Bleach Black

25 Oct

Shades of White: Crop top, vintage trousers, statement diamond necklace, leather backpack, messy waves
Shades of White: Crop top, vintage trousers, statement diamond necklace, leather backpack, messy waves
Shades of White: Crop top, vintage trousers, statement diamond necklace, leather backpack, messy waves
Shades of White: Crop top, vintage trousers, statement diamond necklace, leather backpack, messy waves
Life doesn’t have to match. We don’t have to follow all the rules. Life doesn’t have to be black and white, black or white, or any other color, for that matter. Life is just life. We don’t have to define or categorize it. In fact, I don’t think we should –trying to make sense of the unknown will only drive more confusion. This world we live in is confusing enough. Perhaps it’s more logical to embrace what baffles us instead of running away all the time, turning a blind eye. I want to stop running away. I want to be mismatched more often.

I believe in crossing the line, when there is a line that needs to be crossed. I am an advocate for speaking up when there is something that should be said. I think we ought to step outside our comfort zones and wander into the unknown, so we can get to know it a little better. That’s one healthy way to make progress, in my opinion.

Let the wind catch you hair. Run away. Dream hard. If you aren’t uncomfortable, from time to time, dream even harder. Find comfort in discomfort — this is how we expand. This is how we move and shape things. Allow fear to push you rather than hold you back. And, every once in a while, just let fucking go.

I want to be scared and excited and completely lost, so that I can find my way back and experience something new along the frightening and invigorating journey. I want to be capable of embracing uncomfrotable emotions instead of hiding from them. Life is a jungle. Life is chaos. Life is frantically, beautifully mismatched. Black, white…white, black…it is all the same. The only difference is perspective. And perspective is a pretty good start, because with it comes all the possibility in the world.

*head to toe: Tribe Kelley Cropped Top, VALENTE necklace from Flont Club, vintage trousers from Saks, Lauren Cecchi Bella Backpack

Photos by Cameron Holland 

BOLD AND YOU

10 Jul

Los Angeles Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: TONI&GUY hair products, messy waves, little black dress, suede dress, leather mules, summer style
Los Angeles Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: TONI&GUY hair products, messy waves, little black dress, suede dress, leather mules, summer style
Los Angeles Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: TONI&GUY hair products, messy waves, little black dress, suede dress, leather mules, summer style
Los Angeles Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: TONI&GUY hair products, messy waves, little black dress, suede dress, leather mules, summer style
Los Angeles Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: TONI&GUY hair products, messy waves, little black dress, suede dress, leather mules, summer style

For the bold ones, the mavericks, and those who march to the beat of their own drum. 

We weren’t built for subtlety, and we’ll leave this world a little different than it was when we got here — our stiletto footprint set in stone. We gracefully walk the tightrope of life like acrobats, and even when the strongest winds try and blow us off course, we keep our balance. 

We’re the daydreamers whose minds are constantly running, training for a race we’re destined to win. Known for our ambition, we’ll beat the odds. When told there’s something we cannot do, it becomes our mission to prove the naysayers wrong.

We aren’t afraid to speak our minds, but think before opening our mouths. This is why, when we have something to say, people tend to listen – some left wanting more, while others disregard our words as nonsense. We don’t mind, well aware that the legends who came before us – the contrarians who changed history – were often labeled as “crazy”, too. 

Mistakes and embarrassing missteps have been made, but we can still look in the mirror and feel proud. Every experience, both good and bad, has contributed to our character. The person staring back is one we’ve grown to respect. Those eyes have seen things, that body has been places, and the scars are reminders of battles we’ve won. 

We know wisdom because, on our journey to hell and back, we earned it. Life lessons collected along the way have become engrained, changing us for the better. We’ll never lose our desire to learn, so we remain eager students and young artists…reading, writing poetry, and painting blank canvases with colors never before seen.

Seen as reckless by many, with a tendency to live hard — some envy our audacity while others try hard to figure us out. Their whispers won’t hold us back, because we’re not the type to be tamed. It isn’t about rebellion or defiance, we simply enjoy the freedom that comes with the thrill. 

Presentation is important to us, but not because we’re drawn to material things. The clothes we wear or how we choose to style our hair are reflective of a personal brand we’ve designed — a product of our own making. Self-expression isn’t defined by one’s ability to fit inside a box or blatantly stand out to draw attention, but the act in itself appeals to us. And we admire others who are brave enough to share themselves on the outside, and own it.

So, to all the troublemakers, daydreamers, and inspiration-seekers…dare to Be Bold and You. Express yourselves freely. Unleash your adventurous side, and don’t hold back. There’s a need for more spirited people like you, with abstract thoughts and unconventional ways. We weren’t built for subtlety, and it’s time to take the world by storm.

Sponsored by TONI&GUY. Shop the amazing hair care collection HERE. And share your own creativity with the world by posting a look on Instagram with the hashtag #BOLDANDYOU.

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Life, According To Denim

7 Jul

Denim on denim, life according to denim, lessons in denim
Denim on denim, life according to denim, lessons in denim
Denim on denim, life according to denim, lessons in denim

I wear my denim like I live my life.

Flawed with a few tears, here and there. Worn in with stories to accompany the imperfections.

“High wasted” was the go-to for most of my 20’s. Sometimes I still shamefully opt for “intentionally distressed”.

I’m coming to accept that outgrowing certain styles isn’t necessarily a bad thing…

All of a sudden classic has this flattering and mysterious appeal.

Comfort is appreciated, but rarely takes top priority, as far as decision-making goes.

This, for me, may never change. Oh well.

My collection is eclectic and interesting. I like it this way. I hang on to it all, with pride.

The fit is almost never perfect, but I figure it out. Because that’s just what I do with denim. And life…

I take it and make it work. And learn to fucking love it as I go.

*head to toe: GANT GANT Rugger Indigo Twill Slub 60s Collar Shirt, AGOLDE AGOLD E AGOLDE Sophie Hi Rise Skinny, Bernardo Bernardo Blossom Mules snake skin

A Simple Safari

14 Mar

Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Jumpsuit, olive green jumpsuit, cutout jumpsuit, palm tree fashion shoot, red lipstick, fashion blogger, personal style blogger, California street style, LA style
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Jumpsuit, olive green jumpsuit, cutout jumpsuit, palm tree fashion shoot, red lipstick, fashion blogger, personal style blogger, California street style, LA style
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Jumpsuit, olive green jumpsuit, cutout jumpsuit, palm tree fashion shoot, red lipstick, fashion blogger, personal style blogger, California street style, LA style
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Jumpsuit, olive green jumpsuit, cutout jumpsuit, palm tree fashion shoot, red lipstick, fashion blogger, personal style blogger, California street style, LA style
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Jumpsuit, olive green jumpsuit, cutout jumpsuit, palm tree fashion shoot, red lipstick, fashion blogger, personal style blogger, California street style, LA style
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Jumpsuit, olive green jumpsuit, cutout jumpsuit, palm tree fashion shoot, red lipstick, fashion blogger, personal style blogger, California street style, LA style

Never underestimate the satisfaction that accompanies slipping on a jammin’ jumpsuit — ONE AND DONE (reference here, here and here…see what I mean?!)

I was talking to a friend about fashion and trends recently, something I rarely discuss these days because, well, I don’t care that much. That being said , this conversation did encourage me to acknowledge that, while I may have adopted a liking for “lazy” attire, my lifestyle is anything but, and appearance does actually matter…at least a little bit.

Am I curating cutting-edge outfits on a daily basis? No. But, fortunately, there are still stylish (and affordable) options that can accommodate busy females like myself…THANK YOU, Forever21Stylinity. Available via Go2Buy!

Not just that, but being lightweight, with long-sleeves and the cut-out accents, this particular jumpsuit is a major winner for transitioning from winter to spring. Forever21 has many more great pieces, just like this one, and you can redeem some awesome discounts by clicking HERE!

So, this is my fashion strategy for the day – get groovy, fantasize about the ’70s, and keep it easy breezy, just like the palm trees do. Buy things you can wear over and over again and can work into your wardrobe as seasons are changing.

Happy shopping!

*head to toe: Nars Lip Crayon in Cruella,  Vint & York sunglasses, Forever21 Vented Jumpsuit, Madewell slide sandals

Photos by Jonathan Mariande

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Cracked But Not Broken

12 Mar

Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Female empowerment, bathtub editorial, March On Washington, scoliosis surgery, beautifully scarred, perfectly flawed

Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Female empowerment, bathtub editorial, March On Washington, scoliosis surgery, beautifully scarred, perfectly flawed
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Female empowerment, bathtub editorial, March On Washington, scoliosis surgery, beautifully scarred, perfectly flawed
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Female empowerment, bathtub editorial, March On Washington, scoliosis surgery, beautifully scarred, perfectly flawed
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Female empowerment, bathtub editorial, March On Washington, scoliosis surgery, beautifully scarred, perfectly flawed
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Female empowerment, bathtub editorial, March On Washington, scoliosis surgery, beautifully scarred, perfectly flawed

“The scar meant that I was stronger than what tried to hurt me.” -Anaïs Nin

I frequently talk about troubles, struggles, triumphs, crashes and burns. I talk about how, after crumbling into little pieces, I’ve attempted to glue it all back together and move forward – stronger than I was before breaking.

Not to be dark and dreary, but I am convinced that, as women, we may never stop facing struggles, unfortunately, on global scale. It’s something that is hitting particularly hard today, Inauguration Day, when all you magical females and males are standing strong and defending our rights by Marching. FUCK YES, I wish I was in Washington, holding hands and waking with you…or in any of the many cities that are walking for an important cause and defending our rights. Perhaps we don’t have a president that makes us proud to be Americans, but we still have each other – and its days like today that show just how strong community can be.

Currently I am in London, feeling wimpish and incapacitated, due to back pain and spasms in my neck, stomach, ass, legs, and a terrible ache in my head (I know, waahhhh, get over it – but it really hurts). This is all a result of a pretty crazy surgery I had over a decade ago, when I developed scoliosis after making the decision to end my 11 year career as a gymnast. I completed my third year at level 10, just before entering Elite trials, and checked out — you can see my last competition HERE. As a result of the quick termination, my back completely spazzed. I went from being a national champion, to ignorantly checking in to HOAG Hospital for a very intense operation, thinking nothing of it. I had no idea what I was in for.

To backtrack, I was training about 30 hours per week (5 hours a day, 6 days a week), and when I stopped, had an unexpected growth spurt. I went from being a tiny little 5 ft. nothing powerhouse, to a flaily 5ft. 5 in., spiral spined disaster.

One of my ribs was protruding, so I was brought in for x-rays a couple months after I quit gym. Doctors told me I had scoliosis, but it was minor and I should return for a check up in a few months. When I did, my spine had swiveled into a 48 degree curve, and surgery was the only option if I wanted to have a “normal life”.

I remember the night before like it was yesterday, but I wasn’t particularly nervous. I was more annoyed that I couldn’t eat a Happy Meal or drink water.

They took me in, drugged the shit out of me, and put me under. I “woke up” in the ICU, after 6+ hours under the knife (they took out a rib, collapsed my lung, removed a number of disks between my vertebrae in order to straighten it out, fused my spine with my ground up rib bone – as you can see in the first image above – and put in two metal rods and 10 screws). They inserted a chest tube that reached through to my stomach to drain the blood. I spent three days in the ICU and was then moved to my own room, where I spent the next week, on a Morphine pump…I remember very little, just pain. I remember them removing the chest tube and I definitely recall the pain I experienced when I got home, where I remained on bed rest for about a month, and experienced the deepest depression I hope I ever have to go through.

THIS WAS THE WORST, SCARIEST, BEST, AND MOST PIVOTAL EXPERIENCE OF MY LIFE. I WOULDN’T CHANGE A THING.

I was in misery. So much pain. My mother sent my brother and sister, who were also young at the time, on a trip to Europe with my dad, so they wouldn’t have to hear me wailing in agony. She stood by my side, took me to the bathroom, bathed me, and nursed me back to health.

Eventually I realized, after plenty of time spent pitying myself, I was SO FUCKING LUCKY to have the opportunity to regain my health again. Somewhere during the depression that came with living inside of a drugged out and horrifically pain-filled, broken body, I recognized just how fortunate I was. Mostly to have my mom and the knowledge that I would heal eventually. Not everyone heals after varying traumas, but I finally hit a point where I got out of my head and recognized I would. Some people lose their arms, their legs, their ability to do the things most of us take for granted…FOREVER. I was going to get better.

Now I wake up grateful for my my arms and legs (even if they hurt). I wake up proud of my accomplishments and excited for what I might be able to achieve in the future, since I have these blissful abilities. I wake up and don’t take my life for granted. Recently I wake up hoping, as an American woman, which I am lucky to be in the grand scheme of things, regardless of everything, that none of this will change…

I got pancreatitis from what was basically an accidental, prescribed drug overdose, dropped 20 pounds (from the 105 I currently, healthily weigh), couldn’t keep food down and was rushed to the ER. I was injected with anti-nausea medication through an IV which I happened to be allergic to – only about 1 in a million are intolerant of the drug. The allergy results in a “psychotic reaction”, which involved me tearing the needle from my arm and pretty much flipping my shit for about five hours. It is difficult to describe the feeling of fear pumping through your blood…

I was poked with Benadryl until I stopped screaming, and they would let me go home. The doctors informed my mother that they haven’t seen this deadly disease in anyone under the age of 60. It is typically drug addicts and alcoholics, who have been abusing for decades, who get diagnosed. I was only 16. I weighed nothing and had probably ingested a total of six Smirnoff Ices at this point in time.

Being young and resilient I fortunately was able to shake the illness, and went back to my senior year of high school, a sickly waif in agonizing pain, only to receive positive reactions from the “popular girls” who asked me about my diet secrets (no joke). I was appalled and discouraged, but also tremendously vulnerable. Was never one who cared that much about fitting in, but really, bitches?! Not all women are great, but three fucking cheers to those who are — and there are plenty of us out there. THANK YOU.

I tackled the 2-year eating disorder that succeeded this weakness, and have been battling the physical and emotional issues that accompany being a woman ever since. From WEAK, sad females, or men who have sought some kind of gratification or feel a pathetic sense of power through sexual abuse. NO. No more.

This is why I praise you who Marched. We are power. We are strength. As women, we bleed every month, we give birth, and we experience more than any man will (but MAD LOVE TO THE MEN WHO WENT OUT TOO, we are all equal after all). And I am no man hater, but I am all about girl power, and the men who recognize it – there is NOTHING stronger.

The world is in a place that bums me out a lot, and I know I am certainly not alone here. Fucking shit, DONALD TRUMP is president?! Yep. But you know what is amazing? Taking a bad situation and finding the great in it. What I saw today, while basically bedridden in London, was people all over the world Marching — standing strong. And even in the smallest of cities, attendance was higher than the number of supporters who showed up at his inauguration.

The best we can do with a bad situation is stand strong, speak out, and UNITE.

People, politics, experience, health, life…it might try to break us. But with guts, guidance, perseverance, unity, strength, and a genuine belief that you can do anything you want to (YOU CAN),  we will WIN.

*photos by Gus Melton at Nick’s Cove

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang

11 Feb

Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Valentine's Day pumps, Italian leather, red satin dress, Valentine's Day lingerie, little red dress, kiss kiss bang bang
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Valentine's Day pumps, Italian leather, red satin dress, Valentine's Day lingerie, little red dress, kiss kiss bang bang
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Valentine's Day pumps, Italian leather, red satin dress, Valentine's Day lingerie, little red dress, kiss kiss bang bang
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Valentine's Day pumps, Italian leather, red satin dress, Valentine's Day lingerie, little red dress, kiss kiss bang bang
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Valentine's Day pumps, Italian leather, red satin dress, Valentine's Day lingerie, little red dress, kiss kiss bang bang
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Valentine's Day pumps, Italian leather, red satin dress, Valentine's Day lingerie, little red dress, kiss kiss bang bang
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Valentine's Day pumps, Italian leather, red satin dress, Valentine's Day lingerie, little red dress, kiss kiss bang bang
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Valentine's Day pumps, Italian leather, red satin dress, Valentine's Day lingerie, little red dress, kiss kiss bang bang

While I think Valentine’s Day is a completely reasonable excuse to get drunk and naked, I also stand firm in my belief that considering it an actual holiday is a bit of a stretch. Maybe I’m just being bitter…really, to each their their own, I suppose. However, my personal opinion is that this day adds unnecessary pressure to our already stressful lives. Managing to stay in a healthy relationship is difficult enough, so why make it even harder?

For the singles out there February 14th is, best case scenario, depressing. The older we get, the more likely we are to fall victim to triggers that ignite erratic behavior which could land us in  jail, rehab or surrounded by cats. SO many cats.

If you do happen to be  in a relationship, which I actually typically have been in the past, Valentine’s Day is still annoying. Seriously, aren’t there already enough fucking holidays to celebrate? Like birthdays and anniversaries, and Christmas, Hanukkah, etc?! Do we really need another one? Not just that, but one we must share with all the other couples?

If a designated date is required to serve as a reminder that that you are in love, perhaps you, umm, aren’t (just saying). And, since on this day, everyone is supposed to be EXTRA “in love” you better plan way ahead, because if you don’t you won’t get a reservation anywhere and the night will most likely end in tears. It is just seems like such an unnecessary burden! Perhaps this is why I have set the bar quite low and my idea of a dream date is going to McDonald’s with a flask in my bag and getting a cheeseburger Happy Meal. If he picks up the check, rad! If we happen to hold hands…super romantic. And at least I know we’ll be in good company.

The way I  see it, men and women should buy flowers and chocolates for their significant others when they feel like it…which is hopefully not never (if that’s the case perhaps this IS actually an important reminder to inform your deprived companion that you sort of care about them, when you aren’t too busy forgetting they exist).

I also think that it is our god-given right to pick and choose when we’d like to go down on one another…something that, again, shouldn’t be a task. Sex is supposed to be fun, no?

Anyway, while I am still inclined to boycott this romantic spectacle, and vote against Cupid, we all know votes don’t matter at this point. So take it, you stupid little cherub, and bring Hallmark right along with you. I’m throwing in the towel. There are bigger fish to fry, after all.

In conclusion, I have decided to quit with the cynicism (starting now), treat myself to a fancy hotel in Paris I can’t totally afford, and wear a red, satin negligee, while prancing around in my new favorite Italian leather pumps…they’re appropriately decorated with pretty pink and red lips that happen to perfectly match the ones on my face. Like I said, to each their own! Happy…whatever. xoxo

*head to toe: Stone & Strand princess cut diamond earrings, Chanel Rouge Allure lipstick, ASOS red satin pleated nightie, Baldinini pumps in red pattern nappa

photos by Gus Melton at Hotel Baume in Paris

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Cheeseburger Love Affair

9 Feb

Over the cheesy gift roundups. Not in the mood to share a tear-jerking novella. No romantic poetry. Sure, I do indulge in these things from time to time – guilty as charged. But NOT today…

Middle fingers up to Cupid and Hallmark. Here’s to ditching labels and eye-rolling at fake holidays. For my ladies who’d prefer a night in with a bottle of red, or an evening out with gal pals and loads of laughter, over a cliché bouquet of roses…

HAPPY FUCKING VALENTINE’S DAY!

*wearing: Chanel Rouge Allure lipstick, Satin Maxi Slip Dress, pleated velvet dress from ASOS (similar styles HERE), black low-cut maxi dress from Reformation, Baldinini pumps in red pattern nappa, reading How To Murder Your Life by Cat Marnell

Video by Gus Melton at Hotel Baume Paris