Tag Archives: Style Stories

TFRL Uniform:
Tieks’ Shamelessly Good
Ballet Flat


If you were around in the 80’s — or if you saw Working Girl — you’ll cringe at the memory of smart, confident career women (as we called them in those days) high stepping it to work in clunky white cross-trainers and power-shoulder business suits. The 80’s got a lot of things wrong — big hair, leg warmers worn with street clothes — but the trend of wearing workout shoes with workaday clothes has to have been the sartorial catastrophe of the decade. Not that the women themselves are to blame. After all, the ballet flat hadn’t been reinvented yet. Ballet flats are ubiquitous these days, and at every price point, but these ones from Tieks make me want to time travel back to the 80’s and stand on a Manhattan street corner handing them out. They’re so Working Girl perfect it’s insane. They fold up! They come in a little pouch! They’re luxurious!


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Bangs Collage

I’ve never worn bangs (or if I have, I’ve long forgotten), but these ladies make me want to give bangs a second thought. Some women were born for bangs. Like Mandana Dayani, Vice President of Rachel Zoe, Inc. (top left) or actress/musician Zooey Deschanel (bottom middle). I had to resist the urge to post 79 images of these women because, every way they rock ‘em, their bangs work.


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Modern Glamour

Modern Glamour Collage

What’s modern? What’s glamorous? It’s a question I’ve thought a lot about, having lived three different sartorial lives in my decades on this Earth.

My sartorial beginnings were in a small city in the American South, capital of a state you could easily forget was part of the Confederacy if South Beach were all you knew. Tallahassee, the kind of place where football reigns supreme,  Live Oaks drips with Spanish Moss, and the festivities surrounding the annual Springtime Tallahassee Parade count among the social events of the year — in certain fair quarters at least. Thirty minutes from Georgia, Tallahassee is very much “of” the South. Growing up I found it genteel and idyllic, but modern it was not. I got on the first train out of there the moment I turned 18 — or, truth be told, two months later when college was set to begin.

Aside from my early years, the four years I spent at college, and the year when I decamped to Virginia to my father’s house, to write and recover from illness, I’ve lived inside the bubbles that are New York and L.A., sartorially distinct cities that have shaped my sense of what’s modern and what’s glamorous, as surely as the half life spent in the American South shaped my sense of what’s proper and prim.


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Hey! Say! Céline!

Celine Home Page

Celine Black Beige Collage

I’m always looking for pieces that give me the pulled together look I aspire to and also a sense of ease. Céline, under the leadership of Creative Director Phoebe Philo, formerly of Chloé (and a great pal and Central Saint Martins classmate of the great Stella McCartney, who preceded her to the Chloé throne), fits the bill, even if it is a bit rich for my blood. Philo has brought Céline, a storied but long-slumbering Parisian brand, back to life, with a simple, edgy-meets classic silhouette that the cool girls (ahem, cool women) want to wear. The pieces above are a case in point. I’d wear those slouchy black trousers on the left with a white cotton tank for a relaxed but polished weekend look. I’d wear the cropped black leather with just about anything — a white crewneck dress with a fitted waist and an A-line skirt; a black sheath dress; a tissue-weight, body skimming t-shirt and a pair of flare-leg jeans; I could go on and on.


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