Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Jill Stuart Fall 2013, Mercedes-Benz New York Fashion Week

Here’s another recap from my fabulous assistant, Tina Yu. This was the first show she ever covered. Mine was back in 2005 and I believe it was Tracy Reese. Those were fun days.
 Jill Stuart Fall 2013 Runway Show
Jill Stuart, Fall 2013
Stepping into Lincoln Center with my very own ticket, for the first time, was an exhilarating moment. Here I was, a Californian girl from the little suburban town of Cupertino, being dropped in front of Lincoln Center and it occurred to me that I’m finally living my dream. Being in the main show area of Lincoln Center was unforgettable, mostly because I was surrounded by diverse styles and could feel the vastness of the media world. Jill Stuart’s Fall 2013 collection was everything I could ask for as my first fashion show: crazy photographers at one end of the runway, a beautifully lit entrance on the other end. I witnessed bloggers capturing the hottest outfits on camera, celebrities being interviewed, and a plethora of gorgeously, gorgeous shoes. Also, I experienced the meaning of “fashionably late” (the show was 25 min late).** Besides being surrounded by clothes/shoes I couldn’t afford, the experience of the show itself was overwhelming; my eyes wandered all over the place, unsure of where to look first. I couldn’t soak up as much of each outfit as I was accustomed to doing at a store or online, and I couldn’t decide whether to continue watching the present model, or the following model. However, after a few looks, I fell into the flow of things. I started recognizing the feel of the collection.

Jill Stuart, Fall 2013
Stuart’s collection started off with tailored pieces in black and navy blue with little bits of white detailing peeping through (bows, collars, tasteful frills). Then, the clothes started to incorporate lace and fabric that had a lovely sheen, while still keeping the structured silhouettes that resonated throughout her collection. Thinking back, Stuart’s woman seems to be one who is classic, yet bold and chic. As the show progressed, colorful geometric patterns, golden flowers, polka dots, and bold stripes slowly emerged. The show ended with looks that sported the brighter of the fall colors, including applique flowers with the red, orange, and plum. Overall, I felt like her collection had a wide range of looks that speak to women who appreciate unique, dressy, yet wearable looks.
**Tina, late is waiting over an hour! This is standard.

Jill Stuart, Fall 2013

Friday, February 15, 2013

Vivienne Tam Fall 2013, Mercedes-Benz New York Fashion Week

This season, I wasn’t able to attend fashion week. Running from show to show, standing even for ten minutes and worrying that someone would elbow me, just didn’t sound appealing or glamorous. Plus, aside from the obvious baby project, I’m cooking up something else that’s craz-y town amazing … details to come later in the year. As such, I sent my wonderful intern, Tina Yu, to a few shows. Here’s her reporting.
Vivienne Tam, Fall 2013

Vivienne Tam Fall/Winter 2013 Runway Show
Similar to other collections this season, including Tracy Reese’s, Vivienne Tam’s Fall/Winter 2013 line incorporates red and black. The difference is that Tam almost exclusively used these hues. While the silhouettes were conservative, the collection was sophisticated and politicized, vis-à-vis prints featuring abstract cartoons of President Barack Obama and the number 44. On many of her pieces, Tam used lines in unique ways, while giving us room to breathe with beautifully tailored solid dresses and coats. Towards the middle of the show, there were more separates that utilized leather and plaid, again reinforcing the sophistication of the woman she has in mind. Although I found this collection more masculine and sharp than some of her previous work, the polish is not lost. I only wish I could’ve seen more of her stunning dresses.

Vivienne Tam, Fall 2013

Tina's shots of Vivienne Tam, Fall 2013

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Cook For Your Man, Homemade Gyoza Recipe from Candice Kumai Pretty Delicious

Cooking for your man is just one of the many ways you can show him how much you love him, how much you appreciate him, and, therefore, how essential the relationship is in the hierarchy of your life.
Cooking Gyozas at Home
From the preparation to the plating, I love to cook. Aside from the health benefits of knowing what goes into my meal, and of course the economic perks, it's important for me to show my hubby that I value him and that I'm putting in the time to make his dinner or breakfast special. This is just one of the many baby steps that keep a marriage sizzling and fresh.
How many of you cooked for your significant other when you were in the early stages of your relationship? Have you stopped doing it over the months, years? You need to carve out the time to work your magic with the mixer, go wild with the wok or simply scramble and sizzle in the pan.
I'll be honest, during my first trimester, I couldn't stand most smells; my wonderful husband, along with the help of our moms, maned the kitchen. In my second trimester, we evacuated our home due to Sandy and couldn't return until late December. Now, back in my own kitchen and approaching seven months, I'm thrilled to put on the apron. I don't cook every night. I'm slower, when I do, and I need to be seated when doing the initial cutting/mixing/peeling etc. Nevertheless, I'm putting in the effort. In the same way I'm not surrendering my sexiness while pregnant, I'm not surrendering my spatial. Case in point, this week's gyoza. If you follow me on Instagram you've seen the images. Here's the recipe, courtesy of . It's easy, healthy and husband-approved.  Oh, and in case you're wondering, I've been know to cook in my sexy skivvies! Food+lingerie=marriage magic.
Mom's Homemade Gyoza Pretty Delicious by Candice Kumai
Chef Candice Kumai Makes her Mom's Homemade Gyoza
Dipping Sauce:
~ 1/4 Cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
~ 1/4 cup rice vinegar
~ scallions sliced on the diagonal
~ 1 lb 96% Lean Ground Beef
~ 5 dried shitake mushrooms, soaked in boiling water for 5min, drained & chopped
~ 5 scallions, finely chopped
~ 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
~ 3 large green cabbage leaves, finely chopped
~ 4 garlic cloves, minced
~ 1/4 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
~ 2 Tb Dark Sesame Oil
~ 1 tsp sugar
~ 1 tsp Fresh Grated Ginger
~ Flour for dusting surface
~ 30 Round Wonton Skins - about 1/2 the package
~ 6 tsp Veg oil
Chef Candice Kumai's Homemade Gyoza from Pretty Delicious
To make the sauce: Whisk the soy sauce and vinegar together in a small dish. Add the scallions and set aside.
To make the gyoza: Mix the ground beef, mushrooms, scallions, onion, cabbage, and garlic together in a large bowl.  Whisk the soy sauce, sesame oil, ginger, and sugar together in a small bowl. Add the soy sauce mixture to the beef mixture and stir together until combined.
Sprinkle a work surface with some flour. Place a small bowl of warm water next to your work area. Place a wonton wrapper on the floured area and place 2 teaspoons of the beef mixture in the center. (Depending on your wontons, you may only get in 1 teaspoon. No worries, I figured out what to do with the excess meat mix.**) Dip a finger in the warm water and moisten the edges of the wrapper, then fold the wrapper over the filling as if you were making a turnover. Press the edges together. Use your index finger and thumb to pinch the edges so they have a cute ruffled look like the edge of a pie crust. Set aside and repeat with the rest of the filling and wrappers.
Heat 1 1/2 teaspoons of veg oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat for 2 minutes. Add about 10 gyoza to the pan and cook until the bottoms are golden brown, about 1-2 min. When peaking under the gyoza to check for browning, be gentle! They are very fragile. Add 1/4 cup of water to the skillet, reduce the heat to medium, cover, and cook without turning until the wrappers are translucent, about 2 min. Uncover and cook until the water has evaporated and the filling is cooked through, about 2-3 min longer.
Remove the pan from the heat. Pour any liquid remaining in the pan into a bowl. Place a large plate over the skillet, the plate should be larger than the skillet, and flip the pan over. The gyoza should effortlessly fall from pan to plate revealing their gorgeous, golden brown skins. Gyoza taste best when hot, so serve immediately with the dipping sauce as you cook up the next batch. Cook 2 more batches, adding a tiny bit more oil as needed and 1/4 cup water for each batch. Wipe out the skillet between batches if necessary.

Celeb Chef Candice Kumai's debut book Pretty Delicious
**Drizzle sesame oil into wok and pre-heat at medium/high for 1 minute. Throw excess meat/veggie mix into the wok and cook for about 2-3minutes. Throw in rice or noodles, as well as some of the dipping sauce from gyoza. Cook for another minute. Meal number 2 ready for the rest of the week.
ALSO, if you make a ton of gyoza you can freeze it. I usually make about 50 from the above recipe because my wontons are clearly smaller than what Candice buys.

Watch Candice make her gyozas.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Elisa Dahan Interview, Mackage Co-Creative Director, Stylish Mom & MILF Mom Is Looking Fabulous

With today being the official kickoff for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week, here in New York, I’m thrilled to feature Mackage Co-Creative Director and uber-stylish mom of two Elisa Dahan. This Canadian-born designer is committed to crafting outwear that is sexy and sleek with a modern twist, and Elisa applied that alluring philosophy to her pregnancy and post-belly style routine. As you’ll see, she’s certainly early the MILF (Mom Is Looking Fabulous) title.
Elisa Dahan, Co-Creative Director Mackage

Pamela Pekerman: My motto on pregnancy and motherhood is: never surrender! How do you embody this motto in your life?
Elisa Dahan: Pregnancy is beautiful and sexy – show it off!

PP: What tips do you have for women who want to maintain their style while pregnant?
ED: Stretch fabrics will become your best friend throughout these nine months. The worst thing you can do to your bump is wear baggy clothing—bodycon pieces celebrate your belly and show off your curves.

PP: What was your biggest beauty issue during pregnancy?
ED: Stretch marks were most definitely something I wanted to avoid so I took preventative measures! Mama Mio creams work wonders – trust me!

PP: No need to convince me. I’m a huge fan, as well. Their Tummy Rub Oil and Boob Tube are part of my nightly ritual. Switching back to style, your specialty, what was your go-to outfit/item while pregnant, that made you feel fabulous?
Elisa Dahan with her husband and kids
ED: I would wear bodycon dresses or short shorts with a fitted blouse. Drawing attention to my legs made me feel sexy during my pregnancy. I think that all women should find one asset they love and flaunt it during their pregnancy

PP: We’re cut from the same cloth.  I don’t understand why a woman would want to all of a sudden drape herself in oversized, asexual clothing. Embrace the bellybody it’s key for your self-esteem and, of course, it keeps the chemistry in your relationship at full sizzle!
ED: Yes!

PP: Now, how do you teach your children the value of style, personal grooming and appearance, which clearly matter to you?
ED: My son is absorbing our sense of style and he wants to be just like us. All it takes is a little encouragement and your kids will be on board. My three year old son enjoys when I try clothes on him. When I dress him up, the first thing he’ll do is pull up his sleeves for an edgier look and then he’ll go to the mirror to check himself out.

PP: I hate the word “balance”, but you certainly have a on your plate. How do you incorporate motherhood, being a wife and a successful designer at Mackage, into your life?
ED: I love a challenge. If you want it all, it’s about making the time for what is important to you. I work hard, but I am also very domestic. To date, I have not bought pre-made baby food for my babies and I make dinner for my hubby almost every night, even after a long day at work. I love having a career, being a wife and a mom; it fulfills me and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
PP: I noticed you mentioned wife before mom. I often say that my husband is number one, and without that solid, romantic connection everything else can’t work, namely having a happy family. How do you make sure that you and your relationship are part of the equation, and it’s not just about the kids?  
ED: The key is to have date night with your other half weekly. It gives you both a chance to stop and reconnect. However, it is equally important to focus on yourself; I treat myself to a manicure every week and don’t know what’d I do without those 30 minutes.
Elisa Dahan
PP: In two lines, express your feelings about motherhood?
ED: There is absolutely nothing more genuine than the love of your kids. Being a mom is amazing and scary at the same time, because you are responsible to help shape your children and they trust you blindly. I lost my mother at a young age. I know how important the role is, as I missed having that warm person it every day.
PS Check out Elise's blog www.infashionated.com.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Spring 2013 Fashion Trends - Pastels

Mercedes-Benz New York Fashion Week kicks off on Thursday, and by next week, we'll all know what's going to be the it color, trend, silhouette and global reference du jour for Fall 2013. But, as much as love fall, fashion and forecasting, most of us are really just thinking about today and our immediate style needs. With the official kick off of Spring just a month and half away, let's talk spring trends.

Pastels were all over the runways and now they are popping up in beautifully photographed advertising campaigns. Get inspired by your favorite macaroon flavour and softly embrace these angelic hues.
 Blumarine ad, Spring 2013
Mulberry ad, Spring 2013
Mulberry ad, Spring 2013
Etienne Aigner, Spring 2013 Preview
Kohl's Spring 2013 Preview

Clockwise from Top Right: L.K. Bennett flats ; L.K. Bennett pumps ;
Elliott Lucca hobo bag ; Ted Rossi cuffs ; Kohl's accessories ;
Stuart Weitzman sandals ; Stuart Weitzman flats