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Category Archives: Trends

To Have and To Hold: Hunger Games-Inspired Weddings

Let’s get Katniss Everdeen to her wedding in style.  The Hunger Games is a novel about survival, starvation, torture and fighting to the death, yet apparently some people seem to find that very romantic!  Several Hunger Games-themed bridal photo-shoots popped up before the premiere of the film last month, earmarking a huge trend to come surrounding the famous series.  The Wedding Event Institute announced a contest called “The Wedding Games,” where 12 planners and stylists will compete to create the best Katniss-inspired wedding.  (You think anyone notices the irony about turning a dystopian horror story into part of a competition that feeds the completely corporate and over-the-top billion-dollar wedding industry…?)  Hmm, well irony aside, some of the elements could translate pretty well: table numbers by District number, incorporating the herbs rue and katniss, as well as dandelions and primroses into a bouquet (you could even use the wilted dandelions to blow the spores onto the couple, instead of throwing rice!), and, of course, putting the bride’s hair into a long braid.  (Fun Fact: Traditional Irish brides wore braids, as they were a symbol of feminine power and luck. Hmm… you think Suzanne Collins did that intentionally?)  You could also easily come up with an entire menu, based on the absence and abundance of food Collins describes in the series – you could serve Katniss’s favorite lamb stew with plums, “sugar berry” jam, fresh-baked bread (or even bread for each district, like the seaweed kind from District 4 that Peeta describes), Mellark bakery’s cheese and apple tarts, hot chocolate from the train, Primrose’s basil-wrapped goat cheese, pudding the color of honey, and, of course, a beautifully detailed wedding cake adorned with handcrafted sugar flowers – just like the ones Peeta Mellark made while working in his father’s bakery.  (Damn, you could start a whole restaurant out of the delicious treats Suzanne Collins describes!  Those were just the dishes we could remember!)  All of the shoots incorporated the forest setting, which makes sense since that’s where Katniss hunts in District 12 and fights in when she’s in the arena.  Each of bridal models carried Katniss’s signature bow-and-arrow (considering that’s cupid’s weapon, that actually makes a lot of sense to incorporate that element).  Green Wedding Shoes featured an adorable table setting with tree stumps for seats (pictured, above), and a bouquet of arrows in place of flowers (pictured, above left).  We loved the stunning bright wildflowers and gorgeous table settings by Courtney Clarke Photography (pictured, below).  Our favorite shoot was done by Stacie Shea Events (pictured, top and bottom).  We found their use of berries, bread and bows-and-arrows to be the simplest, yet classiest.  Their idea of having mini berry jams and tiny baker loaves as parting favors was particularly adorable (pictured, below), as well as recreating the Katniss and Peeta suicide pact (pictured, top left) that feels reminiscent of Romeo and Juliet (not that we’re encouraging it!)  Each shoot included gorgeous wedding cakes decorated with mockingjays, but we’re surprised no one went with the descriptive passages Collins had written about Peeta’s beautiful floral handiwork on desserts.  (We’re also surprised they didn’t include any gorgeous blonde grooms – guess these stylists and photographers were all Team Gale?  Hehe. Although, a traditional wedding ceremony in District 12 features the bride and groom toasting bread – if the “girl on fire” and “the boy with the bread” marry, one would get toast…)  Rustic wedding settings full of birch trees, evergreens and wildflowers do provide a naturally stunning venue, so it makes sense people might be drawn to creating a Hunger Games-esque wedding, but considering the amount of death and destruction that takes place over the series, we don’t think that was the message Suzanne Collins was trying to send… Katniss Everdeen is not a girl just trying to get a ring on it.  Although, it’s not really fair for us to assume what the author would like, since all she ever wanted for her characters was happiness, and the prospect of hope. ❤

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Top 10 Prom Dresses

As the warm weather rolls around, invitations to BBQs, graduations, communions, christenings, showers, and weddings seem to increase tenfold.  But there’s another event that comes with the summer that makes us reminisce about our teenage years – PROM!  There definitely weren’t any pod people, pregnant girls or punches thrown at our high school proms, but there definitely were at the following fictional dances!  Here are our ten favorite prom dresses from some beloved television shows and teen flicks.

1. Jennifer’s Body

This is definitely the darkest story out of our selected favorites, but it’s our number one choice – Megan Fox in the black comedy Jennifer’s Body.  Written by the Oscar-winning Juno screenwriter Diablo Cody, this film bombed at the box office, but it’s actually quite underrated.  Fox plays a smoking hot succubus, and while the plot sounds insane, it actually has some very slick commentary on feminism and sexuality.  And it also has a very pretty black and white prom dress!  (Shocker, can you guess what colors this editor wore to her own prom…?)  Jennifer might have seduced and killed half the school’s male population by this point in the film (it looks like she isn’t done either, by the photo above), and is headed straight to hell, but at least she still looks good!

2. Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Considering Buffy Summers was my hero as a teenager, it’s no shocker this is #2 on our list.  Sarah Michelle Gellar played the tiny hero of Sunnydale, fighting off vampires, demons and the devil in the TV series, based on the 1992 film of the same name.  Buffy has one of the prettiest prom gowns, but she also happens to have the best accessory – after years of being treated like an outcast at her high school, her classmates come to realize most of them are alive due to her fierce protection, and create an award just for her: an umbrella labeled “Class Protector.”  Considering she had to kill several demonic dogs targeting teenagers in formal wear before she even arrived, it’s amazing she still got to the dance on time looking so pretty!  But that’s always been Miss Summers’ MO.  And she still managed to fit in a dance with the original hot vampire boyfriend, Angel (sorry Edward Cullen – you don’t compare to this guy!)

3. Dawson’s Creek

Oh my, the greatest teen soap opera to ever air has to be included!  This editor still gets choked up watching old reruns of the WB hit.  The ultimate girl-next-door, Joey Potter, goes from tomboy to a young woman caught between the two loves of her life in this episode of Dawson’s Creek.  When it came to prom, the love triangle between the three lead characters was still a huge problem.  After their friend, Jack, isn’t allowed to bring a male date to the high school prom, the gang hosts their own “Anti-Prom.”  Joey, normally a cute girl in plaid and jeans, chose a slinky black dress for the affair.  Although her date was actually Dawson, there’s no denying the intense chemistry she has for his best friend, Pacey.

4. Back to the Future

As a preteen, I wanted to be Buffy, and as a child I wanted to be Mrs. Michael J. Fox – mainly because of this movie.  Fox plays Marty McFly, a guitar-playing tough teen who accidentally time travels to 1955 – the year his parents met!  He ends up preventing their meet-cute from ever happening, so he has to recreate it – and plans to do so at the “Enchantment Under the Sea” dance.  His mother, played by Lea Thompson, wears an adorable strapless soft pink pindot dress.  Thompson recently commented that she had kept the dress from the film – and plans on selling it on eBay to put towards her daughters’ college educations!

5. Buffy the Vampire Slayer (the movie)

The TV show was definitely superior to the film on which it was based, but it was still fun.  And still well-dressed apparently!  It may be 1992, but Kristy Swanson looks so elegant in her white halter gown with a sophisticated bun, you barely notice the dead guy lying next to her.

6. She’s All That

Aw, there was certainly a surge of teen scene flicks in the late 1990s!  Here’s one of our favorites – She’s All That.  Rachael Leigh Cook plays Laney Boggs, a dorky artist who the king of her high school bets he can make into the prom queen.  Freddie Prinze Jr. plays an unusual male lead for these kind of films – a jock with a brain!  He smartens up fast, when he realizes he’s falling for his pet project.  Laney goes from art freak to alluring siren in this black, body-hugging gown and swept-up hair.  She may not win the crown, but she wins what matters – a scholarship to art school and a ticket out of her one-horse town.  Oh okay, and she gets the guy too, for you sappy types.

7. One Tree Hill

It’s no surprise this show’s reruns air on the Soap Network – there’s more drama in the fictional town of Tree Hill than the entire state of North Carolina!  But it doesn’t mean it isn’t any less captivating!  The cast’s prom outfits are all color-coordinated (other than Skills on the right – although that is one kicking coat!)  We’ll say the show’s three girls are tied for #7, because Peyton looks lovely in powder blue, Brooke looks beautiful in her sequined mini and Haley looks damn hot in her white halter – considering she’s pregnant!

8. Gossip Girl

 

For a show dedicated to fashion, we expected more exciting frocks from frenemies Blair and Serena, and while we were quite disappointed in Blake Lively’s alter-ego’s choice, we did like Miss Waldorf’s gown.  Although she breaks up with Nate on this episode of Gossip Girl, TV’s favorite mean girl is crowned Prom Queen in this black and gold Marchesa gown.

9. 10 Things I Hate About You

This 1999 romantic comedy is probably the best written film out of the teen hits created over the last 30 years – due in large part to screenwriter Karen McCullah Lutz (a fellow James Madison University grad like this editor – Go Dukes!)  Her adaptation of the William Shakespeare play The Taming of the Shrew was fiercely funny and launched the careers of Julia Stiles and the late Heath Ledger.  Stiles plays an independent girl named Kat Stratford, and although she isn’t too interested in high school, she is eventually talked into attending prom – and she shows up looking quite lovely in a cornflower blue gown, matching silk wrap, her mother’s pearls and a red rose for her swept-up curls.

10. Saved by the Bell

Okay, this prom get-up obviously isn’t a gown, but it still remains one of our favorites.  The ultimate all-American high school girl, Kelly Kapowski (played by Tiffani Amber Thiessen), had everything a Californian teen can dream of – cool friends, popularity, a handsome boyfriend, good grades and a position on the cheerleading squad, but there was one thing she was missing by the end of high school – money.  Kelly’s father lost his job close to the prom, so she couldn’t afford a dress or a ticket.  But don’t worry – she had the best date, Zack Morris!  After finding out his girlfriend couldn’t go, he held their own private prom outside the school, complete with a picnic and dancing.  It may have been in jeans, but attending prom with a guy that wasn’t taking you as part of a bet, or because he was paid to, or because his first choice was going with someone else, is certainly a lot more important than the dress.  (Well for some people.  This editor was definitely more in love with her Jessica McClintock gown than any date she ever had in high school…  In fact, she still is!  But hey, that’s just me! 🙂 )


Hollywood's Hottest Dads

To celebrate Father’s Day, we thought it’d be fun to name Hollywood’s hunkiest dads.  (Which shouldn’t be too hard, considering how many beautiful people live in the City of Angels.)  Here are our favorites, in no particular order:

1. James Marsden: The fact that he’s been left for another guy in seven different movies doesn’t make much sense.  He’s gorgeous, funny, and extremely down-to-earth (according to a friend of one of our editors who worked on the set of Enchanted).  While he looks young, he’s been married for 11 years this summer (yummy, he’s loyal too!)  He and wife Lisa have two cute kids with some interesting Hollywood names… Peachpit and Sandpiper?  No, Jack and Mary.

2. Hugh Jackman: He played a gay guy on Broadway for quite some time, and that still didn’t kill his masculine sex appeal.  This Australian can do no wrong by us.  He’s been married to Deborah-Lee Furness since 1996, and although the couple suffered several miscarriages, he stuck by her side and chose to adopt instead.  Jackman is dad to Oscar Maximillian and Ava Eliot, who he’s frequently seen playing with on the streets of New York.

3. Jason Bateman: Nerdy has never been so sexy.  After watching all three seasons of Arrested Development in about a week and a half, this editor finally saw why one of her childhood friends is obsessed with the comeback kid.  He’s a total dork while trying to raise his fictional son, George Michael, on the show, but in real-life his curly-haired cutie is named Francesca Nora, and the two make quite a pair!

4. Matt Damon: He married the luckiest bartender in the world, Luciana Barroso, and became her daughter, Alexia’s stepdad when the two married.  But he wasn’t done making girls – the couple went on to have 3 more daughters!  Isabella, Gia and Stella Damon.

5. James McAvoy: Talk about one private guy – this photo is apparently the only public one to exist of James and his son, Brendan.  McAvoy is famous for ignoring the foofaraw that comes with being a celebrity, but while James was doing press for Gnomeo and Juliet, he wouldn’t even talk about his new baby!  “The hardest thing about being a dad in this business – the best way for me to be a good dad is not to talk about him.  I’m so sorry.”  A dad that keeps his child out of the limelight?  Very sexy.

6. Patrick Dempsey: The man is McDreamy, so no matter what he does, it’s always kind of hot.  He’s a father to twin boys, Sullivan Patrick and Darby Galen, and daughter Tallula Fyfe.  When Tallula was 3, she also commented on the actor’s gorgeous looks, to which Dempsey stated: “‘You’re very handsome, Poppy.’  That was the best compliment ever.”

7. Jerry O’Connell: He went from being the fat kid in Stand by Me to efflorescing into one freaking stud.  O’Connell married supermodel Rebecca Romijn and had twin girls, Dolly Rebecca Rose and Charlie Tamara Tulip.  The New York native looks right at home being surrounded by all those beautiful girls!

8. Brad Pitt: While we aren’t fans of him leaving Jennifer Aniston to start a new family with Angelina Jolie, there’s no denying he still looks hot carrying a gaggle of children!  Pitt adopted Jolie’s two children, Maddox Chivan and Zahara Marley, when the couple first got together, and went on to have four more children – Shiloh Nouvel, Pax Thien and twins Knox Leon and Vivienne Marcheline.

9. Ben Affleck: He shocked everyone after a series of poor film choices that the actor could write, act and direct quite well, with pictures such as Gone Baby Gone and The Town.  He’s also very good at making cute babies!  Affleck married Hollywood girl-next-door Jennifer Garner, and became father to Violet and Seraphina.  For a couple of Boston tough guys, Damon and Affleck certainly ended up surrounded by quite a few women!

1o. David Beckham: Yes, our editors have a slight obsession with his wife, so it’s no surprise we love the world’s most famous footballer just as much.  And David is one sweet daddy.  He became a father had the tender age of 23, and has remained faithful to the family he created as a young man.  Married to Victoria, they have three sons, Brooklyn Joseph, Romeo James and Cruz David (pictured below) – and a little girl on the way!


Mommy Spice

She used to be my only enemy and never let me be free/Catching me in places that I knew I shouldn’t be/Every other day I crossed the line I didn’t mean to be so bad/I never thought you would become the friend I never had,” the Spice Girls sang in their hit song “Mama” nearly 15 years ago.  Now, the Spice Women are all mums themselves!  It seems like yesterday we were bopping around to their pop songs, and now they’ve all got kiddies of their own!  On Mother’s Day, we discussed how babies are the newest celebrity accessory (hell, there’s a baby section of People magazine…), and who our favorite Hollywood moms were (including Posh, of course), so why shouldn’t we discuss our favorite pop-stars of our childhood, too?  Especially when they’ve got quite a few “baby spices” themselves!  Here are the Spice Mamas, in order of their appearance on their original album cover, because that’s how we’ll always remember them:

1. Posh Spice (Victoria Adams Beckham): She was only 24 when she had her first son, Brooklyn Joseph, with famous husband, David Beckham, in 1999.  She went on to have two other sons, Romeo James and Cruz David, and is due with her first daughter this summer.  (Fun Fact: Upon hearing his new sibling was going to be a girl, Romeo asked to name the new baby “Justine Beiber Beckham.”)

2. Baby Spice (Emma Bunton): Baby Spice lives up to her name, seeing as she just gave birth four days ago to her second child, Tate, with boyfriend of 11 years, Jade Jones.  She is also mum to Beau Lee Jones.

3. Sporty Spice (Melanie Chisholm): She is mum to a baby with the same initials as her alter-ego, Scarlet Starr!  Chisholm has been dating the baby’s father since 2002.

4. Ginger Spice (Geri Halliwell): Ginger was definitely one to stand out, so it’s not surprise her daughter has the most unusual name of the bunch – Bluebell Madonna Halliwell.  Geri explained whys she gave her the unique moniker, “What really clinched it for me was my mother telling me that the bluebell is increasingly rare – so it’s a precious flower, which seems just right for my daughter.”  Bluebell’s middle name is for both the pop-star and the virgin by the same name.  The top photo shows four of the Spice Girls at her christening (Fun Fact: Beckham and Bunton are Bluebell’s godmothers!)

5. Scary Spice (Melanie Brown): The first to become a mom, Brown was only 23 when she had her first child, Phoenix Chi (now that’s scary!) with her first husband.  Her second daughter, Iris Angel Murphy Brown, was the center of a very embarrassing paternity case with actor Eddie Murphy, but eventually Scary settled down with long-time friend, Stephen Belafonte.  Something must be in the Spice Girls’ water, because they too, are expecting a baby this summer!  (Fun Fact: Brown and Beckham’s first babies were born only two weeks apart, and both were named for locations special to their parents – Phoenix was the city she was conceived in, while Brooklyn is named for the city his parents were visiting when they found out they were having him!)


Hollywood’s Hottest Moms

In honor of Mother’s Day, we’re naming Hollywood’s Hottest Moms.  Okay, that isn’t exactly true… we’re naming our favorite Hollywood moms!  Starlets of the 1950s seemed to always have children – Audrey Hepburn and Sophia Loren both had two sons, Elizabeth Taylor had four children, and Jayne Mansfield had a whopping five by the time she died at 34.  In the 1980s and 90s, it seemed actresses were scared of having children, in fear of halting the perpetual movement of their careers.  Then all of a sudden – BAM!  A baby seemed to be the newest accessory in town!  Move over teacup poodles, babies with movie star looks are a lot cuter to look at!  Wow – and reducing the most important job on Earth to a fashion tip is all in good fun!  Here are top 10 favorite Hollywood moms, in no particular order, and why:

1. Salma Hayek: For how sexy Hayek is, it’s actually shocking that she’s also incredibly intelligent.  The Mexican beauty has a degree in Political Science and is fluent in Arabic, in addition to English and Spanish.  Her baby, Valentina, was named after the day her parents wed – Valentine’s Day.

2. Tina Fey: She’s funny, cute, down-to-earth, smart with a quick tongue and writing talent.  Would we expect her to be bad at anything?  It’s no shocker Tina didn’t give her daughter a dumbass name (Alice), or exploit her, like so many hot messes in Hollywood do to their children.  Tina’s cutie is the face of her Mom’s production company, Little Stranger, Inc. and the inspiration for her Sarah Palin impersonation – when Alice started seeing the Alaskan governor on TV, she would say “Mommy!”  It made Tina think she was probably the best person to play her on television…

3. Katie Holmes: Sure, she dresses her toddler inappropriately in heels (ask Tim Gunn about that one), and apparently just made up her name (what’s a Suri?), but that baby has got to be the cutest kid (and most stylish) in Hollywood!  (Okay, that wasn’t a good reason at all – Katie once took a nasty fall in stilettos carrying Suri when the paparazzi was photographing her, and she hung onto that kid like white on rice!  Good save Katie!)

4. Gwen Stefani: This blonde bombshell still looks beautiful (and ultra cool) at 41, so it’s no surprise her two sons look just as hip.  Named after her favorite beaches (really?), Kingston James McGregor (not bad) and Zuma Nesta Rock Rossdale (again, really?), always look cute in mini-jeans and trendy t-shirts.  Although… is it appropriate to be bleaching your four-year-old’s mohawk to match your signature hairstyle?  (No, that’s actually probably quite dangerous…)  But hey, Kingston doesn’t seem to mind!  He looks like he’s giving his mom a back-rub for all her hard work (pictured, left)!

5. Kaitlin Olson: This is the It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia star’s first Mother’s Day!  The hilarious actress (with an awesome name) had son, Axel, last year with her husband, and co-star Rob McElhenney. The actress told People “Axel…doesn’t necessarily lend itself to a nickname because his name is already as cool as sh*t.”  Haha, it’s no surprise, she’s a funny mom, too!

6. Jennifer Garner: She has two little girls, Violet and Seraphina, with husband Ben Affleck, and well, face it… She just looks like an awesome mom!  She’s so sweet, picking her kids up from school and dropping them off at ballet.  It doesn’t surprise us that the homegrown cutie-pie from West Virginia seems to be very hands-on.

7. Isla Fisher: Talk about keeping your child out of the spotlight – this adorable redhead is mom to two girls, and barely reveals anything about them.  Olive (pictured, top left), and new baby, Elula, are not part of the package Fisher and her husband share with the ever-invading world of reporters and paparazzi.  The couple refused to even confirm Fisher was pregnant the second time around, nor did they release the baby’s name, until it was finally discovered 6 months after her birth.  But this tiny actress looks like so much fun when she’s playing with her girls!

8. Keri Russell: Her baby, River, is kind of funny-looking.  But she’s just so damn cute, we threw them on the list.

9. Reese Witherspoon: This petite blonde had her first baby young, but she continued to be a doting mom to Ava and Deacon with ex-husband, Ryan Phillippe.  The toe-headed trio raises farm animals outside of LA in Reese’s home in Ojai, California.

10. Victoria Beckham: What a surprise – this is definitely our favorite on the list!  After over 10 years together, Posh and her sexy husband have raised three adorable boys together, Brooklyn Joseph, Romeo James and Cruz David.  The boys are certainly stamps of David, but this summer they’ll be welcoming their first daughter – will she look like a mini-Victoria?  We hope so!  (At least we hope she dresses her like so.)


When All Black is All Wrong

Taylor Momsen

Paris Hilton

Ashlee Simpson

Nicole Richie

Frequent fashion violators like Paris Hilton, Nicole Richie, and Ashlee Simpson have been wearing a trend theSkinnyStiletto deems overdone.  These girls often pair opaque black stockings with black shoes.  Black stockings look elegant when they’re sheen and/or have piping down the backs of the legs à la Bettie Page.

Bettie Page

Nowadays, women just wear dark tights that don’t give any meaning to the words shape, style, or sexy.  Ladies end up looking childish, and the outfit gets lost when the eye can’t distinguish leg from stiletto.  The shoes don’t stand out (no matter how gorgeous or expensive they are) and the women end up appearing like they have stumps, instead long, beautiful legs.

Victoria Beckham

Leighton Meester as "Blair"

How to Wear this Trend: Take note from Victoria Beckham or Leighton Meester, who’ve mastered patterned black stockings.  Also, Victoria’s Secret offers a great selection of sheer black hosiery. But don’t copy Taylor Momsen… She looks like she just finished working her shift on that sidewalk.


The Only Time Naked is Boring

SJP in the "Naked Dress"

“It’s a scientific fact that if you say ‘naked’ three or more times, to any man, he has to cross his legs.” – Sally Harper, Coupling.  Miss Carrie Bradshaw introduced the “naked dress” during the first season of Sex and the City in 1998.  It became iconic as her profile pic for her column, and as the dress she wore on her and Mr. Big’s first date.  While Sarah Jessica looked quite sultry in her nude mini, we here at TheSkinnyStiletto believe when it comes to formal wear, isn’t naked kind of… well, boring?

Nude served SJP as sexy and hip, and it can elongate even the shortest of legs when worn correctly in a stiletto, but when Hollywood’s fairest beauties select it for the red carpet, they look very washed-out.  Yet, over the last two years many fashion critics have been giving these women accolades for selecting the perfect hue for their skintones – TheSkinnyStiletto disagrees.  While we absolutely adore these modern-day Snow Whites, we think their beautiful faces, bodies and hair would stand out much more if they chose soft pink or peach gowns.  These couture frocks also lose their gorgeous detailing when worn by creatures blessed with the same ivory-coloring as their material.  So ladies, we ask you – no, beg you! – save naked for date night.

Scarlett Johansson in Elie Saab @ 2011 Golden Globes

Nicole Kidman in Prada @ 2011 Golden Globes

Anna Kendrick in Elie Saab @ the 2010 Oscars

Anne Hathaway in Valentino @ 2010 Met Costume Institute Gala