The Art of Patrón

In New York City, the fall season is all about cozy gatherings to warm up the chilly season. And nothing cranks up the heat quite like being surrounded with the city’s finest mixologists, chefs, artists, and musicians – at least what felt like several hundred of them, in celebration of everyone’s favorite tequila.

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Patrón was hosting a special event at Manhattan’s Art Beam to showcase the finest art, dishes, and drinks inspired by the smooth Mexican spirit. Of course, any party is going to be an amazing one when  Patrón is hosting it.

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At this fiesta, I even had the chance to make my own cocktail spice rim. My mouthwatering spice highlights vanilla powder, salted caramel, cloves, and nutmeg. I was inspired by the crisp season and holiday pie. Yum.

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For the occasion, I wore the floral parker green Sabrina Dress from Eva Mendes’ New York & Company collection. I previously mentioned how much I love the Hollywood Latina’s chic couture as its fabrics and prints are old Hollywood-inspired, all while showcasing modern fits and sizes. It’s a winning combination and needless to say, I’m a fan.

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The Sabrina dress is still available at New York & Company for $41.97(!).

Eva Mendes for New York & Company
Eva Mendes for New York & Company

While Eva models them without a belt, I wore my usual corselet belt, as I need something to enhance my curves. They were meant to shine, not hide!

Photo by Alexcia Foster
Photo by Alexcia Foster

Myself and gal pal Alexcia had a grand time savoring refreshing tropical mango cocktails, succulent veggie burgers that easily tasted like Angus beef, and of course, being silly.

Photo by Alexcia Foster
Photo by Alexcia Foster

Some New Yorkers prefer apple picking in the fall. However, this city girl doesn’t mind enjoying just another Tuesday with fine company and tantalizing cocktails.

Going for an Ava Gardner Look

Did you know there’s something called “National Vodka Day?”

Neither did I.

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This alleged marketing holiday is technically on October 4th, but truthfully, who wouldn’t mind kicking back with a cool vodka cocktail after a long day at the office?

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I was invited to attend an event in honor of this day with Wyborowa Wódka, a premier Polish vodka. U.S. President of the Polish Vodka Association Andrzej Szumowski was in attendance to share the pride of Poland with us at Schapiro’s Eatery and & Cocktail Bar on the Lower East Side.

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There were tons of pierogis to eat and drinks to savor.

For the evening, I wore this thrifted 1980s label-less electric blue silk dress and paired it with a corselet belt.

Photo by Alexcia Foster
Photo by Alexcia Foster

Looking back, it reminded me of 1940s glamour goddess Ava Gardner, a sultry Hollywood dame who enjoyed cocktails and was also the love of Frank Sinatra’s wife.

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It’s been described that her swears were like hearing a truck driver and a sailor have an argument. Now that’s my kind of lady.

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For a similar look:

  • 1980s Electric Blue Beaded Silk Dress (size 2) $75, Etsy.com
  • Vintage 1980s Electric Blue Wiggle Dress (size medium) $50, Etsy.com
  • 1980s Cocktail Electric Blue Dress (size medium) $75, Etsy.com
  • 1980s Old Hollywood Glam Beaded Electric Blue Dress (size medium) $112, Etsy.com

Another personal pick you should check out? The super popular Ava dress collection by vintage-inspired retailer Pinup Girl Clothing. Not only are they drop dead gorgeous and super comfortable, but they also come in an array of sizes, ensuring that their brand offers style “for every body.” And who doesn’t love that? I would like to believe Ava would approve.

Pinup Couture Ava Dress in Sky Blue
Pinup Couture Ava Dress in Sky Blue

On sale for $57(!) at PinupGirlClothing.com.

Ava Dress in Teal
Ava Dress in Teal

$114, PinupGirlClothing.com.

I really enjoyed my personal take on this classic look!

Photo by Alexcia Foster
Photo by Alexcia Foster

Also, if you’re ever in North Carolina, make sure you check out the Ava Gardner Museum. It’s on my bucket list!

Photo by Alexcia Foster
Photo by Alexcia Foster

Getting Glamorous With a Turban

There are several must-haves that every lady should own to both look and feel like a glamour goddess. A fresh tube of red lipstick, some fabulous fur (I prefer faux), pearls, a little black dress – you get the picture.

But one piece that’s seriously a must-have? The ever so stylish turban.

Fellow Dominicana Maria Montez.
Fellow Dominicana Maria Montez.

This chic piece has been a fashion staple for old Hollywood starlets since the era of silent cinema and it’s easy to see why. Turbans add an extra amount of oomph to any wardrobe, they’re super eye-catching (much like a perfect red pout), and they keep your mane in place. What’s not to love?

Hedy Lamarr
Hedy Lamarr
Elizabeth Taylor with Richard Burton
Elizabeth Taylor with Richard Burton
Greta Garbo
Greta Garbo
Lana Turner
Lana Turner

During the 1930s, the turban exemplified a well-traveled woman and as for today, people will certainly ask for the story behind your accessory.

Gloria Swanson
Gloria Swanson
Sophia Loren
Sophia Loren

And if that’s not convincing check out these grand dames rocking their turbans at one of my favorite blogs, Advanced Style. Need I say more?

For a date night with Jordan, I decided to rock my very first turban, which I purchased from Israel-based Craftasy on Etsy. All I can say is, All right, Mr. DeMille, I’m ready for my close-up.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

Craftasy sells several turbans, but you can get the exact same black one for less than $9. How sweet is that?

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

As for my dress, it also came from Etsy, via Midwest-based Fly Away Vintage Shop. It’s a late 1970s-early 1980s teal satiny secretary wrap dress by Liz Claiborne. The original dress was long in length with equally long sleeves. I had it tailor to better fit my figure, and then paired it with a thrifted wide leather corselet belt.

Dress Before Tailoring Photo by Fly Away Vintage Shop
Dress Before Tailoring
Photo by Fly Away Vintage Shop

For a similar look, here are my picks:

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

For our date night, Jordan and I went to Brasserie Les Halles on Park Avenue South. If you’re an Anthony Bourdain fan like me, then chances are you’ve already eaten at this spot. While Les Halles is known for their French dishes, Jordan and I were craving burgers. Perhaps we made a poor choice as the American staple was rather forgettable. However, the pommes frites was a mouthwatering pairing with cocktails.11709437_10100269604901757_100750542406942018_n

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And reader, I must say, there is nothing more glamorous than savoring a Friday night at a French restaurant in Park Avenue, while devouring a plate of French fries while rocking your turban.

Aloha, Blue Hawaii!

Confession: I’ve never been to Hawaii. It’s actually a place I’ve always wanted to visit. I dream of dipping my toes in a clear, sapphire blue sea while feasting on juicy, sun kissed pineapples, all while swaying my hips and yelling out, “Aloha!” to every one I encounter.

Gil Elvgren Pinup
Gil Elvgren Pinup

While this NYC gal hasn’t visited Hawaii yet, I decided to channel the tropics in my ensemble for a media event at The Asia Society.

Photo by Francis Rodriguez
Photo by Francis Rodriguez

This dress ($163), from New Orleans-based vintage-inspired retailer Trashy Diva, is from their “Aloha Blue Hawaii” Spring/Summer 2014 collection.

Photo by Francis Rodriguez
Photo by Francis Rodriguez

According to Trashy Diva: “Inspired by vintage Hawaiian fabric, Blue Hawaii makes it’s debut as our newest addition to our tropical prints. Blue Hawaii will surely become your new favorite tropical print!”

Photo by Francis Rodriguez
Photo by Francis Rodriguez

This piece definitely made me channel my inner pinup. Along with a white flower on my hair and matching orchid earrings, I was ready to attend the nearest luau. However, I was intrigued by The Asia Society’s exquisite offerings.

The remains of sushi and cocktails.
The remains of sushi and cocktails.
Our view at night.
Our view at night.
Late night snack at Cupcake ATM (780 Lexington Avenue in NYC)
Late night snack at Cupcake ATM (780 Lexington Avenue in NYC)

Sadly, this dress is no longer available, but Trashy Diva is one of the best vintage-inspired brands around, and their garments are made to last. I adore many of their dresses and even have several saved for a rainy shopping day!

But if you’re looking for something on the tiki side, Unique Vintage has a whole section dedicated to just that.

1950s Style Purple Tiki Floral Halter Hawaiiana Wiggle Dress & Bolero Set ($104), Unique-Vintage.com
1950s Style Purple Tiki Floral Halter Hawaiiana Wiggle Dress & Bolero Set ($104), Unique-Vintage.com

Hopefully, Trashy Diva will deliver some more sunshine in the upcoming winter months with similar prints. After all, who wouldn’t want to look like Loretta Young for a day?

Loretta Young Tiki Look #1
Loretta Young Tiki Look #1
Loretta Young Tiki Look #2
Loretta Young Tiki Look #2
Fin.
Fin.

Spending the Afternoon with Frank Sinatra

Nothing puts me in the right mood quite like ol’ blue eyes.

Frank Sinatra: The One and Only
Frank Sinatra: The One and Only

Night and day, summer or winter, I’m all about feeling like a glamour goddess while New Jersey’s finest Frank Sinatra croons of his greatest love, and one of my favorite old Hollywood stars, Ava Gardner.

Frank Sinatra and Ava Gardner
Frank Sinatra and Ava Gardner

So when the New York Public Library in Lincoln Center was hosting a special exhibition dedicated to the beloved singer and star, appropriately titled “Sinatra: An American Icon,” you know I was attending.

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It was truly a celebration of Sinatra’s life, featuring his wardrobe, awards, and even personal artwork he created for his grandchildren. It was an exquisite feast for fans and I was incredibly honored to be a part of it.

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There were even other treats on display, like Billie Holiday’s furl shawl and Ella Fitzgerald’s gorgeous emerald dress.

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Artwork created by Frank Sinatra for his grandchildren.
Artwork created by Frank Sinatra for his grandchildren.

For the festivities, I wore a vintage Joni Blair of California red plaid swing dress that I purchased from Etsy vendor TempleKatVintage of Pennsylvania. She’s one of my favorite Etsy vendors and I was excited to receive such a beautiful, seasonal piece for the fall and winter months.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

And while the look and style scream 1950s, would you believe it’s actually from the 1980s? But that’s my little secret.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

For a similar dress I have some recommendations. Vintage-inspired retailer Lindy Bop has a near replica for $46, except it’s so popular that most sizes are sold out. However, you can request for the vendor to notify you when the piece is back in stock, giving you some time to save your coins. Unique Vintage has a 1950s style red tartan swing dress designed by pinup star Bernie Dexter for $154 that’s downright breathtaking. If you’re looking to add some wiggle to your step, Unique Vintage also has this green tartan dress by Stop Staring! for $178 that will hug every single curve you’ve got, making the fellas break a sweat. And finally, Etsy vendor maybel57 has a wiggle red tartan dress from the 1950s available for $115.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

Missed the Frank Sinatra exhibition? You’ll definitely want to try the Interactive Sinatra Walking Tour where you can visit some of his favorite hot spots and performance venues throughout the city he famously sung about. Or, you can even go on a short trip to Hoboken, New Jersey and learn all about Sinatra’s childhood home.

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Lady Love Song

Every lady deserves to have a dress in her closet that accentuates her curves and is guaranteed to make jaws drop everywhere. Who wouldn’t want to have a silky smooth fabric hug your shape like a lover who knows exactly what to do with his/her hands?

May I introduce you to the Lady Love Song Dress?

Photo by Alexcia Foster
Photo by Alexcia Foster

This piece, from vintage-inspired online retailer ModCloth, features a velvety smooth fabric that will make you feel like a seductive pinup. My beau couldn’t get enough of it and well, I felt like the greatest animated seductress of all: Jessica Rabbit.

Jessica Rabbit from the 1988 film, "Who Framed Roger Rabbit?"
Jessica Rabbit from the 1988 film, “Who Framed Roger Rabbit?”
Jessica Rabbit
Jessica Rabbit

Even ModCloth said it best: Who wouldn’t want to croon a ballad when they see you in this sultry frock? In a melodic, shimmering maroon velvet material that caresses your curves, this dress complete with a crossover sweetheart neckline and gentle pleats at the bust, is made to impress. Step into your favorite jazz club for a martini and dulcet serenade!

Photo by Alexcia Foster
Photo by Alexcia Foster

Another woman who would appreciate this piece? Rita Hayworth, 1940s “love goddess” of Hollywood, who also served as one of the inspirations behind Mrs. Rabbit.

Rita Hayworth (in black and white)
Rita Hayworth (in black and white)
Rita Hayworth (in color)
Rita Hayworth (in color)

I wore my merlot-hued dress for an evening with loved ones at Hotel Indigo, a posh hotel in Chelsea where you can easily spot a model or three making her way to the Meatpacking District for a stylish Saturday night out.

Photo by Alexcia Foster
Photo by Alexcia Foster

No martinis were involved (I’m more of a gin girl), but you could savor tantalizing cocktails at equally posh Mexican hot spot Tijuana Picnic on the Lower East Side. It’s a fitting tribute considering Rita Hayworth, whose real name was Margarita Carmen Cansino, rose to fame in Tijuana clubs in Mexico as a dancer.

Tijuana Picnic in New York City
Tijuana Picnic in New York City
Sizzling Chicken Wings at Tijuana Picnic
Sizzling Chicken Wings at Tijuana Picnic
Delectable Churros at Tijuana Picnic
Delectable Churros at Tijuana Picnic

Expect luscious libations, such as the Grapefruit Gringo (poblano infused-vodka, grapefruit, Thai basil, and sugarcane), Mi Casa Margarita (featuring loads of tequila and mezcal), or the Mayan Michelada (a spicier take on the Bloody Mary).

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Love the Lady Love Song dress as much as I do? Make it a forever dress in your closet in Merlot for the wine lovers out there, along with Olive, Black, or Ruby for $89.99. I would just recommend going up a size for a comfy fit without losing the hip-hugging effect.

Photo by Alexcia Foster
Photo by Alexcia Foster

Azul Rooftop Bar at Hotel Hugo

If you’re new to my blog, here’s one thing you should know: one of my besties (Francis) and I are big rooftop fans. We’ve made it our duty to visit every single one in NYC.

On top of Hotel Hugo.
On top of Hotel Hugo.

So when we learned about the new Cuban-inspired Azul at Hotel Hugo between SoHo and the Hudson, we just had to check it out.

Photo by me.
Photo by me.

In typical fashion, we met up after 5PM for cocktails and decided to first explore the tranquil Hudson Square neighborhood. I love it because it’s quiet and picturesque, yet just blocks away from bustling, supermodel-loaded SoHo.

Photo by Francis Rodriguez
Photo by Francis Rodriguez
Photo by Francis Rodriguez
Photo by Francis Rodriguez

Remember when I was channeling my inner Golden Girl in the fitting room? Well, this is the dress.

Photo by Francis Rodriguez
Photo by Francis Rodriguez

The piece is a v-neck ensemble from H&M featuring a soft rayon fabric and a gorgeous jungle print. It’s currently on sale for $20.

Photo by Francis Rodriguez
Photo by Francis Rodriguez

I completed the look with gold jewelry, like this panther necklace, also from H&M. It’s no longer available, but I would have also worn this decadent chunky gold chain, also from the popular retailer. Of course, vintage cat-eye sunglasses, black pumps, and one of my signature reds, Sephora’s Cream Lip Stain in Always Red, also made an appearance.

Photo by Francis Rodriguez
Photo by Francis Rodriguez

When we finally made our way to Hotel Hugo, we first explored Bar Hugo, the rooftop bar below the rooftop. With cocktails like Giggle Juice and Lavender Daisy, it was quite the crowd. We briefly stopped by to enjoy the view, but soon quickly went upstairs to see Azul.

Francis channeling her inner Marilyn at Bar Hugo.
Francis channeling her inner Marilyn at Bar Hugo.

Imagine escaping to a breezy, sun-soaked island where the beats of hip-swiveling salsa greet you at the door.

Azul Rooftop Bar at Hotel Hugo
Azul Rooftop Bar at Hotel Hugo

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You’re then welcomed with slushy passionfruit mojitos to quench your thirst.

Photo by Francis Rodriguez
Photo by Francis Rodriguez

It’s a brain-freezer, but its sweetness is well worth the pain and packs a major punch for a tantalizing, downright delicious drink. Don’t just get one, trust me.

Photo by Francis Rodriguez
Photo by Francis Rodriguez

You can relax with a laid-back crowd and savor all of downtown Manhattan from sunset and beyond.

Photo by Francis Rodriguez
Photo by Francis Rodriguez
Photo by Francis Rodriguez
Photo by Francis Rodriguez

We soon decided to hang out by the pier to watch boats and yachts float by.

View from above at Azul.
View from above at Azul. Photo by Francis Rodriguez.

Bagel, anyone? This is NYC after all.

Bagel art in NYC.
Bagel art in NYC.

Hope you’ll join us at the next rooftop outing!

Photo by Francis Rodriguez
Photo by Francis Rodriguez