Monthly Archives: February 2012

Kicking myself.

So MIA I don’t even remember what A looks like. The irony is that I’ve been laboring over about seven half-written drafts that are either missing text, missing photos, or So Damn Deep that they’re going to require at least three more rounds of revisions before I can force my #whitegirlproblems on your Google reader. While I’m busy being over my crappy camera and scaring myself out of writing real content, I thought I’d return to my roots (seems to be a theme lately. If you’ve seen my scalp in the past two weeks, you know what I’m talking about) and dash off a quick fashion post. Or anti-fashion post, as the case may be.

Fashion “Week” (semantic clarification: this ish has been going on for at least a month) rages on, having fled the continent for an excuse to keep the party going, and I feel like the wizened lush with tally marks on her arm who knows it’s time to bow out. I could tell you all the ~*~MaYjaH TrEnDz~*~ for next fall (fur and maturity, in a nutshell), but frankly, I’m sure anyone who’s concerned has already seen the collections, and even more frankly, I just don’t feel like it. I have such a hard time caring about the fashion industry these days. I’m super broke and super busy and actually feeling pretty super about my wardrobe, so I find myself with little desire to shop or stare at runway slides or do anything that might pull me back into the insatiable whirlwind of consumer culture I had come to embrace on autopilot before quitting my job in retail. I’ve always said that fashion is a hobby and not a passion of mine, and the fact that the industry feels so irrelevant to me right now illustrates that perfectly. I’m still having a grand old time playing mixologist within the confines of my own wardrobe. I just don’t know or care what anyone else is doing. Sorry I’m not sorry. Give me until at least June to figure out what I want to wear next fall, please.

So now that I’ve killed all credibility I ever had as a tastemaker, I’m going to kill all credibility I’ve just established as a independent spirit and confess that I really, really, really need a pair of Isabel Marant-inspired wedge sneakers, like, yesterday (pumped up kicks are a spring thing, okay? I can deal with spring). Reminiscent of last year’s hyper-exposed Prada creepers but infinitely more flattering, highbrow high-tops have been ruling the streets as of late, my favorite interpretation being foxy mama Miranda Kerr’s:

Kicking it. Kicking it with a blazer. Kicking it with a blazer and leather pants. Kicking it with a blazer and leather pants and a baby. Who is your baby wearing, Miranda? I think I need his sweater. Those toggles!

Since Isabel Marant is (ahem) slightly aspirational, I’ve got my sights set on a more affordable rendition by Ash:

As usual, I’m paralyzed by indecision in the color department. The coral and cognac version is the most polished, but the versatility and athletic flair of the all-yellow present an undeniably charming alternative. Yellow and cognac would be the obvious compromise, but funnily enough, I think those are coming in last for me. Opinions? Objections? Gentle shaking of heads? In my defense, every instance in which I’ve been seduced by so-called “fashion sneakers” can be traced on some distant level back to Mary-Kate Olsen. I owned a pair of sparkly turquoise platform Skechers in 1999 that were lifted directly from an episode of Two of a Kind, and three days ago, I went bananas over this:

Working it. Working it with a pashmina. Working it with a pashmina and leather pants. Working it with a pashmina and leather pants and a doppelgänger dressed as a Mennonite? I just can’t.

Do you consider high fashion an end in itself, or is it only fun when it applies to you? Also, I can haz shoe advice? Thanks. Missed you like candy.


Hakuna ma-NOT-a.

Is there anything more affronting to the control freak than two days of empty Google calendar alerts? What would appear to be a respite from worry often turns into just the opposite—because as we all know, just because you can do nothing doesn’t mean you should. For a Type A personality with a secret capacity for total uselessness, the only way to deal with weekends is to fill them up with arbitrary (and hopefully somewhat productive) distractions. A man, a plan, a canal, Panama. The usual suspects.

This impulse gives way to Weekend Theory. The science of Saturday and Sunday. I need my R&R as much as the next head case, but I want to know when and where it’s coming to me in advance. Like Facebook’s, my timeline has evolved over the years (and also like Facebook’s, it continues to be susceptible to emotionally disruptive but ultimately positive change), but right now it looks something like this: rage Friday night, run errands Saturday, go low-key Saturday night, loaf and laze and cook and clean and refuse to put real clothes on Sunday, and enter a homework-related panic around 10pm Sunday night (I’ve got an hour to go, somebody Skype me quick!).

The Friday night rager speaks for itself. What is there to lose, dignity excluded? Nothing important is ever due on Saturday, and everyone is more fun when they’re desperate to shed a week’s worth of anxiety and propriety. You can also get that nagging, inexplicable need for Katy Perry’s approval out of your system (you too, right?). Saturday lends itself well to being out and about—stores are open at the usual hours, and even the strangest strangers seem more approachable and relaxed. A classy dinner or a single drink on Saturday night scratches the social itch without diverting from a purposeful Sunday, which for me usually includes making playlists, doing laundry, engaging in various forms of boring beauty maintenance, and prepping raw whole grains/fruits/veggies so I have healthy snack and meal components readily available during the week. Oh and homework. If I have time.

This Errand Saturday, I redeemed a forgotten Groupon for half-off gourmet groceries at Fox & Obel. Naturally I spent it almost exclusively on frivolous things I would have never purchased under normal circumstances. Fiscal irresponsibility: it’s what’s for dinner.

Fancy cheese, fancy chocolate, obligatory bottle of wine. Can we talk about Mast Brothers’ packaging, please? It’s just mean. Sweet, salty, and preppy? I didn’t stand a chance.

I also spent a few hours curled up with Henry James’s Portrait of a Lady at my favorite Chicago coffee shop, The Daily Cup in Edgewater. Crimson walls, ample couch space, indie music at optimal volume, fresh pastries baked on-site (Nutella scone, anyone?), my favorite loose-leaf tea of all time (OF ALL TIME) (roasted almond. Though if you can bring yourself to speak the words “Raspberry Kiss Mocha” or “Cream Dream Latte,” those are pretty worthwhile as well). If you’re still at Northwestern, it’s about two blocks from the Intercampus stop at Loyola. Highly recommend.

And I did all of those exhausting, important things wearing the unofficial winter weekend uniform: cozy sweater and comfy jeans.

No peacocking on Saturday afternoons. A waffle weave and tiny star studs provided more than enough drama for this ensemble.

Do you systematize your weekends? How did you spend yours? And more importantly, what did you wear while doing it?

[Vince sweater, J. Brand jeggings, Marc by Marc Jacobs earrings, Michael Kors watch.]