Shop Talk

In Jay-Thorpe’s negligee department you must get yourself overalls. They are crepe de Chine, have high round necks, little collars, bows under the chin. The trousers are absolutely straight and wide. If you are overtaken by guests, you rapidly button yourself into a circular skirt, cut so amply that it almost has a train. So there you are, practically in evening dress. Jay-Thorpe’s corset department continues to be news with women clamoring for corsets which cost $250. They are marvelous affairs with loving thought bestowed on every ounce and every billow.

Most tricky jewelry is far too reminiscent of the boardwalk to be in the least chic. But there is a new pin which is really divine. It is flat, circular, made of a dull-finished silver or shiny silver or gold. It’s about two inches across and in the center your initials are cut out. The girl in the shop fixes it while you wait. Square and modern and effective, it looks grand on sports clothes. It’s pretty on a scarf or to pin up under your chin on a high-necked dress. It’s called Corogram and you get it at Saks— Fifth Avenue.

There is news in the very air of Bonwit Teller. The first act in the drama was the arrival of Fira Benenson who, as Verben, has been dressing many of the most sophisticated women you see in New York. She is a bosom friend of the brightest stars in the Paris dress world. She stays in Paris after the other buyers go and shares from these friends of hers very special models, designed for their private clientele. The result is collections of dresses which you don’t see elsewhere. A whole floor of Bonwit Teller is given over to her. The collection is divine. And if Madame will step into the Lingerie, she will see a cloud of blue—that pale, pale blue which Syrie Maugham and Schiaparelli made famous. The nightgowns are nightgowns in name only. In the subtlety of their cuts, they are dresses. Other new horizons are opened by Bonwit Teller’s acquisition of Mrs. Mink Jackson, one of the ablest buyers in the country. Her French models are a joy.

I must confess that I came after the era of sulphur and molasses in the Spring and Fall. But I heard a great deal about it and I absorbed the tradition that Something Has to Be Done. What I am doing this year is cleaning up the old complexion. Kathleen Mary Quinlan has a cream which ferrets the silt of summer right out of your pores. Don’t be scornful. No ordinary cleanser does it. This is a cream you rub in and it opens the pores and cleans out what shouldn’t be there. Slap your face with astringent and even your best friend will notice the improvement in your skin. It is not as violent as it sounds and it’s a marvel of efficiency.

The most recent debutante on Madison avenue is Lawrence Parker at 444. It’s shoes he’s showing in his very modern shop, and very modern shoes, too. Lawrence Parker believes that shoes should be designed in a continuous way, the design starting at the toe, flowing back to the heel. Some of his models, especially the evening sandals, are very daring. But they’re always in excellent taste. The monk shoe, with curious triangular cut-outs is what I mean to wear all Fall with my tweeds. It’s a sturdy, unscuffable thing and as pliable on the foot as though it were suede. They are making a ghillie of porcupine leather and giving it a sole twice the thickness of soles on men’s shoes. Mr. Parker doesn’t like very flat-heeled shoes. The one on the ghillie is a cuban heel and about as flat as he approves. These are the most original shoes that have cropped up in a long time.

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