Sunday, February 04, 2007

Sunday Top 10: Project Fashion

It's Fashion Week. Think Ice-Capades, but skinnier and without skates.

Like most of the major events that occur here in New York City, my primary relationship to the event is:
1. Reading about it on blogs and other sources of breaking news.
2. Figuring out how to avoid the area where it is taking place (this was totally impossible when I lived in Sparlem on Puerto Rican Day, during which it took me 15 minutes to walk 3 blocks to the subway because i had to push through packed crowds of people wearing flags as "dresses" (like, I can dress really slutty, but there's slutty and there's like, so slutty I can use that term and not feel like a bad feminist) and beer-vendors riding around on ACTUAL DONKEYS.)

But because I have my pulse on the heart of New York City, this week's Sunday Top Ten will be about "Fashion."

UPDATE!: has described this list as: "Minus 6 and 5 these basically read like steps towards becoming the ultimate Vice "DON'T" of all time." WHICH IS AMAZING. I mean, think about it: baseball cap, sunglasses, handcuffs, wifebeater, black tank top, SWEATPANTS, legwarmers, white t-shirt, leather bracelet, police badge. That is basically the outfit of a homeless person who just robbed a police officer.

This Week, I will be showing off some of my best fashions. I will be showing these fashions in a runway show that begins at my bathroom and ends at the kitchen, with an after-party in the refrigerator, where I marvel at the fact that I accidentally ordered three giant bags of shredded mozzarella cheese from freshdirect but no cookies. If you want to know where to pick up the fashions that I will be showing this week and actually every week probably for the rest of my life (unless I get preggers, in which case I plan on lounging in hoodies and HardTail maternity pants), I would suggest: KMart, Mandees, your roommate, my roommate.

SUNDAY TOP TEN: TOP TEN FASHIONS you won't see at "Fashion" week.

10. Sweatpants and Not-For-Yoga-Yoga-Pants
Influences: toddlers (particularly those still "in diapers"), delia*s loungewear for college students, people who have given up all hope.

Krista and I often noted that our first stop upon arriving home--iPod dangling in one ear, voicemail light blinking on just-now-in-service cell phone, feet wet, urination needed immediately, starving as all get out, in desperate need of a shower--the first stop, always, always, always, is changing into sweatpants. This is evidenced by every photo of Krista and I taken within the walls of our apartment, in which we are both wearing sweatpants or yoga pants at all times. On the right is a photo of Krista leaping onto my back. You can tell that it's Sunday, because the Sunday New York Times is still on the floor. Actually, that doesn't mean much.

I've been wearing jeans at home lately because I read an article in "Writer's Digest" that said I would be more productive if I looked presentable.

9. That One Item Of Clothing You Got From Your Roommate and Never Gave Back That is Now a Staple of Your Wardrobe
Influence: Robin Hood, Krista, Jesse James, Mr. Dress-Up, Me, the old days when there wasn't any money so people would like, trade cows for other stuff.
So it starts out like this: person one says, hey, can I borrow this? Person two says sure, I never wear that. Person one wears it. Person one receives compliments on this lovely item of clothing she never would have thought to purchase for herself. Either you can spend the rest of your life feeling guilty about this, or you can make a list of all the items of clothing you have sacrificed over the years. I've taken a stunning black dress and black skirt from Maggie, and above you can see the legwarmers I wear about 10 times a week that I took from Lo. Above, it is a part of the ensemble that Haviland and I created for the Cyndi Lauper concert.

8. The Leather Wrist-Cuff
Influence: bracelets, S+M handcuffs, tracking devices, slap bracelets

I got mine for 5 dollah in the East Village and it has a little zipper compartment in it. This is where I keep my heroin. And my magic fairy dust. And probably a lot of germs. I have it on always, like Jesus.

7. Cop-Chic:
strip-o-Grams, police officers

I tried to convince my ex-boyfriend [redacted], who is now a member of the NYPD, to let me take a picture of myself with his gun. This is not the first time I've tried this with him. He told me that I could get arrested for illegal possession of a firearm (or whatever, I don't remember anymore). Then I realized that handgun laws are something I have never thought about for more than like, 5 seconds, but for the record obviously I don't really even know how guns work, I mean, I'm Jewish and from Ann Arbor and have never won an arm wrestling match against anyone ever. Anyhow this doesn't have a lot to do with fashion, but I think that the silver of his badge went really well with the silver of his handcuffs. Like Tiffany's. Also he let me out of the handcuffs, and I was a little worried that he wouldn't.

6. Hanes Boy-Briefs For Women
American Apparel Ads, Shane, Boys.

The problem with girl-styled boy briefs is that they don't always go all the way over your butt (I like to think I am not the only one with this problem), and the problem with boy-styled boy briefs is that they have a big sack for your wiener. I don't have a wiener. Also I like the style of boy-briefs. I still remember the day I went to the K-Mart in Astor Place and I saw these boy-briefs for women calling my name from the rack. I rushed towards the rack like the wind, wedging my way between the other underwears and the obese woman sorting through the discarded piles of "Just my Size" bras who looked at me like I was the devil's baby when I accidentally brushed one-tenth of her XXXL ass with my bag as I squatted to the ground to extract a pair of these or ten. I'm actually wearing some right now. The best part is, they go all the way over your ass, so that you can wear them with tight jeans and not have a panty line, and wear them to bed without showing any you-know-what. The photo on the left is Shane. The right is an Underwear model. Yes, I am seeing what you are seeing about this underwear model, which is why I want you to know it's not me.

5. Maggie's Cleaning Outfit
Influences: Betty Page, Edie Beale, Austin Powers' harem, leopards, saucy maids, sexy maids, sooo-not-desperate housewives.

I thought it was funny one of my first days at this apartment when Maggie was cleaning in six-inch platform shoes and a little mini-dress. I thought maybe she needed to do laundry or something but it turns out no, that's just what she wears to clean. Today she was doing it again and I think it's possibly the trend of the year, so I thought I would capture it here. You will notice the pairing of leopard print with wedges (Maggie calls them "my Fred Flintstone shoes") and Windex. It's post-modern-housewife-couture.

Me: Why do you clean in heels and a mini-dress?
Maggie: Because then I'm like "oh! I am so clean, what is this terrible mess! Like I'm very prissy and want things to be clean."

If you look at the photo in the upper right hand corner, that's when she was telling me that we should do a blog about going around the city doing all the things that everyone has done except me. For example she suggested: going to a strip club.

4. Sunglasses and Baseball Cap
Influences: Jay McInerney, sorostitutes, unabombers, Nicole Richie, J.T Leroy

It's always good to have these things in your going-out bag because you never know what could happen. Especially when, like me, you love Jesus but you drink a little. In the winter, this is less important, because we all wrap ourselves up like mummies and you can't really see how haggard anyone looks through all that (mummies are usually dead, so you see what I mean). For example, this past Thursday night, I went to see a show called "My First Time" with Heather, and in honor of the show's title, we declared "asking for it" (visible lingerie and high heels) the costume of the day. Then I slept there and the next morning I had to go home on the train in high heels and visible lingerie, like a hooker. Just kidding. I put those things in a bag. I like to save my walk-of-shame outfits for actual walks-of-shame, not just sleeping at a friend's place. I squeezed my 9.5-sized feet into heather's size-6 sneakers and borrowed a hoodie and tried to wrap my scarf up really high and look really devastated like maybe I was on my way to fashion week or to bomb the Baby Phat show.

Side Note: THIS ESPECIALLY comes in handy if you go out with rich guys who give you money to take a cab in the morning, because then you can just get on the train and then you made 20 bucks, like a proper hooker.
Side Note Note: I have not done this since 2004. I'm much more mature and less drunk now.

Influences: Marlon Brando, Leonardo DiCaprio in 'The Basketball Diaries,' Gia, Shane, Hot Lesbians

I have some kerchiefs and some undershirts. I hear some people call them wife-beaters, which I think is kind of funny.
There's nothing funny about beating your wife.
(Six Feet Under)

That's true. But there is nothing sexier than your wife wearing a "wifebeater." I estimate I own about 40 wifebeaters, all hanes size small mens wifebeaters which I purchased in three-packs, or sometimes 6-packs. Every now and then it's nice to get new ones, because I wear them to the gym and get them sweaty, and also they are tighter when new. ALSO you must always wear TWO wifebeaters. Otherwise it is see-through. I learned this from Krista. She changed my life. When you consider that both of us chose our outfits when we are already 10 minutes late for wherever we are going, it is remarkable that this is the second time I've mentioned a shared fashion trademark.

2. The Black Camisole
Influences: I don't even know anymore. Eve? (as in, Adam and)

To your left you see the original black camisole in 1999, which was Calvin Klien, and generally purchased at Marshall Fields, when we went there on the mall bus. Then we would tie knots in the straps so that they wouldn't be so low cut, and our little midriffs would show above our baggy Abercombie/American Eagle/Levis jeans. Now I heart the H+M black camisole, of which I have like, 10, but 9 of them are broken, 'cause H+M is pretty cheap. I keep buying more, like a goldfish with no memory.

1. No. 1 Fashion Tip for Well-Muscled Boys from MEEEE
Influences: James Dean, Every Hot Boy Ever, and also Alice Piskei can rock a white t quite well.

You can try to do a lot of things to like, look hot, but really all you need to do is: 1. your hair, 2. put on a white t-shirt. That's right. Also, I like cologne, but that's just me. Oh and also, guys always look good in dark slightly boot-cut jeans, so I don't understand why some of you are still not buying boot-cut jeans. Carpenter pants are so '00, unless you are Melissa Ferrick or my friend (in which case I love you unconditionally), and tapered jeans are so NEVER.


Anonymous said...

WOW! awesome sunday top ten riese. been an avid reader of ur blog that i've just discovered recently, and i think i've read each and every single one of your post... TWICE! So, i do very much agree with ur Fashion: Top 10. The wifebeater thing is soo true that u have to wear two layers!! and yeah.. they're like my saviour from a omg-i-have-nothing-to-wear-need-to-go-shopping-pronto! situations...

anyway, thanks very much for the post and cant wait for the next one!

have a g'day!


Anonymous said...

Maggie looks AMAZING.
I love the photo shoot.
I will send you the photos of the shoot I did today-
costume of the day at LES MIS was "factory girl"...
everyone participated!

Nicoel said...

"Especially when, like me, you love Jesus but you drink a little."

This is my new myspace blurb/mantra.

"Side Note: THIS ESPECIALLY comes in handy if you go out with rich guys who give you money to take a cab in the morning, because then you can just get on the train and then you made 20 bucks, like a proper hooker."

Why didn't I think of this. Sleeping over at The Engineer's is not a for-profit venture. Screw cabs, I'm going shopping at the end of the week.

Mercury said...

Runway fashion literally terrifies me. It's like, everything's been done before, so let's do it again, but with more lace. Or more pleats. Or lacy pleats. With buttons and glitter. And realy angry-looking walking skeletons can wear them. And then people write articles titled things like "From Runway to hallway!" about how you can cleverly integrate the runway fashions into your daily life. They take off all the lace and pleats and buttons that the fashion people labored so hard over adding.

You/your writing is as clever & awesome as always, of course.

riese said...

yeah, TG, you need to get on that. I mean, he's an engineer. You know what that means: money.

runway fashion is a bit mystefing. I love "Runway to Realway" because they are still using a half-dead model, so how is that the Real-Way? of course, I guess, being personally a part the .005% of the population with model-esque proportions (if I lost like, 20 pounds, which yes, I realize would make me look dead, that's the point), I probably shouldn't complain.

I like it when they wear big head-dresses and stuff.

We should do a Factory Girl show, contrasting you outfit (hav) to the factory girl movie about edie sedgewick. mmmm.

and thanks blo-tox, your name pretty much rules to the high heavens.

keep on lovin' jesus,

Unknown said...

A response to the Gawker comments: a)"#2 The Black Camisole, I still have that black camisole...I never wore/wear it without a cardigan though," and b)"Also, who calls Spanish Harlem "Sparlem"?

a)you probably had to wear a cardigan because you probably didn't suck in your cheeks and pose for photo class projects in the basement of a girls' dorm at an arts boarding school, and we had small breasts and little/no armpit fat so SUCK IT

b) some people who live and visit there call it Sparlem so SUCK IT

(p.s. congrats on another Gawker thing, Ri!)

riese said...

Obviously I composed a master retort to that, and then gawker wouldn't accept my password. Then I tried to re-set it and never got the email, and they don't really say who to talk to about that kind of thing, so obviously this drove me crazy for about 20 minutes, when all I really wanted to say was:

"People who are never genuine on their blogs, like me! You know, the same people who call sweatpants "fashion.""

I mean, did we ever use "Sparlem" genuinely, or were we mocking the fact that people called it Sparlem? The answer is that we were mocking it. And actually, I think it was Sam that first said it to me, in reference to the dealer in the 'hood. I thought it was funny.

and i could not agree with you more about our stunning phisiques. I mean, she's saying "I always wore a cardigan" like that's a GOOD thing? I mean, it was probably the dead of winter but we were still too hot for cardigans. SMOKIN'.

Annie said...

"I love Jesus but I drink a little"

Ha! That's from Ellen! If only that woman Gloria knew how often my friends and I have been quoting her... and we don't even love Jesus so we must really like the quote.

Anonymous said...

While discussing Fashion Week, my friend Atherton (who crawled in via Gawker) pointed me in the direction of your blog and fabulous entry. Who is this Maggie, though? I must know! I adore her! She's my idol, please tell her so.

Forget Gawker: you're in tune--Betsey Johnson's collection today included some more excellent cleaning outfits.

riese said...

Annie: I know! I think I've quoted her like three times in my blogs alone. Oh yeah--and on myspace. She's a genuis, that one.

AV: Maggie is my beautiful rooommate who you may have caught this winter as the sexy/crazy wife in the Twisted Sister music video "Come all ye Faithful." She's an actress, musician, songwriter and trendsetter.
Thanx for bein' a fan!

Anonymous said...

She's inspired! I'll be coming back to your blog. I like what you have here.

Anonymous said...

I am the Atherton to whom my friend AV references above, and just wanted to let you know that I, too, enjoy what I read here. I've been a fan of your blog (and writing, and humor) for awhile now, but simply had to respond to this and say...


(That's not all I agree with, of course, but it's a start.)

Anyway, keep up the fabulously funny good work! :-)


Unknown said...

What can I say? Just logging in to express my gratitude for the input of such fine, witty, introspecitve, intelligent, intriguing women. Oh and to say: yes Riese I agree with your roommate share/swap/findersfee laws about clothing...that little black dress and mini were made to fit you so why should I be so trite as to holed them hostage? Take those babies out on the town! And for next time, agreed, the leapoard print handcuffs with my matching prima clean the house digs will make a perfect addition o the tedios task of cleaning- handcuffed and fashionable with a Windex bottle?! Who knew?! Ciao for now bellas...

Unknown said...

I keep buying the black v neck t shirts from H+M because the 43463278 I already own are dirty.