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Monthly Archives: October 2012

{Hillcrest} farmer’s market

Dream weekend: wake up in Hillcrest condo, do a run in SoCal’s brisk morning air at lush Balboa park, shower and get dressed in cute outfit for girl’s brunch at Extraordinary, then shop at farmer’s market with hand-woven basket in hand.
Realistic weekend: wake up in Vegas suburbs, do same old exercise video due to dry cold desert winters, shower and get dressed in sweats for comfort at the airport, brave temporary loss of dignity at TSA search while scrolling twitter feeds for much-needed entertainment and human connection.
Back to dream weekend: browse the colorful produce aisles, ask farmers about what to make from the unique-looking squashes, then move on the fruits and flowers, take a ridiculous amount of photos and spend at least 5 minutes on photo editing apps, instagram most of them, and then buy everything in sight due the visually-stimulated appetite only to beg neighbors to take some off my hands later…
Realistic weekend: grab predictable airport Starbucks… 
Dream weekend: drink freshly made beet/carrot/kale/orange/ginger/apple juice that I actually like.
Realistic weekend: middle seat
Dream weekend: listen to bohemian musical groups, browse jewelry and other handmade accessories, buy organic almond extract for BFF, tell BFF jokes, laugh uncontrollably, walk, laugh again, walk some more….
(all dream scenarios set at Hillcrest Farmer’s market)

black and white {and pink}

Whenever I’m short on time or energy and creativity seems to be winning at the hide-and-seek game, I tend to rely on the black-and-white palette while putting together an outfit.  The two colors give me a canvas that feels most authentic to myself.  Building on this canvas comes natural for me, I love to mix different textures of the contrasting shades to give those two basics some variety, like the denim pants, silk blouse, and fabric-trimmed leather shoes of this outfit.  Of course, a pop of color gives the whole look a sprinkle of youth, and this hot pink clutch does it perfectly.
Haute Hippie blouse, J Crew jeans, BCBG necklace, vintage ring, Rebecca Minkoff clutch and Lamb shoes.

candied {colored}

If among my personal fortunes in life are my girlfriends, then lately I’ve been strapped for cash.  I’m still blessed with rewarding female friendships, but many of them have moved from Las Vegas and most of them now live far from me.  Good friends are built for catching up and if you are close companions, then you always pick up where you left off.  But there’s nothing quite like having the reliable routine weekend brunch with your best gals.  And not only do I miss the company, I also miss the fashion.
Dressing for women is very different from dressing for men.  Women are equipped with a completely separate set of social contexts, from which a myriad of fashion inspirations can be drawn.  Details are shoes and handbags are the entrees, not just the appetizers or desserts.  And the expression of the outfit is prioritized higher on the list than the flattering cut of the fit.  This outfit is one of those I would have assembled on Thursday and excitedly wait for the Sunday girlfriends’ lunch.  It’s dressing up in all of its girly glamour, a kaleidoscope of cheerful candies to pair with endless laughs and flowing champagne.
H&M peplum blouse and patent belt, Asos skirt, vintage clutch, Christian Louboutin pumps, Belle Noel ring, BCBG bracelet, Juicy Couture watch.
all photos shot by the BFF

Cafe Chloe

Among my personal fortunes in life are my girlfriends.   Rewarding female friendships do not come along every girl’s life, but when they do, they’re often better with brunch and handbags.  Cafe Chloe provides the perfect backdrop to have a delicious meal before heading out to a shopaholic’s adventure.  It’s French bohemia served up on beautiful plates and completed with thoughtful marketing.
Most of the diners who come to Cafe Chloe find themselves returning here.  If you return with a girlfriend, you know to ask for the table looking out the French windows, built for the interesting people-watching of San Diego’s East Village.  And if you return with a lover, you know to ask for the cozy table on the discreet indoors balcony.

Brunch is a well-kept secret here, and I’m glad for that.  We received top-notch service while munching on our whole-wheat pancakes and poached eggs atop wild mushrooms.  Pancakes were too delicious to be healthy but the whole grain did keep us full a good while.  Eggs were expertly poached and the wild mushrooms tasted like they came a short distance from a farm very near.

Atmosphere felt feminine and dreamy with the help of Chloe’s own scented candles, sold at the restaurant along with the other adorable accessories (pictured above).  Their motif is the art of silhouette of which I’m an admitted fan.  The highlight of this is featured on the most clever piece of marketing for a brunch restaurant, the purse hanger, didn’t I say it’s built for girlfriends?

creme, black, and the honesty of bralessness

I’ve been living with these thoughts about being braless for some time, and even though I’ve already posted a previous blog (red jeans. white shirt) with my au naturel self, this post really had me considered sharing them with you:
It’s no secret that my town, Las Vegas, and my industry, the entertainment industry, are both breasts-obsessed.  Our relationship with perfect breasts is more complicated and spans more pages than the usual body-image essay.  During my teenage years, I seriously considered getting them done, but never quite made it past contemplation into consultation.  As I went into young adulthood, more and more friends around me began to acquire their enhancements.  I lived in Los Angeles at that time, and plastic surgery, even though widely endorsed, wasn’t really something openly discussed.  There was a cloud of “shush” around it, the open conversations being an admittance of fragility, or insecurities.  Whatever it was, work was done to women’s bodies and then discussed in whispers, often remaining the big pink elephant in the room.

In my mid 20s, I moved to Las Vegas, the town that celebrates all things conspicuous.  And boob jobs were more prevalent and publicly discussed.  It was not uncommon to meet a girl and five minutes later she would tell you about her latest “splurge” and then invite you to feel them.  Something about this openness permanently changed my desire about enlarging my breasts.  It’s ironic and inexplicable but that’s what happened.  Plastic surgery was not so personal here, it was seen more a product of the times and residence.  Here we were at our eternal quest for perfection, or at least what society deemed perfection, and now we were given the tools to get it.  And everyone was doing it!

At the same time that I was receiving this loud and clear message from my fellow Las Vegans that they didn’t like their breasts, and they felt the freedom to change them, and they did, and this was okay.  I was receiving a message from my internal self that I actually liked mine, and I didn’t want to change them, and this was okay.  I didn’t judge them, and hopefully, they didn’t judge me.

To go braless, to be so bare and honest about what you have and don’t have, about where you’ve been and where you haven’t, about who you are and who you’re not, is not something I have always been comfortable about until Vegas.  To be photographed braless and then posted onto the eternal world of the Internet, is not something I’ve been comfortable about, until around now.

Thank you for letting me share, and for not judging.  How about you?  Have you gone through something similar?

- Asos dress, H&M belt, Miu Miu shoes, Marc Jacobs tote (also seen here), Juicy Couture watch, BCBG bracelet, Anthropologie necklace (also worn here), Ray Ban sunnies -