6.29.2014

Splattered

Often times I find myself sitting in a quiet corner in the Norton Simon Museum of Art partaking in a guided tour by headset. When I insist on time alone, I thoroughly enjoy seeing a museum in this fashion. It allows me to erase the chatter that surrounds me, and I'm able to learn much more about the art than I would if I were to simply read the small wall descriptions.

On one occasion, I sat in a room that housed tapestries from the Middle Ages and early Renaissance. Tapestries are intricately detailed and made of the finest in textiles and often woven with red and gold threads that displayed the status of the household in which they hung. While some would simply glance at one and move on, it always fascinated me how artist were commissioned to create these masterpieces to depict the noble lives and events of importance. Each thread was intertwined with the next to represent lives that gave the illusion of perfection.

If I commissioned an artist to portray my life, I wonder how they would orchestrate such a piece? I would suggest that the best way to illustrate my life in art would be to stand back and toss a variety of colors onto a canvas and watch the paint splatter, drip and perhaps naturally form into something recognizable. Unlike the perfectly woven tapestry, my life hasn't been artfully constructed with the greatest precision. One may look at my piece and question, "They call that art?" While another may stop and stand back with an curious and artful eye and say, "Brilliant...simply brilliant." Today's dress is a perfect example of my life's self portrait. Though I call it Splattered, within its details are elements that can't be denied.

Today's Look - Dress is thrifted but originally from Old Navy, Top: H&M, Sandals are Michael Kors via TJ Maxx, wristlet from TJ Maxx, Cat-Eye Sunnies from the Getty Museum gift shop.




I chose to pair my dress with a button-up top for two reasons. First: This dress is made for someone with small bosom or someone who isn't bashful. Neither of which am I. Because I love the dress, I have to wear it with a top to help conceal my private parts. Second: I'm experimenting. Normally I wear the dress with a simple t-shirt. I thought it would be interesting to pair it with an actual top. I'm not quite sure if I like it, but hey, I gave it a shot. I wore it bare on a recent cruise and I spent the entire time hiding behind my husband. I felt like every man on board had his eyes on my chest.

  
If someone asked you to describe your life as a work of art, what would you say to the world? For myself, I see whimsical flowers peeking out from within the splatters and drips; there are colors that come together to make one harmonious hue; I see bright and happy moments that overshadow the dark; and I see a life void of direction, that had to take the unexpected moments and create a life that can still be seen as beautiful. Unlike the lives depicted in the carefully woven tapestry, the splattered life can still be deemed a masterpiece{wink}

Be sure to read my Event and Book review called the Glitter Guide by the founders of Juicy Couture. Visit the link HERE


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Photographs by Fred


6.28.2014

A Juicy Story: Pam & Gela (Event and Book Review)

In contemplation over their lives, Pam and Gela ask the question, 
Can you have it all? They answered, "No, when you're driven, something in life does always suffer."

This past Friday afternoon, a pleasant warm and sunny day in Southern California, the Los Angeles campus of the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising (my Alma meter) asked members of the media to come out and be a part of a reception that would introduce us to the authors and a new book titled The Glitter Plan by the Founders of Juicy Couture - Pamela Skaist-Levy (FIDM class of 1984) and Gela Nash-Taylor. Having been a participant in several FIDM events, I can say, that this too, was just as spectacular, and very befitting to the two women who launched a world-wide fashion trend with a track suit.
 
Booth Moore, Gela Nash-Taylor and Pamela Skaist-Levy

Media and the over 800 guests in attendance had the opportunity to hear how the two petite powerhouses parlayed their invested $200 into an ubiquitous, multi-million dollar fashion empire. Being as humble as they are, they sometimes giggled with delight over their success as they proclaimed, "We are the luckiest girls in the world," almost as if the two couldn't quite believe all that has happened to them. With book co-author, Booth Moore, offering questions to the duo, each reflected on what it took to make Juicy Couture into a successful brand, while still encouraging us to read the book. Well, I did read the book and must say, I am extremely impressed with the guts and determination that these two women demonstrated throughout their career. What I also found impressive was the serendipitous relationships and events that steered the brand further into the behemoth that it has become. Without giving too much away, they built Juicy Couture around a philosophy that was comfortable to the two of them, which included a strong team commitment by enlisting the help from individuals that felt good to their gut...people who didn't necessarily have all the accolades to boast, but had the desire to see the brand grow. In addition, Pam and Gela found it very important to keep the brand true to their California lifestyle, and to their own personalities which are glittered with wit and colorful sarcasm.


I found the Glitter Plan to be a refreshing take on the typical road map 'what to do to start a business' book. I appreciated the honesty of the two, and found myself cheering and crying with them along the way. The book ushers us straight from the beginning, and to the very end when the two found themselves at a crossroads and having to walk away from their baby. As we all know, Juicy Couture was sold to a large conglomerate and is now being sold at Kohls stores. A big change from having over 300 stores with some located on prestigious real estate like Beverly Hills. Their true feelings, though they tried to hide from the audience, was palpable. As the story goes, Juicy was sold for around $200 million dollars (a far cry from the invested $200 they began with). Change in management within the new owners took Juicy Couture into a direction that Pam & Gela could no longer agree with. Because of this, the two walked away and are now full throttle into building their new brand which still caresses the California lifestyle but offers a more edgy, rock & roll and bohemian feel. Some would say it is Juicy Couture part two, however I say it's Pam & Gela all grown up.

Do I recommend the Glitter Plan? Yes, I do. I recommend it for persons who want to know the inner workings of a brand, what it takes to launch a brand successfully, and if you want to know the true story of Juicy Couture and not the tabloid gossip.


Juicy Couture may have come to an end for Pam & Gela, but there passion for fashion is still shining within them. In regards to the statement at the very beginning of this post...Pam & Gela, we may not be able to have it all at once, but it is a glowing possibility that we can have it in juicy bites. The best to you Pam & Gela on your next endeavor {wink}

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6.25.2014

a VERY Little White Dress

We all have those pieces in our wardrobe that require VERY little to zero thought. We just throw them on and go. And, because of their simplicity, it takes VERY little to dress them up. Simple accessories and we're good to go. Life sometimes beckons these stand alone wardrobe options. My mind has been elsewhere lately, and not so much on my closet. I feel blah and in desperate need of an aromatherapy laced massage from my favorite spa. When I find myself in this state, I am thankful for the clothing that takes the guess work out of dressing, so that I can focus my energy on other things.

For today, I'm wearing a VERY little white dress that I purchased last year from H&M. The dress is somewhat short. Remember, I am only 5'2" and still, the hem is about 3 inches above my knee. I can't imagine where the hem would hit on a taller girl. One of the pros of being petite is that we can often get away with wearing lengths that taller women avoid. Even with its short length, I find the dress comfortable and easy to wear.

Today's Look - Dress: H&M (option), Sandals: Calvin Klein via Nordstrom Rack, Clutch is custom made, Silver Hammered Cuff from J.Jill (option), Cat-Eye Sunnies from the Getty Museum gift shop (options).
 


Until I can make it to the spa, I'll have to indulge in my favorite body cream that's scented with the essence of wild mint, spearmint, orange and rosemary. The product is by Origins and it's the Smoothing Souffle (seen below). This isn't a paid endorsement. I just want to share with you what I do when I need a mood adjustment. I even slather on the souffle just before I work-out to give me an extra boost of energy. Isn't it amazing how scents can alter our mood?


Until next time, my friends - I hope you're having a stress free week. If not, I hope you're making the needed adjustments to take some of the angst out of your days, including reaching for the items in your closet that require VERY little attention{wink}

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Photographs by Freddy
Link Up: Whitney Nic James

6.24.2014

Style Challenge: Patterned Leggings

After reading the Are You Shackled discussion, that many of you participated in, a dear friend contacted me to inquire about mature women wearing patterned leggings. She asked me if I thought the look was to young for our generation and above. I hesitated to respond because, like I mentioned in the discussion, I don't think age should be the overall determining factor when selecting an outfit or fashion. Anyway, she put me up to the challenge of showing how they can be worn without making older women look inappropriate.

On the left side of the demonstration is a daytime/playful look, and on the right - a look that would be more for work or an event that is artsy, but requires a level of fashion decorum. Below are 4 simple styling suggestion. Enjoy!


Styling Suggestions:
#1: I don't care how cute and toned your bottom is...I beg you...please, and I mean PLEASE, wear them with a top that completely covers your bottom. Leggings are simply glorified (thicker) pantyhose and wearing them with your bum exposed makes for an unfinished and albeit unattractive look.

#2: Style your leggings with a solid top that offers a level of sophistication, but has an element of fun. A plain ol' button down would be too dull.

#3: For your Career look, wear sensible heels. A heel that is too high may translate into something less appealing...if you know what I mean.

#4: Keep your accessories less fussy and let the leggings take center stage. Overly busy accessories in addition to the leggings can make you look like a circus clown. In other words, Keep It Simple.
 *************
Tell me friends, what are your opinions on patterned leggings? Leave your comments below. I can't wait to read them{wink}

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6.22.2014

Hodgepodge

Hodgepodge: A mixture of things
 synonyms:mixture, mix, mixed bag, assortment, random collection, conglomeration, jumble, ragbag, grab bag, miscellany, medley, potpourri, patchwork

I have this fascination for city centers that were once old and dilapidated, and then restored and made of new. It's as if city developers searched an attic and discovered a dusty old jewelry box; decided to clean it up, and then opened it to discover a virtual treasure trove of goodies inside. Such is the case for the community that I visited for this photo shoot. Once ruled as a dreaded part of town, it is now a delicious hodgepodge of quaint vintage shops, rare book dealers, art galleries and eateries. Buildings are being restored to their former glory to reveal lovely architecture...some receiving a face lift by having a lovely mural painted on its facade. What was once deteriorating is, once again, welcoming and beautiful.

One thing I have discovered about these quaint, restored towns is that I can usually find a treasure in one of their tucked-away little shops. Whether I'm shopping for a great vintage fine, a quirky new accessory, a book that was put out of circulation...9 times out of 10, my shopping adventure is a success.

Today's look is a hodgepodge of pieces that I threw together for this post. For some strange reason, I think it works. As you'll see, each piece was purchased from a different location - some mainstream stores, while others were completely unexpected. Enjoy!

Today's Look - Skirt: Anthropologie (old), Navy Tank Top: Loft, Bag is Nine West via Marshalls, Sandals: Zara (old), Belt: Thrift shop in Palm Desert, Cat-eye Sunnies from the gift shop at the Getty Center Museum, Silver Bangle purchased from a vintage shop in another Southern California quaint community, Polish is Normani by Zoya.



I selected this skirt for this post because it reminds me of a skirt that a woman may have purchased some time ago and had it in her donate bag. But then, she rummaged through her trusted box of crafting hodgepodge and discovered spools of blue ribbon. She decided to give the skirt new life by decorating it with the ribbon.

Notice the boarded building behind me. I can't wait to see what developers will make of it.

While you're on your way to that big destination, make some time to visit a small community that you may have forgotten about. Chances are you'll discover some fantastic places to explore. (Click to Tweet) - Always keep your eyes open for a great find. You never know what you may discover off the beaten path.{wink}

Oh yes, thank you to all the smart and insightful comments on Friday's post called Are You Shackled? (discussing age and fashion). It was fantastic!

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Photos by Freddy 
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6.20.2014

Are You Shackled (Discussion)?


I wasn't going to post today, but I felt a spark after reading and participating in a post that asked if women over 40 should wear a particular clothing item. I was taken aback to see that almost all of the women, without any reservation, simply said, NO. I, for one, couldn't believe it. Why is age the only driving factor that determines when one should stop wearing particular clothing items? I beg to differ. Without being overly judgmental, I wondered if the women who gave NO as an answer were merely speaking for themselves. I have seen women older than I wearing mid-baring tops that I only dream to wear. Their belly baring tops aren't as extreme as our younger sisters, however, you can still see a peek-a-boo of flesh. They took extreme care of their bodies and have rock-hard abs to boast. Hey, I'm not mad at them. I celebrate their success in their physical accomplishments. Should the fashion police tell them to remove the top because they're now in their 50s? Come on, let's be real.


The simple fact is that unless you go around introducing yourself as such, Hello, my name is Glenda and I'm 48, no one will really know just how old you are. Here is another fact, not all 48 year old women are cut from the same cloth. We each have our own style, essence, lifestyle, body types, etc, etc. So why on earth should we allow age to shackle us into some type of grid that tells us YES on one side and NO on the other. We should not!


(Click to Tweet) As we age, it isn't necessary to give up on certain fashions, but one should simply adapt, or tweak a look to meet YOUR standards. Notice I said YOUR standards. Yes, YOUR standards. Not the standards of what society thinks you should be wearing. If you loved a particular fashion in your 20s and 30s and wish to carry that look into your latter years, then by all means, make it happen. As an example, say you loved wearing neon colors head-to-toe, but now you feel that wearing too much neon would be inappropriate. Here is how you can still rock neon. Treat yourself to a pair of bright colored pumps in yellow and then carry that hue farther by wearing a scarf tied in your hair or around your handbag. Tah Dah! You're still wearing neon, but you tweaked it a bit. Get my point?


So, as we move forward in this season of life, just remember this - Remove the shackles and look in the mirror and say, "I can still rock a look, I am still viable and sexy as hell, so - So What to Twenty!"

Have a free weekend friends{wink}

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Photos by Freddy


6.17.2014

I Danced

The other night my husband and I went cruising down the highway with our sunroof open and blaring our favorite music. Destination unknown. Then, while traveling through one of my favorite little towns, I suggested that we stop and have some tea at one of our favorite French bakeries. We sat in a central courtyard and enjoyed the sounds of small children splashing in a nearby water fountain. While enjoying sips of tea and conversation, I told the hubs that I wanted to poke my head into one of my favorite vintage boutiques...just to see if they had anything interesting.

We strolled across the courtyard and into the store. With my to-go tea in my left hand, I began to rummage through the racks with my right. I found a mint condition, black, cropped leather jacket originally from Wilsons. It fit like a glove. I took my jacket over to the wrap desk to finalize my purchase, when the sales associate said, "Would you like to take advantage of our Buy One Get the Second 1/2 Off?" I went back to peruse the store once again when I spotted an adorable skirt in black. I carried it to the dressing room (passing my husband who sat comfortably in a chair outside the fitting room) and said, "I'm going to try this on real quick." He looked up from his phone as a form of acknowledgement. I slipped the skirt on and squealed in delight. It was so cute and flouncy. It made me want to dance! Out of the dressing room I came to show my husband. I twirled around and did a few side steps. Yep...I danced right in the middle of the store for anyone watching to see! My husband just smiled and said, "I guess that's coming home too?" I said, "With it being 1/2 off, it's only $9.00." He said nothing more. Went to the cash register and finalized the deal.

Today's Look: Skirt by Max Studio from The Grove Vintage (similar on Shopstyle), Tank Top in Pearl Linen from Loft, Cross-body purse by Perlina, Sandals by Nine West Limited Edition Vintage America Collection.




On this day, I can hear The Jacksons singing Shake Your Body (Down to the Ground) in my head. The cut and design of my new skirt, with the tiered elastic bands, encourages me to move. Standing on top of the music notes, I sway and flip my skirt to my own musical serenade. I'm having fun! (Tweet this) Having fun in fashion is of the utmost importance. You should feel like strutting your stuff in your clothing!


What makes you want to dance? Is it the beat of a great song, a drop-dead gorgeous pair of shoes...or the movement of a garment? Do share, I would love to know what gets you off your seat{wink}

ps. I actually did dance with the Jackson family at the premier party for the Jackson Family Dynasty that my husband was the sound engineer for. Here are some pictures of us with Jackie and Tito. I wanted to get one of Marlon but he left early (sad face).
Myself, Jackie Jackson and my husband Freddy

Tito Jackson and the two of us


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Photos by Freddy