Retro Inspiration

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

A good friend of mine recently sent me a picture of a super cool hairstyle she thought I should try (see below).  It's funny because I have been looking for different ways to rock my braids.  I was surprised at how easy it was!  I feel this hairstyle is retro inspired for two reasons: 1. the style (40-50s) 2. the braids (90s).  I traced the image to the following blog that has a ton of great posts (more specifially for black hair):

My friend Laura reminded me that I need to get crackin' on my search for cool hair styles.  I'm sure this applies to tons of other girls who have long hair; braids or no braids.

Thanks Lara! :)
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Casual Chic

Sunday, July 28, 2013

I found this super cute shirt/dress at Zara on sale for $15!  I knew it was meant to be.  I rocked it on a lunch date I had with Melody and Ryan at Fred 62 in Los Feliz.   

Shoes:  Chinese Laundry $35
Earrings:  Somewhere on Melrose years ago :)

*Photos by Melody Garber and Leigh Gaston
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Recycle and Reuse Your Wardrobe

Friday, July 26, 2013

I've been dying to go shopping for some new clothes, but I'll admit it; I am broke as a joke.  Yes, I am a grown woman living on my own, but I have also been paying down a lot of debt so that doesn't leave me much cash.

So, instead of heading to the mall, I dived deep into my drawers and found some old clothes that I had totally fogotten about.  Most of the items I found I've only wore once!  Here are the outfits I created for free from old clothing that had been hiding in my closet.
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Wednesday, July 24, 2013

I got my hair re-braided last Friday.  I pushed myself to be creative and added white hair.  My stylist at The Design Studio did a great job.  Check her out on Instagram: @godgavemetalent.  It took me a second to get used to it but now I love it!

I got this cool skirt from Urban Outfitters ($50) and my Lisa Simpson shirt at Universal Studios ($35).  This shirt was a little small for me so I chopped it!  Instant crop top.
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A Makeover for Melody

Monday, July 22, 2013

Meet one of my dearest friends, Melody.  She is a piano teacher who owns a studio in Torrance, CA and lives in Hollywood, CA.  Check out her website here! 
Melody and I met back in high school.  We'd giggle at our sometimes goofy Chemistry teacher together.  

Anywho, Melody has been dealing with a lot lately.  She used to be one of the most fashionable people I knew, but in recent years with all the stress of starting a small business, fashion was no longer one of her top priorities.

So I chose her to be the subject of my first makeover feature on this blog!  Here's our story...
We started off the day with some yummy snacks and mimosas, because...why not?
One of the easiest things someone can do to instantly upgrade their appearance is to get their eyebrows threaded/waxed.  So this was the first thing we tackled.
We were on a very tight budget, so we made our first stop at Forever 21.  Melody and I started a board on Pinterest so I could get an idea of what kind of look she would be going for.
"Everything must go!" That's always a nice sight for shoppers on a tight budget.  Here at American Basics, we found a pair of pants for $10.
 Next up, we had to take care of Melody's hair.  She has been growing it out and hadn't trimmed it in forever.  We made a stop at Super Cuts to stay within budget (wash and cut for $20).  I directed the stylist how to cut her hair so she could easily wear it curly or straight.  Melody has a natural "silver" highlight so I chose a medium bob that would showcase her streak.  Grey hair is a new trend!  Just look at Rhianna!
Here I am on a style safari on Melrose, digging through piles of trendy clothes that might fit Melody's style and budget.  I found a few items for myself :) but no luck for Melody :(

The whole purpose of this makeover was to show you that you don't need to spend a lot of time and money to create an attractive look.  A lot of girls don't even bother with makeup, but I only spend about 5 minutes a day applying my makeup.  We found Melody's makeup essentials at Target, spending a total of $30. 

Outfit #1

We found this dress at Forever 21 for $18.  The empire waist fits Melody well, and gives her body a bit more length.

Outfit #2

We found this flowy skirt at Forever 21 for $23.  This skirt also has a high waisted cut.  Melody has recently lost a lot of weight, and is still working towards her goal.  So for now we went for a top that she would feel comfortable in (Zara $15).

Outfit #3

Last, but not least, we created this fun look with a top from Zara ($10), and funky blue pants from American Basics ($10).  Melody already had these cool yellow shoes that she ordered off of ($80).

So there you have it.  For the haircut, eyebrows, makeup, and clothing (three outfits total), we spent a approximately $135.00 (not including the shoes Melody already owned).  I'd say that's pretty awesome!
So let this be inspiration for you to take that extra step when it comes to your personal fashion.  I came across this quote when I was on Instagram today: "You can have anything you want in life if you dress for it." - Edith Head

*Photos by Leigh Gaston Photography
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I Love Gold

Friday, July 19, 2013

"..and hey I love gooold, but can buy anything I want from the records I've soooold."  I can't get that out of my head now.  But yes, I love gold!  Real fake, it's doesn't really matter to me, as long as it's shiny.

I met a friend for lunch on a hot day in Los Feliz, so I rocked my tube top from Foreign Exchange ($20), my new earrings from Love Culture ($5), and my sunglasses from Nordstroms BP section ($12).

Have a great weekend y'all!

P.S. How cool is that billboard?  :-P

*Photos by Rachel Chang and Leigh Gaston
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Instant Drama

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

I just got me some sweet sunglasses from Venice Beach ($8).  I'm still not sure when and where I will rock them, but nonetheless they're still pretty awesome.  I also got this cool scarf with cheetahs on it for 50% off from Foreign Exchange ($5 - They currently have a buy one get one 50% off sale on accessories).
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A Sunday Picnic

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Brunch brings me such joy.  Breakfast food, lunch food, and mimosas make an awesome combination, especially when around good company.  I live in a really cool neighborhood where we have private access to grounds full of grass and trees.  This past Sunday I invited a few friends over to my place to have a picnic, complete with yummy mimosas, bubbles for the neighborhood kids, and squirels (that I drunkenly chased).  It was the perfect way to wrap up a busy week.

I stayed comfortable in my flower print crop top from Forever 21 ($15) and my skirt from Foreign Exchange ($30).  No shoes needed!
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