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February 2010 Archives

The 52nd Annual Grammy's Awards were on last night and I was lucky enough to catch a few memorable moments and some unforgettable fashions, both good and bad.

It was quite a show with stellar performances by Beyoncé, the Black Eyed Peas and my girl Pink who astounded us when she stripped down to a nude bodysuit, took an unexpected dunk in a tub and performed a daring wet act on the flying trapeze (or some other Cirque du Soleil type concoction).

Big winners of the night were Beyoncé, who took home six Grammys with her smashing girlpower anthem - "Single Ladies" winning Song of the Year and Best R'n'B Song, while an exquisitely dressed Taylor Swift came in right behind her with four award honors including Album of the Year. No appearance by Kanye West who finally decided imma let people finish accepting their awards.

As far as who wore what, the overall trend seemed to fall under long, dramatic gowns, intricate necklines and neutral/navy colored numbers. Who were my favorites? I thought the Victoria's Secret Angels dominated the red carpet while standing out in pretty minis that were chic, short and so rock and roll.

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Bronzed beauty Marisa Miller wowed in a simple yet stunning strapless white minidress accessorized by a pop of ruby red platform pumps while her angelic counterpart Heidi Klum showed off her post-baby body yet again in a long-sleeved, low-cut 80's style sequined mini to support her man who was up for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance. I'm sure he gave her the Seal of approval.

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As for the low notes, Britney Spears failed to impress in a sheer black Dolce & Gabbana dress, Nadeea needed to be covered by some nice man's tuxedo jacket and Lady Gaga was... well, Lady Gaga. Seriously though, if Lady Gaga showed up in a plain black evening gown, we'd all feel let down now wouldn't we? These awards shows require a bit of risk, something to talk about and Lady Gaga's totally tubular dress and our Lady of Liberty getups give us the little bit of Björk that we need to get through the show.

Fun with Sam and GoJane

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I rarely write negative reviews. Normally I use my blogging powers that be for good instead of evil, highlighting great deals and spreading some blog love to shops I dig. I so very much wanted to love GoJane.

GoJane features lots of trendy pieces or what my co-worker Gina would refer to as "disposable clothing", things you would wear for a night then toss aside because they're too cheap to make it through the wash. I decided to put my reservations aside and I placed an order for a pair of brown suede ankle booties that were only $20.50 (now only available in purple). Here's the rest of the story...

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Jane sends shoes.
Sam receives shoes.
Sam no like shoes.
Shoe zippers broken.
Shoes look and feel cheap.
Sam can't get foot in shoe to try on.
Sam send shoes back.
Sam spends half of what shoes cost on shipping.
Sam no happy.
Jane customer service rep tells Sam no refund for shipping, shoes aren't broken.
Customer service rep is Dick.
Sam out $15.
Sam has no shoes.

The moral to the story kids?

Sam shop at Go Jane.
Go Jane cheat Sam.
See Sam run.

I recently came upon my old Strawberry Shortcake watch from my youth. It brought back fond memories of playing with Huckleberry Pie, Blueberry Muffin, Escargot and the entire fruity gang, but I faintly remember swapping my beloved Strawberry Shortcake timepiece every now and then for my brother's old oversized waterproof digital wristwatch that weighed my hand down like I was wearing an albatross around my wrist. I didn't care that it was a boy's watch. I liked it...and the boys liked it too.

Even though my personal style has always gravitated towards the feminine and flirty side of the fashion spectrum, i.e. - pretty sundresses, pink tanks, frilly skirts and delicate camis, I have always been a sucker for boy stuff.

There is no doubt about it, menswear pieces look hot on chicks. Just wear your guy's work dress shirt to bed and he'll let you know just how hot it is. From tuxedo jackets to boxy boyfriend blazers, sharp vests to old school fedoras and Hanes wifebeaters for boys, all it takes is one single piece to show men that we have an edge and can be soft and hard at the same time. Yes, we can wear the boyfriend cut pants in the family. Yes we can bring home the bacon, fry it up in a pan and polish off a triple-decker BLT just as well as they can.

We also look cuter in their stuff.

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If you're a girlie girl who is yearning to go where the boys are, ease into the menswear world with a small accessory, like this chunky metal Nixon Watch from Tilly's. It's made for a guy, but looks sexy as all get out on a dainty woman's wrist.

It's $399, but you can score 10% off all women's and men's fashion watches for a limited time when you use code catalogs10 at the Tilly's checkout. The code is only good until February 14th, so time isn't on your side.

Ditch the Strawberry Shortcake watch and try it on for size. Pair it with a sweet frock or frilly tank to keep your girlie identity and if it's too manly for you, you can always pass it on to your sweetie for Valentine's Day.

I'll never tell.


Piano Model

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Everyone is buzzing about the Superbowl last night, and I'm still buzzed from the free flowing beer that I guzzled at the Superbowl party I attended. Normally not the biggest beer drinker, it was nearly impossible to pass up (pass up...see what I did there?) and the brew was a perfect complement to the delectable nachos and buffalo bites.

Enough about me and what I consumed. Back to the game coverage. Everyone loves a good underdog story and the New Orleans Saints defeated the Indianapolis Colts 31 - 17, to win their first Superbowl title in franchise history. You gotta love them. The Saints had the good Lord on their side, recovering from a 10-0 deficit in the first quarter.

Show off your Saintly pride with your own Women's NFL Saints Jersey from Reebok that features a slimmer, shorter, tighter and overall a more flattering fit that hits just below the waistline. I wish I had one for my party.

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Whether you're a fan of tight end Jeremy Shockey, cutie QB Drew Brees or Kim Kardashian's wide receiver, Reggie Bush, you can feature your favorite playah's name between your shoulder blades for $69.99. It's a way better option than that tattoo you've been pondering, less painful too.

While you're there, it isn't too late to score some Saints fan gear for your guy for Valentine's Day. Plus, score 15% off of your first order from the NFL Catalog, courtesy of Catalogs.com.

Touchdown.

It's that time of season again, and I'm in an empire state of mind.

I'm in the midst of packing my bags for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week to view the Fall 2010 collections and have been overwhelmed, checking my inbox minute after minute to find yet another invite, party notification and all of the other goodies that come along with being designated an official member of the fashion press. My inbox hasn't gotten this much action since 2007 when that nasty email worm took out my beloved Sony Vaio. I've never felt more popular.

I wish I were able to spend the entire week at Bryant Park, (Fashion Week officially commences Thursday February 11th and runs through Thursday the 18th) but I am desperately needed at my home base, so I'll only be able to get away for a few days, smack dab in the middle of the week.
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I leave on Valentine's Day, which is strangely apropos, considering that I will spend the day bonding with my first true love that is fashion. So far I'm slated to attend the Vassilios Kostetsos show and will feast my eyes on the new collections of Perry Ellis, Elie Tahari, Carlos Miele, Tracy Reese, and the invites are continuing to pour in.

Be still my heart.

ports 1961.JPG Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week for the new Fall 2010 Collections officially began at 9am this morning. I am not there. I am here at my desk, wishing that I could go to there.

I'm staring lovingly at my invitation to the Ports 1961 show that will start at 3pm in the Promenade tent in Bryant Park...without me. Celebrities Expected: MTV's Whitney Port (I wonder if she gets preferred seating because she shares the company name) and my long-time adversary, Olivia Palermo from The City.

Perhaps I'm better off. By the time I arrive on Sunday, the snowstorms might be lone gone, saving me the risk of returning to Miami as a Samsicle.

By the by, this may just be the poshest invitation I've ever received. It's a passport book with a packet of rosemary seeds nestled in the front cover with a quote that reads...

We have great faith in seeds, for in every nurtured beginning lies the future of a blossoming idea.

I'm flipping through the pages to see the day by day calendar with an itinerary of cool fashion week events i.e. Champagne @ Ports 1961 Boutique, #3 9th Avenue on Monday. I might just take you up on that my pal Ports.

If you're stuck somewhere out there, far far away from the Bryant Park tents, you can still check out all of the action live at Vogue.com where they will be livestreaming the Ports 1961 runway show for those of us who are stuck at other less glamorous Ports of Call.

Check out the show from the first row, and you won't even need my fancy invite.

I just watched the Ports 1961 runway show live at Vogue.com and I felt like I was there, albeit without the pushing/shoving or the goody bag.

The collection was inspiring, a classic compilation of neutral and metallic tones that featured an exciting blend of textures. From flowy gowns paired with structured jackets to sheath dresses paired with elegant over the elbow gloves and Amelia Earhart aviator caps, every piece was more refined, cultured, feminine and ladylike than the last.

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I actually took a double take when I first caught a glimpse of these jewelry pieces that added interest and dimension to the relatively dark overall color scheme. I couldn't take my eyes off of two adornments in particular that gave the illusion of honeycomb with epaulettes and necklaces that were just as intriguing as Ports eternally romantic collection.

Rock on Ports 1961, this fashionista certainly enjoyed the ride.


Happy Birthday Abe Lincoln

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This is by far the raddest nod to honest Abe I've come across since Abe Lincoln's cameo in Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure where he delivered this most excellent speech-

Fourscore and...[looks at pocket watch] seven minutes ago... we, your forefathers, were brought forth upon a most excellent adventure conceived by our new friends, Bill... and Ted. These two great gentlemen are dedicated to a proposition which was true in my time, just as it's true today. Be excellent to each other. And... PARTY ON, DUDES!

I just found this Abe Lincoln tee shirt designed by Nick Pawson, the monstarmind behind Monstar Clothing. It's a cool way to honor the man with the mutton chops both today on his birthday and/or on Monday for President's Day. I take my Abe Lincoln style top hat off to you Nick.

Abe knew even back then... the future was so bright, he had to wear shutter shades.

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This is Sammy, your NY Fashion Week blogger on the scene reporting live from the Bryant Park tents. I'm checking in to let you all know that I'm still alive, I haven't experienced hypothermia just yet, and I'm seeing some super-fine fashion shows.

It's a different world here, many degrees off from what I experienced during Miami Fashion Week. Here's a quick run down of the M.I.A. vs. the N.Y. Mercedes-Benz Week of Fashion.

10. It's frickin' cold.

9. People in line smell like coffee and cigarettes as opposed to coconut oil and lime.

8. In Miami, cute twentysomething girls with headsets manned the doors. In NY, Mafia Soprano like beer bellied dudes man the doors. p.s. They. Will. Hurt. You.

7. Everyone is dressed in black as opposed to tropical prints.

6. In Miami, "Fashionably late" = approximately 18 minutes. In New York, "Fashionably late" = on average 36.5 minutes.

5. Instead of handing out Smart water in water bottles like in Miami, they hand out O.N.E. water in eco-friendly cartons.

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4. In Miami everyone is chilling because they're hanging in cabanas, in Bryant Park everyone is chilling because it's twenty degrees.

3. The models in Miami are tan, have back and are smiling. NY models are pale, have zero ba-donka-donk and look really P-O'ed, like they. will. hurt. you.

2. Foreigners at Fashion Week Miami generally have Latin accents, in NY they have ah da Italian accents.

1. In New York the models are dressed. In Miami they're in bikinis, hello.

Valentine's Day. The Salon. 2nd Row. 9pm. Vassilios Kostetsos.

Sitting in a primo seat with awesome sight lines, staring at a lovely Fern Mallis standing directly in front of me in a dashing winter white knee length coat looking pretty relaxed considering that she is ultimately responsible for giving birth to this crazy little thing called Fashion Week.

9:32pm - I have to go pee just as much as the long-legged 6 foot glamazon next to me needs to eat a sandwich, but they finally started taking the plastic wrap off of the runway which means it's almost showtime. The house lights go down. Here we go.

We hear Lady Gagaish orgasmic screams and catch a glimpse of a hot red light against the backdrop, pulsing harder than the hormones of the Cupid smitten teenage couples I saw making out in Times Square just an hour earlier on my way to the hotel.

I have four words to sum up the show - Leather. Sequins. Feathers. Snakeskin. Sexy-ass. Make that five and a half words.

Inspired by the 442 BC Sophocles drama Antigone, the collection was dominated by sexy puffy-sleeved trenches, hot pants, sheer fabrics, tattoo-like tights, immaculate draping, above the knee boots, pretty boy models with spray-painted metallic faces, ostentatious evening gowns and more inspirations that are all Greek to me.

This show was anything but subdued with a striking color palette of dare to be remembered reds, whites and blues, blacks and bronzes. I snapped the photo below myself during the final walk. Not bad, huh? Just disregard big guy's head on the left. It was a really big cranium. No way around it.

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What was in the goody bag? Orange BZ Greek Grill pens, a Vassilios press kit, world renowned celebrity hair designer and "official hairstylist of Vassilios Kostetsos", Rodolfo Valentin brand shampoo, eyeshadows (gray and blush) and Super Sweet lipgloss.

My seating assignment card read "Eros Anikate Mahan" which translates to - "Love something something." I'm a fashion blogger not a linguist, what do you expect?

Overall, in terms of passionate collections, Vassilios gave me the big O.

Sending you great big kisses Vassilios, to thank you for getting my heart to race wild on V-Day. Make that double kisses on both cheeks.

That's how they do it in Athens, no?


Monday, February 15th. The Promenade. Brazilian Boy Wonder, Carlos Miele.

Brazil, where hearts were entertaining June
We stood beneath an amber moon...

Fine, it was February at 11am and we stood beneath a heated white tent. I still like the song.

As stated in the official press kit, beneath that heated white tent we were presented with geometric abstract art and its pure colors, photo montages, and constructivist architectural engineering that when combined, inspired the creative process of Carlos Miele's collection.

In layman's fashion terms, the show was colorful and deliciously tactile. I actually wanted to reach out and touch everything, although I did not. No sense in running the risk of oversized Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week security men tossing me out on my tush in the middle of 6th Avenue.

Soft, exquisite looking furs and capelets captured my interest as did the comfy looking knitwear including a purple sweater that I dreamed of wrapping myself in once I left the snug comfort of the tents. Other favorite pieces? A black fringe vest and a superb trio of vivid and brightly colored strapless dresses that collectively captured the hues and the spirit of the Carnival celebrations - the Brazilian version of Mardi Gras, if you will.

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Pics from Sam cam -

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All of the looks were accessorized with messy buns and open toe black booties with gold accents.

All in all, this Miele was delish, I'd certainly come back for seconds.

There's one thing I'm certain of
Return I will to old Brazil.

Monday. February 15th. 3pm. Tracy Reese. The Salon.

I am home now. Back on Floridian soil after a four hour layover at LaGuardia due to unfortunate weather conditions. I got home and in bed a little after 4am. I woke up, immediately reaching for the day's show schedule on the bedside table, then realized after a few hazy moments that it was all over. The only fashion shows in my immediate future will be those broadcast on Project Runway. I won't be in the seats. It won't be live. It won't be the same.

My body is still on New York time and my mind is still completely immersed in fashion week, reliving show after show with a slideshow of snapshots of favorite pieces rotating fondly in my memory. Most of these pieces were Reese's pieces. Tracy Reese's divine Fall pieces.

I've come to the conclusion that there are 3 general reactions people have after seeing a show in the Bryant Park tents.

a. Wow, that was either avante garde/daring/bold or weird. I loved and/or hated it.
b. Wow, that was safe and lovely, but I wasn't moved. I loved it but it didn't change my life.
c. Wow, I could wear and want to wear every single item that came down the runway.

Tracy's ready to wear overall grade - a C+.

There was definitely a fine frenzy in the air with the tent packed to full capacity and starting even later than usual. Tracy's normally sweet feminine aesthetic was pumped up with plenty of versatile sportswear separates that were tastefully layered on top of her signature staple of perfectly pretty dresses for the Autumn season.

Skinny studded pants, cozy sweaters, faux fur, impeccably tailored coats and romantic, always ladylike dresses of both dark and pastel hues were paired with sleek arm warmers, side-parted poofed up ponytails, aviator sunglasses and high volume scarves to create an edgy contrast with simple yet striking wardrobe updating pieces.

What I love about Tracy's collection is that everything looks so incredible all put together while still being conscious of today's economy. If a girl wants to invest in a piece for the new season, she doesn't necessarily have to buy the entire outfit, but can still afford a big change with an eye-catching coat, cardigan, dress, scarf or other smart separates that can be mixed and matched to add a breath of fresh air to old basics, pieces from last year and everything else in the modern gal's closet. Again, I wanted it all, as did the celebrities in the audience, at least according to the expressions on their happy faces.

Celebrity Spottings: Kristen Bell and Julia Stiles chatting front row, Robert Verdi, Destiny's Child's Michelle Williams and Raven Symone was slated to attend, but I failed to see her.

Perhaps she ditched the show...that's so Raven.

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twi⋅light
  /ˈtwaɪˌlaɪt/ Pronunced [twahy-lahyt]
–noun
1. the soft, diffused light from the sky when the sun is below the horizon, either from daybreak to sunrise or, more commonly, from sunset to nightfall.

2. a terminal period, esp. after full development, success, etc.: the twilight of his life.

3. a blockbuster film/phenomenon (based on the novel of the same name by Stephenie Meyer) starring hottie vampire, Edward Cullen.

Monday, February 15th. Perry Ellis. The Promenade. 2nd Row. 7pm, the twilight hour.

Pre-show I was treated to a couple of complimentary berry martinis and ran into Jennifer and Laura from the shorty cycle of America's Next Top Model. They both looked gorgeous, were very friendly, and I loved the fact that they are still close friends even more than the fact that they didn't tower over me the way most of the models here did. I snapped a pic with my phone, but Jen looked weird and Laura had her eyes closed, and I could never post an unflattering photo of my new besties.

As I took my seat and browsed through my program I got the chills, excited to finally see some menswear pieces that were to die for. I took in the hot pink backdrop with the black chandelier for a moment and as soon as the lights went dark, the coven of male models were ready to prowl.

Creative director John Crocco presented a collection of dark hues and luxurious fabrics that enveloped a mix of sophisticated sportswear and handsome evening wear to prep today's Perry Ellis man for any night out on the town. Elegant trenches, velvet evening jackets, tuxedo pants, waistcoats, exquisite three piece suits, color blocked wonders, sumptuous leather, cozy wool blends... hold the phones, is that a cravat I see? Where's Chuck Bass when you need him?

Nearly every piece in the program was attached to the words Midnight and/or Eclipse and the pale male models wore them well, looking chiseled, wan and in desperate need of a blood transfusion, although when the light hit one of them just right, I'd swear his skin was sparkling.

Sam Cam
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In conclusion, John Crocco for Perry Ellis is far from the twilight of his career, delivering a dressed to kill collection that had major bite.

NY Fashion Week Audiences

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To say that Fashion Week in New York is exciting would be the equivalent of describing Mother Teresa as nice. The words simply do not capture the magnitude of their respective levels of awesomeness.

Where else could you score free Starbucks beverages in the morning, free alcoholic beverages in the evening, complimentary make-up and hair products, cutie cute tote bags, mini umbrellas to protect perfectly styled hairdos from getting ruined by the snow and more stylish S.W.A.G. (Stuff We All Get) than could possibly fit in a girl's suitcase back to Miami?

I realized after an hour of showing up at 41st and 6th, that there are so many other priceless treasures to be found in the deep confines of the Bryant Park tents. Some tangible, others not. I felt like Gossip Girl Fashion Edition here...your one and only source into the scandalous lives of Manhattan's elite. I overheard private conversations concerning who ate it on the runway during the previous afternoon's shows, who got plastered at the previous evening's afterparties and multiple TMI tidbits about various bodily functions, crash diets, upper lip waxings and extramarital affairs.

Better than the juiciest verbal morsels, I found things. Things that people dropped. This script for instance, previously held by former Supermodel Veronica Webb, pictured below during last year's Fashion Week with Victoria's Secret Angel Doutzen Kroes. There I was, chilling on the cushy black benches a few feet away from the hot Mercedes-Benz parked in the lobby when I found this folded up script underneath my bum.

Thought you might enjoy seeing the rundown for Veronica's Modelinia Fashion Week TV coverage, found by your undercover fashion reporter on the scene. Back to you Bianca!

xoxo,
Sammy

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Tuesday, February 16th. 9am. The Salon. Elie Tahari.

One of my employers is in love with Elie Tahari. I know she's been dying to read my coverage on her favorite designer showing at Fashion Week, but I've been making her wait for it...wait for it...and wait for it some more. This one is for you boss.

Bad news - It's very early in the morning, snowing outside and it seems that everyone is being let in before those of us with tickets.

Good news - No seating assignments, everyone is standing!

Bad news - No goody bags.

Good news - I'm in the front row because I'm short!

Bad news - These models are easily twice my size. I feel like Smurfette.

Good news - I spot Joan Rivers, Fern Mallis and Joe Zee - Creative Director of ELLE magazine!

Bad news - Joan Rivers' face frightens me.

Once I arrived in the Salon, the show began with the models walking proud, fast and furious. The women's collection wowed with sophisticated pieces that showed off Tahari's unfaltering attention to detail. I ooh'ed and ahh'ed over ready-to-wear separates in posh palettes of blacks and grays that gravitated into oranges, bronzes and other cool Autumnal pops of color. Tahari's glorious handbags accessorized the looks beautifully as did the uptown hats and oversized sunglasses that added a touch of timeless style.

The menswear collection quickly followed suit with luxurious Don Draper lookalikes cruising down the catwalk in impeccable suits and perfectly parted slicked back hair. Once the men walked their walk, there was a brief pause and...wait for it...wait for it...

The show started all over again. Wait, didn't I see that? I'm having serious déjà vu. No, I'm not mistaken, I did see that before. After a few familiar looks, I finally put size 2 and 2 together to realize that the women were indeed coming out in the same outfits, beginning their entire collection rotation once again. Then the boys, girls, boys, girls, boy, girl, walk, fierce, pose, repeat.

It was the Groundhog Day of Fashion Week.

Sam Cam
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Samara Sanchez

About Sammy

Sammy Sanchez is a Miami based freelance writer, greeting card designer, and self-professed USWeeklyholic. Sammy loves tall coffee light frappuccinos, vino not from a box, and Mark Ruffalo...not necessarily in that order.
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