Thursday, January 29, 2009

Leave Jessica alone!

Note to Jess (and everyone else considering high-waisted pants): Don't do it. Ever. They aren't flattering on anyone. Especially when paired with horrific pocket detailing.

I am so very tired of "people" calling out others for being "fat." The latest victim of the Mean Girls gossip is Jessica Simpson.

Recent pics of her in an unfortunate pair of high-waisted jeans (with a camel toe ... why isn't that causing a stir? That's way more upsetting than a few extra pounds) have set the internets a buzz with talk of her rapid weight gain.

If you think you can pull off an ill-fitting outfit and a horrid camera angle and still look fab, bring it. I'd love to see it.

I can can't believe I'm going to defend the tuna-and-chicken-confusing celeb, but for the love of God, zip it!

Can't a girl get a break? Ever?

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Stylish, transitional maternity wear

Clothing designer Rosie Pope with samples of her Rosie Pope Maternity line. You won't find the word maternity on the labels. The clothes are designed to be during and after a pregnancy.

New mom and business owner Rosie Pope recently brought a trunk show of her namesake line to Poole Shop at Phillips Place. Her line of luxe, stylish maternity wear is based on a premise so simple and common-sensical, you'll be kicking yourself for not thinking of it first.

When she took a look at her maternity wear options, she was aghast at the construction and choices. So she started her own business with the intent of making maternity more stylish and multi-purpose. Everything in the line is designed for use after you've given birth.

How is that possible? By using hidden adjustable waistbands, stretch silk and lots of knits. Dresses and gowns are designed in a way that after a child is born, panels can be removed without disrupting the silhouette. After you've given birth, you're left with a high-quality garment that will blend seamlessly into your existing pre-baby wardrobe, Pope says.

The line features ready-to-wear ($150-$400), salon ($600-$900) and couture options ($2,500-$5,500). Also available are diaper bags and clutches.

Rosie Pope Maternity has one retail store in New York's SoHo neighborhood. Pope, who gave birth to baby James a few months ago, says she hopes to open another store in the Southeast.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

And the evening gown designer is ...

Jason Wu. The 26-year-old designer was born in Taipei and has been designing for a few years. His line was recently picked up by Nordstrom.

First lady Michelle Obama took the stage at the Neighborhood Ball in a one-shouldered off-white gown designed by another lesser-known designer.

She wore a dress from his collection for her interview with Barbara Walters.

As for the ball gown, I'm a fan. White (and off-white) is chic anytime of year. The detailing was subtle but added texture. And the one-shouldered silhouette is flattering. If I had arms and shoulders that toned, I'd be showing them off as much as possible.

What's your take on the first lady's evening gown?

What about Jill Biden? And Aretha?

Fashion punditry is in full swing on the implications of Michelle Obama's outfit for the swearing-in ceremony. What does her championing of lesser-known designers such as Isabel Toledo mean?

An easing of relations with Cuba? (Toledo and artist husband Ruben are both Cuban-Americans who met while attending high school in New Jersey.) I'm not sure I'd go that deep.

What it means is that Michelle Obama isn't afraid to defy convention, from her color choice (greenish-goldish-yellowish) to her footwear (green patent Jimmy Choos).

I've yet to hear anyone weigh in on Jill Biden's ensemble. I love the red coat and the black knee-high boots, but am not digging them together. I was cold for her, and wanted to get her a pair of black tights. She's a stylish woman, no doubt, but her look was considerably less polished.

And, for the record, I loved Aretha Franklin's hat. Wearing a hat for many women is like winning in poker: Go big or go home. The Queen of Soul hit the jackpot.

What is your take on the inaugural fashion so far?

Michelle Obama in Isabel Toledo

Women's Wear Daily is reporting that Michelle Obama wore Isabel Toledo for her husband's presidential swearing in ceremonytoday.
The New York Times says the designer didn't know if the first lady had decided to wear her dress until this morning.

No word yet on who she'll be wearing for the ball ...

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Inauguration giveaway

We've giving away a Rolling Stone commemorative inauguration T-shirt. One name will be randomly selected.

Here are the rules for entry:
  • Send an e-mail to Entries sent/posted elsewhere will not be considered.

  • Include your name and phone number in the text of the email.

  • Entries must be received by 4 p.m. Thursday. Entries sent after the deadline will not be considered.

  • One entry per e-mail address, please. Only the winner will be contacted.

  • Please do not post your contact information in the comments section on the blog.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

What will the new first lady wear?

What will Michelle Obama wear to the inaugural ball? The frequency with which I'm being asked this question has increased the closer we get closer to Jan. 20.

The answer? I have no idea.

And I have a feeling we're all going to find out at the same time: when we see her in it at the event.

What I do know is that what ever she decides on, it will be dissected and critiqued to death by the armchair fashionistas (and political pundits) around the world.

And, given the visceral reaction to her election night dress, I don't fault her for keeping the details secret.

What do you think she should wear?

For a recap of the Obama family's fashion influence so far, check out Thursday's Style section.

And don't forget to check back here on Thursday for a chance to win a Rolling Stone commemorative inauguration T-shirt.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Golden Globes: The recap

Kate Winslet walked away with Golden Globe awards in two film categories - best actress and best supporting actress. She was classically stunning in Yves Saint Laurent.

There was no shortage of glamour on the red carpet at the Golden Globes.
A few trends emerged, but most celebs were doing their own thing, says Nicole Phelps, executive editor at A return to classic Hollywood glamour could be seen with pulled-back, demure hairstyles on celebs such as award winner Laura Dern.

Then there was Angelina Jolie in a metallic Versace gown with a thigh-high slit.
"There was a lot of gray, and shades of gray," Phelps says, which isn't always a successful or popular color on the runway. Celebs who pulled it off with panache were Salma Hayek in Dior, America Ferrera in a asymmetrical Oscar de la Renta and Drew Barrymore in John Galliano for Dior Couture.

Cameron Diaz was a standout in a sea of black and white in her bright pink Chanel Haute Couture gown and loose, wavy hair.

Most fashion leaders opted for classic, refined looks, Phelps says. Among the standouts: Kate Winslet in Yves Saint Laurent with a brooch pinned at the waist and Maggie Gyllenhaal in a Lanvin piece off the Spring runway.

Phelps gave big love to the dapper men, including Tom Cruise in a classic tux.

What's your take on the red carpet scene? Check out a slide show here.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Golden Globes: Red Carpet Trends

Perhaps absence does make the heart grow fonder. Or in the case of the Golden Globes – a low-key affair in 2008 due to the Hollywood writers' strike – skipping a year makes the fashion more fabulous.

There was no shortage of glamour on the red carpet.

Gowns were long, jewels were big and the sophistication level high.

Pretty but unwieldy trains were one of the more prominent trends of the night. Eva Longoria in Reem Acra, Christina Applegate in Roberto Cavalli and Miley Cyrus in Marchesa were just a few of the celebs getting dresses stuck on shrubbery (or underfoot) while looking fab.

Statement jewelry pieces haven't lost their luster. Lorraine Schwartz creations shone on the necks of Elizabeth Banks and Beyonce, among others.

Live-ish from the Golden Globes

The Golden Globes are back tonight ... the ceremony starts at 8 p.m., but there's plenty of action on the red carpet right now.

I'll be covering the fashion scene live, and for the first time, dipping my toe in the Twitter pool.

Follow me on Twitter and Facebook or just check back in here. I'd love to hear what your thoughts on what they're wearing!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

What's up with Project Runway?

The sixth season of "Project Runway" is in lawsuit limbo between Bravo and Lifetime.

So I was a little skeptical when I saw an early copy of February's Fashion Week schedule that had PR at its first-show-of-the-last-day spot on Feb. 20.

But, according to New York Magazine's fashion blog, Tim Gunn says the designers from season six (which was shot in Los Angeles) will show in NYC.

Hm .... interesting .... what do you think?

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Fans! Get your fashion on

The Peppers scarf, $23.75, a teal-and-black exaggerated hounds tooth, is named for Panthers defensive end Julius Peppers, who also played football for Carolina.

If your idea of Carolina Panthers team spirit doesn't include face paint and growling kitty logos, check out Gameday Boutique, a Web-based retail effort from Charlotte sisters Tempie Largen, 27 and Frances More, 23.

Both Myers Park High School and UNC alumnae, they say they were inspired to launch the store by their failed shopping experiences.

“Carolina blue is the most difficult color to find in the world,” Tempie said with a laugh recently.

The online store features non-licensed clothing and accessories in 14 team-friendly colors. The apparel at Gameday Boutique is free of logos, team names and mascots.

Most of the dresses, tops, pants, skirts and accessories are under $200. Big sellers right now are handbags and scarves, especially the Peppers scarf ($23.75).

Check out Thursday's Style section for more on Gameday Boutique.