a book and a dress

a few novel ideas.

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And in case anyone was wondering, here’s what I wore to Nicole’s wedding. A Cynthia Steffe Spring 2010 floral strapless dress with a sweetheart neckline and asymmetrical pleated tiers. I got it for an absolute steal at Filene’s Basement last year and I love it to death. So glad I finally got to wear it!

Filed under cynthia steffe wedding guest

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Now that, my friends, is a dress! Here’s my friend Nicole in her wedding gown. It took a lot of stress and time to get it fitted right, but boy was it worth it!

Now that, my friends, is a dress! Here’s my friend Nicole in her wedding gown. It took a lot of stress and time to get it fitted right, but boy was it worth it!

Filed under melissa sweet wedding dresses

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just kids

It’s been a rough couple of weeks, but after all these years I’m still surprised by the comfort found in a good book. The past few weeks I’ve been hiding out and reading Just Kids by Patti Smith. Though I typically prefer fiction books, the past couple of memoirs I’ve read (A Moveable Feast, and now this) have really pleasantly surprised me. 

The relationship between Patti Smith and her first love, famed photographer Robert Mapplethorpe, is the stuff great love stories are made of. First lovers and then friends as Robert recognizes his homosexuality, they are life partners in their pursuit of art and fame. It is with each other’s constant support and inspiration that they eventually achieve these goals, and it is also together that they face Robert’s untimely death after contracting AIDS. This memoir is Patti’s diary of their friendship, and for me, it truly redefines the definition of soulmates.

This book contains lots of great images of Patti and Robert together, as well as examples of their greatest works, but the above image was by far my favorite. Taken at their favorite place, Coney Island, their styling is so great and you can really see the chemistry between them. Definitely pick this one up. You won’t be disappointed. 

Filed under patti smith robert mapplethorpe just kids books

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franny and zooey

If I could sum up Franny and Zooey by JD Salinger in one word it would be PASS! Having always been a fan of Catcher in the Rye, I was anxious to read this book but it was a serious snoozefest. In summary, it tells the story of Franny’s existential crisis after reading a religious book that changes her view of the world around her. Her brother Zooey leads her through this crisis and points her on the right path towards enlightenment. Unfortunately, at no point did I care about either character or what happens to them. Salinger spends little to no time introducing the characters or even making them likable. The novel has no strong plot points and the writing is mostly dialogue.

Books with no likable characters have to be one of my biggest pet peeves. Take my advice and don’t waste your time with this one. Read The Paris Wife instead. :)

Filed under franny and zooey jd salinger books catcher in the rye

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"You are everything good and straight and fine and true—and I see that so clearly now, in the way you’ve carried yourself and listened to your own heart. You’ve changed me more than you know, and will always be a part of everything I am. That’s one thing I’ve learned from this. No one you love is ever truly lost." -Ernest Hemingway

"You are everything good and straight and fine and true—and I see that so clearly now, in the way you’ve carried yourself and listened to your own heart. You’ve changed me more than you know, and will always be a part of everything I am. That’s one thing I’ve learned from this. No one you love is ever truly lost." -Ernest Hemingway

Filed under Ernest Hemingway Hadley Richardson quotes

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the paris wife

Since my obsession with Ernest Hemingway had reached a feverpitch after reading A Moveable Feast, a friend recommended The Paris Wife—a fictional novel about the marriage of Hemingway and his first of four wives, Hadley Richardson. The novel outlines Hemingway’s Paris years from Hadley’s perspective in a very different light than the one portrayed in A Moveable Feast. Hadley movingly details the struggles of being married to an artist; a life full of self sacrifice and uncertainty. As a character, Hadley was an interesting combination of both inner strength and passivity. While it is clear that Hemingway may not have flourished or even survived those years without her constant strength, support, and encouragement, she is still at the mercy of his every demand and need (even stooping so low as to allow his mistress to LIVE with them at one point. I can’t.)

This is an absolutely heartbreaking and gutwrenching novel—I sat in my bed and cried like a little babe when it was over. For anyone familiar with Hemingway’s biography, he eventually leaves Hadley for one of her close friends, who later becomes his second wife. At the novel’s end, he is desperately in love with both women, and all three are emotionally destroyed by their shared ordeal.

As we all know, post-Hadley Hemingway goes on to literary fame and fortune, but his personal life never seems to recover from his Paris years; he goes on to three failed marriages and eventually commits suicide. Hadley’s strength sustains her despite the pain of her failed marriage to Ernest, and soon after finds a love that lasts throughout her long life.

Of note: Despite their divorce, Hemingway not only dedicated his first great novel, The Sun Also Rises, to Hadley, he also insisted that she receive all royalties and profits from the novel for the rest of her life.

Filed under Ernest Hemingway Books Hadley Richardson

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In honor of NYFW, and my best friend Meg who works in PR for J.Mendel, I thought I’d post my 3 fave dresses from the J.Mendel show yesterday. Even though J. Mendel is famous for his evening gowns, I’m pretty obsessed with both of the cocktail length dresses shown here.

Filed under J. Mendel NYFW