Weekly Photo Round-Up Category Archives

Back To School

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The last weekend of August has come and gone and now, whether we like it or not, we’re in a back-to-school state of mind. Personally, I have never stopped thinking of the passing of time in terms of the school year rather than the calendar year–“last year” will always refer to anything that happened prior to summer, not the months leading up to January–and being married to a school teacher has only solidified that way of thinking.

So, while I may be mourning the waning of summer, I am looking forward to a fresh (harvest) season, cooler temperatures and the inevitable turning inwards that comes with the end of wild-at-heart summertime. Afterall, fall (and dreaded winter) is prime time for cooking, crafting and all matter of projects.

Never having been one for pumpkin flavored anythings–other than actual pumpkin, of course–I can’t say that the promise of autumnal treats reappearing on the menu does anything to ease my season-shifting woes. But, I always get excited for fall fashion and back to school essentials, even if my back to school shopping has changed a lot since the days of number-2 pencils and Lisa Frank lunch boxes.

Walking the NY Now show last week opened my eyes to a lot of really exciting, new designers whose pieces fit right into the fall wish list and I have laid out my favorites for you below!

A quick disclaimer: none of the below content was shot by me and all images are property of the brands. Since I was busy scoping out new jewelry designers for ViewPoint, I merely grabbed the business cards in passing of brands that caught my eye to research at a later date. 

 

Son of a Sailor

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Leather and wooden favorites for the desk and working on-the-go, all hand made in the Son of a Sailor Austin, TX based studio by husband and wife team and their staff.

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Graf Lantz

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Nothing excites me more for back-to-school than the prospect of the perfect, new carry-all. The Graf Lantz collection, comprising of much more than the lovely totes that I picture below, is a design-enthusiasts dream come true. Clean lines, exquisite materials and timeless color palettes. As the about page on the website so eloquently describes: their aesthetic is thoughtful and functional, combining the disciplines of both East and west into subtle, minimal design.

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Bing Bang

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The look-books and inpso boards alone are enough of a reason to visit the BingBang website. Their necklaces, bracelets and all other accessories are light, fun and stackable, but in particular, I am longing for some of their edgy rings to adorn my hands during long hours of pencil pushing and number crunching…aka adulting.

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Hoff

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Busy season for me means a lot of meetings and a lot of travel, which is why these essential, functional leather pieces strike my fancy. Especially on my wish list are the travel wallets that perfectly fit boarding passes and the oragami-reminiscent business card cases that feature one side for my cards and one side for the cards of clients. Hoff also features minimalist totes that are worth a peek.

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Enjoy your Labor Day Weekend and happy pencil-sharpening!

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Featured image via UnSplash.com, Artist Angelina Litvin.

On The Road

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Life has become, for me currently, a dizzying dance between packing and unpacking. It is hard to believe (even for myself, who has lived to tell the tale) that since the beginning of 2016 I have been on the road to Arizona, Puerto Rico, Texas, (there was a Hamptons weekend in there) California–the entire seaboard, mind you–got surprise married, planned a reception & did my taxes. For a girl who sometimes feels the pangs of anxiety in preparation for something as routine as a dinner party, I relish the fact that I am able to maintain some sense of self in a time that, for routines sake, is in complete upheaval.

Our 8-day long journey through Scandinavia did wonders for the spirit and to recenter myself. From what we saw, the Nordic soul knows little if it doesn’t know how to bathe in the clear, bright light of minimalism and walk the delicate balance between work, life and self. I won’t dishonor that experience by lumping it in with this brief reflection on the past months, but rest assured that there will be much more on that to come.

I had words for each of these past trips and for the months of January through April, but I can’t remember them now. They are a wild forest of overgrown brush, too complicated and tangled to sort through and organize in any coherent manner. So, I will leave you with a montage of photos in hopes that it conveys a bit of the wonder and the awe I feel at having the unique experience to call an airport my second home and America my backyard.

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Weekly Round Up – Puerto Rico

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Some would use the phrase, “It’s like rain I’d never seen before.” But as powerful and relentless as it was, I had seen rain like this before. It was the same rain that tinted our windows black in Gwangju, adding a pause in the day to consider the sound of your own loneliness. It was the rain that rarely came in Sevilla, but when it did the town would briefly fall under a spell and come out smelling like sodden clay. It was the rain that rose up past the tires of our car on my first trip to Puerto Rico and turned palm trees and lights into shadows and smears.

As we drove the dark and mountainous rode from Ponce to San Juan I felt the electricity–a mixture of terror and ecstatic delirium–that comes to me in moments when I am completely out of control of what is to come. This feeling happens often in travel when I’ve been in a place long enough to have a routine, but something occurs that reminds me that I am still at the whim of this foreign place. It happened to me on this recent trip to Puerto Rico because, despite the fact that I had landed on the island only 12 hours prior, I was blissed out to be back among Spanish speakers in a capacity other than “tourist.” I was also duly petrified by the combination of darkness, lateness and infernal rain we were experiencing.

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It should go without saying, as I sit here writing this, that we made it safely back to San Juan. A fate for which I owe everything to the adeptness of my companion and driver to whom a little tropical rain storm is nothing if not routine. I spent the next days falling more deeply and deeply in love with my temporary life as an Islander, delighting in my cafe con leches purchased in Spanish, my daily commutes to work on which I often had the same taxi driver and my moments (though infrequent) to feel the Caribbean sun turning my skin rapidly brown.

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IMG_8213I fell asleep each night to a chirping Coqui and awoke each morning to the sight of a reflecting pool stretching out toward the crashing waves of the open ocean. I felt blessed to be back, if only for a moment, in a place just foreign enough to feel that specific electricity.

So, until next time.

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Featured rain photo courtesy of Unsplash.com, Photography by Christopher.

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The Power of the Mood-Board

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My mom used to keep one tucked inside the inner pages of her work agenda. It had mostly pictures of my father and me, some pictures of beautiful homes that she cut from magazines and of course pictures of far-flung locales that she would one day travel to. She has since traveled to them, because that is the power of the mood-board.

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Oprah suggests that you create your board using images of your hopes and dreams and that, somehow (magically), the act of you cutting out photographs from a magazine and taping postcards to a piece of paper or tacking it to a framed piece of cork manifests your destiny and actualizes your aspirations. Philip Lim collages images of galaxies, cacti, exotic flowers and shaggy rabbits and it leads to the season’s most coveted runway looks. That is also the power of the mood-board.

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My personal recipe is simple: mix in equal parts happy memories and fanciful wishes, add some photos of loved ones, tack up quotes and excerpts that help to guide your journey, make it image heavy and always leave a bit of blank space on the canvas for tomorrow’s daydream.

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Just as I began this winter, hunkered down with some of my favorite ladies at our solstice & chill, I plan to revel in this weekend’s pending blizzard with some expressive mood-boarding. It’s been a season full of sacred nesting, craft and collage and there is no reason to stop now with temperatures dropping.

Happy snowstorm!

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Jewelry Awards Season

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This Friday kicks off the jewelry awards season with the annual Gem Awards held by the Jewelers of America in New York City. Tomorrow we head to the Waldorf Astoria for the 24 Karat Club Gala and, finally, Sunday is the 2016 Golden Globes–a veritable smorgasbord of glimmering eye-candy!

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Tonight’s Gem Awards is much closer to my heart than in past years, as the master Sevan Bickaci has been nominated for a prestigious award. We will all be holding our breaths as the announcement is made for the GEM Award for Jewelry Design!

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In other exciting jewelry news, the designer Kassandra Nicholson with whom I worked to brand her newly launched collection, Kassandra Nicholson Jewelry, was just featured on GemGossip.com. Danielle of Gem Gossip has an incredible way with the stunning jewels she photographs and styles on the site and she was an absolute pleasure to work with as always. Both of these ladies make me excited to be a part of this industry and I wish them all of the best in 2o16. Be sure to check out both GemGossip.com and KassandraNicholson.com for more!

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And, it wouldn’t be a true round-up of the best of the jewelry world if I didn’t speak to my true gem-love Anthony Lent. With a newly launched website and a complete branding makeover, Anthony Lent is set to take 2016 by storm. And, what better symbol of soaring to new heights, than the gilded wings pictured above in the newly designed Flying Heart Ring. All of Anthony Lent’s winged pieces are in the spotlight this month, so visit us on Instagram to keep up on the #TakeFlight series.

Now, it’s time to get dolled up and kick off the weekend in our black-tie best!

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Blue Suede at the Beach

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This winter has been full of surprises already. 60 degree weather, foggy mornings and feelings of spring-come-early have me all mixed up. But a weekend in the Hamptons on the beach was exactly the thing to do when the traditional and seasonably appropriate activities seem strange.

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Here, Rachel and Amanda unknowingly demonstrated two extremes of beach attire…in other words what to wear and what not to wear. While Amanda was able to frolic through the waters in her knee-high rubber boots, Rachel was land bound in her blue suede at the beach. A classic juxtaposition of fashion vs. function, you decide which look you prefer.

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Should the snows come eventually, we’ll all be tucked away inside until spring. So, for now, let’s make the most of this sunshine.

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Old Haunts

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To know that you’ve done your time in New York City is to have recognizable phases. To be able to look back and say, “oh, that was my couch surfing phase”, “that was my living above the bodega phase”, “that was my I had a ton of time and used to walk home from work/go out drinking on week nights phase.” These phases all have routines—kineticly responsive routes, familiar cashiers at the grocery store, Sunday morning rituals—that, as deeply entrenched as they are during the 3-5 years of your experience, become erased and replaced once you move on to a new phase. As quickly as these routines slip out of consciousness, they just as quickly flood back in a bathtub of nostalgia when spontaneity finds you back in your old haunts.

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I rode the M Train across the Williamsburg Bridge this past Wednesday night to meet the ladies out for dinner and drinks and to toast a new month. Walking through the station at Delancey/Essex was like stepping back in time. And I found it funny, as I actually stopped to read the signs to ensure I was approaching the correct platform, that  just three years before I could have traversed the subway station in my sleep.

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That particular stop on the M, and the surrounding neighborhoods (my former neighborhoods), symbolizes a time of extremes. The joys were extremely joyous and the trials, extremely trying. It was my youth. In a few splashes of memory, the time is marked by backyard birthday parties next to the fig tree, Nina Simone records at dinner time and feverish interaction with people, places and things that were all fresh and full of potential (and stories that were written and are still to be written). It was my phase of complete exploration in New York City as an adult, sandwiched between my time away in Korea and my current New York phase—that of blissful stability, overflowing abundance of gifts and gratitude for all that I’ve learned and all that I have to learn. A time when my youthful adventures are behind me and my heartfelt, bold, mature adventures are just beginning.

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I was moved, as I often am when I think about the Bushwick days, to look through old pictures from that time. A tapestry of art making, love, baby faces, best neighbors and growth into the woman I am filled my computer screen and filled my heart. It brings me joy to let these photos—these memories—have their place on Naked City Style as an homage to all that was and all that will be.

Cheers to old haunts.

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The Way Life Should Be

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This post features photos from our makeshift reunion trip to Maine, two weekends back, where we ventured for a little bit of salt air, togetherness and to experience the way life should be. Considering we ALL fell ill during the trip in one way or another (colds + hangovers + general old age…) and I’ve spent the past week in bed recovering and avoiding the world, these images are the latest and the greatest from my photo roundups!

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The weather was a perfect vision of fall in the Northeast, if not even a bit warm for the season. Once again I got to see my hometown through the eyes of people close to my heart and, this time, had the rare opportunity to have my eyes opened in turn to things I didn’t know existed. Our friend who still lives in Portland took us to the Flea-For-All, apparently open and operating for the past couple of years, which is three stories of vintage shopping heaven tucked away on the East End. I nearly had a heart attack at the discovery of this local haunt. Clothing, house wares, accessories and all-the-in-between can be found in bounty in this curated space. True treasures abound at the Flea-For-All (think thigh-high shag boots from the 70’s, antique card catalogue, and Cameroonian feathered headdress wallhanging, to name a few). I scored a vintage Bottega Veneta bucket bag and shearling throw for myself this time around and I plan to make this a regular stop on my trips to Portland from now on!

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The beginning of November had come in like a lion for me with many projects, new responsibilities and other matters to sort through. Even though months have passed since the end of summer it has been taking me longer than usual to get into the swing of things this season and I think the trip to Maine was just what I needed to gain a little perspective on everything and prepare myself to hit the ground running through the new year. Now, with this awful cold behind me, I feel my spirits lifting in preparation for all the holiday cheer!

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I’ll leave you with this “album cover” that we unintentionally posed for at the Portland Head Light! It pretty much sums up our trip north.

 

Cheers for now!

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Frida Kahlo: Art, Garden, Life

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I can’t say that I remember exactly when my love for Frida Kahlo developed. Her tragic passion, her drive and talent, her admiration for the natural and the indigenous  and her infectious artistic spirit have always my greatest source of inspiration.  With that comes my love for Mexican culture at large, but, those who know me know that I have still yet to visit the country of my dreams and the birthplace of my idol. I am happy to report that (fingers crossed) this great folly will correct itself in 2016….but in the meantime, it was incredible to have Frida Kahlo: Art, Garden, Life at the New York Botanical Garden. Not only does the exhibit delve into the art and life design of Kahlo, but creates a living environment transporting the visitor to the rainforests and deserts of Central America, providing a natural (and breathtakingly gorgeous) context for the colors, textures and subjects that permeate her work.

Last weekend was the Day of the Dead festival at the garden featuring parades, musical and dance performances and a pumpkin carving competition. It was a great time to visit (except for the serpentine lines stretching at great distances from each exhibit) because the halloween mood was truly in the air. It was appropriately chilly, the trees had turned and children were running about with faces painted. There are also events scheduled for this, the final weekend of the exhibit, and I would highly recommend the trip if you haven’t been to visit the show yet. For those of us in Brooklyn, it is certainly a trek, but a soul affirming pilgrimage for lovers of Frida Kahlo.

Wishing you all a fantastic Halloween. Let’s embrace the cycle of life and death, the spiritual journey of all living things and the celebration of the season!

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Vegas in the Fall

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It was brilliant being in Las Vegas in October. The sauna-like heat of the desert that I experience annually on my late-May visit for the Couture Show was replaced by breezy days, mid-70’s temperatures and evenings that require layers to sit comfortably outside. But, beyond the temperature, perhaps the most lovely characteristic of Vegas in the Fall is the dramatic sky that kissed the mountain tops in the distance and the towering hotels all around us. Although we were working long hours and didn’t make it outside much, we were always met with awe-inspiring views when we did.

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_MG_1670Vegas rarely allows for much time outdoors, be it the aforementioned infernal heat or the heavy work load (the only reason I have ever been to Vegas is for work, and it may be the only reason I return for the years to come as work finds me there at least annually). But I was happy for the long hours of work that this trip brought at the International Spa Show because of the truly great community I was introduced to. The press, vendors, and spa executives that we interacted with this past week had an infectious energy all in the name of wellness and health and I left with a reinvigorated desire to take the best care of myself, my family and friends, and my world that I possibly can.

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These gracious people shared their knowledge as well as their incredible products with us all (amazing gift bags were delivered to us all in our rooms each night)  and I have already had the pleasure of trying many of them. One morning, in fact, the long hours (and late night brainstorming) had made way for a rough wake up and I used the Shower Spa Mist infused with lemongrass and eucalyptus for a jump-start to the day. The Chaleur self-heating facial mask is also super, and the mineral process in each one sounds like the pattering of rain when you wear it in bed at night for a soothing treatment. I highly recommend it!

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I am looking forward to using all of these incredible wellness products to sustain me through the growing cold and through all of the hard work in the next weeks. The show also brought an amazing bevy of new opportunities that I am so excited to dive into.

Happy to be back in NYC!

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