Thursday, March 5, 2015

I'm at a loss

Ok internet friends, I'm totally at a loss. I need some new items and am struggling to find quality, classic attire. I'm 44, an attorney in a business casual company and the look above pretty much is a good example of how I like to dress. Usually I wear dress slacks, a nice button down or sweater and some classic jewelry. Navy, gray and white are my main colors with red and dark green as accents. Anyway, I'm having the worst, and I do mean worst time right now. J Crew and Banana are awful, Loft looks to young and cheap and don't get me started on Old Navy and Gap. I love Brooks Brothers and try to hit their sales. Any other suggestions? Talbots always seemed like where my grandmother shopped but may? Thoughts?

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Another One Bites The Dust

Banana Republic used to be one of my most reliable places for work wear. There were countless seasons I walked in, especially to the flagship store on Grant in downtown SF and wanted to buy everything. Their tailored suits, lined pants, great dresses and silk scarves! Well recently, not so much. Maybe it's Marissa Webb because I sort of feel like that skinny pant, flat messy hair thing started at JCrew around her time there. But anyway, I went there today and the above picture was there where they used to have all my great work clothes. Now, yes that's the area near where I work but I would be fired if I came in dressed like this. What does a girl have to do to convince folks she's an adult? Has anyone else noticed this?

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

What do you think? Former Dolce & Gabbana CEO know at Lands End?

I read that Lands End has a new CEO and it's former Dolce & Gabbana CEO Frederica Marchionni. I'm not sure what to make of it. Somehow, I can't wrap my head around Lands End and Dolce & Gabbana in the same plane of existence. Lands End has been my go to place, certainly for kids attire. Their boys clothes are indestructible as witnessed by the fact that I got kids kids worth of wear out of several items. It's also a great place to get girls clothes that are not totally frumpy and yet not midriff and bottom bareing, especially for girls in the 10 to 11 year range who are very tall. My husband loves their stuff too. I buy hard working basics from them and have for years. I worry that this is now going to try and move them into the "fashion" market all that goes with it. It's not like we haven't seen that happen before. I've included some links about the change below. What do you think?

  • NYT: Lands’ End, Post Sears, Replaces Its Chief  <http://www.nytimes.com/2015/02/03/business/lands-end-post-sears-replaces-its-chief.html>
  • WSJ: Lands’ End CEO To Resign; Successor From Dolce & Gabbana <http://www.wsj.com/articles/lands-end-ceo-to-resign-successor-from-dolce-gabbana-1422878317>
  • Craine's: Lands' End names new CEO <http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20150202/NEWS07/150209978/lands-end-names-new-ceo>
  • Consumerist: New Lands’ End CEO Sees Company As A ‘Global Lifestyle Brand’ <http://consumerist.com/2015/02/02/new-lands-end-ceo-sees-company-as-a-global-lifestyle-brand/>
  • Tuesday, February 3, 2015

    Signs of Spring

    I know it's only February 3rd and that the groundhog says we are in for 6 more weeks of winter but here in Northern California it was 68 degrees yesterday and hasn't rained in almost 42 days so can you blame me for thinking of spring? I adore this dress from Brooks Brothers spring line. Their web site describes it as

    Our dress is crafted in a silk and cotton blend and mixes nautical stripes with feminine tulips for a pop of color. Full pleated skirt with pockets. Crewneck. Princess seams. 38". Dry clean. Imported.

    I love the quality material and the fact that is it lined as well as the color and length. I have a narrow waist and fuller hips so this style is a good one for me. I can't imagine where I would wear it though, given my life of office, kids and home so it's likely to remain something I yearn for from afar. What about you? have your thoughts turned to spring?

    Friday, January 30, 2015

    What is Luxury?

    What do you think of as luxury? Is it a fancy dinner? A great shopping trip? One of my kids was writing an essay for school about the differences between luxury and necessity and had to interview 5 people about their opinions as part of the project. When I was younger I would have said shopping and the perfect wardrobe. But as I get a bit older, or mature whichever you prefer, I think that the definition of luxury is harder to pin down. Time is often something I think of as a luxury. I work full time and have three kids and the resulting volunteer obligations that go with that. So some days the definition of luxury would be sleeping until I woke up and then going for a run and then reading and relaxing as opposed to leaping out of bed for an all day baseball or lacrosse tournament. Some days, just knowing my kids are healthy and doing well in their respective schools is a luxury. Sitting down on a Sunday night knowing the laundry is done, the house is clean and lunches are packed for Monday morning is a luxury. I think the concept of luxury is fluid. It's being able to spot it in the little things and realize that it does not have to come from money spent that is important. How about you?

    Thursday, January 29, 2015

    A Thoughtful Purchase

    One of my goals this year and beyond is to purchase less but when making a purchase, to buy the best I can with an eye to quality and timelessness. I have much discussed foot and ankle issues and only wear flat shoes to the office these days. The beautiful green flats caught my eye during the end of year clearance sale at Brooks Brothers. Originally $298, I was able to get them for about $75 dollars which is an insane price. They are totally gorgeous, made of leather and leather lined as well as soled and comfortable. Not to mention this dark green is one of my favorite colors, summer and winter because it goes so well with navy. Win!

    Tuesday, January 20, 2015

    Afternoon Tea

     
     
    I love the ritual of afternoon tea. Whenever I give a shower, whether baby or bridal, I do a tea. When I travel to hotels with a "tea tradition" I love to make a reservation for tea. On of my most memorable teas was when we stayed at the Empress Hotel in Victoria, BC on  my honeymoon. The Empress web site describes it as follows:
     

     A time honoured tradition for over a century, the world renowned tea lobby of The Fairmont Empress has served England’s most beloved ritual and Victoria's grandest tradition of Afternoon Tea to famed royalty, celebrities and dignitaries alike. Surrounded by rich chintz fabrics, antiqued tapestries and rugs, elegant wing back chairs, vintage furnishings and hand-carved tables, the picturesque backdrop of the Inner Harbour provides the quintessential Victoria experience to all who grace Afternoon Tea.

    Chef and Team serve hand-made signature Empress scones, delectable pastries and tea sweets prepared in house daily, reflecting locally sourced ingredients to ensure an authentically memorable experience. From the original blend of The Empress Tea created specifically for The Fairmont Empress, served in dainty William Edwards china and sterling silver service to the enchanting ambiance of the live piano, Afternoon Tea is an absolute 'must do' for all who visit Victoria.

    They use the beautiful china above. My husband gave me this cute "tea for one" set on our first anniversary.
    The tea they serve is also delicious. It is a blend of organic seasonal quality tea that was specially created for afternoon Tea at The Empress. The Assam component (2nd flush June production) gives a thick, malty and full-bodied character; the Kenya (Nandi region, January production) and Tanzania (Usambara region, January production) components give floral-like flavor and a golden coppery infusion; the South Indian component (Nilgiri mountains, January production) gives superb fruity and sprightly flavor with a lovely finish; the Ceylon (Dimbula region, January production) gives an airy, almost piquant, flavor that opens the blend; and the China (Anhui province, April production) gives a burgundy depth with light oaky notes. Truly one of the world's great teas! I buy this regularly from the Fairmont Store online and love it! What are your feeling about "tea time"?