Thursday, August 28, 2008

Heels and Chili

What do 4" stilettos and a chili half-smoke have in common? A foray into DC with my partners in the quest for style.

Yesterday I polished off Tim Gunn’s style book, filing away many little bits of information as I try to define where it is that I am going with this. I love his practical approach to fashion and shopping which should result in a lean and functional wardrobe if you do it right.

I decided to watch Project Runway last night. Sounds easy enough until you understand I hadn’t the slightest idea how to find the Bravo channel on our TV. I had never even turned the TV on – true confession! Given my husband was at a Nats game, I called my friend KC, who was watching, and she said it was channel 39.

I managed to uncover the remote control, locate the POWER button, and find myself at channel 357, the Democratic National Convention. By channel surfing, I eventually arrived at 2??, which was indeed Project Runway.

Last night’s assignment was to make a dress from components of a Saturn car – things like seat belts, leather upholstery, rubber mats, even headlights. I found the design and construction to be absolutely fascinating. I didn’t like the idea that Heidi Klum kept reiterating: “One of you will be OUT!” I felt badly for the young male designer from Utah, who was in tears after being dropped. But the resulting apparel from car parts was simply amazing!

Today took me and my style girls to Filene’s at National Place, where we shopped and tried on clothes for hours, thanks to a wonderfully broken DC parking meter. I grabbed a pair of stiletto heels just to see what it would be like to be 4" taller. I’m sure I couldn’t have walked 10 feet in those shoes, but they did look fashionable!

We worked up such an appetite shopping that we headed up to Ben’s Chili Bowl for a chili half smoke for lunch. What a taste sensation – slightly charred casing, mustard, onions, and chili using the same recipe for the past 50 years. Talk about comfort food! It doesn’t get much better than this. The staff were helpful and welcoming, giving us souvenirs of our first visit to Ben’s. We will definitely be back again.

As we drove through Dupont Circle on the way home, we plotted a girls-only sleepover at my friend’s daughter’s apartment when she is next out of town. If we were about 40 years younger, we might be dangerous!

16 Comments:

Blogger bulletholes said...

I forgot to do a wash yesterday so I had to wear parts from my dryer to work today.
That half smoke thing sounds pretty good..thats like a hot dog right? We don't have many places to serve stuff like that down here.

2:44 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Bulletholes -- A half smoke is like a fat hotdog. I can't begin to describe how good it was! I will definitely take you to Ben's if you come for a visit.

3:03 PM  
Blogger bulletholes said...

Its the slightly charred casing that does it right? I do that at home, but the closest you can get to that down here is a place called Fuddruckers, and they don't know what you are talking about.

3:23 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Bulletholes -- Ben's is a big step up from any Fuddrucker's dog I have ever eaten!

4:52 PM  
Blogger GEWELS said...

OOOHHHH! Filene's!
I got two pair of fabulously ridiculous heels there the other day. On Clearance no less. Now THAT'S the best!

5:52 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Gewels -- I wish I could walk in fabulously ridiculous heels. They are so appealing! And how many other such pairs do you own? :)

6:09 PM  
Blogger Pauline said...

once you get your fashion sense straightened out and your new clothes in the closet, ask your friend if she knows how to do it all on the cheap...

and don't forget the pics!

8:11 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Pauline -- My guess is she could do wonders with a small budget. According to her mother, she has very few clothes, but she has a few special "pieces" she wears in a variety of ways. When she was 12, she and a friend "published" a fashion magazine and sold it in the neighborhood. We bought the first and only edition!

8:50 PM  
Blogger Kellyann Brown said...

Sounds like you liked Project Runway!
I love to watch the people design and sew their creations. If you want to catch the "back issues" most places rebroadcast in three-four show "chunks". I feel bad for the people voted out, but it's really amazing what the three finalists do for their final runway show.

10:34 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Kelly -- I was impressed with the camaraderie among the contestants. Even under pressure they seemed to care about one another. And I was most definitely impressed with their creations. Imagine making trim for a dress from frayed pieces of seat belts!

11:20 PM  
Blogger lettuce said...

its such a long while since i wore heels, i'm sure i'd fall and there would be pain!

4:59 AM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Lettuce -- When I told my podiatrist about trying on the heels yesterday, she laughed and said, "Did you know that in NYC there are classes to teach women how to walk in heels?" When walking needs a class, perhaps it's a place where we shouldn't go!

7:58 AM  
Blogger Steve said...

Women's shoes are so crazy. I see women walking around NYC (which is a walking town) in shoes that have got to be killing them. If I were a woman I'd wear sneakers all the time.

Channel 357??? Good Lord.

10:32 AM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Steve -- The torture some people put their feet to in the name of beauty never ceases to amaze me! When I see you next week, you can believe I will be walking in something comfortable.

I, too, was amazed to find channel 357. I grew up with one channel (7) and never imagined there would be a need for double or triple digits!

1:37 PM  
Blogger Kellyann Brown said...

Steve -

I do wear sneakers most o' the time.... at 5'10", I've never needed to wear 4 inch heels (my husband is 5'4"). There are only a couple places where you can wear tennis shoes: the opera, weddin s and unerals. (a couple o keys don't work on my keyboard today... can you uess which ones?)

1:53 PM  
Anonymous Maria J. Sanders said...

This heel is really manly , I appreciate your thinking. But looking so wonderful with this shoes and also be looked so stunning with ladies blazers. I love to read this blog as it brings vast knowledge and experience. Keep up updating the post regularly.....

11:38 AM  

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