Post Holiday Funk

I know we all suffer from this

We spend an entire day stuffing ourselves with various meats and delicious sides, probably wearing a shapeless dress (possibly imitating a trash bag?) or those "nice" pants that secretly have a waistband that you reserve for holidays like this. Sounds like the dream, no?

But then our families leave after that extended discussion about what I'm majoring in, my new internship (spoiler alert: I'll be a part of College Fashionista's team next semester!!), or, unfortunately, our new president, and we sit there with full bellies and exhausted minds and think: now what? Christmas is in one month; I wish I could just skip the awkward 16 days I have in D.C. (with only one final!!) and go home and celebrate a holiday where I won't get that weird "post holiday funk."

Am I the only one who feels this?

It's also strangely affecting my style -- what does one wear when all you have to do for the next two weeks is study and write papers and just wait for the best holiday to arrive?

It's like retail stores know that this funk universally exists. That's why Black Friday and Cyber Monday exist. I've never been one to partake in activities surrounding the dreaded Friday after Thanksgiving, but when one realizes the only way to get out of a style funk is to, well, purchase more clothes, one must use her resources. So commence the shopping!

J. Crew and Anthropologie and Asos and so much more!! Overwhelming is the only way to describe this experience. But maybe overwhelming is the only way to dig out of this hole that Thanksgiving unfortunately dug.

Ruffle top and Levi's jeans by Anthropologie. Turtleneck by J. Crew. Boots by Sam Edelman. Faux fur coat by Asos. Sunglasses by Madewell.

One, but two tissue turtlenecks from J. Crew (40% off!!!).

A pair of Levi's, velvet joggers, and a sweatshirt-material ruffle top from Anthropologie (30% off!!!).

A Margot Tenenbaum-esque fur coat (but of the faux kind) from Asos (also 30% off!!!).

Also these boots from Topshop that I just purchased last night and now have a very small amount of money in my bank account (but up to 50% off select items!!!).

I combined two-thirds of my purchases to create an outfit I felt fresh in, new, confident. There's something about wearing all new clothes that makes you feel as if you could accomplish anything, even if I did sleep most of the day and really only completed one task on Monday: writing this blog post. 

Knowing that I now own two more delightful turtlenecks (and of exciting colors!) that I could layer under anything, especially this strange top that I'm also newly obsessed with, gives me the ability to make any outfit way more, well, me (my turtleneck obsession has not gone away just yet). Knowing that I own a pair of Levi's that I've wanted for two years -- yes, I know I'm a bit late -- eliminates the fact that jeans are dead because they're just that cool! And the fur coat is an obvious one: having a huge blanket (practically) draped over my cold shoulders in this cold D.C. weather seems to be the only thing to get me through this peculiar time. 

I'm not saying you have to buy a whole new wardrobe to fix this uncomfortable phase of the year; playing with what you already have is always a method I've been an advocate for ever since I started this blog two years ago (side note: happy blogversary to Fractured Aesthetic!). But there comes a point when you only have so much to work with, and a purchase of a few investment pieces is just like hitting restart on your style game. It's that easy.

Kind of like getting a new haircut.

All photos shot by Kendall.


What to Wear When: Tights Feel like Mini Prison Cells

I broke No-Shave November for this!

It's that time of year when there are two options for your legs: tights or jeans. We all know jeans are dead (bitter sweet about this concept; jeans are also another form of leg prison), and tights just feel so, well, unappealing right now. Is it our desire to rebel against the cold and let our bare legs suffer out in the open?

To break fashion norms and release our hot dogs into the wild?

Or is it just because tights give us that weird line right above our belly button that is a) unflattering and b) the last thing anyone wants to deal with and c) an inconvenience when eating pizza.

Most will say they risk the well-being of their legs due to my first excuse, but we really all know it's because of the second. Reasoning aside, tights are no fun. Are they even considered stylish anymore? I wore them for 15 years under a leotard several times a week, and ever since I stopped this routine, I can't get myself to slip them on. Not slip, but tug and pull and struggle. They've become an inconvenience, no longer a fashionable warming technique.

So do we just get rid of them altogether? Let our legs freeze in the tundra* when we don't want to wear jeans or those weird pants that don't count as jeans that only really cool people own (not including myself)?

The simple answer is: yes. Suffer through it. You will survive (beauty is pain!!).

The complex answer is:

Dress by Madewell (similar here). Turtleneck by J. Crew. Clogs by Anthropologie. Bracelet and socks by Madewell.

It's called overcompensation. What lacks on your legs goes on your feet or your arms or your neck! This works super well for turtleneck enthusiasts like me or people who are fans of socks. I almost cheated and wore thigh highs instead of these, but covering 3/4 of your legs vs. 1/10 completely defeats the purpose. We're here to free our legs (can this become the new Free the Nipple campaign?). I covered my neck and arms with my favorite tissue turtleneck (sidenote: what an investment!! I'm about to buy the same one in five different colors) and this flannel shirt-dress that someone told me looked like pajamas today but then I told them that technically pajamas are so in in high fashion right now. I wore socks with clogs instead of chelsea boots because this whole project made me want to try new things -- I feel like fashion is evolving a lot right now. Is this just me? 

Styling bare legs in late November should be enough to prove that fashion is, in fact, evolving. Despite the cold, the lack of tights felt liberating. My legs were free!

* The "tundra" in D.C. today was 60 degrees... this experiment would work better if global warming wasn't real.

Photos shot by Maddie.


The Mourning of America

I'm stepping away from fashion today. For many days, actually.

I'm not writing this to simply add to the meaningless cluster of thousands of articles and blog posts about what went down this past Tuesday night. My intention is not to simply state that our country is royally screwed over for the next four years. It's to gain attention, create an active community, allow people to see that everyone is affected. Here it goes.

It's also about to get pretty liberal here, but know that this isn't about politics. It's about human decency. It's about the safety of millions of people.

I've been extremely upset, disturbed, depressed, angry, afraid, simply confused by the results of this election. Basically, every negative feeling is circulating in my brain right now, as it should be in every person who currently resides in this country and plans to for the next four years. It's been very difficult to come to terms with what has happened. Extremely difficult. I've been attempting to come to terms with who will be controlling our country for the next four years, and it hasn't been easy.

I feel like everyone should be feeling the same way I do. An openly racist, homophobic, transphobic, misogynistic, xenophobic, and Islamophobic sociopath was elected to be our next president. A man who has allegedly sexually assaulted people on several different occasions. Someone who's father was an active member of the KKK (didn't expect that one, did you?) and who has been endorsed by this organization only a few weeks ago. A man who has called Mexicans rapists, who has openly made fun of the mentally disabled, who wants to "kick out" all Muslims living here, who does not believe in climate change, who wants to take away the rights of the LGBTQ+ community (no more anti-discrimination laws!!), who wants to defund all of Planned Parenthood. This is just the surface. This man is ungodly (I'm using this word in a non-religious context, considering he backs up a lot of what he says with the Bible, shedding such a negative light on Christianity), selfish (he doesn't even care about the lives of white, rich, straight, cisgendered males), and now extremely powerful -- and I'm scared. Frightened. Terrified. Mike Pence openly supports conversion therapy for queer individuals and the defunding of Planned Parenthood (to the point of reaching an HIV outbreak in Indiana); is against same sex marriage, anti-discrimination laws provided for the LGBTQ+ community, and fair pay for women and minorities (source here). The idea of impeaching/convicting Trump out of office is even scarier because we'll have to deal with yet another nightmare. This is America's nightmare, becoming a reality.

This is our chance to stand up. Fight against this awful man who is only in this position to hold power over the patriarchy and White supremacy ideals. The people voted, and the majority voted for Hillary. But a system that was produced because of slavery (don't believe me? read this) has allowed a man who is treating minorities in a sense that's similar to a modern-day slavery to lead our country for the next four years. So where do we start?

  • Know that you are not alone. You are valid. This man's goal is to invalidate everyone who is not a white, rich, straight, cisgender male, but you are valid. Your feelings are valid, too. You might have more privilege than others who are affected by this, but you are allowed to mourn. You are allowed to feel terrified. You are allowed to feel angry. Everyone is in this together, and I believe that's the one positive outcome from these results -- it has created a strong community that is all fighting for the same thing. It has connected people from all over the country, from different backgrounds and races, to mourn together and to fight together. Maybe this is what we needed to wake America up.
  • Today we mourn, tomorrow we fight. This is something I said and tweeted on November 9th. Mourning is good, great actually. It's extremely crucial to mourn in these situations -- it's a depressing, scary time, and sometimes all we can do is cry. I've been crying for the past 72 hours. I'm still mourning, and I think this will last for at least the next few weeks. But let's use this mourning and sadness to fight this system. Use our anger in a positive energy and attend protests, write posts like me, and express your feelings in a progressive manner. I have the privilege (and discomfort) of living in D.C. where I can simply walk to the White House and protest. But I also live one block away from Trump's transitional office, which is terrifying. I'm going to use this fear to fight back. He is not my president
  • Donate. Almost every minority group is being invalidated and marginalized by this man. We need help more than ever. Donating to any of the below groups is extremely important, especially now, because his goal is to take away the rights of these groups. 
  • Resources are available. As I said before, everyone probably feels invalid right now (me being one of them). These results might only lead to feelings of sadness, despair, or even suicide. Know that you are not alone, but also that there are resources for you. Look below:
A photo posted by Rowan Blanchard (@rowanblanchard) on

  • Apathy is worse than support for Trump. Saying that you don't care about this because it does not affect you is far worse, to me, than actually stating you voted for Trump. The latter is a crime in my opinion, but at least it's not cowardly. It's similar to how many white people did not get involved, or even spread the word, about the BLM movement because of their whiteness. Apathy is poisonous and will only feed Trump's power complex. Also, the concept of not being affected is not really a thing in this situation. Everyone is affected, directly or indirectly. The only people not directly affected are white, rich, straight, cisgender males, and this 1% probably has wives or mothers or friends in minority groups or even just coworkers who happen to not be identical to their privileged situation. And if you don't accept this concept, you should still be affected. It's just human decency. As I said earlier, far simpler than politics.
  • We will become his worst nightmare, as Bernie Sanders said recently. Role reversal should do the trick. We think he's our worst nightmare, but that's what we will become to him. We will fight. We will protest. We will not accept him as our 45th president of the United States of America.

All photos shot by me at the White House, the night of the election. Instagram posts by Rowan Blanchard, the actress and active feminist.

If you need anyone to talk to about this current situation, know that I'm always available. Feel free to email me at geisel.natalie@gmail.com.