10 /06
Green Carpet CatFight at the Zurich Film Festival

Zurich Film Fest Savvy Spice Liam Neeson Catfight Dale Janee

Movie buff or not, if you’ve seen the movie ‘Taken‘ you know this quote – ‘I don’t know who you are. I don’t know what you want. If you are looking for ransom, I can tell you I don’t have money. But what I do have are a very particular set of skills, skills I have acquired over a very long career. Skills that make me a nightmare for people like you.’

Over the weekend, Liam Neeson was the guest of honor and final red green carpet attraction during the 10th Annual Zurich Film Festival. I was excited to go. I had picked up my press pass earlier in the week and gotten into a bit of a tiff with the young woman behind the press booth who clearly didn’t like me. As I walked toward the green carpet to snap some pics Friday night, I noticed her giving me the stink-eye from her counter. I didn’t think much of it until I was approached by a tall blond in a trench coat on the green carpet. She was on a mission…


But first, here’s Liam and the two founders of the Zurich Film Festival – the dapper Karl Spoerri and the gorgeous, statuesque Nadja Schildknecht who had the vision for the ZFF over a decade ago. Now it’s the über fancy, no-expense-spared success it is today. She’s an impressive entrepreneur too, check out this article. Now, back to the CATFIGHT.

Savvy Spice fashion blog Liam Neeson Zurich Film Fest

A PR woman in the trench coat pointed to me in the little press crowd and said, ‘Hi, who are you here representing? I need to see your pass.’ I showed her press pass immediately. Granted, I know I wouldn’t be given access to a Hollywood movie premiere and I’m not with the Associated Press or a major news source, but this is Zurich. Zurich is small, super expensive and there aren’t exactly hoards of reporters here so my press pass was easily approved a month ago. She went on, ‘You’re actually just a blogger, so I just can’t have you here…’ Gulp, was I being kicked off the green carpet?

Savvy Spice Red Carpet Catfight Zurich Filmfestival Switzeralnd

 I instantly felt a lump of humiliation in my throat and thought, Oh no, this is so embarrassing, should I just go?,’ but decided to argue a bit first. After a couple minutes, she didn’t want to deal with me and walked away saying,I’ll be back.’

Liam Neeson Savvy Spice Fashion Blog Dale Janee Zurich Film Festival

Five minutes later, another woman approached me in a leather jacket and said, ‘You’re not on my list and you’re just a blogger, so I need you to leave.’ Ugh, another one. Round 2. What should I do? What would Liam do? What would you do? What would TMZ do? I spun around, whipped out my iphone and said, ‘Look, I’d like to talk to your manager and I’m going to record how you’re talking to me,’ then I pressed the red button. She looked very uncomfortable and was gone within 60 seconds.

Savvy Spice Liam Neeson Dale Janee Fashion Blog

Finally, after snapping my pics and VINE, Liam walked off the mean, green, carpet scene toward the crowd of adoring fans waiting to see him. A final supervisor approached me and said, ‘I just want to say that you actually shouldn’t have been here because you’re just a blogger…Round 3.

Green Carpet Savvy Spice Zurich FilmFest Liam Neeson

I’d had enough, so I just blurted it out the woman’s name behind the ticket booth who I knew had called the pack of PR women. She looked surprised and admitted she was called by the woman and saw I was visibly upset. She apologized immediately and said the ‘mean girl’ was a temp worker and was embarrassed by her actions. I thanked her and took off for some Mövenpick (my favorite ice-cream in the world) to ease my hurt feelings.

Movenpick Ice Cream Savvy Spice Zurich

As we walked away, I looked over at my husband who’d never been approached by the 3 women, except one who asked politely, ‘Will you be needing an interview with Liam Neeson?’ And the whole time, he stood there with his ‘press credential’ lanyard around his neck printed with his name and title, ‘Photographer for SavvySpice.com.’ I’d had my slice of humble pie and now it was time for a big, fat, scoop of Macadamia dulce de leche ice-cream.

Zurich Switzerland Savvy Spice fashion blog

Although the green carpet wolvettes put a bit of a damper on my night out in Zurich, I learned a valuable lesson. It doesn’t matter who or where you are – maybe you work in the corporate world, in a restaurant, as a teacher, maybe you’re a small time blogger from San Francisco, a mom in the park, or even Oprah – you will run into situations when you need to deal with ‘mean girls’ who will treat you poorly. 

Here’s 3 Important Tips to Deal with ‘Mean Girls’ in Life- 

1.  If a gatekeeper is rude to you, maintain your composure and try to be nice. You never know the lengths she will go to make life harder for you. You remember the Seinfeld and Sex and the City episodes where this happened to Elaine & Samantha.

2. Always judge a situation and your safety of course, but if you’re being treated unfairly or being disrespected, never be embarrassed or afraid to stick up for yourself.

3. Get names and take numbers. If you’re being treated like garbage, especially by customer service, get the person’s name or business card so you look more credible if you need to escalate it to someone in charge.

Have you ever had a ‘mean girl’ in life or at work who just didn’t like you, and what ‘particular set of skills’ would you recommend to deal with the situation?

Hope you had a great weekend and I have a Big Giveaway Coming this Wednesday!


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10 /03
5 Tips to Instantly Style Track Pants

Savvy Spice Fashion Blog Casual Basics

Faux leather track pants – a style ‘Do’ or ‘Don’t?’  When I first started seeing this trend, track pants felt more like ‘high-school P.E.’ than posh, until I tried them on and realized they were so comfortable! Not only are track pants still on trend, faux leather is perfect for fall because they’re warmer than the flimsy cotton and silk ones hot last spring and summer. Plus, it’s hard not to love a trouser with an elastic waistband, right?

Of course track pants and a t-shirt – in terms of style – are a close cousin to sweat pants and a Fruit of the Loom cut-off and no one wants to look like The Terry’s (for any Tim & Eric fans out there.) Here’s 5 Tips I have to instantly upgrade those casual weekend basics with a few pics from last night buzzing around Zurich…

Savvy Spice Fashion Blog Heels Tip

#1 – A Must – Track pants can make me feel a bit frumpy and stumpy. Adding heels (without an ankle strap) really helps to elongate legs for a dressed-up night out for cocktails or dinner.

Savvy Spice fashion bag leather Louis Vuitton

#2  Spice Fall Up with Color! – A bright red, violet, or even navy blue statement bag instead of black this fall will make your track pants feel more like an outfit compared to gym attire.

3 Shirt Savvy Spice Style Tips 1

#3 Something New ~ Create the illusion of smaller waist tucking your top on the side. Track pants won’t exactly give anyone a J-Lo booty, so avoid pairing them with crop tops or tucking your shirt all the way in for an instant Steve Urkel effect.

Track Pants Style Tip 4

#4 – Instant Feminine Accents - Statement necklaces, especially long ones always dress up a cotton Tee. I also loved the lace detail on this Zara top and I think it could be a pretty simple DIY to sew some lace trim to a T-shirt if you’re crafty like that.

Tips Bangles Savvy Spice fashion blog

 #5 – Throw an Arm Apero because ‘Arm Parties‘ seem to be a bit outdated. I LOVE these bangles by my friend Vannessa’s new collection Luxuria Jewellry Boutique. The mix of 6 gold plated, rose-gold plated and silver bangles go with any watch and seem smaller than most bangles so they won’t constant slip down your hand.

Savvy Spice Details by Dale

<DETAILS by DALE> Zara faux leather track pants (Some Faves Below) / LV handbag / Forever21 Necklace / Zara top (recent) / Louboutin heels / watch – vintage / Layla 6 Hammered Bangle Set c/o Luxuria Jewellry Boutique OFFERING 25% OFF thru Oct. 17th.Use CODE: SSPICE-25 at checkout.

What do you think of the track pants trend? Take it or leave it for Fall…

Have a great weekend! ~xo,

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10 /01
My Dirndl Diary – One Night at Oktoberfest

Munich Savvy Spice Oktoberfest Diary

Over the weekend, we drove to Germany to celebrate Oktoberfest – the world’s largest ‘funfair’ held annually in Munich, Bavaria, Germany. According to Wikipedia, ‘It is a 16-day festival running from late September to the first weekend in October with more than 6 million people from around the world attending the event every year.’ I don’t know about you, but I’ve always loved Oktoberfest celebrations!

Before moving to Europe, I attended Oktoberfest in San Francisco, Huntington Beach and even Torrance, California. But if you’ve ever thought about coming to Oktoberfest in Germany, I will let you know exactly what to expect and a few questions to ask yourself before booking next year’s flight to Bavaria. Here’s my Dirndl Diary from our night in Munich…

Oktoberfest Savvy Spice

Have you Been to Your County Fair Lately? Oktoberfest has 6 main beer tents that hold thousands of people. The outside grounds are like a HUGE county fair with games, a Ferris Wheel and a ton of carnival rides which you can imagine don’t make for a pretty scene after people have been drinking beer and eating Schnitzel and sausage all day. Watch your step.

Oktoberfest behind the scenes dangers Munich

How Big are the Beers!? - Oktoberfest in Munich is unlike any atmosphere I’ve ever seen. But as you can expect, there is A LOT of drunkeness. Tents start serving beer at 10 am and the beers are 1 LITER - 33 oz in every glass mug. Only breweries within Munich’s city limits are allowed to serve beer (which is about 6% alcohol). In this photo I snapped above, just below the sunshine and carnival rides in the shadows by those trucks were about 10 police officers and medical aids assisting a man on a stretcher who did not look okay. We saw this scene a few more times during the night. AKA – Drink Responsibly. 

Oktoberfest Savvy Spice Munich

What to Wear - If you go to Oktoberfest, definitely wear a Dirndl or Lederhosen! There are outlets all around Munich to buy your outfit including the top, Dirndl (dress), apron and ribbon for about 100 Euros in any color you like. You’ll feel like a local, plus it’s the ultimate souvenir. You are also able to buy the mugs in the tents before leaving, but need a special tag or they’ll take it away.

Breakfast Bavaria Savvy Spice

What to Eat?! I’ll just put it this way, traditional Bavarian food is very hearty. And by hearty I mean huge slabs of meat. As a semi-vegetarian, I just don’t have the stomach for it. There’s Hendl (roast chicken), Schweinebraten (roast pork), Sauerkraut, Schweinshaxe (grilled ham hock), and of course Würstl (sausages). Thankfully, I was able to get a salad for breakfast instead of a Bavarian sausage. And yes, they drink beer with breakfast too. But for the most part at Oktoberfest, I eat pretzels and Knödel (potato or bread dumplings).

Oktoberfest Food

The Vegetarian Menu at Oktoberfest - Thankfully, I really love German pretzels.

Munich Savvy Spice fashion Blog Travel Europe Oktoberfest

If You Want to Go, Here’s How to Do It - I wouldn’t recommend coming to Europe just for Oktoberfest because there is so much more sightseeing to do! Munich is beautiful and Oktoberfest starts the 3rd week of Sept. which is still a perfect time to come to Europe. Summer is over so you can find lower priced airfare to other cities. Then, with a train pass come to Munich on the last leg of your trip for the celebration. PS – Learn some of the traditional German songs, like this one.

New Oktoberfest Savvy Spice

My #1 Reason to Go – The aspect I love is there isn’t the snobby ‘club vibe’ in Oktoberfest tents. Or maybe there is and I just don’t notice because I’m not German, but everyone seems so happy. For example, there may be a line, but you can always get into tents if you go early and it’s FREE ENTRY. You pay for beer and food inside. What is so special is that everyone of all ages from Bavaria is celebrating and they make the tents family friendly in the earlier hours of the festival before it gets too crazy! So if it’s on your travel to-do list, this isn’t one of those ‘Oh, I’m over 25 and too old for this.’ You can go any time.

Overall, I’ve had just as much fun at Oktoberfest celebrations in the US, with a lot less planning involved, but if you ever get the chance to go to Munich, I highly recommend it! Do you love Oktoberfest too or is Halloween your favorite Fall holiday?


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09 /26
Black, White & Martini Bianco

New Savvy Spice Fashion Blog

Have you ever thought about starting a blog? If you enjoy writing, keeping a diary, or just want to vent on a topic you’re passionate about longer than a Facebook status update, then I highly recommend taking your thoughts to the blogosphere. There’s enough platforms available to fit what works for your life.

Some blogs change, grow, and take breaks throughout the years whether it’s the design or the content itself. The past few months I realized there are going to be some changes on Savvy Spice too. I have 5 tips if you’re thinking about updating or starting your own blog, including 5 NEW Ch-Ch-Changes coming to this site from ‘Behind the Scenes‘ shots of an upcoming Youtube video…

blond extensions Savvy Spice fashion blog

1. Not Everything is Black & White with your Blog - Don’t get stuck in one category or niche if you don’t want to! When I first started my blog in San Francisco, it was about fashion trends, celebrity scandals, and whatever I felt like talking about. Then I kept hearing ‘find your niche‘ which can be confusing.  Now that I’m in Switzerland 80% of the time, Savvy Spice will be filled with newbie travel tips, lifestyle short-cuts, hot topics, beauty tricks, celebrity looks-for-less, and candy – yes candy, because I LOVE Candy!

Savvy Spice fashion Zara leather skirt

2. What about Video Content? - Not sure about Youtube? Test your interest on a light basis with instagram videos or VINE. If you’d like to test making Youtube videos, I will have expert tips for beginners in an upcoming post. Plus, a new series of Youtube videos coming soon to my channel SavvySpiceFashion because I’ve always loved writing, but sometimes it’s easier to explain in person what I want to say. So have a seat and subscribe if you’d like. icon wink

Martini Bianco Savvy Spice fashion blog

3. Should You Show Your City? ~ After living in Switzerland a little over a year, everything is SO different in Europe from the US. I discover new trends -some which are 5 years behind the US, but I’ll be sharing more ‘What’s Hot/What’s Not in Europe‘ so you know first. PS. If you have a blog, I highly recommending sharing some of the local flavor or culture in your city. There will always be people checking out your site who have never been there, and will find it fascinating whether you live in a big city or tiny town anywhere in the world.

Lemons Savvy Spice fashion blog Dale Janee

4. Lifestyle Tips for the Lazy (aka if you’re short on time) – I hate cooking and thankfully my husband has accepted ‘fruit salad and PopSecret‘ as a ‘perfect light dinner’ I’m happy to prepare. I’m the furthest thing from Rachel Ray and wouldn’t attempt a Pinterest DIY with a 10-foot pole, but I do have some super time-saving tricks around the house to share. Share your tips, no matter how simple they may seem because you never know; there may be someone out there who doesn’t even know how to make a hardboiled egg. gulp.

Savvy Spice Switzerland fashion blog Martini

 5. Stick with what You Love ~ The truth is whether you’ve been blogging 3 months or 3 years, you will be bored if you don’t write about what you really, truly like. And take a break whenever you want to, blogging should be fun or at least a learning experience. Thanks for reading!  Do you ever feel like your blog is on the back burner when life is busy and want to make changes to it? Or are you thinking about starting your own blog in 2015?


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<Details by Dale> – Zara top & skirt with MAC Russian Red lipstick, plus my favorite cocktail of the summer, Martini Bianco on ice with lemon.

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09 /24
The New Savvy Sleepers ‘Wine Country Collection’

Savvy Sleepers Satin Pillow Cases

If you love ‘pink‘ like me, then I’m excited to share the new ‘Wine Country Collection‘ – Savvy Sleepers luxe anti-aging satin pillow cases – has officially launched! The 3 new shades were inspired by my childhood growing up in Mendocino County’s wine country just north of San Francisco. The same high-quality blend of satin is ultra-smooth for your skin and prevents hair breakage, especially if you sleep on your back or toss and turn during the night.

The limited edition collection just launched today on Savvy Sleepers so now I’d like to introduce you to the new shades below…

Savvy Sleepers Vintage Rose Newsletter Satin Pillowcase

Vintage Rosé ~ The classic girly, girl pink perfect with a bottle of bubbly and your besties during that ‘Sex and the City‘ re-run you’ve already seen 10 times.

Savvy Sleepers Zinfully Blue Newsletter Savvy Sleepers

Zinfully Blue ~ The best way to describe this deep midnight-blue shade is that you instantly feel like royalty the moment you sleep on it. PS - Every shade in the new collection also comes with the secret stash pocket which is also embroidered with our logo.

Savvy Sleepers Wine Country Collection Savvy Sleepers

Pinot Greige ~ This charcoal shade of grey is the perfect pairing for so many homes and all Savvy Sleepers are unisex and offer the same ultra-smooth benefits for hair and skin. Anti-aging + machine washable.

Thanks for all the support this year and if you have a favorite shade, let me know. Can’t wait to share more and ‘Behind the Scenes‘ of our photo shoot and more. FREE SHIPPING all month using code ‘WINE14‘ at checkout. Cheers! 

New style post coming tomorrow! 

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about me

Hi! I'm Dale. A San Francisco fashion columnist, sour candy addict, founder of Savvy Spice and newly married living in Switzerland. I just launched the world's 1st line of unisex satin pillow cases for anti-aging, plus healthier hair & skin called Savvy Sleepers. Stay Savvy Trendsetters! For questions or advertising inquiries, please email me at dale202@gmail.com


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