Posts Categorized: recommended reading

Lovely Links: 7/25/14

I’m partnering with fellow stylist Carly Gaztlaff of A La Mode Wardrobe Consulting for
a shoe-focused workshop on August 24! We’ll be talking about how to choose shoes for your outfits and figure-flattery priorities. Details and ticketing information right here.

August 24
2 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Mall of America Executive Center, Boundary Waters Suite, Level 4

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Weekly Kitten:


That’s my girl.

Nordstrom hired Jillian Mercado – the same amazing model that Diesel used in their spring campaign. She and her wheelchair are featured in the Nordstrom July catalog. Found this article via The Closet Feminist’s Fashion x Ability Pinterest board.

Mood lipstick. My inner child is overjoyed that this exists.

In other throwback news, it looks like scrunchies are coming back. I will admit to being relieved that I have too little hair to consider whether or not to try this trend on its second time around.

Nothing like a fabulous, floral, retro-influenced dress to make a gal feel sassy in the summer heat.

“While videos by women celebrating female strength and diverse forms of beauty are important, Legend’s video is a fantastic first step in breaking down the uninformed stereotype of feminism as a female-only goal to bring men down … Legend’s adoption of a feminist agenda as a straight man clues other men into the ways they can understand and associate with the cause.”

And a thoughtful counterpoint to that perspective here from Arianna Rebolini.

I seriously love Sheila for creating a series of posts titled, “Shoes My Husband Hates.”

Nars’s Sheer Matte Foundation in Siberia gets rave reviews from many pale girls, but Amber gives it a big thumbs down. She also links to her older post on foundations that work for pale complexions.

Since I was wearing my pair when I read it, I feel I must point you to Angie’s list of four reasons to love boyfriend jeans.

Here’s why Esquire stating that the modern-day 42-year-old woman is WAY hotter than the 42-year-old woman of days gone by isn’t all that comforting. Or helpful.

Amanda asserts her right to bare arms. (I agree!)

Stripes, leopard, and a red full skirt. You can imagine how I swooned over this outfit.

I’ve got openings for online and in-person style clients for August. AND! Launched a new closet clean-out service. Details here.

It seems an African woman, or woman of African heritage, can only be one, never in between – either exotic, or not. The July Vogue presentation reinforces that idea while perpetuating the notion that the value of a woman of color is based on her outward appearance and nationality.”

Lisa alters the proportions on her dropwaist dress by tying a blouse at her natural waist. BRILLIANT.

The Curvy Fashionista offers five observations about plus size fashion, most of which are optimistic. And she created a graphic to be shared with the various vendors who aren’t yet paying attention to the plus size community.

“You don’t need someone else to tell you how to take care of your body. Your body will tell you. But, you have to be open to receiving the information – even when it differs from your plans. The more that you listen to the wisdom dwelling in your skin, the more at home you will feel and the louder that voice will become.”

The Bloggess explains feminism passionately and succinctly. Well, aside from the shark and bee analogies. Which are hilarious.

This interview with makeup artist Nick Barose was fascinating to me. In it, he talks about why red carpet makeup looks odd in real life and kinda rails against contouring makeup for everyday use.

Leaders of Today and Tomorrrow (LOTT), the leadership program that I co-chair, is recruiting mentors and fellows! We’d love to have you!

An interesting piece on why the recently coined term “fatkini” and the style of suit it describes might actually be a little counterproductive. English is at the bottom. (Cheers, Maria!)

Racked compared jean sizing from 25 mall and mainstream retailers. Unsurprisingly, there was a lot of variation.

Goodness, Khatu looks amazing in her sequin shorts. Love the whole outfit.

After a man she was dating told her that her wrinkles and stretch marks turned him off - bluntly and callously – Robin made a concerted effort to see and love her 59-year-old body.

“But what I would want the little girl waiting in line to do, what I would want us all to do, is internalize it. Know, without anyone having to tell us, without any hesitation, that we ARE beautiful. As we are. We are so much more too. We are capable and insightful and delightful, but it’s okay to know that we are beautiful. Beautiful is a soul thing.”

On the Fox 9 Buzz, I gave some tips for wearing animal prints.

AND! I spoke with Channel 12 about shopping subscription services like Stitch Fix and Gwynnie Bee.

This made me cry. Love this interview with Colbie, too.

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Lovely Links: 7/11/14

On the evening of July 24 I’ll be at Bella Boutique in South Minneapolis
for a free event! Join me to learn how to incorporate
various types and styles of jewelry into your own outfits.
Attendees will receive 15% off fashion accessories in the boutique during the event!

Complete Your Outfits with Jewelry

July 24
5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Bella Boutique, 3100 50th St W., Minneapolis

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Weekly Kitten:


There is only one place in the house that they’ll cuddle like this and it is on the seat of my office chair. Which is also the only place in the house where I really need to sit. My solution? Use HM’s office chair. I never have the heart to kick them out.

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An amazing poem about size, acceptance, and judgement. (Via Adios Barbie)

Dollar Store Crafts rounds up 10 ways to upgrade your shades for summer. The polka dot makeover is my fave.

Slightly more advanced: Merrick shows us how to transform a pair of printed PJ pants into trendy track pants.

Valérie looks utterly smashing in her digital patchwork print maxi dress.

This series of body-positive drawings and accompanying text by Brazilian graphic designer Carol Rossetti are utterly inspiring. I hope the images will be available as prints for purchase someday, and have stashed most of them in my Body Positive Pinterest board until then.

Great tips for making classic basics like tees, jeans, and jackets feel timeless but also fresh.

“Bosses across the country constantly tell their employees to ‘act professionally’ without a second thought. Wear a garment that represents your non-Western culture to work? Your boss may tell you it’s unprofessional. Wear your hair in braids or dreadlocks instead of straightened? That’s probably unprofessional too. Wear shoes that are slightly scuffed because you can’t yet afford new ones? People may not think you’re being professional either.”

This outfit is right up my alley, from the quirky printed dress and fun blazer to classic heels and chunky necklace.

A fabulous perspective on how we conceptualize ourselves: Your body is not your art, it is your paintbrush (via Smart, Pretty, & Awkward)

I could relate to ALL of these curly hair issues, and loved the proffered solutions.

“I truly believe that the plus size movement has been built by the grassroots efforts of women of color. The majority of U.S. plus size bloggers are African American and Latina and two major movements in the plus size community, Full Figured Fashion Week and Plus Model Magazine, were both founded by women of color.”

Related: The Curvy Fashionista rounds up eight great plus-focused magazines.

My two favorite black-and-white outfits of the week: Jen in tulle and GACW in leather.

Will be keeping my eyes peeled for a screening of the documentary “Raising Ms. President” here in the Twin Cities. Anyone seen it yet?

“Because a triple zero is an impossible goal for most women, critics are labeling this trend as ‘horrifying.’ Disturbing. Concerning. Cataclysmic. And I get that. But aren’t all of societies messages that cause you to hate your body horrifying, disastrous, and cataclysmic? They all take a negative toll on our psyche, body, and life. What I’m trying to say is: the ‘Triple Zero’ phenomenon is just another trend that highlights the extreme inferiority that our society peddles for profit. ”

Maybe it’s time to let go of “perfect” and revel in your today-body.

On the Fox 9 Buzz, I offered tips for layering and accessorizing maxi dresses … and a way to “build” your own!

Great for a giggle: DIY beauty suggestions that utilize items you already have. In your garage.

I’m wearing my comfy flat Bass sandals into the ground and in the market for a second pair. These metallic Clarks are in the running, as are these Nautralizers.

This all-white outfit is stunning. And a suit-like look I would totally love to wear.

From a great piece titled, “Girls On Top – Who Really Benefits from Sexuality, Identity and Branding in Pop Music?”: “For contemporary artists, there are a stream of expectations, many of which are difficult to reconcile with the love of making music. In fact, the industry is riddled with a need to satisfy an audience’s expectations of how pop stars should look.”

Wendy is calling it: Big hoops will be the next big thing in jewelry. She has proof.

Just plain love this: Your Female Characters Are So Strong

The printed accents on Audrey’s cobalt dress make it such a memorable piece.

“It is often said that ‘Washington is Hollywood for ugly people,’ but the adage is only half true. Women are not allowed to be ugly people because women—and nowhere more than in such women’s magazines that reduce female political leaders to their supposed fashion and lifestyle choices—are not really allowed to be people at all.” (Via Capitol Hill Style, love Belle’s commentary on this link, too.)

And from the Department of Random: I’m a sucker for stuff like this. 12 Wonderfully Quirky Words with No English Equivalent. List includes “uffda,” commonly heard here in MN and irritatingly butchered by the cast of the otherwise stunning FX series “Fargo.” (I forgive them. Mostly.)

Additionally: I had lunch with my dear friend Annie Wilder this week and made one of the only actual recipes I use in my life, this lemon-oregano couscous salad. I made a double batch. You should all come over and have some because a double batch is WAY too much.

And finally: Blame Sarah for this one.

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Lovely Links: 7/3/14

We’ll do links a day early this week, since I’ll be holidaying tomorrow and hopefully many of you will, too!

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On the evening of July 24 I’ll be at Bella Boutique in South Minneapolis
for a free event! Join me to learn how to incorporate
various types and styles of jewelry into your own outfits.
Attendees will receive 15% off fashion accessories in the boutique during the event!

Complete Your Outfits with Jewelry

July 24
5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Bella Boutique, 3100 50th St W., Minneapolis

* * * * *

Weekly Kitten:

harriet dishwasher


Ashley shares style-related life lessons she’s learned before turning 30, all of which are incredibly insightful.

Orange, white, and tan work so wonderfully together for summer outfits.

“I will learn at 17 what it takes some people decades to accept: that pretty girls who play to patriarchy and ugly girls who never got asked to a school dance suffer just the same. That the same trick is being played on all of us. There is no way to play the perfect-girl game and win.” (Trigger warning for self-harm and eating disorders)

I’m embarrassingly lax about cleaning my brushes, but this formula for a natural makeup brush cleaner has me reconsidering my routine.

Like a French braid, but easier.

Dear GQ Writer Who Reinforced the Fallacy that Women Cannot Be Both Pretty and Smart: BITE ME. Olivia Wilde invites you to do the same.

Recently added this sunscreen to my daily routine. It is literally the only formula I’ve ever felt comfortable smearing all over my acne-prone face. Light, clean, and non-goopy.

Thrilled to hear that Nicolette Mason has designed a collection for Modcloth, and that all pieces will be available in sizes 0 – 4X!

Author Nichelle Gainer has a forthcoming book titled Vintage Black Glamour. Loved this interview with her on her research, family, and why she believes glamour is important.

Just plain brilliant: 10 Ways We Body Shame Without Realizing It

“It is not just the outside world whose attitude must change, it is ours as girls. If we want girls to be proud of their gender, we need to celebrate every aspect of it, never using it as a weapon. We must acknowledge the girly girls as much as we do the sporty book worms, we must stress that there is no difference between girls, whether they want to spend money on make up or on tough mudder entry fees.” (The ad highlighted was directed by Lauren Greenfield, whose entire body of work is STELLAR)

On the Fox 9 Buzz I offered some ideas for doing (understated) red, white, and blue in style.

Katha pairs a white shirt and handmade lilac skirt with black accents. So unexpected and chic.

A great and incredibly concrete reminder that clothing sizes are totally arbitrary.

This eShakti dress is rocking my world right now. And they’re doing a buy 2 get 1 free deal through Friday.

How do you choose a piece of clothing that will take your wardrobe in a new direction, while still working with what you already have? A great and tough question.

Adorable and totally do-able, even for DIY novices: Embroidery Floss-wrapped Sandals. (Via Dollar Store Crafts)

An eye-opening read about what it’s like to be an asexual woman in a culture that frequently equates womanhood with sex.

That pair of pants doesn’t look fabulous on you? Those must be someone else’s pants. (My thoughts on this topic here.)

An amazing intro to a series of posts about “Most Important Ugly”: “I believe makeup is magic – a chaotic neutral if you want to be precise about it. For so many people, it’s intimidating and scary and suffocating and heavy with the weight of expectations and failed fantasy. I was definitely one of those people for a long time. But somewhere along the way (read: my mall goth days at the age of the 13) I learned that blue lipstick could make boys recoil and make me look like an alien from Farscape. And so, I decided to change my tune.”

Such a centering, body- and person-positive mantra.

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This post highlights three retailers who are doing plus-size right, and reminds other manufacturers that their discriminatory practices aren’t going unnoticed.

Love Gracey’s mashup of stripes, speckles, and bold brights.

Instead of holding your breath until you lose weight, drop inches, get more or less muscular, change your hair color, change anything else, let it out. Exhale. Because once you exhale, you feel freer, calmer, more focused — and healthier, because let’s face it, holding your breath won’t do you any good!”

**Disclosure: Actions you take from the hyperlinks within this blog post may yield commissions for See Already Pretty’s disclosure statement for more details.

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