Tuesday, September 12, 2017

'The Perfection of Style' Yves Saint Laurent Exhibit

As some of you may know, it is New York Fashion Week and while I am not in attendance this year, I thought it would the perfect time to share my recent trip to the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts since this exhibition in particular has everything to do with haute couture.  Spending my down time at the museum has become one of my pastimes during the weekend since I've relocated.  There are many cool exhibits and what I love the most is that the museum has wine & live jazz night every Thursday.  It's definitely the perfect hang out for happy hour after work.  I always have such a great time mingling and I usually always end up meeting someone new.  When I learned that the Yves Saint Laurent exhibition opened early this summer, I definitely made it a point to check it out before it ended in August. 

I wouldn't necessarily say I'm a big consumer of designer labels.  I know that may sound strange, given I do blog about style, but that's just it, I love style.  I'm more about everyday style, which is what I would describe as an approach-- a method, a technique in how I dress which best represents me as a person.  Like your signature : )  Style affects me everyday.  What I wear to work--what's comfortable--what I wear on the weekends.  Fashion on the other hand is art and creativity.  There is a difference.  Fashion is one piece that I may have in my closet to the 10th power.  I figured the YSL exhibit would be great to gain inspiration, learn more about the designer, and get an in person view of his stunning designs.  Perfect professional development for style lovers, right? In celebration of NYFW I present to you 'The Perfection of Style' Yves Saint Laurent Exhibition.

The Beatnik Couturier

With more than 100 costumes, jewelry, sketches, and sample fabrics I was pretty blown away at the incredible pieces on display.  Seeing how intricate each design was gave me such a greater appreciation and respect for designers.  It takes a combination of hard work, talent, and creativity to create these pieces.  Simply stunning.  My favorites were the short black beaded dress from the Spring/Summer 1990 Haute Couture Collection shown below.  Aren't the pink feathers exquisite?  I love how style carries over and has the ability to stand with time.  That's what we call a classic and I can totally see myself wearing this piece right now.  New Years Eve party anyone? 

I also loved this evening gown from the Autumn-Winter 1983 haute couture collection.  The huge pink silk satin draped bodice with large bow really captures the 80's era. My favorite era since I was born during that time.

A Living Legend

Yves Saint Laurent and Models of Color 

What resonated the most for me with this exhibition is learning that  Saint Laurent regularly hired women of color as his models long before many other designers.  Models such as Mounia was Saint Laurent's muse and was the first black model Yves Saint Laurent used in his haute couture shows. She was widely considered the French couturier’s favorite model.  This was all I needed to know to have a greater appreciation for this designer.  Period.

From Darkness to an Explosion of Color


Seeing 'The Perfection of Style' exhibit was such an amazing experience.  I have such a greater respect for this designer and am so glad I had the opportunity to check out the rare behind the scenes look into the creative workings of the fashion house and private life of Saint Laurent.  Amazing.  I hope you all have an amazing week.

"Fashions fade, style is eternal."
--Yves Saint Laurent, 1975

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Wine Tasting & Florals at Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyards

Visiting parts of Virginia has been such a wonderful experience.  When I moved to this state 13 years ago, I fell in love with all of the greenery and actually seeing each season in it's absolute fullness.  I'm originally from sunny California if you didn't know.  So for me, there are locations here in Virginia that are still very new and unknown.  A few weeks back I visited Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyards for a private wine tasting event with SCOUT bags.  SCOUT bags is an active and casual lifestyle brand offering personalized Tote Bags, Insulated Coolers, Storage Bins, and Travel bags.  Pippin Hill Farm is absolutely breathtaking so it was the perfect setting.  I've only been to a few vineyards here in Virginia, but this one by far is number 1 on my list!  Located in the Charlottesville area, Pippin Hill sits on a hilltop overlooking a valley surrounded by mountains. You can see rows and rows of vineyards, fields with hay bales, as well as a garden. The drive up to the property was amazing.  The barn is certainly impressive and even the path leading to it is very instragram worthy, wouldn't you agree?  I'm holding one of SCOUT's wine tote bags in the first photo above.  Pretty fitting right?  It was so much fun getting to know the SCOUT team.  Adding wine and cheese with an assortment of hors d’oeuvres just makes it all better right?


I decided on wearing this floral off the shoulder dress that was perfect because it was very warm that evening.  Wait, who am I kidding--it was sweltering hot--thank God for the shaded porch!  As the evening went on however, we got a break from the beaming sun and heat. Anyhow, I love the feminine cold shoulders on this dress and just thought this look was ideal for the occasion.  I purchased this dress from Gabe's earlier this summer and it's my absolute favorite!  You guys know that I love Gabe's and this dress is very reminiscent of a Topshop maxi I really wanted to get.  I'm so glad I ended up purchasing this one instead for less than half of the Topshop sale price!  It sometimes pays greatly to wait and explore your clothing purchases.  Perfect balance between looking chic and feeling comfortable.  I paired the dress with a pair of tan mules.  For fall I plan to trade out the sandals for booties and a leather jacket over top.

I also received tons of compliments on my hair, which was slicked into a bun with gold bobby pins throughout the left side.  It's exactly how I wore my hair HERE in this previous post.  This is a hair trend that I will definitely be wearing throughout Fall and Winter months. 

Thank you so much to SCOUT bags & Pippin Hill Farm for your gracious hospitality.  It was a lovely visit.  I'm looking forward to returning soon.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Affordable Beauty Look with Gabe's

My Beauty collection has definitely evolved over the last 10 years.  I went from wearing a little liner, mascara, pressed powder, and lipstick all purchased from my local drugstore--to adding concealer, contour, highlight, and becoming a pro at grooming my eyebrows.  With a little more knowledge, I began visiting department store counters and became comfortable with spending a little more on quality makeup.  While I don't mind treating myself to major brands, it's great to know that I can still go to local stores like Gabe's and pick up beauty items for a fraction of the price and not have to compromise with the quality of makeup.  But in all actuality,  I've learned that high prices don't always equal superb product.  It's really all about learning ingredients and trying different formulas to see what works.

Gabe's sent me over a full box of beauty goodies including several eyeshadow palettes, matte cream lipsticks, brushes, and highlighters to put to the test and share with you guys.  I was so impressed with everything that they have to offer in the beauty department and actually surprised with the pigments and consistency of each product.

I used the Colour Me Nude: Natural Nudes Eye Colour Palette which features 12 eye shadow shades with the mix of both shimmers and mattes.  It's actually a great dupe for the Naked Palette in my opinion.  I also used the 'In the Night' Smokey palette to get just a touch of the black shade on the outer corners of my eyes.   I made sure to use primer before applying the colors and even sprayed my brush a bit to pick up the color even more.  I did experience a bit of fall out but that is to be expected especially when dealing with shimmers.  I found that formula for each palette went on smooth, easy to blend, and not as chalky as you would think when purchasing a drugstore brand. 

For lips I used a Mauvy color by 'Bonita' and added in my own liner.  Oh, and did you catch the soft highlight?  I used the 'Strobe & Glow' Highlight & Contour kit that has a total of 10 shades that are pretty pigmented and very nice to achieve a radiant complexion.  Topping off the look with the Matte Finishing spray made this look complete.

Not bad for products from a discount store right?  I'm not mad at any of these products because I was definitely able to achieve what's pretty normal for me--a soft and flawless look.  Some of the brushes and applicators that came with the products, I swapped out for my own, but really that's all I needed to do to help with application. 

How do you feel about shopping outside of the high-end department store for your beauty needs?  If you have a Gabe's near you I definitely encourage you to check out their beauty department to see for yourself!  They literally have everything that you would need to achieve a great look and feel just as confident as you would with other products.  If ever you've lost luggage on a trip away from home, are on a budget, or are just simply a beginner and want to start small, you now have another option.  Thank me later ; )

**This Post was brought to you by Gabe's.  All thoughts and opinions are my own**

Friday, August 25, 2017

Summer Style with MODCLOTH

I've been super intentional about keeping my Summer casual style simple and easy.  I've just been too busy with time at work and other matters to really spend time planning outfits.  When the weekend comes around, I tend to go with looks that are really easy like this one.  I've been gravitating towards off the shoulder tops because they're super  flattering and don't take much to style.  

I recently received these beautiful palazzo pants from MODCLOTH and they've since become one of my favorite Summer pieces.  I love the berry colored floral pattern and the flowy loose legs.  I've always loved palazzo pants and these are not only comfortable but breathable, which make them perfect for early evenings when I'm dining downtown. 

As of late, I've been spending my leisure time in the Shockoe Bottom area of downtown Richmond.  It's one of the cities oldest neighborhoods and easily a favorite of mine because of the cobblestone roads and of course the cute restaurants.  There are some really nice hang out spots that I frequent before and after work.  Here, I visited Urban Farmhouse Market & CafĂ©.  Just one of many cool coffee shops that Richmond has to offer. 

This weekend I have a few projects that I will working on, which will soon be shared very soon right here on Styled Chic, as well as my social media accounts so be sure to follow.  Although I'll be working, I do plan to take a break and grab some seafood from a local favorite tomorrow afternoon.  I promised myself that I wouldn't get too caught up in  my To-Do list -- it's so easy to end up spending hours in front of a computer.  I'm definitely going to make sure to take some advantage of the cooler, yet Sunny temperatures to enjoy.  I hope you do the same.  

Make sure you head over to ModCloth as well.  I was able to snag a few more items on sale ; )

**This Post was brought to you by MODCLOTH.  All thoughts and opinions are my own**

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Getting To Know Richmond + Sweetest Stitch Collaboration

Happy August to you!  A new month and a fresh start for new opportunities, experiences, and also...exploring!  I'm always really excited to take on a new city and now that I've gotten a little more settled on the home front, I've been getting around Richmond more to explore all the restaurants, coffee shops, and other small businesses as I enjoy doing.  So far, what I love about Richmond is the food and the small boutiques!  Food and fashion will always go hand in hand for me, lol.  Local boutiques are quickly becoming my favorite because of the more one-of-a-kind options.  I like the fact that I can shop a boutique and have more unique options and really make an item my own and not have to feel like there are a thousand other dresses out there just like mine.   I also love supporting local vendors and let me tell you, this city definitely has some of the best.  

I had the opportunity to visit a chic local boutique called Sweetest Stitch.  The store offers chic contemporary apparel, shoes, and accessories and I completely fell in love with everything it has to offer.  Not only that, but the shopping experience was amazing.  I love how bright, organized, and beautiful the store was.  The dress options were so pretty and I ended up picking out this beautiful floral Maxi wrap dress!

This dress is so easy and breezy, which is definitely the style I go for during this time of the year.  Also the perfect outfit to wear when dining around town.  I really love the wrap detail as well as the leg action that you can make as subtle or as noticeable as you want!  The color is also so flattering against my more melaninated sun kissed skin tone. 

On this day I went to have something sweet at a dessert only restaurant and spend the rest of the afternoon site seeing.   I thought styling this dress with a sort of Cognac colored bucket bag and caged blocked heels would be great for a day time look.  Plus the maxi dress is pretty long so I like the fact that I can wear heels and the length of the dress isn't compromised.

My summer style has been pretty minimal because most of my items are still in boxes. However, I am meticulously working on my closet to get everything hung the way I like.  I didn't mention before that I'm working with a bigger closet space so it's really exciting to plan out how I want my items to be organized.  I've already purchased new hangers and such to make things more uniform and color coordinated cause you OCD is real when it comes to visuals, lol.  Anyway, I will be sharing more with you all as I make my way around town.  If you aren't in the area to shop Sweetest Stitch in person, you can shop online as well!

**This Post was brought to you by Sweetest Stitch.  All thoughts and opinions are my own**

Monday, July 17, 2017

Natural Hair Treatment with Mielle Organics Babassu Oil & Mint Deep Conditioner

I'm slowly getting back into the swing of things after the move into our new home.  If you've purchased a home before you know that it takes some time to get settled in.  My focus has really been on resting, enjoying all of the time that I now have back, as well as organizing and really making our house a home.  Now that certain parts of the house feel more like home, I'm getting back into the swing of my normal routines of taking more care of my skin and hair.  The last video that I uploaded over on my YouTube Channel, I shared with you guys my wash routine and a few styles I had been wearing to save on time.  I don't even remember the last time I really wore a twist out or anything other than a bun or wash n go, and it's been so long since I've purchased new products that I've been interested in.  Now that I'm more comfortable and not getting home every night at 7pm, I have time to really tend to my hair like I want to.

These days I'm really getting back to the basics of caring for my hair.  One of my goals as far as products go, has been to use most to all of what I already have now before I even think about buying other products.  Fortunately I've been able to receive a few as gifts to review, but I'm now at the point where I'm ready to try some new things.

I've seen so much of the Mielle Organics products on social media lately, well really the past year or so and this particular line has been #1 on my list to try out.  I follow the instagram page and a lot of other naturals have given the line great reviews, so you know I had to try it for myself to see what the hype was about.  Not only did the packaging appeal to me because I mean I can never say no to natural products in pink packaging, but I also follow the owner and after hearing her story and how this brand got started, I knew that this was a hair company that I wanted to spend my hard earned coins.  

Monique Rodriguez, registered nurse, turned CEO of Mielle Organics used her science background and focus on health to create her products and share her own regimen of healthy hair.  That alone really appealed to me so I found myself shopping the aisle of Sally Beauty supply ready to try these products out.  I ended up purchasing two products from this line based on what my hair really needs right now.  My hair has been a little dry and my ends aren't really the best so I figured a good deep conditioner would do me right.   

So I paid about $12 for this product and it was worth every penny.  I was attracted to this product because it contains mint and is said to infuse the hair with protein and moisture to restore dry and damaged hair.  It also contains Babassu Oil, an oil that I'm not really familiar with, but after a little research discovered that it has benefits that improve hair and scalp health.  More importantly I'm getting back to my roots and want to use more products that are made with certified organic ingredients.

The results are in and this conditioner is definitely an added favorite to my shower caddy, lol.  Not only did it literally melt my tangles away but the mint...the MINT..felt so invigorating on my scalp.  The smell isn't too over powering either.  I have allergies and am really sensitive to strong scents and this one passed my nose test.  Literally no sinus tingles while using this product, lol.  

My hair felt so soft and I seriously enjoyed using this product.  Not only did my hair feel moisturized but my husband complimented the smell of my hair the next day.  I'm not sure about you guys, but I love when my hair has a fresh scent that lasts for a few days. 


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