Friday, March 15, 2013

Speaking of Thick….I Mean Curvy

Real women mannequins take the Internet by storm! Women’s Rights News posted a photo of lingerie-wearing mannequins in an unidentified store, with fleshier stomachs and thighs, and the public has spoken, ““Those aren’t mannequins, they are real women, and they are gorgeous,” wrote one of more than 2,800 commenters to the Facebook photo posted by Women’s Rights News.” The average American woman is a size 12 or 14, which is more than double the size of typical mannequins used in retail clothing stores.   It is so nice to see our reflections in the store!

Hannah Simone Isn't Curvy, But...

Hannah Simone is young, hot, fresh and by most accounts a talented actress.  She is educated, Canadian and even multi-ethnic.  But, of all of the things she is, she is not thick.  At least, that's what she says.

In a recent interview with Glow, a Canadian fashion magazine, Simone says, "Curvy is just a polite way of saying fat. And I’m not...Curvy and voluptuous—that one also got dragged through the mud, that poor word. It really just means a woman with breasts. [But] I’m confident with my body.”

We tend to agree with Simone.  Our culture and the fashion industry have used terms like big-boned, thick, plus-sized, voluptuous, and even curvy as synonyms for overweight, heavy and big.  We do it because we believe it is kind and polite and because we feel like we need to put a spin on someone's weight if we believe they are too heavy or big.

And, as news of Simone's comments broke, many, many people have come to her aid and supported her comments--they have said almost in a singular voice, "why can't women who have curves be called by their most appropriate name: normal?"

Pardon me, but these are the same people who would want women to be called simply, "human," or Irish-Americans, or Italian-Americans, or African-Americans, simply "Americans."  That may be fine for their bland, unrealistic homogeneous world, in which they want everyone to "fit in," but it's not acceptable for us.

We value differences and diversity.  It is what makes us special.  It is what makes us beautiful and unique.  Melissa McCarthy isn't normal.  She isn't fat.  She's big...and she's beautiful.  Halle Berry isn't normal.  She is, by her own identification, a black woman, and she is beautiful.  Christina Hendricks isn't normal.  She has more curves than a professional baseball pitcher, and she is fabulously beautiful.

You get the point.

We will respect Simone's wishes and not call her thick or curvy.  But, as for us, we prefer to reclaim the term curvy as it accurately describes what we are, is not a code word for fat, and it is part of us that makes us beautiful.    

Friday, March 8, 2013

Vivienne Westwood Slams the First Lady's Fashion Style

Vivienne Westwood took the opportunity to slam the First Lady in an interview with the New York Times.  Ms. Westwood said, "It's dreadful what she wears." she also went on to say, " I don’t want to talk about it. Really, I can’t. She’s a very nice looking lady, but it’s a nonstarter regarding clothes that suit her. Jackie Kennedy was a different matter altogether. It just has to suit her and be something that makes a human being more glamorous. That’s what fashion is there for. It’s there to help, not just to make you look more conservative.”

I have to say to Ms. Westwood that she is full of it! The First Lady does a fabulous job of being classy and chic! I think that Ms. Westwood is simply using this opportunity to get some attention.  Poor form!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Poet Speaks For the Women of Libya Post Gadhafi

Libyan poet, Aicha Almagrabi, shared her story about how she was stopped by a group of bearded militiamen after giving a lecture at the university. " They kicked her car, beat up her driver and threatened to do the same to her. Her offense: being alone in a car with men without a male relative as a guardian.
"You have violated the law of God," the militiamen told her, Almagrabi said.
"I said, I teach male students, so should I bring a male guardian with me to classroom?" she told The Associated Press."(Maggie Michael)
This incident is unfortunately a reflection of the changing Libya-post revolution. Ironically, women made up a large part of the protesters that marched in the 8 month civil war to unseat Gadhafi.  Sadly, they are now seeing themselves slowly slip to second-class status. Since Gadhafi's fall, women have seen their rights unraveling before their eyes. It is my hope that they will be able to get back what they've lost, before their voices become silenced.

St. Paddy's Day is Just Around the Corner...Get Out Your Green!

St. Paddy's Day is just around the corner. March 19th, is a day we celebrate religion. We celebrate Irish heritage. We celebrate being on the doorstep of spring. But, mostly we just drink green stuff, dance until the morning and have a great time. St. Paddy's Day is easily the country's biggest single-party day.

On the day when everyone in America suddenly becomes Irish, however, we want to distinguish ourselves while we are being festive. We want to rock gear that is sassy, authentic and classy as well. No, this doesn't mean pulling out the "Drunk Irish" T shirt and a Notre Dame Fightin' Irishmen-styled hat, and letting loose on the town. Dressing for any St. Paddy's Day party isn't all that difficult, ladies. Here are a few choices I suggest:
The Baby Doll Coat. Cute, classy, very sexy.
The Hemp Dress With Plaid fabric. Wear this with black pumps and be ready to party.
The Wickstead Coat Dress. If the a princess can rock it on St. Paddy's Day, it's approved.
The Irish Cable Knit Sweater. Put a fresh twist on an old favorite.
And finally the T shirt. If we must wear the T shirt, make it fitted and keep the wording...classy.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Marilyn Monroe at Macys

The legendary Marilyn Monroe's fashion sense is being showcased at Macy's.  If you are looking to channel a little sex kitten, check out these looks below. What do you think? Would you wear Marilyn?

Monday, March 4, 2013

Mod-the Golden Age of Fashion

If ever there was anything close to the golden age of fashion, the Mod trend has to be somewhere in there.

The Mod fashion trend began in the United Kingdom in the mid 1950s, specifically in the East End of London as an entire sub culture.

Young, White working class boys and girls who were drawn to jazz, reggae and other aspects of African American culture, started calling themselves "Mods" or modernists, the term used to described jazz lovers at the time.

These young lovers of jazz and Black culture began dressing in well fitting, Italian suits and dresses with colors and stripes.

The Mod fashion trend became popular with the rest of the United Kingdom by the mid 1960s before giving way to the Hippie subculture.

If you saw any highlights of last week's fashion week, you know that Mod is back in a big way. Several designers showed off Mod-inspired lines.

This is a very good development for curvy figures. The sharp cuts, and block colors of the Mod trend accents beautiful, thick and shapely curves well.

Vogue to Cut Life With Andre Column

Life with Andre fans will be sad to hear that Vogue is nixing the column.  But, he will continue to flourish in many other fashion endeavors.
The great AndrĂ© Leon Talley (born October 16, 1949) is the former American editor-at-large for Vogue magazine, listed as Contributing Editor in the April 2010 masthead. Talley has been a front-row regular at fashion shows in New York, Paris, London and Milan for more than 25 years.[1] He uses his influence to promote young fashion designers and mentors young talent in other fields.  I look forward to seeing what other wonderful things Mr. Talley decides to pursue!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

The Oprah Touch..

I would imagine, much like an intern with Meryl Strep's character in The Devil Wears Prada, a person who has worked for Oprah Winfrey can go on to do anything.

Such is the case for former Oprah hairstylist, Vivian Arpino. After a lengthy career styling the hair of Oprah's most famous guests, she has moved on to open her own hair salon.

Prior to striking out on her own she wowed the fabulous manes of The Duchess of York. Maria Shriver. Al Gore.  These are just a few of the notables whose pre-Oprah-appearance coiffures were tended by Vivian Arpino, a stylist trained by Chicago salon legend Charles Ifergan. For 22 years, Arpino was a celebrity guest stylist for “The Oprah Winfrey Show” — taking the lead in that role starting in 1995.

“I never imagined I’d go out on my own,” Arpino said. “But everyone said ‘Oh, you should open up your own salon. You’d do great.’”

After the Oprah finale last May, Arpino decided to do just that. 

The salon, AllBlowouts, opened in February 2013, in the posh Chicago suburb of Highland Park.

BCBG Max Azriza to Consider Company Sale

Fashion house BCBG Max Azriza Group is looking to sell.   

Founded in 1989, BCBGMAXAZRIAGROUP is the lifetime vision of one man: Founder, Designer, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Max Azria. In 1981, after eleven years of designing a line of women's wear in his native Paris, Azria moved to the United States and launched Jess, a series of new-concept retail boutiques offering hip French fashion to American women. After years of success, Azria decided to pursue his dream of launching a design house that spoke to the modern woman - thus BCBGMAXAZRIA was born. Named for the French phrase bon chic, bon genre, a Parisian slang meaning good style, good attitude, the brand embodies a true combination of European sophistication and American spirit.

BCBG Max Azria Group Inc., whose fashionable clothing has been worn by popular celebrities such as Angelina Jolie and Beyonce, has been struggling since the economic downturn. It has been facing debt woes since the shutdown of Max Rave chain which it acquired in 2008. As of 2012, Standard & Poor's said that the group was at risk of breaching financial covenant for a load reaching to $230 million held by Guggenheim Partners. I hope they will be able to turn it around, but it may be too little, too late.