Come Through, Plaid Suit!

Suit – New York and Company // Shoes – New York and Company // Handbag – Estee Lauder // Sunnies – Old // Images – Nichole Alex Photography

Hey there!  More rain in the Los Angeles forecast, but it won’t stop my grind.  The weekend awaits another fabulous collaboration!  And speaking of collaboration, the images are again by the talented photographer, Nichole Alex.  She surely helped me come through on camera in this stunning plaid suit!

 

I’m sure we all have certain things that we shy away from wearing; like the skirt that is a tad too short, or an outfit that is a little too flashy for our conservative nature.  Well, if you take notice on most of my posts I don’t wear pants.  And if the clothing I wear is in the pants family, it’ll more than likely be a pair of jeans.  This is mainly because I’ve always been self-conscious of my thighs, hips and stomach. Even when I was 30 pounds lighter.  I’ve always felt that dresses were more complimentary to my body type and I still do.  But, there is always that game changer, and this plaid suit is just that for me.

I was wooed by New York and Company again,  when I saw an online exclusive for this beautiful two piece suit.  I love everything about it.  And everything in it!

Until next time, love and light!

Julie

Spring Time: A Floral Explosion

 

Enchant One Shoulder Maxi Dress – New York and Company // Strappy Lace-Up Sandals – Nordstrom Rack // Purple Clutch Bag – Vintage // Sunnies – Old // Statement Necklace – Laura Gems // Photography – Nichole Alex

Spring has sprung! And your girl is over the moon! Even though rain is in the forecast for Wednesday, it doesn’t matter. It’s time for a wardrobe switch up and a floral explosion!

This period isn’t the only time we should wear floral patterns, but with fresh blooms, cherry blossoms and the like all around us, it’s right in line with the season!

This fabulous one shoulder maxi dress is a head turner!  From the IAMNYANDCO collection; it was love at first sight!  The colors are so vibrant and the fabric flows, with every movement of your body.  I paired this dress with some lace-up sandals and a vintage bag I pulled from my closet archives.  The necklace was a gift from my sister Beverly on my wedding day.  Thanks sis, it’s definitely a keeper!

The dress is currently on sale right now, so you’d be wise to purchase now before it sells out.  And I can assure you, this one will!

Happy Spring, Stylistas!  And until next time,

Love and light!

Julie

 

Black + White = CLASSIC

Peplum Blouse – New York and Company // Pencil Skirt – New York and Company // Pumps – Sam Edelman // Purse – Gifted Vintage // Obi Belt – New York and Company

Stylistas!  Praying you had a stress less and productive week.  I’m laying low this weekend, enjoying time spent with friends and family.  But next weekend, back to that grind, lol!  Now let’s talk about something classic.

Monochromatic, chic, classic…all terms used to describe black and white fashion and style.  Think the classic tuxedo, the crisp white button down shirt, the little black dress, black and white gingham.  Peep Janelle Monae’s style.

Recently, I found this beautiful black and white peplum shirt to wear to a memorial service.  I decided to go non-traditional and nix the all black. This look is classic…and I’m loving it.  I hope you like it, too!

Wishing you positive days ahead, folks.

I love you and until next time…

Peace and blessings!

Julie

 

Los Angeles Style Fashion Week Finale: Runway Shows by Thomas Wylde and Honee

 

What a week, Stylistas!  I  got the opportunity to witness the final evening of runway shows for the Los Angeles Style Fashion Week on Sunday.  Fashion designers Thomas Wylde and Honee were showcased.

The first show of the evening featured the designs of Thomas Wylde, who is female and British born.  Paula Thomas founded the Thomas Wylde brand in 2006.  Known as a global luxury ready-to-wear and accessories label, Ms. Thomas was recruited by Givenchy to work with Julien Macdonald.  Her brand is best known for its “nuanced designs, innovative fabrications, quality construction and impeccable detailing.”   Her fashions are also worn by celebrities such as Angelina Jolie, Halle Berry and Heidi Klum.  In 2015, her first flagship store opened in Los Angeles, California.  I was taken by her use of leather, zippers and flowing fabrics.  Everything showcased was absolutely breathtaking.

The other runway show highlighted the designs of Honee.  Her show’s concept was definitely cutting edge and something to talk about.  Honee’s background is in industrial design and she developed an interest in fashion because of her stylish mother.  She attended New York’s famous High School of Performing Arts, where she cultivated her love of the arts.   Honee believes that we use fashion as a personal statement to the world, and she chooses models who appear to be “living sculptures”.  Her vision  is apparent in the photos.  See below.

All in all, it was a fantastic evening!  I was also delighted to finally connect face-to-face with two Los Angeles based style bloggers.  Looking forward the next LA Style Fashion Week!

Shout out to God, because he is working in my life in so many ways to make my dreams come true!  Stay tuned for the full story on my new opportunity in a blog post coming your way!

Until next time, peace and blessings!

Love y’all!

Julie

Sneakers and Dresses.

Dress – New York and Company // Sneakers – Converse (Chuck Taylors)

Hey there!  Did you spring forward this morning?  I spent most of my morning working with a wonderful photographer, Nichole Alex. As a newbie in front of the camera, she made my experience a wonderful one!  Check her out. Photos from our collaboration are coming soon!

Y’all know I love a pretty dress.  But how about wearing a pretty dress with sneaks?  The beautiful thing about style is that it is individual, and we should own it.  As style architects we shape and mold. Most of us can even point out a time or a person who influenced  a facet of our personal style.

Many years ago, I saw an older woman (I was very young at the time) in a flowing midi skirt with a pair of brightly colored, high top Chuck Taylors.  She was definitely dressed edgy,  with a t-shirt, bolero denim jacket, fashionable tortoise shell eyeglasses and a neat pixie hair cut.  Her image is still etched in my mind. I appreciated the risk she took, because some fashion experts might see this type of pairing as a faux paus. However, I knew from the moment I laid eyes on her, tennis shoes and dresses would be a part of my style arsenal.  I’m 50 plus and counting, and it’s still with me.

Stylistas, do you have a outfit combo you’re afraid to rock?  Need some help putting it together?  Give me a call, and I’ll be happy to assist.  For more details, please click the “styling services” tab.

Until next time, love and light!

Julie

 

 

 

Trinkets from the Pan African Film Festival’s (PAFF) Artfest

Cold Shoulder BlouseVelvet Monkey Designs // Bell Bottom Jeans Forever 21 Plus // Wedges – BCBG Generation // Rope NecklaceChidoki’s World // Sunnies – Old

Stylistas!  Hey there.  LA Fashion Week begins this Wednesday!  It’ll be my first time attending, and let me tell you…I’m stoked! More to come, soon!

I purchased this cold shoulder blouse from a company called Velvet Monkey and the rope necklace from a company Chidoki’s World.  Both businesses are in Los Angeles and both were vendors at the Pan African Film Festival’s Artfest.

Every year in Los Angeles during the month of February, the Pan African Film Festival is held. This festival promotes “cultural understanding among peoples of African descent” through exhibiting art and film.  The Los Angeles Times in 2013 called the film festival “the largest black film festival” in the United States.  Aside from the variety of films by producers from all over the world, there is the Artfest.  Fine artists from all over the world participate.  Everything sold is rooted in Africa and its Diaspora.  Up for grabs during the Artfest, are fine art and photography, designer and traditional fashions, jewelry, home decor, fashion accessories.   

The festival usually occurs during the second week in February.  So, if you happen to be in the Los Angeles area during that time, this is something you don’t want to miss!

Peace and blessings,

Love y’all!

Julie

Countdown to Springtime: Wake Up and Smell the Flowers.

Floral Wrap Dress Forever 21 Plus // Necklace – New York and Company // Shoes – Baldi London // Sunnies – Targetstyle // Handbag – Estee Lauder

Happy Wednesday, beautiful people!

Okay, I’m getting stoked about Springtime!  So, every opportunity I get to dress like we’re already in the throes of perpetual sunshine, I’m doing it!

I found this very pretty, floral wrap dress in my local Forever 21 store in the “plus” section right before Valentine’s Day.  Yes, the plus section.  Also, know that wrap dresses are very complimentary to most body types; and especially the curvy girl!

Here are a couple of quick facts: 1) Did you know that the average woman in the United States wears a size 14-16? 2) Plus sizes begin at size 12.

Let the countdown to springtime begin!

I love you guys!

Until next time, peace and a whole lot of blessings!

Julie

 

Dress for Your Day: Stylish Paradox Empowers & Inspires Youth

Hey there, Stylistas!

I’ve been dealing with a little bit of burnout, not to mention the unusually rainy skies in Los Angeles, which has stifled my ability to take pictures.  But know that I am committed and not going anywhere!

A couple of weeks ago, I was contacted by one of my children’s advisors to speak to a group of teen leaders at a regional conference for the Top Teens of America.  Did I tell you how excited I was for the ask?!

Many years ago, I had a conversation about my desire to speak or be a mentor to young people on an ongoing basis. Didn’t know how it would happen, but this was just the beginning.  I’m watching God work in my life.

My theme for my presentation was “Dress for Your Day”, which focused on the importance of showing up for important meetings, job and/or college interviews presenting your best self.  The attendees were all on the college track, so I felt it was very important for them have this knowledge as they move forward.  I spoke about not only looking good on the outside (because it is the first thing people see), but having a winning, personable attitude to accompany your outer appearance.  The teens were engaged and asked a variety questions.

Another highlight of the day was when I was introduced to a dynamic young lady named Dymond Walker, who is 16 years old and the CEO of a digital magazine called “My Perfect Plus”.  Ms. Walker decided to present her publication to the world as an outlet and a safe haven for all who have been bullied or who are looking to re-define themselves. To read more about her and the publication, click here.

Ms. Dymond Walker, Editor and Chief of My Perfect Plus

Miss Walker and I will be working together in the future.  I see a styling session coming on!

Until my next post and adventure, peace and blessings!

I love y’all!

Julie

 

#TheFierce50 & Stories of Empowerment: Stylish Paradox meets 2ChicDesigns

Today, February 19th is the launch of the first annual Fierce 50 campaign, bringing together 50 female bloggers, 50+ in celebration of midlife on the 50th day of the year! This campaign will bring awareness with the hopes of shifting the worldwide perception of the 50+ demographic. Even ESPN Journalist, Hannah Storm offered her words of wisdom and was interviewed in support of The Inaugural Fierce 50 Campaign.

I’d like to introduce you to to my amazing #fierce50 partner, Cynthia Lawson, the creator of 2chicdesigns!  A talented designer of handbags and accessories at www. 2chicdesigns.etsy.com, she is also a wife, mother of two adult children, grandmother and sales representative.  I know… she has a lot of jobs!

When Cynthia and I first spoke over the phone, there was an instant connection!  She is a beautiful spirit, a woman of strong faith and hails from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Cynthia’s fashion journey began in 2000, when took her seven year old daughter to a modeling agency. To her surprise, when the casting session ended, she was asked to model too! Initially, she was very shocked, but accepted the assignment with immense gratitude and enthusiasm.  She modeled with three agencies that employed both professional models and ordinary working girls of all ages. This is where her fashion education began, as she learned about dressing for her body and ways to enhance her personal style.

The runway shows she participated in were exciting, however it took time for her to perfect her signature look. Along the way, she noticed how the industry was obsessed with youth culture and appearances. Not to mention, if you were outdated or looked old, you were invisible.

Cynthia’s mission over the last fifteen years has been to overcome this stereotype. Armed with fashion magazines and the E network, she often noticed that women like her were not represented. But in 2009, she discovered a hidden world of fashion blogs written by stylish women of all ages. These inspirational blogs became the fuel she needed to bring out her true self.

Cynthia worked her way from the top down and updated her look with a sleek new hairstyle. She realized that a good hair style can immediately update your look and take years away! She searched for the appropriate style of clothing that complimented her form, and became adventurous with her color palette.  As she looked at herself in the mirror she noticed, she looked younger than she did fifteen years ago.

Her personal “style formula”  was created and she continues to add to it.  This has been the guiding light in her life and has really given her purpose.

 

Cynthia’s  family has been an inspiration and has encouraged her on this journey.  Her husband recently retired and they recently celebrated 27 years of marriage!  Her husband has also become her photographer.

Cynthia is grateful to God that he has orchestrated her life for good and stands on the scripture Psalm 92:12-15.  She believes that she will continue to flourish, grow and she supports the notion that the Fierce50 campaign will change the way the world sees woman 50 and older!

She quoted, “We are fierce and powerful, and most of all supportive of each other.”

Ladies, make sure you look Cynthia up ….  And let me tell you, she designs some fly handbags!

Finally, if you have enjoyed reading this blog post and learning more about the Fierce 50 Campaign, please visit this page http://catherinegraceo.com/meet-women-fierce-50-campaign/ to see an archive where you will find each of the women that are participating in The Fierce 50 along with their blog posts.  If you or someone you know is interested in either joining or supporting the movement, please contact info@catherinegraceo.com.  We have  lots more planned for this year and beyond so, stay tuned!

Join the movement!

Until next time, love and light!

Julie @_stylishparadox

To read my story, go to http://2chicdesigns.blogspot.com/

 

 

Are You Fierce? Nikki Knows.

@bethbriggsillustration

“Today I am…years old. I still look good. I appreciate and enjoy my age. A lot of people resist transition and therefore never allow themselves to enjoy who they are. Embrace the change, no matter what it is; once you do, you can learn about the new world you’re in and take advantage of it. You still bring to bear all your prior experience, but you are riding on another level. It’s completely liberating.”
Nikki Giovanni

Nikki knows.  And so do those who read this blog.  I am all about women being empowered and confident in who they are.  So, when I stumbled across the Fierce 50 Campaign as I trolled Instagram posts a couple of weeks ago, I knew I wanted to be a part!

Today’s post is a precursor to the amazing launch of this campaign that will occur this Sunday on the 50th day of the year, when 50 women, all 50+ bloggers are coming together to empower and support each other!  Originated by fellow 50+ blogger, Catherine Graceo and three other fabulous bloggers from all over the United States, this international campaign was borne out of the need to show brands that women of a certain age are relevant, beautiful and should not be marginalized by the fashion industry.  We are not the women of our mother’s generation and continue to be the most powerful consumers in the marketplace.

Some quick facts:

  • Americans 50+ account for half of all consumer spending but are targeted by just 10% of marketing (AARP).
  • The Internet is the most important source of information for Boomers when they make major purchasing decisions (Zoomerang).
  • Boomers outspend younger adults online 2:1 on a per-capita basis (Forrester, 2009).

Each person who is a part of this campaign has been partnered up with a fellow blogger, turned sister friend who we will feature on our blogs during the launch.  So make sure you take notice, Sunday, February 19th, as #thefierce50campaign takes flight.  I can’t wait to introduce you to my amazing partner!   #jointhemovement

Until next time, love and light!

Julie

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