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Hi, nice to meet you.
I'm Hallie, a Midwest native, New York City transplant and the mind behind corals + cognacs. If you're looking for an online destination for stylish inspiration and musings on Manhattan living, you've come to the right place.
I hope you enjoy reading corals + cognacs as much as I enjoy writing it.
FAQ //LOCATION: New York, New York •BY WAY OF: The Midwest (Cleveland/Chicago) •HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR STYLE? Attainable, trendy and fun. I’m constantly wearing unexpected pairings – like statement pumps and a graphic tee. •FAVORITE ITEM IN YOUR CLOSET? The vintage Gucci clutch I thrifted for $40. •ANY OBSESSIONS? I like my coffee black, my heels high and my martinis dirty. •GUILTY PLEASURES? Complex carbohydrates and shoe shopping -- both in excess. (And SoulCycle, as a result.)
ARE YOU A FULL-TIME BLOGGER? No, I work as a Development Manager and Contributing Editor at Glam.com. •WHY DID YOU START YOUR BLOG? I've spent nearly seven years on the corporate grind, where sartorial humor and an expertly crafted color-block can get lost in the boardroom. As a result, I decided to create a blog -- a space where I’d hoped my writing, styling and excessive shoe collection would be better comprehended. •WHAT’S IT ABOUT? Living stylish and spontaneously in New York City – and beyond. I aim to inspire others to have fun with fashion and to live lightheartedly •HOW’D YOU THINK OF THE NAME? To be honest, the name just came to me. I’m a big color-blocker and a sucker for alliteration in writing. It just fit. •WHAT’S THE CORRECT WAY TO WRITE IT? corals + cognacs.
HOW DO YOU PRONOUNCE IT? corals and cone-yaks. •WHAT KIND OF CAMERA DO YOU USE? A Canon T3i with a 50mm f/1.4 lens. •DON’T YOU FEEL WEIRD TAKING PHOTOS OF YOURSELF? Absolutely. Everyone looks at me like I’m insane – especially when it’s cold. Wouldn’t you? •DO YOU WORK WITH ADVERTISERS/SPONSORS? Yep! Shoot me an e-mail and let’s talk. •HOW ELSE CAN WE KEEP IN TOUCH? On Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
Every single Fashion Week, it’s always the same. I kick off the season with sky-high hopes that I can gracefully balance everything that the seven-day period entails with Real Life.
By Day Two, though, I’m reminded why it’s essential to take seemingly grave courses of action ahead-of-time. For example, I bid my friends & family good-bye, prepare my out-of-office replies, and open a new credit card exclusively for cabbing to/from Lincoln Center. (That last one’s an exaggeration… Kind of.)
Here we go:
NYFW FW 2014// Day Two
7:45 a.m. Rise and shine! Lol, just kidding. That’s what dry shampoo is for.
8:15 a.m. Okay, I’m up. But I really hate the outfit I planned for today. I’m getting dressed on a deadline, so it’s time to combine creativity and panic. A faux-leather cap is a must, since I was out of dry shampoo. (Throw me a bone, Universe.)
8:35 a.m. I’m out the door to pick up coffee for Jessica and I. She’s swooping me in a cab and we’re beginning the day with Zimmermann at 9 a.m. sharp. Feelin’ good!
8:50 a.m. Well, I have coffee, but still no Jess. She probably can’t catch a cab, which would be our luck. I’m standing on a street corner with bare legs and I can’t text her for a number of reasons: (1) my phone is at the bottom of my abyss of a handbag, (2) my hands are full, and (3) my fingers are numbly frozen around these coffee cups.
8:57 a.m. It’s. so. cold.
9:01 a.m. There’s a creepy looking Grand Marquis rolling up… with tinted windows. It’s slowing down. Can I even PRETEND to look busy right now?! It says “Harlem Cars, Inc.” on it! HELP!!! Oh, wait, there’s Jess in the back seat. What the fuck?
9:10 a.m. Cross-town traffic is a bitch (and I was right, she couldn’t get a cab). Also, I’m realizing that I cuss entirely too much when I’m hurried, stressed and/or lacking caffeine. So, in life in general.
9:24 a.m. We’re cuttin’ it real close on time (shows tend to start 20-30 minutes “late”). While I would suggest that Mr. Harlem Cars, Inc. drop us off a block away (AT LEAST), there’s no time for under-the-radar tactics. In fact, if he could just jump the curb and roll into the Tent, that’d be ideal.
9:28 a.m. We all but tuck-and-roll out of our shady-mobile Marquis, which doesn’t even come to a complete stop. We both take off in a high-heeled sprint across Lincoln Center plaza and I’m painfully reminded that I didn’t wear my good bra today. I’d venture to guess there are some interesting street style photos now floating around the Internet…
9:29 a.m. The jury’s still out on whether or not we made it. A rude security guard with major Small Dick Complex tells us to “calm down” and I will not, in fact, fucking calm down.
9:30 a.m. “They, like, probs won’t let you in,” an intern coos. She’s wearing scuffed up kitten heels and she’s lucky my caffeine has kicked in.
9:31 a.m. I dart past her and turn the corner — Jess at my heels. I open the door to duck in The Pavillion, and Small Dick Complex #2 grabs my arm. “No more,” he says.
9:33 a.m. Well, let’s just say we’re in.
[Seconds prior: SDC2 and I exchanged words (#rageblackout moment or else I’d share those words with you) and I didn’t get kicked out, so it couldn’t have been too bad. However, we’re so late that they’ve filled our seats, the models have started storming the runway and we’re standing in the back. Ah, well. At least that allows for an easy exit post-show!]
9:45 a.m. We hop in a cab to The Hudson Hotel, where we’re seeing our second Aussie designer of the day: Rebecca Vallance.
10:15 a.m. After swooning over the collection’s silk crepe dresses and chic leather separates, Rebecca and I have a quick conversation about how she’s keeping warm — my nerdy icebreaker for any remotely famous person that I interview. I decide I’d like to come back in my next life with an Australian accent.
11:00 a.m. With some down-time between shows, I find a sandwich shop with reliable WiFi to post up in. I order a small tomato cheddar soup (extra bread, please) and another large coffee. I sit down and immediately regret my decision, as I’m wearing white. Food always seems to find it’s way to questionable areas of my lap, but hell, let’s live a little.
12:15 p.m. Sigh. I’ve been totally unproductive for the past hour (stupid J. Crew sale) and now it’s time to go. Does that ever happen to you?
12:20 p.m. We’re cabbing back downtown to the Kate Spade presentation. Our cabbie drops us off on the West Side Highway right smack in the middle of a three-foot snow drift. He doesn’t understand when I try to explain the concept of cab-to-curb heels.
12:26 p.m. Things went a bit differently than last year’s Kate Spade presentation. I actually got myself on the list ahead-of-time, as I e-mailed the PR girls and explained how I went rogue/snuck in despite not being on their list. They likely knew I’d do the same thing this year anyhow, so they just sent me an invite. Thankyouverymuch!
12:50 p.m. We run into Bianca, who’s filming a Day in the Life series for Glam. I hug her hello, grab a glass of champagne from a cater-waiter and get to work. It’s always five o’clock during Fashion Week.
2:02 p.m. The presentation has long since wrapped, and the PR girls are impatiently tapping their pens on clipboards, waiting for us to leave. I go to pick up my bag and promptly drop my phone, shattering it on the cement. Excellent!
2:12 p.m. There’s no time to mourn my phone, as I’m in my fourth cab of the day. Back to the Hudson Hotel for Trina Turk’s presentation! I note that my time spent in cabs/cars/vehicles is generally becoming when I sleep during Fashion Week.
2:40 p.m. For God’s sake. It’s so packed in here I can barely move! Oh, but there’s male models. I’ll do a quick lap – or two.
2:46 p.m. I’ve only made it a few feet, and I can feel sweat dripping down my back. As I gracefully shimmy out of my jacket (or so it looked in my head), I realize my dress isn’t even remotely zipped up. Hashtag SINGLE GIRL PROBLEMS. (And with that, happy Galentine’s Day, ya’ll.) Coat goes back on, it’s time to go.
3:03 p.m. That inbox won’t answer itself, so it’s back to the office I go.
3:20 p.m. Lol, JK. I have a bottle of Veuve Clicquot on my desk, which is really the only reason I’m here.
3:45 p.m. I hail another cab to head home, as I have to clean my apartment. Ashley is staying with me from Days 3 through 7 and the Glam.com crew is coming over at the ass-crack of dawn (9 a.m.) to film my Day in the Life segment — a video series partially inspired by these posts. I will not be hungover. I repeat: I WILL NOT be hungover! Time to crank out some productivity.
5:45 p.m. Wake up face-down on my couch. Shoes and jacket still on… Par for the course.
5:55 p.m. I’m out the door – again – and heading back to Lincoln Center to see Nicole Miller. I really need to do something about the pillow lines on the right side of my face…
6:25 p.m. Nicole’s show is inspired by female warriors. I can feel the music’s bass thumping in my chest in tandem with each model’s step down the runway. Who run the world?! I’m ready to par-TAY. What can I go to that has more free champagne? Soon…
6:40 p.m. I’m in yet another – you guessed it – cab to the Hudson Hotel (this is becoming quite the routine) for Charlotte Ronson’s presentation.
6:46 p.m. It’s packed – and we can barely move. This is like Trina Turk take two! Why is it so crowded?
6:50 p.mParis Hilton and Nicky Hilton just walked in – oh, that’s why.
6:57 p.m. I more or less crawl through people’s legs to get a picture of Paris. I’m not sure why I want it, but it feels like a game at this point.
7:02 p.m. Holy camera flashes. My vision is gone. Paris, like, contorts her body when she’s posing. She almost looks like she’s in a Upward Dog yoga stance, but standing.
7:10 p.m. I wander over to Charlotte to see if she’ll remember me. She does (I interviewed her last February) – or at least she said she does. I decide to interview her for Glam, and we chat for a bit about the fall collection and other upcoming projects. Talk about multi-tasking – a girl after my own heart.
7:13 p.m. Well, that’s fucking great. My voice recording thing wasn’t ON! I’m tired, hangry and thereby brain-dead, but I start feverishly typing our conversation in notepad on my iPhone. Which is when it dies, obvi.
9:05 p.m. Jess and I are cabbing back downtown. We managed to get our names on the list for Charlotte Ronson’s after-party. As far as parties go that you won’t really remember, this is our favorite.
9:45 p.m. We wander into three different restaurants in the East Village – all of which that have a least a half-hour wait — until we settle for slamming white wine, chips and guac (and I mean SLAMMING) on bar stools at a small Mexican restaurant.
10:20 p.m. I’m now in my seventh cab of the damn day, heading back uptown for C-Ronson’s after-party.
10:45 p.m. We’re here! And, oh, there’s a vodka sponsor. It’s some red velvet liquor brand I’ve never heard of – that will be GREAT to drink slightly beyond moderation, as it certainly isn’t loaded with sugar. (Spoiler Alert from my next recap: FML!)
Midnight’ish: On our way out of the after party, Jess convinces me to be bold. We casually walk up to Samantha Ronson (such a lie — we totally creeped on her for at least 20 minutes prior) and wave hello.
“Sam, hey!” Jess says. “We love your music!”
“Uh, thanks,” she responds. “I like your… Jewelry.”
From there, we were out and about ’til late, which made for a very interesting Day 3. I’ll leave it at that. More on that to come next week, though… I hope you have a nice weekend!