SB Flicks: The Bling Ring
Remember me this summer, my dears. Think of me when you need to escape reality for a bit because it’s 100 degrees and your air conditioner is on the fritz and the humidity has caused every last curl on your head to hit the road and follow it’s dreams in the great wide yonder. Remember me when the only thing that will revive your wilted petals is an easy movie in a dark cold theater and a mini bottle of champagne smuggled in your purse.
Directed by the cool as a cucumber, Sofia Coppola, The Bling Ring looks to be highly entertaining and maybe, given the divine Emma Thompson and its director’s deft touch with the slightly left of center, might be quite good.
Are Bras Bad for Boobs?
Not so fast. We may need to take the word of a male French researcher with a grain of salt when it comes to the girls, girls.
Jean-Denis Rouillon, a professor at the University of Franché-Comte in Besançon has concluded a 15 year study that suggests that “medically, physiologically, anatomically, the breast does not benefit from being deprived of gravity.” In fact, he claims bras may weaken the muscles and ligaments that keep them lifted. He measured the breasts of over 300 women from the ages of 18 to 35, noting the changing distance between the nipple and the shoulder with respect to bra use. How he can’t have taken into account the size of the breasts, is beyond me, but it is an interesting theory.
But only interesting insofar as the fact that most of us don’t wear a bra for support, so much as habit, nipple coverage, comfort, shape and a vague sense of propriety – which, frankly, we could stand to kick to the curb.
Make of it what you will. I think women already do what feels and looks good to them, so a free-range exercise regimen for our bosoms is probably not something we need to add to our to-do lists.
On a related note, good for Angelina. There’s not a person on this planet who hasn’t heard all about her choice to undergo a preventative double mastectomy, and that can only be a good thing as far as education and awareness. I have zero faith in the general populace’s ability to digest the specifics of her situation, so big ups to all the doctors who are going to have a lot of ‘splainin’ to do.
Previously on SB: The Evolution of the Bra
SB Tunes: Bowie
This week was a good one for androgyny and music.
David Bowie (honorary SB who happens to have a penis) released the video for his new song, The Stars (Are Out Tonight), starring his doppelganger, the ethereal and bizarrely beautiful, Tilda Swinton.
Not only was this love at first sight for me, it was love at first listen. Which I cannot say about the new song of a certain other honorary SB who happens to have a penis (hint: Prince). Screw Screwdriver. It’s terrible. Brother, where ever did your sexy funk go?
This, however, sounds like vintage Bowie. Dancey and synthy with a menacing, guttural undercurrent. And the video is quite excellent – sexy and creepy, beautiful to look at and yet, slightly disturbing. So good.
My friends, the Thin White Duke has still got it. Enjoy.
The 2013 Academy Awards
So did you watch? I did, but barely. Note to self: one should not overindulge in such a fashion on the eve of the Oscars if one expects to be able to stay awake to see Daniel Day Lewis give his classy acceptance speech or Ben Affleck kinda sorta stick his foot in his mouth.
Nevertheless, I did watch the red carpet with keen interest and for the most part, I think everyone looked beautiful. I’m not sure if it’s the advent of stylists or Best/Worst dressed lists, but people seem to be pulling it together with more success these days.
Gone are those lovely rich days of backwards tuxedos and crow feather headdresses paired with sequined torso-less dresses. And there was nary a swan, goose, duck, loon, merganser, grebe or any other water fowl to be seen. I miss those days.
Nowadays, the most we can hope for is something nipple enhancing, vaguely 90′s and ultimately super boring (talking to you Hathaway – although your hair looked adorable, so there’s that).
Too many stylists doing too good a job = too much couch swooning and not enough spilling my wine and shrieking Noooooo! Noooooo! Oh my God, No!
Anyhoo, amongst all the pretty, pretty dresses I saw two themes emerge through the cottony fog of my hangover. First up, my lesser favorite: The giant princess dress.
Jennifer Lawrence wore a Dior gown which was actually the perfect dress to trip in on her way to accept her Oscar. Prostrate on those steps, she looked like something out of Gone with the Wind. Très dramatique et chic. But she dealt with her stumble with grace and humor and I think everyone fell a little more in love with her after that.
Jennifer Anniston wore a strapless red Valentino and while I give her points for actually wearing a color, the rest was a bit of a yawn for me. Notice that Lawrence’s dress pouf started lower than Anniston’s, giving it considerably more va va voom for a princess dress.
More deliciously textured and tulle-y was Amy Adams’ barely blue confection by Oscar de la Renta. This shade is normally not a color I enjoy, but it looked so pretty with her red hair.
Now to the theme I really liked. I’ll call it liquid metal. These dresses look molten and poured on and über sexy, if you ask me. Naomi Watts was probably my fave of the night in a super modern Armani Prive. And I liked her after-party black and gold Pucci even MORE, if that’s possible. She has been ON FIRE lately.
Her buddy Nicole looked gorgeous as well in a really cool L’Wren Scott gown that looked like an oil spill, but in a good way. I heard that this dress was given to Naomi to try on and she sent it Nicole’s way. Aw.
I don’t know about you, but I was over the moon to see Halle Berry covering up a little bit. When you’ve got a bod like hers, a super revealing dress is ok from time to time, but hey, when you do it EVERY TIME, it gets stale. I think it’s both tragic and preposterous to be half naked and yet still elicit a yawn, so kudos to Halle and Donatella on this beautiful, modern Versace. Loved the sleeves. Loved the shoulders. Loved the plunging neckline. Divine and grown up. And still, so so so very sexy.
And finally, the Kiebs. I have resisted this wholesome looking farm girl for a very long time. I was not sold on her as an adequate mate for Clooney, but she seems to be sticking around and I have to admit that sister is a tall drink of water and knows how to pick a dress (notwithstanding her friendly looking head). Doesn’t she look like she drinks milk with her dinner? I digress. This Gadsby-esque Naeem Khan is spectacular – and come to think of it, which is a stretch for me at this moment, just might be my favorite of the night.
Cover Up, Or Else . . .
CBS’ Standards and Practice Committee has sent a “wardrobe advisory” to all the Grammy Awards attendees basically banning butt cracks, underboob, bare sides, sheer fabric and “female breast nipples”. Oh, and also the “puffy bare skin” of the genital region. WHAT is that?
Strange syntax aside, I think this is puritanical and lame. It’s the GRAMMYS!!!
I know I rail against our over-sexualized society where girls are getting the message that looks and sex are all that matter, but I don’t think the answer is to sartorially censor our artists and outliers. We just need to be throwing more love and attention to the brainy and the brave, so the whole panoply of self expression is on display.
If music people aren’t allowed to do it, who is left to push the boundaries of fashion and good taste, to toe the line of propriety and social mores, to challenge our understanding of sexuality, gender, art and swagger?
This smacks of nuns with rulers measuring the lengths of kilts and I don’t like it one bit.
Which is not to say that I won’t be watching in my sheer butt crack, underboob, female breast nipple revealing ensemble. You know, out of solidarity.
As always, I’ll be live-tweeting @specbitch. Grab your vino blanco and join in the fun.
Photo credit: Kevin Winter/Getty Images
The Beyoncé Bowl
Can we all just agree that Bey NAILED the half-time show? I couldn’t help but imagine poor Madonna (who was no slouch herself) sitting on her velvet throne, her nails digging into the armrests, cursing the day Mama Tina Knowles gave birth to that bundle of boot stomping, gilded-piped, bootilicious awesomeness.
I loved Beyonce’s bad-ass all-girl band, although I do think she missed an opportunity to bust out Run the World – GIRLS in that pantheon of testosterone. How cool would that have been? You boys can crash into each other all you want, have fun with your silly game and your too tight pants because GIRLS, WE RUN THIS MOTHA!
I also loved how Destiny’s Child popped out of the floor – the ladies have held up well and I look forward to seeing more of them. But no Say My Name? Come on.
And I loved that Bey chose an emerging designer, Rubin Singer, to make her ensemble. Considering it now seems de rigeur to be pants-less for any vocal performance, Singer’s jumpsuit hit the right notes. Apparently, it took over 200 hours to make and featured pieces of python, iguana and trapunto stitched leather* as well as chantilly lace.
The whole leather-to-lace ratio is a personal thing and deeply subjective, but to my taste, there was too much lace. Just like white skin in linen, it’s a tricky balance. As is perfume on my wrist. And the full moon that hangs over these dreams in the mist. Oh, never mind. I can think of exactly one person who’s still with me.
*quilting in which the design is outlined with two or more strips of stitches and stuffed from the underside. Who knew?
Let’s reminisce, shall we?
Ask the SB: How to Get Hair to There?
Q: Back around May, Dan asked you about engagement rings. He introduced me to MB, and thus I found my way to you. So it was only a matter of time before I discovered this post. And he was right, I do prefer white gold, and thankfully he was as wise as he is handsome with his choice. I’m surprised he didn’t think the band itself was a gamble. It is different and, as you said, bold. Love it!
Here is my question. Due to a difficult stint in my occupation, I cut off all my wonderful hair in exchange for practicality. Think Anne Hathaway short. BTW, if I had known this engagement was coming, I never would have done it. (Dan did a good job in the surprise category).
It’s been about 9 months, and it’s a mess. Is there any way to gracefully grow out a hair cut like this? Is there a way to fake length that doesn’t include getting extensions that will be suitable for a spectacular updo for a wedding in 5 months?
~p.s. I said ‘yes’
A: WOW! Kendall! Congratulations!!! I always worry that answering questions for the boys might somehow preclude them from sharing me with their spectacular ladies, so I love how this has panned out! And well done to Dan for nailing it on the ring and the surprise. I am as proud as a mother hen. Just watch me strut around all puff chested, bragging about my Dan. Well done!
Now on to your hair conundrum. I trust the circumstances surrounding your cut weren’t quite as extenuating as Fantine’s, but I do quite understand your impatience with a rapidly approaching wedding. The fact is, growing out hair is a bitch. If it’s a mess, as you say, you may actually need a little trim to see you through the worst of it.
You must find a good stylist – someone who understands your endgame (long hair) and will play it, someone who will strategize with you on a coif for the big day. I understand not wanting to go the extensions route, but if you have enough hair by D-day, there are creative things that can be done with hair pieces and braids to fill out an updo.
But who says you need to put your hair up? There is no bridal canon that dictates you must have an intricate updo. Why not go for something unexpected? It sounds like you might be dealing with a medium length by the time of your wedding and if you have lovely hair, as you say you do, it could be even more stunning styled beautifully with whatever hairpiece, headband or veil you’ve chosen.
I’m feeling a 1920′s vibe. Charlize Theron does this really well for awards shows, so check her out for inspiration. Loose and whimsical hair can be so fetching with a wedding gown and frankly, probably photographs better. Many brides end up looking like pin heads in their updos due to the relative volume of their dresses. I’m just sayin’.
So relax. Enjoy the whole process of planning your wedding and know that you have gorgeous options no matter what length your hair.
The 2013 Golden Globes
Did y’all watch? Sigh. I just adore an awards show, and dare I say, ever since TV has gotten as good as it has over the last few years, I think I like the Globes even more than the Oscars. I loved seeing Lady Mary Crawley in a modern day gown and a cute bob. And what a relief to see Carrie Mathison eschewing her under eye circles and drab CIA pantsuits for a fiery red Versace. Phew!
But let me begin by applauding the real stars of the night – Tina Fey and Amy Pohlar – on crushing the Golden Globes into a fine shimmery pulp. They were hilarious, classy, GORGEOUS and brilliant. YES! Mother effing GIRL POWER. That’s what that is. They SHUT. IT. DOWN. Huzzah!!! Love those funny bitches. LOVE.
On to some dresses, because that’s what we do here at SB. At least some of the time. There were many themes: red gowns, black and white gowns. You can read about those elsewhere. Here are the ones I fancied:
The Midriff: Once upon a time, wearing a gown to an awards show meant that an exposed midriff was definitely not on the list of concerns. Aside from having to actually squeeze into a dress, the whole abdominal region was something that could safely be ignored. But no more. Now, in addition to shoulders, backs, legs and bosoms, the trunk seems to be fair game as a new sartorial sexy zone. It’s almost like a page is being taken from our Indian sisters and their beautiful saris.
And lest you think I don’t approve, be assured that I am giving two enthusiastic thumbs up to three intrepid fashionistas who attempted this move last night. The trick, it seems, is restraint. A cut out, a peek-a-boo, a sliver, a slice. No one needs to see a belly button, but a curve here and there? Well, we’d be fools to refuse.
Nicole Kidman was downright confounding in Alexander McQueen. Normally, I dislike mesh (pronounced MEOSH in an operatic tone . . . long story) almost as much as I dislike illusion netting. But this dress looked so damn good on her, so fashion forward and frankly, challenging, that I am going to give the MEOSH a pass and a pat on the behind. Good on ya, Nicole. As always.
Emily Blunt looked foxy as all get out in a gold Michael Kors gown with side cut-outs. And how cute are she and John Krasinski together? So cute.
And finally, funny lady, Kristin Wiig looked amazing in a black keyhole dress, also by Mr. Kors. Come to think of it, this cutouts business is largely Michael Kors’ doing. Well played, you freakishly tan mama’s boy. Well played.
Black and gold: Kate Hudson and Helen Mirren both killed it in slinky, body con black and gold – Hudson in Alexander McQueen and Mirren in Badgley Mischka. I’m not usually one for a sleeved gown and I’m certainly no fan of a high neck like the McQueen, but again, these dresses looked so throughly modern and so thoroughly dynamite on their bodies, that I’m having to rethink everything. I loved them both.
And can we talk about Helen Mirren, please ? She’s 67! A flirty, sexy, SPECTACULAR 67. I want to be her when I grow up.
Rockin’ hair/dress combos: I love an unexpected combination and call me crazy but a messy fishtail with a gigantic floral Carolina Herrera is an unexpected combo. As is, a quasi-fauxhawk up-do and a blingy Monique Lhuillier gown. Both Lucy Liu and Jullianne Hough managed to pull off amped up versions of casual hairstyles, which worked as perfect foils to rather extreme (but in my opinion, gorgeous) dresses.
Lucy Liu’s dress had a voluminous and princessy cut, but the big flowers, the pockets and Liu’s braid all came together as easy and romantic.
Hough was able to try out the Miley Cyrus do, without having to actually do it. The gown had a classic cut, albeit edgy embellishments and all together it read as really cool and chic. Well done to both ladies.
Seeing red: There was a ton of red on the the red carpet this year. Naomi Watts, Jennifer Lawrence, Jennifer Garner, Marion Cotillard. I’m growing weary of this post, so I’ll just give you my most and least favorites. Naomi Watts looked flawless in a retro burgundy Zac Posen. So sophisticated and glamorous, I loved it from the front and the back.
On the other hand we had the twee Zoey Dechanel in Oscar de la Renta. I don’t know man, but sister needs to change things up. The heavy bangs, the grandma pearls, the itty bitty nail art, the prom-reminiscent dress – none of it was working for me. But honestly, lest I end on a sour note, when someone is this entrenched in her look, just think of the power she possesses to blow us out of the water someday when she decides to take a risk. I can’t wait.
SB Cannot Wait to Get Her Paws on the Vanity Fair Comedy Issue
It’s guest edited by Judd Apatow and features three different covers. Which to choose??? I kind of love every single person pictured, with the exception, perhaps, of Megan Fox. Is she funny? Hmmm.
And hats off to Leslie Mann, 40 year old mother of two, for ra ra rocking that bikini. Much is being made of the fact that the issue features an equal number of men and women. As long as we’re talking equity, I think there should be at least one dude in his skivvies as a counterpoint to Mann. My vote would have been for Jack Black, but what do I know? And where is he, by the way?
I do know that this is what I’m going to be doing on my plane ride in a couple weeks. So don’t even think about chit chatting me up.
The American Music Awards
Did you watch? I did and as always, I found it to be completely entertaining, though quite sedate, sartorially speaking. My two take-aways from the night are:
1. Notwithstanding the fact that harem pants (or Hammer pants, if you prefer, which I DO) never really took root for women, they seemed to be working for the men at the AMAs. The Biebs was sporting a skinny boy version, so be prepared – these just may stick.
2. I am strangely obsessed with the fingerless leather gloves Carrie Underwood wore for her performance – especially paired with a gown. I am so feeling these for holiday fests. What a cool way to edge up a look and get a little hand candy going at the same time. Am I crazy? Entirely possible.
Also, Pink needs to join Cirque du Soleil, Jenny McCarthy should not lose her wits and kiss the Biebs on the neck when his mom is sitting right there, Taylor Swift should wear a color for once in her life, everyone needs to cut it out with the pants-less performances (talking to you, Aguilera and Ke$ha), Gwen Stefani still rocks but that illusion netting shirt should be burned and Chris Brown needs to go away. Just away.
Enjoy some more Hammer pants, Gangnam-style:
SB Flicks: The Eye has to Travel
I am an absolute sucker for a good fashion documentary and this one about Harpers Bazaar and Vogue editor, Diana Vreeland, looks to be abso fabu.
Vreeland was a rare bird and I have high hopes that this documentary will capture her visionary, dramatic, fun and irreverent spirit.
She was the first to embrace Barbara Streisand’s nose, to recognize it for what it was – unique and beautiful and not something to be shaded or turned to a better angle. She used to say “Push their faults – make it the most beautiful thing about them.” That, my friends, is a kernel of wisdom we can all tuck in our clutches.
It’s in theaters now, so scurry.
Photo credit: courtesy of the Diana Vreeland estate
Great Golden Globes News!
Did you hear? Did you hear? The hilarious, adorable and all around kick-ass Amy Poehler and Tina Fey have been asked to co-host the 2013 Golden Globe Awards! Oh, January 13th, I am R.E.A.D.Y. Actually, not quite. But I will be. Oh will I ever be. My basement will be a flatteringly lit EMPORIUM of TV readiness by the time I settle in for the red carpet. I may have to hire a butler for the night.
You know, I actually quite like Ricky Gervais, pudgy ginger man that he is. I think he’s funny and I like him mean. I think he did a good job the past few years, but this choice is inspired.
And lest anyone quibble with the fact that it appears two women are being sent to do one man’s job, just remember this: why do something alone when it would be ten times more fun with a girlfriend? Either of them could carry this on her own, but they are hilarious together. Why mess with perfection?
Good on you and good luck, ladies!
Happy National Voter Registration Day
Here’s the delightfully foulmouthed Sara Silverman putting in her two cents on voter registration. I love her, but I’d like to see her stop dressing like a ten year old boy. There comes a time when even the biggest tomboys need to step it up. Not that that’s relevant.
2012 Emmy Awards
I am more than a little bereft at having missed the Emmys last night, but it doesn’t mean I don’t have an opinion on the sartorial goings-ons. There seemed to have been a few major themes playing out in the gowns, and with the caveat that I didn’t get to see any of these in motion, here’s what I think:
Tweety Bird Yellow was most definitely a thing. Julianne Moore, always gorgeous, went for a risk-taking Christian Dior sweater and high-waisted skirt – high-waisted being the understatement of the century because that sucker came right up to her under-boob. It had a cool corset-like look, but the top was a little too covered up for my taste.
Claire Danes swept the night in a drapey Lanvin that rustled around her baby belly. I thought she looked terrific, though some on the interwebs are accusing the dress of being lazy. Whatever. She’s pregnant. Drape away, I say.
And as much as I love Modern Family and like Julie Bowen’s sunny Monique Lhuillier gown, I have trouble with her gaunt, frenetic energy. I just want to send her away for a two week stint at a Belgian monastery where the monks take a vow of silence but consume copious amounts of beer, fries and meat sandwiches. Wait. That actually sounds divine. Screw her. I’ll go.
Sparkly also came out to play and my fave was Kerry Washington in Vivienne Westwood. Even when Viv goes old Hollywood glam, there’s still this punk pedigree that somehow, someway finds its way through. Or maybe it’s just me seeing everything she does through my Viv-tinted glasses. This is a dress I wish I could have seen in motion.
Nicole looked as icy and statuesque as ever in a cool deco-inspired Antonio Berardi. Is Keith Urban shrinking?
And finally, Lucy Liu’s bod was just unstoppable in a disco ball Versace. I know Versace sort of specializes in bod, but seriously, that dress was ridiculously good on her.
Patterns and florals were also out in force with mixed results. As much as I love Lena Dunham and her cringe-inducing Girls, that heavy Prada wasn’t doing sister any favors. I don’t know anyone who can wear a high waist like that and look good, although I do like her short hair. Sometimes lopping it off is the best answer.
Jennifer Goodwin’s orange brocade Monique Lhuillier was two wee ankles short of overwhelming her. Honestly, the small detail of the shorter front
made saved this dress.
Julianna Margulies in Giambattista Valli Haute Couture looks like a garden, but in a good way. It’s fresh and voluminous, only I think the dark pulled back hair is too severe for the organic romance of the frock. If she ever needed to release the curls a bit, this was the night.
And finally, I thought Peggy, er, Elizabeth Moss looked kinda sassy in this Dolce and Gabbana. It’s flouncy and sexy, kind of a bombshell dress. I like to see Peggy get her sexy on. And maybe I’m having a moment, but that short front is doing it for me. Is this a mullet dress cleverly disguised as a va va voom Cha Cha diGregorio dress? Perhaps.
Breaking News: Prince Sports a Baby Fro
The internet was aflame today with news of Prince’s new do. Apparently, this SB (who happens to have a penoose) appeared on The View today sporting a baby fro.
Me? I like it, but then again I never met an afro I didn’t like.
What I can’t understand is why on earth he’d go on The View when we haven’t been able to get him to perform in his native Minnesota in eons. I’d say the Purple Yoda needs to reassess his priorities.
SB Tunes: Michael Jackson
In honor of MJ’s birthday this week, I offer you the one and only for this week’s SB Tunes.
I must confess that I drank a bit of vino blanco in his memory while I shimmied and shmooved around my living room to the entire Off the Wall album. OK, maybe I didn’t exactly do that (I exactly did), but I DO love me some Michael. It’s like dancing catnip.
I love this picture because it captures Michael at the hight of his Thriller-era Spectacular Bitchdom, before he went off the rails, poor dear.
And I love this video because it captures Michael before he even got near the rails. I don’t think a tuxedo has had that much fun in the history of tuxedos. That boy had some moves.
Don’t stop till you get enough.
Flights of Fancy: Tom Ford Crocodile Dress
From Tom Ford’s Fall Winter 2012 collection, this crocodile dress makes me seethe with avaricious envy. It puts me in a fever of covetous desire, a delirium of insatiable longing.
I am utterly consumed by the need to touch it. Come ON someone, can’t I just try it on? Or caress it with my palm at least? One finger? Come ON!
Curse that Rihanna who got to wear it for the Met Gala. She’s so lucky. Damn her.
I couldn’t verify the price, except for one crappy looking gossip site that said $14,000. Hmmm. Seems a pittance for this body hugging backless reptilian beauty.
Oh, the agony. The exquisite torture of this dress. Ay, cocodrilo de mi alma.
Image via Tom Ford
Worst Ad Ever?
Oh, I get it. Live Young! Evian is supposed to bring out the baby in you. I get it, but I hate it.
And I’m not just saying this because plastic water bottles make me ornery.
When I see a woman drinking out of a disposable plastic water bottle, I think: clueless, wasteful, spoiled, clueless. WAY down on my list I may think: or perhaps she was just carjacked and her reusable water bottle was in her cup holder and she has to take her lifesaving medicine asap which, luckily, happens to be in her pocket and not her purse which is half way to the state line with the jacked car, and she is feeling too weak and frazzled to find a drinking fountain, and she looks a little ashamed, so I’ll give her a pass.
We don’t like to be too judgy on SB, but disposable plastic water bottles drive us mad.
Putting all of that aside, this is probably the worst print campaign I’ve seen. It manages to be creepy and cheesy at the same time. Lame. Lame. Lame. And shame on Sharapova (and Aniston for that matter) for endorsing water in plastic bottles. This is not the 90′s, people. LAME. Why not team up with Sigg, or Nalgene or Klean Kanteen?
If anyone ever came asking, that’s what I’d do.
Not a fan.
High-Waisted Swim Suits: Yay or Nay?
The fact that I’m only getting around to writing about this trend in August means I have spent all summer trying with all my might to understand, embrace and enjoy this look.
While there is much to like about this look in theory, I have yet to see anyone actually look good in a high-waisted suit and it’s confounding to me.
On the plus side:
1. I like the idea of a retro glammy swim suit.
2. I like the idea of a little coverage for girls who may want a two-piece but have a little extra tummy love.
3. I like the idea that these bottoms won’t go flying off when you dive off the dock.
4. I like the fact that you don’t have to wax to within an inch of your life in this.
5. I like the fact that these suits pretty much declare to all the boys: I don’t care what you think.
6. I like the idea of being able to share swimsuits with my grandma.
On the minus side:
1. Ke$ha, Taylor Swift, Florence Welch, and Katy Perry all look kind of eeesh in their high-waisted suits and, with the exception of Ke$ha, they all have quite nice healthy figures.
2. Dita Von Teese could probably pull off a high-waisted suit, but to my knowledge she eschews water and, in fact, does not go outside when it’s daylight.
3. If you wouldn’t wear underwear this big, why would you wear bikini bottoms this big?
4. It’s not so much that the waist looks high, but the crotch looks low. Is low crotch ever a good look when you’re frolicking in the surf?
5. From behind, these suits make the bum look like a vast and endless savanna of lycra.
6. Belly button suffocation.
7. Oh ya, and low crotch. Again. Bad.
That’s 5 to 7, with high-waisted being the clear loser.
Not a fan.
Oh, no he didn’t!
Apparently, my (former) secret fantasy boyfriend, Joseph Gordon-Leavitt, was trying to give Emily Blunt a complement at Comic-Con this weekend and ended up saying something inane like “pretty girls aren’t usually funny.”
Maybe it was taken out of context.
Maybe he has a different definition of ‘pretty’ than I do.
Maybe he has a different definition of ‘funny’ than I do.
Maybe he’s just a clueless shit head.
No. No. No. No. No.
Katy Perry is not the one to blame for this. Twenty seven year old pop stars are supposed to have cupcake boobs. Spectacular Girls are most definitely not.
Side Boob Do’s and Don’ts, but Mostly Don’ts
My research for this post has convinced me that side boob is ubiquitous and ninety percent of the time, it is executed poorly. Why, you might wonder, even try this at all? My answer for the general population would be don’t. But to my smart, capable, fashion savvy and self-aware SB readers, I would say read on.
This look is interesting because it’s unexpected. The side of the breast, rib cage and arm pit is a delicate, vulnerable and pretty spot on a woman. It’s also rarely seen (or used to be, anyway) – because it’s usually covered by clothes and also our arms. Done correctly, a little side boob can be quite fetching.
Done right, it is cleavage’s brainy, sexy, infinitely more interesting cousin.
Done wrong, it is cleavage’s nasty ho of a cousin.
Let’s move on, shall we?
Rule number 1: Do not attempt side boob if you have giant faux breasts. It’s vulgar. Period. This is a look best left to our flat-chested sisters. The larger the breast, the greater the degree of difficulty.
Rule number 2: Do not attempt side boob with a loose and flowy top. The point is a fleeting peek, not a white knuckled, hair-raising, suspenseful is it going to swing out? evening for the people around you. I don’t care how much fashion tape you have working for you – people should be admiring you, not waiting with baited breath for one of your girls to go rogue. Also, fashion tape cannot be trusted in a full-on dancing situation. I cannot bear Anne Hathaway in this dress. Pendulous. Dangerous.
Rule number 3: Do not attempt side boob if the rest of you exudes so much as a whiff of skankiness. Stringy hair, ratty jeans, bare feet and bad posture do not mix well with side boob. Miley and Lilo are breaking rules 2 and 3 in one fell swoop. Go figure. And the Guess model in the middle is just grody.
Rule number 4: Do not attempt side boob if there is any danger at all of pancaking. If more than a finger’s width of your breast is in contact with your rib cage, you should be seeking a supportive bra, not side boob. I couldn’t bring myself to make a photo-shop collage of this phenomenon, so just trust me on this one.
These ladies are showing us side boob done the right way, but even they are walking a tightrope.
Gwyneth might be in danger of breaking Rule 2 if she doesn’t keep her posture in check. Giselle is almost too ampled-bosomed for this look, but she is adhering to Rules 2, 3 and 4 with such alacrity and the dress fits her so beautifully, that I must give her a pass. Zoey is perfection and illustrative of one of the greatest ironies in fashion: there is no boob in side boob.
Tell Off the SB: Adrian Brody
Q: I can’t believe you said Adrian Brody has a F’d up face! I think he’s beautiful.
–Tara from Maryland
A: Tara from Maryland! Good to hear from you! Are you eating crabs? ‘Tis the season, no?
Listen, T from the M. Would it make you feel better if I said Adrian Brody looked like un oiseau Français? Because “fucked up face” is just another way of saying “French bird.” Although the latter may be redundant, now that I think about it. Don’t all French people look like birds?
The point is, I too think he’s beautiful, as you say – otherwise I would not have lovingly embedded the video of him emoting casual elegance in Lacoste shirts for you all to enjoy.
He is handsome but not necessarily conventionally so. He is no chiseled all-American looking pretty boy. He’s got a big nose, long angles, and droopy eyes. He looks like he could be a mime or a pickpocket. But taken all together, that fucked up face is a thing to behold and I’d let him pick my pockets anytime.
Glad we agree, dear.
Legs Astride, Arms Akimbo Part 2
Ever since I read that study about the power of taking up more space, I can’t help noticing that American women are suffering from an epidemic of arms crossed over chest.
It’s as if we’re all stuck in middle school, enduring the constraints of our itchy new training bras and trying to evade the pervy gaze of be-pimpled Chucky Sneed.
It not only looks bad, it is bad. Standing like this rounds the shoulders, contracts the pecs and abs and stretches out the back muscles – the ones that help us stand up straight. It’s the bad posture equivalent of hunching over a computer all day.
Worse yet, standing with crossed arms makes you seem uptight, defensive, meek. Who wants that?
Listen up ladies – arms down, chin up, chest out. And all those Chucky Sneeds can take a good long look and then go straight to hell.
Becks and Posh Caught on Kiss Cam
Look! It’s my old pals at a Lakers game.
Well, not really. More like Beyoncé tumblrs. My iPhone burst into a mad hot ball of flames last Friday with all the brouhaha on twitter about Beyonce’s new tumblr.
She seemingly birthed it as easily breezily as she birthed that wee Blue Ivy – and it’s voyeuristic eye-candy to the max. The stream is basically lots of beach pics, yacht pics and Beyoncé looking fabulous pics. You know, a day in the life.
What I want to know is – who follows her around snapping pictures all day long? Could it possibly be Jay Z? Nah. Still, lucky Bey.
Photo credit: Beyoncé’s tumblr
SB Tunes: Gwen Stefani
I’m feeling the Cali vibe, so for this week’s SB tunes, a Cali girl. I love myself a little Gwen, I really do.
Stefani has always had a super distinctive personal style, drawing from Mexican cholas in the early days with her baggie pants and wife-beater tees and trucking on thru exotic bindi girl, glammy 40′s vixen, and Japanese Harajuku girl.
Stefani is the QUEEN of the red lip and the platinum blond locks. She admits to being a total make-up fiend, and sister piles it on, but still manages to look slouchy cool and edgy tough.
And here’s an interesting tidbit: she comes from a family of seamstresses and has been making her own clothes since she was a kid, so her clothing label, L.A.M.B., which launched in 2003 has roots and reason.
Watch this and see if it doesn’t make you want to grab your besties and go cruising with the windows down in your customized muscle car. Damn.
Incidentally, love the message. Spectacular bitches ain’t no hollaback girls. Ever.
I’m heading to L.A. and although I’ll miss you, I plan to be very busy shopping, eating fish tacos, bumping into celebrities at the coffee shop and going to the wax museum.
I’m pretty sure Posh and Becks were planning on having me over for lunch and a swim, however, we haven’t finalized plans.
But don’t worry, babies. I’ll be back before you know it. Maybe with a new bag full of hot tips.
Photo credit: Océane Buret, whose lovely photos are nostalgic and wanderlust provoking.
SB Tunes: Regine Chassagne and Cyndi Lauper
A couple years ago, when this site was but a glimmer in my eye, I was getting my mind blown at an Arcade Fire concert when the meaning of “Spectacular Bitch” crystalized for me.
Watching Haitian beauty, Regine Chassagne, tear around the stage from the keyboards, to the drum kits, to the accordion, to the mic like a wild fairy – it hit me like a ton of bricks. SHE was spectacular.
With her sparkly gold dresses and her fingerless gloves, her messy curls and her twirly moves, her high wavery voice and her bone deep musicality, she simply rocks. She is a foil and a muse – a worthy adversary, co-conspirator, co-creator and sidekick to her hubby, lead singer, Win Butler.
And because I love you, a twofer where Regine performs Sprawl II with Cyndi Lauper at Jazz Fest last year. Lauper is looking great, playing a lap dulcimer and still flying the flag for girls who wanna have fun.
What I would have given . . .
Oh, yes. Mos def. Having a penoose does not disqualify.
But what’s the common denominator, aside from the fact that they are all amazing musicians?
Sartorial flair? Check. Fearlessness? Check. Excellent hair? Check. Attitude? Check. Sensuality? Ferocity? Ability to BRING IT? Check! Check! Check!
Clockwise from top left, for your viewing pleasure: Kurt Cobain, Jim Morrison, Mick Jagger, David Bowie, Liberace, Prince, Freddie, Mercury.
James Franco to Play Robert Mapplethorpe
Heads up, people! The adorable, chameleonic James Franco will be playing Robert Mapplethorpe in an upcoming biopic, directed by documentary filmmaker, Ondi Timoner.
I must admit I knew little of Mapplethorpe (outside of the brouhaha), until I read Just Kids, a memoir by Patti Smith, who is, incidentally, a Spectacular Bitch of the Tomboy variety. Mapplethorpe was one tortured dude, with a heart of gold and an insatiable need to create; it was as if his very life depended on it. Should be gooooooood.
And check out this short film by the NYTimes of James Franco kissing himself if you wish to be amused. And maybe a little turned on.
Top Ten Demonstrations of Love in History
Take a swill of this lovely article: The Top Ten Demonstrations of Love in History. A little Taj Mahal here, an abdication of the British throne there, a bit of gardening that resulted in the Hanging Gardens of Babylon.
There is nothing like a grand gesture, however, sometimes, a bit of old-fashion peevish stubbornness says ‘I love you’ the best.
Lucille Ball apparently refused to do the I Love Lucy pilot unless they cast her real life husband, Desi Arnaz. The network wasn’t sure America was ready for his thick Latin accent, but it turns out Lucy knew best and the beloved show ran for nearly a decade.
Lesson: always listen to the funny lady.
I LOVE LUCY.
Photo credit: Bettman/Corbis
Because I Love You Guys
Paul Newman and Robert Redford playing a little shirtless pingpong – from the fabulous Tumblr Awesome People Hanging Out Together.
Sigh. Wishing for another place, another time, on the other side of that net!
You are very welcome.
Susan Sarandon for Neiman Marcus
Bravo to Neiman Marcus for the GORGEOUS spread featuring Susan Sarandon and her daughter, Eva Amurri, in their March Art of Fashion issue.
Each flick of the page brought on a fresh DAMN! Flick. DAMN, GIRL!
Sarandon looks breathtaking, but refreshingly kinda sorta her age.
She’s as SEXY as the day is long in jaw dropping looks from Lanvin, Prada, Chanel, Tom Ford, Oscar de la Renta, and J. Mendel. Eva looks gorgeous as well, but she’s got nothing on her mother.
DAMN, she looks good!
Hear that sound?
It’s the sound of Nicole Kidman’s make-up artist’s head rolling down the stairs.
SB’s Faves: The 2012 OSCARS!
Photo credit: Getty Images [Clockwise from upper left: Milla Jovovich, Gwyneth Paltrow, Octavia Spencer, Cameron Diaz]
I found the Oscars to be quite satisfying last night. Billy Crystal was back in the driver’s seat, The Artist won best picture, and for the most part, the ladies looked gorgeous.
Also, there was enough illusion netting on the red carpet to outfit a Lepidopterist convention. Everyone from Bérénice Bejo, Giuliana Rancic, and the young Amara Miller were partaking, and I rather enjoy the feeling of ire it stirs up in me. I love to hate mesh. I even hate it on figure skaters, although I can accept that it’s a necessity. I don’t understand why someone not wearing ice skates would attempt a tromp d’oeille that could only conceivably be successful if viewed from really far away or with cross-eyes. If I was standing next to one of these starlets, I would feel compelled to fondle the mesh, and nobody wants that. But I do enjoy bitching about it from the vantage point of my couch.
Anyhoo, I thought the ladies above all looked stellar in their variations on white and I couldn’t pick just one. Milla Jovovich appeared early in the night in a sparkly, one-shouldered Elie Saab. The bob, the red lip and the glammy dress all conspired to make her look like like an oldy-times starlet.
Octavia Spencer looked so beautiful in her twinkly Tadashi Shoji – apparently her go-to designer, and for good reason. The dress hugged her curves in all the right places – hoooowie! The beading coming together in the middle and the slight drape was so flattering on her. Congratulations Octavia, for winning an Oscar and looking incredible while doing so!
The fit of both Gwyneth and Cameron’s gowns was exquisite. Cameron’s was a nude, strapless Gucci with a swishy and subtly sparkly bottom that looked like a dream in motion. Is it me or is Cam looking freakishly buff right now?
Gwyneth set off a frenzy in a simple, one-shouldered Tom Ford with an outrageously chic floor-length cape. I’ll come right out now and profess my love and support for the cape because the cape has had its detractors. It was sleek, linear, modern and elegant – as cool as an icicle. And she took it off inside, which was the right call – unlike her lame little skit with Robert Downey Jr. Nothing like tumble weeding at the Oscars, but at least she looked killer.
Photo credit: Getty Images [L to R: Jessica Chastain, Rose Byrne, Angelina Jolie]
As for the black swans of the night, these three shut it down. Jessica Chastain’s Alexander McQueen grew on me like a fungus. At first I thought it was too heavy and clunky, but the more I looked at it on her, the more I fell for it. It’s a rather muscular gown and she’s so lithe and pretty -together, it worked like magic.
Rose Byrne, on the other hand, I loved from the get go. This Vivienne Westwood is a cool, punk, oil slick revealing ever so slight a hint of side boob. I loved it with the heavy bang – rock on, righteous Rose!
And even though I loved Angelina’s Atelier Versace and thought the velvety folds and the volume helped dissimulate how thin she is right now, I’m really including her because of that hilarious leg. That leg wanted out. That leg wanted its own swag bag. That leg wanted its own Wolfgang Puck chicken pot pie with shaved black truffles. That leg wanted an Oscar.
Photo credit: Getty Images [L to R: Michelle Williams, Emma Stone]
And finally, at the risk of making this website look like a White Stripes album, I cannot forget the ladies in red. They were my favorites. Michelle Williams looked fresh and young in a coral Louis Vuitton, with a peplum waist and delicate mille feuille layers. I won’t even mention that I hated the creepy beige back of it, because I’m pretending that the back doesn’t exist. To me she’s like Lateral Alice Moore from Infinite Jest and she only moves sideways. Like a crab.
Let’s take a moment and just adore Emma Stone’s Giambattista Valli Couture together. Some might say red on a redhead is a risky proposition, but I think she looked divine. Some might also say big volume and big color don’t play well together, but this was a modern, fantastical, fashion-forward dress and Stone is tall enough and frankly, spectacular enough, to pull it off. The gown would have eaten a more diminutive starlet alive, but she just looked happy and comfortable, which, let’s be honest, is what real beauty is all about.
The Oscars: Best Dresses of All Times?
Anyone else feeling oh, so frothy for the Oscars this Sunday night? If you have a moment, take a look at this slide show of the best Oscar dresses of all time from The Huffington Post.
I agree with their choices for the most part, except the first dress in the slide show is that horrifying pink dress that Gwyneth wore for her Shakespeare in Love shenanigans. I hate that dress. I HATE that dress. My prom dress was that color. Bluh! Banish the memories! Go by it fast and six slides in you’ll see the shimmery Calvin Klein she wore last year, which I totally love and adore.
And I worship the canary yellow Vera Wang that Michelle Williams wore for Brokeback Mountain times. And the chartreuse green John Galliano that Nicole Kidman busted out in 1997 was a game changer – I hate that phrase, but it’s true. And Penelope in those feathers is to DIE for.
Now I’m getting myself all wound up in a tizzy, but just one more!
I simply could not resist this pic of Farrah in her sexy sparkler from 1978. Now that’s a dress.
Nicki Minaj Singing the Blues
Kudos to Vogue for putting Adele on the cover and featuring the hi-larious Kristin Wiig in their March issue. I need two hours, a glass of wine, a throw blanket and some silence. Please.
And call me crazy, but I think Nicki Minaj looks DYNAMITE in this shot for the issue. Blue suits her. I can’t stop looking at it. Things sure have changed since her days of “dressing in Tommy Hilfiger baggy shirts and Boss jeans.” So very super bass.
SB’s Faves: The 2012 Grammys
Rihanna by Getty Images; Adele by Photo A/P Chris Pizzello
The Grammys are so always so wacky, cringe-y and fun to watch and this year was no exception, aside from WAY TOO MUCH CHRIS BROWN. I know you can’t stop him from actually winning Grammy awards, but come ON Grammy committee! Must you celebrate this little shit and invite him to perform THREE times? Tssk. Have you forgotten THE INCIDENT? Makes my blood boil, and I can’t even imagine what Ri Ri thinks.
Sometimes a killer dress is the best revenge, and Rihanna felled us all in barely there wisp of a frock she co-designed with Giorgio Armani. She looked absolutely KILLLER – beachy, breezy and as SEXY as a long, slow Barbadian sunset. Un. Believe. Able.
And she would be my fave of the night were it not for the lovely Adele, who was the yin to Ri Ri’s yang. Porcelain-skinned, with a perfect red lip and movie star hair, Adele looked ladylike and drop dead gorgeous in what also happened to be Armani. This photo does not do her justice, but the way that dress sparkled as she moved was so very pretty.
The week end brought sad news about Whitney Houston death at 48. Ebullient and fiercely talented, she could swing from being the sweet girl next door to the righteous diva within the span of mere notes. Oh, and that megawatt smile.
Too soon. Too sad. Rest in peace, pretty lady.
Lady Gaga to Launch Her Own Social Network
It’s a place for all her Little Monsters to create and share Gaga-related content and interact with other Little Monsters.
Really? OK. Go Gaga, I guess.
SB’s Favorite SAG Awards Dress
I thought Michelle Williams looked exquisite in her red Valentino at the 2012 Sag Awards. When I saw her, a peculiar sound came out of my mouth: something between an oooooh (as in sexy! red! slit! FABULOUS!) and an awwwww (as in lace! capped sleeves! pixie cut! DARLING!)
I don’t enjoy sounding like a wounded animal, but I do enjoy seeing Michelle Williams looking like her most gorgeous self. Obviously, she’s getting a lot of attention for her role as Marilyn Monroe, so I’m relieved she’s not trying to carry the Marilyn look onto the red carpet as some actresses would have done.
The words “red” and “lace” in the same sentence are usually cause for alarm, but in this dress they manage to mitigate each other. The vavavoom color keeps the lace capped sleeves from seeming too twee and vice versa.
The real magic of this dress, however, is that it fits her so beautifully. It makes her look tall, elegant and glamorous, but also exactly like herself. Perfection.
SB’s Favorite Golden Globes Dress
I must admit I shrieked and aspirated a bit of my vino blanco when I saw this custom-made Lanvin gown on Emma Stone when she hit the red carpet.
Cool and glamorous, everything about it rocks. The deep plumb color with the gossamer fuscia panels is striking on her, as is the vaguely Grecian silhouette. The deep plunging neckline is tempered by the wee capped cap sleeves and the whole beautiful thing is pulled together with an unexpected, whimsical, and completely kick-ass bejeweled eagle belt.
Dear eagle belt: How do I love thee? Let me count the ways . . .
Well done, Emma. You are my favorite!
Coachella Boots and Bitches
Although I have long lost my taste for rubbing sticky shoulders with masses of unwashed music festival goers, I must admit that this year’s Coachella line up made me feel a bit frothy.
Any place on earth where I might see Radiohead and Snoop Dogg, not to mention Spectacular Bitches Annie Clark of St. Vincent, Florence Welch of Florence and the Machine, Santigold, Noelle Scaggs of Fitz and the Tantrums and Azalea Banks, sounds like a place I’d like to be (if not for those stinky young people).
This year I’ll have to content myself with picking out the perfect pair of boots for my fantasy swoop in. I say boots because boots are the way to go – Coachella is no place for exposed toes. I’d pair these n.d.c. beauties with sun dresses and a big floppy hat.
Oh, look, now I’m getting all frothy again.
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