the ascot

It’s a shame how rare it is to see an ascot these days.  Rarer still than seeing a bowtie. Such an elegant way to add a bit of color or interest to a plain shirt or outfit, for men and women alike, with an endearing element of eccentricity. It creates the sense of an additional layer that is really only the illusion of a layer.

Any light scarf can be made serve the purpose.


This would have been better if I’d worn a shirt that buttoned up farther, maybe. More color this way but there’s something appealing about a small triangle of color peeping out, too. The loose, casual interpretation vs the severe, polished interpretation.  Both have their strengths.


Silk is a nice way to go. 

The most enjoyable part of wearing a shirt or vest with buttons is the art of leaving certain of them undone. I like the idea of this look with no ascot, nothing at all at the neck, and another button on the shirt undone. Love the looks I’m seeing across runway shows recently (to say nothing of American Hustle, long may it be an inspiration to us all) of extremely deep Vs (front and back). I have many personal aspirations re: the deep V. The smaller breasted of us can wear it relatively innocently, I think. Relatively… It still makes for a potentially distracting eyepath, but one that is much more suggestive than it is revealing.

So much more appealing to me to create the impression of revealing than to literally reveal, which is like explaining the joke.



Vintage silk scarf from Jones New York, H&M vest, Banana Republic shirt (thrifted), Express jean leggings, Mulberry bag, Trotters loafers. Sunglasses: cheap (retro, no?). On the lips: Shiseido Lacquer Gloss in RS 306.


I never get it when people with broad shoulders want to disguise them. Shoulders love to be accentuated. They seem to jump at the chance.

But maybe it’s just me, and some lingering 80s influence.


weekend distraction: Chanel Spring/Summer 2014

Chanel is a leviathan*, of course, but Lagerfeld maintains such a consistent vision that I don’t feel I’m in much danger of missing something if I’m a few seasons off in my fashion reading. This season I loved the eye look so much, though, that I browsed through the collection.

*Here’s an interesting series of short films outlining the history of the brand.

Chanel is doing some beautiful things with shoulders for S/S 2014.


See what I’m saying about the eyes?! Also loving these giant asymmetrical pearls.

Other highlights:





The shoulder is one of my favorite parts of the body to showcase. It can show delicacy or strength, depending on the shoulder, and there is always an element of vulnerability. It is also, to me, one of the most elegant ways to show a large expanse of skin. [Another being the back, but you already know my preferences in that regard.]



This off-the-shoulder suit is my favorite, I think. The cut here frames the shoulder so beautifully, and in a way that is entirely distinct from the slouchy Flashdance approach (which has its own appeal, to be sure).



You can browse the full collection at

images from