Style Spotlight: Mariska Hargitay Thursday, May 24 2012 

I’ve been a huge fan of Law and Order: Special Victims Unit from the beginning, almost solely because of the chemistry between Mariska Hargitay’s Olivia Benson and Chris Meloni’s Elliot Stabler. But, of course, the TV gods can be cruel, and Elliott just disappeared after 12 years together. No goodbye, no dramatic shoot-out, no set up for an incredibly emotional and powerful climax they’ve been building up to for 12 years. He was not written out of the show at all. Yes, I’m still bitter about it.

Anyway, I still watch SVU (sporadically) now for the sole reason of my Mariska girl crush. She is so stunningly gorgeous, but still approachable and relatable. Perhaps it’s because we’ve seen her blossom and evolve from young TV ingénue to a bona fide series powerhouse and Emmy-winning star. Who else can carry a show so dark, gritty and downright disturbing as SVU and make it one of the most successful prime time dramas around? Oh, right, Chris Meloni. But everyone knows Mariska is- and always has been- the real heart of the show. You can’t help but adore her.

As the daughter of the late beauty Jayne Mansfield and actor Mickey Hargitay, Mariska had bombshell looks and award-winning acting in her genes. She was also a former Miss Beverly Hills USA.

She picked up an Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama in August of 2006. She had just given birth to adorable son August two months earlier. I loved her Emmy-winning fashion look of dramatic bangs, long hair and a glamourous black gown. Very un-Olivia. Elegant, understated and just perfect.

As much as I loved her look that big night, I was even more impressed by the bright yellow one-shoulder Carolina Herrara gown she wore two years later at the 60th Annual Emmy Awards. Another departure from Olivia’s tough, leather jacket look, she exuded happiness and sunshine all night long.

Another gorgeous Red Carpet moment in classic black: the 2010 Oscars. Mariska wore a black Vera Wang gown with amazing jewels.

At the 2011 SAG Awards, Mariska rocked the Red Carpet in a bold indigo Isaac Mizrahi gown, complemented with stunning turquoise accessories.

If you still weren’t convinced of her overall loveliness, look no further than her Joyful Heart Foundation.Mariska took her Olivia Benson role one step further, and started this amazing foundation to help real-life victims of sexual assault, domestic violence and abuse. It seems that wherever she goes, she brings peace, warmth and joy.

It seemed odd to me, after watching season after season, that Mariska wore the exact same two short gold charm necklaces on the show every single episode. Upon research, I discovered that they are to gain awareness for the Joyful Heart Foundation. It wasn’t that Olivia has no sense of style and relies on the same accessories for years; the jewelry line “Me&Ro”benefits the Foundation. Olivia sports the “Fearlessness” pendant and “Lotus Mandela Amulet” for a great cause. Learn more about the necklaces here.

Mariska has proven herself to be a truly admirable woman of integrity, grace and style. Rocking a powerhouse TV role, starting a foundation to help others, and being a doting wife to hubby Peter Hermann (he plays a laywer on SVU a lot) and loving mom to 3 children-2 adopted- and looking fabulous while doing it all.  I just adore her!

 

 

 

Media Credits:

first photo courtesy of poptower.com

second photo courtesy of zimbio.com

third photo courtesy of fanpop.com

fourth photo courtesy of fabsugar.com

fifth photo courtesy of bestcelebritydress.com

sixth photo courtesy of poshposh.com

seventh photo courtesy of bossip.com

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Cougar Town: TV’s Gal Pal Destination Wednesday, May 16 2012 

Monica Gellar- I mean Courtney Cox Argquette-’s fabulous TV show Cougar Town is quite the guilty pleasure. Shirtless 40-year-old guys, wine-drinking wives and lots of witty banter- what’s not to love?

While the show enjoys a brilliant cast, it’s future has been a bit up in the air lately. Will it be renewed? Will it be cancelled? When is it coming back? What night will it air? Will it be on TBS? ABC has been toying with the feel-good funny lady vehicle for what seems like forever. While certain aspects of the show have been uncertain, one thing is clear: girls rule. The power of one of Hollywood’s most lasting friendships has seen to that.

 

One of my favorite episodes (I must admit, I don’t watch the show every week, I catch it when it’s on and seek it out online later) featured Courtney’s 90’s partner in crime Jennifer Aniston. While I still quote the kooky therapist’s line (“My anger is a purple balloon…I just let go…”)

 

I’m sure I can’t be the only one who tuned in to see what Monica and Rachel would be like post-Central Perk.

 

 

 

But another almost equally-famous team of gal pals might save the small screen favorite. Cast member Busy Phillips has been vocal about her feelings towards the way the show has been treated.

The Dawson’s Creek alum has also spoken out about wanting her BFF Michelle Williams to join her on the show for some good hearted (certainly not Oscar-nominated) fun.

Since they’re often spotted on the Red Carpet together, why not bring the ladies back together in the cul-de-sac? If Monica and Rachel can weather the ages and reunite as totally different characters years later, why not Jen and Audrey?

 

What do you think about Michelle Williams appearing on Cougar Town? 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Media Credits:

first photo courtesy of fanpop.com

second photo courtesy of homorazzi.com

third photo courtesy of fanpop.com

fourth photo courtesy of eonline.com

fifth photo courtesy of usmagazine.com

sixth photo courtesy of instyle.com

seventh photo courtesy of ibtimes.com

Style Spotlight: Jennifer Garner Thursday, May 10 2012 

New mom of three Jennifer Garner stepped out in public in Las Vegas on April 25th for the first time since giving birth to son Samuel Garner Affleck on February 27th. She looks absolutely amazing, and prompted me to delve into some of Jen’s most memorable-and adorable-style moments.

 

Jen first caught our eye as the awesome, ass-kicking Sydney on Alias. With her insanely creative disguises, wigs, leather ensembles, sexy lingerie- not to mention her incredibly chiseled physique- she soon emerged as a starlet to watch!

At the Met’s Costume Gala in 2007, Jennifer drew rave reviews for her bold red Valentino.

One of my favorite Jennifer Garner fashion stunners is the drop-dead gorgeous black Oscar de la Renta at the 68th Oscars in 2008. Her beautiful face is made all the more spectacular by the exquisite Van Cleef and Aprels diamond choker necklace. Pure Hollywood royalty!

Jennifer has exuded glamour on the Red Carpet, both solo and accompanied by her husband Ben Affleck. They co-starred in Daredevil and also in Pearl Harbor. They made absolutely one of the top three cutest couples in Hollywood. Cute enough, in fact, to hep us forget that Ben was once part of another-far less cute and admirable- Bennifer, and that Jen was once married to Scott Foley for a short time. These two look they they belong together, and have certainly embraced the happy domestic life.

 

With all her A-list star power, and dazzling Red Carpet moments, Jennifer shines most in her role as “mommy” to Violet, Seraphina and now baby Samuel.

 

Seriously, the kids are freakishly cute. And I hate kids. Upon announcement of their latest addition, Victor Garber (yup, her Alias co-star) said that Jennifer has never been more beautiful. She always looks happy, and fresh-faced even in casual clothes running errands with her children.

Congratulations, Jennifer Garner on the birth of another adorable (we’re sure!) child, on your recent 40th birthday on April 17, and on being one of the most beautiful wives and mothers in Hollywood! We continue to look to Jen and Ben as an enduring example of love and commitment in the crazy Hollywood chaos.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Media Credits:

first photo courtesy of huffingtonpost.com

second photo (as Sydney) courtesy of mylot.com

third photo courtesy of fabsugar.com

fourth photo courtesy of fabsugar.com

fifth photo (with Ben Affleck) courtesy of babble.com

sixth photo (with Ben Affleck in Daredevil) courtesy of babble.com

seventh photo (with Ben Affleck) courtesy of centerblog.com

eighth photo (with daughter Violet) courtesy of nimbooz.com

ninth photo courtesy of zimbio.com

Style Spotlight: Emily Blunt Tuesday, May 1 2012 

The sassy starlet first caught our hearts-and had us quoting “I’m just one stomach flu away from my goal weight”- as Emily from The Devil Wears Prada.

 

But the once put-upon, snarky fashion assistant to Ms. Streep has genuinely arrived in Hollywood and is now a star in her own right. She got her starring turn as another famous Brit- playing the title role in 2009’s The Young Victoria. With her European charm, unabashed excitement and girl-next-door beauty, Emily has taken both sides of the pond by storm.

 

Next up was an obvious Matt Damon screen teaming. (Side note: I mean, who gets ahead in Hollywood without at one point working with Matt Damon?) Anyway, Emily turned heads as the adorably doomed girlfriend that Matt is determined-if not destined- to meet.

She even had a starring turn in real life in a role most girls dream about- Michael Buble’s girlfriend. The two were a sickenly sweet example of young love for three years, but like most of Buble’s songs, it was too good to last.

 

Of course Emily picked up her fashionable self and moved on to another equally yummy star, the much sought-after John Krasinski. Last July, they tied the knot in an intimate ceremony. The couple regularly sizzles on Red Carpets.

The 2010 Golden Globes showed off Emily’s philanthropic side, too. She auctioned off her amazing blush Dolce & Gabbana gown to raise money for Haiti relief.

 

 

 

 

At the 2009 Screen Actors Guild Awards, Emily caught fashion attention for her sparkly silver Pamela Roland. She’s certainly comfortable wearing haute couture and showing some skin. I loved how she went minimal with her accessories.

 

 

Of course, my favorite Emily Blunt fashion style might be her stunning emerald moment at the 2012 Screen Actors Guild Awards. She drew inspiration right from the runway, and just screamed “elegance” in this Oscar de la Renta. Who doesn’t love a bold green?

On and off the Red Carpet, Emily has been pretty loyal in emulating the role that made her famous, and stuck to high-end couture designers for her fashion moments. After all, once you wear Chanel boots on a set for a long period of time, I can’t imagine it’s easy to let all that glamour go.

Next up: she will star alongside Jason Segal in the much anticipated The Five Year Engagement. Not only do the ads for this film look hilarious and adorable, but Emily certainly garnered some interest when she showed up at the film’s New York City premiere at the 2012 Tribeca Film Festival in a spectacular Jason Wu. Is it just me, or does it look better on Emily than on the model?

 

Pair that fashion sense with Emily’s super-sophisticated accent and Grade A man candy, and you have one of best British imports since tea and crumpets.

 

Media Credits:

first photo (as Emily) courtesy of telegraph.co.uk

second photo (as Victoria) courtesy of nostalgicallyyours.com

third photo (as Elise) courtesy of ballerinaflats.com

fourth photo (with Michael Buble) courtesy of huffingtonpost.com

fifth photo (with Jon Krasinski) courtesy of eonline.com

sixth photo courtesy of fabsugar.com

seventh photo (with Jon Krasinski) courtesy of popsugar.com

eighth photo courtesy of redcarpetfashionistaawards.com

Fitness Focus: Brandi Glanville Tuesday, Apr 24 2012 

She’s not only the snarky, refreshing newcomer on the most recent season of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills or the famously-spurned ex-wife of dog Eddie Cibrian. She’s also a mother of two boys with an incredible body. And for the record, how much does that suck that whenever someone (for the most part) writes about her or thinks about her, the Eddie Cibrian/Leann Rimes stuff comes up? That must be hard for her.

Anyway, I really enjoyed her on RHOBH, and thought she was hilariously honest, funny and likeable. Just the breath of fresh air that the glitzy zip code needed.  So I’ll stop talking about her dramatic divorce now, and move on to gushing about her gorgeous body.

 

At 5’9, Brandi was obviously a former model- not surprising anyone, right? She’s another hard-working celebrity mom who credits her body to the leaning, lengthening Pilates, starting during her first pregnancy nine years ago. She says she now hits the Pilates studio three times a week, after dropping her boys off at school.

She’s also a fan of the outdoors, staying active with hiking, biking and walking her dogs. Of course she doesn’t eat like a glutton either, focusing on a healthy diet, complete with perfect portion control. She sounds so normal about her exercise regimen, making it sounds attainable and a normal, healthy part of her life. She obviously values her appearance but isn’t obsessed with herself, and that in itself is something else to emulate.

She may be trying that whole “normal Hollywood mom” thing, but her body is anything but ordinary.

 

Media Credits:

first photo courtesy of examiner.cm

second photo courtesy of examiner.com

third photo courtesy of celebrityfocus.com

All Hail, Ser Jorah Mormont Tuesday, Apr 17 2012 

Today’s Game of Thrones obsession: Ser Jorah Mormont.

 

The fallen-from grace knight exiled from Westeros, dashing escort to Danaerys Targarean. Estranged son of Lord Commander Mormont of the Night’s Watch. I can’t really say more about him without tearing up or gushing, so we shall stop there.

 

His rugged good looks, charming persona and obvious-yet-honorable infatuation with his Khaleesi are enough to make us adore him, but it’s his real spirit and enigmatic Westeros back story that gives an entirely new angle to the Dothraki story lines.

 

After the death of Viserys, Ser Jorah is Danaerys’ only tie to her homeland, and her only “Common Tongue” companion for much of her journey. It is Jorah who tells her “There is no word for thank you in Dothraki,” and we can then see the fear in Dany’s eyes as Khal Drogo lifts her up onto her white horse to begin their wedding night.

He admirably watches her grow and embrace the Dothraki ways, and heartbreakingly watches her with Khal Drogo during the first book. Their journey together takes many turns, and of course it’s Game of Thrones, and thereby unpredictable. His acting in the last scenes of the amazing season one finale was the perfect mix of anguish and enthralled wonder.

 

The brilliant Scottish-born actor Iain Glen brings warmth and generosity to Ser Jorah, and delivers his memorable lines with the perfect mixology of charisma and pallor.

He also appeared in the wildly popular Downton Abbey and played Otto Frank in the 2009 miniseries The Diary of Anne Frank. I was delighted to stumble across an old (as in 2007) movie starring Colin Firth, Ben Kinglsey, Kevin McKidd (Dr. Owen Hunt!) and Thomas Brodie-Sangster, the adorable little boy from Love Actually, in a totally washed out epic of the Roman Empire. I watched for a few minutes, enjoying the Uncle Jamie action and mini-Love Actually reunion between my two favorite characters, when what do I hear but the gruff, refined voice of Ser Jorah Mormont! Looking exactly the same as on the plains of Vaes Dothrak in his glittering armor, there was Glen, appearing in this film as Orestes. I must admit, the fabulous ensemble cast was not enough to keep my interest, and since Glen’s character soon left the screen, I soon switched the channel.

 

Anyway, Glen’s energy as Ser Jorah Mormont is one of my favorite elements of Game of Thrones. His line “I believe what my eyes and ears report. As for the rest, it was 300 years ago. Who knows what really happened?” speaks to Danaerys’ inner conflict but is also a major theme of the entire series.

 

Besides Ghost, he may be my favorite supporting character.

 

 

Media Credits:

first photo courtesy of imdb.com

second photo courtesy of page2rss.com

third photo courtesy of tumblr.com

fourth photo courtesy of iainglen.com

fifth photo courtesy of tumblr.com

Natalie Dormer, Please Don’t Ruin Game of Thrones! Wednesday, Apr 11 2012 

Those of you familiar with my Game of Thrones affinity (preceded of course, by my Game of Thrones: A Song of Ice and Fire obsession- get the difference? So glad.) will understand my skepticism, hesitance, and total on-the-fence attitude about the 2nd season of the HBO hit. They’re adding gratuitous, visually unappealing extras NOT in the book that add nothing to the character development or the remarkable brilliance of the show.

 

I won’t go into all the details (I hate you, Ros) but let’s focus on the newest face of the third episode: the lovely sort of black widow, Margaery Tyrell, played by Natalie Dormer.

 

Oh, Natalie Dormer, you clever girl, you certainly have made a cozy little niche for yourself, haven’t you? Landing the role of the brat in Casanova to Anne Boleyn to Margaery Tyrell. Then playing them with the exact same breathy tone of voice, exact same open-mouthed, wide-eyed fake innocence and the exact same spoiled smugness? I tolerated you as the doomed Anne, because you were fresh, and exciting and our peaches-and-cream complexion brought everything that The Tudors needed. Horrid acting aside.

 

She even brings with her some Tudors-esque boy-on-boy action (another gratuitous addition:the Loras/ Renly love story was of course alluded to in the novels, but we never saw a love scene. We already saw one in the first season, and we’ve already heard that Loras sneaks into Renly’s tent from the trailer.

Renly’s homosexuality was really only addressed in the book for a reason to explain why Margaery would still be a suitable wife for Joffrey.) If the third episode features more than a few glimpses of Loras and an overly-ambitious Margaery instead of focusing on Catelyn Stark’s interaction with Renly (sort of very important in the book!) I’ll be quite upset.

 

Natalie is certainly lovely looking, in an overly satisfied pug sort of way.

I think she is much more suited to the Margaery Tyrell role than she was for Anne Boleyn- a creature who should have been mysterious, captivating and utterly voluptuous but was doomed to an overly sexed teenager sort of portrayal. Margaery doesn’t need to do much except look pretty and rich- the costume department can help Natalie with half of that. She certainly isn’t bad-looking, only I wish she wouldn’t speak so much.

My biggest fault with this casting choice is perhaps the plethora of choices out there- the Thrones producers and casting agents couldn’t find anyone else who was willing to hang out in period costume for a few weeks? That’s all the Margaery role really calls for- sit next to King Renly, wear a crown, look shocked when he dies, sit next to King Joffrey, wear a different crown, look shocked when he dies. Did we really need to scrape up a Tudors sloppy second, and then allow her play the exact same character over again, bringing her overly breathy voice whispering in her kingly husband’s ear that she’ll give him a son?

It’s like Joffrey agreeing to marry Renly’s young widow as long just because she’s rich and beautiful….hmmm….

 

Media Credits:

first photo courtesy of screenrant.com

second photo (as Anne Boleyn) courtesy of tvguide.com

third photo (as Margaery Tyrell) courtesy of chloe.burchata.com

fourth photo courtesy of the fashioninsider.com

fifth photo courtesy of thewertzone.com

sixth photo courtesy of wikifleet.com

Afternoon of Amazing: Glee’s “Somebody I Used To Know” Tuesday, Apr 10 2012 

The damn-catchy “Somebody That I Used To Know” is brought to new levels of brilliance tonight on Glee. I’ve watched this video probably 23 times. I also bought their version of the song on iTunes. No judgment, please.

Something tells me that Blaine Anderson was the actual trend-setter for Spring fashion, and had indeed been sporting that colored denim all winter. Impervious to fashion trends as he might be (complete with that top polo button that makes me want to be more violent to a button than ever before) Darren Criss has one of my favorite voices of like ever. His devastating rendition of “Somewhere Only we Know” is on my Top 10 list.

He executes the angst and repressed sibling rivalry-hopefully stemming from something a bit more substantial than a flashbacked big brother (looking creepily like Blaine’s main squeeze Kurt Hummel) holding a weird action figure just out of his reach.

He dramatically removes his cross-body bag at the precise moment to maximize the expression of his teen anger, and his poor biceps struggle to remain contained in that too-tight polo. Again, resist the urge to reach into your computer screen and remove his top polo button. You. Can. Do It.

Matt Bomer, another perfect creation of yumminess, then joins him on stage and assumes the perfect Les Mis-esque stance.

The two shoot dagger stares and scream at each other for the next eighty seconds, with enough smoldering drama and pain to satisfy viewers for the next two seasons. The clincher for me is Matt’s last shoulder shrug at the end of the number. Perfection.

His voice is pretty amazing, as well, which brings me to one of the most major questions of the day: why doesn’t Neil sing on White Collar? Are you listening, USA?

OMG, and Blaine’s brother’s name is Cooper Anderson. Trifecta of glory achieved, Glee! THIS is why I watch!

Will you be watching the new Glee episode “Big Brother” Tonight on FOX?

Media Credits:

link to YouTube video

first photo courtesy of popcrush.com

second photo (Darren Criss) courtesy of fanpop.com

third photo (Matt Bomer) courtesy of popwatch.com

fourth photo courtesy of popdust.com

Ski Style Tuesday, Apr 10 2012 

By now, the entire world knows that Prince William whisked his wife off for a ski break to celebrate their reunion. There was some original speculation on exactly where the Duchess was being whisked off to, but now that some photos have surfaced, it’s clear that the Royal Couple is enjoying some time on the slopes in Meribel at Three Valleys Resort with the Middleton clan. (much thanks to www.hrhduchesskate.blogspot.com for keeping me informed about the royals on holiday-I visit your blog every day!)

As if we didn’t already know that Kate looked gorgeous without make-up, there are some gorgeous photos of her, with a natural, sun-kissed glow from a day in the snow. Will and Kate looked like they’re having a blast with Pippa and her beau as well as Kate’s parents.

I happen to love Kate’s ski style. How does she still look so trim in the famously unflattering puffy skiwear? Maybe that’s her secret to being so perfectly skinny and toned? What brands is she wearing? Something tells me it’s not North Face. This makes me want to run out and grab a pair of pink ski pants, just for fun.

I have a feeling I’d still look like a marshmellow wearing a white puffy jacket with pink pants, but it’s fun to emulate Kate anyway, right? If Kate ever releases the name of the luxury ski clothing brand she favors, I’m sure their sales will skyrocket.

Still no word on who was baby-sitting Lupo while Will and Kate were away with her family. Perhaps Harry?

What are some of your favorite brands to wear on the slopes?

Media Credits:

first and third photos courtesy of hrhduchesskate.blogspot.com

second photo courtesy of hellomagazine.com

Style Spotlight: Julianna Marguiles Thursday, Apr 5 2012 

I have LOVED( yes, with a capital “L”) Julianna Marguiles since her Carol Hathaway days.

 

I was one of those people squealing with delight when she took home the Best Actress Golden Globe trophy at the 2010 show, and on her way up to the podium, squeezed George Clooney. No, not because it was George Clooney, but because it was Carol and Doug Ross back together again! The fact that these two supremely successful actors reunited and came back to ER for the show’s series finale in 2009 solidified their places in my heart forever.

 

She epitomized 90’s glamour with her bountiful, bouncy curls and was everyone’s favorite nurse.

 

 

Now, the world recognizes her as an amazing actress for her incredible work on CBS’ hit The Good Wife. This show has won her accolades, awards and also a chance to show off her new fashion sense and that she looks better than ever! She has been nominated for and scooped up nearly every TV acting award there is. Here’s a quick look back at some of her best style moments.

I remember staying in one night while on vacation with my parents in 2001 to watch The Mists of Avalon, for which Julianna was nominated for a Golden Globe for her role as Morgaine. A fabulous miniseries and a $70 room service grilled cheese later, my ER- obsessed heart was finally able to see her as someone besides Carol Hathaway.

With The Good Wife, and her sleek, modern  hairstyle, Julianna shines as Alicia Florrick and brings every sort of relatable vulnerability- while remaining an incredibly strong working mother (with fabulous clothes) that any woman would be proud to look up to.

 

 

 

 

The 45- year old  has stunned at nearly every major Red Carpet, with nary a let down to speak of. I adore her style, honesty and courage.

She caught everyone’s eye (and a statuette) at the 2010 Screen Actors Guild Awards in her asymmetrical black Narciso Rodriguez.

She also took home the Golden Globe for Best Actress in a TV Drama that Awards Season. At the 2010 Golden Globes (where she hugged Clooney!) she also rocked the asymmetrical trend with a dazzling ruby Narciso Rodriguez.

 

She scooped up a trophy at the 2011 Screen Actors Guild Awards in a tight chignon and gorgeous red YSL gown.

She did get some fashion criticism for her white Armani Prive gown that she wore to pick up her Best Actress Emmy at the 2011 show. I loved it, and it was refreshing to see such a seasoned Red Carpet winner stun in something avant-garde and interesting.

I also loved her most recent Red Carpet moment. At the 2012 Golden Globes this past January, she chose a purple/magenta open-backed Naeem Khan gown accented with turquoise earrings.

I’ve always admired her, and now the rest of the fashion world can too! Check her out with fellow TV beauties Sofia Veragara and Claire Danes on the cover of the upcoming Vanity Fair. Wow!

What is your favorite Julianna look? Do you prefer her as Carol Hathaway or Alicia Florrick?

Media Credits:

first photo (as Carol Hathaway, with George Clooney) courtesy of buddytv.com

second photo (as Morgaine) courtesy of listal.com

third photo (as Alicia Florrick) courtesy of cleveland.com

fourth photo courtesy of altfg.com

fifth photo courtesy of fanpop.com

sixth photo courtesy of stylefrizz.com

seventh photo courtesy of huffingtonpost.com

eighth photo courtesy of justjared.com

ninth photo courtesy of tumblr.com

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