Thursday, August 18, 2011

Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head

The recent increase in summer storms has sent me jonesing for a new umbrella. I seem to have misplaced my trusty Monet umbrella, so I'm stuck with dripping hair and soaked clothing when caught in a storm.  I must admit I'm a bit picky when buying umbrellas, mainly because few have been able to withstand the heavy winds of Kingston.  So if anyone has found a sturdy, stylish, and affordable umbrella, or has tried one of the following umbrellas, please do tell!

Compact Umbrellas:
I love that compact umbrellas can be stuffed easily into a tote or backpack, but every compact umbrella I've ever used has been quickly inverted, bent, or torn apart. However, since I'm now living in Ottawa, which doesn't get such absurd wind speeds, I may be safe with something a little less sturdy.

Of course this Lilly Pulitzer umbrella is cute as a button and exudes happiness.  Pink and petite, it would easily go with the myriad of pink pieces in my closet and brighten up a rainy day.  
This mini Degas' Dancers umbrella will surely satisfy the art historian in me.  Degas was also the first artist I distinctly remember loving as a child.  I blame it on the stereotypical young girl dream of becoming a ballerina.

Leave it to MoMA to sell a color-changing umbrella with the NYC skyline.  The simple black and white design reminds me of the Kate Space City Lights Lillith Skirt.

 Stick Umbrellas:
I've recently fallen in love with stick umbrellas, even though they can be a little cumbersome at times.  Perhaps it's the flashback I get to Gene Kelly singing and dancing with his stick umbrella in Singing in the Rain, but I feel that they are a smidgen glamorous and old-fashioned.

I've been coveting this umbrella since I first laid eyes on it in Matchbook Magazine. Featuring Scalamandre's iconic zebra print, it's a classic umbrella that would pair well with both black and tan trench coats and be an appropriate choice for this burgeoning professional.
This iconic Burberry umbrella sends be daydreaming about walking hand-in-hand with a dashing young gentleman along the streets of London.  Unfortunately, for over $200,  both the umbrella and the accompanying dream are currently unattainable.

Carried by both Charlotte York and Blair Waldorf, the clear umbrella seems to be a clever solution to a fashionista's desire to be protected from the rain and yet still have her outfit on full display. Being accident-prone, perhaps this umbrella will be just the ticket.  I assume finally being able to see telephone poles, people, and parking meters will keep me from running into them. I would hope.  

I'm mesmerized by this Color Wheel Stick Umbrella from MoMA.  I can picture myself twirling it around and watching all the pretty colors merge together. Plus it will coordinate well with everything.

What do you think?  Which umbrella do you think would be appropriate for a young professional, but still exude oodles of personality? Do you have any suggestions for other great umbrellas?


Sunday, August 14, 2011

Giveaway Winners!

I hope everyone has been enjoying the weekend and managed to avoid any summer storms.  We had a rather eerie day where the air was cool and crisp, the sun was a little weak, and a sweater was required even in the afternoon.  I'm hoping it was only a fluke, because I'm sure not ready for fall just yet! I want to hold on to my Lilly sundresses and flip flops for as long as I can!

But without further ado, the winners of the giveaway are (using an online random number generator):

For the eyeliner - Vanessa

And for the lipstick - Suburban Princess

Suburban Princess and Vanessa, I will be forwarding your email addresses to Margaret to let her know that you've won.  She's incredibly kind and helpful, and will help you find your perfect shades.

Thank you so much to everyone who entered, and a great big thank you to Margaret who is providing the Mary Kay goodies! 


Wednesday, August 10, 2011

A Date with Jean Paul Gaultier

For those of us not finding ourselves sitting in the front rows of Paris Fashion Week runway shows, visiting fashion exhibits in museums is the closest we can get to the magical couture runway experience. While some exhibits merely present the clothes on static mannequins, providing a rather dull retrospective, the Jean Paul Gaultier exhibit was an animated and stimulating delight!

 From the moment I walked up the stairs I was greeted with animated mannequins dressed to the nines in iconic Jean Paul Gaultier nautically inspired garb and mermaid-like ensembles. The Jean Paul Gaultier mannequin, as seen above, actually introduced himself and spoke about the exhibit in both English and French.  Incroyable!

This was perhaps my favorite piece, and one I most certainly wish could makes its way into my wardrobe.  With the ostrich feathers flowing from the bottom, it's a luxurious update on a classic striped nautical dress, and yet still alluringly simple.

 Moving from room to room encountered spectacular works of tailored art.

From beaded gowns
(No, that's not real animal skin. It's all beaded, and took over two thousand hours to make!)

 To feathered jackets and boots,

And coned bras to neoprene suits, the imaginative designs of France's enfant terrible sent me dreaming about walks through the streets of Paris,

(Please note the Eiffel Tower heels and fur-lined footbeds. I was blown away with the detailing)

Mingling with members of London's punk counterculture,

 Or entering a vibrant scifi movie scene.

I've been lucky enough to visit several designer exhibits over the years, including the Chanel exhibit at the Met several years ago, and this was perhaps my favorite of them all.  The whole thing was a seamless production, with detailed information about the garments, thorough explanations of the inspiration behind each collection, dramatic staging, and multimedia installations. It certainly whet my appetite for couture.  Bring on Paris Fashion Week!


Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Dressed for a Date with Jean Paul Gautier

Over the Canadian long weekend my family took a day trip to Montreal to do a little shopping, snap pictures of beautiful architecture, and peruse the vast retail offerings.  First thing in the morning, while my dad headed over to the Canadian Centre for Architecture, my mom and I giddily checked out the Jean Paul Gaultier exhibit at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts.  Knowing we'd be visiting the exhibit, we made sure our attire for the day fit the spirit of designer, whose striped nautical shirt has become utterly iconic.

We had a swell time venturing from room to room, gazing upon superb works of fantastical art. Luckily we were allowed to take pictures, so keep an eye out for my next post, to be filled with some of my favorites from the exhibit!

And don't forget to enter the Mary Kay Giveaway to win two of my favorite beauty staples!


Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Mary Kay Giveaway!

A while back I won a navy weekender eye pencil from SGL's own Mary Kay giveaway (with the goodies provided by her sister Margaret, a Mary Kay beauty consultant).  Margaret very kindly included many samples along with the weekender pencil. I fell in love with the Sunny Citrus lipstick and eyeliner samples and stocked up on both.  After a couple of email exchanges,  Margaret has very generously offered to provide my favorite Mary Kay products as part of a giveaway to my readers!

One lucky reader will get to choose any shade of the Creme Lipstick.  I have recently fallen in love with bold bright lips.  Most of my current lipsticks are from MAC, but unless it's matte, my lipstick seems to wear off the second my lips touch a cup of coffee. I was pleasantly surprised by how long the Mary Kay Creme Lipstick lasted. And even once the original color creme layer began to wear off, it did so very gradually, so I rarely had to reapply it. 
So whether you're looking for a bold orange-red to stand out
A natural pink blush for everyday
Or an apricot glaze to complement that great summer tan
you'll get to choose whichever one of the many shades tickles your fancy.  

A second lucky reader will win an eyeliner in the shade of her choice. 
I love the Mary Kay liner because it's long-lasting, retractable, and only $10.  I stocked up on my two go-to colors - dark brown and black. I'm sure you'll be as smitten as I am by this product.

You can check out Margaret's Mary Kay website here to see the myriad of products available.

For the giveaway rules:
1) For two entries, be or become a follower of this blog
2)For three additional entries blog or tweet about this giveaway
3) For three more entries "like" Margaret's Mary Kay facebook page
For a total of EIGHT entries! Please leave one comment with your total entry count and an email address through which I can contact you.

The giveaway will end Friday August 12th at 11:59pm, and I will announce the winner by the following Monday.

Best of luck to everyone, and thanks so much for following!


Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Please Excuse My Quarter-Life Crisis

Ever had something really good happen to you that you just knew to be too good to be true?  That something would inevitably ruin it?  Well that somewhat happened to me.  I had a job offer I was utterly ecstatic about, but after having too much difficulty attaining a work visa to the US, the job had to be given to someone else.  Such is life.  It happened to my brother after law school, and now it happened to me.  Thankfully it all worked out in the end for my brother (who is now working for one of the largest law firms in Miami, married to his law school sweetheart, and incredibly happy), so hopefully it will all work out for me too.

The last month or so I've spent much time in self-reflection, trying to figure out what I want to do, where I want to work, and what my skills are after all these years of schooling.  Part of me wants to simply pack up and move to Europe, and another part of me is worried about not finding work after not hearing back from the many employers to whom I've applied.

I know that it's sometimes the luck of the draw, that it's a numbers game, and that I just have to keep applying and eventually I'll get the job I deserve. But with the fierce competition among the large number of unemployed recent graduates, how is one supposed to maintain optimistic?  It will be difficult, but until the day comes where I land my dream job, I'll be trying to hold my head up high, finding joy in the little things in life.

So please excuse my minor bout of pessimism, BUT if you've made it all the way through this post, you'll be happy to know that I'm hosting a giveaway for Mary Kay products.  Stay tuned for the next post!