Dressing Like Dita

I have a lovely habit of wasting time on one of my favorite websites : ShopStyle. It’s like having the world as a closet and being able to create outfits form millions and millions of articles. It’s addicting. I am warning you now.

I am also a big fan of Dita. You know who I am talking about. She inspires me and well frankly, I wish I had her waredrobe and work-out regime!

I created some looks from pictures of Dita Von Teese found off of Google. It was time-consuming but fun to browse thousands of pieces of clothing and accessories, looking for that one perfect piece to illustrate her outfits.


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Paris FNO 2012

Me admiring a Moschino jacket, Photo : Lauren Cashwell

This year Paris FNO happened on the rue du Faubourg Sainnt Honoré.  I thought it would be a mixture of avenue Montaigne and Faubourg Saint Honoré, but avenue Montaigne did not participate at all. There was a slight improvement from last year, meaning access to many stores was less strict, but I was again left with a an annoyed feeling that they still haven’t understood the purpose of this event.

Some stores denied access to us, claiming that theirs was a private party and we had to have had a special invitation.

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Shopping in and around Paris

Guest post by Bonney Bailey 

Paris has to be one of the most popular shopping cities in the world. Here, high-end chic rubs shoulders with vintage fashion, making this the ultimate city to shop ’til you drop. Whether you’re spending a romantic weekend away or taking the kids to Eurodisney Paris you’ll never be far away from some first class shopping opportunities.

1. Avenue Montaigne and Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré
Dedicated to high end fashion, Avenue Montaigne is the place to shop – and be seen. This famous  street is home to fashion houses such as Chanel, Dior, Louis Vuitton, Versace, Fendi, Ralph Lauren, Christian Lacroix and Bulgari. You can easily do some credit card damage here, although there’s nothing wrong with window shopping! The fashion continues along neighboring Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré, where you’ll find the flagship stores of Hermès, Lanvin and Lancôme. Not surprisingly, it’s also where you’ll find two of the major Parisian powerhouses – the President of France at the Élysée Palace and the headquarters of French Vogue.

2. Les Puces de Saint-Ouen flea market
There is nothing like a Parisian flea market to bring out the bargain hunter in even the most high-end fashionista. From antique jewelery to vintage perfume bottles, this is a magical place to rummage for treasures, whether to find souvenirs, gifts for someone special, or a beautiful trinket to call your own. Get in early for the crème de la crème of clothing, jewelery, art and home goods.

Les Puces Saint Ouen Flea Market by ParisSharing

3. Le Marais district
Vintage fashion has had something of a revival over the past few years. Yet, while this now seems to extend to the shiny polyester collections of second-hand stores of England, Parisian vintage fashion is on another level of style altogether. Les Marais is home to one of the greatest concentrations of vintage shops in Paris. From appointment-only costumiers to general vintage stores, a determined rummage might reveal a rare Chanel jacket or Hermès scarf. Prête-Moi Paris’ very first blog post was on one such of these vintage stores!

4. La Vallée Village
Even Disneyland Paris holidays can involve some Parisian retail therapy. (Why should the kids have all the fun?) La Vallée Village is a luxury outlet center featuring a huge collection of major designer brands at over 95 boutiques, and everything is at a reduced price. Conveniently, it’s only five minutes away from Disneyland Paris, so you can spend the day enjoying the rides with the kids and then take a little shopping spree with them afterwards. (There’s even designer children’s wear available here!) For those staying in one of the Disney hotels, there’s a dedicated shuttle service that runs straight to La Vallée Village. This shopping haven is open 7 days a week (excluding Christmas day, January 1st and May 1st) so you can easily fit your shopping trip into your Disney trip.

5. Les Galeries Lafayette
This 10-storey department store in the 9th arrondissement of Paris covers everything from bedding to bridalwear. There are some huge designer names here, from Burberry to Vivienne Westwood, but there is plenty for those whose budget won’t quite stretch to luxury brands. There is even a gourmet food and drink department with all manner of foodie indulgences, and an on site travel agent. Its huge glass dome and art deco interior makes this one of the chicest department store experiences you can have.

Another perk about this department store is the free fashion show held there on Fridays to show the different designers that the store features!

Galeries Lafayette by edmundv

As you’ll have gathered, Paris offers a diverse selection of unrivaled shopping experiences, so break out the credit cards or save up your euros, wear comfortable shoes and hydrate and feed yourselves. This is not shopping to be taken lightly!

Crépuscule – Sundown

The circus has been playing under the “tent” of the Crillon for the past week. But all things come to an end sooner or later. Tout passe, tout casse, as the French say. Well, I wouldn’t say anything was broken, except maybe a stiletto heel or two and a Lilo contract. I would say things were mostly created, new partnerships and fresh ideas.
But as Leslie Sukermann (director of public relations and press for L’Oréal/Lancôme) was heading towards closing time at the Lancôme beauty bar that she created for the occasion, I couldn’t help but feel a little wistful. The fabulous world of fashion-week is moving on to its next venue… So what better way to end it than with one last sprinkling of pixie dust (meaning lipstick and eyeshadow) and to head off into the sunset. And the lithium came, as if on cue, through the atmosphere tonight to splash a pink goodbye over Paris.

But for those who can’t let go so quickly the VogueParisLive bar will still be there to welcome you at the Crillon hotel ’til the 13th. Go bask on plush velvet couches, in the lingering remnants of the rushing models and magazine people and plan for the next time the fashion circus comes to town.

Jouer à la star! – Feel like a star!

Who hasn’t ever wanted to get the star treatment? How about for free?!? During the Paris Fashion week you can.

I decided to take advantage of the offer I saw tweeted on VogueParisLive a couple days ago, who has set up their headquarters for fashion week at the Crillon hotel. There, Lancome is dolling up the press “pipole” (that’s French slang for famous people!) and the rest of us who want to play dress up too. And we did. I took a friend with me and we skipped over in our fashionable best, she in a black JPG dress and a long coral Lacroix coat, I in a plum Grazia Bagnaresi dress and Louboutin shoes (swoon!), and waltzed into the palace hotel as if we belonged…. but of course!

To locate the room where Lancome has its make-up stations installed, we had to pass through the VogueParisLive “éphémère” bar (a lovely word for temporary in French), where they have flat screens for viewing the fashion shows live as they roll, and to catch their minute by minute tweets of the who’s who in the Parisian fashion world. (i.e. VogueParisLive Carine Roitfeld: “a military show at Junya Watanabe, that we would like to see in stores already, and a desert camouflage make-up #PFW ) So far it has been a huge hit! On opening night of fahsion week here in paris, they were expecting 250 people to come, they got 500! I have no idea where they put them all! I certainly didn’t see enough plush red velvet divans for 500. It seems there is no need for an invitation, so show up if you dare!

We found the rooms where the make-up magic happens, and the whole time I was expecting to see a line of women waiting for their turn. Guess what? There was not a stocking-wearing, high-heeled-bearing, hairspray-scaring soul to be found! We entered the room, which looked sparkling and fresh, and was surprisingly quiet and peaceful, as if they had been waiting just for us, merci beaucoup! Not at all what I had prepared myself for. Three gracious make-up artists greeted us, and we had our choice of the empty mirrors. Perched on the white and chrome stools, our vision was graced with a view of the charming courtyard below. Talk turned to make-up, fashion, careers and our afternoon activity (a concert at the Salle Pleyel) as the artists turned us into divas with their brushes, powders and palettes all lined perfectly in rows on their counters. With Enya playing on the stereo, fresh flowers scattered in vases and Beata Rosinska my make-up artiste delicately bringing my face to life, I couldn’t have felt more like a star than if I were one.

A quick refreshment in the Salon at the Crillon, and it’s off the the theater chéri! Oh là là!

Lancome Paris will do your make-up for free at the Hotel Crillon in Paris at la place de la Concorde, March 4th to the 10th, from 11:00am to 8:00pm according to availability of the make-up artists. Rooms 41 & 43. Tell Beata “bonjour” for me!

(Beata Rosinska was hired by Lancome Paris for the occasion, but is a free-lance make-up artist. She can be contacted via her website : http://www.babybuzia.com or her email : babybuzia@hotmail.com ; Beata Rosinska était embauchée par Lancôme Paris pour l’évènement, mais est une artiste free-lance. elle peut être contactée sur son site web : http://www.babybuzia.com ou via son adresse courriel : babybuzia@hotmail.com )