December 13, 2018

The Langham this Holiday

I know this is a fashion blog but I would be remiss if I didn't mention the backdrop for this fashion shoot. The Langham hotel in Chicago opened with a lot of fanfare about 5 years ago. It became the world's  only hotel located in a Mies Van Der Rohe building. His grandson Dirk Lohan did the ground floor lobby's furnishings--the lamps, the furniture and the iconic brass beads that hang in the windows.

I am wearing a fur over white Citizens of Humanity jeans and the soon to be infamous white VINCE boots. I love the beads hanging in the background and another icon, the Marina City building that opened in 1968 just across the street. I adore the ultra modern building. I only wish it had a sexier name.

This cute little dark green velvet dress is on sale right now at Neimans (by Aiden). I love velvet and wear it for more than just the holiday season. I love to mix it with all kinds of sportswear. Years ago I had  some Belgian shoes in black velvet that I adored. Velvet is extremely durable and never goes out of style. Just stay away from anything with a hint of grandma.
December 6, 2018

White Boots

I was obsessed with finding white boots this season but there were not a lot around this fall unless I ordered online. Many of you are old pros at ordering online but I just don't like the returns and especially with shoes. You have a better chance of getting the right size with clothing than with shoes unless you are ordering a Louboutin, Manolo Blahnik or something else you have worn before. I recently ordered some Sperry rain boots that as it turned out ran one size too large. Luckily I could return them to Nordstrom but it's still a hassle. 

Finally I got these Vince white boots and am loving them but finding it a bit more difficult to style them. For instance how will I wear them with dresses? If I were in California you would just go bear legged. Here in Chicago you can not. Do I do white tights or white hose (I've seen signs of hosiery coming back)?

I'll let you know but in the mean time I'll show how I have styled them so far. 

I did a cream colored turtleneck with dark skinny jeans. I like the jeans to be short enough to show the boot. Maybe I'll try a white sock next time, ha!
With my coat the whole look is dark, which really makes the boots pop.
Keep it simple with white boots because it is a modern look and you don't want to muck it up with a lot of stuff going on. All photos taken at Soho House Chicago.
November 29, 2018

Fifty and Fabulous

Sarah Rutson is a long time heavy hitter in the fashion industry. She was the Fashion Director at the iconic Lane Crawford (I have to mention they announced a new sustainability initiative today) and Vice President of global buying at Net-a-Porter to name a few. Now she is the Chief Brand Officer at the Collected Group which owns Equipment, Current/Elliot and Joie.

I found her on Instagram a couple of years ago and was definitely intrigued. After reading a bunch on the internet my guess is that she was discovered by Garance Doré around 10 years ago. So as a women discovered or brought into the spotlight at 40 as a style icon, is a bit different from the other women I've written about. Both Brigitte Bardot and Françoise Hardy were international sensations in their 20s. In their era women in their 40s and 50s were not discovered and labelled style icons that late in the game.

Now that I have switched gears toward the unapologetically grownup, I am celebrating Sarah Rutson's style at fifty. More and more women in their fifties who have great style and have taken care of themselves are being embraced by mainstream America. Because as I say Style Never Stops for those who have it.
The two shots above are current so she must be wearing what looks like Equipment. Her style is very menswear lately which is always chic.
Other outfits from throughout her career are a little more playful. She could probably wear any of the brands at Lane Crawford or Net-a-Porter carried.
November 20, 2018

Animals and Plaid


Animal print has gone wild this season in every possible size, shape and silhouette. I feel like the animals alone are a bit too animaly and plaid can sometimes be a bit too conservative. Together they take it up a notch. They seem fresher and more daring. What do you think?

Plaid is a classic that you can find most of the time but I was hard pressed to find much at the major department stores. Next season I think there will be much more out there. Balenciaga has a lot in their 2019 Resort Show and have told you how that trickles down in many instances.

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November 15, 2018

Shoulder Pads - Please Come Back

Balenciaga has been on the forefront of the shoulder pad revival for at least two years but it has not gone mainstream yet. It can take awhile but this is a particularly tough one to bring back. People are honestly kind of afraid of shoulder pads I think. The 80s were not our crowning moment in fashion. Aside from the exaggerated shoulders there was often some bad hair and makeup that went into the mix. Fear no more, today's interpretation will undoubtedly be fresher and more modern.

Taking a cue from Balenciaga, I bought my vintage Perry Ellis camel hair coat at auction two years ago. I know the people of Chicago think I am wearing a coat that is several sizes too big for me but that's ok. You have to be comfortable with looking a little funny at times unless you want to dress like everyone else.
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November 8, 2018

Denim on Denim


I first spotted the dark denim on denim look in the Fall 2017 Dior show and thought it looked fresh so I replicated it with a dark denim shirt and jeans last fall. At that time I was in New York for Fashion Week and Calvin Klein was showing it on the runway. I love being ahead! If I can't be ahead, I am doing a different take on trend. Don't count on me for doing a current trend in an obvious way. I encourage you to develop your personal style this way or just experiment or hire me. Ha! Anybody can follow trends as dictated. Make them your own.
Jordache is set to relaunch their brand with a dark denim on denim look for their 40th Anniversary. Carine Roitfeld did the styling for their advertising campaign. Jordache Jeans are back!

November 1, 2018

Democratization of Beauty

For at least a century, an elite group of fashion editors, photographers and patrons have dictated beauty. It used to be women could only imagine being beautiful if their body image some how resembled Cheryl Tiegs in the 70s or Cindy Crawford in the 80s. While their beauty could of resembled them, they would never measure up to these goddesslike creatures. Women can have only felt inadequate when comparing themselves to these gifted humans.

Then along comes Instagram, the photo sharing app in 2010. Now girls of every color, race, age and socioeconomic status can be considered beautiful and develop a following. What a breath of fresh air.  Now any young woman can find an Instagram influencer that she can relate to and that makes her feel good about herself. Beauty doesn't have to fit into some kind of mold. 

In an era of dwindling readership of magazines this proves to be another stumbling block. I think that major fashion magazines will feel pressure to showcase these women even though they don't meet their requirements for beauty? Will they cannibalize their magazines? Hard to say but the influencers are here to stay. Our democracy will keep them in power.

           Clockwise: @mayemusk, @thatsnotmyage, @shionat, @doublexposure                      

These gals are just a small representation of Instagram stars. 

What do you think of the change? Do you see any downside?