Wednesday, October 1, 2014
Gorgeous Sky Heavens has sung backup vocals for Eminem and Nicki Minaj, but I had never seen one of her solo performances until last night. She did an acoustic set of songs from her upcoming EP, Luz, at the Standard Hotel in New York City. She also treated us to a little bit of what she’d sung for Eminem: the choruses of “Airplanes” and “Stan.”
I loved her cover of Pink’s “Try.”
I’m glad to see this talented lady striking out on her own.
I wore a t-shirt corset I got at Patricia Field the same day I bought the crazy feathered hoodie I wore all over Paris last week.
What Wendy Wore
Top: Patricia Field (2014)
Skirt: Dolce & Gabbana (pre-2005)
Shoes: Prada (2010)
I need to take some posing lessons from Sky.
While visiting England this summer, I had a bit of an ordeal trying to get jewelry to Sky at her hotel before Eminem’s concerts at Wembley, so I took advantage of tonight’s show and delivered her custom-made nameplate necklace in person.
You can buy Sky’s sex-ay single, “Hear Me Cry,” from iTunes.
Wishing Sky all the success in the world!
Monday, September 29, 2014
Last month, I laughed out loud when I saw this “Bust the Myth” promotional campaign for shelter pets. “Shelter pets are not broken. Shelter pets are not damaged goods,” declared Adopt-a-Pet.com on Facebook, next to a cartoon of an adorably disintegrating cat-and-dog pair.
It’s true that, if you’re sensible, you can pick out perfectly healthy animals at a shelter. It’s also true that, if you’re someone like me, you will lose your mind the minute you walk into the shelter and pick out animals that are almost exactly like the damaged goods in the illustration. I have a perfect record: all three of my rescue dogs have been cute messes. (My vet once introduced me to another patient’s human by saying, “This is the lady who takes all the broken dogs!”) The late Mr. Chubbs had epilepsy and knee problems. Gigi has spinal-cord damage. And that wide-eyed cartoon dog with the serious foot problem? He IS my dog Henry. I got Henry from the ASPCA in 2006 despite his tremors and a deformed front paw — though, unlike cartoon dog here, it was Henry’s left paw, not the right, that was a problem. In 2008, the paw was operated upon, improving though not curing its deformities.
See how the cute cartoon dog has an irritated eye? Pekingese dogs like Henry — and other flat-faced animals — are indeed prone to eye problems. Today I noticed that Henry’s eye looked a lot like cartoon dog’s eye, with the addition of unpleasant discharge. Our regular vet didn’t have an opening till Wednesday. I decided Henry couldn’t wait and took him to the Animal Medical Center, the 24/7 animal hospital in Manhattan. Luckily, I got there before the eye specialists went home because it turned out poor Henry has a deep corneal ulcer. An emergency operation has been scheduled for tomorrow afternoon, lest he wind up looking like that cartoon cat with the empty eye socket. I left him there overnight and the AMC vets let me visit with him for a while before I departed.
Wish Henry luck!
By the way, my history with canines is why I got both my cats from breeders. I can’t be trusted in animal shelters!
Friday, September 26, 2014
Several people have pointed this out to me: On September 19, the Washington Post’s PostEverything section had a rather depressing essay by Sonia Greenfield titled, “Being 40 has totally changed how I feel about how I look.” But even more of a downer than, “In my 40s, it seems like ‘inoffensive’ is what I should shoot for” and “Isn’t it OK to disappear …” is the essay’s URL.
In case you’re over 40 like me and totally can’t read fine print anymore, it says “being-40-means-its-finally-okay-to-be-ugly”! Yikes! I’m past the deadline for giving up on myself. I’m not sure if I should laugh or cry or just take inspiration from Uglydoll toys.
Actually, I’m going to check out the most recent “Visible Monday” post on Not Dead Yet Style, where people share “any outfit, accessory, piece of jewelry, hairstyle, cosmetic or other adornment that makes you feel more confident, alive and visible that day.” I glad to see that “inoffensive” isn’t on that list!
Friday, September 26, 2014
It’s good to know that People Magazine is capable of recognizing when it’s done something wrong. Last night, during Scandal‘s premiere, the magazine tweeted (and quickly deleted):
As the blog Jezebel later asked, “Because you can’t mean serious business with natural hair?”
People didn’t acknowledge the deletion at the time, but simply went from live-tweeting Scandal to live-tweeting actress Viola Davis’s new show, How to Get Away With Murder. That’s when it fumbled again.
The quote is from Davis’s Oscar-nominated role as a maid named Aibileen Clark in The Help. Viola Davis is playing a law professor on HTGAWM, so a number of people were annoyed that, in this context, the magazine chose to refer to a line from a more stereotypical role for a black woman.
This time, People took note of the complaints and apologized.
That’s the one where the magazine blamed female celebrities for the theft of their photos and mocked model Kate Upton for “taking almost-naked pictures for magazine covers” — covers that include, most famously, Sports Illustrated, which is owned by Time Inc., just like People Magazine. After getting no response from People on Twitter, I contacted their public-relations office, where I reached an intern. Finally, 12 days after I first started asking People about the item, I got a message from a People spokesperson: “We received your messages. PEOPLE declines to comment.”
People did run one letter of complaint from a reader in a subsequent print issue, so perhaps People editor Jess Cagle feels that was enough of an acknowledgement.
It was my friend Stef who pointed out last night’s tweets for me, in an email that added, “What is going on at People?? Are they TRYING to piss off their women readers?” (I know Stef because I hired her when I was managing editor of People’s website in 1999. When I left, she succeeded me as managing editor.) That would be a bad thing to try, considering People is a billion-dollar magazine, and the vast majority of its readers are women. You’d think that that bottom line would earn females covered by People a little more respect, eh? Guess not.
Tuesday, September 23, 2014
I had a moment of deja vu when I saw a photo of a pink matador-style jacket on the runway at Dolce & Gabbana’s Spanish-inspired Spring 2015 show on Sunday.
My designing friend Zang Toi did a pink matador jacket for his Spanish-inspired collection for Spring 2010.
You can see a matching pink skirt and a white version of the jacket in the post I did about Zang’s collection in 2009. And the beaded and tassled dress I wore to Zang’s 25th anniversary show a couple of weeks ago is also from that collection.
Great minds think alike!
Monday, September 22, 2014
After MrB did his journalism-related work, I had a little business to do. The Biennale de Paris is a show of antiques, artwork and jewelry, and I wanted to see what the big design houses were showing. There were lines to get into the likes of Dior, and I was told that Van Cleef sold every single piece it exhibited.
While at the Cartier booth, I realized I desperately need a diamond and ruby tiara. I mean, who doesn’t?!
I enjoyed finding this fellow among the antiquities.
The exhibition was in the Grand Palais, which has a grand ceiling.
Afterwards, I paused outside so that MrB could take a picture of me in my new hoodie. As you can see, this isn’t run-of-the-mill athletic wear: It’s covered with ostrich feathers and silver chains. My gorgeous hairstylist friend Julie Matos found it for me at Patricia Field.
What Wendy Wore
Hoodie: Patricia Field (2014)
Jeans: Acne (2008)
Shoes: Opening Ceremony (2013)
Purse: Yves Saint Laurent (2013)
T-shirt (unseen): Splendid
While we were at Patricia Field, I got Julie to pose in a pink flowered jacket.
Back in Paris, MrB and I walked back to our hotel from the Biennale. As we strolled past “Cleopatra’s Needle,” the clouds arranged themselves nicely for this photo.
We had dinner with friends at Terroir Parisien. It’s casual, but very good. The chef, Yannick Alleno, has won Michelin stars.
We all took a photo after dinner. One of the great things about iPhones being everywhere is that you can hand a phone to anyone and they can take a picture without needing a long explanation of what button to press.
From left, it’s me, MrB, Marc, Nina and Jessica. Nina works in fine jewelry at Piaget, so she guided us around the Biennale. Nina is my French twin because not only does she work in fine jewelry, but she’s got five pets — both cats and dogs — and she’s obsessed with her animals as I am with mine. Speaking of twins, can you believe that Nina is Jessica’s mother? They look like sisters in this photo! Marc is the husband and dad.
Sunday, September 21, 2014
Friday, September 19, 2014
If you’re a Fashion Police fanatic/Joan Rivers fan, turn on E!, because the network is running an all-day marathon of the show in memory of Joan right now. Joan’s daughter Melissa will appear on special tribute episode at 8 PM ET.
When I started this blog in 2007, its motto was “Wear What You Want” — my way of encouraging peeps to defy what I called the “self-appointed fashion police who snark on anyone who shows a little creativity.” This August 26, as I watched the official Fashion Police show on the MTV Video Music Awards and the Emmys, I thought, for the zillionth time, that I really needed to write a post clarifying that Joan Rivers was not the target of my anti-policing wrath (okay, just this time). Joan was a comedian doing outrageous schtick. (Her unfunny E! cohosts — Kelly Osbourne and Giuliana Rancic — them I have a problem with. I usually enjoy the third cohost, George Kotsiopoulos, because he’s more open-minded and less whiny.)
If Joan had had the late-night network show as she deserved, she’d be riffing off all kinds of current events in her monologue. But, because late night is firmly in the hands of white men in suits, Joan had to focus her talents on the traditionally feminine — and therefore overlooked and disrespected — topic of fashion.
For the zillionth time, I thought, “I’ll get around to writing that post … someday.” I felt like I had all the time in the world because Joan seemed unstoppable. I figured her competitive spirit meant she’d at least tie Betty White for career longevity and Betty is 92. Joan was only 81. I had 11 years to write that post! Except, as we all know, I didn’t. The head of the clinic where Joan went into cardiac arrest after a routine throat endoscopy has already stepped down. Joan’s personal throat doctor, Gwen Korovin, is denying reports that she performed an unauthorized procedure during an examination of Joan’s vocal cords or snapped a selfie of Joan when the star was under sedation. Exactly what happened is still under investigation.
If you want to understand what Joan was like in her later years, watch the 2010 documentary, Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work, which reveals the comedian’s obsession with working as well as her commitment to her charity work.
To understand what a groundbreaker she was, read the condescending 1965 New York Times review that called Joan “…an unusually bright girl who is overcoming the handicap of a woman comic, looks pretty and blonde and bright and yet manages to make people laugh.” (The review went on to use the word “bright” a third time!)
Here’s Joan on the Ed Sullivan show in 1967 talking about how men have it easier than women when it comes to dating. Note that she says girls have to be “bright”!
Joan came so close to being a big late-night star. After getting her break on Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show in February 1965, she became his permanent guest host in 1983. She did so well that Fox gave Joan her own show in 1986, opposite Carson’s. It ended in disappointment: She was fired in under a year due to sagging ratings and Carson never spoke to her again. Turning a career downturn into tragedy, Joan’s husband, who’d produced her show, committed suicide just months later. Fox should have stuck it out, the way NBC did in the 1990s when Conan O’Brien’s first show debuted to poor ratings. (Men in suits always catch a break — except when it comes to the crown jewel of the Tonight Show, of course.) You can see how great she was as a host in this 1987 clip of her with the Beastie Boys. She’s like their glamorous, sophisticated aunt, poking fun at them but giving them their moments too. She also gave them her desk!
Joan and her daughter Melissa were estranged after the suicide of Rosenberg, Joan’s husband and Melissa’s father, but they overcame it with therapy. As Joan said recently:
“We’re very close. We have nobody else: she has me and I have her. I think it’s going to be very difficult when I die, very hard for her … Your child is never not your child. You can be 90 and your mother 120, but your mother is still worried about you.”
I believe Melissa is going to be okay because her mother set such a fine example of overcoming hardship and getting up after falling down. (If you lose your TV show, design jewelry!) Immediately after her mother’s death, Melissa said, “My mother’s greatest joy in life was to make people laugh. Although that is difficult to do right now, I know her final wish would be that we return to laughing soon.” And Melissa did indeed have me laughing — and crying a little — with the letter to Joan that she read at Joan’s funeral, which was the star-studded gala of her mother’s dreams. Joan had been staying at Melissa’s Los Angeles home and Melissa started with:
“Mom: I received the note that you slipped under my bedroom door last night. I was very excited to read it, thinking that it would contain amazing, loving advice that you wanted to share with me. Imagine my surprise when I opened it and saw that it began with the salutation, ‘Dear Landlord.'”
When you read the whole letter, the warmth and humor of their relationship becomes clear. Not every kid can handle an outrageous parent, but Melissa clearly was doing just fine.
E! just aired the Fashion Police Grammys 2012 show and it concluded with Joan’s tribute to Whitney Houston, who died the night before the Grammys. She said, “Though we won’t see her on the red carpet again, she will always be in our hearts.” Same to you, Joan. Same to you.
Thursday, September 18, 2014
For Throwback Thursday, here I am trying to be Audrey Hepburn in an LBD and updo in November 2003.
The yellow-diamond earrings and ring I’m wearing were purchased from my late business partner, before we were partners.
I didn’t go into the jewelry business until 2005.
I think this is the same, very short, black dress that I wore as my friend Phil’s best man in 2002. I wore that for a long time, but I don’t have it anymore.