AKG

Posts Tagged ‘personality’

On C for Color

In On Muse-of-the-Month, On Style, On Styling for the Individual on August 29, 2012 at 6:23 pm

I’ve always loved color; I had nearly every paint color available in the art supply store in my paintbox at home during design school. I could spend hours trying to mix a particular shade for my artwork. This is a trait my muse Meha Bhargava made me aware of. Still, I used to shy away from wearing much color. A little over a year ago, I fit in perfectly in New York, where black is an official color.

Today, however, I can intuitively mix and match bright and neutral tones. My image consultant training has given me an appreciation for color, as well as the tools to wear colors correctly. I’m likelier to be seen wearing colored denim with colored blouses, or colorful dresses with colorful jackets (Deep, sincere love for Kate Spade, Lilly Pulitzer, Nanette Lepore, Diane Von Furstenberg, and JCrew) than I am to be seen wearing neutrals such as black – which used to be my go-to year-round. Recently I’ve started to pick up bold, colorful neckpieces and accessories as well. My most recent favorite is this JCrew neckpiece in a bright orange color.

Colors bring an outfit to life, make you look beautiful (when chosen correctly), feel happy, and they make a statement – all at the same time. My muse, Meha’s always loved colors. I’ve always seen her putting together bold hues in her clothes, accessories, bags, and shoes.

“Colors are my best friend. Apart from Lime Greens and Hunter/Forest Greens I am good with everything on the wheel.  Favorites being the Blues and Corals! Moving across the color wheel, making bold choices in term of analogous and split complementary is fun!”

~Meha Bhargava

On C for Color - Muse: Meha Bhargava

On C for Color
Muse of the Month : Meha Bhargava

Meha believes she owes her love of colors to her mother:

“I was always a well matched child..with my dress matching my shoes and my accessories matching them all. I dont think I’ve ever had the moment when some one told me, “They Dont Match!””

She likes keeping a wardrobe neutral (simply a color that is a silent spectator) i.e. Beiges, Blacks Reds and the Indigos etc..and then playing with accent colors throughout the look. Meha enjoys seeing how color changes one’s attitude for the day, and how a certain color brightens up cheeks vs. how a certain color dulls the personality.

“Who would’ve thought I’d pick up a salmon colored top and pair it with a bright red skirt? Beautiful and over-the-top combinations excite me.” ~Meha Bhargava
On C for Color: Style board from Meha Bhargava of Styl Inc.

On C for Color: Style board from Meha Bhargava of Styl Inc.

Live life colorfully. Your life will thank you for it.

AKG

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On Listing Wardrobe Staples

In On Muse-of-the-Month, On Personality, On Style, On Travel on August 6, 2012 at 5:22 pm

In January of this year, I wrote about the lists we all should have (in our heads or on paper).

1)What (Trends and/or Clothing Pieces) Make Us Look Amazing.

2) What (Trends and/or Clothing Pieces) Don’t Work Well For Us.

Well, this year I’ve realized there are 2 more lists.

3) Closet Staples

4) Travel Staples

Everyone’s list looks a little different. My muse, Meha makes dressing and wardrobe management look simple – except when it comes to shoes. All lists are forgotten when it comes to shoes. But I think that’s a girl thing – we all get that.

Knowing the staples in your closet has these effects:

  • It’s easier to dress in the morning.
  • If you’re missing a listed item or if a staple is in need of repair/replacement, you know it’s important to deal with it.
  • Simpler to mix & match to maximize your wardrobe.
  • Makes it easier to know which pieces to add, delete, and/or edit when shopping.

Her travel packing list is especially interesting.

  • By having and using a list, the stress of having to make last minute decisions goes away.
  • You can focus on preparing for other aspects of your travel.

“My travels have being varying:  a day long affair, a 4 day relax vacation, a 12-15 days long haul, or even 3 to 4 months – it switches. In terms of naming staples, I choose to explain for a 4-6 days long vacation which we go for, most often. The first step is to find out the weather and terrain (beach, mountains, forest or desert). I leave all techniques and do’s and dont’s when it comes to shoes. Have to pack 5 shoes for a 6 day vacation!”

~Meha Bhargava

Meha Bhargava's Lists

Meha Bhargava’s Lists

It’s important to see that recognizing these lists makes Meha look only more fabulous and stress-free, because she’s aware of herself, her needs, and dresses according to her rules rather than trying to fit into the lists of another person – no matter how stylish they may also be.

These lists simply life. Shopping, dressing, and packing, all, become uncomplicated.

Make your own lists. You will thank yourself (and possibly me) for it.

AKG

On Substantial Frivolilty

In On Muse-of-the-Month, On Personality, On Style on August 3, 2012 at 2:47 pm

“You’re considered superficial and silly if you are interested in fashion, but I think you can be substantial and still be interested in frivolity.”

~Sofia Coppola

As I read this quote nearly a month ago while reading the Women’s Wear Daily, I immediately thought of Meha Bhargava. This is exactly how I would sum up her style.

Parties at Meha’s home are a big part of the Bhargava lifestyle – fabulously frivolous with shoes, accessories, lunches, and more, Meha balances daily work, time with friends & family, and personal growth.

She’ll probably be like Imelda Marcos, who famously said, “I did not have three thousand pairs of shoes, I had one thousand and sixty.” Simultaneously, I know she’ll be involved in balancing major work projects and a meaningful personal life.

Substantial Frivolity

Substantial Frivolity: Meha has both

A typical weekday for her now involves: A grilling work out in the morning, 10-6 work involving client meetings, sessions with the client, and more. Her evenings are a Yoga overload, and then there’s family time followed by her personal unwinding for the night. Along with this, she manages to include time for loved ones and their special occasions/moments.

I take inspiration from Meha, in that when we went to Milan for image consulting training a few years ago, I’d get up, shower, and get ready to leave for class. Miss Bhargava would get up early, neatly make her bed, have tea, exercise while watching the news, wake me up around this time, eat breakfast, and then go to class.

In the years since, I’ve silently learned much from Meha’s consistency as well as from her substantial frivolity. It’s one of my favorite parts of her style.

AKG

On Introducing the Sporty Muse, Arshia Arora

In On Muse-of-the-Month, On Personality, On Shopping, On Style on April 10, 2012 at 7:23 pm

She’s Riley to my Alan.
Her mother calls her Buttons, for her eyes. This woman shares my inability to find and see things right under her nose.
Others still modify her name into “Arsh, Arshi, and Arshu.”
Some of her closest friends call her “happy camper” because of her indomitable spirit, her love for life, and unending enthusiasm, joy, and energy.

She’s a little ambidextrous, and her application of that skill in nail art leaves me slightly jealous, yet mesmerized. Another skill that leaves me a little jealous is the insane knowledge bank of random trivia and fun facts that resides in her brain. She pulls them out like a magician pulls out the unending pocket square of ribbons – randomly. And of course, I take advice from her with graphic design all the time – no jealousy there – only acceptance of her greater skill in that field.

To the casual eye, at a quick glance, people may classify Arshia as a tomboy. But it really isn’t true. The truth is that Arshia borrows from the boys and incorporates their pieces into her style effortlessly. She softens the look with bracelets, charms, fabulous nails, and other feminine details.

An ideal day in Arshia’s life is a great, fulfilling morning and afternoon doing work she loves, followed by an evening spent with the people she loves and her dog. Her philosophy is simple.

“Be happy and always have someone around you to share that moment with.”

Arshia inspires me to dream, to list 21 things I want to do in my life. And she inspires me to share my joy with everyone I love when a dream comes true.

Arshia's Bucket List

Arshia's Bucket List, with the red dotted numbers already complete.

If I painted an abstract to represent her, it would be formed by:

structured, simple, classic, and clean lines. These lines would be completely random, zig zagging from point to point, turning in the opposite direction even when in might seem logical to continue forward. No clutter – lots of white space. Black & White, followed up with bright bursts of color. No pastel shades – only the brightest hues of red, navy, sky blue, and green.

It gives Arshia pleasure to be there for the people in her life. She’s my number 1 supporter and is always by my side whenever I need her, no matter how much I may annoy, baffle, or try her patience. She’s there, always, to offer a wonderful and beautiful balance of friendship and constructive criticism. She’s always a team player first, “a good sport”, and amazingly active. She’s sporty, in her style, in her life, and in the actual game.

Sporty Muse, Arshia Arora

Introducing the Sporty Muse, Arshia Arora

Themuseflash presents to you, our April muse, the Sporty Muse, Arshia Arora. “Miss” just doesn’t sound right – our muse is not the type to be a damsel in distress. In fact, she’d be the one doing the saving in a novel.

AKG

On Being Comfortable

In On Muse-of-the-Month, On Personality, On the Self on March 31, 2012 at 2:08 pm

Soumya Parker inspires me to be comfortable, not only in my skin and being, but in my life and with myself. When asked about the staples in her closet, she says,

“Kurta, jeans (black and blue), T- shirt, Stoles/dupattas, one great pair of indian footwear and one pair of good black heels. And I can’t live without my earrings! Also pajamas man! What is life without comfortable pajamas?”

I couldn’t agree more. People, asked about their ideal days, will give you a laundry list of things that will happen. And that’s perfectly fine, because rarely to do people admit that a day of peaceful me-time is just what they need. Miss Parker’s ideal day is “[lounging] alone with a good book and nibbling on an unending supply of good food.” Such simplicity and lack of duplicity is rare. I honestly can’t define what an ideal day for me will be, but I’m encouraged to openly embrace and admit whatever I find that may be.

Notice this around you – people look the way they feel, even with the makeup. When I think back to the NIFT years, it’s apparent to me that Soumya has always been effortless. She never apologizes for who she is and moves with grace even when she is behaving like a monkey in the courtyard. Soumya is confident, and has always been able to move with poise. I recognize this more now, as I have become more comfortable in my own skin as I’ve grown into it.

There are actually a few stages here – there is the uncomfortable, neutral, and the comfortable. To be clear, saying “I’m not uncomfortable” is not the same as “being comfortable”. It’s okay wherever you may be in that, but let’s make an active decision to become entirely comfortable in our skins.

1) Be good to yourself, and to other people. Start to focus on what you absolutely love about yourself. Instead of seeing the zit or blemish when you look in the mirror, look for the best in you.

2) Give that woman in the mirror some support. Get your best friends together – and instead of lamenting about how “fat” you are or how scragly your hair looks, raise a toast to what’s fabulous about each of you. No more bashing.

3) Image matters. No matter how much we claim otherwise, there is a definite “feel-good” quality to looking in the mirror and liking what you see. So, find fashions, and hairstyles, and makeup that fit you. Don’t try to fit into styles – find the one that works best for you.

4) #3 actually doesn’t just apply to fashion; it applies to anything in life if you want to excel. Find out what’s a good fit for you. As Debbie Ford often says, “Anything that you can’t embrace about yourself gets to use you. Any part of you that you deny, hide, or suppress will come back to use you or haunt you. You can’t get rid of it completely – ever. Either you’re going to use it, or it’s going to use you. […] There is a reason you are the way you are. In order to deliver the gift that you’re meant to deliver to the world, [to your family, to whomever or wherever] – you must be at peace with yourself.

5) Work through your mistakes – trust me, I make the most mistakes in my family. I recognize that it’s not always easy, but the goal is to learn from your mistakes and move forward. You WILL feel better about yourself, having done this. And then, with your family and loved ones, feel free enough to be honest about your shortcomings and your talents. They will love you no matter what.

6) Get to know yourself. Use a journal to log your thoughts, freely. Or whatever helps you become one in your thoughts and actions. Recognize your strengths and weaknesses, and the opportunities you have. That’s right. Do the SWOT analysis for yourself, or your style, or anything. Whatever works.

7) Move your body. Dance, cycle, run, walk, swim, jump rope, or do yoga. Do whatever it is that you enjoy doing to use your body constructively. Not only will you feel more comfortable in it, you will also grow/age gracefully.

8) Prioritize yourself – Love yourself – Treat yourself. Take a bubble bath, or treat yourself to a massage and steam room. Buy lotion in a scent you love. Eat dark chocolate, or whatever makes you feel good inside. Take time for yourself – it will do wonders. Create a personal space and time for “me time”. Everyone needs time for themselves – it’s not a luxury, but a necessity. To feel at home in your own skin, taking time and space for yourself (however that may be), is important.

9) Always always – drink lots of water. It has healing powers that we will never truly be able to recognize.

10) As my father always taught me, laugh loudly. And as mother always says, stop slouching and make eye contact!

AKG

On Genuinity

In On Muse-of-the-Month, On Personality, On Style on March 15, 2012 at 7:48 am

I don’t know if she ever realizes it, but Miss Parker is concise, clever, and succint – she has just enough humor and sweetness to balance any snark and sarcasm. She’s the best friend, with designer flair, and the kindest heart. You are just as likely to find her chasing (or being chased by) her friends, or very seriously planning, designing, or presenting creative work. Most people have a personality that fits best either in a professional, or personal realm – Soumya manages to be herself in both situations. She inspires me to understand and learn how to separate and merge the two effectively and naturally.

It’s obvious in day-to-day interactions with Miss Parker that she’s a total drama queen – she’s constantly entertaining. She’s full of energy, and her dynamism is contagious. Despite her many talents, she is modest to a fault – regardless of her “industry child status”.

On Genuinity - Soumya Parker

On Genuinity - put together with help from Alka Narayan, BFOM (Best Friend of Muse)

Though I knew all of this about Soumya, I wondered what drew people most to her – beyond her obvious creative genius. I realized it is because of her beautiful personality and simplicity. She makes people feel special, and she’s the one who is always there for you. Even though she isn’t a social butterfly, Soumya Parker is often the link that binds two people or more together. She’s unashamed and completely comfortable in her own skin. When she wants something, she blatantly admits it – and she always, always has a genuine compliment for you. And that’s really one of the main reasons Soumya is so stylish.

Genuinity never goes out of fashion, or style.

AKG

On Friendship with Soumya Parker

In On Entertainment, On Muse-of-the-Month, On Personality, On Style on March 3, 2012 at 8:33 pm

Entertainment shows and movies have central themes – surgery, lawyers, criminal justice, diagnostic medicine, newsrooms, the white house, romance, relationships, etc. Whatever it may be about, the theme that endears the characters to the audience is that of friendship. It’s always interesting to see how different characters with completely different backgrounds and personalities become friends.

In Sex and the City, the Carrie, Samantha, Charlotte, and Miranda were practically soulmates. Grey’s Anatomy has Meredith and Christina – they are each other’s “person” for better and for worse. Seinfeld, How I Met Your Mother, and Friends have been based around these friendships. Even entertainment not based in the real world – such as Harry Potter and Toy Story is incomplete without the unbreakable triumphant friendships. There’s Harry, Ron, & Hermione; Buzz and Woody; Jerry and George.

The world always needs true friends – most of us either want to find or cherish (Read: should cherish) “our person/people”. In both the reel life, and in reality, there is often someone who truly rejoices in other’s happiness. I find that person in Soumya Parker. If and when anything good happens to the people around her, you can count on her to be happy for them – to multiply their excitement. “I love your latest post!”…or…”Did you hear about her amazing project?!”…or…”Yay! She got a new job!”…or…”My brother is such a genius!”

People who know Soumya Parker will agree that it’s common to hear her say things like these. Miss Soumya Parker inspires me to delight in the success and joyful moments of those around me. She’s been an incredible support for me in everything I’ve done, and I hope she knows that she is appreciated beyond words.

Maybe you too, should feel inspired, to reach out to the people you love, and let them know how excited you are for them and their achievement(s). Be truly happy for your loved ones – this is a great component of real personality, and style.

AKG

On the Keyword, “Incorporate”

In On Entertainment, On Fashion, On Style on January 18, 2012 at 1:18 am

All stylists wax poetic about “being true to oneself”. Until last year, I was so confused. What do they mean?!

Would there be some sort of instant connection I’d feel with certain clothing in my wardrobe?  I absolutely despise when friends or writers make negative comments/judgments about other people’s street style. It never made sense to me why people feel that they can declare someone’s choice of clothing (unless it’s an event) “wrong”. Doesn’t everyone have a different definition of ‘style’? Carrie Bradshaw with a belt across her bare belly is suddenly ‘stylish’, but the girl across the room wearing the green paisley peplum dress is “so off”? Geez.

Living in New York City and now in Boston, I’ve dressed only for myself. I wear what I want, when I want. If I look funny when I look back at myself at the end of the day (and believe me this still happens every once in a while), I just start over the next day. Live and learn, right? When I’m not feeling great, I try to brighten up with a piece I like. If not, I go with whatever brings me most comfort. When I’m feeling great, I reach for the vivid colors, funky accessories, and fun prints. Yesterday, I even bought beautiful printed bedding.

(It makes my room so happy. Blue Jamaica by Ralph Lauren – from Marshalls)

Developing style takes time. When you have time to plan for a day/an event, try something new. I’ll sometimes try grey tartan pants, or accessorize with un-AKG things, like yellow armadillo shoe earrings from Lady Gaga’s holiday workshop at Barney’s, New York (upcoming post about that). When there’s no time, however, like when something unexpected comes up, I quickly go to the pieces that I love. The pieces that I know will work.

To look fabulous, like you spent an hour when you really just spent 10 minutes, collect these pieces! It’ll take time, but bookmark in your mind what made you feel like a million bucks. Value what your innate style has to say, and tweak it based on what you learn. From fashion, or anything, incorporate what fits you and your personality – not the other way around. 

Trust me; this will go a long way. You may need to copy several styles before you find the ones that fit you best. I still make tear-sheets and print out pictures when I like what someone wore. But don’t follow blindly. The keyword here is to “incorporate”.

Maybe those stylists are on to something after all..

AKG

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