Monday, April 30, 2012

Angeleno Magazine's Generation Next Spring Fashion Event

On Saturday, I had the opportunity to catch Angeleno Magazine's spring fashion event at the Westfield Topanga Mall in Los Angeles.  My day started at the fashion show where Angeleno Magazine's Fashion Style Editor, Elizabeth Varnell, helmed the latest spring fashions with two trend experts.  I am always interested in dresses for the red carpet, so I was thrilled to find a Mad Men-inspired black and white dress by Betsey Johnson and a pair of black and natural wedges by Charles David on the runway.  Both of those items wound up in my shopping bag after the event.  After the show, I was treated to a manicure by Venetian Spa and a makeover by Heaven's Makeup Bar to complete my new look.  To end the day, I hit the VIP Lounge for a cocktail and treats by Kate Mantilini and Snow Monkey Shaved Ice.  Admission to the VIP lounge was pretty easy, all it took was "Like" of Westfield Topanga Mall's Facebook page.

Cute and quirky Betsey Johnson dress in a bird print....look closely, those are birds. 

If this sounds like a fun day to you, hit the Westfield Fashion Square Mall in Sherman Oaks this Saturday, May 5th from 1-6PM for all of the complimentary beauty and fashion fun.  Here's an insider tip for you too:  if you buy $500 worth of merchandise, you also get a gift with purchase.  Guess who received two free tickets to Cirque du Soleil's Iris at the Kodak Theatre?  Yep, I'll tell you all about it after the show on May 17th.

 I loved this spring dress with a pop of color from Macy's.

This model had the perfect body for the jumpsuit silhouette.  I'm jealous.

I bought this right off of the runway, a Betsey Johnson polka dot dress that is featured on the home page of her website.  I can't wait to wear it to my next big event.

Here I am shopping right off of the runway again, I bought those incredible Charles David "Letti" wedges for the summer.  Dress by Angl.

 So many fun color choices, but I went with......

 ........purple instead.  

 Oh man, the "before" pictures are never fun, but here you go.

This is what I looked like after my makeover by Heaven's Makeup Bar.  I also took a fun picture with my makeup artist that is posted on my Facebook page. Check it out here

 Ahhh, cocktails in the VIP lounge: The Mark Alberto Tequila Traveler prepared a "Spring Day in Mexcio" drink:
Casa Noble Reposado Tequila
Lime Juice
Ginger Beer
Fresh Stevia
Fresh Ginger
Dried Hibiscus Garnish

I'm a little obsessed with the yellow Vitamin Water. It's been a three-year addiction.

I was invited to this event by a PR Firm, but all opinions posted above are mine. The event is free and open to the public.  

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Flawless Fashion: Reese Witherspoon

Photo Credit:  Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images

Updated With Dress Designers:
Reese Witherspoon in Monique Lhuillier with Irene Neuwirth earrings.
Kate Hudson in Jenny Packham (My favorite designer of late.) with an Edie Parker clutch.
Leslie Mann in Naemm Khan

Can you say flawless?  Reese Witherspoon is in her second trimester and she looks glowing and beautiful as she arrives at the White House Correspondents Dinner as a guest of Newsweek/Daily Beast.  As I mentioned before in this post, Reese is dressed by Leslie Fremar who ranked number two this year on The Hollywood Reporter's Top Stylist List.  I don't have information yet on who the designer of the dress and jewels are, but stay tuned for a breaking update as soon as I have the inside scoop.  By the way, the top to this dress reminds me of another famous Nicole Kidman dress the year she won the Oscar for The Hours. The year was 2003 and the designer was Jean-Paul Gaultier.  Take a look at the similarities.  Nicole always leads the fashion way for the younger generation.

Here are my two runner-up choices:

Kate Hudson, who is styled by Rachel Zoe,  in a stunning sequined purple gown.  Uh, she had a baby 9 months ago.  Impressive.

Finally, one of my favorite actresses to interview, Leslie Mann.  She's just a gal you would like to kick back and have cocktails with because she's darn funny.  Her dress choice is a bit unexpected for the White House Correspondents Dinner, but I think it's the perfect spring gown-fresh, floral, and colorful.  

Who do you think looked best at this weekend's White House Correspondents Dinner?  Chime in here, on Facebook, Twitter, or Google Plus.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Will The Academy Recognize Stunt Performers At The Oscars?

Note:  This article originally ran on Fanboy Comics on April 16, 2012.  Check out my articles on their site every Tuesday.  

Stunt OscarsNow that the 84th Annual Academy Awards are in the history books, this is the time of year that the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) revises some of the categories, reviews the show, and makes changes to the overall voting rules.  This year, there is big buzz surrounding stunt performers petitioning the Academy to get their work recognized at the Oscars.  Last year, there was a changing of the guard with Bruce Davis stepping down as Executive Director of the Academy and Dawn Hudson moving from Film Independent to replace him. The performers felt now was the opportune time to bring up the topic again. In a recent Hollywood Reporter article, Jack Gill, a veteran stunt performer, says that Hudson “seems to be a lot more receptive than the others.”  He has already started discussions with Hudson to make this a reality.

Stunt performers have long fought to be recognized in the entertainment industry, as they make box office action heroes like Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Bruce Willis look downright heroic in their epic films.  They do have their own awards ceremony called the Taurus World Stunt Awards, but remember, so do actors, directors, and producers, and they are already recognized by the Academy each year.  Perhaps, the most shocking revelation in the article is the fact that the stunt performers considered protesting this year’s show but chose not to distract from other artists’ big Oscar day.  

While the stunt performers are not asking for a televised category, it begs for clarification. If the Academy created a new category, where would they put it?  There are already 24 categories on the televised show that usually runs too long.  The Sci-Tech Awards are held two weeks before the Oscars broadcast, but they honor breakthroughs in the technology of film.  Finally, the Governors Awards honor legends in film with Honorary Awards and the Hersholt Humanitarian Award, so it doesn’t seem appropriate to lump the stunt category in with that program.  Could the Academy create a fourth night to honor those in the entertainment industry?  There has long been an outcry to also honor casting directors for their work in film, and with the changing landscape in technology and animation, it is entirely possible we will see this evolution happen for more categories to be created.  This is definitely a battle to watch, because if the stuntmen succeed, more areas of the industry that are ignored on Oscar night are going to look for recognition.  

What are your thoughts on adding a stunt category to the Academy Awards?  I would love to hear your ideas.   

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Dance Fans, This Is For You: First Position

Last Sunday, I had the opportunity to see the LA premiere of a new ballet documentary called First Position hosted by Dance Camera West.  The film follows the trials and tribulations of seven young dancers at different stages of their careers as they compete in the prestigious Youth America Grand Prix.  The documentary was developed by first time filmmaker, Bess Kargman, who followed the dancers for an entire year and filmed their compelling stories.  I was so moved by Michaela DePrince's journey that I tweeted her before her Dancing With The Stars (DWTS) performance last night.  This girl is a star!

Watch her DWTS clip and the trailer, then check out the film in limited release beginning May 4th.  I've picked a few other winners for you in the past like here and here, so don't disappoint me.....check out this film!


Michaela DePrince on DWTS:

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Baby Bump Confirmed: Megan Fox Edition

Well, it looks like we are two-for-two in the Baby Bump Watch of 2012, this is becoming quite a fertile year!  We started off the year with a rumor of Reese Witherspoon possibly being pregnant and now that is officially confirmed.  I had heard a few rumblings earlier in the month that Megan Fox and Brian Austin Green were expecting their first child. According to E! News, that rumor is true!  So, congratulations go out to the expecting parents. Now millions of male egos are crushed because it was little David Silver from 90210 who knocked up Megan Fox, not them.

Okay, kids, who should be our next Baby Bump Watch for 2012?  I am taking suggestions here, on Twitter, and Facebook.........Jennifer Aniston, anyone?

Monday, April 23, 2012

16th Annual Prism Awards

Interviewing Tony Denison of The Closer.

If you thought awards season was over, don't worry, there is always an awards show happening in Hollywood.  Last Thursday, I had the opportunity to cover the 16th Annual Prism Awards which honor the accurate depiction of social issues in TV and Film.  Honorees included shows like Parenthood and Southland as well as actors and TV personalities from William H. Macy, Craig T. Nelson, and Dr. Drew for focusing in on issues like substance abuse, mental illness, and PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder) in military veterans.  The yellow carpet was filled with celebs and I got the inside scoop from some of your favorite television actors.

From Gugu Mbatha-Raw of Touch:  I learned that her co-star, Kiefer Sutherland, is an avid chess player.  Hmmm, I was looking for a more exciting story, but who knew Kiefer was so focused on set? See our interview here.

From Michael Cudlitz of Southland:  I promised that I would watch his show over three years ago via Twitter and it hasn't happened yet.  I made a new promise to him that he now has his Twitter followers bugging me to honor and we caught it all on camera--including a little bit of heckling from Mr. Cudlitz himself.

From Leigh Anne Tuohy whom Sandra Bullock portrayed in her Oscar-winning role in The Blind Side:  I asked her about the scene in the film where her friends question taking in a young black man into their household and had her friends' attitudes changed after all of the success.  I was surprised to hear her response and I think you will too.  See her interview here.

My Twitter feed has been a lot of fun lately with tweets from Leigh Anne Tuohy, Michael Cudlitz, and Deborah Norville.  Make sure to follow me for even more entertainment scoop!  

From Craig T. Nelson of Parenthood:  He has hit the actor jackpot with a long career in TV and Film.  It is rare for an actor to have lightning strike even once with a successful television series, but he has succeeded over and over again with Coach, The District, and now Parenthood.  When I said he didn't need the affirmation because he is on the right track in his career, he said, "You always do. You always want to know that your work is not only appreciated but is touching somebody."  Ah, spoken like a true professional.  Now that's how you have longevity in your career.  Take note, actors.  See my interview with Craig T. Nelson here.

For more videos from the event, head on over to Red Carpet Report.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Endings and Beginnings......

Post-show and I am a bit puffy-eyed and weepy for our final Toyota Live photo.

If you told me in 2007 that I would still be doing the same show, Toyota Live, in 2012, I would laugh in your face.  Here I am, some 4000 shows later, and finally on the precipice of retirement.  It was a hard decision, but one that was pretty much sealed after this post.  I accomplished everything I wanted with a  show that was basically built around me and my co-host, Matt Troyer. I was having trouble balancing my work and personal obligations in LA with life on the road.  It's hard to give up a job that I really enjoyed and a job that I was incredibly grateful for, but it was time.

An old 2008 team photo with Emily and Amy.

Now Matt and I went through it all from trying to do shows with laryngitis to on-set pranks (usually involving unattended iPhones and new wallpaper.), it was never a dull moment.  We weathered through a rough economy, a massive recall and the subsequent media onslaught, and an earthquake/tsunami in Japan.  Toyota stood behind our show through each and every event.  I am not sure many people can say that about a corporation in this day and age.  I started the show with a Corolla and I end it with a Prius.  Yes, I drive a Toyota and it was a true pleasure to represent the brand on and off the stage.

This was a hard moment, our last sentence of the show:  "This is Toyota Live!"

Yesterday, we said our final farewells to the show as a team.  Matt is off to another city for another job while I still have three more days in New York to finish out the show.  I didn't expect our last show to be so emotional.  I walked onstage not expecting anything but a regular show, then reality set in. The crowd was huge, our supervisor, Simms, started the show with a moving speech, and we kicked it off with a final surprise rendition of Michael Jackson's "Beat It". (A dance I often bust out on command.)  The show was electric, but the final moment had come......"I'm Kristyn"....."I'm Matt"......and I heard the crack in the voices.  I know our last line of "This is Toyota Live" came through a flood of tears.  Even when you are ready, it's sometimes hard to say goodbye.

Backstage, the countdown continues....

I leave with a huge sense of gratitude to Toyota, Productions Plus, Mindfield Pictures, and GPJ. Thank you for an incredible opportunity, it's been such a wonderful journey with all of you. (I will be thanking you individually offline since there are so many of you!)

If you ever wanted to know what a Cobra is.....this is a Cobra. 

To all of the kids who came year after year to see our shows, play our games, and win prizes:  You have no idea how much fun it was to see you each year after growing a few inches, losing a few baby teeth, and still coming up with hugs even though twelve months had passed since we last saw you.  I won't forget you.

To our TDs, Cobra and Larry: Thanks for feeding me lots of candy, teasing me unmercifully, and playing ridiculous sound effects for Justin Bieber joke will always be my favorite because secretly, I am a Belieber, not Matt.

The team last weekend with NASCAR/Joe Gibbs driver, Joey Logano.

To our Toyota Racing expert, Trackside Tina:  You are a true inspiration and you bring so much joy and enthusiasm to the team.

To my co-host, Matt Troyer:  You are the best co-host in the world, but you are an even better friend.  Thank you for the laughs, the tears, the support, and your friendship.  I will always try to break into your phone and change your wallpaper.

Thank you, Toyota Live, Goodnight!

New York Auto Show, 2010.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Is The Media Helping Women Lose The Morning Talk Show Wars?

If you have listened to either of my appearances on Driving with Gass or Cocktails and Conversation, I have been covering what has been happening in the morning TV talk show wars:  What is happening with Ann Curry and Matt Lauer over at The Today Show, Katie Couric's fill-in gig over at Good Morning, America, and CBS quietly bringing aboard Oprah as a guest to counter-program all of the shenanigans happening at ABC and NBC. Well, the gossip has been flying throughout the media:  Is Ann Curry getting fired?  Is Savannah Guthrie taking over Ann's spot?  Is Robin Roberts mad that Katie took her spot while Roberts was out on vacation?  I had a lengthy discussion about it last week on Cocktails and Conversation which you can listen to here.  Yesterday, I came across an article in The Hollywood Reporter written by Deborah Norville of Inside Edition.  If anyone can make sense of this mess, it's Deborah.  Why?  Well, she lived through it when she replaced Jane Pauley on The Today Show years ago and the same thing happened:  people gossiped and speculated and here's what happened.....

Let me know your thoughts on the article and weigh in on the topic in the comments below or hit me up on Facebook or Twitter.  It's time we start supporting each other instead of bashing each other, ladies!  (And yep, that's my Twitter stream from my conversation with Deborah.  Awesome.  I like her even more now.)

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The Stylist Edition 2012

Last year, I wrote about The Hollywood Reporter's top 25 stylist list (THR) and I added a bit of commentary about what I saw on the red carpet during the 2011 awards show season.  That post became one of my most popular of all time.  In fact, you will see that the post is still listed in my Top 5 posts of the last month.  So, I am happy to deliver THR's 2012 list and let's see if we agree on the choices.  Here we go.......

Michelle Williams with Nate Berkus in the background.

1.  Kate Young:  Last year, Kate was number two on the list behind Rachel Zoe.  THR bumped Rachel Zoe into her own stratosphere as "too big to rank", so Kate is the number one stylist this year.  She dresses Michelle Williams, Natalie Portman, and Rachel Weiz.  The photo above is one of my personal photos of Michelle from the Oscars in her tangerine Louis Vuitton gown. I know not everyone loved this look, but it was divine in person.  Rank Last Year:  2

2.  Leslie Fremar:  She dresses Charlize Theron, Julianne Moore, Reese Witherspoon, and Scarlett Johansson.  It looks like Scarlett hopped on over from Nicole Chavez to Leslie after last year's disastrous Oscars look.  She also dressed a pregnant Reese Witherspoon for the Golden Globes and we certainly had no idea she was with child.  Huge star client list, but I wasn't wowed by what I saw this season.  Rank Last Year:  9

3.  Petra Flannery:  I think Petra is doing stellar work with her big It girl client, Emma Stone, but I couldn't figure out why she dressed Emma in a knock-off gown of the dress Nicole Kidman wore just 5 years before.  The Balenciaga dress was iconic, so I am surprised they went that route.  Flannery also dresses Claire Danes, Zoe Saldana, Mila Kunis, Megan Fox, and Faith Hill.  Rank Last Year:  3

4.  Elizabeth Stewart:  Elizabeth had a big year dressing two nominees from The Help, Jessica Chastain and Viola Davis.  Both looked stunning at the 84th Annual Academy Awards, so I would say her top 5 inclusion was warranted.  She also dresses Julia Roberts, Jennifer Lawrence, Freida Pinto, Cate Blanchett, and Amanda Seyfried.  Rank Last Year:  8

I love this gold Marchesa dress on Stacy Keibler.

5.  Kemal Harris and Karla Welch:  Okay, this duo dressed the best accessory on the Oscars red carpet this year, Stacy Keibler AKA George Clooney's date.  Stunning.  They also dress Olivia Wilde, Hailee Steinfeld, Zooey Deschanel, and Paula Patton.  Rank Last Year:  N/A

6.  Jen Rade:  The leg heard around the world.  Yep, this is the gal who put Angelina Jolie in that Atelier Versace dress with the slit up to there.  I kept hearing rumors that Angelina was paid to wear the shoes and this was a great way to show them off.  I couldn't find any confirmation of this, but it's a fun, fashion rumor.  Rade also dresses Pink and Katherine McPhee.  Rank Last Year:  4

7.  Ryan Hastings:  He helps create Rooney Mara's cool chic look and I thought she looked unbelievable at the Oscar Nominees Luncheon.  He also dresses Robert Pattinson and Mia Wasikowska.  Rank Last Year: N/A

8.  Samantha McMillen:  She dresses Carey Mulligan, Evan Rachel Wood, Dakota and Elle Fanning, Diane Lane, Colin Firth, Johnny Depp, Josh Brolin, and Ryan Reynolds.  Rank Last Year:  24

9.  Deb Waknin:  Yes!  This woman worked miracles on Sofia Vergara all awards show season. Vergara looked beautiful and sophisticated with her hour glass figure.  She had a bit of a miss with an ill-fitting dress on Sandra Bullock at the Oscars, but Waknin's clients usually look flawless.  She also dresses Halle Berry and Diane Keaton.  Rank Last Year:  7

10.  Cristina Ehrlich:  Hmmm, I've been very critical in the past about Ehrlich's work with actress Amy Adams, but this year they got it right at the Vanity Fair party.  So, I won't pass judgment this year.  She also dresses Penelope Cruz, Amber Heard, Tina Fey, and Julianna Margulies.  Rank Last Year:  6

11.  Jeanne Yang:  Oh, you know, she dresses minor stars like Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes. Yes, they have the Holmes & Yang line together, but Yang also styles Andrew Garfield, Christian Bale, Mark Wahlberg, and Dustin Hoffman.  That's quite a list!  Rank Last Year:  10

12.  L'Wren Scott:  Not a busy year for her clients Nicole Kidman and Sarah Jessica Parker, but she's still strong enough to rank twelfth this year.  Rank Last Year:  13

She's beautiful, but this look has been done before.

13.  Rob Zangardi and Mariel Haenn:  I did not love Jennifer Lopez's Oscar look this year because she's worn it before.  I found it rather snoozy.  However, JLo looks the best she ever has and her stylists keep showing off those awesome curves.  They also dress Rihanna, Rachel McAdams, and Lily Collins.  Rank Last Year:  15

My personal photo of Gwyneth from the 84th Annual Academy Awards.

14.  Elizabeth Saltzman:  Her client is Gwyneth Paltrow and that Tom Ford gown with the cape was spectacular.  Gwyneth's body looked flawless.  Bravo!  Rank Last Year:  N/A

15.  Cher Coulter:  She is the IT stylist for the IT girls of Hollywood.  Think Kate Bosworth, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Elizabeth Olsen, and Sienna Miller for fashion styling.  She also partners with Bosworth for JewelMint.  Rank Last Year:  N/A

16.  Leith Clark:  Clark styles Kirsten Dunst and Kiera Knightley.  Rank Last Year:  11

17.  Jessica Paster:  She styled Bridesmaids star, Ellie Kemper, for the Oscars.  I thought she looked pretty, but it wasn't a "Wow".  I expect more for the Oscars.  Paster hasn't had that A-List clientele in a few years, but she's still powerful enough to rank on this list.  Other clients include:  Emily Blunt, Felicity Jones, and Andrea Riseborough.  Rank Last Year:  14

18.  Penny Lovell:  Lovell deserves to be on this list after that divine Elie Saab Couture pantsuit that she dress Bridesmaids star, Rose Byrne in at the SAG Awards and then capped off the awards season with a Vivienne Westwood gown at the Oscars.  Two wins for Byrne and Lovell.  She also dresses Ginnifer Goodwin.   Rank Last Year:  N/A

19.  Wendi and Nicole Ferreira:  These sisters did a wonderful thing for the woman who won every award along the way, Octavia Spencer.  They made a curvy girl look her best at every award show she attended this season.  I wish Melissa McCarthy had taken a play from the Ferreira/Spencer playbook.  They also dress Josh Hutcherson, Elizabeth Banks, and Channing Tatum.  Rank Last Year:  N/A

Another personal photo from my spot on the red carpet.

20.  Brad Goreski:  We've all watched this season's It's a Brad, Brad World on Bravo and we know his relationship with Rachel Zoe is irreparable.  I have a feeling that the fact that Demi Moore and Jessica Alba jumped ship to Goreski's services might have something to do with it.  He also styles Rashida Jones, Noomi Papace, and Maya Rudolph. I did not think Rudolph's Johanna Johnson Oscar dress was a huge success, but I look forward to more from Goreski.  Rank Last Year:  22

21.  Nicole Chavez:  She styles Rachel Bilson, Kristen Bell, Catherine Zeta-Jones, and Katherine Heigel.  I love the work she does with Bilson.  Enough said....and yes, I forgive you for Scarlett's Oscar dress last year.  Rank Last Year:  20

22.  Johnny Wujek:  Okay, I get it, you are a rock star and need to go all out.  So, he styles Katy Perry, Nicki Minaj, and Kate Mara.  I'm not a fan, but I don't dress like Katy Perry.  Rank Last Year:  N/A

23.  George Kotsiopoulos:  He's still styling stars like Janet McTeer and Alice Eve even though he helms E!'s Fashion Police alongside Joan Rivers, Kelly Osborne, and Giuliana Rancic.  I loved what he did with Janet McTeer this year, she looked elegant and sophisticated at every event.  Rank Last Year:  19

24.  Arianne Phillips:  She was an Oscar nominee for Costume Design on W.E. this year and she solely focuses on her client, Madonna.  Eh, I respect the Oscar nomination the most.  Rank Last Year:  N/A

Love that navy blue tuxedo on Bradley Cooper. Photo courtesy of Just Jared.

25.  Ilaria Urbanati:  She's new to the list, but Urbanati has a strong list of clients:  Bradley Cooper, Armie Hammer, Nina Dobrev, Krysten Ritter, Chris Evans, and Joel Edgerton.  Rank Last Year:  N/A

There's the list for 2012 with all of my personal comments.  Do you agree or disagree with the list or my thoughts on fashion?  I would love to hear from you. Comment in the section below or join me on Twitter or Facebook.

To read The Hollywood Reporter article, click here.
To read my 2011 Top 25 Stylist post, click here.

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