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It’s CAMPER season

April 30th, 2013

Ok, I admit I used the word camper to get your attention.  Most people either LOVE or HATE anything to do with camping.  Having spent the better part of my childhhood in campgrounds up and down the eastern seaboard, our family loved camping.  Well, this post has nothing whatsoever to do with camping, but with a Spanish shoe brand called CAMPER!  Fooled ya…

As a stylist, almost every client I encounter has a “foot issue”.  It’s usually shared in hushed tones, with head down and a slightly embarassed demeanor.  Hammer toes, neuromas, plantar fasciitis, bunions, and on and on.  I have news for you…EVERYONE (over the age of 35) has a “foot issue”.  Camper shoes are so fun, cool, european inspired, that even with “issues”, they are great shoes.  Here’s the one I just bought ( and bought for 2 different clients):

Camper "Beetle" sandal

Camper “Beetle” sandal

 

I loved the color, the hieght and the dual closures.  This is an incredibly comfortable shoe.  I can walk miles in it and it’s perfect for your European trip this summer (or anywhere you’ll be walking a lot).  They are incredibly light if you’re taking a carry on.  You can loosen one or both sides, as your feet swell or expand.  Here’s another one I like:

"Twins" Camper sandal

“Twins” Camper sandal

I love the use of the three colors, but each shoe is slightly different.  The pair below is a collaboration between designer Veronique Branquinho and the Camper brand.  Notice that this is a full fledged wedge with almost no rise at all…they are almost flat!

"Veronique" Camper sandal

“Veronique” Camper sandal

I didn’t forget the guys, Camper has great men’s styles as well.  Camper originated in Mallorca, Spain in 1975 and opened their first store in Barcelona in 1981.  Today the brand has over 300 stores worldwide and 10+ in the bay area.  VOILA, no more “foot issues”.

For more information and store locations www.camper.com.

 

 

 

Fundraising around the Square.

October 24th, 2012

As October’s Breast Cancer awareness month winds down, there’s still more ways to give and GET .  Many merchants in and around Union Square are joining together to support the cause.  With a $65 donation to Susaon G. Komen for the cure, you receive a Komen Card, good for 20% off from the wonderful list of participating stores!  This is a great event and with the holidays around the corner, you can get a jump on gift shopping.  Cards can be purchased online at www.komencard.org and are good from 10/25 until 11/4.  Get your give on and start shopping!!!

Fight breast cancer and save 20%! Shop with the 2012 Komen Card at the Bay Area’s finest merchants and Save 20% from October 25 – November 4, 2012! Purchase your Komen Card online through Friday, October 26th, or visit any participating retailer to buy your card in-store now through November 4th!

Merchants Offering 20% Savings

Agent Provocateur | 54 Geary Street some exclusions apply; please see store for details

Azadeh | 110 Geary St.

Bottega Veneta | 124 Geary St. Some exclusions apply; please see store for details

The Container Store | 26 Fourth St. Sale items are excluded

Diptyque Paris | 171 Maiden Lane

Downtown | 55 Maiden Lane Special Orders are excluded

Faconnable | 253 Post St.

Glory Chen | 134 Maiden Lane

Gump’s | 135 Post St. Some jewelrey is excluded: Aaron Henry, Buccellati, Estate & Antique Jewelry, Kothari, Petra Class, Russell Trusso and Todd Reed.

Harputs | 80 Geary St.

John Varvatos | 152 Geary St. Watches, AUdio and Photography are Excluded

Juicy Couture| 105 Grant Ave. Some exclusions apply; please see store for details

Paul Smith | 50 Geary St.

Porsche Design | 100 Grant Ave.

Serge Sorroko Gallery | 55 Geary St.

Ted Baker| 80 Grant Ave . Theory | 120 Maiden Lane Non-Theory labels are not included

Tse Cashmere | 60 Maiden Lane Some exclusions apply; please see store for details

Vince | 36 Geary St.

Williams Sonoma | 340 Post St

 

 

Trend spotting in D.C.

October 11th, 2012

I just returned from 5 days in Washington D.C.  I love being in another city and observing how people dress or accessorize differently (or the same sometimes) from the bay area.  Other than being floored by how many young 20-somethings smoked cigarettes, I was also struck by one other popular trend.  Many of the women in D.C., young and old alike, were carrying the “Le Pliage” tote bag by French luxury purveyor Longchamp.  I was surprised by this revelation, as I don’t see them nearly as often here in San Francisco.  You’ve seen this bag, even if you think you haven’t.  They’ve been around a long time and come in many colors and a few different sizes.  You can even customize them on the website…

Le Pliage tote

 

 

You can fold it up when travelling or when storing it, and it snaps closed securely.  Why this is a trend in our nation’s capitol is a mystery to me!  Any ideas…???

Since I am originally from the east coast and have been to D.C. many times, I have seen the vast majority of monuments, museums, and attractions.  I thought this time I would go to a few less visited places.  I ended up at the Museum of Textiles…yes, you read that right.  I am one of those fashion nerds that seek out museums that celebrate period dress, textiles, costume, etc.  This was a lovely museum off Dupont Circle amidst the beautiful embassy residences.  I also really enjoy museum stores.  The assortments are really well thought out and unique, and the merchandising is imaginative, given their small spaces.  The Textile Museum store was postage- stamp small with a wonderful array of interesting merchandise.  I found these pins by a designer in Toronto, named Cynthia Villegas and she has a wonderful website www.ladymosquito.ca .  She is Peruvian and her creations made from heavy felt are so cool!  She also has the most awesome necklaces and other accessories, check them out!

Party at VINCE boutique…Thursday

October 8th, 2012

Please come join me at the VINCE boutique this Thursday, Oct. 11th from 6-8 pm.  The nice folks at Vince are hosting me along with my clients, friends and fans (all of you reading) for an fun evening at the boutique… OH, and did I mention that you get 25% off all of those great Vince pieces!!!  YES, 25%!  I’d love to see you, so please do stop by!

 

Can you LOVE a pair of shoes???

April 24th, 2012

I recently celebrated a milestone birthday.  I had a wonderful party with most of my besties in attendance and had an amazing evening!   At the end of the party,  I opened gifts from my pals.  The last gift was handed to me…I unwrapped it and underneath the wrapping paper, was a Manolo Blahnik box… OMG these couldn’t be mine!  After a little hesitation I opened the box… only to find the pictured red Converse sneakers!!!

The joke was on ME!!!  I was then handed another similarly shaped box to unwrap.  This time, the box read  Jimmy ChooOK, what did this box contain, a cute pair of Haviana flip flops???   I was ready for the prank this time.  I lifted off the lid to find THESE shoes…

My new Jimmy Choos!

My jaw dropped open and a look of utter disbelief spread across my face.   These are by far the most beautiful and extravagant shoes I own!  Many of my girlfriends chipped in to buy me these gorgeous shoes for my birthday.

 

My surprised face!

 

This begs the question, can you actually LOVE a pair of shoes, handbag or article of clothing?  I guess it’s not so much love that you feel, but maybe admiration is a better word.  The leather, the workmanship and the sheer beauty of the shoes is incredible!   I have looked at these shoes non stop over the last few weeks and imagined all of the great places I’ll wear them!  Getting older certainly has it’s benefits!!!

Oldies, but Goodies!

March 14th, 2012

Most people come down pretty strongly on one side or the other…they either LOVE vintage or HATE it.  For those with a love for “older” rather than new and disposable, this is a BIG weekend.  The Vintage Fashion Expo is coming to SF!  There will be 85 dealers of vintage clothing for both men and women, along with jewelry, textiles and accessories.  In college, I regularly scoured the one vintage store in the small upstate N.Y. town where I went to school, searching for great buys on my meager budget.  I felt like a kid in a candy store when I was there.  I branched out when I moved to Manhattan post- college, and found some of the best vintage stores around.  Once I entered the professional world, my love of vintage faded as I tried to emulate Melanie Griffith in Working Girl (the “after” not the “before”).

Over the past 10 years my love of vintage has been rekindled in the form of handbags!  I adore vintage handbags.  I especially like when it still contains the little lipstick mirror that so many of the bags of the 30′s- 50′s came with.  You won’t be surprised to know that I am a huge fan of the TV show, Mad Men.  I think for me, it’s all about the thrill of the “find”.  I’ve found treasures in the most unlikely places.

I imagine what the original owner of each bag was like.  Did she work or was she a typical 50′s housewife?  Where did she go and with who?  Was she happy, did she go to fun cocktail parties?  Did she live in a city, the suburbs or the country?  I love imagining what her life was like.  It’s one of the things that draws me to these pieces, they’re a part of history.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Two of my favorite bags were steals and that adds to their appeal.  The cinnamon colored vintage Christian Dior bag was in a clearance bin at Labels Consignment Store in Walnut Creek.  I think I paid $20 or $30 dollars.  My all time favorite, an alligator one- handled bag with a tortoise shell clasp was at a garage sale.  I questioned the owner about the price not wanting to give away my excitement.  He looked at me shyly, careful not to offend and said ”how’s $5?”.  I was elated, handed him the five bucks and grabbed it before he could change his mind…SCORE!!!

Vintage Christian Dior handbag

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

vintage alligator bag

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’d love to hear about any vintage finds that had you jumping for joy (at least on the inside).  Please share them with me and include photos if you can.  The Vintage Fashion Expo happens this weekend, March 17 & 18 at the Concourse Exhibition Center at 635 Eighth St. (at Brannan) in San Francisco.  You can check their website at http://www.vinategexpo.com .  I’ll be the one looking for the perfect vintage bag…

 

 

Neiman Marcus Opening- part deux, the GALA…

March 9th, 2012

Many in the east bay turned out last night for the pre-opening Gala at the new Neiman Marcus in Walnut Creek.  This is a big deal for the area as there has not been a big “retail event” this significant since Tiffany opened 10 years ago!  The mood was festive as we walked the “pink carpet” with the trademark NM butterflies projected around us.   We were greeted by young, great looking  gentlemen ready to open the doors to the kingdom.  Waiters were ready with trays of drinks; wine (WHITE, of course), champagne, lemon drops and a lovely light pink concoction.  Barbara Llewellyn did the catering so you know all the food tasted great.  Stations were set up all over the store with basics like 3 different kinds of mac-n-cheese, a raw oyster bar, grilled veggies, chicken satay, and  sliced steak and pork.  Desserts included cake pops, mini s’mores and fudge filled brownies.  Definitely something for everyone!

Phat Strad at MN Gala

There were 2 different bands playing, one on each of the store’s 2 floors and they were terrific.  I especially liked the group Phat Strad that played as you ascended the escalator.  They are an all girl electronic string quartet that plays rock n roll.  They had a crowd around them all night that was well deserved!  These ladies rock…

Models walked the store in the latest and greatest designer clothing, shoes and accessories:

NM model in Brunello Cucinelli

 

NM model in Michael Kors

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NM model in Missoni

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NM model in Etro and Ralph Lauren

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This was a sold out event and proceeds from the $200 ticket benefited 4 bay area non-profits:

- Diablo Regional Arts Association

- Monument Crisis Center

- The Taylor Family Foundation

- The Junior League of Oakland – East Bay

As we were leaving, we received the requisite “swag bag”.  What I LOVED, is that one of the items in it was a brown handled bag that you could fill with much needed items for a particular non-profit beneficiary of the night.  In exchange, you drop it off at NM over this weekend and get a $50 Neiman’s gift certificate.  Fashion and philanthropy…a winning combination!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Neiman Marcus in Walnut Creek, a work of ART!

March 7th, 2012

I just attended the press preview for the new Walnut Creek Neiman Marcus store, set to open to the public on Friday.  The space is AMAZING in many different ways.  The space is bathed in natural light from the windows to the far reaches of the store.  The store was designed to bring the outdoors in and to use many organic and natural elements while showcasing the height of luxury products.  We were given a very in depth tour of the store by some of the execs from the headquarters in Dallas, as well as the Walnut Creek executives and associates.  There are 143 pieces of original art in the store, including pieces from some 30 local artists.  Stanley Marcus,  son of one of the founders of NM had a penchant for art and had one of the most impressive art collections around.  His first acquisition was a large scale mobile, Mariposa, by the artist Alexander Calder in 1951.  Today NM has a full time curator and over 2500 pieces in their collection.   The tradition continues in Walnut Creek…

Jamie Broadhurst, General Manager, moved up to this area from the Newport Beach, Fashion Island NM store and couldn’t be happier to be here.  He loves how “active” our demographic is and has felt a real connection to the community.  Jamie says “the openness of the store and the art really set it apart”.  Meghan Mino Murray, Public Relations Manager, is a local girl returning “home”,  as she is originally from Danville.  She was previously at the Beverly Hills NM store.  Other than a handful of executives, most of the 200 employees, culled from 800 applicants,  are from the surrounding area.

The Walnut Creek Neiman‘s has several “shops” within the store including Chanel, Gucci and Balenciaga handbags.  For men there is Ermenegildo Zegna and Armani Collezioni.  In women’s there is Chanel, Jil Saunder, Michael Kors, Stella McCartney and Brunello Cucinelli.  These in addition to the many other designers the store carries.  The women’s shoe department is my idea of what heaven is like…beautiful shoes laid out as far as the eye can see!  It feels like there is more square footage in the Walnut Creek women’s shoe department than is in the San Francisco women’s shoes.  Of course they carry the obvious designers like Manolo Blahnik, Jimmy Choo and Christian Louboutin along with Valentino, Prada, Tory Burch, Kate Spade, Vera Wang, Michael Kors and MANY more!  That space in particular is stunning, as it is right along the exterior windows with plenty of cushy places to sit including several pairs of mid-century modern chartreuse chairs.  These looked nap-worthy to me,  I promise husbands and partners will LOVE them.  Speaking of husbands, there is a wonderful men’s lounge incorporated into the men’s fitting room area.  Comfortable chairs, TV, Wifi and the gentlemen are good to go!

There is also a well appointed personal shopping area that will be used by many a stylist, including MOI.  There are spa/treatment rooms adjacent to the cosmetics department on the first floor along with a small, but cozy Neiman‘s cafe on the 2nd floor.  This store will be the 42nd full line store for Neiman Marcus and that brings it to 7 stores in California, tied with Texas and Florida.  It seems as though the excitement has been building as the opening date gets closer and I can’t think of a better addition to the Broadway Plaza retail scene than Neiman‘s.  Welcome to the East Bay Neiman Marcus, we’ve been waiting for you!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gaultier is coming to town!

March 1st, 2012

For those fashionistas wanting to be ”in the know”, Jean Paul Gaultier is coming to town!  Starting on March 23rd, there will be a rash of special events, a gala and an exhibition sure to inspire and excite.  The name of the exhibit is “The fashion world of Jean Paul Gaultier: from the sidewalk to the catwalk”.  I spent the better part of this morning on the phone and online trying to score tickets to the Saturday (3/24) event “A conversation with Jean Paul Gaultier and Suzy Menkes, Fashion Editor of International Herald Tribune”.  Much to my dismay, the website couldn’t handle the traffic and the call center never had access to the tickets from the start.  So after a VERY frustrating 1.5 hours, I gave up and settled for an angry call to the deYoung Museum members line.  Well, the squeaky wheel got the grease and a very nice member relations person called me back with an apology and 2 tickets to the event!  I’m SO excited for this event and exhibition!

Jean Paul Gaultier with Madonna

 

The de Young’s website had this to say,  ”Dubbed fashion’s enfant terrible, Jean Paul Gaultier launched his first prêt-à-porter collection in 1976 and founded his own couture house in 1997. Emerging as a designer in the 1970s, he developed his own dress codes that reflected the changing world around him. The openly gay Gaultier uses his designs to tackle gender and transgender issues through androgynous, gender-bending styles, meanwhile delving even further into some of the darker areas of the sexual revolution.”  Gaultier may be best known for the costumes he conceived for Madonna’s Blonde Ambition Tour of 1990, punctuated by cone shaped bra tops and lots of garter belts.   Also included in the exhibit are 140 couture designs, sketches, documents, photographs and film clips.

 

 

I feel so lucky to live in a place where we get to see these amazing programs and collections.   The exhibit opens to the public on March 24th and there is a members preview on March 23rd.  Tickets are still available for some of the other special events including the big gala on Friday night ($250).  Check the de Young website for the whole scoop, and I hope to see you there!

Trina Turk at Design Center in S.F.

January 31st, 2012

One of my FAVORITE designers, Trina Turk, will be in town today speaking at the SF Design Center with the editor of California Home + Design magazine.  I have long admired the graphic fabrics used in the Trina Turk line.   Trina Turk launched her business in 1995, having learned to sew and design from an early age.  Within the first year she had Barney”s New York, Fred Segal and Saks selling her clothing.

Inspired by the multicultural mix, architecture, and landscape of Los Angeles and California, The Trina Turk Collection is full of the Season’s most casually sophisticated – and “must have” silhouettes. Trina’s philosophy is to create wearable, optimistic fashion that incorporates the best aspects of classic American sportswear.”

 Trina Turk opened her flagship store in Palm Springs in 2002, to much excitement and fanfare, as the desert was a constant inspiration to her.  A store in LA soon followed, and her NYC store opened in 2006 in the meatpacking district.  Trina Turk residential opened right next door to the original clothing boutique in Palm Springs in 2008.  In 2009 she introduced an indoor-outdoor fabric line with home furnishings manufacturer F. Schumacher

 

“Turk will sit down with California Home+Design Executive Editor Erin Feher for a frank, funny and insightful conversation about finding your style, building your brand and why California is still the land of risk-takers and tastemakers. Audience questions and participation are highly encouraged. “

Design SF 2012 Keynote, SFDC Galleria, 101 Henry Adams Street SF, Ca 94103 February 1, 2012 10:00 – 11:00 AM