New Direction: Beyond the Fashion

“The universe buries strange jewels deep within us all, and then stands back to see if we can find them.”― Author Elizabeth Gilbert, Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear

Today’s post is a little different than most. I know you stopped in (thank you for doing so) very likely expecting to see an update on the latest fashion, trends or style. Well, the truth of the matter is that today I am going in a bit of a different direction. If you have been following One Style at a Time you know that this is the home base of all things fun and fabulous fashion. Today, I want to take off the fashion blogger hat and just have an honest and transparent conversation. You see, for quite some time I have been on quite a personal journey that includes a bit of self-discovery and includes change. I’m sure if you are reading this you can relate on some level because aren’t we all on a path of improvement or transformation. Sometimes you can’t move forward unless you take a step back and take a deeper look at the things that really matter. Now for everyone this introspective peek inward may be different. For me it meant remembering what are some of the things that I enjoy from life. As a blog writer and active social media participant, I’m surrounded by so much information and fast-paced news so the art of research comes in handy. In my search for finding more information I discovered that bloggers are put in a box with tons of labels. From day one, I have been asked, “how do you monetize your blog? how many followers do you have? what is your niche?” I have even been dismissed by people close to me and total strangers because they don’t think ‘blogging’ is a serious venture or because I’m not following the ‘popular formula’. For one, I made a conscious decision years ago that I wasn’t going to be a street style blogger and it’s great that it works for many but fashion blogging is not a one size fits all. I have had endless propositions to promote brands and products that just did not fit my with my style, audience or message. I stand behind projects and partnerships that make sense and that I sincerely believe in. I don’t believe that you can put a price on ingenuity.

Last year I read Elizabeth Gilbert’s book ‘Big Magic’. You may know her from her best seller book and movie, ‘Eat, Pray, Love’. Interesting enough, this book suggestion came to me from a complete stranger on YouTube who recommended I read this book. I took the suggestion and never looked back. What a great book for anyone on a creative path. Although Liz talks from the writers point of view, this book is a great and inspiring read for anyone who is afraid to own their creative gifts and follow their path. This book brought some great insights and made me think back to a time when I was a child. As children at some point we are asked, “what do you want to be when you grow up?” My answer was to be a writer, painter, fashion designer and an architect. Most kids say, fireman, doctor, teacher or nurse. Not me, I guess early on I sensed I had multiple creative passions. For so long anyone who had multiple passions was considered by society to be confused or simply a flake. I doubt you can say that about many famous names throughout history and even today. Case in point, Leonardo da Vinci was a painter, sculptor, geologist, mathematician among many other things. Harrison Ford is an actor with a love for flying helicopters, Jane Seymour is a well-known actress and painter, Stan Lee is an American comic book writer, editor, publisher, media producer, television host, actor and former president and chairman of Marvel Comics. Do you see where we are going here?

If you navigate around One Style at a Time, you will find that although the main topic has always been fashion, it is not a one dimensional blog and I am proud of that. I’ve learned that it is important to stay true to yourself no matter what the analytics show. Nothing against the stats, but without inspiration the content will not feel right with your audience or with yourself. So in the spirit of staying truthful, I am taking a new approach. As of now, this blog will begin touching on additional subjects that are NOT strictly related to the fashion world. My personal life in the last couple of years has taken on different layers that I feel are meaningful and worth sharing. This is not to say that I won’t continue sharing all the fun fashion content with you all (I’m a fashion girl at heart), but there are more topics that I feel guided to include here. It’s all part of the evolution and growth of this blog and I do hope that you stay with me on this ride that includes a bit of change. I appreciate the longtime support and hope that I can bring some additional value to each of you. I will continue to share any shifts in direction as they happen. Thank you for your readership and if you are someone who has many passions like cooking, dancing, photography, designing or writing, my advice is don’t stop working on it! If you haven’t started or are afraid to take the next step, work through that fear and go for it anyway. Never let your gifts go to waste and never allow anyone to talk you out of going for your dreams. Never stop exploring and continue to keep the curiosity alive one step at a time.

“I want to be a Renaissance woman. I want to paint, and I want to write, and I want to act, and I want to just do everything.” Emma Watson

I welcome your thoughts in your comments below.

xo

Maria

 

Celebrating Women’s Day

It’s always inspiring to see women all over the world be recognized in so many ways. Today we celebrate International Women’s Day and will likely see trending hashtags such as #WomensDay and #adaywithoutwomen. The ‘Day Without Women’ is a movement where according to the Women’s March website, ” is to recognize the enormous value that women of all backgrounds add to our socioeconomic system, while receiving lower wages and experiencing greater inequities, vulnerability to discrimination, sexual harassment and job insecurity.” YouTube has also created the #HerVoiceIsMyVoice channel to also celebrate and honor international women around the world. 

In my book, women’s day is every single day of the calendar year. I come from a family lineage of strong, nurturing, caring and tenacious women. I learned so much from listening and watching these women speak their mind and make a difference in the lives of those around them. My mother Sabina was one of the biggest influences in my life and in the lives of all her children. She had a keen intuition and sense of wisdom, but most of all she had heart and strength like no one I knew. The young little country girl who lost her parents at a very young age had to grow up quickly and find her way in life. She later became the loving family matriarch in the big city of New York. She was a devoted mother and a wife who never allowed anyone to shut down her opinion (and boy did she have one). She showed me to always stand my ground and never allow anyone to take my power away. She had integrity, grace and much pride. This didn’t mean she didn’t have her softer moments. As much as she was a stern disciplinarian, she also had an enormous heart and in turn, that is the measure of being a great women. You can have high standards, be assertive and vocal about your point of view. But in the end, you can be compassionate and kind hearted towards others. I am proud to be in solidarity with all women today and so enormously proud to have come from an immigrant family. I dedicate this post to my incredible Mother who is no longer with us and to all the women who came before us and helped shape the world. To those women who broke down barriers, broke glass ceilings, put fear to the side and carved out a piece of history to ensure we could have a better tomorrow. We not only wear red in celebration of this honorable day, but we say ‘Thank You’ to all these women that have made a difference in our lives. Just remember that a women’s armor and strength comes directly from her heart.

 

Runway to Oscars: 2017 Oscars Fashion Gown Predictions

With only days away from the Academy Awards we just can’t help but wonder what gowns will hit the red carpet on Sunday. The runways have been filled with so many exquisite choices. Surely designers and celebrity stylists must be in the midst of the behind – the – scenes fashion frenzy for their A-list clients. Let’s be honest, everyone’s goal is to hit that carpet and be on the ‘best dressed’ list the next day so every inch of detail has to be mindfully decided. The complete look has to tell a story, from hair, makeup, jewelry and accessories. So, who will have a fashion forward, elegant Chanel moment? Will it be Dior, Armani Prive for the win? We always love an Elie Saab moment at the Oscars and who will amp up the sex appeal? Based on the past award shows it’s very likely we will see some plunging  necklines, plenty of sheer panels, feathers and metallics. Today we have chosen a few options that we would pull off the runway and onto the racks  if we had to choose.  Which gown has your vote for the Oscars? Which designers would you work with if you were styling Meryl, Viola, Emma or any other Hollywood actress for this event?

Carolina Herrera, Fall 2017 Collection

Ralph Lauren, Fall 2017 Collection

Zuhair Murad, Spring Couture Collection 2017

Elie Saab, Spring Couture Collection 2017

Christian Dior 2017 Couture Collection

Chanel 2017 Couture Collection

Brandon Maxwell, Fall 2017 Collection

‘M’ is for Menswear Style That Inspires Women’s Fashion

Menswear style has impacted women’s style for hundreds of years. Women have taken on menswear style in versatile ways and now it is part of the most favorite looks seen from street style to the runway. It was the year 1966 when Yves Saint Laurent introduced the world to the tuxedo style ‘smoking jacket’ for women and infusing sex appeal to it. The fluidity between men and women’s style have grown even more so in past decades with androgyny type fashion on red carpets, movies (hello ‘Annie Hall’) and in the music scene as well. Let’s face it, trousers can be as sexy as a pencil skirt if worn the right way. We know that fashion icon Coco Chanel embraced the look without reservations in her days back in the early 1920s. Legends of Old Hollywood like Katherine Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe, Marlene Deitrich and Rita Hayworth all embraced a sweater or button down top with trousers. This look was just as chic as all their glamorous floor length gowns and fur stoles. There is something really effortless when it comes to a confident woman wearing a classic, well-tailored pantsuit. We loved the idea actress Evan Rachel Wood had this year about only wearing pantsuits throughout the award season. She recently said, “I promised myself this year that I would wear a suit to every awards show. I think I myself felt pressure a lot of times that I had to look or dress a certain way, and especially growing up with the industry. So I thought, you know, I’m just gonna go the other way and reach out to a little girl who is like me, possibly. So that’s what I’m going for this year,” she concluded, “It’s all about choice. Choice. Options.”  We are with you Ms. Wood and believe women should always go for options and be authentic.  So we agree, menswear inspiration is a look that will last a lifetime and worth having some fun with. So fashionistas, have you ever taken inspiration from the boys closet to change up your style be it in a suit or a more casual laid back way?

TheFashionCuisine.com

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Forever Oscar de la Renta: Hillary Honors Oscar at USPS Ceremony

On Thursday, legendary Oscar de la Renta was honored by the U.S. Postal Service with eleven commemorative Forever stamp designs. At the ceremony were CNN anchor and journalist, Anderson Cooper, Vogue’s editor in chief, Anna Wintour, former Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton and former Mayor Michael Bloomberg among many other friends of Oscar. It was a special tribute to such a talented man that the fashion industry respected and was loved by the world. He was a proud Dominican and Latino and wherever he went he talked about his people, culture and country with honor and humility.

“I know Oscar would have loved these stamps. He delighted in color and pattern, in refinement and in fit, and his designs reflected his personality, optimistic and fun and sunny and romantic,” said Anna Wintour. Then Clinton who took to the podium to close the ceremony said, “The Postal Service’s choice of this immigrant who did so much for our country, his country, truly is what it means when we say, “USA Forever.” Who we are, what we stand for. And let there be many, many more immigrants with the love of America that Oscar de la Renta exemplified every single day”.

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