Monday, March 30, 2009

The Last Day

So as I sit here, preparing to go to sleep and put to bed another day, I have to acknowledge that tomorrow is the end of an era. Mayle closes. I wish it wasn't so--I regret the items I missed and the ones we'll never see. But I will be there by 6 to say farewell to Elise and Christina and maybe Sumer (if she's there). I'll stay in touch with the girls, but I wish they still had jobs in this crazy economy and that things could stay as they were, if only for another year or so. Other changes I would like (motherhood, that new job), but Mayle was a part of life, like Evan and the cats, that I wanted to stay just the way it is.

At least there will be a group of us girls there to see the store out in some form of style. See you there. I'll be there around 5 or 5.30, depending on how the grading goes.

Mayle for Sale, Part V


Mayle for Sale, Part IV


Mayle on Sale, Part III


Mayle on Sale, Part II


Mayle on Sale, Part I


Sunday, March 29, 2009

Last Saturday at Mayle

I went in yesterday to see Elise and Sumer and to catch a glimpse of the Michaelas and Analinas. Analina runs small and doesn't go above a 6 (which is really a 4, maybe even a small 4). Not my thing anyway. Michaela is pretty and runs big so I was able to try on the two remaining 6s--the oriental jacquard, which is filmy and pretty, and the Honeycomb, which was my favorite of the two. I resisted buying, because I want to see what comes in on Monday and, more importantly, have some money for the sample sale. No clogs as yet--maybe not at all as there is some problem with the factory.

There's still a fair amount of stock left. I don't think any of the pants have sold; there are a fair number of Laetitia skirts (some have sold), a good number of Amandine skirts and one cream Hannae camisole. The brown lurex Ishii dress and the goldrenrod Ishii shirt are left from the first delivery, as are the Lima dress, Lima top (in cream and black), the black lace Sylvania top, the Via Rita Mitsu, the black mini skirt, a few Cliveden tops and Therese. From the second delivery, there's a sole black Avingon and the Paradiso version. There is the burnout bird Josephine and the Madcap Cecilia. Several Adas are left--all seem to run very small, several Analinas (in most, if not all, colorways). Just a few Michaelas left, mainly in the smaller sizes, with Rio Plata just down to one size 2. They still have the leopard jacket, the baby Billie and a sole Billie Doux. One more delivery is expected on Monday or Tuesday.

Sold out items are Sylvestre, Claudie romper, Barcelona and Petulia. It looks like Cecilia, Josephine, Avignon and maybe Michaela will sell out too.

It was great spending more time with Elise and Sumer. I really think they should be credited with making the store such a wonderful place--along with Christina and the much missed Doris and Vanessa. Elise has always been my go-to girl--she's been so kind, given me the best advice and been someone I've loved talking to. I think we're all going to miss 242 Elizabeth Street for so many reasons--the beauty of the clothes and the store itself, the girls, the social space it has provided. It has been a rare and wonderful place where I have met so many nice people. I will be going on Tuesday to say goodbye, but hopefully I'll see all of these wonderful people again at other venues.

I also won the ebay auction for the Monica dress. No idea how this fits--I've only tried on the top--but I put in a bid and it was accepted so I imagine I will find out soon!

Mayle for Sale?

A couple of people suggested I add a regular Mayle for sale post on the blog. I think it is a great idea, given ebay fees. I have one item--the unworn Pilar in ivory, size 2, that Evan inadvertently picked up in the wrong size from the sample sale. Other people have similar mint items, so we'll get pictures and post the pieces and prices here. Let me know if you want to sell anything here.

More soon.

Friday, March 27, 2009


Sorry about the paucity of posts this week. I've been swamped at work--I gave a talk on celebrity on Wednesday (sandwiched between two classes) and my students have tests coming up which has made for busy office hours. I've also come down with some kind of sore throat/aches and pains bug--it's not a cold (yet) and I know it isn't flu which is far more disabling than whatever I have. That said, I am sure this is what my students have that they call the flu.

I'm currently awaiting several packages: my Florinda jacket from ebay (so hope it fits), Jemeen from Studio Sebastian (I hope we have some warm weather by the time it arrives) and two cashmere sweaters from Inhabit's sale. Evan will finally think I've lost it when the packages arrive, but almost all were really cheap. Florinda was the sole exception and even that was over 50% off. In rehearsing my justifications here, I know I protest too much.

I've even been too busy to make it to Mayle (and still found myself falling behind with work and must-do health insurance issues). I doubt much of what has come in will fit me. I'm not sure I like Analina--the menswear styling isn't my thing. I nearly bought the original Michaela but the fit was odd--too big everywhere except the back and the area under the arms which was a little tight (the problem I have with some Mayle--I think she cuts too small in armholes and the back and I can't use all the extra fabric in the front to change the fit). I wasn't sure I liked the way the original looked on me and that makes me unsure about the re-edition, even though I know some fitting issues have been altered. In all likelihood, I'll save for the sample sale, but if some fabulous cotton dress--or well made, non leopard print clogs--come in, I'll be down for them.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Magheeta Fits!

It's always a bit nerve-wracking to get a parcel from ebay--the combination of excitement and fear that the piece won't fit. I knew Magheeta ran small in the chest (Doris had warned me about that), but I run small there too. I got my Magheeta tonight and fortunately it fits.. I am only a small 34A and even on me, the front part just fits--and this is the large. My friend Nicole is a size 4 but she couldn't even get the front to fasten (this is not a cardigan for anybody with a chest). It's quite heavy, soft, warm and the gold is very gold. It is a beautiful piece and one I am so happy to own. I know it comes up on ebay quite often, but the last two times I lost the auction at the last minute, so it must have been my time.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Sylvestre in Madcap

Here, as promised, are a variety of pictures of Sylvestre in madcap. I've loved this fabric for years and am pleased to finally have a dress in it. I also like the Sylvestre dress the most out of all the re-editions I've seen so far. The little button tabs at the side are functional, but the buttons on the top are, sadly, merely decorative. I suspect all buttons on the original Sylvestre worked.

These are not the greatest photos. It looks lovely on and feels so soft and comfortable. The dress flows beautifully. The photos don't do it justice--I look a bit dishevelled and they are generally not as flattering as the reality.

Sylvestre pics coming soon

Work has been hectic the last day or so, but when I get home later this afternoon, I will post my first Sylvestre pictures. Some aren't great--Evan took some of me but was having problems with my camera. I turned the flash off to keep the colors true but you need a really steady hand and know how to brace yourself for this to work. I can do it, but I have more experience with photography and filmmaking. I took some pictures of the details while wearing the dress and having it lie flat. I think it is my favorite piece (so far) from the re-editions. I just wish I'd not missed out on the size 10 Theodora on elux. That dress runs very narrow in the cuffs and skirt so I'm hoping for a return.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

I'm Normal

Or at least, that's what I found out today when I went for the HSG. Such a relief. It took me forever to get to Columbus Circle--the F-train was at its worst and then I had to wait a while, compounding my anxiety. But my doctor was great, even though the test is painful and humiliating, and told me that everything looked good. Of course, hormones and other levels may not be so great, but I'll take the positive where I can get it. My dear friend Nicole and her adorable 9 month old son, Dashiell, met me and we went to Whole Foods for coffee, before walking through Central Park in the sun to get to the F-train (finally, a spring day!). After picking up bagels at Terrace Bagels, I got home and now, exhausted, I'm catching up with email and cuddling a purring little miss Peeps.

Thank you so much for your all your kind wishes. I'm still a long way from motherhood and have lots of other fun tests ahead, but at least this milestone is behind me. I'll try to post pictures of Sylvestre tonight.

Monday, March 16, 2009

My Limited Re-Edition

With Elise's help, I managed to snag the Sylvania in Madcap. I am busy with work today but hope to get photos of it up sometime this week (complete with its tag--number 4 of 5). Hopefully we'll soon get some true spring weather so I can wear it with my lavender or pale green cashmere cardigans. I think it might also work with my light purple tights, the ones seen earlier on this blog.

I'll also keep you posted about the imminent arrival of the Magheeta sweater and, of course, any updated stock at Mayle. It seems today is quiet there, which is just as well, I imagine, after the last hectic week.

Tomorrow is my painful dye test. I have to start taking antibiotics today and hope that it doesn't hurt and that everything checks out fine.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Ebay purchase

Given that I had no luck with the re-editions this week, I decided to buy the Magheeta jacket/cardigan from Holiday 07 that was on ebay this week. I coveted this when it came in. I believe it runs small (I got the large), but hope that it will be OK as I am narrow in the front, despite having a broad back. Knits tend to be more forgiving. If all else fails, I can sell it again, but I hope that it works out. I got the ivory/gold combination. Maybe when I finally find a Tana in gold (resort 07), I can wear the two together.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Avignon is in

I went by Mayle again today. Both lengths of Avignon are in, but it runs really small in the waist and didn't fit me. I think there were just 2 8s and both sold. I would have needed a 10. Avignon isn't for me anyway, but there was one in the iris dot fabric I love. I have to admit to momentary disappointment--new Mayle and again, I can't fit into it (it doesn't make anyone feel good when they can't fit into anything in a store). I had to remind myself that much of this related to my height, the size of my bones and not my weight. I am hopeful for future offerings though. But it doesn't appear that there will be any deliveries this weekend. Hopefully next week will be my week. I'm hoping for a macap print, and iris dot and a Sylvestre dress in cotton.

The Avignons are mainly 2-4 and are in iris dot (my favorite), Amalfi flowers--the original and a lighter washed silk version that I didn't like as much, the red Asian inspired print, black, ivory paradiso and fleur du bois/honeycomb floral--the holiday 07 print. Most of the size 6 run was in the longer cut and only came in the black and washed Amalfi flowers.

On a more positive note, it was fun to see people in the store again today. Julie, LivKate, Maryam and Kim were all there, all looking great. It's been so much fun meeting people--everybody has been so great. I feel very lucky to have met you all.

I feel I look like I've been dragged through a hedge backwards these last few days--all my best winter Mayle is being cleaned so I fudged my outfits. Not to mention my hair and skin seem to be at their very worst. Nothing like feeling ugly when you are trying to buy new clothes--and nothing fits!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Mayle and Lyell

I basically spent half the day in Mayle and Lyell. It was good, although I didn't buy anything today. First, Mayle. No new items--yet--although there is a chance of some being available tomorrow, likely Avignon and maybe other pieces. I spent a good part of the day talking to Elise, Doris and Christina. Doris is moving back to Dallas--tomorrow is her last day--where she will open a boutique and online store selling Steven Alan, Rachel Comey, Jeffrey Monteiro and other favorites of this blog. Christina, I know you will want to visit. The store will be called Domahoka.

I also met Julie and Kim which was absolutely wonderful. It is so good to meet people from this blog and they couldn't have been nicer. I really look forward to seeing you both again. Both wore Mayle: Julie had the Mitsuko in Paradiso, a black Mayle cardigan and the black and white belt (not Deauville) from resort; Kim wore the blue Odette and her Jeanne bag in black. Both looked amazing.

I also visited Lyell and saw the fabulous spring collection. This did not disappoint. Beautiful detailing, amazing fabric, the perfect craftsmanship Emma is renowned for and fabulous cuts. I put an orange floral linen romper on hold that made my hips and stomach look streamlined and my legs appear a mile long. I also found the best pair of black linen shorts in a vintage tap-pants style that will find their way into my closet soon (once the weather permits). I also fell in love with a gorgeous green cardigan with the signature crocheted Lyell neckline and a delicate blouse with an embroidered collar. I chatted to Emma and Mike for two hours. They are the nicest people and so talented. I am glad we're not losing Lyell as well as Mayle.

Tomorrow I'm heading back into Mayle. I hope to find at least one piece from the re-editions to cherish. And, yes, I did feel like a stalker and apologized about half a dozen times to all the girls. I think they understand, however. And, yes, I think many of us are holding on for that perfect piece, the dress that got away or that we have worn to death.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Brief Mayle Update

I've not been anywhere near the store today but I called in. Christina says they got some more Therese, the Hanae cami, and a few Avignon in this afternoon. Someone bought several Avignon and, right now, the only Avignons they have in stock are one Honeycomb floral in size 4 and a black in size 6.

I'll report back on what I find when I go in tomorrow. I am doubtful, at this point, if I'll get anything. The pieces I want aren't in my sizes or seem to sell almost before they hit the floor--I suppose if you are in when the delivery comes, you luck out. That said, it gives me more money for the inevitable sample sale and for ebay finds.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Update on Mayle Re-editions

I was running late and called Elise to see if the new deliveries had arrived. They have not. They may arrive later today but even then, it will take them a while to unpack everything. So I'll go by late afternoon, if at all. If nothing is in today, then I won't make it until Thursday because of my teaching schedule. Watch this space for the promised update.

Update: Nothing will be in today,according to Christina. I'll update you on what I find on Thursday.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Mayle Pop Up Report, Part One

I made it into Mayle at 3 yesterday (somehow, I feel I've typed that opening sentence way too many times recently). I had called earlier and they said it was quiet. It was still that way at 3, so I think the initial fervor has vanished, along with much of the stock. That said, representatives of every piece were still available, although the choice fabrics and sizes were not.

First, the facts (and this is straight from Elise who noted that they don't know anything about specific styles, although they know certain pieces will NOT be made). This first shipment of re-editions contained 11 pieces. There will be a total of 30 styles coming in over the next few weeks. Most of what to follow will be dresses. There will be no bags, no knitwear. Monogram clogs in leopard will come in later in the month, probably near the very end. There may be some other patterns/prints of the clogs, all without the monogram, but that's not certain. If it happens, there will not be full size ranges. There will be no cotton jumper dresses--most of what is coming in is in silk. No Federica dress either. Most of the pieces in the older photos now in the store will not be remade--the only exception is the Avignon dress. She said nothing about coats, but they seem unlikely. I think this is it for skirts and pants too.

The first shipment included Laetitia skirts in a variety of prints. Many were in heavier fabrics (brocades, gabardines). Almost all were in prints. What's left includes a pale blue brocade (similar in print to the pink used on a baby billie), some early 1970s brown/olive/white prints. There are the flared low-rise pants mentioned in a variety of brighter prints--the green from my dress from Summer 06 with the almost paisley style floral print, pink pinstriped fabric, white/blue canvas mattress style print. These were $395 each and seemed to have very few takers. I think the skirts are nice but overpriced. They are also way too short for someone my height (5'10")--nearer a belt than a skirt. The pants were insane but the right very tall, very skinny and probably very beautiful hipster/rocker/California beach girl type could probably look amazing in them.

The other plentiful items were the voluminous Ishii dress and shirt (the dress is the shirt lengthened to the knee or just below). These run big so a size 6 could work even on a 10. They are too beach cover up for me. Basically they are very simple: slight mandarin collar fastened with a row of buttons, yoke back, puffed 3/4 sleeves. Tops are available in a variety of fabrics, several are sheer florals, others are eyelet. Dresses are available in black silk, a kind of lurex polyester style print, and a flamingo pink matte silk with an intaglio print, trimmed with black buttons. The dress is $395, the tops $395 and higher, depending on fabric. I think they had a lot of more expensive fabrics for this but they've gone.

Three colorways of Mitsu were left--Amalfi flowers (I nearly got this, the 6 fit, but I wasn't 100% sure about the yellow zippers), Ada white cotton with black flower print and the dalmatia cotton print from a few summers back. Elise was surprised that they remade this as it wasn't a best seller, but it was a nice dress.

There was one Petulia dress in a size 2 (7 of 7) left--identical to Marti's and the best piece from the collection in my opinion. Had they had it in an 8, I'd be wearing it now.

The Lima dress and top were lace, black and cream colorways available, simple, u-back and front with some grosgrain trim around its 3/4 sleeves and in the front. Both pretty but transparent and need to be worn over slips and camisoles.

Cliveden top. At $525 and up, this was the most expensive piece. Very cropped, pretty slit sleeves, v neck wrap style, 3/4 puff sleeves with ruffle trim. Most elaborate piece in the collection in terms of the workmanship. Also made in the broadest range of fabrics--sheer chiffons I've never seen, the black floral from Holiday 07. This looks like it runs small--if you are a 0, you could wear the 2, maybe even 4.

The lace Sylvania top--one left in gauze. My other favorite. But it is so transparent I passed. I loved it but how much more black Mayle clothing do I need? I'm hoping for cobalt blues, lavender, greens, the green/lavender print from Summer 06, iris colored silks, the magenta used for Clothilde and other jewel tones. But I did have a mild regret as I passed.

The simple Barcelona dress seemed to have just one black version left. I saw someone try it on--it is lovely, despite its limited detailing. It's a lot like my Lyell moon print dress without the ruffle.

The Therese dress (style 11) had arrived--just one size 4 so far. It's bias-cut, 40s style, v-neck with flutter sleeves. It falls above the knee and has a slight ruffle/slit/wrap effect in the skirt. The one I saw was in black silk with a white lace diamond over the stomach and white lace trim by the neck/shoulders. This was $495 and there will be others. It is one of the pieces that will be in this week in a number of sizes. It's very pretty, more an event dress and, yes, looks like it has the quality of a chambermaid frock, Bunuel or not.

There was also another skirt--a detailed black silk miniskirt (very short). Bias cut, it had a fold-over top and a strip of fabric that came down into a slight V. It was $395 (I suspect it is style 12 and part of the collection that includes Therese). Nobody paid it any attention but it was beautifully crafted. Again, too tiny for a 5'10" girl but this is one of the more exquisitely crafted pieces and one I suspect could be a great investment buy.

So, that's that for now. The store is very spartan these days (I think Jane has removed several of the pieces that decorated the left hand side, including the shelves). The walls are decorated with posters from last summer's Corazan de Chihuahaua collection (spelling likely wrong)--a poster I'd never even seen that featured lipstick writing around its margins; posters for A Haiku for Carlos M. are in both dressing rooms (I think this is Fall/Winter 2003). There is a huge frame of old pictures and fabric swatches that Jane put together for this farewell and a beautiful large framed black and white profile shot of her head leaning against it. She's lying in a bed without make-up.

I don't know if this means that Carlos M and Summer 08 are inspirations for this collection, bookends, or what. But there is a sense of the quickly fading past in the air. Some girls came in and asked if the counter was for sale while I was there (they weren't in the least bit interested in the clothes). Elise said it might be and they said it would make a great bar before they turned and left. I was horrified--there was a shared sense in the air that this was near blasphemy. I imagine all the other fixtures will be returned to Jane as so much has already been removed. Really, it is quite sad.

Addendum: I forgot one other piece--a camisole with thicker straps (like Zoia) with buttons up the back in the black and white print used for Zenith. This was $295.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Going into Mayle later

Although I don't think there is much in my size--Doris very kindly walked me through what they had yesterday in 6 and 8 over the phone--I can't resist popping in after everybody's great descriptions. It's a nice day in NYC--I'm in Mirabelle in black and my monogram clogs--so if I don't get anything today (likely), I can at least dream about what they have in store. I'd love a purple or gold dress as mentioned and those seem to be there, something green, something patchwork. Number one, however, would be a cotton jumper dress like the one from Summer 06 I so craved.

More later tonight, I promise... I imagine the lack of size 8 will restrain me more than my credit limit (alas).

Friday, March 6, 2009


Much as I want to visit Mayle and update you on the pop up shop, I have work to do. That said, it has been tough to sit at home today without checking and googling "Mayle pop up shop" for reports on what lies within. Without look books, photos, web previews and all the other media surrounding a new collection, I can only imagine what is being sold and what the price points might be (I am guessing around $700+ for dresses, $500+ for tops, but I really have no idea). I can't buy any of it anyway, so I tell myself it doesn't matter. But it is such a distraction. How can I concentrate on Progressivism and Early Cinema, outline the modernity thesis and debates around transitional cinema when there is a jewel box of a shop filled with new and rare clothes?
Discipline is failing me today. At least with 50-60 degree weather this weekend, I can try out some of those new Mayle purchases that hang unworn in my closet. If I finish the intro this weekend, I may even be able to dream of adding one more item to them if a real favorite turns up at the pop up shop, in my size and in my price range. Somehow, though, I doubt it. I'd rather hope that some of this won't sell and it will end up in a sample sale and go home with me that way.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

More a PSA than a post....

I received the following postcard from Mayle on Tuesday. I believe they don't send these out to customers who live out of town (at least that used to be the case...), so I'm transcribing the (cryptic) text below. I don't know any of the items mentioned below, other than Avignon, so any descriptions--or pictures--welcomed. Here's the postcard's text:

Ten Little Indians

This is how we say good-bye. And it's backwards, we know.

With many of you waxing nostalgic over past collections before the shuttering had begun in earnest and then those favorite, hoarded fabrics proving impossible to just let go of, it seemed most fitting to say some sort of hello again.

From March 6th until, we're thinking, March 31st, a limited and numbered troop of re-editions (ten little, nine little, eight little indians) will compete for your last affections. Pass by often. One day you'll find the Clivenden top, still disheveled, still lovely, from the spring of Best of British birds, proving that her shape still makes sense. Another day, the Avignon dress from the fall of A haiku for Carlo M. will jostle cheek to silky cheek with the Therese dress, that dress, which could have fleshed out Bunuel's chambermaid even further. Then the lacy Lima top becomes lacy Lima dress. There's even talk of the monogram clog making a leopard print comeback sans monogram.

Not so much a collection as a series of fleeting reincarnations, a brief breathing of new life into old favorites. But, still, a little more to have and to hold on to.

A grand thank you for being there the first time around and proving it with your memories.

A grand thank you for being the most loyal band of customers a brand could ever hope for.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

More Winter

Despite there being enough of a respite for me to wear my Ludovine coat on Friday (for the first time), it's back to deep winter in NYC. I write this in between checking the local news media and CUNY's website to see if college will be closed tomorrow. I am giving two exams--both in my 100+ lecture classes--so I've been receiving a lot of emails from students today, justifiably anxious about whether we'll have school tomorrow. Of course, the powers that be are playing the waiting game, likely until tomorrow morning, to decide whether or not to cancel classes. Predictions of up to 12-14 inches of snow abound, and all my students commute, but I guess the Mayor would rather tinker with parking regulations than let us know what is going on tomorrow.

Fortunately I have my snow boots ready to go, and my trusty layers on alert, but I am looking forward to getting deeper into March and finally wearing Helen, or Virginie, or Rocio.

In other news, this is the week that Mayle will be closed for its transition into a pop-up shop selling limited edition merchandise. I plan to visit next week and I'll see if I can take any photos. From the little I've read (which may be untrue), there will be baby Billie bags but no full size ones (which is a shame as I have no need for small bags), and most of the designs are from further back in the Mayle archive. I suspect a lot of the items will be more dressy, but who knows what coats, cotton sundresses and multi-fabric tops await? I recall most Mayle from the last 3-4 years but I still find items on ebay that I forgot, and others I've never seen. It's rare, but it happens. Sometimes I see one piece I had forgotten and it stimulates recall of an entire collection. The final range will doubtless be full of such nostalgia.

So, I hope as March comes in, looking back to winter and further back to early Mayle, it will also be a month for me to look forward. To those ends, I'm going for more fertility tests/treatments and taking a more aggressive stance so I can get one step closer to meeting Mini Cooper, as my friend Nicole has nicknamed our future offspring. And I also plan to finish the book this month. And get some pictures of my Mayle clothing up on this blog at long, long last.

Update: They finally canceled school this morning, causing our college website to crash under the weight of anxious student/faculty/staff clicks.