Archive | October 2008

Sarah Palin’s $150K Makeover: The Common Touch


So, is this what would happen if a hockey mom won the lottery?

The newspapers have been buzzing with the news that the Republican National Committee decided to play Rachel Zoe with Sarah Palin to the tune of $150,000. Although your faithful correspondent feels that the RNC did a better job than Zoe would—one shudders to think of Palin giving her acceptance speech, hair parted in the middle, in a swirling tiered oversized chiffon maxi dress. (But on the other hand, the question of Palin’s credibility would have been instantly moot.)

Despite her beauty queen past, Palin was perilously close to frumpy in the months before destiny descended on her vastly unprepared shoulders. She favored a frizzy upswept hairdo with highlights that seemed meant to blind oncoming moose at night. (Those Alaska roads can be so treacherous.) The woman wore fleece, for pity’s sake; need one say more?

Over John McCain’s squeaky objections, Palin was selected to be the Vice Presidential nominee, and instantly the image machine went to work. In September and October make-up artist Amy Strozzi earned about $36,000 and her hair stylist Angela Lew earned $19,000. There are moments when one thinks they are trying to remake her into a younger, sexier Elizabeth Dole. (Who, by the way, now has blinding blonde highlights of her own.) Department stores were looted for designer labels: St. John, my darling Oscar de la Renta, and Escada. Palin’s hair was darkened, smoothed, and she was even convinced to wear it down around her shoulders. (Cf. my earlier entry: “Sarah Palin – A Man Made Woman?”)

Her clothing is carefully chosen to show off her trim figure, which GOP consultants feel “appeals to white male voters.” We already know she does not need to actually wear glasses, but without them she would look so generic one could not tell which politician’s fashionable wife she was.

For her acceptance speech she wore a beautiful silk shantung Valentino outfit. Many of her outfits feature belts around the waist or an hourglass cut, and she is often seen striding about in boots. Perhaps that appeals to “white male voters who long to be spanked.” Stranger things have happened in politics.

However, it does dent Palin’s image as a hard-working middle class mom (toting around her tot helps…personally, I think it is either kept heavily drugged or she is carrying a large doll. What sort of child never cries or throws up on the person carrying it? That is why I never handle children, myself).

She claims she will give the clothes to charity after she is elected. That’s a bit like saying vous donner la cher de vol de steak après avoir mangé, for lack of a better metaphor. The woman has even been reduced, in interviews, to cataloging what does and does not belong to her whenever she steps out fully dressed. (At least that way she doesn’t have to answer any hard questions about foreign policy or who Henry Paulson is and why she should care.

Now, a confession. I think the RNC does have quite good taste in clothes, if a touch bland. Certainly better than poor Cindy McCain, who always looks like she just put her finger in a light socket when she’s on the public stage.

Michelle Obama has beautiful taste in clothes as well and always has. For that she has been called “elitist.” Apparently it’s “elitist” to buy your own designer clothes, and “common” to allow rich white men to buy them for you.

Which, upon reflection, seems oddly appropriate, don’t you think? One supposes that appeals to “white male voters who wish they could afford a trophy Vice President.”

Elisa & Bucky the Wonderdog

More Pretties At The Bodacious House of Style!


In my few spare moments, I have been listing some lovely pieces at Elisa’s Bodacious House of Style on (ugh) Ebay. Despite my dislike of the place, you can still find luscious merchandise presented by moi.

This lovely blue rhinestone front vintage maxi dress, size L:

A New Without Tags black velvet stretch dress, size 22W


This exquisite necklace made of platinum over sterling silver, with a 14k gold accent on the front and a genuine amethyst pendant:

And much more to come!

Elisa & Bucky the Wonderdog

The Economy Is Vintage As Well!


One simply cannot turn on the radio or television without hearing some “pundit” proclaiming that our economy is in the worst shape since 1929/1930/1931/1932/take your pick. So very depressing, even to someone whose portfolio is solid as mine. In other words, I feel your pain, mes amis.

That makes this simply the ideal time to find vintage bargains online, be they at my little shops, on Specialist Auctions, or even on (ugh) Ebay. Sellers have to make a living, you know–present company excepted–and now you can do your best for our economy by shopping!

For instance, this silky 1920s black dress, XL from Wyoming Vintage on Specialist Auctions:

Or this 1930 vintage farm feedsack dress from Voodoo Vintage, also on Specialist Auctions:

And from my favorite SA seller, Born Too Late Vintage, this beautiful black derby hat:

Remember, reduce, reuse, recycle — wear vintage!

Elisa & Bucky the Wonderdog

A Letter From Some Colorado Doctors…


At first I resisted, but then I felt I simply had to bring this letter to your attention. It is was sent to me by a dear friend from the past, and I have reprinted it from Your faithful correspondent has never been in Colorado, nor does she ever intend to be in Colorado, but as the old saying goes, “it could happen here.”


A 62-year-old man, who we’ll call Joe Smith, came to the emergency room for the third time in 2 weeks. He had no other place to go. Two weeks before, at another hospital, he had been diagnosed with cancer. Only he didn’t have health insurance, because neither of his two jobs offered coverage.

Joe couldn’t afford to buy an individual health policy and was too young to qualify for Medicare. Now, because of his cancer, no insurer would accept him. It was an all-too-familiar American tragedy. Joe needed his cancer treated, but without insurance the cost of treatment threatened to bankrupt his family. To date Joe’s cancer remains untreated.

LindaB :: A Message from Colorado Doctors
As physicians in Colorado (see our signatures below), we see a case like Joe’s every day. As doctors, we see it as our ethical obligation to advocate for the interests of our patients. In this year’s presidential election, John McCain and Barack Obama offer two starkly different visions of what is wrong with our healthcare system and two different prescriptions for “change”.

Sen. McCain’s plan focuses on an unregulated market for health insurance, makes no commitment to provide insurance to all U.S. citizens, and doesn’t address the health delivery system. His plan uses the $360 billion/year of new taxes generated by eliminating the current employer/employee pre-tax exclusion for health insurance benefits to create credits for buying individual health insurance in an unregulated market. The consequence for Colorado could be fewer employers contributing to health insurance, increased taxes on workers, fewer people able to afford insurance and growth in the number of uninsured.

Sen. Obama’s plan provides access to guaranteed, affordable insurance. His plan allows those who like their employer based insurance to keep it. For those without good health insurance his plan creates new, affordable insurance options by pooling them into larger risk pools. In each case, premiums and direct costs will be made affordable, and people will not have to fear losing their coverage or entering bankruptcy if someone in their family becomes ill.

America’s health care system is broken. A privileged few can get extraordinary health care. However, compared to most developed countries, the overall quality of our healthcare is poor; management of chronic illness is limited; and investment in health information systems that improve care is minimal. Our system is the most expensive system in the world, but in Colorado alone we have almost 800,000 men, women, and children living without health insurance. An additional 500,000 Coloradans are underinsured. This lack of insurance is associated with early death and disability. It leaves thousands of Coloradans one illness away from personal bankruptcy.

For Joe and all of our patients who are uninsured, underinsured or will become newly uninsured under McCain’s plan we are speaking out. We believe Sen. Obama’s plan can lead us closer to an affordable, equitable, and accountable health care delivery system that secures our patient’s future.

Suzanne Brandenburg, MD
Laura Donigan, MD
Daniel Jamieson, MD
Danielle Loeb, MD
Joel S. Levine, MD
Judy Zerzan, MD
Agreed with and signed by an additional 96 physicians and 21 medical students from Colorado


My goodness, I really have to stop this political jag I have been on, dahlings. I am actually starting to watch CNN over my assistant’s shoulder, and after the season finale of Project Runway I watched the last part of the presidential debate!

Has anyone noticed how oddly assymetrical Sen. McCain’s face is? His consultants should only have him photographed from the right, so that you don’t notice that odd little bulge on one side. And besides, it’s only fitting that he be photographed from the right, don’t you think?

Elisa & Bucky the Wonderdog

Soon To Be Listed In The Bodacious House of Style!


As you well know, (ugh) Ebay is not my favorite place on the planet, however, one must make oneself available to as much of the vast, panting public as humanly possible. So here for your delectation is some of the truly dazzling jewelry I shall be listing in the coming week. Some of it is already listed!

Vintage 1950s cats-eye glasses brooch with genuine rhinestones on the ends:

Vintage 1950 high-end rhinestone necklace and large earring set, still in the original box:

Vintage 1960s hippie bohemian “evil eye” bead necklace:

Vintage faux amber necklace:

So do take a look, dahlings!

Elisa & Bucky The Wonderdog

The Manhattan Vintage Show – Another Triumph!


At the risk of bragging, let me say that in my little booth at The Manhattan Vintage Show, there was no sign of “economic meltdown,” save for perhaps the possibility of credit cards melting in the buyer’s hot little hands. The merchandise simply flew out of The Mad Fashionista’s Plus Size Boutique! The first day, I was dressed in a divine creation by Crystal Aponte, a young designer of whom you will hear much one day. Here I am, posing in a competitor’s booth (I was far too busy to pose in my own):

Absolutely gorgeous, if I may be so bold.

My creamy decolletage was quite the hit with many of the male Italians roaming the floor the first day, and a few of the females as well. My partner, Sheri Lane of Matinee New York, was also doing a brisk business, selling menswear like it was going out of style. (There’s a joke there somewhere, but to be blunt, I am too tired to think of it. Please do suggest your own.)

“I heard there was phenomenal business at the plus size booth,” one disgruntled seller said as she came in, looking over the dazzling display of accessories, jewelry, and most of all, the most beautiful plus sized vintage on the planet!

It is truly a shame that I had to educate the buyers that a) there is such a thing as plus sized vintage, and b) that it is as high in quality as the best smaller sized vintage. At least in my shop. No polyester maxis pour moi. (Although honesty compels me to confess that I did sell one hideous Kayser lounging gown to a foreign swimwear designer. A woman has to be practical.)

That is all I am up to dictating to my assistant at the moment. It was a delightful weekend, and I must again thank Sheri Lane, Crystal Aponte, David Ornstein (organizer of the show), Bonnie, Michael, Jacqueline, P.J. Malie Reif of the Vintage Shopping Guide and a very special man who shall remain nameless. One must be discreet, after all.

And Dorothy DeCarlo, without whom it would have been completely impossible to do this.

If you are moaning in pain that you missed the opportunity to shop with moi in person, please do stop by one of my sites, and you can feel the fabulousosity by proxy.

Elisa & Bucky The Wonderdog

Listen To My Podcast On New York Radio!


The handsome Colin Gregory and manly Bruce Biggins invited me to be a guest on their talk show, “Spotlight on Business & Entertainment.” Of course I accepted, and went on to talk about the upcoming Manhattan Vintage Show–this Friday, mon Dieu!

You can hear my dulcet tones by clicking on this link:

It is show #31, and I am on about one half hour in (some fellow who sang like Sinatra was on first). Malie Reif of the Vintage Shopping Guide had been a guest and recommended moi, of course.

Here are a few pictures, as promised, of just a few of the chapeaus that will be on display!

Vintage 60s Saks Fifth Avenue faux patent Beatles cap:

Vintage 50s faux fur scarf pillbox hat:

Vintage 40s feathered hat:

Vintage 60s cream mink toque:

Remember, the show is THIS Friday!

The Manhattan Vintage Show
at the Metropolitan Pavilion
125 W.18th Street, between 6th and 7th Avenues in Chelsea
New York City
Friday: 10/10 1-8 pm

Saturday: 10/11 11am-6pm
Admission: $20*

See you there!

Elisa & Bucky the Wonderdog

* $5 off if you go to