SB Tunes: Janelle Monae
I literally cannot believe it has taken me this long to feature Janelle Monae on these pages, as she is the quintessential Spectacular Bitch. She has a consistent, unique and powerful sartorial point of view. A lot of women look like her, but she doesn’t look like anybody. She is sexy, but on her own terms. She’s insanely talented but she’s not a diva. And she can sing. And dance. Like a mother fucker.
Monae has nailed the androgynous black and white look, but over the years manages to tweak it and shift it around so that she always looks like a million bucks. Whether she’s in a tuxedo or Spanish toreador bolero, her clothes are tailored to hug her lovely shape and she just might be the reigning queen of the crisp white shirt. She has so honed her aesthetic (chic, dapper, tomboy) and her palate (black, white and red) that she never misses. Ever ever ever. And I read somewhere that she always does her own hair and make-up.
It takes a lot of restraint and, frankly, cojones to stick with a uniform when you could have ANYTHING.
She just released this fabulous single off her upcoming album, Electric Lady, and it features yet ANOTHER SB – they mysterious, mercurial and all around tremendously bad ass Erykah Badu. Let me tell you, there is nothing not to love and adore about this song and video. It’s not often in life you get a two for one like this.
Enjoy Q.U.E.E.N. Because you know, the booty don’t lie.
Previously on SB: SB Tunes – Betty Davis
SB Flicks: The Great Gatsby
For a moment the last sunshine fell with romantic affection upon her glowing face; her voice compelled me forward breathlessly as I listened – then the glow faded, each light deserting her with lingering regret, like children leaving a pleasant street at dusk.
F. Scott Fitzgerald
The movie comes out next month, leaving you plenty of time to read (or in the case of you sexy, bookish SB readers, RE-read) the novel. Cracking its spine is like opening an exquisite package: beautiful, bright and shiny wrapping frantically tossed aside to reveal mystery, regrets, damnation. So good!!!
And the movie promises to provide some MAJOR eye and ear candy.
Leo, Carrie, Toby.
Darlings, I cannot wait!!!
SB Tunes: Tegan and Sara
For this week’s SB Tunes, I offer you Tegan and Sara – Canadians, indie-darlings, twins, tomboys, pixies and all around cool chicks. I heard them interviewed on the radio recently and they are super down to earth and sweet, but also really thoughtful, eloquent and real about their process for making music. Always intrigued by the how of it all, I sat in my car until they were through describing their long-distance over the internet music collaboration. Fascinating.
Their latest album, Heartthrob, is intentionally more pop sounding than their old stuff. I’m sure there is many a dour and humorless hipster out there shaking his or her fauxhawk at the demise of Tegan and Sara, but I love it. I love the fact that they are taking a chance and expanding their sound and trying to capture a new audience while being deep, smart and musical enough to hold on to their old fans – yours truly firmly included.
After all, a little artfully used auto-tune never hurt anyone and I would argue it can be as effective a dancing lube as tequila. Screw all those sardonic hipsters. The pixies win. See for yourselves, SB friends.
Previously on SB Tunes: Gwen Stefani
SB Hauntings: Flashmob Headband
Anyone who has ever shopped a day in her life understands what it is to be HAUNTED by some exquisite little thing that grows in perfection and desirability with each wretched moment after it becomes an impossibility.
We all know what it’s like to pass something up in a moment of practicality or frugality or sanity, only to have one’s thoughts stray back to said little something again and again until it becomes unbearably clear that life without said little something is simply not worth living.
There are times, of course, when one passes on something and never thinks of it again. But on rare occasions, that boot, that bag, that cuff is so kick ass, that it MUST be had. NO MATTER WHAT.
And woe to the girl who goes back for it, breathless with anticipation, clutching credit card in her sweaty little hand and finds that said little something is SOLD motherfucking OUT.
OF COURSE I didn’t by a pom pom headband for three hundred dollars. How preposterous. But it is no lie to say that I have thought about this beauty every day, at least once a day from the time I first saw it and now I would gladly pay three hundred dollars for a pom pom headband. I know. How preposterous.
And it is no lie to say that I would actually wear it – I really would. I would wear it to parties with a black tube top and black tuxedo pants and a sky high heel. I would wear it to brunch with a sundress. I would wear it out dancing with a red mini and gold boots. I would wear it with a robe to write SB posts.
Pom poms are the new feathers. You heard it here first.
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.
Holiday Gift Guide: For the Bookworm and the Glam Girl
For the bookworm: Does your SB carry a book around in her purse? Does she light up when someone so much as approaches her bookshelf, at the ready to pluck and discuss? Does she get ornery when someone doesn’t return one of her books? Does she get all frothy and greedy in a bookstore? Then, by all means, buy her some books! And this year, how about this adorable coffee table book called My Ideal Bookshelf? It has illustrations of the fave books of everyone from Patti Smith to Tony Hawk to Judd Appatow. For a dedicated copy, go here.
OR if you’re truly awesomely sneaky, you can commission a custom portrait of her favorite and most beloved books. You can also get a gift card, so you’ll have one year to send book picks and pictures of the spines to be illustrated. I just love this.
For the glam girl. Oh she’s easy. Not easy that way, you pervs. Anything sparkly or be-feathered is sure to please. J. Crew has some really cool bling to choose from and let’s just say I would be more than a little tickled to open a box and see the Band.o flurry pouf staring back at me. I can think of a million places I would wear that little piece, starting with the post office, the liquor store, the market, the dentist and oh, maybe a party or two . . .
For the bookworm glam girl: This hybrid is more common than you’d imagine and lucky for you, there’s the perfect book for her this year. Grace Coddington, the longtime creative director of Vogue magazine and a former model, has put out a memoir. Yep. Cannot wait to read it. Can. Not. Wait.
SB Loves: Decembeaver
A cheeky wink and middle finger to Movember.
SB Tunes: Solange Knowles
I know, I know. It’s downright crazy to feature sister Solange before I feature sister Beyoncé on SB Tunes. Lordie knows I love myself a little Beyoncé, and I will get to her, my friends, trust me.
There is just something really cool, cute and compelling to me about Solange. She seems graciously impervious to Beyoncé’s superstardom and content to go forth and do her own thing, in her own time, on her own juice, with her own style. And she always has great hair.
I read this article in the NY Times a few months ago and was kind of surprised to learn of her DJing, her indie vibe, her ample musical influences and her nonchalant eye towards celebrity. In short, I just kind of dig her.
And I dig this video. So stylish. And a pretty good jam too.
I love Halloween and this year we have a full moon hanging heavy in the sky to light our paths and cast inky shadows. Ahwwwooooooooo.
Hope you’re all getting to play dress up tonight, or at the very least, indulging in something tooth-achingly sweet that comes out of many crinkly wrappers.
Here’s a sweet confection from Bow Wow Wow to get you in the mood. Watching this video again, I can’t help but marvel at how current they all look considering the song is 20 years old. Annabella Lwin is rocking that mohawk like nobody’s biz.
I WANT CANDY.
Photo credit: Ellen von Unwerth
Spectacular Bitch: Patti McGee
Did y’all know about Patti? The first female skateboarder to go pro and the first female to be inducted into the Skateboarding Hall of Fame, she was born in 1945! Imagine that. Girls on longboards are a dime a dozen these days (not that it detracts from their coolness), but back in 1965 when she won the first Women’s National Skateboard Championship and appeared on the cover of Life Magazine, she was one of a handful.
I’m crushing on her glammy blond bouffant and boyish clothes. You can never go wrong with khakis and a little cardi – just femme it up with some bling or sex kitten hair. Love her.
Ask the SB: Hair Clips
Q: I cringe to ask, but is it ever acceptable to leave the house in a hair clip? I think I know your answer but let me tell you why it is so tempting.
I have long hair that I put into a cheesy hair clip the second I walk in the door. It’s my version of putting on my pajamas. I like ponytails but hair clips are more comfortable and don’t pull my hair out when removing them. From the front, my hair looks swept back and soft and then I turn to the side and see the clip protruding from my head. I shudder at the thought of bumping into anyone I know but it’s so tempting when I’m running a quick errand or picking up a child.
Please know, SB, that I am otherwise a relatively stylish person but I have a small problem here. Please help me. I’m wearing a hair clip right now! The shame.
A: Sister, I don’t even know what you are talking about! What in the world is a hair clip? Are you talking about a banana clip from the 80′s? Or one of those white plastic clips they use at the salon? Good heavens, you must send me a picture because I am imagining the absolute worst.
This question falls into the category of questions to which you already know the answer, but I will answer it anyway.
We all need to let our hair down (or in your case, put it up) every once in a while. Everyone’s got a secret lazy piece – whether it be a pair of beat up sweatpants, dorky old eyeglasses, an ex’s rugby shirt, a pair of Dearfoams slippers or, in your case, these mysterious hair clips.
Secret lazy pieces are not discussed in your glossy fashion magazines even though they are a fact of life. Anyone who won’t cop to at least one secret lazy piece is a damn liar.
Having said that, secret lazy pieces should, by definition, be kept secret. Meaning, inside the confines of your home. Meaning, no quick errands for your hair clip. Have you heard of Murphy’s Law? If anything can go wrong, it will. Have you heard of Smurphy’s Law? If you go out looking like shit, you will run into everyone and their brother.
p.s. One more thing to consider apropos of secret lazy pieces: If there is at least one person in your household who would relish throwing your secret lazy piece onto a roaring bonfire, consider finding an alternative. At least some of the time.
Hope that helps you clip the habit, Clipt! Best of luck to you!
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: Phantogram
One half of the psychedelic synth-pop duo out of Upstate New York, Sarah Barthel is mesmerizing on vocals and keyboards. Not that her compadre, Josh Carter, isn’t – but we’re here to talk about Spectacular Bitches.
Barthel’s fabulously shiny hair landed her in SB’s collage of bluntly bobbed brunettes a while back and honestly, if I had this hair I’d have to join a band just to swing it around. It’s perfection.
To say nothing of the music. This is sexy sultry shake the confetti out of your stilettos, flop on a couch with one more glass of champagne and a cute boy after-party party music.
You dig? I dig.
Photo credit: Aaron Richter
First Woman to Officiate in NFL Game
Yesterday one more gender barrier was shattered when Shannon Eastin became the first woman to officiate an NFL regular season game.
She tucked her ponytail into her hat and line judged the Rams-Lions game in Detroit. Of course it was fine and naturally devoid of much brouhaha, but here at SB, we’d like to give her a little brouhaha. Because she deserves it.
Brou! Ha! Ha! Claps! Confetti!
Great job, Shannon! And go ahead and let that ponytail fly if you feel like it, sister.
More Confetti! Wooh Hoo!!!
Photo credit: Rod Mar/AP
SB Tunes: Bananarama
It’s hot, it’s August, so I’m going to keep it simple and serve up a little Cruel Summer by the cute 80′s New Wave girl group, Bananarama.
While I do not endorse baggy overalls, I do endorse running around town with your betties, a pigmented red lip and ratty crimped hair, stealing a Mack truck, throwing banana peels at the sheriff and then inviting him and his dancin’ deputy to your rooftop dance party. All of that sounds awesome.
Put a cold beer on your forehead and enjoy Cruel Summer:
Olympic Girl Crush: Megan Rapinoe
Striker Abby Wambach and keeper Hope Solo tend to get all the attention on the US Women’s Soccer team, and there is no doubt they are righteous babes. But after Rapinoe’s flawless, elegant and completely bad-ass performance in Saturday’s USA v. Columbia game, my heart belongs to her.
With her shock of blond hair and high cheekbones, she looks like Tilda Swinton’s sporty cousin. There is something tomboyish yet high fashion about her and I find myself daydreaming about coming at Rapinoe with a six pack of beer, a pair of chandelier earrings and some eye liner.
Rapinoe. Baby. Call me.
Photo credit: Via Out Magazine and AP Photo
SB Tunes: Annie Lenox
Androgynous, theatrical and utterly transfixing – I L.O.V.E. Annie Lenox.
As one half the cooler-than-cool synth pop duo, Eurythmics, Lenox has always brought her own personal style to her music and performances. She has pretty much consistently rocked the pixie since the early 80′s, in various shades of red, orange and platinum blond.
She messes with our perception by cloaking that womanly bod in men’s garb, by offsetting the short crop with glammy make-up, by opening that wide, beautiful and borderline obscene mouth and wrapping us up in a powerful contralto voice that lingers and haunts.
Scottish soul. Spectacular.
Photo credit: Jean Baptiste Mondino
SB Tunes: Joan Jett
It’s hot and I’m feeling a hot rocker chick for this edition of SB Tunes. I love Joan Jett. So much so that I dressed up as her once for a costume party. Let me tell you, it is highly satisfying to wear a shag wig and a studded belt.
Named by Rolling Stone as one of the 100 Greatest Guitarists, she is one of only two women on that list – the other being Joni Mitchell. Rolling Stone writes: In the earlier Runaways and the later Blackhearts, she played it straight ahead: No frills, all heart, no fucking around.
Bad ass, unapologetic and fuck-you sexy (yes, that’s a kind of sexy) – Jett rocks.
Put another dime in the jukebox, baby.
With the New York Times calling 2012 The Year of the Bang and everyone from Zoey Dechanel to Beyoncé showing us how cute they can be, it’s tempting to go for a lop.
You all know I love a good bang, but it doesn’t mean they’d look good on me. As the article points out, girls with curly hair, cowlicks and low hairlines need not apply. I tried bangs once and I ended up looking like Ringo Starr and Cousin It’s bratty ten year old love child.
But if you were ever so inclined, now seems a good time to give it a whirl. Here’s a handy glossary for all the different types of bang, so you can convey what you want to your stylist.
Bang it out. Why not? It’s just hair.
Mullet Skirts – Yay or Nay?
I am wildly undecided as to how I feel about mullet skirts – so much so, that I’ve been sitting on this post for weeks. Help me figure out how I feel.
I do like showing a little leg.
I do like asymmetrical hemlines (and necklines for that matter).
I do like having my cake and eating it too (SB Tenet!) and this way I don’t have to choose between a mini skirt and a maxi skirt – I get both.
Much like a regular mullet, however, I think I like them in theory more than in practice (come on, business in the front, party ’round back is a good idea).
Also, like a regular mullet, the more extreme the difference between front and back, the less I like them. A hockey haircut atop a fine hockey player makes me a little weak in the knees. But really short in front and flowing in the back is just plain ugly. (Unless you’re that guy who comes to 80′s new wave dance night with moves so awesome I spend half my time trying to figure out what your deal is, because how can someone who looks like he should be Rocking Me Like a Hurricane know all the words to China Girl?)
Well THAT didn’t help.
Dude! What’s with the Bangs?
It seems as if bluntly bobbed brunettes have a penchant for music making. Or is it the other way around? Curious, isn’t it?
Clockwise from upper left: Sarah Bartel of Phantogram, Katy Perry, The Dum Dum Girls, Jesse J, Karen O of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Alexis Krauss of Sleigh Bells and Kimbra.
You may see many of these ladies featured in my Friday SB Tunes in future weeks.
And for the record, SB likes a good bang.
SB Tunes: Cat Power
Cat Power has a voice like molasses – it oozes, slow, sticky and sweet. Not only does she sound like she’s lived in bars and danced on tables, she looks it. But in a good way.
She puts the bang in a bang – and works the cooly disheveled afternoon-in-bed hair like nobody’s business. She’s done her bit of hard living. She’s been careless with her beauty, and yet . . .
She hasn’t released anything in a few years, so I’d like to think she’s just holed up in an apartment in Paris with her man, smoking cigarettes and scratching new songs into a notebook.
Come on Cat. Give us a little more love, girl.
Enjoy Lived In Bars.
SB Loves Bob Marley
I do. His music feels as good as a cold beer, sun on bare shoulders and dancing in the sand. Slow and easy, now.
This documentary, by Kevin MacDonald, to be released later this month looks dynamite. And who doesn’t want to look at that face for an hour and a half.
Stir it up, little darling,
stir it up.
How to Tie a Scarf
Let it be known that I am a fan of scarves. Worn myriad ways, for myriad purposes or no purpose at all (aside from utter chic-ness) a scarf is, hands-down, the easiest way to amp up your look. French women do this in their sleep.
I love this guide by Sears and Roebuck Co. from 1960. Every single suggestion would look cool today. For the details (and some decidedly un-pc names), take a peek at the Sears pamphlet.
I like “the Gypsy”and “the Apache”, but shhhh – we can’t really call them that.
Short-Haired Spectacular Bitches
I’m sure you’ve all heard the news by now: Anne Hathaway cut her hair for her role as Fantine in Les Mis. Le gasp!
The only reason this is even noteworthy, is because we’ve all come to understand Anne as a long-haired girl. Nevertheless, I think it looks adorable and will only serve to accentuate her big beautiful eyes and mouth. But you can tell from this picture, she feels naked.
That’s because hair is a shield. It is a buffer between your face, your neck and the cruel prying eyes of the world. Short hair was considered outré and subversive back in the day, but honestly, it still is.
Short hair takes balls. I envy the chick who can bust out a pixie or a short little shag. No muss, no fuss, face, neck and ears exposed for all to see. It’s the hair equivalent of a bold fist pump to the air. This is me. Take it or leave it.
Me, I’ll take it. Oh, that I could pull it off. Check out this slideshow of SBs past and present who rock a short coiffe. So very fetching.
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.
SB Tunes: Blondie
It’s hard to talk SBs without talking music. Being spectacular comes from the inside – like music. It’s not so much about what you wear, but how you wear it. Not about who you know, but who you are. It’s not about perfection, it’s about point of view. It’s confidence, attitude and bringing something unique to the table.
I’ve decided that on Fridays I’m going to treat myself to a little SB tuneage highlighting SBs past, present and in the making. I have no preconceived notions of where this is going and who I’m going to feature, but I do know my net will be wide and my heart will be racing. Hope you love it.
First up. Debbie Harry. Of course. The queen of glitter pop. The princess of punk. The sheba of the shag. Sexy on her own terms, Blondie walked the line, no – created the line between glammy girl and tomboy. Enjoy a little Dreaming. And check her out in this commercial for Gloria Vanderbilt by Murjani.
Dreaming is free.
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.
Ask the SB: What to Wear to a Cuba before Castro Party
Q: I’m preparing to dance the night away at a “Cuba Before Castro” event and I’m stumped on what to wear. There will be a great Latin band and some salsa dancers to kick off the night. I have a slinky black dress that I love. Are there simple ways I could dress it up and go with the theme?
Also, how to dress my husband? A penciled-in mustache perhaps?
–Clueless about Cuba
A: Ay, mujer! Que lindo!!! Should we meet before for mojitos?
Your black dress is basically a blank slate and there are indeed some easy ways to bring a little Chiquita to your look.
To start with, go with a matte red lip and some very large gold hoops – don’t hold back on either.
If I were you, I’d figure out a way to tie a scarf around my head to look like the Havana beauties above. The look is slightly Rosie the Riveter, but with those fabulous bows in front. Otherwise, a chic little turban with some bejeweled fruit and flowers would be divine. Since your dress is black, feel free to go with a red or leopard-print pump or wedge.
As for your hubby, the obvious choice would be a Guayabera shirt, perhaps a fedora and hell, yes – a pencil mustache!
Un beso grande,
photo credit: Klaus Lang
Not a Fan: The Wet-Look
Vogue calls the wet-look one of Spring/Summer 2012′s biggest beauty trends, but some trends aren’t meant to trickle down from the catwalk.
Sure, if you’re a model, a wet bun might look chic. But the rest of us would just look un-done.
I’ll take this as permission to continue doing what I already do, which is to eschew the hairdryer in favor of time and air. Actually putting product into dry hair to make it look wet, however, is just plain whack.
And God forbid someone try the wet look with the pajama trend! Sister would be pelted with muffins and Sunday papers at every turn. Not a fan.
Ask the SB: When You’ve Been There with the Hair
Q: Oh, SB! What’s a mid-40′s girl to do with her hair? My go-to pony just isn’t cutting it anymore. Please advise.
A: First of all, LDK, I must caution you to be patient. Please, darling – don’t do anything rash.
From what I can tell, it is this very issue that sends scads of mid-40′s women to the salon to chop off their hair in a fit of pique. Then they’re stuck with short, grown-up hair for the rest of their days. That is not to say that short hair is old hair, but if you were a pixie or short-bob type of gal, you would know it by now.
Let’s talk about your pony. Ponyentomologists have spent decades studying the effects, both psychological and sociological, of ponytail placement. It is a science worth exploring.
Have you tried moving it around on your head? I will grant you that a standard, back-of-the-head, athletic pony can get boring. It says: I’m all about business - whether that business be cranking out 40 minutes on the treadmill or making coq au vin.
Try bringing your pony low to the nape, for a soignée look that whispers I am intelligent, calm and French.
Bring it high for an instant face lift and a kick of joie de vivre. I’m not talking the top of the head like a water spout, but the top of the back of the head. This placement says, I’m fun, young and game.
And bring it to the side when you’re ready for a night on the town. The vertical placement along the side indicates just how much you want to party. The girl in the image is saying I’m ready for a chatty dinner out with maybe one too many glasses of wine. To avoid looking like a hooker circa 1987, don’t go above the ear without a corresponding move toward the back.
Finally, if all else fails, pony up for some cute hats. But you knew that.
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