Best of the Bourgeoisie

Above: J Crew sweater, Tucker skirt (similar here), Hermes bag, Miu Miu heels (similar here), Celine sunglasses


Quick snap on the way to work. Meet my forties pin up alter ego (Scarlett Betty? not quite as catchy as Sasha Fierce), who went into the office for me last week. 

I picked up a fabulous haul of on trend fall sweaters from J Crew when they had 30% off and couldn't be happier it is time to break some of them out. I am particularly enamored with this red collared knit, but it already has a pull after one wear. Quelle catastrophe!

What is the verdict? Try and repair? I never have much luck with fixing sweaters. I am not gifted in the seamtress department. 

Bide my time until another sale and buy again? Such a waste and yet it's one of THOSE items that goes with everything. One of those, you love it so much buy it in every color they make it, types of sweaters.



Get in My Closet: Interview with Yoana Baraschi




Images: Yoana Baraschi


Yoana Baraschi is a woman after my own heart- after all, I think we all know by now that I love a stout color and print!

Yoana, born and schooled in fine arts and sculpture in Bucharest, has a long history in fashion that spans France, USA, Hong Kong and India, and one well known designer and label after another. Her lines are often heavily influenced by her travels and almost always grounded in textiles and embroidery (her first position as a designer was with Emmanuelle Khahn as an embroidery designer). Also on her resume, positions as an illustrator at WWD, shoe designer for Mario Valentino, Design Director for Guess Knitwear, as well as Creative Director for Betsey Johnson. 

Is it any wonder she launched her own line in 2002?

Yoana Baraschi's line was picked up by Saks shortly after the launch and the rest is history. 

As I found out, the Romanian born beauty is equal parts thoughtful and passionate about her fashion- check out the interview below.



Yoana Baraschi is renowned for rich embroidery, vibrant color, and print- where do you find the inspiration from line to line?

Almost anywhere- traveling, the evening sky, an art show, and always from the buildings, landscapes, cafes and women in Paris. It feeds my designs that made for women who are feminine, confident and looking for a playful luxe aesthetic. In each collection there are statement dresses that fit flawlessly. Many have become favorites of some of Hollywood’s most dynamic women: from burlesque artist Dita Von Teese; to supermodel Heidi Klum; to actress, Camilla Bell. These are the type of women I keep in mind when designing.


How do you see your background in fine arts and sculpture work its way into your pieces? 

As an avid world traveler, I'm always seeking stories from the old and new worlds to see how I might be able to reinterpret them in my designs. I am endlessly attracted to neoclassical and baroque decorative motifs. They possess an effortless harmony that begs to be revealed anew.  I love creating clothing that enhances women’s physical attributes and empowers their inner spirits. Fit is also an ongoing labor of love in my collection from its design inception to the final truth of production.


Who are your biggest influences design wise? 

A mix of Diana Vreeland and Betty Page in almost equal measure. . .  


What advice would you give to an aspiring designer?

Trust your instincts and stay true to your design aesthetic. Build a team that you trust as you cannot do it alone, you will need support and sound advice to guide you through.  Study and explore, I am constantly on a journey to learn and experience more. Design internships are invaluable experiences to have, as they give you a first-hand look into the business.   


What was the catalyst for you to take the leap, move on from Betsey Johnson, and start your own line?

Seeing the creative energy of Betsey Johnson when I worked as her Creative Director really inspired me. It helped me realize there wasn’t one way to design—you could think outside the box, you could be playful and have a sense of humor while still creating something incredible.


If you weren’t designing what would you be doing?

Plastic Surgeon!


What is your favorite piece from the latest collection?

My favorite pieces are the Canyon Land Swing Jacket and the Luxe Patch High Low Coat.


Any specific reference point for your latest collection?

Abstract prints, ombre leaves, feather motifs, as well as a surreal gilded forest print set the framework for my current Fall collection. 


What piece in your closet means the most to you?

A cashmere sweater I produced 10 years ago in collaboration with the Cita Foundation at a Women's Cooperative in Nepal.


What does the coming year bring for the line?

Even better design and execution.


5 Questions with MPCC


Trapped on a dessert island, what three things do you bring?

My contact lenses, Mrs. Tweedie's book and water!


Favorite scent?

Killian's Cruel Intention


Last item of clothing you purchased?

Red suede boots from Freelance


Super power you want to have?

To be effortlessly super present in the moment.


Historical event you wish you were a part of?

The coronation of Louis XV



And finally, where can readers buy Yoana Baraschi locally?

YB can be purchased at Vira on Charles St. In Boston




The Dove Great Style Effect: Holiday Hair

Mohar C: Bohemian UpDo!

Shauna G.: Formal, Classic UpDo!

Flora S.: Formal & Glamorous!

Jande W.: Formal, Bohemian Updo!

Images: Dove Style Gallery


Hair confessional time.....I have been guilty of it- pulling celeb inspiration from magazines for a new hairstyle or look. Why is it we turn to these unrealistic images time after time? Why not use real women and real hair as inspiration? Dove has finally given us the means to do just that!

I am proud to announce my involvement in the Dove Great Style Effect (check the full gallery here), an online gallery of real women and their gorgeous locks. Search by hair type, style (updo? bohemian?), or just browse through for ideas and tips from the gorgeous ladies. 

Such an awe inspiring final product, I have already earmarked my picks for holiday hair, though I may need to replicate them sooner than that!

Time to break away from my signature bun for a bit and look to Jande and Mohar (above) for some side swept braid inspiration. Totally glam, polished, and fun.  This look is part Downton Abbey, classic, and 100% chic, perfect for holiday parties and festivities. All the looks above are from the Dove gallery and all perfectly polished for your formal party needs. 

Mohar's styling tip:

"Dirty hair! It's so much easier to work with hair when it's not super clean but a day or two unwashed. It's been my dirty little secret!"

Seconded! My hair is so much easier to work with after a day or two of going unwashed. Dirty secret no more!

Flora's glam long locks are an inspiration for me to grow out my tresses a bit and try to inject some curl. Her secret? 

"Leave conditioner/mask on your hair for at least 8-10 minutes!"

Definitely going to give this a try.

Be sure to check out the gallery for some serious hairspiration and check back here to let me know what you think!