Friday, March 7, 2008

Rainy Day Gear

It's pouring in New York right now, and it sucks. There's still a little bit of the Arizona girl in me who thinks rain is something special, and I blame her for deciding it was a good idea to walk from my dorm to campus (about 20 blocks) and back instead of waiting for the bus. Dumb Arizona girl-- it was a bad idea. But I did wear the rain boots I bought over winter break, so I got to stomp through puddles no problem. Despite using an umbrella, my entire body was soaked when I finally got back to my dorm, but everything from the knee down was perfectly dry!

I have these Buckle Wellies from the Gap, $39.50, except mine are dark blue with pink trim. The inside has multi-colored stripes, which is sort of neat except that the bottom of my socks always get insanely stained with color. The other way my boots are different is that I bought them for like 4 dollars, due to my employee discount and some major price-slashing. When I worked at the tail end of the holiday season my store got like 80 pairs of rain boots, and no one bought any. Surprisingly, there's no market for rain boots in Arizona! Especially in the winter, when monsoon season is a good six months away. Anyway, the thing I really like about these boots is the buckle at the top, so you can make them a little bigger if you want to tuck in your jeans, or tighten them up if you're bare-legged.

My dream is to get some Burberry rain boots, because I'm a label whore. Well, not really. I usually hate accessories with a designer logo slathered all over, like those LV purses and whatnot. But for some reason, the classic Burberry check just does it for me. Who cares that you're dropping major cash on footwear that isn't particularly flattering and you'll only wear in certain weather? It's Burberry! The Check Rainboots are $170.

Because rain boots are an item you'll wear so rarely, and then only on days were you tend to be cranky, I give everyone permission to buy really silly, ridiculous rain boots. Like these Chooka boots with little pink bunnies, $60! There are also the Peacock City boots by Chooka, but I'm not sure if these are fierce or freaky. Doesn't it kind of look like a ton of little alien eyes?

The last Chooka boot I really like is the Koi Tattoo. All these boots seem a little pricey to me at $60, but on the other hand, if you buy cheap rain boots and they're ineffectual, then they're useless. An extra 20 bucks for boots that will keep your toes dry and warm is worth it.

J.Crew always has good Wellies, and these pewter with pink elephants boots, $65, are perfectly whimsical.

If you're looking for something cheaper, and I always am, Target's where it's at. These Comic Town rain boots, $19.99, will bring you back to a childhood spent reading about Betty, Veronica and the whole gang. Plus, you'll always have something to read when you're bored during class. Oh, and Target has anchor rain boots, too, so I'll be able to wear my anchor necklace, earrings, bracelet and t-shirt with the boots and look like a total nutjob!

The other thing you need, obviously, is an umbrella. Personally, I go for function over form. Every time it rains in New York you see a graveyard of torn and broken umbrellas in corner trashcans. It's sad. Freshman year I had this really cute polka-dot umbrella for Target that I was so excited to buy and then always angry to use. It flipped inside out constantly, and I couldn't go 5 feet without seeing another girl with the same umbrella. So the next year I went to REI and got a black umbrella with one of those automatic expand and collapse buttons, with all sorts of steel reinforcements and technology whatevers. I loved it, and I never wanted another.

But I either left it at home or it's in some box in the back of my closet, so I've been borrowing from Danielle's esteemed collection of umbrellas. I would let her blog about her own purchases, but I'm on a roll here so: she recently bought two great umbrellas from Echo Design. The Folding Vintage Dot umbrella, $38, is adorable and classic, and the Medallion Clear Stick umbrella, $52, is going to be perfect for rainy April days that are still a bit warm.

From the same website, I really love the Squares Umbrella, $42. I would never wear clothes with geometric prints, but somehow, on an umbrella, it's all ok. It kind of reminds me of bathroom tile, but in a good way.

The Museum of Modern Art Store is known for its witty designs, and the Sky umbrella, $48, is one of the best. It also comes in a collapsible version, but I say, if you're buying from Moma, get the old man wooden handle cane version. It's classier, and easier to dance with should you find yourself in a music video.

The Color Spectrum umbrella, $24, is a bit more in-your-face with its fun colors, but sometimes, when its raining hard enough, subtlety is no longer necessary.

What do you guys think of those dome umbrellas? I feel like they're great in theory, but whenever I see someone on the street using one I can't help mentally calling them a douche. Maybe I'm just jealous that they're dry and I'm wet. Here's a clear bubble dome umbrella for $19.95 on Amazon.

Finally, maybe the next time it's raining you should just stay in bed and read one of Roald Dahl's short story collections for adults, The Umbrella Man. It's $7.99 on Amazon, so you won't even have to leave your building to get it.

This post was brought to you by Rihanna.


Lena said...

Hi, I'm Alex's little. I know you don't know me, but she gave me the link ages ago and I've been stalking this blog religiously, lurking in the shadows of No-Comments.

Well, this post got me off my high horse. I am very anti-rainy day gear. I don't know why. Maybe it's because no matter how much thought or effort I put into it, I am never dressed appropriately for horrendous weather.

I too was stuck in the deluge this week, and here I am minus one pair of really great and now soaking wet probably ruined leather moccasins. So I guess I'm in the rainy-day gear business now.

A couple days ago I was online shopping and noticed these $88 Henri Bendel SALE rain boots and now I'm seriously considering buying them.

I'm not a fan of cutesy patterns on my clothing. It just ain't who I am. So these boots are perfect for me. Good old fashioned Wellingtons (in orange, white, and brown, but who would want white rainboots? A disaster waiting to happen) but with a yummy surprising twist of the Henri Bendel brown/white stripe on the inside, and down the back of the boot. Solids for boring girls like me, plus a little bit of a name dropping stripe for label whores like you.

Right now my biggest decision is orange versus brown. I'm thinking orange.

Sorry for the long comment. I'm a heavy blogger.

Danielle Blanchett said...

i'd go with the orange, personally :)

Julia York said...

Lena, I spend way too much time reading Alex's blog, so I totally know who you are (is that creepy?). And thank you for commenting! Those boots are really cute, and I like the orange, too. Definitely cute enough to make you happy it's raining.