Category Archives: Fashion

[Keep It 100] Burn Your Bra: Bralettes Are The New Black

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Life back when I was a little kid felt so much simpler – parents helped with the meals and laundry, my biggest concern was whether to play four square or tether ball at recess, and wardrobe choices? Easy as pie.  Inundated with the Hollywood scene and celebrity , I always looked forward to when I was ‘old enough’ to wear certain things: dress like those fancy ladies on TV and in the movies, dazzle in designer choices- and finally fill out more than a training bra. You know, a bra with underwire and uumph, pushing out daisies from our chests like the first day of Spring. Besides shaving my legs, it was the milestone that my friends and I were truly waiting for: all my friends older sisters and the teenagers on swimteam had bras, while we were flat-chested and full of wonder on when we’d actually become a ‘woman’.  Fast forward 18 years and I wish I never traded my training bra for the real deal – for multiple reasons.

For one second, lets do some personal little show and tell with me, myself and I.  Ladies, stop me if you’ve felt this way before:  you’ve been looking fly all day in a cute outfit, you’re proud of shape and showing off your wares, and then it hits you – your shoulder blades sting and your chest can only swallow the shallowest of breaths.  Dipping, ducking, dodging and diving your way to the closest restroom, you reach under your shirt and feel the jagged etches that your bra straps have etched on the small of your back – only to leave a rough, red effigy of where the bra sat, sturdily holding up your hooters.  Nine times out of ten, this is when I just say fuck it, take my bra off at the club or music festival and stuff it in the bottom recess of my purse – that tenth time, I’m tossing it in the trash to burn – proverbially speaking, of course.  The last time this happened was at Beyond Wonderland back in March.  I remember romping through the fields debating if beer would help the tightness in my breath while I watched while girls in pasties prance around me without a care in the world.  They were free, their tits were free – and I couldn’t wait to join them.

The Perks of Going Braless

Now, you might be saying – “Oh, hell no, you won’t catch my girls sagging….”Well, I hate to burst your boob-bubble, but in studies of women that don’t wear bras – it’s been shown that their natural lift is better than those who wore them for their entire life. As it turns out, there are tendons and ligaments surrounding our breasts, and the more they’re engaged – the more terrific our titties become.  So, let your body do what it knows how to do! Let your caged birds sing: free your breasts and allow them get a proper workout in by just hanging out.  The end result is your pair will be perkier, and you’ll be happier.

Last year, I started the slow conversation of my undergarment drawer after Danny pointed out that I technically didn’t need to wear a bra, less some redeaming amount of chest coverage.  Fast forward to 2016 and I own maybe one bra with underwire that I actually never wear and continually debate if I should donate or not. I can take the deepest breaths, and I don’t feel pressure on my chest; my back feels long and healthy instead of constricted and I don’t have any pain around my shoulders.  Unlike bras, bralettes have thin or lacy straps, don’t have molded cups or contain any wires; they’re lighter, more airy and have minimal but excellent support.

A day worthy of celebration – October 13th is No Bra Day, and while a few months out – we can certainly start today. I’ve found that unlike their sturdier sister with underwire, bralettes aren’t just more comfortable – they can also be a lot less expensive, depending on where you pick your poison from.  Some of my favorites are from Urban Outfitters – they’re incredibly affordable have literally all the colors and styles you could dream of, and then some!  Other retailers with great bralette and bandeau selections include American Eagle’s Aerie Collection, Abercrombie + Fitch (say what you will, but I worked there for three years and enjoyed myself) as well as Forever 21 and Victoria’s Secret,   which as all the ladies know can get pricey but the good news is the pieces have longevity.  Join the revolution, burn your bra – and come to the bralette side, we have cookies and they’re comfortable.

 

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[Thursday Trend] Lusting for Leggings

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17 Fall Activities All Basic Girls LoveFall in Los Angeles; it’s when scarves, boots and a sweater goes flawlessly together, PSL’s head back to the menu, the tree’s have embarked on their seasonal metamorphosis and the roads are clogged with kids heading back to school.  I’ve never considered myself much of a fashion aficionado but over the last six years in this city, I’ve really honed in on my personal style. And much to my surprise, as of late – that’s included leggings.  Now, until a few years ago – I considered leggings a passe idea reserved for ballerinas, yoga devotees and all you can eat buffets; but thanks to an impromptu dressing room encounter, they’ve gone from a wardrobe-won’t to absolutely necessary item in my closet.  Every color, design, fabric, texture…with pockets, studs, zippers, the works; you could basically say that I’m in lust with my leggings, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.  Here are a few of my favorites as of late – including a few I’ve bought for myself and my favorite suppliers.  Fall into a pair!

Nasty Gal

Little bit of glitz, little bit of glam – and a whole lot of sex appeal.  I have a healthy love of all things Nasty Gal – and that includes their plethora of leggings. I don’t have a whole lot of their clothing in my closet, because let’s be honest…I’m a baller on a budget and there are other priorities than loading my closet with the latest and greatest fashion (that’s what my Pinterest board is for).  Then I go back and buy it months later if I still love it =D

Nightwalker Tie Me Up Faux Leather Pant - Halloweird

 

 

 

Blackmilk

Sleek, sexy, shimmery patterns and form fitting cuts – I’ve been obsessing over Blackmilk for years now and one of these days, I have my own pair….promise!  Until then, these can satiate my taste…

Aurora Skye Neon Purple Leggings - glows under blacklight!

 

Barbie Spewed On Me Leggings - LIMITED

Target

For a super inexpensive alternative to splurging, head over to Target! These are quite literally the cat’s pajama’s, less than $20 and I cannot wait to wear them out!

 

 Urban Outfitters

They’ve been a favorite store since High School and I simply can’t see them going out of style; well, my sort of style at least.  I can’t wait to get a hold of these guys…

Kimchi Blue Ballerina Legging - Urban Outfitters

 

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[Thursday Trend] Springtime Purse Picks

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20140501-105756.jpgWhether it’s an extra dose of lotion for brittle, dry Winter skin, a pleasant Autumn aroma or some sexy Summer shades – if you’re a self professed ‘Bag Bunny’ like myself, the contents of your purse change more frequently than the weather in Los Angeles. Now that Springtime in the city of Angels has sprung to life with extra bounce in her step, I thought it was time for a little satchel-switch.

For the last year or so, I’ve been attached at the shoulder to my beloved, yet bulgy, cheetah print purse.  At any moment, it could contain up to 10 elusive tubes of chapstick and or lip gloss, my eyeglasses case, a pair of sunglasses, three lighters – two of which probably don’t even work, scratch paper, maybe there’s a pen but it’s probably almost out of ink, a cell phone charger and on a good day – a small bottle of whiskey.

I wouldn’t call it a ‘problem‘ per-say – but whenever I migrate to a new purse, regardless of size – I always manage to fill it to the brim with a random assortment of semi-important items.  Now that the weather is getting nicer, I want to downsize what I carry on me; I want the freedom of movement so I can play as I please, and I don’t want to be sweating buckets while lugging around a bag of things I might not need. So, I’m putting my old purse in hibernation until Fall rolls around and I’m trading up for a simple Springtime satchel that’s perfect for my prized possessions.

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The real draw of this great beach bag, is that there’s only one pouch – so you don’t have to dump everything out like a madwoman as you look for your (fill in the blank): mascara, camera, keys, etc.  As with all things in life though, there’s a catch to switching up your purse – chances are, you’re like me and your purse life expands and contracts at an equivalent rate to the size of the bag. This means it’s time to do some spring cleaning, clutch style!  First things first, there’s the essentials: ID, Credit Card, Cell Phone, Keys. After taking a long, hard look at what else I’d been stashing in my bag for the last few months I managed to pair down my possessions into a nice little 10 item pile that’s equally perfect for a beach day with your friends, an afternoon in the park with your BFF or a lazy Sunday with your significant other.

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10 Springtime Purse Picks
(Clockwise from the Top)

  1. [Digital Camera with Durable Case: Canon PowerShot 310] When you’re with good company, there’s little to no use for your cell phone – because, let’s get real: why give into social media when you’re in an actual social situation? Cameras on cell phones have become just as good, if not better, than most digi cams and I’ll be the first to argue the “merits” of a Yelp check-in, or why I like being able to use the geolocation feature on Instagram (*cough* nerd *cough*).  But, when trying to capture a moment becomes more important than being present in it – you need to check yourself; I can say this, because I did.  I love taking pictures, so instead of busting out my phone and deciding on a filter, I take them on my Canon and edit them on my computer using iPhoto or GIMP and they turn out somuch better!
  2. [Lip Balm: EOS in Summer Fruit, $3.29 + S/H online] I’m literally obsessed with everything about EOS lip balm! From the easy to find shape, hot pink color and the yummy flavor, this is a must.
  3. [Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner: Kat Von D Tattoo Liner, $18 at Sephora]When it comes to makeup, a lot of girls forget that the point isn’t to mask what makes them unique, it’s to let their real beauty shine through. Warmer weather means sunkissed skin, and in my opinion: the more natural color you have – the less makeup you actually need (unless you want to look like a clown). Just a simple swipe of liquid liner with that glow and you’re good to go.
  4. [Mini Perfume] Hot days can turn into sweaty days in a heartbeat, and there’s nothing quite as awkward as smelling yourself for the rest of the night so make sure you have a small perfume in your purse that you can dab on at your leisure.  Trust me when I say, your friends will appreciate it as much as you do.
  5. [Fun Read] Everyone’s taste in literature is different, but the important thing is you have an appetite for books – even if you don’t get to indulge as often as you’d like.  Right now, I’m in the middle of ‘The Agile Gene’ by Matt Ridley but next up is something I’ve been craving for a while – The Joyous Cosmology by Alan Watts.
  6. [Sunglasses] There’s two types of weather in the Summer – “squinty cloud weather”, where it’s overcast but you still actually need to wear sunglasses, and blindingly bright sunlight. Either way you spin it, you’ll want some shades – so head to your local Thrift Shop and find a pair for under $30.  I had to face facts long ago that sunglasses get broken all the time, so you may as well invest in a cheaper variety; there out there, you just have to look!
  7. [Travel Size Sunblock, SPF 30+] What I said about your eyes, goes doubly true for your skin – make sure you get some SPF on your face and shoulders, or you could be peeling instead of pool partying this Summer.
  8. [Lighter] Candles, incense, cigarettes (gasp!), herb (it’s legal in California…), hookah coals, getting the fuzzies off your socks, etc – there’s always a good use for a lighter. Even for those non-smokers out there, if you’re party privvy – you’ll know that a lighter is also a great conversation starter.
  9. and 10. [Notebook + Pen] As a writer and expert list maker, I’ve been known to frantically search for scratch paper and then subsequently lose it.  Now that I have a notepad and a pen in the mix, I can get my doodle on, craft a shopping list or even get my next blog post ready. Plus, you never know when you’ll want to jot down some important info!

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Last, but certainly not least – when the weather gets above 80, you have to be ready for the inevitable, and the only thing that I think is better than festival season: pool party season! At any given moment, you could get a call to a hotel pool party filled with friends you haven’t met yet or a small apartment pool kickback with your closest friends – and based on my personal experience, not only will you want a swimsuit you feel great in, but you’ll want options, for style and color.  The two piece on the right from Sofia has the right amount of color pop and the right amount of coverage for me to bounce around with confidence where ever I roam. EDC, Las Vegas, Lightning in a Bottle, The Standard Hotel; you name it, it’s been there. And I’ve gotta admit, I’ve never been big on one piece swimsuits, but I’m basically obsessed with the cut and color of the suit on the left from Victoria’s Secret and I can’t wait to wear it!

To send you off, a new mix from my favorite Tropical house producer – Thomas Jack:

 

 

[Doing it Right] A Night Out with the Bev Cen + Klout

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If there’s one thing I’ve learned over the past few years in LA – it’s that there’s a very real power behind social media.  It’s an idea shared by many, especially the beautiful minds over at Klout.  I touched on the company a bit last year – almost a year to the day, if you want to get ironic about it! So here’s a refresher if you don’t feel like time traveling through my page:

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Klout aggregates your social relevance  by measuring your reach across multiple platforms, including – but not limited to – Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, FourSquare, Youtube, Instagram, Tumblr, Blogspot, WordPress; ‘m sure you get the picture.  Then it spits out a score from 1-100 based on how influential it thinks you are.  How does this benefit you, you might ask? Well – Perks; Klout Perks if you want to get specific.  From small things like a $5 McDonalds Giftcard to care packages with Crest Toothpaste, a To Go Container of Scope and a $10 Wal Mart Gift Card, Klout rewards us social media whores connoisseurs in kind for our hard work and cult like devotion.

Last night I was invited to an event at the Beverly Center with fashion aficionados from far and wide.  They were diving into photo booths, digging through goodie bags and frolicking through the mall with some of the hottest in the fashion and blogging industries.   The purpose?  The Beverly Center “Show us Your Style” Challenge.  The entrants –  submitted pictures of their hottest fall fashion for under $125 and the winner was gifted a $1000 shopping spree to the Beverly Center.  And thanks to Klout, selected people with scores of 65 and up were invited to rub bows with the best of ’em.  The event was hosted by three of LA’s hottest fashion and lifestyle bloggers: Shea Marie of Peace, Love, Shea , Chriselle Lim from The Chriselle Factor and last but definitely not least Liz Cherkasova who pens the Late Afternoon.  Now, I blog about lots of things – life, laughter, my love of music, cats and photography – but clothing and accessories, eh – not as much! So it was fun masquerading around under the guise of fashion blogger all night.

They had a live DJ,  yummy specialty made cupcakes from Georgetown Cupcakes, delicious sangria thanks to Pavan Liqueur and some awesome swag to take home.  Thank you a thousand times over to the lovely staff of the Beverly Center and Klout for throwing such a classy event, a day later and I’m still feeling truly honored to have been a part of it.

Swag bag, what!

More coupons and gift cards; can't wait to go back to the Bev Cen!

More coupons and gift cards; can’t wait to go back to the Bev Cen!

Forever21 Goodie Bag with Gloss and Tweezers

Forever21 Goodie Bag with Gloss and Tweezers

New journal; love the binding!

New journal; love the binding!

Thursday Trend: All That Sparkles

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Trust me when I say this: I have no clue how to be trendy.  If you don’t want to take my word for it, you should talk to my best friend.  We met the first day of Freshman year and have been relatively attached to each other ever since.  It wasn’t one of those “We hung out off and on and then slowly our friendship developed things” – it’s the platonic equivalent of love at first sight. We used to compare notes on poetry and boys; but when it came to fashion, I definitely took a back seat.  Eventually, and somewhat jokingly, she told me “Amanda, if you don’t match…we can’t sit together at lunch.”  She may as well have said “…and on Wednesdays, we wear pink.” but last time I checked I didn’t live in a movie.

Joke or not, what she said definitely nestled itself somewhere deep in my brain because now that I’m older (and somewhat wiser) from my nail polish to the trim on my boots, I match all the damn time.  The downside of trying to fit the trends and be relatively on top of being a 21st century chic chick is in my early 20s, I spent a rather ridiculous amount of time, money and or energy trying to fit the latest “trends”;  trends from the magazines, movies and runway that honestly have little to no place in my closet.

So I took a step back to re-evaluate who wanted to be, and the type of young lady I’d like to evolve into.  Sounds silly, but (a) there’s absolutely nothing wrong with dressing for success – be it career-wise or personal; and (b) it becomes a positive feedback loop!  A while back, I wanted to streamline my growth – I wanted to feel sexier, more mature, more sophisticated – so that’s how I started dressing.   Low and behold, the fashion must have seeped into my pores and into my veins, because while I looked the part I acted the part!  It’s a glorious cycle that I’m glad I discovered.

I think what strikes me is the originality of the items that I love – if I’ve seen it duplicated, I’m already over it before it hits my closet.  But every now and again, I seem to get these genius – and very specific – cravings for fashion and as of late, jewlery.  Sometimes, its for a delicate necklace in a specific metallic shade – and other times I get my mind set on clothing in daring, yet possible, colors.  I used to go shopping often – maybe a little too often – and what I’ve found, especially on Melrose, is that most shops are carbon copies of the others.  But a few, like Essex, have a great turnover for new threads and necklaces.  One of my favorite finds that I mentioned briefly yesterday is the Melrose Trading Post; it’s a great (and incredibly inexpensive) place to check out handcrafted jewelry and vintage duds.  Last, but definitely not least, don’t forget about my favorite treasure chest – your local discount stores!  What’s being another season behind the trends if you don’t even follow them, right?!  So, let’s get down to it – these are a few of my favorite blings.

Faux Sapphire Ring from Shanghai
Leather Wrist Wrap from Melrose Trading Post

ChiChiMe has the best Bangle Sets!

Amethyst Gradient Fox from Shanghai

Eggplant Corduroy Pants from J Brand (on sale at Nordstrom Rack!)

Riding Boots from Target
In love with the metal zipper embellishment; I will wear these to the ground!

Flower Bullet Necklace from Melrose Trading Post

Snaking around my fingers; found at the Melrose Trading Post

Thursday Trend: Pastels, Floral Patterns and Prints that Pop

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All around the country, people are getting excited that Spring has sprung and in just a few week’s they’ll happily be transitioning into Summer with their floppy hats, skimpy swimsuits and color pop pieces; conversely, in Los Angeles, it’s just another Thursday. The great thing about living in a city that essentially says “fuck it all” to keeping seasons is now I have a “fuck it all” feeling about the seasonality of clothing.  Buying coats in the Summer and bikinis in the Winter? Drooling over pastels in the fall and enjoying rustic wine colors in the Spring? Judge Me!  Stores like Marshalls, Ross, and outlet stores like Nordstrom Rack and Sak’s: Off 5th are perfect if you enjoying ballin’ on a budget as much as I do. My new bottom line: if I like it, I buy it.  If you don’t like my wardrobe, you can go ahead any buy me a new one 😉

The thing was – for the last two and a half years that’s almost exactly what I’ve had: the same damn clothing assortment.  It’s enough to drive a chameleon crazy – and truth be told it had!  So over the course of the last year and with the assistance of some continually cathartic closet cleaning, I’ve forced myself to go through my finest and most favorite things and then bid them adieu by taking them to the local Goodwill – this has left a considerable amount of space in my closet!  Thanks to my love of things that bling, colors that dazzle and cuts that compliment – my wardrobe is looking fierce and I’m ready for all the pool parties, picnics and play dates that Summer has in store!

Things I’m a huge fan of right now, in now particular order:

High Low Skirts 

I don’t know why this trend has taken me so stinkin’ long to get on – something about having legs, and the words “high low” scared me off the bat and now I very much wish it hadn’t!  These skits are all kinds of adorable and can take you from work to engagement party to playdate in the quick switch of a shirt!  My favorite thing right now is wearing a bold print with a solid color tank; so cute, right?!

Floral Print High/Low Skirt by Three Ena
Color Pop Tank by Love On A Hanger

Floral Print

Every which where in Los Angeles there are flowers blossoming, blooming and scenting the city with their succulent aroma.  One of the interesting things about LA from a botanical point of view is most of our plants, flowers and trees are imported – what this means for us is year round blossoms, vibrant colors…and allergies.  But, I digress! I went for a walk the other day and was enamored with the amount of pastel petals on the ground – and had an epiphany: if the flowers looked great as on the sidewalk, they’d surely look just as good on my body!  The skirt above and this shirt below are two of my favorite finds…even some of the crop tops I’m loving have some floral patterns!

I’ve also realized that with the cut and shape of tops lately – there’s one rule to abide by in stores: TRY IT ON!  A lot of things look better on (though, I’m sure our male friends would agree to disagree with that) than they do on the hanger, so make sure you respect the garb and show it what you’re working with.

Crop Tops

These little tops are perfect for adding a pop of color or a little bit of extra coverage; perfect  if you have an oversized or sheer top that flows, or even to wear by itself with a high low skirt or even (gasp) a pair of high waisted shorts at a pool party.  These are the Layering Queen’s wet dream – the possibilities are endless!

Crop Tops (bottom left, clockwise) – Love on a Hanger, H I P, Victoria’s Secret

White, Cuffed Denim Shorts

White – it’s like, the official color of Summer, right? Perfect for between Memorial Day and Labor Day weekends but for me, it’s about to become an essential part of my denim rotation.  White shorts are white hot, and the cuffs add a bit of Nautical / East Coast swagger to the closet.  Bottom line, these shorts can brighten up any outfit; besides, you weren’t planning on wearing those rugged jean shorts again this summer, were you?

True Religion on a discount; thank you Nordstom Rack!

Sunglasses…In Living Color

Every girl should have to pairs of sunglasses – a classic black that can go with every outfit and scenario, and a fun pop of color that can liven my favorite basic Friday happy hour uniform – a blank tank top and jeans!  Dress ’em up with a dress or dress them down with flip-flops and some cutoffs – colored sunglasses are in for the win.

Cole Haan Shades