Sunday, April 25, 2010

Are Cats the new Black?

Is it just a coincidence that Spring has sprung, and we enter the time known as "kitten season" that the latest fashion trend is cat prints?  Is it theoretically okay for me to dress like a crazy cat lady if it is also endorsed  by highly fashionable Miu Miu brand? 

I'll assume the answer is yes.  The followup question is "How much crazy cat lady is too much crazy cat lady?"
Exhibit 1:  Head-to-Toe, I've got 15 cat "babies" and room for more!
Exhibit 2:  Just some subtle accessories using the same print as in the outfits above for the woman who only has a couple cats but is heading down the slippery slope by leaving food outside for the strays. Note the adorable pink cat crawling down the shoulder of the top.
Please let me know your opinions before I go making a fool of myself!
- alison

Review: Nordstrom at Fashion Island

What I was hoping for:  A Nordstrom that has more designer collections, both apparel and shoes, than South Coast Plaza.
What I got: A Nordstrom with NO designer apparel collections (St. John does not count), a couple of good shoe collections, and a very large and well-stocked contemporary section.

I was really expecting Nordstrom to come into Fashion Island in Newport Beach with the intention of kicking the ass of Neiman Marcus.  It was so not like that at all. They have decided to cater to the SoCal beach audience whose uniform is jeans and tees. How disappointing.

What was not disappointing was seeing that they stocked Nicholas Kirkwood and Jonathan Kelsey shoes.  These are shoes that you see in the multi-page Nordstrom ads, where they mostly show collections that they don't carry in Southern California.

The most exciting part of my visit:  Meeting Jonathan Kelsey.  As I was pawing his shoes, it didn't even register that there was a sign on the table saying he was in the store that day. I just thought he was an odd guy hanging out by the women's shoes. Then, he said "hello." I responded "hi." He then said, "those shoes are from the fall collection, so they aren't available yet, but the ones on the other end are available." I said, "oh, do you represent the line?" and he said "I design the line." How embarrassing! Though more embarrassing was what little fanfare Nordstrom gave the guy. He literally was standing next to his shoe display like he worked there!

I asked him what I have to do to find the awesome shoes typically featured in magazines. He confirmed my suspicion that you have to pre-order at trunk shows after the runway shows. I told him I had been desperately searching for a pair of Proenzas and he said his friend designs the shoe line. And I asked him where I should go shoe shopping in London and he said Selfridges has absolutely the best collection of shoes. All that and he was really adorable, too!

- alison

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Shoes: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

I've identified three types of shoes that have obsessed me this season and would like to share with you.

First: The Good.  I consider these the most beautiful shoes I have ever seen (it might not be the first time I've said this about a pair of shoes, but I'm sincere about it every time, really!).  I will most likely never own these shoes because they cost $4700. Enjoy your free look.  If you do go off the deep end and need to buy them, you can get them at Neiman Marcus in black!

Next: The Bad.  And by "bad" I mean, I want these shoes BAD.  Alas, I will probably never find these shoes in any store because I am not a uber-power shopper that goes to trunk shows and commits to buying things before they even hit the shelves. I guess these will only be in the shoe closet of my dreams...

Finally: The Ugly.  There is no excuse for such a use of plastic, lucite, PVC, any other toxic man-made material, plus the chandelier crystals that remind me of some table lamps from my childhood. Prada always seems challenge the level of taste every few years.  I'm not even going to show you the Fendi shoes that were taken straight out of a stripper's closet.
I'm sure that in a few months time, I'll have done a complete 180 on my views of these shoes. Hopefully this happens before I spend money on any of them!
- alison

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Sunday, April 25 - Zac Posen for Target

If you were lucky enough to be in NY, you have already shopped the Zac Posen for Target collection.  The rest of us must wait until April 25.  I have mixed feelings on what I've seen of the collection, though definitely worth making the Sunday morning trip to my local Target to see how it looks and feels in person.  All the dresses seem short and the metallic stuff looks cheap. But there is some hope for the maxi dress.  If you didn't see the looks when they release the images in January, click here for a quick peek.

The next Target collaboration is with Tucker by Gaby Basora.  I'm not familiar with this line, but from the looks of it, it has real casual, vintage vibe.  Check out the full-priced line at

- alison

Monday, April 19, 2010

Et Tu, Target?

What is with this disturbing trend of advertising awesome deals that so few can actually take advantage of?  I've already bitched about The Outnet $1 sale (btw, as an apology for the frustrating experience, they are going to give customers free shipping for a month. Wow, I feel much better, now).

I went to my local Target at 10am on Sunday to check out the Cynthia Vincent shoes. Sadly, the shoes only took up the space of one endcap, and there were none of the gladiator wedges to be found. The space was half-empty already which led me to believe that they stocked them the day before, at least.  And when I went online at home, they claimed all the gladiator shoes were sold out, yet still showing them on the website just to rub it in.

Target deserves an extreme finger-wagging for being a MASS MERCHANT who NATIONALLY advertised a specific pair of shoes and yet didn't bother to order enough.  There was still boatloads of Liberty items in-store as well as some Jean-Paul Gaultier, so what happened, Target?  I almost think that they didn't even ship the yellow wedges to stores because I when I checked on ebay, I only saw the brown wedges. No one was selling yellow.  Usually, there are a boatload of the Target items on ebay as soon as they are in the stores.

And Target gets an additional stink-eye from me for not even having the Eugenia Kim accessories on display in either Target that I visited on Sunday.

Badly played, Target, badly played.
- alison

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Dana Davis Shoes - Fashionable and Comfortable?

Did anyone see the story about a month ago in the Sunday LA Times Image section on Dana Davis' shoes?  She claims to make comfortable stilettos.  Could it be true?  They do feature built-in orthotics, which makes me want to believe they are comfortable.  And they don't look as boring as something from Naturalizer. The heels are legit - 4 1/2 inches, not just a bunch of 3 inchers. Of course there are lower wedges and flats, but why waste time there. I would wear some of these styles. Hmm...maybe I WILL wear some of these styles at E3 and put their comfort to the test! Check out the collection on her website:

- alison

Friday, April 16, 2010

Target - This Sunday: Cynthia Vincent shoes & Eugenia Kim accessories!

I'm sorry I didn't post about the Jean Paul Gaultier or Liberty of London collections at Target. Short story on that: I did not buy any Jean Paul, but I did buy some scarves, comforter, a dress, and a blouse from Liberty.

But mark your calendars for this Sunday.  The Cynthia Vincent shoe collection goes on sale. The pics look really cute, but the real test will be in person when I can figure out what material it is made of.  The yellow wedge is just what I need to relieve my daily stress. They also come in brown and black. The flat studded sandals come in a few different colors and the tribal print fabric is used on a flat and a wedge.  I'm EXCITED!

On the same day, Eugenia Kim is launching a line of hats for Target.  I learned long ago to stop buying hats because I never wear them, but they look really cute, so I encourage you to check them out.
Have fun shopping at Target this weekend, you might want to create a valid shopping list in case you are having any feelings of guilt for buying shoes.  I need to pick up some vitamins while I'm there!
- alison

Damn you, Outnet! See what you made me do!

I shouldn't surprised, but I certainly am annoyed.  I didn't realize the Outnet would play dirty pool when it came to their $1 anniversary sale. As I mentioned previously, the Outnet would not tell anyone in advance when the dollar sale would start today. So, I was mentally prepared to enter the fray as I logged into my computer this morning around 9am, only to find that the sale started at 3:45am.  WTF?!?  Of course it was LONG over by the time I got the news.

So to quell my irritation, I decided to buy the most expensive dress I've ever bought in my life that I had tried on last night at Neiman Marcus during their cocktail party. I tried it on, got Polly's approval that it looked good, and put it on hold, thinking, I really shouldn't buy this, though I would sleep on it before making a final decision.  After I told Polly the price, she confirmed I should not buy it.  But this morning, I get the stupid Outnet news, AND an email from Polly telling me to buy it.  I did some casual research to see if there would be any chance that I would find this dress two months from now on the sale rack, half-heartedly convinced myself that there is no way this dress is going to be around in two months, and made the purchase.  Thank gooodness I got a tax refund.

In other Neiman Marcus party news, Polly and I discovered there is Spanx for men, I believe I had a real housewife of Orange County sighting, and after  the party, Polly and I got to meet and chitchat with Trina Turk over at her store in Fashion Island. She is totally adorable! I feel rather bad that I didn't buy anything from her.
- alison

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

When did shopping become stressful?

I know it has been a while, but don't worry, I have been doing a LOT of shopping since the last post.  I will try to give you some details on that later, plus some things you need to put on your calendar for the upcoming weeks.

But what I really wanted to discuss today is why does The have to make my pleasure in life so stressful?  If you are not familiar, The Outnet is sort of the clearance site for  Everything there has been marked down, versus net-a-porter which only occasionally has sales.  The Outnet also does these flash sales where they take one item and mark it way down and they sell it until it is gone. I have NEVER been able to take advantage of these flash sales because they start at 9am pacific and I am still enjoying the drive to work at that time.

But the REALLY stressful sales event is this Friday, April 16th. They are celebrating their one-year anniversary and selling a bunch of stuff for $1!  Who knows if it will total crap, like a bunch metallic harem pants or something awful like that.  Then again, it could be awesome.  The stress comes once you've RSVP'd for it.  They don't tell you WHEN the sale will start, and today they dropped the bomb that you will only be able to buy 1 item.  How the hell are you supposed to look at everything that is available and make your choice before everything is sold out?  It's making my blood pressure rise just writing about it.

In any case, if I actually get logged in for the sale and manage to buy something, I will report back to you all.  Wish me luck!
- alison