101 Fashion Tips and Tricks every Gal Should Know

I'm a list maker.  A task master, if you will.  So when I come across lists on line, I scoop them up, especially when they are as helpful as this one, full of useful tips and tricks.  This one comes from Fashionista and details some unique and creative ways to tackle fashion issues, look your best and keep your clothes in great shape.  I hope you find a useful tip or two... or twenty. Enjoy! 101. Despite what it says on the tag, cashmere is best washed by hand. To dry it, use a salad spinner, which releases excess water in seconds.

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How SJP met Manolo Blahnik

"Give a girl the right shoes, and she can conquer the world" Marilyn Monroe

On Saturday, a group of women gathered at Neiman Marcus to watch a parade of gorgeous shoes walk down a carpeted runway.  George Malkemus, President of Manolo Blahnik, was in store to share with us the Spring collection of shoes.  Everything from high heels to flats were showcased on the feet of the models, who showed the shoes in a graceful fashion.

Mr. Malkemus has been president of the famed shoe company for 30 years, since buying the rights to North and South America from Mr. Blahnik in 1982, when they bonded over their love and ownership of Scottish Terriers.  While one is the creative designer, the other is financially savvy -- a partnership from which many an elegant woman benefit.

Mr. Malkemus told us the story behind each shoe and how comfort is the most important element when designing the classic, never trendy shoes.  "The shoe should never be the totality of the woman, but always a complimenting factor," he told us.  If you have trouble wearing slingbacks it's because you have a narrow heel. (Marc Jacobs puts a dab of mustache wax on the heels of his models to secure the skinny slingback straps.)

As the last model walked down the runway in the shoes that Sarah Jessica Parker's character Carrie lost on an episode of Sex and the City (When Tatem O'Neil required her guests to remove their shoes before entering her home for a baby shower) we were told the story of Sarah Jessica Parker and how her connection with Manolo came to be...



Many years ago, when SJP was dating Robert Downey Jr. (we're talking 80's here), the dynamic shoe duo were having a trunk show in Los Angeles.  The new starlet asked Mr. Blahnik if she could purchase three pairs of shoes, but needed to put them on a layaway plan, as she couldn't afford to pay for them outright.  Mr. Blanhik, hailing from Italy and confused by the term "layaway" asked Mr. Malkemus how they should proceed?  For the first, and only, time they agreed to the layaway plan.  Several years later, when Sex and the City burst onto the TV and cultural scene, Ms. Parker repaid the company by requesting that Manolo Blahnik shoes be used on the show and in the movie.

Neiman Marcus was the first department store to purchase the shoes, initially securing a total of 60 pairs, 30 for Beverly Hills and 30 for their San Fransisco store.  How the times have changed! The shoes are now available in all Neiman stores, as well as Bergdorf Goodman, Barneys New York, Saks Fifth Avenue and Nordstrom, as well as in 14 independent retailers and two stand-alone stores, in New York and Las Vegas.

The day wrapped with Mr. Malkemus in the shoe salon, assisting women with their selection and doing what Mr. Blahnik credits him as doing best, "knowing what women want."

Spring Trends have Sprung

A few weeks back, Neiman Marcus invited a handful of Media Mavens to view their Spring Collections.  Being a true girly girl, I always enjoy my get together with girlfriends for brunch, but this brunch was different... it included shoes, clothes and accessories that were sure to fly off the racks this Spring. What better way to kick off the first day of Spring than with a visual online runway of what's hot this season?

  1. Pinks.  The burgundy and bordeaux from Fall is replaced by all shades of pink. Think magenta, bright pink, light pink, fuchsia, coral.
  2. Patterned pants.  Leopard, floral and snake-skin, oh my! Fancy pants are the way to go!
  3. The Clutch: On the New York Fashion Week runways, models strutted their stuff carrying clutches and handbags.  The difference this season lies in the way in which the handbag is carried, which is clutch style, not tossed over the shoulder.
  4. Silver shoes: Silver wedge or strappy sandal, Neiman's tells us "all over metallic makes a statement, a single detail makes it modern."
  5. Prints: Prints are not only for pants! Floral is front and center this season, but so are graphic prints.  And Ken Downing says "At Neiman Marcus, the animal never dies."  This spring/summer 2012, the print is zebra!
  6. Dramatic Earrings: Even in jeans, earrings can make your outfit pop.  Think BIG!
  7. Tribal: More Aborigines and African and less Santa Fe, this trend is everywhere from pants (fancy pants!) to dresses.
  8. Yellow: A difficult color to wear for some skin tones, yellow is the new neutral.  Find the tone that works best with your skin tone and wear it with blue, red, green, white... the choices are endless!
  9. Sports Influence: Velor tracksuits and yoga pants not included.  Think of it as more one item that has sporty influence, like a duffel shaped bag, and less about looking like you just walked out of the gym.
  10. The Spring Face: Brows: keep them groomed ladies, they frame your face!



The excitement was endless and there was chatter about the pieces that were drool worthy.  The one everyone agreed on? The Alexander McQueen clutch.  Weighing approximately 5 pounds, it looked fabulous on every single one of the ladies well-groomed and manicured fingers.



Veterans Day PM P.S.

Happy Veterans Day and a heartfelt "Thank You" to the families of service men and women, and of course, to all those who have served our country, to preserve and protect our freedom. Today's PM P.S. brings one piece from Culture, Food, Fashion and Fitness. Let's take a look:

Culinary: The New York Times brings us an article from culinary creator Mark Bittman, on the multitude of uses for brown rice, claiming "it's not just for hippies."  Filled with recipes and detailing the difference in various types of brown rice, this piece is a win-win for a girl who could live on this grain.

Culture: Giorgio Armani opens a new hotel in Milan, with 95 rooms decked out in chic decor. Vogue Magazine calls it "a grown-up space, that bucks the traditional baroque theme, found throughout Milan.

Fashion: "Reading Between the Lines, This is a Big Day for Corduroy Fans" shares with the reader the excitement of the corduroy fan club for today's date: 11/11/11, as it most closely represents the look of the pant.

Fitness: With holiday season knocking on our door, eating is sure to take center stage in the next few weeks and through the New Year.  Take a look at 58 ways to burn 100 calories, so we can still enjoy all the deliciousness the Holidays have to offer.