Inside a Fashion Editor’s Summer Shopping List

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My (current) shopping list.

As I recently wrote on this blog, I’m sick of everything in my closet. It’s especially good timing, I suppose, as it’s a new season, one that is budding with fresh takes on old favorites. But all this newness can be overwhelming, and it’s tough to remain a smart shopper when there are very impractical things like metallic-sequin slip dresses and blouses with knee-length ruffled sleeves to tempt you.

But it is possible to nod to current trends without sacrificing your own personal style. Here is what’s currently on my To Buy list, most of which feel very of-the-moment, but not too far from the shapes and styles I already love. I’ve even included some pro shopping tips to help you decode what’s worth the splurge and what trends are better found on the cheap. Ready, set, shop.
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10 Home Accessories to Buy From Target’s New Spring Collection

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Photos via Target.

If you’re anything like me, you’re bursting to upgrade your house for spring, to store the faux fur throws and heavy shag pillows for lighter offerings like, well, everything you’ll see in this post. The home decor and office accessories here are all part of Nate Berkus’s newest spring/summer collection for Target, and they’re all fantastic. Better yet, most of them ring in at under $50, so you can make small, spring-y swaps in your home without breaking the bank.

Ready to shop? Let’s do it. Here are 10 things you need to scoop up at Target right this moment. Read more »

Must-Buy: Gladiator Sandals Under $100

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Leopard, laces and POM-POMS. | Photo of Waltzing Matilda sandals by Nell Hoving.

Though recent years have seen the gladiator sandal creep up to the knee (see: Kourtney Kardashian, who’s famous for corseting her poor calves in uncomfortable-looking lace-ups), the best iteration is the most basic: a still-elaborate lacing of the foot that ends with a simple knot at the ankle.

One of my favorite pairs of gladiator sandals comes from Waltzing Matilda, a Wayne-based leather-goods company that strips the Roman sandal to its utilitarian essentials—butterscotch Horween leather, hand-tacked golden nails, a loopy crisscross of laces. They are at once primitive and beautiful, perfect for the urban hippie or the pavement-pounding glamazon warrior. And at $178, they’re not totally wallet-breaking either! (Buy them here, or visit the adorable Wayne boutique, which nabbed a spot on our 50 Best Shops list!)  What’s that? You want ones UNDER $100? Click here!

I Hate Everything In My Closet—Am I Over Fashion?

Close up on a untidy cluttered wardrobe with colorful clothes and accessories, many clothes and nothing to wear.

Dear closet: I’m over you. | iStock|luanateutzi.

I stood in my closet this morning and realized, quite suddenly and with a surprisingly fierce finality, that I hate everything I own.

It wasn’t surprising. This happens to me every spring, like some sick sort of clockwork. I look at my clothes and wonder how I ever managed to get dressed before this moment, how I ever physically put on clothing and walked out the door.

“You’re staring again,” said my husband as I stood in my closet in a robe, blanking out before a row of identical slouchy black things, wondering whether my wardrobe boredom is a sign that savvy fashion marketers have gotten to me, or whether it’s simply a product of my job, which is, in part, to shake out what’s new, old, in, out, now and next, and write about it. And then I started to feel bad about it all – am I some small part of the reason that other women are standing in their closets, hating everything they own, too?

I did manage to put on clothes this morning, but  – as was the case yesterday morning, too, and the morning before that – it was a purely perfunctory effort. I had to wear clothes, so I put some on, stuff that covers up my bits and pieces but doesn’t delight me or make me feel some way or another. It’s barely afternoon and already I am bored.

My sartorial lethargy has me worried. Have I gotten … over fashion?
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Our Favorite Spring and Summer Flea Markets in Philadelphia

Spring and Summer Flea Markets in Philadelphia: Clover Market

A snap from Clover Market last spring. | Photo by Carrie Hill Photography.

We’ve officially shrugged off winter, which means it’s flea market time. (Cheer!) Some of our favorite markets are gearing up for another season of al fresco treasure-hunting, and many have added additional dates and locations to their usual lineup. Here are nine can’t-miss Philadelphia flea markets to visit in the coming months, whether you’re on the hunt for furniture, home accessories, crafty goodness or vintage treasures. Just remember to bring cash (many vendors don’t take cards), haggle politely, and leave room in your trunk for larger hauls.  Read more »

Shop Talk: 15 Must-Buy Spring Shoes Under $150

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Fun fact: Both of these strappy pairs cost less than $150. | Images via Topshop.

  • You know the age-old style adage: If your bags and shoes look expensive, so does the rest of your outfit. But you can get the look of investment-worthy add-ons without breaking the bank. Here are 15 pairs of spring-perfect shoes that only look expensive. In fact, each rings in at under $150. I’ll take the eyelet-detail sandals, please. [WhoWhatWear]
  • Old Navy recently released a pair of purportedly stain-resistant white jeans. So, naturally, a blogger put ’em to the test with coffee, soy sauce, red wine and Cheeto fingers. The result? Not too shabby. [Huffington Post]
  • Trying to get insider info on HomeGoods is like trying to pry info from a Secret Service agent; the company is known for its intense secrecy. But PopSugar managed to get a few juicy tidbits from the company. Here, 19 things you never knew about HomeGoods. [PopSugar]

Up next: How people are using scissors to get sharper cheekbones.

How I Chose the 50 Best Shops in Philadelphia

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A peek at some of my research.

I’ve been covering the Philly shopping scene for over six years now. I consider many of the city’s shop owners to be a particular sort of friend — we don’t chat on the phone or hang at each other’s houses, but I’ve worked with them for so long I’ve grown to love them. And I adore pretty much all of the boutiques that make up our indie shopping scene. You can imagine, then, that picking my 50 favorites was akin to naming a favorite child: How could I possibly choose?  Read more »

8 Spring Looks You Need to Steal Right Now

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Photography by Colin Leaman.

Despite the recent temperature-bobbing, it’s spring, finally. And it’s just in time, too: If you’re anything like me, your cold-weather wardrobe has started to seem boring, same-old, a bit dark and, well, a tad too serious. Enter, spring’s stellar lineup of looks, all of which are loose, light, bright and fun.

Here, the eight looks we’re fawning over right now (shot on location at Longwood Gardens —where better to start spring dreaming?), and the central pieces you need to inject new life into your closet and your look. And there’s more: We’ve broken down the styles into price points both high and low, so you can get the look no matter what budget you’re working with. Say it with me now: Spring. Has. Sprung. Time to dress the part. Read more »

Sneak Peek! Inside Ps & Qs New Women’s Shop

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Image courtesy Ps & Qs.

It’s (almost and finally) here: the second location of cultishly following menswear shop Ps & Qs. And, ladies, guess what? This one’s for us.

The new boutique, located at 1018 Pine Street, caters to women, but with the same elevated-streetwear sensibility as its men’s counterpart. Here you’ll find pieces from Baldwin, Penfield, Carhartt WIP and Pendleton, alongside Naked & Famous denim, slick Stutterheim raincoats and (store standout!) Publish’s first-ever women’s collection. The grand opening is this Saturday from 1pm to 5pm; they’ll be feting the event with an in-store Publish pop-up shop, so you can get first crack at the line. But you want more pics of the interior, right? (Trust me; you do.)  Click here to see more!

The Revisit: Is Primark Still Worth Shopping?

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The mega-store’s exterior. | Lauren McGrath.

When we first visited Primark, the store was a buzzing, neon hub of energy. It was back in November, the day before its grand opening, and an army of staffers was folding, tidying, sweeping, merchandising and prepping the 80,000-square-foot space for an inevitable onslaught of shoppers. The store was organized with militant precision, sparkly and shiny and new, a fast-fashion behemoth that threatened to take the wind out of H&M’s sails.

But now it’s been a minute (a little over three months, actually), and I’ve found that this is generally when the just-opened sheen starts to wear off (see: the Bloomies Outlet; Nordstrom Rack). So I headed back out to KOP to see how Primark is faring now that the CEOs and PR managers and design directors have left the building, and to answer the question that’s been in my mind since opening day: Is it really possible to keep a store this big that organized?  Read more »

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