Category Archives: Fashion

Thrifty Possibilities – A New Old Way to Shop

When someone asks me, “Hey where did you get that top (skirt, dress, etc.) and I tell them “Goodwill” their expression changes from curious to absolute shock. I explain that a good portion of my closet actually is second hand and they’re usually my favorite pieces to wardrobe. Then they say how lucky I am to have found such a deal because they themselves have never been successful at thrifting, and in some cases would never even consider doing it. And to be honest I used to feel the same way. thrift collage

When I first started thrifting it was so frustrating to have to sift through a bunch of unwanted clothes just to come out empty-handed. I have always loved the concept of thrifting: giving purpose to older goods and being able to recycle from what can be a very wasteful fashion industry.  But I almost gave up on the idea when I just couldn’t find anything worth having. It all changed when I moved to San Francisco and discovered the tricks behind finding the best of deals.

San Francisco, much like other big cities, is a second-hand-shop mecca! At first, I began shopping at consignment stores like Crossroads Trading Co. and Buffalo Exchange with great results. Consignment stores are different from thrift stores in that their merchandise typically does not consist of donations. Consignors choose and buy the products they carry which means they are going to be more expensive. Their items are usually gently used and sometimes even brand new.  I find a ton of stuff from these stores and always for good prices; however, nothing beats thrift shops. Here are my tips on how to become not only a savvy shopper, but an amazing “thrifter”!

  1. BE WILLING: Remember you are thrifting, not just shopping! You should not come to a second hand shop with a wish list because chances are you will leave unhappy. Instead be willing to search racks of clothing and explore shelves of stuff. It’s like a big Easter-egg hunt so you want to make sure you are in the mood to thrift and have the energy to do so.
  1. BE PATIENT: It may take you some time to come across something nice, but I guarantee once you do it’ll be well worth it (the prices will be unbeatable!). The best results for me come when I make a day out of it and visit more than just one store. Thrifting is hit or miss but that should not discourage you to keep trying. When it comes to thrift stores it is all about location because they usually take up donations from local residences. Based on my experience, the shops I liked most were in neighborhoods where there were more people around my age and therefore had a similar style to mine.
  1. BE CREATIVE: Thrift shops are the best place to tap into your imagination. You can really change up your style at a low cost. I try to be more creative when it comes to colors, prints, and clothing textures. It allows me to be adventurous when it comes to layering and styling pieces. I even try to replicate outfits that I see in magazines. This creativity can also be applied to other merchandise you might find such as furniture or vintage décor.thrift collage 2
  1. BE KNOWLEDABLE: One of my most important tips is to really think about what you are buying. What will you do with it? Are you actually going to wear it? Is it in good condition? It is important to ask these questions because there is nothing worse (and definitely NOT thrifty) than buying something you won’t use/wear – no matter how low the cost!
  1. DO YOUR RESEARCH: If you are like me and want to know the life of your clothing, then take some time to search up brands. When I come across an item with a questionable label, I pull out my phone to see whether or not it is worth my buy. Sometimes, I even come across very expensive brands that are sold in shops like Nordstrom and Saks Fifth. The better the brand, the bigger the deal!

I hope these tips lead you to the best thrifting experience! Have fun and good luck!

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Makeup Tips: How to Make Drugstore Brands Work for You

Every time I go to Target, Wal-Mart, or really any drug store I find myself lost in the cosmetics section wanting to try everything on the shelves. Lipstick, lip gloss, lip stains, lip balms, lip liners – there is almost too much to choose from (and this is only one part of the face!). For me, the choosing process is even more difficult because of the low prices. This might not make sense at first, but hear me out. See, when I shop from more expensive makeup brands like MAC or Benefit I come in knowing exactly what I’m looking and how much I am willing to pay. Plus I am able to sample the different products to be sure I am happy with my purchases.  I usually end up with maybe 2 or 3 things whereas when I shop at stores like Rite-Aid I leave with a bag full products. “What’s wrong with that?” you might ask. Well, usually I end up only using half the products I purchase. Whether it is because it lacks the quality I’m looking for or it’s simply not my shade. At first I became very discouraged and didn’t want to buy any product unless I got to sample it. But being on a college student’s budget and wanting to still keep up with trends there was no way I could afford to buy all my makeup from Sephora…

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As a result, I discovered ways to find the perfect affordable product all without having to try it on beforehand. I begin by having a good idea of what new trend I want to try by looking through magazines, watching makeup gurus on YouTube, etc. For example if I want to try an orange lip color there are a few things I need to determine. Like my skin tone and which kind of orange will match well with it (Maybe neon orange? Maybe a delicate coral?). Then I have to think about what I want from the product whether it be a matte finish, a shiny gloss, or something moisturizing and on the natural side. But the key thing in finding the best product for you is to do your research. You can easily find articles on makeup dupes (drug store products that have been compared to high end brands) and popular top-rated drug store makeup products with personal reviews. And if you want to know how a product looks on – because it may look a bit different than what you see on its packaging – check out tutorials from the hundreds of makeup gurus on YouTube. One of my favorites is guru BeautywithEmilyFox, she has great videos on lipstick swatches from a variety of drug store brands and covers every color from their line.

By following these steps I get exactly what I want with products I am more than happy with. The proper research allows you to keep the quality of makeup you are looking for.  Also because they are drug store brands you can buy a bag full of products compared to the few items you would get from more expensive cosmetic lines. If you love to keep up with trends like I do having an assortment of makeup to choose from is important. Below I have also listed some of my top drug store products. I hope this helps your makeup shopping process and good luck!

1. Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm: smooth, very easy to apply, moisturizing, bright pigments

2. Nyx Soft Matte Lip Cream: wonderful wand that helps for easy application, very very matte, long-lasting

3. Maybelline Colorsational Lipstick: excellent pigments/ variety of colors, bright as can be, available in matte

4. Maybelline Blushed Nude Palette: beautiful colors, easy to mix and match different shades

5. L’oreal Pop Balm: great for moisturizing lips, color appears lighter than on packaging

6. Milani Color Statement Lipstick: not as smooth to apply but that makes it easier to shape your lips with minimal mess-ups, long lasting

7. L’oreal Voluminous False Fiber Lashes: great for length, waterproof never smudges!

8. FitMe Foundation: great overall coverage, smooth finish, available in matte and dewey

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Engineering Marvel of Tesla

In the past several years, the interior of personal vehicles have been built with digital displays. They resemble a tablet or a phone as it can display maps, play music, and even project a camera view. Tesla has taken a step further in reengineering the personal vehicle.

A Tesla car is a unique engineering gemstone that has some of the most cutting-edge car software technology that exists today. Tesla cars are the only ones on the road that receive software updates over the air that improves how the car operates. It is just like running a software update on a personal device (phone, tablet, laptop). Except you would not have to worry about holding the device because it is mounted in the center console.

Dan Seitz/ The center console shows large displays that replicates a tablet and eliminates fixed buttons.
Dan Seitz/ The center console shows large displays that replicates a tablet and eliminates fixed buttons.

People have become accustomed to buying new versions of products in order to receive the latest technological updates. Tesla is breaking that mold. Instead of having to buy a new car every several years to receive new features. Those new advancements will come with any Tesla that is already functioning. The newest Tesla model has the same features as its ancestors. This is because a new Tesla car has the same updates and software features that an older Tesla car can update itself.

Besides the advance software and hardware, Tesla is very economically friendly. It is one of a few fossil fuel independent car that exists. Imagine how much you can help the environment by driving a car that releases zero emissions.

What is truly amazing about Tesla is that it is powered by a motor that is the size of a watermelon, but with a lot more juice. The small motor is so powerful that it can handle speeds of up to 14,000 RPM. To describe that number in context, a fossil fuel engine can only handle a speeds of up to about 7,000-8,000 RPM. The power that a Tesla motor can generate is simply incredible. You can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in just 3.7 seconds.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ndb_4L-6ZP0

If you are an enthusiast for fast accelerating, environmentally friendly, and techie cars, Tesla is one that you should try out! You will be able to effortlessly race past anyone while being environmentally responsible. Also, you will always have the most updated software features. That’s the power of Tesla!

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Meet BondsWell – Creative, Social and Fun [Infographic]

bw-why-bondswell-r8As a child you probably heard the phrase, “Sharing is caring” almost every day of your kindergarten life. We, here at BondsWell, believe that to still be true – no matter how old you are. When you start making bonds with us, you are able to create and express…whatever! And, by sharing your knowledge and expertise with friends and our vibrant community we can all grow together. Come explore with us and keep learning!  Learn more on our YouTube, how-to-videos channel.

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Are you Ready? Because Winter is Coming.

Winter Gear Collage

 

(Beanie – Under Armour Beanie, Gloves – North Face Gloves, Jacket – North Face Jacket, Scarf – Seth Roberts Cashmere Scarf, Hoodie Jacket – Leather Jacket with Removable hood)

 

A few weeks ago, I wrote about how the days seem to be getting shorter and all the warm summer days are becoming distant memories only to be replaced by chilly mornings and icy evenings. However, winter still has its charms. There are many things to look forward to like Halloween, Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and everyone’s favorite holiday. And winter finally hits, we get to enjoy all the benefits of the Christmas spirit such as peppermint flavored Starbucks beverages and the always fun holiday shopping rush. While it still may only be fall, it has gotten noticeably colder in the past few weeks. Depending on where you live, you might even already have a little bit of snow. Of course this mild snuggle weather is reason enough to start busting out the winter gear. So this week, I’ve made a short list of clothing items that I will be digging out of my closet and most likely be using almost every day.

1. Beanies. Beanies are generally a good idea to wear when its cold. While they people tend to wear them even in warm weather, they become infinitely more useful when the temperature drops to around freezing and the wind chill causes your nose to run and ears to go numb. Not only do beanies keep your ears from turning icy blue, but they are also very useful when you roll to of bed and have a bad hair day. Just throw on a beanie, hide your hair, and pretend that nothing’s wrong and no one will know that you’re having one of “those” days, at least until you have to take it off.

2. Gloves. Most people don’t think to bring a pair of gloves anywhere unless they are going to go skiing or snowboarding, but in my experience having a pair around can be very handy (pun intended). Instead of having to walk around everywhere with your hands in your pockets and being scared to touch anything that looks metal – like door handles – you can walk around knowing that your fingers won’t feel like they’re about to fall off. And lets be honest, gloves are all around trendy to have.

3. North Face Jacket. Probably one of the most common winter jackets you will ever see, but for good reason. North Face jackets are both comfy and warm yet they also look pretty cool. The only problem is that because North Face is such a popular name brand, they tend to be a little expensive, with prices running up to around $200. They are also a little thin, meaning that if you see snow falling you might want to search your wardrobe for something a little thicker.

4. Scarfs. Some people think they are a little ridiculous to have, I happen to think they are extremely comfy and add a snazzy look. These cashmere scarfs are also very very soft and incredibly enough, are able to keep you warm even in freezing cold winds. Wrap it around your neck neck or pull it over your face to keep your cheeks from going numb. However, you chose to use it, a scarf will keep you toasty and help you look good while doing it.

5. Leather jacket and hoodie. Leather jackets don’t exactly hold up in intense sub zero weather, however they are very good at keeping you warm when its chilly and windy. Having a hoodie also lets you keep your head safe. These jackets also are also thick enough to keep out the cold for a little bit but not so thick that you feel like your suffocating in your own clothes. Plus theres also the fact that you leather which instantly adds to your awesomeness.

Do you have Dorm Decor?

Decorations n Stuff

 

(Poster – Godfather, Poster – Archer, Painting – Triptych [Three Panel Painting], Banner – NorCal, Fountain – Sculpture, Indoor plants – Juniper Bonsai Tree)

The nice thing about dormitories and apartments is that many come pre furnished and include basic amenities. However, the first thing that you probably notice when walking into your new dorm or apartment is how empty it looks. Sure there may be a few couches, a dining table, chairs and a bed, but for the most part that’s basically it. Even the walls are tend to be blank. Simply put, a new apartment looks cozy, but seems lifeless. In order to make an apartment or dorm your home, you have to give it your own personal touch. So I’ve decided to come up with a list of just a few things that I do to turn a house into a home:

1. Throw up some banners on the walls. A themed banner or flag from your state (or country) is an especially good idea if you are living out of your native state (or country) – don’t be afraid to be proud of where you come from! A large banner can also be hung on a blank wall to add some life to the monotone colored interior. If you’ve got an upper floor window, you could also let the banner fly loose to let the world know what you’re all about.

2. Get some posters to decorate your room. It’s your room so it should reflect your interests. Put up some posters of your favorite movies or t.v. shows. Not only will it make your room feel more decorated but it will also male your room feel more personal and comfortable.

3. Add some paintings in your living room. Your living room is usually the first thing guests will see and often times will be the place that mosts guests will spend time when visiting you. Having a few paintings on the wall will add some class to your apartment and if all else fails while entertaining guests, they can serve as last resort conversation pieces.

4. If there are some empty spaces in your apartment or dorm that the furniture does’t fill you can always add some small sculptures to make your place seem more full. As with paintings, sculptures can add some class to your place and serve as conversation pieces.

5. The last item on the list is to add some indoor plants. Indoor plants literally add life to an apartment. They add color to your humble abode and make your place seem more lively. Apparently taking care of plants is also said to be a cathartic exercise and can relieve stress such as the zen Juniper Bonsai tree.

How do you decorate your place?

Fourth of July Weekend

July the Fourth

 

(Chair – Patriotic portable chair, Glasses – Patriot Aviators, Shorts – Patriot Shorts, Tank Top – Patriot Tank, Grill – Portable Coleman Grill, Cooler – Coleman Red Cooler)

Barbecue + Fireworks = Tailgate Opportunity

The Fourth of July. For some people it’s just a date that marks a halfway point that summer is over, but for us living in America, it’s the day that we officially remember and commemorate our Declaration of Independence in 1776 – hence the name “Independence Day”. And in a very American fashion, we honor this historic occasion by hosting parades, barbecuing, eating, wearing the stars and stripes, and lighting up the nighttime sky with explosives. The Fourth of July is, simply put, a nationwide birthday party for America and everyone celebrates in their own way. From my experience, The Fourth is mostly about going to barbecues and watching the fireworks, all while donning some America gear. So, why not combine the barbecue and fireworks into a tailgate event? Grill up a few steaks and hotdogs, open a few drinks, pull up a chair and wait for the show to start. Of course, you’ll need a few things first.

portable gas grill is essential if you’re going to have a barbecue at your tailgate. Sure you could bring steaks or hotdogs with you before you set up, but your food might get cold. Bringing a portable grill and cooking your food on the spot will ensure it’s fresh. Plus it’s a tailgate and will be much more fun to cook it out in the open. A cooler is also important unless you want warm drinks to go with your food. If you’re feeling patriotic, you could also paint the stars and stripes, just to get in the spirit. And what’s a Fourth of July tailgate without some portable freedom chairs to kick back and relax on while watching the fireworks.

Since this is America day, you might as well have get some America themed clothes. A Patriot tank top is a good way to show your American pride and a very good way to keep cool in the summer sun. If you really just have to go all out, throw on some patriot shorts to match your shirt, and if it gets too hot, you have a nice pair of America themed swim shorts. Aviator shades with a freedom theme to them are a good way to keep the sun out of your eyes and a good way to make Uncle Sam proud! You might be thinking all this America themed clothing might be going a little overboard, but when it comes to showing your patriotic side, there is no such thing as “overboard” – let lady liberty know you love her.

If for whatever reason, you’re busy today and can’t make the festivities, don’t worry. We have an unofficial celebration for after Independence Day known as “Fourth of July Weekend” – think of it as the after-party for America’s birthday party. So go out with your family and friends today or this weekend and celebrate America!

 

Ready for a Rodeo

Stampede Collage

 

(Sun Glasses – Ray Ban Aviators, T-Shirt – Stampede Shirt, Hat – Rodeo Hat, Shirt – Long sleeve Plaid, Jeans – Light blue Levis, Boots – Cowboy Boots)

It’s a Rod-Eh-O

When you think of Canada, the first thing that comes to mind is probably snow, skiing, hockey, poutine, or moose. While all these stereotypes are generally true,  Canada is famous for several other things. One of these is the yearly rodeo held in Calgary, Alberta known as the Stampede. Didn’t expect Canada to be famous for rodeos, eh? Well as it turns out, Alberta, which is the province located north of Idaho and Montana is mostly flat land good for farming and as a result, it has a history that isn’t too different from the American Old West – you could think of Alberta as Canada’s version of Texas. Out of this old western tradition came the Calgary Stampede, a ten day long rodeo held every summer that attends to over a million guests every year.

Like most rodeos, the stampede hosts many events ranging from bull riding to horse bucking and barrel racing. It also includes various rides, exhibitions and lots of food most of it deep fried. Now I don’t want to understate the importance of the Stampede to the city. It’s a really big deal for the city and instills a sense of pride in heritage. In fact last year a flood hit the city several days before the stampede, literally submersing the fair-grounds under water and flooding most of the Saddle-dome, where all the rodeo events are held. Yet in only a few days, city workers cleared out the flood-waters and repaired the fair grounds in anticipation of the City’s biggest festival. So, now that I’ve peaked your interest in the Stampede, the question is, how are you going to get in the Rodeo Spirit?

Wearing a T-Shirt that says “I like Calgary” is a good start and simple enough if you don’t want to dress up in gear full cowboy, but this is a rodeo and you should try to dress as festive as possible. Last year when I attended the Stampede I tried to be festive yet casual. I chose to go with a plaid shirt and light blue Levis jeans – a simple combination that also complements the rodeo atmosphere. Aviators might not be traditional rodeo dress, but believe it or not, it gets really hot during Canadian summers and the sun is constantly beating down on you during the parade. Eventually I convinced myself to wear a cowboy hat both to hide my head from the sun and to show my festive side. For those of you that choose to go all-out, you might want to throw on some boots. IF that’s not enough a large-buckled belt or leather chaps might be your style, but as for me, that would be going overboard.

If you’re planning a vacation soon check out Calgary Stampede 2014. This year’s runs from July 4 to July 13.

Gym Bag Essentials

Screen Shot 2014-06-13 at 6.38.04 PM

(Gym Bag- Lululemon, Jump rope- Target, Glass Water Bottle- Lavish & Lime, Quest bar-questproteinbar.com, Sports Bra- Alexis, Ipod- Apple, Tshirt- Etsy, Pants- Lululemon, Shoes- Nike)

What’s in My Gym Bag?

Working out is proven to increase your energy, help you sleep, prevent sickness, and make you happier. Exercising is essential to living a healthy lifestyle, yet some people still come unprepared for the gym or a workout!

A gym bag should be big enough to carry all of your gear. This specific Lululemon bag is just the perfect size and it does not hurt that it is so cute!

I have a slight addiction to workout clothes, which is why I’m always changing my style. This outfit has always been one of my favorites. I love a tank top that will make someone smile as they run past me on the track. Plus, who doesn’t run because they really like chocolate? These specific Lululemon Wunder Under Pants fit so well you may never take them off! You can pick different colored waistbands to give them a personal touch. I know my pair may be worn more for daily activities then the gym because they are so comfortable. Shh…don’t tell anyone! The outfit is complete with a fitted sports bra and Nike Free Runners, which also have amazing color options.

Before I start my workout, I love to jump rope to an upbeat song. Most people don’t think about this activity as fast paced cardio, but just try it for one song on your iPod. Trust me, you’ll notice. After I’m all sweaty and burnt out, a quest bar, an apple, and an ice-cold water help me rejuvenate. Quest Bars are a healthy, tasty alternative to other sugary protein bars.

What’s essential for your gym bag?