fashion + beauty + insider interviews + est 2006

Thursday, January 31, 2008


behold m.j's new fragrance ring. this is just too posh!

world wide - so you know our obsession with coty prestige and our love for ms. alana stahl. well, she's passed another lovely scoop our way, and i want to share it with you. marc jacobs' amazing new fragrance, daisy (the bottle alone seduced me!) is now available in a portable form. the bottle makes me melt!

i'm not talking tiny sample bottles though. instead, they are offering stylish options like a perfume ring ($30 usd) or a portable purse spray ($40 usd) that comes with a refill. starting this february, they are available at bloomingdales in america on online, worldwide.


new york - sometimes life isn't fair. it's one thing to be young. another to be beautiful. and yet another (and total rareity) to have a fabulous job. well carly zipp, 25, has all three. and if she wasn't such a phenomenal person to boot, we'd have a really hard time liking her. but she is! that's exactly why we had to scoop the vanderbilt university grad for our latest edition of "i want that job." as the public relations guru for both real simple and essence magazines, the washington d.c. native, does double duty getting the magazines we love the attention they deserve. but what did it take to get there? danielle prescod, my ace reporter, sat down with carly on a brisk new york day to investigage....

carly is getting enjoying the san diego sun in this photo...

You have a fabulous job that probably a million people want. What did you do to get where you are? Oh man, well this is a little bit of a story so hope I don't ramble too much. I decided to take a year off after High School. I went to a really intense high school both socially and academically (the movie Mean Girls was based off the book that was based off of my high school if that gives you any reference!) and just needed a year off before going to Vanderbilt in Nashville, TN. I decided to intern at the local Top 40 radio station, Z104. At the time, Billy Bush (the co-host of Access Hollywood) was the main DJ and I worked under him and the morning show as a morning intern. I'd get up at 4:00 AM and drive 45 minutes to sit at the station and I'd be their little "go to girl", so any time you hear the radio and they're having some moron do something ridiculously embarrassing on a morning show – that was me. After about 5 months, a new radio station came on the scene called Hot99.5 and it beat out Z104 in ratings; they were looking for a fun midday DJ to act as a sidekick to the host and they had heard about me at Z104. I came in and got the job. So for the rest of my year off I was the DJ and co-host of this "girl power" midday show on the hottest Top 40 channel in DC; we had male beauty pageants, fashion shows, hosted weekly club events, concerts, etc. Through that I met so many amazing people in the entertainment and music industry, and decided to continue with it. The summer after my Freshman year, I went back to Hot99.5 and helped out with the midday show but also interned at CBS in the White House bureau. It was really fun to see another side of the media – they sent me to cover a lot of protests on Capitol Hill and even presidential footage, but I knew hard journalism was not for me. Anyway, I formed a great relationship with the Executive Producer at CBS and she took me to New York with her one day to meet Dan Rather and the whole NYC CBS team. I loved New York, and she knew I wanted to be in entertainment. At the time, Viacom owned CBS and MTV networks and so the Executive Producer made some calls on my behalf and got me an interview with VH1. I landed an internship in the booking department for VH1 and the summer after my Sophomore year interned as a booker for I Love The 80's and I Love The 90's – which means that I helped the booking department to get the comedians and washed up celebrities booked for our shows. It was quite an experience. I became very close with my department and they recommended me for a job as an MTV campus representative, which I did my Junior year at Vanderbilt. It was fun! I basically got to work with MTV to tell them the trends on campus, and then give my friends free MTV swag. The summer after Junior year I was hired as a summer associate in the booking department and worked again to book the comedians and secure some on-air talent. I met a lot of fun celebrities (actual stars, and then of course people who used to be cool) but the best part was how close I became with my department. So, come Senior year my bosses at VH1 got me an interview with CMT (oh yes, Country Music Television) in Nashville – another Viacom connection – and instead of most of my classes I interned for school credit in the publicity department. It was the first time I was introduced to being a part of the press, and I loved it! I mean yeah, I don't have a passion for country music, but it was really fun to be able to publicize events and upcoming shows on the station. I loved it. The highlight of CMT was walking Orlando Bloom down the red carpet for the premiere of Elizabethtown. I'm a sucker for accents. My biggest project was working on the Miss America pageant, which CMT took over. Talk about fashion faux pas. So by the time I graduated, I had an idea that I liked publicity. I had met so many people along the way that by the time I started interviewing, I had so many contacts that I was able to choose the best offer I received – which was at Time Inc!

we are loving this gold and white dress. and loving carly's dance moves even more.

Being young and successful in the fashion industry comes with a lot of territory. How do you dress yourself (mentally and in actuality) for the work place?
Sassy. I like what I wear to reflect my attitude – and everyone expects me to come into work everyday as this young, cute, bubbly girl with edge. That's how I try to dress. Yesterday my coworker said I looked very "Jackie O. meets Katie Holmes" – I try to go for that!

Who are your favorite designers? Miu Miu, Ted Baker, Karen Millen, Theory for the basics, Madison Marcus, Foley + Corinna, Cynthia Steffe. Julie Haus in also my fave designers. She has the most feminine dresses!!!

What is your guilty fashion pleasure? SHOES! They make of break an outfit in my mind. And oh to splurge on a good pair of heels every now and then…yum.

What are your style secrets? Accessorize lightly but with nice pieces. You can be wearing some old t-shirt from a vintage store and jeans you bought for $40 in the early 90's, but if you accessorize with a hot bracelet or sassy bag (there I go saying sassy again), you're golden.

carly strikes a pose a vegas.

How has your job impacted your personal style? Definitely has forced me to step up my game. I keep up with the trends (mainly because I publicize them!) but never go overboard. My mom always told me "the trend is your friend", but I like to be trendy-classic.

What is your typical day at work like? Typical? Ha, I wish any day was like the next. I am responsible for building TV segments off of articles and for publicizing (and working) our large events, so on any given day I'm pitching producers and reporters, running around the city getting samples and props, dressing up for events (most recently we had a Weddings event to promote our new book – I was a bridesmaid), or writing press releases and scripts. Oh, and dancing. We have a radio in the office that gets cranked any time a good song comes on. It's the DJ in me.

How does it feel to make the transition from student (or intern) to employee? Bittersweet. I LOVED college. Loved the theme parties, the carefree attitude and making bad decisions, loved even my classes (yes, I still keep in touch my professors – nerd alert). I loved being the big fish in the little pond. Being in the real world is scary, definitely tiny little fish now! But I really like where I am at, both professionally and mentally. I have worked really hard to move up in the industry and it has paid off!


just like a stripper: cute, but waaay too costly. (

new york - blaynista's, please tell me: why did they even bother? earnest sewn, which really does make perfectly lovely jeans and van cleef and arpels, which really does produce perfectly lovely jewels, have teamed up for a perfectly horrid item: diamond encrusted denims. i don't know what's more garish the jeans (which literally are only functional and fashionable at a photoshoot) or the price tag (they really could feed my entire family in africa for a year).

same comment as avobe. don't like these shoes with the jeans though. (

i'm in such sticker shock that i can't even comment any more. but i will provide the solid stats: a) it's a limited edition line that will be auctioned off later on at christies. b) only 10 of each style will be produced: a dark blue one that retails for $9700, and a light gray one that retails for $11,300 c) a party will be held to celebrate it on february 11th in new york city. so what do yall think?


nina has a lot to $mile about, i'm sure. (

new york -- umm, if you watch project runway, then you know the name nina garcia without fail. she is one of the hosts of the show, and a fashion director for elle magazine. well i don't even know how she manages to do those two jobs. the woman has so many dope side hustles. in addition to her latest book, she recently got together with verizon to launch the new pink blackberry. a journalists doing promotions and tie-ins!? it's probably nothing now. but it's really a pleasure to see a fashion scribe actually making money and making a name at this game. go nina!

honestly, it's not a party unless paris hilton, below, shows up! (


wow. doth my eyes deceive me or is marc bouwer, left, sexy? (

new york - - so at first, it was a brilliant idea. i can't recall who did it first now. was it galliano? either way, the whole thing of doing a virtual presentation is starting to ring hollow. what was once fresh, exciting and totally tech, is now feeling simply over done. i say all that to say, yet another designer forgoing a traditional show to do a virtual one. this time it's marc bouwer and this time, he's doing it online. i would have been excited a year - maybe two years ago. but now i feel like stop. give me lights, camera, action, and real, live, models. (or am i just being shady and jaded!?)

i am living for this dress from bouwer's last collection. (

this is what he had to say: "of course I love a live show, but this season i wanted to explore a unique way to show that presents easier accessibility during a particularly challenging schedule." hmmmm. okay mr. bouwer. that said, log on to on february 4th to watch the fashion magic happen.


the exterior of selfridges, the high-end london retailer. i live for their electric yellow shopping bags.

london - if there were ever an event to that warmed my heart, this would be it. selfridges has come up with the brilliant idea to celebrate one of my favorite designers of all time: stella mccartney. the event is meant to highlight the wonderful world of mccartney (specifically stella, as we know paul's isn't doing so good.) not surprisingly then, the event is quiet literally called: the world of stella. it will coincide with london fashion week and takes place between february 6 - 20th.
gym clothes have honestly never looked so damn sexy. mccartney's selections for her adidas line.

the event will showcase everything from her clothing, to beauty to sports ranges, and will also feature her adidas by stella mccartney brand. are you ready for the kicker? she also has a golf line which will also be highlighted. first a baby, and now a mega-branding event. must be really nice to be stella these days....


a candid of mk! (

new york - so on my list of style icons, i just can't say that mary-kate olsen ever figured high....i don't think she's bad or good. i just took no notice. but after reading this quote, i just might. (p.s i don't believe in style icons, but if i ever had to have one, it would be my little sister: zeba blay.) now on to mary-kate's quote....

"I wear weird things sometimes. I like to drink coffee. Neither of those things has anything to do with who I am."

Wednesday, January 30, 2008


russian designer, valentin yudashkin. he was the first russian designer to be accepted into the paris fashion syndicate.

one of yudashkin's runway creations. loves it! (

russia - say what you will about russia - but don't you dare say their military uniforms are ugly. they are making sure of it. the country's ministry of defense has hired internationally acclaimed russian designer, valentin yudashkin, to create stylish new uniforms for them. "young recruits should be at the cutting edge, they shouldn't be deprived of anything and must be fashionable," said the designer. kudos to this fashionably forward country.

the russian military in uniform, marching in 2005. i quiet like what they are wearing, but it could be sexier. i imagine spandex and swarovski combinations. sexy! (

oh! and in case you are curious (lord knows i was!) the new uniforms will be aquamarine in color and include glistening tassles and a sleek new hat. i've never been one to join the army (i'd have rather stripped my way through college than joined rotc to pay for it.) but that said, if the u.s could get tom ford or marc jacobs to design our uniforms, i'd be the first to sign up. through in blahnik shoes, and i'll be the first on the battle field!


the emotion in this ad is moving. equally moving though, is that flyyy luggage set. (

paris - nah. it's not a lv tote with a digital lv monogram that also pipes techno tunes (though i'm sure such a bag is coming.) instead - it is t.v commercials! yes! as low -rent as that might look for a high-end lable, i am positive it will be a good look for the luxury line. vuitton will launch television commercials which will be aired on channels and in cinema's throughout france. they roll out will exclusively be in france for now with international expansions planned for a later time. i will eternally live for this ad. my two loves: politics & fashion combined. (

according to, "The extended 90-second commercial will evoke travel as an emotional and sensory experience, with a guitar soundtrack from Gustavo Santaolalla (of Brokeback Mountain score fame). Directed by Bruno Aveillan, the ad will be translated into 13 languages." the geniuses behind the ads are ogilvy & mather, the same firm that launched the legendary (in my eyes) print ads which featured mikhail gorbachev and catherine deneuve.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008


thanks to freshnessmag for photos and omar abdullah for sharing.

paris - how did a cool name, cool collaborators and a cool concept add up to a really wack product? i am no jewelry expert, nor do i really know much about design. but as a consumer who works hard to earn (or borrow) or cash, i feel semi-qualified in saying this could have been better. for all the media stories online and on this blog, i really expected the new louis vuitton blason collection - a collaboration between musician pharrell williams and l.v's camile miceli -- - would be a lot better. and with price points between $600 and $3000m they should have. personally, i was expecting really brilliant and bold pieces that elevated what we see on offer from vuitton and on display in the industry. these are okay to look at. and might turn a naive head or two. but mind blowing they are not.....


the young designer has even more to half-smile about. (

this piece from jones' fall 2007 collection shows his strength: making street/activewear chic and sophisticated. (

london - remember the spring/summer 08 collection for kim jones? that will be his last. in a move that's at once surprising and expected - the popular mens streetwear designer has been hired by english luxury goods label dunhill. well old houses poaching young designers to head their labels happen all the time. look for example at esteban cortazar, the 23 year old who will soon be debuting his fall 2008 collection for ungaro. but what's a shocker!? the fact that jones is scrapping his entire line and his collaboration with umbro, which he has worked with for the past five years. it is rare that designers give up entirely on their namesake collection. i wonder why he chose to do so.....

above photos are part of dunhill's latest catalog and ad campaign, featuring sophisticated brit, jude law. it is clear that dunhill is serious about raising it's profile and relevance to young men with old money.

if money is ever an issue, then perhaps that was it. no matter how profitable his own label was, i am sure dunhill is offering him that times ten. in addition he has the relative job security, financial stability and creative control that often eludes designers. at dunhill, he will be the new creative director. as such, his job has a wide scope, covering accessories, leather, and of course, menswear. he is a strategic component in dunhill's new pitch to redefine themselves as a mens luxury lifestyle brand.

Monday, January 28, 2008


los angeles - aaaaahhhhhhh. everyone is blogging/writing about sag style , so why not join in? for my readers who are not familiar with it, the sag awards are the screen actor guild awards where actors nominate and reward their own for work well done. it's also where style stalkers/commentators for for fresh fashion meat. i'm not a fan of following, but these celeb styles are too juicy to not comment on. below are some of the styles i found notable. enjoy! xx,zb

k. i'm indifferent on jeremy piven's domenico vacco suit. but i am passionate about this: he wears hair plugs. i don't care what any one says! that hair line looks dodgy!

despite my research, could not find the make of the suit that award winner daniel day lewis is wearing. but that swagger which makes the suit look oh so good?? that's by god. there's something about him that just oozes sexy. aaannnnddd did you know he was 50? if my husband looks half as good at that age, i am truly blessed.


i just don't know how i feel about these two, so i'll refrain from any real commentary. but can i be totally catty and say angelina's vintage hermes needs steaming? and brad pitt is doing his obligatory duty by wearing tom ford made to measure. it looks good.


okay. so debra messing bores me. but i can't take away the fact that she usually looks stunning in clothes and this look is no exception. she is working this oscar de la renta gown out. and despite the fact that she has very nice accessories to match, it is her glam hair style and color that truly sets this look off.

i love that teri hatcher is sticking to her spokeswoman duties by wearing a badgley mischka gown. i just don't know if i love the gown. i think the style is sweet, but the prints are a little too washed out. i would have loved the same silhouette in a bold graphics or an electric hue.
super shiny face withstanding, tilda swinton is killing it with this absolutely brilliant skirt/suit combination. i mean killing it. by far this is one of my favorite red carpet looks of all time. the silver is brilliant, the silhouette is brilliant, and the statement is impeccable. she is at once feminine and masculine and sublimely simple as she steers clear of ornate jewelry to let the colors (red hair , silver pieces) and clothes speak for themselves. kudos to her for wearing it well, her stylist for selecting the piece and designer haider ackermann for such a modern twist on a traditional look.
the color. the hair. the smile. the body. honestly, what is not to love about vanessa williams' look on the red carpet? she makes this brilliant escada gown and being a divorced, single mom look especially good.
thank god! something other than jennifer connelly and those cylander-esque dresses from balenciaga. it is visually refreshing to see a soft, flowing, floral frock from balenciaga on cate blanchett (their spokesmodel, actress jennifer connelly has been spotted everywhere in balenciaga's latest spring collection and it's overwhelming to the point of underwhelming). the pregnant actress looks beautiful and in classic cate fashion, wears this well.

why am i more interested in glen close's toned arms than in her giorgio armani gown? please explain.

never thought i would say this: jamie-lynn sigler looks amazing. and are you ready? so does this calvin klein gown. i have been sleeping on this label and this beautiful piece woke me right up. i live! i like! i love!
michelle pfeiffer is like a mustang: classic, timeless, beautiful. this versace dress is oddly (for that label) restrained to the point of being boring. but she needs no bells and whistles. this ageless beauty is exciting enough for a brown paper bag.


okay oakley. okay. (big hugs to complex for photo.)

usa - okay. so would you wear this? more importantly, would you buy this? even more important, would you pay $750 for this set. my personal answer is no. but i am beyond curious to know who would do all three. oakley, which is traditionally known and loved, for it's traditional sun glasses had decided to wade in the world of the weird with this new offering. it is a combination of a medusa head hat for $500 USD and medusa goggles for $250 usd. but the site of seeing someone other than a model in this haute mess? priceless.


big hugs to for these photos!

seattle, washington -- i always liked nordstrom. i can't say i've ever bought a single thing there, but i've written about them a lot. this u.s based retailer which specializes in high end items has a taste level and cache that truly makes it more than a department store. to further that appeal, they are releasing a brilliant ad campaign which will debut in spring issues of magazines like vogue and vanity fair. the photos are a collaboration between artist ruben toledo and photographer ruven afanador.


above are some of my favorite looks from his s/s 08 collection. can't wait to see what he unveils for fall. (hugs to for photos!)

brazil - alexandre herchcovitch is one of those established, yet under the radar designers who is widely known in the industry - but not yet widely applauded. well, i for one giving him a standing ovation. he was one of the first show's i ever saw during new york city fashion week and from the first to last look it was instant love. what i love him for are bright, structured pieces with character and perspective. i'm saving my coins to invest in my first piece. that said, there's good news for the brazilian designer. hdlc investimentos, a brazilian equity firm which is boldly positioning itself as the "lvmh of latin america" just purchased herchcovitch's namesake label as well as his herchcovitch denim line. the announcement was made in early january and signals a strong cash infusion for the brand. this means plans are a go for the designer's first retail store in new york city with four more planned in rio. congrats!


perhaps picketers and protests like this didn't help wet seal much either...(

u.s.a - my american blaynistas (yes! it truly is an international audience that the blayreport enjoys!) will be more familiar with wet seal than others. wet seal is a juniors retailer that's very focused on churning out cheaply made, slightly pricey (for what it is), ultra trendy clothes. perhaps, that's becoming the death of them. according to recent media reports there is serious turmoil at the company. so far, they have cut 41 jobs and have put a freeze on hiring new staff. they have also slashed their advertising budget. the upside? the company saves $4.3 million u.s so far this year. good for them, but bad for former employees. (b.t.w. if you are - or know anyone - who has been fired from there, get in touch. would love to do an interview.)


prada is all about brand extention. phones, trains, and who knows what next?

italy - ever the innovator, prada 's latest collaboration has nothing to do with clothes - yet everything to do with style. the italian fashion house is now allegedly working with nuovo trasporto viiaggiatory, italy's first private train operator. as you've prolly guessed, prada will be designing the interiors of the high speed trains. wonder how that's going to impact the cost of a ticket for such a stylish mode of travel......


with this face....(

...and this body, you too can retire young. (

italy - another reason why i wonder what i'm doing with my life at 25.... super model natalia vodianova, and mother of three, has decided to call it quits and retire rich at the tender young age of 25. she's been in the industry for na full ten years. fittingly enough she timed her retirement alongside true fashion great: valentino. the -unlikely - duo are going to moscow and then on to brazil for carnivale to celebrate (a really, really rich) retirement. a source who was commenting on this story for gossip rag pagesix said, "she may do another show in the future, but only for $500,000 or this large pink diamond she's had her eye on." must be nice.....
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