Monday, 29 April 2013

You Know You're a Parsons (or Other Fashion School) Student When...



1. If you didn't already have one, you have developed a serious shopping addiction but you tell yourself it's okay because it's research. Casually buying something online from your iPhone during class is not an uncommon occurrence.

2.
You describe colors in terms of hue and chroma now and get offended when someone compliments you on your 'blue' shoes. They're actually aquamarine with more green than blue, but thanks. (True story: my friend Leyla texted me the other day because she described something as a shade of elephant and the person she was talking to was like...you mean grey?)

3.
You spend so much time at the cafe next door that you have friends at each station (panini guy, coffee guy, cashier lady) who ask where you've been if you only see them once a day. They've all taken to calling you 'sweetheart' or 'honey' and that's okay with you. 
 
4.
Phrases like 'totes amaze' and 'I used the Valencia filter' are not only often overheard but a part of your regular vocabulary. 
 
5. When in a store, you absolutely must feel each and every article of clothing. Before buying something you inspect the tag to find out the fiber content, care instructions and country of origin, because it matters people.

6.
You spend so much time with your classmates that you pass colds around like mono at summer camp. When your closest friends are sick it's better to just accept the inevitable and share a drink with them to get it over with. 
 
7. Carrying at least 2 bags loaded with essential supplies like scissors, double sided tape, an extra pair of shoes and a small selection of magazines is basically a requirement. If you don't need to see a chiropractor on the regular than you've clearly been doing something wrong.

8. You only have female and gay friends so bitchiness and cattiness are about as common as breathing. When you do come into contact with the (straight) opposite sex, it's like a scene out of one of those daily planet DVDs. Let the best woman win.

9.
If you're running late for class, wearing sweatpants is NOT an option. Staying home because you couldn't find something cute to wear in time is not only acceptable but strongly encouraged because you will be judged by your outfit by a minimum of 3 classmates in every class.

10. You're willing to work 12 hour days for literally no money if it means getting to see that show/work at that agency or for that designer because at the end of the day, you live, breathe, sleep and (don't) eat for fashion. 

j.

Saturday, 27 April 2013

I Have Nothing To Say, So Here Are Some Photos

touque {Steve Madden via Century 21} - jacket {Loft} - jeans {Old Navy} - booties {Dolce Vita via Century 21}


I really wasn't kidding about having nothing to say. Sorry to disappoint (or not). These photos were taken a while ago and due to my procrastinator tendencies, have not gone up until now. #Fail

I will tell you that the first photo was taken with a vintage Hasselblad camera which is pretty badass and that these lovely photos were taken by my lovely friend, Leyla, who has a website with more lovely photos. So, you should check it out because it will be a lot more interesting than what I have for you here. Which is absolutely nothing, in case you hadn't figured it out by now.

I'll come back when I have something remotely interesting to say. So I wouldn't hold your breath if I were you.

j.

Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Things They Don't Tell You or You Simply Don't Believe About Living in NYC



1. At first the thought of paying anything more than $1000 to live with at least one roommate is simply unacceptable. Then you learn that paying less than $1000 anywhere for anything is pretty much a non-option. So you increase your budget to $1200 at the very least. But then you see a few places for $1200 and unless you feel good living on the corner of gang bang and drug dealer, suddenly the notion of living in a 2-bedroom with as many people as possible or sharing a master bedroom with your bestie, seem like the best ideas you've had since moving to NYC.

2. It rains. A lot. And when it's not raining its either sleeting or is so hot and humid that you are sweating in places you didn't know existed. NYC has approximately 2 seasons: bitter cold and disgusting hot. Spring is lovely, you can go outside without a wool jacket and not freeze to death yet you're not worrying about imminent pit stains and chafing thighs. Spring lasts about 10 days before the humidity sets in and starts to choke the life out of you. Then there's Fall. Rumored to be the most beautiful season of all in NYC. Fall lasts for less time than Spring before it starts raining and the wind gusts on the avenues conspire with the umbrella companies to ruin as many umbrellas as possible. So do yourself a favor and, as soon as the leaves start to turn color, get your butt to Central Park to take photos because tomorrow the leaves will be gone.

3. The bagels will change your life. Sure, we've all heard of the world renowned "New York bagels" but until you have one loaded with cream cheese (lox is my particular favorite), especially one that's fresh from the oven, well... simply put, you haven't lived. If you haven't had one you're probably thinking how good can a bagel really be? I know, I thought that too and I wasn't even a bagel person before moving here but then I tried one (from Ess-a-Bagel in the East Village) and the stars aligned, a rainbow appeared and a unicorn started prancing around me.

4. Your feet, knees, back or some combination of the three will be shot within the first 3 months. The amount of walking you do in this city is staggering and underestimated. For a city that does have so many walkers you'd think that the sidewalks would be a priority but it's like a daily obstacle course to avoid potholes, uneven pavement and dog shit. If you don't develop chronic back pain or fluid in your knees than your feet will be the ugliest they have ever been in your life. And don't even bother with the $15 pedicures because those disgusting calluses are the only thing saving you from having bleeding feet each night.

5. This city smells about as good as Naples and Paris combined and if you've ever been to either city than you know this is not a selling feature for New York. The days leading up to garbage day and obviously any subway station are the worst. Get used to the smell of all bodily functions and prepare yourself for it to get 10x worse in the summer. There's nothing quite like the smell of baking garbage and urine when you're hungover, or ever really, but it's even worse when you've been drinking the previous night. The saving grace, however, are the pockets of paradise known as the corner bodegas that have flower stands outside. Breath that in real deep, relish every second of that floral high because it won't last for very long.

6.
You will become desensitized to seeing the most bizarre things. A man with a bright green beard, dressed head to toe in rainbow colored costume who's carrying a small dog? That's Ms. Colombia. A taxi driver getting out of his car at a stop light to scream at a truck driver who cut him off? Daily occurrence. A pair of drag queens wearing the most elaborate get up with legs most girls would kill for walking down 9th Ave? That's my neighbor. Gazelles and giraffes, I mean models, popping up every which way you look? Welcome to Fashion Week. A young guy with a pet (I hope) rat/bird/snake on his shoulder. You're in the East Village. Ben Stiller walking briskly past you carrying two Starbucks', wearing sunnies on an overcast winter day and looking alarmingly like Zoolander? Only in NYC. 

7. You will learn to walk very, very fast. Usually as a matter of survival on a New York sidewalk but often times because your feet are already numb anyways, you're carrying a minimum of 2 bags that weigh no less than 10 pounds each and if you don't get to wherever it is you're going 5 minutes ago you will collapse in the middle of the street. You will then meet your untimely demise by being run over by a taxi, horse drawn carriage or kabuki cab, depending on the location of your collapse.

8. Since you are now the fastest walker on the planet, you will likely develop what I like to call 'sidewalk rage'. Anyone who is walking even slightly slower than you are, can't seem to pick a side of the sidewalk to stay on or just appears to have the inability to walk in a straight line will make you more mad than a toddler who's toy has been taken away. You will have the very strong and sudden urge to yell, swear or even shove this stranger out of the way. Umbrellas will be another cause for potential rage attacks and people's need to own one large enough to fit a small family underneath and keep it open when there is not even the hint of a rain drop falling will leave you feeling angry and anxious at the same time. As for tourist season or Times Square in general, it's best to avoid both at all costs if you want to remain an upstanding member of society and not be either institutionalized or imprisoned.
 
9. You will not meet any single, straight, available (literally and emotionally) men no matter how hard you try so you shouldn't because it's just depressing. You had been told that its hard to meet someone in this city but you believed that you'd be the exception. Plus, movies and shows like Friends made you believe that the people who told you that were bitter liars who were probably just unhappy in their lives. You will quickly learn that they were not lying and the only reason for their bitterness was because they probably tried dating in NYC. 

10. You will feel the most inspired and energized in your life by this city. You will forgive all of its faults because of the feeling you get when you're here. You will be a part of something that's hard to explain and can only be understood by the people who also live or have lived here. You'll have a sense of belonging and know that anything goes whenever, wherever. You will believe in magic again (or still if you're like me) and finally understand why everyone says there is no other city like it. 

j. 

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

You're More Beautiful Than You Think!

I was just perusing my Facebook feed and saw that one of my friend's had shared Dove's video, below. He said it was worth the watch and so I did. Worth it, indeed. Not only did I get a bit choked up during it, but it really got me thinking. So much so that I decided not to go with the light, funny post I had intended for tonight. I know the video is three minutes (which is hours in social media time), but it really is something. Watch it and then read my thoughts below, if you so desire!



This video is about so much more than women's self confidence. It's about self perception and how we see ourselves. Everyone is their own worst critic, that is just fact. Even the prettiest girls can't help but beat themselves up from time to time. What shocked me the most about this video was that these women, who were in their 20's, 30's and 40's, had such distorted perceptions of what they looked like. Self deprecation knows no bounds. It doesn't differentiate between age. I suppose if someone had asked me at what age are women most vulnerable about their appearance, I would've said late teens to early twenties. Maybe that's because that's when I felt the most disconnected in my body. It upsets me that beautiful women in their 30's and 40's are still feeling the way I felt for a short time in my life. I wasn't as much of a "I have this wrong with me" insecure, but more of a "I wish I had that girl's legs/stomach/arms/fill in the body part" type of insecure. In hindsight, that's basically the same thing but it was the comparing myself to other people that was the most hurtful to myself. I don't really know when I started to grow out of this. It was a slow process of getting older, experiencing more things, and just becoming more comfortable in my own skin. I learned to accept what my body had the potential to look like (I will never be a size 2, or even 4 for that matter because I have hips and no amount of exercise or diet will change them). But I know that with regular exercise and a moderately healthy diet, I can get to a point when looking in the mirror not only doesn't make me cringe but maybe even makes me smile.

In this video, these women described themselves in terms of their flaws (or what they perceived to be flaws) whereas the strangers described them in terms of their best features. I think what's important to take away is that the world sees you in terms of your best, not in terms of your worst. Only you are looking at those dark circles underneath your big, beautiful expressive eyes. Strangers just see those eyes. I think it is so important to be kind to ourselves and to try focusing on the positive every once in a while. All this negativity is just bringing us down. This was reinforced by the blonde lady near the end of the video who, when looking at both sketches, realized that the one she described looked "sad" whereas the stranger's description looked more "open" and "happy". So, do yourself a favor and be nice to yourself today, it just may make you happier!

I can't say it any better than Dove did, so I won't: You're more beautiful than you think!

j.

Saturday, 13 April 2013

Some Outfit Photo Outtakes or in Other Words, a Bloopers Reel

As you can imagine, I have a lot of photos of myself. Not all of those are quality, let's put them up on the ol' blog worthy. Until recently, when I thought it would be a funny idea to show you guys some of the not so pretty and always awkward outtakes. All of these gems were taken by my talented iPhonographer of a roomie, Kiki. After looking at all of them together, I realize that the awkward gets going when she tells me to move and that more times than not, I have no clue what to do with those hands of mine. I hope you enjoy this horribly embarrassing display of myself.


When a duck tries to curtsy, this happens.


I call this move "the circle of awkward hands". It's part of my interpretive dance.


Simon says you're definitely not too sexy for your touque.


Heeeeeyyyy! Call me.


If you keep staring from your truck/taxi I'm gonna come on over there and whoop you.


Did you hear that? Is that an alarm? Did I just do that? Start walking, go, go, go.


Just chillin' on my invisible ledge here...or pretending to be a t-rex. One or the other.


You're welcome.

Happy weekend!

j.

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

It's Been Freezing, I Blinked and Then It Was Summer

sweater {Century 21} - skirt {Target} - shoes {thrifted, Zara} - jewelry {street vendors}


I just needed to forever document the momentous occasion that was bare legs today! I was literally wearing my wool, winter jacket on the weekend and then bam! Monday was in the mid-twenties. Today got to a high of 26 degrees (celsius) and honestly it tricked us into thinking it was June. Too bad this more than Spring-like weather is not planning on sticking around any longer than tomorrow. A girl could get used to this.

In other news, today someone at the agency was celebrating his birthday. I ran out to order some fries from an upscale fast food restaurant (this is an oxymoron) because birthday fries make much more sense than birthday cake. After waiting briefly in line, I was called up, looked at the man straight faced and asked for twelve orders of fries. He looked at me with bewilderment and repeated my order to me as a question. I confirmed that yes, I really did want twelve orders of fries. He rang it in and then straight faced asked me, "to stay or to go"? Oh right, to stay please! Just bring my twelve pounds of french fries over to me in the corner booth of shame. And yes, we put two birthday candles into a mountain of fries and sang happy birthday like this was the most normal thing ever.

j.

Sunday, 7 April 2013

A Big Life Decision and Some Words To Live By


Hi friends. I know there have been some radio silences on the blog lately. I couldn't quite put my finger on why I hadn't been posting lately until it hit me. Everything I thought to post about felt disingenuous because I have made a pretty big decision in my life and I guess I just wasn't ready for it to be blog public until now.

I have decided to move back to Calgary once I finish school. I have talked about this possibility a few times before on the blog. While this certainly wasn't an easy or quick decision to make, it is the right one for me. The thing I was struggling with the most was the notion that I should want to stay in NYC. After all, it is New York City, fashion capitol of the world and I have spent all this time and money to study at one of the best fashion schools. Everyone around me was telling me to stay. All of my friends and classmates are hoping for a job out of school in order to be able to stay, live and work in this vibrant city. Yet, with all that NYC has going for it, I couldn't shake the feeling that I was done here. My brain was telling me that it would be good for my career to stay but my heart was telling me I wanted to be home. I have gotten everything and more that I needed out of this experience. New York has been a lot of things to me. I came here partly broken and at a time in my life when I was very lost and this city rejuvenated my spirit, inspired me and put me back together. I will always have a soft spot for the city that never sleeps but I know, in my heart, that home is where I belong.

I'm excited for this new chapter in my life. I'm eager to start my career, and rediscover a city that I have not lived in as an adult. I anticipate this journey having its ups and downs, as all do. While it may not be as glamorous as the Big Apple, I hope you'll all keep following along as I seek out fashion, style and everything in between in a city who's nickname is Cow Town!

j.