Lucky 13!

Farewell, 2012.  (Photo by Pat Zimmerman.)

Farewell, 2012. (Photo by Pat Zimmerman.)

I know, this post is a teeny tiny bit belated. But see that balloon in the above photo? I brought it home with me on New Year’s and it’s still floating! (I even have photo evidence, taken this very evening – see below!) And since we all know that helium balloons never last, it can’t be too long after New Year’s, can it?

New Year's Balloon - still kickin' over 3 weeks later!

New Year’s Balloon – still kickin’ over 3 weeks later!

Even though it’s a bit late in the telling, I feel like I got the year kicked off on the right foot. For New Year’s Eve dinner, my husband and I made a lovely dinner consisting of shrimp cocktail, homemade bread (made by my husband – he’s an excellent baker!), and an avocado, grapefruit, and watercress salad. Plus a bottle of Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc – a favorite introduced by our friend Rich.

New Year's Eve dinner

New Year’s Eve dinner

And then we headed off to Davies Symphony Hall for the New Year’s Masquerade Ball. We went last year and had such a fabulous time that we decided it should be a tradition.

I donned a coral Armani Collezioni silk chiffon gown that I found several months ago at Nordstrom Rack and hadn’t yet worn. It’s one of those things that you’ll never find if you’re looking for it . . . I just happened across it one day, tried it on a whim, and found that it fit beautifully and felt lovely. And, at over 90% off, it was totally affordable!

Decked out for the Masquerade Ball (Photo by Pat Zimmerman.)

Decked out at the Masquerade Ball (Photo by Pat Zimmerman.)

Pat wore the tux he bought last year, along with some vintage octagonal studs and cufflinks. (FYI – if you’re looking for studs, check out Etsy! There are some great, really affordable vintage sets – often more interesting, higher quality, and lower priced than what you’ll find in most men’s formal wear stores.)

My dashing escort.

My dashing escort.

We had a wonderful time listening to the symphony, eyeing the gorgeous gowns (okay, maybe I was the one really eyeing the gowns), and enjoying the high spirits of the crowd.

Well hello there! (Photo by Pat Zimmerman.)

Well hello there! (Photo by Pat Zimmerman.)

Before 2012 ended, we danced to the tunes of the Peter Mintun Orchestra . . .

The Peter Mintun Orchestra

The Peter Mintun Orchestra

. . . and I had the honor of meeting the enchanting Susanna Phillips, the Symphony’s soloist that evening.

With the lovely Susanna Phillips. (Photo by Pat Zimmerman.)

With the lovely Susanna Phillips. (Photo by Pat Zimmerman.)

Soon enough it was midnight – heralded by a balloon drop . . .

New Year's Balloon Drop at Davies Symphony Ball

New Year’s Balloon Drop at Davies Symphony Ball

. . . and celebrated by balloon clutching!

AHHHHH it's 2013!!!!

AHHHHH it’s 2013!!!!

Happy New Year! I hope y’all have had a fabulous 2013 so far!!

What I wore:
Dress: Armani Collezioni silk chiffon gown, an absolute steal at Nordstrom Rack
Shawl: pashmina via Nordstrom
Necklace: vintage Coro
Bracelet: Victorian mourning bracelet

[All photos by me except where otherwise indicated.]

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Summer Warmth

Summer in San Francisco: I still (usually) need to wear cardigans, but I try to mix in elements that remind me of the sultry summers I grew up with.

Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

Like warm peach and yellow, the color of northeastern summer sunsets. And one of my favorite pair of earrings, in the shape of cicadas, that bring to mind the sounds of summer nights.

Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

Mix in some gold and caramel accents, add a white skirt with florals and sequins . . .

Gold jewelry and nails. Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

Gold jewelry and nails. Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

. . . and I’m the very image of summer!

Catching my shadow

Catching my shadow :)

What does summer mean for you?

Skirt: White House Black Market (thrifted)
Top: Now or Nectar Top, C. Luce via ModCloth
Belt: Gap
Earrings: Magicicada Earrings, Erica Weiner via ModCloth
Bracelets: Sparkle an Idea Bracelet via ModCloth and Victorian mourning bracelet
Cardigan: Somewhere to Bow Cardigan via ModCloth
Shoes: Adventure Capitol Heel, J Shoes via ModCloth
Purse: Basketwork Bag, Industry via ModCloth

Manicure: Pams & Kin holographic glitter (“THIS Year”) ombré over Julep Nail Parlor shimmer polish (“Nessa” layered over “Ashley”).

[Shadow photo by me. All other photos by Pat Zimmerman, as noted.]

Style Challenge: Neon!

Aloha! It’s Friday, which means another style challenge! The theme this week is neon. And where better to wear neon colors than on a sunset cruise?

Neon and navy, with my soon-to-be-lost plumeria blossom. Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

Neon and navy, with my soon-to-be-lost plumeria blossom. Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

I grabbed this bathing suit at a super-tropical store: Old Navy. And I paired it with a jersey knit chevron-striped skirt and a jersey knit navy cardigan when the breezes picked up. Plus a pair of pearl earrings.

Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

The effect was tropical meets nautical – which meshed well with the scenery!

Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

Happy Friday!

Bathing Suit: Old Navy
Skirt: Old Navy
Cardigan: Final Touch

[All photos by Pat Zimmerman]

Check out the rest of the style challenge crew this week, and join us or follow along on Twitter: #stylechallenge :)
Meghan of Voilà!
Rebecca of Thirty-Five Inch Inseam
Adiel of It’s Because I Think Too Much
Angie of The Hotness Your Momma Warned You About
Amanda of Fashionablee Me
Carlina of Allergic to Vanilla
Nic of Manners and Moxie

Seafoam and Coral

It rarely gets very warm in San Francisco. In the winter it’s usually in the 50s and 60s — which is wonderful for someone who dealt with chilly Pennsylvanian winters for most of her life! But in late spring and summer it’s usually in the 60s and low 70s, and layers are always required.

Except for every once in awhile when the weather warms up a little, and I rejoice by wearing a sundress!

Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

I love the retro styling of this coral Bettie Page dress, which is actually based on a 1950s Elvgren painting: “That Low-Down Feeling (Who, Me?)”. This dress was one of a series that Bettie Page did last year, all based on Elvgren pin-up paintings. The series was fantastic and I’m hoping Bettie Page does something like it again!

"That Low-Down Feeling (Who, Me?)" by Elvgren, 1957

“That Low-Down Feeling (Who, Me?)” by Elvgren, 1957

I paired the sundress with seafoam green accessories and nails:

Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

And added nude-colored patent-leather heels. And my dog, Jasper – isn’t he a great accessory? :)

Nude patent leather heels by Jessica Simpson. Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

Nude patent leather heels by Jessica Simpson. Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

Then Rocky joined for a photo too!

Yay for totally cheesy smiles. ;) Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

Yay for totally cheesy smiles. ;) Photo by Pat Zimmerman.

What’s your favorite warm-weather wear?

Dress: Sweet Coral-ine Dress, Bettie Page via ModCloth
Purse: Nordstrom
Bracelet: From a clothing exchange
Earrings: A gift
Shoes: Wishing and Taupe-ing Heels, Jessica Simpson via ModCloth

[All photos by Pat Zimmerman]