Shirts So Good

we’re obsessed with these artful button-downs, featuring
eye-popping blooms that our designers discovered in the
archives of London’s famed Liberty Art Fabrics
D.I.Y. FYI: Our fashion director and associate stylist fashioned these sweet ties from other Liberty-print shirts at our shoot!

SHOP ALL WOMEN’S SHIRTS >

Book Club: Our Beach Reads

when we’re not obsessing over polka dots, prints and the perfect pun,
we spend summer weekends booking it to the beach, accompanied by
a great read. here are a few books that kept us hooked:
from top
Fifteen, Beverly Cleary “My mom received this book as a gift from her cousin in 1976 and gave it to me when I was—you guessed it—15! It’s the sweetest story of a young girl who falls in love for the first time, and I think I’ve probably read it about a dozen times. Plus, I love that the cover looks so retro—it has really held up well!”
—Maddie, copy maestro

Then Again, Diane Keaton “Diane Keaton has always been one of my personal icons. This window into her personal life and her relationship with her mother was an absolute treat to read. I even own an autographed copy!”
—Katherine, intern extraordinaire

Freedom, Jonathan Franzen “Admittedly a book I only picked up upon Oprah’s recommendation. But I have to say, it was such a good read. Franzen has a real knack for creating wonder out of the seemingly mundane. Five stars!”
—Hanah, web wizard

How Did You Get This Number, Sloane Crosley “To be frank, I LOL’d. This book, as well as Crosley’s previous work, I Was Told There’d Be Cake, is a hysterically accurate narrative of post-college life in New York. An indispensable read for the twentysomething, or really, any age.”
—Christine, digital design maven

Bright Ideas

inspired by the rouge tones and optic dots in our latest
Style Guide, we created a mood board full of images
that have us blushing (and seeing spots)

A Look Back

we dug through our archives to bring you some of our favorite cover photos
from over the years. this one has us dreaming of white sandy beaches…

A Look Back

we dug through our archives to bring you some
of our favorite photos from over the years
(feel free to be inspired, humored or a little bit of both…)

Hair How-to: Gayle’s Topknot

“my go-to ’do in a pinch (or if you’re a day dirty). here’s
how to get the look.” —our fashion director and stylist, Gayle
Step 1 “Flip your head over and gather hair into a high ponytail at the crown of your head. Secure with a hair bungee—I love these because they create just the right amount of tension, especially for thicker hair (you can find them at Ricky’s).”

Step 2 “Wrap hair around the elastic, securing with bobby pins as needed.”

Step 3 “Loosen strands around your hairline to create a bit of a messy softness. And that’s all.”

Take the Cake

when our email-metrics extraordinaire (and baking know-it-all), Carolyn,
brought in her signature sweet treat, it was love at first bite. after a little
convincing, she finally divulged her secret ingredients…bon appétit!
What you’ll need:
1 box Pillsbury Funfetti® cake mix
1 cup water
1/3 cup oil
3 eggs
1 can vanilla Funfetti icing
Sprinkles
1 bag semisweet chocolate chips
How to make them:
1. Mix Funfetti batter and bake according to box instructions.
2. Let cake cool for 30 minutes.
3. Using a fork, crumble cake into a bowl, then stir in 3/4 can of icing and mash together.
4. Roll the mixture into golf-size balls of dough and space evenly on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
5. Refrigerate for a few hours (or overnight) to solidify.
6. Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave (about 1 minute) and stir.
7. Evenly coat each piece of chilled dough with the chocolate.
8. Cover with sprinkles.
9. Refrigerate again for 3 hours to harden.
Enjoy!

Strokes of Genius

we adore artist and illustrator Elizabeth Mayville’s work
and, lucky for us, the feeling appears to be mutual.
here are two of our favorite paintings, in oil on canvas.
 
 
Mayville says she loves to capture “the small bits of life.”
We love that those happen to include the J.Crew Style Guide!
 
 
Her take on our superstylist Gayle’s favorite updo, the messy topknot
(paired with a stripe top, of course).


See more of Mayville’s work at elizabethmayville.com.
 

State of the Art

when we found out that our resident web designer Rachel was
attending a collage class at the Oracle Club in Long Island City,
we insisted on joining her for a night of crafts and cocktails
In the Club
The Oracle Club was founded by partners Jenna Gribbon and Julian Tepper as a workspace for artists and writers like themselves. Jenna is a painter who specializes in commissioned portraits, and Julian is a novelist and musician (he cowrote Spoon’s 2008 hit “Don’t You Evah”).
Cut and Paste
Collage classes are held on the first Tuesday of every month and are led by painter and writer Caris Reid. Caris picks a theme for each group (they’ve ranged from “Spirit Animals” to “Everything Personified”), then gathers scraps like tear sheets, wallpaper swatches and old postcards for students to use.
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Pierre and Edith, the club’s resident birds, watch over each class.
The Finished Product
For our “Summer of Romance”–themed class, Caris collected vintage imagery from the ’60s and ’70s—here are some of our favorite creations from the night. The best part: You have a new piece of art for your walls.

A Look Back

we admittedly have all-American style on the brain today…
in honor of the Fourth, a perfectly patriotic photo from our archives.

© 2014 by J.Crew. All Images and materials are copyrighted by J.Crew unless otherwise noted.

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