South Street Seaport

The last time I’ve been to South Street Seaport was when I was 16. I still remember the sickly sweet stench of Abercrombie & Fitch cologne, a sea of “I Love New York” t-shirts being sold by vendors looking for a quick buck, abandoned centuries-old buildings displaying loads of graffiti tags, and broken-down streets leading to cluttered highways.

It wasn’t a pretty sight.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

So you can only imagine my surprise when I recently went down, all the way downtown, to South Street Seaport, only to see a brand-spanking new neighborhood. The historic harbor highlights cobble stone streets (great if you’re not wearing heels), quaint coffee shops overlooking towering ships, and a massive beer garden leading to streets of seaside restaurants. There’s also the Smorgasburg, a foodie paradise where ramen burgers and massive grilled cheese sandwiches overflowing with oozing fromage are readily available to one’s mouthwatering delight.

Needless to say, I was a fan.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

I re-discovered the South Street Seaport as a native New Yorker wearing a piece from one of my favorite Etsy vendors, The Braided Bandit. It’s a super comfy 1970s black maxi dress by American brand Choon California.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

Finding a vintage black v-neck dress on Etsy is pretty easy, but here are my picks: There’s this 1970s/1980s gown that’s super similar for $60, a gorgeous cocktail variation available in plus sizes for $39.90, a 1970s sheer variation for $50, and, if you’re willing to splurge, a 1970s Givenchy creation for $498. Just don’t forget to keep your size and measurements in mind before ordering.

All you need is a wide leather waist belt to cinch the waist, creating instant Morticia Addams vibes.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

To jazz up a plain black dress, I added a giant vintage butterfly brooch, but any brooch of your choosing will do. A lot of beautiful pieces can also be found on Etsy.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

So excuse me while I enjoy a local espresso and shop for stuff.

The Fitting Room Chronicles: Feeling Lauren Bacall Vibes

My friends know me best for rocking  florals, but one print I’ve always loved? Polka dots, of course.

There’s something about this classic design that purrs old Hollywood. Think of any leading lady from the past and I guarantee you she rocked polka dots. However, no one made adorable circles look so fierce quite like Lauren Bacall.

ba107c542e97a3326b7b24205dbc49db e96c9eb80cdd05ef957e78e8e298c505 1372894886101008687yZP0nuNcYes reader, I’m aware this screen siren owned The Look and no one else can go near that, but I was feeling some serious Lauren Bacall vibes on a recent thrifting trip.

FullSizeRender-4

I found this label-less sheer navy dress with white polka dots and I was in love. I just felt like me…The pearls I wore to my shopping outing definitely enhance the overall appearance of the dress, but I was loving its casual, yet put-together retro style that works for brunch, a casual night out…or just because.

FullSizeRender-4

The shoulder pads needed to be popped. For the record I always take off shoulder pads from any piece. I’m just not into the linebacker look. Yet, this dress was coming home with mama.

FullSizeRender-4

But lately, I was feeling inspired by this fellow New Yorker. Earlier this year, FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology) featured an exhibition titled “Lauren Bacall: The Look,” which was dedicated to her legacy in the fashion world, as well as her relationships with the many designers lucky enough to dress her.

11159519_10100223646068627_2364871671687576560_n

It was a real treat to stand just inches away from garments that once hugged the star.

Check out that pink French creation, a gift from 1968.
Check out that pink French creation, a gift from 1968.

11039084_10100223646298167_3978638898810373692_n

10985904_10100223646228307_3327234684196550522_n

I may not be BFFs with Yves Saint Laurent, but I’m all about channeling My Look, with the help of Ms. Bacall.

FullSizeRender-4