Pretty Not Peculiar: Words To Live By

70 degrees, the sun peeking over the hill as I entered the gorgeous Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco, the SF Ballet Auxiliary Show hosted by Neiman Marcus is one of the only runway shows in San Francisco worthy of such a large (450, to be exact), and may I add chic, audience.

As I entered the cocktail reception, my eyes could only focus from the neck down. I’m in the business of paying attention from the neck down so please forgive me. Upon first glance, I see a bevy of stylish, sophisticated women double kissing and showering one another with Emily Post appropriate niceties.  They are lovely, but I zoom in on a Mary Katrantzou flirty, baby blue structured ballerina dress, which also rather serendipitously made its way into the runway show. A bold and uber chic off the shoulder Faith Connexion tuxedo jacket and metallic pleated skirt, Sophia Webster gladiator heeled sandals and her chartreuse, or was it yellow, Dior clutch on none other than Sonya Molodetskaya. I’d be remiss not to mention the Rubin Singer cream and black printed dress with a structured cape on the gorgeous Sobia Shaikh or the fact that Damion Matthews was as dapper and chicly understated as ever in a black fitted suit and monochromatic shirt and tie combo, his hair styled to perfection. I was so lucky to serve as Damion’s fashion accessory in a few Drew Altizer photos, wearing my own geometric, metallic Kenzo dress and Gianvito Rossi heeled sandals.

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The quintessential “ladies who lunch” definitely aspired to turn their own fashion quotient up in their freshly pressed Dolce and Gabbana printed dresses and multicolored handbags. Some misses, of course, but I’m not in the business of kissing and telling. Just call me already! A rainbow of pastels paired with moto jackets, dramatic costume jewelry and even a few white pumps (as seen on the marvelous Karen Caldwell) made it into the room.  It was as though Ken Downing sent out a memo to step it up or go home.

Ave Seltsam took the stage looking like a porcelain doll in her picture perfect white floral print dress and her even more perfect red hair and thanked the crowd for their overwhelming support of the San Francisco Ballet. Mr. Ken Downing then sauntered in, hands in his pockets onto the stage with a sense of petulance and charisma that only he can own. He began by reminiscing about the 60s and 70s and even referenced Stevie Nicks as his style inspiration for Neiman Marcus’s first collection. “Pretty not peculiar,” he told the audience. Fashion words he lives by bestowed upon him by his mother. I’m unsure if the majority of this year’s audience members followed that rule, but they nodded feverishly nonetheless.

The first story started and, well, there is nothing quite like a bellowing Stevie Nicks song to get the fashion party started.  Fringed bags, jackets and vests ruled the runway paired with long, voluminous peasant skirts, which skimmed the floor so gracefully I swear I had to wipe a tear from my eye. Modern, oversized leather motos in cream, cozy knitted cable sweaters thrown over beaded evening gowns and structured gold embellished Saint Laurent “Sergeant Pepper” inspired jackets hung delicately over the models’ shoulders while they walked with serious intention and equally serious, parted ever-so-carefully down the middle, chignons and slicked back ponytails.  An occasional feather headdress donned the heads of some of the models, leaving some of us confused but amused. It’s fair to say, the immaculate white runway hardly stood a chance against the rebellion of Ken Downing’s styling touch.

The second story was dedicated to creams and whites and included a Veronica Beard white jacket with a metallic collar and matching white tuxedo pants, long cream trenches over monochromatic printed maxi dresses, and big and burly faux fur vests in cream made their cameo and not surprisingly with Spring so fervently in the air. I was so lucky to have remembered my own white tuxedo jacket. God forbid I not fit in!

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Lastly, Downing encouraged the amused audience to dance on their chairs ala Studio 54 and just like that, a barrage of glitter, shimmer and rock and roll proceeded down the runway. I’ll admit, the Tom Ford sequin jersey dress that Beyonce wore while on tour in Amsterdam in 2014 is a bit played out and may have encouraged a yawn or two, but the Tom Ford shimmer bell bottoms that bounced their way into my heart did not disappoint. Gold brocade coats over mod floral printed dresses and short shorts paraded down the runway like a scene from Disco Inferno.

The show ended with a thoughtful applause and most everyone stood in ovation for Neiman Marcus’ fashion director, Ken Downing. Leaving me in amused bewilderment over those that chose to stay seated (Emily Post would not approve). All audience members were then encouraged to come shop the runway show at Neiman Marcus. Many left, but the tried, the true and those with money to burn, couldn’t get there fast enough. Besides, who can pass up an opportunity to shop and be styled by the man, the legend himself, Ken Downing? All in all, a successful event for the San Francisco Ballet and one I hope to attend again next year.

xo - MGK

The Oscars: And No, NPH Did Not Get Best Dressed in his Tighty Whities

I would be remiss not to hammer you with endless Instagram photos and a pattering of pointless Joan Rivers' worthy fashion patrolling tonight. The Oscars' Red Carpet tap dance simply completes me as there is SO much to discuss, friends. A quandary of "hell no" moments, but at least a handful or two of "hell yes." Shall we begin? 

Let's start with my personal favorite, Marion Cotillard, in none other than Dior Haute Couture. This white polka dot sleeveless dress hints of old Hollywood tailoring. It fits her figure well, but doesn't hug her body (and I LOVE that). BUT, more importantly, did you see the back? 

You're welcome, okkkk? How fierce and how unique could one dress be? Sexy doesn't have to mean Herve Leger, okay? Intended simplicity with a bit of surprise is everything on this lovely creature. Hardly any makeup, an elegant diamond drop earring and a face like that? Well, that's called perfection. Note it.

Here we have the always stunning Emma Stone in one of my favorite looks on her ever. Monochromatic metallic magnificence by Elie Saab. Fits her perfectly, highlights her perfect red hair and makes me weep. That's all. 

Cue Pachelbel's Canon because here comes our ironic virgin fashion bride, Anna Wintour. Give me a second, while I wipe my tear... Okay, I'm back. I sort of love this dress and fur capelet. And by sort of, I mean, I am obsessed. I mean, she's not wearing her sunglasses - even if she clutched them in her hand like a smoker waiting for her next drag. She has a bit of a glow and her smile seems genuine. This has turned into a moment, people. It certainly helps that Bee Shaffer serves as the most beautiful sidekick ever; just divine in a dark, floral print and smoky eye. Brava, ladies, but like I needed to tell YOU that.

I love me some Meryl Streep. She is truly one of my all time favorite actresses. She doesn't always get it right on the red carpet, though. I mean, let's be honest, like hardly ever. BUT tonight, she nailed it. Wearing an absolutely perfect Lanvin skirt and jacket, styled with a sophisticated hand, Meryl looks divine. This, ladies, is how you dress when you're sexagenarian status. Okay?

Naomi Watts in Armani Prive,` shows some serious back in this number and we love it. The metallic paneling of this dress seems almost reptilian. I love her dark lip and the goth-ish vibe she's owning. Rad. Just rad.

Tegan and Sara were Canadian, androgynous superstars tonight. Love, love, love everything about their looks and their wardrobe voracity. Tegan in The Kooples and Barbara Bui and Sara in Public School and Cole Haan. Out of the box and fierce. Their Oscar performance was kind of AWESOME, too. Sorry, I can't help it.

Now, for the misses. The, I can't help but be snarky moments… 

I mean… Diane Warren. I'm so sorry, but just no. When the 80s call and you just wanna hang up… yeah, this is that moment. That moment of sheer and utter horror. Not sure who she's wearing, but do you really care?

Solange. Solange. Solange. You look like Muno from Yo Gabba Gabba. I'm ashamed I know who that is, but the resemblance is uncanny. This is so not okay. Fire your stylist immediately. Please, we all need you to do this.

If ever there was a true GOOP moment, it was now. I know most of the world finds her incredibly irritating (and she is), but her fashion is usually on point. Don't argue with me, I'm right. Tonight, however, this dress gets a big fat "F." The cut is fine. I don't even mind the one shoulder thing… but the flower is atrocious and the color? Just ugh.

Nikki K., this color is so bad on you. Why? Why would you let them convince you that it brings out your eyes? Because it does not. The iridescence of this Rainbow Bright number hurts me in my heart - and that's saying a lot, ok? I forgive you, though, because I know you usually kill it. Just don't do this again. Like ever.

And there you have it. We're tapped out. Tell us what you loved and loathed. Give us some insight because we're just a bunch of a**holes, trying to be funny. 


Golden Globes 2015: We Can Dig It.

We'll try and leave our snarkiness in the other room... try, we said... overall, pretty impressed with the fashion candor of the celebrity set. Super happy about the vintage looks that walked the red carpet ala Lana Del Rey and Laura Carmichael. Bravo to Cameron Silver at Decades and Penny Lovell for representin' and showing how vintage can and should be worn. Whether in vintage or something modern and chic, this year's display of fashion was definitely on point and unique.

My faves, like always, have a French influence and a collaboration of color, cut and style that stands out but in the most glamorous, most feminine, most beautiful way. 

Keira Knightley in Chanel Haute Couture. I can't help it. This is SO me. I would wear this dress and probably never take it off. It fulfills all of the categories I strive for: uniqueness, femininity, florals and lace, and well, an unspoken sexiness. 


Dakota Johnson in Chanel Haute Couture. Simple and yet not. Just how I like it. Leaving us with a double take... whoa, wait a second, what's that?! Kind of amazing. 

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Lupita Nyong'o in Giambattista Valli Couture. I mean, how do I begin here? She's just awesome and this dress is awesome. That's all. 


Emma Stone in Lanvin. What?! Seriously? You stole my "one day I'm going to wear a killer pant suit with a train look, b*$#^h." No, but really, how cool is she? Wearing a pair of pants that fits like a glove and an overwhelmingly stunning, bustling train is just ... well... she wins.


Sienna Miller in Miu Miu leaves me begging for More More. It sings a sweet, Parisian song that I can't help but dance to, people. It is perfection. Her carefree visage - the hair, the makeup and the delicate applique of this dress is, well, done and done.

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Amal Clooney in Dior Haute Couture & Harry Winston. Well played, my newest celeb-archy obsession. White gloves, classic black and diamonds to beat the band. I mean, I can't make this stuff up.


Naomi Watts in Gucci dropped the mic, people. Her yellow strapless belted dress brought all sorts of sunshine to a sea of plum, black and gray. Bravo for bringing us some color and for wearing it so well and for sporting her Bulgari serpent necklace, which is so fierce I want to cry.


That's all I've got for now, folks. Who were your favorites? Until the next award show... au revoir! MGK