Sunday, September 14, 2014

Guide to Speaking Like a Millennial

A lot has been said about the millennial generation -they take selfies! They have no attention spans!  They need instant gratification! -but not so much about how we say it.  Sure, our emoji use is well documented, including here, but the employment of an entirely new vocabulary?  Yep, you heard it here first.
Images from Time and Merriam-Webster

1. Bae
Technically short form for before anyone else, bae serves as a replacement for relationship pet names like babe, baby and wifey. But for those of us for whom a significant other is an elusive concept akin to the tooth fairy, bae is applicable to nearly anything: a perfectly golden Chik-fil-A chicken biscuit, a bottle of Veuve or the new Céline sunglasses.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Emmy's Superlatives

Confession: I didn’t actually watch the Emmy’s, so for any official recap or debate about the merits of who won what, look elsewhere. That said, where else could you find stellar superlatives canvasing the best and worst of the red carpet? Any fashion blog in the world, that's where! But for titles like "Most Interesting Hookup Logistics," look no further.


Sunday, August 17, 2014

Taking the Birkenstock Plunge

No way, no how, I thought as I reminisced on the clog variety that permeated my middle school.  If I could resist at the height of tweenage insecurity, I can resist the full-fledged assault of today.
But maybe paired with boyfriend jeans or my black leather miniskirt...? Or with my whole closet!
Ew, wait no, my feet look humongous.
Why am I still thinking about these shoes?!
Fine, if they have the metallic copper pair in my size…

And that’s pretty much describes my thought process regarding the Birkenstock over the last 13 months.

Image via Vogue

The fashion community has waxed poetically about the revival of the Birkenstock: Man Repeller has four posts dedicated to the footwear du jour, Sincerely Jules wears hers like they’re going out of style and Vogue dedicated a post to the sandal last summer -leave it to Anna to be lightyears ahead of the game.  I guess it means me and my copper Birks are late to the party.  But I could have told you that, given I’ve been debating taking the plunge for over a year.  Unlike most trends, which appear like a flash in the pan (I’m talking to you, McDonalds meets Moschino) to soon become rendered to the depths of one’s closet or worse, the consignment pile, Birkenstocks appear in for the long haul. 

Saturday, August 16, 2014

The Rise of the Bucket Hat

Thanks to HBO’s Hard Knocks, a documentary series that follows an NFL team through their preseason preparation (I highly recommend it), I have come face-to-face with the rise of the bucket hat.  Atlanta Falcons’ Defensive Line Coach Bryan Cox sports a yellow polo and matching bucket hat, while a trio of rookies rock bucket hats to the Georgia Aquarium to swim with whale sharks, no less.  But the bucket has roots beyond the NFL locker room.

Image via Complex

Friday, August 8, 2014

A Foodie's Guide to New York City

It's pretty simple.  I love food, and I love New York.  Therefore, I decided to create a list of my absolute favorite eateries, whether they're heavily featured in my restaurant rotation or I've only been once but continue to dream about the corn crème brûlée (Quality Meats, I'm talking to you).  There's not really a method to my madness as the list comprises full-service restaurants, bakeries, taco stands and ventures from Alphabet City to the Meatpacking District to the Upper West Side.  This doesn't come close to covering all of what New York has to offer -I'm not even a full-time resident quite yet, so please feel free to share your favorites -there's a noticeable lack of sushi, barbecue and pizza joints- and I'll continue to share mine!


Thursday, August 7, 2014

Links à la Mode: To Trend or Not to Trend

Consider this a "Weekly Web Roundup" curated by Independent Fashion Bloggers, a site that seeks to serve as a community for bloggers to connect and share experiences.  Each week, they select 20 articles to be featured on their site.  This week, they selected my article about the best movies on Netflix Instant. Happy reading!


To Trend or Not To Trend

Just a few years ago, fashion editors were complaining about "peacocking" and the ridiculousness of street style. It seems like the pendulum is beginning to swing the other way, because now, it's all about the basics. Whether it's denim, a crisp suit, or just keeping a fresh face, it's never been so hot to not be too trendy. The non-trend-trend, or something.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

9 Best Movies on Netflix Instant

Enter a familiar scene. Despite boasting thousands of options, you can never seem to find a good movie to watch on Netflix. Either you search for a movie that's not available on Netflix Instant, and I mean, really, who has time for the mail order service, or after 30 minutes of browsing through their suggestions, you watch five minutes of something terrible before falling asleep. Trust me, I usually don't get past the trailers. But when I do, I occasionally strike gold, which is what I consider this list, movies that either through searching or through recommendations I have found on Netflix Instant and come back to again. and again. and again. Here's to hoping that you enjoy them as much as I have!


Thursday, July 31, 2014

Why I Gave Up on (Most) Print Magazines

I have a confession.  I don’t buy print magazines.  Sure, this only started a few days ago and excludes specialty magazines and compelling issues like Michelle Obama’s first Vogue cover in March 2009 or Kim Kardashian and Kanye West’s April 2014 Vogue cover, but I swear my print days are (mostly) over.

Image via The New Yorker

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Weekly (WEDNESDAY) Web Roundup

You may have noticed the title weekly web roundup hasn't been quite accurate. Instead, I post links haphazardly, either when I'm too lazy to concoct an original story of my own or more likely, because I have recently read something that I feel like I just can't keep to myself. In the interest of holding myself accountable, I have retitled the series Weekly (Wednesday) Web Roundups, so you can expect your weekly dose of the best of the Internet. Happy reading!


Hip-Hop x Fine Art = EVERYTHING

There are two constants in my life: art and hip-hop.  Indoctrinated into the "art world" from birth via my parents who collect --and not just cool looking $40 prints like the lot I have amassed-- I myself have grown fond of art, whether it be gallery hopping in Chelsea, minoring in Art History in college or more recently hoarding art supplies from Michaels for my own projects.  And hip-hop, don't get me started.  First, there was the throwback hip-hop playlist with classics like "Holidae Inn" and "Right Thurr."  Then there was the admission to my religious watching of 106 & Park in middle school (read about both here).  And today it was reaffirmed when with "Money Baby" by KCamp playing in the background, my mom said, "You are just a ratchet girl at heart," referencing my penchant for the likes of YG and Sage the Gemini.

Well, they say if you can't beat em, join 'em, which is exactly what Fly Art and Carter Family Portraits have managed to do -combine my two loves, art and hip-hop, masterfully.  They have reworked works from the art historical canon with contemporary figures and lyrics from hip hop, thereby making the old feel new again.  For the non art history buffs, I have included the original work details.

But the best news of all? You can purchase these works as prints, T-shirts, sweatshirts, iPhone cases and more here and here (and follow them on Insta here). You know I have four T-shirts en route. Thank God for online shopping!

The Old Guitarist (1903), Pablo Picasso

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

How the Bachelorette Sets You Up To Be a Delusional Dater

Watching the Bachelorette last night (yes, I watch that Bachelorette –previously documented here), I started to feel for Nick despite wanting Josh to win.  Here’s why: The premise of the Bachelor is that you enter a “journey to find love.”  It occurs in a vacuum that entails international jet setting with dates that end in literal fireworks and serenades at personal concerts.  But beyond the logistics, each Bachelor or Bachelorette continues to urge that you open up to let the process work.  Make sure you tell him or her that you’re falling in love, albeit two weeks in and with no verbal reciprocation. It’s the process, Chris Harrison reminds you.  But for whom?

Image via Andi's Twitter

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

#WCW: Joan Smalls

As far as girl crushes go, Joan Smalls is it.  She's the tits. The cat's meow. The bee's knees. The business.  Bottom line, girlfriend kills it.  The face of Gucci and Estée Lauder, featured in Givenchy ad campaigns and nearly outshining Beyonce in her music video no less, Joan Smalls can do no wrong.  She's the Queen B of the fashion industry, counting designers and insiders like Ricardo Tisci, Alexander Wang and Derek Blasberg among her closest friends, and currently ranked the #1 model in the world according to since September 2012.  Further, I respect her determination for pursuing her dreams in an industry notorious for relegating black models to token status.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

How to Score the Best Deals

The sales associate is the fashion equivalent to your SAT tutor.  Lurking in the background, he or she provides the assistance you need to knock your score (or your footwear) out of the park.  While the workings of a sales associate often go unnoticed, calling you first when the Chanel boots go on sale in your size for $300 (yes, it happened to my mom at the Neiman Outlet), immediately shipping you a box of clothes to pick from and send back all the way from Los Angeles (again, my mom with Elaine Kim), or literally hiding merchandise behind the counter until you get first dibs, they’re the essential part of scoring the best wardrobe and often at the utmost convenience.  Why bother venturing into the store when you could just call your sales associate first to see if they have what you’re looking for?

Image via Vogue

Monday, July 14, 2014

The Delicate Art of the Movie Trailer

So, I have this problem.  No, it’s not what you’re thinking.  Get your mind out of the gutter!  Just kidding, what were you thinking…? Anyway, I have this problem with movie trailers.  Each two-minute clip is a teaser, a narrow window into the full-length feature, that attempts to pique your interest just enough that you succumb to watching the entire film.  But, here’s the rub.  It rarely ever does.  Instead, two hours and endless trailers later, I throw my hands up and resign myself to bed because either the trailer aficionados have revealed too much and I’m convinced that I’ve already digested the entirety of the film (hello, weekly previews for the Bachelor and Bachelorette) or it’s just off.  What do I mean by off?  I mean, it’s an Academy Award winning film but because the trailer guy didn’t do his job correctly, I’m put off.  Not put off as in “Oh, this looks bad, but I’ve heard such great things, so I’ll watch it anyway,” but rather, “Wow, this is not what I thought I was in for, so I’m abandoning ship before it even leaves the dock.”  Yeah, that bad.

Image via Vogue

Friday, July 11, 2014

Juicing Demystified

I’m no doctor, but six $12 green juices per day (price being zip code dependent) seems like a rather stunning marketing ploy than a prescription for health.  Yes, I’m talking about juice cleanses.  As the former employee of a cold-pressed juicery, one might expect that I would revere juice cleanses as the Holy Grail, the utmost necessity to detoxify and reset your system.  But honestly, that’s what your liver is for, and if I say so myself has been doing a pretty decent job thus far.

What’s wrong with juice, you ask?  Well nothing except for the fact that the most popular juices tend not to be the low-calorie alkalizing green juices chock full of essential vitamins and minerals but the calorie-laden fruit juices loaded with upwards of 40+ grams of sugar, a whopping 15 grams more than the daily recommended value for an average adult.  But it’s natural!  And here’s where I must interject.  Sugars in whole fruit, a-okay because the fiber helps slow the absorption of sugar; however, juice eliminates said fiber, therefore delivering a shock to your system eerily reminiscent of a candy bar.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

#TBT: An Ode to Gossip Girl

Gossip Girl, here.  Your one and only source into the scandalous lives of Manhattan’s elite.

And boy was it ever.  Even prior to the debut of the television series in 2007, I was what you’d call a fangirl.  My middle school friends and I would each buy a copy of the series, share it and immediately discuss how we wish we could rendezvous in St. Barths with our own real-life Nate Archibald, thus creating an infantile version of a book club. 

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Formatives Moments in Fashion History: The Prom Dress

There are not many occasions more momentous than prom.  Maybe it’s the prom-themed Seventeen Magazine issue on how to do the perfect cat-eye, the racks of low-cut rhinestone pastel dresses lining the Macy’s junior section or the endless buildup by Hollywood producers: Regina George in a neck brace in Mean Girls, Drew Barrymore’s emotional breakdown after being named Prom Queen in Never Been Kissed or Brittany Snow escaping an ax-murderer in Prom Night.  It tops Homecoming, the Sadie Hawkins dance, even Halloween.

No, my brother was not my prom date -just a cool junior. Yes, his hand does look amputated.

And it all begins with the search for the perfect dress (three months in advance, mind you).

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Hey, It's Okay

If you’ve ever read Glamour magazine, you’re well aware of their monthly “Hey, It’s Okay” feature, which highlights those rituals we do that may not be the most logical but nonetheless are human.  And hey, it’s okay.  You shouldn’t feel bad about your quirks.  I’ve compiled a list of those traits that I’m ready to publicly justify.

  1. To be reminded of Bring it On every time you brush your teeth next to someone
  2. To cry over a leather jacket
  3. To religiously follow someone’s Twitter or Instagram but refuse to validate their existence with an official “follow” (and subsequently be heartbroken when they decide to make their account private)
  4. To be more concerned with working out before a family vacation than for spring break
  5. To have a list of future baby names on the Notes app in your iPhone
  6. To have a secret Wedding board on Pinterest
  7. To keep setting that morning alarm to go on a run.  Someday?
  8. To use an $8 cold pressed juice as a chaser

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Weekly Web Roundup

1. Even when I don't buy anything from Intermix, I always leave feeling inspired by their styling.  They put together the most unique outfit combinations and this menswear inspired post is no different. (Style 3 Ways: Modern Menswear, Intermix)
2. Simply because it's about my alma matter. (To Young Minds of Today, Harvard is the Stanford of the East, New York Times)
3. A reverse bucket list?  Now that's new.  My reverse NYC bucket list would have to include watching the ball drop in Times Square for New Year's Eve, really doing anything in Times Square; drive -I've done it once, and that was enough; and lose power while living on the 32nd floor -it happened to my brother. Yikes. (What's on Your New York City Reverse Bucket List? New York Times)
4. Moving to a new city for someone, dating bicoastally, neither of which are attractive propositions but Mr. Right...The Cut investigates the modern relationship milestone. (Moving for Love, The Cut)
5. Talk about a good read from the perennial fixture on these weekly web roundups.  Not one to judge but if you're still sleeping together after two years, you're probably a delusional dater and just need to cut it off. (The Post-Relationship Crutch: When Sleeping With Your Ex Becomes a Cock Block, Vogue)
6. If the similarity attraction theory of psychology rings true and birds of a feather in fact do flock together, I should want a male version of me.  I envision someone who rocks Public School, subscribes to GQ and scours the inter-webs for the best restaurants every time he visits a new city.  But sometimes I think that could be exhausting, not to mention confining.  I foresee something of a warped reality in which we're completely unaware of opposing viewpoints, interests, a cave of sorts.  Now, that's no fun.  But someone who appreciates seeing Neiman Marcus on the credit card statement...that's hard to pass up.  (The Pros and Cons of Dating a Fashion Conscious Man, Vogue)


Tuesday, July 1, 2014

What You Should Have Learned at Cotillion: Modern Manners

Cotillion.  For many, it probably brings back awkward memories of trying to flirt with boys who were simultaneously tripping over your feet whilst trying to perfect their foxtrot.  Remember when “if he’s mean to you, that means he likes you” was the mantra? Or still is...funny how that works.  Middle school flirtation strategies aside, cotillion sought to instill in us manners and social grace: which knife to use first, how to confidently introduce yourself to adults and how to properly write a thank you note.


Monday, June 30, 2014

6 Signs the Menswear Industry is Exploding

You don't have to live in a cave to recognize that menswear is on the rise. From the proliferation of male-specific versions of popular women's retailers to the adoption of high fashion by celebrity athletes, menswear is here to say.

1. Bergorf Goodman finally created a male-specific Instagram account last week, Goodmans, an appropriate move to attract a user base who would otherwise not subscribe to the female-skewed Bergdorfs account and further aligning with their brick-and-mortar business model of Bergdorf Goodman and Bergdorf Men’s Store across the street.  And what better timing than the debut of the spring/summer 2015 menswear shows!

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Paris City Guide: Where to Shop

Alongside New York, London and Milan, Paris is one of the premier fashion destinations in the world, host to semiannual ready-to-wear and couture fashion shows.  Some of the most world-renowned brands were established here: Chanel, Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior.  This, in part, explains my desire to have studied abroad in Paris and why I returned with an extra suitcase (sorry, mom and dad).  But it would be selfish of me to keep my newfound knowledge to myself, which is why I’m sharing with you some of my favorite stores in the beloved city.  Now, I’m not going to pretend that this list is in any way exhaustive but rather the musings of a 20-something who spent 10 weeks here and managed to pick up a few things along the way.
Le Bon Marché
Le Bon Marché may literally mean “the good deal,” but stocked with the latest Anne Demeulemeester, Saint Laurent and Chanel, this department store is anything but.  Even if your wallet may not be Celine Luggage Tote-friendly, a stroll through is absolutely necessary on a trip to Paris if only to browse the stunning space.  Don’t leave without a stop at Le Grande Épicierie, the haute couture of grocery stores with artisanal jams, fresh produce, incredible pastries and its own café.  And for the ex-pats feeling homesick, stop by the “American” section, home to Oreo’s, peanut butter and Reese’s Puffs cereal.  Now you know what they really think about us.
24, rue des Sèvres, 75007
Tel. +33 1 44 39 80 00

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

12 Reasons Why New York is Better Than San Francisco

These kind of statements tend to be polarizing...and the type you'd find on Buzzfeed -comical exaggerations purely orchestrated for page views, but nevertheless, here they are, and I believe in them unequivocally.  Plus, when you're justifying moving from a place in which you honestly can't recall the last time it rained to a place most recently known for its polar vortexes, you have to have reason.

1. Clubs don't close at 2am. And neither do diners (thanks Cafeteria for the early morning fuel!).
2. People don't conceive of a start up T-shirt and cargo shorts as an acceptable outfit in which to leave the house.
3. Public transportation. Enough said.
4. Dominican hair salons. I'm sorry, San Francisco, but your 6% black population (and rapidly declining) is doing nothing for my new growth.
5. Housing is expensive but not impossible.
6. Net-a-Porter has same day shipping.
7. Maybe this is unique to Palo Alto, but walk-in nail salons are not a foreign concept and don't cost the down payment on a new car.
8. Temperature doesn't swing 30-40 degrees, rendering your a.m. outfit impractical merely two hours later.
9. Seamless. 24/7.
10. Sample Sales -- just a quick look on and you'll find yourself in sample sale Mecca (e.g. Alexander Wang, Rag & Bone, Dannijo).
11. Movies premiere here first.
12. Culture: SF MOMA is closed for the next 2 years? Meanwhile in New York, we have the Chelsea art galleries, MOMA, Guggenheim, Whitney, Brooklyn Museum, Jewish Museum, need I say more? Oh and don't forget about Broadway, Lincoln Center and the Apollo Theater.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Defining the "Game Time Decision"

It’s not everyday that you and three friends hop into your car at 11pm on a Friday night to arrive on the Las Vegas Strip at 7am –joggers and streetwalkers the sole inhabitants of an otherwise vacant street.  Caesar’s Palace staring at you in all its gaudy lure, void of the blaring music and flashing lights that commanded hordes of club goers merely hours prior.  But alas, somehow I found my way there Memorial Day Weekend. So let me tell you how it came about.

It all begins with something known as a game time decision.

Urban Dictionary defines the game time decision as a “decision that is held off until the moment when it must be made. Very commonly used by professional coaches, especially of the NFL.”  San Francisco 49ers Coach Jim Harbaugh favored the use of the game time decision during his tenure at Stanford when evaluating players’ injuries, preferring to list them as a “game time decision,” thus eluding his opponents who therefore would have to scheme for the first team player when, in fact, Harbaugh was fully aware that said player was incapable of walking, better yet meaningfully contributing on the field.  Talk about tactics.

Palo Alto City Guide: Where to Eat

As I leave the Bay Area in my rear view mirror, I see it only fitting that I dole out a city guide highlighting the places that have truly made Palo Alto my home for the past four years, which first and foremost, includes food.  Without respite from oft-repetitive cafeteria meals or itis-inducing menus from Row House chefs with items like Chicken Fried Steak with Sausage Gravy (sorry arteries!), I don't know how I could have survived.  With that said, I'm delighted to share with you some of my favorite eats (Orlando, New York, Paris versions to come).

1. Tacolicious: Somewhat of a new kid on the block, Tacolicious is a welcome addition to the street-taco vibe of Lulu’s in Town and Country and the parents-pick-up-the-tab vibe of Reposado.  With an exhaustive drink menu of pitchers and “chupitos,” think shooter-esque mixed shots, to boast, you’re sure to leave happy.  And if, in fact, you’re the kind that chooses to actually eat at a restaurant, I recommend you adhere to the tacos, all sound selections. 
Tip: They don't take reservations, so come early or don't mind waiting during peak hours.
Great for: Pre-senior night pregame, anytime meal


Friday, May 23, 2014

Graduation Dresses 101

If your Facebook news feed is any indication (cap and gown selfies, anyone?) graduation season is upon us.  Cue impending fears about becoming a rent-paying, 401k contributing adult in the "real world" in which your college drinking habits now verge on the fence of alcoholism.  Oh, how times change.  But, let's not get ahead of ourselves.  We have to get there first, which obviously begins with what you'll be wearing to graduation.  

Unlike high school, which mandated white dresses for girls, college graduation is a free for all.  But, before you go crazy, know that graduation is not the time to bust out that cutout sheer-paneled mini dress from Nasty Gal unless you welcome sticky-thighs-on-the-seat syndrome during commencement or disapproving looks from your grandmother.  Instead, opt for something nude or floral and passes the fingertip test.  And voila, you have the Otis stamp of approval!
1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 / 9


Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Weekly Web Roundup

Inspired by the Man Repeller's "the best of the Internet" and Cupcake and Cashmere's "Links I Love," I'm bringing you six of my favorite articles, gifs and videos from the week.  I hope you find the links as equally inspiring and thought provoking as I have.


Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Mother's Day Playlist

By now, you probably know about my proficiency in all things ratchet music related.  Tyga, YG, bring it on.  But I'm also surprisingly well equipped to deliver you a playlist you may not have known that you needed: Mother's Day inspired.  If your mother is anything like mine, Mother's Day is far too insufficient.  Come on, this is your mother we're talking about.  Certainly, the woman who birthed you and tolerated your middle school phase of "drop me off at the mall to hang out with my friends and don't talk to me," deserves an entire week of commemoration.  Perhaps a "mama" inspired playlist isn't exactly what you had in mind, particularly when 'ma is sometimes used as a casual term to hit on girls who are distinctly not your mother.  Anyway, take it or leave it:

*Note my expertise does not extend to technological savvy, thus the need for two differing music apps.

Met Gala Superlatives

The Met Gala.  It's the Oscars of fashion.  The one night a year when you can dress like a total man repeller, and no one can judge you for it.  Except for the hordes of styles blogs and tabloids with their "Worst Dressed" lists.  But hey, who ever said I'm one of them?  Which is why I'm bringing you my Met Gala superlatives.   Because perhaps you wanted to be known as the girl most likely to have gotten dressed in the dark.  I'm talking to you and that 80's prom dress, Sandra Lee.  So, without further ado:

1. Most True to Theme: Liu Wen in Zac Posen

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Do You Know What Day It Is?

No, it’s not October 3rd.  

It’s the next best thing –April 30, aka the 10 year anniversary of the premier of Mean Girls.


Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Coachella Conclusions

For the uninitiated, Coachella exists in our minds as the site of the conspicuous ferris wheel Instagram, hippie chic reincarnated (think flower crowns, fringe, crop tops and crochet), oh and some pretty awesome performers.  This year, I decided to see what all the fuss was about.  So, here's a few conclusions from spending four nights in the desert:


Saturday, March 22, 2014

Spring Break: Cabo Edition

“Mango Deck, you have to go to Mango Deck.”
“Don’t forget Squid Roe!”

“Should I do the 1-day cleanse at Pressed or the 3-day? #cabodiet”
Image via Instagram


Friday, March 14, 2014

Best of the Web: Blogs

You may have noticed that I've been conspicuously absent from the blogosphere this past week.  Blame it on my impending finals.  But in the interest of fulfilling your desire for more Otis Unfiltered, I bring you the next best thing: my six favorite blogs.  The concept is loosely based off my experience working on the "Best of the Web" guide for InStyle magazine, which provides rankings of the best websites and apps in different categories.

1. Ever wondered what Miranda Kerr’s beauty regimen consists of, how to get Cara Delevigne-esque eyebrows or what’s the best waterproof mascara?  Into The Gloss provides an insider’s look into the beauty industry with reviews, makeup artist profiles and in-depth interviews.
2. The Coveteur brings you into the homes of models, musicians, actresses, fashion houses and emerges with gorgeous photos of their enviable closets and insightful interviews.  Think Pusha T, Gabrielle Chanel’s apartment at 31 rue Cambon and the costume designer for Olivia Pope.
3. The New Potato delivers restaurant reviews from fashion, food and entertainment industry influencers.  Bobby Flay’s favorite restaurants?  Man Repeller Leandra Medine’s local digs?  Yes, please!
4. The Cut, the style section of New York Magazine, provides witty commentary on news, fashion and 21st century romance with eye-catching headlines like “The Definitive Emoji-Sexting Glossary,” “At Home with Princeton Mom: Susan Patton is a gleefully snobby rape-denier.  You’re going to love her,” and “Juan Pablo Is the Worst Bachelor in History: And that’s why this season might be the greatest.”  You know you’re going to get a well-developed, highbrow argument about the decidedly lowbrow realm of pop culture.
5. What initially began as a series of outfit of the day posts with Leandra describing how to turn a “man getter” item like an Herve Leger dress into a repeller via seemingly endless layers, The Man Repeller has evolved into a full-blown business with additional writers.  Expect to find self-deprecating humor, creative styling and thoughtful considerations about the direction of the fashion industry.
6. Cupcakes and Cashmere is always certain to provide a little light into what could otherwise be a gloomy day.  Emily Schuman’s outfit posts, entertaining ideas and baked goods inspiration are endlessly cheery.  Think a St. Patrick’s Day ombré cake, pairing Zara with Prada and hosting a whiskey and donuts party just because.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Iggy Azalea's Ode to Clueless

It's only Tuesday, but my #WomanCrushWednesday has to go to Iggy Azalea for remaking cult classic Clueless in her latest music video "Fancy" featuring Charli XCX.  The Australian rapper plays Cher Horowitz -all yellow plaid skirt suit ounce of her- to perfection.  Just watch.


Monday, March 3, 2014


On March 3, 2014, there were 39,921,259 posts uploaded to Instagram with the hashtag, “mcm,” an abbreviation for Man Crush Monday in which users upload pictures of their crushes, typically celebrities but occasionally boyfriends and for the most emboldened among us a real-life crush.  Its counterpart Woman Crush Wednesday reigns equally as popular yet both distant seconds to the holy grail that is Throwback Thursday.

From top left to right: Channing Tatum, Christian Bale, Chris Evans, Pharell, Cam Newton, Dave Franco, James Marsden, Michael Ealy, Tyson Beckford

Oscars 2014: My 7 Favorite Moments

The Oscars.  They came, we saw, and now I break it down for you.  Here are my seven favorite moment's from the 86th Academy Awards.  It conspicuously avoids a "Best Of" fashion feature primarily because I think the Oscars play it safe: pretty girl in a pretty dress.  How inspiring!  Wait for the Met Gala for all of the couture-inspired fashion risks to elicit any sort of emotional response from me.  So without further ado...

1. Cate Blanchett’s Acceptance Speech
If you haven’t seen Blue Jasmine, you’re doing yourself a disservice.  Cate Blanchett delivers an awe-inspiring performance of an Upper East Side socialite’s fall from graces into Xanax-fueled mental instability.  On Sunday, Blanchett won the Academy Award for Best Actress and did so in a stunning fashion.  First off, she stunned in a sheer nude Armani Privé gown with silver beaded detailing and gorgeous Chopard drop earrings.  Secondly, her acceptance speech was spot on in addressing the “random and subjective” nature of the Academy Awards, she congratulated her fellow nominees in a non-Macklemore-at-the-Grammy’s type of way and shattered the idea that “female films with women at the center are niche experiences –they are not. Audiences want to see them, and in fact, they earn money.”  Blanchett FTW.

2. Ellen’s Inside Joke to Jonah Hill
In probably her best joke of the night, Ellen Degeneres said, "Jonah Hill is nominated for his amazing performance in Wolf of Wall Street. Honestly, I have to say, you showed us something in that film that I have not seen for a very, very long time. You get it?"  The thing about a joke is that it becomes exponentially less funny when you have to explain it, so here’s the back-story: In Wolf of Wall Street, Jonah Hill publicly masturbates at a pool party.  Ellen is a lesbian.  Think about it. 

3. The Selfie that Crashed Twitter
The Oscars are a breeding ground for live Tweeting for attendees and viewers alike.  Where else would you find out Kerry Washington couldn’t eat the pizza Ellen ordered because she’s gluten-free #SnacksInMyPurse or see your timeline collectively go really when hearing Matthew McConaughey admit that his hero is his future self?  So, when Ellen literally crashed Twitter’s servers by posting the biggest celebrity selfie in –ever, you knew it was a momentous occasion.  It’s not everyday you have Jennifer Lawrence, Bradley Cooper, Angelina Jolie, Julia Roberts, Kevin Spacey, Brad Pitt, Meryl Streep, Lupita Nyong’o and her brother in one photo.

4. Steve McQueen’s Reaction to Receiving Best Picture
There’s something delightful about witnessing pure, unadulterated happiness.  And that’s how I’d classify McQueen’s jumping up and down after delivering his acceptance speech for Best Picture.  12 Years a Slave delivered an unflinching portrayal of slavery with stellar performances by a star-studded cast that included Lupita Nyong’o, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Dano and Michael Fassbender, so it was only fitting that the Academy Awards ended with the entire cast on stage celebrating.

5. Darlene Love Singing During Her Acceptance
Another shameless plug for one of my favorite movies of last year: 20 Feet from Stardom, which took home the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature.  It chronicles the lives of some of the most well known voices but most obscure faces in musical history.  Try to imagine the Rolling Stone’s “Gimme Shelter” without the piercing scream of “Rape, Murder!” and you begin to understand the importance of the backup singers who have brought shape and style to popular music.  So, Darlene Love’s singing her way through her acceptance speech was just the cherry on top of her incredible struggle from obscurity to Grammy winner documented in the film.

6. Lupita’s Acceptance Speech
The awards season has catapulted Lupita Nyong’o from unknown to “it” girl.  A fresh face in an otherwise established industry (18 Oscar noms, Meryl Streep, really?), Lupita has perfected the role of the grateful, gracious nominee.  She has made a name for herself not only with her powerful performance in 12 Years a Slave but also her colorful red carpet appearances.  It seems the girl can do no wrong, which she made even clearer in her astute acceptance speech: “It doesn’t escape me for one moment that so much joy in my life is thanks to so much pain in someone else’s, and so I want to salute the spirit of Patsey for her guidance.  And for Solomon, thanks for telling her story and your own.”  No matter where you are from, your dreams are valid.

Let's look at Lupita Nyong'o's Oscars win reac... on Twitpic 

7. Jared Leto’s Hommebré

This wouldn’t be an Oscars post if I didn’t mention the gloriousness that is Jared Leto’s hair.  He rivals The Bachelor’s Andi for best ombré.  Call it the hommebré (I wish I came up with that on my own.  Thanks, NYMag).  Oh, and congrats on the Award for Best Supporting Actor in Dallas Buyer’s Club.


Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Formative Moments in Fashion History: Leather Jacket

Inspired by Dave Chapelle’s “Great Moments in Hook-Up History," in which he recounts memorable tales of sexual escapades, I present the second post in a series of “Formative Moments in Fashion History.” I am often asked why fashion means so much to me and how I can justify dedicating my career to what many deem a trivial pursuit.  I hope to articulate why I’m abnormally distressed about who will be Karl Lagerfeld’s successor at Chanel and how I can justify spending my weekly paycheck on an “investment piece” by bringing you a series of influential moments that have defined my perspective on style, the fashion industry and what they mean to me.

Read any style blog about wardrobe “must-haves” and you’re bound to (Kanye, see what I did there?) find mention of a leather jacket.  And for good reason.  It’s an incredibly versatile piece that toughens up an otherwise feminine look and not to mention just exudes cool.  So let me tell you about how mine came to be.
The leather jacket makes an appearance on the Paris metro next to a pair of boobs.


Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Weekly Web Roundup

Inspired by the Man Repeller's "the best of the Internet" and Cupcake and Cashmere's "Links I Love," I'm bringing you six of my favorite articles, gifs and videos from the week.  I hope you find the links as equally inspiring and thought provoking as I have.

Spring Break Must-Haves

Talk to any senior in college and you're sure to hear about how they're struggling to maintain the eagerness and motivation that characterized freshmen year.  It's why we lament the overeager freshmen ruining the curve, relentlessly contributing in class and arriving en masse to fraternity parties.  The most recent bout of senioritis has me feigning for spring break, which at a month away feels like a distant thought.  But searching for the perfect poolside attire is making the impending finals feel manageable.  Here's a list of what's currently on my mind, the perfect compliment for margaritas in Cabo San Lucas and tanning on South Beach in Miami.

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© Otis Unfiltered

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