I’ve Been Thinkin Bout Forever

I have been neglecting this blog for the past several months and I just sat down to write and really couldn’t pin-point the main reason. I guess numerous things have been happening that have been not only obstacles, but life-changing events (positive and negative).  I suppose the main reason I’ve put writing on the back burner is probably because for a while, I took off more than I could chew with school, work, relationships, etcetera. Sometimes we let unimportant or petty things get in the way of things we are most passionate about- and I am passionate about writing. As cliche as it sounds, I feel like I’ve been given a voice and story that if I share, people will listen (and I so appreciate that).

To bring you all a little up-to-date, for the last four months I have been enduring the last (full) semester of my career as an undergraduate college student. For those of you who don’t know, this journey for me has spanned over the past five years, multiple schools and continents. I left my parents house when I was 17 to attend a school far from home (500 miles) where I thought I’d be far enough for my problems to melt away- they didn’t. I hit a lot of big bumps during those first two years that I thought might dull my ever ambitious shine and stop me from doing what I wanted to do- but they didn’t. I found solace in an incredible internship where I felt constantly inspired and hungry to make something of myself and more importantly, to write. This inspiration was further fed by an unforgettable summer spent in Europe where my eyes were opened wider than they ever had been before. I discovered a love for art history, taking photos of people and learning about cultures much different from my own.

Yes the learning or traditional education I gained from a university experience has been important, but the things I learned about myself along the way have proven to be invaluable. Because, even though I am only 22 years old, I have lived in a city in a foreign country, been able to prove myself valuable in many different types of job settings, know how to communicate and numerous other lessons you cannot learn in a classroom. I’ve learned some things the incredibly hard way, and I’ve also learned things by observing others mistakes. My belief is, that every bit of information and wisdom you learn yourself or gain from someone else can prove to be extremely valuable. People who don’t have this type of mentality will not go far- trust me.

After this entire journey, I discovered last week that I will not be able to walk in my college graduation. I have to admit, when I received this news, I was pretty crushed. I needed something, anything remotely positive to hold on to and graduation was going to be it. However, since a few days have passed, I’ve realized that a traditional right of passage is not something I need because I haven’t had a traditional college experience whatsoever- and that’s okay. In places where I feel like I have come up short, I’ve been able to fill those voids with incredible and serendipitous relationships I have gained over the years. I don’t care how cheesy or cliche I’m sounding at this point, but I really do believe that things happen for a reason, and maybe the reason doesn’t always reveal itself to you immediately, but it will in due time.

Other than graduation, I have began to think about how I really want to achieve my lofty goals and pursue my career. I’ve been having trouble lately deciding exactly what it is I want to do, because I have changed my mind so many times. I recently had a friend ask me “what do you like to do?” and that question has been in the back of my mind since then. What a concept? Doing something you love for the rest of your life. When I was originally asked this, I thought of the Frank Ocean song “Thinkin Bout You” because there’s a lyric that says, “Or do you not think so far ahead? ‘Cause I been thinkin’ ’bout forever.” It speaks to me because anyone who knows me knows I am always anxious about the next thing that’s going to happen. For now I want to take this time and live in the moment.

Thank you for all your love and support and thank you for reading always.

xx Aly

New Years Eve Style Challenge

Last week in the rough of finals, I was excited to be contacted by DailyLook.com asking if I wanted to take part in their New Year’s Eve Style Challenge and I took them up on the offer! For the challenge, I had to pick my favorite little black dress
(so hard to choose just one) and create a look around the dress using their Polyvore-esque Style Sets. I came up with a glamorous yet simple NYE look that I think will be perfect for ringing in the new year!

I chose this dramatic Keepsake Maxi Dress complete with high side slits and a daring neckline as the item to style my look around. This dresses’ deep v-neckline is a flattering way to draw the eye toward your waist, making your middle appear smaller. My favorite part about this dress is probably that it’s a party in the back as well featuring thin crossing straps in an interesting pattern. I love this dress because it’s sexy in a very classy way and is a statement on its own that doesn’t require many accessories. I chose to pair it with delicate gold jewelry, strappy black sandals and an unexpected bronze clutch.

Here’s a preview of the dress and the complete look I put together, to see the links to all the items and the full style set, click here. Let me know what you guys think and what you’ll be wearing to start off 2015!

      Screen shot 2014-12-15 at 6.40.36 PM Screen shot 2014-12-15 at 6.59.07 PMKeepsake More Than This Maxi Dress in Black $159.99 

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Full look HERE.

 

California Dreamin’

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This summer I came up on this gorgeous UNIF kimono at a Buffalo Exchange for an absurdly good price and I couldn’t not buy it. For some reason, I haven’t figured out how to style it until now. Long kimonos work for me because of my height, but sometimes it’s tough to find a fairly understated/cool outfit to pair with such a stand-out wardrobe piece. My parents got me these awesome Ray Ban sunnies for my birthday a few weeks ago and the rose-tinted lenses that compliment the water color vibes of the kimono gave me the inspo to create an outfit based around them and the kimono.

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What I’m wearing: UNIF Kimono// H&M crop top // Levis shorts // Ray Ban Round Folding Flash Lenses // Urban outfitters & Old Navy necklaces //  Old Navy Bucket Bag // Charles David platform sandals.

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Photos by my friend Laren Kai check out her site here laurenkaiphotos.tumblr.com.

 

An Afternoon with eShakti

IMG_9540 IMG_9541 IMG_9646 IMG_9585 IMG_9574 IMG_9557About a month ago, the site eShakti.com reached out to me expressing their interest in doing a collaboration on my blog and I’m so excited to finally share the final product here! A little background;  eShakti is an online retailer who specializes in creating customized pieces for women in an array of sizes (0-36W) that fit your individual body type.

They gave me the freedom to choose a product that I liked and that fit my personal style, so I chose this color-block sheath dress that I knew would flatter my body. The process of customization was simple and easy to understand. In my sample order, they asked for my height (important considering I’m 5’8″/5’9″), bust and hip measurements and then I chose my size according to what I usually wear and their guide. Upon receiving the dress, I was really pleased with the way it fit and how the customization had turned out. However, the only criticism I will give, is that I wish the sizing could be offered in a way that the bust size and the hip/bottom size could be made more tailored to individual bodies. For example, I have fairly broad shoulders and a big bust, in comparison to my smaller waist, it would have been convenient for those measurements to have been used and allow me a little more shoulder room.

Overall, my experience with eShakti was a great one and I am really pleased with the way my customized piece turned out. I recommend other gals take a look and see what it’s all about!

What I’m Wearing:: eShakti dress // Charl0tte Russe sandals // Chanel bag

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Photos taken by my friend Alexandra Alvarez in Los Angeles.

Walk on the Wild Side

IMG_9197 IMG_9194 IMG_9192Last week, my sister and I made a trip to one of our favorite stores in Hollywood, Amoeba Music (and spent a little more time there than we maybe originally anticipated). Every time I find myself in that amazing store, I discover that I need things I never knew I needed! This time I found an awesome poster of the late great Janis Joplin that will be perfect for my new apartment!

What I’m wearing: Urban Outfitters top // Levis vintage shorts (I own 3 pairs) // Dr Martens (my sister’s) // Gold chain necklace: vintage from my grandma // sunnies: street vendor in Venice.

**Side note: A lot of people have been asking me about my hair lately. It is in fact naturally like this, but to achieve this type of curl, I rely on Catwalk by TIGI Curls Rock to get this kind of look (along with the good favor of the universe). I will do a post soon on my hair ritual to fill you all in completely!

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Thanks for reading!

xx Aly

 

 

 

 

Summer Sadness & Florals

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What I’m wearing: Matching floral top & skirt (I bought a few months ago) from Buffalo Exchange // Gold vintage watch (one of many stylish accessories inherited from my grandma) // Steve Madden sandals //  Forever 21 sunnies

First of all, WOW IT’S AUGUST (where did the summer go)? **cough cough summertime sadness** TOO MUCH SORRY… There is always this great stigma that summer is the ultimate time to play “catch up” or accomplish lofty or challenging goals that you maybe wouldn’t normally be able to do during the other nine months of the year. Since this is (hopefully) my last official summer “off” as a student, I’ve been doing my very best to really soak it in. I remember back in May when Alice Cooper’s “School’s Out” was the theme song playing in my head and I did not give a flying F*** since I found out all my grades were decent and I had somehow survived another semester! Woohoo! But, at the same time I was frantically making a check list of everything that I believed needed to be accomplished in the short three months to follow. Seeing the progress I’ve made on that list thus far makes me feel slightly relieved.  These goals completed have been planned as well as unexpected include; making a bit of money, reconnecting with old friends, getting writing published on various platforms, having my blog recognized (without trying), getting a tan (I just got back from Lake Havasu), do some reading, get back into exercise (I forgot how much I love it), taking singing lessons (something I haven’t done for a while but singing is one of my great passions).

Obviously I’m a visual/list person, and sometimes writing things out is the best way to see what you’ve done! This summer has been a time of reflection for me and rediscovering things that I truly enjoy doing and make me happy (like singing and exercise). I’m hoping that thought process will somewhat rub off on me once school starts again in three weeks.

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Photos by my fabulous sis Sarah!

Thanks for reading!

xx Aly

 

Crop Top Queen

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Earlier this week, my sister and I both had a day off so we decided to to take a trip up to Santa Barbara to shoot some photos and of course, do some shopping. I wore these high-rise Gap jeans I found on MAJOR sale about a week ago (and have worn them nearly everyday since). I decided to break out this floral American Apparel crop top that was part of last summer’s staple wardrobe in Europe. In the past, I’ve only worn this top with shorts and skirts, so it was fun to try something new and maybe a little more Carrie Bradshaw-esque. 😉

What I’m wearing: American Apparel top // Gap High-rise distressed jeans // Old Navy suede demi-wedge sandals // Urban Outfitters Initial Bar Necklace // Aviator sunglasses (borrowed from a friend 😉

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