Styling, Wardrobing

Is It Spring Yet?!

Sometimes I wish I lived in California, or Florida, where it’s 70 and sunny like 24/7. Growing up in Raleigh I’ve become use to, and sometimes fond of, our unpredictable weather patterns. We have a saying; “If you don’t like the weather, wait five minutes.” and it’s pretty true: two weeks ago I got sunburned and the next it snowed. But as charming as it can be, our bipolar weather really confuses my wardrobe! As soon as I change over to Spring we have a week of cool 40’s. Over the years I’ve come to transition slowly, mixing bits of winter with the inevitable spring season. Oh, and always bring a jacket wherever you go.

Last September I shot with one of my favorite photographers, Terrence Jones. It was a similar situation – technically Fall but with temperatures hovering around 75 degrees. For my styling inspiration, I decided to mix “winter” fabrics and colors with “spring” prints and silhouettes.

One of my favorite combinations is contrasting a cheery floral print with dark colors. This sheer vintage dress (not for the shy) has a petite scattered floral print to keep the look from becoming too bright. Black & white accessories give the feminine frock some edge.

“Florals? For Spring? Groundbreaking.” Sure, florals for spring isn’t new, but the color palette can be unexpected. Also, leather! I love this look – a little bit schoolgirl, a little bit wallpaper in an opulent home. Together these textures and colors can transition from hot to cold, work to drinks, and everything in-between.

For those less print friendly, try rocking a pastel knit. Personally, I’m obsessed with this vintage 1930’s dickie from Raleigh Vintage. It’s a great layering piece that can be styled jazzy or classy. Throw a leather jacket over your shoulders and hit the bar (like C. Grace) without feeling out of place.

Pastels not your thing? Just show some skin. Not in a slutty way, but in a “I’ve already got my beach bod so bring it!” confidence way. Plus, a fabulous scarf can help cover up should you feel the need (or just get a chill). Also, I’m a firm believer that a fabulous hat can elevate any look, no mater how technically simple it may be. This is one of those situations where less is more. Choose your pieces wisely.

How are you dealing with the sporadic weather? Need help dressing for the seasons? Let me know! I’m here to answer any and all of your fashion questions.

 

Look 1: Vintage everything – except shoes from Art of Style
Look 2: Vintage hat, Ray Ban shades, Topshop top, J. Crew skirt, Marc Jacobs heels
Look 3: Vintage hat, thrifted bralette, Raleigh Vintage knit, Art of Style trousers, Nasty Gal platform heels
Look 4: Vintage hat, Alexander McQueen scarf, thrifted bralette, Art of Style skirt

Big thanks to Melissa G. S. for creating my face and assisting me with my curls 🙂

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Lifestyle

Good People

Surround yourself with good people

People who make you use big words
Who get you talking about something other than boys

People who make you want to be great
Not because they’re better,
but because they encourage you to be better

Surround yourself with good people
Friends who can pick up a conversation from six months ago
… or six years ago

Friends who love you for you

Surround yourself with good people
and you will be good people

 

Coming from The South, it is not uncommon to hear of a single person being referred to as “good people.” This colloquialism ultimately serves to specify a particular person as being respectable, down to hearth, and just generally good. Throughout my life I’ve come to use the phrase to refer not only to my best friends, but to people who I can count on. “Good people” doesn’t have to be the most law-abiding citizen. “Good people” may curse and drink too much, like to gossip and have their lazy days, but when push comes to shove they stand up for their friends and don’t take shit from anybody.

For 2017 I hope to meet more good people and keep them in my sphere of influence. Good people are crucial for personal development. You are who you surround yourself with.

Thank you to the good people I have in my life. You remind me every day that I’m not crazy, that not everyone is stupid, and our world is not doomed 🙂

 

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Styling

Technicolor Girl

She’s a technicolor girl living in a full, fast-paced, sometimes overwhelming, technicolor world. We pride ourselves on being busy, but often forget to stop and smell the flowers.

This Spring I’m holding myself to a resolution to stay motivated and not let my 9-5 (or rather 9-7, sometimes 8) drain me of my creative energies. You’ve seen it; my consistent posts giving way to infrequent posts, then an unannounced hiatus, only to return with a promise to be present that eventually gives in to the same disappearance. Well no more! I’m here and ready to share all of my stylish wisdom and fashionable photo shoots.

Step 1 is teaming up with other motivated and creative minds to propel you forward. I recently had the honor of working with the super talented photographer, Terrence Jones. We brought in my BFF, Keisha, to get HMU on fleek and the most genuine model I’ve ever met, Mara of 3BBM.

Step 2 is not taking the easy way out. Today’s fashionistas think that wearing all black makes them cool and hip, when really it is just a cop-out. I mean, you do you Boo, but do you really think a wardrobe of black keeps you creative? No. Black is easy. That’s why I’ve been all about some color play. This shoot has a hint of neutrals, but is primarily an exploration in color schemes. Inspired by the youth culture of the 70’s, I hope you enjoy this garden of hues! (Thank you Revolver Boutique for the fab clothes & accessories)

Mara Color in Studio
Emilio Pucci called; he LOVES this skirt!

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Bohemian Safari doesn’t have to be all khaki. I’m obsessed with the contrast of this brushed silk coral dress with high-shine interior.

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Everyone needs an orange hat in their accessory arsenal, right?! Shout out to Good Girls Studio for awesome one-of-a-kind pieces like this necklace.

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Mixing prints is a great way to explore color. The trick is keeping the palettes the same and changing up the print scale. This ensemble is glamourous athletic – perfect for running errands while looking like a model off duty.

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Can we take a moment to appreciate this cobalt blue winged liner? Thanks.

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Fashion is fun: don’t take yourself too seriously. We love color, but black never hurt (everything in moderation). Use it to add a graphic punch to an artsy look.

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An ensemble of color doesn’t require complicated layering or color mixing. A complementary color scheme makes an impact, even with a minimalist aesthetic.

0164 Mara in Color 2016.jpgDon’t be sad that I’m shunning an all-black uniform. Get excited for the endless possibilities of color! Explore your schemes (analogous, complementary, split complementary, triadic, tetradic) and test out your print mixing skills (florals and stripes is an easy introduction). Have fun this spring and don’t forget to smell the flowers.

PS: Follow Style Asset on Instagram for more pictures and a look #BTS

 

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Styling

The Modernist With a Heart of Chrome

The Modernist aesthetic often gets a bad rap.
Associated with cold, steral rooms,
the Modernist adaptation of monochromatic color schemes leaves viewers feeling uninvited.

But this isn’t Modernism as a whole.
Many interpretations of the movement have lead to the most colorful artists,
like Pollock, Picasso, and Gaudi.
Still, the black&white variation can be warm, inviting, and interesting.

One of my favorite local boutiques, The Art of Style,
specializes in neutrals.
Rarely do you see a color of the rainbow on their racks.
The difference is, TAOS’ aesthetic brings in different textures to break up the clean lines.

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For starters, try mixing different neutrals.
Layering is key for a (no pun intended) warmer look.
Keep it sleek with drapey knits.
Minimal jewelry doesn’t overpower the metallic dress,
while still allowing the look to transition from day to night.

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Speaking of layers,
sheer, translucent fabrics are your friend!
Look how this uber prissy white lace dress is given some edge,
just by throwing on a black sheer tunic.

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Handmade jewelry plays on the femininity of the dress
while giving a nod to the artisan aesthetic which brought about the Modernism movement.

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For a more menswear-inspried ensemble
look no further than your classic black & white color combo.

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Add a touch of minimalism by ditching the shirt!
Relaxed slacks balance out the sex appeal.
Plus, if you keep your jacket zipped during work,
no one has to know what’s not underneath.

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The Modernist aesthetic in architectural design
focuses on material and line.
Frank Lloyd Wright built houses based off the landscape
and made use of natural materials.

Get back to your roots with Modernism
by incorporating natural elements into your look.

The suede texture of the dress,
the chunky knit scarf, the hematite earrings,
and the marbleized acetate cuff all nod towards earthy elements.

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See!
Modernism can be warm and inviting,
rather than cold and harsh.
Just remember to play with textures, layering,
and earthy accessories.

These looks transition easily from day to night,
as well as into Fall, with its mix of warm and cool days.
For more Modernist inspiration, for men and women,
check out The Art of Style,
located at 2032 Cameron St in Cameron Village
(Raleigh, North Carolina).

Very special thank you to
photographer Terrence Jones of J1S Photography
and the ever fabulous model Mara W.

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Lifestyle, Styling

Lavender & Smoke

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Since body positivity has become such a major social movement, I feel the need to express my sentiments on the subject. I love my body, as one should, but it has taken me years to come to this conclusion. And even though I love my body as a whole, there are still parts of me that I feel like I could improve on. Some things I can change (like my yoga moves), but some things I can’t (like my height).

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It was only within the past few years that I have learned to appreciate every part. Even the parts of me that I don’t love, I find a way to disguise and I accentuate the parts that I do love. Isn’t that what fashion is all about (aside from personal expression), anyway? I’ve never had a problem with my back, shoulders, or décolletage, and that’s always been my focus. Being teased for having a large chest at a young age had an impact on how I dressed, beginning in middle school. Apparel is the original Photoshop.

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With Lavender & Smoke, it was very bizarre because for once my skin didn’t need much retouching. I have struggled with acne for years and finally I’m a place where I feel comfortable going out in public without any makeup on and sometimes I forget I’m not wearing any at all. When I realize this, I’m not worried or scared that someone is judging me for my acne or acne scars. In this shoot, we had fun with makeup without the fear of close-ups. I still focused on the parts of me that I’ve always felt comfortable with, but the overall effect was that of increased confidence. I feel like body acceptance is not so much saying “Yes, I am 100% beautiful!” but more so saying “You know what, I might not 100% love every part about me, but I accept it and I’m going to try my best to love everything I am.”

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It doesn’t happen over night. It doesn’t happen in a year. It takes time and effort. You have to learn who you are to reach this result, Body Acceptance. I’ve found that I never use a scale anymore. I’ve found that I’ve stopped measuring my waist-line. You have to realize that “perfection” doesn’t exist in beauty. That’s really what this Body Positive movement is all about. It’s not “Everybody is perfect.” It’s that, yes we might have our flaws, but we’re okay with them.

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Special thanks to Debadeep Sen for capturing my good side (photography) & Keisha Lousie for making me look fabulous (hair&makeup).

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Styling, Wardrobing

New Tailor in Town

Ok style seekers, here’s the scoop on the next cool shop to hit downtown Raleigh. The crazy part is they don’t even sell clothes — they tailor them! Allow me to introduce Glenwood Tailors, conveniently located on Glenwood South (near St. Marys Square Apartments), the next best thing for your wardrobe since high-end consignment. I’m super excited to 1) not have to drive 15min to North Raleigh and 2) to have a tailor that gets it: style, fit, trends, and all the possibilities that tailoring allows for.

My love affair with tailoring began at an early age. I come from a long line of crafty ladies, so it’s no surprise that when things aren’t quite right I get creative.

As a tween, I had an unusual body type: strong legs of a dancer + a D cup at age 13 meant I couldn’t wear the cute things my friends were wearing. I remember shopping for a button-up shirt (the nemesis of any busty gal) and having to purchase a large in order to avoid the dreaded gaping hole between my boobs. Of course, this meant that my torso became a shapeless wash of floral print. My mom’s solution? Add darts! Darts quickly became my best friends as they were the magic trick to taking ill-fitting garments and making them hug my womanly curves.

I took sewing classes in high school, honing the skills necessary to alter patterns and create my own garments. This came in handy when looking for a job during college and stumbling across a Craig’s List ad for a tailors assistant. I came to the interview prepared with samples of my work and got the job! It wasn’t quite what I was expecting, but the experience and knowledge gained have stuck with me to this day.

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My tailor mentor was a miracle worker. I came to her with vintage dresses that were four sizes too big (I’m a sucker for prints) and with a nip here and a dart there it became a one-of-a-kind, perfectly fitting garment. Once I realized the potential with tailoring there was no stopping me. Shortly after starting at the tailor shop, I began working at Revolver Consignment Boutique. There I would find amazing designer garments and unique vintage pieces, keeping the idea of tailoring in the back of my mind. Hem too long? No problem. Dress too big? Easy fix. Hate the sleeves? Take them off! When something is such a great deal, why not invest a little to customize?

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(I wore this dress once for New Years and wanted to repurpose it to be more versatile. The end result was a cute fit&flare mini dress + an a-line skirt!)

Not everything is worth tailoring. That cheap dress from H&M that’ll fall apart in a year? Nah. But I have collected the most delightful treasures that wouldn’t have been an option for me had I limited myself to the garment “as is.” More than designer and vintage apparel, I love taking clothes from my mom’s youth and transforming it for my wardrobe. I get more joy from wearing the dress my mom met my dad in than my prized Marc Jacobs shoes. The dress in question began as a frumpy 80’s day dress with a drop waist and tea-length hem (not the most flattering on my petite frame). I took up the sleeves to bring up the waist, took in the sides, and chopped off about five inches of the skirt.

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With this love and appreciation for tailoring as an art-form, my excitement for the grand opening of Glenwood Tailors of Downtown Raleigh comes as no surprise. Glenwood Tailors aims to change the experience of having garments tailored. From the cool vintage decor to their eye for style, Glenwood Tailors is going to revolutionize how society looks at tailoring. Our generation being so rooted in the idea of personalization; I can’t believe more people don’t take advantage of tailoring to create unique, stylish pieces to add to their wardrobe! Join me on Saturday, October 3rd from 12-6pm at 743 W. Johnson St. to see what Glenwood Tailors can do for your personal style.

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Wardrobing

Don’t Call This a Comeback

I’m baaaack!
After a brief hiatus, Style Asset has returned at full speed.

The past few months have been big.
I was promoted at my day job and began a new project for Style Asset. Some of you may know that my ultimate goal with Style Asset is to open a brick-and-mortar boutique and styling firm. Well this is a step in that direction!

Introducing: Style Asset Collections; a new way of presenting second-hand apparel.

The idea came to me while trying to figure out what to do with the clothes I had recently purged from my closet. I am a collector of fashion with a wide range of influencers, but I tend to buy things for their beauty instead of compatibility with my wardrobe. Why was I doing this?! I’m always telling my clients not to keep things they no longer wear or fit into, so why wasn’t I more strict on myself? If you’re looking to clear some items from your closet, ask yourself these questions:

When was the last time I wore this?
Does it go with more than three other pieces?
Do I really love it?

If your answers sounded something like, “forever ago, not really, & meh” then toss it. Not literally, like into the trash, because clothing is taking over our landfills, but do something else with it. Donating is super easy, but if you have quality pieces try taking them to your local consignment boutique. I had consigned clothes for years, but for some reason this time around I thought, “why not do it myself?”

I set out to sell my own clothes wanting to do something different, so instead of listing several, seemingly non-coordinating pieces onto a website, why not take a tip from the designers and present collections? I started to sort though all of my gently worn apparel and found about twenty articles that inspired me in their colors&shapes and voila! I had my first capsule collection.

Collection

Laurel Canyon is the name of the first group of goods available on Style Asset Collections. Check out my next blog post to see inspiration for the collection, featured designers, and a sneak peek at the beautiful pieces available JUNE 13TH! And of course, I have to thank my BFF Keisha Louise for helping me realize these crazy ideas that I get 🙂

Laurel Canyon Preview

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