wardrobe planning? winter’s checklist

            When you’re having a good hair day, take a picture. When you’re having a decent outfit day, take a picture. When you’re wearing a new pair of shoes, like I’ve mentioned before, take a picture.

            One of my favorite writers once said that she remembers events through outfits. I cherished that quote, not because of the honesty but rather the mere bliss of having that certainty that there’s an outfit ready to go without spending valuable minutes pondering of its level of functionality and/or avant-gardeness. That level of confidence of the quantity of your wardrobe brings about a certain level of satisfaction that only a handful are able to fulfill. Which reminds me that the long grey days of the winter season are up ahead that means I need to replenish my winter wardrobe asap, but this time I’m not going shopping without a preplanned list of the items that I want and need. 

            One of the first items that is officially off of my shopping list is a multi-functional pair of black sneakers that will last me through the season. Although these Nike black high stop air forces need comfortable matching pairs of solid black high-rise socks to match because if not, my ankles will be spotted with unwelcomed blisters. Next up, a pair of leggings that are more than multifunctional but rather multi-faceted with the serviceability of “around-the-house” use but paired with a great over-sized blazer or jacket, can then become “internship-ready”. I had found my favorite pair in Zara and will probably go back to source some interesting pair of bottoms. The next item on my list is to find the best quality basic selection of plain colored t-shirts for my budget. Needless to say, basic or essential, solid colored plain tee’s are not hard to find in the market, but these days quality is and then factoring the one chance that I can choose from a brand or garment that is sustainable is something important. Lastly, the most widely used item in my closet will be the cardigans, blazers, or jackets. My plan is to purchase no more sweaters for the season because sweaters are for squares lol just kidding. Sweaters are an essential part of one’s winter wardrobe, how else will you say to the world that you didn’t want to leave your comforter that morning lol. 

            Wardrobe planning is a balance, like everything done in life, but a carefully planned wardrobe list can yield that much more satisfaction and hopefully end the outfit decision fatigue. If you haven’t felt it, it’s that feeling of prepping before an interview when you’re asking yourself if I have something to present myself with. Although the combinations of outfit ideas are set determined by the business staples and casualwear is whatever is available in your wardrobe, the choices are influenced by your feelings. Therefore, if you feel like you look presentable or good, then you’ll go the extra mile to do more. 

Sneaker Story Time

Let me tell you a little story about these sneakers. These sneakers took me probably a year to convince myself to actually buy, unfortunately. As I was browsing through most of the options available through the ASOS website for my size, I kept reminding myself that this browsing experience was going to be different! It was going to be different because I was actually going to fulfill the online order and spend some hard-earned money. 

It’s been a tough year and my sneakers are a sure reflection of it. One poor darling sneaker, a pair of black Nike lunar glides, first started with a small hole on the surface of the fabric above the toes. But then gradually widened into a semi noticeable hole, which small pebbles could easily slip through. Another darling, a pair of grey and lime green Nike air max’s, are at point where the outside looks pretty good, but the inside is starting to tear apart. My left ones heal counter skeleton is exposed because of the fabric friction. Lastly my third darling, a pair of grey sketchers sneaker, have bore the manic New York weather from heavy rain to post snowstorm slush and now the inside is not in the best condition, let’s just keep it at that. 

These three were on repeat on a weekly basis, especially during my tough school schedule. For months, I didn’t have other options, or my other options wouldn’t have helped my commuting situation. I wanted to look cute, but I also didn’t want to get blisters. I finally told myself enough is enough, my current selection is on the verge of popping! At first, I thought I was exaggerating but then I heard on the news of a basketball player whose shoe popped during the middle of his tournament in the NCAA, the signs were everywhere and my conscious kept telling me just do it. So, this time I listened. 

I couldn’t have picked a better time, ASOS was having a mid-summer sale which meant that I might be getting a little discount on something. But I just needed to be open minded enough to swoop up something good. It felt like a game at 6am, the excitement of finding a new pair was enough to keep me up. As I was putting some in my cart, I kept scrolling for more and making sure that I wasn’t missing out on page 10. By the time I had a chance to narrow my choices, some of my most coveted items were already gone in my size. No way! I had told myself; I had invested so much of my time on scrolling that time flew by and ASOS has one basic rule that I ignored. In the Asos online cart, the items you pick stay there for only an hour and that little bit of information surprised me. The items I really wanted were gone but I wasn’t going to “leave” without something getting ordered. When I finally fulfilled the order, I felt like I was still missing something but to much time was already invested just to go back and keep looking for other items to add, you know. It was the feeling of what economist would say “opportunity lost”.

To be candid, why did it take me a year to buy something that I desperately needed but didn’t cave in until my items were falling apart: guilt. The guilt of buying something for myself for the sake of vanity was unbearable during times where it was financially tough for our family. Before, vanity would jumpstart an impulsive pattern of buying something without having a designated purpose. Before I didn’t hold back, I had yet to learn the lessons of household economics. But before things changed, we had dual incomes and suddenly in the middle of the year we were down to one annual income. Resources weren’t completely scarce but if we weren’t careful, it could drain fast and the needs of our infant were top priority. I’ve now realized that going through a series of unanticipated occurrences are unforgettable learning experiences, borderline traumatic actually. Which it was for us and which is why, I could do without a new pair of sneakers for a while.

The Pink Lip

Today, I promised myself to try something different and to get out of my comfort zone. Lately, I’ve been going back to the same makeup look. Each time swearing that this time, I might look just a bit different, then the look from the day before. My current everyday makeup look has me feeling uninspired and slightly bored.

Seeing that I already own a few lipstick shades, but never use, I thought that I should give a bold reddish lip a try. I have the shades, along with the fear of testing it out and going outside with it on… does that make me sound a bit silly?… Probably…

After applying the matte red lip shade, my immediate reaction was to take it off. But then I stopped myself for the sake of not wasting time putting. I kept everything else light. My eye makeup minimal, enough concealer to cancel my trouble spots and focused more on contouring along the sides of my cheekbones and forehead. Lips were my focal point and I was nervous as I spread it along my lips.

My fear of testing red lipstick came from believing that I looked weird with it on. I had this internal worry of judgement. When I asked myself if someone had actually told me that red lipstick didn’t suit me, then is when I realized that I was being my own self critique and being a harsh one too! But once I really let go of these insecurities, I asked myself what am I really afraid of? So what was the worry?

Once I really embraced this bold lip look, I felt focused and oddly, empowered. In retrospective, putting on lipstick and wearing was not weird, but rather the boost of confidence I felt, seemingly out of the blue was. It’s funny how that works.

Thank you for reading my blog post! I’m curious to know if you have had a similar experience with makeup? If so, what inspired you to give it a try regardless of these insecurities?

Like always, have a great day!

Multicolored leaves

Is it still considered Fall after a snow storm?

Probably not, but neither am I really sure and currently to focused on finishing this post to stop writing just to google it. I still consider this time as Fall because the trees still have leaves on them. Albeit, not as much but non the less, they are still hanging on. I find it inspiring to see how many different colors the leaves turn into. Then how the ground is littered with these multicolored shades of yellow, brown and reds with a tiny streak of green. Sometimes I ask myself if these leaves would be a good source of material for creating art pieces. I wonder if someone has already been so bold to ask themselves the same thing and actually make something beautiful out of them. I’ve picked one up just to examine it; to observe the array of colors, to feel the texture and to admire its irregular shape. To bad it’ll be gone soon before I take the time to make something beautiful out of them myself.

Just like seeing how pretty the burgundy hue of the leaves were, I was equally pleased to see how nicely this thrifted Topshop burgundy wool coat fit on me. The arms were not to long or tight around the armhole. The material was in good condition, minus the signature thrift shop scent. The lining was in decent condition, shiny and smooth and the pockets had no holes. It had a detachable black faux fur Peter Pan collar that looked like it had seen better days. I was impressed. The pros were greater then the cons and that made me happy, so I took it home.

Golden brush strokes

As my family was walking home after visiting our local Salvation Army, we stumbled on a pretty simple wall. It was simple, at least, compared to the other abstract and intricate street art walls surrounding this simple one. The wall was painted black with different brush strokes scattered over the black paint. In the center, what I’m assuming, was the artist’s graffiti signature drawn in a goldish brown hue. It was extravagantly minimalistic but with a pop because of the contrasting colors. It caught my attention from afar and drew me closer to observe the work, very much like an art gallery. I liked that it wasn’t overly conceptualized but neither was it a “wall flower”. The work had a balance while adding balance to the collection of street art surrounding it.

Naturally, I felt it would make an interesting backdrop. I didn’t notice the artists credentials or maybe I just overlooked it. But if you ever find yourself in Brooklyn, take the J train to Brooklyn and get off on a stop called Myrtle ave. Walk a few blocks south and you’ll spot it by making a left in the corner of the Papa Johns pizzeria.

I know I should have taken a picture of the street art by itself. I apologize. I only hope that it won’t distract you from being inspired by my very casual outfit of the day. My rain coat is from Nike. The black fleece pullover, a gift from a family member who traveled to Colombia. The black leggings from Pink by Victoria secret (although a size too big on my petite frame). The navy blue faux leather sack bag was thrifted from a Salvation Army across town. It’s been my favorite go to bag and it’s in great condition. I only wish I knew the brand. Yet again, do I really want to know? Lol

A white t-shirt and trousers

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A plain white t shirt is an essential basic top in my closet. It’s like a blank canvas and (mostly) everything in my closet compliments well with it. For this look I was inspired by fashionista I stumbled on in Instagram. I paired my white t-shirt with a pair of thrifted straight leg palazo trousers, which are slightly to long and oversized for my frame. What’s interesting about The trousers is that they are made out of silk with a chevron kind of print. Silk trousers? That was new, so felt like they needed to come home with me.

I intended to wear the trousers for casual days but Ive been told that it actually makes me look very formal. When I looked in the mirror that’s not what I saw and I kept wondering as to why would these trousers would look formal. Could it be the permanent crease in the front? I couldn’t answer that question, until I saw myself in them through pictures. Now I knew why my husband kept referring to them as my business casual pants. I might wear them with kitty heals next time lol

Easy Makeup of the Day x A Not So Helpful Guide lol

Honestly, when I feel like crap 💩 I like to do my makeup. Whenever I’m feeling so overwhelmed with different tasks, to do lists, and the on going little details of managing motherhood, I try my best to take a few moments to touch up my a face. Even with just a little bit on, my mood instantly changes from indifferent to motivated and focused. Managing motherhood feels like a challenge every day because you’ve got to learn to balance your own personal needs and the very cautious efforts of parenting and those minutes of just “me time” can make the difference. This feeling is something completely new to me and I only started to really embrace it after I gave birth. This just makes me wonder how much different my attitude about my daily activities would have been if I’d started this routine earlier in life? Why hadn’t another women ever mentioned this and how come its not more commonly mentioned? I don’t feel selfish by taking that little bit of time to just focus on me and sometimes I feel like thats the only time I can get a few minutes with my own thoughts.

I’ve been steadily getting better at doing my own makeup by trying different things or a new technique every time I take up the challenge to apply it. For this look I put a little bit of eyeshadow along with a cate eye wing (which is something I’ve never tried doing cause eyeshadow kind of intimates me). From what I’ve noticed, a light hand is key as your applying it because it can easily start looking like a mess.

Here is a step by step of what I did & please, feel free to chuckle at the subtle humor of the commentary lol:

1-foundation

Step one: covering up my reptilian skin lol

2-concealer

Step two: using this awfully bad compact makeup as a under eye concealer because I needed to use it one last time so I won’t feel so guilty for throwing it out and wasting money on it.

3-powder

Step three: blended well… from this distance you can’t notice the bumpy skin. i think i did a job well done. Now its time to set it with some powder to minimize my oily skin build up. hooray

4-eyeshadow

Step four: some eyeshadow because i hardly wear it and these are subtle enough for others to not notice how mediocre i actually am with makeup.

5-eyemakeup

Step five: if i were in a stranded island, i would put a note inside a bottle asking for whoever reads the note to send me mascara and eyeliner… and some sunscreen cause no one wants to age prematurely6-liplinerStep six: a lip liner to overline my lips and as a lipstick cause my lips can make a desert look moist and plump

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Voila mistro… not bad.

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and another selfie to reenforce how naturally untalented I’m with makeup and girl,  let me just say that if you know how to work your angles, no one will even notice lmfao!

Thanks so much for reading along and maybe even getting a little inspired by this faux easy makeup tutorial cause a girl tried her best! show some love on the comments and I hope you all have a blessed day.