Embracing the Mane

Writing has always been therapeutic for me, and this blog is kind of like a diary of sorts, so, welcome to my venting session…

I’ve always wanted to stand out, but I’ve never wanted to be a spectacle. Unfortunately, my hair hinders me from avoiding the attention that I try to escape.

My hair is big, extremely curly, and extremely hard to miss. My friends and peers can always spot me out in a crowd. “It’s the hair,” they always say.

image

It took me a while to come to terms with my natural texture, and to this day, my hair still presents challenges. Prior to my freshman year of high school, I often wore my hair straight. It was easier that way, and I looked like everyone else. There were no questions about my hair, or curious looks, or strange comments.

image

I can’t tell you how many times my hair has been described as “fun.” I’m not really sure what that means. It’s like calling someone “exotic.” Animals, far away places, and plants are exotic-not people. Hair can’t be “fun.” I don’t think that’s possible.

The other day, a girl stared at my hair intently before asking me how long it took me to curl it, as if I have a miniature curling iron that is able to produce thousands of curls. I can’t make this stuff up.

image

I can’t expect people to understand my hair texture when it’s something they have never come in contact with, but I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t frustrating when people observe it like a science project, or ask me really strange questions about it. As I said earlier, I don’t like to be a spectacle, and I definitely don’t like being constantly made aware of the fact that I’m different because I already know this.

image

Curly hair has a history of having a bad rep. We live in a world where straight hair reigns supreme. I read a few articles online that described situations where curly-haired women in the corporate world felt pressured to straighten their hair because their peers deemed their natural locks as “childish” and “unprofessional.” The situations in the articles were maddening to me because how can one be penalized for the hair that grows naturally out of their head? In the future, will I have to spend hours straightening my hair each week just to hold a job or gain respect from my contemporaries?I hope not.

Over the years, the curly hair community has grown so much, and I think it’s great. I like to see people being who they really are, and I prefer to be who I really am. It’s much less exhausting. I do like to straighten my hair occasionally because I like a change every now and then, but when I do, I don’t feel like myself. I straightened my hair for prom this year, and while it was nice, I couldn’t wait to go back to my curls.

image

Straight hair, wavy hair, curly hair, and everything in between is beautiful. Rather than holding one hair type in the highest regard, we should embrace them all.

The reception towards my hair isn’t all negative. A lot of it is actually really positive, but sometimes the strange comments and ignorant questions do bother me. Sometimes they are even hurtful.

I hope to one day live in a world where people are more educated about individuals that are different than they are. Maybe this will never happen, but even if it doesn’t, I’m still going to love and embrace my hair, despite its flaws.

I’m proud to be a curly girl. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

image

 

Thanks for letting me vent,

Couturely Sound ❤

Advertisements

Soccer in America

A lot of people may not know this about me, but I’m a huge sports fan. Basketball, football, the Olympics-you name it, I’m watching it. However, despite my love for sports, I’ve never really payed much attention to soccer, and I don’t exactly know why. Maybe it’s because I’m American, and as far as I know, America doesn’t like soccer very much,especially not now.

Today I had the pleasure of coming home for an extended lunch, and as I ate, I decided to turn on one of my favorite sports shows, The Herd with Colin Cowherd on FS1. Colin, always the eccentric sports analyst, expressed his disdain over the US Men’s Soccer Team’s loss to Trinidad and Tobago, and he immediately got my attention. In my understanding, this match was a must win for Team USA in order for the team to qualify for the World Cup in 2018. Long story short, they lost, and people are not happy. It is the first time since 1986 that the US Men’s Soccer Team has not qualified for the World Cup. To many people, that is 30 years of progress down the drain.

Rebecca Blackwell/ Associated Press via New York Times

 

Colin ripped our treatment of soccer in the US, saying that we don’t put enough emphasis on the development of players like we do for football, basketball, baseball,etc. Meanwhile, European countries turn their kids into soccer machines at a young age.  The US is home to the best sports leagues in the world-except for soccer. Soccer is like the ugly step sister in America. We even watch golf more.  Cowherd then pointed out that soccer is a “suburban” sport, as it is the sport that every little kid in the country plays at some point in their life. When Americans think of soccer, they think of “soccer moms” and orange slices at half time, rather than a legitimate sport. In my own experience ,many critics of soccer have called it a “sissy” sport, and that’s putting it nicely, but that is to be expected when football, a “macho” sport replete  with bravado and brain damage reigns supreme in the USA.

Americans already didn’t respect soccer,  so they definitely won’t now. I’m sure our country would appreciate the sport more if the team was dominant, but since they aren’t, forget about it.

What are my thoughts? What do I think of soccer?

I had a soccer career a long time ago. It lasted a whopping three months.

I was trash, just like the quality of this picture.

 

I was one of the many kids in America that plays soccer at least once in their life time. When my family lived in England, my brothers and I played a lot of youth sports through the Air Force base, and when I was seven, my mom thought it would be a good idea to sign my brother and I up for soccer. Always, the natural athlete, my brother was really good. He had all the makings of a good soccer player-quickness, speed, agility-all of it. While my brother was the star of his team, I was the type of player that would get a “Most Improved” trophy at the end of the season. Soccer requires a lot of coordination, something that I lacked greatly at the time. I remember I had one break out game where I stole the ball from an opposing player. That was a happy day. By the conclusion of the season, I ended up getting “most improved,” and my coach never pronounced my name correctly, but I had a lot of fun. I really did. I don’t know why I never revisited the sport.

One of my best friends plays soccer and so do several of my peers, so I respect soccer as a sport and I respect the athletes that play it. Although I do get bored watching it, I don’t think I’ll ever discredit it. After all, it isn’t an easy sport. I couldn’t even play it at the youth level.

I mentioned earlier that my family lived in England. While we were there, we got to experience first hand the prominence of soccer in Europe. It is huge there. During the World Cup in, I think 2006 (We were in England from 2005-2008), I remember laying in my bed trying to go to sleep only to hear my neighbors screaming loudly in celebration or frustration over what transpired with their soccer, or I guess I should say, football team. In America, we have basketball courts everywhere. In England, they had cement soccer courts where kids would play and get into brawls all day long.

Image result for concrete soccer court

It kind if looked like this, just more “suburban”

I remember one time being up at one of these courts with my brothers and our American friends that also lived in the neighborhood. Our British peers were really getting into their little match. There was a bunch of elbowing and foul language. One kid got pushed to the ground, and his entire leg was scraped up and bloody. It looked like he needed stitches. Some cops happened to be driving around the neighborhood, and they stopped to see what was going on. They got the kid all cleaned up and then they took him home. It was quite the experience to witness.

My stepmom is Colombian, and her family is crazy about soccer. In summer of 2016 ,I took a trip to Florida where her family lives. The Copa America was going, and you’d think it was the Super Bowl. I think Colombia made it to the quarter finals before they were eliminated from the tournament. I was mostly indifferent, but her family screamed and hollered at the TV just like Americans do when football is on. It was really interesting to see the cultural differences.

It got me thinking. The entire world adores soccer except for the US. I’m very perplexed by this.  I’m going to get superficial here, but if you go to Leo Messi’s Instagram page or  Cristiano Ronaldo’s page (two of the best soccer players in the world), you will find that they have exponentially larger followings than a LeBron James or Tom Brady. This is simply because soccer is such a globalized sport. For some countries around the world, it is their pride and joy. It unites entire nations. Meanwhile, our sports leagues are dividing this nation, but that’s a whole other story…What does our disdain for soccer say about us? Do we have to be so different from the rest of the world? Is it some weird form of American exceptionalism? I mean the rest of the world has the metric system, and we use inches, Fahrenheit, and feet. Our dates are structured as 10/11/17 and theirs are structured 11/10/17. We always say that the world is backwards but maybe we are backwards. I’m all for standing out. America does a lot of things well, exceptionally even, but I do think we can be on our high horse too much. Rather than dismissing soccer as “gay,” maybe we should try to develop our soccer players better,  so that we can be dominant in yet another sport on the world stage. I’m no soccer aficionado or a soccer expert by any means, but I do think our team would perform better if they had their country’s respect. How funny is that? Americans get mad when a team they don’t even support loses. I am rolling on the floor laughing.

I’ve always thought that sometimes you have to lose before you can win. Maybe the soccer team’s loss could act as a starting point for reconstruction of the program in the United States. It’s possible that USA soccer could be just as dominant as USA Basketball or the New England Patriots in the NFL, but only time will tell. Perhaps right now could be a starting point for the US to start appreciating soccer, but after such an ugly loss, that may be a lost cause. Here’s to 30 more years of growth.

Couturely Sound ❤

Link to Cowherd’s segment: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HwepDm2mYS8

 

 

 

Dissecting the Billboard Hot 100

Today when I was driving, I had the radio on, and of course I was annoyed by it like I always am. I don’t know why I even bother with it at this point. Sometimes the radio is enjoyable, but most of the time it’s not.

First off, it’s super repetitive. Every morning when I get into the car, the same song is on. It’s like clockwork. Apparently the stations are all in sync too. Whenever a song I don’t like starts to play I, naturally, switch the station. My efforts to escape the cruel noise flooding my ears is almost always in vain because 75 percent of the time, the song that I tried to avoid is playing on the station I switched it to! I’ve gotten to the point where I would rather listen to ads than some of the music playing on the radio. I either listen to the ads or I turn the radio off, forcing myself to listen to my own thoughts, and those are no fun to listen to either.

I will never understand for the life of me how some songs become hits…Well, actually I do understand. In order for a song to become a hit, a lot of people have to like it, buy it, and share it. What I meant to say is, I will never understand how so many people can enjoy some of the music on the radio.

For decades, Billboard magazine has ranked the top 100 songs in America from week to week on their Hot 100 list. I thought it would be fun to go in and analyze 50 (plus or minus)  songs from that list, so here goes. Enjoy my lousy since of humor and second rate criticism.

1. “Bodak Yellow (Money Moves)”-Cardi B

 

I had never heard of Cardi B until this song came out. In my understanding, this is her first number one, so, I guess, congratulations to her. It is quite the feat to get a rap song to number one, so it’s cool to see this song there. Cardi B has also seemed to inspire Instagram captions everywhere. Everyone is making “money moves” these days. Despite her impact on popular culture and her contributions to the rap game, the song is still annoying.

2. “Rockstar” -Post Malone feat. 21 Savage

“Rockstar” has a good beat. That’s about all it has going for it.

3. “Look What You Made Me Do”-Taylor Swift 

Put any other artists’s name on this song, and it’s not a hit.

4. “1-800-273-8255”-Logic feat. Alessia Cara & Khalid

I like this song. It’s catchy, it’s soulful, and it has a message.

5. “Despacito”-Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee Featuring Justin Bieber

I think it’s cool that American charts are becoming more globalized, but seriously, when “Despacito” is translated into English, it is just another trash pop song. Also, how is it still so popular? Last time I checked, summer was over.

6. “Unforgettable”- French Montana Feat. Swae Lee

The irony is that this song is forgettable. In a few months time, everyone will forget it existed.

7. “Feel It Still”-Portugal the Man

I have no idea what this song is about, and half of the lyrics are undecipherable, but I actually like this song strangely enough. It’s kind of jazzy, so that’s cool.

8. “Believer”-Imagine Dragons

Imagine Dragons are so hit or miss for me. Sometimes I really like their songs. Other times I’m not a fan.  I’m not a fan of “Believer.” It’s too repetitive for comfort, and it sounds like a lot of their other music.

9. “Rake It Up”-Yo Gotti Feat. Nicki Minaj

This song is just nasty.

10. “Sorry Not Sorry”-Demi Lovato

We’ve finally made it to another song that I like. Demi kills it on vocals, and she emanates so much confidence. I’m a fan. Sorry not sorry.

11.  “Attention”-Charlie Puth

The video for “Attention” has 503 million views. I’m sure Charlie Puth won’t notice or care that, outside of this blog post, I have invested no time or money into this song.

12. “Strip That Dawn”-Liam Payne Feat. Quavo

Of all of the One Direction solo debuts, this is by far the worst. According to Liam Payne, this is what being an adult and making “mature” music looks like.

13. “Slow Hands”-Niall Horan

Oh, look, another ex One Direction member. I feel like this and “Strip That Down” should switch places, but what does my opinion matter anyway? “Slow Hands” isn’t a bad song, but it is so darn middle of the road. I don’t know which is worse.

14. “Too Good At Goodbyes”-Sam Smith

I think Sam Smith is super talented, but a lot of his music sounds the same. While “Too Good At Goodbyes” is beautiful, it’s super boring.

15. “Bank Account”-21 Savage

I don’t really know what to say. As far as rap music goes, this song doesn’t break new ground or distinguish itself.

16. “There’s Nothing Holding Me Back”-Shawn Mendes

Shawn Mendes seems like a really nice kid, but his music is so pedestrian. “There’s Nothing Holding Me Back” sounds generic and similar to every other single he has put out in the past.

17. “Thunder”-Imagine Dragons

Remember how I said Imagine Dragons was hit or miss for me? Well, “Thunder” is a hit.

18. “Wild Thoughts”- DJ Khaled Feat. Rihanna & Bryson Tiller

I wonder if the public is aware that  the guitar riff in “Wild Thoughts” is a Santana sample. I’m beginning to wonder what DJ Khaled actually does musically besides shouting his name and “Anotha one.” Nevertheless, I like this song. I’m a fan of both Bryson Tiller and Rihanna, and I think this was a good collaboration. Wow, that’s two songs in a row that I like.

19. “Shape of You”-Ed Sheeran

This song was released in January. HOW is it still on the charts?

20. “What Lovers Do”-Maroon 5 Feat. SZA

In recent years, Maroon 5 hasn’t put out the best music, but with “What Lovers Do” they end that streak. I really like this song, and I think it was a good idea for the band to bring SZA along. “What Lovers Do” is a fun, light, and airy track that doesn’t take itself too seriously.

24. “Praying”-Kesha

Yes, I skipped 23 and 24. I don’t want to be here all day, and I’m pretty indifferent to the songs ( “Mi Gente” and “That’s What I Like”) occupying those spots. As for Kesha’s “Praying,” I’m a fan. I like the message of the song. It shows that she has overcome adversity. It shows strength, and it shows maturity. Very soulful performance by Kesha.

25. “Young Dumb and Broke”-Khalid

I love this song. It should be higher on the charts.

26. “Body Like A Back Road”-Sam Hunt

Sam Hunt graces us with a cute little pop song, and yes I said pop. Hunt may be a country artist, but take away his accent, and no one would even question that this was a pop song.

27. “XO TOUR Llif3”-Lil Uzi Vert

My Jam.

28. “Humble”-Kendrick Lamar

Kendrick can do no wrong.

32. “Love Galore”-SZA feat Travis Scott

I skipped 29-31 because why not? “Love Galore” is a brilliant song. SZA’s voice is beautiful.

33. “Location”-Khalid

It’s strange. As I move down the chart, the songs start getting better….”Location” is no exception to this trend.

34. ” Say You Won’t Let Go”-James Arthur

It’s a cute song, despite how cliched it is. This song accomplishes what it aimed to accomplish: making lonely girls feel like someone loves them.

35. “Congratulations”-Post Malone Feat. Quavo

I don’t know what to think of Post Malone. Also, what  song is Quavo not  featured in?

38. “Loyalty”-Kendrick Lamar Feat. Rihanna

Oh, look, I skipped more numbers. For those of you that are dying to know which songs I skipped, I’ll link the hot 100 list at the end of this post, but anyway, Kendrick + Rihanna= magic.

39. “Ready For It?”-Taylor Swift

 

It’s better than “Look What You Made Me Do.”

42. “I’m the One”-DJ Khaled Feat. Justin Bieber, Quavo, Chance the Rapper, & Lil Wayne

This was a great collaboration for the summertime.

43. “Redbone”- Childish Gambino

Groovy.

44. “Havana”- Camilla Cabello Feat. Young Thug

This song has a lot of flavor. I like it.

47. “Stay”-Zedd & Alessia Cara

Although “Stay” has been on the charts for too long, I enjoy the song. I think Alessia Cara is very talented.

50. “The Weekend”-SZA

I heard this is supposed to be some kind of “side chick” anthem. While I can’t get behind the subject matter of this song, I can get behind the musicality and SZA’s vocal performance. Girl’s talented.

It may seem like I don’t like music, but that’s not true. I love music-when it’s good. Today’s hits are pretty disappointing, but I will say that the music this year is much better than it was last year. I guess I’ll just have to suck it up when I listen to the radio on my various commutes. If only my car had an aux cord….

Couturely Sound ❤

Link to the Billboard Hot 100: http://www.billboard.com/charts/hot-100

 

Turning Over a New Leaf

Last Monday, to my disdain, I woke up to thick fog and rain. It was exactly the type of weather I needed to put me in a cheery mood. Mondays are hard enough as it is, so the rain and cold made staying in my warm bed all the more tempting.

Fall has been in session for about a week now, but the weather still came as a shock to me.  The transition from summer to fall was abrupt. One day it was 80 degrees and sunny, and then the next day it was 40 degrees and cloudy. I had hoped the weather would ease into cooler temperatures, but that’s not how Colorado works.

I am happy to say that the clouds have finally lifted like they always do. It was so comforting to wake up this morning to sunlight peeking through my window. The vivid reds and yellows of the autumn leaves reflected  onto the walls of my room, and I finally felt like getting up for once. I finally felt motivated.

My mom wanted me to go to the grocery store with her, so I decided that  I would actually get dressed today, rather than staying in my sweats.

image.jpeg

Inspired by the leaves outside of my house, I wanted to play around with the fall color schemes.  When I get dressed, I often first pick out a top or article of clothing  that I want to build my outfit around. Today, it was my mustard-colored top from American Eagle that acted as my base.

image

The next thing I thought about was contrast. I scoured through my closet and found my red flannel with green, orange, and yellow accents. It went perfectly with my yellow top.

image

I knew the weather was going to be warmer today, so I had a dilemma. Was I going to wear a skirt or jeans? I ended up opting for my boyfriend jeans because they’re just more functional, and they still account for the warmer weather.

image

As for shoes, I went with my trusty leather booties.

 

Fall has ever changing weather, so it’s always good to wear layers. My flannel made my outfit more versatile . If it were to get too chilly, I could keep it on. If it got too hot, I could easily take it off and wrap it around my waist, almost creating a new look altogether.

image

image

Lately, I haven’t been making good use of my time, and the cold weather lately has only perpetuated this. Procrastination and lack of motivation have been my Achilles heel, stealing my sleep and my sense of control. I realize that I should tackle each day with a purpose because our days are numbered. Once one passes by, I’ll never get it back. So today, I’m going to get stuff done, stay positive, and prepare for the new week ahead. I am going to turn over a new leaf.

Have a great Sunday!

Couturely Sound ❤

“This is the day the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it.” ~Psalm 118:24

Gossip Girl 10th Aniversary

Do you ever think back to a time or event and wish you could have been around for it? Or, at least a little older? I feel that way all of the time. Over the years, there have been so many great things circulating through our culture in the forms of entertainment, sports, and beyond.

There are a few moments in pop culture history that I wish I could have been, not only alive for, but more specifically, a teenager for.  Titanic is my favorite movie ever. It came out two years before I was even born, and I wish I could have been around when it first hit( no pun intended). There is no doubt in my mind that I would have been one of the rabid fan girls screaming for Leo DiCaprio. The Twilight series was a staple of my preteen years. I was the ultimate Twilight fan girl or, twihard if you will, but I often wish I could have been a teen during the height of its popularity. I could have gone to midnights, participated in fan events, and I would have had an even better understanding of the story. It would have been more relevant to my life, and besides, its always more fun to be a part of things when they are current. I’ve come to realize that so much of what I enjoy is after the fact, mostly due to being too young at the time these phenomena occured. Yeah, I can watch Titanic whenever I want, or read Twilight and watch the movies whenever I want, but it doesn’t hold the same excitement as it would if it were all happening right now when I’m 17 and not 7.

On that same token, Gossip Girl is one of those phenomena I wish I could have been a teen for. I mean, I watched it as a teen, but I wasnt a teen during its original run. It wasn’t until 2013, when I was 13, that I finally watched. Many of my peers started to watch too. We were only 6 years behind schedule, but can you blame us? Not exactly a show for second graders. Gossip Girl first premiered on this day in 2007. It came to a close in 2012. Thanks to Netflix, it still remains popular to this day. I wonder what it would have been like to be a teen back in 2007, watching Gossip Girl as I marveled at a keyboard on my cute little flip phone or checked MySpace. That’s the thing though. As our society changes, so does our pop culture. By the time I reached my teenage years, flip phones were obsolete, and on the show they were the main feature. Not exactly relatable as much as it was reminiscent of the past. I mean I had a flip phone( that I could only call on) at one point, but cell phones were not first introduced to me during my teens. I’m sure that was a very exciting time for people whenever phones started to first rule the world. I guess what I’m saying is, I would have loved to have been around for that ride as it was happening.

As I said before, Gossip Girl premiered in September of 2007. 10 whopping years ago. When I think of 2007, I don’t think “decade ago.” In a lot of ways, it feels like yesterday. Pretty crazy how time flies and how much things have changed. To celebrate,Gossip Girl’s 10th anniversary, I thought I’d showcase 10 of some of my favorite looks from the show because let’s be real-Blair and Serena, played by Leighton Meester and Blake Lively respectively, killed it every single episode. I mean could we expect anything less from New York’s elite? Introductions aside, here are my favorite ensembles from the iconic show.
These outfits have me singing if “If I was  a rich girl nananana….”

image

Why not start with the very first look viewers were ever exposed to? This photo was taken from the first episode of the show, the one where Serena(pictured above)  returns from boarding school to the shock, and maybe annoyance, of all of her peers in the Upper East Side. I love this look because she looks so cosmopolitan. The contrast between the brown jacket and the black and white stripes is perfect, and I love the neck scarf. It’s a nice touch. It’s a simple look, but it’s oh so stylish.

image

Blair(pictured above) was an extremely flawed character, but her style never disappointed. She was the master of preppy girl chic, totally owning her role as a New York elite . If you know me, you know I love ponchos, so it should be to no surprise that I adore this look. The pop of yellow throughout the outfit is a nice touch, and I love that the ensemble was styled with burgundy heels. The contrast is everything.

image

The Upper East Siders were  at events or parties non stop. Such occasions call for the best fashion had to offer , and Serena always killed it in her party dresses . This dress stands out to me because of the print and the cut. The pearls add some sophistication to the look as well, making Serena really look the part of the socialite that she is.

image

More yellow from Blair and I love it! This looks is so flirty and sweet. I love the bright colors, the prints, and the accents.

image

Ponchos, peeptoes, and a Chanel bag for the win!

image

Serena rocked this poncho dress! It is so cute, so polished, and perfect for fall. I love the contrast of the ensemble with the brown booties, and the tights are a perfect addition.

image

So classy, so fabulous, and the purse just pops.

image

I am just loving the colors in this outfit. The plumbs and the greens are so pleasing to the eye. The shoes are killer , and the cut of the dress is perfect. I need this dress, and the purse….and the shoes.

image

I love the simplicity of this look and the super cute headband. I never see people wearing headbands like that anymore! The plumb color is beautiful, and this dress would be perfect for a party!

image

Olive green heels with gold bottoms? Yes, please! This look is so gorgeous and perfect for spring time. The statement necklace, the soft prints, the blazer…I need it all.

Gossip Girl was a very entertaining show, even though it was somewhat toxic and pretty unrealistic( I mean c’mon all of the characters, who were high school aged, never once got ID checked when they frequented clubs and bars). Serena and Blair, frenemies to the end, made a lot of bad decisions, but at least they looked good while doing it!

Happy 10th Anniversary to Gossip Girl! There is no denying the impact it has had on popular culture. Maybe I enjoyed it late, but I’m glad I got to enjoy it all.

P.S. I still can’t get over who gossip girl was hahahaha.

XOXO

Couturely Sound

The Best Looks From New York Fashion Week 2017

September means a lot of things to me. It signifies the arrival of fall, the start of football season, and of course, the return of New York Fashion Week.

This year, there were so many stunning looks sent down the runway, but there were a collection of ensembles that really made a statement in my mind. Without further ado, I present to you( in no particular order) the best looks from New York Fashion Week.

Oscar de la Renta Spring 2018 Ready-To-Wear

Luca Tombolini / Indigital.tv

Despite Oscar de la Renta’s death in October of 2014, his fashion house has continued to prosper, producing some of the world’s most beautiful gowns. I saw this look as I was scrolling through my Instagram feed, and my mouth actually dropped. I don’t know if it was the fullness of the tulle skirt or the vibrant orange ombre, but I completely fell in love with this look. The model looks like a fiery princess. I love fashion that evokes fantasy, and this look does all of that and more.

Marchesa Spring 2018 Ready-to-Wear

Luca Tombolini / Indigital.tv

Like Oscar de la Renta, Marchessa also dabbles in gowns. Their spring collection for 2018 was whimsical and feminine with lots of airy fabric and floral embroidery. However, the look pictured up above was an exception to this pattern, which is why it stood out to me. I love this look because it looks expensive, as if someone important would wear it. It’s chic, polished, and reminiscent of something Chanel would put out. Some might think the fringe details are a little excessive, but I think that’s the point. It’s supposed to be over the top. Also, fashion never goes wrong when it goes neutral. The beige/ champagne color is classy and timeless.

Reem Acra Spring 2018 Ready-to Wear

Courtesy of Reem Acra

There is so much to say about this look, that I don’t even know where to start. First off, this dress is extremely well made. The tailoring is clean and polished, the skirt is full and balanced, and the waist line is nicely cinched. The metallic quality to this piece is stunning. It shines, it glows, it radiates-who wouldn’t want to wear this? The pairing of the gold with the pink is absolutely beautiful. If I had the money to afford this dress, I would envision myself wearing this look to a fancy tea or brunch.

J. Mendel Spring 2018 Ready-to -Wear

Courtesy of J.Mendel

If you are an individual that is a fan of Gossip Girl, then you are probably subconsciously familiar with J. Mendel. After all, many of his looks were worn by Blake Lively and Leighton Meester on the show. So, it is no surprise that his entire  Spring 2018 collection was beautiful. I loved the colors that he went with, such as the burnt pink of the dress pictured above. The white organic polka dots are a very nice touch. They look as if they were painted on to the fabric, making the look that much more intricate. I think what  I like most about this look is that it is wearable and looks like something the everyday person could wear. J. Mendel is an artist, and this dress was his canvas.

J. Mendel Spring 2018 Ready-to-Wear

Courtesy of J. Mendel

J. Mendel delivered on yet another ensemble. This look is so classy, so feminine, and so vivacious. The coloring is beautiful, the tailoring is top notch, and the layering is pristine. I also love a good paint suit. This is an A+.

Oh, look, more from J. Mendel. I know it may look like I’m going in that direction, but I promise I’m not about to post the entire collection.

Courtesy of J. Mendel

The material on this is like a cloud. The colors are so soft and pretty. Heart. Eyes.

 

Courtesy of J. Mendel

Classy and fabulous. That is all.

Courtesy of J. Mendel

Beautiful colors-again-and the model looks like a warrior princess.

Courtesy of J. Mendel

This is, grudgingly, the last look I’m sharing from J. Mendel’s immaculate collection. The layers, the airy fabric, the soft color scheme,  and the delicate beading at the bust makes this dress everything.

Zac Posen Spring 2018 Ready-to-Wear

Courtesy of Zac Posen

This ensemble simply showcases Zac Posen doing Zac Posen things. The Project Runway judge does not disappoint with this playful dress and all of its delicate details. Love this look and all of its depth.

Alexander Wang Spring 2018 Ready-to-Wear

Yannis Vlamos / Indigital.tv

As I’ve progressed through this post, I realized that most of my favorite looks have been dresses, but that trend stops here. I adore this look from Alexander Wang. It’s sporty, edgy, and cool. The asymmetry  of the top, the color contrast, the mixed mediums of the pants, and the details really take the cake. I like to feel cool in whatever I’m wearing. A look like this would make me feel just that.

I just love fashion. Seeing such great looks from these talented designers makes me so excited about where the industry is going.

Happy New York Fashion Week!

Until next year,

Couturely Sound ❤

Real Talk: Comparison-Not Good

Let’s talk about comparison.

Comparison is a a fact of life, and in a lot of ways it is necessary.

It allows us to make choices. If I didn’t compare my college choices, how would I know which one to pick? During the hiring process for my job at JCPenney, my manager had to compare me to other candidates, in order to know if I was the right choice (thankfully I was).

Comparison  also provides a great point of reference, allowing us to track growth. If one year an individual could only bench 100lbs and then the next year they bench 250lbs, comparison would be warranted in that situation. The individual became a lot stronger than they were prior. The growth in the second year would not be as evident if it were not compared to the first year. Everything is relative.

Here is where comparison gets bad though: when another individual is used as a point of reference. We are competitive creatures, so we absolutely love to compare ourselves to others. We always want to be the best. If you are someone that compares yourself to other people you should probably stop. You’ll be a lot happier if you do.

There have been countless occasions when I’ve been proud of myself, only to feel like my accomplishments have been diminished when someone else does better. We place too much emphasis on how we stand among our peers, rather than how we stand against ourselves. Never track your growth relative to someone else because you’ll never feel like you’re accomplishing anything. Someone else will always be bigger, better, stronger, faster,prettier, or smarter. If you’re better than you were before, then that’s all that matters because you can control yourself, but you can’t control other people.

I find that comparison often leads to jealousy. We compare ourselves to people that are better than us in some way, and it makes us want whatever skill or talent they possess. This jealousy then leads to unhappiness and lack of appreciation of those around you. We are surrounded by so many talented people. Why not stop and appreciate what you’re witnessing? Why not recognize that you have certain skills that no one else does? Comparison is pretty pointless. We are all different people with different circumstances. It’s apples and oranges.

Image result for apples and oranges

I’ve been wanting to write about comparison for a while now. It’s something I struggle with a lot, but I’ve been trying to get better at not doing it. Funnily enough, the sensationalist, fear-provoking media inspired me to get writing. In wake of all of the hurricanes that have been ravaging our country in the past month, the media has decided that they want to compare the current natural disasters to those of the past. Again, I understand where they are coming from up to a point. Some people might need a point of reference to decipher how potent these cyclones may be relative to others they may have experienced in the past, but it is the way the media compares these storms, as if one disaster is more horrible than the other. Newsflash-they are all horrible. I think the media likes to create a lot of fear and a lot of hype by ranking tragedy with all of their statistics and dramatics. There was one headline I saw that compared Hurricane Irma to the destructive Hurricane Andrew that struck Florida 25 years ago. It read “Forget Hurricane Andrew. Irma could be the new Big One.” The media loves to make people feel as if they are a part of something big or a part of history-even when that something is not good, but I digress. Look at humanity making everything-even hurricane destruction-a competition. I just love it.

 

The top image is one that was taken during Hurricane Katrina in 2005. The bottom is an image that came out of the Hurricane Harvey disaster in August. They both seem pretty devastating to me.

Sports media loves lists and comparisons too. There almost always seems to be a debate about who the GOAT of a certain sport is. Is it Michael Jordan or LeBron James? Is Kobe in that mix too? Is it Tom Brady or Peyton Manning? Aaron Rodgers? I have my favorite athletes; I think it’s okay to have a preference, but I don’t see a point in comparing athletes. All of these individuals have different strengths and weaknesses, different health situations, different levels of experience, and different circumstances altogether. Again, it’s apples and oranges. Instead of comparing these individuals we should just recognize that they are all great in their own ways.

Image result for michael jordan vs lebron james

Comparison. On a personal level, it just isn’t good How can we be our best selves if we are too focused on other people? The answer is that we can’t. As I write these words, I am not only telling my audience to stop comparing, but I am also telling myself. I’d like to think that we are all in this together. So, here’s to growth and not letting comparison steal our joy.

❤ Couturely Sound