Ellen Lubin Sherman: Essentials of Fabulous

…because WHATEVER doesn’t work anymore. I was out at Barney’s  taking a friend to lunch (like a City Girl)  and I ran across this title. I did a double take. Because whatever doesn’t work anymore. Amen, sister. I promptly picked it up (got permission to untie the bow wrapped around it, it was Barney’s after all) and loved it at first sight. Ellen Lubin-Sherman has written the modern guide to being “fabulous” (and a guide to some basic manners, thank you, Ellen!) Manners aside, this is a really fun read and I completely enjoyed it.

With chapters like Fabulous people are delightfully authentic  and Fabulous people are revered for their amazing attitude, I knew I would gobble it up. I also knew you, my fabulous Smart Creative Women, would really get a kick out of it as well! This book is refreshingly well written. Ellen is a gifted writer and her book  is full of optimism, good smart advice and fabulousness!

Takeaway: She says that fabulous people know what makes them tick. She says maybe you where one of the lucky ones and someone took you aside and told you that you were gifted or maybe you figured it out yourself. Or maybe you’re still trying to figure out what you ought to do with your talents and skills. She encourages you to be patient with yourself . They don’t teach self-knowledge in college.  But figure it out you MUST, because it is the secret to a happy and passionate life. You identify your gift and incorporate that gift into your daily life. You take your remarkable quality that makes you stand out, name it and then showboat it.

Just by reading that advice, you know she is my kind of gal! That is what I want for you too!  (hello, Smart Creative Style) You can buy the book from Barney’s here (not quite like going in person, I know) or on Amazon here. And how about these outfits that Ellen sports? My closet is looking quite dull compared to these! You can see more fun outfits here.

We are giving away a copy of  The Essentials of Fabulous. To enter add a comment below (tell me if you think “whatever” isn’t working anymore!) A winner will be picked on Sept 4th!




  • MelissaW

    It’s hard not to be stuck in a “whatever” rut. I do dream of being fabulous, maybe the book will help 🙂

    • ellen

      Dear Melissa: The book is for “the stuck.” Do one thing. Say hello to people you don’t know. Delete tape in your head that makes you sad. Don’t rush this because it takes time. But you’ll feel better about yourself. The first page of the Boy Scouts Manual is how to tie your shoes. Go tie your shoes! Regards, E.

  • Michelle Schneider

    This interview makes me smile. I love that she wore heels around the house to make herself feel more fabulous when working from home. It makes me wish I had more access to fashionable clothing where I live. I’m just not very good at picking out those perfect pieces to keep in my closet from year to year. Any suggestions?

    • ellen

      Keep it simple, Michelle. This fall I decided “white shirts, dark trousers or skirts. Coordinating knee-socks or matte stockings.” The classics are back and hello dolly! Regards, E.

      • Michelle Schneider

        Thanks Ellen! Now I’m on the hunt for a crisp white shirt. 🙂

  • I loved this interview! Ellen is such a great guest, I love her attitude to life and no-one talks about how important manners are any more so it’s lovely to hear someone speak up for them. I’ve already gone to look for the book but amazon in the UK doesn’t sell it so I’ll have to investigate where else in Britain I might be able to get a copy.

    • ellen

      Dear Gabrielle: Thanks for the kudos. I have sent many books to the UK through orders from Amazon so I’m sure it’s do-able. Try again or I’ll contact Amazon.

      Great to hear from you!


      • Hi Ellen, Thanks for your reply, I didn’t realise amazon US ship to the UK, just have to work out the steep shipping cost! I’ll cross my fingers for this competition but at least I know I can get my hands on a copy now, yay! Having read your other comments I might look up a copy of the Boy Scouts Manual too… 😉
        Thanks, Gabrielle

  • Heather Boissonneau

    OH MY GOSH!!! She is FABULOUS!!! I’m buying this book! I just love everything about her; what an awesome interview!

  • Well this was just a breath of fresh air. And it makes me want to be fabulous. Wonderful interview!

  • I love that Ellen talks about how important good manners are and that you have to make them a habit. So true! I don’t know if it’s from growing up in the South, but my family — especially the women — always placed a premium on good manners. In fact, if you were out and about without your family and did anything that was considered bad manners, it was considered scandalous by the rest of the family, and oh my, you would hear about it in no uncertain terms. : )
    I’ve checked my local Barnes & Noble and they don’t have the book, but I see that Amazon does, so I can order it there!

  • Janice

    A world where “whatever” doesn’t exist? Sounds fabulous!

  • Pattie Jansen

    What FUN! Best interview EVER, Monica. Ellen, you are one of a kind and I just want to scoop you up and go get a latte and laugh into the wee hours. LOVED “meeting” you! And now I’m off to buy your book … Thank you for being fabulous!

  • kmericks

    Wow, what a great interview! Working at home with a wee one really does make it easy to just put on “whatever is laying around.” But it doesn’t work. I don’t like the way I feel when I do that. I have lately begun taking time to really “shop my closet” as Ellen puts it. What a difference! Feeling fabulous makes me more joyful and makes it easier to Spread Joy to others, too! So I agree, whatever doesn’t work anymore for me. Love it!

  • this may be just what i need to get me out of whatever-mode! very excited to check out the book and thanks so much for the opportunity to win one!

  • vanachupp

    What an amazing interview, Monica! I can’t wait to read Ellen’s book. What a refreshing take on life and through things we know but should be practicing as women and human beings.

  • Julia Glukhoy

    Thank you fabilous Monica, for such informative interview with fabulous Ellen Lubin-Sherman! Ellen is so, right that whatever doesn’t work anymore. It’s sad to see how etiquette schools were lost, and now it takes each individual to invest time into educating themselves about good manners. More importantly, how vital it is to teach our children etiquette and to how be fabulous! I think Ellen’s book will help achieve this development and I cannot wait to read it!

  • Lisa Firke

    I’m not sure “whatever” has ever worked. That said, you have to pick your battles with fabulous. I am a fabulous creative person but I’m not a fabulous dresser, for example. I just get gesso on everything I own, so I keep just a tiny portion of my closet for interacting in the outside world.

  • Meghan Irene

    I just fell in love! What a true inspiration Ellen Lubin-Sherman is! I love what she said about the importance of manners! I agree with you, Monica when you say that they have been forgotten! I also picked out how you both said that you wanted to be an A+ person! I do too!! I hold myself to high standards and I’m proud of it. I also like that you said you wanted to be a zest of engagement and to be confident in your mannerisms. CONFIDENCE IS SEXY! I love that! It’s so true. I love that being in control of yourself shows your confidence. and that style is about communicating who you are. I have so many other things that I love about this interview but the #1 thing that stuck out to me was that you are doing others a favor by making yourself a priority. It’s so important! All in all, a wonderful and inspiring interview that I will be re-watching again and again. THANK YOU for coming on Ellen and for hosting the interview, Monica! Cheers to both of you!

  • allthingspaper

    Ellen, you are refreshing! Monica, I enjoyed the interview and will now hear your voice and Ellen’s in my head offering advice on many occasions. As for whatever, I’ve never liked it and think (hope?) it’s beginning to wear out its welcome.

    • Too funny, I think “whatever” is wearing out it’s welcome too!

  • Terri Stegmiller

    This book likes like I should be reading it. I’m ready to toss “whatever” into the trash!

  • camillac

    “Whatever” has never worked…for the recipient or the the bestower of the word…it shuts everything and everyone down and separates and a fabulous person would know better then to do that. Fabulous brings together and sees many angles to a situation to respond in an uplifting way…we are all fabulous in the making and I am sure wearing fabulous outfits help the process….

  • Oh what a great inteview! I’m so glad I set aside some uninterrupted time to watch it. . And now I can’t wait to read the book. I think “whatever” has never worked because it’s a way of hiding. And hiding your true self is never a good idea, for you or others. It’s no more than a defence mechanism against getting hurt or feeling left out, even though the opposite is true- the more fabulous you are, the more others can be too.

  • BJ Lantz

    Great interview 🙂 Love her style & energy! Sooooo many – OK – toooooo many people out there these days just say “whatever” when it comes to style. Heck, people seem to think it is OK to wear their pajamas on an airplane…. To combine Ellen’s thoughts & a Tim Gunn quote: “Whatever” is the slobification of America.