Fashion – Where are your zebra shoes?

B9A0C629-9C7F-4589-A125-CDAEC8B9B67FYesterday, I felt like Steve Jobs. Remember, the Apple CEO whose signature style was to wear a high black crew neck style shirt. He had a daily uniform which was classy and suited him. We grew to recognize him in a crowd, just look for the tall slender guy with glasses wearing a black turtle neck.

Fast forward to my life. A few years ago, I needed gym shoes. I went to the athletic shop. Tried on a variety of shoes, nothing fit properly. I was disappointed, but needed shoes. There wasn’t much left to choose from.

The sales clerk pointed to these zebra looking shoes. I looked at him with a “You’ve gotta be kidding” type of look. For me?

Weren’t those kid shoes, I asked? Nope, the latest style, he said.

I had to admit, they were comfortable. I bought them reluctantly.  I wore them a few times, but felt funny at the gym, so tucked them away in my closet.

Years have gone by, they have sat nicely in my closet. Recently though, it was pouring rain, I didn’t want to ruin my normal shoes, so took the zebra ones out.

In retail, we are on our feet 8 hours, we need cushy shoes. These fit the bill. My feet needed a break from “nice looking shoes,” so I started wearing my zebra shoes. Of course, there were funny comments. That was fine, I laughed.

Spring is here, I thought it was time to retire my zebra shoes for cute looking ones. So, I put my zebra shoes back in the closet.

To my surprise, two of my co-workers said, “Hey, where are your zebra shoes?”

I smiled and said, “Time for a change. You mean, you actually liked those shoes?”

“YES, they are a bit crazy and fun,” they said.

Smiling, I thought, “My Italian mother would be horrified to learn my signature style was a pair of zebra looking gym shoes.”

While I would prefer being known for wearing glitzy shoes like “Dorothy’s red ruby slippers,” my zebra shoes have modern funky style! Who would have known…

Kate Spade… We will miss you!

09CB115E-2D8B-42DD-9416-B808F4C021EBBy now, you’ve heard the news about Kate Spade’s passing. We refer to her as “Kate Spade,” when really her name was Katherine Noel Brosnahan. This is a sad day!

Why did we love her handbags so much? Back in the 90’s, when we started to see her purses, they were special because they were different. She used bright colors, different patterns and when we opened her purses they always had beautiful colored linings inside.

Kate Spade’s attention to detail was top notch. You can see from this original purse I have of hers. The material for the giraffe pattern was high end, the leather piping was perfectly sewn, the leather strap was thick, not thin. Look at the lovely gold feet with rich dark brown quality leather on the bottom of the purse, the stitching is faultless. Notice that in the beginning, she did not have her name placed on the outside of the purse, I liked that. Instead, her name was on the inside, creating mystery as to “WHO” designed such a rich looking purse.

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I have other purses of Kate Spade’s, this was an all time favorite. I always received compliments on it for it’s unique style. She was the mystery designer back then. Who was this marvel with a bright preppy fearless style? When walking through the department store, we had to smile at the colors, patterns and textures she chose. Simply wonderful!

Katherine, you were a beautiful and talented designer. Your memory will live on through your handbags, accessories and now shoes! I’m sorry you were suffering, you will be missed!

The Pantone Color Institute has spoken. The color of the year is GREEN!

pantone-color-greenHave you ever thought about how the color of the year is chosen?  I’ve always wondered, but as I am not in the design industry never looked into it. However, throughout the years, I would walk through stores “thinking,” I guess this year it is egg plant purple, sunny yellow, cherry red, etc., because every store was using the same color for their products.

I’d either be excited and spend money on a new pillow I didn’t need, because I loved the color OR I would frown and say, “NEVER would I buy dishes in grey.”  Not my color palette. Good way to save money, if you don’t like the color of the year, you don’t make frivolous purchases.

So, you are thinking, “How is the color of the year chosen?”

There’s a company called, “Pantone Color Institute,” and they are known for color forecasting. Companies hire them for help with understanding color trends, color branding, and choosing a color strategy.

They came up with the Pantone Matching Color System as seen in photo, which standardized the ability to reproduce exact shades of a color between companies/manufacturers by using a specific Pantone number for each color created. So, basically, if you want to have a specific “blue” for the print on your business card, you would email the printer the specific “Pantone #” for the blue shade you want. No need to go into the printer’s office. Your blue color would print out perfectly!

The Pantone Color Institute started choosing the color of the year in 2000. Why were they chosen to choose the color of the year?  This is not clear in my research. It seems that since they own the Pantone color palette, they are considered color experts. They make their yearly choice by looking at color trends during the year. This year they chose green as they had the feeling people wanted to be closer to nature.

If you want to learn more about “the color of the year,” do a quick Google search. There are several interesting articles on this.

I hope you like green. We will be seeing GREEN in everything, i.e. fashion, home goods, interior design… probably cars too!

Luckily, I don’t mind green, it’s the color of nature. I can live with that!

Can you?