Saturday, November 19, 2011

Fall Styles on the T

While I can not pinpoint any specific trends in clothing, one thing that I noticed is that many women are wearing scarves this fall season. Scarves are great because they can brighten up any outfit. They say that women of Paris know a hundred ways to wear a scarf. I wonder if women of Boston know of more ways  to wear a scarf. Here is a video that explains 25 ways to wear a scarf in 4.5 minutes. Cheers!

After a long break, T Style Watch is back!

Dear Readers,

After a long break I am back to blog about the latest styles and trends on the T. Why was I silent on the topic anything since May. Well, since I got laid off from my job, I was not really commuting on the T, and I felt a little bit of a writer's block on this topic--it was a little bit of both. I hope you will forgive me, and I will get my audience back again. :-)

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Book Trends on the T

When I am not taking a nap on the T, I am trying to keep myself entertained with reading something or really anything...

In the winter, every time I sat down next to someone with an open book, they were reading from the series "The Girl with the Dragon Tatoo" or "The Girl Who Played with Fire", or " The Girls Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest" by Stieg Larsson. Just reading the titles alone gave me these edgy unpleasant association.Nonetheless, after several occasional over the shoulder scattered readings, I am now curious to read one of them or watch the movie that's already on DVD.

To be honest, it's not a question of what titles are popular on the T, it's a question of what type of devices people are using to do the reading. I've read somewhere that more and more school are implementing iPads instead of textbooks, so I think it's not a prophecy or a new idea to suggest that books are on the way to become relics of the past. Lately, I mostly see people using the Kindle by Amazon. By the way, it's harder to read over someone's shoulder if he or she is reading from a Kindle. People tend to cling to their screens and quickly scroll down the page. In fact, I believe with the advent of Kindles and iPads, reading over someone shoulder may become obsolete. I am waiting for telescreens to become available like in George Orwell's novel "1984".

Monday, May 16, 2011

Skinny Jeans on the T

Circa Fall 2005, I remember going into a mall, and it was like seeing a ghost--leggings were back in style. I felt like I was transported back to the future; the 80s were back..

Then in the Fall 2010, I noticed something revolutionary appearing on the T--legging jean--a fusion of leggins and jeans. Needless to say, this new style completely rehabilitated the image of leggings in my mind. These leggings-jeans are stretchy and soft like leggings, but to the uninitiated, they look like--skinny jeans! Remember that episode of "Sex and the City" that coined the phrase "skinny jeans", when Miranda tried to fit into her tight fitting jeans? It is not only their denim-like material, with colors such as faded blue and indigo that adds to the confusion, it is also the back pockets that make them look more like jeans. Some of these leggins-jeans even have the worn-out or ripped patches to make them look more like those old tight fitting jeans that you have burried in your closet from the 80s.

Now it's Spring 2011, and leggings-jeans are still popular on the T. What is so great about this style is that it also allows for a comfortable commute; no more tight fitting harsh fabric, or buttons from the real jeans pressing into your belly, yay for the legging jean!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Inspiration on the T

I started this blog because I was noticing interesting fashion trends on the T, and because I desperately wanted to write, to write anything, anything at all. It's surprising that the T should give me inspiration, but I am not alone. The other day, I was at the Children's museum, and I saw this wonderful painting/collage by an artist named Tim Murley. I wanted to share it with you. As you can see it depicts the Green Line. It gives you this wonderful, happy feeling, as when you are riding a T on a sunny day, and it's full of Red Sox fans, and you are jammed from all sides, but there is this happy buzzing energy all around you. I also read the artist's statement next to the painting, and I thought I'd share it with you. Tim Murley says, "I don't think it's important where inspiration comes from; it just needs to exist."
fragment from "Magic Night in the City" by Tim Murley
"Magic Night in the City" by Tim Murley (Children's Museum, Boston)

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

April Showers: Hunter vs. Animals

On the way to the Boylston T Stop:
Rain boots galore during an April Shower
I hope you are ejoying the short-lived Spring in Boston. On a day like today, hot and humid; it feels like the Summer has already out-wrestled the Spring, but wait, and in a few hours gray clouds and a cool breeze will bring about an April shower.

In an uncertain weather like this, many of us will get away with wearing clogs, crocs (if they have no holes in them), or snickers, but some ladies will still be spotted wearing rubber boots.  It used to be that rubber boots were something that kids wore or else they were associated with a farmer stepping through a wet grass spotted with manure. Nowadays, rubber boots have attained a special veneered place int the hierarchy of knee-high boots. 

On the T (if you just search the platform with your tired eyes, careful not to cross the yellow line! :-), you might see  rubber boots in many different shapes and colors, but the leading trend is rain boots by Hunter. It does not matter if your boots are kelly green, or paisley and pink, which are, by the way, most popular choices for Hunter boots on the T, as long as it says Hunter on it, which is a big white label with a prominent red border, you are in fashion and wearing something coveted by others.

Ironically, yet another style, which is popular on the T are rubber boots with animal patterns, zebra or tiger stripes, produced by lesser known companies. To summarize, it's Hunter versus animals--you make the choice. What if one rightfully wants to combine the two by splurging on Hunter boots with animal prints. Alas, such boot does not exist. At least I could not find them online. Hunters and animals are not friends after all, not even when it comes to rain boots. I leave you with a quote from a musical called "Urinetown", "Don't be the Bunny, be the Hunter!"

PS: If you really want the animals prints, you could get the Hunter fleece Welly socks with leopard or zebra pattern, made specifically to fit Hunter boots. These socks have cuffs that go over the boot to show off yet another Hunter label.  Here is an idea, you could wear these socks with non-Hunter boots, and then you could still have the Hunter label for less. 

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Star Wars on the Subway

You probably noticed that this takes place in the NYC subway, but I could not resist to post this hilarious video. It's called "Star Wars Subway Car". Notice the hysterical laughter of the passangers; seeing Darth Vader sure brightened up their daily commute. While searching google I also found a video of Leia and Boba Fet accordions' duel on a subway station. See below. 

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Spring on the T

"April Associations"
Flowers sold on the "T" station
the wind is blowing by with dust and pollen
new leaves unfolding
like bright green ruffled tissue paper,
yellow of dandelions and daffodils, 
tulips sold by the bunch


Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Shawls vs. Macchiatto?

top: Russian Woolen Shawl
bottom: Pashima Shawl in Style Now
Every year fashion trends seem to be inspired by a certain country or culture. For example 2007 was India. I recall seeing a lot of loosely fitting tunics (inspired by kameez), in bright colors with paisley patterns, dotted with rhinestones. I myself had one of those "matternity" style tunics, white with black pattern. And this year 2010-2011--where does the inspiration come from--none other but Mother Russia.

First there were the faux fur hats (ushanka as they are called in Russian, from ushi which means ears, and they do cover the ears pretty well), but that's not all. The real proof is the shawls this year. The patterns look similar to the traditional Russian shawl. Presenting you with two pictures to compare.

How much I wanted to get myself one of these shawls! There was  a girl selling them at the Charles/MGH stop, two for twenty bucks, but I never had cash on me. Alas, I floundered for too long, and by the time I was ready to get them the scarves/shawls stand was replaced by the organic fair trade coffee/espresso on the go stand.

Throughout the cold winter, I observed the sales person shifting from foot to foot at the cold T station, warming her hands on the hot coffee jugs. Do you think I ought to buy myself a nice cup of macchiatto? Though once again, like in that dear old cartoon I used to watch, about the turtle who was slow to change his clothing for each season, so he would come out wearing skies in the summer, once again I am late as it's almost summer, and it's time for a coolata.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Eggcentric Advertising

Be Eggceptional! 
Be Eggstraordinary!

Wait...Did you notice something wrong with these fabulous adjectives that describe how great you could be? Of course, you noticed this eggceptional (pardon me, exceptional :) play on words that this advertising company came up with. What is this all about? You may wander. This smart linguistic trick was designed  to convince you to donate your eggs, as in human egg cells, or to become a surrogate mother.

 Lately, I've been noticing these advertisements popping up all over the T. Considering the myriads of college students, they are targeting the right market. When I first saw these, I was struck by how far we have come in terms of technology and acceptance of in vitro for these advertisement to appear on the T. Years ago people could not even fathom this was possible. Today this has become a part of our everyday reality. 

Philosophy aside, I think by likening a woman to a fruit-bearing tree with delicate branches and flowers, the ads evoke lovely associations with feminine. I hope they get an award in the advertising world. Don Draper and Peggy of the "Mad Men" would have been proud to claim these as their own work, though again this was sci fi in the 60s.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Spirit Hoods

"Spirit Hoods" by Sam A. 
According to my brother-in-law, "these are the new rave - they are called spirit hoods". It's great to have my family interested in helping me out, and I really appreciate you guys being my field correspondents :-), noticing more quirky trends. 

It looks like animal hats evolved to a new level, or maybe a better word would be 'transcended', so now they are not just animals--they are animal spirits.

I also see a Star Wars set in the corner there. I wonder if these spirit hoods have anything to do with Ewoks or the force.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Of faux fur and bunnies

You guessed it, my new post is going to be about hats again. Another type of hat that is now popular on the "T" is a faux fur hat with fluffy warm ear flaps that tie together, and a furry brim. What's more, I now own it, big thank you to my sis who gave it to me as a gift on New Years Eve. What I adore about my new hat the most is that each of its strings bears two fluffy pompoms, the stuff of childhood. Isn't it fun to jingly your pompoms on your long commute?

My husband recently told me that it reminds him of a Russian style hat, and he's absolutely correct. Remember that movie "Spies Like Us" with Chevy Chase, the bluish gray hats that Russian boarder patrol were wearing are the same style as fax-fur hats that are popular in Boston this winter.

The only difference is that here, in the non-Communist regime, these hats come in a variety of colors and hues. When my sister presented me with the two choices, an adventurous side of me wanted to pick the colorful one (image below), but I convinced myself that it just would not go with my chocolaty, brown fox trimmed, Brooklyonish coat, plus my style tends to be, if i may say so, more classy and subdued. Just before I got my hat, I saw a girl walking to the "T" and wearing all black, black coat, black scarf and boots, quite unremarkable, if not for the colorful faux-fur hat illuminating her broad, red cheeked face. But, what's more special about my hat is that it's sparkly, and I can even go out in the sunlight (a pun here for Twilight fans, I could not resist). I feel like I've given you too much description of myself, you could even spot me on the "T".

Now, why in the title of my post, do you think I mentioned bunnies? That's because a long time ago, back in the old country (hence the absence of proper "a" and "the" in my blog), I used to own a hat just like this, but it was made with bunny fur. I was just a tween ("too old for toys and too young for boys" as the Urban Dictionary cleverly explains), and I actually did not care for the way I looked in my hat, but then again there remains to be found a person, especially a tween, who is completely happy with their winter hat appearance. So the story goes is that once, I was walking with a girl friend of mine down the school hallway, cuddled in hat, on my way out of the building. Suddenly two boys, pimply upperclassmen, take notice of me and say "Hey, man, take care of your girlfriend, she's very pretty." Mindless to say, with a hidden sadness in my voice, I kept telling everyone how hillarious the whole situation was.

Speaking of boys, the faux fur hats that men are currently wearing on the "T" remind me of Holden Caufield's red hunting hat. They have checkered plaid pattern, and come not only in red, but a combination of other manly colors.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Hats with animal ears

The winter is in full swing in Boston, Massachusetts. While I've been contemplating finding just the right kind of hat for myself and in the meantime perpetuating a fashion disaster by wearing my three-year old's navy and red hat with a tassle, I've noticed a big development in the 'hat compartment' :-) on the T. People are wearing wool/knitted hats (or acrylic ones) that look like adorable little animals with ears on top! 

I always knew that it's every mom's dream to have their kiddo adorned with a hat like this. Turns out, this year it's in fashion for adults and teens as well, both men and women alike! You can't believe how many guys I saw on the red line and the green line sporting these hats. I am sure their moms are going little piggy grew and became a big....

I first read about the hats with animal ears in the Metro, the Christmas issue ; it was an article that suggested gifts for various types of people in your life, even your local drug dealer (wow, we've moved past the 80s "don't do drugs", haven't we?) Besides the point, this issue suggested that the best gift would be a hat with animal ears even if you don't have kids. So I wonder if Bostonians got some ideas from this article, though I doubt that so many people follow the suggestions made in the Metro.

In any case, I love this trend. I've also seen a baby wearing this cute sock monkey hat at Wholefoods recently. I even complimented the mother. Apparently, these sock monkey hats are also available for adults.

Well, here is a question of the day: What animal would you like to be, or rather what type of animal hat would you like to wear?