Author Archives: Garance

L’Art De Vivre

What if style is much more than just our clothes?
 
Yeah, sure, ok. We all know that. Obviously style is much more than our clothes. It’s how you wear them, how you move, it’s about being present. But maybe it’s also about the way you live your life.
 
I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately. When I see other people’s lives on Instagram, for example. It’s annoying sometimes, sure – but it’s also super inspiring at the same time. Style is a way of life, and it has absolutely nothing to do with money. It’s all the things, little or big, that make up the art of living.
 
It’s putting together a beautiful dinner. Cultivating your passions. Knowing how to pick out flowers. Creating beautiful friendships. Writing a letter. Being fulfilled in your work. Knowing how to travel.
 
I was telling you monday about my friend, Laura, who splits her time between the farm and the city. Her life is like a dream to me. Not the working on the farm part necessarily (the passion I’d like to cultivate as soon as I can would actually be laziness and laziness has no place at the farm), but the fact that she lives both in nature and in the city.
 
The way my friend Richard lives and works also seems really dreamy to me. He’s renting a gorgeous little house in Montauk (you might remember, he lent it to me for a weekend) and his employees are all permanently invited there. He even had pillows embroidered with the name of his Surf Shack on them – it’s a little detail, but it shows the empathy involved in creating your own world, a world you can share with those you love.
 
I remember the first time I really understood what the art of living was.
 
My mother had just come back from spending a weekend with her friends in Bonifacio, and she said to me: “Can you believe it? They love going to the beach with their friends so much, they had a huge beach blanket made just so everyone could share it!!!”
I remember thinking that was so amazing. It’s a way of thinking about life and doing things differently, even if it’s just a tiny detail.
 
Maybe I’m asking all these questions because I’m starting on my fifth year in New York*, and maybe it’s also because my relationship with fashion and style is changing thanks to everything I’m learning with this blog.
And it’s also because, since I created my own company, I feel lucky to be able to decide how I want to live my life and what kinds of people I want to be around when I work, so I often find myself wondering: “but why do we do things that way?”
 
The funny thing about starting your own business is that you can do whatever you want, but even so, you often find yourself repeating whatever is familiar to you.
Work hours, vacation time, and even behaviors – like sitting at a desk, for example.
 
Last week, I posted a photo of Emily working at the Studio.
I explained that I’d always wanted the Studio to be a little bit like a home for the team. Last year, I ordered them all fuzzy slippers so they’d be comfortable. And I encourage them to take their laptops and work wherever they’d like.

So, the photo I posted on Instagram was of Emily chilled out working on the couch in her socks, which she does often. I got a lot of reactions like: “dream job” “I want to work with you all!!!” “Life goal!!!” and I thought it was interesting to see how inspiring it was for people just to see someone looking cozy at work.
 
Things like giving two weeks of vacation at Christmas to your employees in a country where two weeks is typically the total amount of vacation allowed for the whole year. Encouraging them to work wherever they want in the Studio. My next project is to send us all off on a trip together with different assignments… But I’ll tell you more about that when the time comes, if it comes.
 
These are little things, but I think it encourages people to push the limits a little bit and think about living in a way that’s really personal.
 
It’s not just work, it’s kind of the same way with life. I really admire people who question the way things are done and don’t just follow the established rules. I was telling a friend recently that my goal is to work less (friends of laziness, who’s with me?). If I said that in France, everyone would be like: of course!!!
 
But, here in the US, that shocks people right away. But, actually, I like that. I love working. I think what I really wanted to say to my friend was more like: “I want to live and work differently” – and, most of all, I don’t want to confuse my career with my life – and that can happen quickly in the fashion world…
 
I want to keep coming up with new ways of doing things, not get too attached to typical methods, find inspiration in others, like Laura, so I can find what really works for me, and never forget to keep questioning the rules – am I doing things mechanically just because “that’s the way it’s done”?
I want to invent my own lifestyle, I guess.**
 
And it’s funny, right now. I’ve been talking about this with my friends of all different ages, whether they’re employees at a company or they work for themselves, and they are all asking themselves the same questions.
How do you organize your life so that it really fits you? Is it like in the fashion world? Do you have to try different things and make mistakes? (I think so) Find inspiration in others? (Probably) Question your way of doing things every season?
 
I think so, yes. Otherwise you end up with a boring and dull life, like an old sweater that’s too comfortable. Well, ok. We all like old sweaters, you feel good in them. But aren’t you going to regret not trying the candy pink-colored top one day?
 
(Oh, the worst analogies ever. This snowy weather is going to my head…!)
 
So I wonder – what do you think about all of this? What does your ideal life look like? What do you dream of doing?
 
———————
 
* It’s a city I love, and I’m here for good, but it’s also like it’s own planet sometimes.
 
** That’s kind of what I did with this blog, I guess. But once blogs become a kind of establishment, how can you keep reinventing?
 
Translated by Andrea Perdue

That’s A Wrap

You know me, I love coats. But wrap coats don’t really work on me, no idea why.

Too bad because, during winter, sometimes you just want to feel a little more feminine after months of a bulky coat. And the wrap coat has such a nice, womanly silhouette.

It sure works perfect on Alex, in the photo.

A Beauty Minute With Kai

Morning: In the  morning I use Caudalie Cleansing Water in organic grape and camomile, it’s very light and very refreshing. Sometimes I will use Isola vanilla coffee bean scrub, it’s my magic ingredient to achieve soft and even toned skin. I will either moisturize with Clarins Beauty Flash Balm or Nature’s Gate Vitamin E Oil. I have a lot of  hair so I like using products that will keep my hair moisturized throughout the day. I use Giovanni Deeper Moisture Conditioner as a leave in and Oyin Handmade Whipped Pudding.


Day: During the day I like to carry Butter Elixir body oil and lip balm. I don’t wear a lot of lipstick so the lip balm is perfect for me, it doesn’t have much sheen so it almost looks like I have a bare lip. The body oil is really light and I use it as my daily moisturizer. I don’t wear a lot of makeup, but a friend of mine recently gave me the Shimmering Skin Perfector from Becca and it’s quickly become a favorite.

When I am getting ready to go out I will apply my favorite mascara, from Benefit called “They’re Real”.

Night: Before bed, I use a bar of soap I picked up in Morocco, it’s not scented, which I love and it doesn’t dry out your skin like most soaps. I’ll apply Sublimage Eye from Chanel around my eyes and  dab a little bit of pure Tea Tree Oil on my face after using a drop of pure Argan Oil that I got from an herbalist in Morocco.”

- Kai Avent-deLeon

For more beauty minutes, click here!

Style Story / Laura Ferrara

My friend Laura Ferrara is probably one of my main life inspirations right now – you probably remember the photos I took at Westwind Orchard, her upstate farm, last summer. She divides her time between farming upstate and being one of my favorite stylists in the city. One day, I would love to have the same type of lifestyle…

Her style also completely resonates with me. It’s timeless, elegant and cool at the same time.

Shopping Cart

A few more ideas for the OTK (over the knee) boot, I love them with a sweater dress!


Check my Pinterest too!


By admin

Shopping Cart

A few more ideas for the OTK (over the knee) boot, I love them with a sweater dress!


Check my Pinterest too!


By admin

Veronika / Berlin

I’ve never been to Berlin, but it’s one of my dreams – and who better to ask for the secrets of the city than Veronika? She lives a beautiful life there, amid all of the art and culture. And I can’t wait to visit all of these places with her next time I visit!

How would you describe Berlin to someone who has never been?
The city with two faces; young and old, beautiful and torn down, grey and colorful, loud and quiet, modern and old-fashioned.

Tell us about your first visit to Berlin — what made it memorable?
I was only 16. It felt enormously huge. As it was a very short weekend, I only visited West Berlin. I was overwhelmed exploring the area around Bahnhof Zoo, thanks to my favorite book C, Kinder vom Bahnhof Zoo by Christiane F. Disturbing and exciting. Mostly I remember the colors were dirty and bleached out, very 70s-like. It was only years later that I found out David Bowie was playing in the movie.

What is your favorite restaurant here?
Grill Royal is the place to be and is always fun!

And the best bar?
Diener Tattersaal

Where do you go if you feel like dancing with friends?
I rarely go dancing, as I am traveling so much. I really enjoy my quiet time at home in Berlin. I really do love dancing in our corridor in our huge apartment (one of Berlin´s big pluses are the spacious apartments)…

And for date night…
Luckily my date (Justin) loves bringing me to Grill Royal. Another good place is Paris Bar. It’s a classic West Berlin restaurant that is filled with art and breathes historic air.

What is the one landmark in Berlin that everyone should visit?
Museumsinsel is a very beautiful place. I love the Pergamom Museum – unfortunately it’s closed for renovation. but the Neues Museum, renovated by David Chipperfield, is an amazing place. also the Dom nearby is one of my favorites. Visiting churches is something I love – quiet places that feel like time machines to me. Another exciting spot is the Bundestags-Building. Very impressive and amazingly renovated!

What is the best souvenir someone can buy in Berlin?
Porcelain from KPM (Königliche Porzellan Manufaktur)

Where is the best spot for people watching?
The restaurant Borchardt. A famous place where the people watching is major next to having schnitzel. I love going there on a rainy sunday afternoon, having late lunch and a glass of champagne.

Describe your favorite stores here…
I am very excited for The Store in Soho House to officially open in March, they have an amazing juice bar — very healthy, yummy snacks and a great selection of designers from J.W. Anderson and Simone Rocha to Christophe Lemaire. And I like Andreas Murkudis’ store a lot, he sells not only Céline and Dries van Noten, but also beautiful furniture pieces.

How do you prefer to get around Berlin?
In Summer I am always on my bike and preferably crossing the Tiergarten (by day – it’s a bit dodgy in the night). In winter, it’s best to have a car. My favorite is driving with Justin on his beautiful 70s BMW motorbike on the super impressive Karl-Marx-Alee with its enormous socialist building blocks.

Where do you go for a day trip outside of Berlin?
To Potsdam. Its a very short trip. The castle Sans Souci is a must-see and the lakes around are beautiful. My secret spot for sunbathing and swimming is Heiliger See in Potsdam.

Describe your perfect day in Berlin…
After waking up early (one of the pluses of not going dancing ;)), we have a fresh juice and a snack (best cookies and carrot cake in town!!) in our favorite cafe What Do You Fancy Love. Then we have a walk on Ku Damm through my favorite street, Fasanenstrasse, visit my favorite church Gedächtniskirche (its new version built by Egon Eiermann at the zoo). Then we visit some galleries like Blain Southern, maybe go see a movie in the afternoon and have an early aperitivo in Grosz. Then either we invite friends for dinner – luckily Justin is a great chef, or we go and have the best meat in town in Pauly Saal.

 

Click here for more city guides.

Photo by Sandra Semburg.

The Little Things

How cool is this jacket? It’s a really interesting interpretation of the classic bomber. I’m not always sure about an oversized style in this shape (I usually prefer a large coat to hang a little longer) but this suits Patty so well — and the neutral color makes it extra chic.

But I think my favorite part of this look is the unexpected layer of red. The contrasting turtleneck is a super interesting detail that shows sometimes it’s the little things that make an outfit special.

What are the little things you do to bring personality to an outfit?

The Little Things

How cool is this jacket? It’s a really interesting interpretation of the classic bomber. I’m not always sure about an oversized style in this shape (I usually prefer a large coat to hang a little longer) but this suits Patty so well — and the neutral color makes it extra chic.

But I think my favorite part of this look is the unexpected layer of red. The contrasting turtleneck is a super interesting detail that shows sometimes it’s the little things that make an outfit special.

What are the little things you do to bring personality to an outfit?

In Costa

I almost have no words to describe my vacation in Costa Rica. That’s how amazing it was.

The idea was really simple. Get away with friends, rent a simple house, learn to surf, that’s it. Nothing to do in the evenings, everyone in bed by 9 after a margarita or two at sunset, and I’ve already told you about all the whole inevitable style meltdown.

And actually, I think it was the simplicity that touched me so much.

It reminded me of my summers in Corsica, in my village of Girolata, the dirt roads, the purity of the water and the sky, and days spent doing nothing that end up passing by incredibly fast.

It’s something I’m really stuck on right now – keeping things simple and getting back to my roots.

Two of my friends, Lolo and Camille, were with me – and I couldn’t help but take a few photos – they were absolutely irresistible with their tans and all their colorful funny tee-shirts.

I hope these rays of sun will do you some good. This trip started as a promise I made to myself to not spend another winter in New York without seeing the sun at some point. The winters here are brutal, so having the chance to break it up with a few days of sun should totally be reimbursed by insurance.

I mean, Obamacare or something.

Maybe one day! ;)

Translated by Andrea Perdue

Swipe Right

Noooooooooo, don’t start looking for me, I’m not on Tinder.

But I have lots of friends who are and, in life, you should never say never, even though, in my opinion, Tinder seems like the MDAITW (Most Depressing App in the World)(Ok, after irs.gov).
For those of you who live under a rock, Tinder is an online dating app and everyone is on it.

Why depressing? I don’t know, I guess it’s the fast hook up thing that freaks me out a little.

But apparently, it’s not depressing for everybody.

I have a friend who is recently separated (no, no I’m not doing the “so I have this friend…” thing who is actually me) and she’s having THE BEST TIME (all caps AND bold) on Tinder. She’s meeting tons of guys, making friends, having torrid one-night stands, and apparently that makes up for the occasional disappointing date.

Friday night, she had me swipe for her (basically, on Tinder, you see photos of people who are within a reasonable geographic distance from you, and you say yes or no with one swipe.)(And if you say yes, and they say yes, you can start chatting with them)(And that can be great, or it can end up with conversations like this).

That night, Tinder was seriously depressing.

The only criteria you can select is age and geographic distance, so, as you can imagine, the net’s cast pretty wide. Anything and everything comes your way. 

It’s like being at Grand Central at rush hour.

Except that there are only guys in the station, and each time you see one, you have to say yes or no.
Just like in a train station, most of the guys aren’t much to look at, and on Tinder, some of their photos are just ridiculous (come on, guys, we don’t want to see your naked torso photos. We don’t want to see that you’ve obviously cropped your girlfriend out of it (we can see her hand on your shoulder, dude!!!). It’s ridiculous. Photos in hot tubs are ridiculous. Dick picks aren’t even ridiculous, they just make you want to throw your phone out the window or put it in the washing machine. I could go on for hours but, basically, the first person to open a business for helping people shoot their Tinder photos is going to make a fortune.)

You end up swiping automatically — nope, nope, nope, eeeew, nope, when suddenly a gorgeous guy appears and you swipe NO too fast AND IT’S A DISASTER. You’ve lost the hot guy forever. You can’t go back.

That’s what I did to my friend on Friday without realizing — I swiped NO on a guy who’s not only hot but also a famous actor (well, moderately famous — it wasn’t Leonardo DiCaprio or anything, even though apparently lots of famous actors are on Tinder) — like a dummy, and I was about to fall into an ocean of guilt for maybe making her lose the man of her life (ok, her night) when I noticed she couldn’t care less.

There’s always a hot guy a few (ok, 987647656) swipes later.
It’s the man / woman fish market, except less slimy. Or not.

[By the way, we're talking about New York City on a Friday night, but I wonder what Tinder is like in small towns, like Ajaccio where I was born -- you swipe and the guy happens to work at the grocery store on the corner, or he's your exercise instructor, or an ex you would have liked to never see again, or your own brother?! I'm sure it's happened before! Your brother!!! Eeew!!!]

This quick visit to Tinder confirmed my doubts about it — it really is the MDAITW, but a few hours later, when I was already in bed, my friend texts me three photos of super handsome guys (One was half naked, though, I was like nonono I know it’s late but no), asks me which one I prefer, and I hurry up to respond, because living Tinder vicariously through other people is actually pretty fun. 

And she texts me back the next morning, saying she had the best sex night ever.

#maybenotsodepressingafterall

Anyway, for full disclosure I have to tell you. One of the girls at the Studio is about TO GET MARRIED to a guy she met on Tinder!

And another friend of mine who was on Tinder for a few months told me that no matter what anybody says (“Tinder is just for having fun!!”), every time you swipe, you hope that the next swipe is going to be the love of your life.

So!!! You see? Love is everywhere, you guys. 

What about you? Are you on Tinder? Do you have any stories to tell me? Have you heard about the new app that’s supposed to replace Tinder, Happn? I want to live vicariously through you guys, come ooh!!! ;)

Translated by Andrea Perdue. 

Classic Modern

You know me, I can never go past a classic silhouette. No matter how much I try (ok, so I don’t really try because I love them so much)…

But with Kai’s look here, what I like most is how she takes a classic silhouette and gives it modern accents… like the metallic shoes and her raised beanie. It really shows her personality, which, to me, is a sign of real style.

Classic Modern

You know me, I can never go past a classic silhouette. No matter how much I try (ok, so I don’t really try because I love them so much)…

But with Kai’s look here, what I like most is how she takes a classic silhouette and gives it modern accents… like the metallic shoes and her raised beanie. It really shows her personality, which, to me, is a sign of real style.

My Boots

It took me like a storm in December. I suddenly needed a pair of over the knee boots.

Weird, because it goes against all my fashion habits.

I hate tights, and over the knee boots are mostly worn with them.
I rarely wear skirts in the winter and, again, over the knee boots = skirts most of the time.
I was never super into the jeans and over the knees combo. It has a David Bowie in Labyrinth vibe that I can’t shake off.

But I suddenly needed some, no idea why.

I wanted them flat, to be able to walk around in like sneakers. And also because high heeled over the knees are another story… can be a bit trashy?

Which is probably what made me think about them, The idea that an over the knee boot can be super sophisticated, yet comfortable AND warm. I looked for them everywhere. In the beginning I wanted a real thigh-high boot, but it’s almost impossible to find a flat one. I also wanted a completely flat one but I adapted. Mine have a small heel, a little 70s. I’m okay with it.

I found them at Barney’s and I wear them all the time. It made me love wearing skirts in the winter again!

And about that David Bowie in the movie Labyrinth… well, he was cute, wasn’t he?

Sweater Vest, All Saints, Blue Dress, Steven Alan.

White coat, Nili Lotan; Turtleneck, American Apparel; Tights, Wolford.

Grey Sweater, Joe Fresh; Jeans, Acne; Scarf, White + Warren.

Business As Usual

After an amazing vacation, it’s nice to be back in the city and back to business at the studio!


More ideas on Pinterest.


By admin

Business As Usual

After an amazing vacation, it’s nice to be back in the city and back to business at the studio!


More ideas on Pinterest.


By admin

Career / Brooks Roach

Brooks works in music at Atlantic – he’s got a fascinating job managing musicians and I thought it would be super interesting to ask him to tell us a little bit about his role and his industry. Music has changed so much in the past few years that it makes you wonder what kinds of careers you can pursue in that world these days. Brooks’ career will definitely inspire you…

So what’s your job title?
I work at Atlantic Records as a Director of Touring and Artist Development.

When you were growing up, what did you want to do?
When I was growing up, I didn’t know what I wanted to do. Thinking about it, I swam a lot and I was like, “Oh man, I’m going to be the next…whatever the older equivalent of Michael Phelps was at that point.” I wanted to be an athlete.

And then I got to college and I still didn’t know what I wanted to do. For some reason, in my mind political lobbying came into play. I don’t know where the hell that came from, but it was one of those things…Why would I want to be a lobbyist? But in my mind I said, “I’m going to go to college for political science. This sounds amazing. I’m doing this.” I went and did that and I took a couple of political science classes, learning about the political climate and subcultures and GDP of countries that I didn’t even know where they were on the map. I realized that it wasn’t for me — not my thing at all.

Where did you go to school?
I went to school at the University of California, San Diego.

What was your degree?
Communications — what everyone has a degree in. It means absolutely nothing.

People don’t realize — I do business development and I studied journalism and philosophy in undergrad.
Oh, and I have a minor in religious studies. It’s very important that I have all of these things. [Laughs]

What do your parents do?
My father is a dentist and my mom helped him build his practice when they were starting out, and then she stayed at home with my sister and I. My dad owns his own practice in Austin, Texas, where we’re from. He still works three and a half days a week. He calls it four, but it’s three and a half. He goes water skiing every Friday. He always told my sister and I to get dental degrees. He was like, “I want you to take over the practice,” and we were both just like, “Nah. That’s not really our scene.”

Were you always interested in music?
Yeah. When I was in college, with political science I was thinking in a very business-minded way. Music for me has always been the passion project. In high school I was going to three or four concerts a week in Austin because it has such a great music scene. Growing up there, I got into the mentality that going to concerts was my main source of entertainment and it happened as soon as I had my driver’s license. It was always something that I did and I never really thought about it until college.

So when I was in college — probably my first quarter — someone was saying that they were planning a concert and I should join this committee. And I was like, “Wait, how do you plan a concert?” It just sounded like such a cool thing. I feel like for the public, the general perception of a concert has so much smoke and mirrors surrounding it. You don’t realize that it’s something people do every day. I was working as a freshman, coming in and really getting involved and getting my feet wet and doing a lot of heavy lifting.

My junior and senior year of college I booked about 150 different shows for the university. Everything from a coffee shop show to a larger show outdoors on the quad with everyone from rappers to indie pop bands to emo bands — all over the map. Anything that you can think of, the university implored us to make these events happen for the students and develop a culture.

I think something people don’t necessarily realize when they’re in school is that there’s a budget for this stuff and the university wants to do these things because it creates such a great atmosphere and it’s exciting for incoming students. There are so many resources that you can take advantage of when you’re in that space.
The budget was healthy, so we got to book a lot of shows. There were a lot of venues on our campus, so it wasn’t like we were bringing them to a stage every time. We could do shows at a pub and it was fun.

There are so many people who want music industry jobs because it’s a very desirable field to work in. It’s all about trying to figure out your niche or where your spot is for you to get in and for you to get people to notice you.

How do you book a show?
You have to have all of your particulars in mind. You have to have your venue, you have to have your budget, you have to have your core demographic and you have to understand what kinds of events they would like to come to. From there, it’s just about reaching out to different agents of different bands. You can easily find any band’s agent or manager these days because it’s on Facebook. Ten years ago, there was a silly print directory — that still exists — that tells you for every band who their manager is, who their agent is and how to get in contact with them.

What was the first concert you ever went to?
The first concert I ever went to was a country show that my dad took me to in Austin. It was Bryan White and LeAnn Rimes.

My first “concert concert,” like not in an arena but in a club, was Fall Out Boy. It was in a club in Austin. I’ve probably seen them fifteen times over the years. They’ll be playing at things I’ll go see or I’ll have a band opening for them. It’s been fun to watch their trajectory and come into my own around that.

When did you realize this was something you were interested in as a career? Or that it could be a career?
Once I started booking shows, I realized it was an industry and not just a hobby. That influenced me to look into different opportunities.

I was looking at management companies, record labels, agencies, publicity companies, trying to figure out what would be the best fit for me. I was like, “At this point in my very young career, where are my connections? Where can I reach out to?” And then I thought, “Wait, I’ve booked a lot of shows through a lot of agents, I wonder if I can go intern for one of these agencies.” One summer I interned in Los Angeles for The Agency Group and the following summer I interned for a company in New York called Paradigm, as well as a management company called Red Light Management.

I was trying to figure out where I had connections and how to get my foot in the door. There are so many people who want music industry jobs because it’s a very desirable field to work in. It’s all about trying to figure out your niche or where your spot is for you to get in and for you to get people to notice you. So, I interned for two summers at those different places and then after that I ended up working for The Agency Group in New York. I got the job offer on a Thursday, I did my last final in San Diego on a Friday and I started work in New York the next Tuesday.

What did you do in your internships?
I did everything. I was answering phones, running errands, inputting deals and issuing contracts, which was actually great when I was working at both agencies as I was able to learn about how concert deals were structured. The best part of my internships was when I was at The Agency Group in LA. The CEO of the company came over from London and had me drive his rented Porche from the office in Century City to the Sunset Marquis hotel in West Hollywood. 19 year old me felt so cool driving through Beverly Hills in a Porche. Did I put the top down? Ha…is that even a question?

Did you always want to move to New York? Or was it just because of the job?
I think that I was open at the time. I had different job offers at that time from CAA, William Morris and The Agency Group.

That’s really amazing, and seems so rare.
It was great. But with the other large agencies, when you’re starting out, you start in the mailroom. You’re a number to someone. It wasn’t personal in the way that I wanted it to be personal.

The guy that I was working for is this guy named Steve Kaul, who was a great mentor. Three months into working for him, he was like, “Okay cool, here’s one of my bands. Go book a tour. Figure it out. Route the tour and find the offers. Negotiate the deals. Help set the ticket prices and then let’s discuss it with management and we’ll confirm the tour.” He put a lot of faith and trust in me that I would not have had if I had gone with a larger agency instead.

So what was that first job here?
I was an assistant to the Vice President of the Agency Group in New York. His roster was a lovely Canadian indie-rock band that you might know called Nickelback…yeah…so Nickelback was his largest client. It was such a great experience learning with one of the biggest bands in the world. They still play arenas and their live show, the way I describe it to people is: “Going to a Nickelback show is like drunk karaoke.”

I love that. And I love karaoke!
Because you don’t necessarily want to know every Nickelback song ever made, but you do.

So I was working with Nickelback and a bunch of other bands in that genre. I was also working with a few artists who I still really love: Built to Spill, an alternative band that’s been around for like twenty years, and Doug Martsch, who is a guitarist legend; he’s revered by people. For that kind of music, he’s one of the guitar gods. He was self-managed, so it was so fun working with him on a lot of different components. And then Citizen Cope, who is a singer songwriter.

What was the next step in your career after that?
From there, I worked at The Agency Group for about three and a half years. I had a great time working there and everything went really well and then another opportunity came up with Atlantic Records from my current boss. He reached out to me and said, “We have this position open. It was working in touring at Atlantic. Would you be interested?” And I said, “Sure, I’d be interested in talking about anything.” So, coming into this position, it was very vague and I was trying to figure out what it meant.

Now, seeing the full breadth of what this can be and has become for me, it’s really cool. It’s much more creative. I felt like in my former job, it was a lot of spreadsheets and negotiating and all of that, whereas this is more of a marketing position.

Can you talk me through what your job actually entails?
There are a lot of things. The title is two-pronged: touring and tour promotions.

So, when our artists go on the road, it’s working with their agents and helping them figure out strategically where it’s best for artists to play based on sales figures, radio numbers if that’s applicable for a certain artist, social media stats — any kind of analytics that we have that we can point to and say, “This artist should play in Cleveland on x date because we have radio in that market and the fan base on Facebook is in the top 20 markets for us.” We utilize those tools to make sure our artists go to the right places and play the right venues.

One of the reasons I was brought over here is because of the experience I had with The Agency Group knowing different venues and promoters and understanding the different landscape of where you could play. Like in New York, if you’re a cool, young indie band, you want to play at Bowery Ballroom. That’s the end-all-be-all. But where do you play in Indianapolis? Where do you play in Phoenix? Where do you play in the less sexy places in the world where career artists are actually made.

It’s a lot of planning for tours and then figuring out how we’re going to announce our tours. If we’re going to put up a new song or a new video, if we’re going to put up a pre-sale, what the pre-sale is going to entail, if there’s a fan club or if fan clubs are too antiquated for that artist. If we’re going to have radio get involved and give away tickets. When you hear on the radio, “Justin Timberlake is coming to town in three months, get your tickets now from Z100!” That’s because someone at the record label is doing their job. All those kinds of pieces to the puzzle and making sure that we get the biggest splash that we possibly can on a tour.

I hear this all the time that recorded music is dead, and I have to say honestly, it’s quite the opposite. Record companies are alive and well.

I feel like it must have changed so much from when you started with the Internet and social media. You’ve been here for a pivotal moment.
I’ve grown with it. When I was going to shows in Austin, I was listening to bands on PureVolume. That’s how we consumed music at that point. I listened to an artist on PureVolume, I went and bought a CD at the merchandise stand and that was how you consumed music.

Now, it’s interesting because there’s a lot more focus on streaming that’s happened in the last four or five years. There are outlets like YouTube, Spotify, Ario, Pandora, Beats now with Apple and iTunes radio — everything under the sun. People are focusing on that more and there’s different opinions on how effective different streaming platforms may or may not be, but people are gravitating towards that.

We can see it with Paramore, for example. When we were looking at the numbers, we debuted number one on the Billboard charts, we had the biggest record of the week, but I think we did 150,000 records the first week. It was interesting though because even though we all think streaming is the new thing, 50% of those records were physically purchased in a Best Buy or a Walmart or Target.

I feel like Billboard chart numbers and getting a platinum record are something completely different that what that meant in the 90’s. It’s a totally different system.
People used to sell records and record sales are not what they used to be. Like Taylor Swift, she’ll sell 1 million plus and go platinum and be the first one [to go Platinum in 2014], but even massive, juggernaut artists like Sam Smith, he’s doing well and it’s still moving, but it’s still 800,000 units sold. No one’s at 1 million. When we were growing up, it was bands like N’SYNC doing 2 million in a week. It’s just so different.

I remember standing in line waiting for those albums.
I do too. I was living in Los Angeles and I remember going to Sam Goodie Records on the morning tickets went on sale and you had to wait in line to do this because you could not purchase tickets on the Internet. That’s how you got tickets: you waited on line. Everything is evolving. Everyone is trying to figure it out.

And that’s totally changing your job.
Yeah. And the other part of my job is artist development, which deals with more of the promo side of things. So, when we’re looking at an artist campaign, we try to figure out what the right looks are for our artist to secure. [Editors note: Look in this context means positioning artists the right way in the right places] With Charli XCX, who has been a huge focus for me over the past two years. I’m working with her management to figure out what the right looks are for us to do here. This is not a real conversation, but would it be right for her to go on Sesame Street? No. That’s not her.

I saw her on VH1 Top 20 Countdown.
We’re trying to look at all the looks that are out there, figuring out that we want x, y and z and that we don’t want a, b and c because those don’t fit our image and those aren’t things that we should be pursuing. Trying to help position in the way that the artist wants to be seen and working with their vision and making sure that they feel like we are not doing what they would never want to do, but to help them project whatever image they want to project and find the right looks to do so.

Using the term ‘development’ in your title, is it something that you do more on a record-by-record basis or are you really thinking long term?
We’re thinking career development. The way Atlantic is different from Sony or Universal is that where some other labels might look to see chart success immediately, that’s amazing and we’re so happy when it happens, but we’re all about having career artists.

With Charli, for example, she put out a record in April of 2013 called “True Romance.” The album did great. It was critically acclaimed. It was well received. Musically, it was a great record and it sold a handful of copies, but it wasn’t commercially successful in the way that some other projects that we’ve worked on have been. So then, it’s going back and working with her on the whole next record and figuring out what kind of music she wants to make. Figuring out for album two, how can we take what we did and build on it. It’s not just about a flash in the pan.

One of the big success stories for Atlantic, another project that I worked on that we point to a lot of times is Ed Sheeran. Within eighteen months he went from playing Mercury Lounge to selling out at Madison Square Garden.

So, how big is the team that you’re working on?
There are six of us total. There are four people doing my job. There is someone overseeing us, his name is Harlan Frey and he’s great. He allows us to each have our own roster [of artists] and really is supportive of us. And then we have a department assistant as well, who helps out with all of our ticketing and everything we could possibly need. He’s great too.

The way a roster is broken down, ideally in a perfect world, when someone starts in this position you want to know what their tastes are. The roster that I have now is because I’ve raised my hand and said, “I really like this project, can I please have this one.”

Which artists are you working with?
My roster right now is Lykke Li, Christina Perri, Charli CXC, Marina and the Diamonds, Icona Pop, Paramore — those are all my poppy females who I love. I love that kind of music and it’s so fun to be able to work on music that you actually enjoy.

And then on the rock side of things it’s Portugal. The Man, Young the Giant, Saints of Valory, a young band from Austin who we love, Meg Myers, who is this new young indie chick who we’ve put out. She toured with Indie Blood, Pixies and a bunch of other cool bands this year. She’s like a young Alanis Morissette. She’s awesome. You’ll be hearing about her.

And then on the dance side of things, which was sort of a foreign territory to me when I started. I worked with so much rock and so much indie, that I didn’t really understand the landscape and it’s been so great to learn a different side of the industry. I’m working with a group called Cash Cash, a DJ trio from New Jersey. They had a song this year called, “Take Me Home,” that went gold this year and was a big success for us. Then this group called Volantis, they’re a DJ duo from Sweden. One of the guys wrote Toxic, for Britney Spears — a very small song you may have heard of. We’re putting out a record for them in 2015 and they’re super buzzy right now. Then a group called Clean Bandit out of the UK. Their live show is so cool — it’s a live violin, a live cello, a vocalist, drummer and a keyboard guy. Then Rudimentals out of the UK. Their live show is epic. It’s the best festival band show that you would ever want to see. It’s eight or nine people on stage: three vocalists, a guitarists, a live drummer, a bassist, a trumpet and some other brass instruments — it’s so fun. And then one of the ones we’re most excited about is this group called 21 Pilots. They are on Fueled by Ramen, which used to be the emo label but is now going to become the cool, alternative label after Fun and Young the Giant were on there. They’re our next act that is going to break out of Fueled by Ramen.

How have you seen music change in the last 10 years?
In the past 10 years, there have been so many changes in music. In terms of genre, we’ve seen the fall of guitars and the rise of all kinds of electronic and sampling elements. I think that in the next couple of years, we’ll see the rise in more traditional instruments on stage again with artists like John Legend, Sam Smith and Adele on the top of the charts in 2014.

In terms of touring, in 2005, it would have been ridiculous to even consider paying $1,500 for a concert ticket and to meet any artist you wanted to. Today, it isn’t just the norm, if you aren’t doing it and you’re playing larger rooms, everyone is asking you why not? The VIP ticket bundle advent, for better or worse, is here to stay and there are a lot of tours that are planning special areas in arenas to offer fans a premium experience. People with a lot of disposable income are looking for experiences like this and bands and festivals are more than happy to capitalize on this. The VIP craze is definitely here to stay.

Where do you see music going? A lot of people talk about it like it’s a dying industry, but really it seems to be thriving from what we’ve talked about.
I hear this all the time that recorded music is dead, and I have to say honestly, it’s quite the opposite. Record companies are alive and well. Granted, we are having to reinvent what the new model for a record deal will look like, but are also offering support that traditional record labels never have before. My job, for example, was one that didn’t exist 20 years ago. The fact that record labels have taken it upon themselves to find people with experience in the touring space to help advise and market an artist’s tours shows a gesture towards working as a partner in all facets of an artist’s career.

Over the next decade or so, I believe that we’ll see an even greater transition between people purchasing music and people streaming music. Look at the film industry…blockbuster is now out of business, but the studios still release movies into theaters for the fans who want that experience and now they allow you to stream them through Netflix / HBO GO / Amazon etc at home. In print media, a lot of print publications are dying and everyone is going online as well. I believe that the music industry will follow suit. We will always still have physical and digital product for sale (just look at the demand for vinyl…it’s greater now than it has been in the past 30 years), but we’re also coming to grips with the reality that we’re going to need another form of consumption as the habits of music lovers change. Who knows what time will tell, but for the time being, it seems like streaming may fill that void.

Have you ever worked on a project that you weren’t excited about?
No, I love all my projects. [Winks]

How do you deal with something like that?
I think there are elements to every project that you can find that you like. Even if it’s a tougher team to work with or even if the music isn’t great, there are always parts of a project that you can find that you enjoy. I feel like the projects I’m most excited about I love the music on. I’m just really trying to dive into the music.

For me, some of the dance stuff wasn’t on the top of my list when I started, but after going to a bunch of their shows and hanging out with the artists and really getting involved in a collaborative environment, I feel like I’ve really gotten into to the music now.

Do you get tired of the music you’re working with? Do you hear it way too much?
We do hear it a lot. I would never say that I get sick of it. The same way that an artist at the end of a cycle is so excited to stop touring and go off the road because they might be sick of a song, I’ve seen a lot of shows many times on an album cycle. For me, it’s not sick of it, it’s like we’re celebrating a sendoff. It’s like celebrating that when you come back to us, there’s going to be a completely different set list and live show.

I know you travel a lot and you’re going to shows constantly. How hands on are you with the way that you work in terms of spending time with your artists and traveling with them?
That definitely varies project to project. There are some that I’m less involved and some that I’m more. With something like Vance Joy — that’s another one of my projects that I’m working on right now — I was in Texas with him. Vance Joy is supporting Taylor Swift all summer in stadiums around the US. It’s really fun to hang out with him now. We went and did some radio promotions and played a lounge performance and went out to lunch and then did another meet-and-greet. I always really enjoy those experiences hanging out with artists and I feel like a lot of really good ideas come from those interactions.

For Charli’s fall 2013 tour, I was running around New York doing a bunch of promo with her and I feel like when you have a personal relationship, that’s when you can really give an opinion on things and give guidance in the best way you can. Knowing them one-on-one; knowing their likes and dislikes. Part of my job sometimes is to say, “I know you’re tired, I know you want to sleep right now, but we’ve got to go do this radio thing.” Part of being a tour manager is saying, “We have to do this today. This is actually important.”

It seems like a lot of the work you’re doing straddles the line with what a publicist would do.
We’ve got a publicity department and a radio department and a video department that handles MTV, VH1 and all of that. My position is like a quarterback for a lot of that. Saying, “Hey, publicity, can we do this? Hey, radio, can we do that?” Connecting the dots. Our department usually has the relationships with artists and can help work on things like that. It’s not “are we doing things?” it’s “how are we doing them?” Connecting creative directors and choreographers and set designers. It’s kind of all over the place.

I think some of the most interesting jobs are the ones that don’t really have so much of a defined thing. That’s when you really get to explore and do other cool things. Do you ever bring talent to the table at Atlantic?
I have a few times. There have been a couple of artists I’ve suggested to A&R. Our A&R department is in charge of signing and helping to make records. There have been a couple of artists where I’ve said, “Hey, A&R, check this out because I’ve seen a lot of heat on this online and no one seems to be on it or someone tells me this is going to be a big thing.” A lot of times it will be a Spotify viral playlist or I’ll be reading through Pitchfork, Complex, Rolling Stone, Spin, Brooklyn Vegan, just to see what names I’m seeing repeats of. I’m trying to see who people are talking about and why they’re talking about them.

What would your advice be for young artists? How can they be heard?
There are so many young artists out there, I feel like now, more than ever. If you want to be heard, do something different and true to yourself and people will notice. Right now, there are so many dime a dozen bands trying to be the next Lumineers and that genre has all of the superstars it needs. Try something new. When you think of the most dynamic artists, they’re constantly reinventing themselves. When you look at true superstars like Justin Timberlake, he only has three records and they all sounds worlds apart. This is because he’s working with a diverse group of people to keep his sound on the cutting edge.

If you want to be heard, do something different and true to yourself and people will notice. Right now, there are so many dime a dozen bands trying to be the next Lumineers and that genre has all of the superstars it needs. Try something new.

 
What would your average day be?
In the morning, two days ago it was running out and doing a TV show with Vance Joy. Being at the TV, hanging out, making sure everything is going well, making sure that artists are comfortable in the environment that they’re in. Doing a TV show, having thirty people working on a show that you don’t know yelling at you to start to go to stage, just trying to make sure everyone is in their comfort zones. It could be going from morning TV show, coming to the office, working on a schedule for Charli XCX — we’re going to shoot a couple more magazine covers that are going to come out. Then we’ll have an artist come in the office or a manager come in the office to do a meeting or a lunch. Then I’ll go back and work on a marketing plan for Lykke Li at Radio City Music Hall to make sure that we’re selling all the tickets that we possibly can. Then I’ll go out that night to see whatever artist we have playing at Webster Hall. Days look like that a lot of times, where they’re stacked.

You’re working a lot of hours.
But it’s fun.

It’s not a job. It’s just part of your life.
And I feel like if I complained about it, it would be so unfair because there are so many people that want to work in the music industry, that if I complain for a second — and I have to stop myself sometimes — someone else can take my job in a heartbeat.

I understand. I feel like fashion is very similar.
If we do morning TV, I’m out the door at 7:30am or 8:00am, sometimes even earlier, and if we have a show I’ll get home at 1:00am or 2:00am in the morning. It’s all worth it.

What do you find to be the most challenging about your job?
Time management and prioritizing. I work on a roster of about 26 different artists right now, so finding time for everyone and juggling to make sure everyone gets exactly what they need, that’s definitely the hardest thing. Because we care, I’m not trying to clock out and walk out of the office at 7:00pm on the dot every night or 6:00pm or whatever. I’m working until the job gets done.

Do you ever feel like you have too much on your plate and you need to hand off to someone else? How much can you be working on at one time?
I’m very close to the maximum that I can be working on to still be effective. But I don’t feel overwhelmed. I used to when I first started because it was a lot all at once. But I’ve been able to get a grip on what needs to happen today and what can wait until tomorrow. But it’s also being on call at 2:00am when someone’s bus tire goes flat and they’re not going to make it to morning TV on time or radio or they miss a flight and figuring out what’s going to happen with that.

What do you enjoy the most about your job?
I really like getting to work with artists and getting to see their inception through completion. The Charli album, “Sucker,” we’ve been talking about this since April. I was in LA and she was like, “I’ve got this amazing album concept. It’s a great name and there are great visual components.” And then finally in September when we got the album artwork, I was like, “See, that’s awesome, because you had this idea back then and here it is. And it’s everything you wanted it to be. It’s so rewarding to get to see that — when an artist’s vision comes through and you get to be a part of that.

How do you handle challenging moments with your artists?
I’ve had moments that are challenge, but at the end of the day I have to remind myself why I’m doing this. There are a couple of things that have happened that are very challenging in the moment, but then you step back from it and you let everything roll off your shoulders, you don’t take anything personally — we’re all working together here — and then a week later it’s a funny story you can tell for some autobiography later.

I have to remember why I’m here. I’m not here because I need the job — well, I do need the job — but I’m here because I love it. Sometimes you have a rough day and I’ll come home and be bummed out for a while and then I’ll go for a run and I’ll be good.

You spoke a lot about your first boss being your mentor, do you feel like he’s still your mentor? Do you have a specific mentor?
I don’t feel like it’s one person anymore. Atlantic has been very inspiring for me. The caliber of the people that are working here is great. Steve was an amazing person to introduce me to a lot of people and show me how to carry myself in the industry and be respected. He was such a great first step for me.

But Atlantic has so many inspiring people. My boss, Harlan, has been working touring people for the last twenty years. He challenges me. Julie Greenwald, our chairman, has been in this industry forever and can call Jay Z up in a second and get him on the phone. Craid Kallman, who is the other chair of our company was one of the most revered club DJ’s in New York and truly has such a passion for music and making the best music that you possibly can. It’s really cool to see that. Some of our radio people will tell me stories about working with Tina Turner or the Spice Girls and it’s funny because I’m looking at all these people and I’m like, “You shaped my childhood.” Especially with the radio people, being like, “I liked the Spice Girls because you were doing this. Because you were telling me to like them.”

People aren’t going to approach you with things. If you have opinions, ask about them. Check peoples’ temperatures on them.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
I think my dad gave me the best piece of advice, which was, “Never be afraid to ask.” People aren’t going to approach you with things. If you have opinions, ask about them. Check peoples’ temperatures on them. I feel like people in our generation, or people in the workplace in general, are scared to ask for things or scared to suggest things or scared to speak up. In doing that, either someone is going to hate you, or they’re going to respect the hell out of you. The answer is going to be either, “No, why would we do that?” or “That’s a great idea.” It’s important to take a risk like that, than to be a person sitting quietly and not speaking up.

What kind of money can you make in this industry?
Working in the music industry is just like working in fashion or TV — when you start out, you make no money. You rent an apartment out in Bushwick for a year and are scared to walk home at night because your train stop is very sketchy, but you do it because you love it. You don’t come into this industry to make money. There is money floating around in the music industry, but you don’t enter the music industry to make money. If you want to make money, go to law school. Go to business school. You can be successful in the music industry, but I don’t think that money is a key factor for most people in the music industry.

What would your advice be to people aspiring to work in the music industry?
There are two kinds of people: the people who want to work in the music industry because they hear that the music industry is so great and then there are people who love music. I fall into the second category, as do most of the inspiring people I’ve told you about — they’re all music lovers. If you love music and this is what you want to do, you have to figure it out. It’s probably going to be starting out as an assistant somewhere like a record label or a management agency or a publicist. Whatever it is, that’s how you need to get your foot in the door, but you can take that anywhere.

I’ve gone from an agency to a record label, and I’m doing a very non-traditional job at a record label that ten years ago would not have been what it is today. Maybe a management position like this exists because there is such a broad spectrum.

What’s your dream for your career?
It’s hard to say. My dream is to have as much of an impact on elementary school, middle school and high school kids and really make music as huge a part of their lives as it has been for mine. It’s shaped my life in many ways. Even if one person said to me, “Charli XCX’s ‘Sucker’ record was the best pop record I ever heard.” If I ever hear one person say that, I will have accomplished my dream. That’s all that I want. I just want people to love music the way that we do and the way that everyone at this company does.

Everyone talks about record labels like this big, bad machine that’s so corporate and has a horrible agenda. In actuality, we just want our artists to succeed. We want people to love our music. If we wanted to make a zillion dollars, we’d be working on Wall Street.

Check out other career posts here.

A Beauty Minute With Laura

Morning: I like to start my day off with vinyasa yoga, running or barre pilates. It gives me a boost of energy in the morning and a natural flush. When I’m getting ready I have a coconut water mixed with Garden of Life green powder. I take daily supplements – probiotics, algae, vitamin d and B12/folic acid – which keep my body and skin healthy. A few years ago I saw a holistic nutritionist (Sally Kravich). She completely changed the way I saw health and skincare – good skin truly comes from what you put in your body unless you are very genetically blessed.

Before I shower I dry brush to exfoliate and activate my skin (my mom encouraged me to start doing this – it increases you circulation and releases toxins in the body). I wash my face with Joanna Vargas all-natural Vitamin C cleanser (I go to Joanna Vargas for facials). If I have time I use Eminence probiotic mask (a mix of yogurt, cucumber, shea butter and tea tree oil). I then massage my face with John Masters Organics 100% argan oil and add a layer of EltaMD broad–spectrum sunscreen. It’s oil free and helps with breakouts. In the summer, or if my skin is acting up, I use Eminence probiotic moisturizer instead of argan oil.

On the weekends I don’t always follow a makeup routine – I like to have my skin breathe. During the week I either use Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer or I will dab By Terry touch expert under my eyes. I add a light bronzing powder (Guerlain terracotta) to my jawline and cheekbones and sometimes Kevyn Aucoin creamy glow blush. I always brush my eyebrows up and use clear Bobbi Brown eyebrow gel. I find that it instantly makes you look fresh and awake. After that I either finish with a coat of Armani black mascara or draw a thin line on my eyelids with Armani smooth silk eye pencil in brown or charcoal and smudge it to enhance my eyes but not look “done.”

When my hair is damp, I spray it with Oribe wave spray. I normally let my hair air dry but in the winter I let it dry for a bit and then finish with a blow dry. If I have time, I use the wand and curl the ends for no more than five seconds to give it a soft, messy wave. Whenever I use the wand it looks great the next day after sleeping on it. All you need to add is Klorane dry shampoo.

Day: I carry By Terry rose lip balm in my bag (it exfoliates and moisturizes your lips at the same time) and a thick hand crème during the winter. I also drink a lot of water throughout the day to keep my skin hydrated.

Night: The only products I add for evening are Clarins beauty flash balm (it brightens and makes your skin look really radiant) and either a soft smoky eye or a lip. I smudge Armani eyeliner in charcoal around my eyes or use Benefit smoky eye kit. If I decide to do a lip I love Nars velvet matte lip pencil in Cruella.

I always wash my face before going to bed. It’s become such a habit that I can’t sleep on my pillow with makeup on even if it’s past midnight! Twice a week I use Joanna Vargas exfoliating mask with Kaolin clay and hyaluronic acid. It works so incredibly well – your skin instantly looks brighter. I then massage the argan oil on my face and off to bed!”

Laura Stoloff

For more beauty minutes, click here!

Parkas!

By now I think I’ve established (at least to myself) that I’m a coat freak, but when winter comes after you in New York City, it’s a serious matter. Going out without the right parka, you can literally freeze and feel like your nose is gonna fall, which it might, actually.

I’ve worn my Mr and Mrs Fur for a while now, but recently I also added a classic Canada Goose one (love it) and I’ve been thinking about a Moncler for a while… I like a big one that I can disappear into. I can dress however I want under them (I even wear my purse under the parka, which makes me look like I’m pregnant, but who cares? It’s f#@$%g COLD!!!), they’re like a survivor blanket. It’s the only way I’ve found to stay chic and warm when the winter comes.

I mean, until you get to the bottom of the winter, the part when it’s just too cold, icy and windy and we’re all just layering stuff on ourselves and Duck Booting wherever we go and it’s total style game over. I refuse to even talk about these days.

How do you make your tan last?

Last, cold, glacial, brutal winter, I swore to myself that I’d make sure to get away for at least one week the following winter to get some sun. That’s what I did this year in Costa Rica, and it’s true that it changes everything…

And plus, I came back with a light tan (because of the SPF50 sunscreen I kept on at all hours of the day and night) (you never know with the light of the full moon…) and I love it.
So now I’m wondering, what do you do to make your tan last when it’s -12 degrees and raining outside?

Translated by Andrea Perdue


By admin

How do you make your tan last?

Last, cold, glacial, brutal winter, I swore to myself that I’d make sure to get away for at least one week the following winter to get some sun. That’s what I did this year in Costa Rica, and it’s true that it changes everything…

And plus, I came back with a light tan (because of the SPF50 sunscreen I kept on at all hours of the day and night) (you never know with the light of the full moon…) and I love it.
So now I’m wondering, what do you do to make your tan last when it’s -12 degrees and raining outside?

Translated by Andrea Perdue


By admin

Style Detox

One of the funniest quirks about my profession is probably my tendency to think of each episode of my life as a fashion story.
And I think of myself as the heroine of the fashion story, of course, haha, obviously.

Ok, I’m going to guess I’m not the only one, right?

Like now, for example, I’ve just gotten back from a long vacation. The first part was at a farm in Virginia, and the second, if you followed, was surfing in Costa Rica.

Fortunately I made a stop in New York between the two to unpack and repack my suitcase, otherwise I think I might have ended up with a meltdown and a split personality.

The farm in Virginia? No need to go into detail, you’re gonna get it right away.
The contents of my suitcase were as cliché as a Pinterest board.

Big wool socks for hanging out around the fire (with a mug of hot chocolate of course—they call it a prop, like when you give a model a newspaper to make her look interesting sitting in a cafe), wool pants (think Chloé A/W 2008) Duck Boots for walking in the mud while staying chic—rugged, but elegant—big sweaters, plaid shirts, and yes, of course!!! I almost forgot!!! Cozy beanies—you want ‘em, we got ‘em—for going to say hi to the horses.

Easy. 

Then after that, time to head to Costa Rica.
The surfing! The sun! The beach! The hang out! The dirt roads! The quads!

I’d done a little investigating, and my friend Lauren, who I went with and who knows the area, told me. “Don’t bring anything, everyone down there wears the same thing every day.”

I listened to her because I always listen to my friends’ advice, and it’s a good thing I did, because even after reducing as much as possible, I still had a giant suitcase.

So to keep it simple, my professional quirk and I chose a “white” theme. Title of the imaginary fashion series: “Blanche in the sun” or even better “White sun” — you always end up picking stupid titles like that.

So anyway, I said to myself: white’s easy to wash by hand, it goes with everything, and also, it’s one of my favorite colors, and hey, everybody cover your eyes once I start getting a tan I’m gonna be so hot*.
Add to that some pretty rash guards (a kind of t-shirt you wear to protect your stomach from the board and your back from the sun) from J. Crew, a sublime Lisa Marie Fernandez wetsuit, and a few neoprene wetsuits from Patagonia in case the water gets cold**, and off I went to Costa Rica with the “bare minimum” according to a fashion girl***.

I was reassured right away when I arrived and saw that Lauren’s “Don’t bring anything, everyone down there wears the same thing every day” suitcase was even bigger than mine. And she’d even brought A DRESS FOR NEW YEARS. Lolo, how could you not tell me about New Years!?
What do you mean you don’t need to remind someone about New Years?

But the one area I definitely succeeded in was shoes. I only brought one pair of (white) Havaïanas and one pair of (white) Vans.

Ok ok, I also brought my Rondinis, in case of a style emergency.

As for beauty products, I brought my normal kit plus a truck full of sunscreen, to make sure my skin matched my white theme, of course. 
Honestly, you could really say I did a pretty good packing job.

But even so, as I was about to realize after two days of trying to keep the “Vogue Paris N°916” (the one with Gisèle on the rocky terrain in Greece) sexy-serene look, reality always catches up to you when you least expect it.

So here is my day-by-day report on my Costa Rican style meltdown. Pure Fashion Detox like I’d never experienced before.

Day #1
Cool. Classy. White shorts, white t-shirt, Havaïanas.

I brought a beautiful blue suede beach bag****, but apparently, it didn’t fit the scene. A suede bag is heavy, it can get stolen, etc. All my friends have cloth tote bags with funny inscriptions on them.

Since I left my personality in New York, I empty out a Fendi shoe bag that had my bathing suits in it, and I use that as my beach bag.
I like the irony of it, it fits in with the local style of my friends. And fashion is safe and sound. For now.

Day #2
First surfing lesson, at 7 AM.

I get out of bed and throw on yesterday’s outfit. Too early to think.
Underneath, I put on a little Zimmermann bathing suit that I paid an arm and a leg for right before leaving because “my body hasn’t seen the light of day or even the light of a gym since August” and I bring my rash guard with me.

Problem n°1? I can’t find my instructor so I walk up and down the main street trying to find her. I’m still in New York mode, and I’m fifteen minutes late, so I’m super stressed out, and walking super fast.
Yeah, yeah, the kind of walk that would make even Chris Hemsworth look stupid. 

Problem N°2? The streets are partly covered in dirt and partly covered with the fresh molasses they apply to the roadways to keep dust from covering everything. Basically, it’s like walking around in an enormous pot of organic mountain honey.
I’m forced to come and go in the fresh molasses and thanks to my Havaïanas flapping around and splashing me, my legs (and my shorts, and my t-shirt) are covered in mollasses and dust.

I finally find my instructor, who is totally chill (being half an hour late is nothing here) and she gives me an incredible lesson in surf style. She’s got a little rash guard and a micro-bikini on her bronzed bottom, so I change right away to look just like her and we get right in the water.

But the cowl does not make the monk, as they say.

When I was choosing my bathing suit, I hesitated between a size 38 and a 40, and I chose 40 to make absolutely sure, oh the horror!!! that it wouldn’t look too tight. #Ihatetightclothes. BIG, HUGE MISTAKE.

Fatal.

With every wave, I lose my swimsuit bottoms.

Not easy learning to surf with your bare ass in the air, I tell you. I make a few surfers happy, but I’m not feeling so great myself.

Day 2, and style’s already lost. And it’s only 8:17 in the morning.

Day #3
I take a shower, or something like that.

The thing about going surfing three times a day is that you don’t really know when to take a shower anymore. Should you take one before surfing? After surfing? During surfing? In the evening after you’re all done?

Yes and no. It doesn’t work like that here — “evening” is at 5:30, right when the sun is setting. People bring beers to the beach for the after-surf party*****, and then everyone goes straight to dinner, then they hang out at the skate park****** and at 9PM, you’re so tired you go to sleep with your clothes on, still salty from the day. Then you get up at 6AM to go surfing.
Nobody takes a shower before surfing, as far as I know.

By Day 3, I understood that the idea was just to “rinse off when I could.”

As for my “white” theme, it was continuing on its highway to success.

Every time I put on a clean t-shirt, someone on a motorcycle rides by, waving at me (people are so nice here), and covering me with a thick layer of dust. I’m not giving up yet, but let’s just say my stock of clean outfits is disappearing right before my eyes.

Day #4
Let’s talk about my hair, shall we?

Hair isn’t easy at the beach.
Short hair isn’t very easy at all at the beach.
Short, curly hair is horrible at the beach. 

A sort of compact nest forms on my head and I try to ignore it by pinning whatever I can behind my ears. Sometimes I wear a turban, but #too_hot.

I make a few more attempts at washing my hair to keep it looking somewhat human, but the more I wash it, the curlier it gets. Shoot, pfff. Oooooh but who cares.
I decide to forget shampoo exists. Salt will do the job just fine.

Day #5
We’re going on a boat ride, the perfect time to bring out my white blouse.

Perfect for protecting me from the sun and staying fresh, the girl’s totally in control, I love it. 
People compliment me. We get on the four-wheeler to go to the boat and that’s when a cloud of dust rises up and never leaves for half an hour, oh, except for when we get sprayed by a gardener passing by who waves at us (people are so nice here) and sprays us with his hose. At the time, it feels so fresh and alive.
When we get off the four-wheeler, we’re totally red with dust from head to toe. 
And thanks to the gardener, the dust is perfectly soaked into our clothes, and my white “I totally know what I’m doing” blouse is lost forever.

Oh, by the way. That blouse was my last clean item of clothing. Everything else is covered in dirt and molasses. But the good thing is, it’s Day 5, which is also the day when you stop caring, especially about your appearance.

Day #6 
What’s day cream, again?

You may not care about your appearance, but don’t forget you’re near the equator and it’s kind of like surfing on the surface of the sun during a heat wave.

You have to protect yourself, otherwise you’ll end up with a Valentino tan (they should totally come out with a beauty line) right away.
So you smear on SPF 50 every two hours, and not only is it exhausting, it’s also not super great for your skin, so between the sun and the shock treatment you’re putting it through, my skin starts breaking out big time. Yuck.

Fortunately, my hair starts to come back to life, and it looks beautiful. I’ve got some blonde highlights and my locks now have the consistency of clay—super practical for creating nice hairstyles and impressing friends with “look, I can write your name with strands of my hair!” 

Day #7
Nothing’s going right anymore. The damage is done.

By Day 7, you basically just pick up the first thing you find on the ground and put it on. 
You take a shower wherever and whenever you feel like it. At the surf shop when you’re returning your board in the evening, for example.
I try to trick the enemy******* and wash my clothes by bathing in them, but nothing will make the dust go away, so I happily give up the idea of being clean. And when all else fails, I rediscover the art of the pareo I learned in Bali.

Day #8
Sometimes I go crazy and put on mascara.

Ahahahahah, lol. I love it.
These are the moments when I try to get back some semblance of my human form.

I maybe forgot to mention, but to add to the joyfully alarming state of my appearance, my eyes are swollen. My eyes are suffering from all the salt and sunscreen that’s been running into them every time I get in the water. Chronic conjunctivitis? Yeah, baby. So sexy.

But even so, sometimes I get the urge to grab my tube of mascara and put some on.
The result is cute for about two seconds.

Until the next random shower, in fact. That’s when the mascara runs everywhere and since I forgot I put it on in the first place, I look like a panda until I run into a kind soul who lets me know something’s going on with my eyes.

Day #9
 I don’t really know who I am anymore, and I don’t even mind—not one bit.

I abandoned my clothes, my mascara, my shampoo, and I didn’t even tell you about the state my nails were in, but I think you can probably imagine—and well, obviously, I haven’t looked at myself in a mirror in ten days.

Well maybe that’s what a vacation is for a fashion girl.

Day #10
I take a big trash bag and put all my clothes in it. They’re all the same color – reddish brown. It’s pretty, actually.

When it’s time to leave, it hits me.

I think to myself that actually, my Lolo was right. Next time I won’t take anything. I’ll do a mega fashion detox from day one. A pair of flip flops, a tunic, a pareo, and that’s it.

That doesn’t stop me from thinking about the luxurious bath with perfumed body scrubs that I’m going to take when I get back, though. And the appointment I’ll be making with my hair stylist the very next day.

What happens in Costa Rica stays in Costa Rica.

——————

* Which is never, thanks to my SPF 587564
** Which is never in Costa Rica at Christmas.
*** I don’t even want to think about the suitcases of the blogger girls who post their outfits every day on their blogs. 
**** Ok, fine, now that I think about it, totally stupid idea.
***** I mean, it sounds cool when you put it like that, but refer to my post last week for a more precise definition of the “after-surf” party
****** Yoohoo, it’s me GaGa!!! I’m a teenager again!
******* Actually, there is no enemy: no one even cares about style and everyone is pretty much as dusty as the next person.

Translated by Andrea Perdue

Petit et Parfait

This is a little handbag I got for Christmas – and I adore it. It’s everything you could want. The size, the color, the fact that you can remove the strap and turn it into a clutch. It’s also one of my favorite handbag brands – Valextra.

I almost took it to Costa Rica to complete my cool surfer girl look, but then I changed my mind.

It’s much too precious of an object!

(And you’ll see reading tomorrow’s post that I was right ;) )

Bag by Valextra.

Translated by Andrea Perdue

Coffee Addict

I think I’m addicted to coffee. Argh.

A few days ago, I went to see a great therapist who told me it was time for me to slow down on the toxins, particularly caffeine. And I’d been telling myself the same thing for awhile now.
When I drink too much coffee, I get anxious and stressed. Plus, it makes me hungry. And it’s not good for your teeth. And it dehydrates you. Etc., etc.

BUT there’s nothing I love more in the world than waking up to the smell of coffee, listening to it brew while I make my toast, taking my first sip, and walking around my apartment or the studio with my mug all morning. I drink it black — no sugar, no milk. I think if I didn’t have coffee, I’d just stay in bed looking hagard and depressed. But I don’t know, actually, I’ve never really tried.

I thought about switching to tea, but I thought I could maybe start with drinking decaf for awhile, to make the transition easier.
But it sounds like decaf is even worse for your health than regular coffee.

What about you? Do you know anything about this? Have you ever tried to go off coffee?

Translated by Andrea Perdue.


By admin

Coffee Addict

I think I’m addicted to coffee. Argh.

A few days ago, I went to see a great therapist who told me it was time for me to slow down on the toxins, particularly caffeine. And I’d been telling myself the same thing for awhile now.
When I drink too much coffee, I get anxious and stressed. Plus, it makes me hungry. And it’s not good for your teeth. And it dehydrates you. Etc., etc.

BUT there’s nothing I love more in the world than waking up to the smell of coffee, listening to it brew while I make my toast, taking my first sip, and walking around my apartment or the studio with my mug all morning. I drink it black — no sugar, no milk. I think if I didn’t have coffee, I’d just stay in bed looking hagard and depressed. But I don’t know, actually, I’ve never really tried.

I thought about switching to tea, but I thought I could maybe start with drinking decaf for awhile, to make the transition easier.
But it sounds like decaf is even worse for your health than regular coffee.

What about you? Do you know anything about this? Have you ever tried to go off coffee?

Translated by Andrea Perdue.


By admin

In The Details

I love a long coat paired with trousers on a woman. It’s a chic look that’s unavoidable during a New York winter, and Meredith always executes it in an effortless — and unique — way. 

With her look here, it’s the subtle accents that make the difference… the exaggeration of the coat lapels and the extra long pants elevate the outfit. But, for me, it’s the button detail on the pants that really pulls the whole look together. Super chic, no?

In The Details

I love a long coat paired with trousers on a woman. It’s a chic look that’s unavoidable during a New York winter, and Meredith always executes it in an effortless — and unique — way. 

With her look here, it’s the subtle accents that make the difference… the exaggeration of the coat lapels and the extra long pants elevate the outfit. But, for me, it’s the button detail on the pants that really pulls the whole look together. Super chic, no?

Style Story / Melissa

Do you remember Melissa? I met her in the street in Paris (the number of amazing people I’ve met in the street, it’s pretty unbelievable) just before she performed on The Voice. Both her music and her style have evolved since then (one of the things I love about this blog is being able to follow people as they grow and change) and right now, since she’s been spending a lot of time in New York, so we were able to grab her and spend some time together in one of her friend’s apartments.


I really love the way she mixes her clothes. She has a real love for fashion and it shows!

First Snow

The first snow in NY is always kind of magical, I’m shopping for a few pieces to keep me warm this weekend!


More ideas on Pinterest!


By admin

First Snow

The first snow in NY is always kind of magical, I’m shopping for a few pieces to keep me warm this weekend!


More ideas on Pinterest!


By admin

The Greenwich Hotel

I discovered the TriBeCa suite of the Greenwich Hotel recently and I found it so beautiful that I had to share its austere and intriguing design with you. Obviously not your everyday hotel room; more like a special treasure hidden in the center of the city.

The interior was designed by Axel Vervoordt, who is the most thoughtful designer. He’s a genius — every single detail is insane.

I’ll let you explore through these images…

Je Suis Charlie

No post today. The team and I have decided to take a moment to reflect about the limitless freedom of expression we have. The freedom you have to express yourself about our writings.

The freedom to not agree, and the freedom to argue and debate.
Even if we use it mostly to speak about light subjects, it is a freedom we should never forget.

There are no words to describe the horror of what happened yesterday in Paris and the sadness that’s shaking France. I feel so far, on a trip on which I had planned to “disconnect” when all I want to feel like right now is to connect, share and exchange. To be in France.

Later we will publish links to texts to read and share. Sending you love and as Charb, one of the illustrators that was killed yesterday, once said “Love is stronger than hate”.

Je Suis Charlie

No post today. The team and I have decided to take a moment to reflect about the limitless freedom of expression we have. The freedom you have to express yourself about our writings.

The freedom to not agree, and the freedom to argue and debate.
Even if we use it mostly to speak about light subjects, it is a freedom we should never forget.

There are no words to describe the horror of what happened yesterday in Paris and the sadness that’s shaking France. I feel so far, on a trip on which I had planned to “disconnect” when all I want to feel like right now is to connect, share and exchange. To be in France.

Later we will publish links to texts to read and share. Sending you love and as Charb, one of the illustrators that was killed yesterday, once said “Love is stronger than hate”.

A Lace Detail

Ok, I’m sorry but I’m going to pull the French card for once… 

I know, I know… That’s why I try to avoid it as much as I can, but let me say one thing: French women really know how to wear menswear.

And the best part is that it has gone beyond France and I’m seeing stylish women embrace suiting everywhere I go, and in a very feminine way! Like Laura here with this lace detail under her blazer. It’s one of my favorite ways to style a jacket, super sexy and it softens the whole look. So I guess you can wear a bit of lingerie during the day (but only under a jacket hahahah, but seriously).

Do you ever wear lingerie out during the day? How do you style a blazer?? 

Top, Fleur du Mal; Blazer, Theory.

Upsize!

An oversized coat can either look super chic or super bulky — and not so chic!

It really depends on how it’s styled…

Here, Anja‘s extra oversized coat looks cool because she’s paired it with fitted clothes underneath. Even though it’s not so practical for a snow storm, it would work for a lot of winter with a coat this big and warm. And her sleeves are so long she might not even need gloves…

Do you prefer a fitted or oversized coat for winter?

Photo by Asia Typek.

Happy New Wave!

Probably the most frustrating and most rewarding way to start a new year is: to learn something new.

In other words: to be totally bad at something.

This year, I decided to learn how to surf – it’s been one of my dreams since I was about 12 years old. I went with Lauren (who surfs), Camille (who surfs really well) and Chris (who surfs really, really well). We are in Costa Rica, where the waves are known to be easy for beginners like me but, right now as I’m writing this, I’m sore as hell, and it’s been like this for three days.


It started amazing – I threw myself into the water with my wetsuit and board just like Elle McPherson in Elle magazine in the 90s. Thirty minutes later, I was standing up on the board, an hour after that, I was doing turns, and I was already imagining my new career as a Roxy spokeswoman, traveling all over the world looking for the best surf spots and announcing that fashion blogs were so 2010 and that the new thing was definitely surf blogs…

When suddenly my body turned against me. It started with me being intensely thirsty, then I had abdominal pain so bad I thought I was going to explode. I begged my teacher to let me take a break and I went to lie down right away, but not without stopping on the way to let my friends know, of course (who are all way better than I am, if you haven’t caught on yet) that I was totally killing it out there.

I’ve got a kind of pretentious bitchy side like that.
(Which, if used properly, isn’t such a bad thing actually – when you exaggerate your performance, you’re forced to get good at it. For example, I swore I was the best foosball player in the world TO A GROUP OF ENRAGED ITALIANS AND GERMANS, so I totally have to practice before our tournament to make sure I could preserve France’s honor).

Anyway.
Other than half passing out, due to the fact that I like to keep my muscles in a state of half-sleep most of the year, taking extra care to avoid any exercise at the gym or any activity that might build muscle other than typing on my iPad, I totally thought I was on my way to being in the world cup of surfing. Or that I’d at least have a little appearance in The Surfers Journal or something. You know, no big deal.

The second day only confirmed my doubts: I surfed like Kelly Slater in the small waves, without missing even one. My friends were all behind me, loving the fact that they were finally going to be able to enjoy my wonderful company on real waves in the days to come. And plus, my muscles were just fine that day – I was the master of the universe.

On Day 3, I was totally telling my teacher that at my level, I was getting super bored with the little waves and it was time to move on. Since she’s a patient person (and she had already figured out that I can get a little carried away) she told me “One more day with the little waves. Tomorrow, we’ll get serious.”

“It’s about time!” I shouted before being hit by a huge wave right in the face.

At 7am the next morning, I was ready on the beach in my blue Lisa Marie Fernandez wetsuit (a surf blog that doesn’t leave behind its fashion roots, what do you think?) doing my stretches. We got into the warm water, in the light of the rising sun. A flock of pelicans took off into the sky, forming a promising “Go, G!”

And this is where the story of my exploits ends and my New Year’s post begins, kids.

F(%&ing s#*t.

How to surf in the big waves by Garance Doré:

First of all, you have to get past the little waves before you can handle the big waves, and honestly, the little waves are a bitch and they don’t make it easy — they will slap you in the face and carry your board away and throw you back on the beach just when you think you’ve gotten the hang of it. They smack you around and mess up your hair and make your SPF 200 sunscreen drip into your eyes, causing instant conjunctivitis, and making it so you can’t tell the diffrence between the sky and the ground and if those are your friends or strangers with vaguely human forms. They also make sure to tear off your swimsuit bottoms, which, after the tenth time, get all stretched out and ugly (except for the Lisa Marie Fernandez, since it’s made of Neoprene, of course, hahaha) and once you’ve fought the waves with all the strength of your youth (hahaha) then you have to get up on your board (miserable), paddle like crazy (super miserable) and pass through enormous waves with your board (so, so, so miserable).

You arrive at the Line-up (where the surfers, the real ones, wait for the wave)

(The place to be)(THE COOLEST PLACE ON EARTH, ACTUALLY).

Paddle like crazy. End up exhausted. Totally. Dead. A little piece of nothing at all in the ocean. A pelican flies over and poops on you. And that’s when the real challenge is supposed to begin. Take a wave and stay standing up on your board.

And that’s when you hear the noise. The sound of the wave crashing against you. It’s crushing you and, while you’re trying to come back out of the water without drowning, another wave grabs you by the collar and throws you to the bottom of the ocean, all the while giving you a bunch of mini-slaps, taking off with your board, your suit, and all traces of vanity if you still had any left. And then the same thing happens all over again.

Until your body and mind are so completely worn out, and you’re just lying on the edge of the beach, wondering why. (A general why about the meaning of life and stupid dreams).

And the next day you try it all again – until you end up finding muscles you didn’t know you had. Until you get your balance, sitting on a board in the middle of the ocean. Until you laugh (not even a ironic laugh) picking yourself up again for the 1,547th time. Until you’re so exhausted you need to take a whole day to rest.

(And it’s precisely on that day of rest that I’m finally able to tell you all about my exploits, dear readers)

So that’s how I started my year – worn out on the beach in Costa Rica, waving at my friends while they were carving beautiful lines in the waves.

The sun was setting, and I told myself that one day I’d be with them, once I’ve learned, gotten past my fears, and found new strengths inside me. I’ll continue to learn, to follow my childhood dreams (even if they’re as simple as learning to surf) and keep trying over and over again until I get it and it becomes a part of me. Well, I mean, or not – actually. Some people never become surfers, and there are some dreams better left behind. We’ll see at the end of next week.

So it’s here sitting on the beach in Costa Rica, as the sun goes down, that I send you my best wishes for the new year. The future will tell us whether or not I become a pro surfer, but in the meantime, I’m putting my whole heart and sense of humor into it, and the little bit of humility I can muster up, to get through learning a new art, which is always so difficult.

I hope you will put your whole heart into your new projects this year, never give up, never tell yourself it’s too late, never lose your sense of humor, and run after everything that makes you love life without giving up even if life slaps you around a little bit. After all, maybe those slaps are well-deserved, you never know ;)

2015 is going to be a fantastic year, we’ve all agreed on that. I send you all big kisses and I’ll be back soon with photos. Pura Vida!!!

Translated by Andrea Perdue

A Beauty Minute With… Sophie

Morning: My morning routine is simple. I’ve been using Alba Hawaiian Face Wash and Aveeno Ageless Moisturizer. The cream is nice and thick but not greasy, and really good for the winter.


During the days I wear Laura Mercier‘s Tinted Moisturizer in cashew beige, Laura Mercier’s Under Eye Concealer, Chanel Black Mascara, and Laura Mercier’s Eyebrow Pencil. When I was 15, I plucked off almost all of my eyebrows and turned them from thick, even specimens, to uneven, overly arched tadpoles. It wasn’t until a friend’s mother told me I was going to ruin my face that I stopped the over tweezing and let them grow out. Now I rarely pluck them and actually extend them with the eyebrow pencil. I’m happy they came back! I think I have mastered the “no makeup makeup look”. For me, it’s all about applying it by your window in natural light. I remember slapping makeup on my face in my bathroom in high school and being horrified when I caught my reflection in a car rearview mirror on the street. No one wants to look like they are wearing a lot of makeup and I think it actually ages you.

Day: In my bag I have lip balm and Laura Mercier’s Cover Up Compact. I have naturally dark eyes so this helps me look alive!

Night: My makeup in the evening is similar to what I wear during the day but I tend to go a little more bold in the evenings, especially when I have a performance. When I’m singing a red lip is really nice because it draws attention to your mouth. I have also been into a Sofia Loren cat eye that I am trying very hard to master with liquid liner. If I’m going to go heavy on the eye makeup, I keep my lips nude. Otherwise you run the risk of looking a little gaudy. My philosophy with makeup is ‘less is more’!

At night, I usually take off my makeup with Pond’s Cold Cream and then wash my face with the Alba cleanser, use Neutrogena toner, and then I use a Chanel night cream. It seems to keep my skin in pretty good shape.

Style Story / Shala

I love Shala’s style. It’s always so original, elevated, different and cool.


Somehow she executes the boldest choices (bright colors and insane prints) in the most refined way, always with a ladylike touch. She will pair the two most unexpected items together and they always look chic.

Here are a few photos we shot in one of our favorite stores of all times, The Apartment.

New Year!

It’s the new year and I’m looking for essentials.


More ideas on my Pinterest!


By admin

New Year!

It’s the new year and I’m looking for essentials.


More ideas on my Pinterest!


By admin

The Outtakes / Don’t Work with Animals

To finish up the year, we will be sharing some of our fun stories and outtakes from an amazing 2014. Beginning with this one…

We learned the hard way — by attempting to do it. Now we know that dogs don’t usually make great models

Gift Guide / Day 12

Bag, J.W.Anderson.

Surf!

Ok, this time it’s serious — I’ve signed up for surfing classes!!! Here I go!!
I’m packing my bags for Costa Rica right now, where I’ll be spending New Year’s on the beach trying to climb onto my surfboard. I have a feeling my pro surfer girl friends are going to laugh at me. But hey, you have to start somewhere, right?

And besides, no one can ever take away how much fun it was to go “surf” shopping hahaha. Here are the first few things I’m putting into my suitcase. Ok, maybe I won’t be waxing my board after one lesson, but it’s really pretty, don’t you think?


Translated by Andrea Perdue 

Black Wetsuit, Patagonia; Blue Wetsuit, Roxy; Shorts, Jcrew; Sandals, Havianas; Sunglasses, Ray-Ban; SPF, Zink; Surf Wax, Sex Wax & Sticky Bumps; Bikini Top, Solid & Striped; Bikini Bottom, Lenny Niemeyer; Bracelet, Aurélie Bidermann; Towel, Totême; SPF Moisturizer, Philosophy; SPF, Protect.

Gift Guide / Day 11

Objects, Saikai.

A Striking Dress

Around this time, I would normally be going crazy trying to find the perfect last-minute outfit for New Year’s… but this year I’ll be on a beach wearing something super casual. But I saw this dress on Alana and thought how striking it is — it’s really the ultimate party dress.


The details are so intricate (you should see the embroidery up close) and — even though I don’t normally — I really like the cut outs on this. They are a little sexy but not overdone, and New Year’s is the one night you can get away with it, don’t you think? I usually go for something simple and classic, but this is look is so fun.

Dress, Mary Katrantzou.

Gift Guide / Day 10

Superfood Popcorn, Sakara

Gift Guide / Day 10

Superfood Popcorn, Sakara

White On White

I have a very soft spot for white, you probably know it – it kind of brightens up my day. Last week before the Valentino show, it was snowing, and for some reason it made me want to go all winter white.
Or maybe I had been inspired by the invitation, all white


Then I got to the show and the whole room was white… white benches, white walls, a white carpet runway. It was almost like I had worn camouflage to a fashion show (which is not such a bad thing!)! I just blended in. But, Valentino and I think alike — the whole collection was white, too.

Gift Guide / Day 9

Clutches, MM6 By Maison Martin Margiela.

Winter Nights

The holidays are the time of year I feel most homesick (if you’ve lived away from your family, you’ll know what that’s like — it’s not always easy!). But there is something super special about New York at this time of year. It’s kind of inexplicable…

There are Christmas lights everywhere and the winter lighting creates a filter — so much better than Instagram! — that adds a layer of magic to everything. Some moments feel like they’re straight out of a movie… sounds a little contrived, but it’s true — it happens all the time.

The other night, I went ice skating with Lauren and Jess at Bryant Park, and it was a night filled with cinema-perfect holiday moments. After we skated, we had hot chocolate — can you think of a more perfect winter night??