worth watching: Shopgirl (2005)

In this quietly moving and subdued romantic kind-of comedy, Claire Danes shines as plain Jane Mirabelle Buttersfield from Vermont who moved to LA to pursue a life less ordinary. She works at Saks and draws pictures (only sometimes) and is a solitary spirit most of the time. One evening, while doing laundry, she happens upon the hapless Jeremy (Jason Schwartzman), whose socially inept behavior is totally cringeworthy. (I still root for him, though; he’s the underdog of the movie.) Until, of course, she meets Ray Porter, a wealthy “logician,” played by Steve Martin (who wrote the novella upon which the film is based). Ray seduces and woos with candles, flowers and gifts, but stays distant emotionally.

As the story unfolds, we watch all three characters develop further emotionally. There are many honest moments, but seem to dwindle in the shadow of the inappropriateness of Mirabelle’s relationship with Ray. Yes, Steve Martin (while likable) may have written the novella, but he was way too old to play a role in which the audience is supposed to be convinced that a dewy 24-year old woman is falling all over herself for him – and honestly doesn’t see him as a “sugar daddy.” Please. I could have cast it way better. Richard Gere? Tom Selleck? Alec Baldwin? Tom Hanks, even, who was actually considered, but ultimately not chosen. I normally applaud casting directors for their choices – things have a way of coming together, but the older male lead in this movie was a total miss for me and made it awkward to watch at points. The silver lining? The ending, which I’ll totally spoil: Jeremy gets his act together, finds himself in “the moment” and gets the girl. This is an outside-the-box romantic dramedy that isn’t cheap or trite, and is deeply flawed, yet still undoubtedly worth watching!

Tara McPherson – limited edition “Skeleton Heart” poster

I am so pumped for this:

Today one of my all-time favorite artists, poster & comic book art queen Tara McPherson, released a limited run edition of her 2011 Williamsburg Waterfront concert poster entitled “Skeleton Heart.” Only 400 were printed and she is only selling 40 online. I was able to order one (fist pump!) and I can’t wait for it to arrive, even though I barely have the wall space for it. I love how girly and edgy it is a the same time, just like Ms. McPherson herself. The colors rock and so does the fabulous, rainbow-oozing, rock and roll skeleton. Endless hearts! Purchase yours here, if there are any left!

Can we also talk about how badly I want the Hello Kitty figurine by Kidrobot & Tara McPherson? OMG!

vintage cosmetic ads

Jean Shrimpton was the face of Yardley cosmetics in the 1960s. I just love these ads!

My mom actually had this Maybelline “ultra liner” still kicking around when I was in high school, and I remember that very container – a hard cake of black shadow. Moisten the brush with liner, and there you had it. It actually was way easier to use than pencil or liquid liner of today.

A grouping of rare cosmetic ads from the 50s and 60s.

A tanning ad from the early 70s. Good thing we know better now. Slather on the sunscreen, ladies!

artist spotlight: Angelique Houtkamp

I adore Angelique Houtkamp’s work. She’s a tattoer and artist from Amsterdam, whose works are heavily inspired by old school sailor-style tattoo flash. Her inspirations include 1920s and 30s illustrations, circus “freaks,” gypsies, fortunetellers and nautical imagery. Angelique’s works are known for bold lines and heavy shadows. I have a tiny 5×7 “pistol” print I purchased from Mode Merr (local designer & friend Angela Zampbell!) which is one of my personal favorite artworks in my small but growing collection. I’ve also been reading her second book, Tattoo Mystique, and really have enjoyed learning more about her process, inspirations and lifestyle.

All artwork by A. Houtkamp.

milk sky

I prefer the sky when it’s the color of milk
with a drop of ink mixed in. I admit:
I am lonely.
Giving up seems like the easiest way
when my heart breaks and mends in a
thousand ways every day.
My troubles are lost on you
like the brightest balloons drifting
upward, and away. diminishing
You never cared
Or really paid much attention
And again I relish in the exquisite pain of
your perpetual rejection.

I play “Foolish Games,”
Jewel has a Swiss face and likes the color of
wine, probably writes songs on napkins like
you used to draw on at restaurants
back when we belonged together.
this isn’t what it should feel like.
I wait constantly and patiently
for the smallest reward, faithful as
your dog.

I’m muted by the gradual loss of
Sunlight and the pointed lack of caring in
your words of afterthought or distraction
but it doesn’t stop my tears.
Ever persistent, I fucking want you still.
I will forever be your last choice,
and you will forever be my first.

VF, 07.05.11

be colorful; host an arm party.

Erhhhm…what’s an arm party? You might ask. Well. A clever nickname coined by the brilliant Man Repeller. It’s when a big bold bunch of bracelets, related or not, all convene together on your arm & wrist to form a party…an arm party! The more bracelets you have, the better the party. It’s all about layering. Anything goes!

via My Heartistry

whatever happened to____? stuff that should make a comeback

Every now and then I get a case of style nostalgia. It happened to me today going through my old Glamour Junkie folder. Some of the articles made me cringe…but then again, I still kind of like a lot of the same stuff. And, proof that I’m getting old and that the fashion world is constantly changing, you can’t find a lot of this stuff anymore.

C. Ronson’s “Tooshies” line – tees/tanks/boy-style briefs emblazoned with cute prints like guitars, cupcakes and pineapples, I loved these so!

Crimped hair. On Christina Aguilera in 2000, above (I used to have pictures of her plastered all over my wall when I was in high school, one from this very event) and…

…flash forward to 2011, Christina rocking a crimped ‘do again and still looking awesome. Why did we leave our crimping irons in the early ’90’s? I think it adds rad-looking texture, and not everyone is doing it. I say bring it back!

The original Lip Smackers. (Like above…some of those are old!) You can still buy them, but most of the original flavors and “limited editions” are already gone, and it’s just not the same. They were all I carried in my purse all through 1997 (which was faux patent with blue and lime green leopard faux fur, by the way). They remind me of a time when I was so carefree, and the new flavors that are out now are just copies of other foods (assorted soda, candy, etc). Remember the ones with special tops you could wear on a necklace? I would buy them with my allowance. Sigh…I can almost smell the Cotton Candy…

Primp splatter sweats. This brand was popular circa 2004; I happen to own a pair of the ice cream cone splatter capris. They were to loungewear what Wildfox Couture is today, only they never quite took off. They were super expensive and Paris Hilton and Jessica Simpson were fans.

Primp thermals. Cute designs like hearts, anchors and bunnies. (Above: Rachel Bilson & Paris Hilton.) So hard to find these days.

Mandy Moore’s “Mblem” clothing line. I own a “spearmint open front tunic” from this line I purchased years ago; it’s the perfect burnout fabric that works over leggings/jeans or as a beach coverup. Sadly, Mandy shut down her clothing line in 2009, which is really a shame. Thankfully, there are loads more celebs peddling overpriced tees, so not to worry.

Other things I miss but have a hard time finding – awesome jelly shoes that don’t cost $100+, Teen’s “Great Looks” magazine, Taryn Manning’s Born Uniqorn line, Clueless the TV show, scented nail polish…sigh!

Spirit Junkie launch!

Gabrielle Bernstein’s second book, Spirit Junkie, is now available for pre-order! (To be released Sept. 13th.) Time to get PSYCHED and spread the love, people! I adore the trailer, and always, Gabby’s message. ♥

Remember: A miracle is a shift in your perception. When you shift your perception, you shift your world. And when your world is a place of love&kindness&compassion, guess what you radiate to every other person in the world? Yup. Miracles.

trendwatch: dip dye & ombre hair

I love Lauren Conrad’s blog (she’s the most brilliant everygirl who can do no fashion wrong in my eyes) – she polled her readers asking if she should try this shocking (by her standards!) trend:

Funky-colored, dip dyed strands! I’m personally not one for having unnaturally colored hair (I am a dark brunette so it would involve some damaging processes) but I thought this was a super fun (and funky) idea.

The always trensetting Katy perry rocking some crazy hues in her tresses.

This reminds me of a California surfer-girl look – but edgy and modern. So pretty for summer!
Also, for those who want to play it a little safer, but still try a variation of having tonal hair, you can try “ombre hair” – which is essentially a graduation of dark roots to lighter color on the bottom. There are different degrees and hues – overall the effect is subtle but still gets the point across. I really dig it!

Jessica Biel

Leighton Meester

Flavia Oliviera

Lauren Conrad

Drew Barrymore

What’s your take on the dip-dye & ombre look?