Inspiration (and a story): Plum Sykes (and a trench coat)

Plum Sykes
I have been collecting Vogue magazines for a long time.  I own almost every issue since about 1997.  I started reading it in 10th grade, and I can't stop.  And I don't want to stop.  It makes me happy.  Years ago, one of Vogue's former regular contributors (she now writes for the magazine only sporadically, as she's a Mom and a novelist and all sorts of other fun things) was Plum Sykes, probably the most perfect author they've had.  This isn't a snub to anyone who writes for Anna regularly, but it's simply to say that she's everything you could wish for in a fashion columnist.  She's 6 feet tall, weighs like 15 pounds, she's British, and she's got a real sense of humour.  She doesn't take herself, or anyone else, too seriously, but she knows what the heck she's talking about.
Years ago, Plum wrote an article about The Trench.  I capitalize it because it was a Burberry.  And not just any Burberry, it was a custom made, perfect trench coat, which I'm sure the magazine paid for, and paid her to write about.  That's double rewards right there.  The moment in which I read that article was the moment I started wanting a trench coat.  Casablanca made teenage Jillian want a trench in a romantic kind of way, Plum made her want one in a classic kind of way.  Now grow-up Jill finally has one. (I will also say that this summer of rain inspired me to actually do some research and buy one, and I was also inspired, embarrassingly, by NBC's newest incarnation of Jane Timmoney, played by Maria Bello, who has a real nice one.)
Kate Moss in a classic Burberry trench

His and hers - Holly Golightly knew her fashion
The strangely ironic thing is that I bought the thing from Delia's, which is now a quintessential teenage kind of store.  I was always a big fan, especially years ago, when it was more like a mail-order department store, where you could buy Free People before Free People had a store, when it was just a cool little hippie brand, and now it's like, a great big hippie brand.  Anyway, now, Delia's is like a place that almost exclusively sells its own stuff, and has stores in the mall, and seems to specialize in snarky/retro graphic tees that I can't wear because I'm too old, and my sense of humour has matured with me.  BUT if you know what you're looking for, there's nowhere better to get a good deal.  And here it is... my beautiful, perfect trench.  It's not Burberry, there's no fancy plaid lining, and it will never be featured in my fav mag, but it fits me, and it has the cool extra button/flap at the top that probably served a purpose for Rick and Ilsa, but doesn't really now (Banana Republic's doesn't have it, and J. Crew's does, but it was $300). AND guess what?  It was only $50 with shipping.  Beat that.  Yeah, you can't.  Not even Plum can.

My own personal button


Inspiration: The Bouvier Sisters

One of my favorite (and I have MANY) coffee table books is called One Special Summer. It's an illustrated account of Jackie and Lee Bouvier's adventures in Europe during the summer of 1951. Jackie drew the pictures, they both wrote the words. These are 2 women that inspired fashion and decorating not just in their prime, but even now, almost 60 years later. Lee was always the more risky of the two, the younger sister, bolder. Jackie married a Senator, Lee married a Prince. Jackie used history and tradition to redecorate the White House, Lee used exotic prints and stand-out details in her interior decorating. (I have to admit, Lee is my fav, but I love Jackie so much..) There isn't one stronger than the other, and together they are perfection.
ALSO: someday I will post about their insanely, loveably eccentric aunt and cousin.
But here, for your enjoyment, are the Sisters Bouvier:


INSPIRATION: Laurie Partridge

When I was a little kid, I remember being sick, laying in bed with a washcloth on my forehead, my mom moving the TV into my room. And I specifically remember the beginning of The Partridge Family theme song, and my mom getting up and changing the channel. I just assumed it was some kind of grown-up show, something kids couldn't watch. Turns out, Mom just thought it was annoying. Perhaps this adds to my current obsession with Laurie Partridge, and her huge-mouthed, wide-eyed gorgeousness. I don't know. All I know is, Mom thought she was a nerd, I love her, and I'm not sure we can both be right. Laurie's 70s style staples: prairie-inspired maxi dresses (Jessica McClintock/Gunne Sax), floppy hats, sweater vests (vests in general are a huge Partridge item), big collars, and lots of stripes.

Curate: LOVE

It's what I love. I can't help it. I love being fancy, pretty, stylish, vintage, crazy, outrageo
us, colorful, happy, and building my live around the things I love. There is a skill to
this, I think, and that's something I'm still working on. You can collect based on aesthetic, but every collection needs a curation. Every grouping needs to be edited. So, I present as many new (or new to me) things as I can, hoping to find some things that really stick.