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Friday, May 29, 2009

For Realz?

NYC is fast becoming a favorite setting for reality shows. The latest to follow in the heels of The Real Housewives of NYC and The City is Bravo TV's NYC Prep, which "chronicles the lives of a group of privileged teenagers who are key players in Manhattan's elite high school scene. Students who travel in packs – whether it's on sophisticated vacations or to a townhouse for an exclusive midnight party, their lives intertwine as they network, shop, party, study, date and write college applications. Everyone's beautiful and everyone's connected."


Hmmm, sounds familiar huh? Wait until you read the cast's bios:



Camille: A junior in high school, 16-year-old Camille takes her studies seriously, balancing rigorous exams, lacrosse practice, studying for her SATS, the debate team and the college application process with aplomb. She's constantly on the lookout for a boyfriend, but no one seems to meet her impossibly high standards, despite the bevy of suitors knocking on her door. Camille thrives on high school drama and can often be found playing peacemaker, brokering a classic junior vs. sophomore high school feud, or saving a clueless freshman from social suicide. Always armed with acid-tongued opinions and witty retorts, the refined Camille loves to blow off steam by going out on the town at hot clubs around the city.

Jessica: Jessica always gets what she wants -- in the case of her final year of high school, this means she's anxious to get accepted by FIT, a top-tier college program to pursue her passion for all things fashion. To bolster her college application, she interviews for cutthroat fashion internships with top designers in New York. Always a leader among her friends, Jessie likes to throw parties for fun, as well as for good causes. As one of the student chairs of the "Operation Smile" junior committee, Jessie showcases her public relations abilities as she works all angles of their big event to raise money, find the perfect glam venue and solicit charitable donations from the city's top haute couture designers. In her limited free time, Jessie enjoys spinning, exploring vintage stores, and vacations with her family.

Kelli: While her parents spend much of their time in the Hamptons, Kelli recently moved to the Upper East Side for high school. A 17-year-old junior and the most recent import to the Manhattan social scene, Kelli's apartment, which she shares with her older brother, often becomes a crash pad for friends -- leaving one to wonder if the big city pressures will get to her. She loves exploring the city's various high-end restaurants with her friends and also manages her brother's basketball team. Instead of following the party-hunting majority, Kelli chooses to focus on jumpstarting a singing career for herself, working with a team of voice coaches, producers, image consultants, stylists and a dash from her own Mom. Kelli is passionate about setting up a benefit to raise money for cerebral palsy, which afflicts her older sister.

PC: PC is one of the most popular kids in the Upper East Side prep school scene. Attractive and wealthy, PC is interested in photography -- both fine art photography and fashion photography -- and is a music aficionado. He loves sports and plays ice hockey, tennis, golf and soccer. Like many New York kids, this jaded 18-year-old grew up fast, surrounded by rock stars, artists, and the city's literati. For PC, money, women and life's spoils are all he's ever known, and as such, he can't wait to get out of the "sandbox" of high school. A workout fiend, PC realizes that college is right around the corner and he needs to make an impactful change to his partying lifestyle. His first step is to reconnect with his old friend Jessie. They have a long history -- they've dated, been best friends and lost touch -- and as they pick up where they left off, the drama unfolds.

Sebastian: Sebastian is known among his circle of friends as the guy who constantly hooks up with the hottest girls -- either in the City or at his place in the Hamptons. As a native French speaker, girls swoon at his surfer good looks and impeccable accent. Sebastian regularly hits up the town with wingman and best bud Gabe. Sebastian's hobbies, aside from girls, are soccer, tennis and debate tournaments. He's a member of the school newspaper and a certified ocean lifeguard. He is actively involved in charitable causes connected to his school, and has participated in several HMUN (Harvard Model United Nations) events across the east coast. Whether it's "le football" in the Pyrenees or a debate team dais on the Upper East Side, 16-year-old Sebastian is sure to be surrounded by a sea of admirers.

Taylor: Taylor is a 15-year-old sophomore who bounces between her public school entourage and the fast-paced, wealthy Upper East Siders whose parties she has no qualms crashing. She openly jokes about her hopes to score a rich husband someday. As it is for most New York City kids, the academic bar is set extraordinarily high for Taylor. Her magnet public school is an intense academic pressure cooker, yet she finds time to be an active member of her school's gymnastics and roller hockey teams. The rigorous pre-professional dance program she's enrolled in at the prestigious STEPS keeps her sane with dance lessons up to six days a week. Taylor has an active interest in politics and has been known to frequent a student demonstration or two in Union Square. She loves to say that she's "horrible at relationships," which may explain why she continually leaves a flock of boys dangling in limbo, despite advice from her closest friends to "date the nice guy."

Now check out their press release photo. We've seen something like this before no?



The show premiers June 23 on Bravo TV and from what I've seen, these kids look like they've internalized GG's characters way too much. I feel like slapping them silly and telling it to them like it is - "You are not Chuck!", "You're a second rate, trying hard copycat of Blair!" and "You are not as cute as Nate!" Affected much? One thing's for sure, this is a show I would probably watch because let's face it, this will definitely be entertaining! And hey, I wanna give these kids a chance!

I Want You!



The Boyfriend Military Jacket from J.Crew


I've always wanted one. While my Dad had a closetful of army fatigues from serving the AFP for three decades, and Dear Hubby had one for CAT/ROTC, they were just too big and bulky for me. This jacket from J. Crew is just the right size with a shrunken fit that is so perfect for my petite frame. I've been obsessing about this since it came out, but I can't justify $98 for a jacket.

But this would go well with everything in my scant wardrobe, and would be a closet classic that would last me years and years! I can wear it with shorts and sandals, over a dress, with boyfriend jeans and my Chucks, with skinny jeans, a ribbed tank top and ballet flats...


Should I? Could I? Would I?

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Confession: I Bought Shoes...

2 Pairs actually! Heehee!

And you know what, I'm not even guilty about it because they're so cheap! Besides, I'm about to pop soon and my shoe size stayed the same all through out. No swelling too. Hope nothing changes until I give birth. Plus, the shoes I bought are made from fabric so these will stretch for sure if need be...

Here's pair #1:



Got these espadrilles for $4.99 at the Brooks Brothers Outlet store in Hershey, PA a couple of weeks back. While they are super comfy and cushioned inside, I don't think they really are made for walking, unless its on the beach or the boardwalk. City streets are very unforgiving, I actually have to bring my winter boots and my Lanvin flats for repair to the Leather Spa on 55th. Soon soon when I'm not too lazy to lug around 3 pairs of shoes, ugh! So for now, while I love these espadrilles, I only wear them around the house, heehee!



Now about pair #2: Yesterday, my friend Xsa visited from PA, and we went out to run errands. I was wearing my French Sole flats and while I love them, when we stopped by Whole Foods we saw the Toms shoe section and I just had the urge to try a pair on. They were so comfy and light! I love how it has a leather lining inside so even if the uppers are made of fabric, it feels a little bit luxurious when worn. Oh, and since Xsa and I bought a pair each, we feel good knowing that there are two kids in need of shoes who will get a pair of Toms as well!

Between my two new pairs of shoes, I think Toms would be the perfect summer pregnancy shoe! Or a mommy shoe! A pair of Toms would be perfect for when I'm pushing Berry's stroller when we go out for short walks! =)

Xsa and I got these Madras ones...



My feet are officially on a summer state of mind now =)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Berry's Babysitter

We put out an ad the other day for a babysitter for Berry. This afternoon, our first candidate arrived for her interview.



Everything looked good on paper. She majored in psychology at Columbia University, and is currently taking time off before taking her graduate degree on developmental psychology at Yale. When asked why she wanted to babysit Berry, she said she studied too much while at school, she just wanted something that wasn't academic at this point, yet at the same time, would expose her to childcare and development. Simply put, she was burnt out and wanted to feel young and see the world with wide-eyed amazement and wonder, just like a child seeing things for the first time.

Thing is, while we were talking, she asked if she could change the channel since she didn't want to watch "Make Me A Supermodel", only one of my favorite shows!


Before I could say, no, she went ahead and grabbed the remote control! Minus 1 point!


Then she said, "Do you mind if I wear my sunglasses indoors? I stayed up late last night and I kind of lack sleep. The glare from outside is too much for me..." Uhmmm, ohhh-kay....


And when she spotted the bunch of bananas on our dining table, she asked if she could get one for her daily dose of potassium...


But when she saw the cupcakes from Billy's Bakery, she wanted one instead!


Then she went ahead and laid down on a dish of chocolates and declared dramatically, "Now this is what I call 'Death by chocolate!'"


I asked her point blank if she had a sweet tooth, because I didn't want her to indulge Berry with sugary snacks. She raised her hands up and told Dear Hubby and I matter-of-factly, "I do! Is it a crime? If so, then sue me!"



Guess the hunt is still on for a nanny for Berry!

P.S.

Thanks Tita Sarj and Tito Toni for my Uglydoll! Mom and Dad had fun playing with her!

Love,
Berry

Sunday, May 24, 2009

36 Weeks: Almost There!



Berry is so heavy now, and my back hurts a lot these days. I have to support my belly when I walk and I get out of breath so fast. I've washed Berry's going home outfit (well, I have a couple of outfits for her and we'll just choose which one she'll wear when she goes home with us) and we've prepared her car seat. Next thing to do is assemble Berry's crib and sort out all her clothes by months so we can make sure she gets to wear everything! Heehee!

She'll be considered full term by next week! How time flies! See how big she has grown?



We have another doctor's appointment this week and her ultrasound is scheduled the day after! We can't wait to see Berry soon!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

You Make Me So Jelly!

When our resident home goods design expert Sarj told me about her article for The Radar, I just had to stop myself from running to the Kartell store in SoHo. No, not for another Ghost Chair, but for shoes! Yes! Shoes!



Because isn't this Glue Cinderella from .normaluisa and Kartell just adorable? It comes in solids (and "Ghost" too, see that one between the red and black ones)...



...and two tone as well...


And come packaged just so nicely! Sigh!


At $135 a pair, that's a lot more expensive than Hunter wellies and even Pucci rain boots off ebay, but as Sarj contends in her article - "it’s not just plastic — it’s art."

When the subject of jelly shoes of course comes to mind, Melissa can't be too far behind. I checked out their site for their latest S/S 09 collection and I came out more convinced that the jelly shoe has transcended trend and has become a wardrobe must have. Jellies have gone beyond being worn for practical purposes, and have become indeed, pieces of wearable art. Check this one out, a design for Melissa by Zaha Hadid, aptly called Melissa + Zaha Hadid:



Which comes in a variety of colors by the way!


Of course, jelly shoes are meant to be fun too, as seen in this Melissa Ultragirl + Oswald shoe (which also comes in chocolate brown and British racing green)...


And the beribboned Melissa Zen Girl in juicy color tones like strawberry and blueberry!



Luxe lovers who turn their nose up on "pedestrian" rubber sandals and shoes might just be willing to go a step down with Chloe's bridge line See by Chloe's tie-back jelly sandal ($125, available at Shopbop, spotted this too at Bergdorf Goodman)


or Marc Jacobs's jelly Mouse shoes, on sale now for $112 (from $160) at net-a-porter...


Or they might just go all out with this one by Givenchy for $170 (saw this at Curve NYC, also available at Shopbop)...



or this thong sandal from Tods for $175.


So tell me, are you jelly too?

Monday, May 18, 2009

The Model as Muse On The Radar



Have you read my story on The Costume Institute's spring 2009 exhibition at the Met? It came out last Sunday, On The Radar (Thanks for the photo of the front page Grace!). If you haven't, please do! If only to indulge a pregnant woman's wishes, hahaha! (Hey, I got out of bed at 10 am just for this, I braved the swine flu scare and a slight drizzle to be able to share this with y'all! Good thing Berry was such a doll and never gave me any discomfort. I think she enjoys these fashion-y things as much as I do! Heehee!)

No but seriously, any fashion lover would adore this exhibition! It is a must see if you happen to be in Manhattan from now until August 6, 2009. Here's a sneak preview of what you will see, and I really wish I could have lingered longer because I was there an hour before the press preview ended so I didn't really have much time to absorb everything. I took pictures as fast as I could before they closed, with not enough time to really look at the clothing and photos as long as I would like to. That goes without saying, I will probably go back one of these days because these pictures aren't enough for me, heehee!

But this will do, consider it a teaser of what to expect when you step into this fashion wonderland!

Vintage magazine (mostly Vogue) covers (back when models made it to the cover, these days, it almost always about celebrities, celebrities and more celebrities) and iconic images of Twiggy, Veruschka, Kate and co.















A walk down fashion memory lane...from the glamorous 50s...




the swinging 60s...



the disco-dancing "Studio 54" 70s...



"Nothing comes between me and my Calvins" 80s...

plus closet classics from 80s designing icons Armani, Lola Karl, etc...


early 90s grunge giving way to...



minimalist looks from Prada, Donna Karan, Helmut Lang, etc during the late 1990s ...


plus a spooky installation of mannequins hung from the ceiling in silk stretch mesh evening gowns by Giorgio di Sant' Angelo...


The last gallery reminds us of how the supermodel has faded into the background, by juxtaposing the anonymous nurses from Marc Jacobs and Richard Prince's collaboration for Louis Vuitton...



...against the flamboyant, extravagant, ostentatious, "look-at-me" era of the supermodels, as represented here by Dior by John Galliano's ballgowns...


While this exhibition seems to track the rise and decline of the model as muse, and makes the viewer reminisce about the fashion model's heyday, sad thoughts are put to the side once you step into the on-site shop for...Shopping Time!


The book selection alone is worth going back for!!!





Plus of course, take advantage of the chance to stock up on some cheap knick knacks to add to your generic pasalubong stash! Hehehe!



Here's a tip for this Marc Jacobs lipstick pen though! If you go to the Marc by Marc Jacobs store on Bleecker Street, you can get this for just $1.50 each! Mucho cheapo!
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