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Roland Mouret Hits Banana Republic 8/7!

Monday, August 4th, 2014

Banana Republic keeps pulling out great designer collaborations and their next one with Roland Mouret, is hitting stores on August 7th.  I love designer collaborations and  most major designers are jumping on the bandwagon.  It makes sense for all involved.  The retailer gets an association with a big name designer and the designer gets introduced to other markets.  It’s a win-win for both.

Roland Mouret was born in Paris in 1962 and had no more training than a 3 month stint at a Parisian fashion college in 1979.  Somehow, despite his lack of formal training, he seemed to understand the way a dress in particular, should fit a woman’s body.  He partnered with the Meyers (Sharai and Andre’) who bought his namesake line in 1998.  Mouret introduced his Galaxy dress in his 2006 collection and it was an immediate success sending ripples through the fashion world.  Vogue Magazine said  ”for weeks you [couldn't] open a newspaper or magazine without seeing another young Hollywood A-lister wearing it”.  Less than 2 months later,  he split with his backers, the Meyerses and neither side ever elaborated on the break up.  Mouret took a 2 year break and launched RM by Roland Mouret and eventually bought back the rights to the Roland Mouret name in September 2010.  He opened his first retail store in London in 2011.

Roland Mouret

Victoria Beckham in Roland Mouret Moon dress

Roland Mouret

Roland Mouret’s iconic Galaxy dress

Roland Mouret has designed a 25 piece collection for Banana Republic and it will be available on August 7th, and will feature a beautiful mixture of skirts, trousers, tops and dresses in a muted, classic color palette. There is no doubt Mouret’s iconic dresses in particular, will be the most popular.  With price points between $49.50 and $165.00, everyone can afford a piece from this talented designer!  The limited-edition items feature the retail brand’s signature Sloan fabric — a rich, bistretch material that Mouret hand-draped, cut, and pinned on the body to create his classic hourglass structure. Heavy Sigh

Roland Mouret

Photo: Banana Republic

Roland Mouret

Photo: Banana Republic

 

Roland Mouret

Photo: Banana Republic

Roland Mouret

Photo: Banana Republic

As readers may recall, I had quite an adventure acquiring a certain Marimekko skirt when BR launched their collaboration with the Swedish fabric line.  I am a little wiser and a lot smarter now, so I have my list of must-haves from the Roland Mouret collection, and I am sure, a story to share. Stay tuned.

PS-  BR cardholders get a chance to buy a day early online.  Go sign up for a credit card, NOW!

PPS- check out this video for the collection featuring Karolina Kurkova http://youtu.be/ZLG2oKIwhSc

 

A Tale of Two Skirts.

Tuesday, May 27th, 2014

Those of you who read my blog last week knew about the Marimekko and Banana Republic collaboration launching last week.  Being the fashionista that I am, I logged onto the Banana Republic site on Tuesday afternoon (a perk of being a BR cardholder ) to order a skirt from the collection.  Much to my dismay, my coveted skirt was SOLD OUT online!   I was devastated.  This is no ordinary skirt, it is THE Kivet Print patio skirt .   I placed an online order sans the patio skirt and hoped for the best when the stores opened on Thursday morning…

The coveted Kivet Patio Skirt

The coveted Kivet Patio Skirt

A little background, the Kivet Print patio skirt was the hottest item in the collection, especially since Jamie Chung was spotted in LA wearing it with black pumps, a red clutch and a matching Kivet print sweater.   That sent every fashionista, stylist and celeb wannabe,  into an all out frenzy.

Jamie Chung in the Kivet Patio Skirt and Sweater

Jamie Chung in the Kivet Patio Skirt and Sweater

Come Thursday morning at 9:40 am, I secure the 1st spot in line at the entrance to the Grant St., S.F., Banana Republic store (those of you who know me personally, know that I am a freakishly punctual person, so, naturally, I was in the garage waiting at 9:15 am).   I could see the collection through the windows and was trying to see the location of the Patio skirt.    People start to line up behind me.  I should note here, that I lived in NYC for 10 years, so don’t EVEN try to cut me in line!

BR outside

After waiting for what seems like forever, they open the doors at 10:03.  I frantically weave through the other shoppers, only to arrive to the rack with only 2 items on it, a size 2 and a size 0.   “What to do, what to do”, I think to myself.  I end up procuring a size 0 which, unfortunately, is nowhere close to my size 8 figure.

After milling around the store for a bit, I meet a very disappointed gal who needs a size 0.  We cajoled a salesperson with at 4 to give it to me, while I gave my size 0 to a very grateful company employee/fellow shopper.  I was getting closer to my 8.  I tried on the 4 and big surprise, it’s too small.  I decide that my talented seamstress with be able to let out the pleats in the back to transform a 4 into an 8.  I buy the 4 along with a few other cute pieces and hang around a bit.  Hey, 20 years in retail had to teach me something, right?  I spot a salesperson with a 10 and 12 heading for the fitting rooms.  The size 12 fits the customer who reserved them, so I snatch the 10 from the shocked salesperson and it’s MINE!  It’s still not an 8, but only one size off.  I leave the store with 2 patio skirts (size 4 and 10), feeling victorious!

www.theclassycubicle.com

www.theclassycubicle.com

Later that day, I post to craigslist.org for a trade and come up short…no one has an 8.  Meanwhile I get many offers for my 4, as I clearly state that without an 8, I’m keeping the 10.  Then it hits me, eBay!  I list the $98 skirt for $100 starting bid, with a $250 “Buy Me Now” price.  I can hardly believe it, but two hours later, I have a notification that my skirt has been purchased at $250.  Let me say that again, $250!  I am beyond ecstatic as I contemplate someone buying a $98 skirt for $250.  I am at a loss as I think to myself,  ”this is a CRAZY business”.

I’d love to hear if anyone else was lucky enough to get the Kivet Patio skirt.   Tell me your story!

Marimekko, Banana Republic, a Great Team!

Tuesday, May 20th, 2014

Exciting news from clothing purveyor Banana Republic,  Marimekko, the iconic Finnish fabric design and fashion house, is partnering with them for a wonderful capsule collection.  I have always been a big fan of Marimekko fabrics and their prints are just so FUN, no doubt about it!  They have created, or in some cases reimagined, vintage prints, to put together a really inspiring clothing group.

photo courtesy of bananarepublic.ccm

photo courtesy of bananarepublic.ccm

I love when retailers collaborate with designers and the outcome is a more affordable group.  Although Marimekko is not very high end, their fabric designs are always imaginative and feel very Scandinavian in it their aesthetic.  Marimekko has done some very successful collaborations with Crate & Barrel stores, where customers pick their Marimekko fabric and have a custom table cloth made for them.  They are also launching a showroom in the EQ3 store in San Francisco at the end of May.

Marimekko started in 1949 in Helsinki, Finland and was Printex before it was renamed Marimekko.  Their first fashion show was held in 1951 and the crowds were so excited, they practically bought the garments off of the model’s backs!  The first Marimekko store opened the following year.  Their most iconic and recognizable print is Unikko, an abstract interpretation of poppies.

unikko

Marimekko has it’s own stores as well as being carried in stores all around the world.  The store locator can help you find the store nearest you.

The Banana Republic collection includes shorts, skirts, dresses, pants, tops and a few cute clutches.  Everything is priced at $39.50-$130, a very doable price point!  It went on sale today for BR cardholders on their website and is available in stores starting Thursday, May 22nd.  The black and white skirt in the top picture is already sold out online, so I think that means there will be a lot of excitement around this launch.  I’ve already placed orders for my clients (and me)!

BR maxi

BR short set

BR short dress

BR clutch

Pantone 2014 Color of the Year is Here!

Saturday, February 15th, 2014

Pantone has announced the color of the year for 2014 in the usual flush of excitement and fanfare.  Pantone is THE authority on all things related to color.  So, drumroll please…the color for 2014 is RADIANT ORCHID!!! 

Pantone's 2014 color of the year, Radiant Orchid

Pantone’s 2014 color of the year, Radiant Orchid

While I think this is a lovely color, will this be a color that most women and men can relate to???  I combed my closet to see if I already owned any Radiant Orchid.  I came up with a work out top, that someone gave to me.  While I don’t have anything against Radiant Orchid, it is not the first (or second, or third, etc) color that I would reach for.  I then started to think about my clients and whether this would speak to any of their sartorial leanings.  The answer is not really, except for maybe one client.  She tends towards softer colors and never wears black!  So, that begs the question of whether just because a color has the designation of ‘color of the year’, do we try to incorporate it into our wardrobes?

My Orchid workout top

My Orchid workout top

There are a lot of other ways to wear Radiant Orchid besides a dress, top or jeans. Why not a Orchid colored handbag or clutch?  What about an purple hued pair of ballet flats or other kind of shoe?  Don’t forget that the beauty industry is also influenced by Pantones color forecasts.  Radiant Orchid is a great color for makeup.  What about a beautiful blush or eye shadow in this years’ color?

Pantone color board

The color board above gives some other ways to wear this sometimes difficult hue.  Take a look at the other colors in the 2014 fashion forecast this year.  I can really relate to Celosia Orange, Cayenne and Hemlock below.  So will anyone really care if I opt for a blush in the color of the year instead of a statement piece?  Probably not!  What do you think of Radiant Orchid, 2014 color of the year?  C’mon, don’t be shy…

Pantone fashion color forecast

Pantone fashion color forecast

Peter Pilotto hits the Target!!!

Monday, February 3rd, 2014

Peter Pilatto for Target #3Target is truly the benchmark when it comes to designer collaborations, it made Isaac Mizrahi a household name after all!  Well, for those of you obsessed with getting designer styles at a fraction of the cost, the wait is over.  Peter Pilotto and Christopher De Vos,  co-creators of the Peter Pilotto line have designed a capsule collection for Target.  It hits Target stores/website on February 9th, as well as Net-a-Porter.com.  That means those living outside of the U.S. can buy it too, c’est magnifique!

Peter Pilotto and Christopher De Vos are London based designers and met whilst studying at Antwerp’s prestigious Royal Academy of Fine Arts in 2000.  Pilotto is half Austrian and half Italian and De Vos is half Belgian and half Peruvian.  Pilotto’s passion is wonderful prints and textiles while De Vos leans toward silhouette and draping.  Together, they are just genius!

Capsule collection for Target

The collection is so interesting in the way it pairs Pilotto’s graphic and sometimes crazy prints with the architectural design of De Vos.  Almost the entire line is priced below $60 and keep in mind that a real Peter Pilotto dress can cost upwards of $2000!  Some have described their sensibility at Fem-Geek, which hits the nail on the head.

 

The line includes staples like dresses (can you say summer parties?), skirts, pants tops, as well as bathing suits, accessories (totes and clutches) and even a beach towel.  I was a little disappointed with the quality of the Philip Lim for Target collection, so I hope this latest collaboration is a step up.

Peter Pilatto for Target #4

I love the playfulness of the prints and the wear-ability of the dresses.  Until it comes out, it is hard to gauge how well it will fit.  Although from the lookbook, it seems to skew towards the younger side, I think some of the separates worn with a solid would be great on any age.  It’s all about what you wear it with, yes?

Peter Pilatto for Target #2Anyone have their eye on anything???  For the full lookbook, check out fashionista.com and let me know what you like … Happy shopping!

 

 

Lesley Evers Warehouse sale!

Tuesday, October 15th, 2013

One of my favorite designers is having a warehouse sale starting on Wednesday, and I’m pretty excited!  Lesley Evers is a local Oakland designer of both clothing and wonderful fabrics, and I’m not sure which I love more!  They opened a lovely store on College Ave. in Rockridge, and their second store is in Lafayette, where the sale is taking place.  Come and check them out, even if you can’t make it to the sale …

See ‘ya there!

 

Lesley Evers sale

CA89, a Must-shop Stop in Truckee!

Wednesday, July 10th, 2013

If you have any plans to be up in Tahoe this summer (or anytime) you have to stop in at CA89, in old town Truckee.  CA89 is the brain child of Lisa Gotts, an Oakland resident and long time Truckee homeowner and fan.  Lisa has been skiing here for many years and was a ski instructor at Squaw Valley.  She worked for Sunset magazine most recently in advertising sales and other notable magazines like Outside, Vogue and Elle.  CA89 is the next step in her professional ascent.  Jason Spruit is the uber- capable Store Manager and just relocated to Truckee from Detroit.

Out front of CA89

Out front of CA89

CA89 is an iconic stretch of road in eastern California that is well known and well loved.  Lisa developed a logoed brand of merchandise based on that scenic highway.   According to Lisa Gotts, not many stores locally focus on apparel and lifestyle goods that highlight the Sierra life. Her store’s apparel ranges from t-shirts and hoodies to dry-fit shirts and outerwear. Along with clothing they also have a wide selection of accessories such as pint glasses, notebooks, key chains, and hats/beanies.  The store opened earlier this year to much anticipation and fanfare.  CA89 is located at  10156 Donner Pass Road in the Brickeltown part of old Truckee.  It’s across from the train depot, still operating, in a historic, charming old building.  The modern fixtures and black and white color scheme meld perfectly with the old exposed brick inside the space.  Lisa’s keen design aesthetic is clearly on view in the store.

Inside CA89

Inside CA89

In addition to the great retail space, CA89 has a great mobile retail store in the form of their panel truck.  It was great to see it roll down the street as part of the annual Truckee 4th of July parade!  The CA89 crew can take their truck to all the different events around the Tahoe basin, like concerts, triathalons, art & wine festivals and much more.   It really shows how may different ways you can promote and market your brand.

The CA89 truck!

The CA89 truck!

In addition to the regular store hours, CA89 invites the community to summer movie nights on the lawn in the back of the store.  They show outdoor movies (bring a low back chair and $2) every Thursday and Saturday night at dusk.  No worries, there will be plenty of popcorn to go around!  There is also a yoga class every Thursday from 4:30- 5:45pm and it’s $10 for the class.  This is offered in conjunction with Yoga Studio Tahoe.

CA89 #4

 

 

 

 

 

 

CA89 #5

 

 

 

 

 

So if your summer or winter plans include Tahoe, make sure you stop in to CA 89 and tell Lisa and her crew I sent you!  Summer hours are 10-6pm daily.  Don’t forget to “like” CA89 on Facebook…  Happy summer everyone!

CA89 #6

 

 

 

To the Maxi!

Thursday, June 20th, 2013

As soon as kids are out of school (or back from school) it seems like our wardrobes take on a more relaxed vibe.  I, for one, am a big fan of the maxi dress.  I bought my first one about 5 years ago and have slowly added one per season since then.  I love the way they look on different figures, and they look equally great on women of all heights.  My one pet peeve is if they are too short, or too long.  Spend the extra money to get it hemmed if it’s too long and pass it up, if it’s too short!  Here are a few styles that I LOVE:

Trina Turk maxi

Trina Turk maxi

Bailey 44 maxi

Bailey 44 maxi

Ella Moss maxi

Ella Moss maxi

Young Fabulous and Broke maxi

Young Fabulous and Broke maxi

Maxis are easy to wear with a cardigan or jean jacket over them, when it’s gets cool at night.  They are also great for travel.   All of the above styles are from Neiman Marcus online, but there are lots of styles out there that are very affordable.  I just bought one at Loehmann’s for $50!  I’d love to see pictures of your favorite maxi dresses if you want to send them along!

Mycra Pac warehouse sale!

Monday, June 10th, 2013

Mycra Pac is one of those smaller bay area companies whose styles are instantly recognizable, yet they remain under the radar.  Mycra Pac is a manufacturer of cool designer rain wear and they are located right here in Moraga, CA.  Nordstrom carries a wide range of styles and colors in all of their stores.  One of the things I like best about these raincoats is that they’re so packable and come with their own little pouch that doubles as a handbag.  They are designed and made in the USA and have hoods that are perfect if you have no umbrella and they don’t mess up your hair!  Oh, as if that wasn’t enough, they’re reversible!

Reversible Mycra Pac rain coat

Reversible Mycra Pac rain coat

Mycra Pac has a yearly warehouse sale at their offices in Moraga, and it starts WEDNESDAY, June 12th continuing through TUESDAY June 18th.  This needs to make it on your calendar!  Women wait all year for this sale, so it does get pretty crowded.  People start lining up early.  As with most warehouse sales, they don’t put everything out on the first day, so I’m sure each day will have new merchandise.  See you at the sale!

Mycra Pac sale 6-12-13

Scatter my ashes…at Bergdorf’s???

Wednesday, June 5th, 2013

Scatter my ashes at Bergdorf’s is the new documentary film about the venerable retailer at New York City’s 58th St. and Fifth Avenue.  This film gives you an inside glimpse of the inner workings at one of the most valuable designer addresses in the world!  I went to see this movie at the Opera Plaza cinema in San Francisco yesterday and love, love, LOVED it!

Bergdorf Goodman

 

Bergdorf Goodman

Scatter my ashes at Bergfdorf’s was directed by Matthew Miele and introduces you to the real players in the make -or- break world of high fashion.   We meet Linda Fargo, fashion director at Bergdorf’s and fashion week front row dweller, meeting with up and coming designers vying for a spot on the coveted BG selling floor.  We meet Betty Halbreich, long time personal shopper, who when asked what she’d be doing if she wasn’t at BG looks into the camera  and says ”DRINKING”!  The film also interviews every major fashion designer like Karl Lagerfeld, Oscar De la Renta, Jason Wu, Dolce & Gabanna, Vera Wang and many others, on what it means to be sold at BG.

Bergdorf-Goodman shopping bag

The movie also goes through the history of both the building and company founders Edwin Goodman and Herman Bergdorf.  The store opened in 1901 (not at it’s present location though) and has been memorialized in movies, songs and T.V. shows.  The movie also gives appropriate screen time to David Hoey and his team,  responsible for the incredible and outrageous BG windows.  This is an inside look at the pure artistry involved in the holiday windows, and all the windows through the year.  It feels to the viewer like getting ready for opening night on Broadway, a mix between theater and art installation!

BG window

BG window

I really loved this movie, no surprises there, and would definitely recommend it to fashionistas and history buffs alike.  Here is the trailer for Scatter my ashes at Bergdorf’s …enjoy!

Scatter my ashes at Bergdorf’s Trailer