friendship and long weekends.

i don't know about you, but i'm so ready for a three day weekend. i say that now, even though i know it's going to be cray-cray after labor day. our first holiday walkthrough (where our leadership team looks at the visual merchandising and signage) is thursday, so there is much still to prep beforehand. fashion week also starts next week and while i'm skipping new york this time, i'll still be posting about my favorite collections and news.

this past week i really reflected on friendship. after what's been going on in my life, it's been nice to have a great group of ladies that i count on for a pep talk, grabbing a drink, a casual hike, or some shopping. i got to see many of them at the poshmark party, krystal's real real event, and last night at the re-opening of the san francisco centre kate spade store. and i plan on catching up with a few over this long weekend. good girlfriends are hard to find, but worth their weight in gold.

hope you have a lovely weekend with your friends (and family) and thanks (as always) for stopping by!

in case you're in the mood for some retail therapy this weekend, j.crew has 25% off select fall merchandise and 40% off final sale, loeffler randall is 15% off everything (totally want these!). tibi has 20% off select fall styles, and vince has $50 off $350 or more.

image via madewell's pinterest / design by kim mitchell stokes


the new look: dress/vest.

had been looking for a while for a cool sleeveless trench that doubled as a vest...leave it to ann taylor to have one that's not only stylish (authentic trench details, faux leather trim pockets), but also majorly affordable. i got mine during their friends and family sale a few weeks ago, but right now it's 50% off...oh and it comes in petites!

photos by lydia hudgens

#1: ann taylor trench dress (50% off right now!), banana republic tee, alexander wang sandals, céline bag, super sunglasses, jewelmint (similar), eddie borgo, céline (similar) bracelets, forever 21 earrings
#2: ann taylor trench, banana republic tee, mcguire jeans, hervé léger heels c/o dsw (similar save and splurge), chanel bag, accessories as above


editorial focus: three colors story.

so on the heels on monday's debate about fashion and fashion shows being too commercial comes this editorial from the fall mango catalog entitled "three colors story." technically there are more than 3 colors here (camel, grey, red, white, light blue), but you get the idea. i've been adding looks to my style pinterest board, thinking about my fall shopping list, and how i want to dress come cooler temps. i noticed that much of the pinterest board is black, white, blue, and grey, so really i'm not far off. i love the grey skirt suit look, and the hooded blazer (how awesome). i would swap out the stan smith-like kicks for something a little less normcore, like superga's or a pair of manolo blahnik bb pumps.

see the whole catalog (including a fab main editorial with daria werbowy) and shop the items below...


the new look: formal rules.

you may remember seeing this dress on instagram, as i wore this look to the fashion on the square finale runway show a few weeks ago. when it comes to formal wear, to me the standard rules (unless it's a black or white tie event) don't apply (see another example of dressing formally here). i'm all about pairing something feminine (like this racer back lilac silk gown) with something a bit tougher (a grey leather jacket that's lightweight so i can wear it all night and studded cuff).

the dress was another score from cris consignment, where i got these céline sandals and the lanvin dress i'm wearing here. it's one of my favorite places to shop in the city, and now you can shop online from anywhere. the site features more high-end designers like dries van noten, alaia, isabel marant, and christian louboutin, but if you're in san francisco, you can also find contemporary and mid-priced pieces from theory, seven for all mankind, j. crew, helmut lang, and diane von furstenberg, plus menswear and accessories.

photos by lydia hudgens

elie tahari jacket, narciso rodriguez gown via cris consignment, manolo blahnik sandals, saint laurent clutch, hermés bracelet, rolex watch, linda farrow x alexander wang sunglasses, vintage earrings, alex mika and vita fede rings, laura mercier rouge nouveau lip colour in chic


thoughts on: fantasy vs. modernity.

balenciaga spring 2009 collection / louis vuitton fall 2014-5 collection

when it comes to fashion and fashion shows, i'm all about a dash of daring. while i know the main purpose of the fashion industry is to sell clothes, a fashion show should inspire, be inventive, spark a conversation. maybe the clothes aren't completely wearable but that's ok. that's what the resort, pre-fall, and house collections (aka the stuff that doesn't make it onto the runway) is for. one of my favorite designers who always inspires me is nicolas ghesquiere, formerly of balenciaga now the creative director of louis vuitton. his collection was one of the most anticipated of paris fashion week last march, not only because he was taking over from another superstar, but because the lead-up to the show was so secretive. and when the lights went up on the runway, we knew why—he was starting over, not doing a show set on escalators or a train station, but a simplier, more refined runway, with clothes to match. he wanted to wipe the slate clean—which i totally get—but from a designer like ghesquiere, i expect more. was this the new runway ideal?

cathy horyn touched on what was going on at vuitton—and throughout fashion—in her blog post earlier this week, entitled "sign of the times." while wearable clothes on the runway isn't anything new, it has gone through a revolution as of late, with designers like phoebe philo and hedi slimane at saint laurent presenting runway collections full of everyday clothes (albeit expensive ones). when you get right down to it, how many people are wearing irl what you see on the runway? if you leave out the contemporary brands like alexander wang, tibi, milly, and diane von furstenberg, not that many. and while that may be good for my wallet (and yours, because you may have the pieces already in your closet or there's always zara, et. al. to knock them off a bit more easily), i do miss the fantasy, the frivolity, the fun. as we get ready to head into the spring 2015 collections next month, it's a question that sits on the tip of my tongue...is ghesquiere just laying the foundation for bigger things to come or is this fashion of the future? do you follow the cues of the runway when it comes to fashion?

photos via style.com / design by kim mitchell stokes


thursday thoughts.

i read this post on corals and cognacs today (thanks hallie!) and it got me thinking about my own life and the blog. this blog has always been my happy place, where i can share my love of fashion, design, style, whatever i feel like and not necessarily let the outside world in. because sometimes it's not super pretty. there are times when i've tried to find that happy place where i can write and create content and it hasn't been easy, like recently. even though i've been at this for 10 years (!), i don't feel like an expert. i'm figuring this whole thing out as i go along, and how to fit it into the rest of my life, especially when "the rest of my life" has taken a trip to crazytown. so i'm taking a step back, and silencing the mind—refocusing on a few things.

so anywoo, the point of this is to say, thank you for continuing to stop by here, and for tweeting, repinning, commenting, for keeping the conversations going. for being virtual friends. because we all need them. and rosé...that is much needed too.

"what's chic now" by daniel jackson / harper's bazaar september 2013 / model: iselin steiro / stylist: alastair mckimm / hair: esther langham / makeup: francelle / photo fashionscansremastered via the fashionspot / design by kim mitchell stokes


the new look: pop.

taking a break from the neutrals that have taken over my looks recently (except for this) to wear some pink on pink...

j. crew cardigan (worn backwards, new version), carolina herrera skirt (previously seen here, love this midi and this one), club monaco sandals, marc jacobs bag, vintage earrings via elle-meme, alex mika and vita fede rings, hermés bracelet, laura mercier rouge nouveau lip color in chic