Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Pretty in Pink

Tomorrow starts Breast Cancer Awareness month. The power of pink's persuasion is incredible. We all know someone who has suffered the horrific life cancer brings. But we can overcome. Wear pink in October for all cancers. Donate money to cancer research. Wearing pink has never been more en vogue. For more information on cancer awareness, visit the American Cancer Society.

Here's a list of ways you can make a difference as well:

Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion
Limited-edition Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion comes with a pink bracelet and two charms: a Clinique "C" and Breast Cancer Awareness Pink Ribbon. $10 per Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion sold during October will be donated to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
Michael Stars Breast Cancer Cotton Tee
A soft cotton long-sleeved tee with the signature breast cancer ribbon helps to keep hope alive. Love, faith, courage, hope and strength are printed within the ribbon. Logo detail at back. Elongated cuffs. One size fits most. A portion of the proceeds of this purchase benefit the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.

Prescriptives Breast Cancer Awareness Make Up Palette
Show your support for Breast Cancer Awareness Month with our special, limited-edition Pink Ribbon Palette for Cheeks and Eyes. This all-in-one makeup palette includes four must-have eye colors and two cheek colors to highlight, define and contour for customized looks. Packaged in a limited-edition pink compact A $100.00 value.

From now until 12 October, you can save an additional 25% on your entire purchase at Ralph Lauren , an 10% of the entire purchase will benefit either Ralph's Pink Pony Fund or the Ralph Lauren Center for Cancer Care and Prevention.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

You Had Me at Hello

Such a simple line, made famous by Tom Cruise, but such a powerful statement. And actually the opposite holds true, especially in fashion and retail. After a recent experience at Brooks Brothers at the St. John’s Town Center, I’m changing the phrase to “You never had me, without hello”.

You see, I must tell you a story. A fraternity brother was in town visiting on business. I wanted to show him some of the important places to me, in this place I call “home”. Of course, that meant a trip to my favourite and most frequent shopping destination. After making a few stops, we went on an unplanned trip to Brooks Brothers. My fraternity brother really likes the store, and shared with me that he had shopped BB for many years.

We walk inside. Directly in front of us, three employees are facing each other – in a triangle shape – talking mindless banter. No hello. Not a second glance, let alone even a visual acknowledgement. My fraternity brother and I walk through several rooms. We comment on the lack of service, and how it’s only more ironic that we’re being ignored, since no other customers are in the store. After five minutes, we start to head out. My fraternity brother is even forced to walk around the triangle of associates. No “thanks for coming in”, no “enjoy your day”, not even a wave.

Thanks to the glorious iPhone, I instantly Google the corporate number to Brooks Brothers from the bench right outside the front door. After being redirected to another customer experience line, I share this exact experience with the agent. I even tell him that I would have gotten better service at Wal-mart. At least Wal-mart has greeters.

About 15 minutes later, the manager calls. He seems disappointed with the service, and invites us to come in for the friends and family 30% discount and a US$25 gift card. I say we’ll try to come in soon.

After breakfast the next day, we head back to BB. This time, we walk in a little more hopeful. This time, it appears there are actual customers in the store. We walk in. Still no greeting. We walk around the store for a few minutes. Still no greeting. We walk in the room with the cash registers – and I start showing my fraternity brother how pairing several different ties with a few shirts can really change the entire look and feel of the ensemble. I probably gather and arrange 15 ties. Still, no greeting. No acknowledgement of our presence. Then, we are approached by a gentleman and finally helped. He shows us a few shirts, but we’re not thrilled with the colour options. I ask rhetorically if they make custom shirts. He takes us to the made-to-measure area and helps us while we look at fabrics. I thank him, hand him my business card, and tell him to tell the manager we stopped by. He gives me his card and tells me about the custom shirt promotion.

Thursday passes. No follow up with the manager. Friday, Saturday, Sunday pass as well. Monday, I have a business luncheon in the same shopping plaza. I decide I need to speak with the manager in person. I walk in to the store, and simply head straight to the cash wrap and ask for the manager. After I was directed to him, I introduced myself. I shared with him my disappointment. He told me it was disappointing to hear. I asked a few questions about the future of the company. We spoke for maybe two or three minutes total.

We exchanged business cards, and I left. The end. No invitation to return. It was the most insincere exchange I’ve experienced thus far in the retail world.

I understand that Brooks Brothers is a privately held company undergoing some business restructuring. No matter the industry, no matter the company, or even the location of your store – customer service must remain a priority to all. Ever customer should be promptly greeted. Every customer should be offered assistance. Every customer should be thanked for stopping by. Because, even with the most generous investors, without customers, stores cease to function.

I went out of my way to call Brooks Brothers corporate office and share with them my unfortunate experience. I even spent time explaining the experience to the general manager – while it was fresh in my mind – in hopes that other customers and potential shoppers wouldn’t have to experience the same lackluster, unprofessional, and quite honestly disappointing experience that my fraternity brother and I did two days in a row.

I’m disappointed. I’ve had much more positive experiences at other Brooks Brothers locations across the nation, and online as well. It’s a good thing fashion doesn’t play by baseball’s rules. Because this would be three strikes…and Brooks Brothers most definitely is out.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Styles and Trends to look for

Wide lapels

Vintage inspired with a tailored fit

Denim that's not too skinny

The new numbered fragrances by d&g

Purples, plums, and royal blues and reds

Destroyed denim matched with formal jackets or blouses

The unshaven yet incredibly clean image of Tom Ford

Cross necklaces and jewelry with a purpose

The ease and comfort Stefano Gabbana and Domenico Dolce naturally possess

The reinvented luxury of Bally reminiscent of the late 80s and early 90s

Checks and plaids

Big scarves, neckwear, and anything accentuating the neck

The über luxury of Moncler puffer vests and coats

Glamourous gray - like tone on tone on tone

Short, trim double-breasted jackets and cardigans. Just remember to keep the buttons buttoned for optimal silhouette.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Desired Denim on Sale

It's one thing when a company promotes a denim sale and only seems to showcase or promote their ugliest, ill-fitting denim options. I've seen this all too often, where only the older, unattractive styles are offered, in a lame attempt to get potential customers into the stores and drive their business. There's a certain company that's not exactly the express train to fashion, that I lovingly refer to as "the garage sale store" - characterized by their seemingly permanent collection of cardboard boxes with giant red price signs scattered about the floor and all available space. Seriously, who wants to dig through a box of extra small or extra extra large sized clothing from last season?

Now, on the other side of that denim coin, there are some stores that actually mean what they say. When Barney's has a designer denim event, they actually make an effort to stock up on complete size runs, the latest trends, and styles for all.

This weekend, Martin + Osa is the definition of what a denim sale should be. All weekend long, all of the newest, greatest denim for the fall season are only US$59. This isn't last season's left overs either - it's the latest denim originally priced from US$79,50-120. For fall, I love a good, inky denim - and their vintage slim fit jeans for men in black resin wash are definitely the perfect staple. The women's fits and washes are equally as alluring - especially the supercross jean in charcoal wash, slimfit jean in gray destruction wash, the bootfit jean in dark indigo wash, and every one of the flair fit denim.

Now, on another note, you'll remember a few months ago, one of my clients was asking about appropriate attire for a "resort themed" party. Well, she's recently texted another question, and I thought you might be interested as well.

Q: "Can I wear boots with vintage white matchstick jeans? And if so, what style and color?"

A: Yes, yes, and yes! I love how denim looks with boots, for both men and women, in any season. Here are a few tips:

-- if you're wearing a more tailored denim, especially with skinner legs, be sure to tuck the denim into your boots. Whether tall boots or ankle boots, tucking in the denim will accentuate the footwear and create a longer, leaner silhouette.

-- when wearing lighter denim, or WHITE denim like in my client's case, avoid black leathers and opt for a warmer shade of brown like chestnut, chocolate, or even a lighter honey or caramel. The contrast of big black leathers with white denim will be too intense and dark. (now, not to make this complicated -but a caged ankle boot or gladiator style booty is ab.fab. in black with white denim).

-- to keep your denim from bunching inside your boot and keep a perfect silhouette all day long, gather the excess denim towards your lower leg or ankle and use a small clip or rubber band to keep them in place. then slip on the boot and dominate all day long.

-- if your denim is super destroyed or is anything other than "plain", choose a boot that's not as destroyed. pick one or the other. not both.

-- for women, I'm loving super tall boots, riding style boots, and short ankle boots or caged booties. it's the opposite extremes - either short or tall, and nothing in between.

For men - we only tuck denim into boots if we're riding on a horse during a polo match, or if you're wearing rain boots during a downpour. other than that - never tuck the denim.

Remember, just because denim is on sale doesn't mean you have to settle for ugly, ill-fitting jeans. Shop smart. Buy what you like and flatters you best. If not - no matter how inexpensive - move on.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Burberry Live

love, love, love Christopher Bailey's work for Burberry Prorsum. Prorsum, from the Latin meaning "forward" is definitely fashion forward to the nth degree.

For women - love the muted, yet incredibly sophisticated colour palate. a pepperminty, sea foam green, mixed with various shades of khaki and blue are very chic and savvy. The mix of structured shoulders in the jackets with the flirty, flowy draping of the skirts, dresses, and coats is impeccable. Flattering the feminine form, Bailey's idea of fashion is spot on. The drape. The twist. The knot. The pleating. The darting. I love the oversize proportions of the jewelry - especially those giant bracelets. The simplicity of the trench is artfully and tastefully updated with thinner sleeves and a significantly shorter length. Metallics and mattes, shiny with flat - his play on colour is youthful and invigorating. Key elements include the knotted drape, the belt, fabulous furs and luxe leathers. The glitz and glamour factor has risen to new heights - almost as much as the fabulous platform, knotted shoe!

For men - classic fabrics updated with thinner, more tailored, more fitted appeal for the future. Loving the tone on tone colour schemes.

It's as if Mr. Bailey took all of his favourite elements from the trench and incorporated a piece of them in every item of the collection. An ode to the tradition of Burberry but so very modern and perfect for today. I want it all. Now.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

luxe loves

What I'm loving right now, in no particular order.

-- Mary J. Blige's amazing gray cashmere Alexander McQueen hooded wrap sweater she wears in the AT&T mobilephone commercial.

-- all the amazing scarves for fall/winter. especially the purple/gray degrade number from Burberry.

-- leggings (for women, of course) - especially in intricate designs, bright colours, and playful patterns.

-- mixing your shoe wardrobe (for women, again) - tall boots, short ankle gladiator style booties, uber luxe ballerina flats, and sky high heels.

-- vintage inspired leathers - for both men and women - motorcycle jackets, gloves, belts, shoes, and even jewelry.

-- the exquisite manner in which Martin + Osa delivers their online orders to clients - neatly folded in plastic to prevent damage and wrinkles, then neatly wrapped in tissue paper and M+O seals, with air filled packaging to prevent unnecessary shifting through transit, with a clean envelope with very clearly, concise instructions for returning and exchanging (although I won't need them!), complimentary return postage labels, and - best of all - the excitement I had while viewing my purchases.

-- Starbucks' Pumpkin Spice Latte
-- giant sunglasses (but not that stupid plastic raybans in a myriad of colours)
-- cocktail rings and custom jewelry - or at least jewels that mean something, like the amazing Giorgio Armani black onyx cross necklace I just picked up in Firenze.
-- luxe travel
-- and most importantly - all the amazing, thoughtful birthday wishes I've received over the weekend.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Ristorante La Bussola

Ristorante La Bussola might be my favourite restaurant in the entire world. All the elements I look for in an amazing restaurant are the reality that is La Bussola.

Maybe it's because the eatery is located in the heart of Florence Italy, my favourite city. Or possibly it's the expansive wine offerings so artfully chosen. The wood burning oven, with the lightest, freshest pizza you've ever imagined is definitely a plus. The elegant, modern atmosphere without being pretentious or stuffy is quite simply - perfect.

Several years ago, I first stumbled upon La Bussola with my parents. We were in Italy on holiday for the summer, and I quickly fell in love with the establishment. I'll never forget being so proud to accurately and artfully (if I do say so myself) speak Italian to the waiter on behalf of my family. I knew it made my Mom so happy. And, the macedonia for dessert - heaven in a glass. On subsequent return visits, we always ate at La Bussola. The perfect portions. The perfect prices. Just perfect.

A couple weeks ago I made a random trip to Italy to kickstart my birthmonth celebration. Spending a few days in Rome, and then a few days in Florence by myself, I knew I had to eat at La Bussola. And it was everything I remembered, and more. The friendliest staff, the freshest, most delicious food, the comfortable, luxurious atmosphere - time stands still. Nothing is rushed. Everything is savoured. And believe me - you'll savour every morsel. Every day that I was in Florence, I ate at La Bussola. I just can't get enough.
Whether with friends or family, for business or pleasure - La Bussola is a must for any travel agenda.
Ristorante La Bussola
Via Porta Rossa, 58/r
Tel. (39) 055 293376

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

2009 fall fabrics

loving for fall 2009:



-luxe leathers

-premium denim


-fine gauge knits (especially cashmere)

Monday, September 14, 2009

hand-some hands

There's so much emphasis and buzz about antiaging products, special youth enhancing diets, pills, and potions. The fountain of youth seems to be a quest on everyone's mind. If you can pluck it, poke it, prod it, lift it, smooth it, wax it, laser it, remove it, buff it, or tuck it, I'm sure there's a doctor willing to do it and an endless line of people to pay thousands to have it done.

One area we don't always pay attention to, that can have huge results with little investment, it our hands. Think about how used, abused, and exposed our hands are. Constantly in motion, always grabbing, lifting, squeezing; frequent washing and exposure to soaps, antibacterial products, and endless amounts of sun and elemental exposure. Because of this, our hands age almost the fastest of all other body parts.

But you can definitely stop the clock and turn back the hands of time. Just follow these easy steps:

-- exfoliate. remember, salt purifies. sugar softens. I use an all natural sugar and salt blend twice a week. start by wetting the hands, then massage vigorously about a tablespoon amount of the scrub onto the hands - focusing on the tops, palms, between fingers, and especially around the cuticles and knuckles. after about three or four minutes, rinse thoroughly with lukewarm water.

-- moisturize. protecting your skin is important. shea butter is full of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, and also has water resistant properties - so you won't need to reapply so frequently. silver tipped white tea also helps protect against dehydration, deterioration, and oxidation. mimosa, soy bean, licorice, and asiatica all firm. mica helps reflect light and give more radiance. sea haricots and oceanic flora can rehydrate damaged cells on a cellular level giving more plump, more radiant skin as well.

-- protect. it's important to use a sunscreen or sunblock on your hands. think about all the additional exposure your hands get - especially while driving. titanium dioxide and zinc oxide naturally reflect the sun's harmful rays off your skin and prevent ultraviolet aging and burning. Parsol 1789 blocks a full spectrum of ultraviolet aging rays.

No one wants old looking hands. Have you ever seen an older woman or man with a very youthful (and medically induced) looking face, and the oldest, wrinkled looking hands? This doesn't have to be you. With a little proactivity, you can put your best hand (and foot) forward.

PS - I'm not saying you should abuse the "tester section" at better skincare stores. However, whenever I pass by, I can't help but squeeze a little bit of better brands' eye creams or new moisturizers onto my hands for an added pick-me-up. Typically eye creams are gentler, more moisturizing, and lighter weight than other face creams. Gives new meaning to "hand me a free sample, please!"

Friday, September 11, 2009

Love, Love LAMB

You’ve listened to her music. You’ve seen her trademark blonde locks, vivacious red lipstick, and rockstar influence in the most feminine way. Now it’s time to fuse her influence into your every day. Gwen Stefani’s L.A.M.B. Spring 2010 collection is absolutely amazing. Japan meets Jamaica for a glam-rock-star-studded masterpiece.

While some designers and power fashion houses are caving to the recession and creating collections that lack quality, fantasy, and creativity, Gwen’s new collection is simply stellar. Most rocker chic trends currently showing are only fitting in either biker bars or red carpet events – but Gwen’s collection unleashes the inner rockstar in us all. From her trademark structured blazers in luxe leather, to balloon shorts that flatter nearly every body type, and great staples like denim galore and feminine tops, the collection is a must have for spring.

Gwen’s debut album, Love. Angel. Music. Baby. inspired the acronym for her fashion line. Created in 2003 and debuting in 2004, it’s obvious Gwen has stepped up her game and really come into her own. Maybe it’s her two adorable children. Or the added maturity generally associated with age and professional success. Regardless – the fashion gods are definitely in her favour. I’ve seen her collections before, and knew she had a special spark that most celebrity designers lacked. But this time, Spring 2010 is for real.

I always talk about the “hi-lo” – mixing and matching different styles, qualities, and price points. And Gwen’s fabulous fashions definitely fit this serious style. Imagine reinventing your favourite denim and tshirt with the fantasy and grandeur of a signature L.A.M.B. leather jacket. From fragrance to footwear, belts to bags, everything Gwen touches is instantly red hot. Spring 2010 shows us the many sides of Gwen. We see the flirty, feminine knee length dresses and casual, carefree blouses that flash a little shoulder action. But we also see the micro-mini skirt paired with lacy leggings, overdyed low-slung denim with glamrock aesthetic. And as always, it’s about the power playing diva shoes – as high as her trademark blonde upswept hair – and super structured jackets.

In 2007, L.A.M.B.’s watch debut at Nordstrom department stores sold out in just two days, one of the most popular product launches in the company’s history. Gwen is comfortable taking risks and thinking outside the conventional mode of thought – all with precision and pizzaz. In 2005, her Harajuku Lovers range released a very limited digital camera by HP. Later in 2007, we even saw a television spot with Gwen’s “Long Winter” song even playing in the background for a new model of HP computers. Will we see Gwen’s love for style and electronic collide again? Just yesterday she was spotted with a certain lime green laptop case!

There’s love in her heart. She’s got angels who guide her way. Music is her passion. And she’s got two amazing babies. LAMB is her life. And now LAMB is your fashion choice for Spring 2010. When you discover your inner rockstar, the world is your stage. Now put your best foot forward.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Fashion's Night Out

Everyone says New York is the city that doesn't sleep. If that's the case, today's agenda does not include a nap! It's all about fashion today in the big apple. And I couldn't be more excited. Fashion's Night Out is the kick-off of New York Fashion Week and hopefully will bring a much needed boost to the fashion industry, as well as make a sizable contribution to the September 11th fund and other international charities and philanthropies.

Here's a rundown of the hot spots:

(at Barneys) 660 Madison Avenue (at Sixtieth Street) Third Floor
New York, NY 10065

Kris Van Assche, artistic director for Dior Homme, will make a personal appearance on the 3rd floor of Barneys from 8-9PM for Fashion's Night Out. Please stop by for a meet and greet and a glass of champagne with Kris. The newest mens ready to wear and sneakers from Dior Homme will also be available specially for that evening.

1000 Third Avenue (between Fifty-ninth Street and Sixtieth Street)
New York, NY 10022
(212) 705-2000
There's a ton of events happening at Bloomie's - but all you need to know is that Gwen Stefani will be in the store around 7 PM this evening. The first 30 people who buy US$150 or more of her luxe L.A.M.B. collection will have their goods signed by Gwen herself!

115 Mercer Street (between Prince Street and Spring Street)
New York, NY 10012
(212) 334-1160

3.1 phillip lim is marking the occasion by bringing out on Fashion’s Night Out, five signature styles from the past archives and refabricating and updating them for the current fall season. There will be a limited-size run of these five signature styles, which will remain a mystery until the night. Fall in love again with your favorite 3.1 pieces. This limited-edition collection will be revealed and sold only on Fashion’s Night Out between 6:00 and 11:00 p.m. at all 3.1 phillip lim stores in New York, L.A., and Tokyo. Phillip Lim himself will make an appearance that night at the SoHo store, and special guest friends will be on hand to lend personal styling tips over tunes and libations.

717 Fifth Avenue (at Fifty-sixth Street)
New York, NY 10022
(212) 339-5950

Experience the luxury of the world of Armani at Armani / 5th Avenue withextended shopping hours. Receive a complimentary glass of Prosecco whileshopping the Fall Winter 2009 Collection.

542 West Twenty-second Street (between Tenth Avenue and Eleventh Avenue)
New York, NY 10011
(212) 206-0872

Stop by the store for a martini. Spend $2500 and receive a pair of Edition sunglasses to take home!

660 Madison Avenue (between Sixtieth Street and Sixty-first Street)
New York, NY 10065
(212) 826-8900

On September 10, Barneys New York at Madison and Sixty-first will be transformed into a street fair of designer personal appearances and creative events. Customers will have the opportunity to shop and mingle with Isabel Toledo, Marcus and David from Rag & Bone, Narciso Rodriguez, Amanda Brooks, Waris, Thom Browne, Jonathan Adler, Lisa Perry, Alexander Wang, the Row’s Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, and many more. In addition to the personal appearances, Barneys will stage a roster of happenings. Wool and the Gang will teach knitting; Lipstick Queen Poppy King will offer “lip readings”; Vogue editor Tonne Goodman will curate a fashion green market; Gianluca Isaia will offer Neapolitan delicacies; Adam Kimmel will show a Gerard Malanga video installation; Loomstate will customize T-shirts; Leonid Khankin will host an Ernst Benz watch trunk show; Alabama Chanin will host a sewing circle; Juan Carlos Obando will give salsa lessons. And there’s more. . . . Complete schedule at TASTE LUXURY HUMOR.

754 Fifth Avenue (at Fifty-eighth Street)
York, NY 10019
(212) 753-7300

Zac Posen paints one-of-a-kind creations in the Fifth Avenue windows. 5:30 - 6:30 PM. Padma Lakshmi, host of Bravo's Top Chef, judges a designer cook-off with Cynthia Rowley, Edward Bess, Gilles Mendel, Lela Rose, Naeem Khan and Peter Som. 6:00 - 7:00 PM. Alexander Wang presents his t-shirts benefitting the September 11 Memorial. 6:00 - 7:00 PM. Guest bartenders Ashley Olsen and Mary-Kate Olsen mix up the season's tastiest libations. 7:00 - 8:00 PM. An exhibition of photographs from the book EXTREME BEAUTY IN VOGUE, with special guests curator Phyllis Posnick, Dr. Patricia Wexler, Daria Werbowy and Caroline Trentini. 7:00 - 8:00. André Leon Talley hosts a life-sized version of the new game Fashion Rules!™, with teams led by Donna Karan, Linda Fargo and Robert Verdi. 8:00 - 9:00 PM A conversation with Isaac Mizrahi and tunes by the Ben Waltzer Trio. 9:00 PM. Plus Roopal Patel and Troy Surratt present the Roopal Patel Palette from Le Metier de Beaute. Carlos Falchi presents his exclusive FNO graffiti tote. Designers including Manolo Blahnik, Narciso Rodriguez, Victoria Beckham, and many others will stop by to sign Fashion's Night Out t-shirts. Music by d.j.s Andrew Andrew, Johnny Dynell and Jon Jon Battle.

652 Hudson Street (at West Thirteenth Street)
New York, NY 10014
(212) 929-8710

In her New York Meatpacking District boutique, Catherine Malandrino herself will host a street fair themed, “Paris meets New York Marché”. On September 10th from 6:00 to 10:00pm shoppers will be invited to visit the Catherine Malandrino Meatpacking District boutique for a night of entertainment in the store and on the street including live models and performers in the boutique windows, French music with Parisian DJ’s Les Woof Gang, delicious French cocktails by Cointreau, and a street fair with wares presented by typically French companies Marie Belle for delectable chocolates, Selima Optique for eyewear and one of a kind hats, Caudalie beauty essentials, and Carita “Haute Beaute Cheveu” collection. Guests can even have a taste of Paris at the Tripie Crepe cart! The festivities will continue with a special performance by French cabaret Les Nubians at 10pm.

825 Madison Avenue (between Sixty-eighth Street and Sixty-ninth Street)
New York, NY 10065
(212) 249-4100


725 Fifth Avenue (at Fifty-sixth Street)
New York, NY 10022
(212) 826-2600

Gucci is pleased to support Fashion’s Night Out in New York. The Gucci Fifth Avenue Flagship and Madison Avenue stores will host in-store events from 6 to 11 p.m., serving cocktails and Gucci chocolates. All guests who attend the Gucci events will receive a limited-edition Fashion’s Night Out T-shirt, while supplies last. In honor of this initiative, Gucci will make a special donation to the National September 11 Memorial and Museum.

712 Fifth Avenue (between West Fifty-fifth Street and West Fifty-sixth Street)
New York, NY 10109
(800) 423-6335

Henri Bendel will kick off their “I’d Rather Wear Accessories” campaign at a Fashion’s Night Out event. Gossip Girl costume designer Eric Daman will be styling the “I’d Rather Wear Accessories” photo shoot, where customers will be photographed wearing their favorite accessories and will have a chance to win the accessory of their choice in a sweepstakes as well as amazing raffle items. “The New and the Next Gallery,” a highly curated shopping experience featuring accessories designers and beauty brands that were discovered by the iconic retailer, as well as rising stars, will be installed in the Fifth Avenue flagship. Designers Badgley Mischka, presenting their jewelry collection; emerging jewelry designer Rodrigo Otazu; and beauty guru Trish McEvoy will be on hand to meet customers. Many of the designers will create one-of-a-kind pieces that will be auctioned to benefit the 9/11 Fund. Model and artist Sasha Pivovarova will be exhibiting her own work for “The New and the Next Gallery.”

647 Fifth Avenue (between Fifty-first Street and Fifty-second Street)
New York, NY 10022
(212) 317-0224

Musical artist Ciara, Leigh Lezark of The Misshapes, nightlife doyen Amy Sacco, Vogue contributing editor Lauren Santo Domingo, actress Taylor Momsen and supermodels Chanel Iman, Jessica Joffe and Hana Soukupova (to name a few) impart their signature fashion style on the Fall 2009 Versace Collection by creating personalized looks for the models to wear throughout the evening. View these looks on live models while sipping Double Cross Vodka martinis and listening to internationally known DJs, The Misshapes. Mingle amongst the hippest and hottest VIPS for an evening that should not be missed.

693 Fifth Avenue (at Fifty-seventh Street)
New York, NY 10022
(212) 350-0100

Enjoy a festive spectrum of entertainment and designer appearances throughout the store. View a Japanese exhibition of fashions and artwork on Center Stage, main floor, as you sip wine and savor hors d’oeuvres. Sake tasting and snack on sushi on the third floor. Stop by the fifth floor for the Lingerie Diet Champagne event and meet founder Margaret Shrum, along with models in the season’s new luxurious sleepwear. Receive a $25 gift certificate when you spend $100, a $50 certificate for purchases totaling $250 and up. Enter our storewide sweepstakes to win a fabulous prize - all you need is your business card to enter.

611 Fifth Avenue (between Forty-ninth and fiftieth Streets)
New York, NY 10022

Saks Fifth Avenue is excited to participate in the first ever "Fashion’s Night Out." HIGHLIGHTS: Saks will transform its New York Flagship into the evening’s hottest spot, complete with a red carpet and stantions leading the way to the store’s entrances on Fifth Avenue. Many of Saks’s celebrated designers will make personal appearances that evening including Donna Karan— who will inaugurate her new in store shop at 5 p.m. as a kick-off to the evening— Carolina Hererra, Elie Tahari Giuseppe Zanotti, Josie Natori, Peter Som, Ralph Rucci, Geren Ford, Shoshanna Gruss, Kay Unger, the designers of jewelry line Faraone Mennella and many more. The biggest names in beauty such as Aerin Lauder, Bobbi Brown and Fredrick Fekkai will also visit Saks, along with world renowned makeup and beauty artists representing the foremost beauty brands. Customers can look forward to over 1,000 cosmetic giveaways.

711 Madison Avenue (at East Sixty-third Street)
New York, NY 10065
(212) 755-7722

Roberto Cavalli has chosen to celebrate his boutique’s ten-year anniversary with Fashion’s Night Out. The designer will personally host the evening, which will feature ten fabulous archival gowns from ten years in New York. Guests will enjoy signature cocktails inspired by the gowns.

724 Fifth Avenue (between West Fifty-sixth Street and West Fifty-seventh Street)
New York, NY 10019(
212) 664-0010

The legendary Creative Director of Vogue, Grace Coddington, will recreate her magical Little Red Riding Hood story from the September issue of Vogue in the Prada 5th Avenue store. Prada has produced a limited edition red basket bag for the night, a red cape and a red coat sold exclusively on Fashion's Night Out in honour of Grace's project. Fashion Night Out t-shirts will be given to every customer on the night. Come and join Grace and the Prada team for a night of fun and shopping!

1009 Madison Avenue (at Seventy-eighth Street)
New York, NY 10075
(212) 517-9339

Margherita Maccapani Missoni is making a special appearance to New York to celebrate Fashion's Night Out. The brand ambassador will host a cocktail party at the Missoni boutique and offer guests her style tips on creating their own personalized Missoni tote bags. Proceeds from the sale of these limited edition tote bags and along with the FNO t-shirts will go to National September 11th Memorial & Museum.

You know one of my favourite looks is the "hi-lo" - where you mix and match different pieces from different designers and definitely different price points. For example, you might pair a vintage inspired leather motorcycle jacket from John Varvatos with an amazingly soft, airy v-neck tshirt from Martin + Osa, with some distressed denim from Guess, with your favourite suede boots.

But, Martin + Osa takes the "hi-lo" to an entirely new level, giving you the highest quality, design, and style with the lowest pricepoint. There are few and far between who can give such an amazing design aesthetic while still being mindfull of your wallet.

Be sure to visit Martin + Osa's popup shop at 59th and 5th for one day only - TODAY. And whether or not you're in NYC, shop your local M+O store or click through the website and take advantage of ALL CASHMERE for US$79. (and when you use my special promotional code 99400044, you'll save an additional 30% off your purchase until 20 September).

No matter where you live - make tonight your Fashion Night Out. Start your holiday shopping early. Treat yourself. Buy something! Anything! (just don't be tacky and return it all later)

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Duh! in Pensacola

A few weeks ago I stumbled upon a pretty amazing compound of buildings called Duh! in Pensacola, Florida. Imagine a collection of buildings, all fenced in, with the most amazing home interior and exterior furnishings. From an extensive collection of planters and pots, to water features and fountains, to exquisite linens for bath, bed, and table, to amazing artwork and installations - there's something for everyone.

To be quite honest - I wasn't thrilled with the customer service aspect at first. A friend and I had browsed the store for nearly 20 minutes before we even saw an employee. And it wasn't until after I "started talking shop" that they paid any attention to us. But, on the other hand, I understand it can be difficult to reach every potential client in a store as massive as Duh. But seriously, I wanted to shout "DUH!" after finally talking to an employee!

There's no company website, and I don't think they have a catalogue either. So, I highly encourage you to make a the trek to Florida's panhandle and stop by Duh. You won't be disappointed by the endless selection of wares and treasures.

501 N 9th Ave
Pensacola, FL 32501
(850) 439-0640

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

M+O in NYC

If you don't know by now, I've been loving Martin + Osa for quite some time. The most comfortable, everyday luxury, without being stuffy, pretentious, or too demanding of your time or creativity.

In a global initiative to promote retail, restore consumer confidence, and celebrate fashion, U.S. and international editions of Vogue are coordinating evening extravaganzas in their respective world fashion capitals.

In the United States, American Vogue has joined with NYC & Company, the City of New York, and the Council of Fashion Designers of America to enliven again the consumer spirit that churns the economy and boosts the local industry of America’s fashion capital, New York City. Next only to finance, fashion is the second-largest sector of industry in New York City—the headquarters of more than 800 fashion companies employing 175,000 people and generating $10 billion in total wages. At City Hall’s May 20 press conference to announce Fashion’s Night Out, Vera Wang said, "To put it bluntly, if people don’t shop, people lose their jobs."

The first evening of New York Fashion Week, Fashion's Night Out will encompass festivities galore— from inventive window displays to model and celebrity appearances. Champagne may flow; hors d'oeuvres may be passed. Rumors of musical performances, downtown barbecues, shoe capsules, limited-edition rings, and sweepstakes abound. Apparently there will be makeovers, brow bars, and haircut stations at sundry spots, too.

And even more exciting - Martin and Osa will host a pop-up shop in NYC to celebrate Fashion's Night Out! From 10 in the morning until 11 at night, M+O will introduce itself to the city that doesn't sleep, showing their most popular looks and staple items. From the most premium denim and vintage inspired tshirts, to a one-day-only promotion featuring all of their cashmere pieces for just US$79, M+O is sure to make a huge statement.

Now, for those of you not able to travel to NYC to experience the all things awesome of M+O's popup shop, I have a special opportunity for you to still make a difference. From 9-20 September, all of my friends and fans of Thirsty.Threads will receive an additional 30% off their entire online purchase with code # 99400044.

We all are connected to the fashion industry - from the sales clerk at The Gap to Giorgio Armani himself, we've all either worked in the industry or know someone who has. It's time to show our thanks and support. Visit the shop in NYC. Or shop online. Either way - making a difference has never looked so good! And for those unable to stop by, shop online at Martin +Osa and save an additional 30% from 9-20 September with promotional code number 99400044. The more you shop, the better. I'm Dr. Joseph and my prescription for this terrible economy is a healthy dose of Retail Therapy.

To recap: Martin and Osa is bringing Fashion's Night Out to a whole new level. For one day only, on Thursday, 10 September 2009 from 10:00 AM to 11:00 PM, M+O will host a pop-up shop at 59th and 5th. Be there.