Fashion Week Favs: Part I

OM-double G. It’s Fashion Week! While unfortunately I can’t stalk the shows in NYC, I can view all of the looks online thanks to extensive coverage from New York Magazine. All photos are courtesy of Imaxtree via New York Magazine Fashion Week Live coverage.

ADAM

L.O.V.I.N.G his trousers for Spring. Also glad to see that sparkles aren’t going anywhere just yet, because we all know how much I love a sequin.

Cushnie et Ochs

Nothing says I’m a New Yorker like wearing black in the middle of Spring when everyone else is rocking florals. I love the slouchy chic of the pants mixed with this very pretty sheer top. It kind of gives the femininity of the top a little bit of a hard edge. The draping of the dress in the second image is perfect. It is like the most sophisticated way to do a cutout and play a little peekaboo with some skin.

Jason Wu

Ok so I kind of went a little crazy for Jason Wu this season. I mean he just did it all: sheer, florals, great trousers and tailored dresses. He is an early frontrunner for my personal favorite Spring 2011 collection. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves, there are still many shows to go… Anywho, back to the collection. The first image is a tailored dress, I mean no explanation necessary, this is a staple for me. Floral top, perfect gray trousers? This second look has “Hi, I’m Raquel, co-founder of RickRock PR” written all over it. Next up, a shorts-suit? Yes please. Jason Wu, you have stolen my heart.

Preen

When I look at the collection from Preen, one word comes to mind: chic. Just because it is Spring doesn’t mean you have to look like its personification. You don’t always need florals or great prints, neutrals are one of the easiest ways to look sophisticated and sexy. Did I just say sexy? That was weird…Anyway, when you tone down the color and eliminate pattern, you can focus more on texture, cut, tailoring and most important: the wearer. And don’t get me started on the white T-strap stilettos.

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This Side of Paradise

So I’ve been sporadically reading This Side of Paradise from F. Scott Fitzgerald for a while now. I found a 1948 copy  of the book at Half Price Books for six bucks! We are talking a classic book from one of the greatest American novelists of all time. Anyway, I was really excited about my classic book. I continue to be excited as I read on and find the story to be timeless yet so eloquently and beautifully written that it makes it seem totally unique.

Below is a passage from the book that I liked so much, I read it over again about four times then wrote it down in my journal. It comes from a point when the main character Amory receives an encouraging letter from a friend that he recently visited. At this point in his life, Amory was feeling sort of lost and unsure of his place in the world. He had grown disillusioned with college life and felt that Princeton University forced him yet again to conform to a certain person to the point that he was losing sight of himself. He was just sort of going through a quarter-life crisis. I know that I have felt that way before in my life (not that I went to Princeton) so I really liked the perspective his older, wiser friend gave to him on the phases of life:

“…at fifteen you had the radiance of early morning, at twenty you will begin to have the melancholy brilliance of the moon, and when you are my age you will give out, as I do, the genial golden warmth of 4 p.m.”

What a beautiful way to describe growing up. Comparing the journey to adulthood to the rising of the sun, glow of the moon and warmth of the afternoon is just brilliant. Speaking of which, I love, love, love the notion of “melancholy brilliance”. Could there be a more perfect way to describe the moon? When I read passages like this, it makes me want to be a writer..like a real one, not this “on occasion pseudo-blogger” writer that I am now.

photo credit: http://storasysteralskarmode.blogg.se/

Jazz Era Lawn Party

This entire concept makes me so happy. Every summer in New York City, there is an afternoon spent doing the Charleston while dressed in styles from perhaps one of the most glamorous periods in fashion, the Jazz Age. Last weekend, NYC hosted its semi-annual Jazz Era Lawn Party on Governor’s Island. Too bad I was too busy being a rockstar in San Antonio to attend.

I need a Gatsby theme party stat!

Oh fashion, how I’ve missed you.

Let me set the record straight: I love, love , love my job. I also love, love, love fashion. My job however, does not love fashion. Therefore, since joining my current employer in January, I have pretty much abandoned fashion for the sake of practicality.

Running after kids, doing arts and crafts and playing basketball (well, “playing” is a relative term) don’t really lend themselves to amazing shoes, beautiful blouses and tailored dresses. Well, I’ve had enough. Summer is over, fall is upon us (NY Fashion Week!) and it is time to get out of this “famine of beauty!” (to quote Andre Leon Talley). Let the inspiration begin! Here are a few of some of my favorite looks from some inspiring fashion bloggers. Enjoy!

So I did a little shopping this weekend and literally had to stop myself from buying more sequins. Considering I no kidding have like no pants in my closet, I don’t need to build a wardrobe full of sequin tops, skirts and dresses. It looks like I’m not the only one though who is in love with sequins and the instant glamour they bring. They are everywhere and I love how Emily from Cupcakes and Cashmere pairs her sequined skirt with forever chic and ultra utilitarian equestrian boots. This whole mixing of sequins with tough girl wear is all over the place right now.

Ok, so while I am not sure if I can pull this off (but you better believe I’m gonna try), I am LOVING this look.  The whole “socks as statements” thing that I’ve been seeing all over the place has really grown on me. There is something so demure and sweet about this look but paired with aviators and the kind of confidence that only a grown woman can pull off, the look becomes fierce. Yep, I said it, Fierce! This lovely lady runs an unbelievably Euro-chic blog Rebel Attitudes with a ton of inspiring (and beautifully shot) photos.

So speaking of fierce…Um, homegirl is rockin her look! Not only is she pulling off the previously mentioned socks look, but her dress is absolutely adorable! Her skin looks amazing, her shoes are out of control, the hair, the face, the jewelry, ugh I can’t even take it! Too cute for school. This is the reason I love style blogs and websites like Chictopia, you can look at everyday people, check out their style and get ideas for how to wear things. It also helps if you are at all like me and think in your mind something will look cute but aren’t sure if it is wearable. Well as you can see here, it pays to take risks in fashion. This girl has such a great eye for funky bohemian style, I can flip through her Chictopia StylePantry profile for hours!

OM double G. I’m living for this right now. So simple, yet so chic. All I want is for one, moderately cool and rainy day in San Antonio so that I can bust out my Banana Republic trench. Obviously I will also need to seek out a bright colored draped dress to pair it with. I love that if she totally buttoned up the trench, you might assume she was wearing more conservative colors underneath given the black tights and understated shoes. Of course you would assume wrong because once that coat comes off—hello sunshine!  Jessica from What I Wore always has such cute stuff. She has some great guest bloggers right now because she is getting married, congrats!

So I had my 25th birthday celebration and turned into a gay man.

Haha, just kidding.

But seriously, I had a great 25th birthday celebration. Life is still pretty heavy right now so it was necessary to get out for a night and just kind of get out of control. All I wanted to do was wear a cute outfit, be surrounded by my amazing and beautiful friends and dance (and drink) the night away. And we did just that…until 8 Sunday morning. Then I spent Sunday lounging poolside with beautiful gay men while I tried to recover from the previous nights antics. Poolside lounging soon turned into McDonald’s and a Disney movie (Pocahontas, if you must know) which turned into the glorious, musical, divalicious experience of the one and only Whitney Houston in, The Bodyguard.  Then at 12:01 my gorgeous friends turned into a choir to sing me happy birthday.

Sidebar: having a cast of gorgeous gay men sing me happy birthday is literally a dream come true, now all I need is to star on Broadway as Annie. I mean we have a black President, we can have a black Annie right? Right.

The following video goes out to my boys, you know who you are.

Distractions

So some pretty heavy things have been going on in life right now, so I have been doing my best to cope. Turns out, my coping mechanisms are kind of fun…maybe I should have been doing them all along?

Coping Method #1: Hitting the gym.

I get a discount at Gold’s Gym through my job so I figured I had no excuse not to work out (that and the fact that my boss teaches classes there in her “spare” time added a little pressure). Anywho, I have been going to one of her classes, appropriately called Body Attack,  and although I thought I was going to die after my first time, I am now kind of addicted. I just couldn’t make it this Tuesday because it would have interfered with one of my other coping methods…

Coping Method #2: Partying like its 1999.

So I don’t know who I think I am, but somehow I feel like I can party like I’m a Hollywood It Girl and still be fine to be at work at 8am the next day. Turns out, while 25 isn’t exactly old, it sure as hell isn’t 21. One of my friends is kind of a rockstar, and he parties like its his job. Sunday, Tuesday, these may not seem like party nights but let me tell you, they most certainly are. He has single handedly restored my love for the nightlife. As luck would have it, I had been looking in the wrong places for San Antonio nightlife. Here is me, this heterosexual young woman looking for a great place to go dance, maybe partake in an adult beverage and just have a great time surrounded by beautiful stylish people. Apparently, in order to find the killer combination of those things, I needed to look in the one place I never thought of: the San Antonio Gay Scene, or as I like to call it, the SAGS–(not to be confused with the Screen Actor’s Guild, an equally gay friendly organization). Anyway, the SAGS is awesome and I’m pretty convinced that gay men and black women are cut from the same cloth. I mean, we are all really just divas deep down right? Who am I kidding, it ain’t that deep down. Let your diva flag fly b*tches!

Coping Method #3: Dancing.

Now most people would think that the whole dancing thing would be taken care of through CM #2, but no, not for me. I certainly like to dance when I party like a rockstar but I also think that there is healing in an iPod, underpants and your bedroom. Something about literally dancing like no one is looking is so much fun! I love to dance and I mostly just throw on my latest playlist (a scary mixture of hip hop and Myley Cyrus) and dance my ass off. Other times, I watch some hip hop choreography on YouTube and try to learn it. I usually fail miserably, but at least I pick up a few new moves in the process. Below is a video of one of my favorite routines from a choreographer out of Australia named Lizzie Wicks (and yes, it is to a Ludacris song which if you know me at all, you know how I have a burning love for Ludacris that could never be quenched).

Coping Method #4: Lost

Getting lost in Lost is the perfect form of escapism. 4.8.15.16.23.42.

This makes me smile

My friend Kendall sent me this video and I’m so glad she did, it brought a smile to my face (and possibly a single tear to my eye). There is something so beautiful about the simplicity of this video, which only expresses the beautiful simplicity of being solo. I hope you enjoy this too, whether you are in a relationship or not, it is important to remember that lonely moments should be cherished, not avoided.