Tag Archives: preppy clothes

Prep World Paris, Black Fleece Bargains, Itty-Bitty Kate Middleton Dresses

Hello-Hello, and welcome to a Monday.

Things are a little frenzied this week, we’re pedaling as fast as we can here at The Prepatorium.

We begin with a look at the first Prep World pop-up store.

Via StyleRumor

The Tommy Hilfiger/Lisa Birnbach endeavor debuted last week in Paris.

Via Tommy Hilfiger Facebook page

The launch party was right in front of the store, modeled to look like a Hamptons cottage.

It looked like a beautiful day at Pompidou Centre.

Via PaperBlog.Fr

It is a special treat to see our friend Kiel’s work showcased, don’t his bracelets look wonderful?!

Courtesy Prep World

It is always fun to see the reactions to Mr. Hilfiger’s styles, this story in Paper Blog (France) is replete with references to Gossip Girl characters Serena (Blake Lively) and Blair (Leighton Meester).

“Preppy. The decor is slick and hostesses are welcoming. During a moment you feel like Serena or Blair, you invent a fishing trip and you fantasize about the sweaters and knitted pastel polo shirts.”

For a more comprehensive look at the shop, Style Rumor has a lengthy post with loads of photos.

If in need of more comprehensive background on the Prep World line and concept, click here.  To see more photos, the Hilfiger Facebook page has a number of photos, including this one.

Tommy Hilfiger

Hmmmm.

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We have a few quick Sales & Savings opportunities to pass along, but be advised two of them are time-sensitive:

  • The other mention involves another flash sale, this one titled Gossip Girl Boutique at ‘invitation only’ sale site Gilt.com. The sale begins tonight at 9pm EDT, here is more from Gilt’s description:

“We’ve teamed up with Gossip Girl stylist Eric Daman, the man behind some of television’s most fiercely dressed characters, to replicate some of the show’s best looks. Whether you crave Serena’s sexy spin on boho-chic, Lily’s flawless elegance, or Blair’s ladylike polish, you’ll find plenty to choose from. And we haven’t forgotten the guys: choose from pieces for him that range from Brooklyn casual to classic Upper East Side cool.”

  • J. Crew is doing an additional 30% off sale items in its Final Sale promotion, use promo code OURTREAT at checkout for the savings.

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For those like us with a mild interest in royal weddings (cough-cough), we share a headline from across the pond about the “William and Kate” movie now being shown in the UK.

Via The Daily Mail

The descriptions and reactions to the film had us both laughing.

Rupert Thorpe via The Daily Mail

From the Daily Mail’s story:

“…the Evening Standard’s Richard Godwin concurred, adding: ‘Critics in America have panned this movie as a cheesy chick-flick, but there are positives.’  It is recognisably a film, in that it takes place on a screen.”

Indeed.
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One item related to the upcoming nuptials that is adorable, the tiny collection of Kate Middleton dresses.

Images via The Telegraph

The set was done for Harumika, The Telegraph has photos of all the styles.

Apparently they will be sold at Toys ‘R Us. (Moms, aunts, grandmothers…TP needs your help, is this a popular brand?)

Our fave itty-bitty style:

Via The Telegraph

Although we are pretty sure Miss Middleton’s shoulders will be covered, we do love the tiny wedding gown created for the line.

On that darling image we say g’bye until next time!

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Filed under Collaborations, nautical, preppy, Preppy clothing & brands, Preppy Fashion, Royal Wedding, Sales & Savings, True Prep & TOPH

Tie One On & Preppy 2.0 (Again) + Faces of Japan

Hello and welcome to a new week.

We have a slightly altered structure today. The first portion of the post is comprised of our usual content, primarily the light and frothy nonsense we enjoy sharing. The second portion of the post focuses on Japan, the journalist still lurking inside won’t allow us to ignore the latter topic and this provides everyone the chance to change channels, in the cyber sort of way, if one or both portions hold no appeal.

We begin with a brief photo feature in Saturday’s WaPo (Washington Post), “Preppy 2.0,” introduced this way:

“The term “preppy” conjures a range of images, from starched school uniforms to khaki pants and navy sport coats. But the past several seasons have seen fashionable types putting a highly personalized spin on the style, choosing from a new arsenal of old-school staples: nautical stripes, plaids and timeless silhouettes updated for 2011.”

Different clothing and accessories are featured in the piece, including several Tommy Hilfiger items we showed from last fall’s runway show.

Tommy Hilfiger via Washington Post

Other items include the Lands’ End Canvas Heritage Peacoat and the LL Bean Signature Poplin Dress Shirt.

Land's End Canvas & LL Bean Signature

Reading varying interpretations of the “preppy style” is always entertaining, click here to see the photo feature in its entirety.

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Next today, our friend Ben at Starboard Clothing shared exciting news with us: the company’s website is up and running.

Starboard Clothing Company

Starboard does “beau ties”, we wanted to share some examples of their work.  As you can see, there are beaus in seersucker, gingham, madras and other fabrics.

Starboard’s beaus look simply wonderful, bright and vibrant, perfect for spring and summer.

Some readers may recall our little sneak peek at the Alex Grant Bow Ties from our friend Skip. We can share that his bows are also now available, these are silk, with the elegance and panache we would expect from Skip.

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Knowing that April showers are just around the corner (although many of our friends in the southeast have already experienced the phenomenon), we wanted to do a Pretty in Pink showcasing some of däv rain boot styles.

Davrain

For those in need of foul-weather gear for the young miss, there are also däv Kids’ products that look like loads of fun, offering a new Adventure in Argyle.

Davrain.com

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We move on now to a far weightier topic, one consuming almost everyone’s interest.

Yomiri

In some respects scenes from Japan are reminiscent of Berlin at the end of WWII, or perhaps burning oil fields during the Gulf War.

Keiichi Nakane / Yomiuri Shimbun

Or thunderstorms and tornadoes in the great plains during severe weather season.

Kyodo News/AP

It becomes much more difficult to watch now, because the images are beginning to show people from the areas sustaining the worst damage.

JIJI Press/AFP/Getty Images

As opposed to “mere property destruction”.

KIM JAE-HWAN/AFP/Getty Images

David Guttenfelder/AP Photo

And there are faces.

Reuters

Kyodo News/AP

Associated Press (L) and Reuters (R)

JIJI Press/AFP/Getty Images

Kim Kyung-hoon / Reuters

AP Photo/The Yomiuri Shimbun, Hiroto Sekiguchi

TORU YAMANAKA/AFP/Getty (L) & Hiroto Sekiguchi/The Yomiuri Shimbun/AP (L)

Kyodo News/AP Photo

Associated Press

For those considering ways to help, the good folks at Charity Navigator have a superb list of things to consider if making a financial donation, including information on some of the four-star organizations like Doctors without BordersDirect Relief International.


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

A Conversation With Lisa Birnbach

Hello-Hello, welcome to a Wednursday (Wednesday + Thursday) post, we are so swamped this shall have to count for two days.

Today we share our interview with the woman we call the Grand Pooh-bah of Prep, Lisa Birnbach, the author of True Prep.  Yesterday was the book’s official release date, and we still cannot believe she found time for an interview; some readers may recall Ms. Birnbach’s day started with an appearance on the Today show, and it only grew busier after that.

NBC Universal

To say we were flattered to even be on the interview list, let alone on the book’s first day, would transcend understatement. (We will share a little secret: at the last moment throwing on a strand of pearls seemed prudent, because after all, she *would* be able to tell through the telephone what we were wearing here at the Prepatorium, right down to the accessories.  Somehow. she. would. know.)

Ummm, not exactly. From the outset Ms. Birnbach was warm and witty, if anyone was wooden and stiff… well, yes. It was I. Me. Us. (Whomever, honestly Princess, get a grip!)

Sadly, our first question was truly tasteless, we asked the obvious, what (who) were you wearing on the Today show?  It turns out the ensemble was a combination of new and old, both the skirt and the blouse were Brooks Brothers (although we have to apologize for being a witless wonder right off the bat, one was Black Fleece and the other regular Brooks, but it appears we were quite incapable of properly noting which was which), and the shoes were older Manolos. (Because they are still perfectly good shoes.)

NBC Universal

Almost all of the jewelry was on loan from Verdura, including the Beehive Pendant Watch, not unlike the one shown below in a 2007 Christie’s catalog.

Via Christie's

Verdura is covered in Chapter 4, “I Just Found it in My Closet,” sure to be a favorite for most fans, as it covers the contemporary sartorial choices one confronts in clothing and accessories.  Ms. Birnbach explained a bit of the process for borrowing the jewelry, it is not something undertaken lightly.  As mentioned, not everything was on loan, the pinky ring worn by Ms. Birnbach was her own, marking the occasion of her son’s birth.

We only had one other matter to handle before getting into the meat of the interview, a minor issue we felt compelled to discuss before we could comfortably move into more intense conversation.

TP: “There is just one little thing I need to bring up before we move on, um…well….uh, it’s….ah, it’s just something that is very troubling, actually, it’s fairly traumatic, I think some people might classify it as bordering on tragic. I’m worried it might derail our whole conversation, but have to bring it up anway.”

LB: “Oh, really? What is it??”

TP: “The Top-Siders featured on the Today show this morning.”

LB: “The Top-Siders are tragic? How are the Top-Siders tragic?”

TP: “They’re metallic.”

(As a brief refresher, below we share a snippet from our post on the topic earlier this year:

“The women’s Original 2-Eye metallic boat shoe seen below is at Crew, offered in platinum.

J. Crew/Sperry Top-Sider

(TP has stepped away for the moment, she is struggling with the word ‘metallic’ adjacent to the words ‘boat shoe’.)”

There, enough of that tedious blather the background, now back to yesterday’s conversation.

Ms. Birnbach was gracious in responding to our angst about the shoes.

LB: “Susan, let’s talk about this, allright? I know what you’re saying, I really do. But the metallic Top-Siders are sort of like the bad boy in school. You remember? You knew he was not the guy for you, you absolutely knew he was not the guy, and you may even have been repelled by him, but at the same time, there was this attraction, something drawing you toward him. I think the Top-Siders are kind of like the bad boy.  I’m not saying you should get them. I’m just saying I’m open to new ideas.”

TP: “Oh. Okay.” (Heh, heh, heh.)

Of course that exchange was understood by both parties as being in jest. Fun. Funny. Entirely couched in humor, intended to be taken as such, and returned in the same vein.

And Ms. Birnbach is *very* funny, immediately grasping the enormity of a “Princess tragedies” on the level of a metallic Top-Sider. This was helpful, allowing us to feel safe bringing up the next crisis.

TP: Since we’ve dealt with the shoe, can we talk about the skull? Did you see the CBS Early Show Monday morning, that segment on hypothetical Preppy Fashion? They said ‘The new preppy icon is the skull.” What is up with that?!” (Insert a full blast of righteous indignation to achieve the proper sense of total outrage.)

LB: “The skull? No, no, no.  Just no.  The skull of course, is rugby.  And rugby and preps do go back. It’s the Jolly Roger pirate, it’s everywhere, Smathers and Branson have the pirate, all sorts of things have the pirate, the Jolly Roger is everywhere. But it isn’t the new preppy icon.”

Phew. Another close one.

For a sense of that CBS story, here is one line:

“After lying low in the nineties, preppy has once again reinvented itself, this time led by pop stars and gossip girls.”

Indeed.

During the interview we had a splendid talk about the breadth of choices available these days when looking at clothing and accessories, from relative newcomers like Smathers and Branson or Tucker Blair for needlepoint goodies, or Vineyard Vines, to old standbys like Brooks Brothers and Lilly Pulitzer.  The number of bright, gifted entrepreneurs now making things appealing to preps of all ages continues to grow.

The writer shared a story about her own preppy look from years ago when she had one of her very first jobs in the business, this one at the oh-so-liberal (the horror) Village Voice newspaper.  As might be expected, the style was très casual, everyone dressed down. Way, way down. What was a prep to do? Ms. Birnbach went wild, and purchased a Lacoste polo shirt. In black.

No one will be surprised to learn we had fun talking about the Anti-Prep Wall of Shame, we sensed unspoken approval of our existing members. For the uninitiated, this select group includes both humans (think Paris Hilton), as well as other entities (Abercrombie & Fitch) displaying gross negligence to standards of good taste, good manners, or basic decency .  The conversation moved on to the sorry state of what passes for “celebrity” these days.

“Doesn’t anybody miss the day when you actually had to accomplish something to be a celebrity? What is it that says being on a reality tv show makes someone a celebrity or authority on life?”

Amen.

We talked about the challenge of writing True Prep. It was not easy, the enormity of following an iconic book like The Original Preppy Handbook was more than daunting.

“It is scary to come out with this book, it really is.  The writing part itself, the sitting down and typing the words actually wasn’t the difficult part… it was the going through the day, trying to look at every single thing that could have changed in the last thirty years…that part was hard. I hope people have fun with it, I hope they enjoy it, I always worry.

We also chatted about what I perceive as the challenge of the upcoming book tour and other public appearances, almost everyone approaching with a “Why didn’t you include _____________________ in the chapter on preppy colleges?” Or, “I cannot believe you think that _______________ is preppy.”  Miss Birnbach explained that she is not saying absolutely, unequivocally, that a certain school, or community, or club, or sport, or item of clothing, or anything else is the “one and only.” Nor that it should be. And she also said she learns an awful lot when from questions and comments, she very much sees the process as a learning experience.

Again, we stress the fun factor, using the following as a brief example of the writing style:

On thrift:
Do keep repairing old appliances to try to extend their lives. Don’t store them on your front porch or driveway.”

It is very much like the witty irreverence found in TOPH back in 1980.

As far as we’re concerned herein lies the crux of the interview, as well as the new book, the old book, and the entire topic: this is not meant to be taken seriously now, nor was it ever intended to be.  A simple look at the book’s classification makes things clear.

humor, n.

  1. The quality that makes something laughable or amusing; funniness: could not see the humor of the situation.
  2. That which is intended to induce laughter or amusement: a writer skilled at crafting humor.

Both True Prep and its predecessor, TOPH (The Original Preppy Handbook) are meant to be humorous, one need look no further than the chapter and section titles: “Rehab: The New Boarding School,” “What Happened to Mummy’s Face?” and “Truly, Madly, Deeply Preppy: The Second Wedding.”

We didn’t have enough time to cover a few of our most whined-about issues favorite topics, like the documented increase in diagnosed cases of Logophobia, or the deplorable loss of civility accompanying all this new technology (need we even say the c— p—- words), nor were we able to get a verdict on things like Spanx, or an even bigger issue: the Snuggie. (What do you think of one for… oh, let’s say Groton, or perhaps Spence?)

In wrapping up the conversation Ms. Birnbach mentioned the possibility of another gabfest at some point in the future, something we would enjoy enormously. She is much more than fun, and bright, and sophisticated, she is simply a delight to spend time with.

Perhaps the best way to understand Ms. Birnbach is through her simple post last night on the True Prep Facebook page, an example of very few words saying quite a bit.

“I hope all of you enjoy the book. I’m under a lot of pressure to make you happy. I’m a giver, but I’m only one slightly used preppy woman. Hoping you all have a great DAY ONE. xLisa

One quick note before leaving, if there are questions you might have for Lisa, do leave them in a comment; we’ll gather them up in a bit and put them aside for a future (cross your fingers) conversation with Ms. Birnbach in the next few months.  Again, our thanks to Lisa Birnbach, and also to Sara at Random House, they made things fun.

Until next time, g’bye!

16 Comments

Filed under Lilly Pulitzer Paper & Gifts, Logos, preppy, Preppy clothing & brands, Preppy Fashion, preppy lifestyle, The AntiPrep, True Prep & TOPH

True Prep Tuesday

Hell-Hello, welcome back to reality. Sigh. (Truth be told, we are happy campers indeed, the reality is that for us the work week is something to be enjoyed, not endured, so you shan’t hear any complaints from these quarters, we are blessed to do what we love, and love what we do.)

We begin today with an update on True Prep, did everyone see author Lisa Birnbach on the Today show this morning?

NBC/Universal

The appearance marked the official release of the new book, an expanded, updated partner to The Original Preppy Handbook, aka TOPH.  The segment kicked off with a look back at Ms. Birnbach’s appearance on the show thirty years ago, when the person hosting the segment was….

NBC Universal

Yeppers, that would be Tom Brokaw. (How about the Madras skirt, we love that.)

There was also a look at updated preppy fashion during the segment, including new styles from the just-launched Brooks Brothers Fleece line for the young Masters and Misses at your house, as well as looks from Lilly Pulitzer.

NBC Universal

Of course, if interested in purchasing the book, we still have a few copies available, with one cautionary note: Random House has already had to order a second printing, but those books won’t be available until at least the end of September.

We are also down to only two copies of prep classic Take Ivy, that has also had to go into a second printing. (Did we get crazy lucky with our first two books for the store, or what?)

Next, we have to say we love the fab madras jacket Ms. Birnbach is sporting in her on-camera interview with the Borders. This is very similar to one yours truly has, although ours is ancient. Seriously old. But we love it and haul it out every summer.

Via Borders.com

Today’s Pretty in Pink actually features Ms. Birnbach, she was looking at Lilly Pulitzer styles for possible inclusion in the Today show fashion segment.

Via True Prep Facebook

BTW, we were fortunate enough to spend some time on the phone with Ms. Birnbach this morning, and we’ll share part of that extended interview in tomorrow’s post. (Let’s just say that her thoughts about possible additions to the Anti-Prep Wall of Shame are entertaining.)

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Next, several quick updates on all manner of things preppy, beginning with a story in (of all places) the Financial Times. In “A Hipper Preppy Look is Back in Fashion” the writer posits that students aren’t the only people going back to school this time of year. “…fashion is too.”

“Take the long list of preppy brands enjoying success: British-owned Jack Wills recently launched three East Coast stores in the US; Boden is set to join the fray this autumn with Johnnie B, a new preppy tween line; Gant and Tommy Hilfiger, both forebears of the look, are revisiting their waspy roots with updated fashion twists; and LL Bean has put itself back on the map with a range of archive-inspired designs, following in the footsteps of Brooks Brothers, which has experienced a renaissance thanks to new collections from men’s wear luminary Thom Browne.

The story quotes Barneys‘ creative director and author Simon Doonan, offering his philosophy on the style’s popularity.

“It’s a nice antidote to the slutty porno-chic which is the dominant trend in our culture,” he says. “Maybe people are craving a bit of wholesome Americana to counteract the [MTV Reality show] Jersey Shore situation, and The Situation.”

Thank you a thousand times Mr. Doonan, thank you.

More from the FT story.

“Preppy’s previous old-fashioned jolly-hockey-sticks dowdiness is being replaced with a new, hipper image.

The styling in many preppy brand campaigns is taking an eclectic approach with old-fashioned tweed jackets being worn over baggy ripped jeans; traditional fits and trouser lengths are being played around with to give a new fashion edge.“It’s being subverted. There is the patrician privilege aspect, but there’s also a flirty, kinky side,” says Martin Raymond, co-founder of The Future Laboratory, a trends prediction agency.”

While not concurring with the notion of ‘kinky preppy’ (gasp!), we do think you will find the story interesting.

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Speaking of Brooks Brothers, we stumbled into a sale over the weekend with amazing prices on a limited number of Black Fleece items.  The sale was at another ubiquitous off-price ‘invitation only’ site, Gilt.com.

Gilt Groupe

The pieces included a Black Fleece Chesterfield coat originally priced at $1000 for $249 (L), as well as a $950 Black Fleece Cotton Dress priced at $69.

It’s probably a good thing we didn’t notice the sale until after just about everything was sold out; the B2 pooh-bahs can’t be thrilled to sell pieces at 75% off. Ouch. The sale ended this morning at 9am. (If in need of an invite for future sales, just click here.)

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Back to our primary topic, True Prep’s official release. There are any number of news stories related to the book and author Lisa Birnbach, we have a brief sampling of a few more:

We must admit to some most unflattering conduct here at the prepatorium, we’re quite proud today’s post didn’t engage in yet another annoying whineathon lots of chatter mentioning that for many of us, the style isn’t “back,” it never went away.

For those interested in staying on top of all things True Prep, the Facebook page is a good place to start, and if you enjoy Twitter (as we do), you can also find Lisa Birnbach tweetingClick here for the entire Today Show segment, give the video player a few moments to load.

With that we say g’bye until next time!

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Filed under preppy, Preppy clothing & brands, Preppy Fashion, preppy lifestyle, Pretty in Pink, The AntiPrep, True Prep & TOPH

A Special Guest Visits The Princess

Hello-hello, welcome to a Wednesday, a special day for us here at the Prepatorium, because we have a fabulous guest post today.

The one and only Jennifer Solow, an amazing author and advertising whiz (she created the famous “Wendy” Snapple campaign, among many others), has a new book out next week, and it’s simply delightful.  Reading Jennifer’s The Aristobrats marks the first time in years we’ve read a book targeted at “tweens”. (Jennifer and I have discussed the fact that back in the day, we were merely “eleven” or perhaps “twelve,” life was much simpler then.)

To be candid, we were quite a tad skeptical about the book, especially considering the audience.  Silly Princess. We were more-than-pleasantly-surprised at how entertaining the story and characters were! As Jennifer explains, the book is about four close friends who’ve been waiting their whole lives for eighth grade.

“It’s finally their big year and they’re determined to set a good example for the underpopular. With main characters who are undyingly loyal and, hello…nice, it’s a kind of anti-Clique book in my mind.”

Jennifer drew upon her own background in writing the book:

“The uber-preppy world of their story was inspired by my own experience at prep school: Madras plaid, Tiffany lockets, grosgrain ribbon watchbands, L.L. Bean Blucher moccasins, wool duffel coats.

In chatting with Jennifer we discovered we share many of the same interests, including something close to the heart: clothing, shoes, accessories…. you know the drill.  We ended up thinking it would be fun for Jennifer to write a little post about her imaginary wardrobe, not unlike the one yours truly has dreamed about.  Sigh.  So without droning on further, here are some of Jennifer’s thoughts on the topic!

Literary Must-Haves

The best thing about writing is all the free stuff. No, that doesn’t mean that John Galliano, upon reading my latest endeavor, immediately sends over a rack of couture gowns for me to wear to my book launch party. And no, the security guards from Harry Winston haven’t shown up either. The stuff is in my imagination – a veritable Vogue closet of the mind.

It’s quite unlike real life, where my own pursuit of the perfect white shirt has lasted more than two decades resulting in an overspending of the ugliest kind, and an entire section of my closet devoted to entirely un-perfect, and somewhat never-worn, white shirts. On paper, “the perfect white shirt” is just four little words; one doesn’t have to spend several hundred hours in the dressing room of Banana Republic growling and sweating (not that I do that or anything).

The “stuff” that surrounds fictional characters, and I count movies here along with books, has incredible power over me. My life changed when I first met Holly and the “ragbag colors of her boy’s hair, tawny streaks, strands of albino blond and yellow,” and her “slim cool black dress, black sandals, a pearl choker.” How many boxes of hair color did I buy in college in an attempt (a highly unsuccessful one, I might add) to define my own “ragbag of colors”? And my pursuit of that “slim, cool, black, Breakfast at Tiffany’s sort of dress” rivals that of my perfect white shirt.

And is it just me or is there a pink cashmere sweater that Lauren Hutton wears in American Gigolo that is the be-all-end-all of cashmere sweaters? I remember one very clearly even though I haven’t seen the movie in years. All those Armani suits? All that Richard Gere hunkiness? What do I remember – the thirty-second appearance of a cashmere sweater to die for.

For years the image of a specific trench coat stuck with me. It was from Lorrie Moore’s short story How to Be the Other Woman. It seemed to me the most wonderful image of a trench, quintessential in all its trenchy-ness. But I hadn’t read the story for a while so I just looked it up to see what all my fuss was about. This is all it says regarding my fantasy trench: “Meet in expensive beige raincoats, on a pea-soupy night. Like a detective movie.” Why did that stick with me for all those years? Even my Burberry can’t compete with that lingering image. So few words and Lorrie said it all.

And I admit – I’d love to own a pair of those boots Julia Roberts wears in Pretty Woman. You know the ones. Thigh high. Patent leather. (You’ll note the purely coincidental presence of Richard Gere once again.)

But I’ve actually tried these boots on, (I believe they came in size 6 to size 14, if you know what I mean) and they’re truly a terrible sight to behold…and uncomfortable as all get-out. But it doesn’t mean I still don’t want them – I just want the imaginary ones in my mind, the ones that glide effortlessly up my perfectly formed body-double’s legs.

Or…hmm…maybe I need to go shopping for a necklace later today. Specifically Kitty’s necklace from Anna Karenina: “The black velvet of her locket nestled with special tenderness round her neck. This ribbon was a darling; at home, regarding her neck in the looking glass, Kitty had felt that velvet was speaking.”

Doesn’t it sound simply divine? Do you think they have it at Neiman’s?

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We can’t thank Jennifer enough for sharing such a wonderful post, just a taste of her abundant talents. (Also proof positive of why she’s a professional, and we’re just…well, an amateur!) But we must admit, that picture of the Pretty Woman poster is rather terrifying… to think the film came out in 1990?? Eeek!

At any rate, The Aristobrats comes out next Tuesday, it is loads of fun, as well as a good message for the young ladies we know, without being preachy or tedious.  To learn more, former Elle Editor Melissa Walker has a nifty post about the book today, or you can pop into the new Facebook page.

That’s it for today, we’ll be back tomorrow with more madness!

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Filed under preppy

LL Bean Signature, and an Unusual Launch for Brooks Brothers

Hello-Hello!

Today we have more pictures than prose (there’s a blessing!), hopefully images you shall find moderately appealing. We begin with an early look at fall styles from the recently launched LL Bean Signature line.

The new styles are featured at a delightful blog, N’East Style.

As difficult as it is to contemplate the possibility of a weather change in a few months, the pictures serve to remind us of fall’s inevitable arrival.

Many of the styles are enticing, we are eager to see the catalog.  Our thanks to the N’East Style blog; for an early look at Signature for Men, pop over here.

Perhaps of equal interest, the ongoing LL Bean Signature Sale, with solid markdowns.  This includes the Piped Sweater Jacket (now $64.50 from $129) in the Twilight colorway.

The Mariner Leather Tote (originally $285, now $198) has a more fiscally friendly price point, as does the Chambray Shirt Dress, although the latter is not as deeply discounted as the bag (the dress was $79, now $63.20).

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An even newer launch is now officially underway; Brooks Brothers is promoting its new Fleece line for children.

Courtesy Brooks Brothers

Frequent readers may recall our posts previewing the line, below we show two styles we like, the Cashmere Intarsia Dress, and the Velvet Sailor Dress.

The number of sleeveless dresses for winter is disconcerting (unless they are intended to be worn as jumpers), while many of the accessories are cute.

The retailer continues to leverage new media resources, including its Facebook page; Brooks offers all of its catalogs online as well.

Brooks Brothers is also using the internet in another way, debuting a new collection online, but not at its own website.

Gilt Groupe

The new line is being launched via online ‘members-only’ sale site Gilt.com. We should make that past tense, as the sale went live at Noon EDT.  (If in need of an invite to the site, simply click here.)


Here is the description from Gilt’s sale site:

Available from Gilt before it hits stores in August, Brooks Brothers’ new collegiate-inspired line — which culls inspiration from campus life during the Roaring Twenties as well as vintage advertising from the extensive Brooks archives…”

This will be more than intriguing to watch, not now, but in August when the merchandise lands in-store. Are the Gilt sale prices what one might expect to see in stores and online? Or are these ‘discounted prices’ going to be raised when the selling channel moves from Gilt to the Brooks Brothers brick and mortar stores?  We’ll let you know what we discover.

Gilt has done a stellar job expanding into a ‘full-service’ off-price site, now offering goods for men, women, children and the home, as well as gifts and travel opportunities.

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As we approach the upcoming debut of Mad Men Season 4 we can expect to see many of the show’s stars featured in other media; below, Exhibit A. We’re going to go out on a limb, and suggest that a few friends will be gaga find the August cover of W to be of interest.

Nathaniel Goldberg/W magazine

The August issue showcases what many are describing as actor Jon Hamm’s “smoldering look”.  Mr. Hamm is best known for his role as Mad Men’s Don Draper. He is joined in the magazine feature by actress Rebecca Hall, she co-stars with him in The Town, a film being released this September.

Here is one last photo from the spread; we happily recommend the other photos and accompanying interview, click here to see both.

Jon Hamm

Nathaniel Goldberg/W magazine

We apologize to our Facebook fans, as we already shared the cover photo on that site, we simply couldn’t resist.  Silly Princess.

On that note we say goodbye until next time!

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‘Fleece’ by Brooks Brothers Sneak Peek

Hello-Hello, and Happy Monday!

With things crazy-busy here at The Princess, we jump right in with an early look at the new Brooks Brothers line for young ladies, Fleece.

Courtesy Brooks Brothers

These images were posted this weekend on the new Brooks Brothers Facebook page.

Courtesy Brooks Brothers

The new line is slated to launch in time for back-to-school shopping.

Courtesy Brooks Brothers

The Brooks Brothers Facebook page also shows this fall’s styles for the young master of the house, just click here to see the upcoming fashions; below we show the logo for the new line.

Courtesy Brooks Brothers

According to the Brooks FB page, information about a private Fleece Trunk Show for FB fans will be announced on their FB Wall (for those unfamiliar with Facebook, this is rather like one’s home page, for lack of a better term).  Our hats are off to the design team at B2, for the most part we think the girls collection looks promising.

While the majority of the Fleece styles for young men are also impressive, we have a moderate concern about this:

Courtesy Brooks Brothers

As many readers are more than tired of hearing aware, our LogoPhobia can be triggered by something like the item seen above, and in the case of Brooks Brothers, we are off the grid a bit sensitive to the topic, borderline hysterical concerned that logos on sweatshirts are merely the first step on a slippery slope. A slope that this company has judiciously avoided in most respects.

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Saturday brought us our monthly issue of WSJ magazine, always a fun read. This issue was particularly enjoyable for any preppish reader, beginning with the cover story, “The Church of Mickey Drexler, Inside the world of J. Crew’s evangelical CEO“.

Courtesy WSJ Magazine

Tina Gaudoin’s profile is enlightening, and while we are not terribly fond of many Crew fashion decisions, we cannot fault Mr. Drexler’s business acumen.

Another interesting piece in this issue, an interview with designer Thom Browne.

Jeff Riedel/WSJ Magazine

Mr. Browne is perhaps best known to Princess readers as the designer of Brooks Brothers’ Black Fleece collections, as well as the man pushing higher hemlines. For men.

Finally, WSJ takes a fast glance at tote bags, commenting that “Preppy goes paisley and punchy with this summer’s take on the traditional tote.”

Nigel Cox/WSJ Magazine

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We want to mention another children’s line, this one from Princess favorite, J. McLaughlin.

J. McLaughlin

We like a number of the dresses for girls, along with other offerings in the limited edition collection.

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Here is one of the day’s Pretty in Pink offerings, Marilyn Monroe in her iconic Gentlemen Prefer Blondes dress.

The famous gown was sold at auction this weekend for a staggering $309,000.

For another Pretty in Pink that is also an Adventure in Argyle, we bring you this image via the always-on-top-of-things Erin at Pink and Green Scene.

Pink and Green Scene

For more on the Summer Oasis beach Towel, click here.

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We leave you with this image as we celebrate and honor Flag Day.

Toby Talbot/AP

Goodbye until next time!

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