blog

an email newsletter that feels like a hug

I’ve unsubscribed from a lot of e-newsletters in my day [leans back in rocking chair; puffs smoke from old-timey pipe] but Courtney Carver’s is one that always makes me feel better about life. She runs a blog (and wrote a book) called Be More With Less, which is ostensibly about simplifying and decluttering but IS ACTUALLY A TROJAN HORSE FOR SELF-COMPASSION! She has no idea I’m writing this and didn’t pay me to say this by any means but I highly recommend signing up for her e-newsletter.

Today’s email, “10 Rules to Help You Live with Less Stuff,” sounds like any obnoxious listicle you could read anywhere online, but–WAIT FOR IT–is really about being kind to yourself! I LOVE THIS SHIT! “Rule” #6, small progress is still progress, applies to a whole lot more than just decluttering. Tbh, I find decluttering kind of meh. It feels great, but maximalism pumps through my glittery purple blood. “Small progress is still progress” to me is a reminder that it’s OK I haven’t written and published a book already; trying to blog more and getting out a notebook to maybe try morning pages is a great first step. Nothing happens overnight, etc. etc. Or like a quote on my fridge says: “Nothing in nature blooms all year.”

Being gentle with yourself is where it’s at. 🌸

How to dress like Penelope Garcia

how to dress like penelope garcia

I’m on season 3 of Criminal Minds (only a decade behind!) and in love with Penelope Garcia (Kirsten Vangsness) and Dr. Reid (Matthew Gray Gubler) like everyone else. Specifically: GARCIA’S STYLE. While the rest of her team looks like they’re perpetually on their way to a funeral (which…they sort of are?), Garcia wears florals, colorful glasses, and funky jewelry. Her fashion sense reflects her playful sexiness and quick wit. She’s 100% delightful (especially since Kirsten Vangsness herself is “as queer as a purple unicorn singing Madonna”).

penelope garcia fashion style

So you wanna dress like Garcia? DON’T WE ALL! Here’s how:

  • Embrace your curves. Garcia often wears wrap dresses or scoop-neck tops that show off her amazing boobs. Fit-and-flare dresses or a-line skirts, too. (Yay for non-skinny people on TV!)
  • Wear bright, summery colors. While her team wears neutrals, Garcia’s palette is warm, ~*SenSuAL*~ berry tones like red/purple/pink, as well as happy yellows/oranges and vibrant teal.
  • Add a zany cardigan or blazer to a solid-colored top, or vice versa.
  • PATTERNS! Paisley, polka dots, stars, plaid, you name it.
  • Channel ’50s pinup girl meets garden party or punk rawk.
  • Accessorize with novelty earrings, statement necklaces, and chunky bracelets. Also glitter. Glitter’s an accessory, right?
  • Wear a multicolored headband, barrettes, fake daisy, or feathers in your hair.
  • Shiny lip gloss. Heels, if u want.
  • MORE IS MORE!

penelope garcia criminal minds fashion style

Sounds cheesy, but Garcia’s aesthetic has an empowering subtext: You can be sexy and smart. You can be feminine and professional. You can be vivacious and whimsical and amazing at your job. You don’t have to sacrifice color or style or silliness to be successful. That shouldn’t be revolutionary, but pop culture loves its stereotypes (“blondes are airheads”), and thanks to sexism, women feel pressure to dress and act like men to succeed at work:

One in four women dress in a more masculine way – discarding high heels and dresses for trouser suits – acting under the belief they should look like their male colleagues to be treated seriously. A further quarter wear less makeup at work, partly to dispel the notion that all women must ‘look pretty,’ the survey of 2,000 working women showed.

To sum up:

All of the standards of appearance being pushed on employees in office environments are, essentially, strongholds of white male standards of power.

FUCK THAT. Express your personality! Stand out! Be a Garcia! (Ahem. I got excited.)

Looking forward to 10 more seasons of her fantastic style. Stay wonderful, tech kitten. 🦄

ETA: Check out the kind Sheila‘s real-life Garcia style here! Am I biased because she linked to me and was super-sweet? Yes. And no. Her style is awesome, and her blog will make you smile.

Black Friday: a great time to unsubscribe from everything

Nothing brings advertisers outta the woodwork like Black Friday/Cyber Monday. “Oh yeah, I bought one thing from that one company 11 months ago,” I realize, promptly tossing their postcard in my recycling. If only there was an “unsubscribe” link on catalogs, right dawg?

IS THERE A BETTER WAY? You bet your sweet pumpkin-cheesecake-lovin’ booty there is!

When I get paper junk mail (you know, in the ole mailbox from days of yore), I’ve gotten in the habit of googling “email [company name]” to find a contact form/address, then sending them this li’l template baby:

Hello there!
Please remove me from your marketing/catalog lists. I’d appreciate it very much! Here’s my info:
MY NAME
MY ADDRESS
Thank you so much!

I leave ’em as email drafts so they’re ready to copy-and-paste anytime.
Please take and customize to your heart’s content (obviously, you may be less into exclamation points than I am).
Happy Thanksgiving (almost)!

How to dress like Claudia Kishi

🌼updated August 2020🌼

Is any fictional character more beloved for her personal style than CLAUDIA KISHI?

claudia kishi fashion outfits wardrobe

Unquestionably the best member of The Babysitters Club books (a ’90s-child staple), Claudia was *~the artsy one~* and the most relatable (for me, at least). Claud is known for her terrible spelling, candy addiction, and FUNKY FRESH wardrobe, which author Ann M. Martin (and her ghostwriters) describe in deliciously painstaking detail in every book. While struggling with school and comparisons to her genius sister, Janine, Claudia expressed her creativity through amazing thrifted mish-mash outfits. They revolve around a few key staples:

  • Leggings
  • Vests
  • Cowboy boots
  • CRAZY PRINTS & PATTERNS!!!
  • Hoops or novelty earrings
  • Long funky necklaces
  • High ponytails with scrunchies

So much yes.

claudia kishi outfits fashion

Claud was the original hipster, but in an unpretentious way (she was cool because she was messy and had her own phone line, not because she listened to the “right” bands). She wasn’t self-obsessed. She mostly cared about babysitting, painting, reading Nancy Drew mysteries, being a good friend, and hanging out with her grandma, Mimi. She lacked the snobby narcissism of Stacey, the mousy spinelessness of Mary Anne, and the controlling type-A-ness of Kristy. (Wow, I guess I didn’t like the other characters much!)

And of any of the characters, Claudia left the biggest mark on pop culture, inspiring a comic, a fashion blog, and countless style posts (including this one!). Half Japanese, she was also a role model for Asian-American readers (although writers did focus on her “exotic”-ness and “almond-shaped eyes” too much).

So eat a doughnut, hit up your favorite thrift store, and twirl the cord of your landline around your finger! ❤ u 4ever, Claudia.

Update, August 2020! Um could the Netflix reboot of the Baby-Sitters’ Club BE any more heartwarming?! I’ve watched it twice so far and LOVE the costume design for Claud! The show inspired me to go back through the 130+ book covers in search of even more outfit inspo:

Claudia Kishi outfits style babysitters club

The show did NOT disappoint: bright colors, oversized knits, and overalls/jumpsuits to die for. I’m inspired to seek out more orange, purple, and YELLOW PLAID clothes. It’s hard to pick a fave ~lewk~ but I think this mustard-yellow jumpsuit, bomber jacket, daisy ring combo takes the cake:

Brb, gotta finish watching it for the third time 😉

some fall 2017 lewkz

*~ladeez of the canyon~*

Etro (aren’t they missing an R? har har) is delightfully Claudia-Kishi-circa-1970 this fall. Inspo: sheepskin, thrift-store scarves, bubblegum Joni Mitchell??? All the hot pink/floral/lime green/leopard print, plz.

etro-fall-2017-rtw-runway-collage

photos via WWD

Aaaa! Are your eyes overwhelmed too? Quick, look at this water:

water

PALETTE CLEANSER! Whew. OK, ready for more?

tWiSteD SISteR

How about Giamba, which one can only assume is inspired by Black Swan, grandma’s old nighties, and tarot cards:

giamba 2017

Photos via WWD

Suggested taglines: Saccharine with a side of evil. Or maybe More cookies, Skeletor? SOMEone discovered pastel goth! X-P

All right, that’s all we’ve got for Holly Pretends To Be A Fashion Person While Clearly Being Woefully Undereducated. Tune in next time for styles inspired by The Wild West meets gummi vitamins.

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