Tuesday, March 30, 2010

MoCo's The Daily Dish Gets Their Groupon

If you're not already a member of the social savings club, Groupon.com, today might be a good day to sign up and pay $10 for $20 worth of delicious homemade fare made with local ingredients at The Daily Dish A Restaurant and Catering Company in Silver Spring. The restaurant has it all: fine cuisine, great wine list, homemade desserts and a weekend Bloody Mary Bar with brunch. Click here for the Groupon.com special

Monday, March 29, 2010

Tashia Senn show at Hela Spa

Saturday night Hela Spa and Ted Gibson Salon in Chevy Chase hosted a Tashia Senn fashion presentation featuring the local designer's fabulous fall/winter 2010 collection. The architectural collars and structure combined with flowing fabrics and ruffles reminded me a bit of Akris meets Armani--feminine and strong. I appreciated the originality of the collection and how all the pieces--though different--worked together. A brick dress not only had striking lines in front, but enough detail in the back to make the dress a definite parting thought. Notable also was a subtle gray architectural jumpsuit with a strong collar that culminated in loose, long legs--and a big, red zipper going up the back. A soft, evening dress in a gray tone-on-tone stripes flowed softly in perfect contrast against the more structural pieces that highlighted the show. There was no shortage of fun in this elegant collection--a bright dress with a mini-skirt composed of yellow feathers was the eye-catching showoff. Hard to believe this young designer launched her first collection last fall; we'll be following her. The night wouldn't be complete with swag and food: Guests received goodie bags of salon products and Ruth's Chris steakhouse provided crabcake sandwiches and platters of munchies.

Tashia Senn with spa manager Emily Villalva

Post-runway poses

I want to swirl around in this dress. I love how it both contrasts and fits perfectly
with the orange dress next to it.

Most back views were as interesting as the fronts

Models mingled in the salon, post-show

Love this high-collared coat

Note the fun red zipper on the back of the jumpsuit that's also pictured below.

Kay Unger at Tysons Galleria

Enjoy this clip (courtesy of Svelte, LLC) of fashion designer Kay Unger's philanthropic appearance at a fashion show supporting The Alternative House. The event was held at Saks Fifth Avenue in Tysons Galleria. It looks like dresses are back this spring.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Ginger Snapped

In case you missed it, here are some snapshots from the fun party at Ginger last Thursday in honor of jewelry designer Suzanne Somersall Allis' Sakura collection -- just in time for the cherry blossoms. Left is the spectacular spring window display. Owner Gretchen Hitchner stocks her shop with the most fabulous clothes: I could chuck most everything in my closet and restock with Yoana Baraschi and Calypso. (Although, I must admit I made a mad dash to the cupcakes by Fancy Cakes by Leslie before I even got close to the dressing room...)

Suzanne Somersall Allis loves the cupcakes too! (Photo by Mark Silva)

Chocolate cupcakes with a secret cherry surprise

Suzanne's sparkling rings

Gorgeous display--love Cupcake wine

Miya Aoki provided Japanese koto music

Spring shoes! Note the peek-a-booties and the slide perched on a stack of Cathy Alter's books

Friday, March 26, 2010

Weekend Update

Just news today. Two happenings that piqued my interest....

Greenterns: If you're looking to hire an intern or be an intern in a green industry, don't miss the first Bethesda Green "Fields of Green" internship fair tomorrow (Saturday) from 11 - 3:30 at the BCC Regional Services Center, 4805 Edgemoor Lane. Businesses, nonprofits and businesses include Green America, Clean Currents, Honest Tea, Leo Sunergy Corp., Montgomery College and more. Info available at www.bethesdagreen.org.

Boardwalk Run: Chic to Chic designer consignment store is hosting their 5K/1K walk run -- The Great Chic to Chic Challenge this Sunday at Rio Washingtonian Center at 10 am. The $20 entry fee benefits FamilyServices.org and GaithersburgHelp.org. There will be trainers and podiatrists on hand before the race and post-race treats from Corner Bakery. Goody bags with "goodies" from local merchants including Imagine Fashion Apothecary, Stretchalicious, Dick's Sporting Goods, Bath & Body Works, Daisy's Spa and more.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Rewriting Reality

Last night at Johns Hopkins University I got to hear David Shields talk about books, literature and literary forms. I most enjoyed listening to the words the writer had carefully wrought about his new book, Reality Hunger: A Manifesto, which is comprised of ordered unattributed quotations both borrowed and his own (and which I hadn't read). On the Metro ride down, I'd said to my friend, a fiction writer and playwright, that I like essay and poetry. So when I arrived to hear about this book, I was overexcited by the connection I felt to Shields' discussion, which in a poor, simplisitic recap, was a plea to recapture the lost art of the lyric essay and apply more immediacy to the act of writing--dispelling conventional form in a quest to get to truth. (Poetry, anyone?) He seeks to create a new genre encompassing both the borrowed and the new, which may not sit well with those writers for whom Plagiarism is the first writerly deadly sin. (But even in memoir...doesn't memory fib a bit? Emphasizing selective details that may not have mattered much to the original real-life run? Choosing certain events over others...?) Knowing I was in the presence of A Very Important Writer, I purchased a copy, had it signed and chatted briefly with him about making an essay culled from the process of writing a journalistic story gone amok. I felt a new inspiration and validation. Doesn't happen often, but when it does ... boom! Click here for the March 12 NY Times review and here for Cathy Alter's take in Atlantic.com.

Next up: A long-overdue recap of Brunch among Bras at Sylene. Yes, and that is how my reality writes itself.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Happy Hair

I've tried just about every volumizing, thickening, ooomph-adding hair shampoo on the market. I'd finally settled on a drugstore brand, until I washed my mopey tresses with Max Green Alchemy Scalp Rescue natural shampoo. I usually hate anything too natural that doesn't suds up and make a big frothy lather (like the "purging/renewing" feel). Anyhow, this shampoo (no petrochemicals, sodium lauryl sulfate or parabens) whips up into a creamy lather and the amazing conditioner didn't make my hair fall flat. My hairdresser, Rudi, always told me never to use conditioner on my limp, listless locks. The last thing they need is to be any softer--or tame. But this conditioner added a happy bounce to my hair and when I styled it (which I rarely do, sorry Rudi) it held!! It shone; it actually moved! I had much happier hair. Sara Damelio, the skincare whiz behind Skincando's Combat Ready Balm, says she's even GROWN more hair from the product. I got mine at The Still Point holistic spa in Takoma Park. Find it also at Roots Market in Olney or online here.

Monday, March 15, 2010

CityShopGirl's Spring Trend Break Down

The fashion-savvy Kelly Collis Fredrick of DC-based CityShopGirl dishes about the latest spring trends today on DC's News Channel 8. Blues, greens, espadrilles and other classic colors and styles are livened up with subtle detail and embellishments. I especially loved the dark skirt with the metallic hue and lace petticoat trim. Watch the interview and get the rest of Kelly's tips, stores and trends here.

Sarah Pekkanen's The Opposite of Me

In case you missed Sarah Pekkanen read from her debut novel The Opposite of Me at Barnes & Noble last week, you can catch her tonight at The Friendship Heights Village Center in Chevy Chase. (People magazine gave the debut novel 3.5 out of 4 stars!!) The Bethesda Magazine columnist manages to raise three young children, blog for The Debutante Ball, write a book, and get out of the house to read from it. Think we might be able to manage the "getting out of the house" part to attend? Just send an RSVP to jenniefogarty@gmail.com or call 301-656-2797. In case you miss it, Sarah is also reading at Politics and Prose April 3. A complete list of readings is available here.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Friday post about Saturday night blues

Photo by Steve "Buddy" Walker

Saturday night means Blues at Beale Street Grill (in Rockville, not Memphis, who knew?) and if its shopping center location doesn't scream Memphis, the music certainly will. Last week Stompin' Jay Summerour and Daryl Davis put on a show worthy of Beale Street, blazing hot harmonica, deep vocals and fingers that tickled the ivories with lightning speed. Even when Daryl covered the keyboard with a scarf, his notes didn't miss. Eric Selby, seemingly caught in a blues-inspired trance, was flawless on drums; bass notes were plucked out by Gene Monroe. Just as we thought it couldn't get any better,Ida Campbell of WPFW-FM strolled in and grabbed a mike to show off her vocals. The night got cozier as other musicians showed up for an impromptu jam. Oh, and did I mention the food? The ribs prepared with a spicy dry rub and served with honey bbq sauce were hugely successful at our table. Other faves included deep-fried green beans, grilled romaine salad with salmon, perfectly spiced buffalo chicken salad, bottles of red wine and shots of Patron...Patron? Yes. That too. They also have every kind of wing and burger imaginable. 9712 Traville Gateway Drive, 301-838-5590

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Jammin' in the pink

Though the Pink Fashion Rocks fashion event held in DC's Longview Gallery may have had issues called out by other media (if you can call crowd overflow at a charity event a "flaw"), too much press (that would include Women's Wear Daily) and live music that took up precious floor space, none of those problems would have existed had the event not been such a huge success. The fashion show drew crowds who helped raise nearly $20,000 in support of breast cancer research, according to Christa Floresca, who started Pink Jams! when her friend succumbed to the disease. Greater Washington Fashion Chamber of Commerce was co-host of the event that featured 14 local designers touting a lineup of pink fashions strutted down the hot pink runway by local "real" people. Baltimore's Charm City Devils donated live rocking tunes that lent all that pink some edgy thump. The grand finale was Betsey Johnson's display of bustles, street glam and lace. As for me, I got to meet and bump elbows with a slew of editors, photographers, writers and fashion designers angling for a good view. Special shout-out to Bethesda's Meena Tharmaratnam of Ibhana whose model wore a high-feathered head piece and hot pink structured dress that perfectly captured the spirit of the evening.

Pre-show snippets:

Meena Tharmaratnam of Ibhana

Designer Stella Bonds

Perfection in pink ruffles

Fab suit worn by Howard Nelson Cromwell Jr.
editor in chief of DC's Most Fabulous magazine

Fabulous braised duck on endive
catered by The Daily Dish and served by
the fabulous Maddie Watkins

Excerpts from the Runway: