Tuesday, March 29, 2011
We've seen it all over the runways these past few seasons - the mid-length skirt. Rebellious, isn't it? After all, it's a sure departure from the mini skirts my age group favors. On a recent post showcasing my favorite outfits from other bloggers, a reader commented stating she wished she could pull off long skirts.
In my head, I said the same thing. I'm considerably short, and many "experts" advise petite girls against wearing longer lengths. Midi skirts may come to an awkward, unflattering length; while maxi skirts may drag on the ground and make one seem a tiny but frumpy cat lady. Or so we're told.
I've worn both - a pleated white skirt with a bubble hem, and a simple, body-hugging maxi dress. I've received compliments on both, and I didn't fidget throughout the day or feel the need to wear shorts underneath to prevent exposure. It was comfortable. However, nearly every compliment was accompanied with an "...oh, but I could never pull that off". And then there's the "what is she wearing?!" glares from my peers. Yeah, you know the ones.
So enters the irony of the midi skirt. Perhaps not as trendy or beach-friendly as its longer counterpart, it offers a middle ground, as the name implies. No one would dare call a girl wearing a calve-grazing skirt a whore (nothing I condone, for the record), though one wearing a super-short skirt may be subjected to such. Instead, it's cute in a womanly sort of way, and comparatively modest.
In theory, it's safe. When mini skirts came about, they were rebellious, daring, etc. But I think we can agree upon the monotony produced by tons and tons of denim mini skirts from mall favorites, no? With this being said, and for the sake of my argument, midi-skirts are more daring among a younger set. And as we know, any young person going against the grain puts herself (or himself) at a supposed target for insecure peers.
We can accept or reject comments from peers, but many times, such acknowledgments can result in self-consciousness. I've long told myself that anyone who cares about what I wear isn't worth my time, but still, there's that voice suggesting I can't pull it off even though I have and I most certainly can again.
Going against the grain just gets one noticed - positively or negatively - even if the object isn't too far from the original norm.
PS Please excuse any spelling or grammatical errors. I'm tired and my attention is scattered in a million different places. On a positive note, I took the plunge and bought a D3000. Expect outfit post tomorrow if I decide against taking my frustrations out on clay, or if I miraculously don't end up covered.
Sunday, March 27, 2011
Clockwise from top left: Calivintage, Fancy Treehouse, The Clothes Horse, Late Afternoon
I'm loving springtime patterns on a yellow background with espadrilles, as well as chambray and pale peach.
Clockwise from top left: style is style, Song of Style, Color Me Nana, Faboo
Even though it's officially spring, most of us are still layering. For now, I quite like it.
On a side note completely unrelated to these wonderful outfits: I can't decide if it makes more sense to get my camera fixed (at least $175) or to purchase a new camera (at least $300). I've had my Nikon D40 for two years and I'm willing to believe it still has a bit of life left, but I'm not sure how much. Then again, it might be nice to upgrade - either D80, which is just as old as the D40, but it's a better model, or the D3000/D3100. But since I'm scouring mostly Craigslist and shops' used equipment listings, there's no guarantee that any of them won't experience the same problems.
Friday, March 25, 2011
Cardigan - sister's, dress - sister's, necklace - DIY, cuff - antique, leggings - Forever 21, boots - Spring
I think the only way today could have been better would entail temperatures above 45 degrees. It's spring, not winter! School was quite nice, actually - during lunch we had a potluck to celebrate my birthday! My friends brought delicious food. It's still weird to me that I enjoy being at school lately because I spend most of my day in the art hallway.
So after school, I went out to eat with my sister then went up to her school. We hung out in the ceramics studio and I successfully threw using porcelain, which makes me pretty content. On the ride home, I checked my email on my phone and discovered I've been accepted at RISD! One of my top choices! I didn't even know they were letting applicants know today, so it was a pleasant surprise.
It seems like my night will be ending just as well as the rest of my day. And by the next time I post, I'll be eighteen. Hurrah.
PS My camera isn't actually fixed... I just managed to fiddle with its insides to get it to snap a few photos.
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
During my last week that I can call myself seventeen, not much has come up in terms of change. Why would anything? Essentially, I'll be exactly the same. But I guess this means criticizing the magazine aimed at me, by title, is only relevant until Saturday. Truthfully, it's geared toward younger teens trying to appear older, so I outgrew it years back. Since then, I've been under the umbrella of a few fashion magazines, their younger counterparts, publications that provide "useful" news, and anything else.
There's not much on the newsstands for teens that care more about music than impressing boys. Maybe my age group just doesn't like reading, but as a seventeen year old girl with entire bookcases full of past issues from various periodicals, I beg to differ.
I alluded to a distaste of a certain magazine last week, and I see Seventeen as its predecessor. Instead of ubiquitous sex tips, there's headlines promoting ridiculous kissing techniques guaranteed to make anyone cringe - including something such as letting an ice cube loose in one's mouth. There's a "body peace" column on the opposing side of the diet and exercise centerfold. You know, just to ensure that readers don't go overboard with the suggestions to get a great ass by spring break.
In the past few years, new body types have been introduced aside from tall and thin, which is indeed helpful for some. But the covers of the past two issues? Barely distinctive. It's graced by an actress with flowing brown hair, glossy lips parting a white smile and mascara-coated eyelashes. "They're average!", Seventeen tells us - they have boy problems, they get pimples, and they like eating food too. Yet they're put on a pedestal (as are many characters within the public eye, but that's a different discussion) - and we're expected to accept it.
I'm told it's unfortunate that I grew up post-Sassy, but I experienced the demise of several other teen magazines - Elle Girl, YM, and CosmoGirl to name a few. And now options for my peers are limited. There's Teen Vogue (which I am not ashamed to say I read!), a few mini-tabloids following the lives of Justin Bieber and whichever girlfriend of his, and our main subject, Seventeen. For years, I've been flipping through the glossy pages of heavier magazines. Elle replaced Elle Girl. Simple. Glamour - ironically, not Cosmopolitan - replaced Cosmogirl.
I believe Elle, Glamour, and similar publications realize I'm being hit in their aim to capture readership, but they're not targeting me. I'm not sure that any major magazines do understand me and my type - teenage girls that like their appearances as-is, would prefer listening to music on the street to most conventional pop, and that don't give a damn whether boys swoon over them or not.
Of course, I've found other magazines to satisfy my addiction - Bust, Lula, Factory, Glamour and the occasional issue of Lucky - but I feel as a whole, there's a huge void in teen magazines. We shouldn't be directed as consumers-in-training or future trophy wives. Speak to us.
PS For more criticism of Seventeen from actual teenagers, visit The Seventeen Magazine Project or check out Tavi's well-written open letter to the publication.
PPS What are your thoughts on this magazine?
Sunday, March 20, 2011
Clockwise from top left: Twitch Vintage, dayuhan via Chictopia, Flashes of Style, Tick Tock Vintage
I'm still loving coral. And white+navy+brown... such a perfect color combination.
Clockwise from top left: The Styling Dutchman, Transient Withdrawal, Color Me Nana, Natalie Off Duty
And then there's mixed primary colors (top, bottom right), and the breaking of the no brown, black and/or navy rule.
It's officially spring! Go out and celebrate - it's 6:15pm and still light outside.
PS Hello to all my new followers! My giveaway will be up soon!
Friday, March 18, 2011
Cardigan and top - sister's, necklace - DIY, bracelet - gift from Saudi Arabia, skirt - Urban Outfitters, socks - Target, shoes - Doc Martens
Oh, look, I wore green on St. Paddy's day! I had off from school, so I spent the day thrifting, making food for an impromptu picnic, trying to take outfit photos... and having my camera display an error message after three shots. My friend Tracey was kind enough to snap a few, though as displayed in the next photo, I'm picky and I always request my photographers crouch down a little, like so:
I'm so high maintenance. I'm kidding. We did go on the picnic at my favorite field, and we were there until it was dark. A few of us went over to the coffee shop to listen to our friend play, then we gallivanted and somehow ended up in a hot tub.
It's days like that I love - perfectly spontaneous, warm enough to forgo pants/tights, filled with food and awesome people. It's supposed to surpass 70 degrees today, but I've been holed up all day trying to fiddle with my camera.
If not, it seems the repair will be requested instead of clothing for my birthday. I didn't even realize my attachment to my camera until this.
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
"A lot of people in fashion don't love women. They impose their own ego upon women, whether they're men or self-hating women." - Zac Posen
While perusing through Cosmopolitan, I came across an article about nightgowns. I'm willing to believe most young people wear t-shirts and sweatpants to sleep nowadays, but I read on. Strangely enough, the article wasn't instructing me to purchase anything to make my man go crazy (I don't even have a man, for that matter), but rather what I should burn to please him. Apparently, men don't like women who wear frumpy nightgowns.
I'm a feminist, which has earned me personal criticism, as well as impersonal criticism from nonbelievers who just associate feminism with hairy legs and such. Cosmo is akin to the woman/girl who I almost feel bad for because she seems to hate herself so much, but what right does anyone have to tell another that it's unacceptable to wear whatever she or he pleases?
A nightgown is immensely different from a dress designated for public wear, but the message struck a chord. Why is it assumed readers will listen to this advice? A possible theory: in some cases, fashion is misogynistic. Yes, yes, this may sound extreme, and indeed it feels a little ludicrous to make such a claim. But let's explore this argument.
High heels and tight dresses may be restricting and flashy, so in order to demand respect, a woman might opt for a pants suit and more sensible shoes. This esteemed look is derived from typical menswear, suggesting that feminine shapes are incapable of earning respect. Of course, many women enjoy menswear-inspired styles - to each her own. But to make oneself seem competent, capable? It's unnecessary.
Of course, things are changing, and this may no longer be the case. I'll admit that I'm not really in the market for career-wear, so maybe I have no idea what I'm talking about. However, any spectator can agree with my next point: most runway models have boyish shapes. I wholeheartedly support embracing whatever size or shape one is, but someone is making a decision to employ these models as opposed to women who resemble the designer's clientele.
I don't know that designers are always attempting to capture femininity. What does that mean, anyway? Women can be masculine, and men can be feminine. (Neither of these should have a negative connotation, in any context.) But during a fashion show - in an industry which has received fire for implying that thin is the only beautiful - displaying pure masculinity directed at women seems insulting.
It's important to take any message sent to us with a grain of salt. If a woman wants to wear a smart blazer with tailored pants, that's just as well as a woman wearing a cardigan a silk dress in a New Look silhouette. Or anything else. We can accept or reject advice at our own discretion, but associating one particular style with power is just bullshit.
Sunday, March 13, 2011
Clockwise from top left: Postcards From, Flashes of Style, Style is Style, The Styling Dutchman
Let's note two common denominators (by row): coral-y orange and plaid skirts with pretty blouses. Both seem ridiculously perfect for spring.
Clockwise from top left: A Thought Is The Blossom, Fancy Treehouse, That's Chic, night lights
...and florals, and chambray and polka dot shorts.
Saturday, March 12, 2011
1. Coral Scalloped Crop Shirt, Topshop, $50
2. Ecote Studded Wedge, Urban Outfitters, $69
3. Who's-Got-The-Button Top, Anthropologie, $58
4. Linked Skirt, Need Supply, $38
5. Red Anemone Print Jersey Dress, Topshop, $60
6. Open Back Drape Dress, Asos, $62.76
7. Cooperative Janis Platform Sandal, Urban Outfitters, $59
8. Mulberry Tea Shorts, Modcloth, $55
Just a few items I wouldn't mind receiving for my birthday... funny how the color palette is kind of cohesive. I didn't even realize that was the case until now.
Hope your weekend is going well!
PS I've hit 250 followers! I just need to put a few finishing touches on the giveaway item - hopefully I'll have it up this week!
Wednesday, March 9, 2011
Shirt (underneath) - Olive and Olivia, tank - Urban Outfitters, necklace - thrifted, cuff - antique, skirt - Target, leggings - Forever 21, boots - Doc Martens
I've been itching to try a collared shirt under a tank dress, but I have one of the former and no appropriate dresses. So, I pulled out this tank I haven't worn in a while and decided on this skirt after rummaging through my closet with the pressing of the clock. I wasn't so satisfied... the jersey skirt and boots felt a little odd. I'm thinking a dark gray woven cotton skirt would be best. Well, too late now.
My day has been ridiculously average. How was yours?
At least we've made it to Wednesday, right?
Tuesday, March 8, 2011
images via style.com
I can only imagine how wonderful this show must have been in person. A gilded, glitzy runway - with matching shoes? With that being said, people are notoriously distracted by "shiny things", but with this collection, I'm willing to bet the crowd managed to direct its attention to the magically diverse apparel.
This collection has a wide appeal, with pieces for anyone. Named "World Wide Woman" by Westwood herself, it maintains cohesion that literally awes me. And of course, it's about more than just the clothes. It's making a statement.
Monday, March 7, 2011
Cardigan - sister's, tshirt - Wildfox, necklace - DIY, bracelet - gift, belt - vintage, skirt - H&M, leggings - Forever 21, boots - Spring
I felt a little kooky in this outfit, but delightfully so. I've been told many times I look/act like a librarian, and this sentiment goes way back so it's sort of brought up a few negative memories, but I'm considering embracing it. I'd rather be librarian-esque than a Jersey Shore wannabe. Do people still use that word?
Today we were presented with a whopping 47 degrees, but I'm desperately yearning for even warmer temperatures. 70, 80, even 90 degrees, please? My day wasn't too eventful... glazed a few things in ceramics, listened to music and sulked over issues with a friend (ahem, a particular male friend) lingering from the weekend. And to write this post, I'm taking a break from my psychology homework. My life is exciting as it gets... I kid.
Sort of. I'm strangely content, and even happy. I acknowledge and know that in six months, my life could be completely different, involving different people and different places... and that scares me. But instead of anticipating it, I'm living now. And it feels wonderful.
I've been surrounding myself with music lately, so here's my playlist:
1. Better - Regina Spektor
2. Understand Me Now - Pretty Lights
3. On the Radio - Regina Spektor
4. Bookends - Simon and Garfunkel
5. Mushaboom - Fiest
6. Big Deal - Dead Milkmen
7. You've Got the Love - Florence and the Machine
8. Love You Madly - Cake
9. Far Side of Nowhere - Social Distortion
10. Tribal Connection - Gogol Bordello
Sunday, March 6, 2011
images via style.com
Though my style is probably more feminine in comparison to this collection, I have a huge soft spot for leather jackets, combat boots, and general bad ass fashion. So many jackets in every silhouette imaginable... almost makes me wish my pleather jacket had a nipped in waist to give that extra something. And of course, I'd want to pair it with a pleated skirt, like so.
Clockwise from top left: Coconut (via Chictopia), all the pretty birds, Vanessa Jackman, eat.sleep.wear.
Clockwise from top left: mode d'amour, Natalie Off Duty, Song of Style, Fancy Treehouse
So, I've decided to start a segment highlighting a few of my favorite looks over the course of a week! It seems it's warming up almost everywhere (except the southern hemisphere, of course) - at least enough to forgo a coat while taking photos. Even though it's still too chilly here to wear skirts without receiving odd glances, I figure there's no harm in looking to these for inspiration.
Saturday, March 5, 2011
images via style.com
"Live for today, love what tomorrow might bring and be grateful for yesterday" - Roland Mouret
French by birth, and English by residence, I must admit, I have never even heard of Mouret prior to browsing the newest shows on Style.com. I can't say a new obsession has formed, but I feel slightly more "in the know." (I hate that phrase, by the way.) Acclaimed for expertly tailored pieces, these were a little looser, perhaps trying to appeal to a wide audience for the opening of his first store.
...And can we note how good that chartreuse dress (middle left) is? Seriously.