Category Archives: The Closet

What Was That?

Image representing New York Times as depicted ...

I expected more from you, Grey Lady. --Image via CrunchBase

I like looking at the pictures that result from fashion shoots. Does this make me an expert on fashion shoots or photography? No. I do have a blog though and so I’m qualified to spill my opinion and pretend I know what I’m talking about.

What I’m talking about now is a post on The New York Times’ fashion blog. While I’ve enjoyed much of what I’ve seen on the site their “Leapin’ Labels” post from March 11th is something that I really didn’t enjoy. The premise of this alliterated post is something that excited me.  A slideshow showing how “this season’s double-breasted jackets are crazy good”? Count me in.

The four photos in this “interactive slideshow” (I’m not quite sure what was so “interactive” about it. Maybe the fact that you could click the links below to take you to the stores’ websites? Maybe it was the little buttons on the side that allowed you to toggle between pictures? If someone can inform me what was interactive I’d truly love to know.) were disappointing. Basically they violated every rule I have about clothes, photography and life in general (Trust me, I know how pretentious I sound).

Well, they violated my one rule: It should not be busy. These photos featured five models wearing quite bright clothes jumping (thrashing? moshing?) around in front of really colorful city scenes. The effect was similar to what I imagine LSD being like. Often times I could barely pick out individual pieces of clothing as they were obscured by the other clothes and other body parts of the people around them. If the point was to highlight how great double-breasted jackets are it was lost on me as more often then not I couldn’t even see the jackets.

I would like to give the shoot some kudos for including gender-flexibility when it came to clothing: on the second photo I could pick out a cute skull themed skirt on a cute bearded fellow. Overall though I felt like the photos were similar to the photos taken by high schoolers hyped up on Red Bull and enjoying a sunny day out. You could tell that they were having fun but it seems to have been an event that you needed to be there to enjoy.

And thus concludes my rant.



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I’m Embracing, WSJ, I’m Embracing!

This weekend’s edition of the WSJ ordered us to “Embrace Lace” and the accompanying pictures (most of which were snipped out and put into my manila fashion file) more then inspired me to (original article here). I’ve always enjoyed the look of this airy fabric (one thing I learned from the article was that the Italian phrase for lace translates to “stitch in the air”) but now I’m absolutely obsessed with it. Here’s a collection of  some of my favorite lace pieces.

The WSJ’s Lace Slideshow

[For image sources click on the image]

Black lace over cream.

Metal lace, surprisingly pretty.

Maybe you can't buy this blouse any more but don't you still want it?

You don't even have to wear lace, you can carry it!


The picture might be creepy & stalkerish but the dress is fantastic!

Lace can even be red.


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My Current Favorite…Jacket!

Technology can bite me. I can’t insert an image but just click on the link and drool at the wonderfulness of this jacket.

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Nice Sweater


These trousers fit, they are not my trousers. Image via Wikipedia

If my grandfather taught me one thing- ok, there’s also the lesson he taught me about working hard, the joys of gardening, the importance of frugality and many other nuggets of life lessons- it’s to always dress your best while travelling. I have distinct memories of my grandfather’s pressed pants and jacket and polished shoes as we stood in airport security for our trip to Italy six or so years ago, he was the best dressed non-European on the flight. Honestly my grandfather never sat me down to tell me: Grandchild, if there’s one thing I’m going to teach you it’s to dress your best while travelling. It’s just one of those things that I absorbed from being with him- I also absorbed that Rumsfeld was a jackass and that cutting pot roast with an electric blade is scary.

The question is why is it so important to dress snappily while driving, boating, planeing or training around the globe? I can think of a few reasons.

The first is the image that you are trying to convey. When you dress sharp you convey to those around you that you are a serious traveler and not some putz who is going to complain that the steward won’t make him a ninth martini. You should (depending on your idea of dressing nicely) convey a certain calmness that is much needed in these current travel times. Now I’m not saying that you’re going to get through customs easier or that you’ll get a free drink at the Amtrack cafe car but you just might get a cute security guard to give you a friendly fondle instead of a painful prod.

My other reason for dressing up is simply the fact that we don’t have enough time to dress up. Maybe it’s simply northern Vermont speaking but shouldn’t we take advantage of every opportunity to break out the pearls and green polyester pants? (Everyone has their own ideas of dressing nicely, alright?)

Which begs the question as to why I was wearing a slightly torn sweater and far too short tweed pants on the southbound Amtrak today.

Yesterday in class I was planning my outfit. Brown slip on shoes. Socks (rather dressy for me). Tweed pants. Belt to keep said pants up. Tight yellow Shakespeare shirt. Purple cardigan. Owl necklace from Belize. Kinda-tartan-or-maybe-plaid scarf. As I started packing last night the first fatal flaw reared its ugly head: Where the Hell was my purple cardigan? I searched high and low, bathroom to sleeping room, it was no where to be found. And while this did remind me that piling my clothes around the room based off of when they were last washed is not the most efficient method of storing clothes I never found that damn cardigan. With a sigh I consigned myself to the soft green knit sweater and no necklace (the colors would be all weird with the green).

This morning the second fatal flaw struck. My tweed pants come down to an inch or two above my ankles. They may be lovely pants but they look like I’m wearing short pants and I feel ridiculous wearing them. What does that leave me with?

Brown suede shoes, kinda matching brownish socks, too short tweed pants, Ben and Jerry’s vintage tee, fuzzy green sweater with faux crest on it,  kinda-not-really-tartan scarf worn loose,  and my adorable face. All in all not my worst outfit. Unless I stand up. If I stand up I look like Urkel.

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Maybe They Don’t All Need To Die

Yesterday I tweeted a 139 character tweet that ran along the lines of:  Dear men and women’s cardigan shawl collars, please die. I can’t remember my exact wording and since I was up past midnight (thanks NaNoWriMo, by the way you can also go die) I’m to lazy to go and check.

It is now my unpleasant duty to recant my tweet, or at least part of it.

"I just love my shawl collared sweaters!"-Senator Palpatine, Supreme Chancellor of the Galactic Senate and general ne'er do well.

See the truth of the matter is that I don’t want all shawl collars to go and die I just want the ugly ones to go die in a ditch. The collars that I despise with most fibers in my being are those massive bulky ones that look like the ceremonial garb of some Star Wars representative to the Galactic Senate.  These collars are the ones that start narrow around the collar bones but as the move towards the back they grow larger and larger until there’s a massive knit grub laying on your neck. Like a teacher in my school, she has this white sweater with the largest grub you’ve ever seen hanging around her neck.

As you’ve gotten by now I am not a fan of these massive shawl collars. They are bulky and seem completely unnecessary to me. Sure they may protect your neck but a scarf is meant to do the exact same thing and doesn’t leave the front all open and exposed. Some might tell me that fashion doesn’t need to practical and then point to my long scarfs that only get hooked on things and are completely not practical as I wear them loose. To those I have this to say: At least my (few) impracticalities don’t make me look like I’ve got a grub drapped around my neck.

Why would I bother to devote a blog post to this trivial issue? Because in my world it’s not trivial. I’ve spent many an hour fuming and crying as image after image of dastardly collar passes before me on my Svpply account. The real question is if you think this issue is so trivial why are you still reading this?


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