Archive | February, 2012

Film and Fashion

29 Feb

Things were white hot on the red carpet with a few splashes of pale hues and bright bolds. The stars were on their fashion A-game Sunday night.

My best dressed list is as follows: Stacey Kiebler in Marchesa, Tina Fey in Carolina Herrera, Mila Jovovich in Elie Saab Couture, Penelope Cruz in Armani Prive, and Jessica Chastain in Alexander McQueen.

Kiebler wore a metallic gold and the side detail on her hip looked perfect on her frame. I just can’t get enough of it. Obsessed with Kiebler’s fashion choices this Awards season… I think having Clooney on your arm makes anything look better, but Kiebler has no trouble standing fashionably firm on her own two feet. Kudos!

Penelope Cruz never fails to look fabulous. I adore her choices year after year. This Armani Prive gown is so wonderful. The powder-y blue color and off-shoulder design compliments her skin tone and frames her body perfectly. It is a timeless and elegant choice.

Mila Jovovich was brilliantly bright in a pristine Elie Saab Couture gown. White is a color for spring this season and that was clearly evident at Sunday’s Oscars. The one shouldered dress and intricate beading make this an absolute hit for fashion critics. It has a feminine flow which is perfectly delicate.

Tina Fey looked flawless in traditional black. She always wears basic dresses, but they look stunning on her. I love the peplum, it adds the perfect amount of drama to Herrera’s design. I must say that Carolina Herrera is receiving high marks from me this Spring. I love her ready-to-wear line and this fabulous gown.

Jessica Chastain in Alexander McQueen incorporated a simple color and a delicate bronze design. The colors looked beautiful on her pale skin and were just overall exquisite. The Help star shone brightly on the red carpet as Octavia Spencer went on to win Best Supporting Actress. I love it!

While the Oscars were in full swing fabulosity and Stacey Kiebler looked divine in Marchesa (and next to my man Clooney) …my group was editing our short video project. It was a learning experience, but nonetheless very beneficial. Service is a very important part of the Saint Joseph’s Community and as Appalachian Experience approaches (t-minus 2 days) students are preparing themselves for amazing opportunities to learn and grow. These “touchstone” moments will help define the individual because giving back is about engaging with a community and learning from the people around you. It is indescribable and we wanted to capture that throughout short film. Learning how to detach the audio and insert pictures with audio is a skill that I know I’ll use in future courses or endeavors. This breaks up the interview and gives the viewer a mental break while pulling in other important elements. We felt that this was beneficial way to approach the Service profile. Bianca, Grace, and I wanted to engage the viewer by showing them images from a primary source, Andrea. iMovie is an important tool to understand for the Communications field, especially with the rise of social media and global connectivity. Because of this experience I feel much more confident taking on a project of this sort in the future.

 

Color Me Happy

26 Feb

My mind is buzzing with ideas. What colors will I wear this spring?!

Now, of course I love to incorporate colors and fashions from the runways into my daily style. I just bought the most fabulous light gray belt with a double buckle (A-M-A-Z-I-N-G). I got this great find at Buffalo Exchange in Center City Philadelphia. I’ll definitely be back for great clothing at prices which compliment my broke college budget!

 #1 rule: No matter what the “trends” are, I find that staying true to your color-identity is most important because you have to wear things that you feel comfortable and beautiful in. Embrace your favorites and possibly add in the season color trends (expand your wardrobe’s color palate).

My fav spring 2012 colors: Mint, Pale pinks, and Blue hues

Mint is so adorable. It is the perfect amount of spring to add to your wardrobe! Here is a great way to incorporate mint into your spring/summer collection. There is a balance between colors which ties them all together in perfect harmony (yes, that sounds totally cheesy…but it’s true).

Pale Pinks are my favorite new shade. I love the girly vibe and the sophistication of these hues. Pinks are always a great color for spring and summer because they are light and feminine. I love the warm colors of fall and winter…ask any of my friends and they’ll tell you Winter is my favorite season because of the clothes, but I just can’t resist adding pale pinks into my wardrobe. I recently bought the most fabulous mauve boyfriend blazer. I can’t get enough of it. Then, because I was on a total “pink-out” I purchased an oversize cropped button up top (so difficult to explain, but such a great piece). It is the softest thing I think I’ve owned in a while and I’m obsessed with pairing it together with a long gold Betsy Johnson chain necklace with an eclectic purple feather. Thank you best friend for that Christmas present, it’s so unbelievably perfect.

So, pale pink is perfect for spring. Embrace these girly hues!

   

Blue. By far, blue is my favorite color. I own it in every shade. I love them all. Cobalts are a bright, vibrant blue perfect for spring and summer. You can pair them with different shades of blue. My favorite fashion trick is to pair a navy top with a cobalt accessory. The accessory pops on the dark top and it is just such a fun combination. Another great spring color is definitely pale blues. They are light, airy and superbly summer.

 

Always remember that fashion is about trying new things and finding what is right for you! It’s about defining your personality through the pieces you wear and bringing everything to life.

Don’t be shy, be fabulous and fierce. 

Rave Reviews…well sort of

21 Feb

I was asked to evaluate my blog to make improvements on it. Life is a constant learning experience filled with growth on various levels. I take this evaluation and improvements as another step towards greatness. Trial and error with a little bit of guidance goes a long way. I’m trying to market this blog to a larger audience of fashionistas and style guru’s. I have begun a small following of other fashion bloggers, as well as friends and family, but I hope that this is something I continue to use because I greatly enjoy discussing my fashion favorites (shoes, icons, colors, designers. You name it, I want to talk about it). I recently added a sidebar which I will continue to altar and edit as my blog grows and evolves. To do this I have begun tagging and categorizing my posts as a way to improve my search engine optimization.

Why Improve?

Fashion evolves daily. So, the way we talk about it should too. I’m on a constant journey to figure out who I am in this vast world. Where do I belong? What’s my calling? How can I make a difference? Does anybody actually care what I have to say? I carry all of these questions with me on a daily basis. I’m always thinking about how my words can affect someone else. Everyone connects with something and if writing is your release, then share your ideas. I like to tell myself that someone out there has the same love for the First Lady’s fashion and Jimmy Choo shoes as I do… or that Jason Wu’s designs, Fashion Week, and Award Shows are as much of an obsession.

If you have something to say…say it.

Let’s Reflect

15 Feb

Today I did a “digital log” to measure my digital usage. I lost the battle…I’m in digital overload and it’s no wonder I never get anything done (without logging off from the world). Even as I write this, I have various social media sites and my email account open. What I should be doing is writing the paper I’ve been trying to start for the last 3 days.

I wake up in the morning and after making coffee and breakfast the first thing I do is check my email. … Facebook and Twitter aren’t far behind from the constant email checking.

At work today, I attempted to write a pretty heavy paragraph for a paper that is extremely important. It’s the basis to the whole analysis. It took way longer than it should have because I

  1. Had to answer the phones for work and take messages
  2. Checked my email 4 times and read a new blog post from someone I follow.
  3. Texted my sister about multiple things happening in my life right now
  4. Had to reference online articles for the paper

It just never stops. I need one of those weekends where you go and turn off everything from the world. Problem: if I disconnect I might miss an important message. I’m constantly worried about missing a phone call or email from a possible opportunity. Just like in “Grown Up Digital,” Don Topscott argues that our generation is the future and we are reshaping politics and communications daily. We can be the unstoppable force for change. Barack Obama built his 2008 and now his 2012 campaign by creating a social-digital network of supporters. It is now possible to engage massive amounts of people through our digital usage.

I love the “digital world,” but sometimes I need to shut it off and get things done. This is probably the hardest thing for me because I like being connected. I enjoy checking my email and knowing what professors want me to complete. My calendar is constantly growing and since I was basically born organizing my clothes in a color coordinated fashion it’s important to my time management. I enjoy being connected to the fashion world and “what’s new” or “who’s new” … you can’t get everything from a fashion magazine once a month. Fashion media is my release from heavy school-work. However, I’ll be the first to admit that I need to watch my usage. I have a major rule: no texting while talking with friends or while out to dinner. I like my in-person time to be just that: in-person and fully engaged.

But…I did learn some stuff today:

  1. Obama’s approval rating is at 50%!!! Yay, Mr. President!
  2. The Colosseo in Roma has been damaged by the snow storms (NOOOOO. Non mi piace. Mi manca l’italia)
  3. And in fashion… well there is always something new in fashion. BGBCMAXAZRIA took spring’s hottest trend, color-blocking, and completely transformed it into a wonderful fall line. …And then there’s Diane Von Furstenburg’s Fall Collection. It’s bold and daring. It celebrates women. LOVE IT.

Designers I adore: Jason Wu

11 Feb

Jason Wu is one of my favorite designers. I first fell in love in January 2009 when Michelle Obama stepped out in his gown for the Inaugural Ball, but more recently I’ve fallen  for his perfectly tailored designs which play on femininity and strength. I love that he tapped into his cultural roots in the Autumn/Winter 2012 line. The warm colors and structural designs are perfect for fall. All of these reasons are why I am over the moon excited for the Target Collection he just launched because now I can finally afford a little piece of Wu!!!

Some media sources considered Michelle Obama’s choice to wear a Wu design on multiple occasions (Barbara Walters special and a Vogue cover shoot) are the reason for his career launch, but I just think she just has an amazing taste for fashion and went with the best designer. Now, maybe I’m a little bias in the First Lady’s favor, but I find that she is a style icon and one of the best dressed females in the public sphere. I love her daring choices and her ability to transform herself from collected and casual to gorgeous in designer gowns.

  

Everything which I had predicted as a trend for the upcoming fall season, Wu hit spot on. He utilized velvets, military inspiration, bold colors (red!), cinched waists, and draping. I’m such a fan of military (as evident from my previous post) and bold colors never fail. I mean, color blocking is going to be everywhere this season (shoes, accessories, and apparel). Cinched waists are a great way to create proportion and they almost always make an outfit look better (a friend pointed out to me that Jane in Abc Family’s Jane by Design is a perfect example of how belts can make the look). The draping element is something that I love to see on runways and on red carpets. There’s something delicate about it which I’m drawn to.

Here are some of my favorite Jason Wu looks from the Autumn/winter 2012 line:

 

 

  

I’ll leave you with this thought:

“Replace fear of the unknown with curiosity”

Mastering Mean Media

9 Feb

Okay, today’s post is going to be a little different. I’m going to give my version of a “PSA.”  The media, in a sense, runs our lives. We turn to it for guidance and answers on an array of issues. For the most part, I like to think that it is a valuable source of information.

However, everything that seems good typically has a downside or a “dark side.” For the teen generation today, that would be the media’s misconstrued view on beauty and the overexposure of drinking to young audiences. Now, I know how hurtful words can be; I experienced it first-hand and let them tear me down for most of my teenage years. What should have been the time of my life turned in to a nightmare that wouldn’t end. I let the words of my peers affect me. This issue of peer pressure on the premise of weight, body image, drinking and drugs needs to be addressed. Teens and college students feel the need to drink or diet excessively to gain a sense of belonging. Women (and men) are constantly trying to fit an unnatural mold. While we are by nature social beings, independence is a virtue which is under-utilized in society.

My point: The message that needs to be sent is that it’s okay to talk to someone when you’re feeling pressured. You aren’t alone.

Fashion should be a celebration of self-expression, but for some it has become an obsession of “perfection.” While this idea of perfection is absurd on multiple levels, it permeates our TV’s, internet streams, and fashion magazines. While I blame the media for skewing the image of beauty, I also hold peers accountable. I now see the absurdity that surrounds our culture and at times I understand the desire to conform. The underhanded comments and snide remarks from those who are important mean more to a susceptible young adult than the words in a fashion magazine. Not all situations are equal, but when positivity surrounds a person, they think of themselves in a positive light.

While the media may put some insane images out there positive role models can exist.

 

My girl Beyonce is a clear example of true feminine beauty and independence. Find your role model. Whether it is your mom or your best friend… Find someone who makes you a better person because “Beauty is how you feel inside, and it reflects in your eyes. It is not something physical.”

I’ll leave you with this thought: Just earlier this week, I was talking to my best friend about the impact of media on self-image. She said to me “People need to understand that all sizes are beautiful.” If you’re healthy, you’re beautiful and perfect. The words people shout are just words and like the childhood saying “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me” you can’t allow someone to tear you down through bullying and peer pressure. Some people will never grow up. I’ve learned that even as a college student, girls are the worst offenders for hurtful words (most often said behind your back). So, like Christina Aguilera says “you are beautiful just the way you are, words can’t bring you down.”  The words that come out of someone else’s mouth will always come back. Karma’s a real bitch.

In My Shoes

4 Feb

Let’s hope my recent laundry room impromptu fashion advice is a precursor to my life. At least I know that guy will look mighty fine on this Friday night.

Now for what we’re really here to talk about: Shoes. The one and only love(s) of my life… Who needs a man when you can have shoes? They don’t talk back and they always look good (unless you’re wearing shoes under my “Condemned to Ugly” Footwear List).

Of course every girl dreams of a Jimmy Choo or a Louboutin…or my fav a Manolo Blahnik, but these aren’t always possibilities. I was just talking with a friend the other day about my love for boots (For me, I think it borders an obsession…). I love everything about them, but most of all I like how they can complete an outfit and make it perfectly professional or casually cute. This season riding boots are all the rage and rightfully so. When I was abroad in Italy last semester the only thing I wanted was a medium brown riding boot from Ponte Vecchio, an bridge filled with artisan shops in Firenze. I found the perfect boutique and the cutest old man who showed me around his workshop. I had officially purchased my first pair of handmade shoes. My shoe-life could never be the same.

Since I’m short, I do have one rule when it comes to boots: Stay below the knee. If you’re tall, work it. If you’re tiny, stick with a boot that hits the middle of your calf or directly below you knee. It creates a flattering line and while you should make the shoe the focus, you don’t want it to engulf your leg.

Here’s my fav celeb boot look:

 Cameron Diaz in a Givenchy Riding Boot

Flats are a must have…especially when the weather warms and you have to put your boot collection away until the Fall months. Pair a cute flat with some dark skinny jeans and you have an instant classic Audrey Hepburn look. I love colorful flats to add a pop of color with a simple outfit or a sparkly flat as the centerpiece. Right now, I’m in love with TOMS’ new ballerina flats. They are perfection with a purpose. Who doesn’t want to wear something adorable and know that somewhere in the world a child is receiving shoes (for possibly the first time). It’s a way to incorporate Fashion for a Cause.

 TOMS Ballerina Flats Spring 2012 Collection

Stilettos, platforms, and pumps. Oh my! I love high heels. They make you feel instantly wonderful. They add a pep to almost any girl’s step. You can take an outfit from day to night with a perfect pump. This season bright colors are a hit and I can’t say I mind. I love taking the focus and putting in on the shoes…or building everything around the perfect stiletto.

Here is a great color-blocking platform for spring and summer:

If you want something more traditional stick with basic colors, but add a simple detail to the shoe such as a gather, sparkle, or a peep-toe! I love grays and blacks… Here’s an example of a simple stiletto for your collection.

Lastly, neutrals. They were all the rage last year, but I would be so quick to write them off for Spring and Summer 2012. I love a simple neutral pump or a patent platform in beige. They are great for work, but also for going out. Basically, I love everything about them. It’s all about what you pair them with. Stick with light summer colors: white, pale pinks, sky blue hues, and summery yellows in your outfit and add a neutral heel to tie everything together. You won’t be sorry.

My personal favorite Neutral (I just adore the bow):

Anyone can have a awesome shoe collection, but when you pair them with the right pieces  you create a timeless look that not only looks great, but makes you feel like a million dollars. You don’t need expensive shoes to be fashionista, you just need the confidence to pull them off!

‎”Give a girl the right shoes, and she can conquer the world” – Marilyn Monroe

…seriously though, anything is possible with the right shoe