30 May 2012

Can't Get Enough Color

One trend that I can't get enough of is the color blocking and bright colors of spring. The  playful dresses and funky color pairings continue to impress me and inspire my summer wardrobe  choices. I really like the bold pieces and pairings that seem to perfectly capture the boldness of summer fashion.  Eye catching pieces like these  by Martha Streck suggest an adventurous fashion that involves statement pieces and bright colors that are perfect for summer.

Martha Streck Elle Brazil

Martha Streck Elle Brazil

These pieces are most interesting because of the whimsy they evoke.  This one is muter but its
structural details of a bow and ruffle make the feminine frock quite fun.  I love the idea of a cute sundress inspired by the color block trends for a fun daytime event like tea or brunch.

Marie Claire

The more elegant pieces featuring bold color combinations are even more interesting to me. The color blocked look can be incorporated into evening wear in the form of longer dresses and non neon pieces. I like this look because the rich, jewel tone colors suggest a more put together ensemble but still evoke the fun and whimsy of the trend.

Color Block Vogue

I've always been a fan of bold colored statement pieces and I'm excited to experiment with new trends and more color combinations this summer.  Some of my favorite pieces were from the Nanette Lepore Spring 2012 collection and I decided to see if I could fashion a similar outfit out of the brights already in my own closet.

 Nanette Lepore

Since I just donated a ton of clothing to Goodwill and my closet is still overflowing, I decided this look would be perfect for a quick diy project. 

My Overflowing Closet

I had a lot  of brightly colored pieces to choose from but I finally settled on an old t-shirt from my crafting supplies and a pink skirt from a few seasons back.  I spent five minutes on the t-shirt: making a triangular cut-out, cropping the top, and adding a bow.  The skirt was still in good condition and needed no adjustments to create a comparable look.  For a final touch, I added a low-cost, store-bought hat to protect my face from the summer sun.

Nanette Lepore inspired DIY outfit

Because I like the trend so much I'll probably create a few more do-it-yourself versions of runway looks. For the summer, I prefer more laid back outfits like the two below, which offer the same attitude as the other looks, but offer a more comfortable style and freedom of ease.

Peter Som Marie Claire

Mod Cloth

25 May 2012

The Glamour of Gatsby

One of my favorite novels is The Great Gatsby. Maybe I was only holding on by a thread towards the end of it, but the text creates so many beautiful images in my head and that's enough to get me hooked.
Ever since I first saw this photo in the Times way back in January, I have been anxiously awaiting more images to surface of Baz Lurhmann's remake.

The winged eyeliner look - something I am still in the process of mastering.

I wish I could see an extreme close up of Carey Mulligan's dress. Even from far away it looks so detailed and beautiful. 

This might be my favorite still shot from the movie. 

Doesn't the headpiece on the girl in front look daring? I say daring because while it's pretty, I bet it's heavy.

Although previous Gatsby films might have inspired fans with their releases, I think this remake will stun audiences and has the potential to be the best out of all Gatsby films. The glitz and glamour have been magnified and the actors and actresses brought on are some of the best, in my opinion. The trailer was just released this past week:

The clothing and design scene in the trailer exceeded my expectations and had a bit of an edge to them. The scenery and wardrobe reminded me of this twenties inspired photo shoot done by Vogue a few years back.

These images are so similar to the movie, yet were taken almost five years ago. I guess Mr. Luhrmann had the same idea in mind as Grace Coddington (the fashion editor on this shoot).

I will surely be in "Gatsby Mode" all summer long, satisfying my craving for intricate dresses in subtle colors and trying my best to create delicate hair pieces (that don't weigh down my head), but with that, are you as excited as I am about this movie? 

19 May 2012

Multi-Purpose Prom Dresses

For young girls, it’s hard to get to this time of year without thoughts of prom on the horizon.  Though proms are a thing of the past for some of us, it’s fun to look back on those formals and think about what really mattered: the dress. I know that was the case for me when I went to prom in high school, and I look back at I what I chose to wear with a few thoughts in mind.  As a young adult, I can’t help but wonder if I could’ve done better in the dress department, picking a dress that was more mindful.   Often, girls search for months ahead of time and parents shell out hundreds and even thousands of dollars for a dress that is typically worn just once. I too was one of these girls, and for years I had old prom gowns sitting in the closet gathering dust. 

Prom dresses made out of sustainable materials were not the first thing I considered when finding a prom gown,  but there are other ways to be mindful when searching for the perfect prom dress that would have been good to consider.

One of my proms dresses was a flourescent orange, floor length gown and while it was a really fun choice at the time, it didn't really leave a lot of room to be worn again.  Choosing a dress in a classic style with elegant details will make your dress more than just a treasured keepsake: it will remain a beautiful dress that can be worn again and again.  With the right choice, a dress could be used again for college formals, receptions, or maybe even a night out with friends. If going this route, it is important to consider certain things that make a dress long lasting, such as fabric quality and cut.  A dress with trendy details may be fun, but one that has classic details and a trendy color may be more flattering and worthy of looking back on fondly.


Jasz Couture 4045

 Another option is to consider choosing a shorter dress. A shorter dress will have more longevity than a big, poufy Cinderella gown and it is both functional and fashionable. With dancing and dining and all of the other activities that go along with prom, strutting around in a floor skimming gown isn't always the safest or or most comfortable choice. 


Still, if a long, elegant gown is more of your thing than there is still possiblities for making  your dress multi-purposeful.  You can have the dress altered  by a tailor so it can be worn again, in a shorter more wearable style. Or you could consider convertible dresses that feature the length of a regular gown with the added versatility of removable features that make a dress both formal and fun.   like this piece from
The Cotton Bride by Chris Kole

And if you're spending a lot on a prom gown, it may serve you better to look at other couture gowns instead of just limiting it to prom styles.  Many prom gowns are priced similarly to designer dresses and offer quality that will last. 

You can even use rent a dress services, in which a dress is returned after the prom, avoiding the problem of having a dress that sits in a closet or is thrown out after the big day.  Sites like Rent the Runway  allow users to rent designer accessories at a fraction of the cost.

Other options include shopping for a vintage dress or making your own with sustainable fabric like hemp or organic cotton.

Etsy Vintage Dress

For those seeking an extra challenge, there are prom dresses and accessories made out of unusual materials.  When I was in high school, there were prom dresses made out of duct tape and other strange materials, but none seem as intriuging to me as those made of upcylced or reused matterials, worn by a Wisconsin teen in 2011.

Starburst Prom Shoes

Crafting and funky creations are not everyones cup of tea, and just as I did, you end up with a dress you won't use again.  A nice option is donating your dress to a charity, or giving it to someone you know who is less fortunate. Many areas have their own Prom Closet's or other organizations formed solely for the purpose of reusing old prom dresses and giving them to the less fortunate. Donatemydress.org is a good place to start.

17 May 2012

Candy Gems

Invitation to Chanel Cruise 2013 (above) Show (below)

Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel ~ Scrumptious

I am in LOVE with these shoes!
Karl Lagerfeld sent his 2013 Cruise collection for Chanel down a “runway” at Versailles yesterday. Models strutted in candy-colored wigs and pastels hues. Indications continue to reveal an ever growing trend in fashion towards the colorful, as both hot and lush colors and soft pastels have been seen on the catwalks from Milan to London to New York and LA.

BE Couture gives you total design freedom to select your material, color and hardware and add extras to personalize your dream bag.

If you are like me, when you open your wardrobe a sea of neutrals abounds with a spatter of color pops and prints.  The jump to cladding top to toe in pastel lilac may be too much for the average lass, or laddie for that matter.  Sometimes the best way to introduce new shades and colors is through the accessory.

In my search for some colorful accents I recently came across some SWEET as CANDY new finds that I wanted to share.

Silver Continent ~ Scrumptious

From the Silver Continent Summer 2012 Collection I discovered bracelets & necklaces in recycled sterling silver with precious and semi-precious natural gemstones. I am currently in love with the pink coral, amethyst and pastel turquoise. These are not for the faint of heart as they are studded with sprinkled with pave diamonds. Rubies, pink sapphires and other precious stones are available by special order ~ hmmmm maybe a custom piece to go with the custom handbag?

Here is a recipe for a candy gem I found on Hungryhippie that's super fun and and kid friendly too:

Candy Gem

  • Envirotex lite or epoxy resin
  • Bottle caps
  • Bowl & spoon
  • Colorful candy sprinkles
  • Jewelry hardware (rings,bails,hairpins)
  • E6000 super glue


Have fun with it!  Summer is on its SWEET way.

14 May 2012

City Girl Goes Camping

There is something magical about sleeping in a tent. Maybe it's the separation from electrical utilities or the distinct sounds from the animals, but I have come to really appreciate sleeping in nature. The absence of light pollution also creates such an organic surrounding that allows you to appreciate the real beauty of the universe.

For many years I had been very skeptical about sleeping on something other than my bed. I had camped with my family when I was a child, but last year was my first chance to give it a go after such a long time. One night I stayed at a campground that I had previously camped at with my family, which was surreal and brought back many memories. The next night, though, I took a chance and camped on a beach. Yeah, there was always a bit of sand to brush out of the inside, but getting to watch the sun set and wake up to the sun rise with the calm sounds of the water was priceless. I had nowhere to be and no to-do lists. That short getaway was incredibly rejuvenating. Eliminating all of the electronics that run my life helped me to get back to myself. Something this city girl really needed then and is finding she needs now.

This is a pretty makeshift tent, but realistically would not be suitable to sleep in unless the natural climate offered warm nights.

An interesting option, even though it does not provide much privacy. 

These are tents from Shelter Co., a company that actually sets up campsites for large groups of people. While not as pocket friendly as just owning your own tent, the company provides many services and options to make you comfortable in your camping experience, such as a carpeted floor and lighting. I think that kind of defeats the purpose of camping, but to each their own. 

Tents designed for rock climbers. I prefer my tent to be firmly planted on the ground thank you very much. 

My kind of setting. 

09 May 2012

Mindful Mother’s Day Gifts

 My mom, Marilyn, sadly died young.  She had spirit. Mom taught me many things: independence, tenacity, artistry, the joy of finding one’s passion and embracing it.

Mom had spirit ... and loved fashion
But my daughter-like connection to women continues on today through a genuine kindred spirit with women that I admire and emulate. Here are some ecoCouture gifts for inspirational women that inspired me.  I hope you like them too!

Jonano Peace Silk Scarf
Doing your part for charity has never been more fashionable. Jonäno, an eco-chic clothing company, has a unique opportunity to add a designer touch to your wardrobe while supporting a really fantastic cause. 
Jonano Aqua Print donation scarf
 Jonäno offers beautiful whisper light Peace Scarves that support breast cancer research. It’s a great way  honor someone special, brighten the day of someone touched by the disease, and help find a cure, all at the same time!
In Peace Eau De Parfum
 In Peace Eau De Parfum is helping the work of Women for Women International. 10% of net profits from the sale of each bottle will go directly to Women for Women’s sponsorship program which supports women survivors of war to enable them to rebuild their lives and promote peaceful communities. Its available at Space NK locations and online.

Jonäno Maternity
 For new mom’s, Jonäno Maternity and Sami Baby by Jonäno offer eco chic designs in their soft ecoKashmere knits.  
Sami Baby by Jonäno
 Have a Wonder FULL Mother’s Day and thank you for all that you do.  ~ much metta!

08 May 2012

A Schiaparelli-Prada World

Much like Miuccia Prada, Elsa Schiaparelli was an Italian fashion designer, but few people nowadays recognize the name or have seen her collections. In honor of Schiaparelli and the exhibition of her and Prada's works at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations, I wanted to showcase some of their pieces that I find beautiful and inspiring.

Schiaparelli eyeglasses - a work of art.

Prada dress - the velvet pattern is feminine and intricate, but not overwhelming. 

 Schiaparelli jewelry - very classic and simple.

Prada heels that I could probably manage to successfully walk in.

This Schiaparelli dress is fun and quirky. 
I would probably try to wear it with the heels shown above.

Another pair of Schiaparelli eyeglasses - can't get enough of these.