It seems that my friends were getting seriously busy this fall because now they're all knocked up. And when you're "up the duff," there's only one question you need to ask. "What would Heidi do?"
For the next few days Nana Banana is going to draw on inspiration from the world's hottest pregnant woman and pass along some ideas for all the ladies-havin-babies out there. It's the least I can do for people that actually still want to hang out with me without the sweet respite of binge drinking.
First up in our WWHD series? Eveningwear. The beautiful Ms. Klum seems to follow two rules for preggers eveningwear: Highlight your assets, and know the value of a good high heel. Using those two guidelines, I wanted to point out the following...
When you suddenly have to address the challenge of dressing a whole new body type, I think the tendency can be to throw on some solid-colored jersey-knit and call it a day. But I think it's sweet to just wrap the bump up in (stretchy) sequins and celebrate that fact that though you may not be able to booze, you DO have a new and improved rack (see also: highlighting your assets).
For the past five or more years, the preggers set has been in luck because baby-doll silhouettes and tunic+legging combos have ruled the day. Lately the trend has veered more towards hourglass Mad-Men inspired looks and terrifying spiked-and-shredded ensembles. But there are still alot of clothes out there that leave room for the bump and nod toward runway looks. I like the way that the shoulder appliques on this dress have both a vintage 40s vibe and a little of that Balmain strong-shoulder look.
3. Don't break the bank cause the baby already has that taken care of.
Kids are expensive. Maternity-wear has a limited shelf-life. So it's not worth throwing away tons of cash that would be better spent on say a "yay, I popped out the kid so I deserve a new handbag," spree. Or, um, a college fund or something. Etsy has quite a few sellers that make great separates for bargain prices like the convertible top above and the floaty WWHD-inspired one-shoulder number, both from etsy seller Fashion Ninja.
So, what do you think friends? I've never been knocked up so I could have this all wrong. Suggestions? Corrections? Complaints?
So about that last post. I was just joshing you, kids. My friends and family were more thoughtful and generous than I could even handle this year (and every year, for that matter). The best gift of all though was the sense of security that their presence brought in the face of 2010's horizon of uncertainty.
And in that spirit, I'd like to share a few of the things given and received around my house this year.
Gift 1: Reclaimed vintage cake plate
My sister inherited my Mom's gift for baking. We're talking pumpkin whoopee pies, bacon-pretzel-chocolate cupcakes, Nutella poundcake. The works. When I found this cake stand back in September, I ordered it right away. It just seemed so her -- homey and creative and cheerful and ready to take on an entire tray of warm chocolate chip cookies. This particular one was just right because it was made with a New York souvenir plate from the 60s. Stylegarden has similar offerings available in her etsy shop for only $32. My current favorite is the sunny Hawaii stand:
Gift 2: Handmade quilt
Every year, after Christmas Eve mass, Dorito salad with my cousins, and a rowdy drive home, my Mom distributes the annual Christmas PJs. This year, my sister decided to give back by piecing years and years of pajamas together into a quilt for my parents. She worked tirelessly, and it's just such a special way to display so many good memories.
Gift 3: Unicorn Rock
My friend Wes Burdine let us all benefit from his family's handmade gift exchange by passing along copies of the children's album he wrote and recorded for his niece. There are unicorns, there is a bug that sings like Tom Waits, there is an imaginary brass band. It is more amazing than a one-horned mythical creature. Behold:
Forgive the crappy picture, but my G10 is in the shop, and all I have is my iPhone. Anyway, I spent Christmas day chatting with my grandmother about the 40s, how she met my grandfather, and elbow length gloves. It turns out we're the same size, so she went to her drawer and gave me these beautiful gloves as well as a soft mink collar. Speechless. Also fun: a YSL eye shadow set made to look like a vintage luggage tag (thanks Colleen #2!), and a glass CB2 globe that I've used to display feathers I collected in Africa. These are a few of my (new) favorite things.
Gift 5: Graceland Blue Christmas Champagne
This might be the best present I've ever received. Sister, you are the best.
I held off on purchasing this bag (pictured above) because it was Christmas and you're not supposed to buy things for yourself on Christmas (see also: impending funemployment). I very clearly dropped large hints via emails, wishlists, and blog posts making it obvious that this bag should find its way into my grubby little hands. Not only did you not listen, one of you purchased the bag for yourself BEHIND MY BACK. How could you? How will I ever live without its sweet embroidery, its contours perfect for toting my new mini-computer? Oh the humanity!!!
Do you really want to enter the new year knowing that you deprived your devoted blogger of her perfect bag? Send it to its rightful owner immediately or suffer the consequences. Alternately, I would accept this (pictured below) in exchange.
We're coming into the home stretch kids. Time to buy, buy, buy before you board those buses and planes for your holiday homecomings. I have one more roundup of awesome stuff to spend the rest of your cash on. These are the things that I'm praying go on after-Christmas firesale, so I can blow my dough and head into 2010 all fancy-style.
I judge books by their covers. And this has an awesome one. Alas, it's out of print and only available used. Must be snatched up before it goes to that great publishing house in the sky ($59.43).
It's funny, because I do, indeed, take the biscuit. I would like to peruse my pretty Africa book, while sipping hazelnut coffee out of this baby. And then a plate of Arcade biscuits and gravy would be magically teleported from Memphis and I could die a happy person. Help my dream come true ($38 for the mug, teleportation extra).
I am a firm believer in the maxim that the best gifts are those that you'd never buy yourself. Like, say, graphic printed stirrup woolen thigh-highs...for $110. They're pricey but they're amazing, and how great would they look when I'm all cozy with my biscuit mug and my teleported Arcade breakfast and Elvis shows up to croon a little "In the Ghetto," while I contemplate my dire financial straits? I mean, a girl's gotta look her best in a situation like that.
So after Elvis and I finish breakfast, he invites his friend Dolly, who arrives in her magical butterfly tourbus to pour me a cup of ambition. We sit around and customize these necklaces ($85) with hot pink thread and then do a dance number with lots of hair flips and jazz hands.
Ok, ok. If I'm not gonna have Dolly and The King to guide me through the stormy months ahead, I'll have to stay calm and rely on myself. TCB and all that business. I think one of these yoga mats would help me keep things in perspective ($45).
What do you think kids? What's left of your holiday wishlists? Hmmm???
Sorry for the late-in-the-day posting friends. Nana Banana is coming to you from the depths of the world's most spectacular hangover. We're talking room-spinning, face-hurting, not-even-a-McDonalds-value-meal-can-fix-this hangover. This hangover makes me want my Mom, who would probably smack me upside the head and tell me to lay off the special sauce. But still. I want Mama Clark to come make it all ok again. And in return, I would give her one of these awesome Christmas presents. What do you say Eileen? Deal? Yeah, didn't think so.
I cannot remember for the life of me where I got this picture from. But it's a cute bag, right? Maybe when I emerge from the booze haze I'll figure out who made it. Or where it's sold. But in the meantime, you'll just have to look at the cute floral bag that you can't buy.
As usual, I'm more than a little behind on my holiday gifting. I'm guessing more than a few of you are in the same boat, so I figured I'd spend the rest of the week offering up some items from my wishlist and ideas for you and yours. Here are today's pics:
Cleaving, the newest book from the author of Julie and Julia, $16.95
Last night I had to miss my chance to see the Rockefeller Center tree lighting in order to meet a deadline for a holiday shopping story. Bah humbug. Then when I left the office at 8 pm, I had to scale four crowd barriers, run from a cop, and mow down the fannypacked-masses just to get to my subway train. Humbug, humbug, humbug. Holiday spirits have been hard to come by, and there's only one thing to get me back in the mood: stationery shopping! Read on for a ginormous roundup of the year's best holiday cards. And send one to me. I'm in need of a little comfort and/or joy.
Ok, so maybe not one to send to Grandma, but who couldn't use a little humor this holiday season?