Thursday, April 24, 2008

New York is for lovers

So I went to New York last weekend. Every time I go back, I am reminded why I love it and why I belong there.

I'm in love with Manhattan. I'm talking passionate, unyielding, crazy stupid, in love. Coming back to Oxford was like breaking up with my true love to go back to an ex who I still like but no longer have strong feelings for. Depressing, to say the least.

There are lots of reasons I love New York. The people are friendly. (No, really, it's true.) Central Park at 11 a.m. on a spring day. The feeling of the subway whizzing by. The huge abundance of stuff to do.

And the fashion. Yeah, yeah, New York is the fashion capital of the world. When someone who has never been to New York thinks of that, she might be inclined to think that everyone walks around in haute couture, drinking coffee and smoking cigarettes whilst making sure everyone knows why they are better than them.

But it's not like that. I think the reason NYC is considered the fashion capital of the world is because, generally speaking, people who live in New York simply make an effort to dress well.

Casual wear in Oxford consists typically of Nike shorts, an oversized T-shirt and Rainbow flip flops. This is a Rainbow and North Face campus. It's unfortunate, to say the least.

But in New York, casual wear consists of dark skinny jeans, a fashionable top of some sort and cute flats, paired with a cute bag and jewelry. It's not even necessary to spend a ton of money to look cute, and New Yorkers are a prime example. I've never been in an H&M that wasn't packed to the brim, and many people I know from the area rave about stores like H&M and Uniqlo. Just because you're a New Yorker doesn't mean you have to spend lots of dough to look cute.

Walking around New York is like being in a candy store of fashion. Rarely do you see something awful, and even people who dress in a manner that I would consider poor at least have their own style. Bad clothing in Oxford tends to be not only fugly but also typical. Pretty miz. At least in New York, people who dress badly do it in their own way.

I did see a couple atrocities though. I saw a kid with a rat tail. Really? People still sport those? He was in the airport so I'm not really claiming it as New York City. But still. People who either have rat tails or let their kids have rat tails need to be learned a thing or two.

I also saw a woman on the subway who was just awful. She was beautiful with a kickin' body - it wouldn't be surprising at all if she modeled professionally. But her outfit was tragic. She had on a satin ankle-length skirt with a ruffled slit up to her thigh, paired with a sequin and bead embellished spaghetti-strap top and dangly faux pearl earrings.

It was just off. Nothing matched and everything was too embellished: ruffles, beads and pearls. All too much.

It was actually quite shocking-considering she looked like a model and was in the fashion capital of the world. But I guess even New Yorkers eff it up sometimes.

Until next time, majorly yours.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

From NOLA with love

So I'm back. I went to New Orleans last weekend to see the Vagina Monologues. It was an amazing experience - very inspiring to hear all those women talked about their vajayjays. No, really, it was.

And I love loved New Orleans. As I told you, I had never before been, so it was a completely new experience. It was everything I expected it to be - filled with music and life, colorful and a little bit dirty. OK, maybe a lot dirty. But it somehow only adds to the appeal.

I ate lots of delicious crawfish. The French Quarter Festival was going on, so I ate small portions of the best food the city has to offer. Crepes. Etoufee. Beignets. Go ahead - be jealous. I know you are.

Aaaand I saw Berger from Sex and the City. Yeah, that guy from Office Space. Just walkin' around NOLA. OMG.

So New Orleans is wonderful. It's all the good things about the South in one place. Food. Music. Parties. Fashion.

That last part was a lie. Trying to critique the fashion choices of the wonderful people of New Orleans is like critiquing the morality of the choices made by rock stars in the 1960s and 1970s - they were usually way too out of it to be subject to the common laws of morality.

Same of the people of NOLA, god bless 'em. At least the ones I saw. Especially on Bourbon Street and in the French Quarter.

I saw one lady wearing what can only be described as tennis shoes with springs for heels. Normally tennis shoes have some sort of built-in springiness to add bounce to your step so your heels don't get shredded. These springs were plastic and rubber, and visible.

They were so awful that I'm clearly having a hard time describing them.

I saw one white girl with dreadlocks. Actually, I'm surprised I didn't see a lot more than that. I hate when white people try to sport dreads. I love dreads on black people; whites, not so much. Your hair just looks dirty. Probably because it is dirty.

My friend told me once that a white friend of hers had dreads and not only did she not wash her hair for weeks, but she would grease it up so the dreads would stay. Ew. Vom vom.

Bourbon Street after midnight is an entirely different universe. I'm convinced of it.

Fashion and otherwise, it's pretty much beyond comprehension.

I saw a stripper. She was wearing only a bra and thong underwear. And, um, they didn't even match. The bra was orange and the thong was white. Really? If you're going to be outside, pretty much naked, shaking your ass at people and hoping for some dolla dolla bills, y'all, at least wear a matching set. Honestly, stripper, your laziness astounds me. Gawd.

As far as the other outfits that night? I don't remember. I'm sorry. I can't. Don't hate me.

I go to New York this weekend. I know, I'm such a jet setter. More from that later. Until then, majorly yours.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Tie dye (to die)

I own a tie dye T-shirt.

That said, I must also assert that I am unilaterally opposed to tie dye. My T-shirt stays in the drawer, much like my cookies in their jar. Thanks, Ciara.

It was recently brought to my attention that some people still wear tie dye. I want to talk to these people. Who are they? Where do they live? What kind of food do they eat?

And more importantly, what inspires their donning of tie-dyed clothing?

Maybe it's the desire to look like a walking rainbow-swirl lollipop. Weezy would support that.

Or perhaps they actually think they look good. Of course they're wrong. All tie dye is bad. T-shirts, sweatshirts, pants and dresses - yes, entire dresses covered in tie dye exist - should be forbidden. If it were 1968, you would look hip and rebellious. Now you just look like a fool. Take it off.

I also saw in one of my favorite fashion magazines that full-length peasant skirts are back in.

This is really unfortunate. I actually have two in my closet, and that's pretty much where they stay, unless something flies through my window and I need something to block the draft.

Peasant skirts were super-in about three years ago. I remember wearing mine, like, all the time.

It's true: they are super comfortable, and they aren't super hideous - with the exception, of course, of tie dyed full-length peasant skirts - but they just bug me. They're so ... hippie. Apparently this is the anti-hippie column for the year.

I just don't like big, billowy clothing without a purpose. Sometimes it can be beautiful, such as evening gowns that are designed to flow around the body, but most of the time it's just tragic.

If I'm being honest, I could see myself pulling out the peasant skirts some time before this summer is over. But it will probably be in an effort to stay cool without wearing either jeans or shorts. I def wouldn't consider mine a staple in my wardrobe, and neither should you. Last minute necessity only, my friends.

Speaking of shorts, I love love high-waisted double-button front shorts for this spring / summer. Worn with a tank top or a cute baby tee and either sandal flats during the day or sandal heels at night, they look fabulous.

Of course, you have to have the right body type. Thin waist, relatively long torso. I tried a pair on and they looked pretty foolish.

It made me sad, but whatevz. I can find something else cute to wear. But I have seen some other girls rocking them and I love love it. Love.

I would like to take a moment to come out as a New Orleans virgin. I've never been. (I know, gasp!) But I'm going this weekend. I'm skurred. Wish me luck.

Until next time, majorly yours.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Thesis donezo, jorts

I finished my thesis this week.

As such, I feel finished. I feel like I shouldn't have to do any more work.

This is unfortunate because I still have more than a month of school and work left. All I can think about is graduating, leaving Oxford and moving to New York. Fortunately, writing this column is fun and not work-like, so I still enjoy it.

Plus, there is plenty of material, so let's get into it.

Earlier this week I saw a girl wearing jean shorts. No lie.

I know it's hard to believe. I barely believed my own eyes. And she was wearing them with ankle socks and wallabies.

I didn't know people still wore wallabies. I def owned a pair of these freshman year and def wore them in public. I was young and silly then. It's not that I even strongly dislike wallabies, but I certainly don't like them.

And I certainly abhor them with knee-length jean shorts rolled up at the bottom. Straight out of 1990.

Also, while at Wal-Mart the other night on a late night run for ice cream (I mean, broccoli), I saw a couple of tatted up individuals shopping for leafy greens. One guy had full sleeves and the other had a small tattoo on her neck.

I hate tattoos. This is going to get me in trouble.

I know a few people with tattoos, and honestly, if they are small and not visible in most standard clothing, I'm OK with them. But I hate neck tattoos, sleeves, arm tattoos, anything visible if you are wearing professional clothing.

And for the ladies, if I can see a tattoo when you are wearing a formal gown, it's trashy. I just don't like seeing them.

Of course, it depends on what the tattoo is, but mixing formal wear and tattoos is like mixing gin and tequila. It's just a very, very bad idea.

I know, I'm straight-laced. I value class and professionalism. Sue me.

So, as I was walking around campus earlier this week, I was wearing skinny jeans, brown flats, a tank top and a button-up jacket.

(Oh, P.S., why is it so damn cold? It's April and it feels like February. I'm ready for April weather.)

Anyway, I was walking and thinking about what is an appropriate casual look for class. I thought I was dressed appropriately, but I also wasn't dressed particularly cute.

I mean, it wasn't jean-shorts bad, but it wasn't really cute for casual wear either.

I never struggle with dressing cute to go out at night, but during the day it can be more of a challenge to look cute but not seem like you are trying too hard.

I think skinny jeans, flats and a cute top will take you a long way. Any time I see a girl in this sort of ensemble, I almost always like it. It's much better than Nike shorts, flip flops and oversized shacker T-shirts.

On a college campus at 9 in the morning on a Friday, any fashion effort is appreciated.

OMG, that's totally untrue. Lolz.

Most fashion effort is appreciated.

I've got to get going for now. It's starting to rain outside, which means it's time for me to take a nap.

Until next time, majorly yours.