Friday, September 18, 2009

Chantelle and TJ Maxx

If you have read the Muse you know I've already raved about the power of Intimacy at Copley and across the US for lingerie - Now, unfortunately the price tag is a bit sticky - 80-150 for Bras and upwards of 60 smacks for a pair of underwear - now for a former Hanes her Way lady that is a tough bill to swallow especially when it is underneath your clothes!

SO - I couldn't have been more elated to find one of the premier brands, Chantelle, at TJ Maxx the other night - now I'll be honest you have to dig, but the prices are much more in line with Muse's standards - $15 for Bras and $3 for underwear - are you kidding me!!!! I saved over 350 smacks at one go!

I cannot believe I'm sharing this secret - but after seeing Chantelle on Rue La La for a still whopping $29-100 I knew it was too good not to...

Lucky You!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The September Issue

Attention all fashion junkies - Go see the September Issue! It is a rare glimpse into the fashion world and making of Vogue as well as the devil herself - Anna Wintour! Though I have to admit I didn't think she seemed nearly as terrible as the book/movie made her out. What are your thoughts?

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Farewell to Nancy Talbot

Growing up partly on the South Shore in Hingham, I have known about the Bright Red Door since before I knew what it symbolized. At the time, it meant having to go with my mom to a boring store with no toys or fun things to do, but as I grew older I understood what it meant to not only a community but to women - classic and practical styles.

Over the years the styles changed and so did the designers - most recently Michael Smallbone has created a cooler style to appeal to a wider demographic, but one thing remained the same - the Bright Red Door and the name.

Sunday, Nancy Talbot, passed away. The Boston Globe wrote a wonderful and inspirational piece about her work and the families launch to success. It is worth the read.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Back to School Fashion

After a long summer hiatus - the Style Muse is back and ready to get down to business! I'm glad to see that in my time away not too much has changed - miraculously one-shoulders are still in, black&white, and animals are circling the subway - you know the drill.

But there are subtle differences to the upcoming season as there are every season, which require us to update our wardrobes and pick key pieces to keep us looking fresh and feeling better. So, after trying my best to show restraint shopping this summer, I can indulge in so much needed retail therapy without the guilt!
Even if it has been some time since we have stepped foot in a classroom, we can still remember what it was like to get the mail with our new teacher, class list or syllabus, buying our back-to-school pencil box and matching bowl cut (wait was that just me?). Even if the clock restarts on January 1 for many of us it will always be September with the changing air and feeling that you have a new start - so to that end I'll be scouring the sales and new trends to find the best deals to put your best foot forward this season.

As a start, here's a skirt that I found that will not break the bank but fulfill the much needed animal print for the season. For those of you like Sister Muse 2 that can't see themselves in such a print, try incorporating the spotted trend in small ways such as shoes (flats, pumps, but please not boots) or a skinny belt, handbag etc.

Go gett'em tiger (or leopard or zebra)...

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Skinny Style

I'm always looking for new places to get fun and unique items to spice up my wardrobe, especially items that don't break the bank. I was perusing some magazine in the airport yesterday and came across this site, Skinny Style and I love it! They have great little pieces to complement your summer wardrobe - and you know anything coral, turquoise, or gold and I'm already there! I really love this unusual bracelet!

If you aren't into buying online, they have a list of stores that carry it, such as Flat of the Hill in Boston as well.
Happy Shopping!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Gold Moccasins on the Cheap

Looking for inspiration and something a little different this spring and I stumbled on some gold driving mocs in J Crew - for a cool $150. The quality is no doubt rich, and for many can mantain a staple item - but for me it feels more like whimsy, so I was really excited to stumble upon a similar looking moc for $19 smacks!

Treasures hide in every corner!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Carrie Bradshaw and Bebe

I cannot tell you the last time I went into a Bebe - maybe briefly in 2000? I've always figured it is for Eva Longoria types, both in terms of style and size. So I was taken by surprise when I found myself wandering through this week, some unexpected pull weaving me through the slightly slutty attire. But lo and behold - I found myself openly grinning (by myself) at many of the whimsical tops and dresses that would make Carrie Bradshaw squeal with delight. Mind you, like SATC, these are not for the faint of heart, but if you're looking to go out on a limb, this is the place to do it - feathers, ruffles and bows oh my!

Remember how you felt wearing a boa around the house as a kid (wait was that only me?) Well this is the grown-up version - be bold, be daring and smile confidently knowing how bad-ass you are wearing one of these shirts. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE

Friday, February 20, 2009

I'm in Love with Isaac and Liz

Usually when I flip through O Magazine I go fairly quickly through the fashion - frequently I think it is better suited for, well, for someone else. But yesterday, I was looking at the newest issue and was floored then ecstatic - Isaac Mizrahi has done it again! This time partnering with the decrepit line, Liz Claiborne.

I'm sure most of us haven't paid Liz Claiborne a second thought since the early 80s, if at all. But I think it is back and in a big way. I'm over the moon for the new line with Isaac. It is fresh, with vibrant colors and familiar prints that remind me of Mad Men and a time when women could be women.

It says spring 2009 - so I'm dying to know when I can get it! I plan to start saving my pennies now for a few spring essentials like the pink gingham skirt or the sailor outfit or the rattan clutch. OK, so maybe that it is more than a few pennies, but almost everything is under $200. The line is carried at a few venues including Macy's, check it out.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Old School Glamour, by way of Jewelry

Old School earrings are back - I'll admit, I first started paying attention to the elegant Jackie-O type earrings because Sister Muse 2 was not giving me much of a choice - Every time, Lily sported them on Gossip Girl I heard about it. And judging by this year's Golden Globes, she was dead-on. BTW - My vote for Best Dressed all around goes to Olivia Wilde, simply stunning, but I digress...

Glamorous baubles adorned the ears of many of the starlets, channelling Old Hollywood, simple in their styles (think flowered, crystal studs) these earrings emanate grace and class (which says Sister Muse 2 all over it). So, for Christmas I thought I'd found the perfect gift! But alas, the stores haven't quite caught on to the phenom and I couldn't find suitable baubles anywhere. *My guess is, they will be hitting stores this spring and into next fall (I mean who would've guessed that Jumpsuits are still coming in with even more vigor?)
Well, thanks to Sister Muse 2's perseverance, this story has a happy ending for her and hopefully for you too! The quick fix is to visit consignment shops and antique stores to look for interesting costume jewelry. You don't like clip-ons you say? Do not despair, though frequently these earrings are clip-on, just take it to a local jeweler and have them replace with posts which will run about $10.

Voila - you are now ahead of the curve with your vintage finds - A big thank you to Sister Muse 2.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Investing in Classics During a Recession

Now it is getting interesting...The bubble has burst and no matter where you look there are reminders of the economic turmoil facing our nation; including a heavy emphasis on fashion. The stories are everywhere - the elite shopping in private so as not to appear uncouth. Or designers such as Vera Wang, Carmen Marc Valvo and Betsey Johnson cancelling their fashion show or severely cutting back. The period of excess is over. It is no longer trendy to show off your ridiculously expensive purchases, and bragging rights over addresses, vacations and clothing are so passe.

While in some ways this makes it more difficult to be a style muse in other ways it is a huge sigh of relief. It is a welcome realization in my life to understand that I do not need to have so much (clothes or anything else) especially when others have so little. And before anyone thinks I've gone completely George Bailey - my stripes haven't changed all that much. I still believe in fashion and in representing yourself and your spirit through personal style.

But, as a culture, we will embrace a new way of living, at least this is my hope. It is the old adage of quality over quantity. Personally, my goal is to think French in 2009 -- meaning invest in a few necessary items now that are durable, classic and even luxurious and wear them with the quiet grace that is befitting of this period: a winter of stoic sensibility.

So while it may seem counter intuitive, now is in fact a time to buy. As a recent article by David Coleman in the NYT pointed out, luxury [read: quality] has never been so affordable. Now for people like me, that does not mean just because Manolo Blahnik's are marked down to $175 that you need to buy them - What it does mean is that you think about your needs and purchase wisely, sometimes for as much as 50% off - Saks in particular is having some great deals at the moment.

Look inside your closet - what is worn out? what is lacking? and make a list and buy only from that list. For example, The Muse is looking for a winter dress coat that will last an innumerable number of seasons and possibly a some black cashmere to add to the chest. But will not, repeat will not, succumb, no matter how inexpensive, to buying any sequins.
I'm brewing my version of fashion must-haves and will update soon!