Last of the Late Summer Outfits

Leather and Lace II

Vintage coach handbag from my mom, lace dress from Target, Jeffrey Campbell shoes

I know that summer will end eventually. I know that some of you wish it would just hurry up and go already, so that we can get on with the crisper weather, cooler temperatures and new outfits for la rentree.  But I feel I am finally settling into summer and doing what I can to maximize the waning warm, lazy days: filling them with bike rides and backyard barbeques and early morning iced coffee with friends. I’ve even decided its a time to try out a few new looks:

Mixing Lace and Leather:

Lace and Leather

Daring to wear shorts to work and trying to put a “le petit noeud” in my button shirt, which apparently all the celebrities did this summer:

Holding on to summer sun

Shirt from H&M, shorts from Asos, Nat et Nin bag, Swedish Hasbeens sandals (also apparently the one way sigh is my crown)

Backyard BBQ style with Guess vintage denim:

Backyard BBQ Style

Guess vintage denim dress and vintage leather belt, bought at Mystery Train Vintage, Minnetonka moccasins

One note: the necklace I can’t stop wearing was made by Charlene, whose creations you can find on her Etsy shop Ayun Jewels.  I love her work!

Are you holding on to summer style or anxious for fall?

Brighton Beach Memoirs

I want to feel the sand beneath my feet

June is always a fickle month. It’s not quite summer, but I’m already itching to go to the beach, to feel the sand between my toes, the sun on my back, and to spend long lazy days by the ocean or on the board walk, letting my cares drift away.

Down on the boardwalk

For a June birthday celebration we wove a nautical theme into a Saturday afternoon with clams at Randazzo’s Clam Bar in Sheepshead Bay (offering fried seafood that is, reportedly “the pride of Sheepshead Bay”), a walk along the board walk at Brighton Beach and a stop at Ruby’s Bar in Coney Island. In honor of all things sea worthy I pulled out my old favorite LL Bean tote bag and paired it with a very matching Built by Wendy dress.

This was the perfect outfit to show off my new Ellips shoes from designer Priscille Demanche’s Spring/Summer 2012 collection. She had a 4 day sale on my birthday and when I emailed her and said that I was offering myself a pair of her sandals as a gift she gave me free shipping all the way from France! What a darling! And hurry, she has organized a sale to benefit a charity of your choice on her past season collections just until Friday the 15th. Up to 60% off and a donation to a good cause! Shop your shoes at the Ellips site here (don’t hesitate to email Priscille if you are ordering from outside of France) and vote on which association should benefit here.

See you on the beach and the boardwalk this summer!

Thanks to my friend Heather Donahue for the lovely photographs!

High top sneakers, Killerfemme style

American Apparel t-shirt, Mavi jeans, Ubu ring, Asos “DENY” wedge sneakers. Photo by Danielle.

My latest favorite pair of shoes illustrate that I can never predict how my fashion tastes will develop. In the late 80s and early 90s all the cool kids had Air Jordan sneakers and they regularly shelled out large sums of their parents’ money each season to purchase the latest model. I was immune to this trend. Shod in moccasins, boat shoes or penny loafers from the Dexter Outlet I thought those high tops, with all their extra ankle padding, big tongues and laces were ridiculous.

Hello, beauties.

I have held on to this belief throughout the last twenty years and was never tempted to rethink it until I started seeing baskets compensées on French fashion blogs last fall. These shoes were  inspired by Isabelle Marant who put out some wedge heeled high top sneakers which sent the fashion world into a twitter. Naturally, this trend has quickly trickled down into fashionable retailers with more accessible prices. “Cool,” I thought, admiring les filles prancing around Paris in high comfort and style, “but really, not for me.”

Tough and stylish for the courts of Brooklyn

My resistance crumbled when Stephanie, always a source of fashion inspiration, posted about a “Marant-like” version of these shoes by Asos, and then later showed off several versions of them. Stephanie makes everything look good and wearable even to the less fashion forward of us. I finally cracked, especially because Asos was offering 10% off.

I’m trying my best to imitate an 80s advertisement

These shoes are a complete departure for me because I’ve always been a Converse or Vans sneaker girl. However, my first time wearing them out they drew complements from all over Brooklyn, from hipsters, metal dudes and fashion bloggers alike.

Let’s play defense!

Sometimes when we decide to try a new look we have to risk looking and feeling a little ridiculous.

I’m grateful to my fellow blogger and neighbor Danielle for helping me document these beauties on the courts of Sunset Park. You can check out her own photos on her Tumblr. I was tempted to call this post, “Jouez-vous au basket? Non, pas de tout,” but felt that was just a little too self-referential. What fashion risks have you taken lately? Do you think you’ll fall for the wedge sneaker craze?

I’m sitting this one out with my Kate Spade sunglasses

My Charming Darling Winter Ellips

Ellips day

I can be a rather impulsive fashion buyer. Actually, instead of impulsive, let’s say efficient. When I see something that speaks to me that I know I can integrate into my wardrobe and if the price is okay (even if it’s a little too high, but the object is worth it) I try it on and if it works, boom! Mine!

Cables!

My new Ellips boots with a thrifted skirt, American Apparel tights (layered over black Calvin Klein tights), a blouse from Uniqlo with a new cable knit sweater made by my Mom!

However, their are some wardrobe additions that I stalk for months, waiting patiently until end of season sales so that they are within my price range. This was the case with the boots in this year’s fall/winter collection from the fabulous, French shoe designer Priscille Demanche and her label Ellips. The first morning of her winter sale I pounced on the pair I had been eying all fall. Low and behold, they were already sold out in my size! Someone had bought the last pair of my first choice at 12:01 am the day of the sale. Well. That kind of persistence deserves the shoes.

Fortunately, I had a second choice, which was really more like a tie, all picked out. Voila, here they are, my darling bottines bleuette. Like my other two pairs of Ellips shoes (lovely red and grey low heels and some strappy, color blocked sandals) they are incredibly comfortable and I can wear them all day, trotting all around the city with a flash of unique color and style. What I love about these lace up ankle boots is they go with practically everything – slim jeans, skirts, dresses, you name it.

Debut de bottines Ellips! Cc @mhcestmoi

What I love about Ellips is that they are beautifully handmade in Spain from all natural leather and are clever takes on classics. As such they will always look fashion forward and will never go out of style. Definitely a piece that is worth the wait. And investment.

Hi hi bottines Ellips! Today is a great day!

As a note for US readers: If you are unable to order from the Ellips site using the shopping cart function (it may be set up only to ship to France) just email Priscille – she will arrange for payment via PayPal and get your order to you right away!

Black Cat Attack

Photo by Dandy Prof. Charlotte Ronson blouse (I know, again), Urban Outfitters jeans, Jeffre Campbell Lita's, Melville House tote

I admit that when I brought my Jeffrey Campbell Lita’s I had no illusions that they would be the most practical shoes in the world. I secretly asked myself, “How much are you really going to wear these?” And, yet. I find myself wearing them often! Even to work! My co-workers have asked me, “Are you going to wear your cat shoes tomorrow?” And why not? In my opinion, the idea of fun fashion is to bring levity to the everyday. I have found, however, that the cat Lita’s cannot be worn with any other pattern. The supporting outfit has to be super basic, all black, or all neutral. Voila, here are just a few of the ways I’ve worn them.

Black cat attack

American Apparel dress, Hue tights, Jeffrey Campbell Lita's

A little bit of glam makes the world go round

The Cat’s Meow

Charlotte Ronson top, Urban Outfitters jeans, Jeffrey Campbell Lita's

I promised there were more heels coming up, et voila! As a graduation present to myself I caved into temptation and, after a bit of internet searching, I found the shoes of my dreams. At first I didn’t want to admit it, but I was really smitten with Jeffrey Campbell’s Litas.  Especially the ones covered with cat tapestry fabric. Because I love heels and I love cats. It’s as simple as that. But when I finally decided to go for it, after getting over the fear that I had lost all common sense, I found they were sold out almost everywhere. So, I was a little dubious of ordering them a from a shoe store I found after an incredibly precise Google search of “Jeffrey Campbell Lita Cat Tapestry,” but Eilatan Shoes, in California, had them (granted only in size 8.5, my size!) and they arrived within a few days. So here I am, on the streets of DUMBO, with my the cat platforms of my dreams. Tell me, does having a master’s degree and wearing platform heels with cats on them cancel each other out in terms of being taken seriously? I certainly hope not.

Vintage LL Bean leather tote, Jeffre Campbell Lita's

My Litas!!! (I've lost my mind!)

Don't you just love the Jeffrey Campbell box?

Two footnotes: I figured that pairing my Lita’s with plain denim and black would make wearing them seem less crazy. On Friday I picked up this Charlotte Ronson top at a sample sale at Angel Street Thrift Shop for $20. Not bad, eh?

Also, a question was posed to me: Are Lita’s really as comfortable as everyone claims? Answer: Yes. Take it from a New Yorker of shorter stature who rides the subway and walks fast with a long stride. I’m smitten. I want a pair in every color and pattern. Anyone out there want to be my shoe benefactor?

Living the Dolce Vita

My new Carrie Bradshaw-esque escarpins

Life in NYC is not always easy. Sometimes its downright trying and exhausting. And that’s why a girl needs (that’s a relative term) good shoes that support her arches and add a little spring to her step through pretty details. This year I acquired four pairs of Dolce Vita shoes, not bought because of the brand, but because of their looks and comfort. I got them online at Endless.com and Modcloth, as well as at a fantastic clothing store in Bushwick that I forgot the name of (it’s right off the Morgan stop!). I think this brand is on to something by being fashion forward, yet classic, well made, and fairly priced. I may be a long way from Carrie Bradshaw’s endless budget for Manolos and from living in the European capitals I pine for, but at least I have some fancy feet.

Even though I'm working today, at least I have bling on my toes!

Dolce Vita Polly glitter flat

Today: bling of different kinds

Dolce vita Polly glitter flat with Nola bag by Les Composantes, leopard scarf, Brooklyn Industries coat

Like Audrey Hepburn with glitter shoes

Build by Wendy blouse, Gap pants, Dolce Vita Polly glitter flat

Really adore my new Dolce Vita boots.

Dolce Vita Aisha ankle boots

November Neutrals

American Apparel dress, Antoine et Lili scarf, Brooklyn Industries tights, Dolce Vita boots

Primary Time!

Brooklyn Industries blouse, Urban Outfitters pants, Dolce Vita Boots

Summertime Swanky

Petite Bateau dress, Dolce Vita sandals, summer

New York architecture

The perfect NYC summer shoe