Summer style inspiration: movies we grew up with

Just wanted to include a link to brighten your day. Design Sponge, one of the best fashion blogs around in my opinion, does a segment called “Living In” where they showcase classic movies and fashions inspired by them. The movies are wonderful and the “inspired by” fashions are even more so. I obviously covet the idea. Here are some summer movies and links:

Living In: The Parent Trap

 

Living In: 16 Candles

 

 Living In: Stand By Me

Oh, such good movies, such good fashion. It’s this stuff that makes me love the summer, even in the DC crazy crazy heat. Click on the headers for more photos, it’s worth it!

Judging the Hat-tastic Royal Ascot 2010

So I was going to write on something DC related, I really was. However, as I was checking gofugyourself.com, my go-to blog for judging celebrity outfits, I happened upon the AMAZINGNESS that was the Royal Ascot.   

The Royal Ascot is a horse race. It occurred this past weekend. But no readers, it is not just any horse race, it is THE snootiest of snooty horse races. Yes, of course it’s British. The Queen was in attendance, the photos show absolutely no minorities, and the dress code for the invite-only “Royal Enclosure” area is as follows:   

Her Majesty’s Representative wishes to point out that only formal day dress with a hat or substantial fascinator will be acceptable. Off the shoulder, halter neck, spaghetti straps and dresses with a strap of less than one inch and miniskirts are considered unsuitable. Gentlemen are required to wear either black or grey morning dress, including a waistcoat, with a top hat.    

A goddamn top hat. You couldn’t MAKE this up. Oh? And what is a substantial fascinator you ask? Not sure, but I am assuming it is something like THIS:   

1) Life is like a box of HAT

 

 YES, that was worn. Along with these 7 others to be judged for the title of Grand Hat Supreme. And they are….   

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I challenge you, hipster Seersucker Social

self-described "alt-retro socialites" socializing

How? HOW is it so easy to predict these things? Honestly, if someone played a word association game for “fancy hipster garden party” here is what I would have come up with: vintage bicycle, ironic mustache, suspenders, snifter, fancy hats, faux fur. As a test, I also asked ironcityspy his opinion, to which he replied “the Great Gatsby.” Or as we know it, the 2010 DC Dandies and Quaintrelles’ Seersucker Social:

(photos courtesy of DCist)

The Dandies and Quaintrelles is a DC fashion club and the event was this past weekend. Sigh. So much…TRY. Look, I am not saying some of these people don’t look awesome. I mean, who doesn’t admire this commitment? But there is something about the concept: the trendy faux-antique photos from last year’s tweed ride, the finger sandwiches, the croquet, the ray bans, the fact that half of DC owns seersucker for serious, that makes it so… predictable.

The Decemberists would be proud

Afterwards, I half expect them all to ride their tandem bicycles to a food truck, take some vintage-contemporary juxtaposition photos with said truck, and ultimately end up at the Gibson laughing over fancy cocktails.

So with that in mind, my DC fashion avant-guard: I challenge you.

DCspy, the man in black

I challenge you to surprise me. That’s it. Muster your fashion-forwardness and come up with a costume party I could never predict through word association. If you succeed, I will give credit where credit is due and be less curmudgeonly towards your hipster-sensibilities. If you do not, throwback costumes, bicycles and PBR remain fair game.

Good luck, you princes of Maine, you kings of New England. I will be watching.

Sincerely,

DCspy

Trends that need to disappear: Fancy Jumpsuits

So as I am sitting in Jakarta, i.e. one of the few places in the world where I could actually make it rain (seriously, the exchange rate is like 9000 Rupiah to the dollar), I started thinking about money. More specifically, all the clothes I would buy if I actually HAD money. Then I naturally started thinking about all the horrid things celebrities buy even though they DO have money. One item on that stupid trend train?  The fancy jumpsuit:

Oh jesus god the fancy jumpsuit. Fancy jumpsuits are one of those trends that come along, like high waisted tapered pants, JUICY ass-pants, harem pants, and no pants (i.e. leggings as pants), that I cannot understand. They are universally unflattering, encourage el camel-toe, and, though they come in different shapes and sizes, all end up looking either like superhero costumes, fancy pajamas, the wardrobe of Dynasty or a combination of the three. They are also guaranteed to be completely out of style in 6 months, which means they are only for those who can afford to light money on fire.

People. You are young. You have wonderful figures. Just slice the jumpsuit into a top and pants, make sure each is flattering, and we are in business. Do it for the rest of us who live vicariously through your millions. Please. For the children.

Mind the Gap: the 14th Street Zoning Dilemma

So I guess this is an unconventional day for my little blog. First, a non-local news post and now a somewhat serious post (gasp!) about neighborhood politics. I know, but bear with me. This is a neighborhood blog after all.

So my U Street area, known in zoning speak as the Uptown Arts Overlay District, has gotten it’s fair share of press in recent years. The New York Times wrote about it last month. Restaurants like Marvin, Masa 14, and Birch & Barley have received strong reviews across the board, rents have skyrocketed. But I feel with all the hype, people forget one thing: that it’s not quite “there” yet. So yes, 14th street has  a great deal of this:

Churchkey (photo from New York Times)

But it also has great swaths of this:

14th Street (Ohad photography)

In effect, gaps. Sure the vacant storefronts are charming in their own way (we know  they give hipsters a sense of place) but they also reflect the area’s transitioning nature.

It’s these gaps that make the recent Zoning Commission decision so puzzling. Namely, on April 5th, the Commission ruled that the amount of linear storefront space devoted to bars and restaurants within the Uptown Arts Overlay District cannot exceed 25%.  Given that the area is at 24.88% right now, the ruling basically prohibits new bars and restaurants (save those currently pending). Ridiculous? Perhaps. But it becomes even more bizarre once you see what the Uptown Arts Overlay District encompasses:

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Redeem Boutique, think Diesel but more interesting and eclectic

OK. So I haven’t really done a fashion post in awhile. Mostly because I haven’t really been BUYING things. Not enough benjamins at the moment. However, last week I did manage to snag these:

Cute no? The sandals I mean. They are gladiator, a blue and gray that is much more vivid than it appears via my canon elf. They are from Redeem boutique on 14th street. LOVE. Reminds me a good deal of Diesel but with more variety. Talked to the salesguy, he used to work at Diesel. Makes sense. A lot of zippers, draped tops, blue/black/gray/white/purple type of color palette, industrial, tailored jackets for the mens. Designers are from all over: New York, London, Korea, Canada etc.  Also, unlike other boutiques, this one is half menswear. Some beautiful shots:

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Best of DC winners and some DCspy opinions

Ok kids. The Best of DC results are in. Now, last time some DC results were in (i.e. my James Beard post), I thought I would get all bloggery and say “hey readers, let me know your thoughts!!” You know, because that’s what blogs do.

Yeah. You all failed. Basically, none of you commented except for empire state elitist who did not comment on the restaurants at all and instead talked about how much DC food sucks. Way to snark up the comments section.  ANYWAYS, learning from my mistakes, I have highlighted some of the Best of DC winners, MY thoughts, and could effing care less if you comment. take THAT…

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This Thursday! Free Samples & Extended Shopping Hours on 14th Street!

This Thursday, March 18th: MidCity restaurants are partnering with local shops to provide a taste of some of the city’s best dining! Come sample the fantastic shopping and enjoy free samples from the following restaurants:Cafe Saint Ex, Cork Wine Bar, Marvin, Ulah Bistro, Nellies, Local 16 and Policy! Free samples are delicious and the vintage shops I blogged about are open late! You should go! Details here.

The Hunt for Vintage, without the Hunt

Dress from Junction Vintage

As you will gather from this blog, I am often lazy. There are some days when I wake up, want to go thrift shopping in my mind, go out to the store, get immediately overwhelmed by the amount of digging, the idea of trying on a million things, the hipsterness (or homelessness, depending how thrift you go) of surrounding people, my desire to eat a croissant aaand… I give up. Just like that, I walk in and walk out.  I know, I’m a blogger and should be more carpe diem. But meh, I work a 9 to 5 and weekends are precious, precious things

ANYWAYS, Junction and Treasury Vintage have solved my problem. For a lazy person wanting to score that awesome item and only look through a manageable number of edited racks, they are small, beautiful, and reasonably priced (think vintage, not thrift). Both stores have clothes, jewelry, handbags, and a rack or two of menswear, so you can drag some sad male companion along with you. Here are some photos….

Junction

Treasury

Junction is classic retro vintage while Treasury is a bit all over the map, stocking clothes, jewelry and, per their website, curios. Yeah. I don’t know what a curio is, but I kind of want one. Reminds me of an antique children’s toy or a 1930s circus souvenir. After buying your curio, you can stop by café Saint Ex, have a muffin of the day, shop around, go home, take a nap, and (assuming your curio doesn’t come to life and kill you in your sleep), go out for the evening. Perfect afternoon.

Junction: 1510 U St NW, WASHINGTON DC,  20009 (202) 483-0261, website: http://www.junctionwdc.com

Treasury: 1843 14th St. NW, second floor (go up the stairs!), WASHINGTON DC 20009, (202) 506-6908, website: http://shoptreasury.com

(images from the Junction and Treasury websites, and  my camera)