Sunday, December 23, 2012
AUTO PORTRAIT: A HOLIDAY TALE
We're in Bill Cunningham's On The Street in the Style Section of today's New York Times! (See the little watermarked gothic T in the lower right hand corner of the photo above and Bill's name in really tiny letters in the lower left?)
In his voiceover to the video about today's column, called Jollytown, Bill Cunningham said: "The delightful exception to basic black are New Yorkers in eye-catching felt helmets and other colorful clothes like Santa costumes." We're in the center (natch!) directly under the text. He snapped us last Saturday as we emerged from Barney's on Madison Avenue wearing our fabulous felt flapper helmets (try saying that three times rapidly) designed by Carol Markel, the wonderfully talented artist/milliner. To see her own blog post about today's paper, click here.
Two of our pals also appear in today's paper: Suzanne Golden and her friend Victor appear in the fourth photo to the right of us, and Christina Viera appears in the third photo to the left of us. (And all three have appeared in Idiosyncratic Fashionistas at one time or another.)
We don't seem to be able to embed the video for you, but below is the link to it. (We appear at the 2:30 point. Sorry - there's a little ad you have to watch first.)
'How did this happen?!', some of you might ask. Well, kiddies, sit down with your egg nog in one hand and your mouse or touch pad in the other, and we'll tell you.
It all started when we got this idea that we should have a car for Christmas.
In the New Age spirit of visualization and positive thinking, we thought we should be prepared for the automobile to happen. And to help us focus our thoughts on cars, we should wear Carol Markel's auto helmets. The car we envisioned should be red, for Christmas, and because it's a gift, it should be wrapped in a bow. Below, here we are, doing our visualization exercise.
And waddya know...???!!! It works!!!!
Here we are in a shiny new red Mercedes SL550 Roadster!
We figured as long as we were visualizing, we should just go for it! With a sticker price starting at $105,000, we just might be test-driving ourselves off our own fiscal cliff!
Jean has Eartha Kitt's "Santa, Baby" playing in her head.
Valerie is dreaming that she could actually drive a car on the streets of Manhattan.
Having checked the virtual automobile off our "wish list", we were free to wander up and down Madison Avenue. We went to Barney's to view Simon Doonan's high tech Christmas windows featuring Disney's Electric Holiday. In Chelsea Passage on the 9th floor, we perused the Mickey and Minnie Mouse memorabilia of our youth side-by-side with modern Disney creations like little white vinyl Pillsbury dough boy-like faceless creatures decorated by designers like Diana von Furstenburg, and came away with marvelous helium balloons. On the main floor, for the second year in a row, Valerie drooled over - but did not buy - marvelous Balenciaga gauntlets that would go SO well with the car!
As we were leaving Barney's, balloons trailing behind us through the revolving doors, we remarked in astonishment to one another (like, Du-Uh) that sometimes Mr. Bill hangs out in front of Barney's. Quickly scanning the horizon, however, Valerie said "but apparently today is not one of those days". And that's when we just about stepped on his toes, he was that close to us. (Gotta get new glasses. These clearly aren't working anymore.) Bill's face lit up when he saw us and he asked us all about our hats. When he asked who made them, Valerie whipped out our post card-sized business card (don't leave home without it) and wrote Carol Markel's name on it. And you know the rest ...
After that, there was nothing left to do but have a celebratory cocktail, so off we went. We ran into Brandon Acton-Bond on Fifth Avenue, engaged in some big-time schmoozing and then headed right to The Modern where Jean had the South by Southwest - Gran Centenario Plata tequila, P&H hibiscus syrup, lime and mint - and Valerie had a slightly revised version of the Vesper Royale, a heady combination of cilantro-infused Tanqueray gin, vodka, suze liquer and champagne (maybe a little more champagne next time, and a little less vodka...). We each also enjoyed a bowl of The Modern's marvelously delicious wild mushroom soup and wonderfully crusty bread.
Since almost literally bumping into Mr. Bill last week, we continued our visualization exercises throughout the week, this time visualizing ourselves in the Style Section. We even dreamed up a title page. We thought The Year in Style would be nice.
Waddya know? That worked too!
Happy holidays to all of our friends, family, followers and fellow fashionistas! We're excited to see what new adventures 2013 will bring. Stay tuned!
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AND FOR OUR FELLOW NUMBERS FANS OUT THERE IN THE ETHER
As we've pointed out ad nauseum, we had 10/11/12 this year, and 12/12/12 this year, but we're sort of running out of the fabulous numbers that the early part of the century allows. Having said that, however, we would like to point out that we currently have 553 followers (thank you all very much for accompanying us on our little adventures), and we would really love it if we could have 555 followers by Christmas Day. We're hoping (or rather, visualizing) that someone will kindly do us that honor.
What we wore:
Valerie wore Carol Markel's hat; vintage wheel-shaped earrings by Robert Lee Morris; vintage silk coat by Elizabeth Arden; black faux fur jacket by Issey Miyake; wheel-shaped brooches from the Museum of Modern Art; red leather gloves; Comme des Garcons pants; Arche ankle boots.
Jean wore Carol Markel's hat; lacquer necklace and earrings from Heydari (a wonderful boutique in Washington's Union Station); High Use coat; black W118 by Walter Baker slacks; black Kyodan peplum jacket; black with red gauntlet gloves (from an antique shop in Cold Spring, NY); red Tignanello cross-body bag; Underground black & white creepers from Trash and Vaudeville; vintage bakelite rings and bracelet; black vintage glasses from Fabulous Fanny's (updated with a Verilux prescription).