Your Monday Morning Beauty Report

Monday, March 30, 2009

There's something about the big-time beauty editors that infinitely intrigues me. No red lipstick fazes them, their bathrooms could pass for a Sephora, they know all the secrets of the world's most beautiful people -- and the people that make them that beautiful, too. And so, a double dose of purely pleasurable pretty-related reading: 25 Random Things About W's Beauty Editors and then, a lengthy Q&A with Teen Vogue's Eva Chen.

Photo from InStyle, which routinely has the best beauty product shots around. Love.

Spring Shopping List: Dressy Shorts

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Longtime readers know that I am pretty vehemently anti-khaki, mostly because I can't understand how a fabric that looks unattractive on so many became part of our must-have-basics lexicon. Also partly because I, a product of a grade school with a dress code, wore way too much khaki growing up.

Of course, khaki does have its time and place, like on the golf course. And picnics. And on tiny children. But also on Chloe's rolled-cuff, super-voluminous spring shorts (at left), which I admit I drool over every time I see them in a fash mag.

I am pretty sure that Chloe shorts are out of my budget, but I'm intrigued by Express' similarly just-baggy-enough slouchy shorts (right), just $40. Tempting…

Current Obsession: The Slouchy Blazer

Saturday, March 28, 2009

I love the way these instantly elevate a v-neck tee and skinny jeans, which is pretty much my uniform when I'm too busy to put together a proper ensemble. Isn't Madison Marcus' "Alliance" jacket (at left, $348) amazing? And I can personally vouch for Iisli's jerseyish "boyfriend blazer" (at right, $358), which I featured in a photo shoot recently and had to use serious willpower not to buy it immediately. It's really that perfect.

The Blog Post In Which I Eat My Words

My friend Holly recently confessed she'd ordered a dress from Chadwicks — and liked it a lot. I mocked her gently. C'mon, Chadwicks? That frumpy clothing catalog I'm pretty sure my mom has received monthly since about 1982? (Um. Sorry, mom.) And then, flipping through one of the fash mags this month, I chanced upon a Chadwicks ad featuring the floaty, punchy-hued Charlotte dress (above), and promptly placed an order myself. (Just $50! Not too shabby.)

Apparently, I wasn't alone, because it was backordered for some time – but it just arrived in all its bright pink, ruffled-front glory, and I sorta instantly loved it. (Note: I got the coral-ish "papaya", but in a Petite size – it seems to fit the same up top as the standard size, but lops about two inches off the bottom which I find to be a much better proportion.)

And so, a public apology to Holly. But really, what's next? Newport News? Hmmm… I do think this coat is pretty cute…

Isaac + Liz = Strong Reactions

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

After my recent mention of my love over the Liz Claiborne spring lookbook, I'd have to say you readers fall into two camps: those who are willing to give the new Issac Mizrahi-designed collection a chance, and those who — maybe based on some repressed memories about unstylish experiences with the Liz Claiborne brand in some less fashionable times — would never, ever be caught dead in Liz Claiborne.

But, I'm hoping we can all (or, nearly all) appreciate the clean, classic styling of the new lookbook. Even if the pieces aren't your cup of tea, the chic, easy, pared-down feel of these looks is easy to love: simple statement accessories, slim cuts, a bit of colorful quirk. And on a more personal note: Also possibly my new hair muse?

Erin Wasson dreams big for both of us

Model Erin Wasson had a garage sale (of Balenciaga shoes and other model swag) at her home over the weekend. The reason?

"If I'm working all day and I have a dinner or something, I'll go from jeans and T-shirt to maybe a simple black dress. Same heels. Same hair and makeup. I really like the idea of being utilitarian. My dream is to edit down my wardrobe and be very Japanese, where you have one rolling rack and it's like your four T-shirts, your five dresses, your two pairs of jeans. That's so not the case right now. I have so much crap in my closets. I love the idea of being super edited."

Sounds so appealing, doesn't it? I am so a minimalist at heart. And yet, I am so a maximalist in real life.

{Erin Wasson images from here, which sheds more light on her personal style.}

Flower Power

I instantly loved these rose-adorned heels on Some Notes on Napkins — so much so that I immediately purchased some big, inexpensive flowers pins on eBay and plan to attach them to an old pair of simple, strappy, dressy sandals. Stay tuned…

And speaking of color…

Sunday, March 22, 2009

One of my favorite finds in recently memory is Canadian textile designer Virginia Johnson, whose gorgeous, printed, oversized cotton scarves are a great way to add some color to a classic ensemble. (I've been throwing my own hot pink artichoke-print scarf over a boyfriend blazer, white v-neck tee and skinny jeans, a la the always-polished Glamour writer Susan Cernek {third pic, in orange scarf}.) I first found the scarves in D.C. at Urban Chic (which also stocks her fab totes), and now they're popping up in more places, including Barneys.

And now, speaking of Susan, I totally heart this look too. So chic, clean and unfussy. Love the menswear influence. Perfect.

The Festival of Colors

Several years ago, I had the good luck to be in New Delhi on the day of the Hindu festival of Holi, where the entire country splatters each other with bold, bright, saturated color. I often say it was one of the best days of my whole life — right down to where we, dripping in colored paint, went out for a big fancy meal after the celebrations died down.

This year, Holi fell on March 11, and The Boston Globe’s awesome "Big Picture blog posted a bunch of images from the festivities. If these shots don’t get you in the mood for Spring's big, bright, punchy hues, I don't know what will.

Resurfacing for important Barbie-related announcements!

Monday, March 09, 2009

What, dear reader, could drag me out of my selfish, I'm-taking-care-of-my-own-needs blogging break and bring me back to the interweb?

Why, the Jonathan Adler-designed Barbie house, which debuts today, of course. I am kinda sorta completely dying over the Barbie mirror he created above.

In other news, I am fine! And busy! And ironically, thinking about fashion all the time! (I've also been under the weather since NY Fashion Week, but finally got a nice batch of antibiotics today and hoping that clears this pesky sinusitis right up.) Spring has sprung here in D.C. (at least intermittently) and that has gotten me all excited about sandals and jumpsuits and colorful scarves and adorably dressy shorts. I will return soon.

In the meantime, please feel free to discuss amongst yourselves:

+Did you not totally *die* over the Lanvin collection? Because I pretty much drooled all over my keyboard.

+I cannot believe my favorite purchase of the season (so far!) actually came from But it absolutely did, so I will happily give credit where it's due.

+So, these shoes: Cute, or too Mandal-ish? I just got them, and I really cannot decide if I should keep them.

+It is taking a LOT of willpower not to purchase this bag. And actually, half the J. Crew spring collection, if I'm being honest.

+I am kind of obsessed with the Liz Claiborne advertising lookbook for the season (available in a fashion magazine near you, or catch a glimpse online here). Well done, Mr. Mizrahi, well done.