Thursday, May 30, 2013

The Fashionista 45

I can not even tell you how many times I have been asked, “What are you’re list of must-have pieces,” “What pieces couldn’t you live without?” or "What items do you think you should splurge on?" As I am a pretty avid thrifter, that last one is key. I don't thrift everything, because some things really should just fit well.

So, without further adieu, here are my fashionable 45 items, sure to turn your wardrobe into
something fabulous.

The Clothes:

1) A pair of dark wash skinny jeans. They are the ever so flattering and well as flirty jean. Tuck them into boots, cuff them with flats… think of them as the swiss army knife of your denim collection.

2) The chambray top. Timeless and ever so versatile. I got my first one this spring, and I don't know how I dressed without it.  It should be fitted but yet not tight. Wear them alone, layer them under or over. The possibilities are endless.

3) The sexy, skimming the ground flare jean. This should be really flattering and be long enough to wear with heels. Perfect for a polished look or a boho goddess look.

4) The perfect white blouse. Enough said. But seriously, this will save your “I-do-not-know-what-to-wear-today-dilemas.” Wear with anything: scarves, necklaces, shorts, colored jeans, skinny jeans, cords ANYTHING.

5) The striped long sleeve. This nautical staple is also 100% Americano. Always comfortable, as gives that easy chic vibe that everyone wants. Great for the day-to-day grind, but in a timeless fashion. I have a black and white one that is just long enough to wear with leggings, boots, and a sock bun. So good.

6) A black boyfriend blazer. I like mine with 3/4 sleeves and a streamlined shape. It creates insta-polish in any outfit. Wear to work… or over a cocktail dress. The choice is yours.

7) A pair of colored jeans. Ya I know what you are thinking, “They are so trendy”. But I think you can make anything work with a dose of confidence. Patronize a hue that is a jewel tone or a bold red.

8) The LBD. Get one that has a little extra oomph. Whether it’s a peplum detail, a little lace, a cut out. Make it anything but boring. Mine is a very traditional, professional cut, with a bow waistband. This is something to splurge on!

9) The leather jacket. Goes with everything and is light enough to wear in the fall and spring.

10) A jean jacket. Think all-American girl. It also would go great with that striped shirt… You think your jeans are versatile? A jean jacket is just the outerwear counter part.

11) A pair of nice denim shorts. The right pair just looks good on everyone and can be dressed up or down. Avoid going too short, unless you want to buy more than one pair.

12) A patterned skirt. Ideal hem lengths vary for everyone, but avoid an extreme mini skirt. This could be dressed up for drinks or dressed down for every day.

13) The perfect white tee-shirt. It is the basic piece that many outfits will build on. My favorite is neither too tight or too loose. I love a v-neck cut.

14) A great day dress. Get one that works with your body… not against it. Make sure it is light weight so it is easy to layer.

15) A big chunky sweater. Great for the cooler days. Its über comfortable and can be completely chic, with jeans, leggings, boots, flat.s 

16) A striped blazer. This may not strike you as a “must-have” piece, but after getting mine, I know I can’t live without it. I could wear it 100 different ways, easily.

17) Black skinny jeans. Sexy, dark, slim fitting. Perfection.

18) A crew neck sweater. Get some that are infused with personality. Maybe a french saying, a color blocked version, or a cute embellishment.

19) The “I’m sexy and I know it” dress. For the days you want to ditch the LBD. Something flirty and fun that makes you feel drop dead gorgeous. A little over the top is great. Throw practicality out the window and invite frivolousness in.

20) A pencil skirt. It should hit the knee or slightly above. It also should be tailored to perfection, displaying your curves but definitely not skin-tight. Great for work, social gatherings or a classy cocktail hour.

21)A pea coat jacket. It will be in style forever. Make sure it has shape and doesn’t make you look like a box.

22) A “fun” winter jacket. Mine is a bright, colbalt blue wool. It was my grandmother's and it just looks good. Absolute timeless vintage for when you need to be dressed up AND warm

23) Lets talk boobs. You need a strapless nude bra. It will save you. And in case you all didn’t get the memo: never wear white under white.

24) A seductive bra. This is different for everyone. This should make you feel like a Victoria’s Secret model.
                  Side note - I buy almost all of my underwear in sets. I just feel more put together when my underwear matches. Calm me crazy, but I recommend it.

25) The no-show underwear. For all the tighter things in your wardrobe. Choose something in a nude hue that is seamless, it will do the job well.

The Accessories

26) A black thin waist belt. It pulls you in at all the right places and could make a burlap sack flattering.

27) A hat. It honestly isn’t that practica, until the day you wake up with awful hair. Then you wish
you had that fedora you admired at the store. Buy the hat.

28)A great pair of gloves. Make them special. If you live in a place with snow, feel free to splurge. Mine are red leather with a bow at the wrist.

29) An infinity scarf. It is just as comfortable as it is fashionable (which is a surprisingly hard combination to find).

30) A small purse. It can be crossbody or a shoulder bag, but it should be small enough for your wallet, celly, sunglasses, and chapstick. This is good for traveling and you really just want to be carrying the essentials, close to your body.

31) A cross body bag. When you want something to carry more stuff in. I had a friend just go to Europe and I am going in a year and the need for a larger cross body bag is very real.

32) A clutch. For me, I have a big ass wallet in a fun print so I cheat on this one sometimes, but I also have a blue velvet clutch and silver vintage clutch I got as a gift. For when you're going out, or just want to look a little more put together than your bulky bags.

33) A tote. As a student, I find this important. I have a backpack, but there are days when I don't want to lug the thing around and I have too much for my bag. I splurged on this item and I have a PanAM bag from Modcloth, but you can get them cheaply. And it's good to have for school, overnight trips, beach days, whatever.

34) Stackable rings. I love the versatility they provide. You could wear one on every single finger if you wanted, or all on one. They give luring intricacies to any outfit. Mine are bright, colored chevrons.

35) A pair of diamond studs. This piece you will honestly be able to wear forever and are the epitome of classic timelessness. I’m not saying you need 2 carat ones, just ones that add a little sparkle.

36) Pearl studs. Think Audrey, go for a classy little extra that is the blank slate of accessories. Just control yourselves, bypass the gaudy fake ones.

37) A chain necklace. It is sexy and streamlined all in one accessory. It adds a little je ne sais quoi to your demeanor, whether it's just a chain, or have a charm on it. It just looks nice.

38) Layerable bracelets. The deliver a dose of fun to any outfit. Choose ones that “go” and not necessarily “match” to strike the perfect style note. I have ones that are jeweled, spiked, chained and are a simple so I can match them to my style of the moment.

39) Sunglasses.And have more than one style and color. Just because Raybans match your bikini does not mean you have to wear exclusively them. I have Raybans, aviators, and some trendy ones.

The Shoes

40) The black pump. This is the one shoe that exudes equal parts confidence and classiness. It will bring you far. That make-or-break interview: done. That date with a guy you have been ogling over forever? Perfect. Paired with jeans, the perfect mix between trying and the ease of not trying (so hard that is). One piece of advice: invest. If you can stretch your budget, proceed confidently.

41) Converse. Just buy them. Wherever you can find them. They are so worth it. 

42) Strappy Sandals. Lets make something clear, shall we? This does not mean flip-flops. Why settle for a fashion flop when you could be wearing a sophisticated sandal, sans that annoying smacking sound. I love ones that include a little metal or leather detail.

43) The ankle bootie. I love the “cute-factor” that goes along with this style. Wear them with cuffed jeans, skinny jeans, shorts, dresses, whatever actually. It delivers a bit of attitude, which I thoroughly enjoy.

44) The ballet flat. Take your pick of colors, but have the basis of taupe, nude and black covered. I swear I could run a marathon in these… ok, maybe not. But for sure a major shopping spree.

45) The nude heel.  Not only do these pretties make your legs look runway-worthy, but they go with just about anything. The prettiest and parable shoe you will ever come across. If you tend to look like a baby giraffe walking on ice when in heels, I would go with a wedge. Baby steps, people.

This is simply just a mental check-list you should have in the back of your mind. What do you already have? Awesome. What don’t you have? And let’s make something clear… these aren’t items that you need to go buy right away. This is a tentative list to put you in the fashionable direction.

Oh and just a side note as to why there are more accessories than the clothing pieces themself. To this, I can say that I honestly wholeheartedly believe accessories are more important than clothing because it is the details of an outfit that turn it from clothing to having and exuding style.


Wednesday, May 15, 2013


I turned 21 yesterday. 

Which is cool but a little bit crazy. 

It's like the last big milestone birthday besides being able to rent a car, and, really, that isn't nearly as exciting as being able to order alcohol with your dinner just because you CAN.


The thing about birthdays is that you are reminded that you have the most loving and generous family (Alright, I've known that for awhile and am reminded of that everyday, but I'm just saying... ) to spoil you and 100s of amazing friends. My Facebook page was blowing up with messages of love and cheer! Thank you to each of you well-wishers!

Another thanks to everyone who came out with me! It felt so good to emerge from a tough semester and then just feel showered with love and care and be in a light-hearted atmosphere. 

Let's just say I had a great birthday.

And it kicked off what is looking to be a great summer.

I am working for IRTY this summer as a lead teachers which is a HUGE honor.

I am playing Leisl Von Trapp in The Sound of Music this summer.

And I have callbacks for a production of Grease tomorrow night.

While I still need another part time job, these are already great opportunities that I would never have been brave enough to take before. Opportunites I would have wanted to take, but I never would have actually done it.
Lately I've been trying to do things that I say I want to do, rather than saying I want to do something and then just... not doing it.  I have a hard time taking all the ideas I have and actually putting them into action.  But I realize that the only reason things aren't happening is because I don't do them!

I saw a quote once that said, "A year from now, you'll wish you'd started today" and I feel like that so frequently. If I had gone to that audition. If I had taken that chance. If I had broken up then. If I had gone for that kiss.




Blah, blah, blah. Who cares about ifs? They're in the past. They don't matter at this point.

I want to live more fully.  Less regrets.  Less wishing and hoping.  More doing and being.

Since I am an adult and all! I think I'm going to be brave. And going to let my smile, however goofy, shine forth and be a little ray of sunshine.



Saturday, May 4, 2013

Intergalactically Enduring Life Lessons

Happy May the 4th! Star Wars Day!

Star Wars. One of my favorite things. Really, it's a problem.

I love the lightsabers, I love the costumes, I love the culture, I love the story. I know way too much about the actors, the special effects, the story, the backstory, everything.

My first acting role was in family friend's fan film (Yay alliteration!). I was a Padawan with a side braid. I got to help drive a space ship that was built in the hallway of his house with a green screen and everything. It was pretty snazzy.

 For this particular May the 4th, I wore a handmade Star Wars skirt, and I also styled my hair in two low twist buns, a la Princess Leia.

I made the skirt actually a couple months ago, but I've been saving the debut of it for today.

Besides the general coolness of Star Wars, there are several life lessons we can take from it. When I was little, I didn't really think this deeply into it, but I can see things that we internalized from the films.

1. Don’t abandon your friends

Han Solo and Chewbacca didn’t have to come back and clear the way for Luke to blow up the Death Star just as Luke, Leia, Chewbacca, and Lando didn’t have to risk life and limb to rescue Han from Jabba the Hutt. But they all did, no matter the risk — because when it matters most, friends are there for each other.

2. Dream big

There’s a scene early in the original Star Wars when Luke stares wistfully at the suns in the Tatooine sky. Star Wars reinforces that we can breakaway and do incredible things, like rescue a princess from the Death Star or train to become a Jedi knight. Whether it's on Tatooine or Moscow, Idaho, everything starts with a dream

3. Finish what you start

We all steer off course sometimes or start something but don’t finish. Luke, frequently petulant and irritable In The Empire Strikes Back, ignores the advice of his elders and rushes to face Vader instead of completing his training. It’s a bad decision and he pays for the mistake with the loss of some confidence, his hand, and his sense of identity. Luke does recover and learn from the experience, but the films make it clear that what gets him through is that he returns, greatly humbled, and completes his training.

4. Don’t underestimate your opponent

Underestimation is a big theme in Star Wars. Grand Moff Tarkin underestimates the capabilities of the rebels to blow up the Death Star and refuses to evacuate, Luke believes he can handle Vader when he first confronts him in Cloud City, and the Empire (and even the audience) dismisses the Ewoks during the battle on the forest moon of Endor. In all cases, underestimation proves costly, and the examples remind us not to get too overconfident in our own lives.

5. Redemption

One can argue that the entire Star Wars saga culminates in the instant when Vader saves Luke and turns away from the Dark Side and against his master, the Emperor. The moment reaffirms our belief in the possibility and good in humanity. No matter the mistakes or misdeeds, anyone can change, because there is good in everyone. Some days I think we all can use some of that optimism back here on Earth.

6. Judge not by appearances should you

We’re told at an early age not to “judge a book by its cover” and yet the images and messages in our media constantly contradict the old adage. When Luke first meets Yoda, he dismisses the creature as a mischievous and annoying interloper to his mission to find a Jedi master. Leia initially judges Chewbacca as a “big walking carpet," Luke calls the Millennium Falcon a “hunk of junk,” and Han characterizes Ben as an old fool.

7. Quit while you’re ahead (this is to you, George)

The prequel films were major disappointments that diluted the original films. I appreciate George Lucas’ love of the material and desire to add to the saga, but, if I’m being honest, I pretend he never made the prequel films and just retired from the movies after Return of the Jedi.