Friday, February 29, 2008

Make it to Measure

Cambridge Members is no more, but has evolved into something even better: My Suit, Made to Measure. My Suit saw the need for greater options in the made-to-measure market, and has responded with a wider range of price points. Their made-to-measure suits start at $495 and can go a lot higher. How, you ask, can they do this? Buy in bulk, baby, and store it in your warehouse. My Suit gets their fabric from all the usual suspects, so you can go bargain (see above "$495") or luxe (think Zegna).

Start by making an appointment, or walk right in and order away. You can even request a sales rep to come to your office; he'll bring the swatches and look books right to you. You'll choose the fabric and styling options, and then they'll take your measurements. Fourteen days later (depending on specifications), your suit is ready. Or further alterations can be done as needed. All this included in your price. Jealous yet, ladies?

Just think, custom buttonholes, pick stitches (go ahead and ask, I did), ticket pockets, center, side, or no vents, pleated or flat front....wait, don't panic, because if you don't know exactly what you want, someone there is ready to help you. I asked if they get many Thom Browne-esque requests? Alas, no, you won't see many short pants on 34th Street. But My Suit does make a lot of fitted, English-style suits. Well, we're getting there, guys. I'll have you in short pants yet.

My Suit, Made to Measure, Greeley Square, 1270 Broadway at 33rd

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Shoe Man, Take Me Away

I took advantage of the post-holiday sales this year and got a new bag I'd had my eye on for a while. Do I love it? So much...except for this tiny rivet that keeps falling off, which I wouldn't fuss over but of course it's a very important little piece of hardware on an outside pocket that's attached to a cute little buckle, so I returned the bag to the store to reattach it but they said they'd have to send it back to China (home of the world's smallest, crappiest rivet), which would take 4-8 weeks because of the Chinese New Year, and I thought, a la Bill the Cat, "Aack," then "THPPFFT!"

Hence a visit to my new favorite shoe man, Louis Shoe Repair in the Empire State Building. He had just beautifully resoled 2 pairs of boots (his soles are marked "Italy," not "China") and fixed a strap on my platform sandals that others had deemed a lost cause. I left my bag for the afternoon and voila, for $5 the rivet is fixed. So next time you've got handbag hardware issues, or that exposed nail in your heel is clacking embarrassingly in your marble lobby, visit Louis. Quality work abounds, and the classic store is worth a visit for the rows of shoeshine stalls in which there is always someone sitting and reading a paper. Very old school, think I'll visit today for my coffee break .

Louis Shoe Repair, 25 W. 33rd between 5th & 6th

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Puddle Jumpers

Yesterday at lunchtime, I overheard some coworkers discussing the impending rain and realized I was screwed in suede boots. So I gambled with Mother Nature and ran to Macy's Herald Square in suede, hoping to return in waterproof rubber. Macy's, I figured, would not let me down. And I was right.

Get down there quick (women's shoes, 5th floor, full of rain boot shoppers) to pick up these CougarSport yellow Flyers, for $30 (50% off). They also come in a pretty matte red, but not in size 9. I was reluctant to buy yellow, that traditional grade-school color, but once on my feet I fell for them like a 5-year old; I was even disappointed it wasn't raining when I woke up this morning.

Thanks to a removable arch support, these rain boots are so comfortable you won't want to take them off. The wedge heel is chic enough to set you apart from that kindergartner splashing in puddles, but not so high you'll teeter. Black buckles, too, are a nice touch.

Macy's Herald Square, 151 W. 34th btwn Broadway & 7th

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Battle of the Payless Polka Dots

At first I was smitten with the alice + olivia polka dot flat I saw more than a month ago at Payless on 34th Street and Broadway. What's not to like? It's cute, it's funny, and it's very spring. Then I saw the Lela Rose flat and thought it looked kind of weird and boring compared to the a+o's bright polka dot. Here's a picture of them cohabiting on the shoe wall (a+o top, lela bottom, both $30). Isn't alice more photogenic? But guess who's really cute on the foot? Well, both, but Lela was surprisingly pretty. My wallet would vote for her because she's more 9-5.

But don't stop with the polka dots. There's also a great Lela Rose denim pump ($35), an Abaete soft pink strappy sandal, and an espadrille....oh, here, take a look at them all together:

What a happy little pile of shoes. I'll go clockwise from the brown espadrille, a great basic for $19.99, the metallic slide, also $19.99, the above-mentioned Lela denim pump, light blue Abaete sandal ($30.00 and comfortable, how does she do it?), Dexter woven ballet flat $24.99 (another great & inexpensive basic), alice + olivia (hard to choose between the black/pink, white/black, or white/green), Lela Rose, pink Abaete sandal.

Payless, 110 W. 34th between Broadway & 7th

Monday, February 25, 2008

Xmastime: Behind the Tents

Just when you thought fashion week was over, he's back. This time he's behind the tents trying to figure it all out, the hats, the flippy skirts, the sprayed shoes, and all the other things that drive a guy crazy at fashion week.

And guess what? We've still got more tape! Perhaps next week you can see Xmastime meeting fashion doyennes. Just wait and see...

Xmastime's Geox shoes courtesy of Foot Locker, 110 W. 34th at Broadway

Pride and Plumage

Anyone else find the dresses boring at the Oscars last night? Didn't they all look the same? Here's my recession fantasy for next year's awards shows: no one can afford to hire stylists. And then we'd have more wacky color, more imagination, and more entertaining red carpet disasters. And then we'd also not be subjected to Jennifer Garner blathering on about Rachel Zoe. I find it very hard to believe Jennifer can't pick out a gorgeous black dress by herself.

I watched the arrivals, Jon Stewart's monologue (Gaydolf Titler, funny), and Katherine Heigl talking about how nervous she was (no wonder with that hairdo), then switched to the last episode of Pride and Prejudice on PBS. Even though I've seen it three times already and own the DVD, I can't resist Colin Firth giving Jennifer Ehle smoldering looks. And the winner for best sexual chemistry with no sex goes to....(see above couple). Also, the clothes were much more interesting (see Lady Catherine de Bourgh's hats).

From the fall 2008 collections, eye candy with some wow:

Naeem Khan, because if you're going black, please make it interesting. And can you imagine the feathers in a ruffle the next day?

Monique Lhuillier, because rich colors and feathers were all over the runways. Where were they last night?

Yigal Azrouel, because they are perfect, not black and are draped in character.

J. Mendel, you say aubergine, I say purple, which in all its variations was ubiquitous for fall.

Badgley Mischka, because that green would have looked so much better on redhead Rebecca Miller (wife of Daniel Day-Lewis) than those red things on her shoulders. And that last dress is at once sweet and stunning.

Friday, February 22, 2008

I'll Take a Cherry and an Apple

Pastry Kicks, wow, a marriage of food and bags. Well, almost. Look at these very girly and thus adorable bags that will be available at Footaction early next week:

sweet as pie! Do you see the cupcake pendant with the cherry on top ($75, far left, near left $25)? Because 34th Street is so special, we're one of five Footactions nationwide getting these bags for spring. Mmmm, hungry yet?!

And certainly this company's resistance is admirable, because you know they wanted to call themselves "Pastry Kicks Ass." Even if these aren't your style, you need to get one for a friend or sister. Or rethink your style, because Pastry Kicks aren't only street smart, I think they're pretty "early Gwen Stefani Le Sportsac: the jacked-up version." What I'm saying is get out the credit cards, neo-punk girls.

Footaction, 1 Penn Plaza, on 7th @ 34th

My All-Stars Are Leather

I've been digging these black leather Converse sneaks since fashion week (see Naeem Khan show, below). Thanks, Lady Foot Locker, for the test pair. But yesterday I truly fell in love. Yesterday morning, I finally realized what was going on with my feet. After running for the bus and walking up subway steps, it suddenly came to me: my god, my toes aren't scrunched!

Yes, after all these years, I've got scrunch-free toes. In the All-Stars they even have wiggle room. My running shoes don't do this and certainly none of my heels do this. These leather Chucks also have more support than the canvas Chucks. And they are so good-looking I can wear them with almost anything.

Of course, you'll get "Those aren't Chucks" from your canvas-or-die Converse aficionados. I got that not 5 minutes after trying them on. But it's been years, people. Let Chuck upgrade.

Look, cute shoes! They are fashionweekrunway-able.

Get them at: Lady Foot Locker, 120 W. 34th between 6th & 7th

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Sneaky Obsession

Perhaps I've just discovered a little Pierre online? Or perhaps I am so obsessed I see Pierre everywhere, like Andre Leon? Check this out:

"Introducing Gap Design Editions, a collection of limited-edition, specially-designed shoes." Specially designed??? By M. Hardy??? Argh!

They're really, really cute and look good with everything on that site: shorts, dresses, skirts, and will surely rock your jeans. I don't think they'll last long, so go online and get them before we find out who REALLY designed them (oh, Pierre).

PS: These are hidden on the European Collection site. I stumbled on them checking out the short empire dress and couldn't find them anywhere else. They were listed at the bottom of the dress page as "You might also like..." Well, duh.

34th Street's European Collection

There's a little Gap European Collection in stores for you to try on. Not a huge selection, but enough to give you an idea of size and style. I wish I'd saved my striped shirt money for this boatneck T:
I love the gathering at the neckline and the banded cuffs. And for $19.50 it's not even splurging on another striped shirt.

Try on this cropped leather coat, $358. Soft leather, tough style, very runway worthy and an easy carry-over into fall:

Part linen, part cotton, obviously better with less winter paleness (comes in black, only size tens left on 34th), but this is a super-functional dress (left, $64.50). I really like it for work with a t-shirt underneath.

There's also a black flare skirt, soft short-sleeved cardigans, & a cute lace strap tank in royal blue. I wish we had this, right, the pintuck dobby shirt available online, just so I can say "I'm wearing my dobby shirt." Now that's European. And the length is great.

I also wish we had this cute dress, but
if those shoes are You Know Who, I'm going to cry in my morning coffee.

And some Gap accessory likes, right. There aren't many blue scarves left on 34th Street, but lots of pinks and yellows. The tote is much cuter in person, and it comes with it's own little matching bag inside, following that admirable bag trend of two for one.

Gap Herald Square, 60 W. 34th at Broadway

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Stood Up By Shoes

It's been a long time since I've been stood up, because when you're married it's not really "I've been stood up," it's just "Ooo, I've got some good new ammunition." But M. Hardy stood me up today, perhaps even for the whole season. You know, a girl gets her hopes up, shaves her legs (a big deal for a married woman in the wintertime), trots herself out in the windy cold, only to see what? Well, a lot of cute spring stuff, but STILL it wasn't Pierre Hardy shoes. Latest news is that 34th Street isn't getting the shoes (!!), only the Fifth & 54th Street store (the annex shop) is, and not till March 15th. I knew it was going to be a bad day. Still, Gap Herald Square enjoys torturing me: "Keep checking back, we might get them!" Oh, the torture.

Meanwhile, check out this GapBody newness, of which everything would look better with a tan. Tomorrow I'll show a little "European Collection" Gap, which is usually only found online. But a small selection can be found in the flagship stores. So, as Xmastime would say, CAMON Pierre! Throw a 34th Street flagship store a bone-colored gladiator!

Some cute bikinis, (also try the black maillot, fits great and everyone should have a basic one-piece), great cover-ups (that white tunic also comes in a pretty brown, & I love the yoga skirt. Could this all be the result of some Marie-Amelie?

Gap, 60 W. 34th St. @ Broadway

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

J'adore M. Hardy

The Fashion Herald was out of town today, but she can still pass along a little retail rumor: tomorrow, Wednesday, is the supposed arrival of the Pierre Hardy shoes at Gap on 34th Street. Tonight let's all dream a "bon voyage" to Pierre and send the good vibe to keep those shoes traveling our way. But really, can we even sleep?

Gap Herald Square, 60 W. 34th St. @ Broadway

Monday, February 18, 2008

Losing A Little Xmastime

Does chasing Posh Spice burn calories? God knows there should be some kind of benefit. Let's ask Xmastime, our Manny Blogger who's trying to keep his "Fashion Herald New Year's Resolution: Losing 10 inches." Time to check in with our man:

First of all, I’d like to thank Trish and all the kind people at Fashion Herald for the chance to be a part of Fashion Week. Let's be honest, it's a fairly gigantic leap from "hey, it's Fashion Week!" to "hey, it's Fashion week, we should get Xmastime involved!" I mean, there's vision, and then there's VISION. Also thanks to Melissa at Foot Locker, who hooked me up with the awesome Geox you see in the videos. They have the spring in them to increase my vertical from 4.5 inches to 4.589 AND they fit like a glove, making you forget they're even on your feet. They're part Air Jordans and part Amy Winehouse ballet slippers - so either way, you're high.

Like any man who was raised in the sticks, played high school football, served in the military and has always wondered how Sammy Hagar could've ever written a song as great as "You Better Love Somebody," I've always been ambivalent/condescending re: fashion. "Who gives a sh-t?" I'd say, wondering aloud if it was all a ruse, something women just made up to talk about.

But I must say, after my first runway show, I asked the obvious question, "who's buying these dresses?" and Trish, with amazing indulgence (think asking Bill Gates "what's your highest score on Ms. Pac-Man?") walked me through the whole process of what it actually meant to see a piece on the runway and have it end up in your closet. She took me through the whole journey, from the runway to Europe and back again, from A to Z. Unreal. Unfortunately, she lost me when she got to B (and by "B" I mean "A.") But whatever she was saying sure sounded impressive. There are a few things that crossed my mind at the runway shows, however.

1) I learned you don’t hafta necessarily be pretty to be a model. If you have the freakishly right body, they can live with the rest. Ironically, the same can be said for an offensive lineman in the NFL. Life, eh?

2) I was shocked to find out that runway shows are generally about 10-15 minutes long. I don't know what my pre-conceived notions were; I guess if asked I woulda said oh, 2-3 hours. But I am a man, so obviously 1 minute always equals 15 for me, so....(cough)

3) I was shocked to realize that models worked for more than one designer. For example, a model might stroll down the runway for one designer, then sprint down the street to model for another designer. I guess I would've thought, however wrongly, that the models would be LOYAL! on the TEAM! and completely dedicated to their designer, never to be separated! But then again I was shocked and horrified when Brandon ditched the Peach Pit to work at the beach for a summer, so what do I know?

A great, eye-opening experience for a fish out of water. Against my own best wishes, I did gain a modicum of respect for fashion as an industry. Though the clothes themselves still make no sense.


As I’ve written before, my weight loss had hit a depressing speed bump; for some reason I could find no motivation to get me going in the right direction. I was inhaling chicken mcnuggets while pounding 24-oz cans of Colt 45, all while wondering why I couldn’t flip the switch and start the diet. Something seemed to be propelling me to do the exact opposite of what I knew I should be doing. So I decided something drastic needed to happen and this past Monday I started the Atkins Diet. I know, it’s stupid, it’s unhealthy, etc. But I felt like I just needed a little boost of success to get me over the hump. Positive reinforcement, if you will. And here it is Friday and I’ve lost…10 pounds!!!! I can’t believe it. I feel a lot lighter, and a LOT more energetic. And let’s face it – what else would I rather be eating than meat and cheese wrapped up in more meat and cheese, boiled in melted meat and cheese? Camon. Obviously I won’t stay on it forever, but it’s given me the impetus to really go for it again.

The ONLY bad thing about the diet is apparently there is a bakery baking fresh, unbelievable-smelling bread every block I walk on. I’m serious, every 30 steps I take I’m like what the…am I being overwhelmed by the smell of bread baking? I look around, no bakery in sight. Yesterday I actually thought for nanosecond “is a bakery following me?” Not just bread, but a whole bakery baking bread. So I’m losing my mind along with the weight I guess, but oh well, I’ll take it.

Foot Locker, 120 W. 34th between 6th & 7th

Friday, February 15, 2008

Pre-Spring Savings

Looks like Gap has some spring on sale. Go check it out as my favorite navy blue sweatshirt (chic sweatshirt, with pockets) is now $24.99. I wanted to get the grey also, but somehow it's screaming "couch" and "spaghetti sauce stains." Try the cute dresses (below for $39.99) and look at the sales rack in the back if you're going someplace warm involving the ocean or looking good by a pool. For some reason, they've got some bathing suits on sale (bottom level, straight back to the right on the wall). Resort markdowns? Great. Now I just need a plane ticket, a hotel room, vacation time, and mama's rum money.

Aforementioned sweatshirt, paired with short black leggings, $19.50. I know, leggings, but often I want something more under a spring dress than my Hanky Panky. I'll wear them to the gym too and these fit great.

Same dress, different kind of blue (and the pinstripe is a smaller size). Pockets included.

Can't stop thinking about seersucker for spring, and this jacket ($43.99 on sale) isn't helping. Of course it has to have pockets, too.

Seersucker, stripes, everything that looks awful in little internet photos, I love. Really, Stripes Forever. And I so want to layer this under a short-sleeved solid T or sweater. Thanks, Zang Toi and all you other designers who can't get enough stripes for fall.

Gap, 60 W. 34th Street at Broadway

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Dropping in on Posh Spice

Boy On Film Episode 2: Desperado

Because we love Xmastime, and thus enjoy torturing him in unnatural environments, we dropped him down in the middle of fashion week. And who does he practically fall right on top of? Let's go to the tape.

More Xmastime fashion week video to come...

Don't Panic

Fashion Herald Valentine's Day PSA for the men:

It's almost 2pm and you've done nothing for your sweetie. "Victoria's Secret!" you think, "Herald Square!" Great impulse, big store, big selection, but stop and take a breath. Do you know her size? And I'm not talking shoe size.

I'll never forget the Valentine's Day I received, from my then-boyfriend, a lovely piece of lingerie from Victoria's Secret, a rather complicated little bit of nothing that was very attractive but, how should I say, a little ambitious in the cup size area? Yes, I was taken aback, "You think I'm a 36D?" Certainly this boded ill for the relationship, as I was unwilling to achieve such, um, greatness. So learn from others: if you don't have the measurements, ALL the measurements, don't guess. Imagine if you go too big ("you think I'm a large? Are you saying my ass is too big?") or too small ("I'll never fit into this! Do you wish I was this small?").

Try a robe instead:

Here's a spa wrap for $28.50 (yes, hearts, she'll probably think it's cute). Then drop by Aura Wellness Spa one block down on 33rd and buy her a massage ($70-$170) or a facial ($70-$150). Don't worry, we love facials, we'll never say "What, do you think I have bad skin?"

Or do a satin, kimono-sleeved short robe for something a little sexier (right, $35). And because we know you love these tacky, cliched, hideous things called "slippers," go ahead and buy them (left, $48). But tuck a reflexology gift certificate (Aura, $70) into the box. Call it incentive to wear them, indoors, only for you, far, far away from the public eye.

Victoria's Secret Herald Square, 1328 Broadway @34th
Aura Wellness Spa, 49 W. 33rd just east of Broadway

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Make It Official

Can we make Valentine's Day the kind of holiday where we don't have to go to work the next day? And while we're at it, if your city wins the Superbowl, Monday should be an automatic holiday. Let's state our case to the officials. Which reminds me, it's a good time to visit our official friends at Foot Locker on 34th Street. Because Valentine's Day is tomorrow and I'm sick and tired of seeing all those roses/candy/chocolates get bought up just for one day and then what? Gone for the rest of the year. Unlike what? Shoes! Now that I'm a convert, thanks to Footlocker's fashion week supply (soon to be blogged), I've got sneaks on my mind.

Ok, it goes against all I believe in to recommend holiday-themed attire, but to fight this impulse in others is an utter waste of time. I know this as I am descended from a long line of holiday sweatshirt adorners. For those of you in love with sufferers of this tragic malady, go to Lady Foot Locker on 34th for:

  • Nike Air Max 90, Vandal, and Dunk Lo, all available in shades of red and (gasp!) pink.
  • Converse Chuck Taylor All Star in pink. These I actually recommend as you can conveniently pair them up with black and work them into your Go-Go's retro look.
  • Adidas Superstars, be-speckled with RED AND PINK HEARTS. If these don't cure your beloved, she's a lost cause.
Of course if you're buying for your man, there will be no pink hearts involved (except the ones you draw on his card). He'll prefer something from Foot Locker next door, like:
  • Fila Helmsman, classy patent leather hi. It's a running shoe or a casual kick.
  • Nike Zoom LeBron V. Have we talked about my big LeBron crush? Don't tell Andre Leon!
  • K-Swiss Ariake, it sounds high tech, it is high tech, I just want it cause it's K-Swiss!
Happy freaking Valentine's Days, all you well-shod lovers.

Foot Locker & Lady Foot Locker, 120 W. 34th Street between 6th & 7th

Monday, February 11, 2008

Zang Toi Fall 2008 Collection

Surely all anyone was thinking at the end of Friday, the last day of fashion week, was Sean John for celebs, Marc Jacobs for direction and which after-party when. But Zang Toi at 5pm delicately plucked his audience out of this world of trends and dropped them into one of timeless beauty. Perfectly articulated and thoughtfully presented, full of exacting detail and luxurious fabrics, Zang Toi's collection ruled his runway. Thanks to his separates, fashion week attendees won't think there are only elaborate gowns to wear this fall. Finally, one saw winter coats dominate the runway for a good selection of the show. And the models looked pretty badass in them. Then, just when you thought you couldn't like him more, Zang Toi took his bow not with the blonde in the wedding gown (of course he had a bride!) but the blonde in the tuxedo. Perfect.

I lust for: the antler sweater with the striped layer underneath; the stripes with plaid; the "mohair American Indian floor length cardigan wrap:" the American Indian princess gown (fulfills childhood fantasies and looks incredible); any guy who can pull off that tuxedo (Mr. Jolie?); that pouf sleeve shirt that rivals any pirate look going; and that "Adirondak Star" the bride's got going on.