shopgirl / rockin' the prints

there's this literary area in downtown chicago called printer's row, and every year they have this massive book fair, which contains used books and other literary accoutrement from booksellers in chicago and from neighboring states/towns. it's huge and wonderful, and i spent four glorious hours there by myself, perusing the scores of literature available, and then stopping in a cafe for an afternoon caffeine rejuvenation while reading one of my recent purchases, shopgirl, by steve martin. i had seen the movie quite a while ago, but never read the book, and it's sensational. it's very short, is a quick read, and the characters and situations that steve martin created are heartbreakingly real and unabashedly poignant. it was one of those books after which i felt so sad that it had ended. if you're a reader, or are just looking for some good summer literature for the beach, i recommend it wholeheartedly. and then when you're done, go see the movie. steve martin and claire danes play the leads, mirabelle buttersfield and ray porter. it's all sorts of wonderful. plus, the fashion and overall visual aesthetic is very chic and artsy, which is always fun when you're watching a film.

this post wasn't originally intended to be about shopgirl, but, inspiration moves at its own pace. i love the vintage quality of everything mirabelle wears. she's described in the book as being someone who dresses well, but is slightly behind the times. there's something so utterly charming about the floral prints, oversized satin sleeves, and '50s inspired cuts of her perfectly fitted dresses. reading her, and looking at these photos...there's something so honest and unique about her. i love looking at a person, being intrigued by their style, and knowing that on their part, it's completely unpretentious. that what they're wearing just happens to be characteristic of what they tend to buy, what they have in their closet, and putting it all together requires little to no effort on their part. i find that these people may often balk at the notion of their having good style, when really, it's more about the entire ambience of the person, not just who or what they're wearing.

here's a scene from the movie. just as a treat, in case you've not seen it : )

now that i've delved into a deep analysis of shopgirl, i'll post what i originally intended to share, which are these prints i bought at the book fair:

aren't they lovely? erin moves in in a couple weeks and we're so excited to redecorate the apt. right now, i just have these prints propped up in my kitchen, but we're getting all of our prints framed to hang around the house, which i can't wait for. there were so many to choose from, it was really difficult to narrow it down to two, especially when i had like, 1o in my hands at one point. the i loved the "life" one, with all the girls in their pixie cuts and '20s flapper attire, smoking cigarettes and drinking martinis. i'd like to think that the goings-on of my abode render me "just an old-fashioned girl." i have been listening to music from a record player recently...that counts, right?


  1. Aside from my husband, Steve Martin is maybe my most favorite man in the world. I just love a man who's smart and funny. Shopgirl is a terrific read. And I love what you say about personal style -- I think when it's not "on trend" is when it always seems to be the most interesting, the most effortless, and the most sincere. And totally digging those prints!!!! What a great post!!

  2. isn't he just a wonderful gem? he and bill murray just speak volumes in their more serious roles. heartbreaking, lovely volumes.

    thanks for love notes, b! i still have your giiiiffft...we need to get together, i'm leaving town on monday! xoxoxoxoxo