So - which ass-kicking boots do I buy?

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Citywide Health Alert!

NEWSFLASH: A disturbing affliction seems to have struck girls across this city: "Forgot-to-put-on-pants Syndrome." This very specific form of Alzheimer's seems to be particularly prevalent among the hipster community, leading experts to believe it may be caused by increased exposure to stupid hats.

"It can be very embarrassing for these young women," said a leading expert on the epidemic. "Obviously no one intends to wear a shirt like that as a dress. That would just be insane. Instead, it is done accidentally, due to sudden onset of FTPOP Syndrome. They just forget to put their pants on and walk out the house as if they are fully dressed." At right, Exhibits A and B.

Thankfully, a cure is available, said this very credible source, who wished to remain anonymous. "The answer is to buy more pants. Having a cute pair readily available at all times can help to fight the spread of this unfortunate condition." For maximum effect, 4 out of 5 doctors recommend gray skinny jeans, like this $40 pair from H&M.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

One Day at a Time

Do you hear that sobbing? Sometimes it's more of a keening wail. That is my shirt drawer. It already contains at least 7 more shirts than physically possible, but it just knows that I am out trawling for more. And so help it, it is right. I am like an addict. Is there a 12-step program? But first I'd have to hit rock bottom, before I can really commit to turning myself around. And, so help me, until that drawer actually spontaneously explodes, hurling cherry wood veneer splinters six feet into the air, I will continue to purchase cute knit tops at $9.99 and jam them in as tight as possible (and then wonder why each and every one requires ironing, or at least squinting hard enough at the mirror that the wrinkles hardly show).
Step 1: We admit that we are powerless over adorable, affordably priced knits - that our drawers, closets and blanket chests have become unclosable.

Friday, August 22, 2008

You're Welcome

We are so very helpful. Remember how we brought you the elusive "day-into-night" shirt, the shirt that we all thought was the sartorial equivalent of Sasquatch? Well, here is - - insert sound of banner-strung-trumpets here - - the just as elusive summer-into-fall skirt. While I am still partial to a low-slung skirt, because I am the shortest waisted person on the island of Manhattan and possibly across all five boroughs, I really like this high-waisted alternative. Notice how it does turn the model into a pair of breasts resting directly on her waist? I suppose that could have something to do with her being 6'2" and weighing 87 pounds, but, ever the optimist, I expect that this would be a very flattering skirt on pretty much anyone. The cotton knit makes it perfect for both seasons.

And at $50, it's 72% off (sometimes if a price sounds slightly too high, we have to resort to percentage discounted to seal the deal. But you already employ that trick, don't you? You're no fool).

Monday, August 18, 2008

All Signs Point Vest

A while back I worked at Sony Music. That sounds cooler than it was. Sigh, I worked there because they were my client and I was putting an incredibly exciting distribution system. If you've ever done any work like this, you know that while they pay your company like $500 an hour, they stick you in any almost livable space they can, and then add another ten or so team members. Later I'll tell you the story about the time we all worked in a copy room that had such a low level of oxygen that people in the back of the room actually felt faint every afternoon. Oops, looks like I told that one.

Anyway, at Sony we were all of us crammed in a conference room and we used to see a woman walk by every day in a vest. It wasn't always the same vest, but it was always a vest. And clever consultants that we were, we had a hilarious comment for each sighting. They went like "she has a vested interest in her work," "she invested heavily in that outfit," "I think she should divest herself of that ensemble." I wish I could blame these on a lack of oxygen, but different project.

So, my point is, vests seem to be back. I guess it's part of the whole push for us to wear trousers and give up the damn comfortable, easy-to-fit, flattering dress. And every single time I see a vest, I hear Jen-from-the-Sony-project (often confused with Jenny-from-the-block) uttering one of the above witticisms. Acknowldeging that it is only a matter of time before I invest in one, because, let's face it, it is a nice way to layer and make more of just a shirt and pants or jeans, here is nice bargain of a vest ($12). I personally would buy it in black. And, you know, possibly put a shirt on. I'm crazy that way.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Dear Dress

Dear Dress,

Let me start with an apology. I am so very sorry to have abandoned you in Target. I cannot possibly explain away that rash behavior. I saw you across the aisle from the Boots display (and the pushy Boots in-store rep) and I could feel the electricity in the air. And it wasn't the fluorescent lighting. Or not entirely.

You were such a warm shade of gray. And you nipped in at the waist so flatteringly - on your own, or possibly enhanced by a wide belt. You were even lined - so classy. I loved your vaguely puffed sleeves and your $16 price tag. But I turned away from you, thinking it could only be a summer fling, not realizing that, like when Sandy's family stayed in the US and she showed up at Rydell High, we could continue our romance through fall, in our case through layering over a thermal and jeans.

So, will you accept my sincerest apology and take me back? Or rather, let me take you home in a flimsy red and white plastic bag? Please say you will.

With buyer's remorse,

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


If we're talking about cute little plaid coats from Delia's (and Jayn is), I prefer this one. That is all.

In the Bag

I don't know if it's a city thing or a chick thing, but regardless, we carry our life in our bags around here. Just on an average day, I need my keys, wallet, sunglasses, cell phone, iPod, a pair of shoes to change into at work, a book to read on the train (thank God Harry Potter stopped at 7 because I could not lug another one of those behemoths around), a magazine in case I finish the book, a jacket or cardigan for when it gets cold at work, my planner (some of us don't want a Blackberry), assorted bills and envelopes that I need to forget to take care of and carry around for 2 weeks, an umbrella for when it unexpectedly starts to rain this afternoon (tell me again why I bother listening to Weather on the 1s?), snacks, a bottle of seltzer, a selection of no fewer than 4 lip glosses, and extra space to hide purchases made during the day from the eyes of coworkers who may or may not be under the mistaken impression that I was at an off-site meeting for the past two hours. And that's just the basics! It doesn't count the extras I'd have to pack if I'm planning on going out or to the gym after work (in the latter case, I would need a raincoat to protect myself from the droppings of flying pigs).

All those necessities require a big bag. Make that a BIG bag. Which is why I am in love with this one. It's freaking huge. I'm pretty sure I saw guys looking at me on the subway this morning wondering if I had a person in there. (Bonus for Upper West Siders! You can put your children in it!) But all the chicks were totally like, "OMG where do I get me one of those?" Trust me, I could see it in their eyes.

The best part of this bag is that it does its best to mitigate any additional back pain caused by carrying the contents of a mid-sized apartment around with you everywhere, which is a bonus if you're like me and don't have a massage therapist on retainer yet. Two crucial features: a) it is lightweight and therefore doesn't add to the lbs you're carrying around, and b) it is worn across the body, thus balancing the weight on both shoulders so you don't wind up with one higher than the other (as my acupuncturist likes to tell me I have).

Actually, that might just be the second best part. The real best part? It's $12.50! And it will totally fit all of the other purchases you can therefore justify making.

Mad for Plaid or Some Other Trite Title

Every summer I head down to Dallas in August. And every summer I am greeted by 107 degree weather that my parents, sweat trickling from their temple, claim is perfectly comfortable, and could we hustle a little faster from the air conditioned car to the air conditioned house, please.

It's August, so you know where I am heading today. In anticipation of the triple digit temps, I have begun to turn my mind to the bracing chill of winter, and am contemplating this little number. I like the wide-banded cuff and the corresponding wide band at the hem. I like the colors. I like the overall silhouette. I like that it is $40. I am a little concerned that Kim Kardashian appears to be modeling it. Odd, since I can't see her ample t or a.

Someone Get On This

When I showed this bag to Amanda she said, "surely you have that already." And I don't. But I should, by all rights. Who do I speak to about that??

Only $34.50.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Sit This One Out

It's August. In New York City. So, it's what, 107 degrees? You know what would go awesome with my drippy cami, melted makeup and generally sour outlook? A bottle of icy cold diet pepsi? Nah. A personal cooling system? Huh-uh. An eight-foot long, smothering wool boa constricter wrapped around my neck? Hell, yeah! Bring it on.

The New York Times spotted this trend and attributed it to cold offices and subways. Flying in the face of this article is pure logic. Ignoring the fact that there is no evidence on record of the subway system ever dropping below 86 degrees, why are all the people in the article shown wearing scarves outside? Over a sundress? And, pressure points aside, are you really warmer by wearing just a scarf? It's like the whole vest conundrum. When has anyone ever said, "Dude, my torso is like ice, but my arms are perfectomundo. Where can I find myself some piece of apparel that will heat up my trunk while leaving my appendages exactly as they are?" If my father-in-law had seen the NYT piece, he would no doubt have bellowed, "Who I am for you?!" which loosely translates to "Do you mistake me for a recent immigrant who is easily fooled? I assure you, I am not."

You're cold in your office? I don't care. Bring a sweater. Keep it on the back of your chair, the way God intended. (Recent zoological expeditions have shown that the wheelie-bottomed Aero chair is in fact the natural habitat of the cardigan.) Buy this one. Or use the one you are already using at work, because even you have to admit that that summer scarf didn't do a damn thing inside. And anyway, it got all sweaty on the commute.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

The Long and Short of It

Short shorts are never appropriate for the office. That's just my humble opinion, but my opinion is always right. And rarely humble. I have blogged previously about how casual my office is, but I do believe there is a limit, and shorts that can barely be seen under the long peasant top with which you have paired them go beyond that limit. (Ditto the slept-in-for-three-days-and-then-thrown-under-an-M15-bus t-shirt look. I get it, guy on the 3rd floor. You're creative, you need to wear jeans and a super-trendy t-shirt so people know it. But frankly, you look like a complete slob.)

So to all the chicks with whom I work who cannot bear to imprison their knees inside a fabric cell, I offer these. The cropped pant. A close cousin to the short short, but long enough to demonstrate that you know the difference between your office and Central Park. These flare out enough to ensure that no one will think you're wearing your little sister's pants. And they're available in more sizes at the store, on the off-chance that you don't wear a size 0.

Think about it. Do you really want to expose your naked thighs to the petri dish that is a New York City subway seat? There's no cure for some of what's on there.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Party On

First there were the $30 slingbacks Amanda found on That led us to these awesome gladiator sandals... with a couple of codes, the two pair of shoes totaled merely $60!

A deal like that calls for a celebration. A party, no less. And what do you wear to a party, if not... a party dress?! And preferably a dress that goes nicely with your brand new brown sandals. How about this one for $13.99?

Or splurge, and get this one for all of $22.39 and free shipping (use teacher20)!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Orange You Glad It Isn't Peach?

When I started work and went through four searingly hot months of training in Tampa (Tampa! In the summer! Suits required!), the company arranged to have a woman come speak to us over dinner about how to dress professionally. Also, how to use a fork and knife (really - my company hired from top tier schools, and then felt a need to pygmalion us). This woman told all the women that we needed to invest in a peach colored suit. I will never really get to the bottom of that suggestion. Was it a power play? Did she hope to stop by the office later that summer and chuckle to herself when she spotted any of us in peach suits, knowing that none of us, who each had to pass an HR test to secure this job and must therefore be sane, would have arrived with a peach suit in our garment bag, and must therefore have purchased it at her malevolent suggestion? I wouldn't put it past her.

So, to make it clear, I believe a peach suit is a bad idea. If it were a dog named Idea, I would hit it in the snout with a rolled up WWD or Anthropologie catalog and say, "Bad Idea!! Bad, bad Idea!" But I do love me some burnt orange. Look at this gorgeous, flattering tank in that great combination of silk with lycra - and only $16, with free shipping!