Mood Board Inspiration: American Hustle

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I love fashion from the 1970s, actually I am a lover of period fashion and the history behind costume.¬†Today’s inspiration is derived from the 2014 movie American Hustle, starring Amy Adams, Jennifer Lawrence,¬†Christian Bale,¬†Bradley Cooper and directed by David O. Russell.¬† Truth is, my¬†excitement in viewing the movie was only because of the costume design.¬†¬†Fashion from the 70s is flamboyant¬†and seductive.¬† The movie¬†reproduced all of the notable elements of the glamorous era with wavy big hair, bold makeup, and glitzy clothing, not to mention attitude.

If you’re thinking about adding some staple 70′s inspired pieces to your wardrobe, check out the pictures for inspiration!

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Inside of a Box

Conformity:

An act of conforming; to behave in a way that is accepted by most people; to do what other people do

Color inside of the lines.  Jump on the bandwagon.  Go by the book.  Play the game.  Obey the rules. Follow the crowd.  Toe the line.  Roll with the punches. Run with the pack.  Don’t make waves.  Don’t rock the boat.

We learn to conform at a young age.  We are taught to silence our unpopular thoughts and beliefs and adapt to the pack.  We are taught not to seek new ways of doing life.  What arises from learning to live in such a tiny oxygen deprived box is a shell of a person.  A walking zombie.  Someone who has learned to just go through the motions.  Live life on everyone else’s terms and expectations. Wave the white flag, surrender.

That was me.¬† Years and years of wearing a mask, hiding my true self, fearful of consequences, criticism and opinions.¬† Downplaying my passions, dreams, aspirations‚Ķafraid of disappointing ‚Äúthem‚ÄĚ (can anyone tell me who these people are?)..withering away on the inside.¬† I had learned to restrict myself, restrain myself in hopes of pleasing the invisible judgmental group of people that resided in my head who-always-got-it-right (how I hated those people!).¬† I had learned to dismiss the few compliments and encouraging words I received about my creative skills when I allowed a small peek inside of my private world.¬† A pre-recorded repetitious record of negative thoughts would play in my subconscious anytime I felt a jolt of freedom, or joy, or smidgen of happiness.

Change, real-life-shifting-courage-needed-change, cannot occur without a catalyst.¬† Catalysts precipitate change and can be disguised in an array of costumes‚Ķa job loss, death of a loved one or pet, the end of a relationship, financial difficulty…¬†which¬†may¬†lead you to do quite a bit of soul searching and¬†look for some significance, some meaning in your¬†life.¬† You will question everything‚ĶGod (or whatever higher power you believe in) and everyone.¬† You will, at times, question your own sanity and rational thinking.¬† And all that you are made of will want to quit. Give up‚Ķdie‚Ķremain a¬†zombie because well, it‚Äôs just easier.¬† The thing is you can‚Äôt quit because change is occurring.¬† You have to keep going, keep fighting, and keep pushing.¬† You owe this to yourself, your authentic self.¬† Understand you are slowly being released from your prison.¬† It just doesn‚Äôt feel like it because you are in the process of change.¬† Yes, it is a process.¬† But it is manageable and purposeful.¬† And necessary.¬† Teach yourself to remove the periods placed in your life and instead insert commas.¬† A period signifies the finality of a thing while a comma suggests there is more to expect because it¬†will get better.¬† Vow to continue living and allow yourself the room and self compassion to experience the fullness of change.

What makes me so qualified to speak on this? Because I, like you, was once a rider on the transition rollercoaster (I still am).  And like the Phoenix that rises from burnt ashes, I have been revived.  The fire didn’t consume me…it was never meant to…its purpose was to give birth to the powerfully free creature that is me.  Your Phoenix experience awaits you, what will you do with it?

The Chameleon: Kate Moss

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    Intriguing.  Alluring.  Beautiful.  These are just a few terms used to describe model Kate Moss.  One of the most sought models in the fashion industry, she is paparazzi gold as she attracts media attention everywhere.  In honor of her latest collaboration with London giant retailer, Top Shop, here are a few editorial fashion photographs of the chameleon.  The collection has a 70s flair to it (perfect match to the American Hustle mood board), is reasonably priced (some pieces sold out within minutes of the launch) and can add a cool chic London feel to any wardrobe.  Enjoy! Be sure to check out the collection at http://www.topshop.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Pieces of Me

Be You. Two simple little words with profound meaning. For me, those two words represent freedom. Up until the last year or so, I wasn‚Äôt basking in the glorious freedom of just being me that I am now. By all outside appearances, I was a woman pursuing my dream career whilst working a regular paying 9-5 gig. By outside appearances it would seem I led a well-balanced life, with meaningful relationships, spiritually growing in my relationship with God¬†and group of supportive friends.¬†The reality was¬†on the inside, in my secret cave (my apartment) I was silently mourning. You see, I was trying to be the person I thought my family wanted me to be, whom my co-workers and friends¬†sought me out¬†to be. I wasn‚Äôt abused or depressed (well maybe I was depressed). I was just unhappy. And I did various activities (shopping online, watching endless TV, eating unhealthy junk food) that helped me ‚Äúzone out‚ÄĚ/mask¬†my true feelings and I was doing nothing to further my budding writing career or improve my life. In other words, I had learned to keep the wound covered¬†up, never allowing air to bring healing to the infection or¬†ever addressing the cause of it.¬† I had lived this way for years and though I knew it wasn’t healthy, I continued in my dysfunction.

One night while sitting watching the movie Eat, Pray, Love starring Julia Roberts (yes, I‚Äôm guilty I had never seen it)¬†combined with these life defining questions I could no longer cover up finally combusted¬†as all of these thoughts started pouring out of me within the first 30 minutes. I realized, in that insignificant moment (but tremendously significant), I wasn‚Äôt whole. There were pieces of me floating everywhere. One piece my family knew and loved. Another piece went to a job every day. Yet another piece went out for sushi with friends. Who am I? And why am I in pieces?¬†I was asking God and I was demanding answers! Soul searching, prayer, meditation, journaling for months and investigative research¬†brought the realization that¬†I was living out¬†life as a carbon copy of who¬†I was¬†really¬†created to be. Perfectly perfected on the outside but inside crumbling to pieces, giving those pieces away, never fully engaging in life and relationships. I couldn‚Äôt live that way any longer. I wouldn‚Äôt, I wanted, ¬†no needed to be whole. I realized I would never be able to embrace what I am called to be in this life in broken pieces. Tear filled nights with intensive writing, early morning conversations with God gave birth to the woman I am today. Not perfect, no but whole. Learning every day I¬†no longer¬†need anyone‚Äôs permission to just BE. Me. Perfectly imperfect in my beautiful skin.¬† The more I embrace me, the more I reach my highest, most authentic self.¬† And there is no happier state to find yourself in.¬† I’ve chosen to just BE, will you join me?

 

Monday Inspiration

fashionartToday’s inspired fashionArt piece is the cover of a W magazine.¬†A perfect picture except her mouth. Misaligned, askew, out of place.¬† Reminds me of how life can be, how we can feel sometimes in the world.¬† But I’m also reminded that this isn’t necessarily a bad thing…¬†it’s a representation of shattering perceptions of trying to live a perfect life. And in that trying, you can miss out on just living. Take down the walls of perfection today and just live!

Happy Monday!

 

Designer Profile: Jean Louis Sabaji

jls4      I am in love. With fashion, the possibility of this occurring is often fleeting and not always notable. There are just a hand full of designers I keep close watch on and I have to thank my friend, Cherise, for introducing me to the incredible Jean Louis Sabaji.

Sabaji, a second generation Lebanese¬†designer, debuted his collection at Dubai Fashion Week. this month to a well pleased and admirable audience.¬† The final outcome was clear, he is definitely one to watch, I wouldn’t be surprised if we see more of him in the upcoming fashion seasons.¬† The collection was well constructed, painstakingly so, with a grand flair of and mother nature.¬† The insect appliques reminded me of Zuhair Murad‘s fall 2014¬†RTW collection which showcased his love¬†for dragonflies and butterflies.¬† Insects never looked so sexy!¬† Please check out¬†the debut¬†collection on his website.

You can follow the designer on Facebook or twitter to keep up with the latest.

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The Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing

The evil doer often comes to harm through his own deceit.–Aesop fable

 

Woody Allen.¬† Robert Kelly.¬† Terrance “Terry” Richardson.¬† These three¬†men are regarded as the cr√®me de la cr√®me in their respected industries and have all been accused, some tried in a court of law, and found guilty by the public¬†of inappropriate sexual behavior.¬† All have gone to the greatest of lengths to cover and annihilate the “rumors” of¬†accusations, even penning public proclamations of innocence.¬† The latest scandal of the three¬†features famed fashion and portrait photographer, Terry Richardson.¬† Known for his explicit, often nude, images of models and celebrities, Richardson has¬†photographed some of the best in the business and worked for top publications.¬† His resume is quite impressive; his work well received and is name is infamous.¬† But the allegations that appeared via Twitter three days ago published by Emma Appleton are not the first of its kind.¬† In 2010 and 2013, Richardson, who’s explicit often nude images tend to push the boundary of sexual and appropriate behaviors, stood accused of similar conduct by professionals in the industry.¬† Dirt was slung from both sides as Richardson and his supporters fought to discredit the voices that cried foul and defend his brand and name.¬† As with most sensationalized internet stories, the debacle settled into dust particles as the fire¬†slowly burned into nothingness without a clear indication of the true details of the he said she said battle.¬† Richardson continued to work and play as, I’m certain, he felt he dodged the flaming arrows of injustice and the attempt to vilify his persona.¬† But on Sunday, US Vogue¬†issued a clear and concise public statement, proclaiming,”The last assignment Terry Richardson had for US Vogue appeared in the July 2010 issue and we have no plans to work with him in the future.” Quickly distancing¬†itself from the scandal and possible storm of criticism that will transpire in the future (Vogue has recently had its share, and more of public judgment handed to them by the Kim and Kanye cover mess).¬†What’s different about the scandal of today versus yesterday is public support.¬† No one,¬†not one person, has come to stand behind Richardson.¬† The photographer himself hasn’t spoken a word except one lousy standard declaration through his publicist.¬† The silence¬†seeping through¬†Richardson’s dark room isn’t good; it would appear¬†there is some difficulty in finding influential voices that are willing to¬†buck against the power of Anna Wintour and Vogue.

Where does this leave Richardson?¬†Innocent,¬†guilty or perhaps the conversation in question between himself and Appleton was blown out of proportion,¬†it will take quite a miraculous turn of events for this situation to be favorable for him.¬† Richardson can kiss the power his name once yielded goodbye.¬†¬†Yes, he will continue to work and play perhaps not as boldly, but¬†his seat is no longer perched atop of the industry.¬† Remember John Galliano? I do, as many others; however¬†we don’t often hear¬†his name¬†anymore, read about any recent work or accomplishments.¬† The same fate, I believe, awaits Terry Richardson.