Monday, April 28, 2014

Menagerie On Park Avenue

Last week I attended a cocktail party for the Fund for Park Avenue ( ) at Scully & Scully (, to celebrate the Park Avenue tulips.  The Fund basically beautifies Park Avenue and keeps it one of the prettiest streets in NYC.  Every Spring Scully & Scully hosts this cocktail party and I always look forward to seeing all the lovely merchandise there.  My favorite part of the store is the jewelry section (of course) and all the animal themed jewels they have. Fine animal jewelry is classic and adds just the right amount of whimsy to a conservative suit.

Scully & Scully's collection of cuff links is quite remarkable.  They have every animal I could possibly think of in stunning detail.  Here are a few of my favorites:

Parrots and longhorns
(The longhorns are perfect for Texas cattle barons...)

Elephants and horses

Tigers and sharks
(I love the sharks for Wall Street tycoons)

Scully & Scully has plenty of beautiful jewelry for women as well.  I love how intricate the animal pins are:

A gorgeous peridot frog pin

Giraffe and tiger pins, with brown spots and black stripes, respectively

A regal rooster pin with a ruby crest

A playful dolphin pin

A sparkly zebra pin

Two other pieces caught my eye:

Safari cuff bracelet with zebra, giraffe & leopard

The frog had a friend...a stylish starfish bracelet

On the way out there were pretty tulip cookies as party favors.  I neglected to photograph mine before my friend ate it.  I hear it was quite tasty, but I'd rather have that amazing frog pin....

Friday, April 25, 2014

Purses & Pursenalities

A couple of days ago I attended one of my favorite annual luncheons, the "purse luncheon", to benefit the Madison Square Boys & Girls Club.  The Purses & Pursenalities luncheon is very popular amongst New York's social and fashionable ladies.  Every year about a hundred purses, many luxury brands, are sold via silent auction to raise funds for Madison Square and yesterday over $90,000 was raised via the auction!

A sampling of the purses in the silent auction

In addition, at least one designer is honored for their charitable endeavors and there is always a well known MC.  This year Mr. Chuck Scarborough, NBC News anchorman in NYC, was the MC and three designers were honored and received awards:  Elaine Turner (  ), Laura Vela and Yliana Yepez.  Each designer had a display table so luncheon attendees could see the stylish accessories in their collections.

The Elaine Turner display

The Laura Vela display

The Yliana Yepez display

This was the ninth purse luncheon.  I think I started attending the second year, and it keeps getting more an more popular, which is fabulous for the charity and for the guests.  This year I attended with Accessory Generation advertiser Conlyn Chan the CEO of Lawless Accessories (  Lawless donated one of their signature clutch bags to the auction and Conlyn and I carried Lawless clutches, of course.

Lawless Accessories CEO Conlyn Chan holding the bags we carried.  
The black clutch on the table to the right is the beautiful clutch she donated to the silent auction.

We were fortunate enough to be seated with the reigning Miss New York, the lovely Amanda Mason.  Amanda was very sweet and posed for plenty of photos and even took out her crown for us!

Me with Miss New York 2013 Amanda Mason

Amanda showing us her elegant crown

The lunch was so much fun and on the way out everyone received a purse shaped goody bag from Skinnygirl containing four delicious flavored sparkling waters.

The goody bag, a sweet treat, courtesy of Skinnygirl

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Easter Parade

Me at the Easter Parade

Even though I've lived in Manhattan half my life (and was born here) I've never been to the Easter Parade, mostly because I'm usually out of town Easter weekend.  But, I've always wanted to go and this year I finally made it to the tail end (no pun intended).  It was another "first" of sorts today as I made a selfie video standing in front of St. Patrick's Cathedral.  Note to selfie:  put on some make up and have someone else shoot the video.....Vanity aside, I've uploaded it here mostly because I want to show off my hat.  It's so rare to get to wear a hat in NYC, that I relish the opportunity.  This hat, from Lord & Taylor, was a gift from a (now ex) boyfriend one Easter.  He was also enterprising enough buy a lovely hat box for it. I haven't worn it in a long time, but am glad I had the opportunity today.

My Easter 'Bonnet' and hat box

New York's famed Easter Parade started in the 1870's and was, of course, featured in the 1948 movie "Easter Parade" starring Fred Astaire and Judy Garland.  My mom introduced me to the movie at some point when it had already become a classic, and ever since it's been one of my favorites.  Today the hats are a little more kitsch than glamour, but still a lot of fun to look at.   Below are photos of some of the creative Easter bonnets I saw on Fifth Avenue today, and a glimpse at other Easter traditions I spied as I wandered up and down the avenue.  I don't know any of the people in the photos, they were just very cooperative strangers enjoying the parade.

This is a hat of fresh flowers the lady was carrying

When I ventured into Rockefeller Center there were a lot of giant eggs, decorated by various artists and designers as part of a giant egg hunt.  While not exactly accessories, in the spirit of Easter I'll share two I thought were particularly pretty:

And, who doesn't love a giant bunny topiary balancing a giant egg on his nose?

What is Easter without chocolate eggs or chocolate anything?  Chocolatiers like Teuscher and Godiva were doing big business today.

The beautifully decorated window at Teuscher

Making chocolate dipped strawberries at Godiva

Just as I was about to turn off Fifth Avenue and head home I spotted the most adorable baby bunny...

Happy Easter everyone!  May this season of rebirth bring us all peace and tranquility.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Hat Luncheon Countdown Part 4: Trying My Fascinator On For Size

After working very hard on my hat, a fascinator, for several weeks Tracy Young of Millinery Treasures emailed me to let me know my hat was finished and I just needed to try it on to make sure it fit properly and I was happy with the design.

Tracy Young, and her daughter, Alexandrine, with the carefully wrapped hatbox 

When I met Tracy and her lovely daughter, Alexandrine, for the big reveal I had an idea what the fascinator might look like, because I had sent Tracy a photo of some that I liked as a general guide.  Aside from saying I wanted a red fascinator with a sinamay curlicue, I had given Tracy creative license in designing my hat, but I  still just assumed my hat would be fairly simple.  I was not expecting what I saw when Tracy opened the box.

A first glimpse at my hat in the box

I think I may actually have squealed with delight!  Tracy has made me the most fabulous and amazing fascinator in the history of fascinators.  It is not at all the simple hat that I was expecting, but it has the curlicue I wanted and then some, and I absolutely love it.  It is a creative showstopper!  Tracy did an incredible job and I can barely wait until the Hat Luncheon to wear it.

And, speaking of waiting until the Hat Luncheon....I have decided not to reveal a full frontal view of my fascinator until the day of the luncheon, because I don't want to ruin the surprise.  I will take a photo of myself in my full outfit at the luncheon and post it.  But, in the meantime, we took a photo of the back of the fascinator.   

The rear view of my fascinator

It's too late to order a custom made Easter bonnet from Tracy, but there are many more occasions to wear hats this Spring and Summer, including this upcoming Hat Luncheon.  Here is the contact information for Millinery Treasures if anyone would like to inquire about a hat:

The world's most fabulous fascinator and I will see you at the Hat Luncheon in early May!

Sunday, April 13, 2014

LJ Cross

LJ Cross jewelry video

Today is Palm Sunday, the beginning of Holy Week leading up to Easter Sunday.  It is also Passover, starting tomorrow.  Billions of people around the world will be celebrating this week and many will don personal symbols of faith such as the cross.  Even people who are not particularly religious often find inspiration and inner peace from wearing a symbol of faith close to their heart all year round.  And, elaborate and beautifully crafted crosses are also being worn as statement pieces and are now part of mainstream fashion, all of which makes this a perfect moment to take a look at a new line of inspirational jewelry, LJ Cross, from designer Lisa Jackson.

Lisa Jackson wearing a rose gold mosaic cross set with 
champagne diamonds on a silk cord
(photo courtesy of LJ Cross)

Both an interior designer and now a jewelry designer, (and impressively currently attending Harvard Business School's Executive Program) Lisa Jackson, was inspired to launch her beautiful collection of cross jewelry this February as a homage to her late brother who often wore crosses.  Lisa's fine jewelry line is a feminine mix of mostly rose and white gold pieces, some big and bold and glittering with diamonds, some petite and delicate with minimalist style.  When I visited Lisa at her design studio this past week I was entranced by some of the pieces and drawn especially to the ones encrusted with diamonds that are a stunning mix of classic style and modern design.  Below are some of my favorites.

A close up look at the mosaic cross Lisa is wearing above.
(photo courtesy of LJ Cross)

A white gold cobblestone cross set with diamonds on a black silk cord
(photo courtesy of LJ Cross)

The double cobblestone cross necklace is a trademark piece of the collection.
(photo courtesy of LJ Cross)

This ethereal moonstone cross is a beautiful statement piece. 

Another statement piece in rutilated quartz on a ribbon.  Very unique!

Diamond studded open cross on a silk cord
(photo courtesy of LJ Cross)

What would a visit to a jewelry studio or salon be for me without the chance to try something on?  The open cross diamond rings in rose and white gold called to me.  I really like how bold, yet glam they are.

 Open cross and diamond rings in rose and white gold

A better view of the rose gold open cross diamond ring
(photo courtesy of LJ Cross)

For a more extensive look at the LJ Cross collection you can visit their web site or visit the Phoenix Roze store on Madison Avenue in Manhattan.