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Ph. via Pinterest, Asos, Net-a-Porter // 1. Phyton Sneakers, Givenchy [ 595 EUR ]; 2. Antigona Envelope Leather Clutch Bag, Givenchy [ 890 EUR ]; 3. Lace-paneled Cashmere & Silk Jumper, Jason Wu [ 1.040 EUR ]; 4. White Sleveless Shirt, ASOS [ 28,44 EUR ]
 

I love color, I do, but sometimes I just prefer the absolute absence of it. It’s simpler, it’s cleaner. Black & White translate the extremes in life, the Yin & Yang and though I know the whole world is made of plenty of shades of gray (too many, most of the times), sometimes I wish things would be this simple – Black or White?

In fashion, Black & White is the classic of all classics (as in the movies), the safe bet, the choice you can never go wrong with, the epitome of elegance and that thing that always works. And I love it – the uncomplicated extremes – it’s either this or that – living in healthy cohabitation, complementing each other. I’ve also been craving, more and more, the upgraded version of myself, my style, my world – in & out: the edgier, simpler and refined version of who I am. E. E. Cummings said “It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are” and I guess it does. I’ve been betraying my needs, my dreams, myself, delaying ‘me’ for to long, only to realize that’s the worst possible mistake one can ever make. Be humble, be kind, be true to your values and faithful to what you know is right, but don’t be too naive and don’t let people walk all over you. Because they’ll do, oh they’ll do and it’ll hurt. The good side to that is that you always learn something from pain and struggle, if you’re smart enough to do so… “For what it’s worth: it’s never too late or, in my case, too early to be whoever you want to be. There’s no time limit, stop whenever you want. You can change or stay the same, there are no rules to this thing. We can make the best or the worst of it. I hope you make the best of it. And I hope you see things that startle you. I hope you feel things you never felt before. I hope you meet people with a different point of view. I hope you live a life you’re proud of. If you find that you’re not, I hope you have the strength to start all over again.” (F. Scott Fitzgerald)

So, perhaps it is because it’s Autumn and September is the official rentrée and you just want to clean all the mess up and prepare for the end of yet another year – as they say in GoT: Winter is coming. Perhaps it is because when you hit the bottom (or close) you have nowhere to go but up. And there’s nothing better than a clean plate, a clear conscience, a fresh start. Perhaps it is because you realize everything happens for a reason and even the bad decisions and bad people you come across are stepping stones to a better future, in which you’ll know better, be better, do better. So, here’s to new chapters and new beginnings! May they always come whenever we need them! ;) :D

Lykke-Li-Other-Stories-1-Vogue-28Aug2014-pr_b
Ph. Lykke Li x & Other Stories 

We all know by now I have a huge crush on Lykke Li… so, let’s skip that part and focus on the collaboration thing here (moment for childish bumping up and down and hysteric “yay’s”). The news broke back in March (I was probably living on the Moon because up until two days ago I was completely unaware of this) and now, the first pictures and film (bellow) were released.

“be the man you want to marry”

I am super excited. I love her style, in and off-stage, not only because she’s highly charismatic, but also due to her strong masculine aesthetics, yet still somehow feminine – a delicate balance I’m always intrigued about and fascinated for (more on androgyny here). I like the good materials, the black, the leather, the clean lines and timeless pieces. I am aware I won’t probably be lucky enough to reach any of them, but who cares? It’s great to know they’re out there anyway. :)

Related readings:
>>  Lykke Li Crafts a Story  //  Interview Magazine
>>  First Look: Lykke Li for & Other Stories  //  VOGUE UK

Never in my life I was called beautiful so many times as in the past months. Really. I don’t know what shifted from the past – I’m not fishing for compliments here, let me set that straight, because I’m aware I’m not ugly, per se, but I was also always pretty conscious that I am nothing above average – I was always the funny & nice girl of the group, who talks too much and too loud and can’t live without sarcasm, and I am comfortable in that role. Now, apparently, I grew up and sport easily a certain poise and grace (I’m not really aware of but it’s really good to know). Truth be told, I take it a bit offensively to be called ‘pretty’, especially from men, especially when that’s too emphasized, too many times. Beauty is fleeting and relative and I don’t want people to like me, approach me or favor me because I’m pretty or sexy. Yes, I like to feel and be found beautiful – who doesn’t?! I won’t be an hypocrite about it – but I don’t like to hear it all the time or get special treatment for it. It’s annoying, diminishing and makes me feel like a decor piece.

Beauty is a rather complex concept that always had me wonder – what does make a person beautiful? And why does it have such an huge impact on us? Why is looking good of such value when it’s something fundamentally out of our control?! Everyone likes a pretty girl, but a pretty girl for me might not be the same thing as a pretty girl for you. As well as with men: what makes a man attractive? I was never very fond of ‘the hunk’ – the hunk is a sight for sore eyes, but it’s pretty much that, most of the times. And for landscaping appreciation I’d rather travel and see the world.

CameronRussell-01

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, they say, and even though we’re programmed by advertising, pop culture, society, etc, to insert ourselves in certain parameters of beauty, I still believe that true beauty lies way beneath and has much more to do with the raw and real than with the fantasy created by an industry (and you’re reading this from a true Fashion lover who wants to someday too be a part of that industry). For me, a woman is beautiful when she’s authentic, open, smart, strong, funny, witty, slightly innocent but graceful and true to herself and others. Sexiness comes after, from confidence. This is the kind of women I value, admire and aspire to be. The rest is genetics and cosmetics – the first a matter of luck, the second a matter of balance.

 

You know what’s really, powerfully sexy? A sense of humor. A taste for adventure. A healthy glow. Hips to grab on to. Openness. Confidence. Humility. Appetite. Intuition. … Smart-ass comebacks. Presence. A quick wit. Dirty jokes told by an innocent-looking lady. … A storyteller. A genius. A doctor. A new mother.
A woman who realizes how beautiful she is.

- Courtney E Martin (via That Kind of Woman)

 

So, it was with great delight that I watched this Cameron Russell (27, American, Model) TED Talk D. (who’s quite addicted to TED Talks and I should follow) recommended me. I’ve got to confess I didn’t know her very well, before. I’ve seen her in plenty of adds and magazines of course, but I didn’t know her story. Turns out she’s beauty + lots of brains + strong values, therefor a new found icon of mine. Easy. ;)

And now, the said TED Talk (among the 20 most popular):

 

Thoughts? :)

 

Related readings:
>>  Cameron Russell, the renegade model  //  Telegraph.co.uk
>>  Cameron Russell, a Model, puts looks aside  //  The New York Times
>>  Model Cameron Russell: I get what I don’t deserve  //  CNN

 

The other day, while helping some friends set up their IKEA stuff at their new lovely place, I got to think how my taste and style has evolved through time. As much as I fancy a bright colored wall, over the years I’ve learned to appreciate the peaceful and timeless charm of a neutral based decor. It’s clean, it’s calming and it gives space for the light to shine in and through. I’ve had my bedroom walls painted bright orange for a few years. It was an idea that struck my mind, and without thinking too much I bought a bottle of tangerine paint by Agatha Ruiz de la Prada and got it done. I was eighteen – I am stubborn and impulsive even now, imagine how it was back then – it was cool for awhile but then I realized I’d grow up and it just made me anxious and nervous somehow. So I tuned down things, took matters in my own hands (as usual), planned things a bit this time and turned my sanctuary into something quiet, tasteful and peaceful. The key? Neutral colors and comfy textiles.

If somehow you relate to this and need inspiration, feel free to indulge bellow…
I can perfectly see my future house as something like this – like walking in Heaven [with a pop of color here and there just to brighten things up every once in a while, of course... ;)].

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Hello there, everyone! Hope everything’s great over that side of the screen. I would apologize for my lack of posting but, let’s be honest: it’s August – the last thing most of you have been thinking is ‘oh, damn, I haven’t checked that blog in ages!’, for sure… ;) At least I hope so, ’cause that means you’re enjoying your vacation just as you should. I forgive you, don’t worry… ;)

Over at this side, I am back to work, back in Luanda… Cacimbo is over, but then again, what good is summer for if you can’t have your toes dipped in sand?! Yeah, bummer…

Turns out, days go by far more easily when you’re in good company, one of those being my musical muses. I have 3 current Girl Crushes I’ve been hearing non-stop: Lykke Li (4evaaaa!! :D ), (Jillian) Banks (recently found by a hint of a friend of mine – thanks, honey! ;) ) & Jessie Ware (an habitué by now). I’m seriously infatuated with the three of them… I can listen to Lykke Li’s new album – I Never Learn (neither do I, dear…) – (so so good) over 10x a day (I could tell you my favorite songs, but I would have to write down pretty much all of them and that’s just silly). No kidding. And Banks Goddess (this song in particular is my new anthem) has been on pretty heavy rotation on my head (and phone).

I have this problem with songs I really really like: I hear them non-stop until can’t hear them no more for at least awhile. Obsessive behavior, perhaps? Nahhh. Just a lot of commitment (on the short run, anyway).

Now you tell me, are they or aren’t they good?

 

Lykke Li’s I Never Learn was released back in May, Banks will be officially debuting Goddess, the album, in the 5th of September and Jessie Ware releases her second album – Tough Love – in early October. :)

Sales_Finds// ZARA clutch (Pre-Summer/14)

When I started celebrating my upcoming holidays, everyone in Angola (well everyone, really) told me as soon as stepped foot in Portugal I would have the urge to buy buy buy – spend spend spend, because I’d been without it for so long. Turns out, as it happens with me in a lot of other things I realized I fall apart from that trend. So, before, I used to worry about my addiction to shopping, now I might have the opposite problem that is entering any store and refuse to spend my money. Even on those things I had already planned on getting. It’s weird… This is a new me and I don’t recognize it, but well, I’m proud of it – you go, girl! :D

However, there’s an exception to every rule, so, aside from things I had to buy – beauty needs mostly and a few stuff at PRIMARK – one thing fell madly on my radar: this gorgeous powder pink studded beauty (for 39,99€), with compartmentalized interiors and a lot of charm. Powder pink is one of my favorite hues even though I am not that big of fan of pink. It’s girly and rebel at the same time and I can easily picture it with a bunch of differently looks. Isn’t it gorgeous? It was love at first sight. :)

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