Men’s Summer Shorts are the Sartorial answer to women’s Yoga Pants.

Men’s Summer Shorts are the Sartorial answer to women’s Yoga Pants.

A lot of times men ask me, what is the men’s sartorial answer to women’s yoga pants that have taken the world by storm?
To dive into that question, one must examine what is the charm of women’s yoga pants and why they went viral ?
Women’s yoga pants are equivalent to Spanx that you can wear outside.They compress and lift in the right places as well as provide versatility and freedom of movement.
You can easily go from working out at the gym to the restaurant with only slight modifications in wardrobe and still keep yoga pants on. (I think from my previous blog post some of you might know about my current “love affair” with yoga pants).
So what would be the men’s fashion answer? I believe they are not another men spandex pants but rather classic American SHORTS!
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Shorts provide that casual coolness and comfort for men as yoga pants provide for women…some men even do yoga in shorts (although I am not sure if it is comfortable in that case). They don’t compress and lift the butt, but they are as versatile as yoga pants.
Men can wear shorts to the beach, to the office, to grab a quick bite and to play golf…it’s comfortable and looks chic!
One of my favorite brands is Old Bull Lee from Manhattan Beach California. www.oldbulllee.com
They make everything  in California; shorts look stylish and with the highest possible attention to details, which sometimes only the wearer knows.
Since summer season is here and 4th of July is approaching, I thought I’ll mention them for my fashion conscious friends, just in case they want to try on a New Summer Look for their backyard barbeque!

In the Wolvesmouth at the Wolvesden

In the  Wolvesmouth at the Wolvesden

Wolvesmouth is an underground LA restaurant which LosAngeles.com calls the “Toughest Dinner Reservation” in town.

Photo courtesy of : Wolvesmouth
Photo courtesy of : Wolvesmouth

They don’t advertise or promote themselves in any way; the only advertising is “the word of mouth”.  James Skotchdopole, one of Quentin Tarantino’s producer’s says about Craig Thornton (the chef) that  “ He is obsessed with obscurity, which is why I love him”.

After learning about Wolvesmouth from friends, my first reaction was that I could easily find them on Yelp ”What is the big deal?” I though.

Well on Yelp I could see that it had 5 stars and 43 reviews but there was no contact information. The only way to register it was to get on their waiting list on their website.

It took several weeks to get an invitation. After getting the invitation I had to  fill out a little application and  write why I was interested in dining at the Wolvesmouth (up to 5000 words). Luckily they have “excepted the application ” but the “secret location” was only revealed few hours before the actual event.

It almost felt like joining a secret society and I absolutely loved it!

The most important thing was that my great expectations were not wasted. It was worth every bit of the built up intrigue and enticement which was heightened by a well-writen article in The New Yorker about the Chef Craig and his innovative venture.

The “secret location” was in the  developing artsy neighborhood in downtown LA, which felt more like New York with it’s brick buildings and converted lofts. The inside decor was stylish and  shocking  at the same time.

It was a converted loft and the beauty of the experience was that you could see chef and his crew at work right there, with the prep work done in front of your eyes.

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Big dining table had only 20 sits,  as  Chef explained the whole idea is to bring people from different walks of life together, under one roof where they will be  united with one purpose: to enjoy their food and share the joy of dining together.

They specifically pick an eclectic group to add to the dining experience where you can meet  anyone,  from high powered attorneys, fashion designers to producers and newly “retired” Facebook executives.

unnamed-6Chef Craig would come and introduce each dish in the most casual but charming manner. Each creation was utterly unique and original with the eclectic combinations of Russian “pelmenies” and purple algae mousse.

10 course dinner ended with fantastic dessert and no bills! The entire dining is only on “donation” bases, for which red  Chinese envelops were provided.

unnamed-3The whole thing was so inspiring that I would  definitely recommend to  experience it for yourselves whenever you’re in LA.

xoxo

E.

The 8th Wonder of the World!

The 8th Wonder of the World!

As you saw in my previous post, San Gimignano is a pretty unique place. A complete fossilized city in the middle of nowhere. One of the most intriguing things about the city is their delicious food!

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I found a restaurant that Tripadvisor gave more than 1200 reviews. It was located in a non-descript alley, with an unmarked door.

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A little curious fact is that the restaurant was  right next to the Museum la Tortura.

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(As you may have guessed, “Museum la Tortura” means “Museum of Torture.” Because my hands were shaking when taking the photo, you may notice the skeleton in the cage.)

The restaurant that I was looking for was called Cum Quibus. The sign said they will open at 7:30 pm.  And just in case someone wanted to open the door to peek in, it had curtains in front of it: a complete mystery.

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It was only 3 o’clock and I had to eat something. Some American tourist suggested Cafe Stella, and I thought, well maybe something light will help me survive to 7:30 pm. Of course I ended up eating a 3 course meal (dessert included) since this was the absolute best food I have had in Italy so far! Caffe Stella was not even close to Cum Quibus’ ratings on TripAdvisor, so my desire to go there was hightened 10 fold!

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At 7:25 I went back to Cum Quibus and waited another five minutes under the pouring rain, for the doors to open. The restaurant was booked completely but somehow they managed to find an extra table. The place had a really cool rustic Tuscan vibe and was very small.

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Food started coming in and despite the more casual presentation it had the most surprising, bold flavor combinations that were extremely artistic.

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Then some of the loyal patrons started coming and congratulating Lorenzo, the restaurant’s young owner that TripAdvisor just announced Cum Quibus as the 8th BEST Restaurant in the WORLD! 

That was unbelievable! 8th restaurant in the WORLD in the middle of nowhere?! How is it possible?

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Cheers for Cum Quibus from Instagram

But it made me think of an Armenian proverb that says “a polished diamond won’t sit on the floor for too long”.

Regardless of where you are and how small you are, if you’ll do a good job, it won’t be unnoticed.

That was the beautiful lesson from old San Gimignano and wounderful Cum Quibus.

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Lost and Found in Tuscan Hills

Lost and Found in Tuscan Hills

People don’t normally like the feeling of being lost, me included. It is the uncertainty, the loss of control, disorientation, frustration, anger, denial, and the list can go on.

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But if we have time and we can move past the initial sense of anxiety, being lost can be an opportunity to see new places, to discover new things, to become an explorer…almost like Columbus.

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I was not quite in the philosophical mood when I got lost on the way from Florence to Sienna. Rain and feeling hungry did not help the situation. But pretty soon a structure that resembled old city walls appeared, as well as promising signs of Trattorias and Pizzerias nearby. The medieval city structure was so impressive that for a little while I forgot I was hungry. Rain almost became a drizzle and my iPhone finally got an Internet signal showing that my location was at San Gimignano.

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Since I had never heard of this city, I wanted to get inside and see what was happening inside the city walls.

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Especially after seeing that TriplAdvisor.com recommended an amazing restaurant there, which had more then 1200 reviews on it, all being fantastic and fabulous!

Inside the city walls the cutest medieval city was hiding! Coming from LA it almost felt like a movie set. But of course it is as real as it gets!

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With the 14 towers that were leftover from the previously built 72 (the highest one 54 meters!), it was an architectural gem that I was feeling so blessed to see.

I will tale more about this fascinating city but I wonder if you can guess why people will build these labor-intensive tall towers in the 14-century, 72 of them and one higher than the other?

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Styling à la Florentine

Styling  à la Florentine

When you enter a city trough the medieval gigantic doors, you know it is a special place.

Firenze (Florence)  is an epitome of the Italian Renaissance where even the hotels are built with the Renaissance in mind.

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When the hotel room has a Renaissance themed frescoes on the walls, it must be Florence!

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Florence has a very distinct style.

It is an open air museum that would take a visitor a few months to experience and appreciate all the gems that this city has to offer.

One of the least touristy places is the Medicis’ villa. There are so many primary spots that I think the Medicis’ villa hardly gets any traffic.

It is a unique feeling to experience such historical locations in a Zen atmosphere.

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In this Zen environment, I have stumbled upon the most beautiful movie theater ever!IMG_1998

Doesn’t it just look fascinating?

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It just needs a popcorn and a soda machine!

Talk about Form NOT Following the FUNCTION!

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And if the movie is boring, one can always look up to the “sky” for more action!

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What do you think? Would you like a home theater à la Florentine ?

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Crystal Chandeliers and the Gas stations

Spending time in Venice seems like time travel. Life in a beautiful painting, life in a fantasy land. No cars, no streets, no gas stations…instead it is canals, bridges, palazzo and basilicas.

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I was almost afraid that I lost touch with reality.  When it was time to stop by a gas station on the way to Florence, I was almost excited: finally back to the modern life, not as pretty and romantic, but you know it is REAL!

But there was an element of a surprise waiting inside the gas station. Cristal chandeliers, dark hardwood flooring, freshly made Panini’s, gourmet espresso and  restaurant quality amazing pastries.

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“Welcome to Italy,” I told to myself. How could you expect an ugly gas station where food and beauty are the matter of a national pride!

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I do agree with the “form follows function” rule that moved 20th centuries design and esthetics, but maybe there is something else besides pure “function” of an object that the “form” needs to reflect …such as uplifting the viewer’s mood with it’s pleasant look.

gas station italy evelina galli

Gas stations with crystal chandeliers and wooden floors can be a great example for the new ‘postpost modern’ esthetics of the 21st century, where some excess won’t only be allowed but also welcomed.

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Will Love Last?

Will Love Last?

Early in the morning , while I was having breakfast with the most picturesque view that I have ever seen in my life, I thought about, “What makes love last?”

Evelina Galli Venice

Everything was as perfect as it can possibly be.

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The plan was to go to the close of the Accademia museum where some of the Leonardo Da Vinci’s original artwork was on display. (Being a lifelong Da Vinci Fan this was not an opportunity that I could miss).

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On the way to the museum when crossing  the Accademia Bridge,  I noticed a very strange-looking gentleman hanging from the street lamp with metal-cutting scissors in his hands and attracting attention from those passing by.

_MG_0075Apparently that was the infamous Venetian Love Lock Cutter and he was doing his performance art by cutting down all the locks that were attached on the bridge.

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Before seeing him I did not even notice the existence of thousands and thousands of locks on the bridge.

_MG_0087The Love Lock trend in Europe started from Federico Moccia’s story “I Want You” in 2006.  Lovers all over Europe started writing their names on the Padlocks attaching them to the bridges and throwing away the keys into the water. This Love Locking process is believed to make the love everlasting.

It is incredibly romantic if not one small downside: there are millions of couples who are in love, which results in enormous quantity of the Love Locks and subsequently extreme amount of weight that  damages the structural integrity of the old bridges.

Government authorities are interfering with the romantic Love Lock movement and cutting them down at least once a year. Italy is probably the strictest and there is a high fine for trying to attach a padlock.

So what should romantics do?

They want their Love Locks to last and not be thrown away. How to make the Love last?..Well at least Love Locks last.

The Love Lock concept  reminded me of the wishing trees that I have seen in Armenia, where people would wish for love and tie their handkerchief on the tree.

It did not look extremely appealing but provided couples with the comfort of knowing that their love will last.  I could not stop thinking about it until I found the Perfect Picture that provided the solution to the issue.

Love Lock Trees!!! Good for lovers, tourists and the government officials!

What do you think? Would you prefer old bridges or trees to immortalize your love ?

xo

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In the Ducati heaven…

There is never a dull moment in New York…

I was at my friend Hasmiks’ house in New York, having lunch with her when her husband Joe Buzzetta drove in in this spectacular car! I am not a “car specialist” but always had a deep fascination with beautiful car/bike designs.

So this car instantly caught my eye and as Joe explained it was a special car, the original  Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 Eleanor 1967, that  was featured in the film Gone in 60 Seconds

What an amazing design! Sleek ergonomic shapes, deep blue color, white straps going across.. I had to have my picture taken with the car…could not resist!

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Hasmik told me that this is only one of “his toys” he has an entire garage filled with them.

Hasmik and Joe graciously offered to go there if I am interested….and was I interested?!

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Apparently this was not a garage but a Ducati heaven !

Evelina Galli Ducati

I don’t know much about cars besides whether they look well designed or poorly designed…all these bikes were superbly designed and I wanted to learn a bit more about the story behind them…

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Hasmik and Joe Buzzetta

Joe explained that Ducati is a motorcycle company founded in Italy in 1926, currently owned by Audi through its subsidiary, Lamborghini company.

One of the most important milestones in the company history was the 1972 race in the Imola 200 that Paul Smart won riding Ducati. It established the company as one of the most prominent leaders in the four-stroke motorcycle world.

Evelina Galli DucatiCollectors dream!..The signed model!

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Like a “kid in the candy store,” I could not wait to start taking some pictures with these bikes!

(Although I don’t have any memories of any candy stores from my childhood…chocolate in my childhood was found either on the table on special occasions or when my brother and I would get a hold of the key from the bar’s closet where liqueur, cigars and chocolate were kept…but I guess it might be a bit unorthodox to say “like a kid at the bar…”

Evelina Galli Ducati

….to be continued

xo

E.

Circus Circus!

WHO doesn’t love the Circus? …especially combined with a Birthday Party?!

I have to say…well maybe clowns do creep me out a bit, but the circus is such a multidimensional medium that I was always able to find an act that I liked when my parents would take me to see a circus. …

After I finished my meetings in Manhattan, I rushed back to Long Island for my best friend’s and her daughter’s birthday party.hb2 My friend Hasmik, owner of the Flair fashion boutique in Stony Brook, NY, always had a keen eye for party planning. Even when we were 16-year-old fashion students she would always find time to initiate some great parties with specific themes: like a Godfather inspired Italian party or Geisha inspired Japanese party…years later it is a “Vintage  Circus” party!… Too exciting to miss!

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As the saying goes, “The theater starts from the coat check.” In the same fashion we could say, “The Circus party starts with the Candy!”

cake…and of course a Fabulous cake!

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…and the cutest birthday girl!

hb3and my Fabulous birthday girl – friend Hasmik (performing a very dangerous Circus act 🙂 !

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…and the Circe de Soleil aerialists effortlessly flying in the air..

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It is now definitely on my To Do List to learn and do some magic tricks in the air!

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Little Joe was very concerned about the acrobats’ safety!..”Is she going to make it back to the Earth safely?”…

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Hasmik and her husband, Joe were more curious than concerned…”Is she going to make it back safely?”…

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…and yours truly, loving every minute of this!…

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See you soon!

Follow me on Facebook to see more photos!

https://www.facebook.com/blogEvelinaGalli

xoxo

E.

Falling in love in the Springtime Paris…

Falling in love in the Springtime Paris…

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It is amazing ,what you can find in the old archives!…I have discovered my very first collection that I made from  Burlap and Silk yarn…as a 16-year-old student in design school.

The only cheap fabric that I could find was Brown Burlap (It is the material that potato sacks are made of), but since Brown is NOT my favorite color (at least for clothes)…I’ve bleached it and  amazingly it turned into this soft, cream color fabric that was very pleasant to touch and had a silky sheen to it.

Evelina Galli Collection

At that time I was also really into crocheting, so the only embellishment I have used was the crochet pieces from the silk yarn.

Evelina Galli Collection

The shape  inspiration for this collection was the Period of the Renaissance and The Mood was Falling in Love in the Springtime Paris…somehow made perfect sense for me at that time…

Evelina Galli Collection

These pictures were my very first pictures taken with a professional camera with film. I was so excited!…I can’t find all the shots, but still happy to find these.

Evelina Galli Collection

The scene was a rooftop of the hospital where my friend was working, I really liked the color of the stones and blue of the sky…

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…Models were very sweet and were trying to help me as much as they could,

Evelina Galli Collection

didn’t even mind smoking and drinking their soda, while sitting on the roof.

It still is my all time favorite collection…because it was the first and made with love 🙂

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Till next time,

xoxo

E.