Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Fashion Week Highlights

So long, summer! 

Labor Day Weekend and Fashion Week came and went so quickly and now it officially feels like fall back in the Big Apple. 

Over the past two weeks, I've been running all over town covering shows and parties, doing interviews and even trying my hand at StreetStyle photography. 

One of the coolest parties I covered was the Versus Versace show after party. From Rihanna to Naomi Campbell and Nicki Minaj, all of the big names came out to see the latest collection from Donatella herself and Anthony Vaccarello. St. Vincent performed and guests enjoyed custom Versace chocolate bars, dessert pops and of course, endless flutes of champagne. 

I was there on behalf of InStyle and got to speak with Nicki, Naomi, Jennifer Hudson and Allegra Versace.


I also covered the Diesel Black Gold runway show last week, where Rita Ora sat front row and wearable tech was a trend.

On the very same day Apple announced their new smart watch, in addition to the embellished pants and star spangled dresses on the runway, many models sported customized, curved Gear S smart watches by Samsung.

The 2-inch device, which was making it's debut on the Diesel runway, can make calls, send texts and take photos all from your wrist.

I'm not sure if smart watches will be new black, but it's interesting to see how fashion and tech are colliding these days.

In between catching shows and covering parties, I was hanging at the tents at Lincoln Center on StreetStyle duty for SheKnows. Instead of chatting up celebs, I was on the hunt for well-dressed attendees to the fashion shows and found a ton of stylish girls to shoot. You can see all of my StreetStyle series herehere and here but I think Xenia Tchoumitcheva's look, blogger at ChicOverdose, was one of my favorites. I like how she dressed up her casual tee by adding the skirt and heels.
On Tuesday, Juicy launched their latest perfume, Viva la Juicy Gold Couture, during NYFW with a glamorous #CoutureOverdose fete at Gold Bar, which was the perfect venue to celebrate their new fragrance. Guests enjoyed a spritz bar where they could try the new scent, an ice cream sundae bar and gift bags full of Juicy beauty products.



 My roommate Lindsay and I had fun in the photo fun booth and it was great to catch up with the other SheKnows experts and staffers who were all there. That same evening, Mexican designer PinkMAGNOLIA presented their SS15 collection and threw an afterparty with DJ David Katz and artist Jeremy Penn.
I always like learning about new designers in addition to ones I already love during Fashion Week. Now that  NYFW is over, I'm ready to go shopping and update my fall wardrobe. What trends are you looking forward to trying this season? Until next time, have a fashionable fall!

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Montauk to Mexico: My Summer So Far

I can't believe we're more than halfway through summer and it's already August, but I guess time really does fly when you're having fun. Last weekend, our Montauk house officially ended. We had a great time with an amazing crew at 64 Grant Drive. Here are some highlights from my summer so far:
Beautiful beach days
Family dinners...and having the blondest house in the Hamptons, hands down
Our housemate and resident deejay Kyle doing ridiculous living room workouts
Sundays at Surf Lodge. Surf is fun any night but Sundays have the best crowd and best performers and you can even bring your dog. I'm proud to say I didn't miss a Surf Lodge Sunday all season! 
Trying yoga on a paddleboard for the first time. It was such a fun workout! We did it at PaddleDiva in East Hampton and I wrote a story about it for SheKnows.
Getting to borrow a Jaguar F-Type for 4th of July weekend...such a sweet ride!
Seeing so many stunning sunsets
Getting to spend quality time with friends, both new and old
Going boating and being out on the water...nothing like it
Although our Montauk house is over, luckily, the boating adventures continue. Katie and I are off to Mexico in two weeks to take a Sunseeker on the Sea of Cortez. The Hamptons have been a blast but I'm looking forward to exploring some new places.
Despite what it may look like on Instagram, I've actually worked a lot this summer on things other than my tan. In addition to my daily articles for Cambio and weekly stories for SheKnows, I did a Fourth of July segment for Fox News featuring festive cocktails, snacks and games to play at your celebration.
You can see the whole segment here and I even got a shout out from Diddy himself since I used his Ciroc vodka in the cocktails, which I was pretty excited about!
 I also wrote my first story for Hamptons magazine about the renovation of Gurney's Inn. The property is so beautiful and the new restaurant, Seawater Grille, serves delicious food. It's the perfect place to stay if you're visiting Montauk.
I also started writing for Yahoo! Travel, which has been really fun since I've always been a huge travel enthusiast. One of my stories for them was even picked up by the New York Post, and it was a big thrill to see my byline there unexpectedly. 
It's been such an amazing summer so far but I have the feeling the best is yet to come. I hope that your summer is going spectacular as well and that you're making the most of the season. Enjoy the great weather, take some time to relax and make lots of magical memories. Until next time, cheers!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Summer Fridays with Kristen Bell and Maroon 5

Happy summer! After the longest winter ever here in NYC, it's officially summer and it feels pretty damn good. There's something about going through a really brutal winter that makes you appreciate the great weather we're finally having even more.


Most Fridays, I've been heading out to my Montauk house but this past Friday, I stayed in the city for an assignment that turned out to be really awesome. American Express did an "Epic EveryDay Getaway" contest where winners were chosen via social media to have a weekend of unique experiences in NYC.

The contest was hosted by Kristen Bell and I got to hang with the winners on Friday as they did SoulCycle in the middle of Grand Central, got glammed at Milk Studios with blowouts from DryBar, makeup by Sephora and dresses from Rent the Runway capped off by a super intimate concert with Maroon 5.

Soul Cycle is always a fun workout (if you're not familiar with it, picture spinning class meets a dance party) but doing it in the middle of a legendary venue like Grand Central was amazing. Kristen did the class with the contest winners, along with Real Housewives' of New York newcomer Kristen Taekman. Two Kristens for the price of one!

Speaking of Kristen Bell, congratulations are in order for her because news just broke that she's expecting her second baby (which explains why she was wearing baggy clothes all day). During our interview for SheKnows, the actress said she loved getting (and keeping) bigger boobs while pregnant. "They get like monster and they're up high." she told me. "It's what I imagine having breast implants would be like, but you get them for a year. It's dope." Looks like she gets to keep them for another year now, so mazel tov.

All kidding aside, Kristen was super sweet, down-to-earth and a great interview. She took a lot of time to chat with fans and pose for pics and you can tell she's just a cool chick. I'll post the link to the full story when it's live.

Later that night, it was time for the Maroon 5 concert at the Bowery Ballroom. It was my first time seeing a show at this LES venue and it's pretty small and intimate...there's really not a bad seat in the house. I got into Maroon 5 back in high school before they were everywhere and remember seeing them at small venues like the Stone Pony in Asbury Park, so it was cool to get to see them again in a similar venue even though they're huge now.

Adam Levine was sexy on stage back in the day and I'm pleased to report he's still got it (along with a full sleeve of tattoos, but I digress). Say what you will about him (that bleached blonde hair was not his best look), but he's a great performer.

They played a bunch of their hits new and old, as well as their latest single "Maps" for the first time. But I think my favorite moment was when Adam did an acoustic version of "She Will Be Loved" before being joined by the whole band. Cheesy, yes, but the boy's got pipes. Video to come but in the meantime, enjoy this GIF.

I got to head to the beach the next morning, so I feel like I got the best of both worlds last weekend. As I mentioned in a previous post, I've been doing some Hamptons reporting so I'm excited to share my very first story for Travel + Leisure. I have more coverage coming out next month so I'll post that in the coming weeks.

Speaking of live music and Montauk, here's a video from Surf Lodge's concert with Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros a few weeks ago. Surf Lodge is one of my favorite places on earth to see live music and if you watch this video, you'll see why. Edward Sharpe is always so good live and it doesn't get much better than seeing them at Surf. There's even a marriage proposal mid-concert.

Hope everyone's summer is off to a great start so far!
Follow me on Twitter @cristinagibson and Instagram @cristinablairgibson




Monday, May 12, 2014

Lobster de Mayo With My Ladies & Cooking Tips From Katie Lee

This Saturday in NYC was the first annual Lobster De Mayo, which is basically my dining dream come true. The event featured 18 of the city's best restaurants creating lobster dishes for tasting as well as Patron tequila cocktails and pairings. My roommates and I were in culinary and cocktail heaven sampling all of the deliciousness during the fest at Capitale.
My favorite dishes were the poached lobster from Betony, the mini lobster rolls and lobster mac and cheese from Catch and the truffled lobster and salmon sushi from The General
Foodie supermodel Chrissy Teigen attended the event, which was hosted by The Food Network's Katie Lee, who shared some of her summer cooking tips. While many of the dishes there were super elaborate, when it comes to cooking crustaceans yourself, she says to keep it simple. 
"I usually just steam them and I'll put down a bunch of newspaper on the table and let everyone have at it. We always eat outside and have corn on the cob, potatoes and cole slaw," she said.  If lobster's not necessarily your thing, Katie suggests summer salads when entertaining at cookouts. "If I'm having people for a barbecue, I make all my salads ahead of time and then all I have to do is grill the meat," Katie says. 

But salad doesn't have to mean strictly lettuce as a base. "I do a lot of grain salads, like quinoa or farro, and I'll put some fresh veggies in there with some light vinaigrette," she explains. If you're clueless about what to marinate your meat in, Katie recommends chili powder, lime juice, garlic and olive oil. "If it's chicken, let it marinate at least an hour," she suggests. "And don't be afraid to salt your meat!"

Katie also said she'll be spending a lot of her summer in the Hamptons, and so will I. Our Montauk house starts Memorial Day weekend and I'll be doing some freelancing out there for Hamptons publications, so it should be a great summer. What's your favorite summer go to dish to make (or eat)?

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

The Met Gala, Mother's Day and My Sister's Single

So in case you were living under a very unstylish rock, the annual Met Gala was last night here in NYC and basically every celebrity in the world was there to show off their fiercest fashion. My best dressed awards go to Emma Stone wearing Thakoon and Rihanna rocking Stella McCartney. These ladies were killing it in their crop tops.
How did we all feel about Beyonce's face net and plunging studded sheer dress? I kinda love it. Golf claps for Jay-Z, who suited up nicely for the occasion in his white tuxedo jacket. Despite his hit "Tom Ford," Jay's dapper look is not by the designer. Both Bey and Jay wore Givenchy Haute Couture by Riccardo Tisci for the Costume Institute Gala and they win my best dressed couple award (sorry, KimYe).
Worst dressed of the night has to be Katie Holmes in this Marchesa mess. I love yellow but this gown is awful. Leave this look to Belle from Beauty and the Beast, girlfriend.
Lupita Nyong'o was another fashion fail in this Prada number, which totally says "Flapper on an acid trip." 
Who's look did you love and hate from the Met Gala? 
Mother's Day is this Sunday and if you haven't gotten your mom a gift yet, there's still time to get shopping! On Sunday, I did a gift guide for Fox & Friends if you need some inspiration.
Check out the segment here for some ideas. As a surprise for my own mom, I put pictures of her in the Pottery Barn frame thinking she'd get a kick of out of having a cameo in the segment, but you couldn't really see them on camera. It's the thought that counts though, right? Love ya, Mom! I wore a Vineyard Vines Derby dress that day, which you can see better in the pic below. Shout out to my roomie Lindsay for waking up bright and early with me at 5:45 a.m. and coming along to help out! After I finished with work, I went to meet my sister Erica for brunch at Agave, who was in town for a meeting about her new song.
My sister is a music teacher as well as a singer/songwriter and her single "Take Me Over" with Tim White is out on iTunes today! Listen to it below and go buy it here...super catchy. Congratulations!

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Talk Thirty to Me!

So this is first ever blog post as a 30 year old! I officially kissed my 20s goodbye and entered a new decade as of Friday, April 25. Am I supposed to feel different? Do I sound older, wiser and more mature?
To ring in my 30th, I wanted to wear something special to celebrate. I didn't want anything that was short or super young that looked like something I wore in Vegas for my 25th (pretty sure that was an Herve Leger knockoff). After looking around in vain for the perfect dress, I ended up borrowing this Yigal Azrouel number from my friend Yasmine last minute for my party at Up & Down. I loved the bright color and how it was sophisticated yet still sexy.
Before the party kicked off, I got glammed with a St. Tropez spray tan at Euphoria and a blowout at Rodolfo Valentin. I did my own makeup using Internet starlet/beauty guru Michelle Phan's Night Life Palette from em cosmetics, which we got at a YouTube event earlier that week. Admittedly, I'm not always amazing at doing a smoky eye but the instructions and guide were easy to follow and the results lasted all night.

Thank you to ShadowPR for setting up my party! And what's a birthday without a few surprises? Apparently, Leonardo DiCaprio was also there that night (thanks for coming out!) and Paper mag and DKNY were doing a party downstairs toasting their cover girl Rita Ora so we got to meet her briefly.
We also ran into James Franco the night before at a Tribeca film fest after party, which was exciting considering my roommates and I follow him religiously on Instagram and think he's hilarious.
All in all, it was a great weekend...thank you to everyone for the well-wishes and coming to celebrate! I'm looking forward to seeing what adventures my 30s will bring. Stay tuned!
              Follow me on Twitter @cristinagibson and Instagram @cristinablairgibson


Saturday, March 29, 2014

Spring Cleaning: Declutter, Donate and Make Money

When I moved to NYC from LA, I came with just a few boxes. But somehow over the past 3 years, I've managed to accumulate a lot of stuff. Since I was moving apartments, I wanted to declutter and get rid of anything I wasn't wearing or using.
Even if you're not moving, spring is a great time to clean out your home and wardrobe, and you can make money doing it. Win, win! Here's 5 ways to make your declutter count:

1. Sell back designer clothes and items you're not wearing for a Nordstrom gift card. The Fashion Project teamed up Nordstrom to give $40 gift cards to customers who donate 5 or more designer items, plus they'll give proceeds to your charity of choice from the resale. You need to have originally paid $50 or more for each item. You don't even have to leave home: sign up online and they'll send you the shipping materials to send in your goodies, then mail you the giftcard so you can buy yourself new clothes.

 2. Get money for your old laptops, digital cameras and iPods. We all have old clunker laptops and outdated devices sitting around unused. BestBuy offers you an online quote for your old gadgets and a gift card when you bring them into the store to use for new gadgets.

3. Ditch your old cell phone and get a giftcard. You can bring any old phone or tablet to any AT&T store and they'll give you a gift card to use on your next bill or purchase. Verizon is offering gift cards for $100 to $300 for old iPhones in good condition through 3/31.

4. Donate for a tax break. If you take your used clothes to your local Goodwill or Salvation Army, they'll give you a receipt to fill out for a tax deduction come April.

5. Donate old prom dresses for a discount on new designer clothes and to give another girl a chance to go to prom. If you have once worn homecoming, prom or bridesmaid dresses, Becca's Closet is a great charity to donate to for less fortunate girls to wear, and you can get a discount to Nicole Miller as well as a tax write-off when you give a gown.

If you live in NYC, Becca's Closet is having a Spring Fling fundraiser party this Wednesday at Hotel Chantelle with open bar, apps and awesome raffle prizes. Come party for a purpose!

For more closet cleaning and organizing tips, check out my segment for Fox & Friends. Happy Spring!