Musings on the culture of keeping up appearances

All the Rage

Category: Politics & Style

Your morning fashion and beauty report: Mexico state dinner, Wal-Mart and Miley, Courtney Love and Kate Moss

Mexico state dinner
The Obamas hosted a state dinner for Mexican President Felipe Calderon and his wife Margarita Zavala. More importantly: Who was the best dressed? [Huffington Post]

The evolution of the bob. [InStyle]

Denim brands blend in with the arts. [WWD]

Echo Park's Tavin adds vintage bridal. [Mondette]

Wal-Mart pulls Miley Cyrus' contaminated jewelry from store shelves. [Ministry of Gossip]

Donnatella Versace on her friend Naomi Campbell. [The Daily Beast]

Courtney Love claims to have had affair with Kate Moss. [Vogue UK]

Love the print on your new spring frock? It might have been designed on an iPhone. [WSJ]

Andre Leon Talley warns not to bite the hand that feeds you: You'll take that Vogue cover and you'll like it! [Styleite]

Drugstore makeup giant Proctor & Gamble revs up e-commerce, social media efforts. [Ad Age]

Online poll: Top 10 most iconic dresses of the last 50 years. [Telegraph]

Ten flea market rules to live by. [Full Frontal Fashion, via Glamour]

Designer Chris Benz is now a columnist for Fashionista. [Fashionista]

Man heels: hideous or hip? [Guardian]

More on Glee's Matthew Morrison's curves -- this time we're talking abs, not hair. [People StyleWatch]

-- Whitney Friedlander

Photo: Mexican President Felipe Calderon waves as he and his wife, Margarita Zabala, far right, are greeted by President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama before a state dinner. Credit: Paul J. Richards / AFP / Getty Images

One side of debate over Arizona's immigration law is boiled down to a tee

The Phoenix Suns wore their sympathies on their shirts in Wednesday night's NBA playoffs, becoming  "Los Suns" and causing quite a stir about mixing basketball with the political debate over Arizona's new immigration law. You can read all about it at our sister blog, Top of the Ticket.

But we know there are plenty of other folks who will want to let their shirts do the talking too -- and so does, which sells what it describes as "the ultimate collection of the best of Latino-inspired street fashion available in the United States."

During the last week of April, the company had a contest on its Facebook page asking its friends to submit ideas for T-shirt slogans based on the immigration controversy. Now several of the winning designs have been incorporated into T-shirts and are available to purchase on for $19.95 each.

The tees are pretty much for people who are against the new law -- one has a slogan in Spanish that roughly translates to "Arizona, kiss my grits." For the higher-minded, another (shown above) paraphrases the famous words of Jose de la Cruz Porfirio Diaz, president of Mexico from 1876 to 1911: "Poor Mexico, so far from God, and so close to the United States."

If, unlike the Suns, you'd rather stick to sports and keep politics off your chest, also has plenty of sports-related shirts among its offerings. My favorite screams "GOAL GOAL, GOAL" and it's just in time for the World Cup!

-- Susan Denley


Obama throws out the first pitch -- and the dad jeans


President Obama threw out the first pitch at Nationals Park Monday -- and he's apparently thrown out the much-derided "dad jeans" (a pair of hiked-up Levi's 501s) that earned him style demerits from armchair fashion critics.

When POTUS took to the mound, he was wearing a crisp-looking pair of dark-khaki-colored chinos along with a red Washington Nationals baseball jacket (note the popped collar) and a White Sox ball cap.

The day's half over and we're still trying to get the provenance of said tan trousers -- to us it looks like there's a square logo label over the right rear pocket, which might make them Dickies. We'll update when we know more.

-- Adam Tschorn

More All The Rage coverage of Politics & Style

Revenge of the Dad Jeans: POTUS Named to VF's 2009  Best-Dressed List

Obama on the mound: A White Sox jacket and Levi's 501s

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Photo: President Obama throws out the first pitch at Nationals Park in Washington  on Monday on baseball's Opening Day before  the game between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Washington Nationals. He also appears to have thrown out what some had called the "dad jeans" he'd worn on the mound to throw out the first pitch for the All-Star game in July 2009. Credit: Saul Loeb  AFP / Getty Images.

Has Sarah Palin gone from bagging moose to bagging swag?


New and old media alike are abuzz with the tidbit that everyone's favorite rogue former vice-presidential candidate, onetime governor of Alaska, budding stand-up comedian and potential reality-show star was allegedly spotted on Wednesday leaving the Silverspoons Oscar gifting suite in West Hollywood with a freebie gift bag.Rage_perryellis2

Even though the very next day publisher HarperCollins announced that Sarah Palin would be penning a new book reflecting "her patriotic and spiritual values," All the Rage isn't going to bust her chops for supposedly snagging a swag bag -- for two reasons.

 First, we're told it was all in support of the American Red Cross, though, quite honestly, we've never actually been able to figure out how giving away free clothes actually channels money to a charity -- but that's a blog post for another day.

Second, it's not like political party money was funding the fashion, like the $150,000 wardrobe malfunction of September 2008, which All the Rage suggested at the time amounted to a "one-woman economic stimulus plan." (A comment that apparently didn't go unnoticed by the then-candidate, as she makes explicit referencPE0216 Striped Straw- black loe to it in her recently published autobiography, "Going Rogue.")

No, what really interests us here at Rage Central is: What was actually in the bag? Well, according to a press rep for Perry Ellis, Palin and/or her entourage allegedly left the building with the following items from the brand's spring offerings: two fedoras, three T-shirts and two pair of sunglasses.

If it's indeed true, the only question we have is, just how long do we have to wait until we see former "First Dude" Todd Palin padding around in one of those fedoras like some sort of Silver Lake hipster?

-- Adam Tschorn


Ministry of Gossip: Sarah Palin at that gifting suite: Grabby? Not so much

Ministry of Gossip: Sarah Palin attends Oscar gift lounge with Willow and grandson Tripp

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Upper photo: Sarah Palin on "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" on Tuesday. Credit: Paul Drinkwater / Associated Press/NBC

Lower photos: A Perry Ellis T-shirt and fedora. Credit: Perry Ellis

White House rains on Weatherproof's Obama billboard

Weatherproof billboard

You can tell us he's wearing your suits, name him to your 2009 international best-dressed list, print his name on cocktail dresses and even turn him into a fashionable paper doll, but apparently it's not OK to throw up a towering billboard advertisement in New York's Times Square depicting President Obama shrugging off the inclement weather in one of your coats. Weatherproof Garment Co. is finding that out the hard way.

Associated Press fashion writer Samantha Critchell penned a piece Wednesday detailing the White House's unhappiness with the billboard, citing a long-standing policy that disapproves of the use of Obama's name and likeness for commercial purposes.

The billboard consists of a photo of the commander in chief, taken by AP photographer Charles Dharapak as Obama toured the Great Wall of China. The president's hands are in his pockets and he's got a rugged, looking-off-to-the-horizon stance like (dare we say it?) the Marlboro Man of old. Accompanying the photo is the label's name and the tag line "A Leader in Style."

Because the resulting kerfuffle has served to bring the president's wardrobe choices to the attention of more people than it ever would have if the White House hadn't said anything, we think the garment maker will weather this one just fine.

-- Adam Tschorn

Photo: Weatherproof Garment Co.'s billboard in Times Square. Credit: Timothy A. Clary / AFP/Getty Images

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Spanish prime minister's daughters in 'Goth girl' controversy


In one of the sillier Internet controversies, Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero visited New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art last Wednesday with his wife and two daughters and posed for a photo with President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama. The ensuing controversy is not so much over the photograph of the teenage girls posted on the White House Flickr page (Spanish law allows the prime minister to request the images not be published) but that Zapatero‚Äôs daughters, Laura, 16, and Alba, 13, are wearing Goth-inspired black dresses, heavy eyeliner and chunky boots not unlike many rebellious teens. And now blogs have had a go at the family via Photoshop morphing the teenagers into members of the Addams Family and the ghouls from "Scream."

-- Max Padilla

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Credit: The White House

Style appreciation: Ted Kennedy, the patron saint of little brothers

For his entire life, Sen. Edward Moore Kennedy, who passed away Tuesday night at age 77, was defined by his birth order. Even in the last years of his life, the youngest brother carried -- and then paid forward -- the legacy of the brothers who predeceased him.

The story that sticks with me the most was repeated on the morning news cycle today; how, at age 14, at an event honoring John F. Kennedy, the then-14 Teddy stood and asked to remember the brother who wasn't there: the eldest, Joseph Kennedy Jr. who had died in WWII.

Few would use the words "Ted Kennedy" and "stylish" in the same sentence -- especially when compared with JFK, often cited as one of the more stylish occupants of the Oval Office, who has a commemorative Omega watch and Brooks Brothers' suit silhouette (the Fitzgerald) among his fashion bona fides.

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Celebrate the 'aloha administration' at Tiki Oasis in San Diego


On Friday I'm headed down to San Diego for Tiki Oasis 9, which bills itself as "the largest and longest running tiki event on planet Earth" to follow up on my article last fall about the resurging interest in Polynesian pop culture.

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Obama's new healthcare logo causes a Web frenzy

Rage_logo I've long appreciated the way the Obama campaign -- and later Obama administration -- has realized the importance and power of typefaces, symbols and logos (most recently in March, when I parsed the Recovery Act logo.

So my curiosity was piqued when one of the top Google searches popping up on my screen this afternoon had to do with Organizing for America's recent branding effort -- a round logo reminiscent of the campaign trail "O," partially filled with red and white stripes and topped with a caduceus, a herald's staff entwined with two snakes and topped with a pair of wings that is often used to symbolize the medical profession, though an argument rages as to whether it -- or the single-serpent, wingless "rod of Asclepius" is the more accurate mythological callback.

But that's not precisely the debate burning up the bandwidth today. Apparently some folks (including Rush Limbaugh) seem to feel the new insignia is reminiscent of some Nazi symbol or other.

That's a long way to go for a little in my book. It actually looks more like a "Golden Snitch" to me -- that's the winged, walnut-sized ball used in Quidditch -- the game Harry Potter and cohorts play on broomsticks in the J.K. Rowling book series.

And it actually makes more sense -- any young wizard will tell you the game isn't going to end until someone captures the Snitch. 

Rush Limbaugh, rev up your Nimbus 3000 broom, posthaste!

-- Adam Tschorn

Obama recovery plan's logo gets a critique

More on Barack Obama in All the Rage

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Logo from Organizing for America

Revenge of the 'dad jeans' -- president joins wife on Vanity Fair best-dressed list


Our compatriots over in the Calendar section have posted the news that President Obama has made the grade -- style-wise anyway -- and has joined his wife (who has made the cut twice before) on Vanity Fair's 2009 International Best-Dressed List.

That should come as a bit of a shock to those who pilloried the POTUS for the so-called "dad jeans" he wore while throwing out the first pitch at the MLB All-Star game (even "Today's" Meredith Viera felt the need to ask the leader of the free world about his jeans).

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