30 May 2008

Best Accessories (And Eyes) Ever

Have you ever seen such amazing eyes? These are women from the Pakistani Kalash tribe, known for its amazing handicrafts and ancient culture.

Why So Cheapish?

24 May 2008

Santa Cruz Style

You can almost get high by just inhaling in Santa Cruz. People's conversation is peppered with "bro" and "right on" and the city is extremely chilled out. I'm tempted to move here and hang out with happy stoned hippies. Make sure to stock up on George W. Bush toilet paper.

21 May 2008


Hard not to feel a little upset by this picture, taken in Bangalore. Maids are seen in front of a Louis Vuitton ad, hanging callously in a city (and country) racked by poverty. Almost as crass as the Louis-clad elephant from the Keira in Africa Vogue layout.

Le weekend

I'm off to San Francisco for Memorial Day weekend. I hope to be swept off my feet by a reincarnation of Jimmy Stewart under the Golden Gate Bridge while wearing a beautiful creation by Edith Head.


Geishas for Obama

A woman dressed as a maiko (apprentice geisha) walks down a street wearing Democratic Party candidate Barack Obama campaign buttons in Kyoto, Japan May 20, 2008. - Reuters

19 May 2008

Necessity Is The Mother of Alteration

I mentioned a few posts ago that I had taken scissors to some old dresses. Here's one of the products of that experiment. Basically, I've collected about a dozen cheap dresses from various charity shops. Most of them are circa 1985 and fairly unflattering (mid-shin length... shudder). Because I'm going to be in hot, hot places all summer, I knew I'd be wanting some summer dresses. But because I'm pinching pennies for the actual traveling, I don't consider buying more clothing an option.

This dress was actually from my grandmother's rag bag (she's an avid quilter and collects tons of old clothing to harvest). I salvaged it and then forgot about it.

I chopped about 16 inches off of it, left it unhemmed, and sinched it with an old Army Surplus belt. I wore it with some gladiator sandals today and my roommate said that all I needed to complete the outfit was a trident.

The crazy people on the bus seemed to like it. So did the greasy pervert who asked me if I'd like to keep him company. If I'd taken my roommate's advice and carried a trident, I would've impaled him, in true gladiator form.
I have four more altered dresses, so I'll try to post pictures when I can get around to it.

In the mean time, I recommend taking scissors to any boring old dresses you may have collecting dust in your closet. Reuse and Recycle!

15 May 2008

Forward Thinking Fashion

Only in Europe. The U.S. is too regressive to catch onto something so progressive as teaching inmates skills and trades to reincorporate them back into society as contributors.

"A model displays a creation during a fashion show in San Vittore prison in Milan, May 14, 2008. A group of fashion designers have created a local cooperative called 'Sartoria San Vittore' to help prisoners learn job skills. Female inmates have learned tailoring skills from cooperative members and have made costumes for theatre and television." - Reuters

13 May 2008

Pretty Pictures

I wrote a few weeks ago about my delightful afternoon with La Femme. She has posted a lovely pictorial of her trip to the Pacific Northwest. Check out the adorable seals, killer Burberry platforms, graffiti art and fluffy pink blossoms.

12 May 2008

Rant Rant Rant

Once upon a time I scribbled out a rant that, as it grew, morphed into an "I Hate Generic" manifesto. Then this blog was born. It was created as a forum for blowing off steam. Over the last (almost) two years, it has become many other things.

But forgive me while I return to my roots.

I've been in a frenzy trying to complete my final projects before graduation, while simultaneously trying to pack up my life (I'm moving out of my place the same day I graduate and also the same day I fly off into the wild blue yonder for two months).

I had a brief window of opportunity this evening to run out and buy a pair of sandals for my summer travels. I did some research online to figure out what I wanted so I wouldn't end up wasting more time and energy than necessary.

What I want (in a nutshell): good quality sandals that will survive ambulating around Mexico City and through Aztec ruins and then all around Manhattan. Not so difficult, right?

I despise the mall with my entire being and in the last three years I have only gone three times (three times too many). I found some shoes online at Nordstrom that looked promising, so despite my mall-phobia, I huffed it to Nordstrom with my very specific mission.

I detest the snobbery of Nordstrom. It's not like it's Neiman Marcus or Saks or Harrod's, but for some reason it has a superiority complex.

I went wearing exactly what I'd been wearing all day: cut-off shorts, my grandfather's old flannel shirt, and a pair of flip flops. I walked straight to the sandals I had seen online. I saw two preening salesmen fops glance at me and curl their lips in disgust. Ignoring them, I picked up the shoe, and to my dismay, it was a flimsy piece of crap. The sole was a piece of stiff plastic and looked like it would snap after two steps. The straps had shoddy stitching that was already sprouting in places.

I walked over to one of the fops and said, "Hi, I'm just wondering if you have a similar sandal in another brand."

"Hmm... uh..." (eyeballing me up and down) "noooooo."

"Okay, do you know if another Nordstrom might? I'm just looking for a better quality shoe," I said.

He smiled condescendingly at me, his nostrils flaring slightly, and said, "Are you looking for a specific designer?"

"No, I just want a shoe that's not unraveling already," I said, involutarily aping his facial contortion.

He stared at me coldly without responding, his arms crossed impudently across his chest. Silence.

"Is that a no?" I asked.

"Mmmhmm," he purred.

Right. Here's the thing. I'm not a cheapskate, but I'm thrifty (I just converted four winter dresses into sundresses so I wouldn't have to buy summer clothes). I like quality, but I'm not a label snob. I'm anti-recreational shopping and firmly believe in only buying items that last, thereby avoiding falling prey to the culture of obsolescence.

But wow. I'm kind of stunned by the whole mall experience. That place is soulless, full of stale air, heavy with migraine-inducing (well, poisonous) fragrances. It was full of chintzy, ludicrously overpriced crap that is designed to only last one season. According to multiple sources who study consumerism, 99% of all purchases in the United States are trashed within six months.

What is wrong with people? I'm really not trying to wax philosophical or get all Don DeLillo White Noise or something, but the whole picture is just dismal. People go and shell out hard earned dollars for trash. Literal trash. And the buying experience is trash too. There's no joy in it and it makes me feel filthy.

Anyway. That's my rant. I still don't have sandals. Can anyone empathize?

03 May 2008


Coming soon from The Cool Hunter: Fashionation

If Money Grew On Trees...

...I'd climb trees in these shoes.


Shoes I Don't Understand

If I wore these I'd feel like an elephant wearing fur anklets.
Calvin Klein/Source


After seeing this beautiful woman on The Sartorialist, I'm inspired to finally get out my summer clothes.

Old School Coiffures

The Face Hunter snapped this photo in Moscow and I couldn't help but be reminded of the eternal and international influence of Vidal Sassoon.

01 May 2008

Steve & Barry's

The Times has an article on ultra-cheap clothing chain Steve & Barry's. I've never been to one because, well, there isn't one near me and I was worried about the whole sweatshop thing. (Apparently they don't use sweatshops? Is this possible? I'm not convinced).

Anyway, I'm curious to know if anyone has shopped Steve & Barry's and is willing to review the quality of the clothes?