Why Did You Wear That: Escape from New York City

By |August 15th, 2016|Personal Style, Why Did You Wear That?|

kirsten smith riot art walls coney island

Ah, summer in the city.  It wasn’t until just this past week that we were reminded exactly what it might feel like to wade through a crock pot of steamy, stewing, week old garbage.  This is that special time of year when we trade in bitching about blizzards for raising all hell over heatwaves.  Your weather app may say it’s a balmy 93 degrees but keep scrolling down to “real feel” and don’t forget to check the humidity while you’re at it.

The back of cabs transform into Slip N’ Slides of our own sweat.  Sidewalks double as hot plates.  The drips of overhead window air conditioners become welcome reprieves from the heat.  I’ve all but given up on a “good hair day” and relegated my wardrobe to basic black or any pattern that might disguise the sweat stains acquired merely walking the five blocks to the A train where I can’t decide whether the weather above or below ground is more oppressive.  Most of us look like human versions of Salvador Dali’s Persistence of Memory and for whatever reason- perhaps the overwhelming waft of “pheromones” or all around “wet” look- cat calling reaches its peak.  How E E Cummings couldn’t capture this in one single sonnet, I’ll never know.

The only way one might manage to survive a New York City summer is by getting out of town.  Having lived in Manhattan for a combined total of ten years and forgetting that West Coast blunder, I’ve sunned myself from Southampton to Montauk.  Slathered on sunscreen in the Rockaways and caught the Seastreak to Sandy Hook.  Yet, I had never made my way to one of the most exotic and the last stops on the F train.  You don’t need a passport, but may want to make sure your vaccinations are up to date.  A boardwalk by the beach complete with cotton candy, bumper cars, and locals who could be considered its carneys- there lies the coastal gem called Coney Island.

As it was my first time to this foreign land, I wasn’t sure what to wear.  Fortunately, TOBI was kind enough to send me some summer essentials perfect for those days when it’s so hot even your brain begins to fry and you need the guesswork taken out of dress work.  The Love Buzz Strappy Bodycon Set seemed like the obvious choice for perusing the Coney Art Walls.  While Coney Island, itself, is quite colorful, what better backdrop for a photoshoot than commissioned graffiti by prominent street artists?  This little two piece wonder looks good with just about anything from cartoon ice cream cones to causing a riot… something sure to happen had I spent one more sticky second in the city.

To be continued…

kirsten smith coney art walls brooklyn

kirsten smith ice cream coney art walls

kirsten smith whydid art walls

kirsten smith shop tobi

kirsten smith whydid blog

Kirsten smith tobi coney island

kirsten smith whydid tobi coney island

kirsten smith why did blog nycLove Buzz Strappy Bodycon Set, c/o TOBI

Photos by Michael Stiegler

Why Did You Wear That: Vive La Poncho

By |January 19th, 2016|Beauty & Trends, Why Did You Wear That?|

poncho paris whydid

As someone who is currently wondering, who the f#*& snuck into my apartment while I was out and shrunk all of my pants in the commercial driers downstairs, I completely understand the post holiday bloat.  Too much drinking, too many late nights, slacking on those workouts, and allowing for one (hundred) too many cheat days, has left me giving new meaning to the term “skinny jeans.”  While the seams of my jeans hold on for dear life until I’ve managed to get my life back under control, I’ve taken to hiding my holiday leftovers in clever ways that don’t include Tupperware.  That’s right, it’s been a little while since I’ve sported a crop top and turns out, it’s not necessary to carb load when you aren’t training for a marathon.

One way that is conveniently cozy during this altogether dismal time of year, is draping oneself in what is called a “poncho.”


Now, ponchos have gotten a bit of a bad rap over the last, say, hundred thirty years, but the ponchos of present are anything but unkempt.  Great to wear for travel as well as for covering up those leggings on your way to Pilates, ladies- ponchos are the answer to all of our overeating.  I also love a poncho for lounging lackadaisically around the apartment on winter weekends while I scroll through Netflix for the hundred thousandth time wondering why it’s only suggesting I watch movies with tragic titles and strong female leads.  Because the Snuggie isn’t appropriate for public consumption and you haven’t yet reduced yourself to sweatpants, check out these alternative options in the form of ponchos.

ponchos fall 2015 trends1. Shades of Grey by Micah Cohen Colorblock Poncho, 2. Madewell Border Cape Scarf, 3. Vince Cashmere Poncho, 4. Mara Hoffman Knit Cape, 5. Rag & Bone Devon Poncho, 6. Barbajada Fringed Cashmere Scarf, 7. Burberry Prorsum Colorblock Cashmere Poncho, 8. Twelfth Street by Cynthia Vincent Scarf Poncho, 9. DKNY Asymmetric Fringed Poncho, 10. 3.1 phillip lim Fringe Poncho


Friday Frocks: In the Red

By |December 18th, 2015|Friday Frocks, Why Did You Wear That?|

red dress whydid kirsten smithNew York may be called the Big Apple, but when it comes to that shiny red skin, we’d prefer it be rotten.  New Yorkers tend to favor the LBD over the LRD because wearing color makes us nervous.  Regardless of New York’s aversion to any other shade of black than black, a red dress is a closet staple, especially around the holiday season.  Much like the “bend and snap,” an LRD works every time.  You may be saying, “But I don’t look good in red.”  Fortunately for your pretty little whining self, there are enough shades of red that at least one will complement your skin tone and hair color- from crimson to cranberry.  So take a step outside of your comfort zone during the party circuit this year and dare to draw some attention to yourself in any various shade of red.

red dresses holiday1. Zimmermann Sueded Bralette Dress, 2. Bec & Bridge Bon Bon Long Sleeve Dress, 3. Noam Hanoch Russo Mini Dress, 4. Nili Lotan Mock Neck Gown, 5. Preen by Thornton Bregazzi Andrea Guipire Lace Dress, 6.Issa Haley Dress, 7. A.L.C. Aldridge Dress, 8. Halston Heritage Embellished One Shoulder Stretch Crepe Gown, 9. VERSACE Mini Dress, 10. Carmella Michelli Dress


Gift Guide: Pet Project

By |December 17th, 2015|Gift Guide|

smitty in the city dog giftsWe all know the head of my  household is a man with white hair, big brown eyes, and stands about two feet tall.  Sure, I’ve been known to date short guys and older men aren’t out of question, but the boss of my abode is my dog, Smitty.  There really isn’t anything I wouldn’t do for him and that $5k vet bill a few years ago is proof enough.  There are few men who could get me out of bed, into 12 degree arctic tundra to go for a walk and I certainly don’t share my pillows with just anyone.  So, when it comes to holiday shopping, he tops the list.  Sure, he needs to get a job, but as a reward for his discernment in potential suitors and his unconditional love, he deserves something above and beyond Beggin’ Strips.

If you’ve got a precious pooch on your shopping list or a friend who is especially obsessed with his or her pet, below are some gifts worthy of a belly rub.

pet accessory gifts holiday1. Graphic Image Leather Dog Waste Bag Holder, 2. MacKenzie-Childs Courtly Check Dog Bone Frame, 3. K Kane 18K Gold Plated Maltipoo Cuff, 4. Faux Fur Dog Coat, 5. Sydney Evan 8mm Red Garnet Beaded Bracelet with 14K White Gold Dog Bone Charm, 6. 360 Cashmere Skull Dog Super Model Sweater, 7. Charlotte Olympia Dachshund Pandora Clutch Bag, 8. Mungo & Maud Canvas and Leather Pod Dog Bag, 9. Harry Barker Dog Bucket with Leopard Print Play Balls, 10. Ralph Lauren Plaid Dog Vest, 11. Harry Barker Parisian Leopard Toy Bin, 12. Frida Red Leather Collar with Lead

Gift Guide: Jet, Set, Go

By |December 15th, 2015|Gift Guide|

airplane wingHaving just flown five hours from Hawaii to California and planning to fly another five hours back to New York later this week, the importance of having all the right tools to stay comfortable while looking cool became leg cramping painfully clear.  Other than having their own airport lounge available on call or a guarantee that they will get the entire row to themselves, there are several items that any frequent flyer on your holiday shopping list would appreciate receiving for their in flight entertainment.

Rather than doling out cash for a synthetic blanket that can only cover either your upper arms or your ankles (take your pick) or those janky headphones that make you feel as though you may be going deaf in your left ear (time to schedule an appointment with the local audiologist), prepare your loved ones with all they need to fly the friendly skies.  A cashmere blanket set, functional headphones, heavy duty lip balm, and travel guides for their final destination are both thoughtful and useful.  You may not be able to protect them from a crying baby or the guy who brought his salami sandwich on board, but you certainly can ease their airport anxiety with the gifts below.

travel holiday gift guide1. Original & Mineral Hair Travel Essentials Kit, 2. Rodin Lip Balm, 3. Chinti and Parker Cashmere Travel Set, 4. Graphic Image Personalized Leather Luggage Tag, 5. Eddie Harrop The Voyager Fringed Textured Leather Weekend Bag, 6. FRENDS x Mira Mikati Taylor Eyes Headphones, 7. Books with Style The New York Times 36 Hours: Europe, 8. Flight 001 SpacePak Travel Bag Set, 9. MCM Rabbit Passport Holder, 10. Anya Hindmarch Vanity Kit Patent Leather Trimmed Cosmetics Case, 11. LUXE City Guides Fashion Gift Box, 12. Globe Trotter Safari Leather Trimmed Fiberboard Vanity Case