Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Hmmm, What to Buy

Colorful leggings from Meridian. $24 for full-length and $18 for cropped. Pretty hues (click on purple, right) and a non-muffin-top-making waistband make these a perfect leg warmer. You have to buy colored tights this season and layer them with cute socks. I insist.

This top at H&M on 34th and 7th. Dreamy butterfly blouse ($24.90) makes wearer feel like Marc Jacobs muse. Easy cut hides winter weight gain – no, don’t panic, c’est normal, just mother nature keeping you warm.

Navy Aerosole flats on sale rack at Famous Footwear for $14. Comfortable and yes, conservative (yikes!) but every girl should own a pair of Tod’s-like loafers sans Tod’s price.

The Great Mystery follow-up: been using it for a week with great results. Makes my skin soft and de-scaled face in just a couple uses. Am now addicted and believe in miracle cures. Must stay away from snake oil.

Meridian, 977 Sixth Ave. between 35th & 36th, 212-279-4445
H&M, 435 Seventh Avenue at 34th Street, 212-643-6955
Famous Footwear, 1 Penn Plaza, 250 West 34th St. between 7th and 8th,

Sephora, 130 W. 34th St. between 7th & Broadway, 212-629-9135

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Cape Town

It wasn’t so long ago that the word “cape” conjured up visions of vampires, flamboyent male fashion editors, 70's era Elvis, or ancient family photos involving gloves, hats, and matching outfits. But now “cape” is a stylish trend and the Gap has one well worth $78 (far left, on me, and then the official version). Technically this is a poncho (last season's word) or "capelet" (this season's word). The cut is perfect, the wool is heavy and it has cute pockets. I spotted one walking down 5th Avenue just the other day looking smashing (one always feels a little British when discussing capes).

And check out this ivory wrap found in the GapBody section, also $78. GapBody’s line of loungewear makes me want to stoke up the fireplace (if I had one), don their soft twin sets, and lie around all day with cat on lap eating bon bons. If you're properly dressed no one can call you "couch potato;" instead you're "entertaining at home." But this elegant shawl can also be taken off the couch and let loose on the town. Isn't it easy?

Gap, 60 West 34th Street, 212-760-1268

Monday, October 29, 2007

Hair of the Dog

Spent lots of money on sweaters and tequila this weekend? Don’t let that stop you from indulging yourself on Monday. Toss back a coffee, collect some loose change and visit Joey's.

Joey’s 4 for $1 thongs and boy shorts is the best bargain on 8th Avenue. And the biggest public display of underwear shopping on 8th Avenue? The selfsame Joey's. Put all modesty aside, ladies, because the two huge bins of undies are full frontal street level. Everyone can watch while you sort through mountains of thongs. The men’s underwear is, of course, in the back. Thanks, guys. But these underthings are all cotton Fruit of the Loom (bottom, ha!) and 4 for $1 means it's worth any minor embarrassment you may suffer.

Also, pick up some men’s white T’s for $1 and buy the $1 men’s socks (be sure the cotton ratio outweighs the acrylic), left. Then rummage through the racks of sweats and look for a $6 green American Apparel sweatshirt. The adrenaline rush of such a find immediately cures any residual thong shopping shame and your weekend hangover. Cheers.

Joey's, 500 8th Avenue between 35th & 36th, 212-279-3160

Friday, October 26, 2007

Hello, Lover

The Herald fell hard for this Biviel boot. It has it all, the Italian leather, an elusive brand, and that way about it that makes people think “she must have gotten those in Europe.” It is a European boot, but you can buy it in the US of A. Macy’s Herald Square to be more exact, where it comes in this taupe and "testa di moro." Oh, baby, I love how you say "dark brown." This rocker mid-calf with the wing-tip toe runs $245.

Pricey, yes, but this love lasts; the quality is comparable to a boot two times its price. Biviel looks slightly western, slightly ’70’s, and just like something that cute foreign exchange student would wear every day. You know, the one you had a huge crush on in high school. He was so cool.

The Herald met Biviel while searching for Ivanka nudes (it’s not what you think; see last Friday’s entry). Obviously there aren’t many nudes available for winter. Steven by Steve Madden has “Devlin,” a beige patent pump for $89.95. And Macy’s has some nudes on the sales racks; look for the Calvin Klein, the Enzo Angolioni, and the Anne Klein. All run from $62-$70. But none are exactly like what Ivanka wore. Oh, well, we'll wait for the spring collections. Besides, Ivanka and her blonde perfection are so last Friday.

Macy’s, 151 W. 34th between Broadway and 7th, 212-695-4400
Steve Madden, 41 W. 34th between 5th and 6th, 212-736-3283

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Shopping with KT

What’s so great about shopping with friends? Well, for one you get good copy. The Herald took co-worker “KT” to Steve and Barry’s in Manhattan Mall for some Bitten shopping.* Sarah Jessica Parker’s line is huge, inexpensive (nothing over $19.98), and nicely styled. We started with pants.

Women are always looking for “good pants for work.” KT grabbed a pair of dark blue wide leg chinos because she’s looking for “good pants for work.” I tried the high rise slender chinos because I really need, you know, “good pants for work.” Let’s go to the tape:

(KT) “I like them because they’re comfortable & long, [right]; the waistband isn’t tight.”
(FH) “Damn, the 8’s are small [left], and the 10’s are too baggy in the ass.”
(KT) “Mine too, but they’re just for the office and they’re $14.98.”

Voila, KT! Yes, $14.98 generally does not equal couture fit. Upon further examination, KT decided they’re too “crotchy” (this girl never stops). She’s right too, they bag all up in that area. Hmm, wonder if that'll come out in the wash?

Next up, Bitten coats. On the navy pea coat:

(KT) “This is a perfect coat to wear to a bar, toss in a corner, and not worry about all night long.”

Bravo KT! Copy like that could sell thousands of peacoats to young city girls. Pony up, SJP, because they’re so cheap ($19.98) that spilt beer, sticky fingers, and drunk girls taking home your cute coat is no big tragedy.

What KT bought:
Black gathered neck short-sleeve top for $7.98 (see above right)
“bar-able” coat for $19.98 (right, on KT)

*Project Bitten goal: Coerce the women in the FH office to buy Bitten and get blogged. The line is vast, impressive, and CHEAP. Nothing’s over $20. Return for can’t miss pieces that women of all shapes/ages can wear. Feel free to email fashionherald your Bitten opinion.

Steve and Barry's, Manhattan Mall, Level 2, 100 W. 33rd at 6th Avenue

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

The Layers of Your Soul

You floated through Monday, panicked on Tuesday, and finally had time to really look in the mirror on Wednesday. Yikes, maybe last weekend was too much fun. Time to exfoliate, so pop on over to Sephora.

If you’re like me, Skincare World is no amusement park but a big black hole waiting to suck you and your credit card into a void of eye creams, youth serums and hand scrubs. But now you must choose one magical potion that will help your true spirit and soul shine through. Or just get rid of scaly dead skin.

Delve into “The Great Mystery” by Philosophy. Surely this is aptly named for who really understands the curious machinations of your exfoliator? Philosophy is a fun, reliable and reasonably priced line. Plus their goods come in large sizes with little packaging, rare in Beauty Product Land where the opposite is the norm.

The Great Mystery is a daily facial that costs $25 for a whopping 5oz. It cleanses, softens, soothes, enhances, moisturizes with marine extracts (phew!), and contains sea salt. One rule to live by: if it has sea salt, buy it. Anyway, The Great Mystery will slyly work to peel away your complex layers and get to the real inner beauty of your…I mean, use it daily and your skin will look better.

While at Sephora: check out the sale shelf and pick up the Sephora brand “body polish” for $4 and the “superhero hand cream” for $4. Another rule, if it has “superhero” in the name and it costs $4, buy it.

Sephora, 130 W. 34th Street between 7th and Broadway, 212-629-9135

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Sample Civilly

Soiffer Haskin is the home to the civilized sample sale. I mean, they have dressing rooms which completely eliminates shamelessly stripping amongst strangers (say that 5 times in a row). Oh, well, you can still get a good deal. And I’m sure if you try hard enough (grab, snatch, push), someone will wrestle you for that sweater you just yanked out of their hands. Otherwise, it’s just too easy. Upcoming sales:

Bonpoint, stylish kid's clothing (newborn to preteen), the summer and winter collection. So you'll stop crying when they spitup on their $100 overalls.
Tuesday, Oct. 23 - Friday, Oct. 26. Tu - Th, 9a - 6:30pm, Friday 9a - 5pm.
No strollers, looks like kids have to be allowed to this one, and credit only. All sales are final.

Hickey Freeman, Bobby Jones, men's clothing, furnishings (manly accessories), & sportswear. Pick up a shirt for yourself while you're fixing up your man. Love a man's shirt. Sunday, Oct. 28 - Thursday, Nov. 1. Sunday 9a - 6pm, M - Wed, 9a - 6:30pm, Thu. 9a - 5pm.
No strollers, and no kids under 12yr. allowed. All sales are final.

It's just barely not in our district, but it's close and a good excuse to visit 34th Street. And I bet they don’t have dressing rooms. Break out that body stocking!
Chaiken, luxury coats, pants and sweaters. Indulge yourself.
Tuesday, Oct. 23 - Friday, Oct. 26. Tu. 10a - 7pm, Wed. 10a - 6pm, Th. 10a - 7pm, Fri. 10a - 6pm. 261 W. 36th St, between 7th & 8th Ave, 2nd floor.



I'm writing this all in purple as
Macy's Herald Square is rolling out the purple carpet for Mariah and her new fragrance, "M" by Mariah Carey. It's purple, it smells purple, and she's going to be appearing (in purple, I'm sure) at Macy's today from 5 - 7pm. The VIP tickets are sold out, but you can buy a $130 gift set and get a ticket for an autograph from the diva herself. I hope you like a "light, sensual" fragrance made with Moroccan incense, Living Tahitia Tiare, and toasted marshmallows. Mmmm, isn't it lunch time?

Soiffer Hasskin, 317 W. 33rd, just west of 8th Avenue, 718-747-1656

Macy's, 151 W. 34th between Broadway and 7th Avenue, 212-695-4400

Monday, October 22, 2007

Ooo La Scary

Certainly all us girls want to be for Halloween is a fairy princess, right? Um, not exactly. As anyone who’s been out on October 31st in New York City knows, Halloween is the big excuse to dress super sexy. Unfortunately, this usually means about 3 million French maids partying around the island. So please, pack away the feather duster and visit Manhattan Mall where you can pick up a very trampy costume (and I’m not talking hobos).

A New York Halloween standby, Ricky’s, has a temporary costume mega-store on the second floor. Horror masks, vampira wigs, and every kind of sexy costume your significant other can imagine are all at Ricky's. There’s the classic “sexy schoolgirl” ($54.99) or the updated “boarding schoolgirl” which is, of course, more expensive ($62.99). The “vixen pirate wench” ($67.99) should be popular this year, and don't miss "border babe" ($57.99, right), my personal favorite. Check out the binoculars, truly scary.

Afaze on the street level at Manhattan Mall also has a wall full of slinky costumes that run about $50.00. These include the sexy policewoman (left, she should hang with "border babe"), the sexy nurse (an acceptable classic), and the sexy bumblebee (right), stinger, wings and all. Odd but very cute.

What else does the Herald recommend for this costumed night? A very long coat to cover you up as you tramp your way home or hail a cab. A safe and sexy holiday to all.

Manhattan Mall, 100 W. 33rd at 6th Avenue, 212-465-0500

Friday, October 19, 2007

Trump 'Em All

Yeah, yeah, the Donald and the Mayor are eating hot dogs on 34th Street, but oh my god, look at Ivanka. Caught strolling through our district this morning, she's perfect in that dress (designer, anyone?), that bag, and those SHOES. We'll be looking everywhere the next week for a similar pair. These are the hot new nude look, and better yet they are classics. Invest some money because you'll have these forever. Macy's, Steve Madden anyone?

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Sale for Saturday

Macy's is having a big sale on Saturday (preview starts on Friday) with markdowns from 50 - 80%. Looks like most departments have heavy discounts on spring/summer items, so get a cute bag, dress and some tops for that Caribbean Christmas vacation or balmy October day. Here's a sampling from the second floor racks on the east end. Note the retro print, I love how it fits snug up to the arm, and it's 80% off of $238. The grey sweater by RXP is under $10, and the white linen with the gold embroidery by Margaret's (wear it with a peep-toe pump instead of black boots) is just under $54, marked down from $268.

There are some fall shoes on sale, includng the Chinese Laundry tall suede boot worn by Gossip Girl Serena (left), and now it's $69.99 (was $89.99). Try it on the fourth floor. Maybe it's a darker grey than the one she's wearing, but that's a good thing for the walking/subway-riding city dweller. You can't see it, but there's an elastic band on the top to counter boot sag. Love those details as it means extra love was put in to make them fit just right.

Enjoy the weekend sale shopping.

Macy's, 151 W. 34th Street between Broadway & 7th Ave.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Just a Notion

Isn't it the little things in life that truly make you happy? You know, like belts, scarves, and sweet, shiny objects we like to call "jewelry." We'll scour the district weekly and stay on the hunt for the odd bits and notions that keep you looking less sedate and more Kate (you know, the fashion icon that launched a skull revolution).

This week Manhattan Mall is our source for perfect little nothings. Go mad for the plaid cap (right) and adopt that whole hunting look you love for fall. And do it for $9.50 at Wet Seal on the second level.

For some beautiful scarves (around $48), visit Enzo Angiolini on level 2. And although a good knockoff for the hot Balenciaga scarf for fall is tough to find, here's one from Wet Seal that incorporates similar colors. On Racquel, left, for $10.50.

Wet Seal also has big chunky necklaces on sale now for $3.99, (black one on Sarah at right) and a hot pink necktie. Wear it traditional or more "je ne sais quoi," (near left, $6.50). It'll be rocked by, well, a hot rock chick. Very '80's redux.

And there's no more ignoring the sock. It's even getting layered, so buy different colored argyles, polka dots and stripes because they're 3 for $9 at Afaze on the ground level. Another deal is the Sweet by Amanda Bynes belts at Steve and Barry's (level 2). They cost only $5.98. Buy this round-buckle version with studs.

Check in again soon for more Manhattan Mall discoveries.

Manhattan Mall, 100 W. 33rd at 6th Avenue, 212-465-0500

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Boys in Boots

Sometimes, to get good shoe karma, one must give good shoes. So let's think about all the boys in our lives: those who love shoes and those who could care less what's on their feet. The former will return your generosity with joy, and the latter? Well, you'll no longer have to make him leave his shoes in the hallway/outside/on the street. Either way you win.

Keep it simple and cheap and get thee to Daffy's. The men's department has some nice shoes. But walk in with attitude because you'll be elbow to elbow with some savvy male shoppers. And you thought the women were bad.

Because every guy has a little British hip nerd in him, visit soon (today) to get these Ben Sherman's (black boot $69.99, desert boot $39.99, loafer on left, $13.33):
Also spotted were Hushpuppies, Geox, Donald J Pliner, lots of Italians, and a sales rack with crazy discounts (see $13.33 loafer above). Ahh, just wait until all that good, affordable boot karma comes right back at you...

Daffy's Herald Square, 1311 Broadway & 34th Street, 212-736-4477

Monday, October 15, 2007

Last Call for Wide Legs and All

Revel in the bounty of The World’s Largest Store. One of the many beauties of the department store experience is selection of style and price. Macy’s Herald Square is a shopping cure-all and the perfect happy ending to our wide leg story. Naturally the jeans options are vast.

Put your blinders on and ignore the purses on the first floor. Ride up the escalator to “Misses Better Sportswear” on two. Yes, “misses,” it’s very retro like hats, matching gloves and shoulder pads. Skip floor three as jeans are scarce, and hit four if you’re shopping for your younger sister, teenage daughter, or can’t resist the warm pretzel aroma.

DKNY on the second floor has a pair of black wide-legs ($128) with a pretty satin waist band and back pocket detail, heavy denim, and a great fit (see left). INC has a pair with super wide legs and a big cuff for $69, but the waist doesn't give much. The Calvin Klein's are unremarkable. Now run to the other (east) side of the second floor and find the new favorite, Level 99. These handcrafted LA jeans have: real wide legs, a strong standout pleat (love the pleat this year), and length to the floor and beyond. Good luck choosing, you may end up with two if you can splurge. Most styles run $118. Get the dark 5 pocket for work (near right) and for the weekend the lighter blue that feel like an old pair of Levi’s and have the cute back pockets (far right). You’ll want to wear them home.

Honorable mention: Joe’s Jeans “Rocker” at Meridian. One of my favorite brands, these jeans are so great you should never let them out of your sight. The “Rocker” is ridiculously long, the fit is superior and they are so comfy you could sleep in them. Visit Meridian soon as they’re on sale for $118 and sizes are limited.

Macy’s Herald Square, 151 W. 34th between Broadway and 7th Avenue
Meridian, 977 6th Avenue between 34th and 35th, 212-279-4445

Friday, October 12, 2007

Break a Leg

Attention, shoppers, this is only a test, we will soon return to our previously scheduled wide-leg programming. Although the Herald can only do one more jean posting before losing her wide-leg mind.

Payless must be mentioned again because the weekend is upon us and don't you want to stroll around town in your cool, scuffed ballet slippers like Amy Winehouse? You can for $17.99 at Payless on 34th Street thanks to their American Ballet Theatre for Spotlights line. Unfortunately, us large-hoofed gals (bigger than an 8) won't find our size as the store doesn't carry the full adult line. On 34th they're in the children's section but don't feel dumb, pretend you're buying for your niece. And how awesome is this jazz shoe ($24.99), all 80's looking and just what the ladies are wearing in Brooklyn.

If you can't fake the 8, larger sizes are available online ( But for immediate gratification visit the district and enjoy BOGO 1/2 off on everything. Surely you know what BOGO means, so buy the jazz shoe, get the slipper for $9.00, tease your hair to new heights and enjoy the sunny weekend.

Payless, 110 W. 34th between 6th & 7th, 212-947-0306

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Wide Legs and All, the Fourth

Still looking? Today is 4 in 1, four stores in one northern block of 34th Street between 5 and 6: Bebe, Express, Banana Republic, and Zara. Results vary, but, as usual, there’s no reason to leave the district empty-handed.

Get prepared to buy at Bebe even if you haven’t visited in ages. If the world’s least Rebecca Romijn-looking blogger can find clothing here, so can you. And if you like H&M’s big hat you’ll die for Bebe’s, or to be more exact you’ll pay about $50 more. It’s elegant in winter-white wool so good luck keeping this clean, but it looks incredible. Bebe’s jeans are well made and the fit is great for the rear view. But if you’re not into logo promotion, the blue wash denim with the silver metal patch ($129) isn't for you. Instead try the dark wash wide-leg with back pocket contrast stitching (also $129). And the blouse? For $79 it's irresistable in silk and just enough spandex to keep you snag-free on the subway, even while toting a big bag.

We love you Express! Once an integral part of every girl's gloried teenage mall years, and now a great source for work pants. Where else will we get our torn, sequined Flashdance shirts, um, I mean Editor jeans? These look good and are $69.50. The inseam is short on the jeans, but the black editor pant (right, $59.50) is longer and fits perfect. A great deal and an all-purpose pant.

The Banana cannot be visited without reminiscing fondly upon its safari days. Remember the jeep, the jungle beat, and the tropical flora? The clothes are practical as ever, just minus the rainforest trappings. This urban survival store has several jean options. No bells and whistles and the length, color and fit are all on target. The classic wide leg ($108) is soft, has a nice pocket detail and a pretty cuff that easily uncuffs. But don't you think Banana Republic should go retro on 34th Street, let the jungle reclaim the store so you can buy your jeans on safari? It could be nostalgic like a Kiss reunion but with khaki and monkeys instead of pyrotechnics and platforms.

Leave it to the Spanish to do WIDE-legs. Finally, not just flares or wider-legged, these Zara jeans are unabashedly big on the bottom. No, they aren’t bell-bottoms (see Spring 2008 Prada), because this cut has an even, broad fall. What style! But no one’s perfect, sometimes due to slightly itchy waist-bands and not totally great denim. For under $100 the trendy girl says defects, what defects? If you’re not that girl, Zara, of course, has other lovely finds, particularly in the jacket category. Try on the green plaid with the great collar. And Zara’s winter coats are so eminently buyable that they deserve your full attention for another day. Stay posted.

Bebe, 1 W. 34th Street, 212-594-8205
Express, 7 W. 34th Street, 212-629-6838
Banana Republic, 17 W. 34th Street, 212-244-3060
Zara, 39 W. 34th Street, 212-868-6551

Wide Legs and All, Cycle 3

The search goes on…

H&M is the destination for fashionistas trawling on the cheap. Full of stylish hits and the curious trend (see pic on left, love this orange wool thing and yet don't really know what it is), H&M never bores. Some swear by the jeans, none of which can be found on the first floor. But there is a pretty dark green suede makeup bag ($6.90), a beautiful white-fringed scarf ($9-ish), sweater coats for around $60, and a sales rack with brightly printed tops and long striped tanks, perfect for 90 degree October days.

The second floor yields some jeans, but not quite what we’re looking for. There are some wide legs, but the zipper features are too much ‘80’s hardware for the office. The Dior-like black satin ankle boots should be snatched up for $34.90 (unless you’re a size 9, which is sadly sold out), and the sales rack has lots of bright geometric prints that harken spring 2008. With this weather, you could be wearing these for turkey dinner instead of packing them away for next season. Also, there are loads of basic T’s for $7.90 and up. Make them interesting with this cropped, bunny-print cardigan that looks early Gwen Stefani.

Disappointing jeans-wise, but H&M always has something you need. Like the big ’70’s hat that walked right off Michael Kors’ runway. For $9.90 it’s modern retro, especially with a sweater coat, bright tights/leggings, and those “Dior” boots. Yes, leggings, very last season but they’re still practical and they’re still out on the street.

H&M Herald Square, 1328 Broadway @ 34th St, 646-473-1165

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Wide Legs and All, Day 2

The search for wide-leg jeans continues…

The Forever 21 shopping experience: mind boggling, full of throbbing dance music, and awe-inspiring. By the time it’s over you’ll be forever grateful this store exists. Or you'll be in a music-induced trance.

Look for jeans on the first floor and get distracted by Exciting Find #1: the anorak. Last season’s runway trend is here, hanging on a mannequin above the denim. It’s probably not waterproof and the snaps are difficult to open but who cares, it’s $24.50. Best of all, it’s really a “faux-orak” because those ornery snaps are cleverly hidden. This means you get the pullover look without the pullover hair-messing and lipstick-smearing.

And the jeans? Great for 20-somethings but definitely not office appropriate. Longer in the inseam than Gap jeans, but not as high quality, these are great trend fillers. So for $29.80 they can be painlessly replaced in 6 months with the next great thing.

If you’re not buying these, consider Exciting Find #2 and some others:

short black moccasin boots. Hippy meets hip for $24.80. Look for them on the 1st or 2nd floor under clothing racks. Love them all winter and freeze for fashion;

royal blue cotton blend sweater, $17.80, first floor. Get a jump on spring’s color obsession with this standout hue;

men’s white T-shirt, 2nd floor. These long-sleeved T’s ($7.00) are simple and sexy. Pick one up for your guy but caution, they’re fitted. Only gym related 6 packs allowed;

gray belt, $8.80, 2nd floor. Insta-cool your basics with the color of the moment.

Forever 21, 50 West 34th between 5th and 6th, 212-564-2346