One Dollar Slice

IMG_8173 IMG_8181 IMG_8207 IMG_8189 IMG_8208 IMG_8199

Name: Mary Feddeman
Year: Sophomore
Hometown: Chapel Hill, NC
Concentration: Journalism major, Creative Writing and Urban Studies & Planning double minor

JK: What’s the inspiration behind your outfit today?
MF: I think I was just looking for something comfortable and kind of interesting, and definitely something autumn-ish.  In the winter, I wear tights pretty often, and I love loose, soft sweaters. The combat boots are my favorite shoes.  I feel powerful when I wear them, and the heels make a ton of noise when I walk, so they’re perfect for walking around on the eighth floor of Davis or on bricks in the Pit.  I like the disruption.

So I guess my inspiration was my own passive-aggressive personality.

JK: How would you describe your personal style?
MF:
My style is probably most influenced by where I am, so I’d cite Chapel Hill as the main inspiration for what I wear daily because I’ve been here so long, which means it’s pretty earthy and relaxed.  Lots of jeans.

New York has also had a strong influence on my style.  I stayed in the city for a few months this past summer, and I was definitely influenced by some of the styles I saw on subways, where I worked, and in parks.  While I lived there, I wound up dying the tips of my hair bright red and getting a tattoo one day: two things I probably wouldn’t have done before.  So yeah, I think the city hardened me and my style a little.

Lately, I’ve been mixing hard and soft elements a lot – a little bit of urban and a little bit of small town.

JK: What are your favorite trends?
MF:
Growing up in Chapel Hill, I’ve been raised to love Birkenstocks, though I don’t think that’s so much of a trend anywhere else.  I really like hats, though I don’t really wear many.  And brown leather jackets, though I don’t (yet) own one.  I like florals, especially floral scarves.  And I love intricate earrings.  I also really appreciate it when someone loves a piece so much they wear it to death.  I like when you can tell it’s been worn.

I think honestly my favorite trend right now is that anything seems to fly – I like that people are borrowing so much from the styles of other decades, while at the same time coming up with original pieces and ways to wear them.

And I especially like that older styles are considered semi-fashionable because I’m extremely cheap, so I can buy old things at the thrift store and still feel like a college student when I wear them.

____________________

My suede brogues shuffled along the sidewalks of north campus, obscured by the fallen autumn leaves.  By the light of the setting sun, my eyes scanned the grounds for a fashionista.  Then Mary caught my eye, a small town girl with big city dreams.  Mary’s outfit was the apple of my eye…well, I should say the “Big Apple” of my eye. It combined the hard element of the city with small town class.  She began with a light grey cord sweater from Old Navy.  Cord sweater are staple in preppy fashion.  What set Mary’s apart from a normal cord sweater was that it revealed a bit more than one would imagine.  She paired it with a dark grey skirt from PTA Thrift Shop.  A pair of white textured socks that she got from her mom hugged her feet, and Mary finished with a pair of black boots that she bought from Macy’s.  Combat boots, a year-round favorite, gave her a tough appearance.

Subtleties offset her neutral-toned outfit.  These small details mimicked the foliage in color.  Mary’s burnt orange tights from Target, her orange feather earring from Top Shop, and red lipstick really gave her outfit a fiery quality.  She continued to accessorize with a bronze triangle stud and golden bracelet from Top Shop.  Bronze and gold jewelry is perfect for the summer and autumn seasons.  Mary completed her outfit with tortoise shell browline sunglasses, which she haggled for in Chinatown.  Without a doubt, Mary showed us how to bring the big city to a small town.

Managing Stress During Exams

With exams beginning this week, stress levels are rising to an all time high. While it is a well-known fact that stress is harmful to your overall well-being, many people often do not know how to cope with it. During this time of year avoiding stress is nearly impossible, but there are easy ways to reduce its negative impacts.

When managing stress, exercise plays a key role. Staying active daily is not only good for your body, but it causes the release of endorphins. Endorphins are essentially your brain’s feel-good neurotransmitters. Take a study break and squeeze in 30 minutes or an hour of exercise. It can help clear your mind and let go of the tension that your body builds throughout the day. Making room in your hectic schedule to exercise may not be easy but it is definitely worth it.

Image courtesy of trialx.com

Image courtesy of trialx.com

I am sure that we have all fell victim to the evil known as procrastination at least once, but time management can help a great deal in preventing stress. Some people like to make lists or write everything down on a calendar to stay organized and allot their time efficiently. While this sounds nice, in reality, it does not always work out the way you want it to. However, beginning that final paper a few days before the due date or not cramming for that chemistry final can certainly reduce your stress levels during exam time.

Talking about your problems, in moderation, to your family or close friends can provide the advice or reassurance that you may need during this time. Having a strong support system is important in coping with stress because it gives you the comfort of knowing that people are there for you when you need them. If the stress of finals becomes too much to bear, or you just need someone to talk to, counselors UNC-Chapel Hill’s Counseling and Wellness Services are always there to listen.

Fashion Inspiration of the Day: Lillian Bassman

Around this time of year, I find myself settling into the mundane cycle of school life. School has been in session for months already, Christmas break rife with relaxation and twinkling lights is almost here, and the weight of impending exams and papers has significantly increased. As a result, my sense of fashion has also fallen into a rut. I’ve found myself settling into a daily pattern: boots, jeans, sweater, and scarf. It’s not that I don’t have time to think about an outfit—I just feel uninspired. So in the hope of curing an enduring sense of ennui, I looked to fashion idols, photographs, and the people around me. After searching for a source of inspiration, I found mine in a series of photographs by Lillian Bassman.

pic111

Image courtesy of http://nytimes.com

Bassman died earlier this year at the age of 94, and for most of her life, she was known as a master of fine-art photography. Bassman was a true New York woman: she was born in Brooklyn, grew up in the Bronx, and studied in Manhattan. Her life changed when she became an unpaid apprentice at Harper’s Bazaar in 1941, as she would go on to become one of the magazine’s top photographers. A true artist, Bassman experimented with lighting, contrast, and the willowy forms of her models to create beautiful, dreamy portraits of women who seem almost abstracted.

pic2

pic3

pic5

Images courtesy of http://www.coolhunting.com

pic6

Image courtesy of http://mediabistro.com

pic7

pic9

pic10

pic11

Images courtesy of http://ananasamiami.com

Bassman, however, was known most famously, or infamously, for destroying almost all of her commercial negatives in 1969 after becoming disgusted by the models and changing aesthetics of the fashion industry. Later in life, Bassman would re-interpret her remaining negatives with further experimentation and revisit what made her so popular in the first place.

Despite the vicissitudes of her career, I have felt the power of her photography. Many of the images are simply breathtaking, and looking at them is like stumbling upon a hazy dream of remarkable fashion and remarkable women. Hopefully, these photographs can serve to inspire anyone who is currently suffering from this listless sense of ennui.

XOXO, Gossip Girl’s Final Fashion Show

Gossip Girl’s sixth and final season is coming to a close, signaling the end of an era characterized by schoolgirl headbands and scandalous affairs. While the show’s drama has been the main source of attraction, many of us come back for the clothes. Eric Damian, the show’s stylist, has cultivated the wardrobes of each star to perfection over the past six seasons. And even if the outfits border on ridiculous at times, causing many to question whether or not a seventeen-year-old in high school would ever wear such clothes, this is the Upper East Side. And the two queen bees of the Upper East Side, Serena and Blair, rule their fashion empire. From their time at Constance Billard School for Girls, to their trip to Paris, and to their final appearances in season six, it’s clear that their clothes have become characters of their own. Although Serena and Blair’s love lives may take center stage at times, their friendship has always been the strongest and most compelling relationship of the show. In celebration of that friendship and the final season, let’s take a look back at the stories their clothes have created.

Image courtesy of http://www.collegefashion.net/fashion-tips/how-to-dress-like-blair-waldorf/

Image courtesy of http://www.tumblr.com/tagged/serena-van-der-woodsen?before=1335876784

In the early days, Serena and Blair were restricted to wearing uniforms, but the two put their own spin on the classic plaid and starched white shirt. Blair defined her style through ladylike tailored blouses and colorful headbands while Serena opted for a sexier, more laidback style.

Image courtesy of http://jolie-petitefille.blogspot.com/2010/09/introduction.html

Image courtesy of http://www.fanpop.com/clubs/serena-van-der-woodsen/images/1321045/title/serena-van-der-woodsen-photo

Even outside of school, both Serena and Blair used their clothes to showcase their personalities. Blair stuck to classic silhouettes that reflected her obsession with Audrey Hepburn, and Serena chose more casual yet effortlessly cool clothes to represent her free-spirited personality.

Image courtesy of http://www.instyle.com/instyle/package/general/photos

Image courtesy of http://lifeisroyalty.blogspot.com/2010/11/you-know-you-love-this-d.html

By the time season two rolled around, the girls were still choosing clothes that matched their styles from season one. Always youthful and fun, their outfits at the White Party in the first episode of season two were particularly memorable.

Image courtesy of http://www.buddytv.com/articles/gossip-girl/gossip-girl-season-3-premiere-30920.aspx

Image courtesy of http://coffeefashionandtv.blogspot.com/2011/12/how-to-dress-like-serena-van-der-woodsen.html

Season three was a confusing time for these two ladies, as they settled into college, Serena indulged in an affair with a married man, and Blair had incredibly dramatic relationship problems with a certain Chuck Bass. Their wardrobes reflected this fluctuating state, as Blair lost the headband but still retained some of her immaturity from high school. And Serena started wearing more sophisticated looks but maintained her upper-crust boho-chic vibe.

Image courtesy of http://www.posh24.com/gossip_girl/gossip_girl_takes_on_paris

Image courtesy of http://neverenuffstuff.com/2010/09/gossip-girl-fashion-episode-1-season-4.html

By season four, however, there was a change. The dresses became more sophisticated, the accessories more impressive, and the shoes even higher. Perhaps this reaction stems partially from their amazing style during their trip to Paris. While Blair perfected her use of color and patterning without ever seeming gauche, Serena balanced dressing sexy with tailored blazers or funky accessories.

Image courtesy of http://screencrave.com/2011-11-22/gossip-girl-season-5-episode-8-all-the-pretty-sources-tv-review/

The clothing of season five showcased Blair as a princess-to-be and Serena in more sophisticated dresses. Take a look at their evolved styles with this snapshot of the two at Blair’s wedding shower.

Image courtesy of http://www.wetpaint.com/gossip-girl/articles/gossip-girl-season-6-will-blair-and-serena-ever-be-friends-again-poll

Flash-forward to season six and it’s apparent that Blair and Serena are no longer teenagers. Blair still mixes her colors and patterns but in more demure silhouettes. Serena, on the other hand, still dresses in her customary sexy style, but the more bohemian aspect of her style has disappeared and in its place is a more sophisticated taste.

Image courtesy of http://coffeefashionandtv.blogspot.com/2011/12/how-to-dress-like-serena-van-der-woodsen.html

Images courtesy  of http://fashionasliterature.wordpress.com/tag/style/

And finally, my two favorite outfits from the show’s entire run. Nothing makes a statement quite like Serena’s grey lace Zuhair Murad dress or Blair’s red ruffled Oscar de la Renta gown.

Street Style: Coffee Shop Chic

Name: Sara Farrell
Year: Sophomore
Hometown: Charlotte, NC
Concentration: Environmental Studies

While panning for fashionistas in the stream of students flowing through the center of campus, this nugget of gold caught my eye.  Excited that I asked her to be my model, Sara put down her Starbucks cup and took to the brick runway.

Sara describes her personal style as a “beautiful mess”.  This makes sense considering her taste in specific pieces, which alludes to a flexible wardrobe.  Upon asking Sara about her favorite trends, she told me that she loves commando boots.  Especially during these frigid days, boots should be your footwear of choice.  She also appreciates leggings, which continue to be popular in women’s fashion.  You can also find pleated dresses with a high neckline in her closet.

Paying homage to her birth state and the upcoming season, “winter in California” was the inspiration for Sara’s dress.  Her outfit was dominated by black and nude tones, a combination that has always intimidated me.  One of my style rules that I have held dear since high school is to never mix black and nudes, but Sara made me question it.  She tutored me in how to pull off the contrasting duo – don’t overthink it; subtlety will go a long way.  Pairing a cream cowl neck sweater that she brought from PTA Thrift Shop with black leggings from Forever 21, she demonstrates this delicate engagement.  Her nude textured flats from LOFT, which match her sweater, further enhance the effect.  Sara completed her outfit by accessorizing with a pair of pairs: H&M rose lens sunglasses and diamond stud earrings.  Although the palette was limited, simplicity colored her outfit.

The paralyzing choke hold of finals is just around the corner, but that is no excuse to dress down.  Instead, you should take after Sara and dress with an elegant simplicity.

 

Tips for Combating Winter Skin Woes

With winter right around the corner, it is time to get your new skin care regimen ready! As we all know, the brutally dry winter air can take a toll on your skin; however, there are steps to help prevent and combat dry skin.

Moisturizing is key. Although a great moisturizer should be a staple in your skin care routine year round, it is especially important in the winter months. Dawn Diorio, national trainer and aesthetician for Ahava told ELLE, “”In the winter, you need to add products to your skin-care regime to protect yourself from the harsh elements; if you’re using a normal, lightweight moisturizer, bump it up to a more emollient one.” However, thicker creams do not always hydrate better. In fact, they can actually lock in dead skin cells and leave the skin looking duller. Dermatologists often recommend using a serum under moisturizer to boost absorption. Boscia’s Antioxidant Recovery Treatment C is a great option that has a combination of botanicals and antioxidants to make your skin really glow.

Image courtesy of Sephora.com

Another way to keep your skin radiant in the winter is by exfoliating 1 to 3 times a week, depending on how oily your skin is. Contrary to the running myth that exfoliating in the winter can worsen dry patches, using a gentle exfoliant in moderation can help remove dead skin and allow new, moisture-rich cells to move to the surface. Exfoliants that are enzyme-based are gentle and provide great results. Since your body’s skin is less delicate than facial skin, exfoliating 3-5 times a week will help your skin retain moisture and remove dead skin. Fresh Brown Sugar Polish smells wonderful and will keep your skin super soft.

Image courtesy of Sephora.com

Protecting your precious pout is also very important. Have you ever felt a waxy film over your lips after using lip balm? If so, you may have been using the wrong kind. Balms that are made out of mineral oil (petroleum jelly) actually create an artificial film over your lips and prevent them from producing natural lipids that keep them moisturized. Instead, find balms that contain natural-oils such as shea or cocoa butter. If lips do get dry and flakey, use a gentle facial exfoliant, or a soft toothbrush, to remove the dead skin.

Regardless of which products you chose to use, protecting your skin during the winter is vital. Pick what works for you and stick with it.

Sources:

http://www.marieclaire.com/hair-beauty/trends/10-winter-skin-myths

http://www.elle.com/beauty/makeup-skin-care/winter-skin-guide-face-body-care-389158

Winter Essentials

Winter has officially settled in here in Chapel Hill, but that doesn’t mean your wardrobe should suffer.  In fact, winter gives you even more opportunities to show off the looks and styles you love. Coats, hats, gloves, scarves and layering are all pivotal, not only for staying warm but for staying in style. As tempting as it is to thrown on your sweats and Uggs, which we know are needed at times, don’t waste these next few months of fashion fun! As the temperatures continue to drop, here are some of our favorite winter staples to get you through the season looking your best!

1. echotech Touch Gloves

Gloves are a definite winter necessity. They’re great for finishing off any outfit and they’ll keep your hands warm during those chilly months. But in the age of the smartphone gloves are a hassle. They make texting, using social media sites or apps, and all the other functions that make a smartphone fun near impossible. That is, until Touch Gloves came along.

From the company’s website: “Knit into the index finger and thumb of each glove, our eLink fabric interacts with touch screen devices, making them compatible with the iPod, iPhone, iPad and other touch sensitive digital devices.” The gloves come in every imaginable color and style, ranging from wool to cashmere, and with accents like ruffles, color blocking, patterns and bows. Keep your hands nice and warm, without sacrificing form or function!

Available online at:

http://www.echodesign.com/shop/for-her/gloves/

 2.  Socks & Tights

Just because it’s cold doesn’t mean you’re limited exclusively to pants for the next few months. Skirts and dresses are still in the game, but if you keep your legs bare you sure won’t be for long.  Tis the season for tights and socks of all kinds- never skip good hosiery! Tights aren’t boring like you may remember from when you were a little girl. Today, they’re one of the best ways to add detail to an otherwise simple outfit. Coming in a variety of patterns and colors, tights can not only keep your legs a bit warmer but also compliment the outfit you’re suffering for.

Sheer black tights are a classic and should be in your wardrobe anyway. However, patterned tights with polka dots or self-made rips can make a basic black skirt and sweater all the more interesting. Socks are also a must, whether in tights and a skirt or a good pair of jeans or trousers. In the drab winter season bright colorful and patterned socks can be a fun way to bring a little light in. A good pair of high socks will also be needed to keep those winter boots up.  A reliatvely new retailer Bootights makes tights with socks attached to the bottom! It’s literally the perfect pair of tights, invest in a pair and see what we mean.

The above socks and tights can be found at:

http://www.madewell.com/madewell_category/ACCESSORIES/sockstights.jsp?navLoc=left_nav

Bootights are available at:

http://www.bootights.com/shop-bootights.html

 3. Hats & Ear Warmers

If you’re having a bad hair day, whether it be due to winter winds or waking up late for class, or you simply need to keep warm, a hat is the clear choice. Even when the gloves and coat come off, a good hat can continue to make a statement in any outfit.  Beanies, berets and ear warmers are all in this season and are sure to keep you nice and warm.

Ear warmers are a great transition for those of us who love headscarves and headbands. They give you the functional benefits of the hat but with a unique twist. They come in a variety of styles and colors, much like their warm weather scarf counterparts, and you can easily find several to wear throughout the season. If hats are more your style, a good beanie or beret in a neutral like grey, black, navy or cream is sure to be a wardrobe staple as the temperature drops. They’re always a cute, comfy addition to any winter outfit. Plus, if your hair didn’t turn out quite right no one will ever know. Perks of the season, if you ask me.

All above products are available at:

http://www.urbanoutfitters.com/urban/catalog/category.jsp?id=W_ACC_HATS

 4. Scarves

Scarves are an important part of your wardrobe during any season but it’s during the winter that they take on a whole new meaning. It’s oftentimes hard to find a scarf that can keep you warm in the wind and snow, yet look cute when you’re in class or a meeting and want to look cute without the coat.

Infinity scarves and snoods have been on the rise for the past few years and are now a full on fashion phenomenon. Available in a variety of materials, ranging from cashmere to a chunky wool knit, and every color and size you could need, these scarves a great addition to your cold weather closet. However, when purchasing these be sure you don’t go too big, because yes with scarves there is such a thing and it is to be avoided. If you don’t want a trend and instead a classic winter scarf, there’s lots out there for you! J.Crew has an incredible scarf selection, ranging form affordable wool-angora color block to beautiful cashmere wraps. Find what works best for you and your wardrobe. Be sure to have a variety of both basics and fun prints and patterns- scarves should be fun accent pieces even if they’re there to keep you warm!

All of the scarves seen above are available at:

http://www.jcrew.com/womens_category/accessories/scarvesglovesandhats.jsp

 5. Parkas & Pea Coats

The most important piece you will buy this winter is the coat. We may be in the south but that doesn’t mean that the walk home from the library at 2 am when you’re cramming for finals won’t feel like a trek across the tundra. Coats are pricey and for sure an investment, but one that is well worth it. Much like a life partner, once you find the perfect coat stop looking and settle down! I’ve found it’s best to have two winter coats- one for everyday and one when you need to dress things up.

The everyday coat should be some sort of parka or down jacket, one that can keep you warm no matter how bad it gets. The tried and true favorite across the board is any and all things North Face. The North Face ‘Metropolis’ Parka, coming in at $320 on Nordstrom’s site, is one of the brands most popular. The down coat with a detachable hood is lightweight but super warm! It also covers your butt- it might sound silly, but long term you’ll be glad you thought about that. Purchasing this coat was one of the best winter choices I’ve made. North Face has other great coats- find what works best for you! In terms of a fun coat for when the down parka seems inappropriate, well that’s up to you and your personal style. Find a coat that fits your personal style but keeps you nice and toasty. A pea coat is a classic choice that will likely work with any outfit for any possible occasion. They can be long or short, but in terms of color it’s best to stick with neutrals. If the coat is quality if will be costly so don’t waste it on a trend you won’t like during next season’s snowstorm.

All of the coats pictured above are available at:

http://shop.nordstrom.com/c/womens-coats-shop?origin=topnav&cm_sp=Top%20Navigation-_-Women-_-Coats%20&%20Jackets

6. Boots

 A good pair of boots is one of the most important things to keep in your closet to survive the winter. You can wear them with jeans, pants and your tights and skirts. Walking through campus it’s clear to see that the knee-high camel leather boot will reign supreme once again this year and with good reason! A classic pair of leather boots will go with any outfit and keep your feet and legs warm no matter the weather. While many of you will likely will have a pair leftover from earlier in the year, it’s a good idea to buy a new pair in the winter.

Soles and heels get worn down, stains are likely to be rampant especially on suede, and the overall quality of the boot has gone down. Not only does this take away  polish from your appearance but from the warmth and protection of the shoe. With all the holiday sales now is the perfect time to get a new pair of boots to get you through the season. Pick a pair you know will work in your everyday wardrobe, but that can be dressed up here and there! Leather is the safest choice, especially with snowfall possible, as it is the most durable. Again, pick a neutral shade that can function with the wardrobe you have but don’t be afraid of fun hardware and accents! Also, don’t just go for the standard calf height boot. Whether they’re knew high, ankle, or calf height boots if they fit your style and the function you need, get em!

All of the above styles can be found at:

http://www.madewell.com/madewell_category/SHOESANDBOOTS/boots.jsp?navLoc=left_nav

http://shop.nordstrom.com/c/womens-boots-shop

Fashion for a Better World: Creating Change in the Triangle Area

Fashion can tell the stories of who we are and who we want to be. When you wear a bold dress or a piece of jewelry handed down to you by a grandmother, you are not simply trying on meaningless objects. The pieces transform when you wear them—that skin-to-fabric contact creates a bond—a fantasy, a reality. On a less personal note, fashion can tell us about the cultural and social norms of a time. Yves Saint Laurent’s 1966 tuxedo suit, Le Smoking, made a strong statement about female power, as it was the first popular tuxedo suit for women. Similarly, in 2001, Alexander McQueen’s Spring/Summer show, Voss, questioned the modeling industry’s obsession with creating a standard formula for female beauty. Thus, fashion has an impact on the way we feel, think, and see.

However, popular cultural and a majority of the world seem to have one view of the fashion industry, a view filtered through the lens of such phenomenon as The Devil Wears Prada. This image of the fashion industry consists of a cold, snobby, and cutthroat consumerist realm based in New York and inaccessible to the rest of the world. But if the fabulous designers from Friday night’s Fashion for a Better World show have anything to say about it, that perception of the fashion industry will be shattered. A part of UNC’s larger Global Entrepreneurship Week, Fashion for a Better World emphasized the power of rising female entrepreneurs and the growing market of sustainable fashion in the Research Triangle. Hosted by Symbology, a label that uses fashion to empower female artisans, the event showcased works by six different female designers. Additionally, Brooks Bell, founder of an enterprise-level testing and optimization firm, spoke about her experience as a female entrepreneur and the necessity of taking small risks to build confidence. Mor Aframian, from Redress Raleigh, also celebrated the modern female entrepreneur in her speech about the emergence of a sustainable fashion industry in North Carolina.

But it was the surprise celebrity guest speaker of the night, five-time Grammy nominee Nnenna Freelon who so eloquently captured the spirit of the entire night: “It’s not just about looking cute, it’s about spreading the love and the wealth and the beauty…So we can all feel good on multiple levels.” Nnenna also spoke to the notion of creating this sustainable fashion industry right here in North Carolina when she succinctly stated, “Bloom where you are planted.” You don’t have to go to New York, Milan, or Paris to interact with fashion. There’s an entire fashion industry blooming in the Research Triangle, and during Fashion for a Better World, the audience was finally able to witness it. And what I saw was not just any fashion but fashion with heart. Fashion grounded in social and environmental consciousness.

The first designer to send her looks down the runway was Oami Powers, founder of the contemporary clothing line, Judah Ross. Powers noted the importance of personal history in her edgy and eclectic designs. On her decision to go green as a designer, Oami said, “You want to feel good about the clothes you are wearing, you don’t want to feel like you’re having a really detrimental effect on the planet…” A true believer in the Slow Fashion movement, Oami emphasized the need for quality over quantity in her designs. This quality was evident in all her pieces from the night. One particular stunner was this hand-dyed watercolor skirt, no doubt influenced by Powers’ background as a painter. Oami’s attention to fabric and color can also be seen in her other dresses.

Photographs courtesy of Josh Kongmany

Following Powers’ Judah Ross was Kim Kirchstein of Leopold Designs. Motivated by a love for shape, pattern, and texture, Kirchstein has created gorgeous scarves for Leopold Designs in the past but notes that she is now making more of a transition to wearable garments. Her collection vibrated with color and intricate patterns.

Photographs courtesy of Josh Kongmany

This skirt with its blue swirling pattern was beautiful, and Kirchstein’s final look, a fiery dress, was a showstopper. Kirchstein’s clothes had an easy, flowing feel to them, but the colors and patterns kept the designs sharp. On her desire to pursue sustainable fashion, Kirchstein said, “The health of the entire planet is affecting people more on an individual basis [now]…”

Next up on the runway was Mamafrica, founded by Ashley Nemiro, a current PhD student who splits her time between school in Chapel Hill and Mamafrica in the Democratic Republic Congo. This non-profit organization takes a holistic approach to changing the lives of internally displaced women in the DRC who are often victims of sexual violence. Nemiro emphasizes that fashion “is one component, but it’s not the biggest.” Nemiro’s team also teaches health literacy and offers counseling for the Mamas of Mamafrica. The actual creation of clothing is part of the organization’s efforts to create economic opportunities for these women. Of the clothing, Nemiro comments, “All of our stuff is very unique. Everything is one-of-a-kind.” Set against Alicia Keys’ “Girl is on Fire,” the colorful and patterned garments that came down the runway showcased this spirit of individuality. But Nemiro emphasizes that the program not only celebrates individuality but also the creation of community: “It’s important that I know every single woman’s name who comes through the program…Once a woman has come through Mamafrica, she’s always a Mama.”

Photographs courtesy of Josh Kongmany

After Mamafrica’s vividly colorful designs came the softer, earthy hues of Organicality, an eco-lifestyle company dedicated to selling products that contain only organic and sustainable fibers certified under Fair Trade conditions. Carrie Huitt Rueben, the founder of Organicality, has become a leader in sustainable fashion, and her chic collection of laid-back knits was perfect for fall and perfect for the environmentally conscious. Bags and wallets from Callie Brauel’s non-profit, A Ban Against Neglect, completed Organicality’s outfits. A Ban Against Neglect is a non-profit organization based in Accra, Ghana that helps girls off the street in Accra and recycles the plastic bags that litter Accra’s roads. By teaching girls how to sew bags made out of these plastic bags and other materials, ABAN provides a financial boost and an environmental boost to the community of Accra, Ghana.

Photographs courtesy of Josh Kongmany

Marissa Heyl of Symbology closed the fashion show with her Fall 2012 collection. Titled Peacocks and Paisleys, this collection’s crisp patterns, modern silhouettes, and interesting cutout designs created a dynamic set of looks. For example, the flair of this dress and the bright color made for a stunning opening piece. Another favorite of mine was this patterned dress that could easily translate from day to night.

Photographs courtesy of Josh Kongmany

Finally, this modern red dress with an interesting cutout stole the show for me. To round out the collection, performers danced to Beyonce’s “Run the World (Girls),” creating an atmosphere of high energy and female strength.

Heyl founded Symbology with the intention of empowering women and creating a source of income for artisans in developing countries. Named because of Heyl’s interest in how symbols are imbued with cultural meaning, Heyl explains the thinking behind Symbology: “[Symbology is] not only a thread that connects us as humans but is interested in the symbolic nature of our dresses, our pieces…Every dress tells a story, something that connects women, empowering women, celebrating art forms that are dying, providing customers with works of art.”

Heyl uses textiles made by artisans in India and provides these artisans with a steady demand and fair income. Her innovative approach to fashion has changed the way in which we view sustainable fashion. In this case, Heyl has created sustainable relationships with artisans in India. She noted how larger companies like Anthropologie sometimes partner with poorer artisans, but after using these artisans, the companies leave. So no permanent solution to their lack of income has been established. Symbology, on the other hand, thrives on these close relationships. Heyl explained that being on the ground and talking to people in these developing countries has served as the basis of her professional relationships with the artisans.

Marissa Heyl’s commitment to creating communities focused on bettering the world through fashion has resulted in not only Symbology but also Friday’s Fashion for a Better World. Heyl brought together a group of women in North Carolina to show how amazing female collaboration can be. The night also solidified the importance of creating fashion to sustain the world and the people who live in it. Most of all, the night allowed me a glimpse of an alternate fashion universe, one where fashion tells the stories of who we are and who we will be. One where snobby exclusivity is replaced by heart and a desire to see change in the world.

Vitamins for the Perfect Skin

gaylaxymag.com

The end of the semester is within view, but we still have a few weeks to go before we can throw our lectures notes in the fireplace and just kick back while listening to the embers crackle.  The last few weeks of every semester are always plagued with term papers, projects, and finals.  We try to avoid it, but the late nights spent studying are inevitable.  These sleepless nights are bound to take a huge toll on your skin.  Although your mind will be fried, here are some vitamins to keep your skin looking at its best.

Vitamin A is associated with fortifying bone cells, which are important for the health of your hair and skin.  Course, dry, blemished, and itchy skin can be traced back to low levels of vitamin A in the body.  The consumption of liver, carrots, and sweet potatoes, foods that are rich in vitamin A, can prevent these problems from developing.  Vitamin A is also found in topical forms, such as lotions and night creams.  It protects your skin from premature aging.  As college students, we don’t want to roll into class looking like we’re fifty.

wishfulchef.com

Niacin, also known as Vitamin B3, can hydrate your skin and reduce redness.  Inadequate amounts of B3 in the body can result in dry or scaly skin, possibly even dermatitis.  Vitamin B3 can be found in under the name “niacinamide” in lotions, creams, and serums and in foods, such as fish and peanuts.  The dry, winter air can really draw out the moisture from your face, so don’t be remiss about getting enough B3.

kimonobox.com

Vitamin C is the master of aging prevention.  It plays a major role in collagen production.  Below the epidermis, collagen has the task of preventing the skin from sagging.  A vitamin C deficiency will produce coarse skin and will prolong the amount of time it takes for wounds to heal.  Many fruits, especially citrus fruits, are packed with vitamin C.  Having wrinkles when you’re in your twenties doesn’t sound appeal at all.

nutritionexpert.com

The vitamin that is often associated with skin health is vitamin E.  This vitamin aids in evening out your skin tone and softening the texture of your skin.  Color discoloration is common for people, who aren’t getting enough vitamin E.  Many topicals designed for skin health contain vitamin E.  Seafood, nuts, and seeds are also full of it.  Vitamin E will keep your skin healthy and radiant.

colourbox.com

We all know that the end of the semester is a very stressful time, but your health should always come before your studies.  Taking your vitamins will take your skin to new heights, but don’t forget about the basics: getting sufficient amounts of sleep, eating well, and drinking water.  When the last week comes, you’ll be rolling into your finals with the freshest face.

Lovely Leather

There is no denying that leather is a force to be reckoned with this season. Paring a leather item with any outfit is an easy way to give your look an edgier touch. While genuine leather is on the pricey side, there are many synthetic leather options that provide you with all the bang for fewer bucks. This trend has also been a huge hit among celebrities. A-list stars such as Beyonce´, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jennifer Lopez and Kristen Stewart have all been seen rocking the trend. While you may be thinking that wearing tight leather pants or a tiny leather dress is a little too bold for you, there are a multitude of ways to tweak the trend to fit your personal style. Not a fan of black? No worries, there are plenty leather pieces available in this season’s hottest colors. All in all, leather is extremely versatile and should be a staple in every woman’s closet.

Leather Skirt

While leather skirts are typically seen as nighttime attire, this season feminine pleated option allows you to wear the trend day or night.  If you are looking for a sexier option, pair a leather pencil skirt with a peplum top and you’ve got the perfect mix of sexy and classy.

Leather Dress

When it comes to leather dresses there are a wide variety of options available. For the bolder fashionista, who is not afraid to show off her curves, a bodycon leather dress will be perfect. Those who are more modest may prefer a dress with leather accents.

Leather Pants

Remember liquid leggings? Well, they have been replaced with far more stylish, and breathable, leather pants. These pants will give any outfit a chic and edgy twist.

Leather Jacket

The leather jacket is a classic piece that can easily transform and pull together any look. A fun way to wear this season’s biker jacket is to pair it with ultra feminine dresses and skirts to add contrast to your outfit