November 18th, 2013
This is the yet another post in a new series on A Geek Tragedy called Celestial Bodies where I interview lifestyle and personal style bloggers about how they maintain a positive body image and dress for their body type. This time I am talking to Angie the voice behind Lariats and Lavender.
Describe your body type for us. For quite a while, I was an hourglass shape, until I started gaining more and more weight in my lower body and am now considered a pear shape. I am 5’4″ and as of my last weigh in, 180lbs. I have been overweight ever since I was a child, and I have never had proper nutrition information, so I am learning everything as a 20-something year old (24, as of right now!). I love my body. I am self conscious about certain parts of myself, definitely. However, as a whole, I do love my body and I love everything that my body can do, and who I am on the inside as well.
What is a positive memory you have about your body image (a particular compliment, or positive realization, etc.)? The first time Jen called me beautiful, and I knew that she truly thought I was. I was fourteen, when that happened. I wasn’t nearly as in love with my body as I am now, so her calling me beautiful moved me so much. She’s helped me overcome a LOT of my self esteem issues, both body wise and otherwise. Next, I disliked my childlike face for quite a long time. No matter what I do, people think I am a teenager. However, I have had several people tell me that I look a lot like Bettie Page and when I first looked her up, I realized I DO and I am quite proud of that!
What is something about your body that you really dislike for people to comment on or an opinion about your looks that you wish people would keep to themselves? My teeth, and my chest. I have fake teeth, and they’re ill-fitting. I saw a dentist for the first time this year, and he is planning on doing a little work on my mouth and getting me a new set of teeth and I cannot wait. You can tell that my teeth are fake, and I have had people (children, and a few co-workers) comment on them. As for my chest, I was an early bloomer and my garden really grew! The last time I went bra shopping, I picked up a 38D and that was still too small, so I am working on figuring out my current size. I’ve had men yell “compliments” about my chest while walking or driving by me, and I really hate that.
How do you dress to accentuate your body type? Conversely, what might you try to hide? I should start with my eyes, as I love them. I don’t wear make-up often (sensitive skin, boo!), however when I do, I really play up my eyes. They’re big, and my actual eyes change color! I also play up my mouth… Now, I know I said I mentioned disliking when people comment on my teeth, so why play up my mouth? I smile, a lot. I don’t believe in hiding my smile, just because people may comment on my teeth.
I also love my neck and shoulders, so a pretty v-neck or scoop neck shirt or an off the shoulder shirt is perfect. I have a slim waist, so I accentuate that part of my body with shirts that end right near my waist line, and pants that hang just a titch lower.
As for what I hide, I definitely would prefer hiding my acne. It’s not something I enjoy having, however like I said, I don’t wear make-up often and I don’t see the point of wearing make-up JUST to hide my acne. I much prefer wearing make-up, because it’s fun. I also try to hide the fact that one side of my face is a bit “lower” than the other, and is quite noticeable.
I try and find shirts that fit me just right, so I don’t have rolls that pull fabric and look unflattering. I hate too tight clothing, and too loose clothing as well. I don’t show a lot of skin, because I feel like sexier clothing should be worn around Jen – not everyone in the store. However, that’s my personal feeling and I don’t think anyone is right, or wrong, for how much or how little they wear. I don’t believe in clothing making someone a prude, or the opposite.
What body image advice would you give to a younger version of yourself? I would tell my younger self, learn more about healthy eating, and exercising. You won’t do either because you dislike your body, but because you *love* your body. You’ll love yourself, no matter how much you gain or lose, but you want to feel healthier, and have more energy, and it’s better to start now.
Also, start a wardrobe, and try clothing on; see what fits right, and what doesn’t and wear what you love yourself in, both look wise and comfort wise. This is 100% more important as you get older, younger self, because when you were 15 and 16 you had a much better judge of your body shape and what looked good on you than you do now, as a 24-year-old!
Also, you will get acne. It’s okay. You don’t care that much, however sometimes you’ll feel a little uncomfortable. But seriously, it’s okay. Just take care of your skin, so it’s healthier. Take care of yourself, so you’re healthier. Our bodies change. You’ll love yours, no matter what. So take GOOD CARE OF IT.
Also, I should say… For other girls, especially younger girls, don’t change for anyone. Boyfriends, girlfriends, friends… if they’re real, true potential love interests, and if they’re real, true friends, they won’t want you to change anyway. They’ll love you, for who you are. Inside, and outside. You’re *beautiful*. No one else can be you, but you. Your body is a remarkable thing. Think of all you can do, and how much your body does everyday. Think of what a miracle that is. When you’re feeling down, and being hard on yourself, put someone you love in your place. Think of what you’d tell them, and how you’d feel if they were being hard on themselves. Everyone is beautiful, no matter their size, shape, what they love about themselves or hate and no matter what anyone says. You’re amazing.
Don’t forget to check out Angie’s blog Lariats and Lavender. If you’re a blogger who would like to be included in this series, please feel free to email me (link in the sidebar).
November 16th, 2013
T shirt: Target (thrifted) // Pants: H&M (Japan) // Jewelry: Accessory Fanatic & F21
I’ve been feeling very “meh” about my hair lately. A few at-home color treatments had left me looking brassy and unkempt, and the “let it grow” philosophy just wasn’t working for me anymore. When I noticed my roots peeking out again this week, I decided it was time for a change. I made an appointment and didn’t tell anyone (because I didn’t want to be talked out of it). When my stylist cut off the initial ponytail, freeing me of the limp, dead weight I’d been accumulating around my shoulders, I felt immediately relieved and then rather surprised to notice that I have a neck once more. There was no nausea or regret as she tossed the hair away, I only felt a tickle of giddiness. Also, I love being shockingly blonde, so I decided to tack that addendum on as well while I was already in the chair. Short (and blonde) hair always necessitates a re-working of one’s traditional beauty regimen, which can be challenging, but this style is far more reflective of my personality than what I had going on before.
I’ve decided, recently, that instead of dreaming or worrying or wondering I am simply going to BE my ideal version of myself. Too often I tweet or write about something I want to do without making any adjustments or changes to reach that particular goal. Slowly, I am changing that. And it may sound trite, but this haircut is my first step in that general direction.
November 14th, 2013
Sometimes I paint things. Painting takes me into a form of active meditation — a quiet state of mind where it’s just me, the brush, and the pigments I’m pushing around on the paper. I like painting with watercolors especially, but I am still experimenting stylistically with both illustration and realism, so I never know what will happen when I take out my case. I received a pop of inspiration while scrolling through Instagram today and created some fall fashionistas posing all cute-like, taking selfies, and heading out to get pumpkin spice lattes.
November 12th, 2013
Dress & Tights: Modcloth // Cardigan: Ross // Boots: Minnetonka // Scarf: borrowed from Jared
This outfit is simply a mishmash of things I like. It should be noted that I don’t typically take photos indoors because we have weird lighting in our house — no overhead lights, all lamps — but daylight savings time has the darkness sneaking up on me by six. Also, I am standing in front of a large scale paint-by-number of Jackie O that Jared is working on.
I feel so devoid of creativity lately. Or maybe I’m devoid of inspiration. One does tend to feed the other, after all. I usually seek out inspiration for art and poetry in the unfamiliar. Discomfort often makes my senses more alert than normal, resulting in a heightened state of artistic awareness. Lately, however, my surroundings have been all too familiar and I suspect they may be suffocating my muse. I think it’s time for me to go out and make myself uncomfortable.
November 10th, 2013
When I left for Korea, I also cut my hair super short. At the time I needed to start completely over with both my appearance and my location. Sometimes the desire for change is so overwhelming that I just change everything all at once and then attempt to discern which pieces fit and which don’t.
The reason why I didn’t keep my hair short was simply that getting it cut in Korea was a slightly harrowing experience and one I didn’t look forward to repeating multiple times. My hair, right now, is the longest it has been in several years and I am feeling that familiar urge to lose a little bit of myself once more.
The problem is that cutting my hair cut deeply into my self-esteem as well. I don’t think I’ve completely recovered from it. I remember when I first debuted my hair to my family and friends, they reacted as though they didn’t recognize me. I was met with “What did you do?” and “What happened to your hair?” as opposed to “Hey, that looks cute on you!” No one (outside of the Internet) provided me with any positive praise. When I went to get my hair cut in Korea the stylist asked if I wanted a “boy’s haircut?” I was (and am) well aware that long hair has been long associated with traditional femininity and some people are confused by, or even opposed to, any dissociation brought on by a challenge to the social norm. It’s kind of like when people inquire after my tattoos and then ask “Why would you do that to yourself?” Thanks, but also eff you.
When I see other fashionable ladies with close-cropped do’s it makes me wish I simply had the fortitude to maintain the look I find so enviable here, in a place where people know who I am. Then, there is another part of me that likes having longer hair, and pined for it to grow whilst living abroad. I love finally being able to put my hair into topknots and sockbuns and curls and elaborate braids — the options are endless, which is not so with short hair. Long hair makes me feel bohemian and carefree whereas short hair makes me feel more noticeable. As per usual, I am incredibly divergent on the issue. I suppose I just haven’t found my hair truth yet.
Let’s all reminisce for a moment, shall we? Unrelated: I kind of miss that sparkly, cherry blossom wallpaper.
November 8th, 2013
When I was in high school, my parents took us on a Carnival cruise. We left out of New Orleans and visited Jamaica, Mexico and Grand Cayman. It was a fabulously fun family vacation. We hiked through waterfalls, swam with stingrays and laid on white sand beaches. When we were at sea, all I did was read magazines, listen to my CD player, and eat. Oh, and get ridiculously sunburned — apparently, my fabulous early 2000′s bangs did not alleviate the need to utilize sunscreen. My dad and brother both got food poisoning from the beef on board, so I am not sure they share my rose-colored view of the trip. However, I do think that cruise planted the travel seed firmly within my heart. Although I only saw the touristy areas of each port, waking up in another country also awoke something dormant in me that has driven most of my decisions since.
Enjoy some photos of my first cruise, circa 2002 — I took digital photos of my photo album because there were no digital cameras! I am so old.
Our ship, the Carnival Inspiration. Humblebrag: I was a pretty decent photographer at 15.
We are about to hike up a waterfall in Montego Bay, Jamaica, which you totally can’t tell in this photo, but it did happen.
Not only is the amount of silver eyeshadow I am wearing in the above photo shameful, but this is tangible evidence that I DO in fact know how to do the Macarena.
The beach in Playa del Carmen, Mexico. We are both a few days into the sunburn at this point.
My lovely parents at the Captain’s Gala dinner.
Jared and I have made our way around the world together — Belize, Guatemala, Japan, China, South Korea, Las Vegas — but I’ve often insisted we stay in hostels or kitschy accommodation (a treehouse in Belize, a love motel in Korea, a courtyard hotel in Beijing’s hutongs) neglecting to ever check into a resort. It’s not that I don’t enjoy resort-style, all-inclusive vacations — it’s just that I’ve done them before. What I didn’t consider, is that Jared hasn’t.
My first real vacation from work will be Spring Break of next year. I wanted to do something rather special and different because it’s our four year anniversary and I immediately thought — CRUISE! Sure, cruises have their own kitsch and tend to be full of (mostly) old people, but that’s kind of how Jared and I roll anyway. I can call Bingo and “reserve” sun chairs with the best of ‘em. So, I booked us passage on a seven day Princess cruise to Belize, Honduras and Mexico.
I can’t wait to cruise (oh yeah, it’s totally usable as a verb) as an adult and experience all the silly cruise ship antics and day-drinking with Jared. Maybe I will convince him to get his hair braided, like Michael Scott on The Office. Notably, this trip gives me a valid reason to brush up on my Spanish and also buy some pretty evening gowns for the Captain’s dinners. I like having a vacation on the horizon because it gives me something to dream about and aspire toward (mostly monetarily).
Are there any seasoned cruisers out there? Does taking a cruise appeal to you at all? Any cruiser tips?
November 6th, 2013
Shirt: via Stitch Fix // Skirt: Express // Tights: Modcloth // Boots: Zara (Korea)
Yes, I am holding a pencil. The truth is, I actually walked out of the classroom with one tucked into my (very) messy bun and decided to just roll with it. It’s like, a theme or something. I shall call it: exhausted-teacher-chic.
This shirt is from my second Stitch Fix box. I wrote all about my first experience here. This last box wasn’t as wow-worthy as my first, but I think it’s because they sent me several things that were far too similar to tops I already owned. And I suppose that isn’t necessarily a bad thing, because it simply means the stylist pegged my personal preferences, but it definitely didn’t give me as many options to choose from as the first go-round. Luckily, I loved this rather bohemian top and decided to snag it immediately! It’s work-appropriate, NOT sheer — which tends to be a problem with shirts like these, and has a fun pattern. Spoiler alert: I am a sucker for fun patterns. Plus, it’s just super fun to get surprise boxes in the mail filled with pretty clothes to try on, even if you don’t end up keeping them all..
What are you waiting for? Sign up for a Stitch Fix.
Disclosure: I was not compensated by Stitch Fix for writing this post, but I do get referral credit if you sign up using my link. Plus, you’ll earn my undying affection. xo
November 4th, 2013
Blazer: Ross // Dress: F21 // Boots: Blowfish (old)
I live in the suburbs, so taking outfit photos is slightly more awkward than I imagine it would be in the city where there are loads of people milling about and not paying quite as much attention to one another. I always hear about the encounters that happen to other style bloggers coming into contact with random passersby, but this has rarely happened to me. However, while I was taking these particular outfit photos in my front yard, my neighbor’s teenage son and his girlfriend stood out in the driveway smoking and watching me the entire time. It was beyond awkward. They didn’t even talk, just stared like nicotine addled sentries. It’s something that I haven’t quite gotten used to, this voiceless voyeurism that comes along with suburban living.
Apparently November has decided to descend upon me when I wasn’t paying attention. I’m not entirely sure what happened to October, but suddenly holiday decorations around going up all about town. I didn’t spend the holidays with my family last year, so I am eager to re-establish old traditions and create new ones in the coming months. I have a feeling a lot of transitioning is going to take place during this time as well.
November 2nd, 2013
This post is a part of a new series on A Geek Tragedy called Celestial Bodies where I interview lifestyle and personal style bloggers about how they maintain a positive body image and dress for their body type. This time I am talking to Mia, who I met in Austin at TxSC; she blogs at Mia Moore.
Describe your body for us. Soft, round, and squishy. Pear-shaped, with big thighs and hips and a small chest.
What is a positive memory you have about your body image (a particular compliment, or positive realization, etc.) One of the best compliments I’ve had was that my body looks like an old painting, like the way artists from eons ago portrayed women. Think of older nude paintings, like The Birth of Venus. The women’s bodies are honest, with rolls and soft bellies. That compliment made me realize my own perception of beauty was warped. Did I think those paintings were beautiful? Yes. But to me, the honesty of my own body wasn’t beautiful. It started a shift in how I viewed bodies, mine or others.
What is something about your body that you really dislike for people to comment on or an opinion about your looks that you wish people would keep to themselves? I am overweight, but typically people don’t react well when I mention it. I often get told “You’re not fat!” when I make any comment about my weight, but I don’t think people realize that I don’t view weight as an indicator of my self-worth, so calling myself “chubby” isn’t necessarily a way of bringing myself down. At the same time, however, someone’s weight or fitness level or whatever is her own business. Sometimes I get uncalled for criticism on my weight, which is inappropriate and rude, as it would be to anybody, big or small.
How do you dress to accentuate your body type? Conversely, what might you try to hide? I tend to emphasize my waist in outfits. I have a fairly narrow waist for my size and I love playing up that with different proportions. I tend to hide my lower body, since I’m pear-shaped, and my arms. Sometimes I feel like I shouldn’t wear shorts because of my thighs, and while I don’t necessarily like having pictures taken while wearing shorts, I’ve really gotten past that mentality.
What body image advice would you give to a younger version of yourself? The best advice I could give to my younger self is if it doesn’t make you happy, it’s not worth it. Does agonizing over my lack of chest or big thighs change anything? No. Does it make me happy? No. So it’s not worth it. It’s so much more worth it to spend my time doing things I love. If I could take back all the time I spent on hating myself throughout my life and instead hula hoop, or work on cosplay, or travel, I’m certain I’d have several weeks of fun and a much better life experience to share. And of course, nobody cares what you look like as much as you think they do. People are attracted to others who look like they are having a good time. If you’re too worried about your looks or your body or whatever, you could miss out on a really cool friend.
Don’t forget to check out Mia’s blog. If you’re a blogger who would like to be included in this series, please feel free to email me (link in the sidebar).