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Archive for September, 2009...

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SHOWS, SHOWS, SHOWS!  This is the season for major designer exhibitions from New York to Europe to Asia.  So far, what we’ve seen of the American fashion and accessories choices has been spectacular, albeit strange in some instances! 

 

New York offered more than we have ever seen before, and the fantastic deluge might get almost wearisome if it weren’t for the creativity and newness constantly on view. As one industry observer said of New York:

          “They were trying to push forward without being too challenging.  They have            taken a lot of risks, but in a very smart way….” 

 

Or, as a major industry publication aptly called the offerings:

          “A tricky path between safe and surprising.”  — What more could anyone ask?

 

            

 

                          Showtime Goes On and On

 

But…why are we so interested in Fashion Weeks?  Because of a simple factor:

 

                                                  TRENDS!

 

This is where trends begin.  This is where designers parade their newest ideas in fashion and accessories.  This is where you watch the styles, the forms, the fabrics, the colors, the sizes.  So, let’s wrap it all up with élan!  Two supernova design houses, Ralph Lauren and Calvin Klein, ring in on a final clarion note.

 

Lauren dedicated his collection to the American worker, and he did it with real style.  Maybe the look was a bit dated, sort of 1930s retro, but it was dynamite!  Pale blue was the color of choice.  Soft, lived-in-looking scarves wrapped cozily around the neck.  Bouncy newsboy caps.  Striped menswear shirts. And overalls.  No, not just jeans.  Overalls! 

   –With it, great looking multi-strand earring drops of delicate blue crystal.  Sounds strange, but oh, boy! Does it work!

 

Jeans with lots of cut outs and rolled up hems were Lauren biggies.  Little 1930s retro print dresses with cap sleeves were charming.  A gossamer ruffled bottom slip dress in fairly bright blue with spaghetti straps was a reserved tribute to evening wear, with a lacy underskirt and sparkly bejeweled neckline.

 

                                              National Spirit     

 

Overall, the theme here was America’s “resilient spirit.”  The models wore quiet but lovely small drop earrings with some swing. Boys caps predominated.  That orange brown, rich leather color Lauren has been known for stayed with this collection, mainly in medium width belts with square metal buckles.

 

GETTING INTO THE RALPH LAUREN SPRING ACCESSORY MOOD TAKES SOME DOING.  THE IDEA IS TO KEEP A CAREFUL EYE ON SIZE, THINK TRADITIONAL, AND EMBRACE BLUE. FOR EXAMPLE:

 

 

 

 

 

                                                Yellow Bird

 

FRANCISCO COSTA for Calvin Klein was arty, bohemian, sporty, and unexpected.  He worked wonderfully with interesting materials. He drew huge shoulders, almost Balmoral style, and put them on a dress that dropped down to a short straight skirt with big side pockets.  A tan dress seemed to further the look, with soft, slouchy jacket, very long sleeves, some ruffles, big shoulders, and a brown and grey under-dress with hitched up short skirt.

 

Bright yellow was Klein’s hot color, seen in such designs as a straight but full little mini-skirted dress with short sleeves and rumpled, scooped out neck.  Very lived-in looking!  Have you ever heard that terrific calypso song, “Yellow Bird?”  Well that’s the kind of intense but still reserved yellow seen here.

 

IT IS ALWAYS A SMART IDEA TO COZY UP TO A CALVIN KLEIN FASHION LOOK.  THIS IS A STYLE THAT MIXES NEWNESS WITH CLASSIC ELEGANCE IN A REMARKABLE, NEVER-GO-OUT– OF-STYLE WAY.  HERE, ACCESSORIES WITH A KLEIN-SOPHISTICATION:

 

 

 

 

Comments (0) Posted by Mary McGarry on Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

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SPRING 2010 SEEMS TO BE rushing in, with all the fanfare and excitement surrounding the New York Fashion Week’s expositions.  There were so many stories, so many different fashion statements, it was hard to ferret out individual trends and directives. But one thing was sure:  This was an assertive Spring showing, with major design expressions enlivening the runways and giving a boost to the entire fashion industry.

 

Caroline Herrera offered a lovely horizontally striped suit, very au naturel, with satiny grey and shimmery gold playing against each other.  A big bow graced the suits neckline, in a somewhat Asian effect.  The model carried a same-colored little clutch bag

 

THE CHARM OF A LITTLE CLUTCH BAG IS UNBEATABLE.  HERE ARE SOME TO CONSIDER:

 

 

 

  • Evening clutch bag in faux patent leather goes from office to dinner with ease!  Choice of colors.

 

 

Donna Karan worked with lots of nature colors and moody neutrals, lots of grays and whites, and gossamer fabrics that clung to the body while showing it off.  Not everything worked, however, despite the thunderous applause from fashion editors.  Her skinny washed linen dress exemplified the designer’s lived-in move, and frankly looked just that.  Maybe Salvation Army lived-in. 

   –Karan likes jewelry and used it well.  A big white plastic chain bracelet looked stunning with a long white evening dress.  A little choker filled in a bare neckline. 

 

                                                     Disc Choker

 

COLOR POPPED AT Zac Posen, where models walked down the runway showing off plenty of leg and lots of hues and prints.  One long dress in soft rose featured a bejeweled floral print top to bottom.  A short little swing-y dress in two-tone blue was sweet, if a bit saccharin.  A large blue disc choker gave it pizzazz.

 

J. Mendel is a designer who likes shine, plenty of structured and well-cut satin gowns and dresses in soft ivory, yellow and rose.  With them he paired cute little clutch bags and large statement necklaces, like one flashy, medium length necklace of shiny silver disc clusters. Very dramatic. 

 

There were lots of bows from Tuleh at the neckline and at the waist of very sweet dresses and shorts. A handsome minimalist look from Rachel Roy featured a wrap around grey skirt with long sleeved grey knit top.  Simple, stunning. 

 

BIG GLASSES HIT THE RUNWAYS again, this time from Rebecca Taylor. They were more than big, actually.  They were super black, as well.  Carmen Marc Valvo used Grecian draping, satiny fabrics, and tight, body skimming lines to emphasize a rich, feminine evening dress done in very light golden tan.  He accessorized it with a surprise:  A single gold bangle bracelet. Classic.

 

                                                   Two-Tone Blue

 

BLUE WAS A DOMINANT statement at Thakoon – two-tone blue, to be exact – revving up a little short-skirted dress with blue and pink apron.  More blue was seen at Zero + Maria Cornejo.  Here, the designers put forth a three piece outfit of unusual style:  A navy blue halter top, a medium blue print skirt with navy diagonal, and a long, swingy over-jacket of navy blue. 

 

BLUE WAS THE FALL COLOR OF THE YEAR AT PANTONE; IT ALSO LED THE COLOR WHEEL IN NEW YORK FOR SPRING.  HERE, SOME BLUE ITEMS TO ENJOY:

 

 

 

 

  • Lapis heart pendant in bright blue with darker spotting.  Must see!

 

 

Wrapping up the expositions were a number of clothing/accessory designs worthy of noting: 

    — From Vivienne Tam, a long blue diaphanous gown with brown macramé belt. 

    — From Toni Maticevski, a skirt and tank top combination with wild frou-frou floral decoration, accessorized with below-the-waist-length skinny black chains.

    –From Victoria Bartlett, more diaphanous material, this in a tan dress with spaghetti straps, accessorized by a squared-off white and orange bangle bunch.

    –From Rosa Cha, a two piece polka dot bathing suit, shown with a little yellow clutch; a very, very big and wide white and gold bracelet; and an orange terrycloth head wrap.

Comments (0) Posted by Mary McGarry on Monday, September 28th, 2009

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NEW YORK FASHION WEEK kicked off with all the sound and fury of a Dixieland band funeral.  There was music playing, models sashaying, designs on display, and accessories front and center stage.  Everywhere in the Big Apple, things were happening, fabulous new lines were introduced with theatrics and flair as designers bowed and accepted kudos by the score. 

   –A bad economy?  Things are bad in moneyland?  Well, Fed chief Bernanke said last week that the recession “is probably over,” and that’s how everybody was acting, albeit with fingers crossed behind their backs.

 

Sophisticated femininity is how one industry publication described Jason Wu’s collection for Spring 2010.   The clothes reflected a touch of the Forties, a bit of the impossible (a bubble look) and a palette of fresh, refined colors and combinations, like a grey mini skirt with a loose weave high-yellow sweater set. 

 

Wu worked with big, cats eye sunglasses, platform heels, interesting hair accessories and simple, disc earrings.  Tuxedo looks from Rag & Bone were svelte and severe.  An impressionistic floral print mini skirt from Leifsdottir featured a see-through black blouse and skinny black belt. 

 

                                            Color Fantastics

 

LUCA LUCA SHOWED exuberant colors like a wonderful teal evening dress with low cut bodice leaving plenty of room for a marvelous multi-strand beaded choker with big cut-out disc pendant.  Ideeen was hot and edgy with white slacks and top worn under a white man-tailored smoking jacket.   Shown with the look:  an African inspired choker with green chain and crystal drop offs.  Different.

 

On one runway we were impressed by a big, bulbous pave cuff bracelet.  Also charming was a flirty ruffle front chiffon white dress with a very soft, military-inspired over-jacket in khaki, this from Cynthia Steffe.  A ruffled blue taffeta short skirt from Ruffian, worn with a tailored white short jacket, was also a delight!  Both underlined a very youthful, lighthearted fashion look coming through from a number of top houses.

 

COLOR WAS A DOMINANT FACTOR in the designers showing so far. So were strong color combinations and mixes:  yellow with green, blue with pink.  Some of the major trends picked up include: 

     Skinny ribbon belts.  Flowers. Gossamer and see-through fabrics.  Architectural lines. Clean, 1980s graphics. Ruffles.  Medium to wide bracelets worn in multiples. Egyptian elements. Layering.  Little beads worn in multi-strands to effect a heavy, dramatic look.  Large sunglasses and the return of cats-eye designs, only now set on large frames. Oxidized copper. Gold, in profusion. Satiny metallic greys.

 

BE SURE TO MAKE COLOR A PROMINENT FACTOR IN YOUR SPRING COLLECTIONS!  — HEY, COLOR RIGHT NOW WORKS, TOO!  LOOK HERE:

 

 

 

 

                                        Pieces of Shine

 

Elie Tahari added her voice to the yellow push, with a bright full little dress pulled in at the waist with a ribbon belt.  He topped it all off with a somewhat floppy tan helmet hat featuring a wide tan satin hat band. That “strips of satin” look was repeated at a number of designer show places.  Prabal Gurung used strips of satin at the shoulder,

wrist, and waist of his black and grey suit.

 

 

SCARVES WERE ALSO HOT in New York.  Ports 1961 showed a heavily draped soft silk dress with very broad shoulders accessorized by a long accordion-like cut out scarf just hanging down the front. 

    –The long straight line hanging down was something to note.  It might be a necklace, a scarf, even hair, but the final impression was the same.

 

 

Shiny metallic handbags remained important this year, but now the bags tend to be smaller, in general.  Tommy Hilfiger, for example, showed a charming silvery bag that was just a small pouch on metallic handle straps.  The hip designer also went wild with bracelets:  wide, multiple bracelets, many striped, in a bevy of bright colors, worn on both arms.  Wow!

 

Many of the design offerings were unabashedly feminine and gentle.  Hair accessories played a big part in the finished look, although they were not the big, wild constructions of recent seasons, but more like little flowers and puffs of fabric.  Diane von Furstenberg also used very bright, striped, wide cuff bracelets, pairing them with pretty yellow print mini dresses.  Dark wood-like bangle bracelets, fairly wide, were worn in multiples at Vera Cava.  More multiple bracelet looks could be found at Michael Angel, this time shown with a broad shouldered, cap sleeved, very short floral print dress. 

 

YOU JUST CAN’T HAVE TOO MANY BRACELETS IN THIS EXCITING FASHION ENVIRONMENT!  HERE ARE SOME DYNAMITE LOOKS TO GO WITH NOW:

 

 

 

 

                                      Long Statement Necklaces

 

STATEMENT NECKLACES were important, running from chokers to medium length to very, very long.  As always, a 1920s flair came through in large brimmed white hats, long chiffon skirts and little black and white striped jacket-blouses, all in a Kentucky Derby mode.

   –This gracious Southern-lady look never leaves fashion completely, a major plus for the industry.  One more light and ladylike item at the runway shows:  White nail polish.  Clean!

 

Handbags were not as prominent as they have been recently; still, a number of models carried smart little clutch bags, slightly larger than a woman’s wallet.  Glitz was played down, but present.  Sequins were hot, even veering into such offbeat places as shoes.  Cording extended itself from necklaces to belts, where it took on a kind of macramé look.  

 

A fascinating accessory look was on display at Reen Acra, where a model wore two very different necklaces together.  One featured three large bejeweled pendants strung in-line, hanging down to below the waist from a long strand of large creamy pearls. The other, featured a strand of large white pearls with a very big circular bejeweled pendant about the size of a cantaloupe with little beads hanging softly down.  This necklace sat under the first one, was about 18-inches long, and frankly didn’t go with the longer one at all.  But, somehow or other, the look worked.

 

Sort of.

Comments (0) Posted by Mary McGarry on Saturday, September 26th, 2009

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EVERY HALLOWEEN, my neighbor turns her side yard into a virtual cemetery, complete with bats, spiders, witches, ghosts, tombstones, and even an open coffin with the likes of Dracula inside  I can’t say I appreciate her  creative endeavors, dark as they may be, but this year, I did find they stimulated some interesting research. 

 

For example, I wondered:  What was the name of that fascinating cemetery in Paris that I visited some years ago?  And what is the name of the cemetery in downtown New York where all of the office workers come and sit on tombstones and eat their lunch each day?  Why, you may wonder, would I possibly care about such things?  I don’t know.  I just do. So I began checking them out.

 

THE INTRIGUING PARIS CEMETERY, it seems, is named Pere La Chaise, and it is the site of such graves as Oscar Wilde, Edith Piaf, Marcel Proust, and even Jim Morrison. An interesting thing about the cemetery is that it has served as the archetype for practically all urban cemeteries built in the United States since 1831.

 

                                               You Need People

 

It is fascinating to walk around the Pere La Chaise, to see the tombstones of famous people, and to read what they say.  Provided, of course, that you do it during the day, as part of a tour, with plenty of other people around.  Other than that, well, let’s put it this way:  The cemetery is very Old World; the tombs are big, many above ground, and they can be scary.  Very scary. 

   —Don’t go there alone, at night, on Halloween.  You have no idea what might transpire!  Ohhhhhhh…

 

B UT…IF YOU WANT TO HAVE A REAL HALLOWEEN EXPERIENCE, GET A GROUP OF FRIENDS TOGETHER FOR SOME SPOOKY GHOST STORY-TELLING.  AND, PUT ON A MASK FOR REAL ATMOSPHERE (STAY OUT OF CEMETERIES):

 

 

 

 

                                

                                       Cemeteries –on a Serious Note

 

OF COURSE, THERE ARE innumerable intriguing cemeteries all over the world.  The Old Jewish Cemetery in Prague, or La Recoleta Cemetery in Buenos Aires, where Eva Peron is buried.

 

The military has always been given special burial treatment.  Arlington National Cemetery, for example, is “home” to the Unknown Soldier’s Grave, as well as John Kennedy and his brothers.  And then, there is the deeply moving American Cemetery on a cliff overlooking Omaha Beach in France, with its terribly sad endless rows of little white crosses and stars of David, there to commemorate the devastating Normandy Invasion of World War II.

 

SOME CEMETERIES AND BURIAL SPOTS can be surprising when, as a tourist poking in and out of things, you suddenly realize what they really are. That, too, can be scary! Westminster Abbey, for example, is a huge burial place. So is the Taj Mahal. And, what about the pyramids?  They are ancient, fantastic burial places for the Pharoahs.

   –Among other things, the pyramids remind us that it wasn’t too bad to die in Egypt if you were a Pharaoh, but oh, if you were just part of his domestic family!  Wives were buried alive with their dead husbands. So were all the Pharaoh’s personal servants, various high priests, and the pyramid’s architect. (You see, the architect had to know the way through the labyrinth pyramid to the inner burial spot, and that was never to be revealed.) 

 

 

                                                  Final Words

 

Oh, the intrigue of cemeteries!  The goose bumps!  The witches’ tales!  And, even sometimes, the fun of it all.  Like epitaphs.  They often make you forget you’re in the Land of the Dead.  Dorothy Parker once created the pithy epitaph, “Here I lie.  I’d rather be living in Philadelphia.” 

 

PHILADELPHIA OR NOT, COME HALLOWEEN AND YOU CAN HAVE LOADS OF FUN MAKING UP YOUR OWN EPITAPH, OR LISTENING TO OTHERS.  PUT ON A MASK AND LET PARTY-GOERS GUESS WHO YOU ARE FROM YOUR WORDS!

  • Papier Mache Masks in brilliant color – great for guys!

 

 

 

 

  • Phantom of the Opera Masquerade Mask with natural fit and flexibility.

 

   — Meanwhile, if you like life in the fast lane, you’ll love New Jersey’s Rebecca Freeland’s tombstone. It reads: “She drank good ale, good punch, and wine. And lived to the age of 99.”

 

A Uniontown Pennsylvania tombstone says, “Here lies the body of Jonathan Blake. Stepped on the gas instead of the brake.”

 

Harry Edsel Smith of Albany New York was awarded this remembrance:  “Born 1903 – Died 1942.  Looked up the elevator shaft to see if the car was coming.  It was.”

 

And, finally, an epitaph found in a Vermont cemetery that all good merchandisers will appreciate:

 “Sacred to the memory of my husband, John Barnes who died January 3, 1803.  His comely young widow, aged 23, has many qualifications of a good wife, and yearns to be comforted.”

Comments (0) Posted by Mary McGarry on Wednesday, September 23rd, 2009

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TOMBOYS ARE BACK IN FASHION!  The superstar men’s wear designer Richard Chai is introducing a new collection of casual wear for women.  It is directed toward “the girl who fell in love with the guy I design for,” Chai says.  The fashionable separates, grouped under the name Love, feature shorts, vests, jackets, short skirts, and more.  Chai zips them up with bright colors, interesting leather shoes.  It all has a washed, rumpled, at-ease feel, sort of an updated take on stealing from the guys.

 

REMEMBER THE NAME DUNHILL? Well, it is back with an exciting, if totally traditional, collection of watches that “represents a return to the classical values of the brand as the true expression of a uniquely British point of view on modern luxury,” as a company spokesperson puts it.  The new Dunhill Facet watch is a slim, rectangular timepiece with faceted glass.  It was first introduced in 1936 and is returning now in an updated design of stainless steel or pink gold with a black matte or matte chocolate alligator strap.

   Also in the collection are the Dunhill Classic watch and the Dunhill Moonphases timepiece. All the watches boast the famous Jaeger-LeCoultre caliber movement. The collection, made up of timepieces with a distinctively Prince Charles appearance, goes on sale in late Fall or early Winter.

 

WATCHES AREN’T THE ONLY ITEMS BENEFITTING FROM A SURGE OF INTEREST IN ALL THINGS CLASSICAL.  YOU CAN GET IN ON THE DIRECTION WITH THESE GREAT ITEMS:

 

 

 

 

                                     Japanese Golf Craze

 

AIN’T SHE SWEET?  We’re talking about the oh so cute Japanese golfer in her newest athletic wear. It seems that golf isn’t the only thing that is flourishing in the Asian islands; so, too, are specialized outfits for the female golfer.  More than 20 new brands of women’s golf clothes have come onto the market this year alone, helped in no small way by the recent flurry of successful women golfers, Al Miyiazato, and Momoko Ueda, among others. But, just look at these separates:  sequin-covered polo shirts and pink sun visors, sneakers with pink ties, hot little crystal embellished mini skirts and trendy, colorful golf gloves galore.   

   —It is interesting to note that many of Japan’s city dwellers have never set foot on a golf course, but they are still wild for the sport.  They apparently hone their skills on driving ranges, many with video simulators, marketed to fashionable young women.

 

DALLAS MARKET SOMEWHAT SLOW, BUT UPBEAT:  Few buyers were looking for basics at the recent Dallas Fashion Industry Gallery exposition.  It seems that novelty was the call of the day, as retailers scouted out things that were different, new, off beat. Fancy tops with formal embellishments and jewelry were the two top selling categories, along with casual jackets and no small amount of leather goods.

    Retailers generally expressed an optimistic mood for the rest of the year, despite sluggish sales until now, saying that they do expect sales to pick up by the Spring of 2010.  One retailer talked about a new shoe and accessory boutique she plans to open this month in Houston, saying she expects to be ready for business when the economy improves, “in the near future”.

   At the product level: Sterling initial necklaces moved well.  So did vintage Chanel chains.  The colors were generally vibrant here, and extras like fringe and Moroccan details helped move clothing.   

 

                         Won’t You Be My Bridesmaid?  — aargh!

 

NEW LOOK FOR WEDDINGS:  Is there any woman who hasn’t winced when asked to be in the Bridal party of a friend or relative?  It’s the thought of those horrendous bridesmaids’ dresses that does it:  Big, flouncy, garishly colored dresses, totally devoid of any design integrity, more or less chosen for you.  Not only don’t you have any real choice about the dress, but you’re even expected to pay for it, upfront – a dress that you will surely want to burn the minute the ceremony and following festivities are over.

   Well now, ladies, all of that is history!  Swarovski, that arbiter of fine wedding fare, tells us that bridesmaid dresses have entered a new era.  Fashionably designed, these handsome cocktail dresses can be worn again and again, after the wedding.

    They may be short or long, and are usually fashioned on whatever style the bridesmaid, herself, wants.  The popular colors are unusually sophisticated, running from black to intense orchid, deep blue or orange for Winter 2009, and from white to tan, yellow, and deep blue for Spring 2010.

   — Oh, for a wedding where the bridesmaids actually look pretty!

 

BRIDESMAID DRESSES AREN’T THE ONLY WEDDING ELEMENTS UNDERGOING POSITIVE CHANGE.  JUST LOOK AT SOME OF THESE GORGEOUS BRIDAL JEWELRY PIECES UPTRENDING NOW:

 

 

 

 

Comments (0) Posted by Mary McGarry on Monday, September 21st, 2009

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500 years before the era of England’s great universities, a fascinating place called Timbuktu thrived. Westerners flocked to this incredible African city, which many historians claim was the site of the first university of the world! But academia was not its only forte.  This was a kingdom of phenomenal wealth, dripping in gold, emeralds, and other riches, and earning West Africa the name The Gold Coast. Sadly, today, many Americans can not even tell you where on earth Timbuktu is located.

 

                                          Return of the Nerds

 

THE RED HOT SUMMER is almost at its end and young people are returning to school in major-sized numbers.  At the college level, trends abound with feverish delight, but none are so strong, so pandemic, as the look of the Nerd.  This is the Techie hot shot, the know-it-all computer whiz, the soon-to-be very rich scholar.

 

What is the fashion barometer telling us?  The look is “square,” no doubt about it. Think of long skirts and not-too-short pleated plaid mini skirts over cotton blouses.  Don’t miss out on a hat here:  mostly a neutral, Bohemian-looking tam that is not as sharp or sophisticated as a beret, but which expresses a refined, even expensive taste level. 

   —Eyeglasses are a must!  Make them square, fairly heavy rimmed. Add a watch, definitely!  And make some bracelets medium sized, preferably studded. 

 

Because this is a computer-smart look, keep things that jangle and get in the way at a minimum.  That means loose bracelets.  Belts with things hanging off.  Earrings of any sort.  And necklaces that dropdown to the waist and move and swing and make themselves known non-stop.  Techie gals also carry computers, so keep handbags small, easy to carry.  Backpacks work well.

 

YOU CAN ACHIEVE A TECHIE SMART LOOK, TOO, BY LATCHING ON TO SOME OF THESE HARVARD-WORTHY PRODUCTS:

  • Knit beret – the choice of professors, artists and…Nerds! Be sure to make black your color choice.

 

 

 

 

 

                                           Boho and Bikers

 

SEVERAL WELL-KNOWN STORIES cross over the Nerd with ease, like Boho.  That brings in brass and leather for jewelry, like bracelets and chokers, and a 1960s mentality with India-Indian suggestions and paisley prints.  Sandals are a must here!  Or, heavy brown oxfords.  Nerds who just must break out of their fashion category from time to time often go for a relaxed, reserved Biker effect. Bring in the studs.  Emphasize silver.

 

Somebody recently said about Nerds, “It’s the way they are, not the way they dress.”  We beg to differ.  How many Nerds do you know who wear low cut dresses, wild colors, super high heels, signature jewelry, and oh…dangerously mini-minis?  Not many, we guarantee it! So let’s not play games.  Being a Nerd is definitely a fashion statement!

 

Some of the fashionx Nerds love includes things handmade and native looking.  Watches with calculators.  Suspenders.  But, think about it and you’ll probably come up with a good list of your own. This is a whole counter culture and it is growing fast! 

   —Actually, since Nerdism requires a good knowledge of calculus and a love for learning in general, one might say the United States could use the movement, badly!

Anyway, rack up these Nerd identity-marks:  It is generally an easy-going, laid back, comfortable look. That’s probably why last year’s cardigan looks so right!

 

                                              Going Green

 

Peasant skirts are essentials here.  So are earthy colors.  And, if you are going to talk about a nation moving into the “Green Fields,” you know that Nerds are leading the way. If it is chemically questionable, if it involves the equivalent of slave labor from a third world nation to produce, if it throws off all kinds of toxic waste in production, and if it destroys our natural eco-system, “X” it out. As far as American-made is concerned, that isn’t really a requirement. What is important is that the manufacture of any item be globally responsible.

 

Nerds actually do wear jewelry, just not the run-of-the-mill type. Think instead about Zen-inspired pieces, like circular pendants or Yin-Yang signs.  Pieces featuring etched eastern calligraphy are great!  Anything archeological, particularly from the Middle East. 

 

Do we have to tell you to forget glitz with this group? Also, forget fur, high heels, clothing with cut-outs, sequins, bright colors, glittery items, things with obvious designer logos (who wants to wear somebody else’s initials on their clothing?), and chic short hairdos.

 

                                               No Attitude

 

Hey, besides all that, get rid of the attitude.  What attitude?  ANY ATTITUDE!  It just doesn’t go in Nerd-dom.

 

WITH ALL OF THAT, CAN YOU IMAGINE SOMEONE ACTUALLY WANTING TO LOOK LIKE A NERD?  WELL, BELIEVE IT.  NERDS NOT ONLY ACCEPT THEIR LOOKS, THEY LOVE THEM. THEY THRIVE ON BEING NERDS AND LOOKING NERDY. 

   –Strangely enough, if you look into it more, you might even understand why. 

 

ANYWAY, HERE ARE SOME FUN NERD PRODUCTS TO MAKE YOUR DAY:

 

 

 

 

 

  • Zuni style Indian art fashion earrings features high color that even a Nerd would love. Precision cut inlay and silver plated bezels.  Timelessly beautiful!
Comments (0) Posted by Mary McGarry on Wednesday, September 16th, 2009

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AT THE FUNERAL MASS FOR Senator Ted Kennedy recently, the Senator’s son Teddy described his father as an adventurer who loved sailing, camping, all things French and, surprisingly, costume parties. 

 

As we move into the run-up timeframe for Halloween, the fun and fascination of such parties comes to the fore for all of us.  Oh, the mystery of it:  the masked beautiful lady or the masked man with his elegant dress and imperial manner.  Who might they be? 

 

Costume parties are always great fun, for all ages.  Little girls get the chance to dress up as brides.  Little boys become swashbuckling pirate-fighters.  Adults can entertain themselves by dressing up as Marie Antoinette or George Washington, Cleopatra or King Henry the Eighth.  A hero or a dastardly fellow…take your choice for the costumed character of the year!

 

YOU CAN JOIN IN THE ENTERTAINMENT WITH YOUR OWN COSTUME FEST!  HERE’S A COLLECTION OF FABULOUS MASKS TO MAKE THE FESTIVITIES AS ELEGANT AS EVEN A KENNEDY COULD LOVE!

  • Spray of feathers on one side of sequin face mask includes coque, peacock, and ostrich in gorgeous colors of red, purple fuchsia, and turquoise.  Wow!

 

 

 

  • Yellow, fuchsia, and turquoise feathers make up this multi-colored mask. The eyes are outlined with gold sequins and the mask is topped with peacock and dark coque feathers.  Breathtaking!

 

                                 The “Revealing” Bracelet

 

EVEN AS YOU’RE REVIEWING your own Halloween costume for 2009, pay attention to the details!  For example, be careful what you wear with that spectacular mask – it could immediately identify you!  Oh, well, most of us just have to wear the things we love, no matter!

 

   —As one Halloween master pointed out, however, “If you are going to blow your cover so quickly, at least do it with panache!”

 

A gorgeous tennis bracelet is not just a thing of beauty; it is a treasure that never goes out of style.  It is at one and the same time, always trendy, always classic.  And, it is a great way to let “insiders” know it is you, there, behind the mask!

 

Should we include a quick definition here?

 

A tennis bracelet is essentially a thin in-line jewelry design of faux or real diamonds and can be made from small to fairly large, individually set stones.  An essential point is this:  the stones must all be symmetrically set and of the same exact size and cut. 

 

                                              A Rose is a Rose

 

TENNIS BRACELETS ACTUALLY DON’T date back very far, at least in name.  They surfaced in their present guise back in 1987 when former #1 world woman tennis player Chris Evert was playing in the U.S. Open.

 

   –Suddenly, her diamond in-line bracelet snapped apart, scattering the precious stones and more or less causing a spontaneous flurry of excitement.  The match was immediately stopped to allow the diamonds to be recovered! 

 

The incident brought the bracelet design to the forefront of public awareness, and resulted in a new name for it:  The Tennis Bracelet.  It has been a deeply valued and popular jewelry design ever since!  Among the tennis celebrities who routinely wear this bracelet design are Serena Williams and Gabriela Sabatini.

 

Incidentally, Evert has worn the tennis bracelet to numerous events and photo shoots since then.  One of them shows her remarkable versatility:  A pix shot of the champion player ready to kick butt on a dynamite looking motorcycle wearing the now famous bracelet, skin tight pants and a hot black leather jacket.  As we’ve said before: Diamonds (real or otherwise) go with everything!  Hey, another thing:  that Biker Outfit could make a terrific costume!

 

YOU MIGHT WANT TO MATCH YOUR FABULOUS HALLOWEEN MASK WITH AN EQUALLY IMPRESSIVE EVERT-INSPIRED BRACELET THIS YEAR. HERE ARE SOME TO CHOOSE FROM:

 

 

 

 

  • Six rows of solid rhinestones, clear or iridescent, offer up endless dazzle!
Comments (0) Posted by Mary McGarry on Tuesday, September 15th, 2009

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DID YOU EVER NOTICE how certain things go together just naturally?  Like jewelry and music.  Or jewelry and modeling.  Eliminate one from the other and both lose.  Even male musicians know the power jewelry brings to their performances – look at Bruce Springsteen and many others for whom necklaces are part of their very personality!

 

Whitney Houston is no exception to the big jewelry/music connection.  The extraordinary artist has sold over 170 million albums and singles worldwide during her career with Arista Records.  And just look at a few of her almost endless list of awards and achievements:

            7 consecutive #1 Billboard hot hits, including Save All My Love for You,

             and How Will I Know, among others. She is just fantastic!

 

But, don’t miss seeing her, too, in some of her fashion forward, super-modern jewelry that seems to pick up where her music leaves off!  We’re thinking, in particular, about a wild pair of large, spike-y, triangular, etched silver earrings that pick up light and transfuse it, like her vibrant smile, clear across the room. 

 

Now, that’s a real jewelry/music connection!

 

                                                     New Album

 

THIS MUSIC ICON AND BEAUTY has a new album, I Look to You, that just came on the street August 31st.  It is guaranteed to be a worldwide winner, like her other albums, which have racked up record-breaking sales.  For example, the artist’s Bodyguard soundtrack is one of the 10 top selling albums of all times. And, her version of Dolly Parton’s I Will Always Love You is the biggest selling all time single in the United States!

 

Houston’s dramatic appearance plays an important part in her overall musical image.   Among her many fabulous jewels:  a dynamite black stone choker, worn with a sophisticated urban sense above a sleek black satin wrap coat. Fantastic!  Other popular jewelry sights of Houston show her wearing big silver hoop earrings, and multiple ring bands on a single ring finger.

 

A timeless philanthropist, Houston is not only a great artist but a phenomenal humanitarian.  Just a couple of the major charities she has worked with are St. Jude Children’s Hospital and the United Negro College Fund.

   –If you share the nation’s adoration of Whitney Houston, you’ll tune in to the Oprah Show on September 14th when she’ll be stage center on a rare TV appearance which   Oprah is proudly calling “the most anticipated music interview of the decade.” 

 

MUSIC AND JEWELRY OFTEN SEEM TO VIBRATE TOGETHER SHARING A COMMON CHORD OF SENSUAL EXPRESSION.  HERE ARE SOME IDEAL JEWELRY PIECES IN A WHITNEY HOUSTON MOOD:

 

  • Sleek hoop earrings in silver or gold plating made especially for clip earring customers.  Innovative!

 

 

 

 

                                               Model of Perfection

 

 

 JESSICA WHITE IS A SEXY VIXEN and model who is making it big with a gorgeous body and lots of skin-revealing photographs.  She has been a top runway model for Victoria’s Secret and has also been prominently featured the last two years in a row in Sports Illustrated’s fabulous bathing suit issues. 

    –Jessica wears jewelry in a provocative manner, especially multiple skinny gold chains dropping down to mid-chest level with interesting pendants, like a white heart and a silver hand. 

 

One of the more fascinating things about Jessica is that while she is extremely seductive, she is never salacious.  She is just a gorgeous, fascinating female figure.  Jewelry looks terrific on her, but she actually wears relatively conservative pieces, well chosen to draw attention to her bodily beauty without overwhelming it.

 

A PARTICULARLY EXCITING Jessica look features small silver chain drop earrings with a small square metallic drop.  Very creative and different.  Another look includes a heavy link chain with large silver medieval cross pendant.  It literally vibrates against her sun-cast golden skin.

 

Crosses are apparently a White favorite.  Among others, she frequently wears a long, thin, sleek modern cross on a chain, almost as a piece of statement jewelry.  On her middle finger, she wears a beautiful dome-shaped golden gemstone ring. 

 

IF YOU’RE INTERESTED IN GETTING A JESSICA WHITE LOOK, WHY NOT TRY SOME OF THESE JEWELRY PIECES, VERY MUCH IN TUNE WITH HER TASTE AND CHOICES: 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Cross pendant with paste fiber optics in silver plate with antiqued recesses. Beautiful color and inspirational!
Comments (0) Posted by Mary McGarry on Tuesday, September 1st, 2009