(No Longer) The Frumpiest Girl at Physique

A little over a month ago my friend and colleague Monique dragged me to my very first Physique 57 class. Over dinner earlier that week, a group of industry contacts and friends were noshing on petit filets paired with truffle fries or creamy parmesan polenta, green beans doused in butter, several glasses of wine, and the obligatory gourmet donuts. I don’t want to name names, but this downtown hot spot is not exactly where you want to be when trying to downsize in the denim department. That said, the food was delicious. While we munched, we talked about all of the obvious items of interest from men to business, but we circled back several times to the obligatory topic–how fat we all are.

**Now, let me step back for a moment to confirm that indeed, not a single one of us actually “fat.” Let me take one step further to say I don’t reallybelieve in that word anyway. I genuinely do look around and find such a plethora of attractive shapes in this city. In every city. I don’t believe in size 0 or bust. In fact some of the sexiest women I’ve ever seen (or heard men talk about) are of the thicker, “more womanly” variety. But when I talk about it now–and rest assured, it might come up again in the future–my definition of “fat” as it applies to my own life is that I am up a size for me. That the frame I know and am comfortable with at my healthiest weight is currently distorted in the direction I’d rather it not be. **

Back to the point, rambler. It was a big, caloric dinner and we were all feeling guilty. Someone at the table brought up their favorite way to forgive themselves a dinner of this caliber–one more thing this eager New York chick had yet to discover–the inimitable Physique 57. This ballet-based workout includes a bar, a playground ball, a black cloth band, an hour, some awesome music, and a chic little creature clad in spandex who barks orders at you through a miked headset. In short, I was told, it was the place where Hell meets Heaven. And it burns a lot of calories. I was intrigued. I’ve been running with my boyfriend for several months now–which got me started on running solo–and I love it. But I needed a change. I needed to sweat to the point of tears. I was oddly excited.

Monique and I signed up for an open class at the Spring Street location for my first time. Admittedly, I was nervous going in, but relieved I wasn’t going in alone. The class was hard. It leaves you sweating and panting and reaching for your water bottle, yet at the end the feeling of health and adrenaline surging throughout your body is enough to make you sign up online right away to go through the pain all over again as soon as your schedule (and wallet–class costs $35 a pop) will allow.

Cheer practice 2006, Pookie is far left &
I’m in the yellow shorts

I don’t have enough wonderful things to say about this class that has changed my understanding of group, synchronized workouts forever. But there is one little thing that really bothered me that first day, and that continued to nag at me the next few times I went. Shape and size notwithstanding, every single chick in the studio is decked out in the cutest little workout outfits. A former cheerleader myself, I get the desire to look good while working up a sweat, but we always donned little pink pleated skorts or Victoria’s Secret mini shorts with our fitted Midd t-shirts, throwing our boyfriends’ oversized athletic gear on to walk from the dorm to the gym. I’m not gonna lie–there were hair bows involved as well. While the look worked at 19… and even at 22… it’s over. Time to grow up and look like a woman in a class.

It was even easier when we dressed in uniform!

So I threw on my little Gap athletic sweats and a boring t-shirt I didn’t care about and headed to the gym. As I looked around the room and saw the ladies around me geared up in Lululemon yoga pants that fit like a glove, little tanks with built-in bras, and perfect half-zip fleeces that actually fit, I felt like a total loser. But here is the worst part. No one told me ahead of time that Physique class is a socks-only experience. As in, no shoes or bare feet allowed in the studio. As in, within moments everyone in the room knew that I was wearing one faded pink Puma sock and one white Polo sock that had (yes, Lord, strike me down) a hole in it. Everyone around me was wearing cute little black ankle socks that literally had the words “Phsyique 57” inscribed in sweet white writing on the soles. I. Wanted. To. Die.

Now, I must admit, since I finally drank the Kool Aid and purchased a few Lululemon duds myself, I have realized that they are a lot more than attractive. In the store they explain all of this to you while leading you around and helping you select the proper gear based on your preferred exercise routine. Yesterday I picked up a great little tie dyed tank with a built-in bra and the Run Dash Tight pants in black that are great for class but will work wonders on runs as well. The technology involved helps you keep warm outdoors, cool indoors, prevents sweat from soaking you through, and maybe most importantly for me, makes you feel like a real athlete.

The price tags are staggering, but sometimes, isn’t it worth it to feel great? It’s not only about not being the frumpiest girl at Physique. It’s about knowing that even if you aren’t the most traditional athlete in the room, even if you took a year off after cheerleading before figuring out that size 2 (or, ahem, even 4) was a memory not a right, sometimes it only takes some stretch lycra and a proper pair of socks to get you back in the groove. And when you feel like you look the part, you have only success to greet you when you walk through the door of whatever daunting gym looms ahead. Girls, gear up. And when you try Physique, tell them I sent you 😉

My Thanksgiving Face

Last night I met the little bro for a (few) glass(es) of wine and a salad. Okay, to tell the truth, there were French fries involved. Two orders. That is the whole truth… moving on.

After dinner we were play-fighting over a cell phone or a set of keys or who-knows-what and the little bugger got a wee bit too close to my face with those grubby little paws. I exclaimed, “Stop! You’re going to ruin my face for Thanksgiving!” upon which he exploded into laughter and made some comment to the effect of, “Who cares?”

Am I alone in feeling like the Thanksgiving look matters? Alas, I know it’s just family (and friends) scattered around the table, and the focus is on the food and the feeling and all the rest of it. But it also happens to be (one of) the most family oriented holiday(s) of the year, and someone’s always snapping photos. In my house, tons of photos. Occasionally we’ll find an old album and start leafing through; no matter what the year, there is always at least a page of shots from Thanksgiving–usually many.

I spent years in braces, some of those years overlapping with baby fat; then there were the metallic liquid eyeliner days of middle school and the bleach-blond cheerleading years too. Thanksgiving photos are a veritable timeline of the many stages of Jensy and why not put my best face forward this year for the current chapter?

All of this to say, I have started putting some thought into Thursday’s makeup look. It’s so important to find a balance somewhere between smoky eyes/juicy lips and nothing at all. Here is what I’m thinking…

EYES
A subtle smoke, something in the bronze family with hints of violet. This makes blue eyes pop but doesn’t look too intense. Do-able with a dusting of sheer golden powder over the entire lid, a smokier purple in the crease, a quick line of bronze liquid and of course, plenty of black mascara (top and bottom, I can’t help it).

Seen here with the Estee Lauder Bronze Goddess collection of products.

LIPS
A lovely nude infused with just enough sparkle that it feels festive, but not over-the-top. After all, this is a family affair. I like to give lips a nice buff first (especially in colder weather). Achievable by brushing gently with a spare toothbrush *yes, I keep an extra around for this!* and water.  Follow up with a great, creamy lip balm–my favorite is La Mer, but Rosebud Salve will do just as well. Then one coat of a pale pinky-beige lipstick covered with one coat of a great nude gloss. Not to give all the love to Estee today, but their Pure Color gloss in Peach Sizzle ($20) is perfect for this look.

Here is what I’m talking about; can you guess the famous face?

BRONZE FACTOR

A look from the Chanel 2010 Fall Makeup Collection

Same little bro (I only have one, after all) commented in a car trip last Saturday that I was way too bronze for the family get-together we were attending, let alone during daylight hours. I rectified as best I could with no sink, soap, or even towelettes on hand–covering everything with a dusting of mineral makeup one shade lighter than my skin. It worked, but not great. For Turkey Day, I think I will embrace the pale and warm up the cheeks only (as opposed to my famous all-over bronzing, yikes) with a faint dusting of pink as seen here.

So, that’s the plan. Let’s see if I can master the look and keep those photos looking cute, fresh, and not too dated this year.

My Barista Loves My Nail Polish…

Last Sunday I crammed in a super-quick manicure between my sixth phone call to my boss that day, and my afternoon SoHo date with Josh. I was typing, actually, and looking at the atrocity that had become my nails since their last pampering, so I grabbed a 20 and a pair of sunglasses and ran two blocks to Nails & More on Broadway for a do-over.

I hate to play favorites, but this walks-in-welcome cheap nail spot is the best in Manhattan by far. They always accommodate, it is clean as clean can be, and they’re so nice. My favorite is Isabel. I was so glad to get her that day! With ruby red toe nails still in place from a similarly panicked moment a couple weeks prior, I decided to do something fun with my fingers since hey, it’s winter now and who cares if the two sets of nails relate?

I browsed the rack feeling the usual combination of hope and boredom. Stick with something creamy and neutral that will look refined and professional at client meetings this week? Go for a punchy pale pink to bring back girlhood days without going overboard? Silly, flirty favorites like mint green or baby blue are out of the question since August is over and I officially have shed my Silly Bandz and given up crazy colors till Memorial Day comes once more. No, I suddenly decided, I wanted purple. I needed purple. It had to be purple or I had to leave.

Always a fan of Lilacism, I held up the familiar dusty lavender and contemplated it momentarily. I’ll come back to you someday, Lilacism, I will. But today, I needed punchier! I need PURPLE. And there at the bottom of the rack, I found it. Something so out of the norm they had stashed it among the lime greens and the glittery blacks. A shimmering purple so deep, that changed in a moment to brown, then to a certain blue, then to silver, and back to a new, lighter shade of purple, by simply shaking the bottle. I had found my shade.

The beauty of a manicure by Isabel is that at a mere $9.50, it will actually last a week. As I write this, 6 days later, I have not even a chip. But the master of this particular manicure is that it has actually gotten stares. Compliments. Gushes. On the subway, at lunch with an industry contact, and then–the big moment–at Starbucks. My male barista on Monday morning, never one to look up or mutter much more than a “That’ll be 2.50, ma’am,” (MA’AM? Seriously?) actually stopped what he was doing, made eye contact and said, “Miss, love the nail color. So cool.”

I died. I overreacted. I showered him millions of thanks because I was so excited. It wasn’t in my head–this truly was the perfect color. And, it had mysteriously taken me from ma’am to miss in a matter of a moment. Bonus: three days later, same Starbucks, different barista, this one female– “Girl! Love the nails!” Yay!

Here is the fun part. This too can be yours! It’s called Main Squeeze. Looks a little different in this photo, but trust me in person you will adore. Look for it the next time, and let me know if your barista–or your boyfriend– loves it as much as you do.

One Chic Shirt: FRESH PRESS by 607VISUAL

Have any of you ever had the need to produce a t-shirt for your company, a project, or your blog?  😉 For obvious reasons, I’ve been looking into this myself, and am struggling in that a lot of what’s out there is kind of cheesy…

So excited today at having discovered this new initiative from San Francisco based design company founded by New Yorker (!) Brent Gentile. The gifted up-and-comer’s designs can be scoped here. Gentile’s work has been seen in campaigns for Mazda and JetBlue among other heavy hitters. This kid clearly needed a t-shirt for his company, but ran into the same dilemma I did while looking to commission something that was actually cool.

Designer Brent Gentile: self portrait

Luckily for Brent (and the rest of us!) he is a designer and was able to pour all that talent into his own t-shirt, aptly dubbed FRESHPRESS. The line will aim to put designers and creatives in control of the t-shirt search and create something that truly reflects their individual brands. The series will grow into a unique, exclusive clothing line as artists and designers are invited to participate and collaborate. Gentile says, “The idea of a graphic having the authority that renders something official or not is an incredible power, so I brought that idea to Fresh Press.” The first FRESH PRESS t-shirt is now available, and in limited quantity, so hurry up and grab yours today, here.

FRESH PRESS #1 was hand printed in the heart of San Francisco on a heavy weight 100% Cotton Black V-Neck. FRESH PRESS #1 is an edition of 100 (30 Small, 40 Medium & 30 Large)
No more will be created.  Each shirt comes with an official numbered FRESH PRESS tag.
$25.00 each (does not include shipping & handling)

Gemma, A Gem

The Couple, En Route to Lower East Side

On Sunday afternoon, my boyfriend Josh and I had a couple hours to kill and after a quick subway ride downtown, we found ourselves wandering in the vicinity of the Bowery Hotel. We were starving, and cruised the neighborhood briefly looking for something appealing that would work with my food allergies (ugh. annoying). We found the charming Gemma, took a quick peek at their dinner menu and went right inside. It was 4:00, that witching hour when it’s tough to find a great meal. But we knew immediately that we’d lucked out.

The endlessly charming interior cannot be captured adequately in photographs, no matter how lovely they turn out. The space feels at once comfortable yet elegant–as if you’ve wandered in to some fabulous aging debutante’s private dining room and pulled up a chair. Lush, amber lighting compliments the decor comprised of vintage wine bottles wooden tables, mix-and-match chairs, thick white candles, and large antique mirrors.

The wait staff was friendly and attentive–bringing our water in a label-less wine bottle and a basket full of fresh-baked-still-warm foccacia as soon as we sat down. (This Celiac was not able to indulge in the bread, but the boy loved it!)

For our first course we shared the Chef’s selection of meats and cheeses ($18), each heavenly bite of which was devoured instantly but allowed to linger on the tongue. For dinner, he ordered the parpardelle with oxtail ragu ($16) and I had the artichoke salad with parmesan and truffle vinaigrette ($13)–and, never one to turn down a truffle, I paired my salad with the truffled polenta fries ($7). The salad was delightful and full of flavor–not too much truffle oil, but enough to make the taste buds sing. The polenta fries came with two dipping sauces–one a cheesy pot of wonder and the other orange, spicy, and divine.

Munching and sipping contentedly, I scoped out the place and found a diverse spread of happy diners. A young hippie couple sat in a mirrored corner toasting life and enjoying appetizers. A rowdy group of girls my age huddled in a booth drinking too much wine and loving every drop. A long table in the center of the space provided adequate seating and food for a big family celebrating something on a lovely Sunday evening. An older couple held hands over their intimate table while awaiting entrees. And there was the inevitable screaming baby by the bar area, but we were too happy to care.

As our meal drew to close, I knew we had hours ahead of us to wander the streets arm-in-arm and shop and enjoy Downtown. But I was still so sad at having to leave Gemma, the warmth and friendliness of which had charmed us deeply. In a city full of eateries, each with its own schtick, it is always such an amazement to me that it can be so tiring finding the perfect place to fit your mood, budget, and aesthetic. Gemma was Sunday’s perfect discovery–a memory formed over prosciutto and fine wine, a romantic spot that will be just as special when I return with my mom, a friend, or a business associate. It was incredible. It was a gem.

The Fiercest Boots on Planet Earth

I admit it–I’m a little slow on the uptake. The fiercest boots on Planet Earth have actually been around for a while. Blake Lively rocked them last January–at Gossip Girl costume designer Eric Daman’s bash at Henri Bendel in Manhattan–and somehow they have only come to my attention this weekend? Time to get with the program Jensy. I saw them featured on the “B*tch Stole My Look” portion of Fashion Police this week and the strangest thing… last night, I dreamed I owned them.

My complex, anxiety-ridden dreams are usually spent falling, or saving loved ones from attackers, or trying to run without being able to move the legs (too much information, readers? Maybe. I apologize). For me to actually dream about pulling on, purchasing, and sashaying around this glittery city in these heavenly boots, they must have really made an impact right?

Please check out the thigh-high perforated stretch faux-leather Stella McCartney wonders. Everything Blake Lively ever wears looks perfect, because she is. But these are one of those hot ticket, high fashion items that for whatever magical reason, could actually work on real people–people who don’t look, or spend, like Miss Lively. She did bring them to glory, though. That goes without saying. The blazer, crisp white shirt and effortlessly pulled back hair make the statement, “Oh, funny that, I just happened to pull these boots on while making my way to this party where I didn’t put any thought into how I’d look, but hell, I do look great.”

Last week Madonna rocked them at the Fashion Delivers Gala at New York’s Waldorf Astoria, paired with a shimmery sheath and wavy blonde locks. The Material Girl looked like a million bucks.

So tight, so shiny, they look almost as if they been melted on the leg for the wearer. Is it the resemblance they bear to a stretch-leather legging that has me floored, or the fact that they literally work with everything? The metallic heel is its own topic of splendor. The perforated pattern? It’s stunning. It’s modern yet oddly classic, and somehow reminiscent of ancient warrior duds. Perfection.

Unfortunately sold out on net-a-porter.com, they were on sale for around $1,100. We can only hope some girl whose legs are just ever so slightly short receives and returns them, so more become available. Where else? Where can I find these boots? And how will I justify spending the rent money on them?

Till I figure it all out, at least a girl can dream…

Perfect Clouds

This afternoon I was racing to an appointment, late as always, barreling down the West Side Highway in the typical stop-and-go of midday, mid-week. My cell phone was dying, I had a list of work-related things to do that I still had not accomplished, and my head was simply rattling. Oh, did I mention I blew out my iPod headphones last week and haven’t even remembered to replace them yet? In short, not the most pleasant cab ride. And at twenty bucks a pop, you’d like to at least be able to find peace of mind during these trips.

With none of the usual distractions available I found myself looking out the window and I noticed these clouds. Now, mind you, I am no tree-hugger. I am also not one of those people who is always happy, always finding the beauty–even though I’d like to be. But these clouds were amazing, really. I don’t even know what to call them. The sky was a perfect blue, and they just looked like they had been painted in, for my entertainment and enjoyment alone–they stretched all the way from the far reaches of the Financial District back Uptown from whence I’d come.

I tried to capture them with a photo taken on the very last legs of my uncharged phone. I promise you this image doesn’t do them a shred of justice. They just stopped me in my tracks and made me think, “Well, isn’t it all just so damn beautiful?” It really is. I live for these moments. They are the ones that make all the rest of it worth dealing with.

Recently I was having lunch (burgers and fries–my nutritionist had better not be reading this!) with my favorite four-year-old (yes, I know I am too old, and too busy, to be babysitting. But I love these kids so much I’ll probably end up sticking with them till I have my own). For the sake of his and his family’s privacy, we’ll just call him H. That’s what I call him most of the time anyway, when it’s not “Dude,” “Buddy,” or “Handsome.”

H had his bun-less, cheese-less burger in one hand and a toy train in the other. We were experiencing one of those pleasant lulls in adult-on-child conversation where it doesn’t matter that you aren’t talking, and nothing is awkward about it because hey, the kid’s just thinking. And you’re just watching him think. It was great. Out of nowhere he says, “Jenny?” Blue eyes jolt up in my direction and little mouth is set in a very adult half-smirk. “You know what the best part of Disney movies is? There’s always a happy ending. You can get through all the sad parts, because you know no matter what, everything will be okay.”

H has years to go, and lots to learn, but he sure is right about those happy endings. I have to disagree though about the best part–it’s not just at the end. The best part is when nothing particularly special, or good, or even remotely promising is happening, and then suddenly you find yourself smack dab in the middle of a beautiful day. Stress fades, work pauses, failing electronic devices can be dealt with later, and all that really matters are those crazy, perfect clouds.

Cher, Cher…Everywhere

I’m sure I wasn’t alone on the evening of September 12, this year’s MTV Video Music Awards, in feeling equal parts shocked and thrilled when Cher strutted onto that stage in her “If I Could Turn Back Time”–circa 1988–sheer, sequined, insane bodysuit at age 64. She looked fabulous, that goes without saying. And she’s got a big comeback going on, so more power to her. But what is it about this icon that makes us keeping wanting more? And how much of a good thing, is just way too much?

VANITY FAIR
This month’s issue of Vanity Fair debuted on newsstands last week. In the cover shot, Cher is (true to form) clad in a scant, black unitard, decked in jewels, hair wild and flowing. I found the interview itself pretty interesting. Cher opens up on a slew of topics from her difficult marriage to Bono (“He was so much more than a husband—a terrible husband, but a great mentor, a great teacher…”) to feeling shorted by the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame (“We influenced a generation, and it’s like: What more do you want?” Of course, daughter-turned-son Chaz makes for an interesting topic of conversation as Cher admits she struggles with pronouns but understands her child’s struggle with gender identity. You should check out the issue to read more–I guarantee it’s a great read.

BURLESQUE
Okay, so I’ll preface this bit by saying I have no right to comment on a movie I haven’t yet seen. I’ll surely be in line Thanksgiving weekend when it opens (but not in Manhattan–as there is still a rumored bed bug infestation in many theaters, and that’s totally creeping me out). But am I the only one who thinks the trailers are sort of, well, tacky? Maybe I’m just not that into the whole musical-movie thing. Or for that matter, the small town girl making it big in the entertainment business montif–which we just see too often. Fair enough if I am judging a book by its cover here, but I guess I’m just missing the point. I wish we could see her open up a little more. Try something totally outside of her norm. What about playing a character who actually looks (somewhere near) her age? As in, ditch all that makeup and the tiny outfits and nightclub atmosphere and play someone’s mom? In a setting other than a burlesque club?

PLASTIC SURGERY
As I said, it’s pretty clear the woman looks damn great. But doesn’t it make you sad though, just a little, that this is what we’re supposed to aspire to? In a country so eager to go green, to give back, to pay it forward, and all the rest of those charming concepts, why are we still SO afraid to age gracefully? Now I am no expert, nor do I have any exact idea about what procedures she’s had done. But let’s all agree that Cher’s face has been tampered with. Majorly. And a woman at that age (with grown kids!) has no right to such sculpted abs and a tiny toosh.

For the average gal who’s got some money in the bank and is scared to look old, hey, go for it. But a part of me feels like someone in the public eye should try–just a little harder–to exercise some restraint in the plastic department. If every woman in Hollywood knifes themselves into such shape by the age of 64 (which, mind you, is NOT OLD), every other woman in America is going to be crying themselves to sleep. It’s an impossible standard to uphold. And an unnecessary one. You people are role models! Suck it up and buy some La Mer! Sneak in a little Botox from time to time. But no need to go so far.

Based on looks alone, my love goes to Meryl Streep. No, she doesn’t look like she did in the ’80s. But she is so utterly beautiful in her natural-ness, that it makes even the 20-something set jealous. And it gives her peers and her juniors something to feel proud of and to hold onto. Heck, even Cher admits in the Vanity Fair article: “I think Meryl [Streep] is doing it great. The stupid bitch is doing it better than all of us! But I don’t like it. It’s getting in my way.” Part of being a woman, and owning that power, is aging in a way that makes us feel comfortable yet allows us to look like US.

At the end of the day, we all still love Cher. She’s an icon, she’s a goddess, and plastic surgery or not, men of all ages still want to bed her down. Go Cher! I know the comeback is going well, but hope that as she continues on the journey, she’ll find even more of her true self in there, and maybe even share some more of it with us.

ps. In homage, had to throw this one. My fave of all time.

Nude Cocktail Dresses: Do you Dare?

Is there anything sexier than the little black dress? Probably not. But I have to admit, I am so into stepping outside the norm. This season we have been bombarded with a slew of chic and fantastic cocktail dresses in every price range. From one-shoulder to backless to shimmering and bodycon, they’re all great.

But I am so pissed that winter is coming, and so desperate to enjoy the ever-so-faint lingering tan I’ve managed not to lose completely. What’s a girl to do? How about thinking outside of the box and choosing something not bright, not black, but… beige. (Check out the darling Dakota Fanning sporting the look at “The Runaways” premier, left)

Skin-tone frocks might historically have been for spring and summer outdoor soirees. But, this season why not say, “To hell with convention!” and pair yours with black tights, sky-high pumps, and a great faux fur. You’ll stand out at the winter cocktail party for sure.

 A few words of advice:
-Good underwear (nude in color, that is!) is a must. Nothing ruins a great look more than visible panties
-Spanx are advisable no matter how teeny you are, because flesh tone minis tend to reveal everything… if you know what I mean
-Consider sizing up if you go for something tight-fitting in a nude hue
-Bronzer is a must. We don’t want to look corpse-like, am I right?

Here are some really cute ideas…

For the girl who loves her bod but doesn’t want to go too bare:

Why not try this A.L.C. “Baxter” stretch lace mini? The antique feel of the coloring and texture are so unique, and the ruching at the hip packs major sex appeal. White cuffs add a modern flair. Would be perfect with a brown tight (try Wolford Cotton Velvet–you’ll fall in love) and Frye boots for a more casual dinner on the town, or amped up with your favorite power heels and bare legs for a party.

$450. shopbop.com

     
For those of you with perfect bodies and huge budgets (I hate you, by the way!) why not wow in this sexier-than-thou formfitting number by Herve Leger?

The details speak for themselves, so make sure not to over-accessorize or you will look slightly, dare we say, over-the-top? I love how they styled it here with a great black shoe and a pony tail, but a low, messy chignon and some metallic heels would also be divine. Just sayin’     $1,590. shopbop.com
 

This 3.1 Phillip Lim number is the showstopper for anyone who is craving the look but prefers to keep things ever so slightly demure. Style it just as you see here, but go ahead and throw some long, vintage earrings on or let your hair flow in a nape-of-the-neck side pony. Perfect transition into winter, and the bonus–you can ditch the tights and platforms in lieu of bare legs and gold sandals next May for a garden party. But be forewarned: this dress is just close enough to white that it is a definite no-no to wear to a wedding. Sorry girls!  $875. net-a-porter.com

 Alright, so that was fun, but if we’re being honest, we’re in our 20’s and we’re broke right? If the above are not exactly in your price range, why not check out some lower-priced favorites of mine…
 Both from Urbanoutfitters.com:

Silence & Noise, $59
Silence & Noise, $48.     

Blogger’s Own:
 Are you surprised that I was inspired for this post during a wistful browse through my own closet? One of my favorite dresses of the MILLIONS hanging in there is this Valeria Siniouchnika frock from 2002 (!) I know it’s still chic; the question is, will it still fit? Now let’s just hope my fabulous boyfriend has a night on the town planned soon…

Welcome to Sparkles & Fun

Hi friends!

I address you as such because it’s pretty clear that the only people who will read this for a while are my already established friends-and-family base. Nothing wrong with that. I love you all and welcome you to my newest endeavor…

What is “Sparkles & Fun”?…

It started several years ago, to be honest. I like to pretend sometimes that we’re all still 19-year-old college girls bopping around in my navy blue VW Bug convertible through the mountains of Vermont, country music blazing through weary speakers and a case of cheap white wine clinking around in the back seat. But the truth is, that was (well) over five years ago. Some things have changed–big things have changed. But the essence is still there, and that is what I want to write about.

My best college friend–we will call her Pookie–is so much more than my friend. She’s the mirror of my soul, the voice I always want on the other end of the line, and most recently added to her list of connections and titles, she is now my sister to boot. Luckily my older brother fell in love with her a couple years back and on May 1st of this year, she officially joined the family. But I digress…

Pookie and I started out as a couple of blondes on a cheerleading team (she was a natural at both–my hair needed chemicals and my body needed major training), with big open hearts and huge dreams. Anytime we had a fight, a negative moment, tears over a boy, a disappointment in any element of our sweet lives, one or both of us would shake it off suddenly and declare, “Sparkles and fun!” It seemed–seems still, really–that glittery things and fabulous times were always at the core of who were, who we still are. It seems that no matter how difficult or discouraging a moment can be, you can always find a way to bring it back to the positive. Nothing matters as much as finding the joy in life. It sounds corny, but try it. I promise you will find, we were right.

I start this blog not as an homage to my incredible friendship with Pookie (though I know you’ll all hear plenty about that!) but as an affirmation that though I am older now and presumably wiser, and though the proverbial “plate” is much fuller in many ways than it was back when Sparkles & Fun, the concept, was formed, I am still a girl at heart. A girl in New York City, filled to the brim with hopes and fears and excitement and disappointments. A girl desperate to try new things and get ideas out and hear feedback from her peers. A girl overflowing with glitter and love for the many wonderful people who make it all matter, and the beautiful city that now plays host to my dreams.

I hope you’ll stay with me and help me to navigate this new and somewhat daunting path. I am so excited to start Sparkles & Fun, and only hope that Pookie will forgive me for borrowing the term from us, for now. I hope she knows she can always take it back and do her very own things with it.

Welcome to my blog!

“It’s simple. I believe in pink. I believe in wearing lipstick. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe in miracles.”
–Audrey Hepburn–