Thursday, September 24, 2009

Fun with Converse

I decided recently to order some new sneakers, as my old Converse and PF Flyers seemed too chunky to wear with skinny jeans, their colors were faded, and I felt I just needed a change. After searching the Internet for a new brand and coming up dry, I revisited the (now Nike-owned) Converse online store to see what I could find. Maybe I'm behind on this trend, but I had no idea I could design my own shoes for the same price as purchasing a regular pair! You can choose everything: the color of the shoe, back stripe, tongue, lining, stitching, laces, toe cap, and even the stripe that goes around the shoe. I decided on an "all star light," which is just like the regular model except lower, lighter, and just plain better in my opinion. I chose a slate blue color with bright green stitching and lining, etc. Pretty conservative, but I'm happy.
This sounds like I'm shilling Converse, but I really love them! Here they are:


-Maura

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Brooklyn Flea

Today I went to the Brooklyn Flea Market in Fort Greene. Though I didn't buy anything (there's lots of vintage stuff, artwork, etc. but it's all a little expensive), I did eat a delicious hot dog from Asia Dog - it was a hot dog with pork belly on top. SO GOOD. Then me, Matt, and our friends walked around the neighborhood a bit and ended up in Fort Greene Park, which was really lovely. Here's a pic from the park:


Today I decided to wear this dress I got on sale from Tulle. I like the dress a lot, but it reminded me how tall models are because on the Tulle website, the dress fell to about the model's mid thigh... whereas on me it goes to my knees. If only one of the girls from the cycle of ANTM were on the Tulle website, I could have seen how long the dress really would be on me! Oh well, I still like it.

I felt a little dressed up, but I liked the outfit and I love this little yellow shrug, which is from Forever 21. Here's the detail on the shrug (Blogger is driving me crazy and not letting me put the pics in the order I wanted them!) and after that the pics of the whole outfit. Happy Weekend everyone! - Jenna

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Steel City Big Pour & the Magic of Etsy

This weekend, I attended Pittsburgh's annual Steel City Big Pour, an event at which Pittsburgh food vendors and area breweries gather under one roof for a festival of sorts, serving those of us willing to fork over $45 all the food and beer we can stand for three hours. Though we were all drunk and bloated by the end, it was great fun trying all the beers and small snacks, and generally supporting Pittsburgh businesses. There was even a cheesy dad-like rock band playing Band covers, an arts and crafts booth, and an outdoor biergarten area. Favorite beer: Southern Tier Black Ale. Favorite food: beef tongue nachos from Six Penn downtown.














I also got to wear a recent purchase from the awesome Talynvintage on Etsy: a 1960's schoolgirl-style dress with orange ascot.
Shoes from Etsy, tights from J. Crew

What better way to enjoy an evening of beer and food with my boyfriend and a group of awesome friends? Robert was clad in American Apparel as usual:
-Maura

Like a Fine Wine...

When I look at my wardrobe, there are few things left that I've had nearly my whole adult life. First of all, I'm slightly larger than I used to be (as I should be), and secondly, I tend to buy not-so-expensive clothes that either wear out or go out of style. There are a few shirts, and a few dresses, however, that have managed to stick with me over the years. I'm reminded of an American Eagle plaid jumper, purchased in 1997 (when beginning 9th grade), that I still wear; a madras blouse purchased from the Gap in 1998, and this black and white sweater dress, bought for $15 at Bergner's department store circa 1999. To prove I'm not too old, I even remember the details of the transaction: my mom found the dress on the sales rack, and instantly knew (with he excellent fashion sense), that it was right up my alley. I've been loving it ever since, and even wore it to work recently:

Dress: "French Twist" via Bergner's, shoes: Etsy

Maybe it's a little 90's, but to me it seems pretty timeless.

-Maura

Friday, September 11, 2009

Getting Over It

A few weeks ago I put up a post about how I wanted a pair of Oxfords, but how I wasn't able to bring myself to by used shoes. Well, a little bit after that, I started looking at shoes on ebay, and I managed to get over my fears and bid on a few pairs. I did win one, and I tried them on yesterday with my outfit I wore to do some errands. I have to admit, though, I didn't actually end up wearing them out. They were described as being in "vintage used" condition, which means they're definitely worn in and I'm worried about them falling apart on the tough streets of New York!

I might see if I can get them resoled or something, but I just love the look of them AND they were under 20 bucks (maybe for good reason)! Anyway, I'm sure I will wear them out sometime soon. They're just so cute!My outfit - the tank top is H&M, the belt and sweater are thrifted (I kind of love short sleeved cardigans. They're surprisingly useful!), the jeans are Levi's. Oh, and the orange socks are also from H&M!
- Jenna

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Modlife Appearance

They posted my fave find today on the Modcloth blog! Here's a screen capture. I just figured out today that I can do screen captures on my computer, so forgive the strangeness of the amount of screen that I actually captured...- Jenna

Labor Day (feeling wordy)

I keep getting Labor Day mixed up with Memorial Day, though the sentiments surrounding the two are quite different. They both seem to be holidays, however, whose original meaning has been lost. Memorial Day has become nothing more than a time for barbequing, drinking, and dusting off the ol' speedboat, ready to usher in a season of Kid Rock-esque cavorting with chicks in bikinis. Do we ponder about wars past or present? Do we think of who died and who is dying and why? Only enough, it seems, to don an American flag speedo or break in a new set of Confederate mudflaps.

Labor Day works in much the same way. Created as a means of showing support for the labor movement, unions, and workers, it now serves as a mere marker of the end of summer: a time for barbequing, drinking, and putting the cover back on the ol' speedboat, ready to usher in a season of paper-pushing, football, and dread. Of course with Wal Mart et al. raking in the dough, unions don't really mean much anymore. And a lot of the blue collar workers that this holiday is supposed to celebrate have to work through it.


I've gone through different attitudes toward Labor Day in my life. As a child, of course, Labor Day is an ominous holiday, a black cloud that hovers just beyond August. There it rests, disguised though it may be by the promise of back to school sales and pipe dreams of newfound popularity. We always started school before Labor Day, which made it even worse. Once I got to college, Labor Day became an exciting time: the long-overdue expiration date on my summers of stifling boredom. And now? It means little to me, apart from some vague sense of betrayal on behalf of the struggling labor movement.

So what did I do this Labor Day? Well, I went to two barbeques, of course. I drank beer. I mourned summer's end. And I watched some damn fine reruns.

And because this is sort of a fashion blog, here's what I wore to said barbeques:

Shorts: Urban Outfitters (last year), t-shirt: Forever 21 ($5), headband: Forever 21 ($1.50 for 2!), shoes: Steve Madden, belt: thrifted.

-Maura

Monday, September 7, 2009

The Word is Love

They've been playing the Beatles Anthology on VH1 Classic the past few weeks, I guess in preparation for the Beatles Rock Band that's coming out soon. I don't care about the video game at all, but I was really excited to watch the Anthology - I don't think I've seen it since I was 12 or 13 (maybe since it was on the first time?) but it totally started an obsession for me. I was Beatles Crazy from 6th to 8th grade or so.

Watching the Anthology again has been fun - it's funny to see how, even though I haven't been Beatles obsessed in oh... 12 years or so, I still feel that same interest and excitement I felt when I watched it in 1995.

Anyway, with all this anticipation of fall and cool weather, I thought this album cover was appropriate to put up here. Doesn't it make you want to hang around in a lovely park with leaves falling and four adorable British lads?And, OK I'm going to throw in this later pic too, just because I always loved Paul and, though George, John, and Ringo look a little ridiculous in their fur and brightly colored clothes, I think Paul looks so stylish and cozy in his suit here.All right, enough revisiting the obsessions of my twelve year old self...Hope everyone had a lovely long weekend!

- Jenna

Friday, September 4, 2009

Reading on the Subway

So, this is not particularly fashion-y, but I wanted to share this article I found in The New York Times this morning, which just made me smile. It's all about how people read on the subway, what they read, and how they do it despite the crowds. It made me happy to see a little slice of New York life that rings so true to me. Here's a snippet from the article:

"These days, among the tattered covers may be the occasional Kindle, but since most trains are still devoid of Internet access and cellphone reception, the subway ride remains a rare low-tech interlude in a city of inveterate multitasking workaholics. And so, we read.

Even without a seat, even while pressed with strangers into human panini, even as someone plays a keyboard harmonica and rattles a cup of change, even when stumbling home after a party."

The article goes on to talk about specific people they saw on the subway and what they were reading. My favorite was the kids coming back from a camp field trip who were required to read their books whenever they were lucky enough to get a seat on the subway. I liked that story, too because one of the little girls they mention was reading a Babysitter's Club book and boy, oh boy, was I into those when I was a kid.

Maybe because I'm going to New Jersey for the weekend, I'm thinking a little bit about NYC this morning and what I love about it. Sometimes taking the train can be awful and crowded and smelly, but sometimes it can be so relaxing and exciting to find your own little mental space to read in the midst of the crowds of strangers.

Have a great Labor Day!

- Jenna

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Retro Bridesmaid

In July, my brother announced that he's marrying his girlfriend next March in a destination wedding at Sandals resort in St. Lucia. Because it's going to be a small wedding with just family and a few close friends, we're able to avoid the cheesy traditions of buffet dinners, wedding reception DJs, and, best of all, matching bridesmaids. There's a dinner before the wedding, and otherwise it's all frolicking around a tropical locale with my family and my boyfriend. I've never really been to a tropical locale before, and the only ocean I've seen has been during trips to frigid Ireland and Maine, and a shark-interrupted Florida beach visit. I'm excited to purchase a retro swimsuit for the trip, but I haven't found the perfect high-waisted two piece yet (any suggestions??).
Though it's still early, I wanted to find a dress for the wedding before winter hit and my options narrowed considerably. While trolling Etsy during work yesterday, I landed on the perfect dress from SmallEarthVintage :

At $140, it was a little more than I would usually spend, but it is a special occasion. I'm also going to two other weddings next summer, so where's the harm in a little re-wearing? This dress has such a Mia Farrow in Rosemary's Baby vibe, I can't stand it! I'm so exicted for it to arrive in the mail. After a tour through many Pittsburgh department store dress sections and boutiques, I've learned vintage is pretty much always the way to go. Surely no one else will be wearing the same dress.

-Maura

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Shrugs and Loafers

Well my parents were here again this past weekend, so I haven't had much time to keep up the blog. However, I wanted to share one of my favorite work outfits from last week:

Dress: Fashion Dictionary Dress from Modcloth, Shrug: Target, Shoes: thrifted
It's been unseasonably cool here, which is partly a bummer but also an excuse to wear cute sweaters, like this orange shrug from Target. I'm a big fan of shrugs, even if they're not in style that much anymore. Like the bolero of yore, it's a way to keep warm without looking like Old Mother Hubbard.
Last week I also finally received the shoes I purchased for just $12.50 from The Lovelys vintage shop on Etsy:

I love these little Twiggy-style loafers! What a bargain! They're very comfortable, and seem to go with everything. I broke them in on Thursday, when my boyfriend, a friend and I went to the Andy Warhol Museum to see a show by noisy girl group rockers Vivian Girls. They rocked, of course, and a great band I hadn't heard of called The Beets opened. If you get a chance to see them I recommend it highly--like Half Japanese only less deranged. Anyway, here's what I wore:


Blouse: $5 at H & M, t-shirt: Up Six Vintage (St. Paul, MN), skirt: Avalon Exchange (Banana Republic)


I wore the shoes again yesterday for the first day of school, meaning I work slightly harded and have slightly different hours. It was freezeing yesterday, so I tried them with tights. Magic!

Sweater: Banana Republic, Skirt: $10 at the Limited many years ago, Tights: J. Crew sale for $3

-Maura