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A Fashiony Exercise

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


I had a meeting up at the Chevy Chase Saks Fifth Avenue store today. It was my first visit to that particular store and I got there early (and then ended up staying afterwards) to explore a bit. In my opinion (and at the risk of sounding kinda corny), one of the most wonderful things any fashion follower can do is spend an afternoon in an upscale retailer like Saks. You don't have to buy anything – I didn't; I'm still being good! -- but just to walk around, to stand veryvery close the Lanvin and the Oscar de la Renta and the Chanel, to try on a Choo or two, makes for an inspiring time. The stitching, the fabric, the details of such items – these are things that pictures will never do justice. It was all so very lovely. (And, should you be in market for something beautiful, much of it was on some mayjah sale.)

One of my favorite new finds was some pieces from Australian-born, Paris-based designer Martin Grant. Saks had a few detailed black dresses from him (all at verrry tempting sale prices), and they were just so perfectly constructed, with artful pleating and sleek shapes, that I was instantly smitten. (Look at that coat above from his upcoming F/W collection! Swoooon.)

I knew it was meant to be when I clicked on the S/S section of his site and was happily greeted by an image of an enormous pink button as the page loaded.



His designs are not at trendy – no bright paint-splatters here! – but they are, season after season, incredibly well-constructed, impeccably detailed and otherwise perfect. I think I may be in love. {I also think I might love the idea of bright white tights and turtlenecks layered under fitted black sheaths for this fall.}


Even his bio picture is kind of amazing. See?


Do you have a favorite store where you love to just go and drool? My all-time favorite is Lane Crawford in Hong Kong (with nearby Joyce a close second), but Barney's New York is probably at the top of my list in the U.S. I'd love to hear if you do -- it would be excellent fodder for my Fashion Vacation Wishlist.

22 comments :

kim said...

I love Printemps in Paris. It's very open and a bit touristy, so you can wander around without being assaulted by sales people all the time.
I don't really dare to wander around high fashion store as I can't afford the stuff and feel uncomfortable with pushy/snooty sales people. But I windowshop/drool in Antwerp at all Princesse stores (multi brand, Marc Jacobs and others), Dries van Noten, WALTER (Walter van Beirendonck, often has crazy displays) and Delvaux (Belgian bag brand).

Catherine said...

I loooove Martin Grant. His clothes are always so modern and classy. Thanks for the heads up about the Saks sale!

As far as drool-worthy stores, I second Printemps in Paris. I also love Takashimaya in NYC. I have gotten some really interesting, unique clothes there (on sale, of course!) and even if I don't find anything, I love to go be inspired by the things I can't afford (yet.)

KimmyS said...

Definitely Barney's New York (only 5 dangerously short blocks from my office) in the US, Liberty in London (a bit hidden) is my absolute favorite, it is housed in an old Tudor Mansion and has all of these amazing things all over that you can play dress up with--like a giant feather headpiece--while you shop. Above all--the Miu Miu store in SoHo...swoon!

Sal said...

I fear I'm too low-end to contribute to the droolworthy shops list! My first thought is of Century 21 in NYC ... but for the thrill of the bargainhunt, not the serene, mind-opening shopping experience. However, you've made me want to take a leisurely stroll through a Saks, if for no other reason than to visit those to-die-for Martin Grant pieces in person. GORGEOUS.

P.S. Any word on those blogroll adds, Ms. Spinach? ;)

Always In Style said...

Great post!

And thanks for the heads up on Martin Grant - I have never heard of him but am totally intrigued!

The silhouettes really are trendy without being obnoxious. Just beautifully made clothing with an edge. Love it. Must own some now!

Lily said...

I love Le Printemps in Paris too! Going to Lisbon in July so I'll keep you posted if I find one there that makes me drool!

Kiera Emily Dale said...

Most definitely Le Bon Marché in Paris. It's the oldest department store and is an art piece in itself never mind all the fabulous things to buy!

BabsieD said...

1.) Liberty in London--YESYESYES!
2.) Kirna Zabete, NYC
3.) vivre.com
4.) Relish, right here in DC!

DC Celine said...

The Chelsea outpost of Commes des Garcons and the nearly next door Balenciaga...for the architecture around and on the racks.

Veronica Hohenstein said...

I love the Betsey Johnson stores. I love flipping through their rows of crazy, bright, often ridiculous dresses and trying to imagine a place to where them all.

It takes every ounce of my being to not max out my credit card...!

Erica said...

Metier in SF...

Joanna Goddard said...

hi bio pic is so amazing! xo

Iheartfashion said...

For department store shopping I like Franck et Fils in the Passy neighborhood of Paris and Luisa via Roma in Florence.
And Martin Grant is wonderful!

stacy said...

Barneys makes me drool a lot. I also love walking through Bloomingdales in San Francisco.

Suzy said...

I'm with you - Lane Crawford and Joyce and a shoppers paradise. And I adore Martin Gran'ts clothes. He always uses beautiful fabrics with real substance, nothing flimsy at all. So femnine, and really wearable.

Sara said...

Rustan's in Manila, Phillipines.

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