Friday, July 29, 2011

Sometimes girl waits for sometimes bus

So i ride slooooowly by this woman waiting at the bus stop at Grand and Grotto in St. Paul and i had two thoughts (thus completely occupying all the gray cells so i had to get off my bike lest i tip over):
1. unbuttoned sundress, ribcage-hugging jorts, ankle boots and accessories that double as weapons or intergalactic communicators -- what's someone from minneapolis doing over here? and
2. should i tell her that bus never comes?
Well shut my mouth, she was from across the river alright, chicago to be exact. And the whole funky boots-in-summer thing is a work-related hazard because she's one of the proprietors of The Sometimes Store,, a vintage shop in chicago's pilsen neighborhood. it's open sometimes, see, that's why...sheesh. she and a girlfriend started it -- she curates the black collection (do me a great big huge favor and go to the website now so i make the tiniest bit of sense). Their merchandising philosophy really resonates: We're known for being cheap but we don't sell crap. Since she's sitting on this bench waiting for the sometimes bus (somebody stop me), i'm guessing this is one of those times the shop isn't open. Residents of chicago must like a bit of mystery and unpredictability in their lives (this explains the booming hot dog business) because the Sometimes Store has gotten stacks of press, all of it effing good, e.g. I went there and it was closed-- love! Saw the tiniest sliver of six things that might be cute!
Holy crotchal area, last time i zoomed in on pieces of flair the same thing happened -- i actually zoomed in on their parts. ok well, drag your pervy eyes over to the left and feast em on the zena cuff, and then steer north to the ostrich egg-sized pendants, and from there, riiiiiiiight all the way to the edge of sanity or until you think you see a blue coffee table on her fingers. It's a ring! like red lipstick, i adore prehistoric-sized accessories... on other people. last time i tried this at home kids it was like someone had weighted the body but forgot to throw it in the East River.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

six degrees of connection

Good things come to those who stalk, and i mean that in the least creepy way possible.  i was actually pursuing Natalie's neighbors with significant zeal on a paying gig (honing my craft, gangstas, honing my craft) and while they eluded me, i saw Natalie in her beautifully printed vintage shirtdress (she has a whole collection of em), cute red belt and flats and tons 'o tats. she gave the demure shirtdress a whole new life, as a musician! the dress is not the musician, silly, natalie is. natalie lovejoy, or if you'd like to visit her online,  i'm enjoying the CD she gave me even now. so i'd already met a fascinating person with great style and scored a CD, when it kept getting better and more coincidental. she also cuts hair (to fund the music biz, and buy cute retro dresses) and was about to go cut the hair of an architect i'm working with on above mentioned paying gig! in fact, she's working with same architect on same project i'm writing about! too weird and coincidental! i was thinking-- look at all these connections! she was like, i gotta go. and then, as happens when i'm in the presence of stylists and plastic surgeons, i got a little self-conscious. i had just got out of the pool and clapped a bike helmet on the whole chemically mess so i looked:
A. very nice
B. like Ariel
C. like Helena Bonham Carter on a fragile day
By the by, Natalie is playing a Kickstarter concert at Aster Cafe on Aug 11th. so do something with your hair for crying out loud and go.

formally thrift shopping

Here is a quiet young woman who was in the zone, both mastering the high/low lace dress/simple flats thing and enjoying the zen of solo thrift shopping, where hideous lighting and disinfectant smells signal a happy alert state and miles o' crap color and texture blur pleasingly and you wait like an innocent for the Good Thing (it's a surprise, you could never imagine anything so wonderful, my version of the rapture) to speak to you -- Hey you, with the sweat stains. close your mouth and buy me. and maybe take a shower for the love of...
So naturally i had to intrude and get all up in her business. Another blissful moment ruined. i do what i can. She wishes the dress was vintage but alas, it has less than five years of bodily fluids embedded in its lacey fibers.

on the way to yoga class

Her yoga class, not mine. (i have been banned from all yoga classes and most group athletic pursuits for laughing inappropriately).   I saw her biking in an orange shirt and mulberry colored skirt and cool print t-shirt her aunt (?) gave her and you don't see someone biking in that color combo very often, so i gave chase (i was also pedaling) which was somewhat ill-advised as it was up the marshall ave. hill and the sweat index was at public nuisance levels. i may have captured her mid-blink, which is one of my goals, or perhaps her eyes were watering from the poisonous scent and sight before her. hopefully she can clear her mind of that image in yoga class. do you just want to weep with joy over the way the lines on the road point right to this woman on her bike? i do don't either.

Monday, July 25, 2011

no Meatloaf, no gala

Look at this completely candid street style photo i got of Bill Clinton!
 So i vacillated like crazy about whether to hop on my broom/bike and do some gala level stalking at the Starkey dog fight. In favor was it was a gorgeous evening and in my own backyard and big stars like Meatloaf would be there. Also Bill Clinton. Opposed were that it was a gorgeous evening and i had hamburgers grilling in my backyard and big stars like Meatloaf would be there. And Bill Clinton. Hamburgers won out over Meatloaf! That, and the fact that events like this are the antithesis of street style and, like a kids' birthday party, bring out the Helena Bonham Carter in ordinarily sweet and innocent dressers. Dinner consumed in our usual piranha-like 17 seconds, thoughts turned to dessert and the Dairy Queen down on West 7th, near River Centre. Or as i like to call it, River Center. i figured i could catch the first sneaker-outers, and i was right. the above photo is a cautionary tale of the kind of really terrible shadows and lighting that happen when you try to take a picture during an atomic blast. or at about 7 pm out on kellogg blvd. so in the event of the big one, don't try to take a photo.  they got their finery at Madalestroms. at exactly 7:01, i saw whoopi goldberg sneaking out but i had the good taste not to document it.

What a trooper! Smiling and searing her eyeballs, professional journalist (is this Natalie Kane? she introduced herself but i was only listening for my own name because i'm a worthless journalist) from Channel 4 is working this Nicole Miller upholstery. 
i rode around to the back entrance looking for Meatloaf and hung around until a bum, or maybe Billy Ray Cyrus, made a lewd suggestion and because it did not involve Dairy Queen, i left.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

what would Lady Gaga wear at Trader Joes?

 Answer is: Tahari dress with pearl-esque necklace and Calvin Klein pumps. Let me give you a version, to the best of my memory, of the firehose of information i got in the space of 27 seconds or so in the parking lot of Trader Joes on a Saturday when she had returned her cart already and several drivers were waiting for her spot with the safety off of their sawed-off shotgun after i said (insincerely) I'm sorry to bother you:
Not at all I'm so honored I was at a wedding shower The dress is Tahari because I have a summer internship at ____(missed it)____ and the shoes are Calvin Klein I think of them as my Lady Gaga shoes because they're high but I can wear them to work and i was looking for something really ... out there and this was at the same time as Alexander McQueen came out with the armadillo shoe (there was a connection between these shoes and the armadillo shoe, perhaps philosophy, but i didn't have time to establish) and Jessica Simpson made a high heeled pump and (somebody else) did too but everyone had them and i found these and they're high but pretty comfortable and have some texture which i like and they're a little different and the platform at the front isn't all that high so they don't look like stripper shoes. Because that might not be good.
And we agreed stripper shoes can be misinterpreted. In Minnesota. And she got in her car and i went in Trader Joes and a driver eased off on the trigger, though his jaw had a cramp it was clenched so tight.

a Grand Saturday afternoon

 Meet Amy. She is one of those people who expresses herself well via fashion. Here she is wearing the clothing equivalent of MmmBop by Hanson as you would on a beautiful Saturday.  Catchy, lite, lotta harmony, you can dance in it. Also this multi-piece ensemble says Yay, i can wear more than one item of clothing without passing out from heat! She gets material from thrift stores.

I asked her to stand this way so you could see the nice shape of her UV protection. It's from Gap, as is her smocked blouse. She splurged on comfortable and good lookin sandals from Schuh. Shoulda been from Sandolls (i slay myself). She's standing outside My Sisters Closet because it's one of her favorite shops.  I guess if it was 100% your very favorite shop, you'd be inside it. Just to introduce some trash talking to competitive shopping, she is not going to find a purple vintage pencil skirt with pleats and buttons in the back because it's in my backpack. So don't even look for that.... Don't even.... Cuz i bought it. I guess mad skillz at trash talking about running do not cross over to shopping.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Stone Arch Bridge

OK everyone turn around and look at this -- an obvious street style plant. Who knew the city of Minneapolis was just that desperate to maintain fashion dominion over their sibling St. Paul (mmmm dysfunctional families) as to stage a style sighting. Heaven knows how many times this woman strolled oh so casually (an attempt at sarcasm -- this is professional styling or i'll sell my teeth)  over the Stone Arch Bridge waiting for some sTooly like me to come along. The out-of-frame man-ccessory? Duh, makeup man. He dabbed off the sweat every time they got to the end of the bridge. 

Now that i've completed the University's study of paranoid schizophrenics i get to start taking the meds, so that's probably a plot relief to all. Let's get down to it. Unlike the blissfully label-unaware woman at Bastille Dayz a few posts ago, this woman practically had a printed wardrobe list with QR codes (ok, paranoid like a fox i am).  The grab-you-by-the-eyeballs red gladiator sandals are by El Naturalista from and they were sustainably and sensitively made by proud South American native people who were encouraged to celebrate their traditional lifestyle unless it was a drag in which case they were given an iPhone 4G and taught how hack it (psyche! AT&T). The skirt is from Cliche and fits perfectly and even though it's gathered it doesn't make her look like a pumpkin (hello makeup man/husband/stylist with your Hollywood fashion tape).  The ruffly shirt doesn't go too far so as to become a puffy shirt and i really really liked it until she told me it was Forever 21 and i went into a spiral of despair over the futility of couture workmanship. she talked me off the ledge (bridge) by saying it was necessary to achieve sweatshop/sustainable balance with the strong shoeju voodoo going on down below.  Why did i imagine my plastic hello kitty point n shoot which has little cats inside coloring your pictures with crayons would allow me to zoom in on her earrings? It did not. Well huh. Because her earrings, by Marisa Martinez up in the Casket Arts Bldg in NE, were these spectacular blue drops hung from a filigreed setting... well they were the prettiest damn thing you ever didn't see. Man, i hope i get a shitload of advertising $$$ from all this name dropping.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

University of Minnesota

 When you look at this photo, think Everything's relative. Because when I saw her, I was thinking, Holy KodaChrome, there's a hootenanny of color going on. And while I correctly identified her look as rockabilly (like i hate when i say Namaste to nuns and am real careful not to touch their heads or point with my feet, and they're like You're going to hell beeyitch), she said her hair was kinda blah (is this what a Case Of The Thursdays looks like?) and she was having it lit on fire later today. Or maybe flaming. Flamed? Colored. She does swing dancing and was at the U for orientation. Clowns to the left of us, jokers to the right (orientation, get it?)... here i am, stuck in the 70s.

Wow look at all that construction! If that was your first thought, come see me. I have some Viagra samples that absolutely have not expired. Aye yi yi people, this dude is serving up 110%, 27/4 and you're talking about light rail? In your heart of hearts now, were you ever this cool? Is this dude really that cool? hard to say, i have no experience thereof. even as i took this picture, i was wearing a regulation awesome bike helmet and sweat stains. Let this be a lesson to you young man-of-no-collar-- don't get old and shameless. And if you do, wear cotton.

Monday, July 18, 2011

manly touches in unusual places

The title of this post refers not to bad touch, stranger danger, but rather to the suede elbow patches on her otherwise feminine sweater and his Stewart plaid tank top. actually now that i see that tank top again in this photo, i'm willing to deal for it, that's how bad i want it. trying to think of what i've got to sell, let's see -- ok ok, pair of Ron Hill tracksters from the 70s (i.e. vintage track pants in a sweat-encouraging, nonbreathable nylon with stirrups), laundered fairly recently, and i throw in my 17-year-old westie Rascal. take it or leave it, that's my final offer. 
She just got back from studying in Spain which is why she's wearing her Spanish lavender sweater with the suede elbow patches that she got for $3 and her Spanish orange shorts together. that's what you do when you get back from a trip. even before i busted into the three buck chuck in my basket (ironically, same cost as the sweater and if i had to choose... ooo that would be difficult), i could feel the european-ness. this guy, he's got no european excuse. dude's working the sick plaid tank top.

Bastille Day at Barbette

 Manly, aye, but i like it too. 'member that irish spring deodorant soap commercial from the pleistocene? i know, stop with the highbrow academic references already. the two above freshened up, put on their matching outfits and stepped on down to Barbette to watch the fire juggler in close proximity with other sweaty people, as you would on a stinking hot sunday. i've noticed more guys buying into the breezy updraft-availing kilt. unfortunately their footwear has not evolved similarly -- this guy is actually carrying around two aquariums full of sweat on the end of his legs.

 I just want to validate her cute shoes and nice graphic legs and color-blocked shoulders, so she knows her suffering was not in vain. seriously, tights? i was only barely covering the private bits because food was being served, and i was still about to pass out. she said she was covering up all the mosquito bites.

Is she just wearing this Marimekko-esque frock or what? Observe not only the groovy pattern but also the two keyhole cutouts at the neck. Here's the truly amazing part-- she did not know the label on the dress. Yes, purchased at Nu Look consignment, but label? designer? nuthin. irrelevant. as a career label ho, my world was rocked by this blithe innocence and i had to furrow my brow  even more than it normally is and let the synapses scurry around with the air intake slightly ajar. wha?

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Rondo romper

You know what's hot this summer? Rompers. And these split personality sandals, open at the toe but very protective of the ankle. I'm basing this fashion assessment on the six rompers and eight ankle-swaddling sandals spotted on a swing through Rondo Days. Who wore it best? She did (you'll have to take my word on that).  She made a stab at saying her hair was a hot mess but one look at the hostile takeover happening on my head and she realized she didn't know what hot mess was. 
My mom used to get a lot of joy out of saying It's humid-a separating each syllable and pronouncing it with a short u sound, huh, mid pressing her lips together on the m, and adding the extra a (another short u sound) to up the fun. Try it. Huh mid uh. Fun huh? She was of German descent.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Highland Fest

Yah, Kate Moss traipsing through the mud in wellies at Glastonbury -- who needs it? We've got Highland Fest and these good sports. I did not ask my new best friend on the right to hold up my card but he did. Solid bro. The fedora he's rocking actually belongs to the woman on the left, whose Pucci inspired dress i'm digging. Peace out.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Cool shoes

i went for the low hanging fruit (ha, grocery store pun, i'm on fire) which is her shoes -- pleated, peeped, wedged, semi-bootie and 110% great. nordstom's.  but upon closer inspection of the photo, a subtler stupendous pattern emerged. check it -- flower necklace, graphic flower bag and same black flower on skirt. could any stylist-free person have gotten up in the morning and planned this out, perhaps even before a quart of coffee? impossible my friends. she must have had the coffee first. something about the delightfully quirky printed skirt and black lace at the hem looks french. thus better.

Winner-- Most Unaffected Tiara(s)

Head gear bonanza! i don't know about you, but when i see two women in identical dresses and tiaras, waving like beauty queens, with body guards dressed like sea captains, i stop. tiaras and captain's hats are way under-represented on this blog and i'm going to do something about it. 
Oh for gosh, they're all from the Minneapolis Aquatennial which explains the identical dresses. they were out on the River Road waving because that sort of thing can be misinterpreted on Hennepin, and to raise money (lemonade was involved) for Ronald McDonald House. They work about 300 events per year. So support tiaras and Ronald McDonald House, ok?

Winner-- most unaffected hat

 So apparently Blogger is also shutting down in sympathy with the MN gov and is only allowing text in this teeny tiny font. Let it be known that i have sworn loudly and creatively many times, which usually fixes these things, to no avail. Also hard returning is not allowed. i like stream of consciousness anyway, don't you?
    Swearing worked! 
Meet Kelly, above, our Winner of Most Unaffected Hat Wearer. She receives my undying admiration and one of my valuable business cards. In our all-hair-all-the-time days, head gear wearers invariably look self conscious. Not so Foxy Brown (i'm referencing a 70s movie here my young friends and it's really working for me because kelly is foxy and wearing brown, see?).  i assumed she was an awesomely dressed undergrad. never assume -- it will make an ass of u and me (first rule of journalism that i've diligently broken ever day since the pleistocene). no no no, kelly is on her second go-round with higher education, with an intervening stint of living in asia. now she's studying human rights and korean language. and i can't be bothered to capitalize letters. 

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

University of Minnesota

Perky, plucky, going places, she might just make it after all -- this woman is channeling Mary Tyler Moore six ways. Love love love the shoes which are probably Steve Madden. Did i have a stroke or did she say she was leaving in a matter of hours for Uganda? Before you answer, be aware that Both is one of the options. Let's exercise our imaginations and picture this woman paddling in a dugout canoe up some lugubrious river, bumpy with hippos. And even though it's 1000 degrees, she hops out of the hollowed out log fresh as anything and the Steve Maddens only sink in the Ugandan mire the tiniest bit. Good luck Mary!

Speaking American-knees

Shorts with garters. Shorts with garters 'n gaiters. Tomato, tomahto, she's the originator of this look. She was on the phone with Calvin Klein. He's placing an order. Cut-out shoulder? Yawn. Side-outs? We're jaded. The time is now for knees. Knees are news now. Say what you will, i admire an original thinker. And so does Calvin.

Summit stroller

Green is the theme. I'm going nowhere with that thought. That's it -- there's a lot of green here. Sheesh, that's what i get for trying to go off wheat.
I'm trying not to...tripped. She tripped. Booking down Summit and she tripped on the sidewalk. If she wasn't dressed so cute, it would have gone completely unnoticed, like a tree tripping in the forest. So ok, she had an audience of one. And it endeared her to me. Me, i like to go for the big splash. My last trip was a total yard sale next to an idling city bus full of people. She got her dress at a shop in Saratoga Springs, NY (did i remember that right?). It may or may not be vintage.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Basilica Block Party

Things were looking grim at the Basilica Bash, with swarms of blandly dressed pilgrims (if you were there looking fine you did a pretty good job of avoiding me, despite my sting operation right at the main entrance).  I was questioning my faith when I hailed these two holy marys (I'm going to keep going with the ecclesiastic references til the second coming so get used to it).
Holy bowler, they're the answer to any street style stalker's prayers -- menswear head gear + awesomely graphic maxi with feather talismans, mmmmm super-seven-lost-tribal. The vestal virgin on the right is walking the line in Calvin Klein heels and jorts. What a blessing.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

in related news

You're kidding me -- they're related? Really?! Aren't they beeeeautiful? They all just got re-blonded in honor of prodigal daughters' visit from Seattle. Daughter on right got her skirt at a thrift store (right on sista tightwad smartypants) and mom couldn't remember if she sucked in her gut for the photo (she did! yay!), so that leaves daughter on left guilty of looking cute in rolled up jeans. What i wonder is, have these good daughters ever told their mom she looked like the pope when trying on a particular velvet dress? Or that she should under no circumstances say anything or be herself? I didn't think so.

Born in the USA

Meant to get this up on the 4th of July but I was in Rockford, IL having my eyeballs scorched and my heart rhythms rearranged by $63,000 worth of fireworks. Rockford decided to put on this pyrotechnics show instead of having public education past the third grade.  The good mofos of Rockford were delighted.
I digress. I took the above Harley enthusiasts outside Grand Old Creamery where they were about to get some grand old premium ice cream and i was struck by the American-ness of this scene. I was a tiny bit disappointed that none of these badasses had on chaps but the woman on the left represented in the beaded vest that she actually got in Sturgis. That's the good part, US of A, freak flags flying.  Commie pinko that i am, i looked into Harleys and the percentage of red white and blue-ness of those couches on wheels, and i'm happy to rain on your parade. you might as well just send $24K to chairman mao. president, chairman, whatever. happy 4th of july suckas!
P.S. Explaining myself here, which is tough. One thing for sure, this here blog is sincere. I sincerely like the presentation of the people I victimize photograph. I truly dug these bikers' clarity of vision. Their sartorial statement is focused, straightforward, unapologetic. I am not about mockery here. You've seen me -- how could i mock anyone? Right on. Unfortunately, my injudicious use of suckas (which i meant like mankind) was misinterpreted. we are all suckas sending $$$ to china. i was not speaking specifically but rather generally. what the hell, rockford's $63,000 in fireworks went straight to some party bigwig. i like chinese food, don't you?