Category Archives: Tales

This Week’s Muse…Girl Power

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As we mourn the end of Season 5 of “Game of Thrones”, we can’t help but call out for the show’s truest badass: Daenerys Targaryen.  Daeny (we’re on a first name, natch) is obviously a fictional character; I mean, while my kids do act like dragons from time to time, it is impossible to actually give birth to them as Daeny did at the beginning of the series.

Yep, she sure did.  And she raised those dragons, too.  Talk about parenting envy!

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Daeny has also walked through fire, eaten a horse’s heart, freed an entire slave army and now rules a country she invaded with the help of her loyal soldiers.  Oh, and she’s also fighting off assassination attempts 24/7, while wearing some of the coolest dresses we’ve seen on TV in a while.  In sum, Daeny is awesome.

If Daeny lived in present day, I have no doubt she’d be running a very large non-profit organization that helps disenfranchised people.  And she’d do at least five triathlons a year, while raising her dragons.  And we’d love her for it.

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So go on, gals.  Throw on a HEUCY Goddess dress and start your day thinking, I can conquer this day.  No matter what the week ahead throws at me, it can’t be more difficult than what Daeny puts up with all of the time.  Here are a few of our girl’s best quotes from the show, to get you through the plight of pre-holiday madness:

“I will take what is mine with fire and blood.” (Real life scenario: you’re eyeing the only seat on the subway during rush hour…and/or your vying for a promotion…and/or there is one piece of sushi left on the table and you’re determined to have it.)


Barristan Selmy: “The Yunkish are a proud people; they will not bend.”
Daeny: “And what happens to things that don’t bend?”
(Real life scenario: you’re having an especially painful customer service moment and/or you’re still on the subway.)

“The next time you raise a hand to me will be the last time you have hands.”  (Real life scenario: you are being yelled at by a traffic cop…or someone else.)

Have a most empowered week, friends.

xx,

The HEUCY Team

Wednesday’s Women: Girls…Inc.

Okay, we’re not talking about the most recent episode of “Girls.” We’re actually talking about an organization called Girls Inc., and want to tell you more about it. The Lena Dunham conversation will have to wait until next week. (Yes, yes, we love Lena, too).

What is Girls Inc.?, you ask.

The Girls Inc. movement started in New England during the Industrial Revolution. At the time, young women were moving to cities from rural communities to work in textile mills and factories. This new working class of women needed mentoring to help them thrive in a completely new, foreign environment. HEUCY Dude Sean wrote an entire (awesome, Broadway-bound) musical around this new class of women and the many struggles they faced in a man’s world. (See previous post on “Factory Girls, The Musical”).

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Anyhoo, The Girls Inc. movement has grown quite a bit. Now it is an organization that provides life-changing experiences and solutions for over 138,000 young women across the U.S. and Canada. The basic premise: provide tools and programs to inspire young women to be STRONG, SMART and BOLD. Girls learn how to set and achieve goals, confront challenges, resist peer pressure, see college as attainable, and explore STEM curriculum.

I saw a couple of Girls Inc. “graduates” speak and I was beyond impressed by their stories. Every woman should be enabled to believe anything is possible. But it takes a village, so a combination of grit, savvy thinking, confidence and a support network is pretty crucial to success. As entrepreneurs, we couldn’t believe in this more.

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If you’d like to learn more about Girls Inc., and would like to get involved, go to www.girlsinc.org. Trust us, you’ll be moved by these young women’s accomplishments, and by the people behind the organization.

Xx,

The HEUCY Team

Monday’s Musing: Motherhood

I’m sure many of you were celebrating, or being celebrated, yesterday for Mother’s Day.  Hopefully your day started with champagne wishes and caviar dreams, in bed, like mine.  Kidding!  I did get to take a nap, which was lovely.

HEUCY is all about celebrating women — moms, daughters, grandmothers, godmothers…the entire ethos of our collection is all about YOU.  We want to enable our HEUCY Gals to do all of the amazing things they do, unencumbered by synthetic, uncomfortable material or an outfit that won’t make it past 5pm.

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For those of you who are moms, you would probably agree that motherhood in this day and age is definitely not black and white; it’s complicated, busy, challenging, full and wonderful all at the same time.  Many of us have several different roles we need to fill throughout the day.  Which is why this article from The New York Times back in November really struck us.  It’s all about what “mommy-hood” has become in the 21st century, and how popular expectations for parents, and mothers, have become somewhat unattainable and unrealistic.  Here’s a link to Heather Havrilesky’s article, from The New York Times‘ November 9, 2014 Sunday op-ed:

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/11/09/opinion/sunday/our-mommy-problem.html

We’re not saying we agree, or disagree…but it’s a great, interesting read.  Especially if you’re spending part of this day in line at the post office, or waiting somewhere else, and are in need of some quick lit and something to think about.  Besides waiting.  Hopefully you’re wearing HEUCY, so at least you’re comfortable.  Happy musing, gals.

xx,

The HEUCY Team

Introducing…our two latest HEUCY Gals

Yesterday was one of those days where time flies by, but you’re having so much fun you don’t realize it!  We know, firsthand, that this is not always the case…so if you want to live vicariously, read on about our shoot yesterday and the incredible HEUCY Gals (nee “real life” models), Robin and Asa, we were lucky enough to photograph.  Hopefully they will inspire you too.

Setting: it’s 10:30am, on a Thursday.  Suwha and I are consuming our third (or fourth?) cups of coffee, working.  At that moment, a beautiful, statuesque, cheerful woman appears at the door of HEUCY HQ.  It is Robin Wilson, our first model for that day.  We knew Robin was attractive.  And we knew that she was an entrepreneurial powerhouse; her second book, Clean Design: Wellness for Your Lifestyle just came out (she’s currently in the midst of a 12 city tour now to promote it) and she is the CEO of Robin Wilson Home, a line of eco-friendly home products that is sold at Bed, Bath & Beyond.

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We wanted to photograph Robin partly because of her advocacy of green living, a natural synergy with HEUCY.  But as we chatted with Robin after she arrived, Suwha and I realized that we had won the model lottery!  Not only would Robin look amazing in a potato sack (I mean, those arms…), but she also had a lot of invaluable business advice for us.  Robin has been incredibly successful in a variety of roles, and she has learned a lot along the way.  And, because Robin had been a model back in the day, she was a natural in front of the camera.  Robin is also a mom, and she successfully juggles her growing empire with being a doting parent.  It was really encouraging to talk with her about motherhood and running a business.

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After bidding Robin adieu, and best of luck on her book tour, we trekked to Williamsburg, Brooklyn to photograph our other new lady crush Asa Larsson.  Picture Gwyneth Paltrow with a shorter haircut and a slight Swedish accent.  Asa Larsson had been head of PR at Marc Jacobs for years, and she made the brave choice to leave one of the most coveted jobs on the planet after her adorable son Odin was born.  She decided to pursue a path that was just as creative and challenging, but more flexible than that of high fashion PR.

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Asa and her husband David recently launched ATELJÉ 71, a line of Swedish-inspired shoes that are featured throughout HEUCY’s Spring 2015 look book.  They are seriously some of the coolest shoes we’ve ever seen.  When our stylist Kristen Ingersoll introduced us to ATELJÉ 71, we said we had to meet the founders because “Nordic Spring” was our inspiration for this season…and because ATELJÉ 71 and HEUCY are brands rooted in the same conventions and aesthetic.  Both are focused on creating beautiful and thoughtful design for strong, dynamic women…who do a lot of sh*t and who move around a lot!  These women need a practical, chic uniform to accommodate a full life.

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I don’t exaggerate when I say I wanted to move into Asa’s apartment.  I was really hoping she and David would adopt me, so I could just hang out on their sick terrace (that view!!) all evening and drink wine and laugh and chat about life.

But, alas, we needed to give Asa, David and Odin some space since they had hosted us for a few hours and Asa and David had to get ready for a night out on the town…as cute couples do.  Yesterday was one of those days when you realize how important it is to get out and meet women like Robin and Asa to get inspired, and to feel connected to the world around you.  This is especially true now, when so many people have lives and careers that are more gray than black and white.

More photos to come.  Until then, happy May Day and TGIF!

xx,

The HEUCY Team

Claudia Wu — A Perfect Ten in the Perfect Ten 2.0! Shop It Now on heucy.com!

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We had the pleasure of photographing HEUCY Gal Claudia Wu, the Co-Editor of Cherry Bombe magazine, on a sunny afternoon.  Cherry Bombe, in case you haven’t heard of it, is a kick-a** publication that Claudia and Kerry Diamond started to celebrate amazing women who love food.  They profile “women who do cool sh*t” — and the magazine is an ode to all things delicious — so it was a match made in heaven.  Check it out for some really great recipes and interviews with inspiring, interesting, dynamic women.

Claudia was the perfect “real life” example of how versatile the Perfect Ten dress is…because when Claudia isn’t designing and editing, she’s doing some pretty cool sh*t herself.  We’re psyched to share some of her favorite things with you.

1) What is your favorite vacation spot of all time?

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This is a tough one to answer since there are so many places I’d still like to go, but I had an amazing time driving around Sicily a few years ago.  (This is also on our top ten list of where we want to go…check out AFAR magazine’s Palermo travel guide as a starting point!)

2) What is your favorite food?

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Dark chocolate. (We concur, and love Mast Brothers because it comes from Brooklyn and it’s simply beyond).

3) What are you currently reading?

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Blood, Bones & Butter: The Inadvertent Education of a Reluctant Chef. It’s Gabrielle Hamilton’s memoir. She owns the restaurant Prune in New York City. She’s just as amazing a writer as she is a chef.

4) What’s your favorite HEUCY outfit?

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I’m torn between The Perfect Ten, The Weekender and The Burnout. They’re perfect for different occasions! (Don’t worry…you’re not missing something…the Burnout will be released next month! We have some great shots of Claudia in it, too! Stay tuned 🙂

5) If I had twenty free minutes right now, I would…

Take a nap or get a quick massage!

Amanda Freeman, HEUCY Gal Du Jour, in Indigo…

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As you probably know, HEUCY is sort of obsessed with our customers.  The HEUCY Gals who wear our clothes inspire us — and our designs — every single day.  So in addition to photographing some of these amazing gals, we wanted to share their “everyday” tips and thoughts.  Below are a few from successful entrepreneur Amanda Freeman, the owner of SLT NYC.  Beware, Amanda’s favorite vacation spot makes us want to rob a bank and get out West…fast!  Enjoy.

AMANDA’S FAVORITE VACATION SPOT:

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Hmm…I love travel, so it’s hard to pick one favorite…guess it would have to be this amazing hotel in the middle of nowhere in Utah called Amangiri. I’m actually shocked I just picked that because it’s nowhere near the beach (which I love, love, love). However, it’s one of the most stunning settings I’ve ever seen in my life. The canyon vistas are so amazing, they look fake. You can hike, rock climb (so scary), take a boat ride on a nearby lake, lounge by the pool and indulge in spa treatments. If it wasn’t so difficult to get to, it would be crazy expensive and always booked.

FAVORITE FOOD:

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Another tough one…I guess I’d have to say chocolate. Dark chocolate bars, molten chocolate cake, chocolate chip cookies…pretty much anything with chocolate in it.

CURRENTLY READING…

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It’s taking me forever, but I’m determined to finish it…The Goldfinch. It came very highly recommended, took me some time to get into, but I’m very curious how it ends. It’s a giant book and I am almost there.

FAVORITE HEUCY OUTFIT (HAD TO ASK):

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That’s a tie between The Weekender and The Alter Ego…both so cute and comfy.

IF I HAD TWENTY FREE MINUTES RIGHT NOW, I WOULD…

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It’s March Madness time and I’m a big college basketball fan (Go Duke!), so I’d have to say watch basketball or SportsCenter.

And how fitting, the Indigo Weekender is blue…perfect for watching the Duke Blue Devils.  Have a great weekend, friends! TGIF.

xx,

The HEUCY Team

Topic du Jour: Photography…and Forty

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Yesterday we had a really great time photographing two HEUCY Gals in our Spring 2015 styles.

Our first stop was the SLT (Strengthen Lengthen Tone, www.sltnyc.com) headquarters in Manhattan. Amanda Freeman, super-successful (and game-for-anything) entrepreneur and health and wellness expert, was kind enough to model a couple of new HEUCY looks in SLT’s bright, happy, sunlit offices.

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Then we headed downtown to Tribeca, to photograph Claudia Wu of Cherry Bombe magazine (www.cherrybombe.com). Claudia and her co-editor, HEUCY Gal Kerry Diamond, worked at Bazaar together and launched Cherry Bombe because they love food and they love interesting women. (In their words, they profile women in their magazine who “do cool shit”…in the kitchen and in life in general). Naturally, this makes us love Claudia and Kerry because we are kindred spirits. The Cherry Bombe Jubilee conference is on March 29th and we’re so sad to miss it, partly because our gourmet spirit guide Ina Garten will be speaking on a panel. And they’ll be celebrating women and food, which are two of our favorite topics always, in all ways.

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Sometimes it helps when your models are friends, and not real models (even though they look like they should be)…because you can talk about “real” things and laugh and actually connect with each other.

Case in point. Throughout the day, our conversation kept going back to age, especially at SLT where a bunch of hard bodies were sweating it out on reformers while I debated what I would eat for lunch. Our photographer Vanessa (who also happens to be a playwrite and a mom and a wife and ergo pretty darn cool) turned 40 last year, one of our fave HEUCY Gals Alice turned 40 the day of the shoot (sorry to out you, Alice). And I’m skidding toward that birthday in September. It made me think, what do I want to do when I’m 40? Does it need to be something “big” and impactful…or do those big and impactful things happen over time? And is part of “maturing” accepting that we will never be perfect? We spend a lot of cumulative minutes and hours beating ourselves up for not doing enough, not “making it happen”…which is a waste of precious time and headspace.

It also happens to be International Women’s Week this week, which is the perfect time to remind ourselves of the real world out there and our place in it. I came across a great quote to share that makes sense whether you’re 25, 40, 65, older or somewhere in between. Because we know that HEUCY Gals come in all shapes, sizes and age groups. Which is what makes you so awesome.

Here’s the quote of the day, from Alyssa Goodman, Professor of Astronomy at Harvard University and Research Associate of the Smithsonian Institution (we’re not messing around):

The thing that’s grand about spending your time thinking about the universe is that it makes you feel insignificant. I don’t mean that in a bad way. If you understand that we’ve now discovered entire solar systems that contain planets similar to Earth, and that those are just the ones we know about, since most of the stars we’ve looked at are within about 300 light-years of Earth and the distance to the center of our galaxy is nearly 100 times that—then you realize that the laundry you’ve left undone and the dumb thing you said yesterday are about as significant as slime mold.

Enjoy your day, no matter what birthday is coming up!  And thank you again, Amanda and Claudia, for being such exceptional HEUCY Gals and models!

xx,

The HEUCY Team

A Really Good Reason to Buy a Coat

It’s March 5th today. And, for many of us, it’s still cold outside. Snowing, in fact. Which makes it a perfect time to highlight a wonderful charitable organization called Operation Warm (www.operationwarm.org) — a non-profit that has provided brand-new coats to nearly 2 million children in poverty since 2002.

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We just spoke with Operation Warm’s lovely and dynamic Program Director, Renee Koerner. Renee is only 26 years old (which means she was born in or around…oh my goodness…1989?!) and she is incredibly articulate and passionate. We are proud to call her a HEUCY Gal and even prouder of her “boss” and the program’s founder, philanthropist and entrepreneur Richard Stanford, for giving Renee the autonomy and support she needs to help the organization grow. Many of us didn’t have this type of “supervisor” when we were toiling in the trenches after college.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. Some background for you.

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In 2012, Renee joined Operation Warm and worked with a Washington, D.C. Firefighter to bring the entire International Association of Fire Fighters on board, to raise money across the U.S. for new coats for kids in poverty. Firefighters – in addition to being kind-hearted, strong, capable, selfless and, in many cases, very cute (we’ve all seen “Backdraft”…which may have been released before Renee’s birthday, but I digress) – see a lot of things within their communities that other people don’t. Such as, freezing kids coming into the firehouse to keep warm. This one firefighter had organized a lot of coat drives and ended up discarding about half of the coats received because they weren’t wearable. Which led to the idea to fundraise for new coats, on a national level.

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One more reason why we love this organization? Renee and Sanford have been the driving force behind moving Operation Warm’s production back to the United States. They provided 300,000 coats to impoverished children in the U.S. last year, and 60,000 of these were made in the USA. Renee hopes to increase this number every year.

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And Renee is launching another brilliant initiative this year: Buy Warm, Give Warm. If you buy an Operation Warm coat for a child in your life, then a new coat will be donated to a child in need. Renee hopes to produce womens’ coats at some point, which we think is fabulous. We’d love to see an Operation Warm coat on top of a HEUCY dress or jumpsuit. I loathe being cold, but would be happy to put on a coat if I knew it was helping people who can’t afford to buy their own.

Click here if you’d like to get involved in Operation Warm’s mission.

And thank you, Renee, for inspiring us to give.

xx,

The HEUCY Team

Monday’s Musing…on a Tuesday

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A few months back, we were obsessing over Carrie Mathison’s choice of accessories. A cross-body bag didn’t seem like the smartest choice for a CIA operative in Pakistan, especially when she’s being chased by bad guys. But we’ve let that go, as we’ve noticed how fabulous a cross-body bag would look with our Nordic Spring styles. Once again, Carrie, you were right.

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Alas, we have to wait many months to see how Carrie’s wardrobe choices and love life evolves. Fortunately, House of Cards is now available on Netflix! We can throw down our books and binge watch five episodes at a time, as one is meant to do, regardless of wake-up time and other more serious obligations.

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And as we watch House of Cards, we can’t help but analyze Claire Underwood’s wardrobe. If anyone has a uniform, it’s this first lady. Claire is much more high fashion than Carrie, natch (no pant suits in sight)…but her style also lacks a comfort that could benefit the busy days and nights of WOPOTUS. Maybe Claire wouldn’t be so darn mean and conniving if she weren’t packed into a tight, unforgiving pencil skirt?  Perhaps the scheming would stop, or lessen a bit, if Claire was wearing the Alter Ego jumpsuit and daydreaming about her more innocent days as a Harvard undergrad?

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We can see that Claire loves a very well-tailored garment, and that won’t change. But with all that back-stabbing, manipulation, running around the Capitol and – literally — running…we think Claire should incorporate some HEUCY sustainable jersey into her life. It would accommodate her active lifestyle much better than those stiff dresses and tight blazers. And we think the environmental lobbyists would go crazy over her eco-friendly fashion.

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Here are our top 5 picks for Claire, just in time for Spring and the cherry trees abloom.

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The Date Night in feather print. Lots of allusions to eggs and feathers in episode 2. Again, we won’t go there…but we do think the print would look FAB on Claire and could be perfect if she decides to escape D.C. again to visit an old amour. This dress is so easy to pack and it doesn’t wrinkle. (Remember, last time, she didn’t even change clothes. This could fit into her Celine bag).

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The Alter Ego in gray bamboo microstripe. Gray is such a House of Cards color…and this jumpsuit is perfect for lounging on the White House couch, lobbying senators for that coveted UN appointment.

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The Weekender in Indigo. We can’t wait to release this style very soon (stay tuned). Once campaigning starts, Claire will need this dress. She’s obviously very disciplined about what she eats…but chicken wings and donuts are part of the job when want red state votes. (I come from one, so I’m not judging). A little looser fabric around the middle can’t hurt when the photo-op snacking starts. Sorry, Claire. But it must be done for the sake of the country.

ProblemSolver

The Problem Solver. This dress is great for women like Claire, who love to run and who always have problems that need solving. She could throw this on after a jog around the Mall, and quickly pop into Hector Mendoza’s office to tell him what she really thinks.   A “hothead”, Mr. Mendoza, would not wear a cool dress like this.

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The Burnout. We haven’t finished Season 3 yet (don’t tell us the ending!), so we’re still placing bets on what happens. I’m thinking Claire finally has a crisis of conscience and she decides to run off to the Greek Isles with her ex-amour, the cute photographer.  A Mediterranean diet and lots of sunshine could do her a world of good.

Which leads to a spin-off…the photog is actually a CIA Operative who has had a fling with Carrie Mathison. A Claire/Carrie face-off would be phenomenal, don’t you think?  In jersey, of course.

xx,

The HEUCY Team

Oscars Inspiration…and Validation

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As we develop our next collection, we found last night’s bevy of Oscar beauties very inspiring.  This would include Neil Patrick Harris (nee Doogie Howser), who seems to only improve with age.  Not sure if he’s doing the paleo diet, but we should research. (We also loved Patricia Arquette’s speech on equal pay for women, natch).

But I digress.  We picked some of our favorite looks from last night and wanted to share them with you.  Feel free to comment.  Many of us can’t afford the Chopard jewels and the hand-sewn couture gowns…but fortunately, a lot of the “trends” from last night do translate to everyday dressing.  Specifically, in terms of qualities we always consider here at HEUCY when designing new garments.  Such as:

1. Showing a little leg.  I think the average price of one of these gowns is in the five figures.  HEUCY’s Date Night dress with revealing side zipper is under $200, and because it’s jersey, you can wear it on the plane to the 2016 Oscars event and it won’t wrinkle.  A true bargain, if you ask me.

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2. Collarbones.  This may be the most flattering part of a woman’s body, and we like to show it off in a lot of our styles.  Lupita’s (yes, in our dreams she’s in a HEUCY dress and we’re on a first name basis) take on showing off her decolletage is super chic.

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3. Shoulders.  Another area where you can’t really gain weight.  We thought Reese’s dress was grown up but young at the same time, which is a “look” we always try to go with in HEUCY’s designs.

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4. As Many Shades of Grey (or Gray) As You Want.  Laura Dern and Naomi Watts’ gorgeous dresses reminded us why we chose to produce the Spring ’15 Date Night and jumpsuit in a grey bamboo microstripe.  50 stripes of grey is good for any girl, since this color is universally flattering and a bit more uplifting than black.  (Even though we’re huge proponents of black, just not all of the time).

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5. Black.  Oh, wait, did we just mention we don’t wear black all of the time?  It’s sort of an 80/20 mix these days.

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Cate Blanchett…doesn’t f’ around.  The next time we throw on the HEUCY Core collection, we’re pairing it with turquoise.  Maybe she’ll loan that necklace to us!

Until then…here’s a link to the full list of last night’s winners courtesy of ET Online. http://www.etonline.com/awards/oscars/160085_oscars_2015_full_winners_list/

We fell asleep somewhere between sound mixing and best picture.  Dreaming of the next collection, so we can bring a little practical glamour to your lives.  Stay tuned!

xx,

The HEUCY Team