My New Year's Fashion Resolutions.

I've been thinking about the New Year a lot in regards to my personal style, especially since I've come to the realization that I don't talk about what I'm wearing much. Let me paint a picture for you: during school days, I throw on a pair of jeans, a t-shirt, a jacket or hoodie along with my black boots, and I'm out the door. I try to dress comfortably while at school, and I don't care what anyone thinks of me if they're going to judge me based on how I dress. Right now, however, even some days I think I look like a slob.

While I have been told that I have great style, this has not been by my fashion-major peers at school. I came up with a list of things that, if followed, will improve my overall daily style. Some of them are simple, such as add classic pieces to my wardrobe, while others are more complicated and will take time (lose weight to fit beautiful clothes that no longer fit). I am also currently thinking of doing Project 365, which is where you take a photo of yourself for every day of the year. Recording my style progress will probably increase my chances of changing my clothing habits. Until then, here is the list, in no particular order:

1. Clean out my closet and get rid of anything I don't wear.
My closet contains items that date back to 2001.

Organized in Vib G. Yor.

2. Stop wearing my ex-boyfriend's Coors Light sandals as normal, day-to-day footwear.

Can't find them, so maybe my dog solved that problem for me.

3. Fix my mother's ring that my dog tried to eat.
The one, specific thing my mother left me is currently missing two small stones after I accidentally left the ring on my coffee table.

Wearing the ring in happier times.

4. Lose the pounds I've gained since purchasing my one-and-only Betsey Johnson dress and wear said dress.
The whole matter is quite depressing, but with a little exercise and no more ice-cream, the dress should fit in no time!

5. Try to buy things that are classic and durable.
Rather than my add to my collection of graphic tees that are not, I should invest in key pieces, such as blazers and trench coats, that can carry me through the seasons.

I thought this shirt was awesome when I was 16.

6. Stop using my chest as a billboard for beer companies.
'Nuff said.

Oh, Corona...if only you'd get off my chest.

7. Find more vintage concert t-shirts.
The two I own were given to me by my dad, and I think they're the best. There's just something about clothes with a past experience, plus since they're old they're uber-comfy.

Wearing an authentic 1981 Rolling Stones' American Tour tee.

8. Shop local stores more often, rather than at the mall.
This may be hard, as I have a 40-50% discount where I work.

Support local businesses, kids.

9. Streamline what works for me.
I have huge, once-athletic thighs from being a swimmer and runner, so lengths that hit between my knee and hip work better than high-thigh ever will, along with bell-silhouettes and high-waisted skirts.

Even when I am toned and thin, short-shorts don't flatter my figure.

10. Buy jewelry second-hand.
Why, you ask? Because I want to be green as possible without turning into Kermit the Frog, dammit!

I had a lot of fun coming up with this list...can you think of any style resolutions for yourself? Here's to a happy and fabulous New Year!


The Oughts: a decade of fashion in retrospect.

After reading a slew of "best-of" lists for this memorable decade, everything from Best Album to Best Song and Best Television Show, I've been wondering where the Most Memorable Fashions are. Because I feel like that although this decade did not have anything as glamorous as the flappers of the Roaring 20's, beautiful as Dior's New Look (1940's), groovy as the Hippie Revolution in the 1960's, or even as disco-ball shaking as the 70's, there was an impact made through its enormous display of sex. The following is a short overview of famous outfits and trends throughout the past decade.
Cartoons, sugary sweets, classic looks from the past inspired the Oughts.
The Oughts Decade's fashions started with a bang. Jennifer Lopez showed up to the 42nd Annual Grammy Awards in a sheer Versace dress with a neckline that reached below her naval. This left many questions in peoples' minds: first, how did she get that dress to stay put? (Boob tape works wonders, my dears) Then the next question was, how much more revealing can one get?

Jenny from The Block in Versace.

Well, thank God we have Britney Spears to answer that question. In the following September on national television, no less, Britney shimmied her way out of a tuxedo while singing Rolling Stones' "Satisfaction" to reveal a sparkly, nude get-up which left little to the imagination.
Pre-rehab Britney showing us how to back that thing up.
Apparently, as far as celebrities were concerned, we were living in Fashion Hell, and didn't quite know it until the 2001 Oscars when Bjork showed up in a white swan dress. Designed by Marjan Pejoski, the dress has since been sold on E-Bay for charity. The garment made the argument that if a dress is too absurd to never be in or out of style, can it be worn forever? Please, for the love of cygnets everywhere, no.

Bjork in the infamous Swan Dress.

In 2002, we began to see the appearance of trucker hats on the red carpet. Matched with showing your underwear and baring your midriff while wearing your name tag on your belt (ala Gwen Stefani), this look had trailer-park royalty written all over it. Unfortunately, this look didn't disappear until about 2004.

J.T. and Ashton Kutcher: truckers in a past life?
Taking a style tip right out of the Jackie O. handbook, oversized sunglasses became all the rage in 2003 and still are stylish. I actually never wore sunglasses until 2006. I've always hated seeing my eyebrows while wearing sunglasses, so my eyes were very thankful for this trend. Having not found a suitable pair in Montana, I finally found a pair of black, oversized sunglasses for $3 at a hotel gift-shop in Hawaii. Since then, I've jumped around from lavender to blue, along with brown, pink, and white.

As glasses grow, Mary-Kate and Ashley shrink.Myself sporting blue sunglasses from Wet Seal

Now a true shopaholic/fashionista couldn't be caught-dead in oversized sunglasses without her oversized, monogrammed Louis Vuitton bag. I swear, I've seen these bags everywhere from Austin to San Francisco, across the way to New York City and (oddly) Montana. I'll admit that I have one Louis Vuitton purse, but it's a gold tube bag, so it doesn't really scream "Louis Vuitton."

It just screams "gaudy" so I only take it out on rare occasions, especially since I broke one of the leather straps. Currently I also have a pink makeup-pouch that I use for coins, along with a black monogrammed wallet. My Louis Vuitton collection is made up from various gifts through the years, gifts I didn't ask for (kinda like the Barbie Dream House when I was 10 and had blown-up my Barbies the previous 4th of July). With that said, the most money I have ever paid for a purse is $20, and I have no desire to continue my LV collection.

Skinny jeans have taken over the planet the past couple years. They look best on those that are thin, but the curvy-set can wear them too--I'm living proof of this. The best tip is to make sure they actually fit--if they feel tight, get the next size. There are three types of skinny jeans: the cigarette jean, or straight leg, doesn't cling to your leg as much as other cuts, and are universally flattering. The "skinny jean" skinny jeans are tapered and stretchy, barely hugging the ankle. Super-skinny jeans give a sprayed-on look and are tight, form-fitting, and have the highest percentage of stretch fiber. When wearing skinny jeans, it's best to wear a long top that at least goes to your hip. For those with wide-hips, an empire-waistline is best. Skinny jeans look great with flats, heels, and tucked into boots.
Victoria Beckham in destroyed super-skinnys.

Just when you thought people were going to cover up, the no-pants trend popped up. Lady Gaga, Rihanna, Beyonce, Sienna Miller...I haven't witnessed anyone that was not a celeb try out this look. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that I never do.

Lady Gaga: No Pants Day, every day.

Honorable Mentions: Liquid Leggings, Bedazzled Graphic Tees (aka Ed Hardy), Manolo Blahniks/Louboutins/Jimmy Choos, Destroyed Jeans, Sex Hair, Taking Your Dog Hostage in Your Purse, Tattooed Chest Piece and Sleeves, and Uggs.

Photos from Photobucket.com


Ai Austin: Grunge to Glam Fashion Show.

The beginning of the "Glam" segment.

The Grunge to Glam Fashion Show took place on Saturday at the Art Institute of Austin. The show, which as the final project for the Fashion Show Production course, benefited the Santa's Workshop Fort Hood. The class and production was a great hands-on experience and the second fashion show I have ever worked.

Many thanks for the clothing that was graciously donated by the online boutique shopitUPchic, the local mens' shop 5th & Lamar, and teen-clothing store Rue21.

All of the photos shown here were taken by Kim Pluskota, a dear friend and student at the Art Institute of Austin.

The class after the show!


Austin Street Style: Amber.

On Saturday at The Art Institute of Austin's
Grunge to Glam Fashion Show.


A Swift Evolution in Style.

Taylor Swift on the cover of New York Times' T Magazine
A few months back, I less-than-approved of Taylor Swift being on People's Best Dressed List due to the title of "Best Sparkle." I've always felt Taylor Swift's fashions were total girl-next-door (GND for the acronym-obsessed), especially with how she's known to wear boots with dresses. Sometimes I think Taylor, who is turning 20 on the 13th, is reusing old prom dresses, as she never fails to look the part of a fairy-tale princess. I may be coming around and jumping on the Taylor Swift Style Bandwagon, however, especially if she keeps dressing as she did for The New York Times. Just a scoop of maturity, a dash of supermodel, and a pinch of Alice in Wonderland creates the gorgeous photos of Taylor as you've never seen her before with straight-as-a-pin hair. Here is a photo timeline of Taylor Swift's personal style (2006-present), including the December 3rd T Magazine spread:
2006 Promotional Photo.
November 2006: CMA Awards. May 2007: ACM Awards.May 2007: Straddling the thin line
between "cool boots" and "white trash" while in Las Vegas.
(I'm sorry, but having your name
on you anywhere requires a call-out.)
June 2007: getting her moneys' worth with those boots.
(Liberty Boots are handmade leather, fetching up to $2,000 a pair)
October 2007: show in Great Falls, MT.
November 2007: accepting the Horizon Award at the 2007 CMAs.April 2008: after a show in San Antonio with a bandmate.June 2008: in NYC for TRL.
July 2008: at a gig in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii.
August 2009: performing in Sydney, Australia.September 2009: right before Kanye stole her thunder at the VMAs.November 2009: at the CMA Awards in Nashville.

And now...December 2009:
T Magazine

(Photo Credit: CMT.com, New York Times, and T Magazine.
2007 October photo belongs to myself...see, I am a fan!)


Around Town.

Basically...I love the holidays. There's so much shopping to be done in the next three weeks, it's nearly impossible to imagine. Here are some key events this month in Austin, shopping and otherwise...enjoy!

Tonight, December 3rd:

Head over to Shakespeare's tonight at 10 for
Wish's Holiday Fashion Show.
Bring a toy to benefit Toys For Tots, or a $5 donation to get in.
Shakespeare's is located at 314 East 6th Street.
Doors open at 8.

Saturday, December 5th:

Taking place at The Ghost Room (304 West 4th),
this one-day event begins at 11 AM and goes until 6 PM.
Show will feature handmade art, jewelry, clothing, gifts,
baked goods, live music, and other fun treats.
Bring a canned good to donate to the Capitol Area Food Bank!
Benefiting Austin Pets Alive, Home Slice Pizza
will be sponsoring a pizza-eating contest.
The prize? Free Pizza for an Entire Year!
The pizza pandemonium begins at noon at 1425 South Congress.
Thanks to Tolly for the heads up.

Sunday, December 6th:

Craft RIOT! A Handmade Revolution in Shopping.
Etsy Austin, at 5005 Commercial Park Drive, will host holiday shopping featuring handcrafted jewelry, soap, accessories, baby items, and lots of gifts. Other activities include photos with Santa, wine tasting, cheese, chocolate, and treats.
Etsy Austin will be giving goodie bags to the first 25 guests!
Event begins at 11 AM, lasts until 7 PM.
The Preferred V.I.P. Sale at Ligne Roset Boutique ends.
Currently, your entire purchase of in-stock items will be 25% off,
while special orders are 20% off.

Thursday, December 10th:

Spartan, along with Bows + Arrows,
is hosting a launch party for their new blog.
The holiday party will include an art auction.
Proceeds benefit Blue Dog Rescue.
Bow + Arrows is located at 215 South Lamar.
Shindig starts at six.

Saturday, December 12th:

The Art Institute of Austin is hosting its second fashion show:
Grunge to Glam.
Tickets are $10; if you bring a toy donation, your ticket will be $8.
I'll be there, working it, so come and check it out!
Doors open at 6; show starts at 7.
The Art Institute is located at
101 West Louis Henna Boulevard.

Saturday, December 12th-Sunday, December 13th:

With work from over 80 artists and live music,
this year;s Cherrwood Art Fair is sure to be a hit.
Event takes places at the Maplewood Elementary
on 38th 1/2 Street & Maplewood Avenue.
Saturday: 10 AM-6 PM.
Sunday: 12 noon-6 PM.

Friday, December 18th-Monday, December 21st:

Keep Austin Bizarre Bazzar.
Free Admission + Free (limited) Parking.
Live Music and Over 100 Vendors.

Heated Circus Tents and Full Bar.
Taking place at the Fiesta Gardens, 2101 Bergman Avenue.
Friday and Saturday: 11 AM-midnight.
Sunday and Monday: 11 AM-10 PM.

Through December 24th.

If you buy a $50 gift card at
the Round Rock location of Plato's Closet
on 220 Sundance Parkway,
you will receive $10 in "Plato's Bucks" for you.
All content, unless written otherwise, is property of Chelsea Hands.
Use of author's personal photos is strictly forbidden.