The Prada Problem

JumpFromPaper_Tayler Arabelle_choies_1

Tayler and I finally wrapped up the final photos for our Most Important Ugly photo project and hopped right into shooting my babe Jilly (photos of her on Tayler's blog) and also these cute bags I've gotten recently. This will be the last time we have studio space together until after the summer which is really weird! We've been shooting almost every weekend for six or seven months now and almost always around this very strict theme using this very specific process. So finally working on stuff outside rules we've set for ourselves was a strange experience. Tayler jumped right into it and built this amazing set and I was almost at a loss as to what to do with Jilly's makeup, since I'm so used to interrogating people and building a history based on their stories. To not have that story and not reference any specific look like I sometimes do (recreating McGrath for Galliano, 5ever) - it was really exciting but also really intimidating.

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I think into things all of the time, half probably because I'm eternally trying to justify my interests as having value and the other half because I want to explore that value endlessly. But really, even though I love makeup and love how it connects people, sometimes you just want simple looks that look good. I didn't build on any references, I just went with colors I thought would look nice. Jilly has perfect skin and she looks good in everything so it was really easy and fun. Almost too much fun: I had to give my permission to keep it really simple. The day before (or after? time is weird) I did the exact opposite and I had to give my permission to go all out and I spent a very long time doing detail work and violent physical labor with glitter.

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Hat: DIY Glasses: Givenchy Dress: Choies*Strawberry Bag: Tayler's Egg Bag: Luna from the MoonShoes: ASOS. Eyeshadow: Urban Decay Electric PaletteLipstick: YSL Le Orange* Tayler's Bag: Jump from Paper*

Anyway. So I copped this Prada knockoff. Sorry Prada. I worship the ground you work on and I talk about knockoffs quite consistently! There was just no way in hell I could ever afford the real thing, Prada doesn't really do Archive sales in the style of CDG so there was no point in even waiting a million years. I settled and bought the knockoff instead -- laughing at the minor differences all the while (documented in my Prada tag on tumblr, to my own amusement and no one else's, because I have a sad sense of humor). I did buy Authentic Prada sunglasses though so like, she still is getting my money in some capacity? To assuage the guilt I feel. I was going to buy the bra that goes on top of it, but even the non-embellished version costs about $1200 and I would rather make it myself with vintage brooches and you know, pay rent and student loans and stuff. I'm sure Miuccia doesn't mind too much.

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I don't even know why I am apologizing to the internet when we are all pretty complicit in knockoff corporate culture. I think it's probably because I think about class and knockoffs all the time and haven't purchased anything in months besides authentic designer and now I feel weird class shame like I've reverted.  This is the kind of shame that is set up in us and I'm not sure it's entirely a bad or good thing. It's just a thing. I'm thinking a lot about feelings about feelings lately and how you don't really need them. No feeling is final, right? And you don't need to have feelings about feelings. Once you realize this you become free in a lot of ways. Freedom doesn't make you a better person though, and I think we're supposed to want to be better people. Better over freedom? You can aspire for both, of course. But I'm not sure you can get them at once all the time, particularly in the context of consumerism. There is always guilt to fall somewhere, usually it's on the consumer. Especially the poor consumer. Bootstraps mentality and all that jazz -- if you work harder you'll get what you deserve, what you work for, rise. Of course, that's not what really happens. Luck and privilege change the game and you don't so much 'get' a job as are given one. This is where the real conversation begins. But we're still told otherwise, and told if you don't buy the Original you're the bad one when you certainly weren't the person who made the fake to begin with. You're less than. You try to work off the guilt when it shouldn't be yours to deal with in the first place. Do you know what I mean? Feel free to disagree.

Anyway. At the end of the day it's a cute fucking "fake" dress. I wore it outside today with "real" Prada.
Nobody knew the difference.

Photos by Tayler as usual.

Most Important Ugly


I've been working on a photo series with Tayler for about six months now and it's finally done. Please join us for the opening of our photo exhibition at American Two Shot! There will be drinks and hot babes and general excellence. All ages (obvi the bar will not be, sorry young ones). Please come. Here's the facebook event for more info. 

ari n me


ph by Tayler


Hung out with my angel Ari for the first time outside of the internet this Spring Break. I had a really beautiful Spring break full of cute people. I got this vintage suit thrifting the day before with Shelby actually. 


Thriftin' 


Also had a Rookie hangout. This is not from said hangout, it is from the last hangout. Some of us are pantless in the most current interations of the hangout (we were sweaty from Beyonce choreography) and so the internet can't see those. Sorry. 

So much love. 

Updates

Well this blog is dusty. Let's see. I am now Editor/Main Bitch at The Style Con alongside Jenny Bahn so that takes up most of my time that I'm not using on homework or other projects. One of those projects is in collaboration with DIS magazine & other cool babes.


"As an accelerating market and major force in cultural change, fast fashion is the energy drink section of the fashion world. The panel will explore       the significance of fast fashion and its effects on contemporary ideas of intellectual property, authenticity, and coolness."

Here's the facebook invite. I hope I see you there!

CHROMAT FW14: Donna Haraway Robot Blogging IRL

I dictate my own aesthetics and brainwaves by building my own mythology surrounding the things I love and care about. For the past few years or at least, for the past year, it's all about Monsters, and Lady Vengeance Looks specifically. But since the New Year I've been preoccupied by cyborgs and robots and the feminisms associated with them. I actually really dislike much of the academia Donna Haraway has put out there -- it's totally unapproachable and unlivable, removed from real people -- but so much of what she says about cyborgs and innocence and humanity rings true to me, too. So I spend a lot of time just thinking about it, and I'm obsessed with sci-fi and robots because of it. So when the robo babes came down the runway a few nights ago courtesy of Becca and her CHROMAT crew, I was completely floored. I've been going to fashion week for I think, thirteen seasons now? But this is the first show I yelled at, with so much joy and delight. It felt really fun.



 So much of fashion week is about being 2 cool 4 school, getting the best instagram, getting snapped the most. This show reminded me clothes can be promising, and fun, and new, and cool, and fuck everything else. 




I'm also super glad that I've made a conscious decision to only go to shows where I know I will see my friends -- peep my girl Gillian in the background of this picture, and William too (congrats on your new gig, dude) -- as well as to shows where I connect to the designers. While it's an absolute honor to get invited to shows every season, if I know I wouldn't ever wear a designer even if I could afford it (which I can't, ever, I mean, retail price????? hahahahaha) -- it's also a fantasy I'm disinterested in participating in. CHROMAT stuff is not inexpensive, but it's also a small brand and pretty much hand made by a bunch of rad (and mostly queer) women. With Chromat I know who works on the pieces, I know how long they take because I ask, I am allowed into the process. This is my favorite thing about small brands: they let you in. You are unquestionably the center of their universe. This isn't something you can say about larger brands who have to fill a quota for their investors in terms of new releases every season, regardless of how inspired they feel. 

I'm so happy to see Becca grow and evolve and get her stuff worn by our heroes like Beyonce etc. When you can connect to fashion brands and feel proud on their behalf, like they're family, it's really the most fun. And we all know how I feel about lingerie, and badass women. So A+ all around. 




This piece was such a showstopper -- I reached out to touch it on instinct when it jangled past me but I kept my hands to myself because I'm not an asshole. But really: XENA Warrior Princess Looks, right? I bet Beyonce already reserved several in her size. 


Big ups for the diversity in casting, too. There was no tokenism to be found -- and I noticed, and I appreciated it a lot. I'm noticing runways are getting better at it this season, but I'm also only going to shows and presentation where they haven't had horrible histories at doing that, so I am not one to gauge the situation accurately. 


There were so many YESSSS moments in this show -- I'm glad I brought Tayler along to properly document it. Look at this friggin outfit. I haven't documented my season faithfully to the internet and I'm not mad about it, because I want to pay attention to the clothes and the experience more than proving I am somewhere. But I think if I didn't get photos from this show for myself I'd have been bummed out. Just: picture these light up robot goddesses, marching in the complete darkness to a bunch of beautiful people, cheering them on. It was really beautiful and exciting to be part of. 


I mean. Look at this. Metropolis Goddess Looks. Cyborg feminism moments for us to remember and emulate. God bless. 

This collection makes me really excited for Lingerie Fashion Week in a few weeks, actually -- I'll keep you posted on those shenanigans, too. But now I have to do my homework before more shows. And probably brush my teeth. Ok, bye.

Second Skin

Over the summer, StylelikeU convinced me to partake in their relaunched Second Skin project. My friend Meagan had been in one of the first episodes the previous fashion week season and she was so stressed out about it, I was really tentative at first. But I'm also less anxious than Meagan (I SAY THIS WITH A LOT OF LOVE) so I figured it was worth a shot. The internet has a very limited perception of my style most days, so I figured whatever thrown at me couldn't get me too twisted.

I was pretty much right, but the results are truly comical. I'm kind of spacey and mellow about everything, and Dynasty is super outgoing and gregarious and anxious about the whole thing. I laughed through the entire twenty minutes when I watched it this morning.




Yeah, our style is lil' bit different. Just a little.


Here is the video. Enjoy. 



Outfit credits in the first two photos -- our official "meeting" photos -- my plastic jacket and the knitted dress -- are both frequently worn in past outfit posts. Here's me with Scott, my partner who made it the dress. 

Anyway, I hope you have fun watching it and you're off to a cool week. 



tabi time

Illamasqua Scribe Eyeliner, Comme des Garcons Jacket (remixed) from Fall 2005, TAO CDG blouse (remixed), Undercoverism shorts (gift), Margiela Tabis.

Hi peaches. Long time no see I suppose, at least on this little internet space. I have been writing elsewhere -- Teen Vogue, Rookie, and The Style Con (twice a week right now). I also did some interviews, I've been keeping busy. We're back to working on our monstering photo series, Tayler and I, after about a month off. "Off" is an inaccurate word to describe what I've been up to though. I've never been so busy in my life! I've been at Teen Vogue freelancing M-F and then working on other projects on Saturdays. Today and tomorrow are the only days I've been home, but I've been working today too. The only downtime I've had was when Tayler came over to hang this weekend and she took these pictures. This is my dining room, I've photographed in here quite often over the years. It's really dusty and gross right now, but I think that's fitting, everything in it is old. Pirate ship looks.


So -- since last post: I bought myself a grail item of mine, Margiela Tabis. I'm considering them my 21st birthday present (yes, that happened last week!). It was also the blog's 7th year anniversary, which is absurd to me. I've wanted these shoes for probably at least half of the blog's lifetime. When I look back on my past posts, in between cringing, I can recognize myself in my inspiration even though how I interpreted things was a lot different then. Quite honestly, my inspiration boards are the same they've always been. I have just reformulated my process, trimmed the fat. I wrote about giving away a lot of my clothes for TSC actually


Three years ago buying these shoes would have been completely ridiculous and unfeasible to me. But a lot has changed since then. The other week, I was walking through the office on one of my last days at the magazine, staring at my feet in these shoes, in a Seditionaries tshirt (a gift from Hazel from a Rookie swap) and navy CDG skirt (bought for myself last summer), and I had this out of body experience. I was living -- am living -- the dream I first articulated on this very blog years ago. Sophomore in high school dreams being lived out as a Senior in University. I've already purchased so many of the things I've dreamed about, through my writing and other work. I'm in the process of doing so many other things right now I can't even talk about, and I'm so excited, because even a year ago I wouldn't have had the capacity to think myself capable. But now I'm the girl with the tabis I used to hyperventilate with jealousy over. A lot of it -- so much, actually -- has been because of the kindness of my friends and mentors who have believed in me and gave me a chance (and even their clothes, as you might have noticed from this post). I'm a lucky girl. 

Thanks for helping me with everything, peaches. I'm happy you're here with me too. I think I'll do you proud this year.