‘Rear Window’ in April Vogue

© vogue.com

Rear Window, my favorite Hitchcock film, is the perfect story to showcase the 50’s inspired pieces from the spring collections. Vogue’s casting of Carolyn Murphy and Tobey Maguire is spot-on. I cannot wait to see this story in the April issue.

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What's New

GUCCI

Gucci Horsebit 1955 mini bag

MALONE SOULIERS

Gavi crossover-strap leather slides

BROCK COLLECTION

Wool-blend cardigan

SAINT LAURENT

Le Maillon leather sandals

SAINT LAURENT

Suzanne mini leather cross-body bag

SAINT LAURENT

Jota chain-embellished leather sandals

MATTEAU

Broderie-cotton maxi skirt

PRADA

Single-breasted hooded raincoat

BOTTEGA VENETA

Leather sandals

SAINT LAURENT

Flower brooch

SAINT LAURENT

Le Maillon leather shoulder bag

GUCCI

Aviator-style gold-tone and acetate sunglasses

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For the Birds

The fat, ruby red cardinals are gobbling up every bit of seed we put in the feeders and a woodpecker is going at the back of the house (this is not good). Despite the incessant tapping, I love birds and cannot wait to see “Audubon’s Aviary: The Complete Flock”, a three part show at the New York Historical Society. The first installment runs March 8-May 19.  All 474 watercolors John James Audubon painted for The Birds of America will be presented in the order they were created.

Soon to be on my bedside table is Snapper, Brian Kimberling’s debut novel about a bird-researcher in Indiana. Call me shallow, but I love the cover. The reviews are good too.

Vogue covered five made-in-New York City beauty businesses and I love the packaging on the Uptown Soap Co. products, especially the bird motifs. They are the perfect hostess gift.

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‘The One That Got Away’

This morning I had a true that’sjust-what-I-was-thinking moment when I opened the WSJ. The One That Got Away, an article on buying last season and resale pieces, was pure synchronicity.

I have no problem buying items from seasons past. Sometimes it takes me a bit to really love something and by the time I want it, it’s sold out. Then, when it pops up on Yoox, I am relieved to have a second chance at it. My buying credo is to acquire pieces that go the distance, so I am not concerned about which season items come from, just that I can get my hands on them.

This happened recently. I found the Valentino dress above that I bought last spring and still regretted returning. Yoox had only one and it was my size. Half the original price, it was still a lot, but I could not let it slip by a second time. Now it’s hanging in my closet (with the tags on it).

Back to the WSJ article this morning– it listed a few resale sites and I perused them looking for my dress. I am not a resale shopper. A sole exception, I bought a Miu Miu skirt pre-owned, and only because, like the Valentino dress, I whiffed on buying it the first time around. And lo and behold, on one of the sites listed, was the Valentino dress, and it’s $500. less than the new one from Yoox.

Is it worth the extra money to have it be new and unworn? Also, the resale site does not take returns. If I don’t like my purchase I have the option to resell it on the site.

What should I do?

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Garden

‘The Gardener’s House’

© T magazine

I am completely besotted with this glorious house in Tangier, it overlooks the Straight of Gibraltar, and belongs to garden designer Madison Cox. T magazine covered Cox’s home and gardens in the men’s fashion issue out last weekend, and both my husband and I fell hard for this idyllic hideaway.

We are especially inspired by the gardens and will research more of Cox’s design work.

On My Mind

“The happy fashion designer Isabel Marant”

The Gentlewomanone of my favorite magazines, profiled Isabel Marant, one of my favorite designers. When the SS13 issue with Beyonce on the cover hit my mailbox, I was overjoyed. If you don’t know The Gentlewoman, it’s published in London and focuses on a wide range of women ‘of style and purpose’.

The current issue is particularly good. And the interview with Ms. Marant is really good. The best take-away for me was, when asked about the long-term future of her brand she responded “Everybody tells me, ‘Ach, you’ll never be able to stop!’ but I think I will. You correspond to a certain time, your time, and you must realize when it’s not your time”. This truly resonated with me.

For over 20 years I cast models for magazine editorials and fashion shows– I was passionate about my work. Then, one day, I didn’t want to do it anymore. My friend Helmut Lang, whose shows I cast, had retired, I was tired of celebs on covers, the endless travel and being away from my family was exhausting– I just knew I was done. Bottom line, it was no longer ‘my time’.

So, I took the models’ cards off my walls, called my agent, and walked away. Do I ever miss it? Nope. I miss my industry friends, but I don’t need to work in an office or on a show to see them.

Isabel is right, life is too short to do something that no longer makes you happy or keeps you relevant, and I am very fortunate to have found a new passion that I cannot wait to work on each day.

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Favorite Fun Flat

Chloe scallop edge flats

I didn’t buy these flats last year, but I will this spring. When I see them on other women, I realize how cute and versatile they are. The perfect run-around shoe.

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Sow Status

A few thoughts on Paris

There was a lot to love in Paris and the buyers and magazine editors must be pleased. I’m pleased that Karl showed over-the-knee boots again above at Chanel, as did Phoebe Philo for Celine. She showed thigh-high boots in what looks like a pale shade of green below that’s really beautiful and surprising.

So the Saint Laurent show was seriously grunge, not where my wardrobe and wallet are focused right now. But I did like this grey duffel, it’s a forever piece.

These are my favorite looks from Louis Vuitton– the lace details above are very sexy indeed.

And long live the ankle strap, it continues to be a big trend for FW13. The marble print pump from Balenciaga above and the cross-instep strap at Christian Dior below are both good.

It took me a bit to appreciate the Givenchy show (this is when it’s better seeing a show live), and it has grown on me. I especially love the gypsy sensibility. And when I look at the pieces, this fur jacket, patchwork skirt and great boots for example, I realize that the collection is stunning.

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Show Status

Another Victory for Valentino

I am thrilled that the Valentino FW13 collection is beautiful–  love the side braid, lace collars, and gorgeous dresses; the show is an absolute winner.

It’s no secret that I am a huge fan of the Valentino design team, and some of my favorite and oft-worn pieces are theirs. However, I admit that I don’t like the spring collection in stores now, it’s a bit twee. So it’s a relief that there will be more for me to covet this coming fall from this talented duo.

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Garden

Give ’em hellebores

© of the WSJ

The snow has melted and the days are slightly warmer which gives me hope that spring will soon be here. As much as I hate weeding and mundane garden maintenance, by this time of year I am yearning to be out in the dirt, no matter the task.

Thankfully, there are some early bloomers, and my all-time-favorite is the hellebore. Hellebores are relatively unknown in the U.S., so I was surprised and delighted when the WSJ did a piece on them recently. A shade loving plant, they are also frost and deer resistant, and come back every year. I especially love their waxy petals and somewhat unusual, non-garish, colors– the hellebore is from the buttercup family, another favorite of mine.

In Arabic, Helibar means “remedy against madness”, and that’s good enough for me.

© of the WSJ

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Show Status

Wrap me up in Celine, please!

Leave it to Phoebe Philo to give women chic, yet comfortable, clothes. The muted colors and fluid lines of the opening looks are simply put, modern and relaxed elegance at it’s best.

I hope I am tall enough to carry off one of these dresses and over-the-knee boots. The bracelets just below the elbow are really good.

There was more color in the show than I am covering– even though I prefer the neutral pieces, this plaid top is pretty great.

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