We don’t just drool over fashion…

This week, I decided to be adventurous.  I decided that I was going to branch out and get more creative in every aspect of my life, from my own personal style to the way I organize my closet.  One of the ways this manifested itself is through my grocery shopping and cooking experiments.  I’m determined to be able to cook, bake, etc. by sight and with feeling, so this is the first of many (hopefully successful) attempts.

I started out small this week with my own take on a classic recipe: puppy chow.  If you haven’t tried this yet, you need to.  If you have, there is no doubt in my mind that you’re probably craving it as you read this.  No worries.  This quick and easy recipe is perfect for dorm life and yields a ridiculous amount of delectably sweet, crunchy deliciousness to munch and share.

What you need:

9 cups Chex Rice Cereal

1 cup chocolate chips (semi-sweet are best)

½ cup peanut butter

¼ cup butter

¼ teaspoon vanilla (optional)

powdered sugar

What you do:

Melt the butter, peanut butter, and chocolate chips over medium heat in a saucepan.  Mix them until they become a sauce.  Remove from heat and stir in vanilla (optional—I completely forgot it and it still tastes amazing).  Put Chex into a large bowl and pour the mixture over it.  Stir gently until it is covered evenly.  Put into a large Ziploc bag with powdered sugar, seal, and shake well to coat completely.  Add sugar as needed, and allow to cool.  Eat.

Now sit back, relax and enjoy!

xoxo,

Caitlin

Faith, Trust and Pixie Dust

Collars and I have a complex relationship. We didn’t exactly have a singular falling out, it was more just a series of oppressions over the course of thirteen years, during which, under my various school uniforms, I was forced to don a shirt with a collar five days a week. When I graduated from high school, I gave away all of my polos and button downs and vowed that in college I would never wear another collared shirt unless forced. Well, I’m forced to recant my bold statement, because, against my will, I’ve fallen in love. I’ve resisted with all my heart, but the insidious pull of the Peter Pan collar has drawn me in and it’s not letting me go. It’s girlie and retro, and great as an accessory, as a layering piece, or beautiful just on its own. Look at these pictures and I dare you not to drool.

Nasty Gal "Mary Kate Floral"

Whistles' Chambray Shirt

ASOS Cotton Lace Blouse With Double Collar

Boutique By Jaeger Star Print Blouse

Free People "Peter Pan Lace Top"

Free People "Peter Pan Babydoll Top"

Free People "Peter Pan Drapey Jersey Top"

Zara "Dress with Strass Collar"

Zara "Blouse with Applique and Lace"

If you like the idea of a Peter Pan collar but hate buttoning up, check out this DIY from A Pair and a Spare http://www.harpersbazaar.com.au/fashion/style-network/a-pair-a-spare-diy-chain-bow-necklace.htm. It seems pretty simple if you have the right equipment  and would look great over a plain crewneck shirt or dress.

Well, happy shopping!

-Christine

Degas and the Nude

During our first meeting of the new semester, the BCxRR girls were brainstorming ideas that could help bring more of Boston to the BC campus. One idea that came to the table was an arts and culture feature, something that could include visits to museums, plays, performances – anything that would be an atypical activity for a typical college student. In the spirit of bringing more “culture” to BC, Christine and I mentioned we were planning on visiting the Degas exhibit at the MFA for an art history class and perhaps we could write a review of the exhibit. Then, one of the girls thought it would be a cool idea to maybe put a little bit of a RR twist on a review, and give examples of painting-inspired outfits. I though this was a brilliant idea, but Christine pointed a slight problem: it might be a little hard to come up with fashion ideas from an exhibit centered around nude painting. However, after seeing the exhibit I decided that I could do a little bit of both – write a review and give some art-inspired fashion advise.

I thought that the exhibit was absolutely fascinating. The sheer number of paints, sketches and sculptures alone was incredible. The exhibit also included other works from artists, such as “The Death of Sardanapulus” by Eugene Delacroix and Auguste Rodin’s sculpture entitled “Danaid.” The way Degas plays with light and color in his paintings such as “Young Spartans exercising and “Nudes Bathing” is truly remarkable and his sketches of his study in brothels is very compelling. The variety subject matter Degas examines is interesting and thought-provoking, and the color palate he utilizes is very fresh and energetic.

My favorite piece, the “Spartans,” also gave me an idea for great spring outfit, I think this would be perfect to pack for a trip to someplace warm.  (I know it might be a little early to start thinking about spring break, but the weather has been very deceiving recently and I thought I would indulge myself.)

Degas, Young Spartans Exercising, 1860

I really loved the greens in the foreground of this painting along with the splash of light blue in the female spartan’s skirt. I found a maxi dress to pair with nude pumps, which I think reflect the color scheme perfectly.

Rachel Pally Talamdge Dress

Sam Edelman Platform Sandals

I would encourage anybody and everybody to visit this exhibit. Student admission to both the museum and exhibit are free. Unfortunately, the exhibit closes at the end of this week. So, hurry up! Hop on the green line and get to the MFA!

You can find out more about the exhibit here: http://www.mfa.org/exhibitions/degas-and-nude

XO Lindley

Recognizing Stylish Students on Campus: An Interview with the BC Sartorialist

“Hey Erin- I’m here. I have a camera in my hand.” This was the message Alex Lee sent me, in order to identify himself for our planned meeting at the Chocolate Bar. His camera is currently his most distinguishing accessory. Alex Lee is making himself known on the Boston College campus for his own version of the famous Sartorialist blog started by Scott Schuman. Today, Alex’s blog, the BC Sartolialist, has over 25,000 page views.

For someone who recognizes high-style students on campus, Alex does not disappoint in his own personal style. Despite the fact he is not the one being photographed, his outfit makes an impression at our interview. When I asked him to describe what he was wearing, he was very detailed. He began with his hat. It is from a small independent brand, ONLY New York. His striped jacket and printed shirt are both vintage Woolrich. His gold chain necklaces, a favorite find from eBay, feature Egyptian-style pharaohs. The finishing touches are his sweet Reebok pumps that he bought at Bodega in Boston. His outfit on the day of our interview matches his self-proclaimed style: “ a mixture of street-ware and vintage.” He likes clothing that “most people will not have.”

Alex’s interest in fashion began in middle school and continued into high school. He admired interesting clothes that made people look different. Entering college, he believed he would have more opportunities to observe different style possibilities. In addition, he believed this would be a time where he could “define [his] own style.” Interestingly,  his passion for photography only developed, in order to express his interest in fashion. He purchased his now frequently-used camera shortly before he enrolled at Boston College. He claims that his inspiration from Scott Schuman’s blog is centered around a “love [for] capturing people in their own element in their daily lives.” He shares a similar appreciation for “people who like to look good and be their own person.”

Alex transferred from Syracuse University to Boston College for the start of the 2011 fall semester. He admits that on the whole, there is not a lot of variation among the styles of the student population. He insists that this is due to a high prevalence for “preppy” styles. Yet, he is quick to acknowledge that there is a solid base of students who are stepping outside of their comfort zones, so that they can truly be classified as “originals.” In comparison to his previous school, Alex mentions that you seem similar patterns there. According to him, there is little variation with the styles at his previous school, especially among the female students. He believes that the male students at Syracuse had more of an artistic edge than the more preppy ones at B.C.

When I questioned Alex about his favorite outfit so far, he seemed conflicted. He kept showing me different pictures and pointing out certain details that he liked. In the end, he decided he couldn’t really pick a favorite. He enthusiastically insisted, “I like all of them! That’s why I took the picture.” Although this is currently a passion he is pursuing, in addition to his studies, Alex hopes this could eventually turn into a job opportunity in the future. He wants to intern at Karmaloop, a street-wear retailer based in Boston, over the summer. Outside of college, he would like work in fashion merchandising or marketing. He also mentions the possibility of eventually starting and managing his own brand, possibly helping with the design aspect. No matter what career he decides to pursue, his work as the BC Sartorialist has proven  that Alex is capable of greatness simply through his determination to combine his interest in fashion with hard work. He humbly admitted he spends approximately 10-15 hours per week working on his blog. Alex assures me, “It is almost like a job.”

Alex Lee definitely has talent as a style blogger. In addition, his kindness and his professionalism during the interview proved to me that he has real potential to be a success. As we shook hands, he graciously said, “Thank you for meeting with me. I like the way you dress. I like the way you act.” I considered this a true compliment from Boston College’s very own Sartorialist.  

Good Eats: Wagamama

Just this year, while I was in the Prudential Center with some of my roommates, we were looking for a delicious lunch so that we could avoid once again eating food on campus.  This was the first time I was ever introduced to Wagamama, a Japanese inspired ramen noodle bar.  Ever since then I haven’t been able to get enough.  The location is great, considering I can do two of my favorite things in the same trip: shopping and eating.  The interior of the restaurant is also really modern and cool with sleek picnic tables and big red paper lamps over the tables.

Wagamama in the Prudential Center

The last time I went, my boyfriend had the Chili Ramen with chicken and it was definitely the best ramen I ever had.  The dish includes ramen noodles, spicy broth, chili peppers, red onion, bean sprouts, lime, and your choice of chicken or beef.

Chili Ramen with Chicken

If you don’t enjoy ramen, Wagamama has a lot of other options.  I found my love for pad thai when I had their Amai Noodle, which contains rice noodles, eggs, bean sprouts, tofu, shrimp, peanuts, tamarind sauce, and limes.

Amai Noodle

Wagamama is already well known in Europe, but there are two other locations near us in Faneuil Hall and Harvard Square.  Boston is the only city that is graced by Wagamama’s presence in the U.S., so don’t miss out on your opportunity to try it while you are here at B.C.

Shop well and eat up,

Lexi

Dressing for Success: It’s Interview Week

The first few weeks back at school in January can be a kind of extended “internship hell week” for students, especially juniors. Having gotten a taste of the internship hunt last year as a sophomore, I am back this year with my game face on.

Last week was full of information sessions, interview preparation (BC’s Career Center is a fantastic tool, use it!), and a two-day career fair. I had to dress up every day, navigating my way through dress codes such as “business formal,” “business casual,” or “casual.” Every time one of these events came up in conversation, the question naturally arose: “What are you going to wear?!”

Interview hell week didn’t end with this weekend, however. More information sessions and plenty of interviews await us juniors this week (not to mention seniors looking for full-time work and sophomores getting an early start). Here’s my guide for how to dress and where to buy it, so you can spend your time preparing for the interview instead of stressing about your appearance.

Business Formal

When a company specifies “business formal” for an information session or interview, they mean a skirt- or pant-suit, button-up shirt, and heels. Honestly, this is probably the easiest dress code to master. Buy one great outfit that you feel really confident in, and keep it on hand.

Express Pant Suit

Express Skirt Suit

Express Button-up Shirt

J. Crew Pant Suit

Ann Taylor Button-up Shirt

Macy's Skirt Suit

Banana Republic Skirt Suit

 

Just make sure that you have one suit where you bought both the blazer and skirt/pants together, as the resident CSOM career adviser warned. Don’t worry about wearing the same outfit over and over. Most likely, the employers won’t notice; and if they do, they know many of us are broke college students trying to land a first “real” job.

Business Casual

“Business casual” is where things start getting tricky. Generally, you can’t go wrong with suit pants or a suit skirt and a nice top. I usually stick to a more basic button-up, but I have also seen dressy tanks and sweaters. Including the pair from your “business formal” outfit, have 2-3 bottoms in neutral tones (black, grey, brown) that you can mix and match with a few button-ups.

Gap Dress Pants

Banana Republic Top

Banana Republic Top

Casual

Last week, I was surprised to see one bank specify “casual” for the dress code at their information sessions. I stuck with one of my trusty button-ups, and paired it with skinny black pants and riding boots. When I arrived, I saw a mixture of outfits, from guys in complete suits with ties to a couple of girls in jeans and a button-up. I think the lesson I learned on this day is that when it comes to potential employers, over-dressing is always better than under-dressing.

Heels

At 5’8″, I rarely wear heels. But as a general rule I wear them every time I meet with a potential employer. They will never hurt your cause, rather improve your posture; and, we’ve all heard about studies that have suggested people in leadership positions tend to be a few inches taller than average. As girls we are lucky that we can artificially add a few inches to our height and look the better for it.

All of that said, make sure your heels are appropriate. Keep them at 2″-3″, neutral toned pumps.

Steve Madden Unityy Pumps

Stuart Weitzman Easily Pump

Kate Spade New York Madia

Express Heels

Look Alike for Less: Top, Jimmy Choo Logan d'Orsay Pump; Bottom, Payless Pump

Hair and Make-up

Just like your go-to business formal outfit, have a go-to beauty routine for days that you are meeting with potential employers. Ponytails are perfect, but you don’t have to be afraid to leave your hair down either. Just make sure to pin the front of it back so you aren’t tempted to fix or play with it (I am guilty of this). If you’re going to be tempted, pull it back.

Your approach to make-up should be similar to your approach to heels on the day of an interview. Definitely wear some to put your best foot forward and show that you care about your appearance. But keep it basic–it shouldn’t draw attention away from your scintillating personality and resume. Cover-up, blush, a pale eye shadow and mascara should do it.

Well, there you have it! Take an hour now to put together a few outfits and plan your beauty routine. Then when you have ten minutes to get changed between class and an information session, you won’t break a sweat! Good luck…

Frilly Things

Yesterday, as I sat in my room procrastinating on Pinterest (per usual), I noticed a pattern in the fashion shots and apparel that I like to “pin.”  They all have a lot of really intricate details.  From beading to embroidery, lace, rhinestones, colors, patterns, fabrics, and so on, every single photo had some detail or another that made it pop.  As I thought more about it, I realized that this is how I like to style my own outfits too.  I try to have at least one piece in each outfit have some detail that makes it stand out from the others, making the outfit just a little more special.

With Spring coming up, I keep picturing all the different things I can wear, and I keep coming back to lace and eyelet.  What can I say, I like frilly things!  They are both so delicate, but command a certain presence that not many other fabrics can.  They are classically beautiful, but can be worn with almost anything.  Both are so versatile that they can be edgy, natural, preppy, modern, and romantic, depending on what you put with them.

perfect for the evening, a simple, but romantic lace dress looks great when belted and paired with a black clutch

the lace detailing on these shorts keeps them effortless and refined

the lace shirt paired with the blazer and necklace is perfect for the daytime. swap the shorts for a pair of jeans or black leggings, and it's perfect for nighttime too!

a lace crop top with shorts or jeans is casual and natural

a little bit more formal, this eyelet dress looks classic, elegant and effortless

Lace and eyelet are feminine, flattering, and easy.  They can be dressed up or down and always look pretty.  I’m getting so excited just thinking about all the ways I’m going to incorporate them into my Spring wardrobe!!

In the mean time, I’m going to keep searching for inspiration and pinning everything I find on my Pearls & Lace Pinterest board and pretend that it’s warm out so I can start wearing them…

xoxo,

Caitlin

Photo Sources:

http://inspired-design.tumblr.com/post/6894849722

http://ohthelovelythings.blogspot.com/2011/09/happy-friday.html

http://www.tumblr.com/reblog/16543632244/Dbaxb83t?redirect_to=%252Fdashboard%252F32%252F16544017502%253Flite

http://www.kaboodle.com/reviews/butterfly-lace-crop-top

http://www.sunnysummerdresses.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/Banana-Republic-Aliana-Eyelet-Racerback-Dress.jpg?cda6c1