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Get the Look: 30 Perfect Pairs of Party Shoes

Is your New Year’s Eve outfit all squared away. I did the hard part for you, narrowing down your party dress choices from everything on the Interwebs to 75 perfect party dresses. If you missed it, click back because I know you will definitely find one (at least one!) you like.

What? You need shoes too? Must I do everything for you? No, that’s fine; that’s why I’m here. Here are 30 perfect pairs of party shoes. I went heavy on the glitter, but seriously, when else do you get to pretend your’e a princess? There are a few sexy blood red heels too, as well as cobalt blue, and the prettiest shades of pink pumps.

Dancing, dancing, dancing. I’m a dancing machine. (That’s sung. If you don’t know the tune, you are not a child of the ’70s.) Have fun!

P.S. The purse and jewelry are on you.

Holiday Party Shoes Dressy Heels

1 Hoss Burgundy Velvet Heels, $326 at Anthropologie

2 Jeffrey Campbell Gold Peep Toe Heels at Bloomingdale’s

3 Paola d’Arcano Cobalto Pumps, $398 at Anthropologie

4 Badgley Mischka Nude Peep Toe Pump, $245 at Zappos

5 Kenneth Cole Metallic Cage Pumps, $150 at Bloomingdale’s

6 Burgundy Glitter Pumps, $348 at Anthropologie

7 DVF Black Suede T-Strap Pumps, $262.50 at Saks.

Holiday Party Shoes Dressy Heels

8 Tracy Reese Glitter Heel Pumps, $278 at Anthropologie

9 Ted Baker Sequin Ballet Flats, $100 at Nordstrom

10 Topshop Dark Red Cutaway Bootie, $90 at Nordstrom.

11 Gunmetal and Gold Ankle Tie Pumps, $288 at J.Crew.

12 Paola d’Arcano Gold Pumps, $398 at Anthropologie.  

13 Studded Velvet Chunky Sandal, $450 at Tory Burch

14 Loeffler Randall Wavy Mirror Sandals, $295 at Saks

15 Turquoise Suede & Patent Pump, $248  at M. Gemi

Holiday Party Shoes Dressy Heels

16 Anaconda Printed Lace Up, $425 at Loeffler Randall

17 Dark Red Fringe Pump, $175 at Loeffler Randall

18 Cutout Peep Toe Metallic Heels, $298 at M. Gemi

19 Blush Slingback With Glitter Heel, $994.95 at Zappos.  

20 Pink Suede Pumps, $238 at J.Crew.

21 SJP Pink Satin Bow Pump, $395 at Neiman Marcus

22 Red Ankle Bow Strap Pumps, $328 at Kate Spade.

23 Silver Glitter Kitten Heel Pumps, $138 at Ann Taylor.

24 Via Spiga Platform Glitter Heels $275 at Bloomingdale’s

Holiday Party Shoes Dressy Heels

25 Nicholas Kirkwood Pearl Platform Pumps, $629 at Barneys.

26 Glitter D’Orsay Flats, $158 at J.Crew. 

27 Green Sequin Pumps, $328 at J.Crew.

28 Lauren Lorraine Rhinestone Bootie, $ 149 at Zappos

29 Jimmy Choo Floral Pump, $1,495 at Neiman Marcus

30 Giuseppe Zanotti Blue Mule, $450 at Neiman Marcus

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Get the Look: 75 Holiday Party Dresses

Many of you are probably still in the crush of the holiday rush. But since I celebrate Hanukkah, my present giving season is complete. My husband and I celebrate our anniversary on Christmas Eve -a spur of the moment elopement – so there’s opportunity for one more give and get, but the real buying, and by that I mean the buying for the kids, is complete.

That means it’s time to move on to planning the perfect New Year’s Eve outfit. Or you might have some holiday parties to attend. I’ll likely cozy up at home. But if I were planning a rocking New Year’s Eve, I’d start trying on dresses right now. There’s nothing worse than buying a party ensemble under pressure. After all this research I may just make a buy so I have a pretty party dress on hand.

I may have gone overboard—there are 75 party dress picks here from StyleCarrot partners and other sources. Lots of lace happening this season. There’s a turquoise lace dress by DVF; a cobalt lace dress from J.Crew, and a one-shouldered navy lace number fromReiss. (Princess Kate should totally dare to wear that.) Of course there are plenty of metallics. Metallic gold and gunmetal dresses, as well as jacquard (big trend right now, especially at Tory Burch), and a sprinkling of sequins. Plus capes. Channel Gwyneth and try a dress with a cape. The white one from Pixie Market is darling. 01

What would I wear? If I were a tiny bit younger and going dancing, I think #3 is really cute, though I’d probably opt for #33, the pleated midi by Rebecca Taylor or #47, the gold wrap dress. The stripey sequin Marc dress, #16 is adorable, especially paired with those studded clogs. The green knotted Lanvin silk shift (#25) is more my style these days, if I could afford it, along with #38, the modern minimalist black gabardine from Ssense. (Everything from Ssense is fierce. For a more festive feel but still considering comfort, I like #49, a black embellished chiffon shift by Velvet.

I like to order a whole bunch and then decide.

Holiday Party Dresses New Year's Eve Dresses 2015

1 White Cape Dress, $98 at Pixie Market.  

2 DVF Sky Blue Lace Dress, $501 at MyTheresa

3 Sequin Cage Dress, $150 at Bloomingdale’s

4 Aster Flower Dress, $495 at Rebecca Taylor

5 Silence + Noise Lattice Back Dress, $69 at Urban Outfitters

6 Keepsake Lace Bodycon Dress, $170 at Urban Outfitters

Holiday Party Dresses New Year's Eve Dresses 2015

7 Embellished Mini Dress, $898 at Alice + Olivia

8 Double V-Neck Fit & Flare Chambray Dress, $79.95 at Gap.  

9 Jacquard Sleeveless Dress $595 at Tory Burch.  

10 d.RA Blue Hi Lo Dress, $149 at Urban Outfitters

11 Hot Pink Flutter-Sleeve Dress, $128 at Banana Republic

12 Floral Print Silk Dress, $198.50 at Club Monaco

Holiday Party Dresses New Year's Eve Dresses 2015

13 Gold One Shoulder Dress, $300 at Whistles.

14 Lovers + Friends Magenta Cape Dress, $178 at Revolve

15 Bailey 44 Gunmetal Cut-Out Dress, $202 at Revolve

16 Marc by Marc Jacobs Striped Lamé Shift, $498 at Saks.  

17 DKNY Allover Sequin Dress $495 at Shopbop

18 Blush Sequin Dress, $198 at J.Crew.

Holiday Party Dresses New Year's Eve Dresses 2015

19 Red Scalloped Shift Dress, $48.99 at Ruche

20 Lanvin Silk Dress With Tassel Tie, $1,690 at MyTheresa

21 Maison Scotch Tulle Skirt Dress, $329 at Revolve

22 Silver Metallic Sleeveless Dress, $169.99 at ModCloth

23 DVF L Printed Silk Dress, $468 at Saks.

24 Green Floral Drop-Waist Dress, $138 at Banana Republic.

Holiday Party Dresses New Year's Eve Dresses 2015

25 Lanvin Gathered-Front Shift Dress, $1,690 at Barneys

26 Gray Organza Dress, $470 at Whistles

27 Electric Blue Lace Dress, $178 at J.Crew

28 Gray Lace Shift Dress, $148 at Madewell

29 Metallic Brocade Dress, $398 at J.Crew

30 MLV Forest Green Embellished Dress, $350 at Cusp

Holiday Party Dresses New Year's Eve Dresses 2015

31 Halston Heritage Blue Cutout Dress, $267 at Bloomingdale’s

32 Karen Keen Ombre Sequin Dress, $158 at Bloomingdale’s

33 Lurex Pleated Cami Dress, $479  at Rebecca Taylor

34 A.L.C. Montana Dress, $495 at Saks

35 Merlot Velvet Dress, $89.99 at ModCloth

36 Alexis Starlight Print High-Low Dress , $798 at Cusp.  

Holiday Party Dresses New Year's Eve Dresses 2015

37 Asymmetric Lace Dress, $360 at Reiss

38 Enfold Black Wool Gabardine Dress, $865 at Ssense

39 Topshop Unique Crushed Velvet Dress, $435 at Net-a-Porter

40 Self Portrait Maroon Dress, $560 at Shopbop

41 Velvet Studio Dress, $99.90 at Zara.

42 Embellished Blush Shift Dress, $369 at Ted Baker

Holiday Party Dresses New Year's Eve Dresses 2015

43 Ronny Kobo Camo Dress, $336 at Pink Mascara

44 Black & Gold Fitted dSequin Dress, $595 at L.K.Bennett

45 Alice + Olivia Sleeveless Floral Jacquard Dress, $398 at Saks

46 Isabel Marant Chiffon Keyhole Dress, $710 at Net-a-Porter

47 Bec & Bridge Gold Wrap Dress $320 at Urban Outfitters

48 Michael Michael Kors Sequined Tank Dress, $325 at Saks

Holiday Party Dresses New Year's Eve Dresses 2015

49 Velvet Embellished Chiffon Dress, $472 at MyTheresa.  

50 Maje Stripe Fit & Flare Dress, $376 at Bloomingdale’s

51 Geometric Jacquard Dress, $375 at Milly

52 Rag & Bone Silk Shift Dress, $425 at Nordstrom

53 Cheap Monday Illusion Dress, $90 at Need Supply Co. 

54 Bec & Bridge Silver Metallic Dress, $180 at Shopbop

Holiday Party Dresses New Year's Eve Dresses 2015

55 French Connection Black & Blue Lace Dress, $248 at Cusp

56 Black Fringe Dress, $389 at Club Monaco

57 Adeline Rae Fit & Flare Dress, $94 at Nordstrom.  

58 Metallic Dot Dress, $188 at J.Crew

59 Keepsake Black Mini Dress, $199 at Pixie Market

60 Black Graphic Floral Dress, $198.50 at Club Monaco

Holiday Party Dresses New Year's Eve Dresses 2015

61 Floral Print Silk Crepe Dress, $895 at Burberry

62 Elizabeth & James  Red Dress, $365 at Intermix

63 Rachel Zoe Fringe Cocktail Dress, $495 at Neiman Marcus

64 Lela Rose Half-Sleeve Fit-&-Flare Dress, $1,095 at Neiman Marcus.

65 White Sequined Fringe Dress, $34.90 at Forever 21.

66 Pink Dot Pleated Dress, $378 at Kate Spade

67 Sleeveless Sequin Stripe Dress, $598 at Kate Spade

Holiday Party Dresses New Year's Eve Dresses 2015

68 Elizabeth & James Sequin Dress, $465 at Intermix

69 Open Back Fit & Flare Dress, $548 at Kate Spade.  

70 Turquoise Satin Dress, $100 at Topshop

71 Maje Midnight Sequined Crepe Dress, $229.50 at The Outnet

72 Silver Lamé Slip Dress by Boutique. $240 at Topshop

73 Marchesa Notte Strapless Lace Dress, $402.75 at The Outnet.  

74 Red Pleated Strapless Dress, $159.99 at Ann Taylor

75 Black Dolman Sleeve Dress, $775 at 3.1 Phillip Lim.

•            •            •

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Get the Look: Modern Geometric Jewelry

With all the attention paid to crystal encrusted statement necklaces and sparkly earrings in the last few years, it’s refreshing to see jewelry with a minimalist aesthetic make an appearance. Triangles in particular have been popular.

In early November I put together “All the Angles,” a roundup of geometric jewelry for the Boston Globe. Here’s a followup on that, with many more modern geometric jewelry picks, from triangle necklaces in marble or copper to rose gold pyramid studs to diamond encrusted geometric rings.

 

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S H O P P I N G

1 Tri-Color Triangles Necklace, $78 at Samantha Faye.

2 Brass Necklace #3 by Iacoli & McAllister, $70 at Room68.

3 Black Marble & Brass Necklace #1, $120 at RillRill.

4  Temple Ray Studs by Bing Bang, $150 at Club Monaco.

5 Zen Square Ring with Crystals by Campbell, $98.50 at Club Monaco.

6 Tyler Triangle Diamond Studs by Jennifer Zeuner, $165 at Dress Boston.

7 Isosceles Cuff Bracelet, $24 at Madewell

8 Gold Pavé Crystal Pyramid Studs by Eddie Borgo, $95 at Charm & Chain.

9 Gilded Frame Necklace, $32 at Madewell.

10 Arrowstack Necklace, $55 at Madewell.

11 Rose Gold Coin Earring by Campbell, $110 at Club Monaco.

12 Black Diamond Geometric Triangle Studs by Kacey K, $800 at Charm & Chain.

13 Mini Vertical Diamond Stick Pendant Necklace by Jennifer Meyer, $750 at Barneys.

14 Lapis & Gold Triangular Studs by Jennifer Meyer $395 at Barneys.

15 Two-Tone 14K Gold Triangle Earrings, $323.99 at Kay Jewelers.

16 Rose Gold Pyramid Triangles Earrings by Ylang, $280 at Ylang 23.

17 Opal Inlay Triangle Ring with Diamonds by Jennifer Meyer, $725 at Ylang 23.

18 Personalized Rectangle Bangle by Jemma Wynne, $3,360 at Ylang 23.

19 Arrowhead Drop Earring+Stud by Loren Stewart, $425 at Barneys.

20 Triangles Necklace by Arme De L’Amour, $255 at Net-a-Porter.

21 Small Drop Earrings by Malin Henningsson, $210 at Aha Life.

22 Axis No 1 Ring by Yield, $395 at Aha Life.

23 Gold Blondie Ring by Adornia, $425 at Aha Life.

24 Rose Gold V Necklace by Gabriela Artigas, $210 at A+R.

•           •           •

Monogram pendants make perfect presents >

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Designer Spotlight: Shelley Simpson of Mud Australia

Earlier this summer, Shelley Simpson, designer and founder of tabletop line Mud Australia, visited Boston for the first time. Natalie van Dijk Carpenter, owner of South End boutique Lekker Home, hosted her for an evening. I was out of town, but was able to catch up with her a few days later by phone.

Mud Australia Founder Shelley Simpson At Lekker Home

Shelley Simpson and Natalie van Dijk Carpenter at Lekker Home in Boston.

Mud Australia porcelain is handmade in the company’s Sydney factory by in-house ceramicists, from Limoges porcelain, sourced directly from France. Unlike much tableware, to which the color is applied after the fact, Mud Australia tints the porcelain beforehand, which provides a distinctive depth of color. (It also means if a piece chips, the exposed portion isn’t white.)  The interior of each piece has a vitrified stone-like surface that becomes smooth with handling, but the interior is hand-brushed with a clear glaze. The look and feel is organic and the colors neutral, punctuated with a few brights.

When did you first start making pottery? 

When I was 28, I moved from Melbourne to Sydney, where I rented a house with a woman named Joy, who had a kick wheel in her back shed. She was always harassing me to have a go with it. One weekend when she was away, I got some clay and played around. She was very cross with me because she said my things were prettier than hers!

So you didn’t start out as a ceramicist? 

I’m creative, but I’m not trained in art. I draw now, but nothing like my 13-year-old son, who has a natural gift for it. But I have an eye for color and form.  My schooling has been  throwing things away.

How did you decide to pursue it as a business? 

I had applied to manage a theater, but they looked me over, in part because I was a woman. Joy and I started Mud Australia together in 1994, though she left the business after a few years and I’ve continued on.

And now? 

Mud Australia has 70 shapes and 18 colors. We’ve been focusing on new shapes lately more than colors. The latest is a series of mixing bowls and baking pans. We’re doing pendant lights in three sizes, and have a mortar & pestle in production. That really shows the durability of porcelain, so you can feel confident you’re not buying something fragile.

Are there pieces that are distinctive to certain regions?

The shapes work for anything. You can eat Yorkshire pudding, sushi or Middle Eastern food from the same bowl comfortably. That said, we have a distributor in Korea with three shapes specific to their market, including a kimchi pickle dish.  We also make exclusive pieces, like vases, for restaurants.

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Mud vignette

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 Photos by Ant Geernaert

What designers do you admire? 

 Gwen Hanson Pygget, an Australian potter  who created art pieces rather than functional ones. They’re absolutely beautiful. We’re in New York City now, and just went to the Judd; his color is exquisite.

What influences you when it comes to creating pieces for Mud Australia?

I love to bake, which is how we came to add the new baking pieces. I make Pavlovas and exotic birthday cakes for my kids and other family members. I once made a snake covered in marshmallows. Almost sculptural stuff. I go all out when it comes to baking a cake. For my daughter’s 16th, I made a cake with eight layers in rainbow colors, covered with white icing. The restaurant we brought it to was very impressed. My husband makes the dinners at home. Food is very important to our family.

What’s your home like? 

We live in a top-floor apartment in a four-story building in Sydney that’s an Arts & Crafts style, with an old French lift. There’s loads of trees with a vista to the harbor and a large deck; we do lots of eating al fresco. We’ve never lived in a house or on the ground. We want a garden. We are going to put the house on the market soon and find something new.

And of course you have plenty of Mud Australia dishes?

Yes, everything. And pieces that didn’t work out too.

What do you like most about your line?

Everybody’s  Mud Australia dinner set is unique to them, which I think sets us apart from other companies that present full collections. When you go to the store, you can get creative, which is fun. You can buy one piece at a time. Your collection can be a complete rainbow, or blackm white, and gray, or all pastels. Recently, one guy did slate and pink, which I wouldn’t have thought of, but when I was packing it up I thought, “This is amazing.”

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Get the Look: Every Type of Birkenstock Sandal

After putting together Friday’s post on the revival of Birkenstocks, and having a late birthday lunch with friends (thanks Marcie & Deb!), I headed to The Tannery to try on Birkenstocks. As they’re hardly sexy, I felt like I was trying on shoes that an college roommate left by the door. But, once I channeled the women in the street style photos, I was on board. So I turned my attention to how Birkenstocks actually felt on my feet.

The leather of the Arizona sandals were a little stiff for me, (though likely fine for most anybody else), and I didn’t even bother trying on the Gizeh thongs (I can only wear flip flops with ribbons, not leather, between my toes). It’s too bad, because I really like the white Arizonas. They remind me of my white rubber platforms slides by Patrick Cox from the mid-90s (which I actually still have and should perhaps resurrect).

The white Birkenstocks are so obviously a cute style statement and would not be mistaken for the schleppy misguidedness. Look, if you’re going to wear Birkenstocks because they’re back (and by back I mean, by those who matter, i.e., Phoebe Philo, Marc Jacobs, Jenna Lyons), then you’re going to have to cultivate the total look. (I can do a post with specific clothing picks too if anyone’s interested.)

Back to the try-ons. I also slipped on a slouchy pair of mocha suede Arizona sandals with rose gold buckles (nice styling touch), which also happened to be labeled “soft footbed.” Bingo. Pure comfort. (For sizing, go down one.) I could definitely get on board wearing these. Thing is, I haven’t been into earth tones the past ten years.

Back home, my search for size 36 black suede Arizonas turned up “out of stock” messages. Not willing to languish on a wait list, I ordered the Arizona Soft Footbed Suede Sandal in Velvet Gray from Nordstrom’s. (By the way, the Nordstrom Half-Yearly Sale is in progress.) Admittedly, it is going to be harder to pull off elegance in gray suede than crisp black, but so be it. Besides, I’ve been totally into my gray Madewell jeans, so this could all be good.

And, fact is, I’m headed to the Outer Cape for most of the summer, where looking just so is just not.

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S H O P P I N G

1. Birkenstock Gizeh Thong in Black Patent

2. Birkenstock Arizona in White with White Sole 

3. Birkenstock  Gizeh Thong in Metallic Blue

4. Birkenstock Cairo Woven Leather  

5. Birkenstock Granada Soft Footbed in Oiled Leather

6. Birkenstock Arizona in Caribou

7. Ar By Tatami Birkenstock Dakar in Red w/Leopard Fur Sole

8. Birkenstock Catania by Papillio in Metallic Turquoise Leather

9. Birkenstock Granada in Metallic Silver

10. Birkenstock  Gizeh Thong in Mint Linen with Cream Sole

11. Birkenstock Arizona in Violet Nubuck

12. Papillion by Birkenstock Madrid in Leopard Classic 

13. Birkenstock Striped  

14. Tatami  by Birkenstock Adria Flecht 

15. Birkenstock Arizona in Hippie Flowers 

16. Birkenstock Madrid in Gold Metallic 

17. Birkenstock  Yara in Oiled Leather

18. Birkenstock Chania Gladiator

19. Birkenstock Florida in True Leopard

20. Birkenstock Arizona Soft Footbed in Green Suede

21. Birkenstock Milano in Black Patent Leather 

22. Birkenstock Mayari 

23. Birkenstock Curacao by Birki Stretch Sandal

24. Birkenstock Arizona in Floral  

25. Birkenstock Gizeh Thong in Tango Red

•           •           •

Go shoe shopping at Sole Struck >

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