Jersey Shore is ruining my life!

My apartment was burglarized recently (stole my MacBook and iPod…bastards…living, learning and hopefully moving soon). Anyway, my mom let me borrow her laptop, and in the wake of my trauma I discovered that you can stream Jersey Shore on Netflix Instant Watch, one of my favorite things ever. I get addicted to shows easily, particularly ones that are so bad in such a good way. I haven’t had cable in years, but my friends and colleagues with DVRs will frequently compare notes on what happened on Jersey Shore that week. I can only nod and say that I’ll probably get around to watching it in a year or two… and when I do, the experience is intense. So far, it’s been anesthetizing my open emotional wounds of losing years worth of photos and writings, and is consequently knocking points off my IQ with each episode, and impacting my ability to do anything else. Even as I write this blog, Netflix is taunting me in the other tab with a partially-viewed episode of salacious, dare I say–Jerseylicious(!) drama.

I catch myself speaking in a Long Island Italian accent at work, even though I’m from New England and don’t have a trace of Italian in my blood. A customer today asked me where I’m from and I had to just come clean. It’s really hard to control. Snooki’s “wah!” is infectious, as is “t-shirt time” and of course…GTL. It’s been many moons since my ivory skin has seen a tanning bed, but every now and then the bronzed “goddesses” of JH make me go a little thick with the bronzer and crave acrylic nails (also a phase I’m proud to have outgrown).

I have never, ever been the type to go for hard-bodies guido dudes. The fellas on the show are only after one thing of course, but if you happen to not be a “grenade,” you could get some pretty special treatment. The Situation is obviously a sleazeball, but I have a pretty deep soft spot for Vinny and an on going crush on Pauly D and his hair. Why? Only God really knows the answer to that question. Normally I prefer pale skinny rocker boys, softspoken poets or nerdy savants. Maybe Jersey Shore appeals to all our base desires to eat loads of pasta, strap some leopard print over my lady parts, do body shots till 5 in the morning and find an anonymous hard body to “smush.”


inspiring onscreen spaces

Movies and TV are often more than just characters and storylines. There’s more going on than what’s being said and done. I’m obviously really into fashion, beauty and styling, and that’s not just with costumes and makeup – it goes for the sets, too. Here are some inspiring onscreen interiors that are worth a closer look.

Above and below: In the movie Match Point, Nola (played by Scarlett Johansson) has a romantic little studio. I just love the arrangement of photos, books and knicknacks on her shelf. It’s inspiring to see so much care put into a small space when most movie sets are expansive. Images via apartment therapy.

In the romantic comedy Because I Said So, I fell in love with Milly’s (Mandy Moore) boho-chic apartment. Image via Bandelle.

Carrie’s apartment on this little HBO show called Sex and the City. My favorite scenes are ones where Carrie is writing at her computer (a Mac laptop, of course, girl after my own heart!) or just hanging out. It really grounded the show and made her seem more “real.” This is a shot of Carrie’s bedroom, which changes over the show’s six season run. I like when sets adapt, just as in real life, things aren’t stagnant. Even in the same space, subtle shifts are always happening in a living space.

Another view of Carrie’s apartment. The leather chair she bought from Aidan is in the corner. I want to curl up in it!

For Sex and the City, the movie, Carrie’s apartment got a total overhaul when Carrie’s life did, painted in a punchy blue and done up with sleek, modern touches.

I like what they did with the space, but kind of like the SATC movie itself, it didn’t really feel Carrie-like anymore. Image via Bandelle.

The Humphrey’s awesome Brooklyn loft on Gossip Girl. It may not be quite as swank as the Waldorf’s posh Park Avenue pad, but I adore exposed brick.

In Love and other Disasters, I’m in love with Jacks’ (the late Brittany Murphy) romantic whitewashed flat.

Hope you enjoyed the spaces! Keep your eyes peeled when watching your favorites…inspiration is always right in front of you! xox

Sex and the City 2: all glammed up and nowhere to go

[Editor’s note: I am quite possibly the biggest Sex and the City fan ever. I have watched every episode at least 12 times. I adore it all.]

Sex and the City 2 seemed ripe with possibility at first. That glowing “Carrie On” poster. Trailers of glitter and light, piles of more of what we loved. The glitz and glamour, the fabulous city, and the four girls who started it all. Right? Wrong. First of all, the “girls” are definitely not girls anymore. They’re middle-aged women now. Sex and the City was stories of single women in their thirties and their dating escapades and trials with love and life. The show was witty and insightful. The first movie was a peek into their lives as real grown-ups. Miranda and Charlotte got married and have kids, Carrie finally marries Mr. Big, and Samantha–well, she’ll never change. The first movie was a love letter to the series. It had real heart-wrenching moments, good times in the Big Apple and of course, great outfits. It was an extra shot to fill our Cosmopolitan cups, if you will, another fix because we missed our fab foursome. Perhaps Michael Patrick King (writer, director) saw some untapped loyalty in the rabid SATC fan base and decided to milk it for all it was worth.

Milk it they did, creating a film with unreasonable excess ($10 million wardrobe budget: Patricia Field’s ultimate coup!) and a tissue-thin plotline. Suspend all that you once knew about Sex and the City. The characters here might be played by the same actors, but they seem like cardboard cutouts. The movie’s first big event? A white, rhinestone-crusted gay wedding (Stanford and Anthony), replete with swans and a cringeworthy cameo courtesy of Liza Minnelli. Here we set up our general plot points: Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker) is 2 years deep into marriage with Mr. Big (Chris Noth), and just came out with her 4th? 5th? pink and black fake relationship book. Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) is still with Steve (David Eigenberg) and is struggling to be present for son Brady, while also dealing with a sexist boss (Ron White). Charlotte (Kristin Davis), also still married to Harry (Evan Handler), is deep into mommy-hood with a big-boobed, braless nanny to contend with.ย  Samantha (Kim Catrall) is facing the onset of menopause–or rather, avoiding it at all costs with pills and creams galore.

PR genius Samantha gets a business offer from a business-savvy sheik so slick she can’t turn it down (courtesy of hot ex boyfriend Smith, who has one scene and then vanishes from the film with no resolution): An all-expenses paid trip for four to Abu Dhabi. Noteworthy is the fact that the United Arab Emirates refused to let the crew shoot on location due to the offensive script, so the desert scenes, which comprise the majority of the film, were shot in Morocco. The ladies, dressed in their Manhattan-goes-to-the-Middle-East-finest, descend upon the city. The whole premise is a huge culture clash and eye-rollingly unrealistic. Even as well-off New Yorkers, the wardrobes are out of control and would make Paris Hilton suggest toning it down. Their gilded suite is the epitome of opulence; they have personal butlers and are waited on hand and foot. None of the girls fit in, least of all Samantha, who eventually gets arrested for public indecency. The film blithely pokes fun at burqas and Muslim modesty, and Samantha literally gives their culture the finger. This aspect of the film–not a mere scene but a huge portion–is culturally inept and painfully shallow.

Plot-wise, things bumble along. Anyone who saw a full-length trailer will know to expect Carrie to cross paths with ex-flame Aidan (John Corbett) –she’s shopping for shoes (of course!) and spices in a foreign bazaar; he’s buying rugs for his NYC furniture store. The sheer chemistry between Parker and Corbett is magnetic. The two wind up sharing a dinner and a kiss–which is quickly smothered by Carrie’s guilt, and we don’t see Aidan again, only Carrie confessing her sin to a wounded Mr. Big. Carrie and Miranda share a heart-to-heart on the woes of being a mother with live-in help (Kristin Davis does give one particularly honest scene and it involves baking cupcakes and vintage Valentino). Samantha is a caricature of herself. Sex-crazed and delirious, she spends the film chasing after dick or smearing herself in yams (since her menopause “supplements” were confiscated at the UAE airport).

The series centered around Carrie, and now there’s nothing left for her to do. At the wedding, a fellow guest gushes about how she “is” Carrie, until she realizes that Carrie and Mr. Big aren’t planning on procreation. They say it’s “me and you, just us two,” but never bring up the baby talk or even explore the topic. Granted, making Carrie a mom would be so cliche, it would break the soul of everything SATC used to be about: Make your own rules. Do what makes you happy, and love yourself. Carrie still writes, but it seems like more of the same. Her marriage to Mr. Big is placidly vanilla; evenings with takeout and a flat-screen TV. Even if that’s what happened, we don’t need to see that. Our Carrie is forever adventurous.

SATC 2 is a fun romp, if you can forget the well-crafted masterpiece that was the HBO series. It’s a chick flick on speed. There’s no sharp narrative or insight here. Nothing but a dervish of self-indulgent “girl power” and decadence from women who are simply too old for their roles, no ageism intended. The show wrapped up the stories perfectly; the first film put a bow on top. It would have been better to go out on a high note. There was simply no story left to tell–continuing the saga leads into the banality of lives that many women are already living, coated in a glamour lifestyle most are not. SATC 2 makes a mockery of the Sex and the City franchise, dumbing it down to avante garde fashion and bawdy laughs. The show had its moments of glamorous excess and was no doubt laced with innuendo, but now it’s gone trashy. SATC 2 utterly lacks authenticity. You won’t see Carrie typing at her window eating a popsicle, and you won’t see Miranda at home in her Harvard tee shirt hanging out with Fatty. SATC 2 is a faint echo of what we once loved. True fans are best to get lost in reruns of the TV series.

anchors away: Fleet Week style

One of the trends I’m loving about summer that never really goes out of style is the nautical look. Crisp white and navy look perfect no matter what. Regardless of where you are, it’s just so preppy, clean and timeless. I was inspired by the episode Anchors Away in Season 5 of Sex and the City: Fleet Week comes to NYC! One week every year (typically at the end of May/beginning of June…I’m a bit late with the post), the ships from the U.S. Navy, Marines and Coast Guard dock and our fine maritime heroes come ashore to tour the city and have a good time. In Anchors Away, Carrie meets a cute sailor from Louisiana, Charlotte flashes a boob to a naval officer–all in the season that creator Michael Patrick King refers to as a love letter to New York City.

Below: Get inspired with a few nautical-inspired pieces I put together. Mix stripes and solids, throw in rope and knot details, brass buttons and anchor charms and you’ll be ready to set sail.

Above left: It may have been a costume for Halloween, but I adore Lauren Conrad’s “sailor” outfit. She looks cute as heck. Above right: Ralph Lauren is the king of nautical style. His entire collection has always been synced to the lifestyle of The Hamptons. Understated American glamour. All you need is a G&T and to be sitting on a Yacht somewhere.

flashback: Charlotte’s style (Sex and the City)

Part of my “Flashback” series: Old Glamour Junkie articles given life anew. The pieces I used for this article were pulled on May 17th, 2005. I lost the original text so I was prompted to rewrite.

Charlotte York (later York-McDougal and Goldenblatt) is the WASPy “Park Avenue princess” on Sex and the City. She hails from Connecticut originally and maintains a fresh, classic look some would describe as “preppy.” Personality-wise, Charlotte is led by tradition, so it’s no surprise that her clothes have a tailored feel, while always maintaining a fresh, feminine feel. Charlotte’s job as a gallery manager in SoHo called for polished looks, clean lines and lots of black. Shift dresses with belts accentuated Charlotte’s tiny waist.

For dress-up, Charlotte preferred a-line skirts and simple pumps or strappy heels, in solid colors or bold florals, never baring too much skin–just enough to be gently seductive. When emulating Charlotte, you can’t go wrong with soft pastels, strings of pearls and moderated accents of lace and ruffles. Charlotte was also known to wear polka dots and stripes. Even for a casual look, Charlotte stuck with pressed polos (Lacoste, Ralph Lauren) and khaki slacks; we hardly ever saw her in jeans. Charlotte is a classic icon of fashion; always dressed with elegance and poise.

flashback: Carrie’s style (Sex and the City)

I was called out of work today, and being broke as a joke, a few points this weekend have opened me up to trips down memory lane. Cleaning out my cupboards (when you live in a place alone for four years, stuff can accumulate), organizing iPhoto, and this morning, reading excerpts from my handwritten high school journals (stickers and metallic ink, anyone)? Anyway, all that prompted me to seek out my old(est) website and then look in my folders for my carefully kept files from my old Glamour Junkie website. It’s been offline for a few years now but looking back on some of my work, I did such a great job (self-applause), piecing things together. So in honor of Sex and the City 2 being in theaters, I decided to post these pieces I did (in 2005!) and celebrate Carrie’s style, which still rules no matter how many years go by. So without further ado, an archive from Glamour Junkie history.

May 7th, 2005
Carrie Bradshaw (portrayed by Sarah Jessica Parker) is the star of the hit HBO series, and it’s easy to see why by her style. She is the most versatile–she chooses everything from vintage to uptown couture. She knows fashion. She bought Vogue instead of dinner when she first moved to the city because it “fed her more.” While her fashion choices are “out there” at times, she always goes for it and looks unique and amazing all the time, never falling into a rut. While she loves her clothes, shoes will always be Carrie’s vice, especially Manolo Blahniks! Carrie will forever be a trendsetter–and an inspiration to shopaholics everywhere.

goodbye, Lost

I meant to blog this a few days ago to be more timely. So Sunday night was the finale of ABC’s Lost, one of the most amazing series ever on television.

I personally only started watching Lost during the fall of last year (per my boyfriend’s strong recommendation) and was instantly hooked. So much so that from late September until early April I hungrily tore through all 5 of the past seasons and the first few episodes of season 6 so I could catch up and (work schedule finally permuting) join Josh on Tuesday nights for collaborative cooking and watching Lost as a group with his friends and roommates. Granted, this awesome ritual didn’t last long but I so appreciated the thrill of fresh Lost weekly as it came. Regardless of the format, I took it all in and became obsessed with all things Lost.

On somewhat of a side note, I came across these photos of Matthew Fox and Evangeline Lilly (Jack Shephard and Kate Austen) and I just love them. So perfect, and finally together in the end.

We said farewell on Sunday, May 23rd with a group viewing at one of Josh’s friend’s houses. We all watched, riveted to the story. I’m pretty sure that there wasn’t a dry eye in the house by the final frames–and this was a group of big tough men, plus me, the only girl. I won’t write a recap, but I do recommend reading this post if you’d like one. I was struck by the care with which the writers wrapped up the loose ends. The writers did well with balancing humor and sentiment and staying true to the story. The “flash sideways” dual storyline was a brilliant way to connect the characters in their afterlife. It was realistic enough to engage and dreamy enough to lead into a peaceful and fitting way to end the series. We get to see all the core characters move on. This show was so epic and amazing, so deep and dynamic. I will so miss Kate, Jack, Sawyer, Hurley, Locke, Desmond…all of them. There will never be a show like it again. (DVD release in August!)

Long live Lost.