Listen In Style

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I strive to have my home match my personality, so it's only appropriate to have my iPhone have a home that matches it's pop nature. As seen above, I choose to house my music while I'm not out and about in an iHome iP9. While pink might seem like the choice for a 12-year-old, I embrace my inner feminine side (and so should everyone, if so desired!). Added bonus feature? A great and reliable alarm clock.

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However, iHome isn't the only choice for iPod/iPhone speakerware. For indulgent speaker seekers, Bose's SoundDock is sleek, loud and thin enough to fit in any windowsill.

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Stylish speakers shouldn't be limited to the bedroom (or kitchen, living room, or wherever your iHome may reside). Shuga Buds have been popular for a few years (best friend A gave me a pair for my 20th birthday). Swarovski crystaled and juicy with color, pairs could once be found at Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom and Bloomingdales. Now it (sadly) appears that one can only find pairs of sparkly earbud goodness via their official order form. Also sad? Reminder for iPhone 1st Generation users. No flush headphone jack = no usage of non-Apple earbuds. Time to upgrade!


"Intoxicate Me, I'm A Lush"

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The most recent Britney Spears video leaked onto the interwebs tonight (via ontd). I must say, while Radar was one of my favorites off of Ms. Spears's Blackout days, I feel horrendously bored with it (song and video) right now. Maybe after a few viewings it'll grow on me. Or maybe not. What's with the horse innuendos? It's a bit overboard. I still prefer the scandalous If U Seek Amy video, if you ask me.

On a happier note. Brit-Brit is looking just as stellar as she did in her pre-breakdown, pre-head shaving, Slave For You days. Girl's got her abs back. How does she make it seem so easy?


D is for Design

The only thing that links the following few things together is, fantastic and innovative design. Enjoy!

tea= time by erez bar am

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Students at Tel Aviv's Shenkar Academy of Engineering and Design studied everyday coffee and tea drinking rituals and developed pieces based on their observations. The image above is entitled tea = time and is designed to encourage the tea drinker to slow down and savor the experience...the cup is low and broad and comes with sugar capsules that dissolve slowly.
Check out the other excellent designs here.

comet coffee table by skate study house

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Now you can have all the sk8erboi moments you want (yes M, I mean you). Skate Study House, a collaboration between designers Pierre Andre Senizergues and Gil Le Bon De LaPointe, basically takes the waste products from skateboard manufacturing and turns them into furniture and other functional things. Skate Study House combines skateboard culture, California lifestyle in an eco-friendly manner as they use recycled/2nd hand products.
You've got to check out their website to see more of their designs.

klocka clock by bvd for askul

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Talk about the MOST appropriate clock for 9-to-5ers. Hehe. Swedish firm BVD's new Klocka clock for Askul has the 3 most important times highlighted for office-goers...9 am arrival, noon for a leisurely lunch and 5 to rush out the door. Don't you just want to buy it and hang it inside your office/somewhere in your cubicle?

glue cinderella by kartell by .normaluisa

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If you ever grew up wanting to be a Disney princess (and let's face it, who didn't) then it's pretty much guaranteed that you will lust after these fantastic plastic flats. Whimsically titled "Glue Cinderella," this collection from Italian design pioneer Kartell is produced using "injection-moulding technology that allows the creation of two-tone shoes combining transparent and opaque effects." Err, right. Whatever. They're fun to look at, are waterproof and could kick Croc's ass any day of the week.

bubble necklace by marina and susanna sent

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Ahh...bubbles! Soapy suds in the bath or blowing bubbles in the park, bubbles always make me happy, so I was thrilled to come across this piece. Designed by Italian sisters Marina and Susanna Sent and made from Murano glass beads, this piece is designed to resemble a cluster of bubbles. Gorgeous.

This is one of my worst fears...

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So, BET awards...singer Amerie and Kanye West's on-again, off-again girlfriend show up in the same pretty white Alexander McQueen minidress. The only difference? Accessories and a bit of attitude. While Amerie paired her dress with a pretty necklace, long flowing hair and rocker-chic booties...Amber Rose paired hers with hot pink heels and matching clutch.
They both look nice, but, I won't lie, showing up at the same event wearing the same dress...kind of horrifying. :S

Another one bites the dust...

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Word has it that the awesome urban-music magazine Vibe is shutting down "immediately". Another victim to the recession. Sad :(

On another note though, it's really interesting to watch traditional media outlets all but fade into oblivion. I definitely see a place for newspapers and magazines in the future, but there's no denying that the content and perhaps even marketing of them must be tweaked if they are to survive the onslaught of instant and easily available news updates online. Such transitions within the contemporary media world has led to shifts in journalism education. While only a few years ago, I sat in mandatory newswriting and reporting classes, I see now at mine (and P's!) alma mater available journalism classes on Podcasts, online writing formats and how business and journalism intertwine. Who would have thought that my education could feel outdated after only a year?

Also curious about this shift to online media and news sources? What is news anymore? Is the New York Times still relevant when people can get their breaking news off of Twitterfeeds and blogs? Thoughts? Opinions? We'd love to hear them.

-M & P

Tart Soft-Serve Goodness

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Since discovering Pinkberry in NYC earlier this summer (and learning that while P will be able to eat all the Pinkberry to her hearts' content in Kuwait, and I'm stuck with no Pinkberry whatsoever in Boston), I went on a one-woman-hunt for similar tart frozen yogurt in the greater Boston area. After a month, about one froyo a day and numerous pleadings with my boyfriend to, "please just take me so I can get one more today," I think I've exhausted my efforts. I've been to what I could locate as the four main soft-serve froyo venues near me (all within a MBTA subway ride distance). While Pinkberry resides within me as the creme de la creme, some of these come in awfully close behind.

In order of preference...

1.) Berryline. If I wasn't so obsessed with Pinkberry's aura, decor and atmosphere, I would maybe say that Berryline ranks #1 as the best soft-serve frozen yogurt. Their fruit is always fresh (I recommend the raspberries, strawberries and kiwi), and the workers pile it on. I went there twice today alone (true story). Prices are cheaper than Pinkberry by about a dollar and the soft-serve is creamy and delicious. Follow them on Twitter or Facebook and find their yummy deliciousness in Porter Square, Harvard Square or the Fenway area on Bolyston Street.

2.) Chill. When walking into Chill on Chestnut Hill Ave. in Brighton, I felt the Pinkberry influence. White counters. Bright lights. All radiated a certain sense of cleanliness. Also affordable (a small with two toppings runs just about $4), it's become a weekly staple in girls night dinner dates with my friend K. I still opt for raspberries and strawberries as toppings (I'm a creature of habit), while K opts for rainbow sprinkles (we're really 8 years old at heart). I find Chill's consistency to be a bit more watery than Berryline, but not so much so that it's unenjoyable.

3.) The disappointment of the bunch, U Good on Brookline Ave in Boston, next to the Regal Cinema and on the first floor of the Landmark Center. While their signs taut healthy food and healthy living, I felt awfully cheated (and angry, thereby unhealthy) when the worker piled on about 4 raspberries and 2 bits of strawberry as my "toppings" that have an additional cost. When I bit in, I swear, I tasted cardboard. Tangy and not tart. After days of fantastic froyo, my tastebuds were unfulfilled and disappointed. No good, U Good.

4.) Lastly, I put this only as a warning to others. On some internet pages, Cafe Kiraz in Cambridge is listed as having fantastic soft-serve frozen yogurt. Conveniently placed about, oh, twenty steps from my apartment, I decided to give it a try. When I ask the worker whether the soft-serve frozen yogurt is indeed my heavenly tart frozen yogurt, I get nods and affirming yes's. Negative. No tart soft-serve. Learn from my mistakes. If you want imitation Pinkberry, seek elsewhere.

Apparently in September, lucky me, Red Mango is opening on Huntington Ave. near Symphony Hall in Boston. I can hardly wait. Until then, Berryline employees can anticipate to see me every day, while Chill can be graced with my presence on Thursdays. Delish.


Summertime Girls Got It Going On...

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For today's M & P joint post, we turned to our iPods and iPhones for inspiration. Temperatures in Boston finally soared past 75 degrees this afternoon (and, well, it's always hot in Kuwait). I ate my Berryline frozen yogurt (for free at their new Fenway area location until 9pm!) and wanted to drive with the top down. Unfortunately, cabs in Boston don't have convertable tops (boo), but I could jam away to some of my favorite summertime songs.

The Classics:

And by the classics, I don't mean The Beatles and Aerosmith (although I love both!). I mean classic 1999 style summery pop music anthems. Is your iTunes lacking such musical masterpieces? Consider these tracks.

LFO - Summer Girls (the ultimate New England prep school girl's summertime anthem in 2000. We all wore Abercrombie & Fitch and thought those LFO guys were incredibly attractive. Who knew they were from Massachusetts? Another reason to love them.)

Fergie - London Bridge (perfect to blast out of the car speakers on a girls' night out on the way to a club or bar. Don't lie, you know you've done it too. Although P has to ask, what was Fergie Ferg alluding to when she sang about everybody wanting to down...ohhhhh)

New Radicals - Get What You Give & Third Eye Blind - Semi Charmed Life (maybe my favorite late 1990s songs)

Michael Jackson - The Way You Make Me Feel (Okay, apart from the fact that MJ's tragic death this past week has made everyone and their mama rush out and download "The Essential Michael Jackson," there is no denying that this track is fun fun fun)

Beyonce - Crazy In Love (Oh COME ON, like I even really need to explain this pick...It's B at her finest! Uh oh uh oh uh oh oh no no)

Any Britney Spears song (Ain't no shame in it...blast that Britney...Summertime is the only time you can without fear of being looked down upon by music snobs :P)

The Strokes - Reptilia (Awesome guitar solos, energetic drumming, a sexy vocalist...equal parts rock and indie....what more could you want?)

John Mayer - No Such Thing (Remember John Mayer before his current creepalicious phase? Sigh. This song might help jog your memory.)

Jay-Z - Can I Get A...(Ok, I just picked that track randomly, but you're good to go with pretty much anything that Jay puts out....old, new...I'll take it all please, thanks.)

The Donnas - Take It Off (Most songs by The Donnas make me smile, but "The Hangover" reminded me of this particular track)

Current Music Obsessions:

Maino - All The Above
Black Eyed Peas - I Gotta Feeling
Lady GaGa - Paparazzi
Cobra Starship - Good Girls Go Bad (featuring Blair Wald... I mean Leighton Meester)
Kristina DeBarge - Goodbye
Drake - Best I Ever Had
Crazy Cousinz - The Funky Anthem (featuring DJ Reflex)
Robyn - Cobrastyle
Young Love - Find A New Way
Jay-Z - D.O.A
The Veronicas - Take Me On The Floor
Pitbull - I Know You Want Me

Oh my goodness, there are so many amazing songs we've left out and some we're sure we're going to kick ourselves for forgetting...anyway, hope this list at least gets you motivated enough to make your own playlist to enjoy while you work and play this summer.

- M & P

Accept No Substitutions

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On June 13th, Facebook introduced usernames to its users. Despite complaints that the change made Facebook more aligned with Myspace, users snapped up their usernames quickly and swiftly. Over 6 million usernames were claimed by the 15th. Some say that this change is relatively useless, while some are baffled by the "brouhaha" surrounding the change. For Web 2.0-fluent readers and small business owners, it means a better SEO process in setting an online social media presence. For us, clearly it means an easier Facebook stalking process. Assuming people claim their own name as their searchable username that means finding your old college crush or the cute Starbucks barista is as easy as'-name-here (just hope that his name isn't John Smith or anything like that, if so, sorry!).

That being said. We at Pop Culture Paradox jumped on this bandwagon (although admittedly a bit late). Find us. Friend us. Comment on us and send us Facebook love at out official Facebook page at


Coded Messages

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While I made my rounds on the weekend party circuit, my friend (and loyal PCP reader) Mandy and I firsthand witnessed could-be hookups and girl code hand-in-hand. The scenario always is the same. Girl meets boy. Boy meets girl. Boy shameless hits on girl. Girl reciprocates. Boy seems clueless to girl's obvious signs of interest.

It occurred to me that everyone knows guy code (all too much, if you ask me), but girl code seems to be this hidden secret that no one speaks of or flaunts around. Maybe it's because as females, we're a bit more inept to subtlety. Maybe it's because as females, we don't care if there's a code or not. Maybe it's because we all have moments where we're bitches and break the code anyway so if we pretend there isn't one, then we're never in the wrong.

It feels a bit Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus (gag), but I stumbled upon The Girl Code by Diane Farr during my online search for 'girl code' terminology. As a twenty-something, post-college girl, I (and my friends) have had a fair share of flirting, dating, hooking up, breaking up and all that fun stuff. It may seem a bit Sex and The City but somehow the common thread in each relationships' bumps, endings or false starts concludes with, "He just doesn't get it!" Boys, take note. Open your eyes. We really aren't that complicated. We promise!


Anna Sui's Gossip Girl inspired line for Target: Me no likey

When we heard that whimsical fashion designer Anna Sui would be designing a line inspired by our beloved TV show Gossip Girl for our most beloved store Target...we thought we had died and gone to heaven (ok, the latest collaboration between Jimmy Choo and H&M is pretty damn spectacular too).

Horror of all horrors...the line is truly hideous and uninspiring. Full of frumpy prints and cuts, these clothes would've been perfect for Vanessa...when she was going through her "I'm going to wear the fugliest clothes possible" phase...AND EVEN SHE GREW OUT OF IT! Anna Sui+Target...we're not impressed. What happened? How did this collection turn out so horribly wrong? SIGH.

The lookbook can be viewed via The Cut

"OMG, anna is like...madonna"

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"September is the January in fashion..."

The September Issue, R.J. Cutler's documentary film about the making of the September 2007 issue of American Vogue seems, from the trailer at least, a caricature of life behind the scenes of what many refer to as the Fashion Bible. Intentional or not, the majority of the clips in trailer seem right out of The Devil Wears Prada and Bruno. With flavor of the week fashion designer Thakoon and Vogue's editor-at large André Leon Talley actin a fool, it seems a bit contrived...but, who am I kidding, although I am not sure how 'realistic' it will be, the trailer certainly guarantees it will be entertaining. I'd check it out. You?

Watch the trailer:

Fashion, passion and politics: No paradox here...

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I absolutely love it when people can marry their many interests together! I stumbled across The Uniform Project which documents blogger Sheena Matheiken's attempt to make sustainable fashion a reality. She plans to wear the same black shift dress for 356 days straight (alright, not the exact same garment, but 7 specially designed identical versions of the dress so its sustainable AND hygienic). In attempt to keep things interesting, she is also incorporating the use of hand-me-down accessories such as hats, shoes, jewelry, tights, scarves, gloves etc etc. Check out the above screen shot where she pays tribute to the late King of Pop, Michael Jackson.
Apart from raising awareness, she is also collecting cash donations for the Akanksha Foundation, a non-profit group that provides educational programs to children who live in Mumbai’s slums.

Oh for the love of ruffles!

Ruffly sandals are everywhere I look this summer...from the girly pink satiny frilled heels to the more sophisticated black, even flats have tons of ruffle details. I'm loving the froufrouness of the ruffles...and the fact that they can be dressed up or down depending on what you pair them with...a little white dress (since it's summer!duh), city shorts, skinny jeans, a cocktail dress...basically, anything. For work, I'd stay away from the ultra-feminine, cloth ruffles and perhaps wear the more structured, leathery ones. It is just one way to add some visual interest to the same-old outfit....

(Pssst....if you're really bored this weekend (and have an ounce of creativity) check this out...DIY removable ruffles! )

Rest In Peace

It's been a sad day for pop culture fans. This morning, Farrah Fawcett passed away after a lengthy battle with cancer. Amidst all the tabloids and criticism, Fawcett was always my favorite Charlie's Angel.

This afternoon, while sitting at my weekly sushi dinner with friend and soon-to-be roommate, K, I look up at the television to see that Michael Jackson passed away after going into cardiac arrest at his California home. Say what you may about his personal life, it's not appropriate to state so at this time. For many within my generation, Jackson's passing feels like a death of our childhood. John Mayer twittered, "I think we'll mourn his loss as well as the loss of ourselves as children listening to Thriller on the record player."

I personally remember at age four, wearing my red leather (okay, pleather, blame Mom and Dad) MJ-wannabe jacket, with my Michael Jackson branded toy microphone (the 1980s were an odd time for toys) singing in living rooms (of my family's and my neighbors) along to Thriller and Billie Jean. Today, it's impossible to look at Jackson's legacy and not think of how he paved pop music to be as it is for Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake, and all the other guilty-pleasure artists that we have on our XM radios and iPhones. I know my ears are eternally grateful.


Summertime Essentials

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With the official start of summer completed and the sun finally out in Boston today (after two weeks – two weeks! – of rain), come the need for summertime essentials. Currently, in my Coach carryall is one new essential, past the Kate Spade wallet and Juicy Couture keychains. Introducing Sephora by OPI’s Mermaid In The Shade collection.

An ode to summertime beach fun, Mermaid In The Shade includes shades like dark blue Blue Grotto and blue-green Lagoon-a-Beach. My personal favorite, and recent nail polish investment however, is Mermaid to Order. Metallic teal, the color is juicy and bold but not tacky. It’s slightly iridescent, giving a blue sheen in the sunlight. According to Sephora, the color “captures the deep blues and aqua hues of the oceans.” According to me, it’s just plain fabulous. At $9 a bottle, it’s cheaper than any Chanel or Dior polishes, and gives a perfect mani-pedi for about a quarter of the price. Nab it before it sells out (apparently word is spreading about this shade).


Mandatory Summer Reading

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No. It is not embarrassing that I bought Lauren (or rather, ahem, LC) Conrad's book within the week it was released. It's not embarrassing that I devoured it in one day (in my cubicle at work, no less). It's not even embarrassing that I loved every page of it. I have zero shame when it comes to reading material. Nicole Richie's book? Have it, read it multiple times. Every single Gossip Girl book? Have them, read them to shreds. Valley of the Dolls (the original scandalous chick lit novel, if you ask me)? Read it for the first time when I was fourteen (yeah, my mom was proud - sarcasm). What is embarrassing is the lengths that I went to obtain a copy of LA Candy.

Remember in college, when that jerk professor would assign about 90 books with one being absolutely impossible to find? Not at any local bookstore. No one seemed to have a copy. And finally you'd just give up and decide that you can pass the class without it? That was my hunt for my own personal mandatory summer reading, LA Candy. I went last Thursday, after reading The Cut's review to my local Borders. I was positive they'd have a copy, if not many, maybe even a table full of them. But no. Not a single copy, "sold out" the dorky MIT-style salesboy told me, mystified. I checked at the Barnes & Noble (in Boston and in my suburban hometown, in hopes that my mother could get it to me). Sold out. I'm not sure when this happened, but somehow getting a copy of LA Candy was more difficult than finding sunshine in Boston these days (sad but true). I resorted to my trusty online skills and ordered myself a copy. And waited for the UPS delivery person. For days and days. When Matt, the person that handles deliveries at my office handed me the small, cardboard wrapped box this morning. I squealed. I kid you not. Squealed. He even asked me some question after that I just kind of nodded my head at without really knowing what he just asked. Hopefully he didn't ask for a date or anything too extreme.

Substance-wise? Meet reality television star Laur--I mean Jane Roberts. She has best friend Scarlett and reality tv besties Madison and Gaby. Scarlett is a feminist USC (hey, didn't Lo Bosworth go there before transferring?) freshman. Jane interns for a bitchy boss (hello Teen Vogue's Lisa Love) who is nice only on camera. Madison is a backstabbing two-faced attention hog (wonder who this reminds me of). Gaby is, "not the brightest crayon in the box" (Hmmmm. I wonder). Although LC swears that the characters and situations are fictional, I just don't quite believe it. Afterall, reading it and wondering if Heidi and Audrina are like this in person makes the read that much more enjoyable.


Thank Goodness I Didn't Go To Prep School There...

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Confession. I love Bravo reality shows. The Real Housewives of Orange County. Top Chef. Project Runway (it just won't be the same on Lifetime this season). I waited, with baited breath and anticipation for NYC Prep. I assumed that it would be my new summertime guilty pleasure while the rest of my television viewing schedule includes Gossip Girl repeats and 16 & Pregnant on MTV (classy, I know).

Well, we know what assuming does...

I watched the full hour-long premiere episode of NYC Prep last night and, I can't lie. Part of me felt nauseous. Part of me wanted to gauge my eyes and plug my ears. Let me give you the rundown.

Quite possibly the worst part of the show. Overachieving Camille. Overachieving Camille who is nothing like fictional (yet fabulous) overachieving Blair Waldorf on Gossip Girl. Blair Waldorf would never check her SAT scores via Blackberry herself (she would have her devout minions do it for her). She also would never think that at 40 she would be "married with two children, after taking on the business side of a genetics firm." While I know that there are legacies to follow and family footsteps to fill, this girl is what? 17? Why does she have everything so planned out to the spaces and commas? Doesn't she see that this only leads to disappointment and? On top of this fact, petty, but true, why does she wear her hair like she does?

Also horrible? Sebastian, who hooks up with "between 2 and 16 girls a month." I have nothing else to say.

Aside from the obnoxious, overindulgent, ignorant kids (and I say this as a former overindulgent, ignorant kid), the perception that this show casts not only on the students' respective schools, but over private schools as a whole is unflattering and unattractive. Prep school, as a whole, was like any other high school experience. I'd never go back. The reasons for that, however, are not due to the fact that children had unlimited funds, Upper East Side penthouses and considered a $300 Alice + Olivia dress "cheap." However, looking at students now, I'd be inclined to not bring my future children into a private school atmosphere, for fear that either they would resent everyone around them, or, even worse, become one. Call me lame and adult, but I side with the school administrators on this one. Ugh. Back to a summer filled of DVD box sets and CW reruns.


People In Boston...

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Do not know how to dress.

I know, this is a generalization. A blanket observation. An untrue one at that, since I am a Bostonian and I know how to dress. Quite possibly it is that Bostonians don't know how to appreciate fashion. Specifically, unappreciative towards those who are fashionable. Case in point.

My outfit today. Black Theory sleeveless top with a decorative side neck bow tie. Black footless tights (aka thin leggings, or tights with no feet, however you choose to describe them). Olive green and black Mary Jane heels (they are tall, granted, maybe about a 3.5" heel). And this Forever 21 skirt (which I love about 100x more in person than on the website).

Situation. Grabbing a 2:30pm coffee with co-workers because it's a dreary Monday and none of us can quite focus (plus, we don't really need an excuse for an afternoon coffee, other than we want one, so we went to get one). Walking out of Borders, a man (not skeezy looking) says that my outfit looks nice. Gee, thanks. Compliments. I love compliments like I love Skittles, so that's cool. Then we cross the street to get into my office building. Out of the elevator stumbles a middle-aged woman with stonewashed (ew) jeans that looks straight out of a 1980s music video. Cute for a themed party? Yes. Cute for the office? No. Appropriate for Stacy and Clinton on What Not To Wear? Yes. But I don't judge. She, however, takes no hesitation in judging me. Eying - and then scowling at my outfit! I'm sorry if I'm channelling my inner Lauren Conrad and look cute at work today. I'm sorry if I decided to not pick up the first ratty pair of jeans I saw in my room. I'm sorry if I work in a fashion-based industry where I like to look like a million bucks. Actually, I'm not sorry. Just frustrated. Do all fashionistas encounter this? Is it just me? Is my makeup smudged and I'm unaware? Answers? Anyone?


Stand & Deliver

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There is something to be said about a band that can randomly go on tour, not have so much as a new album out within the past seven years and put on one of the most solid concerts that I've seen, in a sold out venue, no less.

No Doubt performed last night at the Comcast Center in Mansfield (not Boston, for the record), Massachusetts. They performed live, amazingly well, with a great setlist. I could rave all post about the performance alone, but I won't. Those are the kind of reviews you can go to for. For me, seeing No Doubt live is a personal experience. I can say to very few bands that they helped get me through my (admittedly at times rocky) adolescence, through just about every breakup (hello, Ex-Girlfriend and Don't Speak and influenced my fashion (does anyone else still lust over the cropped yellow jeweled tank that Gwen rocks in the Don't Speak video?!).

While it wasn't my first time seeing No Doubt live, its been seven years and a few notable changes. Gwen Stefani's solo career opened No Doubt's fanbase hugely. I met new No Doubt fans who saw solo Gwen Stefani on tour. I saw people getting just as excited for Just A Girl now in 2009 like it was 1996 and the Tragic Kingdom tour all over again. Alas, I didn't appreciate the attitude of some (talking to you, mean lady sitting next to me for the second half of the show who scowled at me while I sung along to Different People - sorry if you don't know the lyrics but that's not my problem), but for the most part, convert No Doubt fans are just as good as the old-school-listened-to-Tragic-Kingdom-on-cassette-until-it-wore-out-and-wouldn't-play-anymore breed.

The setlist of No Doubt's 2009 summer tour mixes old (Tragic Kingdom era) with, well, new(ish?) (Rock Steady era). Gwen and the boys throw in their Gossip Girl featured cover of Stand & Deliver for good measure in halfway through the encore, but for the entirety of the almost two-hour show, it's a throwback to the late 1990s. It's easy to forget while watching that it's no longer 1995 (a good thing) but that means Gwen Stefani is no longer 28 or so and is not 40. Forty years old. Holy abs. Don't believe me? Check out the photos that The Phoenix has posted. Two kids and four decades. I can only hope for so much.

Thankfully not a hint of bubblegum pop Gwen Stefani (although I love everything she does, I swear!) can be found during this tour, making myself and my boyfriend happy at the end of the evening. If you're heading to the show (lucky you) take my advice and head to the merch table. Gwen's fashion career brings high-quality concert tees. Fitted, super soft, stylish and not ugly - I plan on pairing my Just A Girl tee with a pair of leggings every lazy Sunday morning.



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What goes around comes fashion. The picture above is of a MICHAEL by Michael Kors Panama Satchel and the following picture is of a bag that I picked up from a random boutique in London nearly 3 or 4 years ago :) (excuse the terrible lighting & quality, I just snapped a picture with my phone)

Tom's Shoes!

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I heard of Tom's Shoes from (gasp) my Mom and Dad months ago. Then I started seeing "Tom the shoegiver" on AT&T commercials. One morning I saw on Britney Spears's twitter (or whoever ghosts it, can I have that job, by the way?) that she bought a pair of Tom's shoes. Now, I open the PCP inbox and dear reader Meghan (thank you for being so loyal to our blog!) tipped us off to them. Clearly a post is necessary on the charitable trend that is Tom's Shoes.

Like Tom says on his AT&T commercial, "for every pair that is bought, a child in need receives a pair of shoes" (yes, I memorized that line. I do watch that much television). Less expensive than a pair of Blahnik's or Choo's, these fabulous shoes won't cramp your toes, make you trip over Boston cobblestones or make you feel overdressed. Comfy and canvas, these shoes are definitely for the girl (or boy, mommy, daddy, grandma, child, baby...) on the go.

For all you high-end designer fanatics, don't scoff at the idea of vegan, canvas shoes. Everyone needs a lazy Sunday pair of shoes. Consider it the perfect solution. Havaiana's just won't do year-round as the go-to casual flip-flops (believe me, my toes have frozen in snowbanks one too many times). Croc's are maybe the fugliest things ever (don't even try to defend these garden shoes - they are not appropriate for anywhere but the garden). No one can deny that Tom's navy tie-dye loafers are anything but cute. Plus, helping out children in need with a shoe purchase? Talk about no buyers remorse!


Pinch Me - Am I Dreaming!?

Are my eyes deceiving me? Is The Cut lying to me? Did I really just read that Jimmy Choo is teaming up with H&M for a Christmas-time collaboration discount line?

It's true fashionistas. November 14th. Line up at your nearest H&M. I will be. Talk about excitement, and just in time for my 24th birthday and Christmas! I hope Santa will buy me a pair or two (Boyfriend, take note).


Music to my ears: Amir Farid at Radisson SAS, Kuwait

(Image courtesy Amir Farid's official website)

I attended a special piano recital featuring the young Iranian-Australian pianist Amir Faird at the Radisson SAS hotel, Kuwait the other night and had a fabulous time. (Nothing like an event put on by the Kuwait Chamber Philharmonia to make you wanna put on a cute little dress and heels and act all posh and grown up for a few hours...)
The pianist was magnificent! I wish I had thought of recording him play so I could share it with you guys...something about his naughty schoolboy smile and infectious enthusiasm drew me in so I didn't spend the evening just passively listening to him but rather responding to his little improvisations and interpretations. Check out this fantastic youtube vid of him practicing for another recital to get an idea of what I mean...
Farid litereally fell into a trancelike state while playing the piano...and when you are that involved with something you are are bound to do it well. He had the entire audience transfixed on him and his piano playing alone.
Even during the interval where everyone filed out of the gorgeous Hashemi for canapes and conversation, people were just focused on going back inside and getting on with the show.
My absolutely favorite part of the recital was Farid's rendition of Ravel's Jeux d'eau ....As the title suggests, this piece is supposedly inspired by the sound of cascading water/waterfalls and is composed by an Impressionist. It conjured up images of raindrops, waterfalls, fountains and even snow flurries (don't ask...thats just what some musical interludes reminded me of). Hear another pianist play the piece.

Me talk pretty one day

(Via Gawker via The Moment)

This was too good not to post....students at some school in Vancouver (oh Canada!) put together a bunch of youtube vids so you can hear just how badly you've been mispronouncing Dolce & Gabanna and a ton of other designers.
Listen, laugh, and maybe even learn...

H20 - Nature's Best Gift

(image courtesy of

With the summer here (in spirit at least, I pray for the day it will surpass 70 degrees again in Boston), I am reminded by my mother to keep hydrated. My liquid diet of iced lattes, caffeinated iced tea, and the not-so-occasional glass of red wine, sangria or Petron margarita, while all tasty, fail me in the hydration department (and aren’t really work appropriate anyway).

In this month’s In Style, cover girl Rebecca Romijn says to keep cool and healthy, she pops a few cucumber slices into her ice water. Inspired, I tried this with best friend A in NYC. I am now hooked. At all times in my fridge is a large pitcher of homemade cucumber, lemon and lime infused water. So much cheaper than buying it bottled, I feel refreshed and healthy. Plus, the skin pluses for drinking so much cucumber water? I believe it.


Sneaker Freaker

(Image courtesy

In an NYTimes' feature, 32-year-old sneaker aficionado Jesse Villanueva breathlessly describes how he "wakes up thinking about shoes!"

(Boys, they're just like us!)

More evidence against the theory that men are from Mars and women are from Venus?

(Really) Mean Cards

(Image courtesy

Your degree is useless.

You're my second-best friend.

She may be after your money (otherwise...she seems lovely).

Some things just NEED to be said! For all those not-so-Hallmark moments, I present you with...Mean Cards.
Designed by a woman who lost her job, apartment and studio over the course of a single week, these cards are wonderfully snarky and humorous (and for the earthy and crunchy among us, eco-friendly as they're printed on recycled paper and sold with envelopes made out of brown paper grocery bags).
If you're in the States, find Mean Cards at a retailer near you or order them off the official website! :) Enjoy!

Audrey Hepburn, we love you so.

(image courtesy of

“You can always tell what kind of a person a man really thinks you are by the earrings he gives you” - Audrey Hepburn

No surprise that P and I are majorly obsessed with the one, the only, the legendary Audrey Hepburn. Maybe it was my outfit today (Theory black neck tie sleeveless top and pinstripe trousers), but I have been preoccupied with the Audrey Hepburn style all day long. Classic, elegant and timeless.

Who doesn't want to channel Ms. Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffanys while she window shops and eats a croissant and drinks a latte? Who doesn't want those oversized sunglasses, cigarette extender and strand of pearls? Who can't thank Audrey Hepburn every time they slip on a pair of ballet flats like Princess Ann does in Roman Holiday? Nina Garcia (Elle Magazine's Fashion Director) reminds us in The Little Black Book of Style that the 1950s signified the "first marriage of a designer and a movie star - Audrey Hepburn and Givenchy." And while it's certainly not the 1950s anymore (thank goodness), the definition and epitome of style remains. Excuse me while I pop in my Audrey Hepburn DVD collection and throw on a cozy black cashmere sweater (it is only 54 degrees in Boston right now afterall).


Mexican & Magnolia

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Best friend A thought that Dos Caminos at 825 3rd Avenue was the M friendly restaurant for our Saturday night dinner out. She's not my best friend for nothing. Upon walking in, I not only was completely impressed by the decor (wraparound booths! ambiance lighting!) but eyed the huge cast-iron pots at the center of each table. Guacamole bowls, I soon learned. And not just any guacamole, but the best guacamole I have ever consumed in my twenty-something years. Freshly mixed for each customer, it comes mild, medium or hot - and whichever way, delicious.

In true M form, I ordered a traditional margarita (appropriately called, "El Camino"). Strong but tasty. No complaints. No complaints about my three-cheese fondue either. Fabulous, delicious and filling - and not expensive! $30 for an NYC meal is nothing to scoff at. Our waiter was amazing and fun. He let us eat and didn't constantly ask us if we needed anything else, but came back with refills and new chips without request. Big thumbs up. Dos Caminos, plan on my return on my next NYC adventure.

Lastly, no NYC trip is complete without a few Magnolia cupcakes. I ventured away from my normal vanilla only choice onto their fabulously delicious caramel offering. If only Amtrak allowed more room, I would have brought at least 20 back to Boston with me.


Pinkberry. My New Obsession.

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Frozen yogurt (or froyo, as we all lovingly call it), used to be a mystery to me. Why buy something that tastes like a less sweet, fake Louis Vuitton version of ice cream? And why can't froyo taste like yogurt? I never could quite wrap my head around it. Until now.

Introduce Pinkberry. Smooth like soft serve, tastes like cold original yogurt. Currently in LA and NYC -- and soon to be Kuwait (lucky you P!), I was a Pinkberry virgin until my weekend's excursion to NYC. I am now obsessed, and long for Pinkberry in my own city. Boston is lacking in the froyo department, and it's a shame. My Pinkberry pick? Original with raspberries and strawberries. However, there are topping combinations for everyone's liking. From Cap'n Crunch to Coco Pebbles to kiwi and berries. Feeling adventurous? Try the pomegranate flavor! I love with every ounce of my junk food's heart. The best part? An original small only has 150 calories and if you're in the NYC area, enjoy Swirls on Wheels. The best delivery since Dominos.

Enjoy, and have an extra bite for me!


Knotty about nautical

Nautical for Summer 2009 - what's not to love? Blue, white, stripes, big buttons, white trousers and cutesy detailing...You can go super-preppy/ rivera with it or more classic, elegant, understated or take it to the extreme with kitschy, campy and retro...

My Closet = Filled By Diane von Furstenberg

(image courtesy of

I am a true city girl. From the designer wardrobe to the inner core that loves taxi rides, skyscrapers and nighttime skyline, I scream city life. It's no surprise that my original post-college plan included a move to NYC (not just a city, but the city), working for a media consulting firm and going to sample sales every weekend. But alas, priorities got rearranged, and while I see that everything worked out for my benefit, when I'm in NYC, I take to it like a fish to water. So, my first NYC sample sale excursion was no different.

The twice-a-year Diane von Furstenberg sample sale occurred this week on 5th avenue. Best friend A attended the past two sales, and always found tons of goodies, even on the last day. This summer's was no exception. $250 spent (yes, only about 2/3rds or so of the price of a wrap dress at Saks) and I'm bringing three tops, two dressy tanks, two skirts, two sweaters and an Andy Warhol collection bikini. My favorite buy, hands down, were the $50 spent on a Vezzano sweater in black. All cashmere, it screams Audrey Hepburn as Holly Golightly in Breakfast at Tiffanys. I can hardly wait for chilly fall days when I can pair it with a black trouser and heels on Newbury Street.

Inspired to go to the next DVF sample sale in NYC? Here are a few tips.

The next one is in December.

Want wrap dresses? Go there before the last day, as they're the first items to sell out.

Get there early. A and I showed up a hour early, were the second and third people in line, and were able to have a smooth shopping adventure.

As always, wear comfortable shoes. Don't bring a bag, as checking bags is mandatory. No one needs a detour before being able to rummage through.

Dressing rooms are communal, and normally a crazy circus of women tearing on and off dresses and tops. Don't be shy because, yes, you do need to try everything on.

Don't feel as though you must buy something. A weeded through everything in her size, found a dress and a skirt that are perfect, spent under $100 and has not a drop of buyers remorse.

Happy shopping!


Truth is stranger than fiction

Image courtesy of

Set to release June 16, 2009, MTV The Hills' Lauren "LC" Conrad's book "L.A. Candy" is already listed on out the preview:

Los Angeles is all about the sweet life: hot clubs, cute guys, designer . . . everything. Nineteen-year-old Jane Roberts can't wait to start living it up. She may be in L.A. for an internship, but Jane plans to play as hard as she works, and has enlisted her BFF Scarlett to join in the fun.

When Jane and Scarlett are approached by a producer who wants them to be on his new series, a "reality version of Sex and the City," they can hardly believe their luck. Their own show? Yes, please!

Soon Jane is TV's hottest star. Fame brings more than she ever imagined possible for a girl from Santa Barbara—free designer clothes, the choicest tables at the most exclusive clubs, invites to Hollywood premieres—and she's lapping up the VIP treatment with her eclectic entourage of new pals. But those same friends who are always up for a wild night are also out for a piece of Jane's spotlight.

In a city filled with people chasing after their dreams, it's not long before Jane wakes up to the reality that everyone wants something from her, and nothing is what it seems to be.

L.A. Candy is a deliciously entertaining novel about what it's like to come of age in Hollywood while starring in a reality TV show, written by a girl who has experienced it all firsthand: Lauren Conrad.

To read an excerpt of the book from Teen Vogue, click here. much as I hate to admit it, this definitely sounds like the kind of trash I would devour in one sitting...perfect beach/poolside read. Although apparently Gawker does NOT share my thoughts. LOL. Oh well...

Will you read it when it comes out?

I Love Almost Everything From My Childhood...

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I have many fond memories of my childhood. I loved my purple bike with the pink basket and koala bear patch on the front. I loved my beloved teddy bear, Honey Bear. I loved watching Sesame Street and Care Bears. I loved Sanrio products, especially Spottie Dottie (and a big shoutout to my aunt, who I heard reads my beloved blog, who gave me my first Sanrio stationary kit). From my childhood, mostly though, I loved wearing scrunchies.

Scrunchies. Pink. Purple. Turquoise. Magenta. Black. White. Yellow. Polka dotted. Striped. Glitter and bedazzled. I L-O-L-O-V-E-D scrunchies.

When I was eight. Rumor on the interwebs is that American Apparel is trying to bring back the scrunchie. I will not be jumping on this trend and reverting back to the 1980s. Some things, like ex-boyfriends and bad drinks, are worth keeping in the past, don't you think?


Why I Love Richard Chai

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On a quick break from work today, I found this interview with Richard Chai on The Cut. I realized I love him and his designs. Why? I thought you'd never ask.

1.) His last name is the name of maybe my favorite Starbucks beverage.

2.) He wears t-shirts all the time, making me feel less like a scrub for wearing mine all the time.

3.) He's basically a prodigy. Who really takes a class at Parsons when they're 13?


4.) He thinks too-skinny jeans should go bye bye. Oh Richard Chai. My new best friend.


Who hearts Joshua Jackson?

'Fringe' promotional poster via

I was never a Dawson's fan, therefore my love for Joshua Jackson is relatively newfound...
I recently discovered him on JJ Abrams' new show Fringe (which is awesome, thoroughly underrated and must be watched immediately - more on that in another post though)...Apart from being supremely cute, he is also Canadian which makes him 110% more desirable to me! :)
Anyway, I just read on UMass alum, friend and NY Pop Examiner Monica Gleberman's blog that he was part of a Canadian virtual scavenger hunt of sorts...To help celebrate the launch of Canada’s first Android-powered smartphones – the HTC Dream and HTC Magic — Canadian television star Joshua Jackson will tour secret locations in Toronto throughout the day next Monday, June 1 to meet with fans and offer chances to win Rogers prizes to anyone who locates him. You can follow Joshua’s tour around the city here, as he posts clues to his whereabouts with live blog updates and photos. Then use Google Search™, Google Maps™ and Google Latitude™ to find his location so you can meet him in person!

This is definitely one of the cooler marketing strategies I have heard of in a while. Thanks for sharing Miss Gleberman! :)

Dr Khaled Al Najdi at Dar Al Funoon, Kuwait

Kuwaiti artist Dr. Khaled Al Najdi's solo exhibition entitled 'Digital Reflections of Kuwaiti Heritage' opened today at the Dar Al Funoon art gallery in Kuwait.
An art professor at a local university here, Dr. Al Najdi's strong background in digital design is highly evident in his pieces. The incredibly stylized images you see are all apparently hand drawn and then worked on laboriously on the computer...pretty amazing stuff.
The enlarged picture is entitled "Wedding Dancers" and shows two traditionally clad women celebrating and the background shows a Sadu rug and Arabic coffee pot.
The rest of the exhibition shows the people on the peripheries of Kuwaiti society and that includes traditional bakers, falconers, boat builders and herdsmen. He captures the most obviously mundane of situations and slaps them on the canvas for us to see...and makes us drink in the images of everyday we so often ignore from the comfort of our air conditioned villas and luxury cars.
The exhibition will run until June 7. For more information, call 00965 2243 3138

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