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Posts Tagged ‘fbff’

FBFF Five

07 Apr

{ daily outfit: }

Daily outfit and style tip, wearing faux fur vest, hot pink cardigan, black skinny jeans
Something’s always funny around here

{ fbff: }

I’ve got twenty tabs open on any given computer, dog-eared magazines are strewn about, there are incomprehensible scribbles in several notebooks, lists of items coveted and I window shop with the precision eye tracking of a true professional.

What does it all mean?

This week, Fashion Beauty Friend Friday offers a simple question: What are the top five trends for spring that you have been looking forward to?

FBFF spring trends, lace
Lace
FBFF Spring trends, neutrals and wide leg pants
Neutrals and wide leg pants
FBFF Spring trends, botanical print dress and statement ring
Botanical print dresses and statement rings

In order of appearance:

Lace blouse, Unknown
Lace cuff, WhiteOwl, Etsy
Neutral dress, ModCloth
Wide leg pants, Nanette Lepore
Botanical print dress, Anthropologie
Statement ring, Alexis Bittar

I covet these. They reflect a time of renewal, a gentleness with which to ease into this next season. I want to feel a warm breeze on my skin, I want to smell the flowers in bloom. Perfect for spring, perfect for me.

 

Thank you Katy of Modly Chic for crafting this question. Friend Friday is an opportunity for fashion and beauty bloggers to share their thoughts on a specific topic and read what others have to say on that same topic. For more information, check out Modly Chic and welcome to the wonderful world of blogging!

{ style tip: }

Faux fur vests are one of the most fun trends we’ve seen this past season. They’re warm and soft and are great for layering. They look best over a slim line because they add so much bulk. Keep the shape of your dress simple or your slacks sleek and uncomplicated. Naturally, they’re perfect with jeans.

Do you own any faux fur? How are you wearing it? Is it a vest or a coat? Do you wear it indoors or outdoors? How does it make you feel?

{ deets: }

Hot pink cashmere cardigan/Bloomingdale’s, yellow owl t-shirt/Shana Logic, faux fur vest/Urban Outfitters, black ankle cigarette jeans/BDG, Urban Outfitters, brown embroidered boots, Aersoles.

 
 

FBFF Q&A: The rules of engagement

31 Mar
Official facebook House in the Clouds page
Check out The House in the Clouds on facebook

 

Guess what? I’m really excited about this, I finally set up an official facebook page for The House in the Clouds. I’m still trying to figure out how to integrate a widget in a way that I find aesthetically pleasing. It feels painfully slow to be hindered by the reality of a full-time job and personal life, not to mention the stack of laundry decorating my office space, formerly known as the dining room. Check it out!

{ daily outfit: }

Daily outfit and style tips, wearing blue and coral pattern blouse with navy skirt and gold belt
Snuck away from a desk for a few to snap these on a beautiful afternoon
Daily outfit and style tips, wearing blue and coral pattern blouse with navy skirt and gold belt
We call this pose “looking for snails”

 

{ friend friday: }

We want our blogs to succeed however we have chosen to define that success. Most likely, we want to gain followers, fans, loyalty, even acclaim of some sort. We want to be recognized, we want to influence. It’s a daunting task at best, completely overwhelming to digest as a whole.

Our mothers warned us not to be too boastful, to play nice and to say “thank you.” Where is that fine line that we are supposed to ride, one that engages and encourages without becoming as annoying as a late night infomercial? How do we get there? What are the rules?

This is this weeks Fashion Beauty Friend Friday’s topic. Read on.

FBFF: Guest posts are a good way to gain exposure. What do you think is the appropriate way to go about securing a spot?

FJ: Personally, I’m a big fan of developing and nurturing connections. I make the most effort with those whose persona and voice appeal to me, those I would have just as likely been inclined to get to know in person. Once I feel that I have this type of rapport, discussing anything is easy. A dialogue and friendship already exists. I treat my online friendships with the same courtesy I extend everyone else, I don’t really have a specific tactic.

FBFF: Leaving comments is essential to growing your blog. But how can you leave a comment without coming across as “Follow Me. Follow Me!”?

FJ: Don’t make it your objective. It’s assumed you want to grow your blog but be cool, be genuine. People can tell when you’re not really into what their blog is about. Honestly, it’s just plain ol’ weird. We’re not little kids anymore. I would never walk up to a total stranger and ask them to be my friend and offer to be their friend. Where else in life is this acceptable for adults? It strips integrity from the action.

FBFF: We’ve all gotten a mass email at one time or another asking for blog exposure, a link exchange, etc… But the mass emails don’t work. How do you make your email stand out from the crowd?

FJ: There’s a huge difference between spam and a conversation. An email blast purely to promote my blog is marketing, more specifically, the worst kind of spam. I care to foster community or have a conversations, not be detached or irrelevant in the context of a group. It would be disrespectful in that context. Tweeting to people who have independently chosen to follow my blog is acceptable. Spamming within the confines of a group is using that group disrespectfully.

Here’s an example of how I did recently ask for support from some friends for my facebook page. Firstly, I had an easy, realistic goal: to reach over 25 “likes” in order to claim my name. Secondly, I sent an email to my best friends. Not everyone in my address book, that would have been really uncool. I sent an email to my absolute closest friends, those who have a vested interest in my success and would not be put out in helping me out in this fashion. I don’t make it a habit to do this so I didn’t worry that my actions would be interpreted as annoying and careless. They came through. Fantastic!

Why did this work? They know me, they like me, they support me. I laid out what I was hoping to achieve and how they could help. I made it clear and I only sent out one email. Why would a group of people who don’t know me want to help me? What’s in it for them if I have not made any attempt at developing a rapport with them? That’s reality. If I want support, I create and become an active participant in that group or community. Being purely self-serving is shallow and easy to ignore, it’s certainly not a likable trait.

FBFF: In interacting with other bloggers, where do you draw the line between seeking support and begging for exposure?

FJ: Seeking support is valid, we all benefit from a helping hand. We help, we get help, it’s a nice way for the world to go around. There’s really no line to draw, they may seem similar from afar but I know the difference between the two and I would never confuse one for the other. My actions speak to that very clear distinction.

I’ll speak loudly on this: there’s no integrity in begging. DON’T. GO. THERE. Don’t beg, Don’t plead. You want advice or support, just ask for it. Be genuine with your request. One hundred people is no more or less valuable than a single one. That is my absolute truth. It’s easy to get caught up, it’s human nature to compare ourselves to others’ successes and failures in order to assess ourselves. Every follower, every person who digs what I’m doing is an individual with their own worth, they’re not lumped in some category and boxed up to go. So why beg for exposure? I have it. It’s right here. If only two folks read my blog today, guess what? That’s two valuable humans. People aren’t numbers. There’s never a good reason to compromise ones self-esteem over anything.

FBFF: What’s one rule of engagement error you made and how have you remedied that?

FJ: I don’t recall making any. I took my time observing and learning before dipping my toes in the water. That just happens to be the kind of person I am. I might be all kinds of things but one would be hard-pressed to call me clueless. I pay attention, listen to others and I learn well. And no, I’m not going to point out my flaws to counterbalance that statement.

Thank you Katy of Modly Chic for crafting these questions. Friend Friday is an opportunity for fashion and beauty bloggers to share their thoughts on a specific topic and read what others have to say on that same topic. For more information, check out Modly Chic and welcome to the wonderful world of blogging!

 

{ style tip: }

I matched my belt and tights to one of the colors in the pattern of my blouse. It provided contrast nicely without being jarring or too matchy-matchy. It was a way to keep the outfit colorful without introducing yet another color. The somewhat sheer tights are a sparkly ochre yellow which made them fun, but the sheerness kept the sparkle from becoming overwhelming.

 

{ deets: }

Blouse/ModCloth, navy blue skirt/MaxStudio, elastic belt/Anthropologie, sparkly tights/Urban Outfitters, brown vegan suede boots/Munro, necklace/Linkel Designs.

Photos: Filip Jach

 

FBFF Q&A: What does a feminist wear?

25 Mar
Daily outfit black dress with blue bows and blue tights.
Bows and boots, perfect for a feminist
Daily outfit wearing orange ombre scarf
Wearing my Style Nation swag from Cheeky Boutique

Feminism and fashion have been a hot topic lately, one I touched on briefly a few days ago. What does being a feminist have to do with anything? If the way I dress gets attention, more specifically male attention, does it revoke my license for gender equality? Am I to be taken less seriously because I’m deemed feminine or sexy? Am I taken to be taken more seriously for hiding my body? This week’s questions revolve around this exact topic.

FBFF: Do you think there is an incompatibility between feminism and a love for fashion?

FJ: No. It’s a matter of perception. I would turn the question around and ask, what would make you believe that there is? Does my love for a male dominated sport make me less feminine? These are all stereotypes and perceptions. I believe that the point of feminism is not just gender equality but freedom from gender-based behavior and obligations. In fact, I would add to this and say there is no obligation to equate fashion to stereotypical femininity. What if my love for fashion was simple, masculine lines? Would it suddenly be deemed appropriate feminist garb? Of course not.

FBFF: There is more to each of us than a love for fashion, how do you incorporate every aspect of yourself into your blog?

FJ: I don’t, nor do I feel the need to. I bring up different topics that I’m passionate about and speak in my own voice but my blog is mostly about my fashion so it will not feature every aspect of my personality or interests. I might loosely cover unrelated topics which will shed light on my personality, of course, but my assumption is that most readers didn’t come here to read about how things are going at work or my family dynamics, for that matter.

FBFF: With the fashion industry still being a male-dominated profession, how do you think it would differ if women played a larger role?

FJ: I don’t know. I’d like to think that there would be more emphasis on comfort but what we purchase and how we choose to dress ourselves is still a personal decision at the end of the day. Therefore, who’s to say that anything would change? Frankly, I don’t know enough about the fashion industry to understand what goes into it. I can say that perhaps the same changes we’ve seen as a society by having women in the workplace and in power would be reflected within the fashion industry. Would there be more compassion in the industry? Would we have realistic models, realistic size? I would like to think so.

FBFF: How is your self-image and the way you carry yourself informed by your beliefs?

FJ: I believe I’m free to carry myself any which way I choose. It is my choice to be androgynous or glamorous, sexy or covered up, feminine or not. I’m not naïve and understand that each choice I make carries with it an impression, people will see me and judge me. It doesn’t matter what I wear, we’re human animals looking to identify and understand. We do this by categorizing, stereotyping and judging. Hopefully we take it further by looking at the entire picture in and not just the first aesthetic impression.

It would be false to say we don’t judge a book by its cover, we do. Then we continue to create this judgement or impression by reading the title. Perhaps the author’s name lends an additional amount of information, the description on the back cover, the content of the story. The point is that it is up to us to remain open and continue taking information in with the understanding that our first impression is still only a portion of the whole. It’s up to me to communicate other aspects of my personality as I go through life, it is up to others to remain open from the time of their first judgement.

FBFF: Do you think clothing/makeup/hair helps communicate the truth about yourself or are those things superfluous add-ons?

FJ: Both. They are decorations but we live in a society where such decorations are the norm. If I were the only person in the entire state to fancy makeup, perhaps I’d only wear it once in a while, or perhaps never but I’m not. I may not consciously apply makeup every morning thinking to myself I must compete with other women, I must blend in, but these are subliminal and primal actions. I’m comfortable in my own skin. I have no problem leaving the house without makeup but it is a choice not a pressure I feel to do so. Everything I do, every way that I decorate myself is appropriate for the context of living in this society but ultimately I do it so that when I look in the mirror I like what I see.

I feel it does reflect the truth about myself. It says I take pride in how I present myself. I could expound further by using examples of inner dialogue versus public discourse, it’s all a choice. This is how I want to be seen. I exercise the freedom to choose how I want to be perceived every day. Exercising our freedom of choice is what defines our character and separates us from other animals.

I wear what I want.

 

Thank you Katy of Modly Chic for crafting these questions. Friend Friday is an opportunity for fashion and beauty bloggers to share their thoughts on a specific topic and read what others have to say on that same topic. For more information, check out Modly Chic and welcome to the wonderful world of blogging!

If feminism and fashion have piqued your interest, check out Feminist Fashion Bloggers for more information on getting involved.

 

Deets: Black dress with blue bows/ModCloth, butterknit pumpkin shawl/Cheeky Boutique, blue tights/We Love Colors, black boots/Nordstrom’s, bracelets/H&M.

 

 
 

FBFF Q&A: Just breathe… Blogging vs. life

11 Mar
Wearing my 30 for 30 remix outfit, wearing burgundy dress in garden

30 for 30 remix, day 23

I blog therefore I am… busy, tired and sometimes a little overwhelmed. When does the wheel stop spinning? Yoga might help but that would be yet another thing I would have to cram into an already busy schedule. So, how is this done? How much sleep do I really need, anyway?

This topic could not have come at a better time. I had been coasting nicely along until snowboarding season. All of a sudden, my schedule looks like this:

  • Monday night – Run 30 min., stretch 30 min., get home later. Blog.
  • Tuesday night – Catch up and blog. The weekly grocery shopping trip is often squeezed in here.
  • Wednesday night – Run 1 hr., stretch 45 min., get home pretty late. Blog.
  • Thursday night – Pack for snowboarding. Blog.
  • Friday night – Make the 4 hour pilgrimage to the slopes. Arrive late.
  • Saturday – Wake up early, spend all day at the slopes.
  • Sunday – Wake up early, spend all day at the slopes, make the 4 hour drive back home. Unpack.

 

To add to the precarious navigation of said schedule, my hubby and I commute together to and from work. Up until recently, we lived in urban areas where the need for a car was next to none and our schedules were totally independent of each other. Now, if one of us has an early meeting it means that both of us have an early meeting. We only have one car to share, there are regular negotiations about who gets the car when, who gets picked up from the train station at what time. All in all, everything we choose to do affects the other.

I’ve been progressively feeling like I’m falling behind; I have to ask myself why do I feel this way? My schedule has changed on purpose, acknowledging this is key. Am I going to let it stress me out or am I going to modify my game plan? After all, snowboarding is not a chore, it’s my passion. I dream about it all summer, I can’t wait for the snow to fall every year. You know what else is not a chore? Blogging. It’s evidently also a passion. What’s a girl to do? Plan better. Be more efficient. And just breathe…

This week we’re discussing the delicate balancing act of blogging versus life.

FBFF: When it comes to prioritizing your life, in what place does blogging fall?

FJ: After my health, fitness, adequate sleep and marriage and before socializing, reading books and resting. I know how that sounds, I put blogging before rest. I’ve been known to stay up right until bedtime which has led to thinking about blogging in bed when I ought to be mentally preparing myself for slumber. While it is not stressful, it’s also less than ideal. The mind should be shutting down, I’m aware that this habit needs to change. It’s cool to be this excited about something but it’s not sustainable to operate at this pace.

FBFF: We all wish we had more free time to dedicate to blogging and all it entails. What are your tricks for taking advantage of the time you do have to be as productive as possible?

FJ: I jot notes down every time I think of something I want to remember. I’ll also send myself emails, too, if I don’t have my notebook around. I click on links from my twitter feed and quickly check out a post at work while I’m on hold or waiting for a file to upload or print. I can read very quickly, it’s probably one of my most underrated abilities.

FBFF: Have you discovered any short-cuts that makes blogging easier or more time efficient?

FJ: Not getting sidetracked is key. I joke around that my brain is run by a tribe of rogue ants, all trying to make stuff happen at once. I literally have to list my top three goals on a piece of paper, number them and keep referring to them every time my mind, eyes or body dart elsewhere. I kid you not. I use a black Sharpie marker and make my list on the back of an envelope. It has to be obnoxiously noticeable to work. I know how my brain functions.

The other thing is that I’m always thinking, constantly mapping out how and what I want to do so that by the time I have a free moment I have already figured it out as efficiently as possible. My actions are bite-size! I’m always improving one little thing at a time. I let go of trying to be perfect out the gate a long time ago. It’s paralyzing. Instead, I’m constantly assessing how I can improve one little thing or another. No one really notices the changes but the experience is perpetually improving one little evolutionary step at a time.

FBFF: Do you have an editorial calendar or something similar that helps you plan ahead?

FJ: Lol! No and boy is that ever going to change soon! I’ve been kicking the idea around for a while. Before I even started hearing about editorial calendars I had already put in certain things in my gmail calendar with reminders. I just need to flush out the system realistically, I wanted to sit with it a little while before implementing it. I’ve been thinking of ways to create a sustainable schedule. I don’t want to blog every single day, it feels unhealthy to be in front of the computer like this all the time. I need to create a schedule that allows for pre-posting so that I can take a few days off a week.

FBFF:  If time wasn’t an issue what you would be doing on your blog/for your blog that you aren’t doing now?

FJ: About a gazillion things! I would have already practiced making a vlog, or two! I’d have read the manual to my new camera so that I could take better pictures, I’d have more posts written for the future. I’d have set up a facebook page. I’d read more blogs, spend more time getting to know fellow bloggers better. That’s just for starters.

As you can see, I’ve been thinking about this long and hard. What have I learned? Ultimately, the choice to do this is mine, I own the schedule, the content and the stress. As long as I remind myself that I’ve chosen freely to do this because I enjoy it I cannot give it so much power over me that it creates a heightened level of anxiety. I love doing this! If I don’t have the capacity for it some night, it’s ok. I take a break. To be frank, I’m a perfectionist so this is something I have really focus on, I have to give myself permission to rest. The internet is not going to die if I skip a day or two. Really! (That’s going to be my new mantra.)

Thank you Katy of Modly Chic for crafting these questions. Friend Friday is an opportunity for fashion and beauty bloggers to share their thoughts on a specific topic and read what others have to say on that same topic. For more information, check out Modly Chic and welcome to the wonderful world of blogging!

 

Deets: Burgundy sweater dress/unknown, leggings/Lulu’s, vegan grey faux cowboy boots/ModCloth, infinity scarf/hand knitted by me, cap/unknown, red leather belt/Wilson’s Leather, green abalone bracelet/gifted, silver three kitties ring/gifted*

* The background on this ring is that my youngest sister bought my other sister and me the same ring. The three kitties represent the three of us so I think of both of them every time I wear it.

 

FBFF Q&A: Make me pretty!

04 Mar

Infinity scarf

My first every giveaway winner announced! Last week I promised that I would knit an infinity scarf identical to the one shown above to thank my followers for hanging around and returning. You guys make me so happy! So without further ado, I bring you the lucky winner:

We have our winner!

*** Mackenzie, looks like you got yourself a scarf! Come on down and claim it, little lady! ***

It’s Friday and time to talk about beauty. We each have our personal routines, in some cases we find it acceptable to spend a pretty penny on some items and in others we head to the local drugstore. You’re lookin’ good, what are your secrets? Here are mine:

FBFF: What’s your favorite drugstore make-up product and your favorite higher-end product?

FJ: Burt’s Bees Tinted Lip Shimmers and Chanel eye-shadow. I also use Neutrogena eye make-up remover but prefer the Chanel one. The $20 difference keeps me using Neutrogena.

FBFF: Is there one type of product that is your go-to, that you can’t live without?

FJ: Burt’s Bees Lip balm. I love the pomegranate, mango and the new açai in addition to the original minty balm. I’ve been really lucky to have normal skin, it’s very low maintenance.

FBFF: What’s the best hair product you’ve ever used?

FJ: Hands down, Aveda and Kérastase. I’ve strayed and always return.

FBFF: Fess up, what’s the worst beauty look you’ve tried to rock and look back at now with a little shame or apprehension that you actually did that?

FJ: Oh the horror! Seriously? A tight perm when I was in high school. And that’s saying something because I had long hair, short hair, rocker hair, bi-level, (A.K.A. a mullet), bleached, red, maroon, blue-black but that perm takes home the Hair of Shame Medal of Honor. My best friend permed my hair for me.

FBFF: When it comes to beauty products, we all use the same basic products. What do you use that helps show off your personal flare and personality?

FJ: “Mermaid” Trucco eyeshadow. It’s two parts, one side is shimmery golden grassy green, the other is shimmery aqua. The company no longer exists and I’m going to be sad the day that I scrape the last dredges of eyeshadow from the container. It’s a wacky color but I only put it on my lower lid. I have big eyes and eyelids and for daily wear,  I find that it’s often overkill to wear eye-shadow all the way up the lid. I wear it almost every day but it feels just subtle enough to keep me from looking clownish.

Thank you Katy of Modly Chic for crafting these questions. Friend Friday is an opportunity for fashion and beauty bloggers to share their thoughts on a specific topic and read what others have to say on that same topic. For more information, check out Modly Chic and welcome to the wonderful world of blogging!

 
 

FBFF Q&A: Blog Awards

24 Feb

R u doin’ it rite?

Some bloggers are doin it rite. They stand out just a little ahead of the pack. They inspire and challenge us to bring our best to the table. We cruise and peruse and think to ourselves, I want to be just like that when I grow up. This week we’re recognizing some of those bloggers. We’re nominating one for each category. Afterwards, the top five will be culled and there will be a vote to determine the champs for the FBFF Blog Awards.

You know who else wins in this? You and I do. We get exposed to some top quality blogging action, that’s a win in my book. To be clear, this was not easy to do at all. I had more than one outstanding blogger for each category. Sometimes even two or three. With the help of one hubby’s famous Manhattan’s I bring you my nominees:

1. Creative Juices – Most creative

I nominate Emma Clark from Daily Clothes Fix for blowing my mind one too many times with those unbelievable outfits. This is a woman who thrifts and swishes many of her finds and then just for kicks challenged herself not to repeat a single outfit for a whole year. A whole year! That’s pretty darn creative right here.

2. The Real Deal – Authenticity

Aye! Aye! Aye! Really? Ok, here it goes. Anika. Of By Anika fame. I can name at least five or more qualifying bloggers in two seconds flat but Anika’s name floated to the top. You go to her blog and the very first thing you encounter is her heart. That thing is out there beating to some awesome rhythm ready to give you some love, fix you a hot drink and sit you down in the most comfortable chair in the house. It’s not particularly easy to be this authentic even behind the screen of carefully chosen words. You have to be ok allowing yourself to be vulnerable. FOR THE WORLD TO SEE! You just want to give that girl and hug and share some laughs and hang out.

3. Spark Notes – Most helpful

I recently made the switch from Blogger to WordPress. In the meantime, I threatened the sanctity of my marriage by abusing matrimonial tech support. I might have even gotten teary-eyed at some point, that was a low point and I was desperate. I think I even wore my pajamas for twelve hours straight. My one and only saving grace came from this woman: I nominate Beautifully Invisible for her tutorial for making the switch. If it’s the only helpful thing she ever brings into my life, it is still a noble feat. I’m still married.

4. Newbie – Best blogger less than a year old

This hot gal has been around as long as I have and guess what? That’s not very long at all. In those few months I saw Yvonne’s blog, now called Fashion Recon, metamorphosize. She polished it, defined her persona, buttoned it all up and got her ducks in a row. I’ve always wanted to say that, by the way. Ducks! It didn’t take long for this woman to put together a vision, clear as day. She’s just started this feature called Wednesday Webbies and I look forward to reading it and getting my learn on. Yep. She’s one smart and stylish cookie. And you know what else? She actually referred to a Chilton’s manual on her blog. Do you guys even know what that is? I can’t wait to meet her at Style Nation in Las Vegas in two weeks!

5. Can You Hear Me Now – Most connected

Oh man Oh man Oh man! I’m so not happy about having to answer to this one. Really. Blast! Drats! Dang! On December 2, 2010, I stopped by her blog for the first time and practically memorized this quote: “leopard print is the polka dot of the animal kingdom”. BELLA, GET YER BUTT OUT HERE! I’m really getting carried away but The Citizen Rosebud has connected me to some beautiful souls, (Sacramento? Ofelia?… Too many to mention.) So, yes, this was THE HARDEST! I want a sister category for Collette of Statements in Fashion. I have so much respect for her and had to go back and forth and back and forth on this one. Don’t hate me, Collette, I was literally splitting hairs. Next year, I’m going to create a category just for you, darlin’. We’ll just call it “Awesome” because you also know how to bring people together.

6. If I had a Hammer – Best DIY

A Beautiful Mess. I painted some boots with glitter paint because of this woman. Elsie is what the creative part of my brain wants to be when it grows up. Maybe I could just move in with her and be her apprentice.

7. Tribe Leader – Blogger who leads others and brings bloggers together

Oh what would we do without the lovely miss Katy Rose? I wouldn’t be typing up these questions, I would not have made a lot of new friends. Heck, I’d still be trying to come up with original content for every Friday’s post. Don’t you know, I’m going to give props to Katy of Modly Chic for putting this party together. In my friend Safy’s words, she’s “making it happen.”

8. Practically Perfect – Most Fashionable

Puhleeze. Check out what this woman wore to shop at Target and tell me she’s not the most fashionable. You go push a cart around in that outfit and fill it with 12-packs of toilet paper. Yeah, that’s what I thought. I recognize Vahni of Grit and Glamour because she’s kicking fashion’s little toosh intercontinentally. And she’s intelligent. And talented. And eloquent. Oh snap! That just made her practically perfect!

9. Paint by Numbers – Best beauty blogger

Okay, I’m kind of cheating here. But not really. It’s just that I’ve not really followed any beauty blogs but today I checked out Ali & Perdi’s blog, 365 Fashion Rehab, (thanks IFB),and I quite enjoyed it. I guess it counts!

10. Renaissance Woman – Best all around blogger, fashion, beauty, lifestyle

Well, see here I finally had to get creative. When you say “woman”, do you mean it like this: “woman”? Because right now I’m kind of drawn to Arash of Arash Mazinani’s blog for providing content relevant to both men and woman. But if you must be a stickler about it being a woman, then Erin’s of Design for Mankind is my girl. All those pretty pictures!


Thank you Katy of Modly Chic for crafting these questions based Courtney of Those Graces‘ suggestion. Friend Friday is an opportunity for fashion and beauty bloggers to share their thoughts on a specific topic and read what others have to say on that same topic. For more information, check out Modly Chic and welcome to the wonderful world of blogging!

 

All’s well in the stairwell

Bringing new meaning to afternoon coffee break

Look who I found! Hi Joe!

As I mentioned earlier, it’s Go Red for Women month. Some of us bloggers were inspired by fellow blogger Andie to participate in bringing awareness to heart disease in women by wearing red on Fridays. I’m wearing red today but the photos featured are of Thursday, how I wore red on Friday remains to be seen. Don’t you just love a little mystery?

 

Deets: Black turtleneck/Benetton, black cigarette ankle pants/BDG, slate shawl collar cardigan/You Be Cheeky, skinny black belt/Nordstrom’s, teal legwarmers/unknown, grey vegan faux cowboy boots/ModCloth, necklace/Alexis Bittar, blue topaz ring/unknown.

Photos: Euan Rannachan

 

 
 

FBFF Q&A: Body Image

17 Feb

Pounding rain means indoor photos

Make mine a mini

Hoo, hoo…

We hide behind our computers, our faces lit by the light of the screen while we type first thing in the morning, after work and before bed. Sometimes encroaching on that treasured sleep. Then, some of us post pictures of ourselves; we edit, scrutinize and approve how the world will see us. The phenomenon of blogging is fascinating. This genre, this tiny niche of style bloggers is varied and diverse. We oscillate between the written word and imagery, sometimes showing preference to one over the other. How does it all add up? What role does it play in how we see ourselves?

This is the topic of this week’s discussion.

FBFF: Since you started blogging has your image of yourself changed?

FJ: Yes. Taking pictures of myself almost every day made me realize that my perception of myself is a little skewed. The mirror doesn’t capture me in an active state. While I may be posing, the camera is capturing me when I can’t actually see myself, it doesn’t care what I’m doing, it just captures it. Sometimes it’s worse than what I see, other times it’s better.

FBFF: Are you self-conscious about any aspect of yourself? If so, do you go out of your way to avoid it or do you post it/talk about it anyway?

FJ: Yes, but I accept it for the most part. I don’t draw attention to it by calling it out on my blog because the same way that I don’t notice what other people are often self-conscious about, I assume most people don’t notice what I’m self-conscious about. Why draw attention to it? I wouldn’t necessarily call it being self-conscious, more like self-aware. I don’t care that my teeth are crooked and I have an impressive overbite and that sometimes it makes my lips look funny. (See, now I told you!)

I will not post a picture where those attributes distract from what I do like. Do you want to look at my teeth or my outfit? Besides, those traits exists. They’re the way my friends see my face, everyone is used to it. I’m the only one who cares and gets surprised by it over and over again. “Hey! That’s not really how I look!” Actually, it is. When the camera takes a picture of me with that stupid expression, guess what? I make that face all the time and just can’t see it. You just gotta laugh about stuff like that, what can you do?

FBFF: Based on how you are feeling now, what do you think the future holds in the evolution of your body image?

FJ: I’m fascinated by the changes. I sometimes try to imagine what I will look like when I’m much older. I think I will have the same happy eyes, the same strong nose, lots of sun spots and happy wrinkles. I hope I always give myself the nutrition, sleep, love and lifestyle that keeps my perspective healthy. I think my perspective is pretty good now.

FBFF: Do you photograph yourself for your blog? If so, how do you feel about the experience when you’re having your picture taken? If you choose not to post pictures of yourself, what prompted that decision?

FJ: I’ve gotten a lot less self-conscious about it pretty fast. In a way, blogging is license to pose. If I’m in public, well, of course I’m posing for a shot, I have a blog. Little mind games are funny that way. But seriously, I try to have a sense of humor about it. I know that when I don’t photograph well it’s when I’m not feeling well either in my body or my head. The remedy is almost always more sleep and exercise. It’s also made me more accepting of what my good and bad attributes are. I was already that way but the process is definitely an accelerant.

FBFF: What would you want every person who struggles with body image to take to heart?

FJ: No one is perfect, no one is above self-scrutiny. If you strive to improve, do it with a gentle loving touch because you’re going to be at it all your life. Self-improvement, body image perception, these are not phases. We live with our bodies until we expire. Be accepting of what you can’t change. Those differences are what set us apart and make us unique. Be cool and enjoy yourself. Your life is good.

Thank you Katy of Modly Chic for crafting these questions based on my suggestion (yay!). Friend Friday is an opportunity for fashion and beauty bloggers to share their thoughts on a specific topic and read what others have to say on that same topic. For more information, check out Modly Chic and welcome to the wonderful world of blogging!

As I mentioned earlier, it’s Go Red for Women month. Some of us bloggers were inspired by fellow blogger Andie to participate in bringing awareness to heart disease in women by wearing red on Fridays. I finally got my red in on time. This 80′s dress from eBay was such a find. I wore it previously like this, this time I wore it with the cowl neck hanging asymmetrically and the waist belted. I made this dress a mini-dress! I put it in the challenge because I knew it would be a challenge to find different ways to wear it. It’s so unique. And I always like a good challenge.

Deets: vintage dress/eBay, black tights/unknown, vegan faux cowboy boots/ModCloth, owl necklace/Urban Outfitters, black belt/unknown.

Photos: Euan Rannachan

 
 

FBFF Q&A: Colorful world

11 Feb

Ferrari FF

As I mentioned last Friday, it’s Go Red for Women month. Some of us bloggers were inspired by fellow blogger Andie to participate in bringing awareness to heart disease in women by wearing red on Fridays. It so happens that I have yet to be captured wearing my red today and was once again in need of a proxy. It’s only appropriate to rely on my new favorite crush of the moment, the recently released Ferrari FF. I realize the impracticality of owning such an exotic car but don’t think I’d turn it down for a second. I’d go grocery shopping in it. I really would. Besides, it’s not that impractical. It’s a four-seater, four-wheel drive coupé, as they say on Top Gear, that puts out 651 horsepower. That’s what I’m talking about.

This week we’re discussing color in our fashion choices. You’ve probably noticed that there’s no shortage of color in this girl’s closet. Let’s get to the bottom of this, shall we?

FBFF: What color dominates your closet?
FJ: No a single one. I might have been Rainbow Bright in another lifetime.

FBFF: If money weren’t an issue how would you change the color emphasis in your closet?
FJ: I think I would more mindfully shop for very specific shades only because I could afford to be that particular. Overall, I don’t think it would affect my wardrobe much.

FBB: What is your mantra about mixing color?
FJ: Mix to my heart’s desire! Seriously, I have no mantra other than the colors in hue and tonal value must look good together. Sometimes the effect is rich and monochromatic, other times it’s full of life and contrast. I dress for my mood. I don’t like being matchy-matchy, I like the colors to go well together. Also, they have to look good against my skin tone.

FBFF: For you, how do you incorporate color into your outfits?
FJ: The easiest way are tights and scarves. They can change the look and feel of an outfit immediately. I own everything in a colorful palette except for pants. Dresses, skirts, tops, you name it.

FBFF: Which blogger(s) do you think do a good job of incorporating color into their wardrobe?
FJ: There are a few but I have to say that hands down, Emma of Daily Clothes Fix takes it to the next level. Her level of commitment to an effect, color palette or style is consistent and unbeatable.

Check out some of the ways I’ve incorporated color via tights. In fact, quite of few of my most colorful options have come from We Love Colors, the most recent acquisition having been sponsored by them. I find that Hue and We Love Colors are on parity when it comes to quality and comfort. I have several pairs of microfiber tights from WLC. They’re pretty opaque, the color is consistent throughout and I find the waistband to be comfortable.

Mocha microfiber, WLC

Rust microfiber, WLC

Scarlet microfiber, WLC

Thank you Katy of Modly Chic for putting together these questions. Friend Friday is an opportunity for fashion and beauty bloggers to share their thoughts on a specific topic and read what others have to say on that same topic. For more information, check out Modly Chic and welcome to the wonderful world of blogging!

 
 

FBFF Q&A: Blogger events and causes

04 Feb
Red, regal in all its splendor

While I made the mistake of diving into day one of my 30 for 30 with the only red pick for the month, I coaxed a proxy to represent me today. Dear Aug was celebrating Chinese New Year innocently when I recruited him for the task. He makes a pretty awesome representative, if I may say so.

The significance of wearing red this month is in to promote Going Red for Women which raises awareness about heart disease in women. Fellow blogger Andrea recruited us to show support for this cause.

Such causes and events are ever present in the blogosphere. How do we choose where to put our efforts, what we back with our face and name? It’s Friend Friday and this is the topic being discussed.

FBFF: With all the blogging events out there how do you determine which ones to participate in and which ones to avoid?
FJ: I have several criteria. Do I have heart for this cause? Can I support it without compromising something, (my schedule, my beliefs, etc..)? Will I feel good for having done this?
FBFF: Be honest, have you ever jumped on the bandwagon of some blogging movement/event for the wrong reasons? How did that turn out?
FJ: I would not say I have. I have chosen carefully what causes and events to participate in to get to know others in the community and gain exposure while also exposing my blog. These don’t feel disingenuous given the context of community and my desire to be an active member within it. I’m a social creature with a limited schedule. While it’s tempting sometimes to jump on every bandwagon, I’m mindful to stay true to my heart.
FBFF: How do you give your own flair to a blog event while still maintaining the general mission and purpose?
FJ: It will always have my voice and my take on it. I don’t just copy and paste statements when trying to convey my perspective. Perhaps if details needed to be provided, sure. If I couldn’t relate to it in a way that I could speak about it then I probably shouldn’t be trying to participate in or promote it.

FBFF: When determining the best content for your blog what criterion do you keep in mind? 
FJ: Do I have a personal connection to it? Is this a conversation I can have with my audience? My content is often diverse in the way that I capture vignettes of my day while taking the time to post occasional in-depth thoughts on a topic that might be dear to me. It really just comes down to me. I’m telling a story. If I can’t tell you this story, it doesn’t make it on the blog.

FBFF: While everything will not suit your blog, how do you try and support your fellow bloggers who are participating in something worthwhile but not your style?
FB: Support can be expressed in numerous ways. A word of support, a personal note, a comment on their blog, a short sentence on mine, a link, all of these work. I’m realistic enough that I won’t always be able to express my support fully but I also trust that the community as a whole is large and diverse enough that where I might not be present for one cause or event, there will be many others who will be. Sharing the burden alleviates the need to be stretched thin at every turn. That’s the very essence of a community in its truest form. I trust this process.

Thank you Katy of Modly Chic for putting together these questions. Friend Friday is an opportunity for fashion and beauty bloggers to share their thoughts on a specific topic and read what others have to say on that same topic. For more information, check out Modly Chic and welcome to the wonderful world of blogging!

 
 

FBFF Q&A: Waving the magic blogging wand

27 Jan
Green, green and green

This is my bedroom wall. Someday, hopefully soon, it will be painted the middle shade of green. After six months of talking about it, it’s practically a reality. I’ve taken endless shots to make my case. I’ve changed the wall colors digitally to express my vision.

Technology rocks! We explored the options digitally until we got a place where we narrowed down our options to two. Mix them together to create a third and most perfect shade of green and Voila! Consider it done.

It’s Friend Friday and the topic we’re discussing this week is blogging technology. Because technology rocks.

FBFF: What technology do you use in blogging? (Computer, camera, video camera, tripod, etc…)
FJ: I use my mac laptop, my Canon S95 camera and my dad’s old tripod.

FBFF: What computer and online technology do you use? (Blogging system, photo storage, photo editing tools, etc…)
FJ: I run Chrome as my browser, currently use blogger but am migrating to WordPress soon, and do all my photo editing on Photoshop CS4. My photo archives are stored in iPhoto.

FBFF: What is your process for taking pictures?
FJ: Generally, I’ve got all of five to ten minutes tops to get the photos taken in the morning before my husband and I carpool to work. I grab the camera, set it up on the tripod, look around for the best location based on the light and go for it. I use the self-timer, taking two photos at a time. I often end up with about ten to fifteen photos. Most get dumped immediately.


I review them in the car on the way to work and dump all the ones that don’t make the cut. Once I return home in the evenings, I transfer them to iPhoto, flag the ones with potential, export two or three, tops. I use Photoshop to adjust levels, hue and saturation. I don’t got overboard since I need to keep it simple enough to do regularly. I crop, sometimes adding a little shadow for depth, and export for web, using the same exact size every time for consistency.


Sometimes on a weekend I might explore using the camera’s more advanced functions and take certain photos, like the most recent ones a few days ago of the daisy necklace and ring. I’m learning how to use this new camera beyond the basics, it’s fun but time consuming. There are a lot of trial and errors along the way.

FBFF: When it comes to backdrops for your photos what do you consider? Do you scout locations or shoot the same spot daily? 
FJ: I notice locations all the time but I know that often my only opportunity will be in the morning. I try to mix it up, they are almost always in my yard. To me, the backdrop is important but secondary. I want it to either enhance or be neutral to the photos, preferably enhancing and never detracting. I still focus on making the outfit be the hero, enhanced by the interesting surroundings.


I’m about to start working with a photographer friend once a week to get a different take on it. I want to keep the photos interesting and explore different backdrops. When they’re done well, they add so much. 


FBFF: If you could splurge and get one new piece of equipment, what would you be buying?
FB: Have we reached that point in the future where I could buy more sleep? That’s the only thing I need at this point! If anyone comes across that technology, please let me know.

Thank you Katy of Modly Chic and Colleen’s suggestions for putting together these questions. Friend Friday is an opportunity for fashion and beauty bloggers to share their thoughts on a specific topic and read what others have to say on that same topic. For more information, check out Modly Chic and welcome to the wonderful world of blogging!