- Edited by Vivian Kelly
- As a nearly 20 year Fashion Industry Vet, I've made TheFE my place to cover and discuss everything fashionable from books, to designer ready-to-wear to couture. All aspects of a fashionable lifestyle are included. BIG NEWS: I'VE MOVED TheFE TO WORDPRESS to take advantage of their superior publishing platform. http://thefashionexaminer.wordpress.com See you there!!
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
BY VIVIAN G. KELLY-VAN ZUTPHEN
LIKE THE INIMITABLE “COUNTESS LOUISE ESTERHAZY, AKA JOHN FAIRCHILD, as of late, we’ve found ourselves nostalgic for the golden oldies. Our G.O. list includes: KEDS [in navy blue canvas], Chanel No. 5, Docksiders, skinny wale cords, Adidas track suits, emerald cut diamond rings and oval sapphire rings.
At the top of the spectrum is Grace Kelly’s spectacular engagement ring from HARRY WINSTON. Prince Rainer proposed with the 12 carat emerald cut diamond ring with two baguettes, mounted in platinum. The ring makes an appearance in the movie “High Society” which Grace starred in that year.
Quality, does NOT have to be expensive though. We got the ring of our dreams – a 4 ½ carat Ceylon sapphire ring, mounted in 14k white gold with 2 tiny diamonds flanking it for under $500. The real savings was the stone – found in a jewelry store in Puerto Vallarta for a whopping $92 US.
That though, was the find of a decade.
KEDS- A CLASSIC YOU CAN GET - NOW
Most accessible though are those iconic KEDS. We’ve been wearing ours 5 days straight since they arrived on our doorstep. They’re repped by NY PR powerhouse, LAFORCE + STEVENS.
We’ve picked-out some of our favorites for guys and girls. Amazingly, none of them will run you more than $60 this spring. They even have a customization program in which you can design your own shoe. For you eco-minded fashionistas, you can pick from their eco line. With that kind of choice and price-point AND the fact that “BELLA” of the TWILIGHT series wore them in “Twilight” and “New Moon”, it’s only a matter of time until you’ll start seeing them on every tweens’ feet come this spring. Who knows? They may replace the much more expensive ubiquitous UGGS.
We’re keeping our fingers crossed.
Keds – A little History
In 1916, Keds created an American Classic: the first shoe with a soft rubber sole and coined the term "sneaker." This original sneaker, called "the Champion" has remained a style icon for over ninety years and a fave of style icons Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe and Jackie O. Today, a new generation such as “Bella” has discovered the Keds brand.
PRO-Keds is the shoe you wear when you're BBQing in the backyards and dropping in on a pickup game. The PRO-Keds classic Royal comes in both canvas high and low tops, and features a red and blue power stripe on the midsole - the unmistakable PRO-Keds signature.
To learn more about Keds, visit the official website, www.keds.com
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
TEXT, VIVIAN G. KELLY-VAN ZUTPHEN
We’re tired of the obvious fakery of the whole GOLDEN GLOBES exercise, but like an addict, we’ll take some, even though we know the product’s inferior.
That said, we’ve got to congratulate our former boss, MICHAEL KORS, for getting the formula down right.
There IS a formula for RED CARPET makeup and he delivers it in the MICHAEL KORS VERY HOLLYWOOD Collection. Model, Hilary Rhoda, looks red-carpet ready in the counter signage.
Kors states in a press release that for the Rodeo Pink palette; he was inspired by “the iconic pink of the flowers that line Rodeo Drive and the bright colors of the homes in the Hollywood Hills.”
What the colors reminded us of were old-time Hollywood Glamour stars like Liz Taylor and Grace Kelly had in spades.
The afternoon of the Golden Globes we spent a few hours in our local DANBURY FAIR MALL and hit Macy’s and Lord & Taylor, in search of the “Marilyn Monroe red” lipstick Lancome Harper’s Bazaar featured in a beauty editorial.
While we didn’t have any luck finding the said lipstick, we DID stumble onto Michael Kors’ brilliant totally mini limited edition cosmetics collection.
We tried “honey blonde” and “bungalow pink” lipsticks, and “sunset coral” blush.
We’ll probably come back for bungalow pink but left with a L&T bag containing our purchase of “Hollywood Gold”, the PERFECT nude-beige we’ve been on the look-out for, seemingly forever.
It’s nice when satisfaction comes at a mere $19 price tag.
To buy, visit your Estee Lauder counter or shop on www.esteelauder.com
The Collection is available at Estee Lauder counters now, until supplies run out.
Sunday, January 17, 2010
TEXT, VIVIAN G. KELLY-VAN ZUTPHEN
Thinking about the upcoming Lingerie Shows at the MET Pavilion, and the presence of LA PERLA on the NY Show Calendar got us thinking about this category. If that weren’t enough, the card companies are bombarding us with images of women in lingerie on Valentine’s Day Cards.
There’s a big divide between swanky La Perla bits of lace and “shape wear” – or is there?
We were surprised to learn that even lean and mean celebs like Gwyneth Paltrow allegedly wear what used to be called “girdles”. Until quite recently, they were about as comfortable as the chastity belts Medieval Princesses used to wear to keep them faithful in the Middle Ages.
These days, it’s acceptable to say that you wear “shape wear”.
You hear, “Spanx this, Spanx that, but they’re hardly the only game in town. Being fans of the underdog, we decided to check the market and see what else is out there.
When friend, Leslie Stevens of PR Powerhouse firm, LAFORCE & STEVENS took on WACOAL as a client, and suggested we try out the latest shape wear, we took her up on it.
Admittedly, we don’t need shape wear but as a size 2 we’re cold from March – November and wondered if like the UNDER ARMOUR tops we live in, could provide a comfy extra ultra thin layer to get us through the brutal CT. winter. Another thought was that maybe we could even use it to go jogging in with a pair of sweatpants over it.
We tested the market, from moderate to high-end and below, the results.
At Kohl’s – MAIDENFORM’S CONTOUR FIT ™
FIRM CONTROL – HI-WAIST THIGH SLIMMER.
RESULTS: If you find the sensation of wearing a giant rubber band from your navel down to your knees comfy, then your search is over. We lasted 1 ½ hours in this one, and it wasn’t all that warm.
No way you’re jogging in this one.
THE WINNER: WACOAL® SHAPE HOPE ON A HANGER – long leg shaper
Available at WACOAL AMERICA
This Capri-style pant/short was so thin we wondered if it would feel elastic at all.
We were able to teach a class and sit at our desk for 2 hours before the desire to take it off hit. We kind of wish we hadn’t as they add a nice layer of warmth.
FUN FACT: Women lose the most heat in 3 places – head, hands, lower back. This little short keeps that third area nice and toasty.
At MACY’s we tried 2 brands, one inexpensive, one higher priced.
THE RUNNER-UP: LULEH CAPRI short –
1st impression – like Wacoal, they’re thin. They’re tight, but it’s entirely possible to move around in them.
MIRACLE SUIT HI WAIST THIGH SLIMMER – style#2709
Looks too much like a girdle, even in the fashionable nude color. The paneling was bulky and overall, very uncomfortable.
Both WACOAL and LULEH put out good products. If you can spare the money, go with the WACOAL. In the end, it’s better made & will last you longer. Take a page from www.WMagazinecom's “The Countess Louise Esterhazy” and go with all things quality, whenever possible.
To learn more about Wacoal visit the website, www.wacoal-america.com
Thursday, January 7, 2010
TEXT, VIVIAN G. KELLY
Images, Courtesy of CETTU & by VGK
We couldn’t resist the invite from bagtrends.com’s Pamela Perkerman to check out a handbag line she promised to be fashionable AND a great value. Lately, we’ve been partial to un-brands – great bags that don’t have the “name” but are really well made. Some examples: BE&D, and ASPINAL of LONDON. We’re loving BE&D’s ruffled “KanKan" Zip Tote and clutch as well as ASPINAL OF LONDON'S Union Jack “Brit Tote” – both ring in at under a $Grand.
For an added incentive,
Pam organized with DRESS FOR SUCCESS, and shoppers that evening were given an additional 5% off if they donated a used handbag to the cause. Before we left for the event, we packed a couple of bags we weren’t using to donate.
We met up with fellow blogger, Richard Spiegel of The Fashion Tribune who was already busy talking with CETTU’S JANELLE RUSSELL, the brand’s National Sales Manager. She graciously modelled our favorite bag, a classic black tote. If you can't yet afford an Hermes Birkin, this is a nice alternative for under $500.
THE FASHION EXAMINER: “What does ‘CETTU’ mean?
JANELLE: CETTU is a magical bird back in the days of Camleot. Arthur presented CETTU to the Lady Guinavere to win her heart, and it worked!
FE: We heard that the price point is quite moderate – a great idea these days. What’s “moderate”?
JANELLE: Bags are on average around $300 [at retail].
FE: Would that be cloth or leather?
JANELLE: The bags are all leather, made of the most luxurious buttery soft leathers out there. We also put substantial hardware and detailing into the bags. We’re debuting the wallets, for $75 – 85, probably at Nordstrom’s.
FE: Is there any buzz about the brand yet?
JANELLE: Yes, we are getting some buzz, and have appeared on Gossip Girl and Elle Magazine.
We left with a yellow wallet, gorgeously packaged in a sleek black box and a keychain in the shape of a heraldic coat of arms. After inspecting the stylish little wallet – clutch, we decided to use it as our camera and flip case during NY Fashion Week.
The spring 2010 collection will be in stores in February. There will be 4 groupings to choose from: EVERYDAY LUXURY, HIPPY LUXE, CITY CHIC, AND SPECIAL EDITION.
CETTU is on TWITTER.
Follow them there!