La Petite by Kamie Kahlo

La Petite rings from Paola of Le Chou Chou

What do these adorable tea rings have to do with Proust, Swan Lake or Best Actress Natalie Portman? (And, no I will not muddy the waters with the 4th degree of separation, M. Galliano’s drunken rant.) In the 3 degrees of separation Proust's novel, "Swann's Way" involves the odd relationship of M. Swann and his beloved Odette, a rather plain, average girl with whom Swann ‘drowns’ in his love for. Was this a witty literary nod to Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake where the main character Odette battles with her adoration of the beloved Prince Siegfried whom she can only meet in death by plunging her feathery incarnation into the dark lake? And did Natalie Portman, the Harvard graduate, take her leap of love knowing that Proust would be riding her wings to Oscar night? Both the second and third questions may never be confirmed. 

But this is what I can tell you in my opinion. Proust's charming story is the first volume from 7 in the novel, Remembrance of Things Past and I understand Lydia Davis does a fine translation in English. Swan Lake is one of the most beautiful and tragic ballets. Odette is a character that will forever attract endless interpretation; she is complex and sweet because of her passion and the spell that is cast upon her. She is not Odile, her dark imposter but, since both roles are played by the same ballerina, the roles themselves become one. The dancer melds into a duality both dark and light. Natalie Portman won an Oscar for her recent portrayal of a ballerina caught between reality and fantasy in her quest to be consumed and eventually destroyed by the roles of Odette and Odile (the White Swan and her evil counterpart, The Black Swan). Although Portman's performance was assiduous and penetrating to say the least, she is not a ballerina. So her part was less about the complex feelings of a dancer and more about the madness of a pathetic child.

The ring? So sweet, a slice of heavenly citrus floats in the abyss of dark tea. La Petite, the ring, was inspired by Swann's Way, which may have been inspired by Swan Lake, which was most definitely portrayed by Oscar winner Natalie Portman. Who would have thought a whimsical ring could have such an intense and multifaceted meaning? You can get it and the other components of the story’s inspiration at Etsy shop Le Chou Chou!

Adelita Style at the Nordstorm Trend Show by Kamie Kahlo

Me and the Chanel rep after the Trend show. Ain't we cute?

Sean and I attended the Nordstrom Trend Show this past weekend. I staggered out of bed on Saturday at 7am and was out the door at 8. “This better be good!” I told Sean when I picked him up from his studio.

By 8:30 we were herding ourselves into an underground makeup lair, greeted by uber polite gay men handing us tote bags with treats, pastries and coffee, thank God!

The show began and the question was posed, “Does anyone here want flawless, beautiful skin?!” A dull roar came from the crowd, “I can’t hear you!” Then a resounding cheer. They caught on fast. I had never experienced hundreds of women drinking in the latest makeup trends. But, I had been to a male strip club once (ONCE) many years ago. I have to say, these trend show ladies had the same reaction to skincare as the bachlorettes at the strip club; Hoots and hollars for free stuff, screams and cheers for the Delectable and Delicious male models donning the latest tanning cream and awwws and ooohs for the newest mascara mania. After an hour or so, I started to feel peppy and positive too. The excitement was contagious.

When the show was over, all of us herded ourselves back up to civilization and the frenzy of makeup continued with rows of chairs lined all around the Nordstrom makeup floor. Ladies quickly took their appointments and whipped out their credit cards for the freshest and most exclusive skincare and makeup. I was simply searching for my favorite model. For some unknown reason I thought it would be a good idea to take a picture with a Barbie clone. When I finally found her and stood by her side I murmered, “Do I really want to take a picture with you?” She laughed uncomfortably, Sean took the shot and I zoomed over to the male models for a quick photo op.

I had a great time, no impulse buys but my favorite makeup rep from Chanel, of course, promised a package of goodies after the Oscars! Will it be those gorgeous temporary tattoos that Barbie and the Chanel models were wearing on the runway? I understand that Sandra Bullock wore a Chanel lipstick for her Oscar victory. Was it their gorgeous new lipstick Rouge Coco? Women should start wearing lipstick again. At least, that’s what they said at the trend show.

In this story all photos and video by Sean Watson.

The 82nd Annual Academy Awards - Delictable Celebrities, Delightful Treats by Kamie Kahlo

click on this photo for a closer look! Oscar photos by Donato Sardella

I don't like to be interrupted while transforming myself into a couch potato for the 7 hours of redcarpet, Academy Awards and post show highlights, so I started preparing for the big night at 1pm with a little shopping at Uwajimaya, supplements at Trader Joes and an hour or so of slicing, mixing and sauteing. Et voila! Academy treats for 3! Our munchies included fresh crudites with onion dip, sweet and savory rice cakes with honey and sesame seeds, Korean sushi or kimbap consisted of tightly rolled sour pickled radish, julienned carrot, steamed spinach and omelet delicately seasoned with sesame oil with papaya, mango, passion fruit punch to quench the thirst. Here are my top picks for the
82nd Annual Academy Awards!
Oscar winner Sandra Bullock mimicked the statue itself and wore Marchesa and her own jewelry, Zoe Saldana looked like a blooming flower in her Givenchy couture lavendar and eggplant dress with Lorriane Schwartz and Jennifer Lopez dazzled us in her pale Armani Privé dress with the side train and Cartier.