Re-Tales: confessions of a shopaholic

Isolation Inspiration – Designer Batsheva Hay

So much has changed in light of Covid-19 – lost my job, temporarily relocated from Brooklyn to The Berkshires and impulsively bought multiple Aviator Nation loungewear sets (tie-dye is clearly the official color of quarantine) instead of saving for a “rainy day.” As if anyone really cares what I’m wearing during early morning jaunts to the local grocer?

Like many of us, I’ve had a bit of time to reflect about what truly matters in life. Clearly family comes first – my kids, husband and parents. That said, as shallow as it sounds, there are a few other things deemed essential for my daily existence: online shopping (no shocker there!), virtual fitness, Marou Tien Giang 80% dark chocolate and of course, Netflix.

As a Mother of 10 year-old boy/girl twins, most of my so called “free” time is spent cooking and cleaning up after these pint-sized humans. When I have a few moments alone (typically on the toilet), I get sucked into the black hole of Instagram. After that, I scan the latest New York Times headlines (all Covid all the time) which completely depresses me (doomscrolling yet again) and drives me right back to my favorite pastime: stress shopping my favorite sites – typically Batsheva.com, Bandier, Farfetch, MatchesFashion, and Garmentory, fantasizing about what to wear despite this “new normal.”

What can I say… once a FashionJunkie, always a FashionJunkie. And yes, despite the global health crisis and my dwindling savings account, I still have a laundry list of at-home sartorial obsessions that somehow find their way into my crammed Brooklyn closet. Case in point: this puff-sleeved micro floral Batsheva prairie dress. I first discovered this masterpiece at NeedSupply.com for 50% off (insanity!) back in May and foolishly left it abandoned in my cart. When I visited the site again the next day, sadly the size 0 was no longer in stock. Fortunately I found a similar floral print at MatchesFashion though I’m still obsessing over the one that got away. Moral of the story: everything designed by Batsheva is best-in-class and sells out super fast regardless of price or Pandemic.

Hard to believe Hay had no formal design training and left her cushy full-time job as a lawyer shortly before launching her namesake line back in 2016. Her success pretty much happened overnight and couldn’t have happened to a better person. I had the pleasure of meeting Hay at her Manhattan showroom on several occasions (pre-Covid days) and can’t say enough good things about her and her undeniable talent. She’s the epitome of cool, treats her customers like royalty and is always beaming just like her signature, mood-enhancing masterpieces.

In my humble opinion, none of the Batsheva copycats (you know who you are!) even compare to the quality, meticulous fit and whimsy of Hay’s Victorian-inspired works of art. I’m obsessed with every flawless detail that goes into the designs of her timeless, unorthodox garments. Channel your inner Shira Haas (a.k.a. “Esty”) via ankle-length dresses with nipped-in waists, ruffle sleeves, high necks and vintage floral prints. Other must-haves include corset-style tops, holographic metallic dresses, modern Moire and 80’s-inspired zebra print blouses, dresses with over-sized bows and tiered crushed velvet, sparkly rhinestone buttons, classic leopard and my absolute fave, dramatic puffed sleeves in quirky prints like this green apple Lucy minidress that’s calling my name!

Dara's '80's inspired Zebra Print Batsheva Dress

Did I mention her adorable kids’ collection? What could be more fun or fashionable than matching Fashion Junkie and Fashion Junkie Junior silver lame dresses?

As a vertically challenged and petite powerhouse, I have a tough time buying anything off the rack (a huge shout out to Pablo at The Stanton Tailor). But with Batsheva dresses that’s simply not the case. Everything I’ve purchased from Hay in a size 0 (at least 20 items at last count) fits like a glove. The only exception being this gorgeous paisley print navy silk pant suit which I happily snagged in a size 2. Best to go up a size and get it altered by my trusty tailor rather than risk missing out entirely. Batsheva just posted this gem on her Instagram feed and the complete size run nearly sold out within a few hours. You snooze, you lose!

I’m equally as obsessed with Hay’s latest brand extensions including quilted duffle bags, floral face masks (I bought one for every day of the week so I can color coordinate them with my outfits), frilly aprons, stunning silk taffeta rosette hair clips and edgy housedresses made from recycled fabrics that are strikingly similar to what my late Bubby Eva wore circa 1970 but with a modern twist. Cool, comfortable, lightweight and perfect for lounging at home or in my case, strolling to the local grocery store. Much more functional and fashionable than all that sweat-inducing loungewear I splurged on. Ooops….. might be time to nix the sweatpants after all.

Dear reader: you’ll be hearing a lot more about my daily fashion musings in the weeks and months to come so be sure to visit often. As always, I love hearing from you so please post any questions and feedback in the comments below. Be safe and be well. xx

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Aritzia Obsession

The last thing I need in my wardrobe is another coat. Peer inside my crammed closets and you’ll find dozens of candy-colored leather moto jackets like this cropped Ruby metallic masterpiece (Veda is killing it!), sleek Mackage puffers and nubby Iro knits. Sadly, many of these have never been worn and still have tags attached. You can read more about my struggles with shopping addiction here, but I digress…

After stumbling upon this Joan Shearling jacket from Aritzia, I just might need to rethink my fall ’18 shopping strategy. Can you blame me?

Wilfred Free Joan Shearling Jacket  

Part of Aritzia’s private label, Wilfred Free, this stunning black shearling topper is everything I want and more – sleek, cozy, slightly oversized (perfect for layering my favorite fall sweaters) and extremely lightweight. But with a hefty price of $998, I might have to hold off ’til Aritzia’s highly-anticipated seasonal clientelling event (a.k.a. Friends & Family) starts. Who knows… maybe someone from Aritzia’s Vancouver-based HQ somehow gets this message? ‘Til then, guess it’s back to selling all my unworn stuff on TheRealReal.

 

 

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Fall Fashion Round-Up: What’s Trending

Valentino Rockstud Snake Ballerina Flat

Valentino Rockstud Snake Ballerina Flat

With a plethora of pre-fall items trickling into stores, now’s the time to nail down those investment pieces. Wait ‘til after Labor Day and the wardrobe staples you really want (Valentino Rockstud stilettos, anyone?) will be long gone. Without further adieu, my must-have list of early autumn statement pieces worth $plurging for.

Navy is The New Black

While burgundy, teal and dove grey are must-have hues for fall, the biggest shade du jour is without a doubt, midnight blue. So kick last year’s cobalt aside and make way for the new… navy. (more…)

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Mackage Arm Candy

Mackage Arm CandyI’ve been counting down the days ‘til Mackage’s highly anticipated handbag line hit the market. Alas, my friends – the moment has finally arrived! (more…)
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FashionJunkie’s Re-Haul Video Series: Part One

On a shoestring shopping budget? Refresh your fall wardrobe with standout designer clothing cast-offs from FashionJunkie’s very own closets.

3.1 Phillip Lim Pashli, Bordeau - $499

3.1 Phillip Lim Pashli, Bordeaux – $499

While I can certainly appreciate a good bargain, my shopping strategy has always been, “Want it, Buy It… Now!” Not exactly the best thing for my dwindling savings account (or my marriage), but I’ve always been fearful of missing out on the season’s best designer pieces, including this standout Valentino Rockstud stiletto and 3.1 Phillip Lim mixed-media colorblock Pashli. (more…)

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