Tag Archives: reem acra inaugural gown

Obama Buzz Crashes J. Crew Website, Mrs. Obama Wears Next Target Designer


Exciting news everyone, on the Lilly Pulitzer Stationery & Gift Collection due February 1! The Princess Consort has made a very few goodies from the group available on our site for pre-ordering.

What is a pre-order? It simply guarantees your items will be shipped as soon as the merchandise is in the door here at the Prepatorium, moving you up to the ‘head of the list’. It is similar to putting a ‘hold’ on merchandise to ensure its availability.

Lilly Pulitzer Latte-Da! Mugs

Lilly Pulitzer Latte-Da! Mugs

The oh-so-fun Latte-Da! mugs are already a favorite, and they are one of two items available now.  The other is the Mix and Match Stationery set in the Bee’s Knees pattern.

Lilly Pulitzer Mix & Match Stationery set

Lilly Pulitzer Mix & Match Stationery set

We spoke this afternoon with the wonderful folks handling Lilly’s stationery line, and they still anticipate shipping to us February 1.  Translated? We then hope to be shipping goods to you by the end of that week.

Okay… we start with follow-ups to our hasty posts on some of the Inaugural fashions seen on the First Family during recent events.

There is good news and bad news for preppy retailer J. Crew as a result of their products being showcased by all four of the Obamas this past week.  The good news is, of course, the favorable publicity for the J. Crew brand.  The bad news? The favorable publicity for the brand.

How so, you say? Below we offer Exhibit A for your perusal and consideration:

Yes, more of that problem; sadly, it has almost become ubiquitous. While pressure brought to bear on the site was created in part by these darling images….

Jae Hong/AP

PHOTO: Jae Hong/AP

… and these, of Sasha and Malia Obama in J. Crew’s Crewcuts line….

Chip Somodevilla/Getty

PHOTO: Chip Somodevilla/Getty

…the reality is that for many J. Crew loyalists this is simply MOTS (More of the Same) when it comes to the site’s inaccessibility.  Stories like this one in the Daily News drove even more traffic to the online store:

“Shoppers can pick up highlights from the custom-made outfits in the Fall 2009 line.

Party dresses from the pint-size preppie line run $158-$248 in sophisticated fabrics like silk taffeta and jacquard. Party shoes are $95-$128.”

To be fair, this kind of stress on almost any site would challenge their e-commerce operations.

But J. Crew customers are particularly sensitive to the problems because of the now lengthy history of the online store’s troubled performance, its less-than-reliable up times. And it almost always seems to occur when the retailer has specifically invited customers to come and shop at the site through aggressive email promotions:

One more cautionary word to those desirous of acquiring the J. Crew looks worn by the Obama girls, either yesterday (as seen above) or those worn Sunday at the “We are One” concert seen below.  J. Crew has now removed the red, white and blue congratulatory note to the Obamas on their home page, replacing it with a message explaining that:

“The pieces worn by Malia and Sasha Obama were designed exclusively for them – from the colors to the styles to the fabrics – and are currently not available.”

We presume this also applies to the Crewcuts Herbie Coats donned by the First Daughters (is that proper?) for Sunday’s concert.

Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty

PHOTO: Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty

J. Crew did share these sketches of the Herbie coats with Celebrity Baby blog (?):

Courtesy Celebrity Baby Blog

Courtesy Celebrity Baby Blog

In today’s “Caucus” blog post about the fashion frenzy, the Times solicited reaction from J. Crew exec Jenna Lyons:

“It was an incredible honor to be part of history,” J. Crew’s creative director, Jenna Lyons, said in a telephone interview on Wednesday. “We are grateful, let me say. We needed it and we’re thrilled to have it.”

BTW, President Obama also wore Crew for his Inauguration.  The President’s ivory silk bow tie was from the retailer, nicely complementing his Hart Schaffner Marx tuxedo. J. Crew does not currently make or sell silk bow ties in any color other than black, but may reconsider this at some point in the future.

We have had a few inquiries regarding the dress worn today by Mrs. Obama to a number of official functions.

Kevin Lamarque/Reuters

PHOTO: Kevin Lamarque/Reuters

It is from none other than Tracy Feith, best known for his sun and surf-inspired designs.  As we first revealed in this post, Mr. Feith has been selected by Target for one of their GO INternational collaborative efforts.  His clothing lands in your local Boutique May 17.  We share his Inspiration board for the Target collection below.

Courtesy via WWD

PHOTO: Courtesy via WWD

For anyone interested in acquiring the look seen in yesterday’s post on the Isabel Toledo daywear worn by the First Lady…


PHOTO: pool

… we have a little update: if you are fond of the ensemble, you will have an opportunity to add it to your walk-in come spring. At least that is what this story in the Daily News reports:

“A spring version of the dress – which will retail for around $1,500 – will hit Barney’s in March.”

We have been negligent in talking about the elegance of Dr. Jill Biden’s fashion choices throughout the festivities. Our thanks to Vicki for letting us know the  beautiful red gown worn by Ms. Biden for the Inaugural balls is a Reem Acra creation.

Gary Hershorn/Reuters

PHOTO: Gary Hershorn/Reuters

That same bright red was also seen during the swearing-in and parade in the off-the-rack Milly Fleurette coat.

“At the swearing-in ceremony, Biden went with an off-the-rack $360 Milly houndstooth roll-neck dress with a Fleurette coat.

Biden also didn’t cut any corners for the inaugural balls, buying a red strapless Reem Acra dress from a store—not the designer.”

And the boots seen on Ms. Biden during the swearing-in and parade?

Mitch Dumke/Reuters

PHOTO: Mitch Dumke/Reuters

They are from the Taryn line by Taryn Rose, known for their exceptional comfort and ease of wear. From Delaware Online:

“Kathy Savage, who owns the boutique… said the cushioned Taryn by Taryn Rose knee-high boots resemble leather, but are actually black nylon with black patent pull tabs and trim. The boots retail for $255.

“Jill loves a high heel, but they’re wonderfully comfortable,” Savage said. “Jill is not an extravagant person. She is conscious of everything she buys. She’s not frivolous at all.”

BTW, some reports have the cashmere overcoat worn by the President during the swearing in and parade coming from Brooks Brothers. When we find out we’ll let you know.


Filed under preppy

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.


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


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



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.



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!


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

Another Prep Fashion Faux Pas, Inaugural Updates, AntiPreps

First off, before you read one more word, scoot over here and leave a comment so you are entered in this week’s Great Giveaway, with preppy goodness anyone can win! Leaving a comment about anything you are thankful for = giveaway entry.

Quick headlines of the day, many of which may well be moldy oldies to many of you, but here we go anyway.

The Presidential daughters will be attending Sidwell Friends school; Malia at the Middle School in Northwest DC (the Upper School Building is also here), and Sasha at the Lower School campus that is actually located in Bethesda. Malia is in fifth grade and Sasha in second grade.

Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP

PHOTO: Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP

The Obamas selected the Quaker school where Chelsea Clinton and Al Gore III received their educations, deciding it was a better fit than Georgetown Day and Maret. For more background, our post here may be helpful.

Newsweek features the future First Lady in their Dec.1 issue, on newsstands today.



And we hear an entire book dedicated to the Michelle Obama style is quickly being put together; former Mademoiselle editor Mandi Norwood is writing the book. It is scheduled for publication sometime next spring by Avon Books.  Coming out even earlier, “Michelle Obama: Meet the First Lady is due December 9.

Harper Collins

Harper Collins

Written by David Bergen Brophy, the publisher is Harper Collins.

Speculation continues on who will design Michelle Obama’s gown for the Inaugural Balls in January, but we have seen little devoted to basic inauguration day apparel for Michelle Obama and the girls….? Seeing some designs in that genre would be most enjoyable.

That now-famous Thakoon dress worn by Michelle Obama is now officially out of production, at least for the time being.

Mark Wilson/Getty

PHOTO: Mark Wilson/Getty

More sketches for Inaugural gowns are floating about from other designers, including this from Isabel Toledo, done at People magazine’s suggestion, for a story.

Isabel Toledo via People.com

Isabel Toledo via People.com

Below, Mrs. Obama in the Isabel Toledo gown worn to a June fundraiser hosted by Anna Wintour (Vogue) and Calvin Klein. Many readers may be familiar with the divine illustrations Ms. Toledo’s husband, Ruben, has done for the Nordstrom catalogues.



And Reem Acra also shared her creativity, again, per People magazine’s request.

Reem Acra via People.com

Reem Acra via People.com


We have another entry in the Gwyneth Paltrow Fashion Faux Pas category. While we do not want to appear as though we are unfairly focusing on Ms. Paltrow, her style statements of late are surprising in light of her über-preppy upbringing.


Above, the actress at the grand re-opening of the remodeled Fontainebleau this weekend. The famed hotel was also home to the Victoria’s Secret fashion show taping.

The always-interesting Styleist blog takes Ms.Paltrow to task for the Antonio Berardi dress she wore (below) to the Two Lovers film premiere in London.

Getty Images

PHOTO: Getty Images

The comments include these:

“We see London, we see France, we see Gwyneth Paltrow in Paris at the premiere of ‘Two Lovers’ wearing another weird dress. Plus we see underpants! And her bra!

Gwyneth frequently comes thisclose to fashion greatness. But then she takes a giant leap off the Cliff of “Odd and Awkward” into the ocean of “Looking at Her Makes Us Wince”. Doesn’t she have any friends? Or a mirror?”

The Victoria’s Secret goings-on alerted us to very frightening news: two Antipreps were in the same place.  At the same time.  Clearly someone neglected to put up the deflector shield.  Mon Dieu.

Exhibit A:

Hans Deryk/Reuters

PHOTO: Hans Deryk/Reuters

In case anyone is fortunate enough to *not* recognize this individual, it is TV personality Kim Kardashian; here is our initial post affirming Ms. Kardashian attaining official AntiPrep status.

Next we have Paris Hilton, our very first Anti-prep, as explained here. It could almost be said Ms. Hilton prompted the necessity of an Anti-prep category.  BTW, for those keeping score at home, this is the second such occurrence of dual (dueling?) anti-preps appearing at the same location.

Hans Deryk/Reuters

PHOTO: Hans Deryk/Reuters

We apologize for the multiple spellings on antiprep; we just can’t locate the word in our Webster’s and don’t know how to spell it so we can find it when we look things up in the blog.

Until next time!


Filed under nautical, Obama Fashion & Politics, preppy, The AntiPrep, When Preppy Goes Wrong