AKG

Posts Tagged ‘icons’

On I for Inspiration

In On Entertainment, On Muse-of-the-Month, On Personality, On Style on August 30, 2012 at 8:52 pm

Inspiration.

I often felt that it’s an overused word.

So I tried to go through a day without feeling any inspiration from anywhere to do anything. Not only was it difficult to do, but I realized that life is flat without inspiration. It’s important to be receptive to avail what this world has to offer.

Often people wait around to feel inspired. That, I find, is a problem. Opening yourself up to feel inspired is an active task – not a passive one. In fact, this blog is based on the muse – to actively learn from stylish men & women.

Some days, I may find myself wanting to channel a sartorial era – other days, I’m inspired to sing, even if it’s just around the apartment or in the shower. The late Anna Piaggi and Lady Gaga are inspirations for people to express themselves freely. My mother’s paintings are each based in inspiration, as are most DIY projects.

Inspiration is a powerful motivator. Inspiration to create. Inspiration to dress a certain way. Inspiration to feel joy. Inspiration to shop. Inspiration to make a change. Inspiration to find purpose!

Meha Bhargava can find inspiration anywhere, and she shares with us some of her ways:

“People watching has always been my favorite thing to do. Other things that inspire me:

  • A healthy, intellectual conversation
  • The rain – my brain works rather smoothly then
  • Fashion magazines
  • Newspaper
  • A well lit room
  • Colors
  • Home/ Family
  • A happy vacation

There’s inspiration in the tiniest of things.”

On I For Inspiration

On I For Inspiration: To be inspired is great. To Inspire is incredible.
Meha Bhargava’s Style Inspiration

For sartorial-specific inspiration?

  • Watch a TV show like Gossip Girl, Glee, or Sex and the City. Mirror a look you like. No, I don’t mean you have to buy the same pieces the character is wearing. But look in your wardrobe – can you create a similar look? Recently, I found I’m often missing a leather jacket to create the looks I like. Finding the perfect leather jacket for the fall is a piece that could potentially pull many looks I like together – that’s inspiration I’m using to make a change in styling.
  • Watch a movie or (music) video with distinctive styling. Example – watch an Audrey Hepburn movie. Or, for example, watch something unique like Annie Hall. Pictures from Annie Hall or of Katharine Hepburn often inspire me to celebrate menswear-inspired-womenswear. For more on that, read “On Borrowing from the Boys, Guys, and Men“.
  • Celebrities! Whether they’ve styled themselves, or have stylists doing the work, celebrities often wear creative looks pulled together by several unique pieces. For example, Brad Goreski’s got Jessica Alba wearing color every day, everywhere. Meha often feels inspired by Nicole Kidman’s perfection and by the Duchess of Cambridge for her royal, clean, and chic style sense. And I think mostly everyone who loves fashion is inspired by Sarah Jessica Parker for her eccentric style.
  • Fashion shows and magazines. Create a scrap file of the looks you love. When you’re feeling uninspired, refer to your scrapbook for looks you’ve liked – this makes dressing creatively stress-free. Pinterest, and several other web services make this easy if you don’t like paper clutter or are trying to be green!
  • Be in awe of something – anything. It will inspire you to make a change.

What are some places you could look for inspiration?

  • Nature
  • Meditation
  • Web-surfing
  • People
  • Thinking about possibilities
  • Scrapbooks
  • Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter – basically any form of social media
  • Browse through an inspirational book
  • Attend a conference with people with similar goals
  • Watch videos of keynote speakers

To be inspired is great, and to inspire is incredible. Have you felt inspired today? Have you inspired anyone today? If not, take a moment now.

AKG

On R.I.P. Whitney Houston

In On 80s Fashion, On Entertainment, On Style on February 13, 2012 at 5:27 am

There are many reasons to mourn the passing of the regal Whitney Houston, one of the world’s biggest pop stars. Her self-titled debut album (released in 1985) sold 25 million copies worldwide. Since then, she released seven albums and three film soundtracks. Sold over 200 million albums and singles worldwide. Winner of six Grammys. Earned 30 Billboard Awards, 22 American Music Awards and two Emmy Awards. Who knew what she was going to bring us next?

She IS an inspiration; her music moves millions. Close your eyes. Listen to a ballad start slow, build into what some call “a cheesy smooth-pop flourish”, go down a few octaves only to come back to an unbelievably high note, and maybe belt out an amazing ending with her. That is the real reason to mourn her loss.

I feature here, my favorites: “One Moment in Time” and “I Will Always Love You”.

Seriously. Turn the music up. Any of the others even. “Greatest Love of All”, “So Emotional”, “Count on Me”, “I Wanna Dance With Somebody”…the list goes on. Sing along with her, sway with her, even if you’re off-tone and singing through your nose on the song’s peak notes. You may feel an incredible shift.

Many of her songs were about friendship, love, freedom – about believing, dreaming, and achieving. This month, remind yourself of why you love you. Dream. Believe in yourself. Walk with your head high.

Much could be said about her style. She was a true diva – her fashion epitomized 80’s glam, complete with the big shoulders, big hair, and glittery sequins. Her shoulders shrunk as fashion changed, but her glamorous style and big hair never did.

But I will remember Whitney Houston more for her fearless style than for her glitz. She was stylish because she was never afraid to be her ridiculously vocally gifted and talented self. In a time when the industry was judging her for cold technique, she brought ballads to a crescendo that tug at your soul.

Oh, R.I.P. Whitney Houston – your stirring music, your unforgettable style – you will live in our hearts forever.

AKG

On Nonsense in the Name of ‘Fashion’

In On Entertainment on November 20, 2011 at 4:06 am

Is it just me, or has entertainment gotten more risqué with time?

I feel that in searching for clothes (or lack thereof), effects, and moves to ‘thrill’ the audience, entertainers have forgotten that there are boundaries. In this world where there is very little boundary, Lady Gaga, whilst only half dressed, holds children at a promotional event at Best Buy, and Rihanna appears naked on Esquire (nothing new for Esquire covers) covered in seaweed. Since when is being covered in seaweed sexy?!


^ (Btw, this is the happier video where Rihanna’s actually more woman than object.)

I understand that ‘being yourself’ is important, and that freedom is the goal. But how much is too much? I can’t find it in myself to blame the entertainers while on stage, because they want to sell to a tough audience. But I do feel there is a problem with the “anything to garner audience attention” approach.

And the problem is the effect that this kind of media is having on the generation. The Olsen twins used to make news, and we thought “look what too much fame and money do at a young age”. But they made news for eating disorders! Not for nudity and inappropriate gestures on stage. The Olsen twins didn’t even always go shopping for their own clothes (even for their nights on the red carpets) until they were 16 or 17. They sometimes used to wear the same thing in different colors. They’ve actually become successful now. And rightly so…

Need I mention the current “teen sensations” and their public appearances?

Miley Cyrus was dancing with a pole wearing leather barely-somethings and gracing the covers of magazines seemingly only draped in a sheet. Taylor Momsen is wearing black leather garters and holding guns. Selena Gomez, who is the most decent of them all, is also performing wearing the barely minimal and seen wrapped around the Bieber at the beach.

These are our teen icons?

Where is the differentiation between teenagers and adults?! What happened to that boundary? Has it disappeared also, in the name of ‘fashion’? Does anyone even want to fathom what these teens might do in future performances and appearances?

But you know…It’s become acceptable, because it’s “fashionable”. Read: It’s what all the cool kids are doing. It’s become “fashionable” for kids to wear heels and use iPads before they can walk. It’s become “fashionable” for 18-month-old boys to recite Lady Gaga song lyrics before they can read. It’s become “fashionable” for people to do many things that I can with certainty say are not healthy.

And the most troublesome fact is: It is what it is, and there is only so much you can do about it.

AKG

On Fashion and Style.

In Uncategorized on November 3, 2011 at 1:13 pm

It would  definitely be an interesting study if someone were to give a hundred women $500 each to go into a specific store and find an outfit that they want to wear. The only restriction would be that they may not wear anything that they owned prior to this shopping spree.

My guess is that there will be a difference in each woman’s outfit. This is despite the fact that the same merchandise and spending amount was available to all of them, and that they were all dressing for the same weather.

The basis for my guess is that style is a visual expression. Very rarely will you find two people who dress exactly the same way. There will always be differences in the way people see fashion, and express themselves.

Mademoiselle Coco Chanel had a belief that while “fashion fades”, “[…] style remains the same.” Circa 1960, Yves Saint Laurent of French fashion said,“Fashions fade. Style is eternal”.

These famous designers were directional forces in modern fashion. Their ideas have stood the test of time. While Coco Chanel revolutionized women dressing with concepts such as the Little Black Dress, the tweed suit, and, jersey as a fabric, Yves Saint Laurent is renowned for creating the Le Smoking Tuxedo for women all around the world.

They were both onto something, and that is what I plan to explore here.

Whether it’s the Hermes Birkin or Anna Piaggi, Chanel’s two tone pumps or fringed hobo chic, the Olsen twins or Lady Gaga, whatever or whoever inspires me will be featured here. What I write here won’t always be about the current “it” bag or fashion. And even if it is, the idea is to explore the eternal quality of it rather than the fad. I want to know about people and styles, and perhaps understand how to integrate what’s current and “what’s in” into my forever.

Can the new cerulean booties be paired with the black dress in the closet? What about the white dress? Or how can the long necklace fad be incorporated? What is so special about the way Madonna or Carrie Bradshaw from Sex and the City dress?

Having become an image consultant, and having interacted with many well-dressed people, I have learned that there is a science behind the way well-dressed people style themselves. It is not just happenstance and never is it sheer good luck.

Style icons like Audrey Hepburn, David Beckham, Mary Kate Olsen, Sarah Jessica Parker, George Clooney, Jackie O, and Catherine Middleton inspire me; or sometimes there is a really interesting way a person on the public transit has dressed. I hope that these features about them will inspire you too.

AKG

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