A Peek into My Life ~ Last edition

*This is the last of these posts, for a while.  I hope that you have enjoyed getting to take little peeks into my life, and what things mean to me.  I have enjoyed reading your replies back.*

What are your 5 greatest accomplishments?
  1. Purchasing a house at 25 years old.  As I write this, I know it doesn't seem that awesome, but really it kind of is.  I know people twice my age that do not own there home.  I also know a lot of people that, during this economic crisis, that have lost their home, so being able to say that I purchase a house, and still have it, is a pretty big deal.  The Mr. and I also purchased it without the help of anyone, all on our own.
  2. Being published in a National Tattoo Magazine.  When I was 18, my friend Laura, and I made a list of things we wanted to accomplish in our lives.  At 18, I still did not have any tattoos, but I knew that I wanted to start my collection of art, and I also knew that I wanted it to be a collection from an artist/artists that would make me proud to have their work on my body.  Getting into a publication was a goal of mine, and I can proudly say I have done that!
  3. Getting to write for a magazine.  It has always been a dream of mine to be able to write for a publication, whether it was online or in print and that has come true.
  4. Being in a relationship with my best friend.  The Mr. can sometimes test my patience, but he makes me laugh and that is the best kind of relationship.
  5. Being able to be a puppy mom.  I won't be a mom in real life, but to me, my animals are my babies.  Animals can bring so much joy into your life and remind you and show you how to provide unconditional love.  To me, it is a daily challenge, but when you can show unconditional love that is the best achievement ever.
Stay Sweet,

Sweetness Overload Currently

Loving: my morning juice.  It is so good tasting how delicious fruit and veggie juice can be.  There have been a couple of times that it has been hard to drink (anything with beets) but really I have just had a change in palette.  Things that weren't as sweet as I once thought, are now sweet and wonderful.

Reading: I have made no progress.  I am a failure.  Still one the same page of the Night Circus that I was on last week. 

Watching: Well the DVR is burning up right now with all the returning fall shows.  Right now though, I am hooked on a Reelz show, Bomb Girls.  It is set during WWII.  The bomb factory has had to employ women, as the men are off fighting the war.  The storyline is not a deep one, but I am in love with the characters and the wardrobe.  The 40's at its finest!

Thinking about: getting my house ready for all the upcoming Holidays.  Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.  They are literally staring us down as we wind into the last quarter of the year.  Now is the time I start prepping for it, in terms of my house.  Making sure to touch up outside painting, clearing out the flower beds, re-seeding our yard, planting for the spring, and just nesting and making sure the inside is clean and the outside is tidy.

 Stressing about: getting all my stuff for this upcoming photo shoot with Vixen Pinup Photography. I know it sounds strange to be stressed about, but I just want to do a good job, and want it to be perfect.  This always kind of happens right before a shoot for me.  Nerves are supposed to push you, right?

Looking forward to: packing up and getting out of town for the weekend.  Sometimes just a few days away from home is all you need.  Things I am looking forward to: Andy Frozen Custard, Mexican Villa, Homemade Lemonade at the Fall Festival, seeing old friends, and spending time with family.

Making me happy: getting to finally wear sweaters.  Come on weather just drown ten more 
degrees and I will be perfectly happy.  Content.

What has your week looked like?  Have you started anything new?

Stay Sweet,

30 Things to get you to age 30 ~ Men's edition

As a special request, I am writing this article in response to the 30 things to get you to age 30 Women's edition!

I always knew that in order to maintain looking young, I had to take care of what I already had (i.e. my skin), and purchase items that are classic.  Now, you know that not everyone fits into a "style", but owning classic pieces, that stand the test of time, will make sure that if you do splurge a little now, it will be able to be stretched across a decade or more and still be relevant.  

With all this in mind, the same holds true for men.  I know that most men, like my Mr., could really care less about taking care of his skin, his health, or his shoes, but with just a little effort, what you put in today will soon become the fruits of your labor tomorrow.

Skin Care Routine
  • Face wash
  • Moisturizer with SPF
  • Exfoliation Scrub
  • Shaving Cream
  • After Shave Lotion/Cream
I don't think it matters what you use, just that you are using it.  This basic system will ensure that your skin is: 1. getting taken care of and 2. combating simple signs of aging without really trying.  I would bargain to say that most men, without the instruction of a significant other, is not following a routine, and probably just using whatever is given to them.  But, the next time you got out to pick up something from the store, start to look at what you are buying.  Stay away from chemical ridden companies and stick with stuff that is basic.  Some companies are even making it easier by carrying "lines" of products from cleaners to after shaves and everything in between.

5 minute Out the Door Routine and a Dressed Up Dapper Routine

Men have it pretty easy when it comes to getting out the door relatively fast.  There is no makeup to apply, no lashes to be set.  So on any given day, you should be ready to go.

What comes into play here is having a Hair Stylist.  No, I don't mean some lady you pay $5 at snip n' clip to cut your hair.  I mean, a legit, hair stylist.  You may think that this is not needed, but this is where you are wrong.  Not only will a stylist provide you with a great cut, but they can show you how to fix your hair, and show you the products that you will need.  (It is usually like 1 or 2)  Next time your significant other goes to get their hair done, ask them if there is a stylist that specializes in men's cuts, and yes it makes a difference.  

You will find that when someone cuts your hair properly, there is little to no time spent fixing it.  And also on a day you don't want to fix it, a vintage baseball cap is always an attractive accessory.

  • Shoes
    • Black boots.  This is critical, especially when transistioning from spring/summer to fall/winter.  Again, this area, if played right, will give you years of wear.  Think low heel, or flat, classic lines, and leather.  
    • Dress Shoes.  Every man should have a classic pair of black and brown dress shoes.  Wing tip shoes, when done in a monotone color have a way of showing class and personality.  Whatever you find impressive, that is the direction you should go.
    • Weekend Shoes.  This is where a fantastically designed pair of sleek sneakers come in.  Converse, Puma, Adidas enter my mind.  I am not talking about running shoes.  In my opinion running shoes should ONLY be worn when, in fact, you are running.  Or if it fits your character, perhaps a pair of loafers or moccasins.  
    • Sandals.  No, not old navy flip flops.  Actual sandals.  They can come in a mulitude of colors and they should NEVER be worn with socks.
  • Pants
    • Black Trousers.  Whatever brand carries your favorite black dress pants, that is what I am talking about.  Make sure to stay away from trends in this department, as it will "date" you quickly.  Find a fit that is slightly wide, flat front, and if the length is not right, a tailor will change your life.
    • Jeans.  Here is a place where it is easy to get caught up in the trendy things to wear, but honestly, don't.  You don't need your jeans to be bedazzled, the stitching to be white and wide, ultra skinny, or strange rips/tears, or odd dye jobs.  Find your favorite brand and a darker wash denim and love them to pieces.  
    • Khakis. One rule when it comes to these types of pant.  Flat front, straight leg, no pleats.
    • Statement Pants.  Maybe they are tweed, plaid, or just brown.  You should find a great fitting pair of pants that have a pattern, and love them!  Men in madras takes a little bit of guts, but makes a very big impact when worn correctly.
  • Tops/Suits
    • Black Suit.  Every man should own at least one well fitted suit.  You never know when you will be asked to a wedding or a funeral.  Department stores, these days, even carry nice suits, that will not break the bank.  The key is to get the suit tailored to fit you.
    • Tailored Blazer.  A great fitting blazer will never go out of style.  If you need a reference look at any ralph lauren ad.  You can find blazers in different colors, just find one that is neutral and it will never be out of style.
    • Several Button Down Shirts in an assortment of colors.  If you are brave get some that have patterns, but if you want to make your life easy, go basic, bold, colors.
    • Get rid of shirts that have stupid "sayings" on them that you thought were hilarious in high school or college.  No one cares about your stupid clever shirt.  It makes you just look stupid, not clever.
  • Extras
    • Pick up a few ties.  Don't go crazy on patterns.  Also, learn how to tie a real tie.
    • Cold Weather Coat.  Even if you don't live in an area where freezing temps are the mainstream, chances are you may travel somewhere where you will need to have a coat to get your through.
    • Dress Coat.  This could range from a trench coat to a pea coat.  Whatever your style personality reflects, just find one that will look good on a date or wearing to a business function.
    • Dress Socks.  Wearing gym socks with your dress clothes is never, ever acceptable.
    • Leather Shoulder Bag.  Think streamlined. Think Simple.  You can carry your laptop, iPad, phone charger, etc and not look like a hobo.
    • Wallet.  Invest in a good wallet.  Besides, even if you don't have hundreds of dollars to place inside, you will at least look like you have hundreds of dollars inside.
    • Watch.  Invest in a good time piece.  Invicta is my go to purchase, for men.  Mid line prices and instant upgrade to your arm.
    • Weekender Bag.  Sometimes, on short trips, you don't want to look like you are moving in, but you shouldn't stuff all your things into a too small tote.  Get a nice looking weekender and impress your company.
    • Sunglasses.  Find your signature shades.  These will work wonders when you eyes are bloodshot from a party, or just tired from running your kids everywhere.
    • Vintage looking baseball cap.  Support your Alma Mater or simply your favorite team.  Just make sure it doesn't look like it has been left outside, in a storm, and drug around by a pack of feral cats.
If any of this intimidates you, grab your nearest friend that is a girl and make her help you.  I promise she will love to!

Stay Sweet,

Stitch Fix Review #7

I ended up with three items from this fix, so I call it a win/win!  On top of being something that is just pure fun to receive in the mail, Stitch Fix, I believe, really strives to make sure their products are quality, on trend and within your selected price range.  My stylist(s) have done a really great job to find things that I like and stayed within my retro loving range.

If you have not had the chance to check them out, you should.  Stitch Fix would even make a fun gift for a girlfriend, sister, cousin, or even mom!

Visit this link, and tell them that I sent you. I know you won't be disappointed!

Street Level Accessory : Purse Handlebar Purse        $60
I loved this purse, the moment I pulled it out.  It is leather and a very on trend color for the season.  I have a really bad habit of getting purses that can double as carry on luggage.  Anyone else have this problem?  With this purse though, it will be the perfect size to help me pair down what I actually need.

Fluxus Dress : Work Dress Devra Cotton Turtleneck Hi-Lo Dress     $98
The price on this dress seemed a little high to me, but once I put it on, I was in love.  This dress is made out of stretch fabric and can be styled in a multitude of ways.  It is the perfect piece for Fall/Winter because it can be layered and it even has a very retro feel too it, but with a modern edge with the hi-low hemline.

Mystree Outer Layer : Cardigan Elsie Longsleeve Embroidered Cardi    $85
Oh this glorious sweater!  It has the right amount of grandma-ness for me to love.  The details on the sweater is what made me fall in love.  Perfect with a pair of skinny jeans and big boots, or over a maxi dress to help the transition from summer to fall.  In love!

Collective Concepts Dress : Work Dress Holmes Belted Shirt dress     $78
The silhouette of this dress made me instantly think of Mad Men, with a modern edge.  I know Joan would love this dress and I loved it too, but even with a bust minimizing bra, the button on top puckered. (Ah the sad life of a curvy gal).  The fabric of the dress is lightweight and would be a perfect addition to any working/business closet.  The color combination is some of my favorite colors, so I wanted it to work so badly, but I just needed it to button!

Eight Sixty Dress : Casual Dress Eagle Drawstring Waist Pocket Dress       $88
This dress has beautiful colors and a perfect pattern, but alas, it was too tight on my hips.  This type of dress, for an hourglass figure, is a hard one to pull off, because there is not a lot of structure, and to truly benefit from a dress, my body type needs a little bit of structure.  The dress is adorable, and lightweight.  Would be perfect with a pair of opaque tights and a denim jacket.  I had to let this one go, because my hips cannot lie, it was too tight.

Nearly Famous Pinup Wednesday!

Scarlet Iris // Facebook // Website

Age: 29

CEO & Owner of the Eco-focused company Naturebella Inc. (I am a treehugger!)

Where are you from:
I am originally from Trinidad (Caribbean), but I currently live in NYC.

Favorite photographer to work with:
I love each photographer that I have worked with for different reasons. Lorraine Murphy was the first pin up photographer that I worked with and she really embraced the essence of pin up modeling. Candace Candylust is rock star and our collaborations are always stellar! Susana Vestige and Michelle Wild both super talented and taught me a lot about posing and feeling comfortable in front of the camera.

Featured photo(s): (Attached)

Artist/Photographer/location of featured photo(s)

My “Tiger” & “Patriotic” themed photos were taken by Candace Candylust in Brooklyn, New York.
My “Red & Pink” themed photos were taken by Lorraine Murphy in Albany, New York.
My “Suite” themed photos were taken by Vestige Photography in NYC, New York.

Tell me about your featured photo(s). When were they taken? Why are they your favorite?

For me, the photos represent my perfect balance of retro class with some modern day sex appeal. The “red & pink” themed photos were taken in 2011 and the “Tiger”, “Patriotic” and “Suite” themed photos were taken in 2012. Candace, Susana and Lorraine are all super talented female photographers who helped me bring out my inner vixen in all of the shoots. They are my favorite pics because the represent a range of different looks that I embraced and also showed my growth as a model.

How long have you been modeling/enjoying photography?
While my first Pinup modeling shoot was in 2011, I did not “launch” my Pinup modeling career until January 2012. So far, the past 8 months have been an amazing ride and Pinup modeling has become more than just a hobby or bucket list item for me, I truly love what it represents and who I represent as a Pinup model. It gives me more confidence now as a curvy 29 year old woman, than when I was a rebellious commercial model at 18 years old. Currently, I am especially looking forward to my first magazine cover coming out in October for Victory Girls Magazine.

Who are your favorite Pinup Models? Past or present inspiration?

My inspiration to step out and be a modern day black Pinup model comes from past beauties that I admire, especially Lena Horne. Some of my favorite modern day Pinup model inspirations are Cherry Dollface and Micheline Pitt. I love their mix of creativity, edginess and retro beauty.

What is some of your favorite clothing lines? Favorite Designers?

I love Pin Up Girl Clothing brands Deadly Dames and Pinup Couture. I also love Sourpuss, Hell Bunny, BGBG, Michael Kors, Rachel Roy and Betsey Johnson.

If you could shoot with any photographer, who would it be?

Supreme Overlord of Pin Up Girl Clothing & photographer extraordinaire, Laura Byrnes.

Stay Sweet,

Daily Candy ~ Juicing Week Two.

Well, we made it one week, and it wasn't bad at all!  In fact most of the recipes from week one were pretty good. My palate has changed and we have a noticeable change in energy level.  I am not dependent on coffee to get me through the day, and the Mr. is no longer chugged energy drinks.  My skin look luminous, if I do say so myself, and really, it is an easy breakfast.  

We only had one major meltdown over frozen blueberries, and since the Mr. is a penny pincher, he thinks blueberries are a waste of money, because they are not "producing enough juice for the price that they are."

This week, however, we are going to start doing a breakfast and lunch juice, every other day.  I will let you know how it goes.  Here are the recipes for week two, if you are following along.  I would love to hear about your experiences with juicing.

Day 9: Apple-Beet-Carrot Juice
1 apple
2 beets
3 large carrots
1 (1-inch) piece of ginger
Spinach or kale (optional)
*Adapted from Reboot Your Life.™
Day 10: Purple Power Juice
6 cups Concord grapes
1 Golden Delicious apple
2 (1-inch) pieces of ginger
1/2 cup blackberries
*Adapted from Reboot Your Life.™
Day 11: Apple-Cantaloupe-Honeydew Juice
2 apples
1/2 cantaloupe
1/2 honeydew
6 to 8 kale leaves
6 to 8 Swiss chard leaves
*Adapted from Reboot Your Life.™
Day 12: Great Green Fruity Mix
2 cups packed beet greens, red Swiss chard, kale, spinach or a combination
1 Golden Delicious apple
1/2 Comice pear
10 strawberries
1 cup coconut water (stir into glass of finished juice)
*Adapted from Reboot Your Life.™
Day 13: Beet-Celeriac-Carrot Juice
4 carrots
1/2 to 1 apple
1/2 celeriac root, peeled
1 beet
1 (1/4-inch) piece of ginger (optional)
*Adapted from Reboot Your Life.™
Day 14: Sunset Blend Juice
1 large sweet potato
1 carrot
1 red bell pepper
2 red beets
2 Golden Delicious apples
1 orange (optional)
*Adapted from Reboot Your Life.™