Soccer Dad Style. Men Tips on looking “Haute”.

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Loïc. Fairfax, California. October 2014.

Fashion Notes : T-shirt: H&M, Hat: Gypsy and Loïc, Jeans: G-Star.  I love how Loïc wears small accessories well – Being French, he learned about style in utero. But men take note – it’s all simple really with a flash of a leather cuff and a small string necklace.  A bright green shirt gives the face some color, and a cool hat is an instant fashion step-up. Being “trendy” is tough for any guy, but adding slight style is so easy – and we women appreciate a man with some style :) (for me it’s especially great, if it seems “unintentional”)

Loïc’s son was playing against my son Neal’s soccer team.  This family captured my attention with authentic Northern California free-spirited style. I wasn’t surprised to learn about their fashion company.

Loïc and his wife Gypsy are creative souls, designing environmentally conscious accessories.  Based in Arcata, California, Gypsy and Loïc is “on a mission to create fun and unique accessories made here in the USA from up-cycled and recycled fabrics.”  click on the link to check out their stuff:

http://www.gypsyandloic.com

 

How I Dodged Barbies & Boy Bands. Haute Huff Post.

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“Though I never finished reading Charles Bukowski’s Ham on Rye, the character Henry still haunts me, with visions of his horrible acne and his sweating body beneath a wool army school uniform. But I will never know what happened to Henry, because like religious freaks who burn books, I have older brothers who would steal them when deemed inappropriate for their little sister. My brother Seth lent me his copy of Ham on Rye and he immediately took it back, after I started asking questions about the sexual nature of the book. This is what brothers do, and for this, I am grateful and semi-illiterate.”

Click below to read the full article…

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mara-menachem/how-i-dodged-barbies-and-_b_6024126.html

 

Music and Fashion. Motel Drop-Off gets Glamorous.

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Cara.  Photography Rock Star.  Aunt to lots o’ kids.  Miami, Florida.  October 2014.

Name Dropping: Cara’s images of rockstars and other popular musicians have appeared in many of the most important music and culture magazines of the day (think Kanye, Jack White, Timbaland, My Morning Jacket, David Grohl).  You can see Cara’s shots in Rolling Stone, The New York Times, Time Out and The Village Voice to name a few.  She has worked with the most prestigious names in the music industry;  MTV, Universal Music, Geffen, Sony, Roc Nation, and Rock the Vote.  Cara’s fine art photography is displayed in several galleries in the States. Check out her inspiring work (especially if your a fan of music and fashion) at www.carabloch.com 

Fashion Notes: Suit: Vintage 1960′s custom made Bill Blass suit, all clothing and accessories, including the suit from Hollen and Jen Show Room, www.hollenandjenshowroom.com, Hollen and Jen have an eye for vintage across all decades..for a lover of all things old, this place is pure fashion candy. Check out their Facebook page, and you will drool over the latest vintage finds.

Photo: This shot is a throw back to another time in Miami, the motel as the background with a tailored vintage 1960′s Bill Blass number is beyond brilliant.  I met Cara through my close friend Shandi, founder of Shandi Levy Jewelry.  Cara and Shandi are jet setters, who always hang out with NYC and Miami’s most stylish and they usually (well Cara) capture it all on film..you may even spot me lurking in the background.

Mara Likes it: As a huge fan of fashion and music, I especially am drawn to the creative works of Cara Bloch.  Cara is an incredibly gifted and imaginative photographer, and I personally worship everything she does.  Her work is cool, stylish and stare worthy.  And no matter how long you look, Cara’s photographs cause you to look one last time, just in case you missed a detail.

Haute: I get that Cara doesn’t meet Haute Drop-Off’s usual “criteria”, but I’m a rule breaker, and Cara is an amazing aunt (she is always using her friend’s kids in her shots), who is also a photography rock star…of course she had to be featured on Haute Drop-Off.

 

 

 

Beards and Tretorns are Haute at Drop-Off.

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Ethan. Artist. Dad. Marin County, Californian. October 2014.

Fashion Notes: An old preppy favorite, Ethan’s sporting yellow Tretorns, Beard: one of my favorites, still even with the beard popularity. Ethan’s beard is not perfectly manicured, but not totally wild..it’s a little bohemian, a little urban. Belt: amazing belt buckle, an anniversary gift from Ethan’s wife, Simple Jeans and T-Shirt.

The Artist: Ethan is an educated artist, with impressive credentials and numerous awards for his work. His pieces range from video installations to sculpture to large public works..and since i’m not an expert, i’m pretty sure my description is quite limited. His art to me, is something you want to talk about, stare and dig deeper regarding what it all means to you…..like this instillation of (T)Here1, which I added below. For more of Ethan’s work, visit his site. His pieces are on exhibition in several cities in the States and overseas, http://www.ethanworden.com

I spotted Ethan, and wanted to capture the look of a low key stylish dad in the Bay Area.  I love the slight style components of certain men, who don’t necessarily follow fashion, but care about style in a cool way.  A manner that’s not in your face, but when you get close – you see all the thought and sometimes “designer” labels!!!

(T)Here1

 

Vertical Stripes give me Dolly Parton level Boobs….

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Negar. Mom. Attorney. San Rafael, California. October 2014.

Fashion Notes: Striped Dress: J Brand and Sunglasses: Juicy

In New York in September I saw lots of stripes on the street  -and knew this was a trend getting some action on the street.  Many of us are afraid of stripes, especially horizontal. This dress has the perfect proportions, as the stripes are long on the body and horizontal on the chest. We can all look tall and curvy, with a little help of fabric and good lines.

I wear horizontal and vertical stripes, and just hope for the best… you can do the same. Vertical stripes do make my boobs look huge, and I always get lots of comments from my peeps when I’m wearing stripes on top – like Whoa Dolly Parton level boobs. Even my friend Eric, made me pose in a different way when he was photographing me with a striped top – he’s like “Mara, you can’t fit in the wide angle lens with those things!”.

This mom looks great, but ya know I always have to bring it back to MARA!!

xxxx

 

 

 

 

Tiny Floral Patterns hide Flaws. Haute Style Tips.

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Mara. Marin County, California. October 2014.

Fashion Notes: Floral Dress: American Apparel, Heels and Jacket: Zara, Gold Hoops: Target

Did you know that a tiny floral pattern hides so much? The pattern is so busy, you can’t see any flaws. When buying a bathing suit, consider a small floral pattern as it’s so flattering. I am wearing all “big name” retailer brands.  And many of you will be happy that I’m wearing this long denim jacket over a dress, not solo!!!

Haute Coffee Table Books. I Can’t Name 3 Clash Songs.

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Even Seinfeld’s Kramer wanted to publish a coffee table book about coffee tables.  Still a great idea, we all want great big books to admire on our “coffee” tables. And so do I.

If you know me, you’ll realize I’m never ashamed to admit to not being as cool as I seem (ha ha ha, you are thinking I don’t seem cool, I got it.)  I love books, and being surrounded by them. Maybe I read them and maybe I stare at them from a pure “design” perspective.

So I will make fun of myself here, ask me to name three Clash songs? I can’t, even with the aid of Google. I like the Clash and its music.  My older brothers, I’m pretty sure had some albums—but I bought this book because it was hot pink and looked amazing against a shiny white backdrop – and of course having your kids grow up among great books, can’t be a bad thing.  So what do you think? should I listen to the Clash and read the book from cover to cover, before I display it like I’m an early punk fan?

Yes, it’s probably wrong to mix an Anne Frank book, with Keith Herring, the Sex Pistols, Led Zeppelin and The Clash – - but the bright pinks and yellows all combined so well. I realize the word SEX in big letters, probably wasn’t appreciated being front and center by the mom’s at my son’s birthday party.

Most of the books displayed mean something to me.  I still look up rules in my huge Emily Post book, and I’ve caught my kids perusing the works in the D’orsay Museum book.  I own original Parisian art books, my mom gave me from our childhood house.  As a kid, I loved looking at the Impressionists paintings – and can spot a Renoir, Monet or Manet  -see what exposure to books create? I’m saying this all with a bit of tongue and cheek humor – I think it’s okay to use books for pure decor purposes -and the great thing is, someone will eventually learn something from the books….kind of like I did.

 

Haute Brooklyn Family. Fanny Packs all Around at Drop-Off.

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Evan. Sage. Ashley and Oscar. Williamsburg, Brooklyn. October 2014.

Such a Haute Brooklyn family we have here!! Well, we all can agree, if they’re wearing fanny packs in Williamsburg, the comeback is real and hip.  After writing my article on the pros of the fanny pack, published in The Huffington Post Comedy section, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mara-menachem/i-love-fanny-packs-and-im_b_5791738.html (not sure why they thought it was funny, fanny packs are no joking matter), I received several lovely correspondence from people who agreed with my highly complicated break down of this throw back accessory.  One of the fans of my piece is Michael, the owner of Jaunt.  Jaunt creates stylish and functional fanny packs, locally in Brooklyn.

Michael explains his company, “Jaunt is a New York City fashion company that makes beautifully crafted fanny packs. Contrary to the traditional big and bulky fanny packs, Jaunt packs are slim, sleek, and meticulously designed with purposed pockets for only the bare essentials needed for adventures. The minimalist design of the Jaunt pack is meant to help “jaunters” be less bogged down with what what they are carrying so they can connect more with the moments at hand. “Walk Slow, Dance Fast” is the mantra, or soul, of the company”.

It seems to me that Jaunt is a trail blazer or shall I say fanny blazer – in bringing back this amazing accessory, without the poking fun – ya see Jaunt is, along with many in the fashion industry  - making fanny packs not only cool and hip, but affordable!! Check out Jaunt’s website, where a video shares Jaunt’s story – and you can see stylin’ music festival attendees sporting their fanny packs.  http://jauntshop.com

Fashion Notes: Dad: Fanny Pack: Pacha style Jaunt Pack, Shirt: Brooklyn Industries
Sage: Fanny Pack: Caro style Jaunt Pack, Pants: Leighton Alexander
Ashley: Hat: Vintage from 10 ft. Single by Stella Dallas, Baby Wrap: Gerisol, Leggings: L.A.M.B., Oscar: nununu outfit

Here are some photos from Jaunt’s website, wearing their stylish fanny packs at a music festival, including Michael, Jaunt’s owner:unnamed-15

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Punk Guitarist Papa. Sausalito Drop-Off.

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John. Dad. Musician. Record Lover. Sausalito, California. October 2014.

RECORDS: John adores records. Currently, he’s digging (I’m trying to be really cool here) his early King Crimson and Cheap Trick records. John continues to buy new music on Vinyl, because he loves the sound coming from a good ole’ record player. Now, John is not a hipster.  He’s been a musician since middle school, and a life long record lover.

CALI RAISED: I’ve witnessed his collection, and the man loves hardcore and punk.  I wasn’t surprised that John was raised in the Southern California surfing town of Dana Point – only because I picture that area being filled with punk tunes, skateboarding and surfing..and serious style influenced by the aforementioned.

SHREDDER: John became a guitar player in 6th grade. It was then, this blonde, Cali kid decided to buy a guitar in leu of a surf board. John continued to save his money and spend it all on records – of the hard rock and metal variety.  Soon after, John heard his first punk record and transformed into a punk and post-punk loving musician.

CAREER: After attending the prestigious Berklee School of Music, John formed a Boston based 90′s band called Pie, signed a recording deal and toured.  But and I quote John “Being averse to elective poverty, I wouldn’t tour regularly and pretty much squandered my opportunity in the music business.” Currently, John woks in advertising and technology, has a gorgeous family and plays in his band, Verst, www.facebook.com/verstmusic

FASHION NOTES: T-Shirt: Fender, Boots: Blundstones (John’s 4th pair), Sunglasses: Vintage 1980′s Ray Ban Wayfarers, Pants: Rhythm Clothing,

Mara and “Cheesy” Jeans

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Mara. Marin County. October 2014.

Fashion Notes: Jeans: MOTHER, Top: Isabel Marant, Fringe Bag: Zara, Ankle Boots: BCBG, Cocktail Ring : Vintage, Paris. Cuff and Beaded Earrings: Shandi Levy Jewelry, Bangles: Turkey Street Market, Hoops: Target

When I bought these jeans off the sale rack in Aspen, my family said they saw the salesperson high five her co-worker..because according to these comedians, these “ugly” jeans were on sale for two years. My sister-in-law said they look great on me, especially the behind…so of course I bought them.  And I think I worked them out, what do you think?

I mixed the jeans with bohemian pieces to take away from any “cheesy” situation…the beat up ankle boots and hippie bag, all give the jeans a less harsh look.  My stomach looks more exposed here, but my belly button was covered  - the jeans are tight, so an exposed stomach is not the best bet with this shape.

Speaking of ankle boots, I get attached to the worn in look of my own, but they look dirty and “improper”, ya know the rule, no one should have scuffed heels…no, no, no!!  I think it’s time to find a good shoe maker in Marin County.