Friday Feeling

Well, its Friday. The weekend shouldn’t hold much significance to me, as I’m on summer break which is basically a two month long weekend, but it does. School may be out, but the grind doesn’t really stop in a lot of ways, especially for those who have summer jobs or rigorous summer workouts.

Today was absolutely beautiful. The temperature was nice and toasty just how I like it. The sunshine was endless, the sky was a vivid blue, and the trees were a calming green as they rustled in the slight breeze. Summer is my season; I love it to death.

IMG_8469

IMG_8466

Luckily for me, I was able to step outside for a couple of hours. It was so nice to finally be able to wear an outfit and not cover it up with a jacket or sweater  because of a chill in the air. I don’t know how many times I had to do that this past spring.

IMG_8445 (2)

Green is one of my favorite colors.  It’s so pretty and calming. This fact may have been why I opted for this green top. It’s frilly, flirty, and perfect for summer.

IMG_8454 (2)

I love contrast, so that is why I added a purple tank under my top. I thought it complemented the light green nicely.

IMG_8456 (2)

To accent the colors in of my top and tank, I decided to wear my khaki shorts. They are one of my favorite pairs of shorts, and they topped my outfit off nicely.

IMG_8459

As for shoes, I chose my comfy brown sandals. Like I said, I’m a contrast type of girl, so naturally I chose dark shoes to balance out the lighter colors of my outfit.

Today was so nice, and I can’t wait for more sunshine and warmth to come. I hope your weekend is fun and bright.

Now, time for me to watch the NBA Finals. The Warriors just might sweep the Cavs( and their entire playoff run…) Crazy stuff!

Couturely Sound ❤

New Music Roundup 6/2/17

Happy Friday! I thought it was a good time to share some of my favorite tracks right now. Enjoy!

Lady Gaga-“The Cure”

I’ve never been much of a Gaga fan, but “The Cure” doesn’t disappoint. It’s really catchy and it’s probably one of the best pop tracks on the radio right now.

DJ Khaled feat. Justin Bieber, Chance the Rapper, Quavo, and Lil Wayne-“I’m the One”

I’m really liking this track and the summer vibes it gives off. The beat is good, I like Bieber’s delivery on the chorus, and the verses from each rapper go well with the song even if there isn’t much to them. I definitely see this song becoming one of the big hits of the summer.

Miley Cyrus-“Malibu”

I never thought we would see Miley Cyrus in this way ever again. She seems to be taking a new musical and personal direction. When I first heard Malibu I wasn’t feeling it. I thought it flowed kind of funny, but it has become a bit of a slow burner for me. I thinks it’s calming, catchy, and emotional(as far as radio goes). The track is perfect for summer, and I’m excited to see where Miley goes with her music.

Russ-“Losin’ Control”

I had never heard of Russ up until this point. I just realized his track Losin’ Control has been out for a year, but it is just now getting airplay, so it’s new to me. Losin’ Control is a great R&B track. It’s atmospheric and the vocal performance is great.  If you haven’t  listened to Losin’ Control I would check it out!

 

Thats all for this round up. I hope you have a great weekend!

Couturely Sound ❤

Fresh in Flannel

School is out, Memorial Day weekend came and went, and it’s June 1st. Summer is here, at least unofficially anyway. Summer is definitely my favorite time of the year. I love its liveliness, warmth, and chill atmosphere.

The one problem I have with summer time is my inability to find things to do with myself. Sometimes I get so bored. School is a drag but at least it kept me busy. This summer I want to make it a point to stay productive or at least somewhat entertained. It’s so easy to immediately retreat to my phone as soon as I get bored, and then the next thing I know, an hour has passed and I have accomplished nothing. I hope to stray away from this kind of behavior this year by reading, going outside, maybe landing a job, and hanging out with my friends.

Luckily I had an excuse to leave my house today.  My mom needed me to run a few errands, and then I went to go see one of my friends. I use any excuse to assemble a cute outfit, even if I’m not going anywhere that is particularly special. Today, I opted for layers and simplicity.

IMG_5038

The day started out pretty warm, but as it progressed, clouds began to move in, and the wind became much more than slight. Cautious of the ever changing weather, I wore my pink flannel over a white camisole blouse. I thought the colors and the textures worked pretty well together. It may not be visible in the photo, but my white shirt has a subtle floral texture on it, which is perfect for summer.

IMG_5065 As for my bottoms, I opted for some denim shorts. Nothing goes better with flannel than denim. I though the dark color of the shorts contrasted well with the light, airy colors of my flannel and cami.

IMG_5069

During the summer time, I usually wear sandals, slip-ons, or sneakers, but today I wore my leather booties. This was a strange move for me, as I usually reserve these boots for the fall and winter months, but I thought they would go really well with the flannel. I also kind of wanted a lift. I l like to create levels with my outfits. The lift, I felt, would bring out the flare of my cami. It sounds strange, I know, but this is really how I think. Ultimately, I’m glad I took the risk!

IMG_5080

IMG_5084

I kept my accessories minimal and simple. I wore a single silver bangle, my faux pearl earrings, and pink studs.

Summer is one of my favorite seasons for fashion. I can’t wait to share more looks in the next couple of months!

Hopefully, you’re staying productive!

Couturely Sound ❤

Paramore-After Laughter Review

paramore_after_laughter_press-920x603

Paramore are one of my favorite bands. In my opinion, they have never released a bad album. Paramore’s roots are mostly focused in the alternative rock/ pop-punk scene, but they have slowly moved away from that sound. In fact, their last album, Paramore (2013), saw the band slowly making a transition into a more pop oriented, new wave type of sound. Some examples of this would be their top 10 hit “Ain’t it Fun” and the power-pop/ pop rock anthem “Still Into You.” Despite the self-titled album’s poppier sound, Paramore still included plenty of alternative tracks such as “Part II,” “Now,” and “Anklebiters.”

paramore

The bands newest release After Laughter is different from their previous releases in the way that their old pop punk sound is essentially absent. However, Paramore still manages to sound like themselves, angsty lyrics and all. After Laughter is a tribute to 80’s synth pop and new wave. So yes, Paramore made a pop record, but I see nothing wrong with this. Pop music has become synonymous with bad music and this really confounds me. Anyway, bands evolve and change. I can’t expect Paramore to make the same music all of the time. There sound is different, but  Paramore still sounds alternative. The songs on After Laughter are poppy, but they are not your average pop songs that you would hear on the radio. And I can’t forget, there are still guitars and actual instruments. Many might say Paramore sold out on “After Laughter,” but I think they sound sharper and  more polished than ever before, while still maintaining their identity. Introductions aside, here is my track by track review of Paramore’s 5th studio album After Laughter.

1. Hard Times

“Hard Times” was the first single released from After Laughter. I really like this song. I think Hayley Williams does a fantastic job on vocals and the instrumentation is cool, interesting, and feet-tapping inducing. The song sounds theatrical to me and that’s what I love about it. Lyrically, I relate to it pretty well. I mean we all go through “Hard Times ” right?

2. Rose-Colored Boy

“Rose-Colored Boy” showcases on full display the 80s sound that Paramore was going for. It has become a favorite track from the album by fans and critics alike. For this reason, I found it strange that I was lukewarm to the song initially. I wasn’t a fan of the cheerleader sounding chants at the beginning of the song, and it almost sounded too throwback for me. However, after several listens, my opinion has changed. “Rose-Colored Boy” is not my favorite track on the album, but it is pretty darn good. It is catchy, and the lyrics are great, as they outline that it is hard to be positive all of the time. Who knows? Maybe “Rose-Colored Boy” will grow on me even more.

3. Told You So

“Told You So” is such a gem. I seriously think it is one of my favorite Paramore songs. The guitar riff and the bass line running through the song is electric. The lyrics are great.  This song is just wow. I really can’t put words to how much I love it.

4. Forgiveness

“Forgiveness” is a sweet little song, even though it’s also a heartbreaker. Hayley Williams delivers a soulful performance over sensitive guitars. There isn’t a lot to the track but I like it nonetheless. The 80s vibes are pretty strong in this one, and it evokes a lot of nostalgia.

5. Fake Happy

“Fake Happy” has themes similar to “Rose-Colored Boy.” We aren’t always going to be happy all of the time, so why pretend that we are? I like the lyrical content of this song-it’s honest-and Hayley Williams truly delivers on vocals. “I bet everybody here is fake happy too.”

6. 26

“26” isn’t a bad song by any means, but it just doesn’t move me like I would want it to. One of  After Laughter’s two ballads, 26 just isn’t memorable enough for me. I think as far as ballads go, Paramore has done better in the past. Nonetheless “26” is still a good song even though it fell a bit flat for me.

7. Pool

“Pool” has to be one of my favorite songs on the album. The lyrics, the vocals, the instrumentation-it’s all terrific. I love the glossy production and the bell/ chime sounds throughout.  I also love the pool metaphor.

8. Grudges

It’s funny because a lot of my favorite songs from the album are clustered together on the track listing. “Grudges” just makes me feel good, and sounds so terrifically 80s. That’s all there is to say.

9. Caught in the Middle

“Caught in the Middle” is fire. This track has perhaps the catchiest hook on the album. I love the guitars and the reggae feel. Hayley Williams’s vocal performance is pristine and I could not relate to the lyrics any more. The “I don’t need no help, I can sabotage me by myself” bridge really resonates with me and communicates how we all can be pretty self destructive.

10. Idle Worship

“Idle Worship” is probably the track that sounds most like the “old Paramore,” whatever that means. While I love Hayley’s theatrical and disjointed vocal performance, “Idle Worship” is kind of like “26” in the way that I don’t find it very memorable, but I like its message to not put people onto pedestals.

11. No Friend

“No Friend” is the worst song on the album. I’m not really sure what Paramore was going for here, or maybe I just don’t get it, but this track was kind of a let down for me. The instrumentation and the singing on it are very sub par(It should be noted that Hayley Williams isn’t singing on this track, which makes sense because she always sounds amazing). Essentially, “No Friend” just doesn’t fit with the album.

12. Tell Me How

“Tell Me How” is After Laughter’s closer. I like the song. I think it is a stronger ballad than “26,” mostly because it has more layers and a more emotive performance by Williams. It is a beautiful song, but it is also a bit unmemorable for me like some of the other tracks on this record.

23PARAMORE-web-blog427

Overall, Paramore delivered a very solid album. I’m not quite sure how it stands amongst the rest of their albums at this point, but I definitely liked a lot of what was happening on After Laughter. If I had any complaints it would be that some of the songs weren’t very memorable and that I feel like the 80s throwback tribute has been overdone. I mean so many artists are making throwback music at this point in time. What was very clever about this record is that a lot of the songs were actually pretty sad, but they were disguised as happy songs. I guess that’s the way to do it right? Turn bad situations into good ones. Find beauty in pain.

My Rating: 7/10

Couturely Sound ❤

New Music Round Up 5/5/17

It’s finally Friday! I thought I’d celebrate with a new music round up. Below are four new (or newish) songs that I am currently enjoying.

Told You So” – Paramore

Paramore strikes again! Their song “Hard Times” made my last list, and I must say that I’m pretty surprised that they released another single in such a short span of time. I am by no means complaining though. “Told You So” might be even better than “Hard Times.” It has the same throwback sound as their first single, and I am just loving it. I can’t wait for Paramore’s new album!

“Humble”- Kendrick Lamar 

“Humble” is just a great jam. It’s so catchy and I love the lyrics.  We live in a world that lacks a lot of humility, and this is what Kendrick tries to communicate. He managed to create a song that is catchy but also has a message. I’m jamming out to this right now.

 

“Sign of the Times”-Harry Styles

I don’t think anyone expected Harry Styles to take the musical direction that he did. “Sign of the Times” is a far cry from anything One Direction had ever done. It is an alternative song through and through, despite the fact that it’s getting top 40 air play. The lyrics are good, the vocals are good, and the instrumentation is good. It runs a little bit too long for me, but overall it’s a good song, and I like that Styles didn’t play it safe.

“Passionfruit”-Drake

Drake is really overexposed right now. I feel like he’s always releasing music and sometimes there is just too much Drake. Despite this, I really like “Passionfruit.” It’s atmospheric and it has a good beat. If Drake continues making songs like this I don’t think I’ll care if he’s overexposed. Ok maybe I will, but not as much.

There you have it! I hope you enjoyed! 🙂

 

Couturely Sound ❤

My Top 5 Favorite Looks from the Met Gala 2017

Yesterday was the first Monday in May. If you’re new here, or to the fashion world in general, I’ll explain why yesterday was so significant. The fashion world has its own holiday of sorts and it occurs every year on the first Monday in May. This day is marked  by an invitation-only event  held in New York  City called the Met Gala. The Met Gala is essentially a gathering of celebrities and public figures who walk down a red(or I guess beige in this case) carpet in order to get their picture taken, promote themselves, promote the designer they are wearing, and then proceed to party it up. In doing so, these celebrities provide funding for a brand new fashion exhibit (usually in the theme of the particular year’s gala) that is showcased at the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art( hence the “Met” in Met Gala).

The Met Gala celebrates fashion, and the celebrities in attendance celebrate how beautiful and rich they are, as us commoners drool over their “perfection.” I won’t lie, sometimes I become one of these droolies before I begin to actually rationalize that the Met Gala is equivalent to a high school prom in the way that it is one big photo opportunity. I mean walking down a red carpet can’t be that fun, right?

I’ve been following the Gala for years now. Despite its excess and superficial nature, I eat it up every year. I love fashion, and this event showcases some of the best statements of the year. I mean that is every celebrities goal: to make the biggest statement(Rihanna usually wins this honor. Egg dress anyone?). So, who made the biggest statement this year? Time to find out. Below are my top 5 favorite looks from this year’s Met Gala.

 

5. Priyanka Chopra in Ralp Lauren

priyanka chopra-ben norman-nyt-ralph lauren

Benjamin Norman/ New York Times

I thought this was an interesting take on a trench coat. It’s really big and in your face which is the point. I’m just wondering how she was able to go to the bathroom in that thing-I mean look at the train!

4. Selena Gomez in Coach

selena g

I don’t know what the theme for this year’s Gala was, and I probably won’t find out. Truthfully, I don’t really care about who sticks to the theme, so much as I care about who looks good and makes a statement. Selena Gomez did not disappoint. I love the simplicity of the gown. It is is feminine, sweet, and perfect for spring. Perhaps the real star of the whole ensemble is Gomez’s makeup. I mean it’s just stunning.

makeup

Getty Images/ John Shearer

3. Zendaya in Dolce and Gabana

Zendaya-DG-Ben Norman NYT

Benjamin Norman/ New York Times

I don’t think I’d be caught dead in a parrot dress, but then again I’m not Zendaya. She really makes this look work. I think the wig adds an extra theatrical touch, and this was one of the best ensembles of the night for me.

2. Gisele Bundchen in Stella McCartney

giselee

Okay, so Gisele looked amazing. Her dress is simple, sleek, and has just a touch of shimmer. What I love most about this look is how elegant it is. It is not trying too hard, it’s put together well, and it is truly timeless.

mom and dad

Tom Brady (wearing Tom Ford) came along too. I forgot to mention that the coupled co-hosted the event this year. Not only does Brady win on the football field, but he also wins the red carpet. Go Pats!

1. Rihanna in Comme de Garcon

met-gala-2017-best-dressed-rihanna

So, I guess nothing has really changed. Rihanna won the Met Gala-again. Would I ever wear this? Probably not. As far as avante-garde fashion goes, however, this is a 10/10. Rihanna owns every look that she wears. This concoction is chic. I love the floral elements, the pink, and its geometric shape. The Met Gala is about going all out and bringing your A game. Rihanna does this without trying too hard. What a feat.

So there you have it. My top 5 looks from the 2017 Met Gala. If you want, you can check out my list from last year. A certain gossip girl took the crown….

Until next year!

Couturely Sound ❤

“A girl should always be two things: classy and fabulous.”

 

13 Reasons Why I Loved 13 Reasons Why

13 reasons why

13 Reasons Why. I’m sure you’ve heard of it by now; its practically inescapable. 13 Reasons Why is Netflix’s newest show, and it is based off of Jay Asher’s novel of the same name. I think its safe to say that the miniseries has become something of a world phenomenon.

I have known about the book for a few years now, but I never got around to reading it. After seeing the show everywhere and hearing about how good it was from all of my peers, I decided to check it out. Now, after watching the show, I will make it a point to get around to reading the book.

13 Reasons Why follows the story of Hannah Baker, a high school student who has recently committed suicide. She leaves behind thirteen tapes that each provide a reason for why she decided to take her life, and it causes a frenzy among her classmates. There are 13 episodes for all 13 tapes, so the season is a pretty fast watch.

I thought 13 Reasons Why was excellent, and while I was eager to find out what happened as the series progressed, I also didn’t want it to end. It was that good. Here’s why:

1. It was suspenseful and mysterious

clay jensen

When Clay Jensen, one of Hannah’s friends( who also had a crush on her), first gets the box of tapes he is pretty confused and seemingly scared. This is how I felt the entire time I watched the show. As each reason is unveiled, the suspense builds.  “Who would be next?” and “what did they do?”  “What did Clay do?” These were questions that came to mind as I slowly found out what led to Hannah Baker’s death. I think what makes the show most mysterious in the first place is the fact that as her classmates are listening to her tapes, Hannah is already dead. The show kept me wanting more, and kept me on the edge of my seat, and that’s what all shows should do.

2. The acting was great

Hannah crying

I have to say-the cast did a great job. The acting was convincing, so much so that I could feel every emotion the characters were going through. Had the acting been sub par this show could have gone very differently, but the soulful performances really take the story to the next level.

3. It was really well developed 

tapes

The writing, the direction, and the production was great. The show was very well put together and well thought out. Most adaptations of YA novels are released as movies, but I think releasing 13 Reasons Why as a show worked out perfectly. Having each episode be a new tape was so well executed, and it allowed for more expansion on the characters. The way the scenes were pieced together also worked so well.

4. The Characters

characters

The characters have so much depth. They truly drive the show, and I think they are easy to relate to. Often teenagers in most shows aren’t depicted very realistically. They are one dimensional and often times pretentious. These characters were well developed, and over the course of the show I felt like I knew them.

5. It was edgy and dark

edgy

I have never seen another teen show like this, and I think it’s because it was darker in tone. The fact that the show is based around a suicide says it all.

6. It was emotional

emotion

The show deals with loss, confusion, and fear. It made me feel things as I watched it, and that is something I look for in TV and film. There were definitely heightened emotions throughout the course of the season, and it all seemed pretty genuine.

7. It’s relevant

Suicide is an issue that seems to be gaining traction with each passing year, so the themes in 13 Reasons Why seem especially relevant. The show deals with a lot of different issues that teenagers are plagued with, and it shines a light on bullying, harassment, and the effects of suicide on communities. In an increasingly toxic environment due to the internet among other things, I think this show could act as a reminder for how to treat people, and it puts emphasis on the weight our choices and actions have on ourselves and others.

8. Diversity

cast

The characters were all from different backgrounds, which I loved. There were white kids, Asian kids, black kids, and a Hispanic boy. I thought this was really cool because often shows only have characters from the same kind of background. Not every high school is diverse, but I like that the show made an effort to represent a lot of high schools out there that are.

9. It gave me a reality check

party

I live in a bubble of sorts. I don’t party or do any of the stuff that accompanies partying. My high school experience has not been too wild, so I haven’t encountered a lot of the issues that the show covers myself, which is probably a good thing. Sometimes I forget that my peers, and other high schoolers across the country, go through the same stuff that is outlined in the show. 13 Reasons Why was a great reminder that these issues are real and happening.

10.  It will make you think

As I was watching the show, I had so many questions. What would happen if someone at my school took their own life and made tapes detailing why? Would I be on them? Should Hannah have made the tapes? How could someone deal with being one of the reasons for another person’s death?

11. It doesn’t rely on melodrama

13 Reasons Why obviously has drama or else it wouldn’t be entertaining, but the drama doesn’t seem unnecessary. So many shows have a pregnancy, a car accident, and some major bombshell in every episode. Shows can be so saturated with drama, that they seem unrealistic. 13 Reasons Why doesn’t do this. Everything that happens fits well, and the drama is real.

12. It’s real, raw, and ambitious

hannah

This show does not hold back. The characters act like real high school students, explicit language and all. The use of explicit language in a teen show is something that is new to me. Most of the time the characters in other shows will curse, but it’s always sugarcoated. 13 Reasons Why does not sugarcoat anything, so much so that some elements of it will make you wince. Everything is stripped down and raw, which makes it so much more realistic. To make a show of this nature is really ambitious, and the creators were not afraid to really take 13 Reasons Why to the max.

13. It’s not like anything I’ve ever seen before

unique

This show is so different than its peers for the reasons mentioned above. It’s memorable, suspenseful, real, emotional, ambitious, and it left an impression on me. I am the first person that will shoot down anything that is overrated. 13 Reasons Why does not fit that description. I really enjoyed it, and it truly deserves the hype.

So, if you’re kind of bored some weekend, and you haven’t checked out 13 Reasons Why, you should. It is definitely worth your time.

❤ Couturely Sound