Tag Archives: Obama Inauguration

President’s Suitmaker Files Chapter 11 and a Change at 21

Hello and Happy Weekend to all, we hope it is/has been enjoyable and rejuvenating.  Here at the Palace we are simply grateful to see a yellowish orb in the sky; we believe it to be the sun, making an appearance for a few hours.

Talk about signs that the apocalypse is upon us. Gahhhh. We offer only brief Prep headlines on several stories today, as the topics themselves are far too depressing to delve into at any length. We can only speculate that Great Aunt Molly is doing far more than the proverbial “rolling over in her…” if the following news has filtered up to her:

  • The Greenbrier has laid off almost 50% of the staff and plans for casino gambling are reportedly under consideration
  • Lost City shares part of a snooze release from ’21’ that includes the following statement: “…we have (somewhat) relaxed our dress code in the lounge and bar areas, as well as the dining rooms. Ties are still preferred and greatly appreciated, but they are no longer a must.” TP is speechless. Lost City’s post on this topic is an outstanding read.

And then there is this…

“Clothier Hartmarx files for bankruptcy”

…as reported in the Trib yesterday.  The Chapter 11 filing covers the Hart Schaffner Marx, Hickey Freeman, and Hickey lines.  And while we would quibble with the paper’s description of the company’s suits as “luxury” (especially when contrasting their prices with those of other upscale retailers, such as Brooks Brothers), the news is grim indeed.

Hickey by Hickey Freeman

Hickey by Hickey Freeman

(Remember this post when we discovered what the logo for the oh-so-hip Hickey line actually is??)

It was a navy Hart Schaffner Marx suit President Obama wore when accepting the Democratic nomination in Denver; he also wore their tuxedo Tuesday evening to the Inaugural balls.  Former Vice-president Cheney also favors the brand, purchasing five Hickey Freeman suits off the rack at the Tyson’s Nordstrom back in August, as detailed in this post.

Enough about this, we’ll move on to something cheerier, like a bit of pink… and green.  For those unconcerned about dates of issue, the Lilly Pulitzer Spot-On cuff bracelets are an outstanding buy, at 60% off their retail price.

They are $38 at C. Orrico’s new online Sale Shack.  Another pink treasure, something we think the always fabulous Nautical by Nature could find appealing:

The Lilly Anchor Charm Bracelet at C. Orrico’s Sale Shack is selling for a mere $39, as opposed to its original $98. Who can resist?

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The witty folks at Men’s Style are at it again with a wonderful slide show, Change We Can (Sometimes) Believe In.” The piece is a “Then” and “Now” look at popular culture now and back in 2000, when we had our last change in Presidential personages.  Back then it was “conspicuous consumption” and now it is “conscientious consumption,” that sort of fun.

As we are total Mad Men fanatics here at the Prepatorium, we had to share their take on actor Jon Hamm, starting with this 2000 image of the star playing Burt Ridley(?) in NBC’s Providence:

Courtesy Everett Collection via The Upgrader

PHOTO: Courtesy Everett Collection via The Upgrader

And as they put it:

Now: Some dude named Don (on basic cable).

Courtesy amc-tv

Courtesy amc-tv

Ummmmm…. in the interest of journalistic integrity, TP feels compelled to add a much more recent image of Mr. Hamm from the cover of today’s USA Weekend newspaper insert:

John Russo/Corbis Outline

PHOTO: John Russo/Corbis Outline

Thank heaven for those journalistic standards. (Heh-heh-heh.)

Until next time, stay warm!

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Filed under preppy

J. Crew Obama Sketches, Jason Wu – Preppy? And, Ralph Lauren Debuts Watches

Greetings and salutations on a drab and dreary day here in the Great Midwest.  However, as we said to ourselves this morning, “Whine not Princess, as the temperature is above freezing for the first time in nearly three weeks.” Indeed.

J. Crew continues to update its website related to their winning looks for the First Family. (In case you missed our many posts on the topic, click here or here for a sampling.) Today’s home page provided insight into the design process, with a reproduction of their inspiration board for the Obama designs.

Courtesy J. Crew

Courtesy J. Crew

We always enjoy seeing the final pieces alongside the sketches….

sasha_cv_20090122173617malia_cv_20090122173905

Jim Young/Reuters

PHOTO: Jim Young/Reuters

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In this story from Cheryl Lu-Lien Tang at the WSJ’s fabulous Heard on the Runway blog, we learn a little more about Malia and Sasha’s individual styles from J. Crew’s Jenna Lyons:

“Malia, she likes pleats and pared-down things and is not a huge fan of sparkles, but little Sasha loves bright colors and sparkly things,” says Ms. Lyons, who says her team submitted 20 sketches based on the details they received.

That same WSJ blog story indicates that an opportunity to acquire an almost-identical look for your Young Miss should arrive in about six months:

“… (the company) plans this fall to introduce coats in its Crewcuts by J.Crew line that are similar to the ones Malia and Sasha wore on Tuesday.

“They’ll be versions of them but not the exact coat, in that color, with those buttons,” Ms. Lyons says. “Malia and Sasha will not go to school next year and see the girl next to them wearing the same coat.”

Not all was fabulous for J. Crew however, as noted in this story in the Times’ Bits blog:

“By Tuesday afternoon, the Web page on J. Crew’s site that features women’s gloves had crashed. By Wednesday morning, the whole women’s section of the site had crashed. Later in the day, the entire site was down, with a note that said, “Stay tuned…Sorry, we’re experiencing some technical difficulties right now (even the best sites aren’t perfect). Check back with us in a little while.”

Another look we saw on the J. Crew homepage:

Courtesy J. Crew

Courtesy J. Crew

Those reading Tuesday’s post about Michelle Obama selecting a Jason Wu gown for the Inaugural balls may remember we closed with this line:

“We’ll be back with more, including the Princess Consort’s take on Jason Wu’s preppy aesthetic, including some pretty in pink confections from the runway.”

And TPC is feeling validated this afternoon, yes he is. We give you part of a story at today’s Arizona Central, titled Who is Jason Wu, writing:

“Whimsical and feminine at times, but he loves preppy and East Coast vibes, too. His spring collection is filled with bright ethereal gowns, ladylike shift dresses and menswear-inspired trousers and long shorts.”

Courtesy Jason Wu

Courtesy Jason Wu

We adore the pink look shown above, as well as this dress:

Courtesy Jason Wu

Courtesy Jason Wu

We just have to share a few more:

Courtesy Jason Wu

Courtesy Jason Wu


Courtesy Jason Wu

Courtesy Jason Wu

We do love almost everything Mr. Wu shows in this collection – what do you think?

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A note for students or afficionadas of interior design, especially those intrigued by White House decor: today’s All the Best is a must-read. Ronda has done an outstanding job sharing inside information and photos on designers like Dorothy Draper and Sister Parish (to name a few) and their work with varying First Families.  Just seeing the photo of the Kennedy family in front of the Christmas tree in 1962 is worth the visit, not to mention the image of Babe Paley at the Eisenhower Inaugural Ball!

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One more quick item almost lost in the Inaugural shuffle: Ralph Lauren unveiled the company’s new luxury watch line this week in Switzerland.

The company plans three different collections, with the first launching in April of this year. Price points will range from approximately $8800 – $25,000 according to a Bloomberg story.  The initial group is designed with the retailer’s iconic equestrian theme in mind.

Courtesy Luxist.com

Courtesy Luxist.com

Ariel Adams at Luxist has a wonderful piece on the line loaded with fascinating tidbits:

“These are no mere fashion watches as can be seen from their unveiling at which occurred at the luxury watch show SIHH 2009.”

For more, click here.

We’ll be back shortly!

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If this is true, THE END really is near…

Hello and Happy-Back-to-the-Grind-Day! Frankly, we’re rather pleased to be back to our more boring, dull, staid rut standard routine… are you?

But we must interrupt our normal blogging. This could be it.  The End of the world as we know it.

Seriously. The End.

We aren’t speaking in code here dolls. It is a simple matter of properly interpreting the signs and signals sent to warn us of impending doom.  And today we were alerted with what can only be called the “Ultimate Alarm.”

What would cause such distress, prompting us to tell the Princess Consort we would be checking out immediately?  Why this headline:

Paris, Clooney are an item

Getty Images via Life & Style Magazine

PHOTOS: Getty Images via Life & Style Magazine

And then this one:

Paris Hilton’s Clooney love

The folks at Life & Style Weekly (?) are responsible for the initial rumor, which has spread like an airborne virus to every media outlet in the galaxy.  Here is a look at Paris with sister Nicky Hilton on New Year’s Eve:

Brendon Thorne/Getty

PHOTO: Brendon Thorne/Getty

If someone is able to assist TP in comprehending the pose assumed by Ms. Hilton, we are all ears. Really.

We are presuming this is sufficient warning that you are able to gather the kids, the pets, the household staff, and perhaps a few photographs before leaving for the next life.

There is only one way this might not be what it seems; there is every possibility someone tipped Paris to the fact we’re in the middle of TP’s “Pick the AntiPrep” voting and she simply can’t bear the thought of finishing second to Lindsay Lohan.

Here are more of your comments on the completely and totally non-scientific poll:

Preppy 101 thinks:

Anti-prep = Paris Hilton

Preppiest = {This is very hard} – Ralph Lauren

[others that I thought about – Anderson Cooper and Caroline Kennedy :-)]”

And the delightful Daisy at Legally Blonde Ambition offers these thoughts:

Preppiest…honestly….well I think Elizabeth Hasselback. You might not like her show or her politics (or you might like one or the other or perhaps both) but one must admit that both on-air and off she is awfully preppy. I think her style is rather adorable & she’s always appropriately clothed. And 2nd place goes to Suri Cruise. She is just always in her darling little dress, bob & patent leather shoes. Divine!

Anti-prep? Can we have a tie between Lindsay Lohan, Paris Hilton, and, ugh, Brad Pitt with the mustache? (Perhaps it isn’t anti-prep but it is fairly horrid.)”

So there you have it.  Don’t say we didn’t warn you.

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On a far more delightful note, we promised to share the rest of the designer looks for Sasha and Malia Obama on Inauguration Day.  Our first two are from Reem Acra, long a Princess favorite.

Courtesy Reem Acra via WWD

Courtesy Reem Acra via WWD

Here is the second design:

Courtesy Reem Acra via WWD

Courtesy Reem Acra via WWD

Our only thought on these? While lush in appearance, pastel colors are generally not a first choice for either Michelle Obama or the girls.

Next, an Olive Juice design for Sasha Obama, who is seven years old.

Courtesy Olive Juice via WWD

Courtesy Olive Juice via WWD

And the sketch for ten-year-old Malia:

Courtesy Olive Juice

Courtesy Olive Juice

Both looks are sweet and certainly age-appropriate, but not as compelling as one might hope. This may be a function of the black and white sketches, making it difficult to discern subtleties of design and color.

We harken back to our original post with the Isaac Mizrahi sketch showing all three Obama ladies as it remains one of our favorite designs for the girls, as well as Mrs. Obama. We say this despite the neckline on Malia’s dress, really a bit outré for a young lady of that age.

Courtesy Isaac MIzrahi via WWD

Courtesy Isaac Mizrahi via WWD

BTW, it was “Back to School” for the Obama girls this morning as they headed off for their first day at their new school (Sidwell Friends), although they are at different campuses.  Judging by the draperies in the background we are are presuming this photo was taken at the family’s hotel (please don’t get us started on this topic again) in Washington.

Callie Shell (Obama Transition Office)

PHOTO: Callie Shell (Obama Transition Office)

For those interested in the details, we are told that Sasha carried a JanSport backpack in pink. Target carries this line, but they do not have the style carried/worn by the youngest Obama girl.  It appears to be pink and the snooze news release from the Obama Transition team described it this way:

“Sasha carried a Trans by JanSport pink, magenta and gray backpack and wore blue jeans and a brown jacket with a hood and her hair was pulled into two braids.”

Our choice for a cute backpack? If for a youngster, it has to be the Blue Whales at Preppy Princess

Preppy Princess

PreppyPrincess.com

If looking for someone a little older, then the standard size Chocolate Polka Dots is always an excellent choice.

PreppyPrincess.com

PreppyPrincess.com

We leave you with a few Pretty in Pink items, the first available at one of the shops mentioned above, Olive Juice; this is the Skerry Rainboot by Tretorn:

Skerry by Tretorn at OliveJuiceKids.com

Skerry by Tretorn at OliveJuiceKids.com

The next two items are not at all preppy. TP Is well aware of this fact. Yet, yet we remain obsessed with their cute factor, which is off the charts and peaking in the red zone.  They are called Qees, and absolutely TDF, at least IOHO.

This one is name Pink Virus, and it is our favorite.

Qee4All.com

Qee4All.com

Probably because the shape of the head looks like a TV, reminding us (as well as The Princess Consort) of all those years working in teevee, feeling like our heads were to heavy to hold up for one more second.

Courtesy Qee/Facebook

Courtesy Qee/Facebook

Keeping in mind TP is the least cool and the most technologically challenged individual on the internet, you will be stunned and amazed to learn we discovered these on Facebook last night!  It is an application allowing you to send Qees to Facebook friends. (Monogram Chick – you are very hip and know all about Facebook, are you with me here? Are we saying this properly?)

We *do* realize we couldn’t be remotely close to the demo the Qees people are targeting, but what the heck, right? It is TP’s tiny step into another world and it is too fun.

On that happy thought, don’t forget to leave a comment telling us about your favorite AntiPrep personality of 2008!

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Filed under Obama Fashion & Politics, Pretty in Pink, The AntiPrep

It’s Baaaack – Ultimate Preppy Names

Hello-Hello, and good thoughts hoping everyone is enjoying a splendid day, not too frazzled and frenzied by the holiday crunch.

We start with a holiday greeting from one of the employees here at the Prepatorium, perhaps the hardest working staff member. If you ask her. Frankly, we think she spends more time lounging around than she does testing products, which was part of her job description. (And she promised us she was qualified for this part of the job way back when we hired her to be part of the Princess Team.)

It’s not like it’s a hard job either. This is one of the products we needed her to try out:

Stewart Dog Collar at PreppyPrincess.com

Stewart Dog Collar at PreppyPrincess.com

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Heh-heh-heh. Yep. We are talking about Silly Tilly, the largest lounge lizard this side of the Mississippi. And she just couldn’t turn down the delightful Daisy’s request for a photo op.  Of course, this all started with the Princess Consort’s Giveaway Post.  (Don’t forget to enter! Just leave a comment asking him a question; the drawing is tomorrow night.)

Tilly's Christmas Wish for You

Tilly's Christmas Wish for You

Oh, and those fabulous grosgrain ribbon dog collars?  Miss Tilly is only allowed to wear a harness because of her throat issues, no more collars. (Don’t ask; we’ll just say the most recent surgery involved removing tonsils and trying to help her collapsed trachea. She is our little Bulldog Rescue girl, health issues and all!)

Besides, when it comes to work, this is Miss Tilly’s idea of a hard day at the office.

Tilly at Work

Tilly at Work

And after what Tilly refers to as “The Episode”…..

"Never Again!"

"Never Again!"

… we were advised that she was going on strike.  (Honestly, it was just a little fundraiser put on by Vet students at the The Great Midwestern University nearby.)

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Once again, it is time to break out the Prep-O-Meter; we need to rank some names in terms of their ‘preppiness.’

  • Caldwell Rohrbach
  • Thayer Damm
  • Skyler Hopkins
  • Porter Whitman
  • Wick Kelley

Yes, these are names of real people on Lacrosse teams at real schools. Every year Inside Lacrosse selects the preppiest sounding names, all in good fun, and puts together the Inside Lacrosse Yearbook All-Name Team.

Inside Lacrosse

Inside Lacrosse

As described by the editors:

“Lacrosse has long been known for its prep school roots. And while that changes and diversifies rapidly every year, it still crops up in some of the 1,000-plus names that appear in IL’s Face-Off Yearbook.”

The list is more than entertaining, click here to read all of the names on the 2009 rosters; many just shriek prep, or old school, or WASP.  If thinking about your very own copy of the Inside Lacrosse Yearbook, just click here.

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We have been sharing some of the Inaugural Day sketches submitted by menswear designers for President-elect Obama.  The request for the fashions came from WWD, and they have all been posted on their site as well as the looks, their visions of stylish looks for the next President.

Today a few of the suggestions for accessorizing, starting with Brooks Brothers and their Tie #1 in silk and cashmere:

Courtesy Photo

Courtesy Photo

And as seen in the catalog in a different colorway:

Brooks Brothers

Brooks Brothers

If you are looking for the tie Ms. Aniston wore on the cover of GQ, that is Brooks’ Black Fleece Triple Guard Stripe Tie in silk and cotton.  (No, we aren’t running the photo.) That tie is actually on sale, now $112.50 from $150.

An offering from Countess Mara:

Countess Mara

Countess Mara Tie

Having visited the Countess Mara site for the first time in forever we must say we find their marketing more than intriguing: “Countess Mara – Be a Gentleman.”

Countess Mara

Countess Mara

The next sketch is from Perry Ellis .

perry-ellis-tie

Perry Ellis

For today’s Argyle Update we offer a Black Fleece Argyle Sweater at Brooks Brothers. One of designer Thom Browne’s better looks, in cashmere with grosgrain trim.  (Quite the bargain too, originally $1000, now $600.)

Brooks Brothers Black Fleece

Brooks Brothers Black Fleece

We close with Miss Tilly giving you the look she generally wears:

Merry-Merry, Happy-Happy, & Joyful-Joyful!

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New Thakoon Line, Preppy on Sale: Brooks Brothers, Hickey Freeman, LL Bean, More

The fashion comet known as Thakoon (formally Thakoon Panichgul) continues to fly high with word he is launching a new line, “Thakoon Addition.”  As seen in the WWD story:

“… a new capsule collection… a supplementary line with May-June and November-December deliveries, which will be inspired by some of the designer’s most popular designs, and sit alongside the main collection. The suggested retail price points for the line will range from about $495 for a top to $825 for dresses.”

This is not connected with the Thakoon for Target Resort collection, now slated to hit stores December 28.  The previous release date was December 25, an absolutely absurd day to launch the line; the 28th is far more reasonable.  Below, one of the looks from that group.

Courtesy Thakoon

Courtesy Thakoon

The News-Observer (Raleigh-Durham) makes some intriguing observations on the upcoming Target collection:

“His look for Target is J. Crew meets Anthropologie, with a heavy-handed mix of stripes and florals — a look that’s expected to be big for spring. He was generous in using colors traditionally found at J. Crew — where he was once a merchandiser — including canary yellow, Kelly green and navy.”

The writer, Samantha Smith, is always a great read; she also does an excellent blog. It appears fashionistas will see the designer’s work at Target long before knowing if he is doing any Inaugural Day fashions for Michelle Obama, or even Sasha or Malia.

In our ‘Preppy on Sale’ update, Brooks Brothers has substantial inventory in their online Clearance section, including most Handbags and Shoes at 70% off.  They are also doing their Golden Fleece Foundation through tomorrow (Thursday, 12.12.08) night.

Courtesy Brooks Brothers

Courtesy Brooks Brothers

Shoppers using their Brooks Brothers Platinum MonsterCard MasterCard or  Brooks card will receive a 25% discount on their purchases; those using any other form of payment enjoy a %15 savings.  2% of net sales will be donated to Golden Fleece Foundation which supports charities like St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

Miss Nautical by Nature, we couldn’t help ourselves – the moment we spotted this we thought of you:

Brooks Brothers Nautical Scarf

Brooks Brothers Nautical Scarf

Although truth be known, we aren’t seeing this on you.  If anyone finds it appealing,  Brooks has the Nautical Scarf marked down 50%, now $114 from $228.

Banana Republic says they have added new items to their sale; we found the Striped Peacoat Sweater appealing, now $119 from $175.  It looks like it could have a very high snuggle factor.

Banana Republic

Banana Republic

LL Bean has added lots of new inventory to their sale and they are also discounting a number of outerwear styles.

LL Bean

LL Bean

Their offer of a $10 Bean gift card with a $50 purchase continues through Dec. 24.

LL Bean

Bergdorf’s is touting their sale, including three pages of Jay Strongwater markdowns.  The Tory Burch Channing Sporty Patent Flat is available in a number of sizes in both khaki and navy (left), and the Kate Spade Sassy Bow ballerina flat is also on sale.

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The Penelope clutch from Kooba in either pink or black is now offered at $207, from $295; the Florence Eiseman Pleated Ribbon Dress for 3-9 Months is selling at $82 from $136 (we love the Peter Pan collar and front bow!).

bgv089k_mnbg-1xe9_mn

J. Crew continues with what is beginning to seem like the never-ending promotion; we are reluctant to use the word ‘sale,’ as that implies a discount on specific merchandise. This is Crew’s discount predicated upon how much one spends.  J. Crew is also offering free shipping for purchases totaling $100 andmoreonline. Use promo code HOHOHO at checkout.

J Crew

J Crew

Hickey-Freeman continues their sale, also offer free shipping on internet orders of $100+, with the code GSHOL. The Boy’s Navy Pinstripe is $148.50 from $195, as is the Donegal tweed.  Both are the Madison model, and at these prices one can’t go wrong.

hickeyfreemanboysnavyhickeyfreemanboysdonegal

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Hickey-Freeman’s younger, trendier Hickey merchandise also provides significant discounts right now, like the Striped Crew sweater at $82 from $248.

Hickey Striped Sweater

Hickey Striped Sweater

Hart Schafner Marx is in the midst of their Semi-Annual Sale; their cotton/silk sport shirts are $40.50 from $135, absolutely heavenly to the touch.

Hart Schaffner Marx

Hart Schaffner Marx

We are surprised to see they have removed the little promotional box about President-elect Obama from their home page. This is the brand doing the tuxedo for the Inaugural festivities, and they have also done several suits Mr. Obama wears frequently.

And the upscale Bobby Jones line has some very fiscally friendly bargains, items that whisper discreetly, “Take me to your closet!” Women’s Clubs are an additional 25% off, and the Argyle Cardigan in Navy is now $147, from the original selling price of $245.  Their $250 Urban Plaid Pleated Skort is now $75, available in a full range of sizes as of this writing.

Bobby Jones

Bobby Jones

The Men’s Madras Shorts are now $75 down from $125.

Bobby Jones

Bobby Jones

Free ground shipping is also included here for orders totaling more than $100, use Promo code GSHOL for the shipping offer.

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We close with an item dedicated to the always-wonderful Third Coast Preppy: the Times says lobster is at its lowest price in 25 years!

Andrew Scrivani for The New York Times

PHOTO: Andrew Scrivani for The New York Times

We thought everyone would appreciate that news, as well as the shopping and pricing rationale from the story’s author, Melissa A. Clark:

“I’M a sucker for a sale, the kind of shopper who tallies the amount “saved” rather than spent. My arithmetic goes like this: It makes more sense to buy the $125 cashmere sweater marked down to $95 than to pay full price for the $80 one.”

On that happy thought, until next time!

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Filed under nautical, preppy, Preppy clothing & brands, Preppy Fashion