Saturday, August 25, 2012

Baby's First Pair of Choos

My mother tells me that, as a baby and small child, I loathed shoes.  She said it was a huge fight to get me to wear them and/or tights, even in the winter.  Hard to believe considering how I LOVE shoes now. 

In last Sunday's New York Times Style Magazine there was an article about Bergdorf Goodman's new shoe salon and they mentioned Manolos (a personal favorite) a lot.  That got me thinking about my first pair of Manolos and my first pair of Jimmy Choos, the two brands that are synonymous in pop culture with luxury shoes, thanks in large part to Carrie Bradshaw on Sex in the City. 

My first Manolos were purchased at their fabulous annual sale over a decade ago.  I got there a few days into the sale.  I didn't want to brave the line that forms the first day in the bitter cold so decided to wait and take my chances.  There wasn't a huge selection left in my size and when the saleswoman suggested these I didn't really love them.  I was hoping for something more basic, but once I put them on I was hooked!  They look smashing with a gray pencil skirt and jazz up an otherwise sedate outfit.  For half price shoes I almost passed over they are still going strong in my wardrobe over a decade later.

Gray, green and pink Manolo Blahnik slingback stilettos.
Close up of the front of the shoes
From the moment I put these shoes on I became a Manolo girl.  If you wear Manolos you know what I'm talking about.  Sex in the City sparked a "are you a Manolo or a Choo girl?" debate.  I think they both make beautiful shoes, and I do have some Choos, but overall I find the Manolos fit me better.  I try to get to their sales when I can, because they have some great deals.
As for the first pair was also about a decade ago.  They were a gift from an ass of a boss who was trying to keep me from quitting on him.  Trust me nothing gave me greater pleasure than going over to the Jimmy Choo store and buying a pair full price (which he bitched about to the saleswoman on the phone when she called him for his cc#).   He was so obnoxious to the sales woman on the phone that she didn't charge him tax because she was afraid to call him back and tell him there was tax on the price she had quoted him.  She certainly empathized with me and realized exactly why I deserved the shoes!  He is now long gone as my boss, but the shoes are still part of my collection.  No point in throwing the baby out with the bathwater!

Plaid with leather flower Mary Jane Jimmy Choos.
So, I want to know, are you Manolo girls or Choo girls?  Feel free to send photos of your favs!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Cowgirl Chic

Cowboy boots and booties are back in a big way this Fall.  They've been back for a couple seasons, but things seem to be peaking this Fall.  In fact, I think I'm going to cave and buy a pair of cheap tan suede cowbooties for Fall.  I saw some I loved, but passed a couple times and now I regret it and can't find them.  Project for next week....The reason I'm going to get inexpensive ones is because this trend can't last too much longer.  Here is a picture of really nice, expensive ones from Roger Vivier that I spotted on line...I'm lusting after these....

Vivier tan suede cowboy influenced ankle booties

Of course I already have several pairs of cowboy boots and booties, but they are all vintage and not tan.  I had a fabulous pair of vintage Frye cowboy boots, but during one of my periodic decluttering, downsizing frenzies I gave them away (stupid, stupid, stupid) and deeply regret it.  The three pairs of vintage I have now are still in great condition, and I think I'm going to keep the tall boots, but am probably going to sell the booties, because I can't really see myself wearing them any time soon.  In fact, I think I am going to start selling some of my accessories on Ebay because I have accumulated too much and feel a decluttering episode coming on again. 

Vintage black suede Chilies cowboy boots

I used to wear these with black stirrup pants (okay, dating myself here), black turtleneck and a green blazer when it was cold out and I wanted to be comfortable, but still have some pizzazz on casual work days.  This time around I may pair them with a black dress.

My cowboy booties, or cowbooties as I like to call them, are both Guess.  The black ones are the same ones everyone had in the 90's.  Mine are still in pretty good condition.  I used to wear them with black or blue jeans and a black blazer when I went out with my girlfriends.

Vintage black leather Guess cowbooties

I also have a very special, and I suspect uncommon, pair in white.  I remember buying them because I had not seen anyone with white ones and I had a pair of dark navy jeans with white stitching that they looked amazing with.  (I still have those jeans and they are now vintage, lol.)  The only problem is that NYC is not the cleanest place to wear white cowboy boots, so I only wore them a handful of times.  They are in excellent condition and so comfortable.  If I lived in Texas or Southern California I would keep them and make them a Fall staple.

Vintage Guess white cowbooties

If you're into western wear enjoy the cowboy boot/bootie trend, just please pass on the fringes.  Unless you plan to ride around town on a horse fringes on boots or pants are just over the top and ridiculous.  Fringes are okay on bags as long as they are not paired with an outfit of western wear, because that just screams rodeo.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

In Love With Love and Some Ducklings

Two of my current favorites purchased at local shops in Katonah....not expensive, but fun.  (Special thanks to the cockatoo for letting me use his beautiful feathers as a backdrop.  More of his photos from this photoshoot can be seen on his blog:

I love the "love" jewelry.  Not only do the pieces make sweet gifts for loved ones, but they are an important reminder to women to take time out to love themselves. 

Love ring on a cockatoo featherbed

On a human finger...

This necklace just makes me smile.....

Duck with ducklings necklace..

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Shoe Mandala

I was in Marshall's shoe store in Bedford Hills looking around and spotted these cute Adrienne Vittadini flats on clearance.

 I'd seen them at TJ Maxx as well and then remembered that Marshall's and TJ's have the same parent company.  They were so cute and so inexpensive I decided to buy them just to hack around in.  A couple of years ago I remember that Kate Spade was selling adorable flats with rhinestone buckles on them that I loved but didn't buy because they were pricey and while I always wear sparkly heels to black tie events and cocktail parties, I figured I wouldn't get much use out of rhinestone flats.  These two pairs together were still just a fraction of the cost of one of those Kate Spade pairs, so I'm glad I had some shoe willpower for once. 

The black ones, which I'm pretty sure are faux patent, actually look waterproof, which is an added bonus, because I'm always lamenting that I don't have any cute shoes to wear in the rain.  The colorful ones are fabric.  I love the  rhinestones--very glam!  There was also a similar style in ivory with a slightly different rhinestone embellishment, but sadly not in my size or a close size that I could make fit.  (Another TJ's may have them yet!) The backs of these are stretchy so the sizing is a bit fluid. 

As I was playing with them at home I created a mesmerizing shoe mandala.

At least it was mesmerizing to me because shoes and things that sparkle always capture my attention.  When the shoes fall apart I can take off the rhinestones and use them in some crafty way, like for a hair clip.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Summer Sparkles

I don't wear a lot of fancy jewelry in the summer because I don't get that dressed up.  But, I think summer is a great time to wear a little sparkle and to pull out the more delicate pieces with bare arms and tan skin (for those of you who get a tan).  Before I run out the door I've been throwing on one fun piece, like a colorful costume necklace or a watch with a brightly colored band.  Nothing expensive, just a little pop of color to brighten up summer whites and linens.  I've also been wearing my Pomellato Do Do bracelets every day, party because I can't get them off, and partly because I love them (mostly because I love them) and they're just so easy.  The tri colored beads on them are perfect for summer and they look great with my two tone watch.  This week, in Katonah, I found some really cute, brightly colored beaded bracelets with little charms on them that are so adorable I couldn't resist.  I decided to spice up the Do Do trio and add them to my wrist.

Fun stretchy beaded bracelets with sparkly charms

Raspberry beads with horseshoe charm

Rust colored beads with sparkly butterfly

They blend in really nicely and add a punch of color to the Do Dos...They also continue the theme of animal charms.

Lots of ch-arm candy....

Of course, on my wrist they all get scrunched up together, which is how to wear them for that beachy summer look.  If you don't feel very creative lots of stores sell sets that achieve the same look, but I think it's fun and more personal to assemble your own stack as the summer progresses.

Casual summer wrist sparkle

Obviously, I chose bright, bold colorful bracelets, but stacks of neutrals work well in summer, too.  I just sent a set of the stretchy beaded bracelets in neutral colors to a friend for her birthday.  Hers are actually different colors of wooden beads, also a summer staple.  I hope she likes them!    If any readers are sporting a look similar to this I'd love to see photos and maybe I'll post them on this blog.