Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Sick and Tired

Hi Kittens. . .

This is a random post, about nothing really style related, but important to me. This post is about etymology and pop culture trends. Small quiz to follow.

I might be the only one who thinks this, and let me know if you disagree, but I am SICK and TIRED of the word fashionista. Let me rephrase. . . I am tired of the OVER USE of the word fashionista.

Wikitionary says the word started showing up as early as 1993. I say even in the early 2000's fashionista was still cool and humorous to use. But now fashionista is trite, trendy, and silly. It is a trend that has peaked, been knocked off, and worn by the wrong people.
It is passe.

Recessionista though, now that one still has charm and meaning.

Nothing else to report.

As you were. . .

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Neighboorhood Watch. . .Coming Soon

Yet another feature we will be doing here at DSB. . .how to find, which one to shop, and of course how to support our local boutiques.

Not only are Washingtonians dressing better, but they also have more interesting places to shop. Our local boutiques are full of designer items, fashionable finds, and stylish options. We can always go to Saks and Bloomies, but finding it at our local shops is even better!

We will interview the shop owner, take pictures of the space and pick a few must haves. So tune in this week for our very first Neighborhood Watch. Your gonna love it!

Kisses and Huggies!
Image courtesy of Nubbytwiglet.com.

I Know What Boys Like, I Know What Guys Want. . .On The Hill

Hello kittens! Here at DSB we find out what boys like and we share it with you, dear readers. For this feature we interviewed an anonymous young male Hill Staffer and showed him photos of three Hollywood starlets, the latest "it" shoe, a fun handbag, and one fashion editor. Good times! Write in and let me know if you agree with him. Enjoy!

Hot off the runway the Louis Vuttion "Spicy" sandal. Dubbed by fashion editors as the shoe of the season and worn by everyone from Posh to Carine Roitfeld. I say this will be the most knocked off shoe of the year. Bebe all ready has a knockoff in their catalog. Not a fan of knock offs, but it does indicate popularity with the ladies. Let's see what our boy on the Hill thought. . .
"That shoe is crazy! And not cool crazy, just nutty weird crazy. When it is on her feet it looks like the shoe is decorated with some sort of hard candy food item. Which is gross and slightly nauseating. Food and feet not a good combo. . .On the other hand, alone it looks kind of like a work of art, folk art or something. . .remarkable and interesting. But on the feet its just nasty gross."

Actress Kristen Bell from Forgetting Sara Marshal and Veronica Mars wearing a super cute party frock. Totally on trend with the girly details, red lip, and pockets. What did the boy have to say. . .
"Now who is this?! Nice. . .oh yeah right the clothes. Umm. . .oh she is cute. Ok, right focusing now on the dress. Don't. Like. It. Not at all. I guess I would say an open back should be more traditional, WAY too much going on. All the that stuff, the bow, the pockets, and the straps. That's it! The straps remind me of a velcro strap from flag football! Not good. I know I would look at her, she would draw attention to herself, but I don't know if it really works. I think I see all these girls in these outfits like this and I think oh bless her heart she is somehow just trying to hard."

French Vouge Fashion Director Emmanuelle Alt, one of my favorites. She does everything in this tough, easy, sexy, and totally french way. And the guy from the Hill thinks. . .
"I am actually speechless. I mean, wow that is just cool and amazing and hot! I am Midwestern guy and that is CLEARLY exotic and foreign, but somehow it is really cool and I like it. She looks like she knows her shit and knows how to dress and take a risk and that is sexy! She looks very European. Plus even though I find her sexy, she really isn't showing any skin."

The boyfriend sweater has been a hugely popular trend. I personally wear it frequently. So let's see what guys think about their sweater on you. . .
"Liv Tyler. . .Oh My God and that is not in a good way!! Mr. Rogers sweater/dress. . .boobs peeking out?! Not endearing. Very pretty lady, made to look really silly and that is bad. Maybe sitting down it would look better? Liv is hot but still. . ."

We discussed ruffles and charming details a few weeks ago. This over sized ruffle/flower purse by Valentino is the epitome of ladylike charm and tongue in cheek humour. Our intrepid Hill Staffer says. . .
"Hate it. To cutesy for me. Way to sweet and prim...trying to hard to be cute. Old lady cute, but with a preppy southern belle like thing going on. It would be annoying if like someone I was taking to dinner or on a date wore that."

Up and coming starlet Elizabeth Banks in a Roberto Cavali dress. I feel like I have seen any number of Georgetown girls and DC women wearing something very similar to this. I would have sexed it up a bit with peep toe red high heels instead of a round toe black pump, but all in all I like it. Cut to the guy. . .
"I don't know. . she is pretty. I like her hair. But the pattern or whatever is weird. . don't know how many people could carry it off. Classy old Hollywood mixed with borderline way too Plain Jane. The hair and the body save the Plain Jane look, but not by much."

So there you have it folks, what a guy thinks of things we love. I guess we've learned why we dress for other women. But let's try to keep the men's thoughts in mind, because they are thinking SOMETHING about how you dress.

X to the O!!

Images courtsey of Garance Dore, I Love LV, InStyle Magazine, and Bergdorf Goodman.

Abandonment Issues

Hi Kittens. My apologies for being MIA for a bit on the blog. I have been super busy recently!!! For starters, I found a new job and had the 8th anniversary with the Hubs. Fun times!

But I am back and I have some wonderful things to share and show you.

So sit back, relax, and enjoy the blog. I promise never to abandon you again.

See you soon!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Watch This Space . . .I Know What Boys Like, I Know What Guys Want

They say women dress to impress other women because men don't really understand or care about fashion. I disagree, I think MOST men don't put as much energy into it as your average woman does, but that doesn't mean men can't appreciate fashion or have an objective/subjective response to it.

Whether you agree with that statement or not, I happen to think men's opinions of fashion are usually funny, irreverent, and sometimes spot on. Ever want to make a decision on the latest coolest trendiest item, I say ask a guy. A man will usually give a succinct statement that will possibly make you laugh and more then likely clarify your stance of yay or nay on said item.

So if your dressing for yourself, or to impress the Mean Girls at the local club, or even to catch a guy check back here for a monthly feature where the men of Washington tell you what they think.

Because men may not be able to spot the difference between Prada and Forever 21, but they know what they like and now we can know as well.

See you soon kittens. . .

Want a taste of what they think about high end edgy runway shoes? I asked a Hill Staffer what he thought of the Nicholas Kirkwood shoes pictured below. He said "they look like Alice in Wonderland got caught up with that guy in the basement from Silence of the Lambs. . .and Alice isn't having a good time."

Image courtesy of jakandjill.com

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Champagne Dreams, Box Wine Budget

Another regular feature here at DCSB is going to be the champagne dreamy items, followed by the more realistic box wine budget possibilities. Because in these harsh economic times cheapie budget style is no longer just an option, it is a must.

One of The Chicks has never met a ruffle she doesn't love. She is drawn to ruffles on shirts, sweaters, and the edges of ladylike skirts. I believe the ruffly aesthetic of anthropologie was made just for her. If it is prim, slightly sweet, and of course ruffled you can count on it being in her closet.

So in her honor below are the high and the low priced ruffle handbags out there, because a bit of girly ruffles always adds a touch of charm to any outfit. Keep them from being ridiculously girly by sticking to a darker color palliate of grays, blacks, and an unexpected teal.

Now kittens got get your glass of boxed wine and enjoy the list.

x to the o!

Offically the champagne dream, and in champagne leather as well. Sigh...drool...ahhhhh....
Prada, $2450 bergdorfgoodman.com
I LOVE this bag. I LOVE this bag. I absolutely LOVE this bag. Perfect price, perfect size, perfect shape, and the ruffles look architectural and interesting instead of overly sweet and delicate. Perfecto!!

Steve Madden, $66, stevemadden.com

A softly seductive beauty from Dolce and Gabanna. Obviously the champagne splurge, but god it is gorgeous and will last forever.

Dolce & Gabanna, $1950 bergdorfgoodman.com

I usually stay away from Prada's nylon bags, there is something so. . .just-trying-to-pay-the-bills-at-Prada-so-charging-the-customers-way-more-then-nylon-is-worth about their nylon line. But this one is just too perfect and dreamy to say no to.

Prada, $1295 bergdorfgoodman.com

Tucked, gathered, smocked, and ruffled to the utmost. . .in the perfect teal color for any wardrobe.

Anthropologie, $88 anthropologie.com

The basic black clutch with a dainty ruffle trim and a hardcore silver lock. Sublime!

Lucky Brand Jeans, $131, zappos.com

Rocker chick mixed with anthropologie girly girl. Fantastic.

Betsey Johnson, $395 nordstrom.com

Friday, March 13, 2009

Size Does Matter. . .4 Inches or Shocker . . .Less!

Size matters, and I am NOT talking about what you think I am talking about. No, kittens, I am talking about heel height.

One of The Chicks just started wearing 3" - 3.5" heels, comfortably and regularly. On a recent shopping trip to NYC she was appalled to find that 3" are no longer stylish, it is 4.5" - 5" that count. Counts, at least in fashionable circles. So, while tottering around the Saks department wearing the latest Louboutin stunner she realized. . .bigger is NOT better, it could kill you in a hellish death by high heel accident.

She immediately called me and screamed into the phone, "How am I going to Wear 5" heels." After calming her down, I said "Well my pet, you wear them only occasionally, with dignity, attitude, and a MINIMUM of swinging hips. Natch."

Seriously kittens, the question is, are those extra inches just TOO much to justify? Are they really needed? Do they actually DO anything for you? Or is it like men say. . . it isn't the size of the boat but the motion in the ocean. . .oh god this metaphor is awful and I am ending it RIGHT NOW.

Look, it just has to be taken on a case by case basis.

First, is it appropriate? Those of you lucky enough to own Balenciaga booties, you PROBABLY don't wear them to the law office. However, heading to the restaurant Mio, then definitely do wear them.

The second thing to consider, as the saying goes, safety first kittens. . .will you break your ankle? I say, practice makes perfect. Wear them at home for at least a week before endangering yourself in public. Planning on being in Georgetown with those cobblestone streets, don't risk it. Many a girl has fallen booty over boobie on those charming, but dangerous cobblestone streets. However, going to Dupont, then try them out.

Some shoes are worth the torture of the towering heights and potential death, others are just silly. Personally I like the 4" - 5" range. Those extra inches make me feel. . .something good.

Enjoy images below of people on the streets wearing the highest of heels. Take comfort in the fact the if the Europeans shown in these images walk on GRAVEL, for gods sake we can surely do it on cobblestones and pavement.

So, go forth and buy that infamous YSL Tribute or the latest Nicholas Kirkwood beauty. Find a comfort zone with the highest heels you can stand.

And if it is only 3" . . . well then the motion in your ocean is all that matters. One step at a time ladies. . .

As always. . .xoxo.

The only American image to make the cut it is the mom from Sea of Shoes, FEEDING/WALKING HER DOGS IN YSL TRIBUTE BOOTS!! If she can do it while taking care of Fido, I believe we can do it while drinking on 14th and U street.

Images courtesy of JakandJill, Garance Dore, and Sea of Shoes.

Watch This Space. . .Home Despots

As the tag line above mentions, there will be some home decor on this DC style blog. Not only I am I continually impressed with the growing fashion scene in DC, but the home decor side is doing better and better as well.

A Washingtonian home can involve furniture from a variety of local sources. . .from antiques in Georgetown, modern furniture on 14th and U, and flea market finds at Eastern Market. The options are pretty much endless.

But more important then the options to buy, is the style with which it is used.

Washingtonian homes are fantastic. No one else in the bloggy-webby is talking about it, but here at DC Style Blender we will in our bi-monthly feature called "Home Despots."

Like our "Who, What, Wore" feature there will be photographs of four significant settings within the home and of course questions, some style related and some silly.

Email me at styleblenderdc@gmail.com if you or someone you know is willing to show their home on our "Home Despots" feature.

I look forward to hearing from you kittens. Meanwhile, watch this space for the "Home Despots" near you.

X to the O!!

Image courtsey of Eric Piasecki Photography.

These Heels Were Made For Working

Morning kittens, let's get started with. . .shoes. . .again.

So we have talked about statement shoes, a la Sea of Shoes blog style influence, but now let's discuss practicalities. . .The Work Shoe.

How can you avoid the sad, boxy, little 2" clunker heels I see between 8 - 6 pm on K Street? What are the best options for working on Capitol Hill, but still looking like you have a clue as to who Louboutin is?

Well kittens, below is a list of fantastic options to make a gal (I really do sound like I am 70 and living in Boca Raton, what IS that all about. . .) feel stylish, while still maintaining a career path.
All the shoes below are ones I suggest you purchase. But if you can't purchase them or they just don't strike your fancy (there is that old lady word usage again. . .) then try to remember the following:

When in doubt, heel height should be absolutely flat or 3" and above, nothing in between, especially if it is chunky and square.

Peep toe is always cute, but make sure to keep it classy, you are at work and I assume you want a promotion.

Not if, but when, you do a colored heel tone it down with simple neutral outfit.

Don't get crazy and buy something from Comfort One, or god help us, Clarks, because your feet hurt. Just pop a Dr. Scholl's gel pad in the shoe and walk the pain off. Or keep a pair of FANTASTIC flats handy to slip into.

So enjoy the list and let me know what you think. I'd love to hear your comments.


Look for something charming and fem. This kicky heel from payless is just the ticket. And at the lowest price imaginable, why not just buy them.
Payless, $38, payless.com
Find a low key animal print and wear it with anything and everything. These charming flats are a perfect example of DC work appropriate animal print.
Wellies are an English staple and it rains enough here that they should be a DC must have as well. Don't ruin a perfectly good pair of heels in a puddle. Keep your Wellies chic and simple in black patent leather.
Kamik, $44, nordstrom.com

A wedge has become the secret comfort shoe for millions of women. These in a charcoal gray will keep you going for a while and maintain a nice since of style.
Get a flat in a punchy color so that when your tootsie's hurt you still look like you have a fashion clue. The gynormous bow on these is charming as well.
Snakeskin is more neutral then you would think and a peep toe slingback is a classic shape. Pair this with anything you own. Get a great pedicure and flash a bright colored nailpolish. . .like I'm Not Really a Waitress by OPI.
DC women wear boots, ALOT. Get one for work that is detailed and fun. These insouciant take on spats can be worn with tucked in jeans or a great wrap dress.
A D'Orsay pump is a classic shape. Wearing it in a soft berry red makes it stylish and fun.
You need a black flat. But don't buy it from Aerosoles get these cute cut out ones instead.
The perfect plain, slightly rounded, slightly pointed, pump. It comes in a multitude of colors, but black and brown are the ones you should ALWAYS own.

Look for pumps with details. This one mixes tweed and patent leather, but the shape is classic and simple.
Modern Vintage, $249, nordstrom.com

In the spring and summer you need an "almost" sandal. These are fantastic!
Kate Spade, $328, nordstorm.com

Like I said before, boots are a must. Get a classic black pair and wear them with ANYTHING.
Get a high end label shoe in a classic but detailed shape. These are amazing. You will wear them forever.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Tripping the Heel Fantastic

As promised kittens, a follow up on how to incorporate the style of our blog of the week, Sea of Shoes, into a wearable DC look. So grab a glass of wino and settle in for a chat, because this is a long one!

First, the obvious element of Sea of Shoes style. . .shoes, and not just any shoes. . .no this Texas based blog is all about wowza statement shoes.

As much as I love Sea of Shoes, riddle me this, do we really think in DC you could flash Emanuel Ungaro branch heels for work? I mean, could you wear them to a client meeting at Deloitte and Touche? I think not, the client would not be impressed and your boss would think this person is obviously not a part of our corporate culture.

That being said, let's operate under the theory that not EVERY shoe in your closet needs to be BOTH work appropriate and playtime ready.

So with that theory in mind, buy one or two statement shoes a season and wear them when you go out. Washington's life's blood is evening events and after work mixers (Yes, I said mixers like an old lady living in Boca. . . stay tuned for the use of words like shindig and cats meow.)

That means wear your statement shoes to go out for store openings, drinks, dates, dinners, local events, charity functions, all those cocktail parties, and etc. Be courageous and pair your multitude of Little Black Dresses or classic boot cut Seven Jeans with something more interesting then the expected black Tory Burch heel or Kate Spade strappy.

For those lucky few who work in offices a bit more open in regards to style; try wearing some of the less extreme statement shoes below with classic, clean items. Keep it clean and pair them with black slacks, simple trousers, or well tailored pencil skirts.

So without further ado, my spring/fall picks for statement shoes for women of DC. The price range is broad, the styles are fantastic, and Sea of Shoes would be proud of you. Go forth kittens and buy!


These whisper . . .statement shoe, versus the more bold choices at Sea of Shoes. These shoes, however, become more and more detailed as you review them further. Who needs a YSL Tribute at 5" inches when Prada has done 5" inches with a tongue in cheek lady like demure. Made by the queen of statement shoes, Miuccia Prada, it is almost as if she knew exactly what a woman of DC would like to wear.
Prada, $590, saksfifthavenue.com

Fancy, funky, and amazingly sexy. By far the best version of a bootie. . .ever. Obviously a major splurge, but sometimes you just gotta invest in something this beautiful.
Givenchy, $979, couture.zappos.com

Multi-colored magic. from one of my favorite shoe designers. You could pair these with more then you think.
Giuseppe Zanotti, $653, couture.zappos.com

Tribal influenced items are big this year. Graphic and bold, these strappys are perfect for the DC lifestyle.
Michael by Michael Kors, $149, nordstrom.com

Every girl needs a wedge. The pop of teal blue makes these interesting. Take a risk, be inspired by Prada, and wear them in colder weather to a fun brunch with gray tights and an all gray sweater dress.
Charles David, $165, endless.com

Nobody does girly and sassy better then Betsey Johnson. These are sweet and fun. Keep them from making your teeth ache with their sweetness by wearing them with either black or gray skinny jeans.
Betsey Johnson, $175, endless.com

The mix of black, brown, white, and tan means you can wear these with almost anything you own. The cool shaped heel and multi-straps make them the best neutral statement shoe in this price range.
Michael by Michael Kors, $150, nordstrom.com

Punchy coral never looked so good. Wear these with jeans, dresses, skirts. . .whateves.
Steve Madden, $149, stevemadden.com

I am always impressed with the shoes ninewest comes up with; trend right and priced so that you can easily justify them.
Ninewest, $89, ninewest.com

Not a brand I am super familiar with, but who cares. These booties in olive suede with tiny bows up the back. . .unfreakenbeliveable!
Promiscuous, $99, zappos.com

Who would think these are from payless, certainly not me! Blue satin peep toe, with a wood and lucite banded wedge heel. . .the description alone sounds more high end then payless would seemingly supply.
Payless, $38, payless.com