Weekly Finds

Links I Discovered This Week

The weekend is here!  I don’t know about you, but this week felt long.  The cold weather definitely slowed me down and I am glad that next week will be short due to the holiday.  Speaking of which, I am very excited that Thanksgiving is almost here.   I hope you are too because I found a lot of fun Thanksgiving inspired links to get us ready for the big day.  Next week will be very busy with traveling to Washington DC, a lot of family activities, and mass quantities of food.  That is why I plan on taking it easy this weekend.  Other than celebrating my wonderful husband’s brthday, I plan to spend my time binge watching on Netflix and trying out new facial masks.  I hope you all enjoy the weekend. If you need any ideas for Thanksgiving day, outfits check out this post and you’ll be all set.

 

ACA-AWESOME:  The Pitch Perfect 2 trailer has arrived and I couldn’t be more excited to see this sequel.  I’m not expecting it to live up to the original, but I am certain it will be entertaining and full of fun new songs!

OH TO BE A ROYAL: When it was announced the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were making a quick trip to the Big Apple in December, my first reaction was, I must stalk them!  Healthy?  Maybe not, but exciting news nonetheless.

DIY:  Want to jazz up your shoes for the holidays?  Verily Magazine has some clever ways to give your shoes a DIY makeover with some festive embellishments.

RIP:  Legendary director Mike Nichols passed away this week leaving behind a wonderful legacy.  Here are 12 Nichols’ films that you must-watch again and again.

GOOD EATS:  This list of the best sandwiches to eat in Washington DC could not have come any sooner.   I can’t wait to try some of these out when I’m there next week.

THE PERFECT GUEST:  Have you been asked by your host to bring a dish to Thanksgiving dinner?  If so, these recipes will be perfect for you to ensure an invite for next year.

RULES TO LIVE BY:  Now that you have the perfect dish to bring, this guide provides hosts and guests with proper modern etiquette rules for a perfect Thanksgiving.

WINTER ACTIVITES:  Just because it’s cold doesn’t mean you can’t have a fun time outside.  Visit Bryant Park where there’s ice-skating, holiday shopping, and lots of hot chocolate to warm you up.

 

Have a great weekend!

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Chic Outfits for Thanksgiving Day

It is almost hard to believe that Thanksgiving is a week away.  I, for one, could not be more excited.  Not only is it my favorite holiday, but it kicks off a fabulous month of holiday festivities.  Before Christmas madness begins, it’s a wonderful day to be with family and friends while eating mass amounts of stuffing and pumpkin pie.  This year, I will be heading to Washington DC to spend time with my husband’s family.  It’ll be nice to get out of the city for a couple of days and recharge the batteries.  As much as I enjoy being a guest, I look forward to the day when I get to be the hostess.  What about you; how will you be celebrating this year?

No matter what your plans are, you will need a warm, cozy, and stylish outfit to wear.  A lot of you may take the casual approach to the day.  After all, you may be cooking all day, playing football outside, or napping from a turkey coma.   I happen to love dressing up no matter what the vibe may be.  If you can’t wear a nice dress on a day of celebration then when can you?  I am sure you all have your preference for dressing up or down, which is why I have put together a few chic outfits that will be perfect for Thanksgiving Day.

 

Casual chic….

Thanksgiving Day Outfits

1. 525 America – Patchwork Turtleneck | 2. KT Collection – Ruby Marquise H0ok Earrings | 3. TopShop – Leigh Stretch Aubergine Jeans | 4. TopShop – Double-Breasted Heritage Cape | 5. Dolce Vita – Graham Boot

Dressing it up a bit….

Thanksgiving Day Outfits

1. Kate Spade – Square Stud Earrings | 2. Daniel Wellington – York Rose Gold Watch | 3. Mango – Flowy Pocket Blouse | 4. Tory Burch – Danielle Skirt (on sale) | 5. H&M – Cardigan | 6. Nine West – Leather Booties

Dressed up (perfect for meeting the parents)….

Thanksgiving Day Outfits

1. C.Wonder – Pave Oval Link Bracelet | 2. Sole Society – Crimson Cadena Heel | 3. COS – Dress with Tie Collar | 4. HumbleChic – Floating Diamond Multi-Stone Necklace | 5. Anthropologie – Earvin Square Scarf

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10 Colorful Coats to Brighten Up Your Mood

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As I write this I can’t help but stare out my window, watching the icy rainfall, thinking to myself that fall is quickly turning into winter.  There is no escaping it.   The best thing we can all do is embrace it.  For me, the holidays help a lot because, with the cold days, there are so many festive reminders to distract you.  However, winter lasts a lot longer than the holidays, so it is well past time to get prepared.  When it comes to seasons, I always have my favorite piece to purchase, and for winter, it is coats.  I have loved them for as long as I can remember, and it has actually affected where I’ve moved to in the past.  My recent inspiration for coat styles has been Mindy Kaling’s character on “The Mindy Project” (see image above).  If you aren’t familiar with the show, Mindy often wears brightly colored coats that stand out in the crowd.  Even though I own one, two, okay, five black coats, I want to break the habit and introduce some color to my winter wardrobe.  If you think about it, a colorful coat will definitely help cheer you up during the cold long months.  I have put together a selection of outerwear that I love this season.  I hope you will consider ditching the black and choosing a vibrant and patterned style to fight the winter blues.  In addition, I have added a few wintery trends like blush pastels and plaid prints for you to consider.

 

Click on the image to be directed to the direct website

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J.Crew

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Asos

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Zara

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Madewell

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J.Crew

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 Anthropologie

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Dorothy Perkins

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Zara

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Pim + Larkin

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Anthropologie

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Movies & Films Reviews: Foxcatcher and Rosewater

When Daily Show Clowns Cry

By Johnny Pomatto

Foxcatcher Review

FOXCATCHER 

The only thing I knew about the story of John du Pont and Olympic wrestlers Mark and Dave Schultz, was the ending.  I was hoping that Bennett Miller’s latest film FOXCATCHER, which depicts the events surrounding this trio’s relationship, would shed new light on the mysterious and haunting story, but sadly it only left me with more questions.  Without getting into the specifics of the real life events, FOXCATCHER is a movie with a destination.  Whether you know what’s coming or not, that destination looms over the whole film, which feels in no hurry to get to it or set up context for what will follow.  Why do I feel like I know less about this story now after seeing the film than I did before I entered the theater?

Channing Tatum and Mark Ruffalo play Mark and Dave Schultz respectively, two gold medalist-winning wrestlers from the 1984 Olympics.  Mark, who feels as if he’s always in his brother’s shadow, is contacted by billionaire John du Pont, (played by a physically transformed Steve Carell), who offers to sponsor and train Mark in the wrestling gym he’s built at his titular estate in Western Pennsylvania.  “What does he get out of this?” Dave asks his brother.  Seemingly just the pride of being on a team that wins a gold medal, but clearly there are other things going on, which the movie just barely hints at.  Max Frye and Dan Futterman’s script seems to want the audience to do all the work for them.  An early scene that we see of Mark and Dave silently wrestling each other seems to tell us so much about their relationship dynamic, but an hour into the film we’re still getting scenes of characters in silence, sending each other icy stares, without really ever conveying any new information about what is going through their heads.  In addition to the silent scenes, we also get large events that take place off camera, leaving us to merely imagine what is going on behind closed doors.  Though the script feels underwritten, the actors still manage to give commendable performances.  Tatum does he best dramatic work to date, and the always excellent Ruffalo, while the most underwritten of the three, tends to have the most memorable moments in the film.  But the main reason we’re being told to see this film is for Steve Carell.

Carell gives the kind of performance that Oscar voters love. He has two things going for him.  First, he’s a comedic actor giving his first truly dramatic performance.  On top of that, he’s a handsome guy who has drastically altered his physical appearance to look strange and grotesque.  If you’re going to wear a fake nose, you might as well clear space on the mantle for your Oscar right now.  We call this “Kidman’s Law.”  In his early scenes, Carell does a beautiful job of seeming mysterious and even somewhat charming as he attempts to seduce Mark into coming to live under his watch.  He tells Mark that his nickname is “Golden Eagle,” though it’s clearly apparent that this is a name that nobody but himself could have bestowed on him.  His scenes of drunkenly horsing around with his wrestlers show a tragic innocence of a man who feels like he’s finally part of a team after a lifetime of loneliness, but as the movie goes on Du Pont becomes more and more goulish, with little explanation as to what has changed his attitude.  Carell plays Du Pont as an overgrown child who has discarded his toy train set in favor of new play things, his very own wrestling team that he’s in no way qualified to coach or manage.  But as he slowly becomes aware that his new friends are only humoring him because the checks are clearing, he no longer has interest in playing with toys that don’t want to play back.

The other reason I can’t in good conscience endorse Carell for any awards is that the script turns him into a supporting character in what is supposed to be his movie.  Bennett Miller’s debut film, “Capote,” made us feel like we were learning new intimate details about a man who we already thought was too famous to have any secrets left.  John Du Pont is hardly an iconic figure.  There will be a fair number of people who go into this film thinking it’s entirely a work of fiction.  I understand that any attempt to get inside his head and theorize what his true motivations were for his actions would be at least somewhat speculative, but I feel like the filmmakers had no theories of their own, at least that they were willing to share.  Bennett Miller has made a beautiful looking film and has gotten a few noteworthy performances out of his actors, but I fear that he forgot to tell a story.  By not providing any concrete answers, Miller probably thinks that he’s made a film that will be a conversation starter.  Maybe so, but the first conversation my girlfriend and I had while walking out of the theater was about what could have been done to make this amazing slam dunk of a story into a better movie.

Rosewater Review

ROSEWATER

The story of Maziar Bahari, an Iranian-Canadian journalist unjustly imprisoned in Iran is an incredible one, though not the kind that would ordinarily get the Hollywood treatment. The other problem with the story is that it’s not terribly unique, as thousands of innocent people are imprisoned in Iran every year. One of the reasons Bahari’s story stood out and was discovered by more people than just your average political news junkie, is because of its connection with “The Daily Show,” whose satirical interview with Bahari was the primary cause for his four months of interrogation. The fact that Jon Stewart temporarily left his show to write and direct this adaptation of Bahari’s ordeal is what has gotten a film like this made and released on more than just a handful of screens, and for that we should be thankful. Stewart obviously feels a deep connection to Bahari’s plight and has made a very earnest and sincere film based on his book, “And Then They Came For Me,” and while the film is a well-intentioned passion project, it is still the work of a first time, (probably only time) filmmaker and it does suffer a bit for that fact.

While working on a shoestring budget, Stewart lacks the tools and experience to visually tell his story. Early scenes in the film attempt to recreate some of the post election riots in Iran, but unfortunately come across as clumsily staged crowd scenes. He fares better later in the film when confined to the interiors of prison cells and interrogation rooms. Stewart has more control over these situations and is able to let his admirable script do the talking, with fine assistance from the performances of Gael Garcia Bernal as Bahari, and Kim Bodina as the titular tormenter. Both actors are the result of unnecessary and puzzling colorblind casting, yet still turn in noteworthy performances that move and compel, even as their scenes together get repetitive to the near point of tedium. Stewart opts out of aggrandizing speeches but rather chooses to focus on Bahari’s lonely meditation and his routine, misguided questioning, and as these segments do sometimes drag, Stewart is surprisingly effective at providing levity with minimal but well used moments of humor. ROSEWATER is ultimately a humanizing story that serves as stand in for the experience of countless others. It’s a message film, and while the actual filmmaking sometimes makes it feel less like a movie and more like an appendix and companion piece to the already comprehensive coverage of the topic on The Daily Show, the message and tone we’re left with in its final moments is nonetheless stirring, and sufficiently helps you forget the cloudiness that could have derailed a film, as well as Bahari’s life.

 

 

Hear more of Johnny Pomatto’s reviews on his podcast MOVIES AND FILMS WITH JOHNNY AND FRIENDS available on iTunes

Currently Coveting: Lace

Right now I am all about lace! I don’t know if it is the impending holiday season, or the cold weather that brings it out in me, but I can’t get enough of it. For the cold weather, I love pairing delicate lace with my cozy knitwear for a softer look. With holiday festivities approaching, a lace dress is a lovely option to be both a festive and romantic style. Pair it with velvet ant you’ll really make a statement.  Whether you wear lace head to toe, or as a peek-a-boo accent, it will elevate your look.  See my collage of my favorite lace pieces that I cannot wait to have in my closet.

For even more options, check out my Lace collection on Mavatar.  Happy shopping!

Shop My Mavatar Cart

 

 

Currently Coveting: Lace

1. Piperlime Collection – Lace Pieced Top | 2. H&M - Lace Skirt | 3. Banana Republic – Gold Lace Shift Dress | 4. Zara – Lace Sweater | 5. Nordstrom – Lace Trim Wrap | 6. Forever 21 – Lace Gloves 

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Introducing Warby Parker’s Winter Collection 2014

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If you’ve been looking for the perfect winter accessory, than look no further.  On Tuesday, Warby Parker launched their new winter collection with eyewear that is a perfect complement to your style this season.  I discovered Warby Parker a couple of years ago and I have been collecting my favorite pairs of glasses ever since.  I am drawn to their unique and creative designs and affordable prices.  Plus, the in-store experience is excellent.  If you live in Manhattan, I highly suggest you pay them a visit.  When I found out that they were launching a Winter Collection, I had to check it out and share with you my favorite designs.  This collection features six new rich tones and eight new shapes that will be a fabulous accessory to add to your cozy sweater on a wintery day.  What I love about this line is that they took the classic Warby Parker designs and gave them more texture, warmth, and charisma.  Don’t forget that even when the weather is frigid, the sun is still shining.  In addition to eyewear, this collection has some fabulous sunnies that will be perfect to fight the blinding snow. Eyewear is a fabulous accessory that brings a lot of character to your personal style.  If you don’t need corrective lenses, you can wear them for a fun fashion statement. I have chosen my favorite pairs and styled them into three fabulous outfits that will suit any day of the long cold winter.   Enjoy!

Click the link to see the full Warby Parker Winter Collection 2014!

This look is perfect for an evening out…

Warby Parker Winter Collection Launch

1. WARBY PAKER – TALBOT | 2. DVF – 440 Mixed Metallic Clutch  | 3. SJP – Diana Pump | 4. Mango – Pencil Skirt | 5. Zara – Polo Collar Lace Top | 6. BaubleBar – Turquoise Wharton Earrings | 7. WARBY PARKER – VERNE

This outfit can be worn for both the office and happy hour….

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1. WARBY PARKER – VAUGHAN | 2. Julie Vos – Belmont Ring | 3. Vince Camuto – Fontainna Pump | 4. Jigsaw – Batwing Dress | 5. WARBY PARKER – HOLCOMB | 6. Anne Taylor – Pebbled Signature Tote

Take on the weekend with this casual, yet chic style…..

Slide3 1. WARBY PARKER – OATES | 2. J.Crew – Crinkle Check Shirt | 3. Steve Madden – Whysper Bootie | 4. TopShop – Moto Blue Jeans | 5. WARBY PARKER – LAUREL | 6. Urbancode – Faux Fur Vest | 7. Claire V – Clutch

Movies & Films Reviews: Interstellar & John Wick

Too Smart For Its Own Good or So Stupid That It’s Brilliant?

By Johnny Pomatto

interstellar

INTERSTELLAR

Christopher Nolan has always been obsessed with creating stories that challeng the brain.  His movies like “Memento,” “The Prestige,” and “Inception” unfold like little puzzle boxes that (one hopes) contain answers.  He’s sometimes a bit less successful at working the same magic on the human heart, but he goes after both organs with the epic and stunning INTERSTELLAR.  I can’t say that Nolan’s attempts at striking a balance between the head and the heart are truly successful.  It’s more than a little too heady at times, and goes to every end of the sentimental spectrum with wildly mixed results, but there’s an ambition and confidence that I’m in awe of.  I’m still uncertain if I really liked INTERSTELLAR, but I really enjoyed being challenged to go on its ride and it’s an experience I won’t soon be able to shake.

The film takes place in an unspecified future when Earth has all but exhausted their natural resources and all hope for the future is placed on farmers, rather than scientists.  It seems that the drastic cuts to NASA’s budget had long lasting effects, as in this world they have been reduced to a joke and school textbooks have whole chapters on how the moon landing was faked.  But one must never forget that the world isn’t beyond saving so long as Matthew McConaughey is still in it.  The Lincoln Farmer finds himself thrust into a plan to save the human race after some strange scientific anomalies start occurring near his cornfield.  Before he has the chance to build a magical baseball diamond, McConaughey is on a rocket up to space, with Anne Hathaway, David Gyasi, Wes Bentley, and a wisecracking robot that looks more than a little like the Monolith from “2001: A Space Odyssey,” and no that will not be the last time that film comes up here.  A wormhole has been found close to Saturn that leads to another galaxy where three of its planets are hoped to be potentially inhabitable.  And although there’s mention that the appearance of this wormhole was not natural and it would have had to be placed by someone (or something…), what follows is a more cerebral journey that is less like the space adventures found in “Star Trek” or “Alien,” and more like the one found in Stanley Kubrick’s classic science fiction masterpiece… well, you know.

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