fashion revolution! power to personal style! an argument against trendspotting

I have been so in love with and inspired by clothes lately. I think it must have to do with the fact that I’ve been buying only clothes that I love and will flatter me, shopping more vintage, and lingering longer at sites like Wardrobe Remix and Hel-looks which feature uber-creative streetwear looks and less at sites like Go Fug Yourself (which is irresistibly hilarious, mind you) and Style.com (an almost daily browse).

I’ve decided that I don’t want to be told what to wear anymore. I could care less about what the industry says is cool. I don’t want to be afraid that I’m trying too hard, or not hard enough. I love what I love and bullocks to trends. I can wear socks with open-toed shoes and black leather with brown. I’ll look in the mirror one more time before I walk out the door and put ON another accessory if I feel like it. I think people shouldn’t worry so much about what’s in or out. It should be more about what flatters your body and makes you feel happy and confident. I want to scream out to the world…

“WEAR ANYTHING YOU LOVE! PLAY WITH YOUR CLOTHES, BE INSPIRED!
GIVE YOUR PERSONAL STYLE ROOM TO BREATH & THRIVE!
DRESS WITH ABANDON AND CONVICTION!
BE FEARLESS! BREAK THE RULES. TRENDS BE DAMNED.”

Such is the case when I look at the photostream of Leibemarlene, a long-limbed lovely from the Chicago ‘burbs…

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Granted, this girl could make anything look good and she is following a few key trends and owning them, but her genius is in her fearless layering, shape variation, color combos and most importantly, always highlighting her best assets. And she does it all with thrift finds and a few alteration skills. In the following photo she layers a striped t-shirt under a vintage wool shift and then throws on 2 belts – a skinny over an obi AND sunglasses, a headband, a brooch, a purse and white shoes (i believe this photo was taken sometime, ahem, after labour day). She’s breakin’ the rules, but in a decidedly feminine and flattering way. I’m loving the idea of “excessorizing.” It makes me happy. So c’mon, if accessories are your thing, then try keeping your clothes simple and making your outfits all about bold accessories, and lots of ‘em.


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Of course, not everyone has this much style instinct (and really, it is all about instincts), so I suppose some people need rules. And trends for that matter, to inspire them and give them confidence to change things up. I know I depend on that devout little rule-follower in my head to sometimes keep myself from walking out the door in some disastrously ill-conceived ensemble. But then, there’s Leslie Hall

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…who can literally pull off anything (and i do mean anything) because she has more than enough unrepentant attitude to pull off The Ugly Sweater.
that’s some seriously impressive conviction.

ALL. RULES. OFF.
pass it on.

*****

While i’m at it, here are a few uber-inspiring reads on similar subjects. Vive la revolution!

“I’m not cool:” An Argument for Safety and Finding your own Personal Style by Gemma Cartwright for Catwalk Queen (thanks, Scarlettholly!)

“Let’s, once and for all, Bash the Trendbashing.” by Tricia Royal for Bits and Bobbins

To the Style-Mobile (wishing Kate Bloody Moss would just disappear…) by Meg for The Apathist

Everyone’s a Professional: Debunking Fashion Rules by Amanda for Art of the Steal




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eBay panic party! vintage party dresses

these are from one of my favorite vintage sellers, indie cult vintage. where DO they find these things? there must be some amazing thrift shopping in seattle. i must go down south more often. if only the traffic there wasn’t so hellish…

jeebus! what am i saying? it’s panic time! only 2 hours left on these beauts. sorry, but i wouldn’t want to skew the prices too much. as of publish time, these were still reasonably priced. only you lucky little sluts who show up soon have a chance at a winning bid for these loverly wee party dresses. click the image to go directly to the auction.

for the slightly less lucky, there’s still my body type tips to help you with buying a similar dress online. or you can hover and click on the stars to shop for similar accessories and shoes (the shoes). don’t forget to use the blessed price slider! have i taught you nothing?

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1. this cream dream is perfect for you if you have long limbs and a small upper body…

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2. this confection is good on almost all body types, as long as you’re not too bottom heavy or petite…

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3. this luscious gown would be so flattering on almost everyone. the length, the obi waist, the capsleeves… however, this cut can be a tad difficult to fit, so try it on right away.

lace mini dress
4. this style would be gorgeous on almost any body, but i’d shorten the sleeves a tad for a more flattering silhouette. oh and i’d have to slather on the self tanner to pull these pale colors off.

EDIT: apparently the plaid minidress, as Kori so quickly pointed out before i ended up looking like a fool, is not vintage. it’s actually a Luella design for Target. go figure! it’s in taffeta too. how glaringly eighties! i bet it’ll go for way over its original price. (thanks, Kori)

update: a few of these didn’t meet the reserve! watch it in your eBay to be informed when it’s re-listed at a much lower reserve price.

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i gots the fevah. playoff fevah.

i’m coming out. i can deny it no longer. i am. a hockey fan. and the vancouver canucks have made it to the second round of the playoffs for the first time in years! but really? how can you not love the canucks?:

taylor pyatt
Hello there, Taylor Pyatt
Where’d ya get those big blue eyes at?

…oh, he can put the puck in the net too.

i’ve got team spirit just as much as the next person, but you know what i can’t stomach? it’s your figure’s worst enemy, unless of course you look good with linebacker shoulders: the hockey jersey. and fan gear is just SO overpriced. its not like i’ll EVER be able to afford to go to a play-off game here (decent seats are selling for hundreds of dollars each), but i will be wearing my team colors nonetheless.

white canucks jersey
official canucks jersey: $200
OR
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blue cardigan: $29
vintage shorts (there’s those buttons again):$19.80
soft basic T: $18
silver affirmation bangles (gotsta keep the ol’ spirits up when you run outta “spirits”):$20
silver organizer clutch: $29
cabochon necklace: $6.80
striped slingbacks: $16.80
aviators: $6.80
total: $146.20

i said damn, Blue Eyes Pyatt’s gon’ be all OVER my ass.

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You can beat the sixteen-year-old out of style, but you can’t beat the style out of the sixteen-year-old.

16 was definitely my experimental stage. I used to pair argyle knee-highs with platform shoes, cut-off jeans and a velvet choker. Then there was my hippie/grunge persona. I had one of those flowy skirts paired with a crocheted vest and my trusty brown mid-high hiking boots. I also had a pair of super-baggy jeans that I’d pair with an over-sized sweater with a white collared shirt underneath and a black velvet newsboy cap (worn backwards) with my favorite Puma sneakers. That was my “rave” look. I felt so badass in that outfit. Then I met a punk dude way older than me while bussing at Long John Silver’s, hacked my hair off and dyed it blue-black, bought a pair of 10-eye Docs and one of these monstrosities, even though all I listened to at the time was Erasure, OMD, Morrissey and Depeche Mode. My poor naive mormon stomach could never handle punk. Sixteen is the age where you experiment with aesthetic, and when you come out on the other end, you’ve either buckled under the peer ridicule and homogenized your style to match convention and corporation or you commit yourself to those thrift store racks, and their damned juvenile cat-and-mouse antics and come out looking like you are worth knowing!

Case in point:

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How much guts does it take to wear women’s flat front pants when you are a post-pubescent kid? He understands that you must sacrifice a few kernels of manhood in order to look brilliant in a pair of easter green plaid pants. He understands the scarcity of real vintage plaid pants in the the thrift stores since the bondage craze of the 90s. Then to pair that with a pink striped shirt and old school checkered Vans and a hoodie with an ambiguous but strangely intellectual message on it is just so audacious and cheeky. This kid tells me he has more outfits (including a pair of glow-in-the dark Roos!) So there may be more pics to follow.

Kid, here’s your Helsinki doppleganger:

Don’t let anyone ever tell you that you’re alone in this world.

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Check me out: the twin emerges from a period of silence

My apologies for being absent lately, I had drama at work. It is sad when I long for the mind-numbing-internet-mussing-while-my-boss-is-out-of-the-office job. It is spring and the children with autism are one step ahead of me, it feels.

Anyways, check me out:

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Sweater vest/tank from Charlotte Russe: $20

Elastic belt from Sac’s Thrift Avenue: $0.99

Fine cords from Gap Outlet: $6.99

Logo flats with silver pseudo-clasp from Ettienne Aigner (OK I splurged but LOOK AT THEM!): $60

And a bracelet from Mexico (Thanks, mom-in-law!): something about pesos?

Total: $88 (and some pesos)

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check me out: the cropped vest

cropped vests are great because they can be ridiculously flattering (giving the girls a boost and hitting right at the smallest part of the waist) and can bring an otherwise drab outfit up a few notches. lazy? throw on yer jeans, a t-shirt and a teeny vest…

spring is starting to work itself out. but winter won’t go down without one helluva fight. i swear everyday has been a monkey’s wedding. big ol’ voluminous clouds, a bit of an icy breeze, scattered showers and the sun just fighting its hardest for a peek-through. casual friday, on the other hand, was gorgeous. finally a well-lit shot:

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long blue tee w/ ruched sleeves: $4 at Hanger’s Discount Store
cropped vest (with an adorable satin bow at the back): $2 at Target
wooden necklace: $2 at Target
grey skinny jeans: $16 at Target
tan peeptoe wedges: $10 at Zeller’s
beer gut: priceless (it takes hard work and determination)
total: $34

and here’s a menswear-inspired office look:

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black cap-sleeve tee: $7 at Target
cropped navy vest: $1.50 at Value Village
navy pinstriped trousers: $24 at Reitman’s
black peeptoe sandals: $3 at Value Village
silver bracelet of the gods: $2 at Value Village
cheapass camera: more trouble than it’s worth

total: $37.50

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Beauty Store Sale

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i seriously need a high waisted skirt.

i bet there is a plethura at any thrift store. i also need karen O. of the yeahyeahyeah’s jacket. and jenny lewis of rilo kiley’s luscious red locks. i will pay full price. while i’m at it, karen’s cupcake is looking very, um, stylish as well.

jenny lewis and karen O


totally random tidbit: eve and i met jenny lewis as little kids when we were hired as extras in everyone’s favorite video game-themed adventure movie The Wizard. she played the saucy young female lead.

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Many people who are regularly found at a hookah bar donít know that hookah is essentially flavored tobacco.

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the greatest invention of the 21st century

as you can see, we have a new feature here at painfully hip. its called visual search technology. i know! i kiss you!

if you see a little star icon on a photo on the site, give it a little tease with your mouse cursor. you can click on the piece that is outlined, et voila! hundreds of similar-looking products. and it gets better. you can use the slider in the upper right to designate exactly how much you want to pay for said product. there are also sliders for color and style importance too. superfancy!

i did a visual search on these gorgeous gold ankle strap sandals, turned down the color preference and the price range, and look at the stunners that came up:

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um. love them. want them. have to have them. the perfect simple sandal with gladiator flair. and so effing cheap at only $21.99!

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