Fringe with Benefits

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Its something about the movement fringe makes that has me all enthralled. Its simply quite beautiful. I love me some fringe. My all consuming affinity to the detail is so evident in my closet: from shoes, tops, accessories, dresses, bottoms, you name it, I’ve got it. I’ve really out-fringed myself, I can never have enough! And with festival season upon us, what better way to exploit the detail by going balls out? Its the perfect timing I tell you. And so, this look is a sort of love letter to my favorite detail of the moment: fringe.

Let’s start from the top, shall we? One of the many reasons why this particular necklace caught my eye besides the obvious fact, this tasseled necklace with rhinestones gave the sorta glam goddess vibe that I am very into at the moment. It looks expensive but you can get it for only $15 at Forever 21 (Who would ever thought that I’d be shopping at Forever 21? Yes I am a bit of a hater but it was my first job and experienced fast fashion horrors one can only imagine. I do admit, they’re jewelry selection is on fleck errr point!)

The skirt to beat all other skirts, I’ve found it: Nastygal’s Easy Rider Leather Skirt! Unforunately, it is currently sold out, but pray that Nastygal restocks, as this skirt is all kinds of amazing. As its no big secret, I am an avid online shopper, checking in on NEW ARRIVALS on my favorite sites daily. I first caught a glimpse of the skirt as a part of a look with another top from Nastygal. I was not the biggest fan of the shirt but the skirt had really caught my eye. The skirt was nowhere to be found on the site so I figured, they’ll release it in a day or two. Sure enough, it became available on a Friday, my payday. Ironically, I did not check new arrivals that day until I was about to go to bed and remembered what had been missing on my day, and so, then and there, as it stroke midnight, I bought my most anticipated skirt and went to bed satisfied. I slept very well that night, I might add. Its not everyday that you cross paths with a skirt like this: the fringe, the beading, and leather to top it off, it was as if it were made to make all my wishes come true. I’ve found perfection in this skirt, truly madly deeply in love! Its a sure staple in my closet!

As a part of my new style resolution of attempting to incorporate neutrals to my wardrobe, I thought I might add a splash of it in the form of this suede fringe clutch from Zara. I love that it is spacious, as far as clutches come and I love the dramatically long fringe that go from the side to the bottom of the bag. My only err is that I did not consider how easily dirty and beat up the suede looks after only a couple of wears. I should have gotten its black counterpart, but I don’t regret the purchase as I really don’t need another black purse and even then, I’m not a person to regret my shopping decisions. I see it more as a lesson learned, you probably won’t see neutral suede bags in my future, but as far as neutral leather? Well that’s a whole ‘nother story.

I was really going for a chic bohemian look, and to accentuate all of that fringe, other details I kept very simple: Ecote Ribbed -Knit Cropped Racerback Tank Top, Free People’s Cortina ankle boot (I never thought the day would come when I’d find the right booties for me, I’d been on the hunt for 2 years. The stitched floral detail really set it above the rest, and the zippers on its side gave it that edge that I knew I had to nab a pair of ’em).

As we transition from Winter to Spring and Spring to Summer, I have noticed that my style has also been on a bit of transition: from chic structured minimalism to now, a more bohemian vibe. I love these little complex changes in detail. I feel that one can have a signature style, but one should always explore other looks because nothing in this lifetime stays constant so why should your style be?

Photos by Amelia Woodford

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The Tobi Series



With the start of the new year, one of the biggest opportunities to have been presented to me was a collaboration with fast fashion site and source of all things cute, Tobi! If you aren’t hip with the hype, Tobi offers its members 50% off their first order and 30% off their daily new arrivals. So take my cue, stop, drop and shop their site! You’ll ogle all over their products, and that’s a guarantee (am I ever wrong? Trust.)

And so the story goes…

Tobi stumbled upon my instagram account and simply fell in love with my style. They loved my blog and decided that I’d be perfect for their brand. They reached out to me via email and blessed me with a care package ranging from dresses, jumpsuits to this shirt featured in this post. I feel so honored to be a part of the #shoptobi community. In the next few weeks, my blog posts will feature Tobi goodies so stay tuned! This is only the first of the series.

As I was choosing my wants from Tobi for this collabo, I stumbled upon the Alone At Last Maxi Shirt, I was intrigued by the idea of a floor length tee. It was so me, I included it to my top 3 faves and crossed my fingers they’d send it and soon enough, the Tobi team did! So thankful. The fit was perfect, slightly over sized and draped in all the right places, the only problem was length (I am only 5’2, as petite as they come). Even with heels they were long and dragged on the floor. My solution was to style it as a high low shirt and tied the front in a knot. Since the shirt had an edgy feel, I wanted the look to be urban street style. I styled the tee with high waisted cut offs in a black acid wash from GUESS? and threw on a waterfall cardi layered underneath my fave moto leather jacket.

Now, the boots are on a whole other dimension, respectively. It is no secret that I am a lover of knee high boots and have gone mad for them this f/w season (you might say they’ve become a staple in my closet as I own 8 pairs!), but this baby takes the cake. Laced up knee high leather boots called the Pennia from Schutz, a best seller on Revolve Clothing, they bring out the dominatrix in me. Jk.

Phtos were taken by mega babe, my girl Amelia Woodford. Check her amazing work here: http://aewphotography.tumblr.com











Life’s a Beach


2015 is here. My only resolution for the year is to incorporate neutrals in my wardrobe and what better way than to do just that on my very first post of the year!

Seattle was a tease one lone Monday at the end of January. Sixty degrees and sunny. T’was a treat and it could only get better by spending it at the beach. Though I should’ve planned accordingly. I was only really supposed to have lunch, but ended up at the beach. Equipped with a disposable camera. I’m not complaining, but my heels might.

Tobi has blessed me with a care package of amazing pieces and one of them is the One Up Jumpsuit (hint: there’s more to come from Tobi!). This jumpsuit is cut very low in the front and with the back being backless, its a very bare all, no apologies type, one wrong move away from a wardrobe malfunction situation. It may be an ideal for a night out but may become difficult to actually wear. My solution is to wear a simple black bandeau and viola! all worries are eliminated. I styled the piece more for daytime wear, choosing to wear my leather cropped jacket from Guess (current obsession) to edge up the dressiness of the jumpsuit. Pair it with simple black heeled sandals, my favorite wool hat and grab the oh so essentials: Mini A Satchel from Kate Spade Saturday and Wildfox Couture Bel Air frames and I’m chic ready.

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Alexander Wang X H & M


At last, the Damsel turns one! To celebrate the best decision of my 21 years of existence, I’d like to commemorate this momentous milestone with the most exiting collaboration of 2014, that’s right folks, Alexander Wang (aka the King of Downtown Cool, aka Creative Director of Balenciaga) x H and M (aka Hennes and Mauritz, aka major power retailer, aka biggest fast fashion brand). Basically, a young fashionista’s (without an expendable wallet) paradise.

It all started on April 13th, when I read the news of this collabo going down via Man Repeller, that I decided I was going to be waiting in line on that lone November 6th night, out in the cold, to get a piece of the covetable. After months of teasing (seven months to be exact) with sneak peaks, campaign shots and Instagram vids, I was stir crazy. Closer to the date, a fashion show took place in NYC and it was impressive: the celebrity endorsement, the surprise live set from Missy Elliott, the runway show was perfection. And it wasn’t even NY Fashion Week. Even though it was a collaboration, Alexander Wang’s sportswear aesthetic was visible in the collection: from the neoprene sweatshirts, to the Under Armour-like Wang’d out separates, mesh oversized tees, down to the gray, black and white hue’d scheme. It was truly a collection after my heart.

Prior to the day of, all was to be done was figure out logistics and do my fair share of research. The H&M website proved to be useful, first off, you can view the whole collection and pre-shop it. Second, it gave helpful information on how the proceedings will go at the store level: the store would open at 8 am, the first 420 in line were given wristbands with an allotted time of 15 minutes to shop. Yes, 15 minutes and that’s it. Initially, I planned on being in line at 4 am, but I considered the fact that this is Alexander Wang and I’ll be in line at the only H and M store that was hosting the exclusive collection in the whole of Washington, Downtown Seattle. And so, it was, I was in line outside of the store by 2 am. I went with my fellow blogger, Jennifer Marie, whom I can talk fashion to no end so I wasn’t bored. Luckily it wasn’t cold to the bone freezing either. In fact, time went by in a flash and before I knew it we were given a 9:05 am wristband.

By 8:50 am, the line migrated inside the store and unfortunately, I was one of the last ones to arrive in the 9:05 am group. Oh, the slick shopping bags with “Alexander Wang x H&M” written across in white that glided by me, their owners smirking with accomplishment (Downtown Seattlites are too cool to jump up and down with joy, apparently). 5 minutes prior to 9:05, my heart was pounding, and I was anxious with the idea that the items I wanted were either not in my size or sold out.

9:05 rolls around and all hell breaks loose, the collection was in a small enclosed square, Jennifer went left and I went right. The first I saw was the AW logo mania crop top I wanted and I pounced on it, my hands shaking as I look for an XS. Viola, found my size! I couldn’t find the matching skirt on my right, I didn’t even have time to panic as I went left and surveyed the rack, found it still fully stocked! Next up on the list was the logo mania knee high socks, nowhere to be found. Neither was the WANG beenie (famously rocked by supermodel Joan Smalls). That’s 2 out 4 items on my list I was still a happy girl. I even surprised myself by not diverting to said wants and buying impulsively cause of all the shopping adrenaline around me. The cashier even asked me “That’s it?” But hey, did I really need more? No. I pre shopped online, knew exactly what I wanted and was out of there in 10 minutes.

I picked the logo mania crop top and skirt set because of their versatility: I can wear it multiple times, multiple ways with endless combinations. Together, worn as a set, they make a statement, I mean look at me, these images speak for themselves. I styled them with basic essentials: black beenie, black knee high socks and wore my buckled bootie, Parleys from Guess for a stylish “going to the gym but not really” look.

An investment of a Sony Nex-6 started The Damsel in the Dress a year ago. From there, I have been recognized by internationally renowned retailers such as Nastygal and Guess. I have been approached by photographers, styled my first music video and I’ve also provided my shopping expertise to DJ Shiva, hailing from La. None of that could’ve been possible without the Damsel, and before it was conceived in my brain, a crazy far fetch dream. I cannot wait what the next year will bring because it has been a magical experience so far. awhm48awhm9awhm49awhm37awhm38awhm39awhm13awhm6awhm19



Caped Crusader


One of the biggest fashion trends to befall us this season is the Cape. While most Fall 2014 collections featured it as outerwear (even manifesting itself as a poncho), BCBGMaxazria‘s take on the trend was the ingenious Capelet Romper. I was intrigued with the piece, and I didn’t even really want a cape, considering the fact that I’ve inherited my father’s broad shoulders (according to my mother) and did I really want to bring attention to that? I loved the uniqueness of the Caped Romper, and could not resist such an elegant statement piece hanging in my closet that it overcame any frustration I had with my genetic layout. And so I went ahead and ordered it online. It was not love at first fit, to be completely truthful. The fabric bunched up in the back. I also looked like i joined a convent (a very edgy convent though it may be). I was planning on returning, but quickly found out that I couldn’t return e-commerce orders in any of BCBG’s stores (if you are buying from their online shop, you have been warned) and working retail, I am familiar with the long winded process of sending an item back. So I decided to keep it. If anything, I would be the sexiest looking nun out there.

The piece actually grew on me in time. It paired perfectly with my Suede Over the Knee Boots (Dandra’s from Guess). It is the ideal Autumn outfit when your feeling like a stroll down the neighborhood to enjoy the turn of color of the leaves. Not only will the cape keep you warm and insulated, you will also look extremely chic as you do as I do in these pictures. cape20cape3cape5cape6cape4cape17cape9cape7cape10

Grey Hues

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It may come as a shock to most of you all, but sometimes I like to opt for something else other than black. In this case, I may have gone all out and worn all gray instead. I love the hue, unfortunately, its still not color (over my dead body!) but its the closest I will ever get. So feast your eyes, this doesn’t happen very often. You may wonder why I decided to change up so out of the blue, you may even feel refreshed by the alternative, but like adventurous journeys, this outfit has a beginning.

It all started with the boots: gray suede knee high boots, Zonians from Guess. I’ve gone a bit gaga over knee high boots, I own five pairs (and counting…the season’s only beginning!). My obsession, I suppose, stem from the fact that they add instant height to my petite frame. They’re also so practical in these brisk days as they keep your legs warm, but mostly, they make a statement: I am here, now look at me, which is how I always want to make my entrance. I hesitated on buying these boots for weeks since the obvious: they are not black, and I pondered whether or not it really fit my wardrobe; should I take a risk and welcome them into my closet in hopes that it’ll evolve my style into a different direction or will they stay in its box collecting dust. It was not until I impulsively tried on the Dark Coal Off the Shoulder Sweater Dress  that I was sold on the boots. I had to have both or none at all.

But the dress, where do I even begin. For one, they just about hug every curve of my body. This is not you’re typical sweater dress, its ultra sexy, and you wouldn’t even know it just as it is on the hanger. Its a must for fall. I wish it came in black, it must’ve been fate that it didn’t. Otherwise I wouldn’t have opted for this coal color. You can praise the lord for that one.

And I couldn’t just leave it at two pieces, I just had to have these Gray Area Sleeveless Coat by J.O.A. available in multiple retailers: Urban Outfitters, Nastygal, Revolve Clothing and Shop Bop. I purchased mine on Nastygal (#nastygalsdoitbetter after all). I’ve been itching for a wool coat vest to call my own, after the ultimate fashion icon (in my book), Victoria Beckham was photographed sporting one. I love the length and the oversized collar.

Who would’ve thought that all three grays would harmonize so well together. The not so secret is the use of different shades of gray. Its the same idea when you wear all white ensembles: to break up all that monochrome, wear different hues. It makes for a high impact yet stylish look!

P.S. My bag is the L.A.M.B. Elga Crossbody (if you were wondering)

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One Night Abroad


 A few days ago, a translation tech company, Smartling and I were discussing travel and the means of communication for a foreign traveller. It really got me thinking about what I would do if I were in, let’s say Milan, for example. Would I change the way I dress in order to fit in? What about for a night out? Eating? And what about the language barrier? Obviously, I don’t speak Italian…

I don’t really like to fit in, in fact, I try hard to stand out, why would I want to fit in? I would, however, assimilate myself in Milanese culture by doing my research on Italian common courtesies. Eventhough I am a tourist, I do not want to make it plainly obvious by making errors in proper Italian etiquette and behavior (i.e. I would not be placing my hand on my tummy as it is a gesture of dislike, nor would I be caught chewing gum or slouching in public). As for dressing, I’d stick to what I like to wear, no tourist uniform ( clad in a sun hat, fanny pack, comfortable sneakers and jeans) for me thank you! As per all my travels, I look up the city’s weather and pack accordingly. I usually like to pack my favorite pieces as well as newest purchases. I have day to day outfits but they change as my plans do. For a night out, I would wear an ultra sexy leather dress like Shakuhachi’s Leather Zip Me Up Dress currently hanging in my closet and pair them with simple black stilettos for more vavavoom. The city is known for its fashion so why should I hold back? I am not one for the club scene and prefer a trendy lounge to sip on Italian cocktails such as Sgroppino or Bicicletta and discuss must see and do in Milan with the bartender. I’d prefer to go to places recommended by locals for more of an authentic experience instead of going to the usual touristy overpriced traps. A not so picky eater, I’d want to try traditional Milanese cuisine such as Risotto Alla Milanese. It would be ignorant and arrogant of me to expect that locals would understand English, so I’d learn Italian common phrases and carry a chic little dictionary in my satchel for quick and easy translations. Since Milan is known globally as a fashion mecca, I’d be frequenting shopping centres and sit on cafes to style watch. 

What I’m Wearing:

In these in between Summer and Autumn days, its hard to decide whether to bundle up or don Summery staples. Striking a fine balance and getting it just right is difficult. For me, I like to mix summery tops like this Handkerchief Halter top from Guess with fall staples like these Zara leather pencil skirt. My booties are an easy transition piece, heeled lace up sandals with leather uppers makes it look heavier duty than your traditional sandals. I added a pop of white in the form of a pearl necklace (Zara’s Mini Chain Necklace) and matching ring. I love a mini cross body and could not resist L.A.M.B.’s Elga Crossbody, I love its all black matte exterior, a perfect hint of edge to a chic look.

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I Wear Short Shorts



Look at me, I’m actually wearing something other than black (for once)! Even a person whose signature style is putting together all black ensembles has to pay homage to classic staples such as these blue denim cutoffs from Guess (similar here). They are the epitome of the summer staple but also bode well as a transitional piece in between seasons. Here, I paired the cutoffs with knee high boots. For more of a western vibe, I styled the cutoffs with a white tee (I’m wearing Kill City‘s white tee with leather sleeves) and layered the tailored Tuxedo vest on top. I love the oversized “borrowed from my boyfriend” look of the vest as well as the metal collar which plays a twist on the classic. Silver accessories tie the look together: spider web body chain (similar here), braided Conch Belt, Unif Conch hat,  and the usual suspects of arm bangles. I invested on another pair of sunnies, this time a pair of oversized Cat Eyes which I often style with my casual looks. I am a sucker for zipper details so of course I had to have this clutch, a huge plus is it doubles as a cross body. 

While editing these pictures, I realized how tan I’ve gotten. This summer has been so much fun! Traveling to Michigan then Denver, but I am definitely ready for fall. I am so ready for layers, the turning colors of the leaves and pumpkin spice lattes. It is also the most exciting fashion season, in my opinion. I have actually been shopping for my fall wardrobe in advanced already. Call me crazy, but better to be prepared than to procrastinate on matters such as dressing. 









Mesh’d Up


Mesh, it seems, is a viral trend nowadays thanks to designers like Alexander Wang and Calvin Klein whose minimal athletica gave inspiration to contemporary brands like Elizabeth and James, Milly who used the fabric in their Spring and Summer 2014 Ready to Wear collections. Eventually the trend worked its way down the market to fast fashion brands like Zara and Top Shop. I wanted a piece of mesh I can call my own and found two that I liked: sen Raquel Top from Revolve Clothing and Topshop Laser Cut Mesh Scuba tee. Both were more or less $100, which I thought was just too much for such a trendy piece. I have no problem in investing on a piece that I would use time and again, but if I know I like it for its trendy appeal, and more likely than not, wear it once, maybe twice, price comes into question. So I passed on them. Both look like Football Mesh jerseys and so I went back to its origins and bought a boys sized M with its tags still attached at Salvation Army for $4.99. This is the result.

I layered my scuba bralette from Topshop (similar here) underneath the jersey and rolled up its sleeves, tucking it into my Leather Textured shorts from ASOS. Its the chic high fashion equivalent to your work out sweats minus the work out and the sweat. I paired them with Zara’s Bio with Ankle Strap and Buckle. Because they’re made from synthetic, man made leather, I am disappointed to share that the pair are not a comfortable everyday sandal. I did buy them for its clean look and gucci inspired oversized buckle.

These were shot in Good Hart, Michigan. The woods make for some epic nature girl shots.

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l’île de Mackinac

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Who would’ve thought that an island as gorgeous as Mackinac existed in Middle America? This petite pearl is tucked in the center of Michigan’s upper and lower peninsulas, accessible via ferry. With no automobiles in sight, this place is like stepping back in time, rich in colonial style architecture and famous for its fudge. One quip is the overwhelming smell of horse dung that hung in the air. Lucky for you, the camera cannot capture the odor.


While most were opting to wear “touristy” casual attire (i.e. sweater, denim and comfortable sneakers) I opted for a classy resort look. I wore the usual suspects of staples/my favorite summer must haves: Wildfox sunnies and Michael Kors Hamilton Mini . To go with the black and gold accents of the bag and sunnies, I paired them with MK’s Calder Leather Sandals, I love its oversized buckle and golden rand on the tip of the front edge. It is so comfortable yet so stylish, I didn’t have to sacrifice one for the other. An alternative to your traditional jeweled statement necklace came in the form of a Choker with Pearls, it adds a minimalistic touch: very simple and very clean.

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I am obsessed with all things pleated this summer. I love how it moves with the breeze. Its movements make for some spectacular pictures. Here, I styled my Asymmetric Fine Pleated Skirt from Zara, with its unhemmed and uneven cut bode well with a formfitting croptop like the Pick Your Poison Top. Its stringy strap attached to both sides of the bottom synch the waist. I was attracted to that detail, since not only is it a new take on a basic crop, the market hasn’t caught onto the trend as well.


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From the pictures it seemed as though the island was deserted but it in fact was teeming with people, some buying souvenir shirts, most purchasing pounds of fudge. Since the morning was gray and windy, a not so promising start to the only sunny day out of a week’s worth of rain, I decided to risk it and wear my summer’s best. I was met with “You’re gonna freeze!” told you so’s and offerings of warm sweaters, but my risk was met with reward. The day turned out to be beautiful. In an island that tourists frequent, my all black ensemble stuck out like a sore thumb.