Archive for December, 2019

On the sixth day of Christmas my true love gave to me … 



… a cocktail for New Year’s Eve. 

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On the fifth day of Christmas my true love gave to me … 




… a new look! 

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On the fourth day of Christmas my true love gave to me … 


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Pancakes for breakfast. 

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On the third day of Christmas my true love gave to me … 



… a little admonishing. Oh dear. 

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On the second day of Christmas my true love gave to me … 

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… a handsome fella in a cashmere coat (from Lord & Taylor). Oh my!

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For something a little different this holiday season, let’s visit some vintage subway ads over the next 12 days. Each day a different ad that I spotted while visiting the New York Transit Museum in Brooklyn. Here we go …

On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me …


… appreciation!

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To all my readers –

Happy Hanukkah!

Merry Christmas!

Happy Kwanzaa! 

Wishing one and all a safe and merry holiday. 



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No photos of the velvet dresses but this is my dad and me one Christmas in Tahoe. The jacket I’m wearing was new and purchased at The Little Shop. It was powder blue. The photo was taken with my vintage (even back then) Brownie Holiday camera.

Here’s a fashionable holiday tale about my dad.

Sometime after my parents got divorced when I was around six, my father took over buying my clothes. A few times a year he and I would walk over to the children’s clothing store, The Little Shop on Chestnut Street in the Marina neighborhood of San Francisco. The young salesladies would help me choose outfits to try on and I’d do a little fashion turn for my dad. I shyly walked around the store perhaps in a wool jumper, or plaid pants with a thick turtleneck sweater, or a simple cotton check dress. He would nod his approval, usually agreeing to whatever I liked best.

Among these shopping ventures was the important visit to pick out a nice dress for the holidays. My dad insisted on dressing appropriately and he usually had big plans for the season, which included dinners out and The Nutcracker ballet. An appropriate dress was essential and of course I had grown out of last year’s special dress.

Off we’d go to The Little Shop just before Thanksgiving to select a new dressy dress. I had a thing for velvet and there are two velvet dresses I remember clearly – one a very dark green with long sleeves and white smocking at the chest and my favorite was red and also had long sleeves with white cotton lace on the cuffs, the hem, and the collar.

I have no pictures except in my mind – my tall father in a blue suit and little me dressed up in velvet and patent leather Mary Janes, probably with a bow clipped to my long red hair. How charming we must have looked.


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no_fur_logoThere is so much innovation going on now with faux-fur textiles that it just feels like a more modern fabric to work with. Also, young people today do not see real fur as a status symbol – they define luxury as innovation and sustainability. And the new faux-fur textiles will get better. We are working on creating a bio-based faux fur with no polyester at all … we have created a faux fur made from 100 percent recycled ocean plastics. 

Kym Canter, founder and CEO of House of Fluff.

Ms. Canter, a fashion industry insider for over 20 years, decided that she could no longer in good conscience wear real fur. But she couldn’t find a quality alternative so she sold her collection of 26 fur coats (I wonder to whom?) and started a new faux fur business with an eye for good design and luxe, sustainable faux-fur textiles.

Designers such as Gucci, Michael Kors, and Versace have gone fur-free – an indication that real fur is indeed OUT. Hopefully this time for good!


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IMG_20191203_130459My favorite part of the holiday season is that quiet time between Christmas and New Year’s when most of the rush is OVER. When we finally have a chance to stop, stay home, and relax. This is the best time to curl up with a pile of books.

And what’s a better gift for Christmas (Dec. 25), Hanukkah (Dec. 22- Dec. 30), Kwanzaa (Dec. 26-Jan. 1) than a book?

On my fashion book recommendation list is IM: A Memoir (Flatiron Books) by fashion designer Isaac Mizrahi. I devour fashion stories and Mizrahi’s is a good one. He was part of the generation that landed in NYC in the early 80s when the city was edgy but real and making it there without buckets of money was still possible.

I read IM while visiting Manhattan and it was a kick to be walking past some of Mizrahi’s references –  like Macy’s on W. 34th Street across from which was his father’s office (he manufactured children’s clothing) or M&J Trimming on W. 38th Ave.,  (touted to be the best trim shop in Manhattan).

IM is a complete memoir starting with Mizrahi’s childhood in Brooklyn. His family was part of the Syrian Jewish community. With two older sisters and a fashionista mother, our hero was all about style from a young age. But he struggled as an overweight kid who liked Broadway tunes and spent his time making puppets and perfecting his impersonation of Barbra Streisand. He was an outsider at school, in his community, and at home. But he had a close relationship with his mother and even though he was unhappy, on some level it seemed that he accepted and even embraced his quirkiness.

I found the early part of this memoir fascinating, especially the section when Mizrahi attends School of Performing Arts in Manhattan. The same school featured in the 1980 film, Fame.  In fact Mizrahi auditioned for the gay character, Montgomery, which went to Paul McCrane. But he was in the film as part of a montage. It’s little tidbits like this that make IM a fun read.

Although Mizrahi initially wanted to become a performer, he was also drawn to fashion and he began to sell his designs at age 15 while still in high school. That pretty much set his fate, at least for a while.

In IM we get a peek at the fashion industry, how it worked back then and some behind-the scene descriptions. There’s a lot of name dropping and talk about Mizrahi’s friendships with the likes of Liza Minneli and Anna Wintour (both at one time pretty close with Mizrahi but the friendships didn’t stand the test of time). Well-written (ghost written?) and detailed, the narration doesn’t get in its own way. I was disappointed that there are no photos and I thought his work with QVC deserved more than a mention. I was interested to know how that came about.  Target, however, does get a chapter.

There is much to say about this book but I have holiday chores to get to! I’ll wrap it up by saying IM, A Memoir by Isaac Mizrahi is a good choice for you, my fashionable readers, and/or any fashionable on your holiday list.




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