Archive | January 2009

Back from Washington, D.C. With Alec Baldwin, Sort Of


Don’t misunderstand the title, I’m certainly not in bed with anyone interesting. During the Inauguration I caught the most miserable cold, which is why you have not heard from moi all of this time. (Donations can be sent to your favorite charity.)

It is hideous…I lie here, sneezing and coughing and shifting Bucky constantly off of my legs. He gets overly protective at times such as these. And I have so much to prepare for! I am supposed to be writing a book, dahlings, but I cannot think straight with all of this bacteria in my system! And Fashion Week–my god!

Your faithful correspondent was already sick on the flight back to New York. I am ashamed to confess that I sneezed violently on Alec Baldwin, my seatmate in First Class. And on his dinner. And on his suede jacket. He was quite the gentleman about it, considering, in fact he hardly noticed, he was so busy talking with his assistant back in New York. “What else?” he kept saying. However, he did agree to my picking up the dry cleaning bill for the jacket. But now I know any chance for romance with Alec is shot. Damn. At times like this I wish he still drank, then I might have a chance some evening. But no, sober people always remember when you’ve sneezed on them.

Oh, dear, I must stop. This has been entirely too much for me, but it was my love for you, my wonderful public, that made me sit up in bed and dictate this to my assistant. More than that, one cannot ask, n’cest pas?



Elisa & Bucky the Wonderdog

Dateline Washington DC: Michelle Obama’s Inauguration Gown


So, Michelle Obama is wearing a glorious ivory one shoulder gown by Jason Wu. (Jason Who? No matter, the entire world will know his name tomorrow.)

Photo by Damon Winter/The New York Times

The only problem with it is that she cannot dance in it, because the new President keeps stepping on the train. But it is so much more beautiful than some of the horrors other designers came up with. For instance, this strange concoction by Betsey Johnson:

The gown is crafted of ivory silk chiffon, embroidered with silver thread and Swarovski crystal rhinestones, with organza accents. The shoulder treatment is rather like a sash, exquisitely feminine and regal. One’s only criticism is that it is a tad fussy, but why not on a night like this?

Our new President Barack Obama looks so handsome in his white tie. It suits him ever so much better than those stuffy business suits! Who would have thought we had elected Fred Astaire to the White House, sartorially speaking? Too bad he didn’t go the whole route and wear tails, but during this terrible recession, it would have sent the wrong message.

FYI, I’m in a gown by my favorite designer, Oscar de la Renta, in blue and gold silk dupioni, and I am carrying Bucky in a custom-designed matching carrier (lined in absorbent and waterproof material inside. Your faithful correspondent has been around this particular block many times before). My feet are still cold–the Secret Service confiscated the space heater I stole from Dick Cheney at the Inauguration. How could I have slept with that man back in the day? What was I thinking? Oh, well, it was une folie de la jeunesse, and he didn’t look quite so evil a few decades ago.

Must dash–I’m here at the Creative Coalition Ball at the Harmon Cultural Center and my nose is most definitely shiny! Actually, Anne Hathaway is bearing down on me with a look in her eye that tells me she read my blogs about the Golden Globes.

Elisa & Bucky the Wonderdog

Dateline Washington DC: Inauguration Fashion!

(This is Mademoiselle’s assistant, writing up her notes from the Inauguration. I hope she gets good and looped at the post-Inaugural luncheon, she’s been impossible.)

It is absolutely frigid out here, even my silk knit lingerie does not help. I am bundled up top to toe. Thank goodness Bucky is back at the Willard Hotel; the little darling does not do well in these temperatures. The estimates of the crowd range from 1 million to 16 million, but all I know is that my toes are frozen.

Hillary Clinton is wearing a cobalt blue coat that would be perfectly acceptable except for that strange ruffle across the back. Laura Bush is wearing a suitably toned down gray ensemble; considering how loudly her husband had been booed on his entrance, it wouldn’t do to dress to be noticed.

Dick Cheney is being wheeled out in a chair…how did I ever bring myself to sleep with him back in the day?

Ah, Jill Biden is wearing a wonderful lipstick red coat with an assymetrical collar. It is a bit hard to tell, but I think she has on black gloves with large black bumps on them that resemble nothing so much as Elephant Man disease. Her husband, the Vice-President elect, has on more makeup than she does, it seems from here.

Michelle Obama is wearing a marvelous sheath with a matching coat over it, in gold with white embroidery by Isabel Toledo. She has accessorized it with green gloves and matching green pumps. This is definitely a First Lady with a style mind of her own. I don’t care for the jeweled collar, but otherwise, this is an instant classic. (Pardon my fawning, but this is the new administration and your faithful correspondent knows which side her bread is buttered on.)

They are beginning the ceremony–whose hair is stiffer, Dianne Feinstein’s or Joe Biden’s? Neither one’s is moving in the icy wind.

What does Aretha Franklin have on her head? Oh, dear, she is not in good voice this cold morning. Somebody just called out “Sing good!” Poor Aretha cannot oblige. She must have a cold. All the moaning and melismas in the world can’t cover up the fact that the woman is having a hard time hitting the notes.


Ha. Cheney thought he could hide it under his wheelchair. Oh, that is such a relief…to be continued!

Elisa sans Bucky the Wonderdog

Dateline Washington DC: The George Bush Farewell Party


It is going to be SO COLD tomorrow when Barack Obama is sworn in…the wind sweeps across the Mall like a knife, but the glow of good cheer from the crowd (plus the sheer numbers) should help keep events heated up.

Last night I let myself be dragged to the George Bush farewell party at Glen Echo Park in Maryland by some Republican friends who hoped that proximity to the soon-to-be-ex-president would help their deep despair. It didn’t.

For one thing, the party was colder than The New York Public Library during February Fashion Week. There was no heating in the building! We had been warned to bundle up, dress casual. One felt that one was at a slightly better clad NASCAR rally.

The guests huddled in overcoats, mostly in gray and black, which suited the funereal mood. There were occasional pops of color in the form of cheap fleece jackets; I suppose the outgoing administration must watch their pennies from now on. And of course, funny hats, mostly the foam kind.

Not even copious amounts of Budweiser and barbecue applied to the wounded psyches of the guests made a difference in the temperature. It was held in the Great Spanish Ballroom…why they could not have dragged in a space heater or two baffles me. But perhaps the Republicans are past caring. Many of them were planning to leave town the next day, not to return until well after the inauguration, if at all. One woman confided to me that she and a number of others had taken a house in Palm Springs. Shivering, holding my (ugh) paper plate of ribs, Palm Springs seemed like a delightful idea at that moment.

Fortunately, I had the excuse of work calling me, so I could make my escape early in the evening. Never have I been so happy to return to a warm, stuffy workroom filled with idiotic panicky staff!

Elisa & Bucky The Wonderdog

Dateline Washington DC: Inaugural Scrambling!


I am back at the fabulous Willard Hotel on Pennsylvania Avenue, a mere block or two away from the White House, along with an entourage of assistants, makeup artists and hair stylists, helping the women on Washington get ready for both the Inauguration and the Inaugural balls on Tuesday. I am absolutely EXHAUSTED, but when money talks, fatigue takes a holiday. My apologies if that metaphor made no sense, but I had only a second to snatch to dictate this blog-thing. Bucky had to be put in his special extra-large dog carrier (made by Louis Vuitton to my specifications). One cannot take the risk of my little beloved sinking his fangs into someone with legislative power. Or even a lobbyist.


Oh, damn, a conservative politico is having a meltdown over the idea of showing cleavage at an Inaugural Ball. It’s Alexander McQueen, for goodness sake, what does she EXPECT????

Oh, all right…tell her we’ll put the top fastening back on.

A Fashionista’s work is never done. It was hard enough to convince her not to wear St. John. I am sorry that the confidentiality agreement I signed does not allow me to tell you who the frump is.

The ladies of the Secret Service on this floor are very happy with their shapely uniforms, as redesigned by moi. They can only wear them on special occasions, but a woman likes to feel like a woman, if you know what I mean.

Passez un bon temps ce soir, mes chers lecteurs, wherever you are. I will do my best to check in before then.

Elisa & Bucky the Wonderdog

The Three Tomatoes Weigh In On The Golden Globes


On the sidebar you will see a link to The Three Tomatoes, a New York-based newsletter and website for “women who are not kids.” Among their contributing writers are food critic Gael Greene and many others.

On their website they have a marvelous selection of photos of, shall we say, more mature actresses, and you are urged to vote for the most glamorous. There were pictures of several actresses I had not seen, including Meryl Streep (stunning!) and Sigourney Weaver (amazing!).

You can find the link at: (you can also click on the title of this blog entry) for their “tomatoes up, tomatoes down” review and vote yourself!

Elisa and Bucky the Wonderdog

Golden Globes 2009: MY Worst Dressed!


I realize that some of my choices will go against the popular grain, but one must be true to oneself, n’cest pas? Some are based not only on the gowns, but the overall presentation as well, which may also be against the popular grain.

First, however, the overwhelming favorite for Worst Dressed At the Golden Globes:
Renee Zellwegger.

She went to her favorite designer, Carolina Herrera.
What on EARTH were they thinking? This looks like an unfinished project on Project Runway! There’s the shapeless muslin underbodice (in close-up you can see the stitching that holds it to the skirt); the visible back zipper at the waist; the badly bungled sheer sleeves; the skirt would be all right if the top was not so ill-conceived. The underbodice might even have worked if it had been in a solid color, say indigo blue. One does not like to use the word disaster, because Hurricane Katrina was a disaster. This is merely a very ugly dress. As for Renee’s hair, well, it might have worked with something a little less…awful.

Marisa Tomei will not be on this list because at least she was wearing something comfortable and true to herself amidst a bobbing pond of safety.

Anne Hathaway

This brilliant young actress made many Best Dressed lists in this navy Armani gown, but her gaunt appearance is so off-putting, and the dress seems too heavy and to only highlight the fact that she is badly in need of some decent meals. One does hope she is not going the way of Audrey Hepburn, who in her later years wore dresses like this and showed the sharpest collarbones this side of a Wusthof chef’s knife.

Olivia Wilde and Eva Longoria

Again, two frighteningly razor-thin actresses who made many of the Best Dressed Lists. The House co-star Wilde opts to go for a fluffy skirt in a dress by Reem Acra, which makes her look like one of those dolls they used to put over toilet paper rolls. (However, on the show she does play a character who might be dieing, so perhaps the producers have put her on reduced rations. Jennifer Morrison, her co-star, looked smashing and quite healthy.)

Eva Longoria also chose Reem Acra for the red carpet, in a mermaid style. One critic said Eva’s gown looked as though it had as many Botox treatments as the actress herself; I could not have put it better. Ladies, cover up those stick-like arms!

So that is my list. It might seem a tad short, but so many stars opted for dull over anything else. White, off-white, cream, gray, flesh, champagne…one could get narcolepsy just browsing the photos.

Beyonce looked very nice, even if her body tape showed in many photographs, and Christina Hendrix (Mad Men) showed off her smashing figure in the lovely black number:

I have a slight quibble with how rumpled the neckline looks, but one must keep an open mind.

Elisa & Bucky the Wonderdog