"Feeling unique is a habit you shouldn't give up."

- Alberto Fermani

"Anyone can get all dressed up and glamorous, but it is how people dress in their off days that is the most intriguing."

-Alexander Wang


Feeling Beachy

I've been totally lax about posting the past week as I've been away at the beach. Something about the beach makes me kind of lazy in the evenings. I think part of it is being outside in the sun, surf, and sand so much that I'm exhausted by the time evening rolls around.

I spent the past few days at Wrightsville Beach in Wilmington, NC. I love, love, love this beach. It is very relaxed, really inexpensive, and a beautiful, wide beach with perfectly temperate water by this time of year. The seashells are pretty and plentiful, the restaurants are not fancy but there are several good eats (Tower 7, Trolley Stop), and the shopping is great. If you venture off the island just a couple of miles, you hit Lumina Station which is filled with higher-end shops that are fantastic and fashionable. My favorites are Beanie and Cecile and Zia Bird. But, in the spirit of the true vibe of Wrightsville Beach, I have to especially mention Sweetwater Surf Shop right in the heart of the beach town. It's locally owned since 1976 and hosts a pretty big surf competition each year. The shopping there is exactly what you want when you're at the beach. They carry men, women, and children's clothing and shoes. They have bathing suits, shoes, jewelry, surf videos, and, of course, surf boards and all the accoutrements you could need. The clothes are relaxed and beachy and very affordable. I should also mention the service is great and obviously family-owned. If you have a chance to visit, it is a definite must-see.



Dazed and Confused

I'm sitting at home on a Saturday night fully enjoying yet another viewing of one of my favorite all-time movies, Dazed and Confused. There are so many things to love about this movie- the music, the cars, Matthew McConaughey- a.k.a. Wooderson-"That's what I love about these high school girls, man. I get older, they stay the same age.", Jason London, a very young Ben Afflek in a quilted button down shirt, Parker Posey, the Soul Pole, the beer bust, my list goes on and on. But, of course, the fashions are at the top of my list. I love the scene of all the different kids getting ready for their big night out and one of the girls is laying on her back on the bed while another friend stands over her with pliers to get her jeans zipped up. They are that tight! Hilarious. I love Joey Lauren Adams in her short short cut-off jeans, tube socks pulled up, baseball tee tied up to show her midriff. Milla Jovovich's super long hair with little side braids, major flared jeans, long vest over a tube top. She's definitely my favorite. Anyway, I don't need to repeat the entire movie for you here. I assume you've seen it at least once. If you haven't, you need to asap.

Here's what I'd wear if I were in the movie- and it was 2010- which would be impossible but you get my point...


The Sales Have Begun

A cute beach cover-up (J Crew)

A seasonless top with jeans or dressier (J Crew)

The perfect day dress (Anthropologie)

For the summer wedding or cocktail party (net-a-porter, Vanessa Bruno Athe)

Fun, summery, and (perhaps) comfortable (Hu's Shoes, Marc by Marc Jacobs)

It's sale season. A potentially dangerous and risky time. And yet you could also score the biggest deal of your life. Be careful. Don't buy something you wouldn't normally wear just because it's cheap. And don't buy something that truly doesn't fit thinking your tailor can make it fit. You might not be able to return so be sure before you leave the store. That said, there are some gooood deals out there right now. I'm partial to net-a-porter; their sale is always good with some items already marked 70% off. So, as summer is just kicking in to high gear, here's your chance to buy items for events you already have on your calendar and so know exactly what you'll need to wear.


Crepes and... Fashion?!

Eating delicious, savory crepes at a fantastic restaurant in Old Town this past week with my parents, got me thinking about a trip I took to France a few years ago. Paris was fun but since I was 3 months pregnant at the time and not showing but several pounds heavier than usual, it was not the shopping extravaganza I imagined. But our time in Provence was so perfect and beautiful... I can't wait to go back. So, until then, I'll have to satisfy myself with fantasies of what I will wear. Here's my day to night outfit.


Running with Style

Speaking of workout clothes (well... we spoke about them in my first blog, anyway), I'm preparing to run the Ragnar Relay with 11 other teammates. We will run 193 miles from Cumberland, Maryland to the National Harbor with each of us running three different legs of varying lengths and difficulties. We sleep in vans and run through the night with headlamps on. Sounds like fun, I know. But I have been given the good advice of bringing a couple of changes of clothes both to accomodate the temperature changes and so that sweaty, stinky clothing can be changed out. Great excuse to buy new workout clothes, right?!

I "ran" in to Pacers (local Alexandria running mecca) and they had tons of great stuff. Of course, the kids were with me and keeping me from comfortably browsing but I did grab this cute pair of shorts. The side panels are black and white, kind of zebra-esque. I love the yellow top with it. Weirdly, though, the top has spf 50. Which may seem like a good idea for long, summer, sunny runs but, given the extreme tank-topedness (I made that word up), it seems a little funny. You obviously still need to coat your shoulders and arms (and everything else bare for that matter) with sunblock. But I guess this will keep your torso from getting burned. Shorts by Nike, $25. Top by Asics, $45 (spf50 must be expensive!) Pacers has a few stores around town so check them out if you're local!


Black Tie and Blue Jeans or Anything in Between!

As a lot of my local blog followers know, tonight is Give Back Alexandria's Bubbles and Bluegrass event. The dress for the event is Black Tie and Blue Jeans or Anything in Between. We've been getting lots of questions about what that means so I thought this was the perfect place to address it.

Unless you're going to an inaugural ball, the term "black tie" has loosened up a lot in the past decade. For Bubbles, black tie does not imply long gowns and tuxedos. Hence the addition of "blue jeans." But each year, we have a few men who do tuxedo on top, blue jeans on bottom. (Kind of like a mullet- business in the front, party in the back.) But, really, that is exactly what is called for. The party is fun, laid back, and for a good cause. No stuffiness here. Most men wear suits or business casual outfits ("anything in between"), but the tuxedo and blue jean clad guys always do us proud.

On to the women. That's who is probably asking the most about the dress, anyway! Fancy gowns, no. But a maxi dress? Why not? Maxi dresses are in so if you have a fun one and want to dress it up with jewelry, this is the perfect occassion. Cocktail dresses work great, too, but nothing too fancy. Finally, what about blue jeans? I'm a big believer in making denim work for almost every occassion. And this is no exception. But what is most appropriate if you're going this route is dark denim, high heels, and an evening top. Anything in sequins, satin or silk, beaded, et cetera certainly makes it evening. And, again, don't forget the accessories. This is usually what takes your look from day to night.

We still have tickets left- $50 at the door. Lord Fairfax House, 607 Cameron St., Alexandria, 7-10 pm. Amazing food, champagne, and live music from Over Under Down Yonder. It is my favorite event of the year so don't miss it!
(BTW- Hysteria and The Shoe Hive have GREAT options for this event right now. So, if you don't have anything to wear, stop in and pick something up!)