Night to Day

PJ 1Vogue

PJ 5Artsology

PJ 2Harper’s Bazaar

Do you wear pajama shirts? Outside of the bed?  I do. While some may find the pajama shirt infatuation that took off in early 2012 passé, this “trend” is anything but over for me.  To me, the pajama shirt is simply a slightly altered take on a button down shirt.  And you know how I love button down shirts.  A pajama shirt is so classic, so stylish, and has such a tailored aura, that it deserves to be seen out of the bedroom. A pajama shirt looks chic, especially when paired with tailored separates and a great pair of shoes (and bag).  It looks effortlessly cool.

My first sighting of the trend was in late 2011 when the perpetually cool Sofia Coppola was photographed in Vogue wearing Louis Vuitton pajamas she designed.  Of course, Julian Schnabel: artist, Hollywood director, and husband of Olatz linens designer, Olatz Schnabel, was wearing them even before the PJ shirt made the pages of Vogue.  PJ shirts finally grabbed my attention for good when I saw Amanda Brooks wearing one in the April 2012 issue of Harper’s Bazaar. I tore the page out of the magazine, pre-Pinterest obsession, and I may still have it. Ever since I saw these photographs, I haven’t been able to quell my pursuit of pajama shirts.

Wearing pajamas out of the house apparently isn’t new.  Coco Chanel did it, as depicted in the movie, “Coco Before Chanel”:

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I continually lust after the Gold Standard Olatz (Made in the U.S.A.!) version worn by Amanda Brooks above, but cannot bring myself to pay $465 for a shirt (and they never have my size online at Barneys)… Yet.  While researching this post, I discovered that all sizes and colors can be purchased through Olatz online. I’ll have to check out their fabulous store in NY!

I satiated my desire a bit last year with the purchase of a black DKNY pajama shirt from Stylebop  with subtle white edging, identical to the one pictured below.  I have worn this shirt to death. It’s one of those pieces that make me feel good, like the best dressed version of myself, every time I wear it.

PJ 3Pinterest

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I’ve become confident enough about wearing a pajama shirt that I didn’t even hesitate to buy the J. Crew pajama shirt pictured above (from the pajama section), which I plan to wear as a regular shirt. I took a bit of a risk, especially since the item was on sale and “All Sales Final” applied.  Although I could have sized down, I might try the elusive half tuck that Lucy of A Leopard’s Spots has mastered.  This PJ shirt will pair nicely with some navy J. Crew Minnie pants, jeans, or white pants. I plan to use the photos in this post for some styling inspiration.  While the J. Crew PJ shirt is now out of stock, there are cotton versions available.  I also recommend trying the versions made by Piamita and Equipment, both currently on sale.

PJ 4Pinterest

"Drive" Photocall - 64th Annual Cannes Film FestivalJust Jared

PJ  8The Fancy Pants Report

PJ 16Parisian lady via The Sartorialist.

PJ 15Olatz Schnabel, wearing one of her creations, via The New York Times.

PJ 13Audrey Hepburn wearing piped PJs in Charade.  Image via Best of Dress.

While I love pajama shirts, I draw the line at pajama pants worn without a matching pajama shirt, no matter how luxurious the pants might be. Although pajama pants are appearing more regularly in stores than pajama shirts these days, they just seem sloppy to me. A pajama shirt at least more closely resembles a regular shirt; it’s simply a silk blouse with some bedtime details.  I actually find that a matching set of pajamas looks better than a pair of pajama pants alone.  If I tried it myself, though, I think I would restrict my wearing of this ensemble to entertaining at home.

PJ 10Elisa Senaoui sporting Ferregamo PJs from the SS12 Collection

PJ 6      Viviana Volpicella via The Sartorialist

PJ 17Piamita Geometric Cat Print PJ outfit.

PJ 11Shala Monroque in chic all white Olatz PJs via Mark D. Sikes.

PJ 7Mary Jane Russell photographed by John Rawlins in Vogue, December 1953.

Clearly, I’m not planning to put this trend to bed anytime soon.

Do you wear pajama shirts? Pajama pants? Would you? What pieces of clothing make you feel like the best dressed version of yourself?

Sneaker Fever

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I finally purchased a pair of Converse sneakers after hemming and hawing for well over a year.  I typically find ballet flats to be the chicest run around shoe, but there’s something about the appeal of a sneaker.  I’ve loved sneakers for a long time. After moving beyond Keds, I started with a pair of black and white checked Vans in middle school and then eventually graduated to Diesel sneakers in college. After reading Parisian Chic by Ines de la Fressange, I heavily considered buying a pair of Converse sneakers to wear in Paris, but then decided that I would feel more like myself in my black riding boots. And, the sneakers would look too new to be Paris cool.

As I grow older, I become more practical in my clothing choices, particularly when it comes to shoes. We all need comfy shoes to run around in, especially those of us who regularly pound the pavement of city streets. For a while now, we’ve seen many photos of chic women wearing Converse sneakers. It was only a matter of time before I felt compelled to join them. One particularly influential inspiration was a woman I saw on the street where I live; she was another young mother, dressed in the chicest casual outfit possible: a Tod’s D-bag, Converse sneakers without the laces, jeans, a jacket, and a gray scarf.  These inspiring images that I’ve shared, combined with the idea of having a great shoe to run around in the parks and playgrounds with my son, ultimately made my decision for me.  I believe that the best way to wear a pair of classic sneakers like Converse, is the way that the women pictured above did it:  with a fabulous handbag, typically leather, and chic separates, usually in black.

It was difficult to choose between Converse and Superga sneakers. Supergas have been on my radar long before I started seeing people on the streets wearing them. I ultimately decided that I prefer Converse sneakers in black and Supergas in navy. I still may buy a pair of navy Supergas, depending on what other items inspire me. I have to make sure I stick to my 25 items, after all!

SupergaImage source


I purchased my sneakers at Converse’s Soho store after viewing the Great Gatsby costumes at Prada. The Converse store was a total zoo. I found it a bit humorous that most of the customers were European; it’s nice to know that even Europeans go shopping when they’re on vacation. I understand that a self-service model where the customer places his/her order for sneakers to try on seems efficient, but in terms of quality of service, it’s not the greatest. I tried on every style of low Converse sneakers in black. I had already looked at all of the styles online and I thought that I might go with the sneakers without laces (which looked ridiculous on me) or the Jack Purcells, but I ultimately found that the classic All Stars looked best on me. No matter which pair you choose, there’s no mistaking that sneaks are chic.  And, as I told my husband, “When do I ever buy $50 shoes?”

That’s one of the beautiful things about Converse shoes: pretty much anyone can afford to wear them.  And they work great in a high-low, formal-casual mix of clothing.  A couple of weeks ago I wore them with a plain black long sleeved T, black Genetic Denim skinny jeans, my beloved black Comptoir des Cotonniers jacket I purchased at Galeries Lafayette in Nice, and an equestrian print scarf that was randomly purchased at Urban Outfitters about 4 years ago.

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The sneakers went from my son’s music class- to brunch- to the park- to coffee- and then home. They were comfortable, and every time I looked down at them, the sight of them gave me pleasure. That’s what all clothing should do.

Do you wear sneakers?  If so, which brand(s)? Do you wear Converse, and if so, what’s your favorite style? What pieces of clothing are giving you pleasure these days?

Kate Spade Moves On Up to the East Side

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Kate Spade opened its new flagship store on the Upper East Side last Friday.  On Monday, I took advantage of a rare day off from work and toured this Madison Avenue jewel box of a store.  I enjoyed exploring the four floors of colorful merchandise and snapping photos on my iPhone.

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I tried on this fabulous bow blouse, the first of many Kate Spade Madison Avenue store exclusives to come, but unfortunately it didn’t fit me correctly.  I’ve found other Kate Spade items to be ill-fitting, so I’m always pleased when a Kate Spade piece that I love works out.

KS 4I love the black trimmed roman shades.  Chic!


KS 5A cash register is accompanied by a delightful bar set up.

KS 7Excuse the poor photo.  My dream home won’t be complete now without these tiles arranged like a bow.
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So not only did I find the colorful merchandise inspiring, but I also felt inspired by the store’s interior design and location.  Pedro, one of the lovely sales associates, shared the view from the store’s pink hydrangea decorated balcony overlooking Madison Avenue.  We both remarked that, “It doesn’t get much better than this.”

KS 8Photo via Instagram

I loved my tour of Kate Spade and look forward to returning.  Special thanks to Pedro and the other sales associates who were extra welcoming!

To Visit:

Kate Spade

789 Madison Avenue

New York, NY 10065

Are you a Kate Spade fan as well?  Have you had issues with Kate Spade’s sizing?  Do you plan to visit the new flagship store?

A P.S. and Pattern Play

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While we’re on the topic of dressing for the Met Costume Ball, I neglected to add Jenna Lyons to my worst dressed list yesterday, so I will now.  I found her ensemble entirely too casual for a ball.  It would have been far more elegant without the printed sweater.  I’m also quite tired of seeing Jenna Lyons in a button down shirt, jeweled necklace, and those glasses.

Lyons, one of the main creative forces behind J. Crew, is lauded for her design turnaround of J. Crew, but I feel that not all of the changes have been positive.  I remember shopping at J. Crew in the ’90s, when the store was primarily a mail order company.  Growing up in an area without a wealth of shopping options, J. Crew was my entrée to a larger retail world.  I derived inspiration from the preppy fashion scenes pictured in the catalog and I loved the basics that they sold, such as a black v-neck wool sweater that I would pay good money for today.  Now I peruse J. Crew’s catalogs more for the shock factor of seeing eclectic combinations that mix prints and colors to the max than as a literal source of inspiration . And the quality of J. Crew’s clothing is not the same as it used to be.  But I continue to shop at J. Crew; despite the brand’s outrageous combinations and diminished quality, I still find that J. Crew carries a number of pieces that I like to wear.  I’ve found their basics to be particularly reliable.

So after this little disclaimer/critique of J. Crew, I want to share some printed pieces that have captured my attention.  I’m typically not a print person, but I love the impact that these pieces create:

 J ScarfEmbroidered Scarf

J Button downLiberty print shirt

J necklaceTortoiseshell flower necklace. 

J toteStriped tote

J sweaterBeaded sweater

 J flatPrinted flats

J iphonePineapple iphone case

J CuffCuff

What’s your take on J. Crew?  Are you newer to the Crew or did you shop the store in the old school days?  Do any of these printed pieces speak to you?  Do you generally wear prints?


Now we take a completely different fashion turn from Saturday’s Kentucky Derby to this year’s Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Gala, “PUNK: Chaos to Couture.” The Met Ball is one of those annual fashion events, like The Oscars, that fashion lovers enjoy critiquing. Each year, some attendees adhere to the chosen theme while others (Ahem, Anna Wintour) dress as they would for any ball. My personal opinion is that at a Costume Ball, attendees should wear a Capital C costume, instead of a blasé gown that looks like it could fit any formal occasion.

I’ve read that some were not pleased with the theme and desired one that lent itself to more beautiful dressing, but I personally liked it. With the proliferation of stud details, leather, and punk accessories, like ear cuffs, spiking the pages of Vogue, there are certainly options abounding. I also believe that a costume ball should allow its guests to present themselves in a way that is unexpected, and this theme does just that.  When critiquing dresses for a costume ball, I’m willing to embrace details that I might ordinarily find veer into questionable taste.

Below are my picks for best and worst dressed. I’m basing my opinion primarily upon best illustration of the punk theme.

Images via Harper’s Bazaar unless otherwise noted.


Met 1Cara Delevigne in Burberry.

Met 13Rooney Mara in Givenchy via People.

Met 2Dakota Fanning in Rodarte.  Check out the stunning back of the dress too!

Met 12Image via Marie Claire

Met 5Sienna Miller in Burberry

Met 18Taylor Thomasi Hill in Thom Brown via Vogue.

Met 22Gwen Stefani in Maison Martin Margiela via Marie Claire.

Met 17Sarah Jessica Parker in Giles Deacon and a Philip Treacy hat via Elle.

Met 3Carey Mulligan in Balenciaga by Alexander Wang.

Met 4Rosie Huntington Whitely in Gucci

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Anne Hathaway in vintage Valentino.

Met 8Lauren Santo Domingo in Dolce & Gabbana

Met 19Jaime King in Topshop.

Met 15Anja Rubik in Anthony Vaccarello.


Met 14Nina Dobrev in Monique Lhuillier.




Met 9While she certainly embraced the punk theme, I think that Allison Williams’ Altazurra dress is a mess.

Met 10While the beautiful Ivanka Trump is almost always in my best dressed category, I think she misses the mark here.  I love her punky jewelry but the mix of navy and green here is too casual for the Met ball and incongruous with the theme.

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I normally adore anything Sofia Coppola wears, but her pajama outfit does not fit the theme, either.  Image via Daily Mail.

Met 23Likewise, the usually lovely Renee Zellweger failed to impress me this time around.  She simply looks dowdy in this Prada dress, which is more Mother of the Bride than Mother of Punk.  Image via Perez Hilton.

Met 11Coco Brandolini’s Dolce & Gabbana dress is a fail for me.  While it embraces the punk flower aesthetic, the shape of the dress, paired with those beyond tacky earrings, is just too much for me.

"PUNK: Chaos To Couture" Costume Institute Gala

Madonna is definitely punk, but decidedly not glamorous in this get up.  Image via My Daily

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Katie Perry looks more like a Renaissance fresco than a punk princess.  Image via Us Magazine .

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Kate Upton, in Diane von Furstenberg, is one of those attendees who ignored the dress code and looks instead like she could be attending a wedding rather than a punk themed costume ball.  Image via Mail Online.

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And Zoey Deschanel, who aims for a bit of punk with her handbag, fails miserably in her Tommy Hilfiger seersucker gown.  I read that Tommy’s idea was to create an original version of the punk theme, but this dress is neither punk nor gala appropriate.  Image via People.


As an Apollo Circle member of the Met, I’m looking forward to viewing this year’s costume exhibit in person.  Expect another punk post soon with my thoughts and photos on the exhibit.

What do you think of this year’s Met Costume Gala theme? Which attendees do you deem Best and Worst dressed for this event? What would you wear to this event?

Derby Dressing

It’s Derby Day!  The Kentucky Derby is one of my favorite American cultural institutions. Although I’ve never been to the Derby, it remains high on my Must Do list.  I love the fanfare of the event and the old-fashioned allure.  I adore both the Derby fashions and the thrill of the most exciting two minutes in sports. And I just love equestrian culture and design.

In honor of today’s Kentucky Derby, below are a few of my favorite images via Harper’s Bazaar collection of celebrities attending horse racing events, as well as my own selection of pieces that would work brilliantly for those attending the Derby or a Derby party:

Liz DerbyElizabeth Taylor

Di DerbyPrincess Diana

Nicole Kidman DerbyNicole Kidman

In choosing a Derby dress, I prefer a sleeveless dress with a shorter, above the knee, daytime hemline.  Since the Derby is a Southern, old-fashioned affair, I would err on the side of looking like a Southern Belle. Here are my picks for an afternoon at Churchill Downs.

Derby Dress 1

I would wear this Lilly Pulitzer dress with some wedges and either a white hat or a pink hat to create the ultimate preppy color combo:  pink and green.


Derby Dress 11I find this Giambattista Valli dress to be the most sophisticated of the bunch.  For that reason, I would throw on an outrageous hat and high heels.

Derby Dress 5This Kate Spade dress has such a classic silhouette and the orange and white stripes make it more festive.  I like how the dress is shown with orange pumps.  A matching orange hat would be the perfect way to top it off!


Derby Dress 8This black and white ruffled Halston Heritage dress is more fashion forward than most Derby dresses and it mimics the particular flounced flair that many Derby hats display.  I like it with sandals and an all black hat.


Derby Dress 7I always love a pink Derby dress, and this Cynthia Steffe peplum dress is no exception.  I would add some bow bedecked heels and a pink and white hat.


Derby Dress 3 Oscar de la Renta is the master of ladylike elegance.  The trimming on this dress is lovely.  I would pair the dress with a white hat and simple pumps, perhaps a white pair in the pointy toe style pictured above.


Derby Dress 6This Halston Heritage dress has a throwback silhouette but the cutouts make it more modern.  I could see this dress with a black and white hat and some heeled sandals.


Derby Dress 10Landscape prints, particularly those featuring flowers, seem appropriate for the Kentucky Derby.  This Erdem dress showcases flowers that are more sophisticated than sweet.


Derby Dress 4

A mint green dress pairs well with a mint julep in hand.  I would wear this Alice & Olivia dress with a white hat and white heeled sandals.


Derby Dress 2Or, why not wear mint juleps on your dress?  This dress by Lilly Pulitzer is cheeky and fun.


Derby Dress 9This Collette Dinnigan dress is one of my favorite picks for its Derby appropriate farm scenes, which I like to imagine are horse farms.  I just keep finding more toile pieces!  I would add a pair of blue pumps and a green hat.


A fanciful hat is a must at The Kentucky Derby:  Any of these would be certain to turn heads:

Hat 1The Hat Shop

Hat 8The Kentucky Derby Official Store

Hat 13Barbara Feinman Millinery


Hat 5Kentucky Derby Official Store

Hat 2The Hat Shop



Hat 14Barbara Feinman Millinery

Hat 9Kentucky Derby Official Store

Hat 12Kentucky Derby Official Store


Hat 7

Kentucky Derby Official Store.   

For more Derby fashion inspiration, visit The Kentucky Derby website.

I just love events with pomp and circumstance.  Do you?

Have you ever attended The Derby or a Derby party?  What did you/would you wear?

The ’20s are Roaring in New York

Speaking of Miuccia Prada, last night I stopped by Prada in Soho to view the collection of costumes designed by Miuccia Prada and costume designer Catherine Martin for Baz Luhrmann’s remake of “The Great Gatsby.” The Great Gatsby is one of my favorite novels and the 1920’s are my favorite historical fashion era; seeing the costumes in person was a true delight!  I’ve been a fan of Art Deco design since I was a child.  My favorite childhood Halloween costume was a flapper costume.  You can expect more Art Deco related posts in the future!

Anyway, Prada’s dazzling collection of Art Deco inspired pieces did not disappoint!  The headpieces were especially fabulous.  The designers’ modern take on the costumes was particularly evident in the hemlines; the hems were longer in front and shorter in back.  The pieces were constructed of silk taffeta, dyed fur, velvet, sequins, and metallic lame.  Many of the pieces were jewel encrusted.

Prada exhibitImage from Harper’s Bazaar.  All other Gatsby exhibit images are by StyleAspirations.


Daisy Gatsby’s outfit is front and center.

Gatsby dress

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Gatsby dress 2

I took note of the shoes, some of which (see below) reminded me of shoes shown at the Schiaparelli and Prada:  Impossible Conversations exhibit I viewed at the Met last fall.  I find Miuccia Prada to be a fascinating person and a provocative designer.

Miuccia Shoes

Prada has some Deco inspired pieces for sale. Take a look:

Prada pieces

Prada bags

I’m normally not drawn to jeweled accessories, but I guess Miuccia is making me change my mind.

If you’re going to be in New York before May 12, stop by Prada at 575 Broadway to see the exhibit in person!


Tiffany is also celebrating the remake of the 1974 film with its Jazz Age Glamour collection. I haven’t visited their 5th Avenue Art Deco window displays yet, but I will. I highly recommend viewing Tiffany’s Art Deco collection of jewels in person or on their website. Not all of the pieces featured are new, as some are culled from Tiffany’s preexisting Jazz and Legacy collections, but they all evoke the glamorous aesthetic of the Art Deco era. Below are my favorite items from the collection, with prices starting at $250 and going up to $875,000:


Tiffany SavoySavoy Headpiece, the pièce de résistance of the collection.

T pearlZiegfield Collection pearl tassel necklace

Deco fan bangleDeco Fan Bangle

T drop earringsArt Deco Drop Earrings

T RingZiegfield Collection Pearl Ring

T DropLegacy Collection Five-Bar Drop Pendant


Another one of my favorite New York landmarks, The Plaza Hotel, is also taking part in Gatsby fever with a Great Gatsby themed Fitzgerald suite, decorated in a modern spin on Art Deco style:

Plaza Fitzgerald BedroomFitzgerald Suite bedroom


Plaza 2Fitzgerald Suite sitting area

In addition to providing these Decoluxe accomodations, The Plaza is offering a number of experiences inspired by the Jazz Age, including dishes and cocktails inspired by the era, a Fitzgerald Tea for the Ages, a jazz band at The Rose Club, and other Gatsby inspired offerings in the Caudalie Vinotherapie Spa, Warren Tricomi Salon, and Plaza Boutique.  It’s only fitting that The Plaza would be celebrating the remake of “The Great Gatsby”; after all, The Plaza was an F. Scott Fitzgerald haunt and it made an appearance in The Great Gatsby.

I don’t know about you, but all of this Deco inspiration is making me want to don a flapper dress and head straight to The Plaza!

Do you love The Great Gatsby like I do? Do you plan to see the remake?

What is your favorite historical fashion era?

Gone in a Flash

Miu Miu loafersBarneys

I don’t know how these embellished velvet Miu Miu loafers previously slipped past me, but somehow they did.  Thankfully, a pair caught my attention.  When exiting the subway station on my way to work yesterday, I couldn’t stop staring at the sparkling-like-a-diamond jewel embellished heels of a woman otherwise sporting no adornment.  My eyes followed her heels until they were out of sight.  As luck would have it, this morning while browsing Pinterest,  I stumbled upon this photo of the loafers paired with a chic black tote.

Miu MiuPinterest

My style desires typically don’t include flashy shoes, but maybe that’s why I’m so captivated by these.  The sparkly heels on these loafers would add excitement to any outfit and the sumptuous velvet makes them extra luxurious.

I own a pair of striped cotton smoking loafers, but velvet smoking loafers are still on my list of items to acquire.  This might be the pair.

How do you feel about velvet loafers?  Do you own any?   What’s your take on adding a bit of flash to an outfit?




I couldn’t resist sharing these toile pieces that popped up on Net-A-Porter this week:

This skirt suit by Nigerian born desiger Duro Oluwu is a great way to incorporate toile into your work wardrobe.  I love the contrast of the black toile print on the sleeves and left side of the jacket with the blue toile print.