You know that pesky hands-free law we were all stressed about last year in California? Well in 2009, the law has been cracking down on more than just phone calls. Text messaging while driving is a big no-no, so what is a girl to do when she just has to send a text from behind the wheel? Now there's an app for your iPhone that will help you do just that without being thrown in the slammer. Called ShoutOut, this app dictates your speech to a text message, then sends it along to your chosen recipient. Although I wish I could tell you that this useful app is free, it isn't.
ShoutOut costs only $1 to buy, but then charges you "voice credits" per dictated text. Prices aren't that bad though, with 50 voice-to-text messages costing $2, and 250 voice texts setting you back $5.
Beauty copy can be a tangle of clichés as writers struggle to find fresh descriptions for minute changes. We almost wish the copy editors would give in and admit it! So when the ne plus ultra of beauty clichés, the cherry, came out in force this Fall the overbearing metaphor seemed almost charming. Its as if everyone agreed to say, eh, why force it? Everyone loves a deep cherry red lip so let's not struggle to call it anything but. Its the beauty copy equivalent of calling a spade a spade. And that refreshing honesty about the limits of descriptors somehow makes us that much covetous. Why strive to over market when we all know that we love it we suppose.
LD Tuttle is a dream brand for a certain kind of independent girl that likes her accessories trendy but not immediately recognizable. The fall collection is packed with the requisite grays and off color neutrals, bursting with ankle booties and straps galore, and it has just enough suede to make us swoon. In other words, it has everything a Williamsburg wants without saying screaming I bought this season's "it" shoes. Community member Style Bite is positively drooling over the collection. Thus it is no surprise that Coutorture favorite and Williamsburg (and now Soho) staple Oak has a great stockist for the fall collection. We took the liberty of doing a little round up of the shoes we like best.
Certain garments can't help but evoke unfortunate associations.
by coutortureCertain garments can't help but evoke unfortunate associations. For us the one shouldered style bring up brings up Express tank tops bursting at the seems with sorority girl bosom, beer pong, and this tragic song. But our community just insists on keeping an open mind. Couture in the City has tips on how to wear the one shouldered style (even if her initial examples of the trend make us yawn since umm celebrities) and Fashion Pad has off the shoulder madness.
Now we associate this style with warm weather, possibly because of the bare skin, possibly because it can have a bit of a silly spring break vibe to it. But given the finds from Couture In The City and Fashion Pad, In fact, there seems to be a number of sophisticated fall styles that show off your shoulders. The Versace dress pictured above is clearly one of Fall 2008's best dresses.
Maybe this is simply a brilliant merchandising designer gambit designed to keep shoulders free for Fall's ubiquitous shoulder bags. Why make money off the dress when you can make even more money off the bag? But Vince, Lela Rose, and Marc Jacobs all have fall styles we could really get into. Which makes us think this asymmetry isn't just about showing off boobs to distract your opponent at bear pong anymore.
Americans are prone to bouts of personal mythologizing in our mindscape of imagined new frontiers.
by coutortureAmericans are prone to bouts of personal mythologizing in our mindscape of imagined new frontiers. Manifest Destiny has never left us. This tendency showcases itself no more beautifully than in our fashion. The ideals of the rough rider have not ceased to appeal even in this time of $4 gallons of gas. As we enter August ready to vacation OPEC cannot kill our need to roam, even if favored mode of transit Harley Davidson's Q2 results were not quite up to their usual standards. But even if that bike can't come home with you, one can at least pretend to its aesthetics. And indeed garments from fringed boots to biker jackets are all the rage in our community with The Coveted and Shoeblog weighing in on both topics.
Because really what is funnier than a bunch of aging Boomers and striking fashionistas saying they are bad to the bone. No offense George Thorogood but at this point the gig is up. Aging happened! There is no more "Through Darkest America With Truck And Tank" thanks to Eisenhower. The open road is a pleasant experience for families these days, we personally have experienced some fine rest stops in our cross country jaunts, some with Wi-Fi. It is time to accept that much of that culture of establishment bashing has become the establishment, one we are supporting with Louboutin fringed boots and and Member's Only Biker Jackets. And that is OK, its alright to sincerely like these things and be well off so get off your narcissistic aging high horse. Harley is publicly traded, the highway system keeps America's businesses in gear, and even your humble editor plans road trips to wayward third tier American cities of yore just for bar food. Thus we celebrate the fringe elements of Americana with expensive designer clothing that has repurposed the strange ideals of rebellion into thousand dollar jackets.
Pleats are tricky creatures, little bits of design that are hard to construct and even trickier to maintain.
by coutorturePleats are tricky creatures, little bits of design that are hard to construct and even trickier to maintain. The pleat is a type of fold formed by doubling fabric back upon itself and securing it in place. It is commonly used in clothing and upholstery to gather a wide piece of fabric to a narrower circumference.
In other words, a pleat is a lot of work and requires plenty of fabric. So why is it that we discovered a profusion of cheap pleats after being turned on to a particular Old Navy sateen pleated skirt thanks to community member Stained Couture.
The concept just doens't make sense. Economizing fabric keeps prices down for the fast fashion retailers so why on earth would they choose to construct a garment that requires an excess of fabric? Lord knows cheap fabric isn't going to hold a pleat especially well and we don't even want to get into just how the arrived at the delightful little tucks via some crazy CAD pattern making creation. And yet there they are in a tidy row at retailers from Forever 21 to Old Navy just begging us to add a little kick to down and out wardrobes. We have enough trouble keeping the pleats in our Miu Miu school girl skirt looking crisp and fresh and the damn thing was made by artisans in Italy with only the finest textiles. We can't even imagine the wrinkling, unraveling, and potential disasters that could be involved in cheaply stapled pleats. And yet somehow we want to pair these with our long tanks and giggly insouciantly, yes of course we deliberately bought the cheap versions just think how they will deconstruct so artfully!
The dripping doldrums of summer are starting to get to people.
by coutortureThe dripping doldrums of summer are starting to get to people. Its not just us mumbling to ourselves about how the sun doesn't care. Our community is starting to feel the heat. The Coveted illustrates just how done she is with summer by showing off a pair of sunglasses by Klavers van Engelen that are literally melting.
We personally aren't so into making the point that we are sweaty and gross via extravagant accessories but our favorite antidote to the downsides of summering in the city happens to be a very simple garment indeed. When showering becomes pointless because you now you are just going to get moist within minutes the loungey, why bother, just throw something and get out the door garment becomes crucial. And thus you have the falling off your sweating limbs tank top. Why invest in clinical strength deodorant when you can just get a few new shirts.
Hot town, summer in the city
Back of my neck getting dirty and gritty
Been down, isn't it a pity
Doesn't seem to be a shadow in the city
We have been leading up to a lace filled fall for some time now.
by coutortureWe have been leading up to a lace filled fall for some time now. Community member, Style...A Work In Progress has been scouring ecommerce land for the best buys and a few delightful remarks such as this quote from Mary Wilson "it is difficult to see why lace should be so expensive, its mostly holes."
We have already established just how this particular material makes so much sense in the here and now so it's interesting to note the trickling appearance of fall deliveries and just how they work with this precious textile. We in particular like the nearly ubiquitous appearance of the practically cliché black lace granny dress. Everyone from Derek Lam to Phillip Lim has one. The dowdy staple brings somehow manages to evoke sexual fetishization and the appearance of frugality, all while suggesting that aren't we naughty for thinking its either. With the pressure to remain practical in a recession that just begs us to remember the precious its going to be an interesting season indeed for lace. Its just too bad the first inklings of the buy are so damn boring. But we are willing to bet its going to sell very well indeed, its so easy to justify the purchase when really its mostly holes anyway.
While jeans are the stuff of Americana legends, the denim skirt has not fared as well in the cultural lexicon.
by coutortureWhile jeans are the stuff of Americana legends, the denim skirt has not fared as well in the cultural lexicon. Perma-tanned and perma-toned sorority girls and their ilk are the first thing that comes to mind when we are presented with a denim skirt. The ubiquitous mini is the most popular of the denim skirt family which means it is little wonder the fashion pack hasn't whipped out lavish praise for it. The classic Guess mini is so 90s oversexed that popping one on can do a girl no favors, it hasn't even achieved retro ironic status yet.
And yet there are denim skirt alternatives lurking at the fringes of fashion. Fashionation is thoroughly convinced the garment is having a revival. The sexy but still long enough to be appropriate Mineral Wash Stretch Bull Denim Slim Skirt from American Apparel is a favorite of ours because of its cut and its blast from the past subtle acid wash treatment. We are also fond of this high waisted skirt from Charlotte Ronson. Its all still a little cute young urban girl by and large but then we suspect that a Marni loving 40 year old Art Director was never going to ask if the denim skirt was coming back or not. But for those of you still young enough we say make a beeline for the sale items and snag one today. Its perfect for August.
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Cowboy boots entered the hipster pantheon as the first ironic product tie in of the Williamsburg lifestyle.
Cowboy boots entered the hipster pantheon as the first ironic product tie in of the Williamsburg lifestyle. Hank Williams and Willie Nelson became totems of the newly sincere grasping Americana that flooded urban enclaves. Soon these emblems gave way to new signs of the American dream, preppy replacing rustic in the hierarchy of cool just as surely as Vampire Weekend wears topsiders. But the cowboy rides again. Its not that we have seen girls sporting boots this summer, we could never figure it out the first time, as stinky feet don't evoke the eroticism necessary to full channel "youth" which is a prerequisite for hipsterdom. Rather, it was a most unlikely product that shifted our perspective.
The Dolce & Gabbana Runway Snakeskin Lace-Up Bootiefeatured in our Island Life photo editorial might seem a strange evocation of the soul of cowboy. But what are these booties if not the cowboy boot reinvented?
And lest you are tempted to call us crazy, community member Style...A Work In Progress has cowboys on the brain as well. She tickles us with proper cowboy aphorisms like "real cowboys never run, they just ride away." In which case, maybe the cowboy is riding back again. With booties like the Dolce and Gabana snakeskins you can't run away, you can really only ride a taxicab into the sunset. And if you prefer a more traditional boot we even have a substitute. But we think faded dungarees, a white boyfriend shirt and booties are just the way to bring the cowboy back, ironically and very expensively.