Friday, October 17, 2014

Celebrating 75 years of Madeline

Madeline, one of my favorite characters, turned 75 this year.
I have always enjoyed the books, in fact I think I love them even more now, than I did as a little girl. The presentation of twelve little girls in two straight lines running through Paris is marvelous. With beautiful illustrations, charming rhymes, and a fantastic depiction of a young girl's adventures through one of the most fabulous cities on earth - who wouldn't envy Madeline? 
She finds a way to get into trouble wherever she goes, but with a yellow coat and Eiffel Tower in the background, a fiesty red-head couldn't look better :) 
This past weekend, The CBS Morning Show had a wonderful segment on the beloved story books, that I have shared below. 

While researching the segment, I came across a couple wonderful articles that I would recommend checking out if you're interested in the history of Madeline, author Ludwig Bemelman and Madeline's legacy. 

I took bits and pieces of an excerpt from The New York Times piece by Edward Rothstein for you to read below:
"Could anything be more steeped in the order and orders of the Old World than those 12 little girls leave an old house covered with vines, in two straight lines, in rain or shine? It has been 75 years since they made their appearance in Ludwig Bemelman's classic Madeline with their hairbows and yellow hats: models of propriety being led through the gradeur of touristic Paris (the Opera, the Place Vendome, Notre Dame, the Tuileries). Except, of course, for Madeline, who never quite stayed in place. 
"Many readers under the age of 95 have Bemelman's images and words inscribed in their consciousness: Madeline daring to 'pooh-pooh' a tiger in the zoo; Lord Cucuface thinking it disgraceful for 'young ladies to embrace a dog of uncertain race;' and, of course, Miss Clavel, the only woman in children's literature, who, when afraid of a disaster, could run fast and faster, and give the black habit of a nun the sweep of a superhero's cape. 
"Yet there are many particular aspects to the first and best of these books...Here is a tale about Paris by an Austrian immigrant to the United States, who began writing it on the back of a menu in Pete's Tavern on Irving Place in Manhattan. Madeline first appeared in Life magazine in September 1939, the same week World World II began, but she is immersed in a sacral, almost antique world...
This Paris certainly didn't exist at the time, and was doomed to become an even more distant memory in a matter of months...
"In fact, the books have not found a French audience the way they have found an American one. They show an imagined France, not an experienced France. The only hint of disruption in their fantastical vision of an old order is Madeline herself, whose spunky individualism is a mark of modernity, and whose mischief just manages to shake Miss Clavel's equanimity without the more serious consequences history was about to provide...
"Even the final lines of Madeline are meant with a wink, as we learn 'And that's all there is - there isn't anymore'...and though you aren't left deeply moved by the fascinations of this show, by the end, you feel an urge to applaud." 
read more here.

If you happen to be in New York, this weekend is the last opportunity to visit "Madeline in New York: The Art of Ludwig Bemelmans" at the New-York Historical Society. The collection honors the 75th anniversary of Madeline's publication, with an exhibition of more than 90 original artworks. Drawings from all of the Madeline books will be featured, in addition to Bemelman's drawings of the old Ritz Hotel in New York, murals from a re-discovered Paris bistro, panels from the Onassis yacht, and cache fabrics based on an early picture book, as described by the New-York Historical Society's exhibition announcement. 
Enjoy your weekend, toodles!


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Friday, October 10, 2014

Old School Cool

My dad sent me this article last week. With as much time as our society spends trying to be "cool," it's amazing how many people still totally miss the boat. 
Why? Too many people forget about being classy

very/highly stylish and elegant
a deeper, more meaningful word for 'cool'

I am sure it wouldn't shock any of you, that I value "class" over "cool" any day. I've found when the former is established, the latter tends to follow. It's a different kind of cool, but the kind worth having.
Below are dozens of pictures showing old school cool, at its best. 
(I put an asterisk* next to my favorites!)
Happy Friday, toodles!

Teenagers, 1950.*

Brigitte Bardot visits Pablo Picasso at his studio in Antibes, 1956.

Sean Connery relaxing.*

Scooter girl, 1969.

Frank Sinatra stepping out of helicopter with a drink.*

Queen Elizabeth and Price Phillip at the horse races, 1968.*

Jamaican streets.*

Muhammad Ali

The original way to "text" in class, 1944.*

Audrey Hepburn at a premiere on September 14, 1953.*

Caroline Kennedy walks ahead while her father carries her doll, 1960.*

The gorgeous necklines of the 1950s.*

Ice skating, 1937. *

The Beatles.

Teenagers and their first car, 1950s.

High school fashion feature, 1970s.

Elspeth Beard, shortly after becoming the first Englishwoman to circumnavigate the world by motorcycle. The journey took three years and covered 48,000 miles.

Clint Eastwood with actresses Olive Sturgess and Dani Crayne in San Francisco, 1954.

A family photo from the early 1900s.*

Ernst Hemingway passport photo, 1923.

Girl with a typewriter and a smoke.

Cary Grant, 1950s.*

Children of Chicago, 1941.*

Michael Caine, 1959.

Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau and his cabinet, 1968.

A couple in London, 1963.*

Graffiti Artist. (Love the lady looking on...)*

Ellen O'Neal, the greatest woman freestyle skateboarder in the 1970s.

Marlon Brando's screen test in "Rebel Without a Cause," 1955.

Kevin Spacey. 

Paul Newman boating during a film festival in Venice, 1963. 

A couple dancing in a 1950s "Be Bop" theatre.*

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Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Fall Outfit Crush

This is one of the primary looks I am trying to channel this fall. In the past year, I have really become obsessed with the blazer + jeans look. Totally French chic. 
In college, I lived in leggings and oversized button downs. But, since leaving the campus lifestyle, I've decided I need to wear pants. The upgrades when you reach the "real world..." :) Don't get me wrong, I love coming home from work and changing into leggings, but now, they pretty much stay in the comfort of my own home. Good things often come with upgrades (wearing pants = better style!) That said, I am still on the search for the perfect skinny black pants. I used to wear the minnie pant from J.Crew, but they stretch out really easily - a similar problem with the Winnie (J.Crew Factory) and the Pixie (Old Navy). I also find them to be just an inch or so too short, where I feel it's border-line awkward length for too cool of temps. For work, I have a couple of black trousers (J.McLaughlin, Theory, etc.), but they don't have the right "streamlined" look that I'm going for. Black denim might be the next best option, but denim doesn't always have the same "dressy" factor. I'd love to hear if you have any recommendations!
Anyways, back to the outfit...
 A few weeks ago my parents treated me to this leopard clutch from Alligator Purse (the boutique I where I work on the weekends) and I just recently bought these Report black flats. I have decided I really like the ankle strap detail on flats, especially when I wear crop pants. You know how you sometimes find looks that work on you/your body type - well this look is one that is totally perfect for me! Combining my favorite details like black cropped pants (when I find the perfect pair!), a white blouse, gold earrings, Persol shades, and a blazer...well I could wear this every single day and feel like a style queen. 
A lot of these pieces are a little bit pricier, but worthwhile investments, total classics that could withstand for trends for years to come! 
Keep an eye on sales, for example Piperlime is having a 20% off sale this week (where I snagged the shoes). J.Crew has sales quite frequently - I actually bought my Schoolboy Blazer (Navy) this spring for $50! If you are a AAA member you receive 30% off glasses at Lenscrafters, a great place to invest on sunglasses - yes, you can buy eye ware without a prescription!
I don't frequently post outfit looks, but when I do, I want to make sure I'm being realistic about my shopping habits. Props to the girls who can go on shopping sprees, unfortunately bills, budgets, and lots of saving is my reality, so that leaves bargain shopping as the method to my madness :)
I hope you are enjoying the fall weather this week, toodles!

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Wednesday, October 1, 2014

September Street Styles

Fashion month is over, phew!
I have a quick round-up of my favorite street style looks from the past few weeks...

See the complete albums on Harper's Bazaar

via Harpers Bazaar albums linked above. All photos taken by Diego Zuko. 

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