Monday, May 2, 2011

Another Blog Post About The Royal Wedding

You know you can’t get enough.

Grab your commemorative plates, gross traditional English wedding fruitcake, and feather-adorned hats, because it’s time to talk about WILL AND KATE!!
The day I’ve looked forward to for months was finally here on Friday. Prince William and Kate Middleton got married! They may officially be the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, but I’m still going to call her Princess Kate. With the exception of Grace Kelly and Princess Diana, has anyone been this perfect for the job?
In preparation for the big event, my best friend Maggie and I both took Friday off as a vacation day (she drove up all the way from NC). Thanks to a sweet Living Social deal, we pried ourselves out of bed at 4:30 and drove to Dupont Circle to celebrate in proper style at The Mansion on O Street (it’s pretty fab). As soon as I got there I regretted not planning a better outfit. I had put on the first pair of jeans and acceptable top I could find, while I was surrounded by girls in awesome hats and cute dresses. The ONLY time I will put comfort over fashion is 4:30 am.

Finally, at nearly 6:00, the world saw which dress Kate said yes to. I had my fingers crossed that it would be a tiny British designer that no one had ever heard of (whose career would then be launched in a Jason Wu/Michelle Obama way times a million). My second choice was Alexander McQueen, but I figured that was a long shot since McQueen tends to be pretty avant-garde and Kate’s style is more classic. Alas, Sarah Burton (for McQueen) came up with this AMAZING dress that will now cause me to go off on a tangent:

Women of America, THIS is how you should aspire to look on your wedding day. Not like a wedding-themed Bratz doll. If I see one more episode of Say Yes To The Dress about a Jersey girl with her heart set on a $15,000 Pnina Tornai with a bedazzled sheer corset and visible boning, I may scream. Your wedding dress shouldn’t look like the top half was purchased at Victoria’s Secret and the bottom was just fifty yards of tulle haphazardly attached. I hope we’ve all learned a valuable lesson from the Duchess. When the whole world is watching and the Queen of England is a few yards away, “classy” trumps “inappropriately racy” every time.
Here are a few examples, and further research on the subject:
Gross. But I digress.
I also breathed a sigh of relief when I saw her hair. Using the same stylist her family has gone to for nearly a decade, Kate opted for a simple half-up, half-down style. I know a lot of brides choose an updo, which is totally elegant, but Kate’s hair is so pretty! It would have been a shame not to show it off. Plus, her cheekbones could cut glass, so she would look great with any hairstyle.  
Of course, I realize that the wedding wasn’t all about fashion. William and Kate are adorable together. Unlike some royal couples of the past, they were friends first, dated for years, and both know what they’re getting themselves into. They are a relatively normal couple. Can you picture Diana and Charles shopping at Ikea together? Awkward. And while I picture Will and Kate as more of a Crate and Barrel kind of couple, it seems like they have fun together. If he would just cut his hair a bit shorter so his receeding hairline wasn’t SO obvious, they’d be perfect. (I know I wasn’t the only one thinking that during the ceremony. He’s still really good looking, but that hair is quite distracting.)
Pippa Middleton and Prince Harry - Royal Wedding: William and Kate with family
Kate and Will weren’t the only ones looking good on Friday. Prince Harry is officially England’s cutest ginger, and Pippa Middleton looked beyond classy wearing the same designer as her sister. That being said, what bride in her right mind would let Pippa wear a gorgeous white dress to her wedding? How was there no trace of sibling rivalry? Meanwhile, their brother James serves as proof that the Middletons have really good genes. In case you were wondering.
A few other highlights:
"We're just here to make everyone else look horrible in comparison."
The Queen wore yellow! She looked quite happy, which probably had a lot to do with her grandson getting married, but I have a theory that wearing bright yellow increases endorphins and makes you happy.
The cameras kept going back to Elton John throughout the service.  I couldn’t help but wonder how AWESOME it would be to sit right beside Elton during a wedding service. Listening to him singing along to the hymns would be great, but you’d also get to hear the snarky comments he makes about Chelsea Davies’ outfit.
Posh and Becks were there, too. Posh covered her preggo belly with a trapeze dress from her own line. As Joan Rivers pointed out, “She’s eating for one now.” She’s also wearing seven-inch Louboutins, so the next time I want to complain about walking around in four inch wedges, I’ll think of pregnant Victoria Beckham and hold my tongue.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Tim Gunn Would Be So Proud

"I'm perplexed... at how fab this is."
I have never been the craftiest person. While I love all things fashion, my few attempts at assembling my own “creations” have been disastrous. When I was told that pajama pants were the easiest thing to make, I bought a couple of yards of a cute print and went to work. After hours of stitching, I realized I had sewn two perfect right legs. Of course, the fabric was sold out, and I was left with two useless pieces of fabric to remind me of my failure.
With the increasing popularity of Project Runway a few years ago (before it moved from Bravo to Lifetime and became completely irrelevant), I was inspired by the likes of Daniel Vosovic and Christian Siriano to get creative again. I bought a cute skirt pattern and more fabric and dedicated the better part of one evening to trying to figure out how to “make it work.” Years later, that fabric is somewhere my black hole of a closet at my parent’s house.
Those disasters aside, I recently have wanted to embrace my creative side again. Thus begins the tale of how I made two scarves into a cute dress.
Earlier this week, I had dinner with an old friend I hadn’t seen in years. After gorging on Mexican food and discussing all things fashion, I was looking forward to checking out her blog, which led me to this do-it-yourself project. All you need are two scarves, some ribbon, straight pins, and a needle and thread.
Unfortunately, I only had one scarf that was the appropriate size for the project. I made a quick trip to Chinatown and scanned the racks at H&M, Zara, Forever 21, and Loft with no luck. Finally, I stopped in American Apparel, because that’s where one goes to find random pieces of clothing that no other store would carry. Also, I’m thrilled for any opportunity to support their consistently offensive ads and the world’s worst CEO. There, among the metallic scrunchies and glitter-adorned leg warmers was a decent collection of scarves. A few minutes later, after waiting forever at the register for a rude saleswoman to take my money (all part of the American Apparel experience), I was ready to go.

While the instructions recommend using a sewing machine, I didn’t think my lack of proper equipment would slow me down too much. It was supposed to be a twenty minute project, so I estimated about an hour since I’d be doing everything by hand. Thus began an all-day project that lasted through an awesome movie marathon (The Breakfast Club, 500 Days of Summer, and Pride and Prejudice=a perfect afternoon).
I was certain that at some point I would make some kind of irreversible mistake, once again proving that I should stay far, far away from all fabric stores. When I finished sewing, I tried on the tunic and adjusted the ribbon, and nothing fell apart. In fact, it’s pretty cute. So now I have a reversible dress that I can brag about having made!
In the coming weeks, I’m sure the blogosphere will be bombarded with talks of my incredible talent. I mean, I did sew two scarves together while incorporating a ribbon. So you’re hearing it here first… Yes, Kate Middleton, I will make your wedding gown (I just need you to provide me with two white scarves).
Obviously, I’m getting a great sense of accomplishment from my awesome new scarf-dress. If you see me wearing it, it’s probably best to not to say anything. There’s a good chance that I’ll go into great detail about the subtle nuances of each scarf and how I pain-stakingly hand-sewed the whole thing. Here’s the finished project, my first successful DIY. It’s not Project Runway, but it’s definitely Project Sidewalk material.
Side 1

Side 2

Big thanks to Jessica for coming up with this awesome idea, here’s the link to her fantastic blog:

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Spring Wish List

Like most of my fellow Washingtonians, I am beyond ready for spring. Right now it’s 40 degrees and rainy. I miss walking around without a massive coat on, outdoor dining, and spending time on the awesome roof of my building. Until the weather warms up, I will keep my spring state of mind by focusing on (what else?) the fashion….

Some things I’m obsessing over for spring:
Since she already has a closet of amazing clothes, can you send this to me, Lucky Mag??
This amazing Marc by Marc Jacobs dress (which I will never own, because it is $728)
The April issue of Lucky mag showcases the adorable Zooey Deschanel totally rocking this dress from the spring 2011 collection, which embodies pretty much everything I love about spring fashion: polka dots, a poufy skirt, and an aura of unapologetic girliness.


Wedges. Lots and lots of wedges.
While it may be tough to pack away my favorite boots for several months, summer shoes make it all worthwhile. From laid-back Rainbows to strappy sandals, I never get tired of summer footwear options. Wedges have a special place in my heart, though, for their ability to make me four inches taller without wanting to saw my legs off at the ankle two hours later. I am forever indebted to the genius who came up with the wedge, the magical shoe that allows me rock fab footwear while walking miles around the city. Also, they go with EVERYTHING.

large product image
Shoes by Miu Miu
So far my spring purchases have included a bright red spring trench, two Kelly green dresses (yes, two, but they look totally different), and a printed skirt in multiple shades of blue. Right now I’m obsessed with anything bright yellow, purple, or green. Most of the black and gray in my overstuffed closet are ready to be packed away until next fall. Bring on the brights!

kate spade new york "Franca" Cat Eye Sunglasses
Kate Spade sunglasses

Cat Eye Sunglasses
I once worked at a Sunglass Hut for six months just to take advantage of the discount (true story). A dramatic pair of sunnies may be my favorite accessory. This spring, cat-eye shapes are HUGE, and the perfect homage to vintage style.

I could go on, but I'll stop here. I'll make it through the next few cold days (hopefully not weeks) with a lot of online window shopping. So the next time I'm on facebook and notice my friends in the South posting about how they're "heading to the pool," I'll try to contain my jealousy. Maybe with a new pair of shoes.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Dresses!!!!!!! My humble opinion of who was Best-dressed at the Oscars

Gwyneth Paltrow

Oh, Gwyneth. You are a mystery wrapped in an enigma. You are also a liar, because no one who owns a deep fryer and a brick pizza oven (which you claim to use regularly) looks like this in shiny gold material. Perhaps this week’s GOOP will be about how to drop 2.5 pounds in a week by mixing cayenne pepper with three teaspoons of beet juice in lukewarm water. Nonetheless, this Calvin Klein Collection dress is perfection. 

Mandy Moore

First of all, Mandy could have mowed down the red carpet in the yellow Bug she fake-drove in the Candy video and I would have applauded her courage (it's difficult to see, but the license plate says HotChick1). I love Mandy Moore. I love how she transitioned from cheesy pop star to supercool actress/singer without going through the obligatory “get arrested, get prematurely married, get divorced, attempt to run over paparazzi in a drunken stupor” phase. Plus, if we ever hung out, I’m pretty sure we’d be best friends. My opinion on her general awesomeness aside, this Monique Lhuillier dress is SO pretty.

Hailey Stienfeld
As I watched her get it right again in this gorgeous Marchesa (which she helped design… can we say budding fashionista???), I couldn’t help asking myself: Is it just a matter of time before this adorbs teen goes Miley on us? Let’s hope not. Upon further reflection, I reassured myself that any 15 year old who can stand out in a Coen brother’s movie alongside Jeff Bridges, Josh Brolin, and Matt Damon is no Hannah Montana. Well played, Hailey. Keep showing 15-year-olds across America that one needn’t wear jeggings to be stylish.

Mila Kunis
Believe it or not, I was on the fence about this the first time I saw it. The Elie Saab dress itself is gorgeous, and it’s perfectly styled, but it’s just so…. lavender. Not that it isn’t a lovely color, but doesn’t pastel purple universally conjure up memories of prom? However, I was quickly won over by the amazing detail of the dress (which is actually more visible because of the light color). I’ve embraced the lavender. Mila has successfully navigated her first big awards season without a misstep. Yay for Mila!

Halle Berry

Halle gets the coveted “most improved” award. Ok, this was not the most adventurous choice for the Oscars. But after the sad trainwreck she wore at the Golden Globes, this explosion of tulle and sparkles is perfect. This dress practically screams Marchesa, and if I had the opportunity to steal it from her, I would wear it every day.

Reese Witherspoon
Cutest. Hair. Ever. I’m completely obsessed with this look, even though she does kind of look like a Barbie. The dress itself isn't that exciting, but Reese is more adorable now than she was ten years ago. Just ask Ken.

Hillary Swank
Feathers. Sparkles. More sparkles in the form of the fab brooch in her hair. When the employees of Dunder Mifflin where trying to decide if she was hot or not, they should have used this picture to judge. I’m pretty sure that Hillary Swank has made some kind of deal with the devil in which the blander she looks in a movie, the better she looks in real life.  She’s long been known for her amazing awards show looks, but this is probably my favorite dress she’s ever worn.  

Anne Hathaway

Anne Hathaway always looks great, but for me the Lanvin tux was the evening’s standout. We all know Anne can pull off a red Valentino dress, and she looks awesome in sparkly goldish things. Menswear, however, is a tricky trend to pull off and usually looks forced and, well, stupid. Take note, Leighton Meester. This is how you do menswear.
Sidenote: I’m already bananas for the inevitable upcoming Rachel Zoe Project episode where Rachel and Brad run around town looking for dresses for “Annie”, complete with a zany montage of Rachel talking on her phone in the car while Rodger sits lifeless in the back seat. Meanwhile, back at the studio, Brad tries on her Lady Tux and almost breaks the heels off of her fab shoes.

Monday, February 28, 2011

The Many Faces of James Franco

Unless you've been living under a rock, you know that last night's Academy Awards were co-hosted by one of Hollywood's most peculiar characters, James Franco. Although he lost Best Actor to Colin Firth, I felt it was fitting to celebrate one of the most random acting careers in recent history. Whether he just gets bored easily or is legitimately schizo, he should be applauded for his unwillingness to conform to Hollywood standards.

Like many stars, James started out on the small screen as Daniel Desario on the (unfortunately) short-lived Freaks and Geeks. Among an amazing young cast (including Jason Segal, Linda Cardelinni, Busy Phillips, and Seth Rogan), he stole most scenes he was in and made a potentially obnoxious character quite likable. If you’ve never seen this show, Netflix it immediately.

"I'm so good looking, I need to sit here and think about it for a while."
 Franco then made his jump to the big screen through the Spiderman Trilogy, playing Harry Osborn. This was a big step up, but relatively uninteresting. It was a superhero movie, he looks good in expensive suits, blah, blah, blah....

Celebrities- they're just like us!
 In the midst of his successful movie career, Franco decided to go back to school. I know everyone says that your college years are the best of your life, but if I was making huge movies, I doubt I’d trade in my SAG card for textbooks. He graduated from UCLA with a GPA over 3.5 and enrolled in Columbia's MFA writing program. He’s currently working on his PhD from Yale, naturally.

Franco put his MFA to use when he wrote Palo Alto, his collection of short stories. I would say this is the move of a totally self-indulgent actor, but he seems to take his writing pretty seriously. Alas, reviews are mixed. I cannot pass judgment as I have not read this masterpiece.


Notice how Milk James judges Nights in Rodanthe James. Give James a break, James. He just lost his father or something.
2008 was the year of Franco, with the eclectic actor appearing in Pineapple Express, Milk, and Nights and Rodanthe. So… he played a greasy-haired drug dealer in a Judd Apatow film, the boyfriend of Sean Penn’s Harvey Milk in a dramatic award-winner, and a small role in a painful Nicholas Sparks movie.

"Hey, have I told you guys the story of how Tom Hanks totally said hi to me at the Golden Globes last year? Not that it matters. I'm not 'Hollywood'. I'm a writer."
Naturally, when one has received massive amounts of critical praise for a meaningful role (that would be for Milk, not Nights in Rodanthe), the next step is obvious: sign on to film 41 episodes of General Hospital. Also, be sure to play a multimedia artist who has unfinished business with a mob enforcer. (FYI, I could have posted about a thousand pics of James on this show. I am sincerely sorry I was never able to catch an episode.)

"Let's move it along, people. I have to teach a writer's workshop in Brooklyn in an hour."
Perhaps it was method acting, but as General Hospital’s Franco (yes, that was his character’s name) was busy raising mafia suspicions and cultural awareness in Port Charles, James Franco put on his own art exhibit. I have no further commentary on that subject.

“I want what you have with Komiko-tan!”
To fully examine Franco’s career choices would be the work of a book rather than a blog entry (and that book would probably be longer than Palo Alto). Thus, a few other highlights worth mentioning include a TV movie in which he played James Dean (he was nominated for an Emmy and a SAG for the role), a guest spot on 30 Rock in which he plays himself fake-dating Jenna, a decent episode of SNL (do the Jammie Shuffle!), the lead role in Howl playing Allen Ginsberg, and a nearly unrecognizable small role in Date Night. Up next for Franco? He’s playing the Great and Powerful Oz, of course.

Yes, this photo is also from General Hospital. No, he will not return to the show playing his own evil twin who has a brian defect that can only be cured at the titular General Hospital. Or will he?
In the midst of quite a bit of criticism for his performance last night, I think we can all agree that the actor/student/artist/writer/director/producer/Oscar host deserves a vacation. Stay tuned for his Food Network show, denim line, and new social networking site, which will make Facebook obsolete.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Healthy Eating FAIL!

I'm always so optimistic about keeping my New Year's Resolutions... and yet I don't think I've ever actually kept one. Unless you consider mixing massive amounts of fat-free popcorn with M&Ms to be a healthy improvement for 2011. Especially when I end up throwing out half of the popcorn and eating all of the M&Ms.

This year, like every other, I pledged to be more healthy. A few days after Christmas, as I sat in my parent's living room in my gingerbread man pajamas eating pumpkin pie for breakfast and watching Inception for the tenth time, I made a mental list. 2011 is the year to go vegan, workout every day, avoid UV rays, and stop drinking massive amounts of diet soda. "I will never miss a Pilates class again," I vowed to the heavens, as I ripped open another mini Twix (they're so small, they can't be that bad- and besides, it was still December, and resolutions don't go into effect until January 2nd).

A month later, I've had a few minor set backs in regards to my resolutions. First of all, I have to brag about the one that I've kept. As of early February, I am UV ray free. I'm no guidette, but I have been known to, on occasion, visit a tanning bed. The fact is, my natural skin color is so pale that it's nearly transparent, and a few minutes in one of those warm death traps helps me to acquire a "base tan." This year, however, I will not cave! I just have to keep telling myself: The paler I am, the more I look like Anne Hathaway. The tanner I am, the more I look like Snooki.

Despite numerous attempts over the past several years to go vegan or vegetarian, I always end up in the same place: hiding shamefully in a Chick-fil-A parking lot, guiltily thinking about the baby chicks whose mommy was deep fried for my lunch. I'm not creative when it comes to cooking, so my attempts at avoiding meat involve a LOT of Morningstar Farms imitation meat (which are awesome, but probably not sufficient in rounding out a balanced diet). I've forced myself to watch PETA videos and read plenty of vegan propaganda, but apparently my stomach calls the shots over my conscience on this subject.

While I pay a monthly fee to an awesome gym that holds daily classes, some of which I actually enjoy, I could be doing better. The fact is, if I get home from work and Netflix has graciously sent me the next disc of Dexter, spinning is probably going to get bumped to the next evening. That's just laziness, but as the weather warms up and I start thinking about spring clothes, I'll muster up some serious motivation.

I think the key to a successful New Year’s (or February 7th, or mid-year) Resolution is taking baby steps. Maybe this week I’ll try snacking on fat-free popcorn sans chocolate.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

I'd like to thank The Academy... I mean, the Screen Actor's Guild...

Ah, the SAG awards. The Golden Globes’ slightly less popular cousin, aired on TBS between bad movies. Ryan Seacrest didn't even show up for E!'s preshow. So why did I stay glued to my couch throughout the entire show with the vigilance that many Americans reserve for the Super bowl? Or at least the Oscars?

I have an embarrassing confession. I LOVE awards shows. The fashion, the interviews, the funny, unscripted moments… Yes, I am a huge nerd.

While I could go on forever about who was robbed (Mad Men) and what they got right (Colin Firth, one of the most brilliant and underrated actors in the industry), I’ll stick with sharing my opinion on the fashions of the night.

My Faves:

Mila Kunis- This red Alexander McQueen dress was STUNNING. Her laid-back hair, make up, and lack of jewelry pulled together one of the most dramatic and well-received looks of the evening.

Claire Danes- She’s always on point. This Louis Vuitton gown was a gorgeous choice. I want to hate her for being married to the gorgeous Hugh Dancy, but she’s just too darn likable.

Jennifer Lawrence- Lawrence’s hot pink Oscar de la Renta gown was one of the evenings more controversial choices, mainly because of the dramatic black belt cutting it in half. At first I was uncertain, but when I noticed the slit that showed off her gorgeous black shoes, I was convinced. It was a bright, fun, age-appropriate choice for the twenty-year-old Winter’s Bone actress.

Dianna Agron- The Glee star has consistently gotten it right so far- she always looks elegant and timeless. From the spectacular Carolina Herrera gown she rocked at the Emmys to this Chanel Haute Couture, she always seems to be channeling Grace Kelly. Or at least Claire Danes.

Amy Adams- How is it possible for a redhead with skin that fair to wear white??? Amy somehow pulled it off. Also, I love her “dressy ponytail.”

Nicole Kidman- I’m a huuuuuge fan of Nikki Kidman, especially now that her forehead is moving again. This dress is uber-classy, as is her jewelry, hair, and make up.

Also looking great: Hillary Swank, a very preggers Jane Krakowski, Sarah Hyland, and…. wait for it…. Tina Fey! Apparently The Great Liz Lemon has finally hired herself a stylist, and she looked better than ever in a bright red Oscar de la Renta with flawless hair.

Although you can only do so much with men's formalwear, a couple of actors did manage to stand out. One was John Krasinski in midnight blue Prada (While looking for pictures, I came across an article with the title,  "John Krasinski Wears a Suit So Well We Decided It's Newsworthy." I couldn't agree more.) Jon Hamm looked great in… well, I missed who he was wearing, but I think everyone agrees that he looks quite dapper.

Can't wait till the Oscars!

"My New Year's Resolution is to get MORE attention by any means necessary." - Kelly Kapoor

For the past three years or so, I've been "meaning to" start a blog. I majored in journalism and I love to share my opinion on plenty of (mostly) superficial topics, so what better outlet for me?

I have no idea what most of my entries will be about, but I have a feeling it will take me a while to find my niche. Those who know me best won't be surprised to hear plenty about fashion, music, and all things pop culture related. I'm sure I'll also be including various insights and anecdotes featuring my hilarious and brilliant friends.

I also have to include a quick thanks to one of my favorite people, Miss Erin Edwards, for nagging me for the last several months to start this blog. When the sponsors start bringing in the big money, I'll be sure to send you a Target giftcard to show my appreciation.