Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Fashion Month #1 in Review

Welp folks, today is the last day of September Fashion Month! This marks the first time I'm celebrating it as a fashion professional. By now you all should know that I give my honest opinion about things around here. So suffice it to say that I'm glad it's over.
Yep, I'm a fashion obsessed, fashion stylist and glad it's over, YES, it's true. I took on a personal challenge for myself to write a quality post with substance each and everyday. I'm totally not used to doing that. You see, writing is like working out. If you get out of shape after having a set workout routine it can be hard to get back into the swing of things. Same with writing, at least for me.
But I got through Fashion Month and had a blast nonetheless. I love writing, I love fashion, so it's all good in the long run. I learned a lot, saw a lot and connected with some awesome new people. Pumped up my writing muscles and learned a few things about myself in the process.
I'm happy that I challenged myself to reach a certain goal. I kept pressing on even when I began to falter with my posts, having built up a wicked backlog that I end up cutting though. I kept my eyes on the prize: adding to a collection of work, ideas and knowledge that I can share with everyone who might benefit from reading it.
Here are my 5 Fashion Month Highlights:
1. Attending my first runway show to see Meagan Ollari's debut Spring/Summer 2015 collection in the Designer Review show presented by Fashion Gallery New York Fashion Week.
2. Attending my first fashion presentation of Degen NYC's Spring/Summer 2015 collection at Pier 59 Studios.
3. Attending the Snowman NYC Fall/Winter 2014, Spring/Summer 2015 presentation + networking event for buyers and press presented by The Set NYC.
4. Attending The Morgan Magazine launch at Jay-Z's 40/40 Club.
5. Meeting a whole lot of new cool fashion folks!
I feel fortunate and blessed for these experiences.
What kind of exciting Fashion Month adventures did you have? Let me know in the comments below.
Thank you for reading, take care.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Favorite Online Fashion Gurus 4 Part Series

In my opinion, my first celebration of fashion month would not be complete without ending it in style. So I'm announcing the kick off a four part series of my all time favorite online fashion gurus! Hold onto your seat because this is going to be stylish ride.
There are four categories I'll be covering: YouTubers, bloggers, Facebookers and Instagramers with 10 favorites each and why I like them.
Stay tuned because on "Media Monday" October 6 I'll post part one, my favorite YouTubers.
What are your favorite YouTube, blogs, Facebook pages and Instagram accounts? Let me know in the comments section.
Thanks for reading, take care.

Mind Right Monday # 7

Welcome to Mind Right Monday # 7! I just had an idea to start a dedicated journal for Mind Right Monday, to keep track of my goals and gratitude from week to week. Writing things down on paper is really helpful to me, so I can read it anytime I want instead on having to go online and shuffling through blog posts.
Anyway, on to the good stuff:
My Goals This Week:
1. To start a Mind Right Monday journal to track my goals and gratitude.
2. To keeping filling in the rest of my October editorial calendar.
3. To register for another continuing ed fashion styling class at F.I.T. today!
What I'm Grateful For:
1. The encouragement and collective brainpower of my blogger group.
2. Grateful that I was able to get my blog backlog under control.
3. Second chances.
That's it, short and sweet.
As always check out the lovely hostesses of the Mind Right Monday Linkup.
Ok Dani
Reese & Coco
What are your goals for this week and what are you grateful for? Let me know in the comments below.
Thanks for reading, peace.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Fashion Pro Spotlight: Julian Gravesande, Purse Designer & Fashion Blogger

This week I'm featuring Julian Gravesande, a talented purse designer who's company is called Moruka Designs, fashion blogger at Guyanese Sista, a fellow member of my blogger group and a NYC fashion buddy of mine. I'm happy to feature her on my blog, below is our interview, enjoy!
1. What is you blog/website/venture called? When and why did you start it?

The name of my blog is GuyaneseSista.com and the name of my handbag business is MorukaDesigns.com

2. What have been your most exciting and proud moments so far in your venture?

My most exiting blog moment was the first time I got paid for a blogging assignment. Also my two most equally exciting moments for Moruka Designs were my first trunk show and the time I was featured on News 12 The Bronx

3. What growth and opportunities are you striving for during the rest of 2014 and in 2015 for this venture?

For the rest of 2014 and 2015 I'd like to expand on the rebranding of Guyanesesista.com. I'd like to make my blog into a lifestyle blog that covers culture, fashion and beauty. I'd especially like to feature other designers, artists and other cool people to inform my audience of that these talented people exist and that they should support them. As for Moruka Designs I'd like to grow the blog, morukadesigns.tumblr.com as well as my revenue. That would include more retail sales online and offline eg. at trunk shows, getting into to wholesale and doing more collaborations.

4. Were can my readers learn more about you and your work (include all social media you want seen)?

For Guyanese Sista I can be found on:
Instagram & Twitter: @guyanesesista  

For Moruka Designs I can be found on:
Instagram & Twitter: @morukadesigns

5. What are your 3 Fall beauty and skincare must-haves?

My 3 fall beauty must haves are purple lipstick, concealer and Oxford shoes. 

6. What are the 3 resources every beauty professional needs to know about and use regularly?

Three things every beauty pro should know about are Skillshare, 11 Beautiful Tools: The Social Media Success Guide for Beauty Professionals by Terez Baskin and The Basics of Beauty DVD by Sam Fine.

Below is one of Julian's clutches.

It was a pleasure to feature Julian. I wish her the best of success with her blog and purse company. What did you like about this spotlight? Let me know in the comments below. Thanks for reading, take care.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

My Go-To NYC Fashion Stylist Resources

Every stylist especially in NYC needs to develop a tried and true set of resources for inspiration and to load up on tools of the trade. Here are my top five resources in NYC.
1. Manhattan Wardrobe Supply: This place has EVERYTHING for your kit.
2. Fashion Institute of Technology: F.I.T. has a fashion styling certificate program offered through its continuing education department.
3. Window Shopping: Everywhere, seriously but Bergdorf Goodman, the shops at Rockefeller Center, H & M, Zara, J. Crew, Gap, Urban Outfitters, Anthropology and Banana Republic are favorites.
4. Jack's World/99 Cent Stores: All kinds of cheap office and art supplies.
5. Destination A: Accessories store that always has major sales and $1 E.L.F. cosmetics and tools!
This is just the tip of the iceberg, I will have plenty of updated resource lists in the future.
What are your favorite stylist resources in NYC? Let's me know in the comments.
Thanks for reading, take care.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Art Supplies Every Fashion Stylist Needs

Art supplies can be a lifesaver for fashion stylists when they need to make presentations, impromptu props for shoots and signs for certain occasions and more. You just never know when you might need something extra and supplies to make it happen. I've needed board for presentations and let's just say I wish I had it ahead of time. Below are 10 + handy supplies to ALWAYS keep on hand.
1, 2. Foam Core Board & Poster Board: For presentations, signs and simple props.
3, 4. Colored Pencils & Colored Markers: To sketch styling ideas and color prop boards and signs.
5. Black Sharpies: To write signs and color in stenciled letters.
6. Stencils: Get various styles such as basic bold block letters, fancy and unique ones to use in making signs, presentations and props.
7. Xacto Knife + Extra Blades: For cutting boards and paper.
8. Glue + Tape: Elmer's glue stick, glue gun w/sticks, Modpodge, spray glue, painters tape and double sided tape.
9. Sturdy Scissors: One large and one small pair.
10. Paints + Brushes: Water colors, tempera paint, acyclic paint and an assortment of brushes to go with them. Oh and craft sponges with handles to apply paint too.
11. A Ruler: Because straight lined are a must!
First, check the dollar store for these supplies. Sometimes they have name brand items. Check Target, K Mart and Walmart for these items on sale especially during back to school time. As a last resort, try office supply and art supply stores, which could get pricy.
What art supplies do you find essential for your styling work? Let me know in the comments.
Thanks for reading, take care.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Fall Season Must-Haves: Fashion & Beauty

Today is the official first day of Fall, HURRAY!! To celebrate I've compiled a list of my fashion and beauty must-haves. Keep in mind though that this IS NOT a specific current trends list. It's just the things I like and want and if they happens to be trendy, then cool.  :-)
My Must-Have Fashion Items:
1. Motorcycle Jacket (fitted)
2. Snazzy Sport Shoes
3. Cute Oxfords
4. Faux Leather Backpack
5. Brown Knee Boots
6. Black Pencil Skirt
7. Burgundy H & M Scarf
8. Ankle Boots (preferably Vince Camuto brand)
My Must-Have Beauty Items:
1. Creamy Facial Cleanser
2. Black Eyeliner
3, 4. Blood Red Lip Gloss + Matching Lip Liner
5. Mascara
6, 7. Peter Lamas Naturals Avocado & Olive Ultra Smoothing Shampoo & Conditioner (thebomb.com, right here)
What are your fashion and beauty must-haves for Fall? Let me know in the comments section.
Thanks for reading, take care.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Mind Right Monday #6

Hey everyone, I'm back on track with Mind Right Monday Linkup #6. I had gotten behind with it the last few weeks. I'll jump right into my goals and things I'm grateful for.
1. To get back on track to finish up fashion month strong!
2. To find and write about more cool fashion events, people and things.
3. To write up my October editorial calendar this week and next week.
Grateful For:
1. The start of a fresh new day or week to do better blogging.
2. Constant learning opportunities.
3. Meeting great new people all the time.
Visit the lovely and talented hostesses of Mind Right Monday Linkup:
Ok Dani
Reese and Coco
What are your goals and things you're grateful for this week? Let me know in the comments below.
Thanks for reading, take care.

The Morgan Magazine Launch Recap

Hey everyone, how was your weekend? I had a great one and I'm excited to share that I attended the launch of The Morgan Magazine on Saturday! The magazine is the creation of NYC-based celebrity fashion stylist Fatiah Rebbekkah. The launch was held in the chic, sleek 40/40 Club NYC, co-owned by Jay-Z, located in the Flatiron neighborhood and very close to Madison Square Park.
I arrived at around 7 p.m. told the people at the door that I was there for the magazine launch and was instructed to go upstairs to the party. I walked to the top of the modern, glass-detailed staircase, greeted by a nice gentleman Sa' Quan and was given a little pink paper bracelet as proof of admission to the event. The cool music provided by DJ Drewski electrified the room.
Then, I found my way to the area where people were taking pictures. I took a seat right at the very front so I could see the parade of unique style. I had a blast checking out the outfits everyone was wearing. Styles ranged from chic to flamboyant and everything in between.
I met a young lady named Jessica, a grad student studying chemistry, who was nice enough to take my picture at the event. I also took pictures of her on her camera for her.
I also met journalist Denise who was covering the event as well Amari and Queen who later liked my Instagram pics of the event. Special thanks to Fatiah Rebbekkah for following me on Instagram!
The event wouldn't have been complete without having the featured cover man football player Julian Talley of the NY Giants taking pictures with attendees, Fatiah and proudly holding his magazine cover photo.
I had a lovely time at the launch and wish Fatiah and her team the best of success with the magazine. I enjoyed the ambiance of the stylish club, positive energy and friendly people. Stay tuned for tomorrow's fashion roundup of the event.
Until then here are a few photos from the launch.
Photo 1: Me; Photo 2: Julian Talley, NY Giants; Photo 3: Fatiah Rebbekkah in black dress.
Check out the links below to read the magazine and learn more about it.
Digital Issue # 1 of The Morgan Magazine
The Morgan Magazine
To get social with the mag, find them on:
Did you attend The Morgan Magazine launch party? Let me know in the comments below!
Thanks for reading, take care.

My Five Favorite Online Fashion Resources

We all know online fashion resources are a dime a dozen.
Here are my 5 absolute faves: 
1. YouTube: Definitely my number one fashion source because I love looking at the video lookbooks, hauls and DIYs of The Fashion Citizen, Chriselle Lim, Thrift Drifter, Vagabond Youth, HRH Collection and Clothes Encounters to name just a few.
2. Eventbrite: This is the holy grail of finding free high quality events ANYWHERE, not just in NYC. It allows you to sign up for all events through one nice and neat account.
Bonus: When you download the app, it keeps all you tickets for events organized so you don't have to print them. UNLESS of course the event instructs you to bring your paper ticket.
3. Polyvore: I love it because I can create seemless magazine editorial quality layouts with this free website! I can then post those layouts to blogs, Facebook, Pinterest etc.
4. Pinterest: This is an efficient way to gather specific designer looks as well as outfit inspiration and more into organized pin boards. You can also pin your own photos of the people you've styled.
5. H & M: I ALWAYS look at the emails they send me, the site and app before going to the store to browse and shop.
What are your 5 fave online fashion resources and why? Let me know in the comments!
Thanks for reading, take care.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

My Stylist Kit (So Far)

Ah...the fashion stylist kit. It's made up of everything AND the kitchen sink. Everything you think you'll need for every conceivable wardrobe fix you'd need to do on set or on location working in various situations.
With that said, here are the newest editions to my styling kit that I bought at Manhattan Wardrobe Supply, www.wardrobesupplies.com.
1. Basic Black Apron: For holding small things you need on hand all the time like pins, small clamps, lint roller, sewing kit etc.
2. Larger Clamps: These hold together all kinds of things but very good for cinching heavy fabrics to make coats look fitted.
3. Small Clamps: For holding small items and cinching thinner fabrics for a nice fitted look.
4. Anti-Slip Shoe Pads: To keep feet in heels from slipping forward.
5. Clothing Rack Dividers: Sometimes you'll need to hang clothes up and keep them separated.
List of My Older Items:
1. Lint Roller
2. Measuring Tape
3. Sewing Kit
4. Basic Makeup Kit: Eyeshadow, eyeshadow brush, lips gloss, lips gloss applicators, makeup wipes, fan makeup brush, face blotters.

5. Basic Office Supplies: Notebook, agenda planner, pens, highlighter, post-it flags, biz card folder and holder.
6. Masking Tape
7. Ground Cover
8. Paint Brush (to sweep off sidewalks)
9. Fabric Wipes
I bought the above items at:
Jack's World, www.jacksnyc.com
Bed, Bath & Beyond, www.bedbathandbeyond.com
Destination A, www.destinationastores.com
Hopefully, I didn't forget anything but if I did I will go back and add items here later. My kit is relatively small and there are several things I still need to get. Such as more small and maybe medium clamps, scissors,  a bite light for runway dressing, makeup and hair scarves to shield freshly done makeup and hair when putting clothes on.
What are your favorite essentials in your kit? Let me know in the comment section below.
Thanks for reading, take care.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

My 5 Favorite Go-To Hairstyles

It's taken me a long time to discover hairstyles that work best for me to create quickly and easily. I've learned that the foundation of any great natural hairstyle is healthy moisturized hair. So I start by using a coconut oil treatment on my slightly dampened hair before I shampoo. This is known as a coconut oil "pre-poo" to naturals who know natural lingo.  :-)
I leave the pre-poo on overnight or a few hours before washing my hair. I put on a shower cap and headscarf to lock in heat from my head to allow the oil to penetrate my hair strands. Once that's done I fill up my sink, submerge my hair, massage my scalp for about 5 minutes and drain the sink. Then, I divide my hair into 6 or 8 sections while still wet and apply shampoo and wash each section thoroughly one by one.
Next, I rinse well with plain water and fill up the sink one more time to soak my hair in warm water. I add a bit of apple cider vinegar (ACV for short) or baking soda to open the cuticles on my hair strands to let the conditioner penetrate. That also helps to remove any soap residue. I use about a 1/4 cup of either the ACV or baking soda.
I really go to town on my scalp to make sure no styling residue is left. Then, I let out the sink water, ring my hair out gently and apply deep conditioner. Finally, I put the shower cap and scarf back on to let the conditioner penetrate and do it's magic for maybe 10 minutes or more. I rinse that out really well, squeeze water out of my hair and dry it with a Turbi Twist hair towel.
Now, for the home stretch I put a heat protectant leave-in conditioner in my hair, detangle with a wide tooth comb. Then, I'll either heat straighten by blow drying using my faux Denman brush and flat iron OR twist my hair depending on the hairstyle.
I also don't use extreme heat either.
So without further adieu, here are my 5 favorite go-to hairstyles:
Side Twist + Braided Back Knot
Twist Out
Braided, Twisted Updo
"Olive Oil" Braided Top Knot
What are your favorite go-to hairstyles? Leave links to pictures of your fave go-to hairstyles in comments below!
Thanks for reading, take care.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Fashion Meanies #1

Fashion meanies are a dime. For some reason, the fashion industry seems to attract a microcosm of eccentrics and meanies ranging from lovable loonies to down right crazy, abusive megalomaniacs and everything in between. This is especially true in NYC or anywhere else with a large fashion industry.
I'm going to talk about my first experience with a fashion meanie during New York Fashion Week 2014. I won't give the event name, venue name or the company who produced the show. Even though I'd love to! But I'll share the overall experience because it's important to me.
I was an hour early at the fashion show event space to meet up with someone that I was attending the show with. As I was waiting for the person, it began to rain really hard. I took shelter under the awning of the building. A tried texting the person I was supposed to meet and my phone went haywire then died, which was really unusual for my phone.
Anyway, I wanted see if I could find a place to charge my phone. So I went inside where four women (probably interns) where stationed right next to the door. One of them looked like she was in charge, holding a clip board with a guest list on it. So I told her which show I was there for, showed my ticket and asked if there was a place to charge my phone.
She was very polite and professional. She found my name on the list, gave me an official event lanyard, which I guess was given to certain "important" attendees. She said I needed that in order to be inside and said if I go down the steps there should be a plug. So I went down the stairs leading to a landing and the opening to backstage. There was another group of employees, which were all women too. I smiled and told them which show I was there for, showed my ticket and asked if there was a place to charge my phone. One stern woman asked where I got the lanyard, I told her the woman at the door gave it to me. But "Miss Stern" said I didn't need the lanyard right now, asked for it back and I gave it to her. I asked again if there was anywhere I could charge my phone she said no. Then "Mr. Producer" came up to us in a typical fashion industry drama queen huff. Asked his peeon workers rapid fire, "who is she, what's she doing in here, she's not supposed to be in here!!!" Then he addressed me directly, "I'm the producer of this show!!!"
I smiled and said "Hi, I'm here for the ______ show later," showing my ticket. "My phone died, is it possible to plug it in here to let it charge?"
"No!" Mr. Producer snapped. Then, he got called away by someone and "Miss Stern" went with him. One of the nicer workers kindly told me that I needed to leave. I said ok, started walking up the steps and then saw an electrical outlet. I pointed to it and asked the woman if I could plug in to charge for just a minute and she said yes. So I did and got to charge up for about 3 minutes before Mr. Producer came back in a fury. He asked his team almost like a kid having a tantrum, "why is she still here?!" He came up to me in a frantic, furious huff, "Why are you still here?! I told you to leave! Do you want to be able to come back later and see the show?! THEN LEAVE NOW!!!" I unplugged quickly and quietly said "I just needed to charge my phone," as I hurried up the stairs and out the door. As the door closed behind me, I heard him scream at his workers, "No more being nice!!! Don't let anyone else in, she's nobody!!!!" Wow, what a weirdo I thought. He's creating all that drama over me asking politely if I could charge my phone. But you know the best part of this? A week prior to this fashion show I checked out the venue's website. Guess what the website said? Take a wild guess.....Give up? Well, the site said that the venue has PLENTY OF OUTLETS TO ALLOW PATRONS TO CHARGE THEIR PHONES. Now, don't that beat all?! All that crap I went through for nothing....It would have been nice if the venue staff had been present and directed me to one of its "PLENTY OF OUTLETS TO ALLOW PATRONS TO CHARGE THEIR PHONES." All wasn't lost with not being able to fully charge because THANK GOD Holiday Inn Express was a few doors down and I went to charge up in the lobby problem-free. I called my mom to tell her the insanity that just happened and then the person I was meeting called to ask where I was. I said I was in the lobby at Holiday Inn Express charging my phone because the venue wouldn't let me come in early and charge. So the person came over and we waited and talked until it was time to see the show. We went back saw the show and had a nice time. On my way out I noticed Mr. Producer, he greeted a woman then made a snide crack about her hair TO HER FACE. He smirked as he walked away and her jaw dropped in disbelief. So evidently he's just a loose cannon and a jerk to whoever he's talking with. Very unfortunate.... Now that the story is out of the way. I'm going to give some food thought. I don't think it made any sense how Mr. Producer treated me for a few reasons:
1. He didn't know me well enough to called me a nobody. I tend to think that if you mistreat someone you THINK is a nobody, they just might end up being 'somebody' with some kind of power or money. OR they might know or work for someone who could be more powerful than the offending fashion meanie. That's kind of the irony of New York in general and the NYC fashion industry specifically.
2. The NYC fashion industry is a small world. And newbies who get mistreated have mouths and they can talk to their connections and blog about their experience, LOL!
3. So called nobody-newbies progress in their careers and don't stay nobody forever.
Finally, I'll say this. Since Mr. Producer wasn't producing a show at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week HE'S a nobody to me and surely to a lot of others.  
The moral of the story is that there really is no point mistreating people who did nothing wrong. Also, closed mouths don't get fed! So if I hadn't asked if I could charge my phone, I would have had a dead phone the rest of the day. Finally, I think treating people with basic decency and respect goes a long way and never goes out of style no matter what position in life people are in. Have you had any bad experiences with fashion meanies in your blossoming career so far? Sound off in the comments section. Please DO NOT use the guilty party's name or identifying info. As much much as they do suck, WE don't want to sink to their level.
Thanks for reading, take care.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

My Favorite Haircare Products

These products have become my favorites because they have changed my life by significantly improved the health and manageability of my hair. It's been a tough road on the way to discovering these but thank God I did! And if talking about my favorite makeup and skincare products weren't enough now I'm going to talk about my haircare faves, away we go!
1. Alba Botanica Clarifying Shampoo: Great fresh scent and doesn't leave my hair dry. It leaves my hair conditioned and smooth.
2. Coconut Oil: Revives my dry hair and scalp when I use it as a pre-shampoo oil treatment.
3. The Body Shop Rain Forest Moisture Shampoo and Hair Butter: This contains honey and nourishing oils, which my hair absolutely loves. Both products leave my hair moisturized and soft.
4. Peter Lamas Avocado & Olive Ultra Smoothing Shampoo and Conditioner: This smoothes, conditions and pampers my hair like NOTHING I've ever used since I was 13 years old and used Nexus Botanoil shampoo and Humectress conditioner! That's saying a lot.
5. Redken Smooth Lock Stay Sleek Leave-in Cream: This one great product replaced my empties of the Aveda Damage Control and Alaffia Leave-in Conditioner. It leaves my hair smooth, manageable and moisturized till my next wash!
6. Aveda Damage Control: This is a wonderful detangling and heat protectant spray.
7. Beautiful Curls by Alaffia Curl Activating Shea Butter Leave-in Conditioner: This is a light, non-oily leave-in condish that layers nicely over the Aveda Damage Control.
8. Roots of Nature Remedies Mango Oil & Capuacu Butter Thermal Smoothing Serum: This is a great heat protectant and it moisturizes my hair.
9. Roots of Nature Remedies Mango Oil & Capuacu Butter Curl Reviving Spray: This moisturizes and defines my hair.
10 &11. Wen Styling Cream & Nuance By Salma Hayek Blue Agave Curl Cream: These were two of my fave styling products when my hair was short. They defined and moisturized my coils to the max!
What are your favorite haircare products that have changed your life because it significantly improved the health of your hair? Let me know in the comments section.
Thanks for reading, take care.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

My Favorite Makeup and Skincare Products

I enjoy talking about my fave stuff so talking about the makeup and skincare products I love is always fun. Who's knows, it may help someone discover some cool, new-to-them products. So let me jump right in!
My Top Favorite Makeup Products: 
1. Alba Botanica Hawaiian Lips Balm in Nourishing Coconut: Super smoothing, great in the winter or anytime of the year.
2. Prestige Lipstick in Velvet: A deep, rich berry color that making me feel va-va voom!
3. Bare Minerals Original Foundation in Golden Deep and Mineral Veil: I love this stuff, it blends in seemlessly and evens out my color without looking unnatural.
4. Avon Color Trends Eyeshadow in Rose Gold: Sadly it was discontinued but I still have a little left. I found a great dupe for it, which is E.L.F. Custom Eyes Eyeshadow in Mocha.
5. E.L.F. Blush in Mellow Mauve: I use it as eyeshadow because I just love mauve and pink eyeshadows.
6. E.L.F. Eyeshadow Palette: 32 piece warm eyeshadow set. This has so many beautiful pink and earth tone shades in mattes and metallics.
My Top Favorite Skincare Products:
1. My Creamy Oil Blend: My original recipe with shea butter, jojoba oil, coconut oil and glycerine has my whole family abuzz and wanting more, it's that good! The nourishing oil blend works together to heal any dry skin or hair issue.
2. Now Solutions Vegetable Glycerine: This stuff works so well on super dry skin and hair, that I consider it a "holy grail" product. Meaning that it has been truly amazing and transformative for my hair and skin.
3. 365 Everyday Value Lavender Shower Gel (I use on my face and body): I started using this on my face when I got too cheap to buy my regular face wash. This is gentle, soothing, smells great and no harsh ingredients so I have no regrets using this on my face.
4. 365 everyday Value Fragrance Free Body Lotion and Burt's Bee's Milk & Honey Body Lotion (I use on my face and body): I currently use 365 lotion on my face and it works great because again I'm too cheap to spend $ on a separate face lotion. I did use Burt's Bees for a few years and loved it but I succumbed to being cheap so I quit using it. These natural body lotions work great on my face, I've never had any issues with them. I also used Aveda Botanical Kinetics Hydrating Face Lotion for a couple years, which was amazing but didn't want to shell out $32 for the 5 oz bottle anymore. Mind you, the bottle lasted me about 8 months to a year because I used it very sparingly but I just can justify buying it anymore.
5. Lily of the Desert Aloe Vera Gelly: I use this as a base to make shave gel or skin moisturizer mixed with jojoba oil and glycerine. The mixture is very moisturizing and nourishing for skin.
6. DermaE Evenly Radiant Intensive Skin Brightening Complex: This is great to get rid of dark spots quickly but it must be used everyday to be effective long.term. The first time I used it I saw a noticeable different on an old dark spot.
7. Avalon Organics Vitamin C Renewal Balancing Toner: I love this stuff because you can dab it on an area of dry skin and it smooths it out within a few days. It's soothing yet powerful.
8. DermaE Evenly Radiant & Glycolic and Vitamin A Face Washes: Both excellent and very brightening for my skin. Loved these both but these are the ones I mentioned that I stopped buying because I'm cheap. They were $11.99 each for 8 oz.
9. Aveda Stress-Fix Body Lotion: Very emollient and good for winter. The scent smells like lavender and the bottle says it's a stress relieving aroma. Very true.
10. Aveda Personal Blends Hydrating Formula Body Lotion: You can go into an Aveda "experience center" aka retail store and pick out one of the essential oil aroma blends to have them customize a lotion for you. Mine smelled so good, I believe it was called aroma 4 floral, woody.
What are your favorite makeup and skincare products? Let me know in the comments section.
Thanks for reading, take care.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Intro to My Personal Style

My personal style has gone through quite an interesting metamorphosis over the years. I went from being a life long wearer of Tomboy attire to embracing my femininity in more fitted and womanly clothes. It all started almost two and a half years ago, when I finished college. I felt that I needed to start dressing like a grown woman and not a boy in high school, LOL. From there the current version of my personal style began to blossom.
I wrote about my daily uniform (www.styleandmedialeah.com/2014/09/my-daily-uniform.html?m=1) in my Sunday Sept. 14 post, which breaks down my style into specific outfit combos. But in this post I'm being more general. Here are the current personal style staples I can't live without:
1. Fitted and Flowy Button Up Blouses:
2. Skirts:
3. Shorts:
4. Fitted Pants:
5. Scarves and Necklaces:
Where I need improvement: dark colored shoes and bags because they tend to be really sporty and functional looking not cute and feminine like my other items. So this Fall I want to get at least one pair of cute shoes and a cute bag.
What looks characterize your personal style? Let me know in the comments section.
Thanks for reading, take care.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Issuu.com Review

I've known about issuu.com for a while now but in recent months I have been paying more attention to the emails that they send me. Issuu is a website that allows you to browse thousands of independent digital magazines and of course I zeroed in on the fashion mags! These digi mags are formated just for its website. Said e-mails being sent to me are weekly digests of its latest magazine offerings they think I should check out.
One magazine that stood out to me was Baku Magazine. It's focus is the art, culture and fashion of Azerbaijan. As I looked at the masthead I was surprised to see that it is a Conde Naste publication.
Here are 5 reasons I'm loving Issuu:
1. The Clip and Share Functions: These allow you to zero in on relevant content and share via social media.
2. Discover Unique Content: I love all the cool Indie mags I can find on the site and browse for free.
3. Fashion Inspiration For Stylists: Looking through all the fashion mags on there, one is bound to find tons of ideas, designers, locations and products for their own projects.
4. Possible Job Opps for Stylists and Writers: As long as there are magazines there are opportunities to style their fashion stories and write for them.
5. High Quality Digi Mags: These mags are all the real deal. They are high quality and professionally produced. They tend to be super niche focused that online publishing is more cost effective.

If you like issuu.com, what are some of your fave magazine discoveries? Let me know in the comments section.
Thank you for reading, take care.

Mind Right Monday # 5

Here we are at week # 5 and away we go!
1. Get more sleep because I'm failing miserably at that.
2. Getting my sleep schedule regulated.
3. Start taking Omega 3 fish oil. Yeah, yeah, yeah it's gross but ultra healthy and good for skin, hair and nails.
Grateful For:
1. Peace and quite in this loud city whenever I can get it.
2. Having the opportunity to go to Fashion Institute of Technology's continuing education styling class and having the option to go back for more as I'm able to.
3. My many transferable skills!
What are your goals for the week and what are you grateful for? Let me know in the comments section.
Thank for reading, take care.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

My Daily Uniform

Years ago I learned about the concept of having a "uniform." It's a simplified way of wearing clothes that look similar from day to day that can help streamline ones morning routine. But this is not the same thing as wearing the same clothes each day.
I've read and observed that lots of fashion designers have daily uniforms. For example, Karl Lagerfeld in his iconic black blazer, crisp white button up shirt and black jeans. He accessorizes with all black items including shades, a tie, driving gloves, a fan and sharp shoes. I just love his classic, sleek and ultra chic look. To top off his look he pulls his white hair into a neat ponytail. He mixes up this uniform look with variations of the same items.
Or let's take Carolina Herrera as another example. She just wears a timelessly elegant and simple ensemble of a crisp button down blouse and full skirt, accessorized with a necklace and heels. I love her style and I've definitely used this formula in putting togethers my own outfits.
With these two examples you get the point. Now on to my daily uniform. There are usually three variations of it.
1. Blouse + necklace + bracelets + watch + pants combo
2. Blouse + necklace + bracelets + watch + skirt combo
3. Blouse + necklace + bracelets + watch + shorts combo
Depending on the weather I'll add a blazer, sweater, boots and stylish scarf. This uniform goes for the clothes I wear in the spring, summer and fall, so I'll get into my winter uniform in a future post.
If you like to wear a daily "uniform" tell me about it in comments section! Thank you for reading, take care.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

How to Create an Inspiration Board & Laydowns

As promised in my August 22 post titled Fashion Styling Class Final Project, I said I'd give more details about creating inspiration boards and laydowns. So here we go! First, I'll review what an inspiration board and laydowns are.
The inspiration board is a simple board on which you gather images that inspire your photo shoot and fashion story. These are basically fantasy images that you will translate into everyday outfits when you put together your laydowns (summarizing my styling professor's words).
Here's an example of the inspiration board I created for my final project. I found the various pictures on Pinterest and did the color palette myself.

A laydown is a simple still life arrangement of clothing and accessories that you'll use during a photo shoot for a fashion story. A fashion story is an editorial style series of photos featuring a specific theme or look.
Now more about laydowns. When you're gathering the items for laydowns think about how well each piece goes together. It's so important to consider how items go together so your laydowns looks cohesive. That way your fashion story will look cohesive as well. Look at the laydowns I created to go with my inspiration board. Notice how the looks fit together?

To get you thinking even more about laydowns look no further than your fave fashion mag. Have you ever noticed when items are placed on a plain white background in a magazine? That is a laydown. Very simple looking but they can be very challenging to actually shoot.
For instance, when I was shooting the laydowns for my final project I ran into some big trouble. I shot the two looks on my dark brown blanket (I know, I know, very bad!) but at the time I could only use what I had available. The dark brown blanket totally washed out the black skirt and shoes in both looks. The other issue was lighting. I have one huge, harsh florescent ceiling light in my room that did not do me any favors. It also made my laydowns look dark and dreary, which I tried to correct in editing but to no avail.
To get around the background issue in the future, I researched a bit and found two background options. One option is seamless paper, which is heavy duty paper that comes on rolls of various lengths and widths. It is used by professional photographers for photo shoots. It's usually always hung from an adjustable stand or even the ceiling and people can walk on it without ruining it. They have good deals on it from Adorama, www.adorama.com.
The second option is butcher paper, which comes on a roll too and is less sturdy that seamless paper but stronger than regular paper. I've seen it used a lot as backgrounds on school bulletin boards and art projects. Best thing about it is that it can be cut to specific sizes unlike seamless paper. Both types of paper come in a variety of colors.
I'd recommend getting 1 roll of seamless paper in white to start out and as your budget allows get another roll in light grey. The seamless paper can be used for laydowns using coats and other large clothing and accessory items for big spreads. It can be hung and used as a background when photographing models when you're ready. Plus, a roll of white and light grey butcher paper for smaller laydown projects is good to have too.
The second issue I had was the lighting so right now I'm researching lighting options. I'm pretty sure I want to get two soft box lights that have adjustable stands. But more about that in a future post.
Tell me about your experience creating inspiration boards and laydowns in the comments below.
Thanks for reading, take care.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Fashion Pro Spotlight: Edwige Foltek of Hypnozglam blog

Welcome to Fashion Friday! During Fashion Month I'm excited to be doing special spotlights on a wide range of fashion professionals and sharing their awesome insights with you! This week I'm spotlighting Edwige Foltek of the blog Hypnoz Glam. Below is our email interview, enjoy!

1. What is you fashion blog/website/venture called? When and why did you start it? Hypnoz Glam: a Fashion, Decor & Lifestyle Blog. On August 1st I put all fear aside and launched what I call now my little get away from the busy life. For years I've had a lot of admiration for the talented ladies and gentlemen out there that are sharing their passions with the world. I finally decided to blog not only because I will have the chance to write (I love writing) about some of the things that I love and share them with the world, but also because I've always aspired to inspire. I hope someone, somewhere, will find satisfaction and inspiration in my work.
2. What have been your most exciting and proud moments so far in your fashion venture? I had a few proud and exciting moments since I started blogging just a month ago: I'd say my proudest moment was when I actually launched my blog. For many reasons, I thought I wasn't ready. But It feels like a huge accomplishment when I hit the "Publish" button that day and made my blog site public. Besides that, I've been recently nominated for the Liebster Blog Award and as you can imagine I was beyond excited about the opportunity.
3. What growth and opportunities are you striving for during the rest of 2014 and in 2015 for this venture? You know, I promise myself to make this venture as pleasing and fun as possible and I decided not to put any pressure on myself. However, I'm an ambitious and goal-oriented person so I’m striving to reach as much audience and brands as possible and be an inspiration to as many as possible. I'm a believer and I pray that God guides me through this venture and in everything else I do.
4. Were can my readers learn more about you and your work? To learn more about me head over to Hypnoz Glam and feel free to drop me a line. Your feedback is also welcomed :-). Great things are coming - I can't say anything yet -but stay tuned and be sure to subscribe to my post or follow me on any social media platform you'd like. (Hypnoz Glam on Facebook)
5. What are your 3 Fall must-haves (clothing item, accessory, makeup)? My 3 picks for Fall must- have items will be: 1- Cape Coat : I find it feminine and not too bulky for the fall season. 2- "A statement piece" accessories! Every woman need at least one. 3- Red or plum lipstick. I think red is the new neutral. A fun way to brighten up your whole look is with earth tones, being the dominant colors worn in Fall.
6. Any closing statements or things you want to add that weren't discussed? - I would like to thank you for this opportunity for being featured in your blog. It means a lot to me. I appreciate all my readers and followers. All of this will not be possible without them. To anyone out there reading this and is still hesitant to start their blog, I say go for it! Do it with passion and determination! Do not quit even before you start. For my relatively new fellow bloggers, know that for some people, success may come right away, but for others, lots of works will need to be put in before... so do not give up and while working toward that dream of yours, do not forget to enjoy the ride and have fun.
7. What are the 3 resources every fashion professional needs to know about and use regularly? - 3 fashions resources I think anyone in the fashion industry should know about: 1- Portfolio: I think one fashion success tip is to create a portfolio. Every employer/client wants to see your work. 2- Networking: I'd say to possibly join a fashion organisation to stay current in industry trends. 3- Books. I'm biased because I love reading! But I think Fashion resource books are great ways to learn more about the industry.
Edwige has inspired me a lot from reading her answers to my questions. I wish her the best and much success and look forward to following her blog as it evolves. She's in the newbie fashion blogger club with me!!
Tell me what you think of the insights that Edwige shared in the comments below.
Thanks for reading, take care.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

My Favorite Designers

Ah my favorite designers...what can I say? They all have drastically  different aesthetics, but I love all their distinct, unique elements.
Here's just 5 random faves and why I love their designs:
1. Lauren Conrad: She has a very fresh, feminine aesthetic as far as the light and neutral colors, floaty, delicate fabrics and cuts she uses and how she puts it all together. Her LC Lauren Conrad collection for Kohl's is just as appealing to me as her more expensive designer line called Paper Crown.
2. Christian Siriano: When he was on Project Runway season 4, his catchphrase was fierce. But that word perfectly captured the essence of his debut Project Runway collection. It was dark, dramatic, diaphanous, sensuous and FIERCE! Since then he's designed footwear and purses for Payless Shoe Source. His collections after that have been equally fierce and all that wonderful stuff.
3. Nicholas K: A lady named Nicholas, gotta love it! She and her brother work as a design team. They create a cool mix of drapy, flowy pieces and structured edgy pieces mixed together perfectly for what I describe as a chic urban Bohemian, punk look.
4. Anna Sui: I like that she's been designing the same look since the 90s with her trademark floral, bohemian baby dolls dresses. Her aesthetic also has elements of goth and whimsy.
5. Vince: The neutral color palette used-- usually black, white and grey. The clean lines and minimalist aesthetic appeals to me because I love neutrals and the minimalist look.
Who are some of your favorite designers and why? Let me know in the comments.
Thanks for reading, take care.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Snowman Presentation + Networking Event for Buyers & Press

Tonight I attended the Snowman  presentation for it's fall/winter 2014 and Spring/Summer 2015 outerwear collections + networking for buyers and press. The event was put together by The Set NYC,  who organized great fashion events around the city. This was my second event that I've attended by them and I loved it.
The collection of outwear was super chic, yet functional and I can totally see myself wearing these coats and jackets in the future. I'm always on the lookout for a stylish, well-cut water resistant jacket but haven't really had much luck until seeing this collection.
I liked how they styled the models with old Hollywood glam hairstyles and a deep red lip color. It was a nice detail how they paired all the coats with great heels and the short jackets with fitted leather shorts. I also noticed that the models weren't anorexic-looking teens but healthy-looking slim women with curves.
Favorite Looks That I Photographed:
Also, I had the opportunity to network with some great people and attended the event with purse designer/blogger Julian Gravesande, who told me about the event.
Events Photos
1. Me, 2. Julian, 3. Me & Julian, 4. Designer, Carlos Con Long and Julian, 5. Photographer, model Bo Pratt and his assistant (left), 6. Event worker and models checking their phones, 7. Snowman promo bags with lookbooks inside, extra lookbooks on the table and bottles of refreshing Hubert's Lemonade, and wine being served. 8. Snowman promo bags, 9. Julian and photographers shoots the outerwear looks, 10. & 11. Racks of Snowman winter coats and jackets. 
What you think of the jackets. Which one do you like best?
Let me know of the comments below. Thanks for reading, take care.

How I Got Three Recent Fashion Opportunities

I've been fortunate enough to have received some great fashion opportunities lately. I owe it all to God and the lovely members of my blogger group!
Here are just 3 recent opps:
1. The Degen Spring/Summer 2015 Presentation on Thursday Sept. 4: Courtesy of Monae Everett, Hairstylist/Makeup Artist/Blogger
Degen Presentation
Me (left), Monae (right)
2. Ollari by Meagan Ollari Fashion Show on Saturday Sept. 6: Courtesy of Sandy Jean, Fashion Blogger
Sandy (left), Me (right)
3. Snowman Fall/Winter 2014, Spring/Summer 2015 Presentation & Networking for Buyers and Press:Courtesy of Julian Gravesande, Purse Designer/Blogger
Snowman Presentation
Me (left), Julian (right)
These events were particularly exciting because they make up my first fashion week! It's been a dream of mine to attend fashion week since I was a little fashion obsessed kid. And now that I'm a fashion obsessed adult making my way through the early stages of my fashion styling career, this has been a dream come true!
What have been some of your early opportunities in your styling career and how'd you find them?
Thanks for reading, take care.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

What to Wear to Fashion Shows

This is the all important question on everyone's mind who will attend a fashion show, especially a fashion week newbie like me. The easy answer is, it depends. It depended whether you'll be photographing the event or not.
For photographing shows and presentations, I recommend that you wear super comfy clothes that look chic as well. Stretchy pants like black spandex or matte leggings, very stretchy skinny jeans, or ponte (thick legging-like) pants, which stretch and look more chic than leggings. Next, a comfortable pair of shoes that are flexible and bend with your foot since at some point you're likely to be crouching and/or kneeling. Now, onto the top. During fashion week in September, it will still be hot so wear blouses and tunics that are comfortable, light and airy. Add a necklace, either simple or statement but make sure it's not dangly. Otherwise, it could get caught in your camera or anyone else's camera if you get really close to them to get your shot. If you like bracelets wear ones that aren't jingly and annoying. Either stretchy ones that are a bit snug or cuffs.
If you're not photographing the show extensively or can get good photos from your seat you can wear whatever you want! Have fun with your ensembles.
Lastly, I'll tell you a little "I shouldn't have worn that" story from my first show at Degen. I wore heels, enough said, hahaha! I'm not a heels girl AT ALL but I wanted my outfit to look cute so I wore the heels, but never again! All I can say is that now I'm going to be in search of a couple pairs of pretty sturdy flats.
What are your go-to outfits for both photographing shows and just watching them? Let me know in the comments.

Thanks for reading, take care.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Mind Right Monday #4

As usual I'll share my goals and what I'm grateful for during the week.
1. Get through Fashion Month successfully.
2. Think of more interesting topics to write about in October.
Grateful For:
1. My Blessings.
2. Opportunities.
3. My tenacity.
What are your goals for the week and what are you grateful for? Let me know in the comments section.
Thank for reading, take care.

Fashion Job Roundup

Industry newbies are always looking for a job and career opportunities so here are 5 areas you might be interested in:
1. Omni Media/Entertainment:
IMG World
E! Network
2. Online:
Refinery 29
Style Caster
Style Blazer
Say Media
3. Magazine Publishing: 
Conde Nast
Hearst Magazines
The North Star Group
Meredith Corporation
4. PR:
People's Revolution
5. Retail:
Bergdorf Goodman
H & M
Blue Fly
What are your favorite fashion job sources? Leave links in the comments below.
Thank you for reading, take care.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

How to Cover a Fashion Show Or Presention

Covering a fashion show or presentation takes some planning. I recommend buying one slim notebook from Muji or any dollar store specifically to cover each season of shows. Especially, if you're covering more than 5 shows. It's a good idea to make pages in your notebook for each show you'll attend. 
For each show dedicate 1-2 pages front and back to write notes about. Title each page with the following:
-makeup and hair looks
-overall theme of the show
-specific looks you liked
-interviews with designer, hair and makeup leads maybe models and show attendees
-get the designer lookbook of it's available.
-introduce yourself to their PR rep if possible, get their business card and follow up by requesting press photos of the show.
Also, network till you drop! Greet people, first ask about what they do, what their favorite thing about it etc, talk a bit about yourself. Ask for their business card or contact info if they don't have one. You give them you're card and make sure you ALWAYS have business cards!
If they only have one card left ask to take a picture of it with your phone. Always follow up with everyone within a few days. Say you enjoyed meeting them and you look forward to connecting with them again in the future.
Then, once you get home you can go through your neatly organized notebook to begin writing your blog posts or articles.
What are your tips on covering a fashion show? Let me know in the comments below.
Thanks for reading, take care.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Meagan Ollari Debut at New York Fashion Week 2014

This evening I attended the Spring/Summer 2015 debut collection of young designer Meagan Ollari. She was featured in FGNYFW's Designer Review, a multi-designer runway showcase. Many thank you's to Sandy Jean, blogger at Fashn Boucoup and friend of Meagan for making it possible for me to attend the show. 
Pre-Show: Weeks before the show I viewed the Ollari Collection on Meagan's website. I loved the colorful light, airy looks of the collection.
Lookbook that I received at the show.
Show: A beauifully diverse cast of models of varying heights and body shapes paraded down the runway in the collection. There were pops of colorful geometric shapes against the white maxi and mini dresses, shorts and tops. Pink and reddish-terracotta ethnic printed maxi and mini dresses, capris and a halter jumpsuit with geometric detail on the bodice were some of my favorite pieces.
Two of my favorite outfits from the lookbook.
Post-Show: Stay tuned for a post in the winter months with photos of the collection!
View the Ollari Collection and tell me what you think in the comments section.
Thank you for reading, take care.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Fashion Pro Spotlight: Ashley Goode, Up-and-Coming Fashion Stylist/Blogger

This is a special Fashion Friday featuring Ashley Goode, up-and-coming fashion stylist and fashion blogger at Vogue Binge. Here is my email interview with her along with some photos of some of her and her work. Enjoy!
1. What is you fashion blog/website/venture called? When and why did you start it? My brand is called Vogue Binge, specializing in fashion writing, styling and photography. I started in March 2010, blogging and sharing my style and daily outfit with others. I've always had a passion for photography and styling, and wanted to incorporate it into my platform. So, I rebranded into offering additional services in 2011. Vogue Binge's mission is to "Create to Inspire." Once I found my calling to inspire others through my craft, I dedicated my blog to encouraging others to follow their dreams.
2. What have been your most exciting and proud moments so far in your fashion venture? I think my number proud moment is just seeing how my brand affects and encourages others. It's amazing to know that other people are inspired by your work and you're making a difference. Another proud moment of mine is when I was able to put together and style my first photoshoot. Something about planning and putting time in to a project, and finally seeing it come to life, feel amazing! I strive to continue to progress within my career in the future.
3. What growth and opportunities are you striving for during the rest of 2014 and in 2015 for this venture? For this rest of this year and 2015, I hope to work with more brands in collaboration and partnership, as. well as developing an online boutique. I am striving to turn Vogue Binge into a household name. I don't want to say to much, but there is a lot in store for the year to come!
4. Where can my readers learn more about you and your work? You can learn more about me and my brand Vogue Binge Also you can keep up with me on Instagram and Twitter @VogueBinge.
5. What are your 3 Fall must-haves (clothing item, accessory, makeup)? Hmm..there's so many to choose from. I'm totally in love with sporty and androgynous clothing that I would like to adopt into my own wardrobe. So I'd like to pick up a pair of joggers to sport with a pair of single sole heels. I'd also like to purchase a pair of white platform chucks and boyfriend jeans.
6. Any closing statements or things you want to add that weren't discussed? I'd like to say, no matter your dreams and goals that you have, don't give up! Continue to work towards them, and I promise you will see an outcome. Stay focused and keep your eyes on the prize! If you're looking for weekly inspiration and fashion updates, be sure to subscribe to our Vogue Binge Newsletters. (Subscribe here)
7. What are the 3 resources every fashion professional needs to know about and use regularly? 3 resources I think every fashion professional needs to know about is LinkedIn, Style.com, and any social media platform. LinkedIn because it is a great network to display your resume/work experience and connect with people in the industry around the world. Style.com is my number one source for keeping up with the latest trends, designers, fashion news and more. Every fashion professional must be up on the latest! I think if you are in the fashion industry you should be using at least 1-2 social media platforms that are comfortable to you; Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, etc. It's important to have internet presence to market and sell their product or services. Especially during this age, where society is surrounded by technology.

Ashley's idea for the photo shoot.
I put this shoot together on my own for my lookbook called "Girls Night Out." The lookbook was created to capture three styles that a modern day fashionista could wear on a night out on the town with their girlfriends. The first look was inspired to portray a sophisticated gal, who enjoys using animal prints to spice up her wardrobe (pic with the light pole).
The model is wearing a black tank top from H&M, leopard maxi skirt from Stein Mart, and black ankle strap heels from GoJane.com. The second look is for a trendy fashionista that is in to trying the latest styles from the runway (black and white pic). This look plays with the all-white trend, as the model is wearing a lace overlay maxi skirt from H&M, nude ankle strapped heels from Forever 21, and a white tank and blazer vest from Target. When styling my lookbooks, I like to incorporate affordable pieces that the average fashionista can pick up from her local mall or thrift store; moderate pieces that can be styled to create a high fashion look.
Photographer: Beach Photo
Model: Kasey Witt
Wardrobe Stylist: Ashley Goode
Make-up Artist: Karen Vaughn
I enjoyed and learned a lot from my interview with Ashley. She's a very talented and inspiring young lady and I wish her the best! What did you like about this week's fashion pro spotlight? Let me know in the comments below. Thank you for reading, take care.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Nicholas K Spring 2015 Show Review

Nicholas K is one of my favorite designers. I love the way she creates such effortless looks with flowing layers juxtaposed again clean lines and edgy details. I first became aware of her clothes when I was watching her show online in 2009 on YouTube. I've been following her collections ever since.

In the spring 2015 show that I viewed online, all her signature design elements were there.

1. Flowy, loose fitting dresses and tops.
2. Draped scarves.
3. Silky, sheer and sturdy fabrics.
4. Long tassel bracelets, armbands and necklaces.
5. Muted and subdued colors and bold pops of color in garments.

Click here to view her Spring 2015 show.
The theme for this collection reminded me of a chic female desert nomad, traversing the sand dunes of the Middle East in high style. The music of the show even set that ambiance. The show opened with dark olive looks, muted greens and khakis followed. Later creams, blacks and whites sashayed down the runway. I liked the flowy, silky shirts and tunics paired with sheer harem style capris. The oversized scarves draped elegantly over the models heads looked great for styling in the NYC spring when the weather is still a bit chilly. Towards the end of the show I loved the flowing aquamarine pieces, I thought to myself now that's what spring is all about, bright poppin colors! Are you a fan of Nicholas K's designs and if so what do you like about them? Let me know in the comments. Thanks for reading, take care.

Degen NYC Spring Summer 2015 Presentation

Just a couple days ago the opportunity came up to cover Degen's fashion week presentation. Monae Everett, hairstylist/makeup artist extraordinaire posted a notice in our blogger group to see if anyone was interested in writing about the hairstyles that she created for the presentation. Of course I jumped at the chance and I'm so glad I did.

The day of the presentation I arrived at Pier 59 Studios waaay over on West Street overlooking the Hudson River. The studio had a sleek, minimalist industrial ambience. The staff was friendly and welcoming and one of the employees walked me back to room two where the Degen presentation was.

I was directed backstage where I was to meet with Monae, who was the key hairstylist (leading her team of stylists) and photograph her in action. The room was abuzz with activity, but it wasn't what I expected. Everyone was so relaxed, calm and chill for backstage. Wow I thought, this is great! I had read that working and photographing backstage is stressful and chaotic but thankfully this was not.
I worked my way through to the back where Monae was. We greeted each other, she introduced me to Keisha, a member of her hairstyling team. Then, I took out my camera and got to work photographing the hairstyles and backstage activity. 

Monae's hairstyles were so creative. They ranged from spiked short styles and asymmetrical up do's on long hair, to what reminded me of finger coils and locks but on straight Caucasian hair! The makeup was done by INGLOT and packed a colorful punch, but at the same time looked very ethereal and dewy.

Once I finished photographing the backstage hair and activities, I went into the huge space where a stylized beach was set up. The models were dressed in super cute clothes ranging from fitted crop tops, leggings, shorts, bathing suits, tunics, short sleeve and long sleeve tee shirts, lounge pants, cozy, soft-looking life preserver vests. Some of the models were wearing Teva sandals, others were just wearing socks. A couple of them were wearing sleek leather backpacks.

There were a handful of photographers and a videographer with a steady cam. We all had plenty of time to photograph each look. After we finished, the models all gathered on the beach set. They were given a beach ball to toss around, while others were chilling and relaxing in beach chairs. One model was even lounging in a life preserver "floating" in the fake ocean waves on the set. The whole set up was very cute, imaginative and fun. As they tossed around the beach ball more and more people trickled into the studio. I think they were a mix of friends, family and colleagues of the Degen team plus maybe bloggers, editors and other fashion industry folks.

From my arrival to my departure was such a lovely experience. It was nice to observe that the designer Lindsay Degen was cheerily circulating through the studio wearing a cute smiley face tee shirt, shorts and Teva sandals in a similar style as her collection (she's pictured below with Monae). I enjoyed this positive energy fashion event and would love to attend future Degen NYC shows.
Stay tuned in October for my favorite Spring Summer 2015 looks from the presentation!

To see Monae's talent at work watch her YouTube channel Monae Artistry, check out her website Monae Everett as well as her Hair and Makeup Blog. She belongs to Hair Room Service artist agency and used Schwarzkopf USA  products for the hair styles.
Check out INGLOT's site as well as it's local stores in NYC .

Have you been to a Degen NYC presentation before? What did you like about it? Let me know in the comments.

Thanks for reading, take care.