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Filtering by Category: resolutions

#9: Dream of the Sea

Erin Burke

This year we resolve to dream of the sea.

As these grey, frigid days drag on, our thoughts drift to the beach.  Maybe it’s the subzero temps or the vitamin D deficiency talking, but we’re tempted to leverage it all for a few days in the sun. We soldiered up this winter and short of a holiday in Belize, we’re gravitating toward a few wardrobe updates to make the tail end of winter a bit more bearable.

Nothing says spring like a good set of stripes.  Think late 1950s motifs inspired by the beach chairs in Forte dei Marmi or the umbrellas in Saint-Tropez.  The resort collections were bursting with fun interpretations of these.  Have a look at the trends here--colors merging, rainbowed, varying widths, outlined, fading and swirling.  

So if you’re heading to the beach to beat this dreary cold, pick up some time tested resort stripes to anchor your look. Or follow our lead and mix them with staples to add some sunshine to your day-to-day.

Photo credit: stripes printFrench Seaside Resort posterMarni Resort 2015Port SkirtCeline Resort 2015Striped UmbrellaTibi Resort 2015Genevieve Naylor, Dorian Leigh, Cuba, 1954Kenzo Resort 2015vintage sunglassesStriped denim jacketsunbathing ladiesRedondo Beach striped dressSass & Bide Resort 2015 

#8: Speak French

Erin Burke

“In Paris they just simply opened their eyes and stared when we spoke to them in French! We never did succeed in making those idiots understand their own language.” 

― Mark Twain, The Innocents Abroad 

This year we resolve to speak French beautifully.

After living in Paris now for three years it appears that Mark Twain and I have learned the same French.  And back to class I go where my teacher is making me take two levels simultaneously to catch up. This year, I’m determined to learn the type of French that French people actually understand. 

And while learning the language, might as well dress the part.  With classic French school girl looks at the Fall/Winter show by Saint Laurent and even more found at J.Mendel’s Resort and Stella McCartney’s Pre Fall 2015 shows, I’m not the only one tapping into this trend. 

Inspired by the fashion of the 1968 student protests in Paris and the classic French school girl uniforms, with their A line skirts, pussy bows and perfectly titled berets, these looks are ideal for transitioning into spring.

Photo credit: French school girl

#7: Bring Back Le Boudoir

Erin Burke

As Valentine’s Day approaches, what better time to take stock of what you’ll wear behind closed doors? From pretty foundations to the main attraction, this year we resolve to bring back the boudoir. 

It seems we have traded our elegance for efficiency and forgotten the importance of physiology (mind and body are connected).  Our rituals determine what we become - and how we feel. It’s easy to posture for the crowd, but it feels better to be elegant, graceful and stylish all the way through, not just in pictures or around certain company. And what better way to make yourself feel good than to look beautiful underneath?  

It’s easy to reach for the sweats, and there is a time and place for that, but with a lifetime of choices to make, why not choose to remember how lovely you are no matter who’s looking?  Lingerie has a long tradition and decades of hand washing has left us with so many wonderful vintage silks and laces to discover. Some tips for picking the right pieces for you are to always take your measurements and compare them to the piece. And look for silk pieces that were made to last.  


#6: Have More Dance Parties

Erin Burke

The stars set my fate early as a dance party enthusiast--even if I wish they would've aligned to make me a doctor, but we don't control these things. As a child dancer and gymnast, I danced wherever I happened to be: around my house, in the back yard, down grocery store aisles, etc. As a teen when all my friends seemed to be in bands, I'd follow them to any venue we could get into and get lost in the music. My college years were the late nineties / early aught's club era that allowed me to combine my love of 70's fringe with body glitter and the pre narcissistic equivalent of the selfie that was 'dancing on the blocks.'

After moving to New York and landing my dream job as a trend forecaster, I was sent to music festivals to scout trends and it was only fitting to dance the nights away. On solo research trips, a good dance party was a universal language that got me through many nights alone in very foreign countries. But the older we get the less time there is for dancing, and the demands of adulthood can drain away that carefree spirit.

So this year I resolve to bring back the dance party. Maybe it's not at le Baron or in a field at sxsw, but even a solo dance party on a Monday night after finishing a deadline can keep your spirits high.

What to wear? That's easy. The 70's have been a lifelong obsession - I wore a pair of tan corduroy bell bottoms all through college with button ups tied at the waist and my grandma's beige hip length jacket with front tie and fur collar, updating the lining with a seventies floral print. I think I was born cosmically too late. That 70's trend that seems to never go away… that's due to me pushing it though every other season as a forecaster. And like the best clockwork ever, again we see it on the runways for Spring/Summer 2015.

Nothing says free spirited dance party like seventies flare with a side of fringe. And like my grandma's coat, something tells me this is a resolution absolutely worth keeping.

Get moving with our favorite dance playlist!

#5: Soldier Up

Joelle Renee Benoliel

Fashion has always borrowed from the battlefield to dress women in dignity and strength. From Coco's St. James sailor shirts to Lagerfeld's brilliant protest show last fall, Chanel has often transformed political inspiration into high fashion. And of course Balmain has been king of the warriors for years with his ornate jackets.

This season the warrior look is taking ground on the runways, with asian influences at Alexander McQueen and more military-inspired brilliance at Balmain, Ralph Lauren and Marc Jacobs. At LACMA's current exhibit Samurai, we meditated on why the military has become such a powerful creative influence. The designer for the exhibit explains,"The procession as ceremony as well as the military procession, it is so simple yet very strong... creative design takes advantage of these parameters like a strategic move in Judo; using and aligning the forces around you to make your mark."

This spring we're facing down our insecurities and taking calculated risks in order to grow. It's required a new kind of discipline, focus, and courage to push through the resistance that so often challenges creative pursuits. As anyone who has read Steven Pressfield's The War of Art knows, "It is one thing to study war, another to live a warrior's life."

We don't know about you, but we wouldn't mind a few new pieces of armor to equip us for the fight and remind us of the strength that's already inside of us.

For more inspiration check out our Pinterest board.

Photo Credits: top left runway Jason Wu SS15 , top right
Marc Jacobs SS15, bottom left runway Gucci SS15, top left civil war soldier , middle samurai sailors walkingKate Moss, long military coat , French Napoleon III Cavalry Helmet Circa 1852-70 from pinner Curt Sambelli, patch Petty Officer 2nd Class --Assistant Master at Arms c.1908 15th Sihks soldierwomen in military uniform, 1914 postcard of a poilu supporting a fainting British tommy. 

#4: Dress Your Dream

Joelle Renee Benoliel

Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you’ve imagined. 
- Henry David Thoreau

If the word for 2014 was transition, 2015 is a welcome fresh start. Resolution #4 is dress for your dream life.

Last year I decided, intentionally, to receive life as it came, to open my hands to all its gifts, even if they didn't look the way I expected them to. By July, I found myself selling all my belongings, saying goodbye to my cat, my apartment, my friends, my family and my country. Arriving in France with a few boxes and an emaciated wardrobe, I realized there needed to be loss in order to make room for all that was to come.

My life in Paris is slowly taking shape in a new home with the man I love and his daughters. We have a new company to build, but my closet has a lot of catching up to do. I love the idea of letting my passions, family and work inspire my wardrobe--being an American entrepreneur, a Pizzaiolo's woman, and a Parisian step-mom all at once. Adding just a few new pieces can cast everything in a new light.

On my list are whimsical heels from Sophia Webster or Charlotte Olympia, heels my step daughters could admire. Next, the perfect multi-strap handbag to sling across my shoulder during bike rides around town, and a vintage watch with a leather strap to help me make my appointments on time. And for everything from meetings to errands I need the perfect pair of relaxed jeans and a Balmain inspired blazer. Lastly, a colorful print dress is a must to stand out in this dreary weather.

What does the life you want look like? How will you dress for it? Share your outfit inspirations with us and tag them #dressyourdream. We can't wait to see!

For more inspiration check our our Pinterest board ‘Dress Your Dreams’

Photo Credits: Charlotte Olympia's Veuve Clicquot Adstreet style denim and black coatwoman in floral dressJenna Lyons by Lee Oliveira, Happily Ever After handbag by Charlotte Olympiaheelswatchembroidered jacket

#3: Lighten Up

Joelle Renee Benoliel

As Parisians and New Yorkers, we love black. But between leaving work after dark and fighting to keep those well intentioned new years resolutions, wearing a black coat every day can start to feel like a major downer. There are 57 days until Spring arrives, so we've resolved to lighten up with coats that are as pretty as they are warm.

From fall/winter '14 to pre-fall '15, the runways were full of colorful coats! Instead of black or brown try dark green, navy or marsala, Pantone's 2015 Color of the Year. Pastels like baby blue, pale pink, light grey and soft nudes feel fresh, and for a statement, we love orange or creamy white.

Silhouettes have gone long and classic or shorter in more exotic shapes. Think blanket coats, capes, and fuzzy furs cinched at the waist. Colored furs and shearling are especially big right now. For a more classic look, try a long, menswear inspired cut in window pane plaid, herringbone or cashmere.

Thanks to designers' current love affair with the seventies, vintage options that feel super current abound.  After all, you can always wear black underneath.

Coats, coats, and more coats on Pinterest.

Photo Credits: Backgroundbeige coatgreen coatburgundy coat; white furcoat check bluecoat check yellowgirl in fuzzy orange coat.

#2: Judge Less, Love More

Erin Burke

In honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., we have another resolution for 2015: judge less, love more.

Choosing peace in the midst of hatred is one of the most admirable and challenging things to do. Thankfully we have role models that have shown us the beauty of living this way, thank you MLK. We saw a beautiful display first hand a week ago in Paris and it was moving, whether it will continue this way or not. The sheer act of millions of people walking in solidarity was a beautiful expression of peace.  

As I boarded the metro on Sunday a man with a guitar and little else starting singing “Imagine” with his hoarse yet intoxicating voice that sent cool shivers down everyone’s spine.  By the time he hit the verse… ‘you may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one.’ there were tears burgeoning in my eyes and people started joining in the song.  It was a petite moment in the midst of a historic day, but it was a moving one (especially in a city not typically known for its warmth) and a good reminder we can put out the flame of hatred if we are armed with love, forgiveness, kindness, peace.

Strangely, culture has been heading in this direction for a few seasons.  Music festivals have picked up the hippie vibes of the sixties and the runways following suit.  Miniskirts, mod and all things peace and love continued to run through both the fall and spring runways from Louis Vuitton to Gucci and Saint Laurent to Dries Van Noten.  

So we resolve to honor Martin Luther King’s life by replacing judgment with peace.  Wishing you all love and peace for 2015.

Photo Credits: Coretta Scott KingFrancoise HardyGirl with Hatwild flowersblonde in furDonovan posterface postergirl with headband; Dries Van Noten runway.

#1: Wear More Vintage

Guest Contributor

One of the best ways to keep a resolution is to tell everyone about it. So we’re daring to share our resolutions with you over the next several weeks, starting with the one that inspired theCuriositeur: Wear more vintage and second-hand fashion.

Why? For starters, Americans send 10.5M tons of textiles to landfills every year, and clothing manufacturing has well-documented social and environmental challenges. On top of these very real ethical issues, I lost my job last summer and started freelancing with startups, so shopping as usual was out of the question.

There was something exhilarating about being able to afford the wondrous luxury of managing my own workday and a new (to me) piece now and then without the crush of credit card debt. A camel cableknit and a pair of last season snakeskin ballet flats joined my wardrobe for little more than the cost of a taxi.

But love is always more powerful than frugality. The real reason I’ve resolved to shop more vintage is because I got inspired. You know that friend who is always wearing these amazing, one of a kind pieces she got for a song at an estate sale? She got me started. And then there was that gorgeous 1970s Yves Saint Laurent rose-colored wool blazer I can’t stop thinking about--the one I didn’t buy.

theCuriositeur is a place to discover those killer vintage pieces and second hand basics that can upgrade your wardrobe and evolve your personal style. 

Photo Credits: Background; Black BagBrigitte Bardot; polka dot shirt; urban renewal jeansoxfords; YSL Jacket.

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