September 2011

With so many elements to my Contemporary Carnival event, I had to split up the event elements into two posts.  As a continuation to my Carnival Candy Bar post, I’m going to go straight into all the other fun, fashionable details!  Making sure we had fun activities throughout the store was one of my concerns.  So though the men’s department featured the carnival candy bar, I still had the women’s fashions, shoes, handbags, cosmetics and jewelry departments to worry about on the first floor.  So first I confirmed fashionable gifts with purchase and raffles throughout the store.  Next I had our associates dress in carnival theme.  I even initiated a storewide contest for best carnival themed fashion which turned out to be a fun morale booster.  Check out these pictures and see how they got into it!

Throughout the store, we promoted “Magic Makeovers” and highlighted the super transformative powers of our makeup artists, personal shoppers and stylists.  Trust me, I’ve seen their work and they really can work magic!

By women’s fashions (women’s contemporary) and jewelry, I placed a directional sign, again using one of our disassembled coat hangers and simply posting our customized signs from Party NV who helped create all the graphic elements for the event.

I placed it behind our fashion fortune telling area to help draw attention to the fun, free and fabulous service.   Given our fashion fortune teller was going to be sitting while doing her readings, I knew I could get away with placing the sign behind her while still ensuring readability.


Our fashion fortune teller for the day was stylist, Cathy Berger from Fashion Societe. 

She was able to read people’s shopping needs and recommend what she saw in their fashion future.  I gave her the hat and lace black opera length gloves to wear, both helped to complete her carnival look.   And her crystal ball is simply a crackled fishbowl vase turned upside down on our Michael’s riser and bling plate.

The table was dressed in striped linens that I purchased used and super cheap from Cloth Connection on sale.  I again stapled the pom pom trim that I purchased from Cathie Filian  for a more customized and coordinated look.   Yes, I said stapled… I’ve customized event tables before with linens and trim and have painstakingly pinned every inch of the trim in the past.  And after getting severe back cramps and knowing how much sweat and toil that takes, I opted for the quick and easy 3minute version.  And it worked! 
Notice all the carnival graphic details of the tents, candy red and white stripes and vintage font elements.  I had the mini chocolates worded “shop til you drop” and used our leftover hang tags as a table topper, decorating the perimeter of the fashion fortune telling table.  What do you think?

A carnival needs fun games so I created a fashionable take on the traditional “Pin the Tail on the Donkey Game”.  There are no donkeys at Saks, nor should there be so I converted the title into “Pin the Purse on the Fashionista” and held it within the handbag department – makes sense, no?  Given I didn’t have the budget or staff to hire someone to man the game, I had our partner gym, Equinox man the table and use it to draw attention to their giveaway gym passes.  Shoppers would stop by, be tied with a scarf, be spun around then pin their purse of choice on the fashionista in front of them.  If they got it right, they would win a bigger Equinox pass.  For playing, everyone won a little something from Equinox and everyone was treated to some candied carnival peanuts too!  Here I am demonstrating to the Equinox guy, how I want the game to run.

The blindfolded gal is our fabulous intern who painstakingly helped tape all the mini chocolate covers and create those branded gift wrap popcorn holders in the previous post.  Thanks, Kaitlyn!

The Equinox guy was a super sport and agreed to wear the bowtie that I handed him.

Another game that we played was Fashion Pictionary.  Think Pictionary but with fashion terms like “perm”,” lingerie” and “stilettos.”

I had the intern write on the blank cards that Jodie from Party NV created for us.  I love Party NV!  They create custom party designs, decorations, favors and more!

Contestants won carnival themed goody bags for their participation.

Across the way in shoes were the clown shoe cupcakes.  I bought the clown shoe cupcake holders off of OrientalTrading.com  – they were the perfect match to our blue/red/white/black color theme.  And I asked our local baker to create red velvet cupcakes.  Colors must match, ladies!

For more on Party NV and other carnival themed parties, check this link and you’ll see where the original event graphics came from!

 

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At the store, we had a promotion for contemporary clothing and called the event Contemporary Carnival.  Our carnival was about fun, food and fashion!  There were many elements but let me start with one of my favorite – the food or in this case, the dessert bar!   Having studied many dessert bar photos in the past year, I’ve picked up a lot of ideas and have taught myself the tricks of the trade along the way.  Knowing that the background wall is just as important as the table itself, I made sure to consider what would take up half my photo opp.  Here, you see the beginnings of my setup.  (1) 6′ table covered in black linen topped off with a furry piece of extra fabric that I found in our visual storage room which i simply cut to length and stapled on with a cute pom pom trim.  Having browsed through Etsy.com before, I knew I could find just the right trim to customize my candy bar table.  Weeks before setup day, I found the perfect trim below.  It coordinated perfectly with my graphic elements (which you’ll see in this post soon) and for just $7 for 7 yards, how could I resist this adorable piece from Cathie Filian?  That yellow stuff is popcorn – can’t have a carnival without one.  I had my intern assemble cones out of Saks Fifth Avenue gift wrap using some simple scotch tape and scissors.   What a project that was.  She was sitting in the hallway of the executive office, on the floor, trying out different templates until she got it just right to which she jumped up in celebration and soon after started taping away like a madwoman.  Isn’t this cheap and easy?  The presentation method added a little extra branding for us too!   The acrylic holders with which we held the popcorn were found online and would also be perfect for ice cream cones, cake pops and more!  Below is a picture of step two.  Add in the other candy elements making sure to vary the height and create symmetry.

All the clear cube vases were found in the visual storage room and the black sparkly risers and bling rectangular trays were purchased at Michael’s (with coupon)!   And can you believe that the black and white polka dot piece sitting on the table is actually a free find that I picked up on the streets of NY?  hah I knew I could use that fabric covered canvas board someday! Dumpster diving rocks! lol JK…really!  JK.

Thanks to another talented Etsy artist, Jodie from Party NV I had fabulous paper products to go along with my carnival theme.  I shopped around etsy for quite some time and found the perfect design theme.  She was super to work with and quickly followed up on all my customization and wording requests after all we did have to change it from Vincent’s 4th birthday to a chic fashionable event.  Here is her original design template that I fell in love with.

I loved the vintage feel and thought that the crimson red and bright blue would be a more elegant color combination than the traditional primary colors that were usually associated with carnivals.  The color scheme also played well with our black/white base, found in all our branding.  So in addition to the candy bar labels that you saw above, I also had Jodie create fashion -related hang tags which we used on our goody bags and (sorry I don’t have a picture of the goody bags).  But we also used them as labels for our candy grab bags which are pictured below.

The roasted peanuts and cotton candy (hard candies) were bought through candywarehouse.com, a site I frequent anytime I’m in need of fashionable candy.  I love their search function which allows you to search for candy by color.  And being as anal as I am in matching colors at my events, this search tool is quite handy and immediately lets me browse all the blue options for instance.

Here are some close-ups of the candy prep and the final photo of me with my candy creation!

Another creative cost-saver was the fact that I re-purposed our store’s blue hanger slips into candy bags.  Thsi is what the pink version really looks like and this picture below shows you how we normally use them in the store.

All I did was cut them to size (as you can see they’re a little too long).  Then I just tape them closed, hiding the tape with the “Enjoy” stickers!  It pays to be creative!  tip  Never look at an object with just its original purpose.  See the possibilities.  How would it look cut?  Upside down?  What else can it hold?  What else could it be used for?  This sign holder shown below is actually a coat hanger taken apart for the event for instance.  By taking off a couple stems, it became the simple pole that we needed to base our customized signs off of.

See behind me are custom Party NV signs alerting shoppers to our in-store raffles, gifts with purchase and contemporary carnival themed event.  For event hours, I hired a cute staffer and dressed her in Saks clothing, themed of course, to the carnival look.

She helped to serve guests, treat them to some Pop Rocks Pop and keep the area nice and tidy. I should have had her watch out for freeloaders too because one lady came back and stuffed her purse with as much as she could before walking out!!


The Pop Rocks Pop was basically just red soda with a sprinkling of Pop Rocks, that nostalgic explosion-in-your-mouth candy that brings you back to your younger years.  It was a concoction I dreamt up after browsing the online candy sites.  I actually liked that the red and black Pop Rocks packaging matched my candy bar and was playing with different ways to incorporate them into the whole look.  Why not sprinkle it onto drinks for a little snap crackle, pop?!

Stay tuned for my follow-up post on the contemporary carnival’s magic makeovers, clown shoe cupcakes, pin the purse on the fashionista and fashion fortune telling!  There’s just so much to share!  Please don’t forget to leave your comments here and let me know what you think!

 

 

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Call me Forever 21.  Yesterday was my birthday and on the plane ride home from the Bahamas where I celebrated, I excitedly flipped through my free New York Fashion Week copy of Teen Vogue.  I love teen movies, teeny bopper music and I love me some Teen Vogue.  What can I say?  The magazine reminded me of the fun time I had visiting their New York Fashion Week Haute Spot.

Here’s a clip of what I saw inside.

You’ll see from their list of events that there was a lot going on.  At the time I was there, they were just finishing up a model open call with IMG and a line was forming for a personal appearance from some Disney star that I never heard of.

What I particularly enjoyed were the fashion trend stations alongside the room’s perimeter.  The 3-D displays were adorable, weren’t they?  They were styled and laid out like giant pages out of the Teen Vogue magazine.

These “prim and proper” and “school girl luxe” boards seemed the most “me.”

But I can see myself wearing bits and pieces from all of these boards!  I guess I am truly Forever 21...strange being that I just celebrated my 30 something birthday..

Speaking of which, every birthday, I give away something on my blog.  This year, I’m giving away the vintage red peplum dress that I wore to the Teen Vogue event shown below and here.

Just subscribe, post an announcement on  your FB, blog and/or twitter about why you love FabGabBlog and you could win the dress!  Leave me a link or links as comments here and please remember to leave your email  -otherwise I won’t be able to contact you as the winner.  Each post brings you closer to winning the dress.  Entrants must live in the U.S.  Contest ends after 50 comments have been made.   I’m also considering all offers for the black calfskin leather Chanel purse pictured here!

waiting to hear from you….

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If you see yourself here, please comment with your outfit details!  This is part 3 to my New York Fashionista-round-up from New York fashion week. So if you don’t see yourself here, and you know I shot ya, check out post 1, and post 2 before you get mad.

“Who wears short shorts?” As the Nair commercial sings, who wears short shorts, this girl screams that she does with her bright orange pair.  I like that she balanced out the shortness of her bottom with a longer sleeved, classic white blouse.

This fashionista had the same idea pairing her short shorts with a white longer-sleeved blouse.  Aren’t you loving the shoes and the Chanel?

Running along the same shorts and white blouse theme, Alexa Winner, a NY stylist, stuck out from the crowd even across the way when I spotted her at one of the fashion shows.  She told me her blouse was from Thailand when I asked if it was vintage.  I love how she modernized and Westernized it with the jean cut-offs and leopard pumps.

This fashionista had a cool French accent.  I loved her blazer and thought her oxfords were so unique!

Lace is a big fall trend this year.  This fashionista proves that lace doesn’t have to look traditional or “grandma.”  She balanced out its frilliness with a modern black blazer, added sparkly shoes and fun ethnic earrings which gave the whole look a quirky new spin.  I love it.  For  more inspiration on how to wear white lace and see how others wear their white lace dresses, check out my earlier blog post.

Oh my gosh, I just realized that I shot this blonde fashionista twice on two separate days.  I guess I really do like her style! haha, she is the one wearing that fab lace blouse in this post above!  Ok so which outfit / look do you like more on her?

This woman’s sleek and minimalist look really interested me.  I found her so chic. What do you think?  I would love to know how long this Canadian stylist lasted in those fab heels.  Those look like the 2-3hour type.  Fashion week is hard on your feet, ladies!  I know I planned out each day’s outfit by examining the shows’ locations, how far I’d have to walk combined with the estimated time in line that I’d have to stand + how many hours I could teeter in each potential pair of shoes.  It’s a complicated fashion equation.

This woman was wearing so many of this season’s trends -and wearing them right!  Check out her cute cropped pants, the cross-body purse and her take on “geek chic!”  I love geek chic and wrote about it when it first came out here.

Speaking of cross-body purses, check out this fashionista’s simple but graceful look.  I loved that it looked vintage-inspired and featured the cute bow with a little bit of sparkle.  It looked totally like something I might wear.

 

Whose outfit struck your fancy?

Click here to win mine!

 

Come back and check out my next fashionista round-up of baby fashionistas found at New York Fashion Week!

 

 

 

 

 

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As part II to my earlier Spring 2012 New York Fashion Week fashionistas post, this post will feature fashionistas caught by my FabCam.  For those of you who don’t already know, I shoot fellow fashionistas whose style I admire and take interest in.  There’s no fashion bashing here.  It’s all love!

Below is a lovely blonde who was wearing what looked like a vintage-styled blouse with Fall’s trendy snakeskin and the Valentino shoes that I’ve been dying for.

The blonde pictured above is a fellow blogger.  What caught my eye about her (besides her striking beauty) was that striking leather jacket.  But I love how she paired it with a swingy, simple dress, cute booties and a clutch that offered a bright pop of color.

Okay, so there are a lot of blonde beauties walking the tents of New York Fashion Week.  This one was a bit of a risk taker.  Check out those shoes!  They’re what I’d imagine an ultra-fabulous astronaut might rock.  I thought her outfit was super fun in that stunning color with the polka dots peeking out – polka dots are super trendy this fall.

I’m looking at this one and I’m thinking, model?  She certainly had the height and skinniness down and like much of whom you saw within the tents was some amazing eye candy.  Don’t you love her mustard colored Prada?  Mustard is a trend color this fall and this girl included it with professional ease.  The little fitted jacket looks great with the printed dress (is that Missoni?) and paired with those funky boots.

If you’re a regular reader, you know how I love Chanel purses and the black and white color theme so it’s no wonder this fashionista’s outfit caught my eye.  In Rachel Zoe’s words, those booties are “ba.na.nas!”  Readers, you should know that I’m up for selling my Chanel, calf-skin, chain-link purse.  just click here to check it out!

Since I’m on a roll with the blondes, I figured I’d make it the running theme of this FabCam post.  This lovely blonde reminded me of me.  She made a boo boo under her left knee!  I wore a band-aid like this for weeks after falling in my heels.  I blame the uneven concrete sidewalk.  (should have sued lol)  But ok back to the fashion.  Do you not love the mix of rough and casual (i.e. the military jacket) next to the elegant silk sheath and sparkly necklace?  Talk about casual cool.

Ok so who is your favorite?

If you were featured here, please leave a comment and tell us who you’re wearing and how much you paid for each item!  Adoring fans want to know!

 

Click here if you’d like to win a goody bag from New York Fashion Week!

 

 

 

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Today was a great day.  No, today was fabulous.  I got a ton of stuff done at work thanks to my Red Bull high, and got to bask in my fashion and event planning obsession all day.  Then with my remaining Red Bull fuel, I trekked into New York city from Long Island where I work for a  fashion show at the Trump Tower where Kendall Jenner was hosting and modeling in Sherri Hill’s show.  By the time I sat down and had the chance to catch my breath, I realized, I was sitting across Kathy Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb.  Right next to me was Miss Teen USA, Danielle Doty who I shared stories of attending the most recent Miss USA pageant with.  Then the most delightful surprise was when I learned that Kim and Kourtney were about 10 seats away from me to my left.   So for the sake of the blog, ok for the sake of the Kardashian-reality-show-watching-freak in me, I leaped off my front row seat like a professional paparazzi and made sure I was able to snap this shot before they took off post-show.  Note to self – never stand ahead of others when taking pictures because it makes my already large Korean head look even more distorted…

Damn they’re photogenic!  The girls’ skin looks amazing doesn’t it?  And why is it that their makeup is always so darn perfect?  Their sister, Kendall was awfully cute too.  She is surely doing her part to keep up with the Kardashians!  I couldn’t believe tonight was just Kendall’s 2nd runway debut.  And at age 15, it seems she has a long modeling career ahead of her.  Also walking in tonight’s show was Miss USA, Alyssa Campanella who I rooted on while watching the live pageant in Vegas this past June.  I thought that Miss USA and Kendall were the perfect representatives of  the formal wear line being that Sherri Hill is known for her high-end prom and pageant dresses.

Check out these pictures from celebbuzz.com showing shots of Kendall from Sherri’s homepage.  Isn’t she a stunner?

And here is a clip from the show’s finale.  What do you think??

For more on Kim Kardashian, click here.

 

 

 

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Every fashion week, I spot well-dressed fashionistas with my FabCam and post here for my lovely readers.  Here is this year’s round-up of the best dressed fashion friends!  If you’re one of the lucky fashionistas featured, please leave a comment with your outfit description.  We wanna know who you’re wearing, how much you bought it for and any other details you care to share.

Leave it to two Asian fashionistas (spotted at the Concept Korea event that I wrote about) to rock designers purses.

These lovely ladies wore matching shoes and updos -gotta love that!  They were super sweet and I was loving their looks.

This twosome was adorable.  I loved the bow blouse and Chanel vintage purse on the lady in the left of this picture.  And I loved the shoes, bow dress and nerd glasses on the other fashionista – so geek chic!

Ok, if you guessed that these skinny giants were not mere mortals but rather models, you guessed right!  They were straight out of the Tribune fashion presentation which I will write about tomorrow.  Their personal style was cool, carefree and effortless.

Check back for my next FabCam entries on baby fashionistas spotted at NY fashion week as well as fashionistas, spotted on their own! So much eye candy!

 

 

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Inside the New York Fashion Week tents, my favorite booth was the Unicef area where you could play with props and take a silly photo with smilebooth.

 

I’ve seen these props on etsy and think they’re so cute!

I’m giving away the red vintage peplum dress shown here through the blog.  Click here for more details!

This last outfit is H&M (except for the belt and purse).  I bought the wool heart-printed shorts for $5bucks.  Don’t you heart them?  See the Chanel calfskin chain-link purse in the last two shots?  I’m selling that so make me your best offer and leave your email for me to return your message!

For more on my favorite photo booths and photo opp areas click here.

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Known for superb construction and a minimalist aesthetic, Yeohlee lucked out with beautiful weather this year after having taken a gamble on her outdoor venue.  159 E 65th street was actually someone’s personal townhouse and so we were asked to sign papers promising we would not take photos of the property (other than the fashion show and the  models themselves).  Being that we were outside in the communal garden, I was surprised that more neighbors didn’t try to crash the party and/or peep out from their windows.  Aren’t Upper East Sid-ers notorious for loving fashion??

My mad rush over from Lincoln Center had me in a New York frenzy.  But upon stepping into the garden sanctuary and stepping over the cobblestone floor into my front row seat, I felt a sense of immediate calm, something Yeohlee had obviously orchestrated.

The fashion show signaled its beginnings with Zen chimes and sort of a new age musician, perfect for this Asian fashion show.  We were further transported to another world simply by watching the models walk in slow motion almost in a peaceful, zombie-like way.

At every fashion show, I’m always looking out for that one piece that I would wear, whether it’s a designer I love or not.  At Yeohlee, I found this adorable springtime coat.  Structured, feminine, artsy and definitely unique, I could definitely see myself being able to rock this.

Here’s my video of the fashion show finale.

Zimbio has me posted as part of their Yeohlee front row collection (shown below).  I’m wearing a vintage dress with an Ann Taylor leather jacket, Chanel purse and sunglasses and simple ballerina flats – AND for the last time because I’m giving this dress away to a lucky reader!   If you want the dress, subscribe!  Just subscribe, post an announcement on  your FB, blog and/or twitter about why you love FabGabBlog and you could win the dress!  Please remember to leave your email as a comment here showing me the urls where you posted -otherwise I won’t be able to contact you.  Each post brings you closer to winning the dress.
Here is the dress pictured without the jacket.  I love the peplum skirt detail.  It’s so trendy right now.

Well what are you waiting for?  subscribe, comment and post!

Also, click here if you want to win a goody bag from Betsey Johnson’s fashion show!

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One of the most anticipated shows of New York Fashion Week is Betsey Johnson’s show.  For those of you who weren’t there, here is the invite and program book.

It might just be me but I enjoy all these little details – must be the event planner in me.  Here is the inside to the program book which has a cute way of listing out the models, credits and sponsors.

Her press release described how this collection blended “modern elements with her signature vintage style and aesthetic.”  The Betsey team cites Brigit Bardot and 1940s burlesque dancers as the inspirations.  Take a look at this video highlight clip and you’ll see peekaboo lingerie, corseting, flirty and sometimes borderline slutty outfits paired with Bardot hair waves.  What do you think?

Personally, Betsey’s outfits are too over-the-top-girly even for me and these runway styles somewhat reminded me of what Pretty Woman might wear in 2012… not exactly what I want to be emulating.  But you’ve got to love Betsey’s shows even if just for the anticipation of her unique model finales and signature cartwheel.  Plus you can’t beat the energy and fun factor of a Betsey show which is always why it is one of the highlights of my fashion weeks.

What caused the most stir this year at Betsey’s show was the appearance of a blue wigged, Nicki Minaj.  In fact from what I hear, the whole show started late because of Nicki’s late appearance.  Sort of a black Lady Gaga, Nicki garners attention with her outlandish outfits.  I immediately felt sorry for the poor fashionista who would have to sit behind that giant mess of a hairdo because surely that is all she would get to see!

I never thought Nicki would be the type of celebrity that PR agencies would wrangle and secure for a front row fashion show seat – she isn’t exactly what I’d call the most fashionable.  Buzz-worthy yes but mostly for all the wrong reasons.  I gasped when I heard and saw that Nicki sat next to fashion icon, Anna Wintour during the Carolina Herrera show this year – what an odd sight that was!  Sort of fashion sacrilege in my book, if you ask me!

I imagine Anna must’ve been cringing underneath those dark shades.  With all the technicolors that Nicki was wearing beside her, it is no wonder she kept the shades on!  What a contradiction in style those two make!

To win the Betsey Johnson goody bag that I picked up at the fashion show, comment here and (any) 2 other entries (and leave your email so I can notify you if you win) !

And come back for further NY fashion week updates and another goody bag giveaway!

 

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