Vera Wang for the masses & screw top wine

When exactly did Kohl's start carrying a line of Vera Wang designs? I know, eventually lots of famous names end up on clothing labels and are carried in stores frequented by "regular people." This is not what I'm talking about. Vera Wang is a serious fashion designer and in an entirely different league than most of these people. And now I can run out to my neighborhood Kohl's store and pick up something with her name on it. If I want. Which is weird because even though you can sometimes find something you enjoy wearing at this store, high-end fashion is not what it's known for.

I'm apparently late to this discovery, which I made this weekend during my first Kohl's visit in months. Alas, I did not choose one of Ms. Wang's pieces, marketed under the name, "Simply Vera." For one, the colors weren't right for what I needed. For another, the only piece I actually liked might have been good for wearing to work or to meet a friend for coffee, but it was too scratchy. It's a fine weave sweater and I'm thinking wool. With the added pressure to find a thin piece to wear underneath to protect my sensitive skin from the itchiness, I decided I didn't care that much.

So we've remarked for years that what we see on the runway never makes it to the places "ordinary people" shop. Now it seems they're trying something new and things feel pretty much the way they did before. I still buy what I like. Sometimes I know the name on the label; other times I don't.

Meanwhile, I returned home that night to an even more disconcerting discovery. That familiar bottle of Big House Red I'd purchased the night before? It has a screw top lid. No cork. Just a regular, run-of-the-mill lid I can twist off without the aid of any fancy tools. And while I'd heard that this, too, is a trend some of the vineyards were intending to employ, I less expected that than I'd imagined running into Vera Wang in my Saturday evening shopping rounds.

Fortunately I still liked the wine. I'm just trying to figure out if there's the tiniest little bit of snob in me that might be unwilling to take a bottle of screw top wine - even Big House Red - to a future dinner hostess.

What important stuff I'm pondering in my little middle-class, suburban brain this Tuesday.