Viewing Party Archives

The war is almost over. The British Invasion ends tonight on the America’s Next Top Model Cycle 18 Finale, with American tough girl Laura LaFrate battling Twiggy-like Brit Sophie Sumner for the coveted Tyra Banks title.

It's punk vs. pixie, with a battle of blondes that covers two continents. Insiders tell me that one chick will most def have a panic attack, and get this, the final runway show is going to have holograms. HOLOGRAMS. It'll be like the Victoria's Secret fashion show meets Tron.

Be sure to tune in tonight to see who takes the pretty prize, and to catch Nigel Barker and Jay Manuel in their last ANTM appearance.

Here's a spoiler look at their final easy, breezy, beautiful Cover Girl ads:

May the best skinny b**** win.

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Sometimes it's the smaller victories in life that deserve to be celebrated...

*Opening a hermetically sealed jar of spaghetti sauce all by myself... As opposed to immediately giving up and walking next door so my super-humanly-strong neighbor, Tami, could do it.

*Finding a twenty in the side pocket of a bag you haven't seen since last spring.

*Hiring a ticket lawyer and getting a 1/2 reduced fine, no traffic school or points for a speeding ticket that you shouldn't have gotten in the first place.

*Accidentally leaving a pair of red panties in a load of whites and discovering that the laundry gods were on your side, nothing turned pink.

**Placing a successful order on an outfit you just fell in love with on Fashion Star.

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I don't know if you've caught on to the NBC Fashion Star frenzy - a reality competition series that gives Project Runway a run for its money - but I have, and it has taken me 9 episodes to secure a coveted piece of clothing in my size before it sold out to the Saks, Macy's and H&M masses.

The premise is simple - 14 designers compete for the chance to become the next big fashion brand, launching their collections in 3 of America's largest retailers: Macy's, H&M and Saks Fifth Avenue. The big 3 buyers either purchase or pass on the designs showcased every week, with the purchased items available online to the general public. Fashion mentors Jessica Simpson, Nicole Richie and John Varvatos give the designers their 2 cents, offering valuable insider tips along the way.

I admit, most of my Fashion Star failures were my own fault. I caught the first few episodes On Demand and after-the-fact, so I could only admire the buyers' purchased looks from afar while my sizes sold out in minutes. One time I begged my boyfriend to wake me up so I could check out the latest looks. He didn't, and I slept my way out of scoring a to-die-for printed jersey maxi dress from H&M. {see above} Hmpf.

Last night, however, during the last show before the finale, I was armed with my iPad, shopping trigger finger cocked and ready to click. I picked up a pair of Orly Shani's corporate chic Mia Trousers a half hour into the show without a hitch. Victory was mine.

That is, unless they don't fit.

Cheerio!

If you weren't anywhere near the telly last Wednesday night, hold on to your knickers and britches because America's Next Top Model is about to get bloody interesting.

For those of you who missed the Cycle 18 premiere last week, be sure to tune in to the CW tonight at 9 to catch the second episode of ANTM's newest installment, America's Next Top Model: British Invasion.

This season, seven All-American model hopefuls will duke of york it out against seven English and Scottish model mates who have already made a splash as contestants on Britain and Ireland's Next Top Model. Prepare for model mayhem old chaps, because the battle of the beauties has just begun.

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I hope I'm not committing an act of treason by admitting that I find a few of the Londoners brilliant and smashing, but I've always been intrigued by all things British (except blood pudding). At first glance, the Brits seem to have more than a bit of experience, but the Yanks have the home court advantage, strutting their walks on American soil with the fierceness that we Northerners are known for. They have Kate Moss. We have Tyra.

Another change I'm going barmy over is the addition of new guest judge, fashion PR goddess, Kelly Cutrone, who tells it like it is no matter how much it hurts. In short, get used to a lot of drama, a lot of subtitles, and a whole lot of malarkey.

May the fish and chips fall where they may.

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Happy Monday LTS's (aka Let's Talk Stylers)! I have the scoop on what all the stars wore on the red carpet during last night's 84th Annual Academy Awards Ceremony, and I bet you're aching to see my Oscar hits and misses. I'm proud to report that no one fashion failed miserably... there were a few standouts and a few sitdowns, but I'm being picky.

The Top of the Oscar Fashion Charts

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Jessica Chastain - The Help's Best Supporting Actress nominee makes the top of my list yet again, this time evoking romantic Renaissance charm in a totally modern strapless Alexander McQueen gown. Love the hair, love the makeup, love the $2 million dollars worth of Harry Winston diamonds. Didn't love The Tree of Life.

Michelle Williams summoned up the spirit of Marilyn Monroe and Mia Farrow combined in a demure, feminine hued coral Louis Vuitton gown. The dress was sublime as is, but Michelle's unexpected styling took it a step further with an adorable bubble-gum pink crocodile clutch and diamond bow brooch pinned at the hip. Diamonds are a girl's best friend and I wish you were my best friend, so I could raid your closet.

Natalie Portman - Isn't she lovely? Nat had a baby boy since she accepted her Oscar statue for Black Swan last year, but you'd never know it with Miss Cherie Dior herself rocking the red carpet in a vintage red chiffon silk Christian Dior Couture gown with a sweet and retro velvet polka dot detail. Understated perfection.

Rooney Mara - The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo's Best Actress nominee was all contrast in a dainty, lacy and dramatic white Givenchy gown paired with dark blunt bangs, a porcelain complexion and a dark red lip. Fresh and pretty yet still dark and dangerous, like she might have had a taser strapped to her leg. I can't wait to see Mara you on the red carpet.

The Worst, but Not Really That Bad

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Gwyneth Paltrow - Simply put, I loved your Tom Ford dress but did not love your matching Tom Ford cocoon. Silly rabbit, capes are for kids... and superheroes.

Angelina Jolie - Every heterosexual male in the world is going to disagree with me, but this isn't about your dress, it's about how you wore it. I guess you wanted to hightail it home to your 6 pack of kids pronto because you were apparently trying to hail a cab all night with your thigh thrust out of your dress. Yes, your custom black velvet Atelier Versace gown was hot, but your posture and body language were not. The sexy thing about daring super high thigh slits is the random peek, not the overexposed limb.

Melissa Leo - Shirt or dress, shirt or dress? Although your sparkly two tone black and gold Reem Acra gown glittered, it was not Oscar gold. Again, I'm being picky here, but if I were your friend in the limo with you, I would have cut the top gold shirty part of your dress off, removed the belt and given you a sheer piece of floaty fabric to drape over your shoulders. If you need any other tips for future red carpet appearances, I'm available 24/7, just Ask Sammy.

Grammy Style 2012

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If you didn't catch the 54th Annual Grammy Awards last night, never fear, Sammy Sanchez is here with your quickie gossip/fash recap.

Adele was the big winner of the evening, taking home 6 awards and rocking her 1st public performance since having surgery on her vocal cords; Jennifer Hudson made us cry with a heart wrenching vocal tribute to Whitney Houston; Bruce Springsteen rocked; Paul McCartney looked old.

Alls well was not on the fashion front. I was surprised to see that some of the music industry's biggest stars chose to make more matronly statements this awards season, with Carrie Underwood, Katy Perry, and Adele opting for floor length long-sleeve beaded gowns, while others took risks. As always, some paid off, others will be mocked.

ROCK STARS

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Rihanna - Some folks are gonna love your black plunging Armani gown, others are gonna hate it. I loved it. Your ex Chris Brown was there and you looked so hot, it should have been illegal. Like when Chris repeatedly punched you.

Jessie J - Adele wasn't the only Brit who had a brillliant night. The sexy siren went full on Star Trek in a futuristic metallic mirrorball gown designed by Julien Macdonald. Live long and prosper in that dress, Jess.

ROCK BOTTOM

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Fergie- Psst, Fergs, your bra and panties are showing. Bravo for taking a risk with your Gaultier Couture gown, but I'm so not orange crushing on this dress. I have only seen orange lace once before, on a girl who dressed up as a slutty pumpkin on Halloween. Here's hoping I never see it again.

Nicki Minaj - Why look, it's Little Red Riding Ho. One of my New Year's Resolutions was to lay off your red carpet choices, but this was before you showed up wearing a ruby red nun's habit with a Harelquin mime beaded on the skirt. Your get up was a Versace, but looked more like an Illuminati. Hail Mary full of grace, the lord is not with thee.

Tilda Swinton was not there.

Hi LTS's, (My cool new acronym for Let's Talk Stylers. Let's see if it catches on).

I've been a bit behind on my Red Carpet Award Season coverage. I really don't have any excuses, except that I had to take my dog to the vet, had a serious case of bronchitis, and have been really, really tired. The important thing is, here I am. Better late than never.

Best: Every now and then, out of the blue, a starlet will surprise me with a gown that is so simple, yet so striking that it takes my breath away. The Help's Outstanding Supporting Female Actor Nominee, Jessica Chastain, did just that, looking as smooth and sleek as a chaise upholstered in blue velvet, with a gorgeous blue bustier style gown by Calvin Klein. The 145 carats of Harry Winston diamond jewelry certainly Help'ed.

Honorable mentions: Glee's Lea Michele in Versace, Kyra Sedgwick in Pucci, and Ashlee Simpson's beaded Boardwalk Empire worthy gown by Jenny Packham.

Worst: Boho? Oh no. Cougar Town's Busy Phillips made me want to scream blue murder in her mumu inspired, multi-tiered, and way too long frock that I highly suspect was stolen from Mrs. Roper's closet. The blueprint was too busy, Busy, and this ain't Woodstock. Peace out.

Dishonorable Mentions: Kristen Wiig's choker, Jenna Ushkowitz and Heather Morris's ungleeful gowns.

As I promised, we won't even discuss Tilda Swinton.

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ANTM Finale

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Thanks for giving me this Justin Beiber, skater boy, emo haircut right before you tell me that I'm not America's Next Top Model. Really, thanks.

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Black Swan Queen For a Day

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This past weekend I relived my budding ballerina days with a viewing of the critically acclaimed, Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild nominated film, Black Swan.

Directed by Darren Aronofsky, (the mastermind behind Pi, The Wrestler and Requiem for a Dream), Black Swan stars Natalie Portman as Nina Sayers, a young, gifted and meticulous ballet dancer at her prime who wins the coveted role of the Swan Queen in Swan Lake. As the innocent, delicate, virginal and perfectly cast White Swan, Nina struggles to get in touch with her darker side in order to fully capture and rock the dual role of the sinister Black Swan. In her process of self swan discovery, Nina goes a little cuckoo for cocoa puffs as she finds herself locked in a web of competitive intrigue with the new ballerina on the block, the seductively reckless Lily, played by Mila Kunis.

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As far as psychothrillers go, Black Swan delivered three acts of on the edge of your seat intrigue, mesmerizing choreography and performances that were as on pointe as the shoes that graced every tightly bunned dancer's feet. Portman, who began rigorous training a full year before production even began, deserves every bit of Oscar buzz dancing around for her intricately layered portrayal of a girl transforming into a woman transforming into a tortured artist. In short, her Swan Queen blew Queen Amidala away.

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Things are looking good for Natalie, she is not only being recognized for turning out the performance of her career, but she is also engaged to and expecting a baby with her Black Swan co-star, French choreographer Benjamin Millepied. To wrap up my review, Black Swan is a definite Award season must-see. There's even some hot ballerina on ballerina action that will keep your boyfriend from falling asleep, even though he'll swear he's not into that kind of stuff.

It's been awhile since I performed grand pliés and relevés in a ballet studio, but I longed to slip on my old dancing shoes with the sight of every perfectly executed pirouette. If I were to rediscover my inner swan (the good one), I would start off by investing in the right footwear, like the Glisse by Capezio Pointe Shoes from Dancewear Solutions. Then I would splurge on a twirly girly tutu like Leo's Professional Tutu from Discount Dance Supply, available in pink, white and black if you're nasty. Finally, I'd nail the look with NARS Cream Eyeshadow in pure inky black, the NARS Glitter Pencil in silvery Roxbury, and NARS Lip Lacquer in Diablo.

Now all I need is a tiara and some feathers.

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On Wednesday night Ann Ward, the super tall 19 year old self-professed dorky Dallas teen took home the honors as America's Next Top Model, wiping the gap-toothed smile off of front runner Chelsey Hersley's face as Ward won a spread in Italian Vogue, a $10,000 contract with Cover Girl cosmetics and an IMG modeling contract.

Skinnier than Olive Oyl on Alli, Ann's 6'2 stature made waves on the show, as did her miniscule waist. Personally, I never thought she'd go the distance with her quirky runway walk, her inability to roller skate in commercials and the triumvirate of zits on her chin that she never could quite figure out how to cover up.

I was Team Chelsey all the way. The white blond bombshell from Iowa booked jobs, won competitions and escaped finding herself in the bottom two week after week. She had experience, confidence and freckles. To make a tall story short, Ann took better photographs.

Nevertheless, I'm happy that Ann is giving tall girls a title to strive for other than World's Tallest Woman in the Guinness Book of World Records.

Now vertically challenged girls everywhere can dream of growing up to be something other than a basketball player, a really tall stunt woman, a ladderless house painter or a librarian who can reach the highest bookshelf sans a stepping stool.

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Gwyneth Paltrow has a lot to be thankful for this Thanksgiving.

Wait. They don't celebrate Thanksgiving in England, where Paltrow resides with Coldplay frontman hubby, Chris Martin, and their adorable pair of cherubic children.

Rephrase - Gwyneth Paltrow is enjoying quite a November, first by wowing the entire country music scene with her live performance of Country Strong at the CMA's, and then by shining on the small screen last night on our favorite prime time guilty pleasure, Glee.

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We haven't seen a whole lot of Gwyneth after she gave birth to produce in the form of Apple, and the prophet Moses, but the Academy Award winning actress returned baring her triple threat chops, singing, dancing and acting her way into the Glee Club's, and our hearts.

Gwyneth stole the show as super sub, Holly Holiday, who takes over Mr. Schuester's Spanish class and his glee club while Will recovers from a nasty bug going around school. Holly is a free-spirited, fun-loving gal who is committed to making her class periods rock. She sings Cee-Lo songs, stages jazzy numbers from Chicago, revamps Gene Kelly's classic tune "Singing in the Rain" by merging it with Rihanna's smash hit "Umbrella"...and she loves "Animal Hoarders" and tacos.

Where was Holly Holiday when I was in AP Physics?


This weekend I finally had the chance to take in An Education.

Before you applaud me for furthering my studies, allow me to clarify. I did not audit an English Lit or pottery themed night class at my local high school. Instead, I rented the Nick Hornby penned adaptation of the real-life coming of age story of British columnist, Lynn Barber.

Here's a quick plot summation:

Brilliant sixties school girl meets charming older man in the form of Peter Sarsgaard.
Charming man seduces young girl by showering her with fine art, music, food and travels.
School girl discovers that life is not always a picnic in Paris.

Carey Mulligan is effervescent as Jenny Mellor, a 16 year old London schoolgirl who desperately longs for a life outside of the classroom in lieu of her father's dreams of her securing a formal education at Oxford. Mulligan's Academy Award and Golden Globe nominations were well-deserved as she convincingly escorts us on a journey of self discovery where she evolves before our eyes from a bicycle riding, cello playing, cigarette puff sneaking adolescent into a worldly, sophisticated and cultured gamine.

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From ladylike coats to kitten heels, vintage handbags to elegant printed sheaths and fancy chignons, Carey/Jenny scores the highest marks when it comes to sixties style, with a wardrobe that would leave both Audrey Hepburn and Jackie O. breathless.

School for thought - If you don't have time to scour the thift stores, score your own vintage fashion findings from Modcloth, Santoki Vintage and Ramona West à la Etsy.

If you're over the all-day marathon reruns of ANTM on Bravo, I'm proud to report that the 15th Cycle of America's Next Top Model premieres tonight with legendary fashion icon Diane Von Furstenberg in tow joining Tyra Banks, Vogue's Andre Leon Talley and Nigel Barker on the panel of esteemed fashion evaluators.

So if you wanna be on top, tune in to the CW at 8. If you wanna be on top but have zero interest in watching this show, right on.

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So, I saw the Sex and the City sequel and apologize for taking my sweet old time to review it. Honestly, I was beyond excited to be reunited with the girls and to steal a line from Bravo - to "watch what happens" after our serial single girl, Carrie Bradshaw, marries the Big love her life. Here's the thing, I didn't like it.

I didn't hate it, but I didn't like it. For some reason, the plot just seemed remarkably forced. As I was sitting in the theater digging into my cheesy nachos, I had this strange feeling that I was watching some kind of weird television spin-off trying to capitalize on a previous mega success - sort of like Joey after Friends or CSI Las Vegas, Iowa, or whatever city they're solving crimes in these days.

*Spoiler alert, read on at your own risk.

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The main disconnect here was the fact that instead of focusing on Sex and the City of New York, this sequel takes us far and away to the land of Abu Dhabi. It didn't work for me. The well-dressed fish out of water/Girl Power theme was tired and weak, as were the musical numbers (two of 'em folks).

Instead of picking up where we left off, watching the girls cope with real life, real relationships and real friendships in the city, we begrudgingly follow them on an unnecessary, unmotivated international escape that seemed to amass more than half of the film's running time. In the first film, the girls go to Mexico, have a few margaritas and head home. In SATC2 they overstay their welcome doing touristy things and conveniently running into ex-boyfriends until they are thankfully forced to leave.

There were a few high points, notably a scene where Miranda and Charlotte swap inner-Mom thoughts over cocktails and when Samantha pelts a crowd of disapproving Abu Dhabi men with condoms from her Birkin bag while crying out "YES, I HAVE SEX!". Was it enough to carry the film? No. Not even Patricia Field's colorful costumes could distract me from the mess and lack of depth I was subjected to for the 2 hour, 27 minute running time.

Overall it's a cute chick flick, but don't be surprised if you find yourself rolling your eyes at the overload of Sex and the Cheesy. There was more cheese on the screen than on my nachos.


Ladies and gentlemen, place your bets.

The race to the finish is on tonight, with the final episode of America's Next Top Model Cycle 13 airing on the CW.

It's come down to two petite sized models - the awkward redhead vs. the southern belle. Our first contender - Nicole (aka Big Red), the quirky girl who may not know how to carry herself in real life, but sure knows how to pose in front of a camera. Handicap: Her monotone, stoner voice that seems to irk the judges. She's placed first, week after week... let's see if she stays on track, holding her spot at the front of the herd.

Then there's a horse of another color, contestant #2 - Laura (aka Blushing Beauty), the gal hailing from the home of the Kentucky Derby who has managed to win over every judge and jockey she meets with her shining blue eyes, charming southern drawl and a smile that goes on for days. Handicap: She can't tan. Laura taking first place honors would make this cycle a true Cinderella story (or a Seabiscuit story, considering she's only 5'6). As long as she doesn't horse around during her final walk, she might just win it all.

My money is on Big Red...
but I'm betting it'll come down to a photo finish.

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If you caught the last episode of The City that aired last night on MTV, you had a chance to see Whitney Port arrive on my home turf during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Swim in Miami last July. Whitney and her rowdy roomie Roxy worked the Mara Hoffman show alongside Kelly Cutrone and the rest of the People's Revolution team.

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To sum up the backstage drama, Roxy and Whitney got torn a new one by Kelly for fighting backstage (Roxy ditched Whit the night before at The Florida Room, so not cool). My archenemy Olivia Palermo half-assed her interview with Mara and once again proved that she has no business working amongst the elite at Elle magazine.

As for the front of the house, guess what ladies and gents. I was there. Front and center.

It's been four months since my coverage of the Mara Hoffman show, but here is a little never-before-seen-video showing just how up close and personal I was.

You saw it here first.

If you've been following Project Runway Season 6, you've probably noticed a few minor alterations.

The Runway crew has packed their bags moving from Bravo to Lifetime, shuffling from the east coast to the west coast. Although the show's format is pretty familiar for the most part - designers are given their challenge, designers sketch, designers shop for fabric at Mood, designers sew, models walk, judges evaluate what designers have sewn - there are still a few new patterns and missing threads. Regular Runway Judge, Michael Kors, seems to be M I A more often than not and a slew of guest celebrity judges (i.e. - Lindsay Lohan, Rachel Bilson, Milla Jovovich, Rebecca Romijn and Kerry Washington) keep cropping up to throw their two cents onto the catwalk.

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One delicious new improvement comes in the form of a post-show cocktail with a half-hour look at the Models of Project Runway - the gals who rock the looks that our designers make work. Now we get to see that models have feelings too - we can watch them dish about their designers, fret before eliminations, cry after eliminations and revel in seeing them bare their model claws over double stick tape.

If you're a fan of all the model drama, cast your vote in the Models of the Runway Challenge so you can choose who walks the Project runway next season.

There's still a Wild Card slot open, I'm going for the model who looks like the biggest bitch in her profile.

I'm not afraid to admit, I'm a big fan of Mtv's The City. I love Whitney Port's imminent sweetness and everything she stands for just as much as I despise Olivia Palermo's toxicity and everything I imagine she makes Mtv's production assistants stand for. I've been hating on Olivia so much that I actually came close to putting gum in her hair when we came in dangerously close proximity during Miami Fashion Week.

With that said, I'm not going to let my personal differences with Olivia get in the way of relishing Whitney's adventures in the city, especially now that she's back working alongside fashion PR maven, Kelly Cutrone, who is rumored to have her own Bravo show simmering on the back burner.

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As for departed cast members, Erin with the cute bangs is gone as is Whitney's Aussie ex Jay and his philandering roommate and they are swapped for new roomie Roxy, the bad girl from Whitney's past, and a blonder, peppier Erin - Elle magazine's youngest Director of Public Relations ever.

In the first two episodes, new blonder Erin and Olivia have butted heads now that Olivia is on board at Elle, and I keep finding myself yelling at the HD tv screen "Fire her", the way I would yell at some half naked chick to "Run" when some deranged maniac crawls through her bedroom window during a horror flick.

With that said, if you're interested in the fashion industry at all, this show may not be the most legit resource, but you will get a backstage view into the everyday operations at Elle (in a more accurate light than the failed Stylista), and you'll get to see Whitney's behind the scenes journey involved with expanding her own line - Whitney Eve.

In short, prepare for one City slicker of a season.

500 Days of Summer Dresses

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This summer, I had me a blast. This summer, happened so fast.

I enjoyed a hot and sunny day at the beach yesterday and have a red, itchy, already peeling back to prove it. It made me realize that my joy and my fun and my season in the sun would soon be exchanged for dead leaves on the dirty ground, pumpkin patches and Publix pilgrim salt shakers.

September 22nd officially marks the end of summer and the beginning of fall, but if you're like me - you're aching to hang onto those reckless days of summer lovin' and those delicate, breezy and effortless summer dresses.

If you're still longing for the lazy days of summer and not ready to give up your summer wardrobe just yet, check out my favorite indie film hit of the season - 500 Days of Summer.

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*Warning: Before you buy your movie ticket, there's something you should know.

This is not a love story, it is a story about love.

Here's a quick Sammy summation of this charming, anti-chick flick...

Boy (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) meets girl (Zooey Deschanel).
Boy falls in love with girl.
Boy and girl take fun trips to the park, record stores and Ikea.
Girl ends up breaking boy's fragile heart.

I warned you, this wasn't a love story.

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Spanning the 500 days of Tom Hansen and Summer Finn's relationship, we witness deliberately scattered scenes illustrating the dismal dissection of a love affair, and a whole lot of cute outfits.

Our quirky heartbreaker, Summer, takes us through a year and a half of adorable seasonal ensembles all in varying shades of her signature blue, from sweet summer sundresses and vintage frocks to shorts and tight combos that will get a girl through the winter, spring, summer or fall.

I'm taking a clue from Summer and stocking up on opaque and wool tights to warm up my spring and summer skirts and dresses paired with stylin' mod coats from none other than Modcloth.

This way I can still enjoy a little Summer breeze that makes me feel fine,
blowing through the jasmine in my mind.

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I've been sitting on pin cushions and needles waiting for my beloved Project Runway to return, and thank heavens to Heidi Klum, tonight is the night.

Tune in and watch what happens...but on a whole new station with Project Runway debuting on Lifetime, television for women (and gay men who love Delta Burke). Get ready for a three hour extravaganza featuring:

- A two-hour All Star Challenge at 8pm with 8 old runway veterans like Jeffery Sebelia sporting a mean handlebar 'stache, Uli Herzner and Sweet Pea...

- The Season 6 premiere at 10pm with 16 new designers all aching to make it work.

I think this is going to be the season of a lifetime.

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Bachelorette style

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Ahhh... Lazying around during the dog days of summer in a posh LA mansion with a dream date scheduled every night, bubbly champagne by the gallon, and 30 hot guys clamoring for your attention. Most girls would envy the sweet set-up of current Bachelorette, Canadian cutie Jillian Harris, but after the past few episodes, Jill has had all of America wondering if host Chris Harrison was slipping her some crack before every rose ceremony.

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Thankfully last Monday, millions of viewers tuned in to finally watch Jillian give the cowboy boot to super shady suitor/country wannabe superstar Wes. The baddest boy in Bachelorette history was rumored to have a girlfriend and was even outed to Jillian by Jake the pilot, although the woman in question - his ex Laurel swears it isn't so.

Regardless of whether Wes had a girlfriend back in Austin or not, the dude had an agenda from the moment he stepped out of the limo, and wasn't afraid to admit it. Practically whipping out his guitar to serenade the girl before they had a chance to shake hands, he performed his silly little ditty 3 or 4 times....I actually lost count and found his shameless self-promotion embarrassing, even more so than his shabby corduroy blazers.

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Gossip aside, I've adored Jillian Harris' style since she peddled her hot dog theory on the last season of the Bachelor. From her chunky rose gold watch to her colorful mini dresses and red urban cowboy boots, her interior decorating background definitely translates to her quirky, trendsetting personal style. I don't know if Jillian is dressing herself in outfits she's brought from home or if she's getting a little help from a band of ABC stylists. If it's the latter, I'm 5'3 and pretty close to Jillian's size if you guys need to clean out the ABC closets.

If you want Jillian's rainbow colored tie-dye bikini pictured above, you can get it on sale from Victoria's Secret.

p.s. Wes, I think your song sounds like a jingle for a laxative commercial.

The Fashion Show

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I'm headed to the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Swim festivities in Miami next month, so I've been cramming in extra hours of reading Women's Wear Daily and Vogue while Tivo'ing a weekend worth of fashion tv. I recently caught a mini Bravo marathon re-broadcasting a few tail episodes of the Project Runway knockoff, The Fashion Show.

Swap Heidi Klum for Isaac Mizrahi, Tim Gunn for Kelly Rowland, Nina Garcia for my idol (and creator of NY Fashion Week) Fern Mallis, and you've pretty much got the same clothing pattern. With only a few minor differences - the judges stand rather than sit while judging, the runway is triangular, the mini challenges are hosted by Harper's Bazaar, and there is an actual audience of fashion critics waiting to be wowed at every week's final cut fashion show.

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The last episode I caught was an Icon episode, with designers paying homage to the 7 legends of fashion - Chanel, Halston, Versace, Pucci, Yves Saint Laurent, Christian Dior and Madame Gres. Some got it right as seen below - Johnny's Verasce victory in black leather, Anna's black and white salute to Coco Chanel and Daniella's choice Christian Dior collar.

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Others got it miserably wrong - Reco's Renaissance ruin in red and Haven's YSL WTF, which ultimately sent her home.

My episode hightlight? Being reminded of the industry mantra penned by Yves Saint Laurent -

Fashion fades, style is eternal.

I hear you Yves. That is precisely why this blog is aptly titled Let's Talk Style, rather than Let's Talk Fashion.


Make Me a Supermodel:

I totally missed season one of this ANTM copycat, but I'm finding the second season to be an even juicier and guiltier Spring pleasure than a plump watermelon soaked with vodka. The main difference between America's Next Top Model and these supermodel wannabes is that Bravo knows where the boys are, the boy models that is.

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With an equal mixture of both sexes, these perfectly sculpted guys and gals who want it all are now down to the top three. Zero chicks made the final cut - Salome, the Mennonite model pictured above was tossed for having too much junk in her trunk followed by 4th place Brazilian Roxette lookalike Mountaha. Although she wasn't a traditional beauty, I was kind of pulling for Mountaha, just because a girl with a name like that deserves to win something.

The final three models face off tonight and go head-to-head with two major photo shoots and an extended catwalk challenge. Considering the trio of pretty boys left, my pounds are wagered on the always beaming Brit Jonathan who is doing whatever it takes to support his wife and baby boy back at home. Thunderthighs Sandhurst will probably come in a close second.

Good luck and thanks for all the Supermodel worthy good times guys, and more importantly, for giving me tons of material for my Model Poses.

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Fashion TV Roundup

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It has recently come to my attention that I've been neglecting the Viewing Party section of this blog. In the words of the legendary Kurt Cobain, all apologies ladies (and mostly gay gents). I just can't seem to keep up with my Tivo these days and sincerely apologize for falling fashionably behind. So in order to make it up to you, I'm giving you a two-for-one with a Cliff's Notes rundown of television's most stylish moments from the past few months, crammed together at the last minute, like my 10th grade research paper on Jane Eyre.

America's Next Top Model:

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Cycle 12 did not disappoint with another group of skinny girls (who all wanna be on top) fighting tooth, nail and extension for a shot at Tyra Banks' top title. Teyona, the gorgeous Jersey girl with the Crest-White-Strips smile from Woodstown wins, beating an awkward, alien-like Allison whose big weird deer-eyes in the headlights look carried her all the way to the finals. Teyona might've screwed up her easy, breezy, beautiful Cover Girl commercial and was trippin' when she wore a nightgown to judges panel, but she rocked the final fashion show in Brazil, tearing out her fake ponytail and whipping it around with the fierceness and dexterity of a jungle cat.

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Season highlight - When a jealous, over the hill Celia sabotaged burn victim Tahlia in an effort to get her eliminated. Celia got torn a new one by Tyra because no one likes a tattletale, especially one who looks like a vampire from the cast of Buffy.

The Hills:

Season 5 brought about many a stylish strife despite the absence of Whitney Port, especially when Spencer's little sis Stephanie got fired from a dream intern job at People's Revolution with Lauren forced to give her the thigh-high boot. You can pretty much kiss your handbag designing dreams goodbye Steph (No one messes with Kelly Cutrone). Spidey is finally getting married after a few brief rounds of turmoil with a silly fame seeking bartender named Stacie, Lo gets a job at Smashbox, Audrina makes out with Brody Jenner and breaks up with Justin Bobby, and Spencer grows half a ball and apologizes to LC for spreading those nasty sex, lies and videotape rumors. This Sunday is the hour long season finale - Will Spidey finally become one? Will LC be there? Will Heidi's cowboy Dad be packing his Colt 45 when he moseys Heidi on down the aisle?

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Season lowlight - Knowing the girl behind the Hills, Lauren Conrad, will be moving on to bigger and better things with a seaon 6 replacement already lined up - fellow Laguna Beach alum and blonde troublemaker Kristin Cavallari. I wish I was wearing my Tootie Ramsey rollerskates when I say-

There's gonna be trouble...make that a double...

Fashion TV Roundup Part Deux Electric Boogaloo to follow next week...

Last Valentine's day weekend, my sweetie and I saw the long-awaited chick flick Confessions of a Shopaholic along with one million other adoring boyfriends who were too afraid or too whipped to tell their significant others they'd rather see Mall Cop or Underworld: The Rise of the Lycans.

My readers know that I've been desperately awaiting the release of this film adaptation since April of last year, and as I predicted, the big screen version of Sophie Kinsella's bestselling book did not disappoint.

Who could resist the trials and tribulations of Rebecca Bloomwood, the journalist with a heart of gold and an empty wallet who finds herself jobless, in mega-debt, and pursued by the villainous collection agent Derek Smeath. We've all been there, haven't we ladies? Finding ourselves shaken and stirred by overdraft fees, spending limits and increased APR's, but still we cheer Becky on, urging her to go ahead and buy that green scarf. She needs it after all.

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Becky reminded me of another female writer I know...a girl who sits at her laptop all day, dreaming of Gucci boots, sample sales, Chloe handbags and endless shopping sprees at Barney's. That girl is me, but I must confess - I am far from a shopaholic. I have 172 wish lists, but the only weekly treats I allow myself are nonfat decaf caps from Starbucks. Deep down I wish I were more like Becky, a true free-spirit in the department stores who allows herself to not only covet, but to own all of the apparel and accessories she's ever dreamed of, thanks to her magic cards. I wish I had an ounce of her spirit, allowing myself to enjoy the finer things in life --in moderation of course.

Back to the movie....Let's talk shop. I'm a big fan of the entire Shopaholic book series, and wasn't sure how it would translate shifting the setting from London to New York, but I think the film holds up and any Shopaholic fan will be pleased with the big picture. If you're still not sold, here's a quick rundown of my Shopaholic highs and lows:

Highlights- Patricia Field's scrumptious costuming, Isla Fischer's comedic genius, Hugh Dancy's quiet vulnerability, and Becky & Luke's insane Miami salsa number.

Lowlights- Talking mannequins, Leslie Bibb's Cruella De Vil-like turn as Alicia Billington, mysterious missing scenes that we loved from the trailer.

Shop responsibly.

*s

ps- if you're desperate for more confessions, check out a Mother-slash-business woman's Confessions of a Shopaholic blog focusing on family, business, motherhood, and of course - shopping!


If you haven't heard, Whitney Port - our favorite good girl stylist and budding fashion designer from The Hills - has left Lauren Conrad's side and the warmth of La La Land to take The City by storm. New York City that is.

It was only a matter of time before Whitney stepped out from supporting character status to embrace the spotlight all on her own with an MTV reality show catered just for her.

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She's moved on to greener pastures (concrete pastures rather) and has a new job at DVF (Ahem, that's Diane Von Furstenberg to you fashion civilians), plus a new crew of city friends including Aussie rock star boyfriend Jay (who isn't comfy with the boyfriend/girlfriend title just yet), Erin, the lovable roommate/confidante/party girl with a killer set of bangs and Olivia, the Upper East Side socialite who wants to take Whitney under her blinged out wing, and teach her everything there is to know about The City. I'm not sure about Olivia. Does she have ulterior motives? Does she secretly have a thing for Whitney's scruffy boyfriend, (sorry Jay), scruffy man friend? And why does she wear those two teenie tiny mini cips in her hair, recreating my second grade signature hairstyle?

One of the things I always loved about Whitney during her stint on The Hills was that she always steered clear of the drama...which may prove difficult now that she's headlining this act. Two boys have already fought over her, and it's only the beginning of the season.

Will our dear, sweet wholesome Whitney be corrupted by the big, bad unforgiving city? Will she come crawling back to the West Coast, or flourish in the fashion capital of the world?

If any or all of the above peaks your interest, tune in for the next installment tonight. It ain't Masterpiece Theatre, but it's worth watching just to see what Whit wears on all her date nights...with her friend, not boyfriend.

Stylista? Oh pleas-ah.

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The finale is over and Leanne Marshall was named the winner of our favorite guilty pleasure- Project Runway. Before you put your pin cushions back in your sewing baskets and start feeling the pangs of Heidi Klum & Tim Gunn withdrawal, there's a new fashion-themed reality knockoff to sink your sewing needles into.

Stylista is a new reality based fashion-fest trailing a rather awkward group of 11 desperate, young and sometimes clueless fashionistas as they vie for the coveted position of assistant to Anne Slowey, fashion news director of Elle magazine.

Episode two aired last night, but based on the premiere alone this stylista isn't very interested. As is the formula with most reality show competitions, casting directors make it a priority to assemble a group of contestants who will clash more than paisley and plaid. You have your token Underdog, the Egomaniac, the Sexpot, the Panic Attacked and an entire crew of familiar stock characters. Some are sweet, some are stacked and most think they're Coco Chanel. They're not.

My advice to Ms. Slowey? Drop these fashion wannabes, and hire me instead. I keep my boobs concealed and my anxiety levels under control. I'm cute, obedient, and I've got moxy. Elle needs a girl with moxy...Just ask Nina Garcia.

To the remaining ten stylistas, sorry guys...it's just business. Intern with Ralph Lauren for a few years and then we'll talk.

Like Heidi says, auf Wiedersehen.

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If you haven't caught the first few episodes of the much anticipated 90210 spinoff, relax. The show is getting press alright, but not because it's groundbreaking television.

Entertainment, gossip, and fashion rags alike are all headlining stories highlighting the 90210 Skinny Girls in all their flesh and bones glory...stress on the bones rather than flesh.

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Shown here on the cover of Nylon magazine, these Skinny Minnies are being compared to their 90210 foremothers- Jennie Garth, Shannen Doherty and Tori Spelling, who were considered skinny back in the 90's, but times have changed. The old 90210'ers had some twenty to thirty pounds on this new crop of California girls. Jennie Garth and Shannen Doherty have both reprised their roles as the legendary Kelly Taylor and Brenda Walsh respectively, and have given these young'uns a run for their money. They may not be teenagers any more, but they look Beverly Hill-icious with sexy curves, insulation and health on their side.

Sadly for the new class of West Beverly, scale readings and weight estimates are being flashed left and right. Personally, I'm tired of seeing these numbers thrown around for shock value. I could care less what the scale reads, you can tell by just taking a look at these girls and their gangly arms that there is a problem, a problem that has apparently escalated to the point where the 90210 Studs are planning to step in and stage an intervention. I'd love to see their strategy. Cheeseburgers in one hand, Gucci bags in the other.

My advice for these Beverly Hills babies? Stop guzzling Red Bulls and maxing out your credit cards on Rodeo Drive and head to the Valley. Not the Los Angeles Valley, head to Valley Naturals and pick up some Weight Gain powder.

Pronto.


Project Runway is back.

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Bravo's Emmy nominated series Project Runway is back for another season with another crop of 16 budding designers hungry to be "in", at least in Heidi Klum, Tim Gunn, Michael Kors, and Nina Garcia's eyes. I was more excited than a seamstress in a fabric store to revel in another fierce season of cutting, draping, and stitching to the finish...but after last night's episode, my evaluation is just...well, sew-sew.

The first challenge brought the designers full circle as they tackled the first challenge ever on Project Runway season one, the grocery store showdown. To add to the nostalgia, Tim Gunn was joined by season one contestant- an airbrushed Austin Scarlett who won the challenge way back when with a corn husk concoction that ultimately launched his career. It was nice to see an old familiar face, albeit one plastered in makeup. He looked like a cross between Clark Gable and a young Joan Rivers.

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Innovation was the name of the game. Most went the tablecloth route, others went the unexpected material route, few went the edible route. My favorites? A meringue cookie and candy dress that I dreamed of wearing during my days of playing Candyland. To sum up the fusilli pasta/oven mitt Italian themed dress? Two words - que bella. The tiered paper towel lipstick design was adorably kissable, and the yellow flyswatter dress was bugged out ingenious. Lowest marks, I agree with the judges- pink scully cap boy Blayne's Girlicious design was more like Pukelicious, even a six year old girl at her tap recital couldn't pull it off. Ultimately, it came down to Trashy vs. Psycho. I knew Trash bag girl wasn't going anywhere because in reality television, whoever declares "I'm going home", never goes home. It was Psycho shower curtain/yellow rubber glove dude who heard Heidi's fateful "Auf wiedersehen" and left with his model...no doubt to go unclog a toilet somewhere. If you missed the show, check out all the designs and rate your own favorites here (and if you thought the shower curtain ensemble was the bomb, I dare you to wear it outside...when it's not raining).

It will take me too long so sum up first impressions of all 16 designers, so I'll just cherry pick the ones I think are main contenders. Kenley- I like his chick. A cross between Dita Von Teese and Betty Page with a definite signature style, a throwback to days of old while maintaining a totally modern vibe. I would wear her dress today, tomorrow, as long as my tush fit in it. Kelli- bold, blond, bad to the bone. She's reminiscent of tatted Kat of Miami Ink fame and nailed the innovation challenge with a vacuum cleaner bag design that she manipulated into a truly gorgeous print. I loved the skirt, but wasn't too crazy about the coffee filter seashell bra top, but that's just me. The judges loved her daring bravado and deemed her the one to beat. At least for now...

Stay tuned...we're just getting started.


I would be remiss if I wrote a fashion blog and didn't comment on the Sex and the City movie I of course saw last Friday night, along with 55.7 million other cosmo guzzling women. It overtook the domestic box office and succeeded in Manolo'ing Indiana Jones out of his precious #1 spot. He used to be scared of snakes...now it's stilettos.

Carrie, Charlotte, Miranda and Samantha were all back in fine form prancing around the streets of New York (LA for Samantha) in Patricia Field's delicious couture costumes. You've read enough reviews and I don't believe in spoilers, so I'm just going to give some highlights and lowlights to match Carrie's ever changing haircolor.

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Highlights- Vogue photo shoots, wedding gown and fashion show galore. Trumping runway shows during Fashion week at Bryant Park? A fashion showcase taking place in Carrie's closet.

Lowlights- Carrie's Bird Veil. Not enough Stanford.

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All in all if you're a fan of the series, you're gonna likey, Big time. Even my date for the evening (who was male) said he liked it better than "Fool's Gold". I know, he's a keeper.

When the final credits wrapped up I couldn't help but wonder...are we in for a Sex and the City 2, Bradshaw Boogaloo? Or will Michael Patrick King throw together a prequel, casting younger girls to play the Sex and the City sexpots in their 20's? Or maybe Carrie and Mr. Big will have a set of precocious quadruplets, all with a different haircolor...Come to think of it, the possibilities are endless.

*sex and the sammy.

It's pretty sad when a group of high school trust fund babies have a better wardrobe than you do. Watching Gossip Girl's Upper East Side socialites traipse around Manhattan in Versace and Dolce and Gabbana is enough to make me call Bravo tv's Millionaire Matchmaker for some sugardaddy prospects.

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Enough about the clothes, here's the rundown...

Gossip gets put on hold while the kids prep for the SAT's. Unfortunately for Serena, a blast from the past in the form of Georgina Sparks threatens to seriously impair her math/verbal scores. Played by Michelle Trachtenberg, (former vampire slaying Buffy sis) Georgie doesn't jive with Serena's new spitting clean image and resorts to spiking her gal pal's drink so she won't be the only underaged bad girl left on Park Avenue.

Serena misses the big test, but not-so-evil stepbrother Chuck saves the day by scoring a redheaded SAT proxy for her. S closes the door on G for good and all seems well until Georgie shows up in Central Park making a play for Serena's boy Dan. The plot thickens...By the way, is it just me or did Jenny Humphrey grow two feet since they've been on hiatus?

So many designer clothes...so many they'll grow out of by summer...

*Keepin' the gossip flowing,

xoxo,

sammygirl

Over the Hills?

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There aren't that many fashion-themed television shows on air, and with Project Runway on hiatus (probably because Heidi is having Seal's triplets) you're going to have to settle for a rundown of last night's episode of the Hills.

This wasn't a favorite episode of mine. The three major plot points were:

1. Heidi infiltrating LC's table at GAO Nightclub.
2. The Return of Justin Bobby.
3. The Hills girls deciding to get a house together.

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1. We've seen it before...Heidi Montag's feeble attempt at hogging camera time. Wouldn't your time be better served filming another horrid beach video than sitting at a table where you're not wanted? At this point, Heidi is like herpes. She just won't go away.

2. Audrina went to dinner with her ex Justin Bobby, and he didn't burp once. Who said men don't change?

3. It's settled. Lauren, Audrina, and fellow Laguna Beach alum Lo are going to move into a house together. Read the contracts carefully girls, Heidi may already be living in the attic.

Spencer's camera time was limited thank goodness, but during the 4 minutes he was on screen I had an insatiable urge to poke him in the eyes Three Stooges style.

And these are the days of The Hills lives...

*Keepin' it real,

sammy

Sometimes it's good to watch bad tv. You don't have to follow storylines, plot progression, or character development, and let's face it...Sometimes you just wanna watch someone get bitch slapped. America's Next Top Model is bad tv at it's best...or worst. Depending on the model's angle, and what Ms. J is wearing.

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Here's a quick rundown of last night's episode. No one got bitch slapped, but someone did lose a thumb. Yowsa.

The central conflict revolved around African refugee/Iman doppleganger Fatima as she faced an international crisis. The models smelled a trip abroad in the air and Fatima hadn't updated her travel documents. Will she make it to the consulate in time? Will she miss a photo shoot in the process? Whatever is a model to do? All turned out well, but Tyra milked it more than she did in her got milk ad.

Now for the thumb. Arty redhead Lauren who has a bad walk and apparently tourettes syndrome, cut her thumb off while slicing an onion. Good thing there's not an IQ prerequisite to be cast on ANTM. You wouldn't last a day in Hell's Kitchen you donkey.

*Spoiler alert if you're saving it on tivo*

Adorable Stacy-Ann (reminiscent of Tootie from the Facts of Life ) had been flying under the radar, but got the boot for not being able to angle her big jaw properly. Sorry Stace. Personally, I think it should've been Dominique's time to go. For some reason she reminds me of the dude looks like a lady from the Crying Game.

Sorry. I guess bad tv just brings out the bitch in me.

*Keepin' my thumbs in tact,

sammy

Let's get something straight. I don't watch Dancing with the Stars for the dancing. I don't watch it for the sequined costumes that look like a bedazzler threw up on them. I don't watch it to see the chicks from Hairspray and American Pie respectively shake their tatas. I don't watch it to mourn the loss of what was once Priscilla Presley's face.

I watch it for Jason Taylor.

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The Miami Dolphins heartthrob is just as comfortable on the dance floor as he is on the 50 yard line and tonight, he rhumbaed just a little bit deeper into my heart. Looking very Ralph Lauren chic in a cream sweater and khaki slacks, he seduced me and every other hot-blooded woman in the country...and some men.

It was Samba and Rhumba night and in case you missed it, here's a full rundown: Mario, aka Poopie (don't ask) sold the hips but not the footwork, Priscilla missed a turn, and a Botox treatment, Marissa shook her tush and her big hair, Christián was competent, Marlee missed some beats, Kristi let her hair down and was one point shy of getting the gold, Shannon's hotness couldn't mask her awkwardness, and Jason was...ahhhh....everything a Jason should be.

Quin es mas macho? Christián De La Fuente O Jason Taylor?

Do I even need to answer? Be still mi corazon.

*Keepin' it real.

sammy

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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