Sunday, October 6, 2013

The Silk Kimono

Long jackets with flowing lines and minimal lapels have always been favorite articles of clothing for me so of course I adore kimono style jackets. Recently I received this hand painted silk kimono from Dalitika. You should have heard my excitement when I opened this package!

The previous two weeks have been very hectic ones filled with many long days as I helped Mr. Mickey move into his new home and started to decorate it for him. (His previous home sold after only five days on the market!) Our aching bodies were ready for a day of relaxing so we went out for lunch and had a couple's massage at the Austin Springs Spa located in the beautiful Carnegie Hotel in Johnson City.

After a massage my face and eyes always get puffy so I had to pull out all my tricks to get ready for these photos. I keep a clean wet wash cloth in a storage container in my refrigerator. After my shower, I hold the cold cloth on my eyes for a few minutes each morning to reduce the puffiness. (Always drink lots of water after a massage.) 

This week on Facebook we have been discussing makeup techniques and eyebrows specifically. Have you noticed that when we are young, the brows are normally darker than the hair? As we start to color our hair or we let it fade to gray as I have done, we tend to forget this and try to make the brows the same color as our hair which can often make us look older or more tired. It is important to rethink your makeup techniques after forty. What worked when we were in our youth will make us look dated and not our best current self. For example when I learned to apply makeup, I wore a light color with a bit of shimmer under my eyebrows and a darker color in the crease of my lid. If I did that today, my eyes would appear to recede. The color I use under my brown now is a muted matte pink color by Merle Norman called Pink Truffle. I use a pale cream shimmer color only at the inner corners of my eyes now. 

A couple of hours after the massages, we were on our way to our favorite restaurant in the mountains of North Carolina. The Artisanal in Banner Elk is truly a world class dining experience. On this evening we dined on the terrace over looking a mountain stream at the edge of the woods. As dusk started to fall a great owl took flight from one of the trees and glided along the stream on his way to look for his own dinner. I was thrilled to catch a glimpse of this magnificent bird of prey!

On this evening there was no private party in the wine cellar of the Artisanal, so we took the opportunity to do this photo shoot there. 

We have been in the restaurant when a helicopter has landed on the lawn to deliver special guests for dinner. Those who prefer total privacy go down to the wine cellar for their dining experience. The wine cellar private dining provides the ultimate food and wine experience in an unforgettable setting. They can accommodate parties of up to thirty-two guests. The owners, Anita and Bill will assist you in creating a memorable experience down to the finer details. Their guidance in planning every facet of your event to the menu selection, place cards, or floral arrangements, to any other special occasion needs, makes the tasks of planning a party feel effortless.

The wine collection is massive, including more than a thousand bottles of fine wines. (Note that the floor of the actual wine storage area is pea-gravel.) There is a long glass wall which separates the diners from the wine vault but it is very pleasant to be able to view all those neatly stored bottles.

The decor of the grounds and building are based on equestrian events, race horses and a barn.

This massive poster is on the far wall of the wine cellar.

With the fabulous hand painted silk kimono from Dalitika I am wearing a tank and a long necklace from Chico's. The ankle pants are from Talbot's. The shoes are by Guess and the copper beaded clutch is old.

I got a new hair cut a couple of weeks ago. It is softly layered and a little longer on the sides so that I can tuck some of it behind my ears.

I love you this much for reading my blog!

Susan Street is the president of

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Where are you?

Some of you have written to ask, "Where are you?" I have been helping Mr. Mickey (my photographer and partner in life) to move into and get settled in his new home. My old home is still on the market so I am in the process of packing and also doing a few projects at my new home. Recently our "date nights" have consisted of manual labor.

I am so excited to show you my new home but I am a few weeks away from moving in. For now I will share with you some of the things that provide inspiration for me.

This is Timothy Corrigan's LA home. He has always been one of my favorite interior designers. He has a new book just out, "An Invitation to Chateau du Grand-Luce". 

My copy is on its way! I look forward to curling up in front of the fire with this book and a glass of wine later this month to absorb every detail. 

I always study the classics to get inspiration and guidance for any project I undertake whether it is dressing, designing jewelry, planning my gardens or decorating my home. For example I love the classic timeless style of Jackie O and Audrey Hepburn. I also admire some popular young women who currently show their own strong sense of style. Olivia Palermo is one of those young women who constantly impresses me with the way she dresses.

Below is a selfie of my casual look for today. I am on my way to the dentist and will be running lots of errands afterward.

I am wearing a long sweater vest and a long sleeve tee with a long tassel necklace all from Chico's last year. The jeans are Levis dark wash. The shoes are Vince Camuto.

Mr. Mickey and I are looking forward to a normal date night on Saturday so perhaps on Sunday I will have a fashion post to share with you. Thank you so much for reading my blog and for your kind comments. I truly enjoy interacting with you!

Susan Street is the President of

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Oh So Slimming!

I wore a So Slimming ™ collection Ponte skirt from Chico's to dinner last night. 

This turquoise silk jacket I bought at Stein Mart earlier this year had never been worn. Now that cooler weather has arrived I paired it with a black tank also from Chico's. 

The Ponte Collection  dress from Chico's is great fitting and very comfortable. I tried it on last week but didn't buy it because I felt it was too short for me. Now that I see these pictures, I realize that I could wear the shorter dress with opaque hose and a bright jacket and still look appropriate. Earlier this year I made a promise to myself not to buy anything else black but as a base with a brighter color near the face it can still work with my softer coloring. I love how comfortable all the pieces are in the Ponte Collection so I will be at Chico's again later today!

Some of you have written to ask why I so rarely wear a skirt or dress. My calves and ankles are thick and too short compared to the rest of my body so I am usually more comfortable in pants. I can never wear tall boots for that same reason. All my boots are the short version.

We all have our little tips and guidelines that we follow to look and feel our best. In sharing some of mine, I hope that you will be inspired to try new combinations of the things already in your closet and to perhaps make your next shopping trip less stressful. 

I found these T-Strap heels by BGBGeneration at T.J.Maxx last month. I am wearing nude Calvin Klein hosiery.

Since the rain was pouring down this evening we shot these photos in my living room. That is not what I had planned but sometimes you have to go with the flow (pun intended).

Thanks for reading my blog. I hope you have a great week!

Susan Street is the President of 

Friday, September 20, 2013

Chico's Fashion Show

It was so great to meet some of you at the show on Friday. 
Thank you very much for being there!

My sweet friends, Jeanie and Rose were as inspired to shop as I was. We had such a fun day!

I love informal modeling in the boutique. It's great to see how things look and move on a person who is not a professional model and then buy what you liked afterward. Instant gratification at it's best! All these models did such a great job.

Thank you for reading my blog. 
I hope you have a lovely weekend!

Susan Street is the President of

Monday, September 16, 2013

My Birthday in a Castle

Mr. Mickey gave me a royal weekend away for my birthday.

We stayed at the fabulous Graylyn Manor House in Winston Salem, North Carolina.

This is a view of the fireplace in the great dining hall.

The back view of the estate in the setting sun.

A fountain held huge koi fish.

A winding staircase led to a lower courtyard beyond the indoor pool. 
There was a rehearsal going on for a wedding which was held on the grounds on Saturday evening.

There was a pond nearby with an abundance of ducks and geese.

The hand carved imported mantel in the sun-room embellishes one of eighteen fireplaces in the 46,000 square foot mansion.

The chess set in the grand entrance hall had splendid details.

This is another winding staircase found at the front of the building. The thick stone steps were built into the outer stone wall so that there was no support needed on the inside.

Hand painted tiles were used in this fountain in the sun room.

On the evening of my birthday we dined in a private dining room with wonderful service and ambiance. My tiramisu dessert came with a candle and a serenade. 

The Mews was once the stable for horses and chickens.

On Saturday we visited the Reynolda House which showcases  one of the largest collections of American Art in the world. This was the home of R.J. Reynolds.

Later in the day on Saturday we visited nearby Old Salem which is an historic district settled by a Moravian community in 1766. 
We had a delightful lunch at the tavern.

We also visited the hat-makers shop. 

This wood fired kiln was in one of the back yards.

Pumpkins were everywhere! Can it really be fall already?

In the afternoon we returned for a delightful guided tour of the mansion with our Butler, Terry.

I am standing at Nathalie's writing desk.

The hand carved wood panels in the library were brought over from France. They were carved in the 1600's and were still in perfect condition.

On our last evening we dined at a wonderful Italian restaurant nearby the estate.

We lived like a King and Queen for the weekend!

Thank you for reading my blog. I hope you have a lovely week.

Susan Street is the President of

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Dinner with Mr. Mickey

One of our couple traditions is to have a date night on Wednesday. It gives us a chance to unwind, get caught up on the busy first part of the week and plan our weekend ahead.

For this date night, I wore soft fully lined black crepe pants, a black tank and a lightweight, almost sheer blue jacket all from Chico's last year.

The shorter necklace is from Nouvique also worn here and the longer necklace is from Chico's. The black strappy sandals are old from JCPenny. The black ruffled evening bag is also old.

I don't work for Chico's and I don't get free clothes from them but you might think so. Clothes that last for more than one season and keep their shape after going through the laundry are worth the investment. In my area, there are only a couple of stores in which I shop for that reason.

Tomorrow is my fifty-seventh birthday. There are a few messages I would like to share with my teenage self if that were possible.

1. Happiness is an inside job.
2. Find out what you are capable of accomplishing on your own before you commit to a relationship or marry. 
3. Become a vegetarian now for the best lifelong health and weight control possible.
4.You would be wise to buy one timeless top quality black pair of pants that you can wear for many years, rather than to buy five pairs of cheap pants that will only be worn for one season at most.
5. Imagine an event that you might actually be attending. Go to your closet and put together an outfit for that event. Your wardrobe should allow you to participate in any activity without causing stress or emergency shopping when it comes time to get dressed. Plan your purchases accordingly throughout your life.  

Thank you for reading my blog and for the kind comments 
you leave. It is always great to hear from you.

Susan Street is the President of