L-O-V-E Day

“The best kind of love is the kind that awakens the soul and makes us reach for more, that plants a fire in our hearts and brings peace to our minds.” – Noah Calhoun, The Notebook

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Sappy romance movies really aren’t my thing and is probably my least favorite movie genre right next to romantic comedies. When I first watched The Notebook, I rolled my eyes at how the cheesy and predictable love story unfolded. Yet over time, I have grown fond of it mostly because, well, it stars Ryan Gosling as the hopeless romantic Noah Calhoun – what’s not to love? Oh how I’d like to take a ride on Noah’s ark.

Rachel McAdams plays Allie Hamilton, who is Noah’s love interest. It was painful to watch her torture herself and Noah as their summer love crashed and burned, but watching her outfit change in each scene was certainly a delight. Although women’s fashion in the 1940s is often characterized as utilitarian and austere, reflecting the nation’s somber mood during the war, there was also a softer and glamorous side, as epitomized by Allie’s perfect curls, red lipstick, and feminine dresses. Hats, floral and geographic prints, emphasis on sleeve details, shirt dresses, and shoulder pads became very popular during this time.

vintage jacket (similar) / vintage dress (similar) / vintage pumps (similar) / fishnets (similar) / Forever 21 pillbox (similar)

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You must remember this, a kiss is still a kiss.

I may not have a heart when it comes to romance movies, but I can empathize with the pain and uncertainty of wartime love. Imagine kissing your love for the last time, never knowing when or if they will return. You cling onto a photograph of him, waiting everyday at the mercy of a telegram or handwritten letter to know that he is still alive and well. The men and women in these photographs didn’t really know when they would see each other again because another day was not guaranteed. So on this Valentine’s Day – and any other day for that matter – enjoy the present with the apple of your eye and be thankful that you have someone who wants to be attached to you at the hip, and who is happy to call you their better half. If you are single, then bask in the love of your family and friends and believe that your soulmate is out there somewhere – or at least right at your fingertips on Tinder.

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I experienced wartime love when I laid my eyes on this gorgeous pair of 1940s peep-toe pumps. In pristine condition, I can only imagine they sat in a shoebox in some stylish lady’s closet and forgotten, as she probably had more pressing matters to be concerned with. Valentine’s Day wouldn’t be complete without a lady in red, because you know how the saying goes: red dress at night, sailor’s delight. This thrifted 80s silk beauty almost fits the bill for a 40s style dress. None of the hats in my collection could ever rival the amazing head pieces in that era, but I tried my best by adding a veil to my favorite pillbox hat. I felt a bit like a widow, but the 1940s were somber times after all. Fishnet stockings were hardly a thing in that decade, but I felt this outfit deserved some pizzaz and sheer nylons just weren’t going to do it. I could be waiting a while for my sailor, so better stay warm and glam in my fur collar jacket.

Although I never want to be in the situation of such uncertainty, one thing I am certain of: when my sailor sees me this Valentine’s Day in my 1940s inspired getup, he’ll want to dip me and kiss me like it’s V-J Day in Times Square.

Happy Valentine’s Day loves!

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The rain in Spain falls mainly on the windowpane

Alex Trebek says: This gridlike pattern is one of spring 2013’s hottest trends. (hint below)

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Windowpane by chicvic featuring tibi

Answer: What is the windowpane print.

I purchased this windowpane printed poly blouse last winter at my local Out of the Closet thrift shop. I was not particularly crazy about it, but I do have a penchant for semi-sheer blouses, and a weakness for twofer deals (the tie came attached!). I channeled my inner Eliza Doolittle with a 1940’s twist. I decided to go modest with a wool midi-skirt, with the blouse tucked and belted in. I recently acquired this wide brimmed wool hat from Uniqlo (finally, a hat to add to my collection!), and it complements the outfit’s color palette and silhouette quite nicely. Added to the mix is a pair of old maroon pumps from my momma that match perfectly with my hat. Eliza’s look wouldn’t be complete without a bouquet of flowers! I feel like singing in the rain now.

If I were a poor flower girl, I’d still know how to look dapper on a dime. Oh Professor Higgins, I’m a real fair lady now, aren’t I?

Fashion Week Favorites

New York. London. Milan. While Paris Fashion Week hasn’t even started yet, there are simply too many fashion shows to keep up with. After reviewing hundreds of runway photos, my favorite Fall 2013 collections so far are from Anna Sui, Badgley Mischka, and Dsquared2.

I love Anna Sui’s bold use of color and eclectic mix of fabric and textures. From the clean wingtip eye makeup on the models to down to the shoes, Anna has redone the 1960s in a very groovy way and kept it young and playful. Might it be a reminder that yours truly was swinging 60s before Ms. Sui debuted her Fall collection. Call me clairvoyant.

Badgley Mischka’s slim silhouettes, fur, jewels, and dark hues paint the portrait of an elegant lady. It is said that the duo were inspired by the female characters from Alfred Hitchcock’s films. I’ve never seen any of his famous movies, but now I will definitely check some out, just for the outfits. Oh the horror!

Dsquared2 channeled the 1940s wartime look without the seriousness of the war. They added their own whimsical twist to the popular silhouettes and styles of that decade, with pencil skirts, suits,  fedoras, and fur. I must find excuses to wear socks with strappy heels more often. I drool over the men; the menswear doesn’t look so bad either.

What are your favorite runway looks from Fashion Week?