How beautiful it is outside today. My bedroom window makes a pale blue frame around a winter wonderland -- a light dusting on the trees, a white coating on the lake. Everything sparkles in the noonday sun. It’s been snowing for two days; the first snowfall of winter is always the prettiest of the season. It’s the perfect time to wish all of you, my dear readers, a healthy, happy and prosperous 2015.
The Christmas holidays came and went in a blur of activity. The gift list gets smaller and smaller every year, which is a blessing and a sorrow. The children in my life are no longer children; gift certificates have replaced snow globes with dancing ballerinas. Loved ones lost to me are remembered with sweet sadness. It gets harder and harder to find interesting and clever gifts for friends and family, but I still do my best and so do they. In fact, I got a terrific gift (i.e., clever, interesting and practical) from my sister-in-law, Sandy.
Do you know what this is? I didn’t.
It’s a little device from QVC that helps you fasten your bracelet, and it’s positively génial. Mine has a bulb of clear crystal and comes in a deep blue velvet pouch.
Here’s how it works.
New Year’s Eve found us celebrating at Tavistock Country Club, an annual ritual for ‘lo these many years now. There were private parties in the upstairs banquet rooms and over 300 members in the downstairs Lounge and surrounding dining rooms. I always marvel at how beautifully the Club and its staff handle all this, particularly the members. We members are a demanding bunch, who think nothing of spilling all over the place, table hopping to greet friends. I sometimes wonder how they keep up with us, but they always do.
With no time to shop, at the last minute I threw together an outfit for the evening from some of my favorite pieces. This Jones New York LBD (available at Macy’s) looks exactly like the one I bought almost 15 years ago, except that mine has a deep V-neck. (It’s the first thing to get packed no matter where I’m headed.) I added an emerald and diamond choker that belonged to the late Mme Mère, a chunky, rose-gold bracelet (also hers), Swarovski crystal hoop earrings, high-heeled pumps in burgundy leather and suede, a leopard print, snakeskin clutch and a body-hugging, black sweater with a discreet trim of black and brown mink on the border and cuffs. (Sorry there’s no picture, but I don’t do Selfies and I hate to interrupt a good time to ask someone to take pictures, particularly of me. You’ll just have to use your imagination. Besides, I always look better in my own imagination, so I’ll probably look better in yours, too.)
I’m often asked if you can “get away” with wearing black when you are a femme d’un certain âge, to which I reply, “Get away with it? You can absolutely run with it!” Where is it written that you have to pack away your black after 50? I have it on the best authority that black is still the chic woman’s best friend, no matter her age or size.
What would we do without it?
The Color Black projects sleekness and substance, the ultimate in sophistication and glamour. It is also associated with power – think tuxedos, limousines, clergy and judges’ robes.
“We experience all of life’s big events in the little black dress.” Norma Kamali
While there’s more than a dash of hyperbole in that statement (I’ve never seen a bride dressed in black!), on the whole, it’s probably more true than not, and I love the spirit of her words.
She should know; she practically lived in the color. My guess is The Empress of Fashion always got it exactly right.
Did you know that over 90% of the tea consumed in the western world is black tea? The flavor of black teas can run the gamut from soft and flowery to dark and spicy.
The Two Sisters on the Terrace (1881) – Renoir
|Lise Sewing (1866) - Renoir|
Could that statement, perhaps, have had something to do with the black-haired beauty Lise Tréhot, whom the 24-year-old Renoir met when she was 17? She would become his mistress and his model until 1870.
While I have no artistic talent whatsoever, the red satin ribbon in Lise’s glorious black hair inspired me to create an evening ensemble in two of my favorite colors
I have definitely gone a little high-end crazy with the accessories, I know….but, a gal can dream, can’t she? And so she should. After all, we are never too old to wear black or too old to dream.