spotlight: muzungu sisters

Muzunga

Earlier this week I posted this pic on instagram of an amazing bag that I found in Harper’s Bazaar.  While flipping through the mag it noticeably stood out on the page thus beginning the deep dive into where this piece of perfection had been sourced from.  Enter Muzungu Sisters!  Dana Alikhani and Tatiana Santo Domingo are the co-founders of the brand and their mission is to “promote fair labour practices by showcasing artisan-crafted goods from around the world”.   The online store was born in 2009 and Dana and Tatiana’s goal is to “shine a light on the rare artistry found in various communities, and to stimulate those local economies, all while providing customers with timeless, hand-selected items of impeccable quality and style.”  I have become an instant fan of the product (and philosophy) and I’m thinking you might too!  Shop the site here and read the bio behind each item – everything has a story.  I’m currently coveting these. *above photo via here

Screen Shot 2013-04-24 at 10.21.16 PMdelphine delafon x muzungu sisters III

Screen Shot 2013-04-24 at 10.06.59 PMenamel hoop earrings

Screen Shot 2013-04-24 at 10.27.02 PMdark blue stitched kaftan

Screen Shot 2013-04-24 at 10.14.46 PMdenim bali sarong

Screen Shot 2013-04-24 at 10.29.40 PMtasseled dress

Screen Shot 2013-04-24 at 10.31.54 PMembroidered zebra shawl

Screen Shot 2013-04-24 at 10.36.17 PMwayuu mini mochila x

the “new” gap

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If you are part of my generation (born in ’79) then you have at some point been a loyal GAP shopper.  I remember when they opened in my hometown I was over the moon.  It quickly became a staple spot for back-to-school basics and I’m pretty sure that at least 60% of my wardrobe was GAP in the early 90’s.  I’m still a fan, picking up styles like the new ‘sexy boyfriend‘ jean from this spring, but from an overall retail perspective they have missed the mark for the past few years and the brand identity has become a little, ahem – schizophrenic.  In speaking with a few people that I know at the company – GAP is getting back to its roots (and groove) of fashionable all american prep.   They have been working towards re-establishing themselves as the go-to destination we’ve all grown to know and love for the classics.  Rebekkah Bay, the companies new Creative Director may even be the new rival to J.Crews Jenna Lyons according to Connie Wang from Refinery29.  This coming fall we’re about to see this new vision and collection come to life.  Here are a few of my favorites from the fall 2013 look book.  What do you think?  xx #yoursoulstyle  *photo credit: here and here

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dove’s “social experiment”

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Have you seen Dove’s new “social experiment” video?  If not, I think it’s worth checking out and I’d really like to hear your feedback.  I have my own opinion which I’ll explain in a minute.  Click here first to view it.  There is a lot of controversy, the most popular a review written by Jazz Brice which you can find on her tumbler site, “little drops” found here, but before clicking the review I urge you to watch the campaign first.  I did the reverse so I’m advising otherwise.   Then let’s discuss.

So now that you’ve watched (don’t read on unless you have), these are my thoughts:

Although I understand Jazz’s commentary about Dove’s “social experiment”, I also have a profound appreciation for it; the message, that is.  It is easy to pick apart a progressive and original approach to cultural messaging, but in doing so we lose the actual intention of the message!  I won’t say the “social experiment” doesn’t have flaws and that there isn’t some validity to her review, however in order to evolve and move forward it takes courageous corporations like Dove to make the attempt.  Being a pioneer is certainly not fool proof!  From my perspective what they have done is raise an awareness to an ongoing societal issue that needs to be addressed.  Women do have magnified self-esteem issues in this country and it’s about time we got to talking about it in a bigger way.  We can all psycho-analyze this advertising and marketing campaign (and I am the queen of psychoanalyzing, trust me), but why should we expend our energy on that part of the project?  How about taking away the larger message at hand which is about embracing and recognizing your individual beauty.  It is not Dove’s job to teach us how to get there – it is their job to bring the subject into light – and with that, I think they’ve done a stellar job!  I’d rather be part of the movement that takes the risk than the person who stands back and judges the attempt. 

What do you think about the experiment?  I really want to hear your thoughts so don’t be shy.  Share away!!!

xx #yoursoulstyle

white hot

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Happy Monday!  Did you all have a nice weekend?  Let’s discuss blazers today – an appropriate item for this ongoing brisk spring weather!  Something tells me you have a black one hanging in your closet already.  Or if you don’t, you’ve certainly had a conversation with yourself about needing one.  Am I right?  Well I’ve got a proposition for you – instead of taking out the good ole staple black blazer for your second layer this season, why not get a brand spanking new white one??  I’m a lover of white always (as I’m sure you’ve figured out from this post) so no brainer for me .  But how about you??  Are you ready to swap the classic for trendier version?  I think you should go for it and I promise you won’t look like a waiter.  That’s an old wives tale – just like the “don’t wear white after labor day or before memorial” – who the heck came up with that?  Anyway, here’s a few styles to get you going, me rocking it this weekend and check this and this out for more visual convincing!   above photo via here

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  1. Mango minimalistic blazer, $129.99, mango.com
  2. H&M blazer, $49.95, hm.com for locations
  3. H&M blazer, $49.95, hm.com for locations
  4. Topshop ponte jet pocket blazer, $70, topshop.com
  5. Theory crepe blazer, $385, net-a-porter.com
  6. Rag & Bone finn vest, $450, shopbop.com

weekend reform

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It’s Friday – finally!  We’ve made it and the weekend is here.  Hope you all have something enjoyable planned and are spending time with your favorite people.  Rounding out my week of shopping posts – I thought I’d offer you a final tip to take you into the weekend.

I happened upon reformation when I was shopping the LES  (LES = lower east side) for my pre-wedding dinner outfit.  I wasn’t exactly sure what I was going for however I knew I wanted to look edgy (black was a must) to counter the white dress that would happen the next night.  So alas – reformation appeared.  Choices galore – between the backless jumpsuits and plunging neckline maxi dresses I was like a kid in a candy store.  I wound up with this gem, felt perfect and certainly achieved my fashion goal for the night – reformation had done me right.  With no question I had found exactly what I had been looking for.  On top of them carrying a stellar fashion collection from an aesthetic point of view, it is “an environmentally sustainable fashion brand that repurposes vintage and surplus materials.  Their collection is made locally in the New York and Los Angeles studios, and sold directly to their stores at fair prices”  Get the full story here.  Head over to the site if you’re not native to NYC or LA because they ship throughout the US, free on orders over $50.  It’s kind of a win all around, right?

Here are some of my favorites that I’m coveting from the spring/summer collection.

Screen Shot 2013-04-19 at 12.02.21 PMcitrine dress, $258Screen Shot 2013-04-19 at 12.01.04 PMdesert dress, $258Screen Shot 2013-04-19 at 12.06.01 PMcharles dress, $198 Screen Shot 2013-04-19 at 12.06.34 PMfiore dress, $288 Screen Shot 2013-04-19 at 12.07.02 PMsupernova jumper, $218 Screen Shot 2013-04-19 at 12.01.51 PMpapaya dress, $168Screen Shot 2013-04-19 at 12.05.04 PMozone dress, $288

And……..some other links I picked up from the week to keep you busy for a minute over the weekend!

Refinery29 says this Loeffler Randall is the new ‘it’ bag.  What do you think?

Sarah Yates from a house in the hills looking extra chic in this look from monday’s post.

I’m lucky if I make it to yoga, but if you’re a cardio aficionado and also love a good stretch, check this new brooklyn spot out.

Coachella music festival was last and this weekend.  I’m not going, but if I was would certainly be wearing this.  For more coachella fashion check this and this out!

Speaking of Coachella, check this deal out!   If you haven’t been to Palm Springs yet, it is heaven on earth.  My happy place.

Gwnyeth Paltrow is getting a ton of criticism from this ny post review but you have to admit, the woman has got taste!  Check this post from goop for an epic travel recommendation.

Have a great one and see you next week!!  xx  #yoursoulstyle