Thursday, March 27, 2008

Worst. Copy. Ever

This a follow up to my previous rant about D&B and their goofy Haden Panettiere pairing.

While I still have some love for D&B, I have to say that the marketing copy in their latest catalog is some of the lamest stuff I've ever read. And that is saying a lot. Here it is in all of its mediocrity. Sadly, there is a lot of it.

A warm breeze beckons.

Following the coastline through all the promises of summer from Santa Barbara to Saint Tropez, you take in the blue sky spilling down green hills into the glimmering sea. A kerchief flutters among white clouds. You wind your way down streets of ochre and sunlight amidst art deco architecture and reach the waves. Glimpse a sailboat through jewelled splashes of surf from beneath the cool shade of umbrellas. In the sun-dappled air, whispers of a timeless glamour, past and present, meet. It is in the romance of the seaside that you feel as radiant as your favorite celebrity, at the end of the bright day, passing into the fairytale night popping with stars and flashbulbs.

And just like you, HAYDEN PANETTIERE, star of the hit TV show "Heroes," redefines the image of classic grace in a fresh, distinctive style. Like Dooney & Bourke, she evokes the sophistication of the past while revealing an exuberant new spirit that could only belong to today. Among all the enchantments of the coast, every woman, with her favorite pair of sunglasses and a handbag on her arm, is a vision.

Okay, did you read it all because you really have to. It's hilarious.

Let's break it down:
  1. Umm, "a kerchief flutters." Who says that
  2. The Thesaurus got it's work-out today didn't it?
  3. Run-on sentence. Look it up.
  4. "Sun-dappled air?" Is that even possible? Gag.
  5. I don't often aspire to feel as radiant as a celebrity. Generally they look kind of grimy. Maybe that's just my take. And where did all these stupid flashbulbs come from?
  6. Yes, those are their all caps.
  7. If I don't know who HP is, why would I want to plunk down $500 for a bag "designed" by her?
  8. A very young girl who plays a cheerleader on a TV show evokes the sophistication of the past. Uh huh. Gotcha.
  9. Every woman is a vision...with her favorite pair of sunglasses and a handbag. Subtle with the product integration there, guys.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Imitation = Flattery?

On Friday I was at Target doing a serious round of shopping for some Spring basics and I spent a good amount of time in the jewelry department. I checked out the new Subversive line a bit (I need to do a closer look) but mainly just browsed through the fun inexpensive stuff. As I was sifting through the multitude of new items, this necklace caught my eye.

This is not a high-quality piece by any stretch (it's only $12), but it was cute and would look okay from far away. But the reason it caught my eye is because I totally knew what they swiped this design from.

Look familiar? These are the Forever Pendants by Bernardaud and are $215 on Vivre.

These are porcelain and the hearts are accented with painted chain detailing. They have a toggle closure and feature a application of gold or platinum edging. The colors are just lovely, I especially like the lavender and the red versions. But isn't it surprising that such a small piece could be remade for the mass-market and even more surprising to stumble upon it.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Color by Numbers

Have you ever seen one of those blank canvas art installations (or a splatter artist) and thought to yourself, "I could do that." and "That thing is supposed to be worth a million dollars?!?"

Well, then this is not the bag for you. Or maybe it is.

The ultimate in customization, you can now color in your own pattern on a Fendi bag. With this Fendi Paint-Your-Own-Baguette kit you get 10 Pantone markers to draw in your genius design.

The canvas bag and markers come in this complete kit box decorated with artistic cartoon-like illustrations which match the interior of the bag.

Do you think this is a genius idea or completely ridiculous, especially given it is $1300?

And don't mess up because once you "make your mark" it's yours forever.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Designer Focus - Shompole Collection

I'm not sure if you read the article about her, but Elizabeth Gilbert was featured in the March issue of Domino magazine. The article wrote a lot about her lifestyle and what she does, but it also featured some of the local hand-crafted products and jewelry she is creating a store for to help support the local Maasai and to help preserve their artistry and way of life.

Her site says it better:

At Shompole, luxury is defined by experience, environmental responsibility and individuality. With this in mind, we work with African artisans, women’s groups, independent traders and craftspeople to produce a collection of high quality, unique house wares, jewelry and tribal arts. Our one-of-a kind beadwork, fig wood furniture, African art and jewelry are all environmentally sound, handmade products created by freelance artists who price and determine the fair value of their own products.

The shop and collection were created as an extension of the Shompole Lodge, once again in tandem with the African people with whom we work. The shop at Shompole is our “flagship” store. It is run like an atelier,with art, design and fashion sitting side by side.

What caught my eye were the amazing jewelry pieces that were featured in the issue. I contacted Liz to learn more. Each piece is unique due to the hand-crafted nature and the variations in the natural product they use. I love the heft of this ring.

Emerald Galaxy Ring - $3,500

And look at the colors in this Lamu Shell Ring ($1,500). Shells always have such a glow about them. I have several shell serving pieces, but very little jewelry. This is so simple and elegant.

But my favorite is the Bone Collection -

Our bespoke 18k gold jewelry is made in Africa, by Africans, using African gold, bone, gem stones and other indigenous materials. Each piece is individually crafted by hand and can be made to order.

This horn, gold and garnet ring is modern looking but you can see the origins of the design.

Horn, Gold and Garnet Ring - $1150

Don't these beads just glow? Mafupa Bracelet - $350

This ring is my absolute favorite. I love the treatment of the round stones and the circles. The Little Ox Ring - $275.

As each of these are hand made, they aren't available on the site in a huge variety of sizes, but you can contact them to order your size, I'm sure. What's great is that to order you email and you will be working with Liz directly. I'm sure you could ask her about the pieces and learn more about their work and the artists they work with.

This is one of the best things about the Internet. Connections with amazing people around the world. Learning about who they are and what they do and being able to bring a piece of that home to you.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Reflections of You

I have a fondness for all things vintage and I also love old fashioned mannerisms. One holdover, like gloves and handkerchiefs, that I want to help bring back is the pretty compact. Of course, it can be tacky to touch up your full face of make-up in public, but a quick pat of powder, a swipe of lipstick and a discreet check to make sure you don't have food or lipstick on your teeth is perfectly acceptable.

And pulling out one of these compacts would be a lady-like and fun way to dress up the process?

I'm kind of torn. Do I go for something totally over the top girly Heart of Hearts compact?

Or more classic and elegant with the Tuberose Gardenia compact which comes in a powdered compact or simply a mirrored compact.

This Twinkling Pink compact is a feminine but still subtle version too.

All of these are by Estee Lauder and are refillable. I actually used to have an Estee Lauder compact that was based on signs of the zodiac. I'm a Leo so mine was gold in the shape of a lion's head with small rhinestones. I just can't find it, so I think I need to get a new one. Then I need to make room in my purse not only for all the modern technology I have in there (two phones, a digital camera and my iPod) but also for a little retro glamor.