Weekend Update

1. I first saw these Kate Spade pumps earlier this week as I was trawling the web for my sale PSA feature, and haven’t been able to get them out of my head since.


Along with the original white version I linked, I’ve been obsessing over the tan, and of course, black. I wear my classic black Louboutin Simples and Decolletes all year round and am always looking for new variations on this classic.

Update: a lovely reader, Lesley, commented that Kate Spade is currently having a 25% off sale on all full priced merchandise, with code S14FFUS. The Lanas I linked above qualify on their site  (I personally am having Nordstrom price match mine as I prefer their return policy, to price match just give Nordstrom the code after you place the order with the Kate Spade site link). 

2. Back in January, I linked an article referencing an HBR study delving into social signaling through non-conformity – aka, if you show up to a Chanel boutique in sweatpants and flip flops, it must be that you are so secure in your social status that you can wear whatever you like while your billions sit neatly in little piles at the bank. Unfortunately, the conclusion did seem to be that to do this, you actually needed billions. Anyway.

Well, an enterprising journalist decided to go out and see if she could ensure good service for herself at some of our favorite luxury boutiques through the very same social signaling, and I thought the results were interesting (and sometimes funny). Enjoy!

3. If you love leather accessories like I do, you might like this little peek into the workings of a very high end tannery serving the top luxury houses, via the WSJ. There’s an accompanying article that’s very good but only open to subscribers, so I didn’t link directly, but you can find it at the top of the slideshow.


PS – the photo above is from my Instagram, taken last year in Paris from the Hermes offices, with all kinds of luscious leather – Vache Naturelle, Barenia, and more!

4. This week’s book recommendation is a guilty pleasure read of mine – the infamous Forever Amber.


Apparently this was one of the best selling book of the 1940’s, but I originally found it as a recommendation from Amazon after I ordered The Other Boleyn Girl. It’s a very charming, and slightly smutty read. Well apparently it was considered really smutty when it first came out and was even banned in a bunch of states and countries, but let’s remember that the period was the 1940’s. Meaning, it’s way more conservative than your average episode of Gossip Girl.

I’d describe the story as a cross between Vanity Fair, The Other Boleyn Girl, and maybe some Mean Girls thrown in there as well. It details the live of a young girl named Amber…who eventually rises to the (almost) top of society…and then, I’ll let you read from there.

Wishing you a wonderful weekend!



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  • Belen
    April 4, 2014 at 8:51 am

    Ohh, I read the article and I have to say I’ve had the same experience. At Nordstrom, dressed in jeans and a solid black t-shirt, holding my Louis Vuitton bag: offered help by pretty much every sales rep. Same clothes, no bag: IGNORED.

    • Katherine
      April 4, 2014 at 10:42 am

      Wow! Thank you for sharing your experience.

  • Prêt-à-Porter P
    April 4, 2014 at 9:20 am

    I enjoyed reading the sweats/shopping article. I can say I’ve been on both sides of the equation. And you can’t always judge. People should always at least be greeted, as its a “loss prevention issue.” customer service is the #1 detterant to external theft, not security guards, not cameras, and not sensors. And thieves of high end retail–people that steal and commit fraud for a living–they’re not stupid. They’re not going to walk in the store dressed like a bum either.

    • Katherine
      April 4, 2014 at 10:43 am

      That’s a great point about the loss prevention…absolutely.

  • Lesley
    April 4, 2014 at 10:22 am

    I think Kate spade is having their f&f sale (25% off) now. Not sure if those shoes are on the website. The code is S14FFUS. Hth!

    • Katherine
      April 4, 2014 at 11:00 am

      Thank you so much! I think they are and I am going to have Nordstroms’ price match…I generally prefer their return policy (over 30 days since I can get lazy about returns and can be late with them!). Will update the post as well.

  • Revanche
    April 4, 2014 at 11:19 am

    “Unfortunately, the conclusion did seem to be that to do this, you actually needed billions. Anyway.”

    Hah, I would agree – I can very easily dress that way but I’m not sure I’d actually be buying. I also wonder how much difference this makes in different countries, as well. The original study was conducted in Milan, which has different social norms than we do in the States, and hypothetical as well. I’d be interested to see what would result from an observational study rather than a survey of hypotheticals.

    Love the KS pumps. Happy weekend!

    • Katherine
      April 7, 2014 at 8:44 am

      You too my friend! And that is a great point about Milan and cultural norms.

  • Anna
    April 4, 2014 at 12:01 pm

    I actually prefer to be left alone when browsing. I don’t like it when SAs tail me around with that “so, are you buying something or are you just here to waste our time” look. I’m a slow and deliberate shopper, so I need my time to comparison shop and weigh my decisions.

    Thing is, even when I show up in my yoga pants, tee shirt, and little Coach Penny, the SAs still greet me 99% of the time. I think SA attention might have more to do with physical appearance when I’m dressed casually. I’m always one of the tallest shoppers on the floor, so I think that might have an effect on the service?

    • Katherine
      April 7, 2014 at 8:45 am

      I also like to be left alone generally. You are lucky to be a tall shopper 🙂

  • Trang
    April 4, 2014 at 8:03 pm

    I think there is another perspective to this issue. I find dressing like a bum is the best way to shop for a good SA. The best ones will not make assumptions and will treat you very well. They are the ones who respond quickly to my requests, regardless of the amount I spent, and have gone the extra mile for me. As my Chanel SA says, it doesn’t matter if a customer only spends $20 here. The sort of person who is interested and walks in this place will eventually spend much more under the right circumstances. If I build the relationship, they will hopefully spend it with me someday. Isn’t that a fantastic way to look at each customer?!

    • Bella
      April 5, 2014 at 5:22 am

      Absolutely! That SA is “investing” in the customer. Very smart.

  • Bella
    April 5, 2014 at 5:21 am

    I live near a high end mall on Long Island and most of the times i wander into those stores wearing my yoga suit and my everyday go-to LeSportsec crossbody. I’ve never had a problem getting a SA to help me. I almost always walk out empty handed. I did, however, hear from my neighbors who are much better dressed, attractive, and more distinguished looking then i am who say they have been completely ignored at those stores. Go figure!

  • Nina R.
    April 5, 2014 at 6:59 am

    I have found that in NYC, it’s all about the handbag. Not even the savviest SA can tell what brand of t-shirt or jeans a person is wearing as soon as they walk in the door, but the handbag says it all. And that was pretty much confirmed by the article. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that as the SAs are there to make sales and they have to have some way of discerning “real” shoppers from “looky-lous.”

  • TC
    April 5, 2014 at 5:07 pm

    The best sales associates are the ones who are happy to assist anyone regardless of how they dress. Since I always dress like a slob when shopping, I always find the best sales associates.

  • Designs By Katy
    April 5, 2014 at 6:29 pm

    WHAT?! I did not know Nordstroms price matched. Another reason to love them.

  • Emmi
    April 6, 2014 at 8:05 am

    I have just discovered your blog and absolutely love it!