NYFW Outfit Diary: Lady in Red

Ladies in Marni. We must have communicated in our sleep about heel choice for the day. 
I just adore Sarah's pair...

Above (on Lani): Milly Hayden trouser, Forever 21 tank, Marni heels, PS1 bag, necklace, c/o my mother!

Back to back trips, from Canada road trip 2011 straight into NYC and fashion week, the last few weeks have been a whirlwind!

I have finally loaded up some photos....and can't wait to share some of the fabulous shows I had the chance to go to. Day one, Sarah from Style on the Couch and I took in Tadashi Shoji and Candela. So many fabulous looks to share. I was blown away by the ethereal, colorful and beautiful designs, deserving of their own post.

First up though, a quick outfit post for the week, with my favourite look for fall, all red layered with some, ahem red! I have a full on obsession which started with the Vena Cava dress I tried at the Tannery, went straight through to a new Max Azria dress I picked up (and declared at the border) in Montreal, and then carried into this week with my Milly Hayden trousers paired with a red Forever 21 tank (for more on my fall trend predictions, check out my guest post over at Bows and Sparrows).

I had so much fun wearing these brights and even caught the attention of some street peepers from Tyra Banks new site, TypeF during the FNO event at Reiss. Check out the interview and site here.

I lasted the entire day in my Marni heels! Husband would be so proud!


Zara US E-Commerce Launch

Unless you've been living under a rock for a spell, you probably heard Zara launched their much long awaited ecommerce site in the US this week. I gave it a road test this morning and I am happy to report stellar shopping results from the comfort of my arm chair and laptop. Items were in stock and shipping is free.

What I really love is the campaign.....Dear America, 50 states, 50 photographs. Stunning photography and tribute to America the beautiful.

I am very thankful to live in this great country today.

Ten years and we will never forget.


Jean Paul Gaultier Sidewalk to Catwalk

As I mentioned in my last post, top on my list of highlights from our recent road trip to Montreal has to be the Jean Paul Gaultier exhibit at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts- the first international exhibit devoted to the French courtier.

Gaultier, France's enfant terrible, launched his first pret-a-porter collection in 1976, despite a lack of any formal design training. Gaultier caught his break in the business by sending sketches to the top couture stylists and landing a position as Pierre Cardin's assistant in 1970. Punk, rock, denim, mixed in with a little of the bizarre, and all with a sense of humor, are hallmarks of the designer who founded his own couture house in 1997.

The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier: From Catwalk to Sidewalk was initiated, developed, and produced by the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts to coincide with the 35th anniversary of the designer's label. Don't call this a retrospective! It is an exhibit, a work of art in and of itself which features over 140 creations from the designer, mainly from his couture collections. In addition to the virtuoso designs you will also find many photos, videos and sketches on display, many for the first time, from other artists and collections (hello Cindy Sherman!).

Six different thematic sections guide the visitor through the multi-media instillation, from the streets of Paris, to the elements of science fiction that have influenced his work over the years. It is a winding, unfettered and best of all uncrowded look at the designer's collections.The space is a little bit back alley brothel with neon lights and dark corners, part eerie with mannequins triggered by sound and movement to talk and change facial expression and all around beautiful with clothing that dazzles in down to each minute detail. Equally refreshing is the museum's approach to engaging the audience, by allowing people to interact with the items and take photos! No more skulking around gallery space sneaking photos on your iPhone while you pretend to text. I wish more spaces would take a hint and do the same.

And who could forget the cone bras which Gaultier designed for Madonna in the early 90's as part of her Blond Ambition Tour? Two of her own iconic corsets from the tour, along with photos, are on display here. Took me straight back to "Express Yourself" and was actually accompanied by some really interesting information on Gaultier's work with the female form and corsets. His adaptation (rounding and raising) of what would typically cinch the waist and lower abdomen, instead, leaves the stomach exposed in most of his designs- not hiding the shape of women but still providing a sexy option for enhancement to the natural shape.

From the revolving catwalk, corsets, cones and the stripes of Gaultier which all clearly captivated me, I decided to end my post with a bridal gown, like a runway show. This being after all, the show to end all shows from this unrivaled designer. Make your way to Montreal for a long weekend to see this ASAP or take it in when it travels to Dallas, TX, in November of this year. Definitely not an exhibit to be missed.


Canada Road Trip, Next Stop Montreal

Day two of our Canadian road trip took us first to the Abbaye Saint-Benoit du Lac, for a mini-detour on the way out of Sherbrooke, and into Montreal. The Abbaye, founded in 1912, houses little more than 50 monks who live under the rule of Saint Benedictine in the gorgeous grounds. The monks are a regular stop on many bike and driving tours because of the apple based (wine, cider, jams) and maple based products they produce (hello maple ice cream!!). I brought home some maple chocolates and sparkling cider for husband, that I will report back on, because you know they were really for me.

An hour and a half away from the Abbaye, we finally landed in the metropolis of Montreal, the largest city in Quebec, and the second largest city in Canada. Montreal, dual parts French and English in it's history, takes its name from Mont-Royal, the triple peaked hill in the heart of the city.

We tossed our bags at the lovely Loews Hotel Vogue and walked over to Cafe Holt for lunch to take advantage of the gorgeous weather.  Cafe Holt is located in the venerable Montreal shopping institution, Holt Renfrew. Holt's originally opened in 1837 as a hat shop, and once "Furrier in Ordinary" to Queen Victoria, is equivalent to our Barneys and Saks. Also an excellent spot to grab a glass of wine and light lunch, as you can see we did. Sufficiently fueled on salad, cheese, biscotti and wine we took in all this high end department store had to offer a couple of ladies from out of town.

A hop, skip and jump around the corner, we quickly arrived at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts to tour the Gaultier exhibit, a perfect denouement to our outing at Holt's. The exhibit is equal parts gaudy, awe inspiring and outright beautiful. The mannequins are at first glance unsettling, being triggered to speak and change facial expression when you trip a sensor. The overall effect of the fashion literally talking to you and directly engaging the audience member is a pleasant and unexpected surprise. The museum also encourages people to openly take photos within the exhibit (shocking!) and seems to welcome audience interaction on a level that many museums here in the states could take a lesson from. More on this to come though, this amusing and visually stunning collection of Gaultier's work is deserving of its own post......

Day three still to come!


Getting Mod with TJ Maxx and Marshalls

Above: Leifsdottir top via TJ Maxx $59.99, Leifdottir pant via TJ Maxx $99.99, Banana Republic bag, 
Oliver Peoples sunglasses, Forever 21, YSL and Yurman jewelry, Hermes ribbon and Miu Miu heels.

What are you favourite trends this fall? Are you blushing for scarlet? Layering fresh prints on prints? I am personally digging the Mad Men mod stylings with a passion.

So, when my good friends at TJ Maxx and Marshalls asked me to interpret this look with some of their latest fall merchandise I jumped on the bandwagon.

I was also curious to see what some of my fashionably inclined friends would put together a la Peggy, Betty or Joan, so I enlisted the help of Naina, of STYLE'N, Alana of The Good Girl Gone Blog and Lissy, of A Girl in Boston to fill in some of the other characters and style looks as well.

The rules are easy. We were each asked to interpret our own modern day Mad Men outfit with clothes from a specific local TJ Maxx or Marshalls location. (Of course, I selected the TJ Maxx Freshpond!) The catch? The outfit had to be under $200.00. The reward? One of us lucky ladies will win a gift card from TJ Maxx/Mashalls for $200.00. The goal? To provide all of our readers with some fun ideas for fall from one of my favourite stores to shop! Voting runs through 9/14, just in time for some fall shopping.

Voting for your favourite can be done by clicking here!

I had no problems finding mod clothes at TJ Maxx, it was like they stocked the runway section with all my go-to brands for the shoot. Parfait! The buyers for TJ Maxx and Marshalls must have been working over time to stock up on all the latest fall fashions. Mod faux fur. Print galore. Chic leather jackets and leather details all abound. Not from past seasons, never defective and definitely on deep discount. Pretty much why I keep coming back. TJ Maxx and Marshalls buyers round up the best of the world and deliver it up to my favourite local store at off prices, such a perfect arrangement for me.

My total outfit? Well under budget at $159.99 and high waisted heaven.