This Week I Love …

aimee-mann

… Aimee Mann.

I consider myself a lapsed musician. I sang from age five with my family, did countless choirs and musical theater productions throughout school, was music director of my college a-cappella group, and fronted several bands. It’s been a long time since I wrote a new song or sang for a crowd, but I’ve done both. For ages. And Aimee Mann has been one of my musical heros since I first heard “Whatever” back in middle school. The clincher for me? There’s a lyric on that album that goes, “And she’s got the river down which I sold her.” Grammatically correct songwriting is my kryptonite. Helps, too, that Mann writes great hooks and amazing story songs, has a uniquely earnest and plaintive voice, and consistently releases albums that are beautifully produced, engaging to hear, and gobs of fun to sing along to.

She was also hilarious on Portlandia. And Buffy. And in The Big Lebowski. My guess is she’s a very clever, fun, ridiculously smart person.

I never gave much thought to Mann’s style until I saw her in concert when she toured for “Lost in Space.” During that time, she mostly dressed like this:

AIMEE_MANN_TIES_VESTS

one | two | three

I loved her take on menswear chic, and I certainly admired her choice to be extremely covered-up in an era that focuses on cleavage and exposure and super-sexy-see-through outfits. Like most people, Mann’s style has shifted quite a bit over time but she’s always struck me as someone who is comfortable in her own skin and makes style choices based on her own preferences. Sure, her looks follow the trends to some extent, but she always looks a little edgy and rebellious, a little tough, and definitely more laid-back than uptight.

aimee mann style

one (album cover, 1993) | two (2012) | three (2006) | four (2014) | five (album cover, 2000)

I love a little mindless dance pop as much as the next person, but when I want to think and feel I’m more likely to reach for an Aimee Mann album. She explores everything from May-December romances, to the links between charisma and narcissism, to the paralysis of depression, to our fascination with bad boys and bad choices. I admire her so much for writing insightful, funny love songs and perhaps even more for writing incisive, emotional, unusual songs about how complicated and trying it can be to be a human. She’s a gifted musician and lyricist, a woman who seems to dress primarily for her own self-expression and pleasure, and I sincerely hope I can cook her a spaghetti dinner someday.

Anyone else an Aimee Mann fan? From Til Tuesday times, or more recent? Have you heard her new collaboration with Ted Leo?

Top image source

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Insomniac Sale Picks: Leather Moto Jackets

*In this late-night feature – which will run on Tuesday and Thursday of each week – I’ll gather up three fun items that are currently on sale online and share them with you! I would LOVE suggestions: Stylish wide-width pumps? Classic v-necked sweaters? Chandelier earrings? Petite dress slacks? What would you like to see featured?*

Angela requested a few picks for leather moto jackets, so here we go:

2709106-p-MULTIVIEW

Marc New York by Andrew Marc Gretchen – was $395, now $159.99

So friends, real leather is expensive. I was able to find a few options under $250, but they have quirks. This one for instance: Gorgeous – and Marc New York is a fabulous leather brand – but it’s definitely cropped. Which isn’t bad if you want to wear it with skirts or dresses or prefer the look of staggered layers, but might not be practical for all outfits. Available in black or tan in sizes XS – XL (which will fit 16/18). This jacket is similar and available in sizes 2X – 3X.

Womens-Slim-Fit-Black-Full-grain-Leather-Biker-Jacket-P15994602

Slim Fit Black Full-grain Leather Biker Jacket – was I have no idea but Overstock items are always dicounted, now $237.99 – $264.99

A little longer in the body and still has that classic moto styling. I love the stud details on the collar, too. All leather jackets will be somewhat stiff and stand away from the body, but this one is somewhat shaped to curve in at the waist, a nice design detail for a less boxy fit. Available in sizes S – 2X.

guess leather moto jacket

GUESS? Asymmetrical Zip-Front Leather Jacket – was $350, now $314.99

Yep. Absolutely drooling over that cognac color. Most motos are black, as evidenced by the picks above, but occasionally you’ll find a winner in another color. (Also love this Cole Haan in a washed brick red.) Sounds like this Guess jacket runs small, so order a size up. Available in black or whiskey in sizes XS – XL. This is a scuba style jacket not a moto, but comes in black and cognac in sizes 1X – 3X.

Other not-currently-on-sale resources for leather moto jackets:

  1. Wilson’s Leather - These guys are always having a sale. Quality varies from piece to piece, but plenty of great motos are available, including this rich red-brown oneWilson’s also carries plus jackets.
  2. Overstock - Some of the best deals around, including the one above.
  3. ASOS – Best variety of colors and styles. Some are quite spendy, but others more affordable. Love this stunning navy leather moto.
  4. eBay - More than 5,000 options in a huge variety of sizes and colors.
  5. And, of course, THRIFT STORES! At least around here, there are always a few leather motos on the racks. An especially great option if you like the weathered look for your leather. (thethriftshopper.com can help you locate stores near you.)

**Disclosure: Actions you take from the hyperlinks within this blog post may yield commissions for alreadypretty.com. See Already Pretty’s disclosure statement for more details.

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