Overall impression: Go for the architecture, the inspired shopping, creative and friendly atmosphere and the trendy dining. A must in Amsterdam? The enchanted 9th Street District for its swirl of everything amazing.
I love vintage and I really love European vintage. European fashion from a previous era tells a story that more contemporary fashion rarely does. Owning the original version of a fashion moment is more inspiring to me then the “easy get” of that mass produced look today.
My favorite spot to source unique and envy inspiring pieces is Episode. Episode is a small chain, but you can’t hold that against them as they are all about budget friendly, quality merchandise that is organized with dewy decimal precision. The focus on grouping like merchandise together is a godsend when time is tight – and your husband’s patience is growing thin. Their mens collection is just as fabulous as their ladies. If you’ve never “been into vintage” or found vintage to be too much work, Episode will convert and spoil you.
HIGHLIGHTS OF MY VINTAGE BINGE:
The tuxedo jacket with tails of my dreams – €30.00 (euros) and a heavily metal grommeted ’80’s jacket done in buttery soft suede – €25.00.
Amazing fur accessories: muffs, collars, boleros, hats, scarves, gloves. Sorry PETA but I bought bags full and I certainly wasn’t alone. Everybody is buying and wearing fur in Amsterdam, and with prices that start at €10.00 and topped out at about €50.00, you can see why. The fur coats were all in the €100.00. range and would easily go for much more in the US.
An epic, embroidered lederhosen, with incredible leather braided suspenders. I am obsessed with the buttons, the pewter buckles, and the embroidery. Super flattering and completely unexpected, I can’t wait to wear this with a killer pair of high heels. At only €35.00 , I now wish I had bought more.
LAURA DOLS VINTAGE
My spirit animal has got to be the magpie. Its bad rap for attraction to shiny things hits close to home, because I too am absurdly attracted to everything that glitters – especially vintage. Indulge your inner magpie while in Amsterdam and be sure to visit Laura Dols, located in the heart of the 9th Street District. This sweet, well curated two level shop is filled with a wide range of girly party dresses that will have you feeling ready to go get flirty. Sequins, beading, and feathers embellished on silks, satins, and all varieties of polyester from the last 5 decades boast impressive quality. What did I bring back to my nest? The diaphanous, white belted dress with a subtle metallic sheen, very Kathleen Turner in “Body Heat”.
Attention all femme fatales: for unabashedly feminine lingerie, a stop at Stout is a must when visiting Amsterdam’s 9th Street District. Don’t let its unfortunate name fool you; this small but incredible boutique is for grown up ladies, who need something more stimulating than Victoria’s tired secrets. All 50 shades of exquisite underpinnings are offered and well displayed. Sexy, bold, sweet, classic, naughty…whatever your personal taste, this is an upscale shopping experience that will surprise and delight you with its wide range of European brands. I’m always impressed with their selection of beautiful bras, panties, teddies, swim wear, accessories and other items that will help you break hearts and get your groove on.
It’s always exciting when one of our favorite designers comes out with a more affordable collection. And while these less expensive works can often range from lines for Target, Macy’s and H&M, I often feel a bit disappointed at the cheap version of what was once a luxurious piece of art. And please, does adding the word “Target” to our label really make us feel luxurious? (yes, I’m speaking to you, Mulberry for Target).
The B Atwood for Saks debut is to me exactly what these collections are all about. The price points aren’t so low that the quality will suffer, but you’ll definitely feel you can justify that classic Atwood pump you were once on the fence about.
Even better? Often times these “budge- friendly” compilations result in a much less creative version of what was loved about the designer in the first place. Not in (ahem, smart and handsome) Mr. Atwood’s case, though, much to our relief! He’s taken the opportunity to be even more innovative with a cohesive variety of textures, prints and embellishments (think leopard, calf hair and fringe), but while still throwing in some traditional platform pumps to stay true to his aesthetic. I honestly cannot even begin to tell you which shoe is my favorite as the collection as a whole is anything but monotonous. In fact, I think you’ll find there’s a little something for everyone in this high-heeled line-up.
Start pre-ordering HERE (link: http://www.saksfifthavenue.com/editorial/brianatwood072611.jsp)
And check them out at Saks this Fall.
Like love at first sight, when you see it, you know it. Heck, even your unfashionable, khaki wearing, straight boyfriend who annoyingly wears athletic socks with loafers (God love him) knows it. They’re as identifiable as the crisscrossing double C’s of Chanel or the golden arches of McDonald’s. I’m talking about associating lacquered red high heel soles with French shoe guru Christian Louboutin. And I’m talking candy apple red. Not orange red or pink-red. Red-red.
It is as Christian Louboutin’s lawyer, Harvey Lewin, bluntly told WWD last week, “Unless you’ve been living in a cave,” you most definitely associate that red-red sole with Louboutin. It’s as iconic a brandmark as any logo could ever hope to be.
And that’s precisely the issue Monsieur Louboutin contends in his recent suit against another established French fashion house, Yves Saint Laurent. With specific respect to a pair of sky-high, candy-apple-red suede ‘Palais 105’ platform pumps with leather soles. The issue? The soles match the suede, my friends. Monsieur Louboutin wasn’t pleased about about YSL squatting on his corner of the color wheel.
YSL responded to the claim by stating it unfair for a brand, any brand, to monopolize a color.
Fair enough. But it seems beneath Yves Saint Laurent–the house of Le Smoking legend, and the savoire faire to turn safari fatigue into safari-chic–to pull such a stunt. Surely, the designers knew such an accusation would ensue. More to the point: why would YSL send to market a design that essentially, if inadvertently, advertises a completely different brand, when it can simply develop it’s own new signature sole color?
I don’t know the answer, frankly, but I would like to officially stake my own monopoly on fuchsia. One, I look fantastic in this shade of pink, and two, 95-percent of my wardrobe is already this shade, for the aforementioned reason. This probably doesn’t work for all of you lovely readers. I’m sorry I’m not sorry about that.
A little advice to the lot of you, and, apparently to YSL: get your own signature color.
EDITOR AT LARGE
CHIEF FASHION CORRESPONDENT
Anna Paula Goncalves
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