop indie designers Cass Guy & LD Tuttle and get 70%-80% off at this joint sale. 6/6-6/7; 9-6; 265 W. 37th St. (7th & 8th Aves.), 21st fl.

Impress all your design-snob friends with a new look from Jil Sander for up to 40% off. 6/7-6/24; 10-6, 10-7 Thurs., noon-5 Sun.; 11 E. 57th St. (5th & Madison Aves.).

Cynthia Steffee's totally accessible looks are $25 and up and this most excellent sale. 6/7-6/8; noon-5 Thurs., 10-5 Fri.; 550 7th Ave. (at 39th St.), 10th fl.

Stock up on knits at Autumn Cashmere, where cotton and cashmere is up to 70% off. 6/5-6/8; 10-6:30; 231 W. 39th St. (7th & 8th Aves.), ste. 924.

Treat your tresses to a pretty accessory from Colette Malouf for $10-$40. 6/7-6/8; 9-7 Thurs., 9-5 Fri.; 594 Broadway (Houston & Prince Sts.), ste. 903.

Felix Rey's fun bags (um, handbags, that is) are up to 75% off. 6/7-6/8; 11-7:30 Thurs., 11-6 Fri.; 611 Broadway (Houston & Bleecker Sts.), ste. 828.

Save 40% on spring looks for women, men, and kids at D&G Dolce & Gabbana. Through 6/17; 11-8, noon-7 Sun.; 434 W. Broadway (Prince & Spring Sts.).

Missed last week's Tahari sample sale? Good news: You've got a second chance! All sizes are available, and pretty much everything is under $100. Through 6/8; 10-7; 247 W. 35th St. (7th & 8th Aves.).

Balenciaga's men's and women's spring collection is 40% off, not that that's really going to help. 6/7-6/17; 11-7, noon-5 Sun.; 542 W. 22nd St. (10th & 11th Aves.).

at Christopher Fischer: so much more than just cashmere, and now $30-$150. 6/7-6/9; 10-7; 80 Wooster St. (Prince & Spring Sts.).

Fight the other sneaker freaks at Classickicks' sale, where Nike Air Max 90's, Adidas Stan Smith Velcro sneakers, and Vans Sk8-His are $30-$150. 6/7-6/9; 11-7; 298 Elizabeth St. (Bleecker & Houston Sts.).

Stock up on barbecue-related goods at Broadway Panhandler's weekend sale. 6/7-6/11; 11-8 Thurs., 11-7 Fri. & Sat., 11-6 Sun. & Mon.; 65 E. 8th St. (Broadway & Greene Sts.).