Tag Archives: Blake Lively & Leighton Meester

Politics and Fashion Part 5, Real Yale Students Talk Gossip Girl

The Princess has landed. Or something. We enjoyed delightful times with our houseguest and are now returned to our standard workday with a tad more time for sharing wacky and whimsical things in our goofy blog.

We must acknowledge the good folks at Refinery 29 for the heads-up on our first item, these finger puppets by artist Melanie Howard.  Available on Etsy, the Republican ticket puppets with Senator John McCain and Governor Sarah Palin in wool felt:

Wondering just what one does with snappy items like these?

“They are finger puppets and will fit most fingers, but would do well on pencils, pipe cleaners, chopsticks. Scrapbook them, stick them on your Christmas tree, sew them on to your favorite hoodie.”

Next, the Democratic ticket of Senators Barack Obama and Joseph Biden, also in wool felt:

As described by the artist:

“Details include Obama’s charming ears and Democratic dress. Biden sports a grin that would launch a thousand smiles and fabulous swept hair. Both are lawyers, both are fit, both are pleased to be your Democratic Ticket for the White House.”

Ms. Howard also has other fun figures memorialized in this fashion, including Karl Lagerfeld and Hillary Clinton.

Some readers may recognize the unmistakable style of our next item, knowing immediately they are by Hidalgo.

Courtesy Hidalgo

Courtesy Hidalgo

The stacked rings with candidate names carry the distinctive look the company is famous for; the Obama and McCain rings are each about $1350, while the gold and diamond ring guards shown above will add another $1,100 to $1,260. If you are looking for something a little less dated, you can play it safe and go for one simply showing your fundamental belief on the issue.

Both the Elephant and Donkey are $1100, the red enamel guards shown with them run about $475.

Of course, the names of vice presidential candidates Sarah Palin and Joe Biden are also available from Hidalgo. For those not familiar with the brand, one can purchase only a single, ‘basic’ ring, or may acquire several. Ring guards (as seen above in red on either side of the Donkey) are fairly essential IOHO, designed to enhance the beauty of that primary ring.

The folks over at StyleList have put together a group of Hidalgo rings they think would be ideal for Cindy McCain. These include a ring bearing John’s name, the ring with her zodiac symbol (Taurus) and one stating the obvious.

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Next on our political hit parade, one may dine on the candidate of their choice.

Many readers may have already seen these on their local news or in the paper, but we thought we would share them anyway. The “Obama O’s” come complete with “Hope in Every Bowl” while the “Cap’n McCain’s” promise “A Maverick in Every Bite.

If those cereals are too sweet and sugary for your morning, there is one with more bite: “Killogg’s Same Old Corn, Different Flakes.

It would seem the folks behind this creation are a bit more acerbic, but also non-partisan.  The box features leaders of both parties, adding “Now With Added Nuts.” Indeed.

Another non-partisan effort comes via Rock the Vote Red lipstick, available at Stila Cosmetics.

Part of the Rock the Vote, the voter registration effort, the lipstick is a rich red, offered at $17.

And finally today, real students at Yale weigh in with their thoughts on last week’s Gossip Girl episode, featuring a trip by the characters to New Haven as part of the school’s admissions process.  Below, Serena van der Woodsen (Blake Lively) and Blair Waldorf (Leighton Meester) in the fictitious New Haven.

In ‘Gossip Girl’ relies on Univ. stereotypes, an article in the Yale Daily News, actual Yalies share their thoughts on how the school and students were portrayed:

“Students interviewed said last night’s installment of Gossip Girl was especially erroneous in its portrayal of the Yale admissions process.

In the episode, three of the main characters met privately with the Yale dean of admissions, but the real admissions dean, Jeff Brenzel ’75, said such meetings could never have occurred beyond the realm of the television series.”

There were some “watch parties” on campus for the airing of the show, but few students had favorable reactions to the “New Haven Can Wait” episode:

“It didn’t bring out the Yale that we all know and love, but instead just used stereotypes about Yale,” Zimmerman said. “And all the characters were just focusing on getting in [to Yale].”

On the whole, she concluded: “It was kind of a failure.”

Anyone familiar with either Yale or Columbia immediately recognized that the show was shot at Columbia, conveniently located near other Gossip Girl shoots, with nary a foot of video from New Haven.

In reality, the Dean of Admissions does not send out exclusive invitations to ritzy early-admissions soirees. Skull and Bones does not tap pre-frosh. And under no circumstances do high school students approach Yale upperclassmen with romantic propositions.

But perhaps it’s still up for debate whether, as Serena put it, “Yale is for overachieving bookworms and preppies.”

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Filed under Gossip Girl, Obama Fashion & Politics, preppy, Preppy clothing & brands, Preppy Fashion, preppy lifestyle

“Prep” Author’s Book About to Hit, Gossip Girls Have Fashion Week Plans!

h Happy Monday…! What an absolutely luscious Labor Day weekend it has been! But of course, that is only in the Great Midwest; naturally our thoughts and prayers and donations go south to those experiencing a far different weekend.

It wouldn’t be a complete summer if people weren’t getting all worked up about a new book. This year it seems “American Wife: A Novel” by preppy author Curtis Sittenfeld seems to be the target of increasingly heated discussions.

The high-pitched chatter is understandable. The book’s initial release is tomorrow (Tuesday, 9/2), timed perfectly to coincide with the Republican Convention. Focused on a ‘fictitious’ First Lady, the primary character’s background is strikingly similar to First Lady Laura Bush. Jan Hoffman at the NY Times condenses the pertinent details far better than TP ever could in her story about the book from:

“Set in Wisconsin rather than Texas, the novel is about Alice Blackwell, a quiet, perceptive woman who is marred and marked by extraordinary circumstance. When Alice was 17, she ran a stop sign, killing a popular high school boy. As a 31-year-old school librarian, she married the coarse, rakish, heavy-drinking son of a rich Republican family. He buys a baseball team, sobers up, is elected governor and even, for heaven’s sakes, president of the United States.”

In the Times’ actual book review, writer Michiko Kakutani also describes the similarities :

“In writing this book Ms. Sittenfeld — who wrote a 2004 Salon.com essay in which she touted Mrs. Bush as “a true role model” who “takes her responsibilities seriously” while maintaining “a life separate from her husband” — has changed just enough details to avoid accusations that she has completely plagiarized the first lady’s curriculum vitae.”

Wondering about the author’s political leanings? The review includes a condensed version, quoting from that Salon.com essay, which was entitled ‘Why I Love Laura Bush‘:

“…a staunch enough liberal that I take would-be epithets such as ‘flaming,’ ‘knee-jerk’ and ‘bleeding heart’ as compliments,” and a registered Democrat who regards Why I love Laura Bush’s policies as misguided at best “and at worst evil….”

Indeed. At issue (among other things) are the ‘steamy’ sex scenes contained within the 514 pages of American Wife, which MSNBC.com said were “too graphic to reprint.” We won’t attempt to recount the book’s many sins or assets (or a combination of both) depending upon one’s perspective.

Some may remember Ms. Sittenfeld’s other novels, including “Prep,” published in 2005 to much critical acclaim, followed by “The Man of my Dreams.” (Full disclosure: TP struggled through Prep, encountering difficulty connecting to both the characters and the storyline. Clearly we need remedial assistance on some level.)

The writer attended Groton, and graduated from Stanford University.

 

Dilip Vishwanat for The New York Times

Photo: Dilip Vishwanat for The New York Times

Should one plan to be in or near our nation’s capital on September 9 and have a desire to see Ms. Sittenfeld in person, have your social secretary pencil in Politics and Prose (Georgetown, on Connecticut at Nebraska) for 7pmish.

In the midst of the feeding frenzy over the Gossip Girls script leak

PhotO Courtey Gawker.com

Photo Courtey Gawker.com

…and no, TP is not about to reveal the contents of the ‘leaked’ script, nor where the plot goes in the fifth episode because it just wouldn’t be proper.  However, if every semblance of self-control has evaporated and one simply *must* know, then this link to Gawker.com’s story may provide the answers you seek. In honor of the new season we thought we might mention one stop we know that Gossip Girl stars Blake Lively, Leighton Meester and Taylor Momsen plan to make during Fashion Week.

Word is they’ll be going to Abigail Lorick’s show this Thursday, September 4, which makes sense as it is the clothing used for the fictitious clothing line owned by Eleanor Waldorf on the show.

Getty Images for IMG

Phot: Getty Images

This will be the first time Ms. Lorick has shown a Collection at Fashion Week. The designer, a former Ford model herself, describes her customer in part this way:

“The Lorick Lady silently speaks stories of Classical and Contemporary Charm…”

There are some wonderful looks on the Lorick website; below we show two from the Fall 2008 Collection.

One could describe pieces in the Collection as having a ‘preppy aesthetic’ if so inclined. It will be fun to see the Lorick show and then see it repeated as part of an actual episode. It was quite amazing to watch this evening’s episode with its ‘White Party’ scenes (including Tinsley Mortimer’s appearance). The party is the scene that essentially no one showed up to be in when an open casting call was held somewhere in Southampton back in June. Remember?

“We were told to come “dressed upscale and camera ready,” which had us a little nervous as to whether we’d be up to the competition — but then … there wasn’t any. The massive line of Gucci-clad teenage girls never materialized. Instead, the line maxed out at just four people (including us) and none of us were teenagers. We were amazed. How could only four people want to be on the BEST SHOW EVER?”

That is from the delightful story by Lauren Le Vine in New York Magazine about the event…. or non-event as it turned out to be.

Oh, one more quick pic (which we’ll justify by saying the show *is* about a preppy school) from the weekend, Chace Crawford at the U.S. Open, an outstanding choice for weekend relaxation.

Things quieted down here at the Prepatorium and we were able to finish reading a few magazines from the absolutely immense stacks scattered about the place. It’s awful, and we know many of you are buried under the same towering piles of Fall Fashion reads, upcoming auction catalogs from Sotheby’s and Christies, other literature, and ephemera!

Speaking of auctions, there is a rather fabulous Jewelry Auction at Sotheby’s New York in September, and while we are not in any kind of acquisition mode, browsing the catalog is always loads of fun. We were particularly intrigued by a Pearl Necklace and Bracelet lot, above left, and thought we fancied a pair of black and white diamond rings, but upon closer inspection determined they are just not Princess. If you aren’t a subscriber to the catalogs, you can almost always view them online; really a marvelous and inexpensive way to entertain oneself for an hour or two.

BTW, if one of the things you were reading of late was the Town and Country sister publication, Town and Country Travel, well, ‘late’ would be the operative word, RIP. For those not familiar with T&C Travel, (or for for those like TP who tends to lose track of it occasionally), it was a quarterly that the Hearst folks once thought might become a stand-alone magazine. Word came late last week that the most recent issue is the last, Hearst Magazines has opted to close it permanently.

That is a shame, we rather enjoyed that particular view of the world. Sigh.

‘Night.

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Gossip Girls Haunt the Hamptons & Here’s One for the Military

Here in the corner condo at the Home Offices of the Preppy Princess Intergalactic (or Interplanetary, either will do) Headquarters, we are most definitely ready for a Friday. My goodness. Sheesh. We are aware it could always be worse – you could be sweltering in Southern California, and we remain hopeful we don’t have a Melted Miss Muffy Martini. (Was it really 106 in Burbank?) Or you could be at the brand-spanking-new Ikea stores that opened this week in Red Hook (Brooklyn) or Atlanta; talk about a zoo! In chatting with friends, it appears both locales have enjoyed scenes not unlike a party at an SAE house or feeding time at the great ape display at your local zoo!

Or you could be in Southampton looking at this.

Gossip Girl ed westwick Hamptons argyle

We hope you are fortunate enough to be reading this while sitting on the porch at your cottage on Nantucket or at the Cape or Macatawa, perhaps Pismo Beach or Half Moon Bay…. sigh. If you are reading it from the Hamptons, you may have already encountered Gossip Girl filming for their upcoming season. We have never, ever, actually known a human being who would get off the train attired like this. You are in a suit, or you are in khakis and a blazer, or you are wearing jeans and a button down, you know the routine. Three argyles all at once and spectators and the shorts…? No. Not even close.

Gossip Girl Hamptons shoot two ed westwick argyle

But hey…you’re at the beach. Literally and figuratively. It matters not. By the way, for those not quite in the know (The Princess included) this would be actor Ed Westwick, a Brit who plays a rather slimy fellow named Chuck Bass. There were other celeb sightings: we were told that any females in the vicinity of actor Chace Crawford tend to swoon, or get a bit giggly, as seen in the photo below. You know, teenage, pre-teen, post-teen, tweens, you name it, almost any female breathing in and out could be susceptible, at least from from what we understand.

Gossip Girls Hamptons Chace Crawford

Gossip Girls Chace Crawford #2

We move on to female co-stars Blake Lively and Leighton Meester who play teens at the all-girls prep school the show revolves around. Both are seen on the set.

Gossip Girls Blake Gossip Girls Leighton Long Island

Ms. Lively (this is where TP asks if that is her given name?) is often referred to as being possessed of a ‘preppy style’ or ‘aesthetic’, she is shown below in a Rag and Bone dress that we’re not finding overly ‘preppy,’ although we do love-love-love it. (Psst – it’s on sale too!)

Blake lively Preppy Style Rag and Bone dress Gossip Girls

One interesting tidbit about the show shooting in the Hamptons comes from Lauren Le Vine’s story in The Cut Blog (New York magazine online): she reports that no one, as in nobody came to the open auditions for the show held at Pink Elephant last weekend.

We were told to come “dressed upscale and camera ready,” which had us a little nervous as to whether we’d be up to the competition — but then … there wasn’t any. The massive line of Gucci-clad teenage girls never materialized. Instead, the line maxed out at just four people (including us) and none of us were teenagers. We were amazed. How could only four people want to be on the BEST SHOW EVER?

Gossip Girls \'casting call\' lauren levine ne mag The Cut blog

They were casting for an “old-money, glamorous, White Party” in the Hamptons, and were looking for people with “upscale looks and wardrobes … Upper East Side high society, conservative prep-school teenagers, elegant bourgeoisie.”

Let’s take a moment to think about this…. would you have gone?

We thought not. So we’ll move on to our next topic if that is acceptable to you…?

Christopher & Banks Khaki Drawstring SkirtChirstopher & banks Stripe Boat Neck Tee

The Princess would like to take a moment for a ‘shout-out’ (… it’s a term we have heard previously and we do hope we have the appropriate usage here) to the folks at Christopher and Banks. The retailer has announced they will provide military personnel a 10% discount every day, starting tomorrow, June 23rd. This is EVERY DAY for active and retired military personnel and their families. How cool is that? Personnel must show a military ID and be in person to receive the discount, which makes sense to TP. Are you familiar with Christopher & Banks? We weren’t, so we were forced to find out more. Above, the evidence. A khaki skirt for about $25 and striped knit tee for $19.97, both of which looked perfectly presentable to us.


Christopher & Banks Intarsia Boxes CardiganChristopher & Banks Pink Tee

Above you see the company’s Intarsia Boxes Cardigan at $45.50 accompanied by the Everyday Fit Tee for $15.50. To kick off the military discount, Christopher and Banks and CJ Banks stores will boost the discounts to 20% for a two-week period from June 23rd – July 6th, and make it 30% if personnel bring a friend to the store with them. For more information, TP recommends reading a copy of the snooze release here or contacting a store near you directly. The Princess was amazed to read there are 500+ Christopher and Banks stores (serving Missy sizes 4-16), 250+ CJ Banks stores (serving sizes 14W-24W), and 39 Acorn stores catering to a “… more affluent customer.. a distinct shopping experience for women who prefer upscale, boutique fashions…(sizes 2-16)…for women who seek spirited fashions..” The Princess will not snarkitize the beauty of what the company is doing for the military with any comments about their description of their Acorn stores division.

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