Thursday, October 21, 2010

Designer Robin Brouillette at Julia Farr--tonight

Get a jump on the holiday and gala season. Join Julia Farr from 5:30 - 8:30 in her new boutique to meet designer Robin Brouillette and enjoy champagne, hors d'oeuvres and a trunk show of her lovely evening gowns.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The heart is a fickle hunter....of shoes

Last year I was in love (and a little bit of lust) with this Badgley Mischka...such a party girl.

This year, I have a new love. More subdued, but tantalizing with a quiet passion just under the surface of its slightly authoritarian exterior:

Prada, Neiman Marcus Mazza Gallerie
My change of heart was vindicated (egged on?) when I spotted these on Julia Farr at the grand opening of her new boutique. 

Frailty, thy name is woman.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Make your rezzies--Bethesda Row Restaurant Week is here

It's here! Try any of the amazing restaurants in downtown Bethesda during B-Row's Restaurant Week. Now is a great time to try out newbies American Tap Room and Taylor Gourmet, as well as old faves like Jaleo and Cafe Deluxe. All restaurants are serving up three-course lunches for $15 and three-course dinners for $30.  Below is a sampling of what's in store at American Tap Room:
Starters: Choose one:

Maryland Crab soup or Soup of the day

House Salad with choice of dressing

Entrees: Choose from:

Steak Frites
Grilled NY strip with garlic herb butter and shoestring potato

Southwest shrimp salad
Grilled spiced shrimp with corn, tomatoes, avocado, and shredded cheese. Served with house made ranch dressing and tortilla strips

Grilled Chicken Breast
Served with Italian vegetable medley with a light basil sauce

Choice of

Maryland Crab Soup or House salad

Choice of

Atlantic salmon
Seared filet of salmon with a grain mustard sauce with asparagus

Seared Tuna Salad
Sashimi grade tuna with an exotic mix of Asian greens and seaweed

Chicken Penne Primavera
Penne with fresh vegetables and grilled chicken with Parmesan cheese sauce.

12oz Rib Eye
Served with grilled asparagus and garlic herb butter

Choice of

Crème Brulée
A soft creamy custard awaits you under a caramelized sugar shell

Warm chocolate cake
Made with Belgian dark chocolate and served warm

Mixed Berries
Served with crème anglaise on the side

Not bad!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Chic Geeks

Tonight's the night to see the techno-geeks go chic at Bloomingdale's, Chevy Chase. The Geek 2 Chic fashion show starts at 6:30 tonight and will be MC'd by Karen Sommer Shalett, editor-in-chief of DC Magazine. Tickets start at $45  and benefit the Heart of America Foundation, a DC-based national nonprofit that focuses on providing children with the right tools to "read, succeed, and make a difference." The geeky lineup (of good sports) includes David All, President, David All Group;  Aaron Batalion, CTO & Co-Founder, Living Social; and Chris Brown, Director of Digital Strategy, Quinn Gillespie & Associates. A great way to de-geek and let that brainy hotness shine for a good cause. Click here for tickets. 

Monday, October 11, 2010

Lululemon--where the "ambassadors" came out to play

Bethesda Row's Boutique Week ended with a fashionable bang Friday night at Bethesda's lululemon athletica. The stores' super-fit "ambassadors," a mix of athletes, trainers and even a 2012 Olympic hopeful, strutted the runway in a mix of lululemon apparel--clothes for tennis, running, yoga and more. Customers and clients packed the store to cheer them on and sipped on refreshing peach bellinis courtesy of the W Hotel. In addition to a fabulous show, complete with glittering runway and MC, guests were treated to a goody bag filled with gifts.

WSC Personal trainer Madeleine Watkins and friend, Annie Slacter

Fitness First trainer Robin Gmeiner

Friday, October 8, 2010

Baby Love and shoes at Sassanova

Norah O'Donnell, Elizabeth Thorp and Isabelle
Baby shoes, grown-up shoes and Norah O'Donnell signing her bestsellling cookbook, Baby Love , is what was in store last night at Sassanova in Bethesda. O'Donnell of MSNBC co-wrote the book with her husband, local chef Geoff Tracy (Chef Geoff).  The book presents healthy, organic alternatives to processed baby foods that the authors say are simple and easy to whip up (they have three children and work all the time so should know). We also loved looking at all the shoes, including the cutest little ones for kids, and meeting Elizabeth Thorp of and her daughter Isabelle.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Shoshanna, with a side of window and Chic P salad

Last spring my daughter Maddie and I jaunted to Georgetown to meet designer Shoshanna Lonstein Gruss at Urban Chic's trunk show. Last night we set out for the Bethesda location to see the latest from the designer and visit with fashion blogger Betsy Lowther as part of Bethesda Row's Boutique Week. The dresses were a classic mix of fem with a subtle touch of sexy. Shoshanna doesn't do plunging necklines or slit up-to-there skirts. Her bright florals have more subtle details--off the shoulder, ruching, and gathered skirts. Betsy looked great dressed in a flowered ruched number we all love.

But stay with me...there are two more parts to the story. The Before:
... the fantastic window display we passed at Ginger. We love this dress made of book pages--perfect statement of book + fashion (see my prior Devil Wears Prada post)

and After:

...amazing salad at Sweetgreen. I've already had the "bondi" and "guacamole greens" with shrimp and I love them both. Because I'm a falafel lover I tried out the Chic P... The best. I loved the crunch of the spinach and pita chips combined with soft, warm, spicy falafel. The salad also has roasted yellow peppers, mesclun and chickpeas all dressed with a light tahini/hummus lemon dressing. It was a bowl full of my favorite tastes. The textures worked splendidly as well--not too salty, mushy, hard or crunchy. A home run--especially paired with their deliciously chewy brown bread.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Boutique Week moving's stop Urban Chic!

Today Boutique Week highlights Urban Chic, who is hosting a Shoshanna fall 2010 trunk show. Drop by to see the fall collection and receive 15% off Shoshanna. Tonight enjoy some bubbly and meet Betsy Lowther of popular fashion blog

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Ginger kicks off Boutique Week events with The Devil Wears Prada author Lauren Weisberger

Annie Lou Bayly and Lauren Weisberger
It was a writerly crowd last night at Gretchen Hitchner's Ginger in Bethesda--which would be fitting since owner Gretchen Hitchner is a writer herself, having been a Capitol Hill press secretary before following her passion and getting into the business of fashion. Lauren Weisberger, who combined writing and fashion brilliantly in The Devil Wears Prada, was signing copies of her new book, Last Night at Chateau Marmont, where instead of a young, single protagonist tormented by her ruthless fashion-editor boss, the starring roles go to a young couple struggling with the demands of newfound celebrity and long-term travel on a marriage. Annie Lou Bayly of DailyCandy mingled among the crowd who were sipping wine, buying books and filling up the dressing rooms with the fabulous fall clothes at Ginger.

Zena Polin, Gretchen Hitchner, Me (Karen Watkins)

Tonight: Look for Andrea Rodgers of at J. McLaughlin and a trunk show of Kenneth Jay Lane and Lauren G. Adams jewelry--the cuffs are especially hot.

Monday, October 4, 2010

All Access: Fashion--The Paul Sinclaire Runway Show Redux

Who'd a thunk it?? Wow! A big fashion show like this in a mall--and free? Friday night's All Access: Fashion show of Paul Sinclaire's womenswear line for Saks Fifth Avenue brought out mall patrons, local stars and national celebrities to Tysons Galleria. Patricia Field, award-winning costume designer and stylist for Sex in the City and The Devil Wears Prada, made her entrance, greeting the front row guests (which included Real DC Housewives castmembers), and then took the stage to introduce the show. Though her speech was incredibly short, she was long on star power with her long red hair, cropped bangs, great legs and flanked by style guys with fab studded shoes. The fashion show was a little more reigned in than Ms. Field's entourage, with lots of ruffles and bows, trim A-line skirts, high waists and and bateau necks. The looks had a slightly French and definite ladylike theme. Trousers were neatly cuffed and cropped.  Mr. Sinclaire, who has consulted for fashion houses like Dior, sat modestly among the crowd, which stretched up all three levels of the mall.  After the show, things loosened up considerably as VIP attendees were treated to a cocktail party,  complete with waiters, bars, a silent auction, swag--and lots of photos.

The After Party
Paul Sinclaire

Real DC Housewives castmembers

Glamazon Diaries Makeda Maggau Sackey and Ebong Eka

Kelly Collis (left)  and Laura Chavez (center)