Boston event: Project Beethoven

On Thursday, I am very excited to be attending the Boston Symphony Orchestra's Project Beethoven event.  A contest where music & fashion meet, 10 fashion students from local colleges designed evening wear inspired by the music of Ludwig von Beethoven.  The event kicks off with a viewing of the dresses on models, then continues with an 8 pm concert of Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3.  Following the concert, the winner will be announced at a reception.  The winning prize includes a spread in Boston Magazine-  how lucky!  

I was given the opportunity to interview the designer of this amazing dress- that I cannot wait to see in person!
Name: Jessica Hutchings
Age: 20
Hometown : New Fairfield, CT
High School: New Fairfield Highschool
College: Lasell College in Newton, MA 

1. When did you start designing?  The first time I can remember designing was in 6th grade.  Although I didn’t know very much about fashion or drawing figures for that matter, I would always be doodling dresses on dress forms.  I found designing was the best creative outlet for me since I could make a dress my own and someday someone maybe wearing my name.
2. Who or what influences your designs?  I take a lot of inspiration from what I see around me.  The smallest things such as architecture or nature will influence my garments. I like to explore my creative boundaries, and come up with something different and new.  My favorite thing to do is experiment with interweaving straps and creating a design within a design. 
3. Tell us a little more about your experience with Project Beethoven and the process. I really enjoyed this chance to be a finalist for Project Beethoven.  I’ve had to think about every part of a design, the fabrics, the construction and the presentation.  The hardest part I think is the presentation because it’s not something you’re taught in school, it’s just something that needs to come naturally.  I needed to find a hairstyle that would highlight my dress and jewelry that would complete it.  If one thing is wrong, it could completely throw off my look. The experience was also similar to the show Project Runway; I have felt the same stress and excitement of designing a garment and watching it come to life.  Now I just can’t wait to see it go down the runway!
4. Who are your favorite everyday and high fashion designers? Vera Wang, Betsey Johnson and Jessica McClintock hands down.  Not only do I love Vera Wang’s beautiful wedding dresses but her story inspires me as well.  She originally didn’t plan for fashion to be part of her future, instead she was going to the Olympics for figure skating, but when that didn’t happen she entered the fashion industry.   This helps remind me that even if my plan changes it may be for the better.  Betsey Johnson’s creative style is always fun and flirty, but I especially love her accessories.  Finally, Jessica McClintock was part of the reason I chose to pursue a fashion career.  One of my first home coming dresses was a McClintock and most of the dresses after.  They always seemed to fit like a glove and it originally had me thinking I would design clothing for people with body types that didn’t fit the “norm”.
5. If you could take only 3 pieces of clothing or accessories to an island, what would you bring?  Although I am a Fashion Design student ironically I don’t find clothes very important. I believe fashion is a way to express yourself and impress those around you; it has lost that once important use of practicality.  If I only could bring three pieces of clothing, I would bring my favorite London sweater from Express, my favorite stretch jeans, and a change of clean underwear.  If going to an island there would be no need to impress anyone, but to simply be as comfortable as you can be, and in these clothes I feel comfortable and clean underwear of course is a must!
6. What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned either in school, personal life, or during Project Beethoven? The most important lesson to me is one I am still learning: Be Yourself.  Some find themselves right away and have their group of friends picked for life.  I have always had friends but bonds weren’t permanently formed until I came to college were I have found my niche in a group of friends who support me as me.  There is always more to learn and I still have yet to find a comfortable place in the fashion industry but as long as I am doing what I love I will find my niche soon.  
7. Anything else you’d like to share with us? I just want to tell people to pursue your dreams to the fullest and take as many chances as you can.  My mom was the one who really pushed me to enter Project Beethoven and without thinking I may have a chance to win I entered anyway.  Now I am a finalist and putting everything I have into this garment, because I see where I could be if I pursue my dreams.

Thank you, Jessica, and best of luck!  Thanks also to the BSO for the complimentary ticket! Read more and get tickets here.  If you are under 40, which I believe most of you are, the ticket is just $20!

Photos courtesy of the BSO.

Blogging last year: Style you Sunday: Now and Later


Friday Faves

Mini tuxedo @ O'Style
Makes me want to wear shorts and this shirt I bought asap.

Colorful stripes are my fave @ You Are My Fave
Just thought this was cool, and it brought a smile to my face.

Carrie Menswear and Kooky Carrie @ B.Jones Style
Doesn't she recreate these looks perfectly?

Katarin Malmstrom Brown @ Desire to Inspire  
Love the Mona Lisa and nook.

Spuds and Suds party @ Zucchero, Zucchero
Anyone else think this is a brilliant idea? Make your own baked potato bar with friends ;)

I couldn't be more happy to have this week over...have a nice weekend!

Blogging last year: Inspired by Design for Mankind


Cheer me up post

Thanks for all your nice comments yesterday. It's kinda amazing how people I know only through the internet can be so sweet :)   It's been a tough week, but these pics from some of my daily blog reads really brighten up my spirits and make me ignore (yet another) snow storm.

Images: 1, 2, 3-6, 7

Blogging last year: What I'm Wearing Wednesday


Remembering Cody

Yesterday we had to put our dog Cody to sleep.  After a week of not really eating and possible liver failure, it was time- we didn't want him to suffer.  He had just celebrated his 15th birthday on Saturday...we were going for the record of owning the oldest Bichon (19 1/2 years old).  

I know soon, I will stop crying and just have the happy memories of Cody... I will always remember:
  • The first night we got him in 1996 and were driving home, he must have farted in his crate from being nervous. We thought he had pooped, and the whole time were laughing at how we'd have to clean him up at home.  
  • On his second night, I had a Girl Scout troop meeting, and we spent the entire time all excited over his little, white, fluff-ball self.
  • When he was young, we'd give him a bath and he'd blitz, running fast from room to room, on our 2nd floor. My bro and I would laugh and laugh.
  • After we got our backyard fenced in, in the winter, he'd run all over and come in with balls of snow stuck in his leg fur.  Too cute.
  • My bro and I dressing him up in everything you can imagine- funny hats, sweaters, booties...taking rolls and rolls of film with him and all of our stuffed animals and Beanie Babies.
  • When we got Molly- our other dog- 10 years ago, Cody was so upset and betrayed, he didn't eat for weeks in protest. Finally, one day, the 2 dogs had it out somehow and were best friends ever since.
  • There was a mix up at the groomers, and he got sent to the wrong home!  Luckily, we got him back :)
  • In the past few years, when he was getting up in the years, whenever he did his "exercises", rolling on his back and running upside down almost, we knew he was doing ok.
  • How he loved being pet...if you stopped, he whined like a baby.
  • The smell of his (foul, really foul- sorry, Cody) breath, feel of his wet nose, soft fur when he was a puppy..more wirey as he got older.
  • The final look he gave me yesterday before we took him to the vet- when I hugged and kissed him goodbye, he had this goofy smile on his face (we had given him a tranquilizer to calm him and make him more comfortable).  The sweetest face I will remember forever.
Cody went through 2 knee replacement surgeries, bladder surgery, and was diagnosed with diabetes 6 months ago. What a trooper. And there were many-a-times that the fence gate was left open and he ran away...he always came back though.

The funny thing is- Cody had a family before us, and they gave him back because he was a runt.  What a amazing dog they missed out on... love you forever Cody.

Pics- some random ones from my BlackBerry


Monday blues

Feeling a little down in the dumps today...and not just due to the arctic temps in Boston. Is it spring yet?
pics: 1, 2, 3, 4


Style you Sunday: Marie Claire editorial for Ms. Mac

While working from home on Friday, Ms. Mac and I were perusing Marie Claire's February 2011 issue...she stumbled upon an editorial with Clemence Poesy that boasted classic items and expensive prices.  She asked me to recreate this look...taken with my BlackBerry and in MC's "Shop the Shoot" section.

Their's cost $583 for the striped top, skirt, and wedges. My cost? $158 for the top, skirt, wedges, and trench!

Love this look...looking forward to spring!

Blogging last year: While I was sick...


Friday Faves

At home @ Escapade
Love the "wallpaper".

Beautiful and simple tabletop decoration @ 79 ideas
Simple and so pretty...reminds me of all the Queen's Lace flowers I see in Maine.

Paper inspired pairings @ Oh So Beautiful Paper
Nice inspiration for spring.

DIY: woven chains @ Because I'm Addicted
I'd love to try this..check out finished product by clicking link.

A glimpse into my closet @ Made by Girl
Before and after...after is the dream closet! Would love her shoes too.

Have a great weekend!  Thanks to Olivia at Casually Defined for the Stylish Blogger award!


Purple Rain

Purple is having a moment, and I can't stop being inspired by Kristen's lady-like dress, Blake's feathers & t-straps, Nicole's one shoulder mini, and SJP's chic clutch.

Follow suit, and next time you reach for your LBD or fave neutral clutch, try something with a pop of purple.


#StyleBristol Tweet Up

Last night's StyleBoston Tweet Up at the Bristol Lounge was a good time of bloggy friends, champagne, prizes, and well-dressed Bostonians! 
Everyone at the event tweeted with #stylebristol hash tag and the tweets were displayed...

 If you were lucky enough, you won me! ;) 
I won a gift certificate to the Met Bar...thank you!

With lovely blog ladies Rachel and Kinsey...wearing my outfit!

Goody a free eyeshadow, thank you x2!

chin chin!

Alana and Katy tweeting away

Thanks to the Four Seasons and StyleBoston for putting on a great event! When's Tweet Up #2?


What I'm Wearing Wednesday

Trying to bring WIWW back into regularly scheduled programming... tonight I am going to StyleBoston's first ever Fashion TweetUp at the Four Seasons' Bristol Lounge.  I will share more pictures tomorrow of the event, but here is what I am wearing...
  • J.Crew wool shift dress- from last year
  • Charlotte Russe necklace- last seen here
  • Ann Taylor maroon tights
  • Macy's gray booties
  • rings from Anna Belen and H&M
  • earrings from Bobbles and Lace
I am starting out my day wearing my flowery rain boots as the slush/snow/ice is out of control in Beantown.

What are you wearing today?

Blogging last year: Golden ladies of the Golden Globes
(PS: re-reading this fashion wrap-up from last year...there was a lot more glamour in 2010, I'd say)


Golden Globes fashion review

Glitter Gals: 
Anne Hathaway in Armani Prive- my best-dressed, fits her like a glove
Sandra Bullock in Jenny Packham- bangs are a bit much, but I really like the dress
 Carrie Underwood in Badgley Mischka- classic and elegant

Jewel-toned Jewels
Jane Krakowski- works the baby bump well and beautiful color on her
Amy Adams in Marchesa- love the lace/cut out details and train
Catherine Zeta-Jones in Monique Lhuillier- stunning color on her and love the neckline

Bright Stars: 
Mandy Moore in Monique Lhuillier- love the bold color and tulle
Kyra Sedgwick in Emilio Pucci- unique color for her
Julianne Moore in Lanvin- gorgeous draping and daring of her to pick this shade..she rocks it. My second best-dressed.

I-wish-I-liked-this/could've-done-better Ladies:
Heidi Klum in Marc Jacobs- she looks kind-of a mess to me. Eye makeup was too heavy.
January Jones in Versace: too much boob!!
Natalie Portman in Viktor and Rolf- just not a fan. Would've preferred w/o the necklace.
Michelle Williams in Valentino- so disappointed.  Too matronly and blah.

Who were your best & worst dressed?

Photos via FabSugar

Blogging last year: I have a dream