Re-Tales: confessions of a shopaholic

Style Social

imageReady to shop like an A-list celebrity? For a mere $25, you can gain entrance to Style Social, New York’s most talked about shopping soirée of the season. Purchase VIP passes for early access to dreamy designer clothing, jewelry and accessories with savings up to 50% off retail, not to mention schmoozing, hors d’oeuvres and an open bar.

From fabulous Fall finds to classy resort collections, this red haute fashion extravaganza offers bargains galore from dozens of heavy hitters including Adrienne Landau, Nieves Lavi, Pink Tartan, Helen Wang, Rafé New York, Catherine Rapetti, Dyanne Belle and more. Plus, Fashion Junkie, your shopping chaperone, will be on hand to offer expert tips and tricks for building your wardrobe.

You can shop without the guilt, knowing your donation is going to a worthy cause. A percentage of the proceeds will go to charities including Rosie’s Broadway Kids and Gilda’s Club Worldwide.

Don’t delay…. RSVP today! Make sure to mention Fashion Junkie at check-in.

  • The Retail Details!

  • What: Style Social Shopping Event
  • When: Thursday, October 4, 2007 from 6pm-9pm
  • Where: Opera Gallery, 115 Spring Street (btw Greene & Mercer Streets)
  • Ticket Price: $25 at the door or $500-$1000 for VIP Pre-Benefit Sale & Cocktail Reception
  • Phone: 800-960-1736
  • Email:
  • Website:
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Filed: Shop Talk

Polish With Personality

imageWhen it comes to selling cosmetics, it’s all about marketing. Truth is, most lotions, potions and polishes produce the same end results, regardless of brand name or price. That said, I’ll admit, I’ve always been a sucker for pretty packaging and clever names, no matter what ingredients are listed on the label. That’s probably why I’m tickled pink over Carolyn New York – an eye-catching nail polish line inspired by life in the Big Apple.

Created by celebrity manicurist, Carolyn Cianciotto, a native New Yorker who wanted people to experience the greatest city in the world “first-hand,” Carolyn New York is much more than just another pretty polish. A diary in a bottle, Carolyn New York’s dazzling array of 46 hues vividly recounts a series of personal events that happened to Carolyn in each of the five boroughs. Even the packaging is emblazoned with a gleaming gold Manhattan skyline. For instance, Blackout in the Bronx (a matte black) perfectly captures the essence of the ’77 power outage that left the city in total darkness; Cheating in Queens (a red brick shade) is named for Carolyn’s cheating ex-boyfriend who left her for a stripper in Queens (ouch!); Staten Italy (a hot pink) symbolizes Italian-American girls’ weekend ferry rides into Manhattan for a night out on the town and NY Stock X (a creamy pink neutral) to cover the fingertips of conservative Wall Streeters. My personal fave is Mulberry Street, a dark brown shade reminiscent of coffee and canolis.

Kitschy concept aside, Carolyn New York’s long-lasting formula has seriously nailed the competition. The sleek glass vials have a goof-proof rubber grip and wide applicator brush that glides on smoothly, sans streaks and air bubbles. Plus, you needn’t worry about inhaling any funky and harmful fumes – Carolyn New York’s polishes are made from a DBP-free formula that’s hydrating and adheres to nails. I brought a bottle of Brooklyn to my manicurist and miraculously, the deep red hue managed to stay chip-free and shiny for a full five days. A helpful hint: for maximum maintenance, apply a topcoat every other day, don dishwashing gloves and slather on cuticle oil.

Try all the Carolyn New York colors and you’ll get to know every neighborhood like the back of your hand.

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Filed: Beauti-Fixation

Yummy Mummies

imageMuch to my mother’s chagrin, I’ve never felt the burning desire to bear children. Call me shallow or selfish, but to tell you the truth, I’m petrified of acquiring saggy, post-pregnancy boobs and stomach rolls. Plus, I’m a total bitch without my requisite 10 hours of beauty sleep (just ask my hubbie). That said, after recently bumping into a friend swathed in Isabella Oliver – a chic London-based line of maternity wear, I just might have to reconsider (hey, Mom… are you reading this?).

Drape yourself in Isabella Oliver maternity designs and instantly transform those nine months of hell into swell. An expansive 65-piece collection of comfy and yes, fashionable frocks for every occasion, Isabella Oliver will want to be worn well after your little one is born. Conceived by Vanessa Knox-Brien and Baukjen de Swaan Arons, two European mums who noticed a dearth of modern maternity gear when they themselves were preggers, Isabella Oliver has become the go-to label for expecting fashionistas who refuse to compromise their sense of style. In fact, even hot mamas like Heidi Klum and Amanda Peet have proudly pranced around Tinseltown sporting Isabella Oliver’s trademark wrap dresses and ruched tops. Touted for their tailored fit and top quality fabrics (from soft jersey to elastic woven), Isabella Oliver’s silhouettes won’t stretch out, even when your stomach does.

This season’s luxe lineup includes cuffed wide-legged trousers, sexy ruched shirts with slouchy sleeves, curve-hugging dresses, over-sized cowl-neck sweaters, kimono-inspired tops, racy off-the-shoulder gowns and swimwear (perfect for playing-up up that new-found cleavage). Plus, everything’s available in an earthy color palette (from charcoal grey, ivory to black) that perfectly complements every skin tone.

Why waste your time waddling around town looking for an entire maternity wardrobe, when with the click of a mouse, you can buy everything you need at Isabella Oliver’s online store. And if your purchases don’t fit at first, trust me… you’ll grow into ‘em.

  • Isabella Oliver
  • 866-614-9387
  • $65-$330
  • returns or exchanges within 30 days of purchase with receipt
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Filed: Clothes Encounters

Fancy Feet

imageLets face it. When it comes to footwear, us girls can never seem to have enough. At last count, my closet was crammed with 118 pairs. And since feet don’t gain weight when the rest of our body does (thank goodness for small favors!), my shoe collection won’t be shrinking anytime soon. Given that I’m in constant need of shoes that suit my many changing outfits and moods, lately I’ve been sprinting over to Iris – an Italian-based, designer footwear Mecca which opened it’s first U.S. outpost in the Meatpacking district this summer.

I know what you’re thinking: “Why try the unknown when that “other” multi-label shoe shrine, Jeffrey New York, is just around the corner. For starters, Iris produces shoes for major European brands like Marc Jacobs, Chloé, John Galliano, Paul Smith, Veronique Branquinho and Viktor & Rolf. But here’s the kicker: Iris carries the complete range of styles from each of these hard-to-find brands, most of which were previously unavailable in New York… that is until now.

A sleek 1,200 square-foot space with minimalist décor and a chic Le Corbusier-style couch, Iris is so inviting you just might want to camp out for the day. Iris’s gallery-like shelves are lined with a luxe assortment of day-to-night looks ranging from pointy-toed patent stilettos, burgundy platform pumps, dove grey wedge booties, buttery suede sandals adorned with rhinestones, ballerina flats with brushed gold buckles and so much more. Thanks to Iris’s well-edited mix of seemingly endless inventory, I’m sure I could find a pair of shoes for every single day of the year. Financing the purchase, well, that’s another story.

  • Iris
  • 827 Washington Street (btw Little West 12th St. & Gansevoort)
  • 212-645-0950
  • Monday-Friday, 11-7pm; Sunday 12-6pm
  • $500-$1500
  • 14 days within purchase for returns or store credit
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Filed: Shop Talk

Color Me Pretty

imageWARNING! Stop reading if you’re easily offended by racy subject matter. Phew… now that we got that public service announcement out of the way, let’s get back to today’s Beauti-Fixation.

I can deal with a few stray grays on top of my head. A quick cab ride to my colorist and in a matter of hours, I’m back to my natural shade of chestnut brown. But salt ’n pepper hair down there is another story. Since I can’t bear the pain and monthly maintenance of Brazilian waxing, I now put my pubes in the very capable hands of Betty – a do-it-yourself hair coloring kit especially designed for beautifying below the belt.

Thanks to Betty’s brilliant line-up of semi-permanent shades, there’s no need to be bashful when exposing your nether region in front of strangers at the locker room. A safe and sassy way of ensuring “the collar matches the cuffs,” Betty may even spruce up your sex life. Perfect for prima donnas who can’t stomach the thought of clashing colors, as well as nudists, Betty offers an eye-catching array of au currant shades including blonde, auburn, black, brown and sunburst (a bright orange hue that comes with a sexy temporary tattoo). And for those who want to go Frenchie-style for Halloween, there’s even a flashy, hot pink “fun Betty.” Makes a great gift for special occasions such as birthdays, anniversaries and dare I say, weddings. In fact, I just bought the six-pack for a friend’s bridal shower.

You’ll also be pleased to know that each of the dyes are formulated with a gentle, no-drip formula and are free of harmful chemicals like ammonia, so you can freely spread the mascara-like applicator wand across your entire woo-woo without worrying about leakage into your sensitive areas. Just to be on the safe side, you might want to perform a skin allergy patch test 48 hours prior to use. Another bonus: you’ll only need to touch-up your triangle’s tresses every 3-4 weeks to maintain your desired shade. One thing’s for certain, now that I’ve found Betty, I just can’t help flashing my privates.

  • Betty Beauty
  • 212-308-0028
  • $20 per kit
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Filed: Beauti-Fixation