For the Love of Basics.

September 24, 2008

We don't get much time to read the Sunday paper anymore. It used to be a huge ritual for B and me: The NYT, pajamas, coffee, lounging around.....that's all we ever really wanted from a Sunday morning. Brunch out? Nah, we'd have to get dressed and drink mediocre coffee. An invigorating workout at the gym? Too lazy. Homemade waffles and warm maple syrup? B, sadly, doesn't do the sweet thing for breakfast.

Now, with the kids and all, we are lucky to skim an article or two and glance at the travel section. We both have our "must skims," I guess you could call it. For me, the NYT Sunday Styles section makes that cut.

Last Sunday, while skimming through said section, I honed in on a little blurb about Martin Clothes. Anyone else see it? Anyone? The gist was "All the basics you'd ever really want to wear." I was totally intrigued, of course.

So, here's the scoop: Anne Johnston Albert decided to start the line because she saw a need for "wearable, yet understatedly sexy clothes for herself and her friends." The line is a "destination for cool clothes hunters searching for simple pieces with a twist." Everything is made in New York. Take a all looks perfect, basic, has just a bit of an edge, and is, indeed, understatedly sexy. A military jacket like this will go with everything and never go out of style.

We all know the importance of a great pair of trouser jeans. These look just about perfect.

I just love this pocket blouse made out of sheer, soft cotton. The site says "all the time, for all occasions." OK, will do.

Well, hello there, perfect black dress. I could wear you with flip-flops or stilettos.

I am always, always searching for that perfect tank. It needs to be thin, soft and LONG. I can't stand the ones that slide up on my tummy. This one claims to be all of the above.

This cashmere "whisper-weight" poncho looks just right for the barely chilly fall days in Southern California.

These look like the long-sleeved version of those perfect tanks.

This blouse has just enough frill for me. Perfect under a little button-up sweater, no?
I have a rule of never buying jeans without trying them on, but if there ever were a pair that I would take a chance on, it would be these.

This here is a cotton canvas weekend tote. Love it.

Now is it just me, or would all of the above make up the ultimate travel wardrobe? Everything goes together, it all looks fairly low-maintenance and you could wear these pieces on a trip to a fabulous city (think: Portland) or to the "country" (think: Napa). Throw in a pair of those boots and some ballet flats and you are good to go.


  1. LOVE IT! Maybe I will look for this when I'm in NYC. Do they have boutiques? I guess I'll check the article!

  2. Oooo, I love each of those pieces - tu for passing them along!

  3. Wow, I like every single piece you listed. Was just talking with a friend today about how hard it is to find good, simple, wearable stuff and voila!

  4. each piece was cuter than the next! forget travel (like i ever do that). i want this wardrobe for daily life! how seamlessly could i go from the playground to the office to a date night? now if only i could find some gap outlet knockoffs . . .

  5. I love the concept of a uniform, something you just grab effortlessly out of your closet but that always looks hip. These seem to fit the bill, although the pants seem to be made for a giant.

  6. Hi everyone - you're all right - this is a great collection of must haves. I don't believe they are yet in the boutiques but you can get them online at
    The designer Anne Johnston Martin used to have a great shop in the East Village but now produces her clothes line from the Berkshire mountains of Massachusetts. All her pieces are definitely keepers!

  7. Marie Louise: Thanks for the scoop! Now we can say we've talked to someone who has actually tried the pieces. :)

  8. love it all...gorgeous but totally understated. perfect.


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