Archive | May 2009

The Fashion Show, Episode Four: Foot In Mouth


Due to my hectic schedule and no access to DVR, I only saw the last fifteen minutes of last night’s “The Fashion Show.” Obviously Isaac Mizrahi had been told to tone it down a few notches. Because unless my ears were deceiving me, he had some nice things to say about the designs. The designers’ challenge was to design an outfit based on a pair of shoes. And thank goodness, they were no longer working in teams, but individually! If I’d had to listen to Isaac say “Team Haven” one more time…

Tell me, is there a point in Kelly Rowland’s presence? Although there is something unintentionally humorous about the gravity which with she does her non-job. As if everyone is in on the joke except poor Ms. Rowland. One can almost hear the camera crew stifling their guffaws.

Your faithful correspondent has no idea why anyone likes this dress…am I the only person who thinks it looks like a diaper? It was designed by Angel, and even though she probably had the worst shoes to work with (Stella McCartney), one can only imagine what this would look like worn by an older woman in the Hamptons. Or even a younger woman. Or a man.

Except for the fact that I have taken a liking to Lidia, her dress was awful and I believe she should have gone home, not whoever-the-man was.

This crumpled mess of a dress answers the question: how on earth do you make a professional model look like she has a pot belly? (One thinks that every designer on this show should be BANNED from using TULLE in any form!)

But Merlin’s was far worse. However, his headgear will likely keep him on “The Fashion Show” for at least another few weeks.

I was delighted that Reco won. Except for his penchant for plunging necklines (did we really need to see the star tattoos on his chest?), I enjoy his trash-talking. And yes, this did look tres Balenciaga, but the workmanship was excellent. The strange little hat tied the look perfectly with the cage shoes. Although at a cocktail party, it could wreak havoc with trying to eat hors d’oeuvres.

More later, dahlings, when I am back in New York –

Elisa & Bucky the Wonderdog

Way Down South In An Art Lover’s Paradise


Your faithful correspondent is reduced to using a…one can hardly bring oneself to type the words…a hotel’s business center computer. First my assistant quit, simply because I told her she was a moron for shopping at Hamrick’s.

Hamrick’s is a department store in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and it is the graveyard of style. Or an orgy of ” festively” colored polyester, in colors mankind was never meant to see, let alone wear. In my few days here I have seen more women in polyester pants and baggy t-shirts than in a month in my beloved New York City.

As a final gesture, my assistant did something to my laptop. When I turn it on, all I get is a screensaver of a…well, you don’t really need the details. Suffice to say it involves a donkey and some unusual equipment.

IN ANY EVENT, my stay has been otherwise delightful. My hostess is one of the finest in North Carolina. The only OTHER kink was that one of her other guests was (quelle domage) allergic to dogs! That meant that my darling Bucky and I had to stay elsewhere. At first I was terribly upset.

But the hotel she chose to put us up in (and this is NOT a paid blog post, I do not stoop to those) was simply marvelous, and quite New York-esque. It was called The Sundance Plaza Hotel, Spa and Wellness Center.

It seems that it had been recently bought and converted from a Ramada, and the new owner is an art-lover. So not only is the interior lavishly elegant, Southwestern style, there is art EVERYWHERE! Large iron sculptures, paintings, something wonderful to look at everywhere (except perhaps the janitor’s closet, but I don’t believe I was supposed to look in there). There is a luxurious day spa, where of course I treated myself to a manicure and pedicure. (I do hope my hostess is not upset when she receives the bill. But after all, she knows it is my business to look beautiful.) The staff could not have been more helpful in every way.

Outside, near the very large swimming pool, was a garden called The Sanctuary, and it truly was: winding paths, fenced off with some sort of natural straw-like material (sorry, dear readers, I don’t do nature), and flowers everywhere. Not to mention stone benches and iron chairs in nooks perfect for contemplation.

One only wishes there had been time for contemplation, but one was far too busy meeting with the creme de la creme of WS’s creative community.

On the first floor, there are a series of rooms that are actually small art galleries! At first, I was put in the Maya Angelou room, where there are paintings, poetry, and a biography of Ms. Angelou. However, during my first night there, I could not sleep. A creeping sense of non-specific guilt came over me, and I felt surrounded by self-righteousness. So I asked to be moved to another room, whose name escapes me. (This damned hotel computer will not let me use a search engine, because apparently every site in the world is not safe for children!) The room was filled with paintings and photographs, much more to my taste. I will edit this properly when I am back in my beloved Manhattan.

Now I am in Durham, North Carolina, staying with friends who are not allergic to my darling Bucky. His behavior has been exemplary, save for trying to bite Robert Moody, the music director of the Winston-Salem Symphony. Fortunately, their season is over, so any injuries Mr. Moody might have sustained will have healed by next season.

Elisa & Bucky the Wonderdog

More Ramblings on The Fashion Show, Oprah, Kirstie Alley, Etc.


Forgive my lateness in posting, but I have been up to my long-lashed eyelids in trip preparation. Yes, your faithful correspondent is leaving her beloved Manhattan to go to North Carolina. First to stay with one of NC’s finest hostesses, and from there to attend a dear, dear friend’s commitment ceremony.

Yes, I believe in gay marriage and I’m not going to hell. Anyone who disagrees with me is free to go there, however, if I may be so bold.

In any event, I did not manage to get through Episode 3 of “The Fashion Show.” The minichallenge, after Johnny R. blew up at Isaac for not being able to sew last week, was a sort of producer’s revenge. The teams had to do repairs on three garments: a shoulder pad, missing buttons, a broken zipper, and a skirt hem. When Isaac pronounced one misshapen zipper “unforgivable,” well, my apologies, but I hit the Mute button. I only glanced up during the runway show, and noticed that the sleeping bag coat bore a remarkable resemblance to this coat that was sent down a real runway several years ago:

The convertible coat was the winner:

And it was designed by Andrew, who I could not pick out out of a lineup. Markus got the boot and was quite bitter about it. (Serves him right for spelling his name with a “k”.) For more about this episode, you’ll have to read elsewhere. Your faithful correspodent finds “The Fashion Show”…well…unpleasant.

On to other, even more unpleasant topics. The news of the day is that poor Kirstie Alley was in talks with Harpo, Oprah Winfrey’s company, about doing a talk show. However, because of the weight she has gained, she has been replaced by the far thinner Jenny McCarthy. Who has more to offer as a host, one has no idea. But once again:

SHAME on Oprah Winfrey, for AGAIN driving another nail into the coffin of American women’s self esteem, subconsciously because of her own self-loathing, I’m sure. Yes, Kirstie Alley has been inconsistent in her comments about her weight and plans since she was given the boot by Jenny Craig.

But show me a female with a weight problem who ISN’T!

Some say that no-one would care about Kirstie’s weight except Kirstie if she didn’t keep bringing it up! Excuse me, people, but have you read a tabloid over the past two years? With their most unflattering photos of Kirstie Alley getting out of cars, eating, etc., all with screaming headlines such as:


Of course Ms. Alley is crushed that a more conventionally pretty host was chosen over her. Wouldn’t you? Wouldn’t anyone? Personally I would be far more interested in hearing what a woman who struggles with her weight (who is NOT Oprah!) has to say, instead of blaming the victim as Hollywood does.
And yes, the press does that with anorexic stars as well as overweight stars, which means across the board, celebrity females are probably afraid to leave the house in anything but a burkah.
This is exactly how your faithful correspondent likes to start her morning. Utterly disgusted.
Elisa & Bucky the Wonderdog

The Fashion Show, Episode Two: Come Back, Heidi Klum, All Is Forgiven!


So, the second episode of The Fashion Show has been inflicted on the American public. Your faithful correspondent was not impressed. At least they have toned down “Evil Isaac” to “Nasty Isaac.”

After being told last week by “Evil Isaac” that she had no business being in fashion, a weeping Kristin quit the show. So now we won’t have to look at that annoying hair anymore.

As before, Kelly Rowland still has absolutely nothing of value to say during the judging. Thank God for Fern Mallis, or I couldn’t sit through this idiocy. And the ending catchphrase from NI: “We’re not buying it. Bye, darling.” Somehow one doubts that will be on everyone’s lips. With Project Runway, fans said that the designers had been “auf’d.” Saying a designer has been “bye’d” lacks the same zing, don’t you think?

The mini-challenges aren’t worth commenting about, other than they take even more time away from the workroom. AND they have 30 second segments of the actual show? Not teasers, but segments? Thank goodness for fast forward.

And how pathetic is it that the only visible sponsor is Tresemme? When they showed the fabric store, it certainly wasn’t Mood (which your faithful correspondent has visited many times), in fact, they could not show the name on the bags! And the winner gets…

A fashion show on the runway set. In the basement of whatever building that is. Combien peuvent-ils faire de plus faible des enjeux, chers lecteurs?

I never thought I would write this, but I miss Heidi Klum.

Well, most of the time.

This past week’s challenge was to design for…Tinsley Mortimer. Ms. Mortimer is a “socialite”, and she and her husband Topper (in this picture she told him to look at the camera, but this is the best the poor thing could do) are from that elite group that intermarries. Rather like Appalachians, but with far more money.

This is a woman so without personality that a planned reality show about her life was scrapped earlier this year. Do you realize how dull a celebrity has to be to have a reality show about you not even make it to air? (I know this fact because I have my connections.)

“My hair is my trademark,” she claimed about her bleached tinder-dry long bob with bangs. The bangs at least obscured the ridiculous amount of eye makeup she was wearing. Each designer was given $40 to create their outfits. As the young people say, WTF?

The designers were kept in teams, which is meant to promote conflict as these various social misfits clash with each other. Merlin’s flamboyance is starting to grow on me, and I suspect the producers will keep him until he makes something so unforgiveable that it actually catches fire on the runway and burns the poor model to death. Reco looks exactly Jimmy Walker on “Good Times.” One keeps waiting for him to shout “Dy-no-MITE!” I liked his design, if not the clashing colors. (That background designing for strippers is hard to shake off.)

During the 14 hours the designers had to create their pieces, Nasty Isaac and Useless Kelly visited the workroom several times. Determined to be as unlike Tim Gunn as possible, instead of giving constructive criticism and encouragement, Nasty Isaac tears down each design. Or if he can’t think of anything sufficiently vicious to say to the designer, he simply sprinkles some bad karma around. Each time the hosts leave, the designers are visibly more dispirited. WHAT is going on?

Are they going to start waterboarding the designers as we get closer to the Final Four?

Laura was determined to put red tulle on a badly designed dress, despite the efforts of her team to talk her out of it. And the back! Dear God, the back!

During the final judging, an awful lot time is taken up with of groups of people getting up, sitting down, getting up, sitting down. I was starting to nod off from boredom, so I’m not certain why. Bucky was sleeping in my lap, so he was of no help.

Suffice to say that Daniella won for a cute jumpsuit with a transparent bomber jacket, nothing special except for a floppy blue bow that was completely out of place. Ms. Mortimer, the fourth judge, would “totally wear it.”

The loser was going to be either Laura and Johnny R., whose dress not only promised to malfunction on the runway (thank goodness models barely have breasts), but was put together with safety pins. When criticized, Johnny R. and Isaac had a bitch-slapping contest. Not smart, Johnny dahling. Isaac is the host, you fool. Obvious to us, perhaps, but not to Top-Knot Guy. (Unfortunately for moi, the nickname Samurai Guy is already taken.)

Backstage, Isaac pretended to be foaming-at-the-mouth furious while Kelly pretended to restrain him. The choice was between “bad attitude and bad dress.” I’m sure after consultation with the producers, they went for bad dress. Quel mauvais. Top-Knot Guy is more telegenic, and I’m sure we can look forward to more outbursts in the future.

Or you can look forward to it. I might wait for the real thing to come along later in the season, on Lifetime.

Elisa & Bucky the Wonderdog

Plus Size Vintage At My Fashiondig Shop!


There is simply beautiful merchandise on my Fashiondig shop, The Mad Fashionista’s Plus Size Boutique! Please do follow the link on the right and take a look. Here are some pieces to whet your appetite.

1930s Royal Doulton brooch and clip earrings

1960s cashmere long jacket with genuine broadtail collar, size XL

1970s maxi dress with rhinestone trim, size L

Sheared beaver jacket with rolled collar and cuffs, size XXL

1960s silk shantung embroidered dress, size L

And oh, so much more! Do stop by and take a look!

Must dash–more later, dahlings!


Elisa & Bucky The Wonderdog

From WWD: Mayor Bloomberg & Anna Wintour


From today’s scoop at Women’s Wear Daily:

CALLING ALL CUSTOMERS: Details of a far-reaching consumer initiative to take place this fall are expected to be unveiled sometime next week with New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Vogue’s Anna Wintour, designers and retail executives providing a united front in an attempt to jump-start business. The initiative is believed to have the participation of top city retailers and will come at a time when stores have been hard-hit by recession. Vacant storefronts are cropping up, tourism is off and layoffs have plagued several industries, from publishing to Wall Street. Activities will likely include various special events, from personal appearances to extended shopping hours, to lure customers back into the stores.

Personally, I think they had better start much sooner to halt the downward toboggan-esque slide of New York’s economy. For more, follow this link:


Elisa & Bucky the Wonderdog (who was born to wear red, don’t you think?)