Sunday, March 28, 2010

Changes, Changes

Notice anything? Changes are coming to WTSTA - many more than what you see now! Stick with me while we iron out some kinks...can't wait to share the unveiling of the new and improved Where The Style Things Are sometime soon!

Big kisses!

Social Primer: Man walks on the outside


From my favorite guys over at Social Primer, this on men walking on the outside:

There are few things that get under my skin more than witnessing a man walking with a woman on the sidewalk and the man not knowing or caring where he belongs. A man, or should I say, a gentle man,  always walks on the street or curb side of the sidewalk in America (the Euro tradition states that a man walks on a woman’s left, which can be curb side or building side.) I wonder that some men are confused because they have read or heard the opposing opinion that a gentleman walks on the building side. This alternate opinion is based on the notion that in the case that a flower pot or soup can should fall from a ledge or an open window and plunk his lady friend on the head, the gentleman would be there to catch said pot or at least absorb the brunt of the collision with his own thicker skull. Then the argument for the curbside is that a woman is protected from a wet or muddy splash caused by a passing car. As for for the transgressions against this rule, I suspect the violators don’t know any better and saunter on in oblivious bliss.

Let us make this clear once and for all. A gentleman walks on the curb side of the sidewalk when walking with a woman. Basta. Of course, SP understands that this can be a bit awkward when walking in a city such as New York, Boston, Charleston or San Francisco when a couple may encounter many turns and street crossings in a relatively short jaunt. In fact, I once had a lady friend say to me, “I know you are well-mannered and your intentions are gallant, but you are annoying the hell out me with all this switching from side to side.” In this case I acknowledged (to myself) my mistake for making my action so ostentatious and vowed (to myself) to make my transitions smoother in the future. But the truth is, I can not enjoy the walk if I am not on the curb. It’s so ingrained that it’s damn near obsessive. Or is it compulsive? Whatever it is, I am content in my place and confident the majority of women appreciate the gesture.

Gentlemen make me swoon, what can I say.

Jonathan Adler’s 10 Commandments

Silly, funny, and fun – just like Jonathan Adlerjonadlercuriosities

Thou shalt embrace maximalism.

Thou wilt find minimalism to be something of a bummer in thy abode.
Thou wilt grow tired of an endless sea of beige and thou wilt long for
a splash of color & a dollop of pattern! Bargello pillows, Furnace
bottles, and rustic modern lamps - these shalt be the accessories that
add some panache to your pad.

Thou shalt not deny thyself hotelish comfort at home.

Thou shalt furnish thy rooms with paw-pampering, hand-loomed llama
wool rugs, luxurious lighting and our fabulous furniture.
Thy rooms shalt feel like the most opulent hotel rooms in which thou
hast ever stayed.
Thou art worth it.

Thou shalt buy an X-Bench.
Then, thou shalt buy another. Thou shalt use them in pairs, perfect
under thy console or placed near thy sofa. Thou shalt rest thy feet
upon them & so will thy guests. In fact, thy guests might even fight
over who gets to rest upon them. Therefore, thou shalt establish house
rules about thy X-Benches. Perhaps thou should consider a sign up

If thy nest needeth zest,
consider thy crest!

Thou shalt emblazon with thine
initials wherever possible.

Thou shalt mix fancy with frisky.

Thou shalt not be overly formal, for if thou art, thou will be sad.
Conversely, thou shalt not be overly whimsical, for if thou art thou
will not feel chic. Therefore, thou shalt embrace a mix, pairing the
chic classical foundation - excellent proportions, classic furniture -
with a layer of playful punctuation. Then thou shalt rest.

Thou shalt honor the funsters of yore.
David Hicks, Alexander Girard, Piero Fornasetti, Bonnie Cashin, Bjorn
Wiinblad - if thou dost not knoweth them, thou should. Thou can use
Google Images to learn more about them and thou shalt channel their
fun, idiosyncratic, playful spirit in thine own interiors. Thy home
will be fun, happy, and chic.

Thou shalt not commit murder,
unless thou art murdering for a decorative accessory.
If thou should find thyself at one of our stores and seeth the last
bird bowl on our shelf, thou shalt feel free to use whatever means
necessary to obtain that special something.

Thou shalt not be afraid of orange.
Thou shalt use orange copiously in thy interior, whether it beeth in
an orange breakfast room or via the zing of an orange lacquered box.
Thou might even consider painting thy front door orange to pique thy
neighbor's curiosity. Thou shalt also covet chocolate brown.

Thou shalt play ping pong.
Better still, thou shalt have a ping pong table in thy living room.
Then, lo, thou shalt play ping pong with thy spouse rather than
sitting around watching thy tv.

Thou shalt not covet
thy neighbor's house.
In fact, after following these 10 commandments, thy neighbor might
covet thy house.
So there.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Raoul Dufy

raoulduffy raoulduffy1 raoulduffy2  raouldufy  


raouldufy4 raoulduffyvintagefromsilmpaleyraoul-dufye28094jungle-1922 raouldufy3

Pretty paintings and textiles by the French Fauvist, Raoul Dufy. Instead of the ubiquitous Monet and Art Deco posters, try one from Raoul Dufy – available at

Monday, March 15, 2010

Getting Over Your Glory Days

I couldn’t have said this any better myself, so I’m letting the lovelies over at The Art of Manliness tell you. I joke that I’m in my 8th year of college all the time, but things are better now than 4 years ago and I wouldn’t want anything to change. Innsbruck, Georgia/Florida, socials, formals, band parties – none of it would be as it was then now. So it’s with a bittersweetness that I post this very grown up post about “Getting Over Your Glory Days” – the good news is, we’ll always have memories and PICTURES! (thanks, 20 lb scrapbooks!)


Getting Over Your Glory Days

by Brett & Kate McKayunc1956

Chapel Hill, 1956 slumber party

The acrimonious late-night showdown between Jay Leno and Conan was surely about a lot of things. Money, ratings, television. But it was also about a man who couldn’t get over his glory days. Who decided to step down, but then missed his old life and was desperate to return to it.

It’s happened before to high-profile men-Brett Favre tearfully said goodbye to football and then hello and then goodbye and then hello again.

Sometimes trying to get back to your glory days actually works. Mr. Favre had a great season this year. But typically it ends up hurting the piner and those left in his wake (sorry, Coco).

While most of us will never play professional football or host a late-night talk show, we all can struggle from time to time with wanting to return to our “glory days” and missing some bygone period in our lives. This can hit in middle-age and inspire a man to buy a sports car and ditch his wife for a young babe. But it can also happen at the end of your twenties when you’re trying to adjust to the working life and missing your college years.

It’s hard not to think back to high school and college with real fondness. It was indeed a glorious time. No real responsibilities besides studying and working at a pizza place. Sleeping in, playing sports, driving around with your friends, and hanging out at parties. You felt profoundly free. The world was your oyster, and the possibilities for your life seemed endless. What were you going to make of your life? Who would you be spending it with? What were you going to do when you “grew up?”

These days you have a pretty good idea of the answers to those question. You’re married to Susan, have a job as a financial planner, and live in Dallas. Life is good, but sometimes you think back to the student life and would give anything to get back there. You wax nostalgic until you’re in a deep funk and sit on your porch sipping on a brewski and reminiscing about the good old days. Pretty soon you’re surfing the internet for a time machine.

A little nostalgia for another time period in history can be a positive thing, but too much nostalgia for another time in your life can rob you of satisfaction and happiness in this one. How do you get over your glory days and fully embrace the life you currently lead?

Create new firsts. When people over the age of 35 are asked to recall the most vivid or most important events of their life, they disproportionately remember things that happened between ages 15 and 25. This association is natural-it’s the time of our lives when we’re making big decisions about our identities and the direction our lives are going to take.

It’s also a time where we experience a myraid of “firsts.” First kiss, first date, first time away from home, first time outside the country, first sex, first love, first college class and so on. Any kind of first is an exciting, heady experience. Firsts make you feel alive.

If you’re feeling stuck in your life and longing for the past, maybe it’s time to experience some new firsts. Certainly, a lot of the big ones have already been notched, but there are always new things to go after. First trip to Asia, first time surfing, first marathon, first time riding a motorcycle, first painting class. Keep filling your life with new, soul-expanding adventures.

Focus on a new goal. Sometimes our funk is not so much for lost youth, but simply the let down we experience after we achieve one of our major life goals. Psychologists have shown that we actually get more pleasure and satisfaction on the journey to a goal than we do when we finally attain it. We’re happy for a bit, and then we think, “Okay, what now?” Olympic athletes and astronauts often struggle with depression after they win a medal or make it to space. After you’ve reached such a pinnacle in your life, what can you possibly do for your next act?

The obvious answer of course is to create a new goal. Without goals your life will lack direction and purpose. The goal doesn’t have to be as grandiose as the one you’ve already attained, it just has to be something that will keep you busy and give you something to focus your life around.

Let go of false scenarios. Oftentimes when we pine for the good old days of our life, we find ourselves somewhat unconsciously dreaming of a false scenario. We want to get the freedom of our youth back. But if we were asked to give up our wife and kids we wouldn’t have any desire to do so. What we really want is to have that freedom back and keep our families. But of course that’s not possible.

Everything in life involves trade-offs. The single life is great, but there are definitely times when you’re lonely and sitting at home wishing you had somebody, and times where you’re sick of playing games with women and just want to find the one. You can’t get rid of those negatives without being in a committed relationship.

Acknowledge trade-offs, be grateful for the benefits of what you have, and don’t torture yourself with impossible scenarios.

Move on and out. In high school I did pretty well for myself. I was a football player, student council president, homecoming king, and voted Mr. Edmond North High School. I was never cocky and never ran with the popular kids, but when I graduated I thought I was a pretty cool guy.

Then I spent two years working in Tijuana, Mexico as a missionary. Nobody knew what a homecoming king was or what the Mr. ENHS title was, and they didn’t give a crap about any of it. I didn’t know a single soul, and they didn’t know me from Steve. My high school exploits quickly seemed totally unimportant, and I was humbled in a hurry.

If you’re still living in the town you grew up in or the town you went to college in, and you still think a lot about the past, it may be time to start a new life for yourself somewhere else, somewhere where you don’t keep running into people who still remember you from way back when and want to spend their time reminiscing about the good old days.

Recapture the salient qualities of the time that you miss. It’s impossible to recreate the past. You’re never going to play varsity baseball again, and hold hands with your crush at the movies, and hear your name called as prom king.

But while you can’t recapture these experiences whole hog, you can work on adding the most salient qualities about what you used to love back into your life. Even though it will never be the same, that doesn’t mean you should give up on trying to recapture some of the elements that used to lend some magic to your life.

If you miss playing high school sports, a lot of what you’re missing is the feeling of competition among men. Join a intramural team for adults in your town.

If you’re missing the camaraderie you used to feel with your frat brothers, a big part of what you’re missing is having strong male friendships. Join a lodge of Freemasons.

If you’re missing the warm fuzzies you used to get when dating, start romancing your wife with novel dates. Studies have shown that going on unique and interesting dates with your spouse can bring back the old butterflies you used to feel for each other.

Embrace different kinds of satisfaction. Being young is definitely awesome. The freedom and fun will be forever unmatched. But the key to growing up is being able to embrace new kinds of satisfactions in your life. Having a lot of freedom is certainly one of the pleasures in life, but it’s not the only one.

There is incredible satisfaction in becoming a husband and a father. In molding and shaping your children. There is satisfaction in becoming a mentor to young men. In finding success in your career. In making an impact on the world. In being in control of your life. In being wiser. There is pleasure in the passion of new love, but there is pleasure in long-term companionate love as well.

When all you think about is what you miss about your former life, you can miss out on the joy to be found  in your current one.

Embrace the idea of “seasons” in life. Some people prefer life in places like California, places that are always fairly temperate but lack distinct seasons. But I’ve always been a seasons guy. I like watching the world change around me, seeing how different the very same place can look in each season, and enjoying the distinct activities and weather each season brings. Each season, although different, has its own charm.

For example in Vermont, summer is a glorious time. The days are warm but not scorching, and the nights are cool. You can spend your time wandering through the woods, eating maple cremees, and floating down picturesque rivers.

Of course, the winter is another story. Cold, dark and snowy, it keeps the state from being overrun with new residents who fall in love with the area in the summer and fall. Winter season stretches on for half the year and many people, even those who’ve been there their whole lives find it depressing. The winter really brings them down; all they can think about is the coming spring.

My uncle-in-law has lived in Vermont for decades, and I asked him how he stands the winters. He said they used to bother him, but he started getting right out into it-snowshoeing and skiing every day-and now the winters don’t faze him at all. I talked to another Vermonter who said that winter was her favorite season, because she loved to ski more than anything.

So where am I going with this? Well our life is broken into seasons. Spring, then summer, then fall, then a long winter. During the winter of our lives things are certainly not as carefree as they once were, but we can find the things about this period of our journey that are unique and fully embrace them.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Wise Words

Billy Baldwin (this one, not that one), I love you.

“Nothing is interesting unless it’s personal.”

“Nothing is in good taste unless it suits the way you live.”

“The best decoration in the world is a room full of books.” –Amen.


via apartment therapy

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Just Enough A Little Too Late

Y’all. I ate practically (85%) of a king cake for breakfast the other day. And where did said king cake come from? I sent it to myself. That’s right – the ultimate fat kid move. And what a pretty king cake it was! When the lady called to confirm my order, she said, “You know Mardi Gras is over, right?” To which I replied, “yes…I just want to eat it. All.” Is that really so bad?



This little baby can be yours for only $19 (!) from Sucre in NOLA. Best breakfast ever.

Step 1 in Decluttering Your Life

I am in need of a MAJOR life reorganization, and Nicole from Well-worn via D*s shares her tips for making your bedroom the first step in getting your life together. (Ok, projecting that last part, but she really wants you to find tranquility and peace in your bedroom!)


1. Keep it simple. Necessities only.

Check for me, my New York City room is super small so I can’t fit anything more than just the necessities in it. This means removing all the extra crap – boxes, desks and shelves you don’t use, assorted clothing storage, etc.

2. Clear your nightstand top.

Guilty. I have books, pictures, a lamp, mirrors, and lots of other “stuff” on my nightstand which happens to be the top of my dresser. (ehem, see #1). But for those of you with normal sized rooms, keep it clear of the clutter. Have your one lamp for reading (better yet, have sconces) and put away the books and magazines. Bedside containers are a great place to store these, if not underneath the actual table top.

3. Put away the electronics.

Also guilty. Have tripped over my phone charger countless times in the middle of the night (since it runs from the living room into my bedroom – welcome to New York!). Try one of the new charging stations or run your cords through the back of a drawer if your nightstand has one. You will be so much calmer not seeing that pesky black cord running across your floor.

4. Get creative.

Need even more space? Try putting your dresser in your closet, or a mini home office in there. Use up as much dead space as possible behind closed doors so you have a clean and serene room. Don’t forget under the bed – I have awesome storage things from Ikea that I can actually stack on top of each other for double storage duty under my bed. A bedskirt will hide any ugly plastic containers.

bedroom designed by Nate Burkus

The Great Debate: “For Whom Does The Door Open?” & “Front or Back?”

This from Social Primer:

Dear SP

Regarding your post on door etiquette…here’s a question: If it’s true that people entering a building should allow those exiting to go before them, what does a guy do when exiting a building as a lady walks in? Which takes precedence: 1) those exiting, first or 2) ladies first?

(unsigned) Sasha

Dear Sasha,

Age and Beauty always take precedence in introductions and in entering and exiting. You would allow a woman or an elder to enter before you exited.


Hello SP,

I have an etiquette question which I cannot find the answer to anywhere. I must be terrible at using Google!

When entering a row of seats, where people are already seated, which way should I face when squeezing past them. Either direction seems equally rude, but I’m sure one is less rude than the other.



Dear Tony,

This is such a great question and one I’ve never been asked before. You would always face the seated. It’s better to have an awkward smile as you pass than an anonymous butt squeezing by.

Taylor Town – The Chicest Place in New York

Taylor Tomasi Hill, style maven and It Girl Icon, takes Refinery 29 on a tour of her Manhattan home – and shares her five key pieces in her wardrobe.


What are your five key wardrobe pieces, things you wear constantly?
1. "Burberry trench coats, a great classic staple for fall or spring."
2. "Madewell destroyed boyfriend jeans, I dress them up with my YSL heels for the office, or down with sneakers for traveling."
3. "Punkrose leopard print sneakers, my go-to for days when my feet can't take anything over .5 inches."
4. "Chanel bag, I just got a large 2.55 after years of lusting after it. This one is the perfect carryall. My other tiny Chanel bags were always exploding with all the stuff I would try to pack in them."
5. "My Rick Owens leather jacket, I can mix it with anything for an edgier effect. They are so expensive, but I stay on their radar and email list to make sure I'm always there for the sales."

A Soapbox About Gaga

For anyone who doubts her talent – see above.

For anyone who hasn’t seen it yet – see below. I’ve watched it three times (that’s 27 minutes of my life gone by, for those of you counting) and still can’t fall in love the way I did with Bad Romance. Bad Romance was genius, comprehensive, and sexy – this feels campy beyond the obvious and while I get the pop culture – the pop colors, the pop references, the play on advertisers – it just feels kind of….wrong? What do you think?

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Just a Little Bit

Really tired tonight - just a few things I thought were lovely.

Kelly Wearstler's killer organized bags section of her closet

Claudia Schiffer by Ellen von Unwerth - live for that bow and that hair

Liz from Pop Culture Afternoon in a smashing outfit

Essie's The Art of Spring collection


Copied and Pasted in Its Entirety...Because Paraphrasing Does This No Justice

Ah-mazing. Anyone who misses, this is for you. 

Last week we talked about the madness that is the ULTIMATE Engagement bridal show. But what if you want something a little more off-the-L-train, if you know what I mean? The kind of wedding to make your mother shed tears…of disappointment. Fear not. Here are eight steps to the perfect Hipster Wedding.-
1. Find A Wife on Your Photo On
Hipsters are only looking for two things in a girl: quirky appeal, and acceptably Indie taste in music. So if you're looking to find a Hipster Husband, don't say you like Coldplay or John Mayer. Actually, you could probably get away with naming a band that doesn't actually exist, like The Defenestrated Gazelles. That will REALLY impress him.
Your should openly proclaim your love of dive bars, obscure cartoons from the mid-80s, and B movies.
2. Go on a a First Date.
Here are some nice suggestions from
How about we…spend $20 on an all night show at Smalls, get whiskey drunk and somehow find a way to sneak into the Jazz Loft.
How about we…go to the Brooklyn Brewery for cards and laughs, followed by a dive bar to play Buck Hunter and listen to classic rock
How about we…go see 'point break' at midnight showing.
How about we…take a butchering class at the Brooklyn Kitchen.
How about we…Debate regular coffee versus lattes?
(Don't be fooled by the last suggestion! Debating regular coffee versus lattes is just code for "How about we…extoll the virtues of a good ol'fashioned cup of joe from a rundown diner and diss Starbucks".)
3. Get Proposed To At White Castle
Anywhere else wouldn't be quite ironic enough. And a note on weddings: if the notion is too traditionalist for you/you refuse to get married until everyone in America can get married/you want to keep your options open, a "Co-Habitation" ceremony is totally acceptable.
4. Buy Your Wedding Dress At Urban Outfitters
Yep, they're designing wedding dresses now! Face it, Urban Outfitters shoppers are graduating college and settling down, so of course the label wants to get in on the wedding industry. The store will also feature Wedding Invitations (out of recycled looking paper that will cost twice as much) and a wedding registry (so you can let your friends know exactly WHICH ironic shotglasses and faux-art you would like to receive as a gift.)
5. Take some engagement photos.

Like these, from, which is an actual site, and this is an actual example from the portfolio.
6. Get someone really random to officiate the wedding.
It's old news now that practically anyone can get ordained on the internet in like, five minutes. So who will YOU choose to perform your wedding? Your friend? Your yoga instructor? Dov Charney?
7. Hold your reception at Radegast Hall
As it just so happens, they're hosting weddings now, so you can guzzle beer with 500 of your closes Williamburg friends to celebrate your nuptials.

8. Send your children to Saint Ann's Preschool, move to Bushwick, and live happily hipsterly ever after!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

All Hail The Return of Blair

Who is 2nd in my book by a hair to, of course, Lady Gaga (yes, you can love both).

20100301_gossipgirl_560x375Last night: “I see my advice went the way of the clog.”


Oh thank GOODNESS my Mondays are back!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Spring Fashion A to Z : Part V


is for…




It’s just so pretty and such a classic design house – very happy they’ve been able to keep with the spirit of M. Valentino in the next chapter of the storied courturier.


is for…

West Coast Cool



Victoria’s Secret Tie Dye Dress, $39.50, Proenza Schouler SS2010 via, Abbey Lee Kershaw in Vuitton SS2010

Fresh Prince and Jazzy Jeff make subtle appearances in this West Coast Cool trend – skate parks, backwards hats, surfers…it all makes sense, doesn’t it? So refresh on your tagging skills, find your old tie dye, and go to town with bright colors and the right attitude to go along with it. 



maxazria350neta aedress29.95

Rachel McAdams in Emilio Pucci, Max Azria white shirtdress, Net-A-Porter, $350, AE white burnout sundress, $29.95


is for…

Not going to force this one, sorry!


is for…



Botox or not (probably), Demi Moore represents how important youth is in our culture…it’s always on trend. Just remember to be youthful and not juvenile – older ladies, get out of the junior’s department!!!


is for…



Zac Posen’s diffusion line exclusively for Saks is full of his signature quirky pieces.


That’s all, folks! Phew! Took a very long time and a lot of hard work, so I hope you’ve enjoyed this little run through the Spring 2010 fashion alphabet. Let me know what you’re planning on buying!

Spring Fashion A to Z : Part IV


is for…

Queen of Hearts



Alice in Wonderland opened last weekend, and add this to the LOST frenzy (it’s all about the White Rabbit, y’all!) and you’ve got a recipe for whimsy.


is for…



She’s always stylish and pushes the envelope when it comes to trying new things in fashion!


Rachel Rachel Roy

rrroy99 rrroy38.99

Obsessed with this diffusion line. Most Macy*s don’t sell the entire collection but I managed to find a good bit of it at the Macy*s in Tyson’s Corner and a decent selection at the one at Lenox…but for the full range, visit the section at the Herald Square store. (Bonus, it’s right next to the “designer” stuff at Macy*s…did you know that they now sell Anna Sui, Betsey Johnson, and See By Chloe?!)



is for…


tommy tommy1

Tommy Hilfiger via

The revival of separates and sportswear has been music to my ears – it just makes so much sense. Instead of head to toe dressing, style yourself! I’ve thrown in here references to All-American sportswear because it’s my favorite kind – crisp, cool classics that never go out of style.



is for…


 tory465bloomes chanelturqbag


Tory Burch turquoise satchel, Bloomingdale’s, $465 * Chanel turquoise python bag, price upon request * Madewell turquoise cross-body bag, Shopbop $128


Tap pants

parker149revolveclothing diortappants

Dance influences always abound, but this time it’s the tap pant that takes center stage. Keep it interesting with crisper pieces on top – a white button down, a structured blazer – anything to balance out the sexy boudoir bottom.

Parker cognac tap pant, Revolve Clothing, $128; Christian Dior SS2010 via



is for…


Marc Jacobs SS2010 via

Mix these hard, wartime pieces with khaki and softer elements as Marc does in this runway shot to get the #1 trend for Spring. Experiment with layers, texture, volume, and color – put those separates to use!

We Interrupt This Spring Fashion A to Z…

For a little Oscars fashion! Below are my best dressed – what do you think?


Sandra Bullock in Marchesa

Love how it fits like a glove – her hair and make up are what keep this from looking too overdone. Love, love, love, her hair.


Zoe Saldana in Givenchy Couture

Youthful, striking, different, elegant – what’s not to like about this couture masterpiece?


Elizabeth Banks in Atelier Versace

Unusual color and this awards’ biggest trend, front-split ruffles, done well.


Demi Moore in Atelier Versace

Again, ruffles done right – I just wish that she was paler – it would be even more striking. This would have been an absolute showstopper on someone like Anne Hathaway or Nicole Kidman. Demi does work it, though.


Sarah Jessica Parker in Chanel Couture

Be still my heart – audible gasp in the room when I first saw SJP. So original, yet so old school Hollywood glamour.  Just the right amount of jewelry…does she ever get it wrong?


Meryl Streep in Chris March

Another gasp – smashing at 60! Meryl Streep has got to be the best thing that ever happened to Chris March – who used to be famous for this.


Maggie Gyllenhal in Dries Van Noten

Fresh, unusual, elegant – everything about this dress is Maggie. Bravo, ma cherie.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...