Why Did You Wear That: April Foolishness

By |April 3rd, 2014|Personal Style, Why Did You Wear That?|

kirsten smithEvery time I check the weather on my iPhone and start to feel optimistic about the above 40 degree temperature and lack of rain icon, I’m smacked in the face with reality when I check it again fifteen minutes before leaving the house to see that the temperature has taken a nose dive and the icon may as well be a middle finger.  It’s as if my weather app is playing an elongated and twisted April fool’s joke on me and it’s the only one laughing.  Getting dressed during this time of year is also a joke because one never knows when Mother Nature will snarl and decide she’s bored with the sun and would rather toss out a hailstorm to liven up your otherwise mundane Tuesday.

And while I may look like a delicate spring flower in these photos, I certainly navigated the April showers (along with the ever patient, Brian Schutza) to capture them.  A wet fire escape in five inch stiletto Jimmy Choos?  Child’s play.  I like living on the edge and 6+ years navigating the treacherous cobblestone streets of the West Village qualify me as a pro.  I found these pants in a thrift store in Bushwick, and I knew I needed them because they fall in between the categories of pants and maxi skirt and isn’t that kind of like getting the last seat on an overcrowded L train?  While these pants are beyond comfortable, I had to be very careful with the way in which I styled them, because they could very easily be mistaken as pajama pants– something I discovered when I wore a similar pair to brunch at Bubby’s one lazy Sunday.  When wearing pants with an elastic waistband (yikes!), be sure to keep the other elements more tailored (adding a belt is a good way to add refinement to an otherwise casual style).  Take that, Mother Nature.

Don’t forget to learn how to milk maid braid to avoid rainy day hair calamities.

kirsten smith nyc


kirsten smith nyc

new york kirsten smithjacket: Express, tank: Brandy Melville, pants: vintage, shoes: Jimmy Choo, belt: vintage (mom’s), bag: vintage





photography by Brian Schutza

Why Did You Wear That: Holiday Red-y

By |December 12th, 2012|Personal Style, Why Did You Wear That?|

whydid kirsten smithAnd the hits just keep on coming thanks to my ahead of her time mother.  This is yet another adorable dress straight from the closet of Georgia Lynn.  I’m so thankful my mom had the good sense to hold onto some of her favorite pieces.  While I won’t be inheriting any Chanel tweed jackets (wasn’t her bohemian style), I’m happy to give several stunners of the sweater dress variety a new home.  True, you won’t be able to go out and grab this exact one but, I think it’s a great example of a dress that’s more than appropriate for a couple of upcoming holiday party occasions.

  1. The office holiday party.
  2. Semi-formal family functions (whether yours or his).

A form fitting sweater dress (or knit) in a festive color (we all know emerald green would be a fantastic choice as well) at a moderate length says, “Cheers!” not “cheap.”  No one wants to be the girl in a mini dancing on the desk/table with a lampshade on her head.  And should you have one too many egg nogs and find yourself perched upon said table, this dress will be long enough to keep Victoria’s secret.

red sweater dress kirsten smith

kirsten whydidyouwearthat

whydidyouwearthat kirsten smith

dress: vintage, boots: Steve Madden, bag: Amrita Singh, hair: Sultra Bombshell

Thanks, I’ll have another.



Why Did You Wear That: Park It

By |June 7th, 2012|Personal Style, Why Did You Wear That?|

why cant i feed the ducks

Growing up, I always loved to feed the ducks at Wheeling Park.  My animal obsession clearly began at an early age.  I gave up meat for several years as a kid because I realized that bacon came from pigs and at that time I was campaigning for a pot belly pig of my own.  I remember this particular park was full of animals.  They had a mini zoo complete with strutting peacocks.  So, it was sad to return to see that you aren’t even allowed to feed the ducks anymore.  Now, it’s just kind of a pond with paddle boats… hardly the magical playland that it used to be…

wheeling park pond

paddle boats duck pond

striped platform wedge sandals

straw clutch banglesearrings: random Soho street vendor, top: ISSI, jeans: Frankie B., clutch: vintage (mom), bracelets: it’s hard to tell, shoes: Steve Madden (I know!)

I’m ducking out now.



Monday Mashup: Vintage or Just Used?

By |June 20th, 2011|Monday Mashup|

Some of my very favorite pieces in my wardrobe are things that belonged to my mother when she was (around) my age.  Not only does this lead me to believe that style may be a genetic trait (cause Georgia has great style), it also made wonder what the differences are between vintage, retro, and antique.

Lots of so called “fashionistas” like to throw around the term vintage, but is their bag circa 1992 really “vintage” or just something they picked up at a thrift store and probably should just be classified as “used”?  Since I really like to know what’s what, I did a little research to find out the official definitions of these time


Vintage clothing is a generic term for new or second hand garments originating from a previous era. The phrase is also used in connection with a retail outlet, e.g. “vintage clothing store.” It can also be used as an adjective: “This dress is vintage.”

The word vintage is copied from its use in wine terminology, as a more elegant-seeming euphemism for “old” clothes.

Generally speaking, clothing which was produced before the 1920s is referred to as antique clothing and clothing from the 1920s to 1980s is considered vintage.


Retro, short for retrospective, or “vintage style” usually refers to clothing that imitates the style of a previous era. Reproduction, or repro, clothing is a newly-made but faithful copy of an older garment.


Most authorities consider the actual definition of the term ‘antique’ to mean an age of at least 100 years. If an item is not definitively datable to 100 or more years in age, it should not be directly referred to as an antique.

So there you have it, ladies.  Vintage is basically a trendy way of saying “used.”  While I have no problem wearing my mom’s “used” clothes… I do have a hard time slipping my tootsies into some other broad’s old shoes.  On the bright side, shopping at a consignment store is a great way to save cash and just think… “it was somebody’s mom’s” clothes at one point or another.



Why Did You Wear That: Mixed Signals

By |April 19th, 2011|Personal Style, Why Did You Wear That?|

My favorite picture of my oldest niece is one of her wearing purple pants, a tutu, a sparkly pink shirt, a headband, and two different shoes.  While you may be quick to assume that the tutu is what put me over the edge, it is actually her self assured expression in the photo.  She is so very proud of herself, and for that reason, her discombobulation works.

I’ve always been a big fan of mixing and matching.  I think when things are too carefully concocted, they seem a bit fussy and overdone (like matching your bag to your shoes- ick!).  While it may seem silly to take inspiration from a child, it’s actually quite the contrary.  See, children are somewhat uninhibited when it comes to fashion.  They have not yet become slaves to trends and “rules” about what goes with what.  They see it, they like it, they put it on.

I’m not suggesting that you throw on just any old thing, but what I am suggesting is loosening those chains of style and having a bit of fun.  Who are these people making up the “rules” anyway?

When mixing patterns, I do suggest staying within the same color family.  I also would try incorporating prints in different scale (one big print, one small print).  The days of plaids and stripes being considered a faux pas are long gone.

1. American Apparel Stripe Mid-Length Pocket Tank, $29, 2. Miu Miu Stitched Sandal, $595, 3. Hazel Polka Dot Print Skirt, $79, 4. Ben-Amun Worldly Charm Rope Bracelet, $145

See?  Mixing and matching is child’s play.