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  1. it’s the most wonderful time of the year

    December 4, 2009 by thelillinator

    tonight was a good night. i went to duque spa and salon for their shimmer beauty bar grand opening and the downtown seattle nordstrom private shopping event. food, drink, and other goodies make the world go round, in my opinion.

    Duque_Salonso for those who don’t know, duque just opened shimmer beauty bar, a space dedicated to making your face pretty. they cover make up, facial waxing, and lash extensions. duque, just around the corner on ballard avenue, provides hair and other spa services as well as an assortment of jewelry, cute undies, and a few clothing items. i haven’t had my hair done there, although my swag bag did include a coupon for a discount on hair services. what i have done with the duque family is discover my new home for lash extensions. heather is their make up artist/last extension maven and i love her. her fill prices are reasonable, she’s available until 6pm on weekdays that the salon is open, and she has a great attention to detail (*so* important for lash extensions). it doesn’t hurt that she’s cute and fun to talk to; makes you want to really be friends with her. they were offering a few free services tonight for their opening, but heather had a line several people deep and i didn’t want to wait nor to be rushed through any sort of hair removal process (ouch!) so i took off relatively quickly.

    cullen crest vneckthe most anticipated part of the evening was the nordstrom private shopping event. i look forward to this all year long. there’s champangne, food, 10x as many points on purchases with your nordstrom card…now the first private shopping event i went to included a few other people and consuming so much champagne that the only other thing i remember about that night is falling over and bruising my bum. since those days of my youth, i’ve continued to anticipate each of these annual events though i haven’t had as much “fun”. tonight i didn’t even buy anything for myself beyond exchanging my new moon t-shirt for a bigger and better left unsaid size. i guess considering how much online shopping i’ve been doing for myself over the last few days that’s good news, but i still felt somewhat deprived. i started trolling the cosmetics department looking for someone to woo my into buying a pretty new thing. alas, The Boyfriend dragged me out before i did any damage. see? i really can’t not shop.

  2. why is a giant tin of popcorn considered an adequate holiday gift?

    October 7, 2009 by thelillinator

    nm customized cupcake carthe neiman marcus christmas book came out yesterday. per the usual there were some outlandish offerings like his and hers aircraft and, um, cupcake cars. they even went as pedestrian as a tin of popcorn (seriously, explain that one to me). here is my christmas list are my highlights.nm ugg embossed metallic ankle boot

    a couple of things that are actually feasible are the metallic embossed ankle high uggs (i don’t need another pair…but they’re metallic…and i don’t have a natural colored pair…). i think it’s because i’m still searching for the perfect pair. i’ve got 2 pairs of knee high uggs, one that i wear schlepping outside in the mornings with the pups, and one that are a bit more snow bunny and i like to wear with skirts/dresses or skinny jeans/leggings. i’ve also got a pair of short uggs that i had hoped would free me of any tightness around my calves, but surprisingly they are of no help in that arena. these uggs with the button look more flexible. oh, and i’ve got a pair of the cardys that i haven’t worn yet. maybe i’ll break them out tomorrow. i should do that before the weather turns too soggy to wear them outside. must now ponder outfit possibilities…

    nm gucci wool scarvesmore than the uggs though, i want a gucci scarf! i’ve paid around $200+ for my burberry cashmere scarf, so i’m okay with the price point, but i do take some exception to the fact that this gucci scarf isn’t even cashmere! boo hiss. but i guess the black on grey logo makes up for it. ;)

    nm nambe vasesa couple other things “within reach” but are pretty low on my priority list are these nambe vases (i like the round one the best) since i rarely keep any fresh flowers around. when The Boyfriend and i were selling our place in queen anne, i kept a bouquet of fresh flowers around, and while i recognize it was a really nice touch…fresh flowers are expensive (and messy) to keep up! whatevs, are these vases considered modern? if they are, that’s how i like modern; in small doses.

    nm iphone casethe other trinket i liked was a very chic lil iphone case that instantly made me go, “oooh!” it completely encloses your iphone, disguising any fashionista’s inner technophile so that it looks like she’s just carrying around another wallet/clutch. so yeah, thinking about it that way makes this case seem completely awesome and must-have. however, after getting past the initial “oooh!” reaction, i realized this is completely impractical. how annoying would it be to have to open up the case every time you get a phone call to check the caller id? further, the photo doesn’t give you any sort of inkling of whether or not the case’s hinge allows the front cover to be folded back while actually speaking on the phone. or perhaps the assumption is that you would already have your bluetooth earpiece enabled? and if that is true, wtf? walking around with an earpiece completely negates any chic points earned by this case. fashion+function, designers!

    nm matthew campbell laurenza banglesso, i am not a bracelet person but this turquoise on black color scheme on these matthew campbell enamel bangles is really appealing. i’m especially fond of the second from the bottom with the big wave on it. not more-than-a-grand fond, but more like admire-from-afar-as-pretty-art fond. oy.

    my absolute winner for this year’s christmas book? this red and black houndstooth alexander mcqueen sweater dress (that is somehow only a few hundred dollars more than one of those darned bracelets!). and how nice is it that the houndstooth pattern contours the waist and bustline to flatter one’s silhouette in (what i find to be) the notoriously uncomplimentary fit of knits. but if anyone feels like spending $1,600 on this dress for me, i’ll work my booty off to make sure i look good in it!

    nm alexander mcqueen dress

  3. anna sui does gossip girl for target

    September 13, 2009 by thelillinator

    i checked out the new anna sui for target line today before getting much needed manis and pedis with a friend. apparently, anna was inspired by gossip girl for this collection (below are some of my favorites), which whadaya know premieres tomorrow (superpsyched, by the way)! i came away with the giant navy and black houndstooth dress. my friend had more success with two dresses and two tops. i think most of the collection suited her coloring much better than mine. there seemed to be lots of orangey and mustardy tones that don’t like me too much but go beautifully with her light skin and burgundy hair.

    anna sui tablecloth dressanna_sui_houndstooth_jaquard_dress_winneranna sui silk patterned dress

    blair-red-bow-headbandso, what do you think will be this year’s blair waldorf headband? i was so in love with the big red bow headband blair had in season 1 that i ended up fashioning my own. thank god i found a red ribbon that matched a red satin headband i just bought at claire’s. i love that headband, but ever since i wore it as part of my blair costume last halloween i feel self-conscious wearing it. like now i’ve stuck it in a costume jail and apparently i can’t find the right bail amount to set it free. :(

    speaking of halloween, the columbia tower is hosting the 3rd annual masquerade charity ball to support the muscular dystrophy association. it’s being held on october 24th starting at 8pm and tickets are only $45. i’d really like to go and i’ve already got a royal blue venetian mask that my parents brought me from the venetian (i know, not quite). i’ve never been to a masquerade and i have a secret fantasy that if i attended this masquerade, it’ll be like i got dropped right in the middle of the masquerade ball scene in phantom of the opera. *paper faces on parade*

  4. the bravern is open!

    September 12, 2009 by thelillinator

    cute lil decoration on the bravern grounds

    cute lil fox decoration on the bravern grounds

    the bravern in bellevue is finally open and i had planned to spend a fun friday night checking out the new neiman marcus before going to a “tweet up” (i am not on twitter) at moksha on the ave. unfortunately, i did not leave the day job until after 6pm and then by the time i had gone home, attended to the dogs, and went to go pick up The Boyfriend from his office, it was already 7.30pm and neiman marcus closes at 8pm. highlight of the night ended up being a cute new oversized filigree ring i got at moksha (sorry, no picture; it came out blurry. if only i had an iphone 3gs with the new auto-focus feature!). there was a big let down having to do with being promised a spot on a list at a club where a friend was dj’ing. too bad she didn’t show up until like 5 minutes before she was supposed to go on…which was also about an hour after the list closed. needless to say, after leaving puppies 1 and 2 at home alone practically all day and night, i was a much happier camper just going home and chillin with them.

    anthropologie bellevue store front

    anthropologie's really cool bravern store front

    so The Boyfriend, the dogs, and i didn’t actually end up going to neiman marcus until today, which was almost better anyways, since the rest of the bravern didn’t actually open until today. stores of particular interest to me beyond neiman marcus were the new anthropologie (which now means whenever i trek over to the eastside i’ll be able to basically get all my stores banged out in one go. score!), tory burch, jimmy choo, and dna 2050. there was also a louis vuitton store and a masins store, but like most of the rest of the shopping center, they both seemed smaller than they should have been and the selection much more limited than expected. for those who don’t know, masins is a furniture store. i swear the entire store was about the size of an 1100 square foot condo’s living room (i.e. the size of my living room). how do you justify renting a retail space where you can only display 1/50 (i’m guessing) of your inventory and where your staff just defers all interest to one of your larger locations? i hope to god these people are not paid on commission. or lucky for masins because they found them some suckers.

    anthropologie plaza cardigananthropologie was the only store that i was actually impressed with. the decor, as always, was amazing. so much so that The Boyfriend tried to buy a mini chess set that, while tagged for $2.99, was actually just part of the merchandising. i found the floor space was actually satisfactory considering. unfortunately, that plenty by tracy reese coat i want wasn’t in stock yet. i did end up getting this nice ruffley red cardigan.

    neiman marcus bib necklace

    *sigh* to die for

    the main draw, neiman marcus, was somewhat of a letdown. i mean, it’s absolutely great that we finally have a neiman marcus and i totally know where i’m going to go the next time i need to buy a cocktail dress (because that happens SO often). but compared to the neimans i’ve been to in vegas, nyc, and cali it was teeny tiny. it wasn’t merchandised that well as in nothing jumped out at me and screamed, “you must own me!” i was also disappointed with the contemporary selection. i had hoped it would be bigger. granted, it’s neiman marcus and it’s all very high end designer, but let’s be honest, i’m not buying that stuff. i’m buying the contemporary labels. or at least, i wanted to.

    civil society free range shirtThe Boyfriend had better luck than me. he was getting lots of attention from cooing bellevue ladies for carrying pj around. by the end of the trip though, i had to admit that it wasn’t that pj was cuter than ruffus, it was The Boyfriend. when he carried ruffus around for a few minutes, mr. fuss actually got more attention than pj. sucks to have armed him with cute dogs to attract every other female in the world. anyways, he came away from neiman marcus with two civil society shirts. one was a burgundy plaid short sleeved woven shirt with a matching tie and the other is pictured here. the turquoise really brought out the blue of his eyes.

    tory burch sweateranother bust for me was the jimmy choo store. i was surprised that they displayed mostly handbags rather than shoes. needless to say, i moved on quite quickly. on my search for the anthropologie, i stopped at tory burch. i hadn’t thought i’d find much of interest there. i haven’t gotten into her much lauded flats and when i visited the tory burch boutique in vegas i was just, “eh.” happily, i found the pictured sweater in grey. unhappily, it took freaking forever to actually purchase the damn thing. first, they only had smalls on the floor so they had to go to the “off site” storeroom to find my size, which was on the second floor (not exactly what i consider off site). then apparently they couldn’t find it so they were going to order it in from another store for me. i hadToryBurchLogo already been walking around the bravern for about 3 hours at this point and i was thirsty. jimmy choo had been serving beverages, but we didn’t stay long enough to partake so i straight asked the tory burch staff if they had anything to quench my thirst while i waited. i ended up with a diet coke, which was more than i was hoping for, but i have the sneaking suspicion i took a staffer’s break time beverage. i would have felt bad except my salesperson who had my credit card to ring up my shipment disappeared for at least 10 minutes! eventually i asked a salesman (whom i’ve seen rotate through several other higher end stores in the past) to check on my salesperson to make sure she hadn’t fallen and was injured in the backroom. i’m serious. i couldn’t understand what was taking so long i was convinced she had to be immobilized and no one else was in the back to help her. turns out the top was in the store somewhere and she was tracking it down. i just wish she had told me because The Boyfriend was starting to get annoyed, waiting on me.

    dna-2050 logothe last place i want to touch on is dna 2050. it’s a pretty cool shop with a rather stark black and grey palette and i recommend it for at least a browse. apparently there are a few other locations scattered across the country but no good online presence or i would include a link. it was very hip and now. lots of boyfriend jeans for girls and jeans for boyfriends. the slant of the store was a bit too modern for me, but The Boyfriend was quite pleased with his denim options. he ended up getting a new pair of evisu’s which you don’t find too often in seattle.

    overall? go. at least check it out once. it won’t be my new spot but if i’ve been to uvillage too recently and it’s a nice day it’ll be nice for window shopping in the open air. be forewarned though that the self parking entrance is off of 8th. yes, you will feel like you are going to end up on the 405 south on ramp, but the drive is there. it will look like you’re pulling into a valet area because you are, but if you turn directly to your right you’ll head towards the parking garage.