Blearning Blog! Letter eeeEEEEEE!!!

It’s Monday, which means it is time to put new information in your head and live a fancier and more fashionable life!

BLEARNING BLOG brought to you by the letter E!

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E is for Elizabeth and James!

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You know Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen? They are the masterminds behind this hip label, which they started in 2007. Ashley and Mary Kate went from Full House to powerhouse with their fashion careers post sitcom stardom.

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Elizabeth and James is the second of two lines. It is named after their siblings, and is the younger brand to their luxury line The Row. Here are a few of my favorite looks from the Resort 2015 collection. The good news is that the following eye candy is part of the less expensive label. The bad news: you still may have to “resort” to looking and not touching, because even the midi top is going to cost upwards of a couple hundred bucks.

If MK & A hired me to label these looks, it would go something like this:

The Short, Plump Cartoon Man that Never Was

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The Playground Outfit Not Made for the Monkey Bars

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The Powerpoint Presentation w/ Gun Show Encore

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The Laundry Day Skirt Shirt

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The DIY Sharpie Lab Coat … paired with the Rejected Color Jansport

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Okay okay so maybe I was poking a little fun at these looks, but I think even though they appear to be somewhat mod and stark in the way they have been styled for the photos, there is still room to be playful in these looks because of their creative lines and unexpected pops of pattern and color. The aesthetic is supposed to be a relaxed urban with just enough of a blend of femme and structure that it looks powerful and stays relaxed. I’d wear it because it would make me feel edgy and because the shapes allow for all kinds of pizza to be consumed. I wouldn’t wear it if I wanted to feel like a polished professional or if I wanted to show off my silhouette.  If I were styling someone who had a lax, urban dress code for work, I could definitely see pulling some of these pieces for their wardrobe, otherwise I see most of these pieces as meant for the everyday casual sophisticate.

Speaking of sophisticated, when I realized that today’s Blearning Blog was going to start with “E” I immediately thought of Mini Me from Austin Powers running and squealing, and thought “oh, I should definitely put a clip in my blog of that!”  Here’s what search engines gave me:

Because I said sophisticated and I meant it….  😉  Maybe a good look for my next post?

CheeeeEEEEEEEEEEEErs!

C

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Blearning Blog: d’Orky for d’Orsay

Monday it is! Learn we will.

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Blearning Blogs, for those of you joining us, are where I pick a topic the fashion world assumes everybody knows about, but actually doesn’t, and I write about it for you to read. I like it because we all become savvier without buying a damn thing. Street cred for all! 

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Oh, I should also mention that Blearning Blogs go in alphabetical order. If you want to catch A, B, or C, you can check them out here!

Letter A!

Letter B!

Letter C!  

Letter D! …. Oh wait that’s today…. Check it out!

Today we are learning about d’Orsay style shoes! I have seen these all over, and have heard the word d’Orsay, but have I ever used it in a sentence? Not once.  Let’s take a quick peek at a shoe that is not only everywhere, but it is also historical! Who knew?

If I were your best gal pal describing my new d’Orsay shoes on the phone, I would say something like this:

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“Yah, they’re like a kind of shoes that have, like, a cut out sort of on the middle sides so, like, you can see the arch of your foot, ya know? Like the toes and heels are still covered. Yah, and they’re like so in right now.”

If I were writing about them for fashion research project I might say this:

D’Orsay  (pronounced door-say) is a style of shoe designed originally for men in the 1800’s by Count Alfred d’Orsay, who wanted a better fitting military shoe that would accommodate wider feet.  Women loved the pointed toe, and incorporated it into ladies’ fashion shortly thereafter. The characteristics that make the d’Orsay shoe unique, are the point in the toe and the exposed arch, which comes from an absence of structured fabric between the heel and the toe box. In recent years, d’Orsay style shoes are experiencing a comeback to store shelves and sidewalks. They follow the “cut-out” trend and also offer versatility in that the exposed arch can be incorporated at any level of formality in both flats and heels.

If I had all the monies for all the shoes so I could buy them and show them to you,  here are pictures of ones I would buy:

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(Those Pierre hardy ones have blue mink fur around the top… wait, what!?? So drool.)

STOP!  Put the credit card down. Here are three more that won’t break the bank:

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My faves are the Ava & Aiden out of this bunch. These are perfect staples because they are sassy and yet still muted enough to wear with a lot of things. 

D’Or I say we have learned something today??

Ba dum chhhhhh!

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Cheers! Because d’Orsay shoes would look really terrible on men!

Happy Monday!

XO

U is for Uncool, V is for Vlog (!!!)

I did it. I made a vlog. That is trendspeak for “video blog”… kind of like “Brangelina” or “Bennifer” or “Cronut”

Because two words takes, like, time.

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(^^bonus points if you can name that comedy sketch ^^)

I am going to share my vlog with you, but before I do that, please remember this: I am uncool. I know this, I’ve accepted this, and I ask that you prepare yourself to be underwhelmed. Even uncool people can play cool kid games, okay?! Okay, moving on.

So, yeah! I made my very first “dorky chick” vlog! I’m actually kind of excited about it because 1) it was fun! and 2) I have a lot of ideas for ways I can make better ones! I wanted to try out a new fun way to show off clothes I love, and I thought how about bringing “trenndayyy pics” to life! This is a vlog for anyone who has lost track of time before they need to be somewhere  where they need to look like a civilized human. I’ll show you how I get from Bedhead Betty to a casual gal-pal lunch date!

FYI:

– Yes, I do shower. I did the night before.

– Some footage with better pics of the whole outfit were deleted. Rookie mistake.

– I arrived on time. BOO YAH.

– Next time I’ll kick it up a notch with the brand shout outs for those of you who are interested. 🙂

Lemme know what you think! Would you want to see more of these vlogs? Or maybe you think I should stick to pics? I’m just a tweet away. ( @pdxcaroline )

Cheers! To being uncool on camera,

X

My week: fashion show pics and a word on pageant chicks

Currently,  I am sitting on the front steps of my apartment building in a shady spot amongst an impressive amount of potted plants. About two weeks ago, my neighbors decided to add a couple potted plants to our barren front porch, and then they got a little enthusiastic. No matter, however, because I just get to sit here in my own little botanical garden and reflect on what an full week it’s been!

To my loyal readers, I owe you an apology because I am a dirty, rotten liar who said that I would post last week, but then I just started having too much fun! I realized I hadn’t left Portland in 3 months and I’m the type of gal who likes to find an excuse to skip town once a month. Needless to say I didn’t realize how crazy I was going until I started to unplug for Miss Oregon 2013 Pageant Workshop in Seaside. But I’m getting ahead of myself…

REWIND! 

*eeeeerereeeeeeeeereereeeeeerereeeeeee* (rewind noise) … wait, does anyone even know what rewinding sounds like anymore?

TUESDAY!

I went to the fashion show at Produce Row! It was so cool to see the two highlighted designers Brady Lange Rief. But, my iPhone is fired.

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It just couldn’t focus! So I’ll leave it to the professionals and include links to the photos.

I was a HUGE fan of the fearless makeup and the pops of color. Here was my favorite look from Brady Lange :

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It’s modern, it’s trendy, and it takes me right to the tropics! I think it would be best accessorized with a Mai tai….. 😉

And check out this from Rief! 

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Again, those color pops get me every time. The pleated pant is such a wonderfully chic way to be relaxed and adds personality with the tangerine. Those pants were made for struttin’!

There’s more pics where that came from! click here ! 

WEDNESDAY!

Pendleton rounded up a huge crowd at Ron Tom’s and it was so big that it sold out!! I almost thought I was going to have to turn around and call it a night, but the fashion gods saw fit to let me in and it was a perfect way to spend the evening. Pendleton Woolen Mills is famous for their signature bold prints and high quality wool, but in 2011 they broke the mold and developed a line that stays true to their Western inspirations, but brings a bit of city flair. It’s called The Portland Collection. They unleashed their 3rd annual this year at Ron Tom’s on Wednesday and the scene could not have been truer to Portland-chic form. A killer band set an upbeat, yet moody tone and then models began to appear walking down the sidewalk through the floor-to-ceiling windows, in through the front door, and through the maze of people. They stopped on a platform and did their turn so all could ogle the immaculate fabrics, construction, and Portland-worthiness of the Pendleton designs.  

Here are a few highlights! ImageImageImage

For more photos click here! 

For more info on the Portland Collection click here! 

I think that dress/vest look (picture 1) was my fave. Femme, but ready for anything!

THURSDAY!

Firstly, I must announce that my first article was hot off the press today. I covered the Fashion Forward Show from Portland Sewing on Saturday, and had a ball. You can read it here!

Unfortunately, I was unable to make Thursday’s show of mystery designers. I had textiles class, and a girl can only fit so much fashion into one day!!! The textiles class is truly fantastic, and I’m learning more than I can retain. It is so crazy to think that cloth is one of the oldest materials known to man, and is a definite blogspiration. I won’t go on a textile rant today, but keep an eye out because it may be one of the more relevant topics I cover in the near future. 

FRIDAY! (and SATURDAY! and SUNDAY!)

After a week of cramming Cartesian philosophy, I took a midterm and promised myself a mani/pedi to relax before a weekend of pageant mayhem! And let’s face it, sometimes the best thing you can do is just paint your fingernails bright purple. 

Being a retired Miss Oregon, it is really important to me that I continue to give time and effort to the girls pursuing their Miss America dream. I learned so much from the formers during my journey, and really got to experience this fun privilege for the first time on the other side! A huge part of preparation takes place 5 weeks before the annual competition week and consists of a 3 day workshop in Seaside. It provides the girls with bonding time with the other contestants, critiques to motivate and educate them on their potential, and everyone (parents, volunteers, and contestants) gets to learn more about the current Miss Oregon and how she has worked not only to win, but to earn her title as “role model”. (And Nichole has done all that and more!!)  It’s an intense weekend, but it was an incredible recharge! But I might still be on a sugar high…. the best candy on the coast also happens to be the livelihood of the pageant directors who double as my Oregon parents 🙂 nom nom nom… I came away from the weekend feeling reenergized and with new purpose. It is so uplifting to put a microscope on a human experience and be reassured that we are all just people with the common goal of living life with intention. For the women immersed in the Miss Oregon program, their intentions are such good ones. Regardless of hairdo, gown, shape, size, or background, each one is so excited to give fearlessly. It’s an awesome reminder of how I’ve come to be the woman I am today.

I’m rambling, but I think you get the point. I left feeling like I had just been plugged back in. To see these women pursuing their dreams with such devotion reminds me that no goal is too big and hard work will absolutely pay off, even if it takes you on a different path. I’m no longer gunning for a crown, but I’ve got some big, fashionable fish to fry! Thanks, ladies, for inspiring me so much 🙂

One of the cornerstones of the Miss America Organization is “style” along with “scholarship, service, and success”. Style? I like style! So you can imagine that I’ve really been buzzing about how I can lend an eye and some advice in this department. Another blogspiration  for another day, but I definitely have the wheels turning. 

Alas it’s MONDAY!

Other than a little education and catching up with the blogosphere, I dusted, vacuumed, scrubbed, washed, folded, and of course also popped n’ locked it in my kitchen. Twerkin’ n workin’. 

Insert a mental picture here.

Whatever you do, don’t Google that. 

 Lots to come this week! Keep in touch 🙂

xo

What I’ll do 20 years from now when I find this dress in Goodwill Bins

I present the Dorky Chick in Lipstick Decree:

You can always shop on an unlimited budget, as long as you spend within yours. 🙂

(And, yes, smiley faces are totally appropriate in decrees.)

Today’s budget for this girl was 2 bucks for clean clothes, 4 bucks for Numi Toasted Rice Tea and a Clif Bar, and a free seat on my couch with my laptop. Ahh a perfect way to spend a Friday afternoon of luxury shopping (on budget!)

My latest crush is on this midi-length, soldier-print dress by Dolce & Gabbana. It is part of their 2013 Spring collection, so it is no wonder that it has my trend-dar going berserk! The vibrant hues make it a head-turner, while the print makes it interesting, yet, surprisingly not overwhelming. Like all of my favorite things to shop for, it is way out of my price range, but there is always hope that 20 years from now I can buy it at a vintage consignment store…right? *tear* Fortunately for both of us, this dress comes with free inspiration! That’s right! It didn’t cost me a darn thing to get my imagination churning when I saw it. And free is definitely in my budget 🙂

So here is the piece I was talking about!

The Dolce & Gabbana printed silk organza dress on the runway:

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And here is the dress as I would style it! I chose two different looks that really speak to me and my personal style.

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I love clean and classic, and thought that simple sophistication would be a great way of showing off the chicness of the garment. Gold detailing and nude, uncompromising heels give the dress a polished look, while the chunky black shades are an affirmation of confidence. Natural makeup and a sleek bun round out what this look, which is everything I love about being a woman; it is refined, yet has a certain amount of prowess that makes it sexy without being revealing.

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I want to see this dress break some rules with it’s bold reds and contrasting blues. I love the idea of toning the dress down by bulking up with shameless accessories. The studs on the boots suddenly take the dress from high-tea to high-octane, and the layered necklace reinforces that the its not about the dress, but the woman in the dress. I also wanted to find another pattern to play with the print, and thought this Marc Jacobs was so crazy it just might work.  Of course she needs some of that crazy-wave hair and sunnies to keep it bold from head to toe.

A downside to falling in love with this dress is that it will be hard to go out and find a comparable version unless this style of fabric printing can become part of mainstream trends. I know that if I wanted to recreate this by just going to a fabric store and looking for fabric, I’d be hard pressed to find just what I’m looking for, and it would definitely be a challenge to make it original. That is probably good for Dolce & Gabbana, though, because intellectual property doesn’t exist in the fashion world. How do you think I find such good knockoffs?  But, that’s another blog for another day. For now, I’ll just keep my fingers crossed that prints like these start trickling down the fashion chain.

Well happy Friday to all! I hope you can get in some luxury shopping this weekend 🙂

xo