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Who is Diane von Furstenberg, and why are her wrap dresses so sick?

Did you know she was a princess?! I decided to start a series where I do a little background research on a designer I'm interested in and whose work I admire. It is sort of fun to dive into the history of fashion lines, and who better to start with than wrap-dress queen and CFDA president, Diane von Furstenberg. 
Dress | DvF (obvi)
Bag | Mansur Gavriel (read a review here)
Sunglasses | Ray-Ban
To get the ball rolling, here is a great 10 minute interview between DvF and Leandra Medine, of Man Repeller, where she doles out such wisdom as "when you doubt your power, you give power to your doubts"

DvF on the cover of Newsweek in 1976
She was born Diane Simone Michelle Halfin, and later married Prince Egon of Furstenberg, a German prince. (Did you know Germany still had a royal family...I'm not going to lie, I did not). Although they later divorced, she started designing clothes when they married, and she kept his name on her brand as it grew.
Far more interesting than her royal past, DvF introduced the jersey wrap dress in 1974, which put her brand on the map, and launched a thousand imitators. Since that time her company has grown into an international business with, per Forbes, estimated sales of $500 million. 

Oh, hello there. 
The wrap dress is pretty universally flattering, nipping in at the waist and then flowing down across the hips. There is something about the cut which is so easy to wear, and yet comes across as very polished. I also appreciate that the prints DvF picks are always fun. This particular dress is from the RealReal, and instead of having a tie at the waist, it just has a wide elastic strap, which sort of acts like a belt, giving you a faux-wrap that can't accidentally come un-tied. 
This particular dress also has pockets, which is always appreciated. 
A print in two colors is twice as good!
No knots needed. 
I've enjoyed reading more about DvF, and might check out her book, The Woman I Wanted to Be. Have you read it and would you recommend it? I hope you enjoyed learning a little bit more about this awesome entrepreneur and business-woman, and in the meantime I will have to think about who I want to learn more about next!

Some DvF options below, priced from low to high:

Floral Pick-Me-Up

I woke up in a bad mood this morning. I was sleepy, my head hurt, and I didn't want to go to work. However, then I got out of bed and realized that I have a closet full of beautiful clothes, and so it can't really be all that bad. 
I picked this blazer in order to will myself into a good mood. I'll tell you what - it worked. 
Blazer | J. Crew (old)
Pants | Theory (thrifted)
Belt | Target
True or false: Looking at these photos made me realize I need a haircut...

Mansur Gavriel Mini Bucket Bag Review

As I have now had the Mansur Gavriel Mini Bucket Bag for a little over a year, I can finally give this bag a full review, especially as the handbag market has probably reached peak-bucket-bag saturation. Long story short, this bag has become my daily handbag and I am just as pleased with it today, as I was over a year ago.
Available on Mansur Gavriel's website herethe Real Real, and elsewhere online.
These were just pretty.
I remember first seeing this bag around the streets of New York back in 2014 and was immediately drawn to the contrast, pop-of-color inside of their bucket bag and their tote bag. It took another year before I purchased, and I really should have just bought one back in the beginning, as the price has only continued to climb since then (alas). 

I went back and forth quite a bit about which size to purchase as the bucket comes in three sizes: the bucket bag, the mini bucket bag, and the mini mini bucket bag. I ended up purchasing the middle size (the mini) and think it is appropriately sized for my frame (I am 5'2''). 

There are two things I love most about this bag, first, the weight. There was a while back in the early 2000's where I swear every handbag weighed several pounds, laden with pockets, zippers, and statement hardware, and which would hurt my shoulder after a few hours use. This bag is very thin and light, which isn't to say it is not durable. It is made of "natural vegetable tanned leather", and pretty stiff right out of the box. It was hard to close the first few times, you really have to pull it tight, but it has softened and that is no longer an issue. 

Second, I love the inside, which you can get in several different colors, or a "raw" option. I purchased the "Oro" liner, and I love the contrast with the black. It is the perfect fun accent to the otherwise pretty stark minimalist design.
Bag + things I carry around. The water bottle actually does fit inside, although when it is fully filled up it can make the bag a bit heavy.
I think this bag has held up well, and I use it all the time. It has definitely accumulated some scratches, as is visible above, but generally is in good condition, (the structure hasn't warped, or drooped) and I think if I use a leather conditioner I could lessen the look of some of the dings. The one thing I would change would be to add an interior pocket. Having a metallic interior helps, but otherwise, anything you drop in there just disappears into a bag abyss. However, I could probably address this by using a small zip pouch and separating out the items I need to find quickly. 
All in all, even when the bucket trends fades, I'm excited to wear this bag for years to come. 
Another photo for scale
Do you have any questions about the Mini Bucket?

Fancy Pants

Sometimes, you have to push yourself out of your comfort zone. For me, although I've gotten comfortable with printed dresses, printed pants are another story entirely. Typically, I am all about jeans, or work pants in black or navy (I know - wild). I saw these at a consignment store, took a chance, and ended up digging the pattern.
Pants | 3.1 Phillip Lim
Sweater | Gap
Shoes | Calvin Klein
Carpet | Ugly, unfortunately 


Ah, the classic trench. This one is actually navy, although it looks black in this photo. I think a trench coat is one of those closet staples that elevates an outfit. Without the trench, it is obvious I just mixed all the soft sweater-items in my closet together, but with the trench - well - it is a real outfit.  This one is Banana Republic, in their petite sizing. 
Trench | Banana Republic
Cardigan | Becky with the... Rachel Roy
Sweater | Eileen Fisher
Pants | See Thru Soul
Shoes | Rachel Comey (Mars)
Mars Ankle Boots Rachel Comey

Rinse and Repeat

Once I have a work-outfit formula I like, I just repeat it and repeat it. One of my favorites is: printed dress, solid-colored cardigan or sweater, and simple flats.

This dress is Rag & Bone, and was on clearance at the Real Real. I only buy Rag & Bone on substantial sale, or secondhand, as it is quite expensive, but I am a fan of their work. Their clothes are classic but always seem well thought out. For example, this simple silk dress 1. is lined (it drives me crazy when more expensive dresses aren't lined) 2. has pockets, which is aces and 3. is made in USA! It was also less than $50. What more could you want?
Nail Polish | Essie Mint Candy Apple

Leather Jackets As The New Cardigan?

I've started wearing leather jackets in the office, the way that I would normally wear a blazer or a cardigan. I think it definitely is more casual, but I think it is also just plain cooler. I try to pick well-fitting and streamlined leather jackets so the fact that I'm wearing outerwear, indoors, is less noticeable. 
Top | SFMOMA Calder T-shirt
Jacket | Veda (last styled here)
Pants | DL1961


When I bought this dress, I sat down and thought about it long and hard, and realized I have never owned an animal-print piece of clothing before. Not a blouse, not a dress, not a glove, not so much as a scarf. No animal print. 


Top | Elizabeth and James
Skirt | Kate Spade
Sunglasses | Raybans
Hat| Goorin Bros
This photo is kind of crazy - there is no filter, but the sun was shining directly into the camera, and it ended up sun-streaked. It does, however, capture the feeling in the air the day I took it.