Tuesday, April 30, 2019

J Crew New Arrivals - Finally!

I've been a big J Crew fan for years but in the past few years, the brand has fallen hard to new lows - trying to compete for the fast fashion buck.  It's been sad to watch how the brand has diminished it's quality, it's look and it's core base.  They were once a "one of a kind" company that offered very good quality clothes, at a good price point, for the buyer who wanted quality, classic styling with a few quirks.

But these new arrivals are a refreshing change from what they've been offering lately.  Take a look....

Love this animal print top.  And it's cotton!  See it here.

 Love this Sophie Anderson Raffia Tote.  It comes in tan too but the colored one is great.  See it here.

Love this silk dress, the floral print, the sleeves...... See it here.

This dress is already sold out in most sizes.  Love that it's silk.  See it here.

Here is the same fabric in a top.  This is lovely!   See it here.

These somewhat wide-leg linen pants look fun.  Love that they aren't too wide and love the color selection.  See them here.

While I don't typically buy skirts, this is a great one for work or to mix and match if you wear them.  Love the fabric and it comes in fun colors.  This would look great with the silk shirt above.  See it here.

Love these slides and they also come in black.  See them here.

This linen shirt is also very cute and comes in a dress too.  See it here.

And while I am not sure I'd have anywhere to wear this, it is very cute!  See it here.

It's nice to see glimpses of the "old" J Crew in this rollout. 

Monday, April 29, 2019

The Amazing Story of Sunday Silence

It's Derby Week and so it's fitting to look back at some of the more unusual stories surrounding past Derby winners.  The Sunday Silence story is one of those worth telling.

He was born on February 25, 1986 by Halo.  Sunday Silence was not an attractive horse. He was crooked-legged and someone called him a "triple zero."  He was black (but registered as brown) and the reality is that no one wanted him.  He was passed over in the sales ring twice as a yearling and he was eventually sold for $50,000 in California as a two-year-old in training (not a lot for a well-bred race horse at that time).  Arthur B. Hancock, III bought him as a "buy-back" hoping to ship him (via van, not airplane) back to Kentucky.

He overcame adversity a few times in his youth, almost dying from a freak virus as a weanling and when he was vanned back to Kentucky from California as a two-year-old, the van driver had a heart attack and died and wrecked the van.  The horse was injured but all of the other horses in the van were killed. 

Not surprisingly Sunday Silence was a late bloomer and raced only late in his two-year-old year.  As a three-year-old, he won an allowance race in California, the San Felipe Stakes and then the Santa Anita Derby, setting him up for the Kentucky Derby.  He won the Derby in the mud, but it was the slowest time for a Derby since 1958 (2:05) but he won by 2 1/2 lengths over the two-year-old champion Easy Goer.

Seven days before the Preakness, Sunday Silence came up dead lame.  He was diagnosed with a bruise under the sole of his foot and was fitted with custom-made aluminum bar shoes, returning to training only four days before the race.  But the bar shoes were removed a day before the race, as Sunday Silence had a remarkable recovery. His top contender, Easy Goer, also had issues of his own leading up the to the race, with cracks on both of his heels.  But Sunday Silence again prevailed, only by a nose this time, over his rival.

 Sunday Silence and Easy Goer

Easy Goer, however, was to prevail in the Belmont, where he ran the second fastest time ever (second only to Secretariat at the time) and defeated his rival over a muddy track by eight lengths.  But Sunday Silence was awarded the million dollar Visa Triple Crown bonus for the best three-year-old in the series.

Easy Goer won 4 Grade 1 stakes after the Belmont (impressive by anyone's standards) and a final face-off was set in the $3 million 1 1/2 mile Breeder's Cup Classic at Gulfstream Park that November.  His jockey had been suspended for drug use and was replaced with a new jockey, Chris McCarron. At post time, Sunday Silence was the slight favorite over Easy Goer.  Sunday Silence won the Classic, earning a single-season record of $4.59 million.  He won the Eclipse Award for top 3-Year-Old Male Horse and Horse of the Year.  In the end, Sunday Silence held the three-to-one edge over Easy Goer in the races they met.  In 1996 Sunday Silence was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame.

Sunday Silence raced twice as a four-year-old, winning once and placing second in the Hollywood Gold Cup where he suffered a ligament injury and was retired.  Out of 14 races, he won nine, placing second in the other five.

As a stallion, Sunday Silence was sold to a breeder in Japan and he flourished there, becoming the leading sire from 1995 to 2008 but he never had that same kind of success outside Japan.  His descendants have broken many records in Japan and in Europe where the purses tend to be higher than in the US.  He lived the remainder of his life in Japan.

Sunday Silence died on August 19, 2002. He had been treated for laminitis for the previous 14 weeks and had developed an infection in one leg as well. He had been given a stronger dose of a different painkilling medication the previous day to provide him relief, and apparently as a result, he had become comfortable enough to lie down for the first time in a week. The following morning, he appeared unable to rise, and while veterinarians were discussing what to do, he died, apparently of heart failure.

You'll see two descendants of Sunday Silence on Saturday in the Derby:  Win Win Win is by Hat Trick , a son of Sunday Silence.  And the top Japanese three-year-old, Master Fencer, is also a descendant as Sunday Silence was his paternal grandfather. So he is still influencing American racing, even from Japan.  His is a great story - this is what I love about racing.

I saw Win Win Win run at Keeneland in April and he is dark just like his grandad.

Win Win

Hat Trick (JPN) Sunday Silence
Tricky Code
Miss Smarty Pants Smarty Jones
Devotion Unbridled

Friday, April 26, 2019

Friday Finds

Friday is my favorite day of the week!  Look what I found this Friday:

I love these white bamboo 5-piece place settings in stainless flatware, perfect for summer entertaining.  These come also in lime green and the more traditional bamboo.  The white is so Palm Beach and for $14.50 a place setting you can't go wrong. 

This silk decorative pillow is the perfect size - not too big and not too small.  

Love this green and white garden stool for the patio. Or use it indoors for a side table alongside your favorite chair.

Dress us your powder room, guest room or any room for that matter with this fabric trash can.

Loving this tray - a perfect gift for a horse loving friend.

This necklace will make any outfit pop:

Loving this Gretchen Scott dress.  

Alice and Trixie is one of my favorite brands and this top will go with everything!

Another great top:

Happy Friday!

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Lunch with Chromie

Earlier this month we made our annual trek to Lexington, Kentucky.  This trip we visited TaylorMade Farm and saw the colts and fillies and of course, their big draw, California Chrome.  Let me start by saying I am not a "Chromie."  He has a legion of fans who are nuts about him and while I love seeing the stallions, I am not a Chromie.  But he is one gorgeous animal.  They brought him out for us to see him and then they let us come and pet him.  He is about as tame as a horse can be - so amazing when you consider he breeds three or more times a day this time of year.  He is better looking in real life.  It was a thrill to get that close to such a famous one.  If you don't follow horse racing, Chromie was, at the time, the richest race horse ever, winning over $14M. He was Horse of the Year, twice.  He won the Derby and the Preakness, the Breeder's Cup and the Dubai race.  Arrowgate beat him in his last race but he has won most everything except the Triple Crown. His babies have not yet reached racing age, so time will tell whether he will pass on his good looks, talent and great brain.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

New Essex Shirts and Sweaters for Everyday Wear

I love the Essex shirts and sweaters and these new ones are surely to become staples in your closet.  I can't tell you how great the quality is....

These sweaters are fabulous - quality, colors and style!

Your Mother Will Love Anything......

Your mother will love........

Anything Toile

Your mom will love this acrylic box, monogrammed, full of note paper:

Or this handmade toile cosmetic bag:

Or this set of monogrammed pads:

Anything Lilly
Vintage is better but anything Lilly will do......

Monogrammed stationary:

Monogrammed Lilly Wine Glasses:

Or this cute Lilly skirt:

Or this versatile Lilly Popover:

Anything Equestrian

If your mom loves horses then she'll love this bag:

Or this make-up bag:

Or this needlepoint belt, already stitched and ready to wear!

Or this lovely vintage Liberty of London scarf with a horse design:

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Keds Aren't Just for Kids Anymore

Talk about turning around a brand!  I remember my red Keds that I wore when I was a youngster and I have not owned a pair since then, until now........

Keds has partnered with Rifle Paper Company to come up with some really adorable shoes that all ages will love. Problem now is how to pick?







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