Fairy Tales

When fairies render olfactory miracles

I’ve always been drawn to the ethereal. Some of my favorite reads are about fantasy, mythology, and the complex worlds of the mystical. I even took a course under Coursera (it’s a website that offers an extensive list of free online programs go check it out) on Fantasy and Science Fiction under UofM and have armed myself with a line up of the Grimm Brothers, Terry Brooks, and Tolkien within bedside reach. I’m a nerd.

Naturally, all things that are even remotely related to these fictitious realms pique my interest in ways I can’t even begin to describe. Brands that reference anything wiccan, instagram accounts dedicated to fantasy, and even perfume scents that are inspired by storybook characters are given time of day.

When I came across Féerie by Van Cleef & Arpels, I knew I had to at least smell it. Even the packaging draws attention – a deep blue gem-inspired bottle that features a tiny fairy perched on a branch. It looks like a precious jewel. The scent is equally captivating. I’ve never been one to go for a sweet scent but this floral woody mix is just the right amount of saccharine. It’s initially fruity with hints of blackcurrant and Italian mandarin but the lasting notes are of the flowers – violet, Egyptian Jasmine, Florentine iris, and the Bulgarian rose. It’s a very feminine, floral choice. I truly believe that scents can easily influence one’s mood. With a spritz or two of this fragrance, expect a truly sweet and fresh take on the day ahead.

So when I’m feeling particularly somber, or let’s be real, irritable, I take the bottle on my way out the door and expect my disposition to be a lot sunnier and a whole lot sweeter. Maybe it’s expecting too much from a singular bottle. But fairies are magical creatures after all, and I’ll presume nothing less from a scent inspired by them.

Top, H&M
Skirt, EVER NEW 
Embroidered choker, PARFOIS 
Photography and Makeup by ELISA AQUINO

SUMMER STATE OF MIND | AVON TRUE COLOR

On how a modern Filipina interprets summer beauty

You’re straight up lyin’ if you say you aren’t feeling the summer season already. Unless you exclusively maneuver in air-conditioned spaces, it’s sweltering. Times like these are when I especially want to be whisked away to a beach—any beach—for respite from the humdrum of daily reality. Imagine spending your days lounging by the shore on some pool chair, donning a killer pair of sunglasses and the ubiquitous straw hat, leisurely turning the pages of your chosen book with a bottomless glass of frozen margarita in tow. I think that’s a pretty concrete picture of my personal summer dream.

Alas, life is not so forgiving and though we have literally thousands of islands, we can’t always just drive off and go. See, the modern woman wears way too many hats and often has way too many responsibilities to just pack up and go on a whim. My only solution to this dilemma is to just exude a summer frame of mind. Now, I’m not just talking about wearing swimsuits to work or actually ordering frozen drinks—both of which I’d probably actually do. I’m talking about imbibing the feel of summer by way of one’s beauty choices. Who cares if you didn’t actually go to the beach if your bronzed glow is deceptively natural? You can still be on point for summer AND be within a few feet of the nearest AC. That’s a pretty good trade-off.

For that faux-summer fun (that hopefully will turn into actual fun), it’s easy to don three favorite summer looks: the bronzed look, the dewy look, and the fresh-faced look with a bright lip. With a little help from AVON, I did just that.

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The bronzed look is probably the look that perfectly captures being an island girl. This “Oh, I got two shades darker, it’s no big deal, I’m just golden now” look is the perfect way to fake that week-long frolic under the sun. Nothing feels as anti-summer as a face lacking color. Plus a bronzed look goes perfectly well with some of the more in-season sartorial trends. Because I didn’t have a bronzer with me , I actually used two different shades of Avon’s Oil Control Plus Pressed Powder with SPF 19. Even when you’re not strolling under the sun the harsh rays are unforgiving. I used a shade two shades darker than my skin color to contour my face and the product one shade darker for a bronzed finish. I also used the Perfect Eyebrow Kit in Soft Brown to make the look stronger (you can also use this to add definition in your contouring). I capped off this look with hints of gold and peach tones.

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both photos in this look were taken by Charles Rudolfo

The dewy look is all about the sheen. For this I’m using the Avon CC Cream because I want the base light and I don’t want to seem like I packed several products on. If you don’t have a highlighter, a trick I use is to just use the cream/white shimmery eyeshadow option and use it on the high points of your face. Ta-dah! Instant product! In this case I’m using number 1 or Disco in the Eyeshadow Quad Palette in Glow Teal. I got a bunch of Avon’s Lip Stylos and I love them. They glide like tints. I just applied a quick creamy blush—the Lip Stylo actually works well as a cheek tint too (so versatile!) and capped the look off with eyeliner, mascara, and a bold pop of color on the lip. Lipstick is the easiest way to don that bold summer look. For day I’d use the Ultra Hydrating Lip Color in Peach Petunia but for a night out I’d use Red Tulip.

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The fresh look is probably my favorite because it’s the easiest and I’m all about the ease. Modern Filipinas don’t have a lot of time to spare so a quick makeup routine works best with tight schedules. (I mean we will take time to apply lipstick in between saving the world but still.) For this I used the BB Cream as the base and topped it off with the Oil Control Powder. I also lined my eyes with number 3 on the Glow Teal Eyeshadow Quad palette—the Teal shade for that fresh pop of color just for fun. I finished it with a makeshift lip tint by softly dabbing on the Beauty Lip Stylo in Sunset and not completely swiping. I finished the look with the Supershock Max Volume Mascara because if your mascara isn’t waterproof, the heat will turn you into a post-crying mascara-running-through-your-face meme. I kid you not. A big trend this summer is feathered brows—where the brows aren’t perfectly filled in but rather messily brushed, so I tried my hand at that too (under the bangs).

I played around with my Avon products and found that I can use them for multiple purposes especially if I’m lacking certain products in my makeup arsenal. The products are pretty versatile so if there’s ever a time to experiment with where you can apply products and stretch them, the summer is the perfect season to do just that. Have fun with your summer looks and go bold. Makeup can definitely help dictate our state of mind and these looks will have you thinking relaxation, enjoyment, and a certain dash of audacity in no time.

Visit the Avon website for more information on the products 

Bold is Beautiful | Benefit Cosmetics

Get (brow) waxed to do good.

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I would like to believe that everyone is philanthropic—everyone has a great desire to help. That’s why we hit ‘Like’ on posts of Upworthy, easily send virtual love to featured Humans of New York, and, conversely, why we’re in collective outrage over posts of animals being maltreated. I’d like to believe that at our very core we are actually good even if recent events have led us to think otherwise.

The desire to help is always ingrained in us. What hinder us, maybe, from acting on this noble desire are the misconceptions we have on what ‘helping’ really means and what it demands.

Charity is such an intimidating and concept. Think about it: how many times have you deliberately avoided a stall at the mall where volunteers try to get you to sign up for their cause? Charity always registers as an obligation—a duty that requires a lot of time and effort to fulfill. All of a sudden it feels like weekends will suddenly be booked helping kids or building houses under the harsh sun (not that those couldn’t be fun don’t get me wrong, I’ve tried both). But I think we have this notion that charity means sacrifice—and lots of it. It also sometimes feels like it demands a change in lifestyle, something we may not be ready for.

But helping doesn’t have to be as grand as dedicating all weekends to field work. And I especially appreciate when brands make it so easy to help others out that saying no isn’t even a consideration. Take Benefit Cosmetics, for instance. A cult favourite of beauty aficionados, Benefit Cosmetics, aside from having the cutest products with the most peacock-worthy packaging, is finally rolling out their outreach efforts here in the  Philippines after such huge success runs in the US.

The premise is simple. All proceeds from brow waxes during the month of May will go to help the local partner charity, Mano Amiga. Mano Amiga is a private, non-profit organization that offers affordable education for girls of low-income families. Each brow wax service costing PHP700 will provide one of the ff: a 2-hour leadership training session for girls, 3 months’ worth of school supplies (imagine that!), or a 4-month livelihood and empowerment program for a student’s mom, because part of helping families is also equipping the parents. Benefit’s Global Beauty Authority, Annie Ford Danielson, recently graced the launch of the campaign here in the Philippines and it was a huge success as everybody seemed to leave inspired and keen on helping.

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with Jackie, Angela, and Marj at the launch

I’m extremely honoured to have been part of inviting people to have their brows waxed in May via the video we shot to easily make a huge difference in the lives of little girls everywhere. Empowering little girls and enabling them to pursue their passions is a great gift to anyone—to underprivileged kids with untapped potential even moreso.

For the video, they asked me what being bold means and what empowerment looks like to me. I said a bunch of things but in reality, when it comes down to it, I think empowerment is achieved by empowering others. And looking good is such an easy way to do good too, no?

Watch the video (above) and get your brows waxed this May! Both men and women are welcome.

Thank you so much, Benefit, for letting me be part of such a special project!

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with my loves Angela, Nikki, and Jackie

 

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Benefit Browbars are available in Greenbelt 5, Trinoma, Mall of Asia, SM Megamall, Alabang Town Center, SM Seaside City Cebu, BGC Central Square, Rustan’s Makati and Rustan’s Shangri-la and will run from May 1-31, 2017

Gait of a Lady | Boucheron Quatre

Add a pep in your step by way of scent.

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Happy 2017, folks! Another year, another welcome post.

Everyone ushered in the new year with such excitement—urgency, almost. I think we can all agree that 2016 was universally awful. No need to enumerate why. The horrific events that transpired, sometimes with equally horrific faces, are, unfortunately, forever etched in our memories.

But if I may, personally, 2016 wasn’t so bad. I took a publishing course in the UK, met amazing people I plan on keeping in my life, had a few amazing trips, took more vacation time than what was probably allowed, thoroughly enjoyed my job, and was published pretty often so I’m extremely grateful for the year that was.

Since I’m a sucker for “Life Planning” and “Goal Setting” or any lame excuse to buy a new set of notebooks, every year I try to come up with a word—an overarching theme for my year (or life). Last year’s was “soar”. I guess I didn’t specify exactly what I had in mind but I did do some literal soaring and for that I am not mad. I’ve been trying to rack my brain for the perfect word for 2017. My working theme is “reinvention” which, by the way, is not an iteration of the trite “New Year, New Me” adage. Just a recalibration. Alyssa 2.0. Or The Late Twenties Version.

Reinvention can encompass multiple things. A new look, outlook, job—country, even. My career and geographical considerations are something I am still figuring out so unless you want to discuss at length what I need to do with my life, let’s stick to sartorial discourse here. Style-wise, I got bangs (which you can’t see in the photos because they were decided rather spontaneously post the shoot). I also bought new makeup and beauty products. Deciding to invest in skin care is worth it, I hear. My ROI can be publicly accessed and observed. Peruse (or dissect) photos as you wish. And my last bit of news in the beauty department is that I switched fragrances.

I got the Boucheron Quatre a couple of months ago but only started to spritz it obsessively recently. The Parisian brand equates to luxury and the perfume captures the brand’s essence, pun intended. The fragrance, inspired by the Maison’s iconic ring, is an elegant floral fruity blend. A lot of times fruity doesn’t necessarily feel grown-up—it’s kind of reminiscent of a tween’s first choice promptly after discovering her mother’s perfume cabinet. I actually remembering discovering my grandmother’s perfume cabinet and wanting to be in on the grown-up lady fun, you know, minus the cough-inducing spritzes. The olfactory biases of an 11-year old are very much geared towards the scent of fried chicken and newly-opened Barbie boxes. The Quatre, on the other hand, is for the contemporary woman. The scent is a subtle combination of chic and cool brought about by the mixture of bitter orange, jasmine, and just the right kick of golden woods for a woody undertone.

I know people say heels make the woman. Or something like it, I’m lazy to Google. But I do know that more than heels, spritzes of the perfect fragrance prompt the gait of a lady.

Statistically speaking, correlation doesn’t necessarily imply causation but trust me when I say the spritz adds a pep in the step. And this specific spritz induces a ladylike strut.

The Boucheront Quatre can be purchased at Art of Scent stores in Shangri-la Plaza and Resorts World Manila.

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All that Glisters is Not Gold

Because Shakespeare doth not know the power of accessories.

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It’s Sunday so let’s talk church.

I’ve always been amazed by mass-goers who are attentive throughout the whole celebration. A full hour of concentration is beyond me. I am not as saintly, pun intended. I zone out for most of the homily and am often lost in my own mercurial thoughts. A little girl, around seven or eight maybe, caught my eye at church recently. She had a toy with her, a lavender My Little Pony with a mane so ombre and glamorous it could rival the current fictional LGBT poster child. It’s mane not only had streaks of purple, violet, burgundy, and pink, it also had flecks of gold. It glistened every single time the little girl shifted. It was oddly hypnotic.

While watching this little girl clutch her pony tightly as she was falling asleep (at least the only extent of my boredom is an ungodly yawn, pun totally not intended), I remembered a famous line of William Shakespeare from the Merchant of Venice, “All that glisters is not gold.” I’m probably taking this entirely out of context but, no offense to Shakespeare, this doll not only glistened, it also obviously meant much to the child. Gold is, after all, variable. An old letter, an Instax photo, a puppy, or even a rare Gyarados catch in Pokemon Go can be gold to someone. But we’re not after figurative jewels here. I’m talking about literal shiny things. Literal shiny, gilded things.

Take jewelry, for instance. In most cases, gilded is good and sheen means value. I’ve always taken a minimalist approach to fashion that any form of trinket feels like a glamorous treat. Some jewel snobs would obviously not equate the precious metal with fast fashion options. They probably discriminate based on carat. Hell, they wouldn’t even equate white gold with its yellow counterpart. But to me it was never about whether or not the accessory is worth an arm and a leg or a mere cup of iced venti coffee. Affordable or with a hefty price tag, it adds another dimension to any look. Gilded, glistening accoutrements instantly send an amplified message of grandeur. Sometimes excess. Sometimes success. Accessories often reveal a nugget of information, accuracy notwithstanding, about the wearer. Take watches, for instance. People who wear watches generate instant respect especially if the timepiece comes in some shiny version of a metal. Call it watch bias if you like but in my head watches scream: job, stability, and an ascent up the corporate ladder. I don’t wear watches, by the way, so this isn’t to toot any employment horn.

What did seem like horn tooting, or at least implied a level of narcissism way past that of owning an eponymous website, was creating “art” with myself as the focal point. (Because really, having a site named after you is definitely not as easy to spurt out in conversation with people you just met and are trying to impress as one might otherwise be led to believe. It’s rather unnerving, actually.) What helped me look past my own omnipresent face was the fact that, to me, these Parfois accessories were gems, and that the photos needed to convey that somehow. (Which reminds me, if you haven’t read the post on my trip to the new Parfois concept store in Portugal yet, click here.) So I did what any Legally Blonde-raised, ultra femme millennial would do and slapped a whole slew of gold glitters in the photos. Full disclosure: I’m actually not Photoshop-savvy, which you could probably tell, so “slapping” was more like solving a 1,000-piece puzzle effort- and time-wise.

Trust that these new Parfois accessories– from the embroidered choker from the new Royal Eccentric collection, to the statement earrings, velvety textured bags, all the way down to the studded flats–made me feel a lot more glamorous than usual, even if my looks were fairly lackadaisical with a jeans and shirt combo (shirt also from Parfois) and a simple slip. That is the power of a good accessory– in this case, a bunch of them.

So yeah, all that glisters probably isn’t gold. But boy do I like ’em shiny, textured, gilded, embroidered, and glittering things.

Apparently so does that kid.

Blouse and accessories from PARFOIS 

An Unlikely Beauty Trip

When it comes to beauty, go big or go home.

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The set comes with a whole slew of products including the Original Foundation, Lasting Line Long-Wearing Eyeliner, Prime Time Foundation Primer, Mineral Veil Finishing Powder, Ready Blush, Marvelous Moxie Lipstick, Marvelous Moxie Lip gloss, and Eyeliner (not pictured).

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When your older cousin who doesn’t wear an ounce of makeup on any given day gets suspiciously excited over the Bare Minerals outlet store you better pop in. And that I did.

In between bursts of joy from my end shouting “I’m just so happy we’re in a makeup store together!”, something I never thought would happen unless she absolutely had to accompany me, I realized she really liked this brand. I’ve heard about the label a couple of times before but I’ve never actually tried the products. Fortunately, after an unlikely endorsement from my non-make up wearing cousin, I was sold, literally. I needed a new tub of face powder and couldn’t remember the exact shade I previously used from Laura Mercier and somehow the lady from Sephora kept giving me a much darker yellow shade which I think we both knew was way off but she insisted anyway.

As luck would have it, I was eyeing the selection at Bare Minerals while my cousin was deliberating on which primer to get (tough decision, I know), and the sales rep easily gunned down the exact same shade I was eyeing. I trust people who can accurately and instinctively pinpoint my shade.

They had a really good deal that day (actually they have a lot of good deals in that outlet store so if you’re ever in Michigan drop by the Birch Run branch) where you could get a set of full-sized products for way, way less so without any intention of buying anything, I ended up with a whole slew of their products in a very reasonably priced kit. For reference, I think the powder on its own is around $22, and the primer that my cousin relentlessly waxed poetic about is $25. I got both plus seven other full-sized products including two brushes for just $59 with the promo kit. I essentially got a ton of free-stuff. Essentially. Or basically paid a $1 for each extra product. (Don’t try to contest this. I’m not aiming for accuracy just a whole lot of impact.)

While I probably won’t use the brushes so much as the strands tend to fall apart, the actual makeup products are really worth the purchase. The Prime Time Foundation Primer glides on real smooth and makes your skin feel silky. I have gone out a couple of times with just the primer and blush. It comes in a pump and I only need to use one pump to fully cover my face. Really, two would be excessive. The Original Foundation powder is also really good. I’ve never been a fan of loose powder, I have always gone for compact options or liquid foundations but this I really like. When my face isn’t especially dry and want something light and natural I use just the powder. But it does give a flawless matte finish for days I need to be especially dolled up and I brush it on top of my liquid go-to. The Mineral Veil Finishing Powder comes in a small container but also makes for the perfect topper especially along the cheeks. I rarely use it, only for special occasions when I want a semblance of a professional touch. The Lasting Line Long-Wearing Eyeliner (not pictured) is also easy to glide on the eyes although I still have a slight issue with coming up a good cat eye if it’s not in gel or liquid form. All sets provide the exact same shades of blush, gloss, and lipstick. The only item that you can and have to choose the shade of is the foundation. I haven’t tried the gloss nor the lipstick yet but they both look promising as nudes.

It’s really easy to get buyer’s remorse from beauty purchases. For one, they tend to be expensive, and two, I only have one face, how much product can I actually use? This was a really good buy though so if you’re ever in need of a primer or loose powder, do consider Bare Minerals. And if you’re anything like me and would want more bang for your buck, then look into their kits. They have a lot of sets to choose from including specialty ones for just the eyes, the base, etc. Thanks, cousin, for the unlikely but very much welcome recommendation.

I knew I loved her for a reason.

Around the House

There is something (good) to be said about domestication.

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There’s something to be said about domestication. Sexist depictions of women hanging out in the kitchen and making sandwiches aside, there’s a certain appeal in knowing your way around the house. This side of the world (I’m back in Asia, btw), it’s not always a given. We’re almost expected to be dependent household-wise and any allusions to wanting to break free of the nest is scoffed at and immediately dismissed as disrespectful. But I’ve always admired—and respected—those who can work a washing machine, know how to clean nooks and crannies, make coffee, and just fend for one’s self without having to rely on microwavable mac and cheese on a daily humdrum basis (at which point I’m still at). In my defense, I used to be able to cook all sorts of things I just haven’t done it in a really long while.

Independence. That’s the implicit quality that domestication conveys. (K, maybe the implication isn’t that subtle.)

Now, in asserting how independent I am to people, I have rebutted that independence comes in different forms. (Though the fact that I had to vehemently defend just how independent I am maybe speaks for my falling short of it). Independence could be measured financially, I said. It could also be in terms of working on one’s own without having to constantly rely on other people for help. It could also mean singularity of mind and being able to make decisions by- and for- oneself. A lot of times I don’t throw domestication in the rebuttal mix because it’s an area I’m not necessarily adept at. There is shame in that, to be honest, but you and I are much closer than we both thought possible and you, dear reader, deserve to know the truth.

But that should change. I always thought moving to New York would be the truest testament of my independence—a rebellious, dramatic proclamation of what I thought independence should look like. Obviously, I haven’t moved yet. We’re still holding on to that dream despite the fear of failure which, trust me, gives me anxiety now and then.

In the meantime, I’m trying to remember just how many containers of detergent I have to put per wash cycle, how much oil to pour in a pan to make my favorite pasta and to not hunch my back so much when washing dishes because #lowerbackpains are real. I can’t delay growing up just because I’m delaying a life change out of fear. And that’s the truth. I don’t know how my nieces in Michigan are so much more capable of running a household than I am with a full ten-year advantage. Shame, shame. Maybe posing with the washing machine is stretching it a bit but I’m trying to prove a point and that is that domestication is just as admirable as the living-the-life posts on Instagram with matching breakfast buffet spreads: hashtag, hotel life.

I can make chocolate covered strawberries though so I’m still winning in life? Kind of?

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Look 1: Denim halter dress, GAP | Eyeglasses, SWAROVSKI

Look 2: Tan ribbed top, PACSUN | Yellow pants, THE LIMITED

Look 3: Striped dress, ASOS | Boots, 3.1 PHILLIP LIM 

A Beauty Date With Megastyle.ph

Chatted with Megastyle.ph about all things beauty. Join in on the girl talk?

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A  couple months back I had the privilege of chatting with MegaStyle.ph about my beauty rituals and must-haves. I always feel like a noob in the beauty realm so this was quite the surprise. I know, I know. Someone who wears red lipstick all the time seems to command quite the beauty know-how, right? Wrong. I mean I thought I knew a lot about makeup until I started hanging out with beauty bloggers. And, to reference my boy Jon Snow, we seem to be alike in the knowledge department (or lack thereof). Apparently, beauty is a whole different beast – with technical, scientific and procedural references that always seem to throw me off. Primers for lashes, serums for different nooks of one’s face, a barrage of anti-aging creams for twenty-year olds – the list of uncharted territories, at least in my book, is endless.

Still, read me babble about my beauty rituals, my must-haves, my travel essentials, and absolute favorite products over at this super cool feature produced and written by Cessi Treñas, directed by Alex Lara, shot by Andrea Beldua and beautified by Jorence Delimos of MAC Cosmetics and hair by Jan Edrosolan. Dream team.

I don’t think I’ve ever done a shoot with the camera this close to my face. Or squealed in depth (and, mind you, like an overexcited little girl) about my beauty regimen. I was pretty honest about my ineptitude too. But if you think there’s nothing you can learn from a non-beauty blogger talking about makeup, well, let me prove you wrong. At the very least, learn from my chronicled mistakes.

Plus, the writing and the illustrations are #lit. Read the full article here.

Produced by Cessi Treñas, Photography by Andrea Beldua. Creative Direction by Alexandra Lara. Hair by Jan Edrosolan. Makeup by Jorence Delimos of MAC Cosmetics

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Into The Woods

I’m turning into Pocahontas and I ain’t mad at it.

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The woods have always reminded me of certain scenes in my childhood. Running around the forest (looking for the puppy I mistakenly let out), hiding behind trees waiting for deer to show up, and walking along trails trying to identify fruits and mushrooms (even if I could never tell which were edible and which weren’t) are some of my fondest memories in the woods. Now when I do see a barrage of trees I feel an emotional connection somehow but since I’m out of outdoor-practice, I immediately scour the place for snakes. Not that I can actually tell if there are snakes by a mere stare but, you know, it feels reassuring to check.

I bumped into this (I wanna say marsh but it’s really not) empty lot with a bunch of trees and fallen leaves that made it look like autumn and immediately knew I wanted to take photos there. Tippi was thinking the same thing apparently so we both giddily parked haphazardly to take photos in a place that was obviously intended to be left alone.

I’m happy we took our chance. Currently enjoying my 4th of July weekend but this trip so far is turning me into a real-life Pocahontas. I literally just looked at a groundhog’s hole a few hours ago. Maybe this shoot was a foreshadowing. Pretty accurate, no?

Photos by Tippi Sy

Top, NAVA | Skirt, ZARA | Shoes, JEAN MICHEL-CAZABAT

Dog Days

Happiness hit her like a train on a track.

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There’s much room for interpretation re: dog days. What comes to mind is Florence and the Machine’s upbeat song (that may be about abuse?), days of sluggishness acco. to google, and, on a more personal note, my days with my actual dogs who I remember every time I see this shirt.

I never thought I’d like pets until I had them. I had a poodle when I was a baby but she was a barker and that didn’t sit well with me as a two-year old. She unfortunately died viciously and the gory and frightening memory is forever imprinted in my head.

It was only ’til recently (about 3-4 years ago) that puppies re-entered my life. Now I have four. I’ll be the canine equivalent of a stereotypical old maid/cat lady in no time. I chanced upon this lone shirt at the clearance rack of Penshoppe and knew I had to have it. Though my puppies are actually all shih tzus, the way this cute little embroidered nugget tilts his head reminds me so much of my own little munchkins.

Whatever pieces remind you of, I think it’s special when an item of clothing can so easily bring back precious moments or even favorite tunes. So until I can embroider my own puppies’ faces on shirts, I’ll be wearing this shirt to constantly remind me of how magical they are (by merely existing) and how happy I am to have four pawed-midgets in my life.

I can’t wait to cuddle them when I get back home.

Photography by KARLO TORIO

Shirt, PENSHOPPE | Skirt, ZARA | Bucket hat, VANGUARD from PACSUN