Friday, June 30, 2006

Cute Store(s) Alert!

Yesterday, after work and before the downpour and before the beet salad and bruschetta and vino at 'Inoteca, and before the Lindeman's raspberry ale at d.b.a. (yum, yum, yum, and yum), I felt like doing a little shopping in my neighborhood: Lower East Side, what! (What?) Usually most of the shops are way out of my price range, unless there is major saleage going on, but I've scored in the past. It's not impossible. I was feeling positive. First I checked out this new place, Renato Vasconcelos, named after the owner, a Brazilian man who was shampooing someone's hair when I walked in. Yep, two haircutting stations in the store! How utterly convenient for your Saturday-afternoon (or Thursday evening, as it turns out) multitasking needs. The place is packed with colorful, fun baubles: canvas bags, crochet and charm necklaces, chunky rings, thick bangles, flowy summer scarves. And get this: It's all totally affordable. I don't think I saw anything over $60. PERFECTO if you need a gift for a friend. And the nice man behind the counter said they go to Brazil all the time and are constantly getting new stuff in.

Then I wandered into a somewhat-new store, the Spiral Room, also on Orchard between Stanton and Rivington. All vintage, and unlike a lot of vintage, which I often find to be hideous approximations of stuff even your grandmother wouldn't wear, actually cool. I got an apple-print cotton dress with cute red buttons and pockets for only $9.99, and picked up a cherry-print elastic-topped, uh, top that was perfect for a friend who's pregs, also for $9.99, and a cute little leather string belt for five bucks. Can we all agree that this rules? I think we can. Take a look-see at the apple-print dress as I wore it today:

A note about my shoes: After my score at American Apparel last week, I stopped in at Miele, lured by their "select shoes $30" sign. I'd been coveting several pairs of their vast collection of Dolce Vita shoes -- they have a whole platform of 'em, laid out in a rainbow of colors and styles. I was thinking the twist-toe ballet flats in red, or maybe the peep-toe cork wedges (also twisty-stylee) in red -- had to be red, no matter what. I desperately needed red shoes. Neither of those were on sale, or indeed, even there (apparently others have had this same red thought). But I did find these super-cute moccasin-esque red mules -- with semi-pointy toes! Amazing. And $30! Go me.

Back at the Spiral Room yesterday, I passed on this cute linen dress, because it was a little tight, probably a little see-through, and a little more expensive at $47.99:

What do y'alls think of it? Should I go back and get it?

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Mad for Plaid (and Other Kara Janx 'Kinis!)

OOOoooooh, girl, you KNOW you love this fetching lil 'kini by Project Runway 2 underdog, Kara Janx. ($110)

I, for one, would have a spot of trouble with the wee top (see post below), but on you, everything looks good!

If plaid invokes a Burberry hangover, check this ferocious piece, which I'm in ruv with: a tiger 'kini, also by Ms. Janx.

The only morts about it is having a set of tiger eyes right on top of your 'gyner. But if that's your thing, snatch this baby up. It's very D&G:

(by D&G)

available on ($88)

available on, but caveat emptor: it's denim! You've been warned. ($117)

available on ($123)

... and finally, i present you, the money shot:

available on ($68)

Ladies, if only one of the above suit was ever manufactured, and ownership of the above suit was granted to the victor of a bloody, hairy cage match between you and me, I would claw your face off without thought or remorse.


Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Hot! Busty! Swimsuit! Action!

There hasn’t yet been an instrument invented that is able to accurately measure my adoration for these vampy yet classically classy sheath swimsuits from the grande dame of old-tymey bathing beauties, Esther Williams, who was also the star of such risquely titled films like: Skirts Ahoy! Dangerous When Wet, The Unguarded Moment and Raw Wind in Eden.

Sure, some of the patterns are pretty mom-esque, but if you avoid the tankinis like a UTI and stick with the classic sheath in something like a perennial polka dot, you’re golden. I myself might order this one in leopard.

These suits are clearly geared toward the fuller-chested ladies (though perhaps the shaped built-in cups might jack up your business if you weren't blessed with a chest). Therefore, you can imagine how elated I was to return home yesterday to find that this week’s cover of New York Magazine features one of my FAVE big-boobied starlets in such a suit.

Guess Arethra was busy.


At under $100 bucks, I hereby declare these whimsical, well-built suits a REAL SUMMER STEAL!

Grab a pack of dames and some flowery swim caps and go practice those synchronized routines!

PS: This is barely related, but I had to throw in due to its amazing, quizzical title... Uh... I smell WTF?

Buyer's Remorse, Part 572

I am wearing a weird outfit today. For some reason, when in search of a pencil skirt, which I am loving these days as they convey a nice professional look, I decided to purchase this somewhat less-professional green polka-dotted number from forever 21. I thought, hey, this is kind of fun, it fits me perfectly, and it's only 17 cents. Why not? And then it hung in my closet, mocking me. "I am a green polka-dotted skirt," it informed me on a daily basis. "Why did you buy me? What on earth are you going to wear with me? I am ridiculous!" Today, mostly out of desperation, I forced myself to wear it, pairing it with a heather gray t-shirt, my beloved tan Target flats (of which I have two pairs; seriously, ladies, look into these), and a green jersey scarf that I thought might play up the fun factor a bit. I think I might just look like i got confused on the way to the preppy party, though. Thoughts? (Be gentle.)

Monday, June 26, 2006

Last Owl Update, Redux

I'm not saying this is in a severe-hangover-never-gonna-drink-again-hollow-promise sort of way. I SERIOUSLY mean this, I swear to Gawd, THIS cute, retro owl necklace is the *last of the owl posts:

* unless something MAJE happens.

One Last Owl Update, For Real

What better way to pull together the whole owl ensemble than this presh owl belt, which:

a.) Dovetails nicely with the whole chunkers wrap belt trend ... and...

Eat it up, ladies.

Friday, June 23, 2006


This just in!

Owl Keds!

OMG! I'm all like WHO KNEW that Keds could be so cute? Generally they're on my NEVER THAT list because they're soooo Kelly Kapowksy.



I'd actually maybe even wear these. They're by far the cutest example of the '06 Owl Resurgence. So, go out and buy a pair (they also come in llama and seahorse!) and put another few grand into Marissa Cooper's bank account.

Oh wait. She's dead. My bad.

TamLo OUT!

Owl Up In Your Piece!

Y’owl (har), I can hardly believe how much adorbs owl stuff has been flying off shelves lately (tee hee!) For a while, as in like, last year, owls were sorrrrrrrrta getting big but they never got past their "cute little baby owl" stage. It was like they were facing fashion extinction. Now, full-grown, full-blown owls (on stuff) are reproducing like... rabbits, figuratively speaking. So, this totally proves my point that owls are the new black. Actually, they’re more like the new skulls, but “… is the new black” is always funny. At least most of the time.

Anyway, owls are ADORBS, especially when they’re not TOO ‘60s-ed-out. Because that’s just boring, all that hippie shit. You don't wanna look like Kevin Arnold's crusty (but hot) sister from "The Wonder Years," do you?


Anyway, the following are some owl-related pieces which, quite simply, j’adore! That’s not to say I’d wear all of them, but maybe you would, hm?


For less than the price of a Starbucks coconut banana thingie (okay, maybe the price of two, when you factor in shipping), run don’t walk… to a new browser window and pick up this adorbs owl sleepy tee from Target. It’s intended to wear to bed, but how presh would this look over your bathing suit? Or mine! Or, you can wear it out if you’re super daring. Or just slutty.

Next, how adorbs is this Forever 21 (or Forever 27, in my case) owl HOODIE! Perf for summer. Both MK and I UNKNOWINGLY picked up the same owl tank from the same place. Psychic cheap fashion twins 4evs!!


You'd be a damn fool not to order this adorable vintage owly skirt. And at THAT price? Oy! They're practically PAYING YOU to buy it!

This skirt is so cute I can barely process oyxgen. And it's reversible! That's like two skirts for the price of one!

For the Petite Sophisticate:
This Arden B. top is sorta momish, but maybe it's cuter in person, no?

Pricey Bits and Bobs!
If you’re the Nicole Ritchie sort and can afford to drop 145 bones (get it? bones!? Hee!) on a t-shirt, this Joystick - Dreamland piece is gorshwa:

And this Fresh Karma number is sugar sweet and expensive, but at least it comes with free shipping! AND a free hood!

This Fresh Henley is super sexy but also up there in the bills department, but SHHH! Here it is on ebay for PRACTICALLY PENNIES, mon frere!

Speaking of ebay and also of the fact that I'm a huge fan of owl jewelry (just like I heart most any tacky vintage jewelry), go to ebay and search for “owl” under jewelry, if you give a hoot. JUST LQQK at some of the goodies you’ll reel in on your virtual auction site fishing rod. SO many cheap, delish pieces -- couldn't you just DIE? Except, of course, for the garbage!

The Inevitable Urban Outfitters Link
And finally, back to reality where I actually can (well, usually) afford to shop (on sale) at Urban Outfitters (you had to know that was coming), and where they, of course, have a small selection of fairly cute owl shit.

How can you not LOVE this screenprinted pillow, even though those pillows ARE sorta last summer.

Ok. That's WAY more than enough owl objets for one post. Give a hoot, and rock something cute. Toodles, fashion friends!

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Barf Bags

As promised, we here at Fashion Binge are dedicated to both the binge and the purge portions of our style sickness. Here are a few bags that make me want to hurl (my blog partner, however, may actually like one or two of them; such is the nature of her wildly unpredictable taste).

Yeah, I know. What do you really expect from Wal-Mart? This is sort of just subtly horbz. I'm just getting warmed up, don't you worry. But I did really like how I misread the description of this bag as being a good option to spruce up "tribal pants." They meant prints. But still: I bet they totally have tribal pants at Wal-Mart.

Here's a better one. This denim monstrosity is exactly the kind of thing you think of when you think of Wal-Mart, and obese Middle American moms. I personally am of the belief that no one should carry any denim bag, ever. EVER. I defy anyone to find me a denim bag I'd deem worthy. The chain, by the way, is getting in on the designer-collabo game, hooking up with one Marc Eisen, who I have never heard of and whose Wal-Mart submissions I predict will be just as sucky as Tara Jarmon's for Target.

Which, this? Seriously? Ugh. But Wal-Mart,as I was saying, is part of a trend. If you clicked the above link, you know that Nine West will soon also be coming out with shoes and accessories from Sophia Kokosalaki, who has a great name, and Thakoon, who was a very nice, very polite fashion assistant at Harper's Bazaar when I worked there a few years ago (notice me establishing my fashion cred, such as it is). Go Thakoon.

Dooney & Bourke makes so many hideous bags, it's hard to choose just one. from the pukey pink pattern to the proud logo medallion thing to the swingy heart charm, this little barrel bag could not be more juvenile. And yet does a 5-year-old pay $185 for their bags? I suppose in certain quarters they do. These bags are a travesty, pure and simple.

All this puking is making me tired. I offer the following abortions of style without comment:

I'm actually starting to come around on that last one....


Good news! American Apparel has come to the rescue once again, having just satisfied my crazy-New-York-things-to-do fashion needs at virtually the last minute (see also: Polar Bear Plunge). see, Christine IM'd me today, telling about how she'd spent her lunch break at M&J trim stocking up for her Mermaid Parade costume. Now, I've totally known I wanted to go to the Mermaid Parade, because I've never been after all these years. and I sort of knew I wanted to dress up, but I hadn't really, truly considered it, because a) I've never been a bikini girl and b) I couldn't really think of any friends who'd want to do it with me. But then I just said "fuck it," remembering this pro-bikini post from Bunnyshop, and thinking that this might just be the summer I turn into a bikini girl. And so off to American Apparel I went, hoping for a green bikini. And hey: green bikini! With my long green tiered boho skirt from last summer transformed into a tail, a little gold body glitter, and some flowers in my hair, I think I'll be good to go. All hail Neptune!

Worth noting, also, is that I additionally purchased some of their little lounge shorts (in asphalt/fuchsia), and I love love love them. Perfect for sitting around one's bedroom in 90-degree heat.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Yummy, Yummy Bags

In certain circles, I am known for my colorful bags. Even if you're dressed boringly, which I try my hardest not to (but sometimes it happens), a bright, fun bag makes it all okay. I say there's almost nothing better than a white wifebeater and jeans with an eye-popping bag. I've got a few oranges, a couple turquoises, a purple, the odd multi-color. But there's always a new one to be had. Why not watermelon? Royal blue? How have I survived without a lemon-yellow tote in my life? I'm seriously craving a new bag. Here are some I'm considering (and not considering, as I'd rather feed a small African nation than shell out for that Anthropologie number).

This past weekend I hit up the annual Renegade Craft Fair in Williamsburg's McCarren Park, perhaps the dustiest, dirtiest park in all the land. I was sort of in the mood for a new bag, but most of the bags you see at Renegade just look so darn homemade. I was tempted by this absolutely perfect Kristen Aronssen bag, though, which was selling for $138, a serious discount from the $210 it's selling for at Rare Device. Too bad I'm cheap.

I feel less bad about not purchasing this Anthropologie cutie, though. At $268, this is what I like to call "out of the realm." Love the femininity, though.

Ah, now we're getting into my realm. Urban Outfitters. Sure, it sorta sucks when you see someone else carrying your bag, but you get soft, usually "leather-like material" (look ma, no cows!), interesting details, and the required rainbow of colors. And most of their bags top out at $60 (and often go on sale; hover over the picture for pricing info). Mmmm.

Lastly (for today), and let's face it, kind of leastly, we've got this Target bag. I saw this bag in the Brooklyn store and seriously considered it, even though it looked sorta cheap around the flowery braiding. The color was interesting (more turquoise than seen here), sort of mottled, and it was the right size, and definitely the right price. And yet: It still looked kinda cheap, so I passed. And then I saw some girl with it at Devon & Blakely, looking cute. Le sigh.