Archive | July, 2010

Fashion Feature: We Love Colors

28 Jul

You may or may not know – but I love colors. On my walls, my clothes, my nails – even in my hair sometimes. While I appreciate for earth tones and neutrals as well, they aren’t my normal thing. When I heard about a leg wear company that supposedly shared the same chromatic obsession that I did, well – it tickled me pink!

Horrible puns aside, I have made a few purchases from We Love Colors, and every single one has left a satisfied customer. They have a wide choice that pleases even the rabid color enthusiast that I am and more that I had never thought of! (Tie-Dye tights? Who thinks of these things?) I actually own the tights that are pictured above, but the main reason I haven’t worn them yet is because I don’t own a neutral (read: black) skirt or dress to pair them with. Mark my words, I will remedy this some day. Pictured below is the next purchase on my to-do list, provided that I figure out what exactly I could wear with them…a white dress maybe? But what would I put on my feet that wouldn’t look strange?

Anyhow, while their Splash Color (read: Tie-Dye) leggings are a bit expensive ($29.00 for leggings seems a bit steep for me considering my broke college student budget, plus the mere existence of stores like Forever 21), I was quite pleased with their mid-range nylon/lycra blend tights. (They have regular tights as well as a slightly more expensive – and thicker – microblend line of tights) When they came in the mail I was expecting a texture and thickness similar to my mother’s pantyhose, but I was pleasantly surprised – they’re thick, think thin leggings thick – minimally opaque and seem to be pretty run-resistant. The regular tights are more like average pantyhose material, but I got them in knee-highs and they satisfied me as well.

While the styles I posted are a bit of a fashion risk, they stock tons of styles in a variety of solid colors as well. Plus, they stock many different sizes, so almost anyone can partake in the legwear love. If you’re looking for outfit inspiration you can check out their official blog that shows user-submitted photos of real women rocking their We Love Colors tights. Once I have an outfit in mind, I’ll probably be submitting photos as well!

What do you think? Let me know in the comments!

xoxo, Tara

Notes from the Universe

26 Jul

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Greetings, everyone! I wanted to pass along a wonderful website that I found via the fanTASTIC blog, Medicinal Marzipan – which, if you need a self-love pick-me-up (and who doesn’t, sometimes??) is really worth a visit – called Notes from the Universe! (I thought a dramatic title deserved a dramatic text accent.)

What are the Notes from the Universe? It’s a daily (or however frequent you would like) blast of email affirmation that is sure to bring a smile to your face during the summer drag or winter doldrums – not that it goes out of style during any other part of the year, of course.

Here’s what the author, Mike Dooley, had to say about the notes:

“The Notes are designed to shed light on your own inner path: to spark your memory, attract like thinking, and awaken the slumbering deity within. They contain the truths I’ve come to know and live by about who we are, why we’re here, and the magic at our disposal. Everything I’ve discovered is neatly tucked between the paragraphs, and for the eager, earnest reader, far more meaning will be found therein than will first meet the eye.”

You can personalize it so it shoots some tailor-made goodness, as well. Here’s an example of a recent Note that I received:

With self-confidence, Tara, the world bows to greet you and coincidence becomes your partner.

And self-confidence comes from loving yourself.

And loving yourself comes from knowing that you are, still, exactly who I most want to be.

And so I am,
The Universe

How sweet is that?

I am a firm believer that self-manifestation is an extremely powerful tool. While bending the forces of time and space could be considered a stretch, having a fantastic attitude and a positive outlook towards life will go a surprisingly long way. While this goes for the attitude you’ll have when facing down tasks and mingling with others, I’ve found that shooting positivity out into the world can help you meet your goals as well! Whether or not it is a divine force switching events to work in my favor or just the fact that an added boost of confidence can make all the difference – and it works.

Here’s a personal example: A few months ago, I was up for a big interview. It was an interview by committee, so if I wasn’t nervous before, I certainly was then. A mentor of mine mock-interviewed me and even then I was so anxious that my knees were shaking and my hands became damp and clammy. I was a mess.

She (and some google-fu) gave me helpful, albeit obvious advice: Rather than considering what could go wrong and how under-prepared you are, consider how much could go right. Rather than lamenting the items that aren’t on your resumé, consider all the achievements that are. Instead of convincing yourself that you aren’t good enough, remind your inner detractor that you do, in fact, deserve what you’re aiming for. For extra ammunition, give evidence.

Afterwards, count your blessings. (Slowed Down Sundays, anyone?) Realize that it isn’t the end of the world – all they can say is no, and so what? There are other chances. If it doesn’t work out for you, remember all the good things that you have.

I walked into that interview with my head held high – I certainly worked hard to earn the right to interview but if I didn’t get the position, I’d survive. Things were going well enough for me that my general state of being wouldn’t be derailed and I could continue on, content and satisfied. I ended up getting the position – and I think going in calm, composed and positive deserves more than part of the credit.

Just for kicks, here’s another Note from the Universe:

In case you didn’t know, you couldn’t tell, or you haven’t heard, if you’re reading this right now on a computer, Tara, you’re rich. If you have somewhere to go today, you’re connected. And if there is anyone, anywhere, who for any reason knows where you are in this moment, you are loved.

Dang, you just keep acing time and space.

Big time,
The Universe

Amen to that.

xoxo,

Tara

It’s Almost Over!

21 Jul

Hi guys!

I know I’ve been talking about this a lot, but now we’re at the end (!) of the nomination period for the Black Weblog Awards. Hopefully, if you’re reading this, you think this blog isn’t too shabby. If you think I’m doing a pretty good job, could you please head over to the Black Weblog Awards website and nominate me under Best Teen Blog? (If you think I am deserving of other categories, however, I won’t discourage you…)

To nominate, just head on over to their nomination page and click “next” (all the while adding the URLs of other great blogs, if you are so inclined) until you reach the Best Teen Blog subheading, where you can enter my URL, https://xoxotara.wordpress.com/. If you want to wait till later, just click that shiny yellow button on the right-hand side of the page. The nomination period ends July 25th. (which is really soon – and then you won’t have to hear about it again! At least until voting starts.)

To all that have nominated me already, thank you, thank you, thank you!! I really appreciate it.

Thank you a million times in advance!

xoxo,

Tara

Should “Guilty Pleasures” be Guilty?

19 Jul

Passions, one of my earliest (and most ridiculous) Guilty Pleasures

What is a Guilty Pleasure? According to Wikipedia:

guilty pleasure is something one enjoys and considers pleasurable despite feeling guilt for enjoying it. Often, the “guilt” involved is simply fear of others discovering one’s lowbrow or otherwise embarrassing tastes, rather than actual moral guilt. Fashion, music, and food (especially unhealthier foods high in sugar and/or fat) can be examples of guilty pleasures.

I’m going to put emphasis on one part of that explanation, namely, “often the “guilt” involved is simply fear of others…rather than actual moral guilt”. That’s something to think about, isn’t it? While there are certainly some pleasures that should be kept away from (these things are often called vices…) guilty pleasures often aren’t necessarily bad, other than the fact that they are potentially embarrassing or not necessarily part of the norm. If you read secret-telling communities (outside of ones like PostSecret), many secrets consist of, “I really like [insert embarrassing fad/movie/television show/music artist] but I don’t want to tell anyone because I’ll be made fun of”. I don’t know about anyone else, but being that afraid that someone will find your taste levels questionable shouldn’t be allowed!

I’ve eventually come to learn that taking pleasure in things that people consider guilt-worthy just isn’t worth it. Why should I hide my cheesy unicorn poster in shame? Of course, I’ve given a few of my friends the side-eye for their interests (What is so interesting about the Real Housewives of Anywhere?) but that doesn’t mean they can’t enjoy them. The most effective way I’ve come up with to combat this is to keep it real and be open about it! No use hiding in shame because I enjoyed (okay, sometimes enjoyed) the ridiculous antics of Passions. By the way, if you don’t know what Passions is, it’s a now-cancelled soap opera that took soap operas to a whole new, poorly scripted, strangely written level. Note: I don’t necessarily think that these are quality products – sometimes I know what I’m watching is awful – but that doesn’t mean I have to feel bad about it!

So, in light of that, I’m going to open up! Here are some of my personal (past and present) guilty pleasures:

HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL – I don’t care, I loved this movie. I didn’t really like the second one (corny) and I haven’t seen the third one, but I enjoyed the heck out of this Disney Channel film and I even have the soundtrack. Of all the recent Disney Channel movies, I enjoyed this one the most. I also like the ones from my childhood, but that’s probably just nostalgia.

CHEESY POP MUSIC FROM THE 90’S –Seriously, that image up there is so hilariously late 1990’s, from their styling and hair, to the “extreme” flames, to the old-internet animated effects, I don’t even know what to do with myself. I feel like I’m viewing this in Netscape Navigator. Anyhow, this music is the kind I grew up with and I still have a fondness for it, no matter what anyone tries to say. From the standard fare like NSYNC, Spice Girls, Backstreet Boys and Britney Spears to the more obscure, like 5ive, B*Witched, S Club 7 and Cleopatra (who knew they released more than one album? not me!), I’m all for it. Also, listen to Love Sensation by 911 if you want to see the depths of my pop obsession. It’s a song from a Casper the Friendly Ghost soundtrack (not even the original…some sequel) and was going to be my first CD purchase if I hadn’t opted for the more tasteful Good Burger soundtrack instead.

VH1 REALITY TELEVISION (or just VH1 in general)  – Up until recently, I used to watch this stuff – all the time. I’ve sat down to watch Celebrity Fit Club and even an episode of Celebrity Paranormal Project. I even know how we got to the depressing point of airing “I Love Money”. If you’re wondering, Flavor Flav and Brigitte Neilson got together on The Surreal Life, got their own reality show (Strange Love), which led to Flavor of Love when Flav ended up getting dumped. Flavor of Love led to spin-offs such as I Love New York (which needs to come back) and eventually Rock of Love. The crazy people from both shows got together for I Love Money (and Charm School). I’ve also probably seen every episode of I Love the (insert decade here) Series. I used to have a lot of free time.

OH NO THEY DIDN’TTo be quite honest, celebrity culture doesn’t interest me that much. But as the header says, “The celebrities are disposable. The content is priceless.” While it does have its share of problems sometimes, there’s a reason this very large community is so popular (it’s broken the comment limit for Livejournal that was previously unknown, and has taken the entire site down singlehandedly…twice.). I have wasted many an hour wading through pages of comments about celebrities, mainly for the hilariously biting commentary. (if you want a taste, check out the tumblr, I Love ONTD). There are reasons why this community is an acquired taste but I won’t lie and say I don’t join in occasionally, even though I’m sure I’d get a lot more done on a regular basis if I gave up ONTD altogether. Then again, what kind of jackal would I be if I did that?

So, now that I’ve shared mine, what are your guilty pleasures? Post about them in the comments!

xoxo,

Tara

Want to nominate me for a Black Weblog Award? You can click right here for more information. A million thanks if you do!

Music Video: California Gurls by Katy Perry

14 Jul

This is seriously one of the cutest videos I’ve seen in a while. It combines many of my favorite things – Candyland, Snoop Dogg and pastel wigs. Cotton candy clouds and lavender hair? LOVE. If it had only included unicorns and mouse ears, I would have given it the title of video of the year, hands down. After I buy a lilac afro wig, of course.

I’m actually not a huge fan of the song – it begins to grate once it’s been stuck in your head for a few hours – but I had to get the video on my iPod. A perfect example of how my sister and I are completely different, once I told her how much I enjoyed it, her first reaction was: “I’m going to think it’s overdone, tacky and obnoxious, aren’t I?” Much like Times Square, Las Vegas and Disney’s Wonderful World of Color, she was proven right and we were at odds over our taste levels (or lack thereof) once again.

Her multicultural backup dancers are cute too, as are her various costumes and props. (Other than the girl wrapped in cellophane – that was a bit creepy.)

Here are a few more images I really liked from the video:

All photos from I ♥ Katy Perry on Tumblr.

What do you think about the video? Are there any you’ve been into lately? Let me know in the comments.

xoxo, Tara

Dream a little Dream…

12 Jul

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I firmly believe that dreams have a tendency to tell you things about yourself – it may be your mind’s way of processing things you weren’t consciously thinking about, or even a way of sending you a message you had never considered. I’ve come to many a personal epiphany based on particularly striking dreams. Then again, there are always those dreams that are just plain strange and those are pretty fun too. Those are the kinds I get the most often, and I really look forward to them. Or maybe, perhaps, my mind is trying to tell me something when I dream of being best friends with Spencer Pratt, who has suddenly become a glamorous drag queen who suspiciously resembles Tatianna from RuPaul’s Drag Race. (I think it’s that I read Oh No They Didn’t! too much, but I’m not positive.)

While I probably don’t remember most of my dreams, I’ve gotten a bit better at keeping them in my head. If you’ve never given it an attempt, it’s certainly worth a try. All you need is a notebook and a pencil!

Next time you go to sleep, have your notebook and your pencil in an easily accessible place, like on your nightstand next to your bed. If you wake up with the memories of a dream, quickly grab that notebook and start writing down as many details as possible, even if they’re in muddled order or can’t quite make sense. (I’ve come to realize that dream logic often doesn’t mesh well with real life logic.) Read them over later and see if you can make heads or tails of them. (That’s always fun.) When they’re written on a page (or typed, whichever you prefer), you’re less likely to forget about them as you go about your daily routine.

If you wake up without any memories of dreams, that’s alright too! Just stay patient. Maybe you’ll wake up with only small snippets, like, “I was a prolific Yorkshire Terrier breeder, but when I bred them, they were pastel colors. I don’t know why.” Another thing I’ve started to learn is that the more you write down your dreams, the more likely you are to remember them in the morning (and that this is a semi-deteriorating skill).

I don’t know about anyone else, but I’ve personally had some strange dreams. Here are some that I’ve written down, for example (basically verbatim):

Basically, me and the boyfriend were Super Heroes. We were kind of like Iron Fist and Misty Knight. I ran into a woman who looked just like me so I freaked out, thinking it was my long-lost mother. (This was at a swanky house that some middle-aged suburban rich people might have.) I ran into a bathroom and freaked out with the boyfriend reassuring me.

They made a movie about us and I watched it with him and my parents.

He claimed he was man-pregnant with a hard-boiled egg, and then he ate it.

Yeah. That one was strange. I’ve also had an epic dream (that I wrote down but I can’t find) where the human race was enslaved by an alien race. After buying my freedom from a kind, elderly alien-dinosaur man through what can be described as a game of interstellar chess (using a game-winning move I had learned from my grandfather), I became an instrumental part of the human rebellion until I was finally able to find my siblings, who had found their way back to our childhood home, resigned to the idea that I was gone forever. I still think that one should become a movie.

Anyhow, you never know what kinds of fabulous adventures and fantastic revelations you may have unless you start remembering your dreams. And hey – you might get that dose of creative inspiration that you’ve been looking for.

Have you ever had a really memorable dream? Share it in the comments!

xoxo,

Tara

Fashion Feature: NaKIMuli, inc

7 Jul

Have you ever heard of NaKIMuli, the fantastic clothing company by designer Tennille McMillan? Well, if you don’t know, you’re about to find out. Her fashion line has captivated me ever since I saw her distinctive holographic dress, an item that I am dying to have in my closet to this very day. The bright colors and African-inspired prints are to die for, and the creative construction makes every piece of clothing extremely different.

The Afrikan Hologram dress. From this moment, I was in love. You can clearly see her creative vision on her tumblr, where she sometimes posts personal pictures of her day-to-day life – it’s clear that her eye for outrageous fashion extends beyond the runway.

Can I just say that I really, really, REALLY want this cape (in purple, preferably) in my life? I already have the perfect belt. I also want to say that this comment that was posted on the page made me incredibly happy:

are you joking? this is fucking fabulous AMAZING and i want it, and i am almost upset that such a perfect cocoon exists and it is not mine, i want to live in that. holy poop! go to this website this lady’s clothes make me feel really happy about being brown and curvy and that is not normally how i feel when i am looking at clothes on the internet. love, shanay.

I feel like she expresses my thoughts exactly. I want a perfect cocoon, too!

From the brand’s official tumblr page:

Clothing, both the classical and the innovative, is fueled by imagination. naKIMuli aims to go beyond the traditions of women’s fashion and explore more of the imagination, what could be rather than what should be. The world we live in often dictates what we should wear and creates millions of it. We at naKIMuli want to create a fashion revolution: replace the cookie cutter model with one that embraces individuality, comfort, and fun. Become your own trendsetter. Dream. Explore. Dare.

All of these images are from the official Nakimuli tumblr, where I strongly suggest you go if you like what you see here.

What do you think? Are there any other brands setting the fashion world on fire? Let me know!

xoxo, Tara