Category Archives: Pretty in Pink

Preppy: The Next Big Thing For Spring. (Cough-Cough.)

Hello-Hello, and Happy Friday. (I don’t know about you, but we’re ready for a touch of weekend here in the Corner Condo at Princess InterPlanetary HQ.)

If it’s almost spring, then it follows that retailers are breaking out the preppy style references in their advertising and marketing campaigns, we thought it would be fun to share a few of them with you. The first comes via Nordstorm, with thanks to our friend Cindy for alerting us to the communiqué, showcasing “Prep Cool“.


“Prep Club Accessories, Swimwear & Resortwear” showcases a variety of merchandise one might expect to see, from Tory Burch, Marc Jacobs and Milly….


To Dooney & Bourke, Kate Spade,and Longchamp.


There were a few brands included in the “Prep Club” group (for some reason the promotional groupings were referred to as both Prep Cool and Prep Club, we’ve nary a clue why) I don’t always/usually associate with a prep aesthetic: from left to right, McQ Alexander McQueen, Cara Accessories and AK Anne Klein.


We move on to a Macy’s campaign, “Preppy Handbook” (ahem), with “The Four Fundamentals You Need Now”.

Today’s prep-wear is feminine, expertly tailored and effortlessly chic (think: 1960s socialites vacationing in Palm Beach). And, it’s the next big thing for Spring. Want to incorporate this work to play look into your wardrobe? We’ll show you four essentials you need to look pretty in prep – and exactly how to wear them.


Among those four fundamentals, “Kaleidoscope Florals and Bold Stripes” shown below, there are some darling shirts.


Macy’s reports that another essential is “Femme Madras,” one is admonished to “Rework this classic preppy plaid with a shrunken schoolboy blazer or tailored shorts.”

Another “Preppy Academy Must Have” is the colored trench.


There’s one more “Fundmental,” we’ll let you discover it in your own time, click here to see the rest of the Macy’s post.


One item not mentioned in either of the marketing campaigns that we do consider a basic: seersucker.

American Digs

While that might look like something perfect for this weekend, it’s not, at least not for you. It’s for these fine friends.

American Digs

These are the work of American Digs, proudly Made in the USA, and $34.

When Tilly heard I was putting them in as today’s Friday Fun she reminded me of something that is a bit of a sore point, we promised her a replacement for this.

Silly Tilly

Her Yale sweatshirt has seen better days. (Heh, heh, heh.) Somehow I’m not seeing the seersucker on her, are you? Sadly, the words “seersucker” and “Tilly” in the same sentence bring visions of material stretched tautly, beyond its original design, buttons straining and popping off randomly, and sounds of seams ripping as fabric shreds.

With that we say goodbye until next time, may your weekend be warm and wonderful!


Filed under Friday Fun, preppy, Preppy clothing & brands, Preppy Fashion, Pretty in Pink, Tilly

Preppy Style Cheat Sheet & “That Absurd War on the Color Pink”

Hello-Hello, and welcome to a Wednesday. We are brief today, business is usurping oodles of time, so we share only a few items.

Our first topic is a quick look at another preppy style guide, “Preppy Style Cheat Sheet,” is found in a recent post on the Washingtonian website.

When it comes to fashion, Washington has a serious case of split personality disorder. From the flannel-wearing hipsters in Columbia Heights to the slick suits on K Street, each neighborhood has its own look. And where would we be if we didn’t mention the pastel-wearing prepsters of Georgetown? With this style, there’s a fine line between fabulous and costumey—and no one walks it as impeccably as law students/platonic lifemates Lauren Wynns and Van Bloys, the duo behind the fashion and lifestyle blog Necessary & Proper.

Below, Mr. Bloys and Ms. Wynns as seen in the story.

PHOTO: Katie Warren via The Washingtonian

Writer Sarah Zlotnick features input from the duo on a variety of topics, including their vision of the Top 5 Wardrobe Essentials.

For women: colored pants (denim or tailored silk), trench coat, a silk blouse (bonus points for one with an unusual neckline or pattern), an equestrian-inspired blazer, and a colorful shift dress.

For men: A navy blazer, Cordovan lace-ups, gray flannel trousers, an oxford shirt, and a cashmere V-neck sweater.

PHOTO: Katie Warren via The Washingtonian

The story also asked about “skills every prepster should master”:

Social grace. Write thank-you notes, buy hostess gifts, be cordial to everyone, and stay classy in the presence of those who are not. Bad manners and cattiness are so unbecoming.

Tying a bow tie. It’s like riding a bicycle. You’d never imagine how many men came into Ralph Lauren [Van used to work at the Georgetown store] on the night of a big event in a tux with an untied bow tie and asked a salesperson to tie it for them.

We couldn’t agree more on the need for proper social skills, and can also verify The Consort concurs on the merits of tying one’s own tie.

There is also a list of brands of up and coming brands, it is nice to see our friends Kiel & Sarah from KJP at the top of the list.

  • Kiel James Patrick—whimsical, handmade accessories out of Rhode Island.
  • Sasha Lickle Designs—Floridian-style jewelry inspired by sea life and the beach.
  • Pierrepont Hicks—An American brand with beautiful ties and bow ties.
  • Smathers & Branson—A Bethesda-based needlepoint belt company. You can even get a “life belt” custom made to match your personal interests.
  • Hugh and Crye—This Georgetown-based shirtmaker has slim cuts and great patterns. And we love our native DC designers!

Click here to see the story in its entirety.


Our second item involves a story from Scientific American, a publication not frequently referenced here at The Prepatorium (there’s a shock). Yet today we speak about a story posted on the magazine’s blog,  Stop This Absurd War on the Color Pink.  A great photo is near the top of the piece, prominently captioned “This Dog Does Not Exist”.

Scientific American: "This Dog Does Not Exist"

The story begins this way:

Last week Robert Krulwich, a co-host of the wonderful program Radiolab, Pluto’d pink. In a blog post he noted that pink doesn’t occupy a slot in the familiar colors of the rainbow—there’s no P in Roy G. Biv. From this, he concludes that pink does not really exist:

“That’s why pink is an invention. It’s not a name we give to something out there. Pink isn’t out there.”

Now, at the risk of sounding like an airhead, I confess much of the story was over my head.

Pink is real—or it is not—but it is just as real or not-real as red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet.

On a more fundamental level, however, Krulwich is right. Pink is not out there, because no color is really “out there.”

Tilly doesn’t think it is ‘out there,’ Tilly finds it very real.

This Dog Is Really, Really Not Real

She may not be real, but still qualifies as our Pretty in Pink for the day.


Filed under preppy, Preppy clothing & brands, Preppy Fashion, preppy lifestyle, Preppy People, Pretty in Pink

Brooks Brothers Spring 2012

Hello-Hello, happy middle of the week.

It’s the time of year where one holds fast to the knowledge that even if we see more snow, spring isn’t *that* far away. Naturally yours truly begins to think about spring fashions at this point,we thought it would be fun to take a peek at some of the offerings this season.

Brooks Brothers continues to offer its updated take on classic pieces.

Brooks Brothers

A number of styles were very attractive.

Brooks Brothers

Although the shorter, more cropped fit on sweaters has yet to resonate here at the Prepatorium, other items hold promise.

Brooks Brothers

The retailer’s Black Fleece collection features a number of pieces we liked.

Brooks Brothers Black Fleece

And some bright colors. Very. bright. colors.

Brooks Brothers Black Fleece

There are also enticing styles for the Young Miss at your palace.

Brooks Brothers

There seems to be a lot of green in fashion palettes this spring.

Brooks Brothers

The offerings in the Boy’s department look solid.

Brooks Brothers

These argyle sweaters will certainly work for the growing number of women who buy Boy’s XL sweaters.

Brooks Brothers

Accessories include new bags as well, some evocative of a man’s repp tie.

Brooks Brothers

There are also new totes, including madras and Liberty of London prints, the Liberty bags are reversible.

Brooks Brothers

The Liberty prints can also be found on women’s espadrilles.

Brooks Brothers

Over at Milly the patterns are equally fresh and vibrant, especially for the spring Girl’s collection.


The turquoise, navy and salmon is an appealing color combination.


The spring Sperry Top-siders that Michelle Smith designed are in stock, the navy Links print is probably my favorite.


These are available for both big and little misses.

It’s nice we have bright and bouncy images like these, here is the forecast for tomorrow night:


(You will hear no complaints from these quarters, it has been an exceptionally mild winter.)


Filed under Argyle, preppy, Preppy clothing & brands, Preppy Fashion, preppy lifestyle, Pretty in Pink

Bits & Bytes: Royal Ascot Gets Tough, Mad Men Premiere & That LL Bean Bootmobile

Hello-Hello, today we have loads of little bits and bytes we hope you find moderately entertaining, beginning with a change in the dress code for Royal Ascot. From The Guardian:

Nick Smith, a spokesman for Ascot, said: “It is stretching a point to say standards have collapsed but there is no doubt that our customers would like to get back to a situation where it is universally acknowledged that this is a formal occasion and not an occasion where you might dress as you would at a nightclub.

“It is probably fair to say that the dress code hasn’t necessarily been enforced quite as rigorously as we might have liked.”

It turns out that relaxing the rules in an effort to appeal to a broader section of possible attendees hasn’t gone as well as hoped, at least not when it came to how those attendees were dressed.  If confused, one need look no further than the Royal Ascot website, where the new rules are laid out:

  • Dresses and skirts should be of modest length defined as falling just above the knee or longer;

Methinks most of the ladies seen in this photo from last year would not pass muster under that new hemline rule.


Back to the more stringent standards:

  •  Dresses and tops should have straps of one inch or greater;
  •  Jackets and pashminas may be worn but dresses and tops underneath should still comply with the Royal Enclosure dress code;
  • Trouser suits are welcome. They should be of full length and of matching material and colour;

Something of a visual style guide was released along with the new rules, this next photo seems to reinforce the ‘trouser suit’ information. (FYI, ‘trouser suit’ as opposed to ‘pants suit,’ because on the far side of the pond ‘pants’ generally refers to a ladies’ unmentionables, a cultural distinction your fearless scribe only discovered last summer.) We’ll make this our Pretty in Pink for the day as well, it is a lovely look.

Royal Ascot via The Guardian

However, those are not the only new rules, back to Royal Ascot:

Ladies are kindly asked to note the following:

  • Midriffs must be covered;
  • Strapless, off the shoulder, halter neck, spaghetti straps and dresses with a strap of less than one inch (2.5cm) are not permitted;

Again, ensembles (we use the term loosely here) worn last year to Royal Ascot that do not appear up to snuff vis-à-vis the updated standards.

Getty Images

With the possible exception of the pink floral frock in the center, that seems like a good thing.

  •  Fascinators are no longer permitted in the Royal Enclosure; neither are headpieces which do not have a base covering a sufficient area of the head (4 inches / 10cm).

Another ‘approved’ look via The Guardian:

Via The Guardian

For those who plan on attending with your MOTH (Man Of The House), one final photo, this one showing acceptable styles for both the Lord and Lady at your palace.

Via The Guardian


Our other primary item of interest involves Mad Men, Season 5 premieres with a special 2-hour episode March 25.  Below, the poster promoting the new season.


Sure to be a collector’s item, this year’s poster takes mid-century minimalism to a new level. We can only hope things are looking up for Don and Betty, I fear he has pickled his liver by now.

amc-tv via

An interesting sidebar involves Newsweek, word is the magazine is doing a special issue in conjunction with the new season launch. More from Advertising Age:

Newsweek is planning an issue marking the return of “Mad Men” this March by adopting the magazine’s 1960s design throughout — all the way, it hopes, to the ads.

The “Mad Men”-themed issue, which will be dated March 19, will include a cover story on the series and a feature on the role of advertising in U.S. culture.

It seems that virtual wall keeping editorial content and advertising separated isn’t in place at Newsweek.  Below, two Newsweek covers from the Mad Men era, the cover on the far left is January 1964 and on the right, December 1965.

Newsweek via Ad Age


We leave you with two lighthearted items, the first involving these delightful images: what happens when an illustrator creates a few fashion pooh-bahs in the manner of the Simpsons?

aleXsandro Palombo via British Vogue

Above, Chanel’s Karl Lagerfeld, below Vogue’s Anna Wintour and Grace Coddington, all created by illustrator Alexsandro Palombo.

aleXsandro Palombo via Vogue UK

Mr. Palombo is known for, among other things, creating the blog Humor Chic. He also created Vanity Karl, seen below.

aleXsandro Palombo/Humor Chic

We like the illustrator’s sly eye and sense of humor.


Our other lighthearted tidbit today involves a much loved product.


Meet the new LL Bean Bootmobile.

Via LL Bean

It was created as part of Bean’s 100th Anniversary this year (more about that in a future post, as well as a special giveaway), and it must be just something to see on the road.

Here is how it looked as it headed to Times Square today.

Zerina Phillip/LL Bean Facebook Page

The Oscar Mayer Weinermobile may have been bumped to second place in our hearts and minds. You can read more about the Bootmobile travel plans (yes, it will be on the move) and other Anniversary events on Bean’s first official blog.

Until next time, keep smiling and keep warm!


Filed under preppy, Preppy clothing & brands, preppy lifestyle, Pretty in Pink

About Those Party Frocks at the Golden Globes

Hello-Hello, welcome to a bright and beautiful day here in The Great Midwest.

Did you watch the Golden Globes last night? We did not, being consumed with personal chores and then Downton Abbey, so we were forced to rely upon Twitter and then today’s newspaper and blog stories for updates.

It seems one of the big trends last evening was the number of nude or blush pink gowns, evidently there were quite a few more than one normally sees.

Reuters/AP/Reuters/Getty via The NY Times

The Times has a great slide show online, above they showcase the almost-nude trend, from left to right we see Elle Macpherson in Zac Posen, Julie Bowen wearing Reem Acra, Charlize Theron in Dior Couture, and Mary J. Blige wearing Michael Kors. Several more in neutral tones, also via The Times: Katharine McPhee wears Donna Karan, Jessica Chastain opted for Givenchy, and Amanda Peet is seen in Marc Jacobs.

Via The NY Times

In more pale hues, Nicole Kidman in Versace (many commentators thought she was a contender for ‘Best Dressed,’ I agree), Heidi Klum in Calvin Klein, it was Gucci for Jessica Alba, and Kate Beckinsale opted for Roberto Cavalli.

AP/Reuters/Getty/Getty via The NY Times

Others in very pale pink or ivory, Jessica Biel chose a lacy Elie Saab dress, Amy Poehler in Naeem Khan, Kristen Wiig wore Bill Blass, while Busy Philipps went for an asymmetrical Temperley London.

Getty/Getty/AP/Getty via The NY Times

Rich wine and berry shades also were seen.

The NY Times

Above from left to right: Viola Davis wears Emilio Pucci, it was Oscar de la Renta for Tina Fey, Emma Stone chose Lanvin, and The Good Wife’s Julianna Margulies wore Naeem Khan.

There were also a lot of blue hues.

And yellow made a big splash, Paula Patton wore Monique Lhuillier, while both Maria Menounos and Mireille Enos were in Naeem Khan.

People StyleWatch

There did not seem to be unanimity on who was the ‘worst dressed,’ although Sarah Michelle Gellar managed to land in that category on a lot of lists.

Getty Images (L) /

Her tie-dyed Monique Lhuillier gown was widely panned, above we also show it as seen on the runway. From Jen Chaney’s Washington Post piece:

She told E!’s Giuliana Rancic that her daughter chose this tie-dyed gown. That explains it.

Ouch. Coco’s Tea Party was a little more gentle in its assessment:

….it’s just a really, really awful choice for the red carpet. The dress is overwhelming SMG’s tiny frame and the print just makes matters worse. Still, at least she’s smiling…

But the LA Times disagrees:

Sarah Michelle Gellar’s blue-and-white ink splotch Monique Lhuillier ball gown, which she said her 2-year-old had a hand in picking out, was another unconventional choice that paid off.

As did Tom and Lorenzo:

“We hate the big ponytail she was sporting but we kinda dig this dress for being bold and eye-catching.”

Perhaps the most polarizing gown was Piper Perabo’s, described by the aforementioned Jen Chaney this way:

The mysteries of the universe may well be hidden under that skirt. Lord knows there’s plenty of room.


I didn’t find the Theyskens’ Theory dress to be at all awful. Perhaps it was a little more sheer than what we’re used to seeing here at the Prepatorium, but it wasn’t ghastly.

The UK’s Daily Mail place Kelly Osbourne atop its worst dressed list, they (and many others) did not think highly of her Zac Posen gown.

The Daily Mail

But two of our faves, Tom and Lorenzo, disagree:

It was maybe a bit much for a job that mostly consisted of sitting down, but we like the shape and the color on her. The hair, not so much.

Others thought Madonna deserved that appellation for her Reem Acra dress, back to Jen Chaney’s WaPo column:

“The crucifix necklace said “Like a Prayer.” The single glove said “Like a Virgin.” The ruffles said distracting.”

NBC Universal via Getty/Reuters

Perhaps this is the point where we should mention the story (with photos) about smushed…ahh, squashed…well, just click here and you’ll see the story about those who appeared to have almost crushed a certain part of their anatomy. (Ahem.)

There were oodles of compliments for Claire Danes in her J. Mendel dress.

AP via Washington Post

Cathy Horyn made a number of legitimate points in her review about the evening’s styles:

Quite a few actresses had hems spilling wildly behind them — Charlize Theron in a creamy Dior, Kate Beckinsale in a beaded Cavalli number. Fishtail dresses were definitely a trend on the Globes red carpet, but each time the camera panned down to them, the viewer seemed to end in the same old puddle.

And though Rooney Mara was probably the most fashionable young woman on the carpet, with a black cut-out Nina Ricci dress and her sleek ponytail and minimal makeup, the dress also didn’t fit her as well as it should have. What was that puddle at her feet?

Getty Images

While there seemed to be almost universal agreement that Angelina Jolie was the smash hit on the red carpet, some liked Nicole Kidman, as mentioned above.

Via Just Jared

Back to Tom and Lorenzo:

This paraded across our screen before we could see who was wearing it and we were shocked later to find out it was Nicole simply because she’s so va-va-voom in it. This is a knockout; best she’s looked on the RC in ages.

Back to Ms. Jolie in Versace Atelier.

Paul Drinkwater/NBC via Getty Images

A better view of the actress’s look via Grazia UK.

Grazia Daily UK

The most overwhelming commentary about Ms. Jolie referenced her weight, many said that the actress has become ‘scary skinny.’  An online post quotes a recent Us Weekly story:

The U.N. goodwill ambassador, 36, who travels the globe meeting the poor, ‘puts herself on fasts to make statements for the children she visits.’ She says, ‘If they can’t eat, I can’t eat.’ The busy mother of six ‘does different cleanses from around the world. It’s very dramatic, but that’s how she gets.’

Of course Ms. Jolie is also included on those lists of ‘power couples’ at the awards, below we see three such pairs via The Times.

The NY Times

For those keeping track, Brad Pitt wore Salvatore Ferragamo, George Clooney was in Giorgio Armani and his date, Stacy Keibler wore Valentino, on the far right host Ricky Gervais was said to be in Ted Baker at one point, Jane Fallon looks to be wearing a black version of the Pippa Middleton bridesmaid gown by Alexander McQueen.

Other ‘power couples’ included Dustin Hoffman and Lisa Gottsegen, Steven Spielberg and Kate Capshaw, Antonio Banderas and Melanie Griffith.

All Getty Images via The NY Times

We’ll close with Natalie Portman, we thought she was definitely Pretty in Pink.

Via Grazia Daily UK

And to think this was merely a warmup to February 12th’s Grammy Awards, followed by the Academy Awards on February 26.

One related story we wanted to mention looks at the very big business of jewelry on the red carpet.

It comes by Brink’s truck and is hand-delivered by security guards.

For last year’s Academy Awards, Tiffany & Co. reportedly paid Anne Hathaway $750,000 to wear Tiffany jewels onstage while she was hosting the event. And Gwyneth Paltrow was rumored to have picked up a $500,000 paycheck to wear pieces from Louis Vuitton’s L’Ame du Voyage fine jewelry collection.

Booth Moore’s piece in the LA Times sheds light on the inner machinations involving upscale jewelers and their gems, celebrities and their agents, and the deals they make during awards season.


Filed under preppy, Pretty in Pink

Big News From Targét

Hello-Hello, and happy Friday.

Oddly, we can go weeks and weeks with nary a word about Target here on the blog and then kaboom – we find ourselves doing back-to-back posts about the retailer. Today, news of the company’s plans to launch an ongoing series of pop-up shops.

A Bullseye View

The shops will offer limited edition merchandise from select US specialty stores. I am guessing many readers will be familiar with at least one, if not more, of the following companies from this first flight of shops:

The Candy Store from San Francisco, Cos Bar beauty shop from Aspen, Polka Dog Bakery treats and toys from Boston, Privet House home goods from Warren, Conn. and The Webster, a Miami high-end fashion boutique.

Each of the ‘shops at Target’ will be open for just six weeks, the retailer hopes to generate buzz about new merchandise while also creating a more unique setting and feel within its stores.

We have a brief rundown on these first five shops, beginning with Connecticut’s Privet House, they offer an outstanding collection of contemporary and vintage things for the home. Below we show just a few of the goodies one might find in either of their two stores.

The Privet House is the creation of Richard Lambertson and Suzanne Cassanoby, it is their aesthetic that provides the quirky, literary and whimsical touch to the merchandise mix.

The Privet House

Models of the stores were unveiled to the media yesterday, below left we show Target’s version of ‘The Privet House,’ on the right we see a mock-up of the “Polka Dog Bakery” shop featuring pet products.

Here is an item from Privet House’s collaboration with Target, the birdcage with stationery demonstrates an offbeat appeal we like.

Privet House at Target

‘Polka Dog Bakery at Target’ will have some very bright apparel for your four-legged family members.

Polka Dog Bakery at Target

A bigger look at the planned pop-up with goodies for your pooch.

John Aquino/Women's Wear Daily

Below, some of the treats from Polka Dog Bakery.

Polka Dog Bakery

Other edibles on offer will be for humans, here are some of the goodies from ‘The Candy Store shop at Target’.

The Candy Store at Target

These are not only lovely to look at, I’m sure they are tasty.

The Candy Store at Target

More on the new direction from Targét’s A Bullseye View blog:

With prices ranging from $1 to $160, the five collections reflect the spirit of each shop and shop owner’s unique perspective and aesthetic. The shop owners and Target worked together every step of the way – from product selection and packaging to in-store shop displays – to recreate the essence and ambiance of the individual boutiques.

Another of the ‘Shops at Target’ will carry the higher end cosmetics and skincare offerings of Cos Bar Aspen, below, some of that merchandise.

The Cos Bar at Target via Cos Bar Aspen Facebook

The packaging conveys an upscale elegance, far removed from the company’s bright red and white theme.

Cos Bar Aspen at Target

Below left we see how Cos Bar offerings will be packaged and displayed, on the right, The Webster Miami atmosphere is seen at yesterday’s media briefing. (Photos via Women’s Wear Daily (subscription required).)

The Webster Miami group may be of particular interest to your MOTH (Man Of The House), it is said to be an enormous offering of men’s goods.

The Webster at Target

It is the Webster Miami goods I am intrigued to see, their customer seems the most removed from Target’s demographic. The actual Webster boutique carries lines like Acne, Balmain, Lanvin, Alexander Wang, Givenchy. Understanding the goal is not to replicate these and other upscale brands, I remain fascinated as to how this particular shop’s aesthetic will be translated into cheap-chic retailing.

These first five “Shops at Target” launch in all stores and online May 6, prices will be $1 to $160. Perhaps knowing the ‘Shops at Target’ are to be open for six weeks will minimize any Missoni-like mayhem online and in stores.


There is one more piece of news from Target, this one involving Apple.


Target confirmed it will try a test run of 25 mini Apple shops within existing Target stores.  It sounds as if these will be similar to the Apple shops found within 600+ Best Buy stores. Target currently offers a range of Apple merchandise, but no desktop or laptop Macs are available.  This could turn out to be a good move for both parties, like the Shops at Target outlined above, this could be another way the retailer distinguishes itself from Walmart.


Finally today, our Pretty in Pink.  You know how there are all manner of tool chests for men, you know the kind, big industrial-looking things? They tend to be found in garages and auto repair places, rather like this.

Gladiator Garage by Whirlpool

It seemed to me there should be something not quite so….blah.

The Original Pink Box

If pink isn’t your thing, there’s always this.

The Original Pink Toolbox

On those pink and green pictures we say goodbye until next time, may your weekend be splendid!


Filed under Collaborations, preppy, Pretty in Pink