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ChaChing

20 Jul

ChingChing

in the city. the New.York.City.
awesome street art with awesome commentary.
change.

stylecasting it up!

22 Jun

ever wanted to go to a party at a hair salon? I didn’t even know I wanted to but I realized I did on Wednesday night.

Sponsored by StyleCaster, Teddie Kossof Salon, SecondCityStyle, Sebastian  Professional and ChicagoStreetStyle this networking event brought together a wonderful group of women, all decked out in amazing clothing, and ready to get glamed up. O! and did we!

That’s right. This is the best part: You could get your hair styled by one of the stylists from Teddie Kossof Salon… while sippin wine and jammin to dance tunes…

My stylist was Mindy. She is awesome. She got her inspiration from my vintage sailor inspired outfit and went retro. I went from having a high bun to a faux-bob with retro waves in the front. reallly amazing! and it took ten minutes. it was so dramatic that when i got home everyone thought i cut my hair.

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the other great part was meeting new friends.

It was wonderful to meet Francia from Chicago Blogger Network and Meghan and Abbie from Stylecasters. the ladies rock. I even had a chat with Amy from Chicago Street Style. keeping it low key.

yes, oddly this event was in the suburbs but it was totally worth it. The Teddy Kossof Salon is an awesome space (it has 2 floors and over 30 stylists)  and the stylists are amazing. worth the drive.

(pssst! win a gift certificate if your the first to comment on this post!)

yup! this stylejuncture event was a total success! cheers to starting the weekend early and right!

Guest Post by Adam & Eve-Masturbation: Not Just For Men

12 Jun

For whatever reason, there is a slight misconception in public opinions that masturbation is more of a male activity than a female one. This perception comes from everything from movies and television, to music and literature, and even people’s personal experience. Unfortunately, however this leads to the indirect but still improper suggestion that while men can and do get themselves off whenever they choose, women rely more on their sexual partner to get off. This simply isn’t true. Female masturbation may not be as popular of a topic in pop culture and entertainment, but that doesn’t mean women aren’t doing it. In fact, you may be surprised at a number of studies that indicate that a huge proportion of women admit to getting themselves off on a regular basis – and really, why shouldn’t they?

Look, as you know, having a partner in bed is great. It opens up the possibility of all kinds of sexual sensations and activities that you just can’t gain on your own, whether you’re a man or a woman. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t still generate a great deal of pleasure by yourself. Chances are, you know your body better than anybody, and that also means that you know what kinds of touches and movements get you off best. This is something that you should certainly take advantage of, because women everywhere are doing just that – and because masturbation, while pleasurable and fun, is also proven to be very healthy and relaxing.

Another perk of satisfying yourself now and then is that you can try some things that might be harder or more uncomfortable to try with a partner. For instance, you might consider heading to a sex shop like Adam & Eve, and looking into the various toys and accessories they have available to help you with getting yourself off. Many of these toys can actually be fun with a partner as well, but the majority of them are meant somewhat for personal pleasure.

Again, there is no substitute for the satisfaction of having a good partner in bed. But at the same time you shouldn’t limit yourself sexually, and you are not dependent on anyone for pleasure. Try experimenting with yourself, and try out a few sex toys designed to help you maximize your pleasure. You may be surprised at how much fun you can have getting yourself off, and again, you may find that it both relaxes you and increases your sexual appetite. Pay no attention to the false assumption that masturbation is for men – women everywhere will tell you that couldn’t be further from the truth.

Anchor Bags=The Perfect Summer Purse

7 Jun

I love looking at ridiculously over priced fashion items on Pinterest for inspiration.  I stumbled upon this crocheted purse with a leather strap and anchor closure by Balenciaga.  This bag retails for $1,125.  Not only is that so not in my price range even if it was I wouldn’t spend that much on a bag that someone else has!  I prefer items that are more unique and have that handmade touch or are vintage.  This almost guarantees no one else will have your bag.  My go to source for such fashion finds is Etsy!  These are my favorites:

This wristlet comes with a sailboat mirror!

Which is your favorite?  Or do you still prefer the $1,125 Balenciaga over these fab finds?!

Guest Post-Fighting Cancer With Beauty

25 May

This guest post was written by Jackie who does outreach for the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance.   “I have always had a passion for fashion-from shoes to makeup, nail polish to handbags, and everything in between! Coupled with that is belief that all women need to feel beautiful, no matter what circumstances they may be facing. Women are powerful beings and WE need to realize it! Sadly, many women are hearing those devastating words “you have cancer.” Despite a cancer diagnosis, women can still feel beautiful in their own skin. Fashion is a wonderful way to feel strong and confident. I would like to share with your audience the reality of cancer and how women can say: “YES I have cancer–but I am no less beautiful than I was before my diagnosis.””

“People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within.” ~ Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

Many women forget about the importance of their physical identity after a cancer diagnosis. Fashion can aid women who not only triumph over the battle against breast or lung cancer, but also for those who visit their doctors for mesothelioma regularly. Many alternatives exist to help women cope with these struggles and negative aspects of a cancer diagnosis. Think of this as a time to be pampered.

Hair loss is a common side effect of cancer treatment, but can be easily countered with a few simple accessories. Perhaps try a wig, hat, turban, or scarf. Eyebrows can be drawn on with feathering techniques in complimentary colors. Fake eyelashes may even be applied. Brush real hair with a soft brush and use a mild shampoo and conditioner. As always, remember to consult with a healthcare provider before applying chemicals to the body or to the hair.

Mild soaps, creams, and ointments that are free of perfume and alcohol can aid in moisturizing the skin. Pat the skin dry while drying off after a shower. Also, try shaving with an electric razor rather than a handheld razor. Preventing dry hands and feet can be done through a soak in Epsom salt. Soft shoes, cotton socks, and gel inserts are recommended to keep feet from any pain. Also, wear clothing that is soft and comfortable, such as cotton. Dresses are one easy way to look beautiful and keep skin feeling great.

Nails are another area where pampering is a must. By using a nail strengthener and moisturizer, nails can stay healthy and look beautiful, a definite confidence booster. Acetone-free nail polish remover is suggested in order to retain nail moisture. It is also recommended to avoid false nails and gel wraps that provide breeding grounds for bacteria.

According to Mona Wade of Beauty Through Cancer, “It’s a proven fact that attitude has a lot to do with healing. So the better women feel while they are going through treatment, the better and the faster they are going to heal.” Different women will find beauty through different things. Whether a bottle of mascara or a shiny new coat of nail polish, it’s time to let the beauty shine in your courageous fight against cancer.

Kiwi Coconut Flognarde

17 May

 

I had originally planned to make a mango and coconut flognarde based off of this recipe.  Mangoes are one of my favorite fruits and I had picked up four really ripe ones.  Come baking day I was down to only one.  I went to the store for more but they were all out!  What to do?  Well, they had a package of ripe kiwis so I decided I would modify the recipe and use kiwis instead.  This is a wonderfully simple recipe which is just my kind of cooking.  It turned out moist and delicious, but not overly sweet.  Which may be a bad thing since because it wasn’t too sweet I ate half of it for breakfast!  It’s pretty healthy though so I think I’ll be ok.

Here is what you need:

  • 3/8 cup of sugar
  • 1/2 cup of flour
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 cups fresh fruit cut up
  • 250 mL coconut milk

First make sure to butter your pan.  I forgot to do this, I always forget to do this, therefore I guess it’s not that essential.  Cut up the fruit you are using and pour it in the pan.  Next melt the butter in a bowl and add the eggs, coconut milk, flour and sugar.  Mix together well.  Then pour over top of the fruit.

Bake in the oven at 350 degrees farenheit for 45 minutes.  Done and so simple!

 

Where Is The Clitoris?

27 Apr

You don’t know?! Well, here is an awesome shirt to wear to introduce people to the clitoris. Many, many people don’t know so don’t be ashamed if you’re amongst them (be ashamed, be very ashamed). You know you’ll be wearing this all summer and men will be staring so give them an edumacation lesson. Think of it as doing a good deed, helping your women friends out.  Just scoop up this tank being sold on Etsy here.

They are even available in different color combos and tank styles.  If you’ve got it flaunt it.  Now for some life advice and inspiration from the fabulous woman who created these awesome shirts.

An Interview with the Artiste

*Can you give us a lil intro to yourself and your products/designs?

My name is Kaibrina Sky Buck. I’m a textile artist, fashion designer and costumer. I like to make clothes that allow people to transform physically and also transform consciousness.

*What inspired your creation?

I grew up with a mother who was a midwife. I watched babies being born before I could speak. The vagina is an amazing thing. I’m happy to have one and I want to celebrate it and help others to celebrate it. There are a lot of vag haters in the world who need skooling.

*What got you motivated to actually do it?

I was printing menstrual panties with the same image on the crotch and a uterus on the belly. I just got inspired to blow it up real big and have it “in your face.” The tangles come from the pubic hair and also from Freud’s theory that all great inventions came from men, except weaving. According to him, women only got the idea about weaving from looking at the tangle of their pubic hair. My design work all has the name, “Tangle.”

*Would you call yourself a feminist? Is there a word you like better?

For sure. I actually got a BA in Women’s Studies before I went to art school. It was the early 90’s and I did a lot of feminist performance work. I have mellowed with age, but my core values are still very gynocentric.

*How would you describe a feminist/what constitutes a feminist?

I leave it up to people to claim or not claim that title. But for me, it is about recognizing the ways that feminine energies have been supressed in the world and then working to create space for those energies to flow freely. I say ‘feminine energies’ because I think that men and women have to claim their right to both masculine and feminine energies. It’s not just about women being oppressed. We all suffer because of sexism.

*Why do you think there is so much women hating going on right now?

I actually see a lot of positive shifts in consciousness happening these days. I think women are finding their voices in all kinds of ways and fighting the good fight against oppression in many arenas. But things like cuts to funding for planned parenthood are a real bummer. It’s a bit like two steps forward, one step back.

*What would you say are the worst things in our culture? The best things?

Worst: Consumerism, Wastefulness and Environmental Devastation, Ignorance, Self-Centered Ego Masturbation, Xenophobia.
Best: Cultural Diversity, Access to anything and everything, flourishing art worlds, radical political movements.

*Wanna share a personal story of the worst and best encounters you’ve had with random people?

I love interactions with random people. Usually they are quite friendly and amusing. But I’ve yelled at strangers too..that’s fun.

*Do you have a “real” job? If so, what is it?

I’ve done lots of jobs but I’ve never had a 9-5. Right now I do freelance costume design and textiles printing. I’m also a single mom of a three year old boy. I have found creative ways to support us.

*What changes do you think should be made to make our society more equal?

I think we need some radical changes. I am not sure how to sum it up. But I think if we don’t get it together soon, we are going to suffer greater and greater consequences. There is a great momentum building against the dominant paridigms.

*Favorite quote/s and/or inspirational?
“And like any artist without an art form, she became dangerous.” Toni Morrison

*What do you do when you feel depressed/knocked down to feel better?

Dance, stretch, yoga, get outside, play with my kid, listen to good music, partake of herbal medicine.

*Why do you think people try to control others w/laws about marriage and abortion?
Fear and a profound lack of empathy. When people embrace love and loving consciousness, they will cease to act like assholes.

*What do you think are the most sexist things going on in our current culture?

I think the thing that disturbs me the most is violence against women and children. Sexual violence, physical violence and emotional abuse are so rampant. I get sick to my stomach thinking about the horrible ways people treat one another. I long for a day when women will feel safe walking outside at night and when all children grow up feeling totally secure.

*Any last words of advice/wisdom?

Love what you got.

What Can You Do To Support Women? Save The Date April 28

24 Apr

Women across the nation are starting to wake up and upon waking up their first exclamation is WTF?!  What is going on in this country?  Why is everybody obsessing over women’s bodies and trying to dictate what women can and cannot do with their own bodies?  Why shouldn’t birth control be covered by insurance?  Why are women still being paid less than men?  Have we entered some strange women hating Twilight Zone?

Since many women were feeling this way, but unsure of what to do, 2 women took it upon themselves to start the rallying cry.  They created UniteWomen.Org  with the intention of uniting women nationwide.  The motivation is for equality amongst women and men.  Along with defending women from attacks on their reproductive health rights.

I come from a generation that has always had access to birth control and access to a safe abortion if needed.  Never did any of us think that this could possibly be taken away from us.  Other women had fought hard for my generation to have this access, to have autonomy of our bodies.

Maybe it was too naive to think these battles had been won.  To actually think that we as women have control over our own bodies.  To think that we could make decisions about our bodies without government intrusion.  To think that we were coming closer to being seen as equals.  Apparently we were being naive in our thinking.  Now the battles are starting again and it’s time to start fighting back.

Enough is Enough!  Women and men are tired of this ****!   Unite Women has organized marches and/or rallies to occur across the nation on April 28.  Almost every state will have an event.  You can check for your state’s event here.  I will be attending and volunteering at the Chicago event.

More information can be found here.  Sign up and come help to.  Be involved in your community.  Be a part of a change.  Let’s start supporting each other and refuse to be divided.

Remember, we aren’t little girls who need to be told what to do.  And not only is name calling not nice, it’s whole point is to put you down and make you afraid.  Don’t let anyone silence your voice.

The Virginity Game

16 Apr

What is society’s obsession with virginity about?  If you look closer at the subject, it’s specifically an obsession with female virginity.  Why is female virginity deemed so sacred and important?  The documentary How to Lose Your Virginity sets out to explore virginity, the hype and the myths surrounding it.

Losing your virginity has always been a hot topic. Having sex for the first time has been built up to be this wonderful thing that should be shared with someone you love or at least care about or at the very least someone you are dating.  Once you give it up you can’t get it back so make sure it’s special!  This is what we are told, this is what is ingrained in our culture.  What is your story?  Did you follow along or did you break the rules?

The term “losing your virginity” has always puzzled me.  To me losing something means there is a possibility that you can find it and reclaim it.  How can you do this with virginity?  It isn’t a tangible thing.  Unless we are specifically talking about the hymen which in actuality is not a good indicator of virginity.  Some women are born without a hymen and others tear theirs way before sex due to physical activity.  And then there are people who claim to be born again virgins. Which means they’ve obviously had intercourse, but now choose to be abstinent and can now declare themselves virgins once again.  Sounds like hocus pocus to me.

Most people associate virginity within heterosexual terms, with vaginal penetration.  Why is female virginity to be preserved or sold to the highest bidder?  Why are purity balls only for girls?  What I find creepy about purity balls is that it is the father that pledges to protect his daughter’s purity.  Why don’t the moms get in on this?  Wouldn’t a daughter rather talk to her mom about sex questions?  Oh that’s right…there isn’t suppose to be conversations about sex.  That’s why it’s a father daughter thing.  Dad says no don’t have sex, wait til marriage, end of discussion.  When are they gonna start purity balls for boys?  Where is the grand ceremony where the boy wears a white tux and is given a ring by his mom to wear to remind him that he pledged to save himself for marriage?

I was raised Catholic and attended Catholic school for most of my school years.  Of course we were taught we should wait until marriage to have sex.  How many of us do you think actually complied with that?  Around 16 I started seriously thinking about the issue.  Do I want to declare myself a virgin until marriage?  How important or sacred do I think sex is? I mulled this over in my head.  My ultimate conclusion was that I would not wait until marriage because 1- I  figured marriage was many years away and 2- I did not know if I would ever get married because I wasn’t sure I believed in marriage.

This however didn’t mean I went out and started having sex.  I wasn’t in any rush and I’ve never been a relationship kind of person.  I waited until college.  People were fascinated that I was still a virgin.  If people would ask, I would tell them I hadn’t had sex and then I would be inundated with questions.  Why?  How come?  Are you religious?  You’re pretty how can you still be a virgin?  I experienced first hand people’s obsession with virginity.  No I’m not religious, no I’m not waiting for that special someone, and no I don’t think sex is dirty.

When I chose to have sex it was on my terms.  I was curious and just wanted to have sex.  So, I chose the cutest boy and I didn’t tell him I was a virgin because I didn’t want it to turn into a big deal.  Because it wasn’t a big deal to me.  It was sex.  And I’ve never felt like I’ve been missing something since then.  In fact, I’m grateful that I didn’t have illusions about romance and sex because I think people equate one with the other and that leads to a whole lot of pain and heartbreak.  Especially since our society is so obsessed with teaching young girls and women that sex should only be had if you are in love.

It’s time to disspell the virginity myths and teach women that it is ok to embrace and enjoy their sexuality.  Please support “How to Lose Your Virginity” by visiting their kickstarter page and making a donation.  Help get this documentary made!

Why I’m Pro-Choice, and Why Other Men Should Be Too

5 Apr

We think it’s important that everyone be included in the conversation about reproductive health and abortion.  Even men.  Men should not be left out of the discussion and it’s important that they be allies, not enemies.  That’s why you should check out Pro-Feminist Bro.  He gets why it’s important for women to be able to decide what to do with their bodies.  Here is what he has to say:

Like many issues within feminism, people tend to view reproductive justice as a “women’s issue.” And while it certainly is, as every woman deserves to choose when to start a family (if at all) it is also imperative that pro-feminist men understand that restricting a woman’s access to reproductive choice – thereby limiting her own personal autonomy – is a form of violence. Presidential candidates (and white men) Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum have regularly stated their desire to close Planned Parenthood, an organization which primarily provides cervical and breast cancer screenings as well as access to safer sex materials such as condoms and birth control. Though I have issues with Planned Parenthood and its founder Margaret Sanger (most notably her support of eugenics), the services that PP – and other legitimate women’s health clinics – provides are essential not only to a woman’s physical health, but her sexual and reproductive freedom. Legislation that states an embryo is more important than a living woman, who would have to carry that embryo to term, is absurd regardless of where you think conception begins. In fact, the whole “life begins at conception” argument is a distraction from the real issue – that a living, breathing woman has to carry that child to term and afterwards take care of it, while the government wants to limit social services and not give what they believe to be “handouts.” As much as it claims to love children, patriarchy does not do a very good job of taking care of them. And, as evidenced by the recent Planned Parenthood bombing in Wisconsin, as well as the murder of Dr. George Tiller, those who are “pro-life” do not care much for the lives of women and girls.
So, why should men care about women’s reproductive freedom? Essentially, it is sexist to tell a woman what she should do with her body. Organizations like theChicago Abortion Fund need to exist so that in the face of sexist, classist, and racist legislation all women can exercise their right to bodily autonomy. CAF states:

The Chicago Abortion Fund (CAF) fights to overturn economic barriers to reproductive choice. Through direct service and education/advocacy, CAF assists low-income women in obtaining safe abortion services by providing clinic referrals, negotiated discounts and financial assistance. While we are unable to directly assist all the women in need, we work to extend choice to all low-income women by making the issue of economic access a priority on the agenda of policy makers.

These reasons are why I am participating in the National Network of Abortion Fund’s annual Bowl-A-Thon. Every bit donated helps underserved women in Chicago exercise their reproductive freedom. In times where a Presidential candidate says he wants to get rid of organizations like Planned Parenthood, we need to take a stand for choice. We need to take a stand for women. If you can donate, I would greatly appreciate it. More importantly, the women in need of reproductive healthcare services who cannot afford it need it.

To donate to my team and support CAF, please click here.

Please reblog or repost if you can. Thank you for reading.

Steve Adler

4-5-2012

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