11.21.2014

Frenemies












Shirt & Skirt: Lotus, Shoes: Jessica Simpson, Earrings: old from Bebe

So... I guess I'll start by pointing out the obvious. 

I am wearing a shirt that you can totally see through. 

WHOA Nelly. 

My first (and more conservative) thought was to wear a black tank top under it, but then I was like... naaah... booooring. Snoozefest 2014.  

This gem was made to be worn over a black bra, and only a black bra. Go big or go home, right? Sometimes you just gotta say EFF it. I'm doing it. I'm just going to shut off all of the little voices in my head that tell me that I can't or that I shouldn't and I am going to do it. 

I wouldn't wear this just anywhere, but it was perfect for an event the manfriend and I went to last Thursday night. My bestest buds own and run a boutique called LOTUS in Charlotte and it was their 4th birthday party (which included dinner and a fashion show). I used to work at LOTUS, but since I started teaching Pilates I'm more like their number one biggest fan and a really good client. I wasn't feeling ballsier than normal just because it was a fashion show though (although they do inspire you to push your personal limits a bit). I was confident enough to wear this last week mostly because of the women I was going to be around at the event. 

This small group of friends of mine (my manfriend refers to them as my "lotus girls") are 100%, true-blue, GOT.CHO.BACK 24/7 365, slash all 4 tires, or kill anyone who says otherwise... supportive. Yes, they too are into clothes, fashion, and promote stepping outside of your box, but more than that they are positive people who make you feel like a million bucks. We do that for one another. We are brutally honest when something looks not so good (cut your hair... ahhh, how about you don't wear that... love you, but not your best look... blonde ombre is over... I can see your butt through that... put it down and step away), but we are also not threatened by one another... not competitive. We love each other and love making one another feel good. Knowing I was going to be around my "lotus girls" gave me the confidence to do something that scared me a little bit. They are my safe space. Being with them is like being in the middle of a big, warm, shiny, sparkly hug.

I think sometimes as women we are worried about other women talking shit. It can prevent us from doing or saying things that are a bit outside of the "norm".  Like this outfit... I can hear it now... "Who does she think she is? Why would she wear that? She teaches Pilates, but it's not like she's super skinny or anything. Isn't she a bit too old for that? It's a touch much if you ask me. Holy, did you see that shirt, or lack thereof, that Melissa was wearing? I would never!! Blah... Blah... Blah..." 

Do you have people in your life like that? I call them frenemies. Part friend, part secret enemy? The "friend" who rarely compliments you, kind of seems to want to sabotage you, is quick to say something negative, and looks constipated-uncomfortable when saying something nice to or about you? They say sly shit about your lifestyle, your partner, your kids, your vacations, your job (or if you stay at home), what you wear, your hair, how you spend your money, what you drive? They are a friend... and a rival. That dynamic is weird as fuk and scares the shit out of me. It makes me wildly uncomfortable and I try to stay away from that type of woman at all costs. I am lucky in that the older I get, the easier it is for me to distance myself from that shit. I'll break up with a bitch quick fast. So fast it will make your head spin. I swear I can sniff it out. I want real friends in my life, not some weird version of a friend who gets pleasure out of making me feel like shit. Fuk you. You can be miserable all by YO self. Ain't nobody got time for that.

True story: when I tried this outfit on, my girl Krista was with me (one of my "lotus girls") and she teared up. Maybe she was pre-menstrual and her hormones had her in a tizzy, but when I asked her what was wrong she said... "Nothing Mel, I'm just proud of you. You've worked really hard this year, and that outfit looks really good on you. I love it. I love you. I'm just happy for you. That's all."She was crying. Legit tears.

Now... if you don't have a friend like THAT... you need to find yourself one, because having just one will do more for the quality of your life than all the frenemies in the world. And... if you've searched high and low and cannot find one... you can come sit with me. I'll be over here, hanging out in my see through shirt with my bad bitches. 

EL, JR, KH, Me (not pictured: HHC and TR) love you guys.


11.18.2014

A Woman... Taken By The Wind











Dress: ASOS (2 years ago), Vest: H&M, Hat: Lotus, Shoes: Jessica Simpson, Cuff: Celene Stones (15% off when you EM Krista at CeleneStones@gmail.com), Necklace: Blue Jane Jewelry (BlueJaneJewelry on Instagram)

Do you ever feel as if you were born in the wrong time? Like you should have been part of a different generation?

I am a child of the 80's and 90's, but I've always been obsessed with the 1960's and 1970's. The music... politics... activism... fashion... all of it. When I was a teenager almost every tape/CD I owned was of a band that started touring long before I was born. The Grateful Dead, Led Zeppelin, The Allman Brothers Band, Creedence, America, The Eagles, Eric Clapton, The Beatles, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Fleetwood Mac, Lynard Skynard, Neil Young, Van Morrison, The Doors... and the list goes on. Most of my favorite groups from that era were made up almost entirely of men. One group however was home to a woman I have been obsessed with since I was 13 years old. I still remember the first time I ever saw her. It was the closest thing I have ever experienced to love at first sight. I shit you not. I was taken. Enchanted. I could not stop looking at this woman. Could not stop listening to her. I became a bit obsessed really. I was like... "Yo! Hold up. Am I a lesbian? I love her. For real."

It was 1993. I was 13 and I was up late at night. Everyone else in my house was asleep and I was in the living room channel surfing at 1 or 2 am. I stumbled across a Fleetwood Mac Concert on PBS. The video quality sucked, but the sound was amazing. And there she was... Stevie Effing Nicks. She was amazing. Half woman, half magic.

Her voice... her clothes... the way she moved... danced... her hair... her passion. I was mesmerized. For the first time in my life I literally wanted to "be" someone else. I started watching from the couch and ended up on the floor, sitting cross legged and glued to the screen with my nose no more than 4 inches from the TV set. I must have caught the concert at the beginning because I remember watching it for hours. I woke up the next day and had to know everything there was to know about Stevie Nicks. I bought every CD/tape/record I could get my hands on and devoured all of the lyrics on the inside covers. I learned that she is a true artist. Beautiful, tortured, a gyspy soul. A feminist, lover, writer. Magical. The Queen of Rock & Roll. One of the BEST singers on the planet. Her raspy, raw, beautiful voice is my most favorite sound. One of a kind then... and now.

It's been 21 years since I stayed up until the wee hours watching her dance across stage, but her music has been the soundtrack to my life. I have cried for hours listening to her songs, fallen in love to her lyrics, gone through major life changes and found something new to relate to in a song I have heard over 200 times. She is my all-time favorite. Over all others. Forever and ever. Amen.

I guess this outfit made me think of her. Dirty hair... a long dress... faux fur/feathers and a floppy hat. I wish I looked half as effortlessly cool as she does... but alas... there has only ever been, and there will only ever be just one. Bella Donna.




11.13.2014

WWBD












Poncho: Lotus, Pants: Express, Cardigan and Purse: Target, Shoes: Off Broadway, Tank: Vestique, Necklace: Celene Stones (email Krista and mention ModaFresca for 15% off your custom piece - celenestones@gmail.com)

So it's Thursday.

Man... I used to love me a good Thursday. I'd look so forward to them.

Back in the day it's when my weekend would really start. Thursday is like a mullet haircut. Business at the beginning, but alllllll party by the end (Whoop Whoop). I'd go into work and do my thing all day, but then at 5/6pm.... BOOM... <<<<oh shhhht it's party time>>>>. I'd meet friends for happy hour, go to an outdoor venue to see a band play, meet up with people for dinner and (3 too many) drinks. I guess I just kind of thought... "ah... it's okay if I feel like dog shit tomorrow, right? I just need to get through one last weekday".

Lawd how things have changed. Somehow Thursdays have become my most insane day.

This is my today:

4:45AM - Alarm
5:30AM- Co-Instructing at a Bootcamp for an hour (1/2 the class does Pilates with me then we switch off)
7:00 AM- Shower and get ready for my Corporate job.
8:00 AM- Try to get blog pics taken. 
9:00 AM- Survived my commute in. Uptown in the office.
5:45 PM- Home. Attempting to get a blog post written and posted.
6:30 PM- Co-Instructing at Bootcamp #2
7:45 PM - My Pilates Group Class at the Gym
9:15 PM - Home &Shower
11:30 PM- Falling through the bed, mouth wide open, heavy breathing, "is she dead or is she sleeping" type sleep

Shit.

I am NOT complaining. I brought ALL of this on myself and I love every bit of it. I mean... the day job really "grinds my gears" sometimes, but in all honesty I am having much more fun these days than I was when I was indulging in weekly Thirsty Thursday sessions. My liver thanks me as well. It's never said as much, but I can safely assume it appreciates the fact that I don't spend hours on end testing the limits of its ability to metabolize and break down alcohol on a regular basis.

All of that being said, I was REAL tired this morning. Skipped washing my hair, for oh say the 4th day in a row and just curled the grease back into it. And... I didn't give a hoot about what I was wearing. When I don't care I default to matching. Like... kind of go overboard with it. It takes no thought to match head to toe. Hence the pants, tank, purse and shoes. Then I put a balled up gray cardigan that was in my closet on and threw more gray over top of it all. Two colors. Done and done.  I love the necklace, shoes, and poncho, but this basic ass cardigan made me feel like a LAME-O all day. Hated it.

Why is it that when we don't feel like going to work we don't put much effort into what we are wearing? It should be the opposite way around, don't you think? Like... "Man, I don't want to go to work today. Maybe I should step my game up so I at least feel good about how I look?" Right? Step into that office like BOW... BOOM... BANG... DEAD.... KILLED IT. Beyonce on that ass. But no. Instead we wear Heather Gray Cardigans and outerwear that could double as a friggin' afghan and then wish we had made stronger choices.  Instead of Beyonce we show up as Amy Farrah fricken Fowler. (Blossom's character in The Big Bang Theory.) I think I am going to put WWBD on my bathroom mirror in red lipstick... What Would Beyonce Do?

Also... does anyone elses grandma call blankets afghans? Is that even a real thing?

11.11.2014

Multi-Level Marketing and Obnoxious Bloggers










Sweater and Leggings: Lotus, Booties: Steve Madden, Shirt: Vestique, Watch: Michael Kors, Bracelets: Celene Stones (Coupon Code MODAFRESCA for 15% off when you email Krista at CeleneStones@gmail.com)

As many of you know I started this blog a little over 3 years ago, but I pride myself on not being an over the top, obnoxious blogger.

My definition of an annoying blogger:

1. Your website is full of ads. Which may or may not include my least favorite... pop up ads. So annoying. No one came to your site to buy a 12 month subscription of Us Weekly. Get that shit out of here.
2. Bloggers who push their posts on you by posting numerous pictures of the same outfit over the course of 3-5 days to every social media outlet available to them. You wore a t-shirt tucked into a tu-tu on Saturday afternoon. It was cute. We get it. Why the hell are you still telling us about it on Tuesday? I post once to FB and once to Instagram. That is it.
3. Bloggers who act like their lives are perfect. All rose petals... Starbucks coffee... vases full of perfectly arranged flowers... fruit smoothies... and over-sized sunglasses. If you don't know what I mean then maybe you aren't following as many fashion bloggers as I am on Instagram. Sweet lawd. It's pretty ridiculous.
4. Copious amounts of selfies with inspirational quotes as the caption. As if they are their own words of wisdom. Now... I have nothing against selfies and as you all know, I love me a good inspirational quote. But taking a picture of your perfectly pursed, lipstick laden lips in the drivers seat of your car with a quote about living your dreams attached to it? Come on man. Your lipstick does not inspire me to go out and live large. One or the other, chick. You can have your selfie and your inspirational quote, but not both at the same time. Pick one.
5. And the single MOST annoying thing about some bloggers is when you read their posts and they are clearly sponsored by a company and the blogger uses her entire text to try to sell you something.

I went to a blog that I used to read about a year or so ago and it was about... wait for it... juice. Yup. As in the breakfast drink. This blogger was approached by Tropicana or something and paid to post about their new line of Pineapple/Orange/Mango juices. On her personal style blog??? The pictures she included were of her in a cute outfit pouring juice and talking about how much she loooooved it. How it pairs perfectly with her favorite foods, etc. It was so disingenuous I could barely stomach it (pun intended). I only finished reading it to see how bad it was going to get. I was embarrassed for her. Now... maybe she got a big paycheck for doing that (which is cool) but I couldn't help but wonder how many people (including myself) stopped reading after that train wreck of a post. Insincerity is the worst. I'll be the first to admit that sometimes it is ridiculously frustrating to try to think of something to write that doesn't suck, but taking pictures of yourself pouring juice and smiling coyly while drinking juice from a mini mason jar? Come on now?

Now... I say all that because I am about to tell you about a few things and I want to make it perfectly clear that I am not being paid to say this shit (nor have I ever done that on this blog) and I don't sell this stuff. If I am telling you about something it's because I am currently ob-sessed with it. I am always interested in what products people love, so in the event that you are too, keep reading. If not... bye for now.

Obsession #1:

Rodan + Fields Mini- Facials. I was given one for free to try. It was a little sample packet thingy. I wasn't expecting much from a single-use trial size of anything, but Sweeeeeet Daddy. This thing was amazeballs. It came with Micro-Dermabrasion Paste, Night Renewing Serum, and a Lip Serum. It took all of the dead skin off of my face but did not irritate it one bit. After I dried my face off I put the Night Serum on my face and Lip Serum on my lips and went to bed. The next morning (at 4:15 am when I woke up to teach Pilates - after a mere 5 1/2 hours of sleep) I noticed 3 things. #1. It looked as if I had new skin. No shit. It was really firm, and shiny. Not oily from sleeping shiny either, like healthy shining. Glowing if you will. #2. I have this enormous pore that no matter what I do is ALWAYS there front and center staring back at me. Taunting me. That sucker was tight as a drum all closed up. Buh-bye. #3. The area around my mouth (which I never paid much attention to before) was really smooth. All the little tiny lines looked almost as if they had been filled. My mouth looked younger. Is that weird to say? Does that make sense? If you are a smoker or if you drink thorough a straw a lot you maaaaaaaay need this in your life. It's ridiculously good stuff. I was skeptical because this is a company full of reps who do the hard core, full court press to try to convince you to buy expensive products, but I'm here to tell you.... I am now a believer. Holy shit do I believe.

Like I said... I don't sell Rodan + Fields, but I will be investing in some other goodies of theirs really soon. I am going to look into their  REDEFINE regimen (cause your girl ain't getting any younger). I mean... it's an investment for sure. Their products are not cheap, but if I could wake up with skin like THAT every day it would be worth it. You only get one face, right?

If you're interested in browsing and/or buying all of their lines and products are HERE on my girl, Jen's page.  

Obsession #2:
Younique products. Two of them to be specific. (Although again, I was skeptical of their claims just because I tend to get annoyed by multi-level marketing.)

A. Their 3D Mascara. When I first got it, I was unsure. It was a bit messy (with all these little fibers) and after my first application I had a slight case of spider leg lashes. Long... but too clumpy. They didn't look natural or pretty. I looked scary. But... I gave it another shot, because I am a slow learner and was convinced my first attempt was user error. I was right. Once I tried it again more slowly. Friggin' magic. It's a three step process. I wouldn't use this stuff every day because it is a three step process, and the stuff costs about three times as much as my drug store mascara, but man oh man... if you want a fake eyelash look w/o the glue, irritants, chemicals, time and money spent... get you some of this. It takes normal looking lashes and transforms them in 2 minutes. It's almost crazy how well it works. Also... its completely natural and will not irritate sensitive skin/eyes. Here is what you do, and here is a before and after from the web. I was going out when I used mine last and forgot to take a close up picture.

1) First you apply 1 coat of your regular mascara (any old cheap brand would do, its just a base)
2) Then you apply 1 coat of the Younique gel (its black and resembles regular mascara)
3) Then you apply 1 coat of the Younique fibers (it looks like pieces of black fluff on a mascara wand)
4) Then you apply another coat of the Younique gel to seal it
5) Repeat until you get your desired effect

This pic is NOT an exaggeration. Promise. You can buy it HERE for $29.00


B. Younique's Lip Liner. I love me a bold lip. Most of the time I just wear a lip liner and some gloss, skipping lipstick all together. THIS liner lasts longer than any I have used, doesn't get on my teeth and held up against everything I ate and drank (which is a lot). There are 3 colors of this stuff that I love. Perky, Posh, and Primal. If you are interested you can get it HERE for $15.

If you clicked the links for the Younique products you may notice I sent you to two different pages. Here's the deal... if you live closer to the North East (NY), go to this page to get your stuff. You'll get it sooner. If you live closer to the South East (Charlotte) go to this page to get it sent to you right away.

I know none of the stuff I told you about tonight is cheap (which is odd since I am the queen of the drugstore makeup aisle) but sometimes, you really do get what you pay for. Let me know if you check any of the stuff out and what you think.