Fall 2013 Couture

I know that summer has only just begun and we still have many more months ahead, but the fall 2013 couture shows have started! Now, I’m already looking forward to fall and all the fashion goodness that comes with it. Valentino’s fall 2013 couture collection is especially wondrous and inspiring. Not that these clothes are wearable for everyday, nor are they anywhere near affordable (for my budget at least), but they are so gorgeous and dreamy that they inspire my imagination.

The collection was based on the “wunderkammer” idea, which was a 17th  and 18th century fascination the very (very) wealthy had with cabinets of curiosity, in which they collected rare and precious items such as shells, jewels, taxidermy and oddities. Inspiring, indeed. The embellishments seen throughout the collection give reference to this idea. However, what’s interesting (and lets face it, more wearable) is the variety of simple yet elegant sheaths, coats and separates that reference this idea of luxury.

The more sedate and plain looks might be a way of referencing the display in a more obscure way. The outside “cabinet” not revealing the luxurious wonders kept inside? Just a thought, but that is the point of this fabulous collection. 

Since I won’t be able to run out and actually purchase any of these looks, I’m taking mental notes of the tweed skirts and jackets, simple dresses and plaids with embellishments and the camel, black, smoky grey and jewel-ish reds, blues and yellow schemes. If a girl can’t be part of the “wunderkammer” collectors of the modern age, at least now with the power of the Internet, she can see these wonders in the form of Valentino.

Images found at Vogue.com.  

Travel In Style


Travel outfits

After many years of air travel, I think I have my travel outfit down. You want to look chic, but ultimately, comfort is the main key, especially if the travel involves any kind of overnight or long plane experience. While this will, of course, vary, based on your own travel needs, here is what works for me.

I’ve narrowed it down to two variations on the same theme, depending on if I’m travelling to a city or to a more laid back destination. The main elements remain the same, but a few accessory changes make all the difference. Let’s start with the basics. Comfortable pants, like these “sweats” (above) from J.Crew are a perfectly acceptable alternative to jeans, and won’t leave you looking slovenly upon arrival. They will, however, keep you comfortable and able to contort yourself into the most comfy position for the flight. Quite a feat! A tank with a denim button up will pull the look together a bit, but won’t wrinkle terribly and can go with whatever you’ve packed for the trip. A large colorful scarf is a definite must to protect against drastic temperature changes and the inevitable germs that always seem to be floating around on planes. A blanket tucked into a big carry-all bag also helps to make the travel experience a little cozier. Shoes and a hat are where the difference really comes in—wear boots or simple shoes, and, of course, a hat, in case you arrive and your hair is not looking quite up to par. And lastly, a watch, to make sure you don’t miss your flight!

If you see me at the airport in the next few weeks, I’ll be wearing the more relaxed version of this travel look and hoping that I look pulled together enough for an upgrade! 

Q&A with Sarah York: Blogger/Textile Designer

As a textile designer with impeccable taste, Sarah York fits right in with the San Francisco style scene. As one of our bloggers, we caught up with her recently to learn about what this 29-year-old designer is eyeing right now. 

How would you describe your personal style?

It's eclectic, classic, bohemian, and feminine. I would like to think I have a bit of modern edge as well, but that is probably just in my mind.

What’s your favorite brand of denim?

At the moment, Thvm. I also love Jbrand. 

What fashion designer (or beauty brand) are you eyeing right now?

I love, love, love Suno for their print and pattern mixing and feminine sillouettes. I also love that they produce their clothes in Africa and bring manufacturing to countries that need the business to help their developing economies (and pay them fairly). Another brand that does this (and I love their style as well) is Maiyet. 

What’s your favorite skin care item?

Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer or lip balm.

What fashion tip would you give to someone for the upcoming season?

Wear more prints! And, prints with prints. Experiment. Fashion is meant to be fun.

If money were no object, what spa or beauty treatment/service would you be addicted to?

Facials. I would have one every month. Or, on some kind of an on-going basis. 

On occasions when you need to get ready in a rush, what is your quick ‘n’ easy beauty routine?

Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer, Loreal Voluminous mascara, and some lip balm. If I have an extra moment, I'll swipe on some Nars Orgasm blush.

What is the most unusual or surprising beauty product in your arsenal?

Baking soda. It whitens teeth, and works as a gentle facial scrub.

What beauty products would we find in your purse?

Probably at least five lip balms, lip glosses, etc. A hairbrush. Water. I think that definitely counts as a beauty product.

You’re traveling, and can only bring one bag: what favorite beauty/fashion items stay home, and what must go with?

When I travel, I try to pack light, but it also totally depends on where I'm going. I always bring a scarf and some jewelry to change up my clothes when I'm repeating an outfit. Flats are essential when travelling. Also, minimal makeup, and red lipstick for some added fun. Things like a hair dryer, heels, many changes of clothes, those stay at home.

Mani or pedi?


Lip gloss or lip balm?

I'm trying to overcome a lipbalm addiction!

Heels or flats?

Flats! Who can walk in San Francisco in heels?

Like Butter

You know the phrase, “like butter”? It means something works so smoothly and is so easy it’s like, well, melted butter. I recently came across something that fit that description. butter LONDON nail polish. It was truly the smoothest nail polish I’ve ever used and the results of painting my own nails were so smooth, shiny and error free, I was shocked. Usually I go for OPI, Essie, Revlon, or whatever else happens to be at the drug store. However, recently I was in the market for something a bit more natural without harsh chemicals, yet still with plenty of color options and I was not impressed by the selection at Whole Foods.

Then I remembered butter LONDON is a carcinogen-free nail polish that comes in a wide range of colors that are fashion-oriented and fresh each season. While not the most inexpensive option at $15 a bottle, I decided my health was worth it. I purchased the "tops and tails," which is the base and top-coat. These worked wonderfully by making the color go on smoothly and the finished result shiny. For color, I went with "blowing rasberries," a reddish hue with a tinge of pink that is a classic, easy-to-wear color. Definitely a winner! Now, I’m longingly looking at all the cool shades that are listed on their website and dreaming of my next purchase. I think next I might go with "Cake Hole," a neon pink, "Yummy Mummy," a taupey neutral or maybe "Union Jack Black," a MET Gala punkish black color. There are so many to choose from. What I do know is that the next time I need to purchase a nail polish, the decision of which brand to choose will be like butter.

Images: www.butterlondon.com

Summer Style


Summer Vacation


Summer is just around the corner and that puts me in the mood for a vacation. Maybe it’s a trained response from childhood, but as soon as May hits, I am ready for sun and fun. This summer, I am lucky enough to have a trip to Turkey booked, and I have been eagerly planning what to bring on the trip. It will be quite hot on the Aegean Sea, so I’m thinking light sun dresses, sandals, hats, and fun accessories. All of which are light-weight and easily mixed and matched, which is the key to vacation packing. This is my current vacation wish-list with a bit of gypset flair. I think it could really be a vacation wish-list for any sun-filled destination this summer. Whether you’re going to Turkey, Hawaii, Mexico, or just having a stay-cation at the local beach. Add some fun to your wardrobe and enjoy the summer! Fall will be here before we know it.