Fashion & Beauty

Glimpse of Gorgeous: Smitten with Bitten

"It is every woman's inalienable right to have a pulled together, stylish, confident wardrobe with money left over to live."

-Sarah Jessica Parker

I have to admit that I was slightly pessimistic when I heard that the same person who introduced me to Manolo Blahnik via Sex and the City was releasing a clothing line at a store specializing in college logos and bright orange T-Shirts with "Beer Delivery Guy" and other classy phrases plastered on the front.

In fact, I merely skimmed through the first few articles I saw promoting the line, and completely ignored all of the hype and publicity SJP's Bitten was receiving until I finally threw up my hands in surrender and went to its website at www.BittenSJP.com where I finally saw the light.

With prices not exceeding $19.98, clothing sizes ranging from 0-22, XS-XXL and shoe sizes from 5-11, Bitten takes its slogan "Fashion is not a Luxury, It's a Right," to heart and the clothes aren't half bad.

On the website, SJP explains that she strived to find clothing that looked great on every body type. Bitten features clothes bordering on the sporty side of things with the majority of its contents consisiting of striped tops, jersey knit sweaters, and athletic pants. However, it also displays a wide variety of dresses, feminine blouses, jeans, and adorable coats to boot!

I've already made a note to pick up the houndstooth jacket featured on Oprah next time I'm in Steve and Barry's stocking up on VT gear. I advise all of you nonbelievers to give Bitten a second glance. You might just find a way to save money or maybe just another way to be GORGEOUS!

Glimpse of Gorgeous: SHOCKING NEWS! Celebrities are People Too!

Fashion magazines are my anti-drug. I get a high from page after glossy page of fabulous clothing, designer accessories, and exquisite advertising. For me, they are a source of inspiration and motivation not only for my wardrobe's sake but for my career and my daily life. I subscribe to four, Hearst Tower is the background on my MacBook and every time I think that one day I will sit in that building and write for Harpers Bazaar or Marie Claire, I get chill bumps because I can think of nothing I want more in life than to produce beautiful art. Never have I looked at a cover and said, "Oh gosh, I wish I could be as perfect as Anne Hathaway!" because I know for a fact, that she probably wishes she had Mandy Moore's hair or SJP's body.

However, the writers at Jezebel.com do not share my same enthusiasm or lighthearted regard for celebrity covershots. In fact, in a recent article "The Redbook You Should Have Seen on Newsstands," the writer expresses her utter disdain for the dramatic results of a photoshopped picture of Faith Hill calling the pre-airbrushed Faith "wrinkly and grossly overweight." It also suggests that we should stop buying women's magazines altogether (no, No, NOO!) But as I look at the two pictures, I can hardly tell the difference, and either way, I think Faith Hill looks lovely.

It seems to me that everyone is always looking for somewhere to put the blame for their self image issues, or eating disorders. A lot of the time, the liability falls on celebrities. People we don't know, who are imperfect just like all of the other humans. The ones with flaws, and cellulite, and believe it or not-bad hair days every once in a while! Who cares if their pictures are airbrushed? If my face was going to be seen around the world, I would want it to be touched up a bit too. There was never once a claim made that they are perfect or that everyone should look just like them, so why is anyone measuring their self worth with a magazine cover? Appreciate the brilliant articles, laugh at the advice columns, or if nothing else, just look at the pictures and appreciate it as art instead of a manual for life.

Really the bottom line is, Faith Hill is in her forties, and airbrushed or not, wrinkly or not (I'm not even going to touch the grossly overweight comment), she looks stinkin amazing. Beauty is in individualism, so never compare yourself to someone else, celebrity or otherwise. Everyone has flaws, so embrace them and stop beating yourself up over them. Find what makes you feel gorgeous and then, by all means, BE GORGEOUS!

If you want to check out the before and after cover shots for yourself, visit www.jezebel.com

Glimpse of Gorgeous: Rescuing Your “Good Intentions”

I have a new obsession with TLC's I've Got Nothing to Wear On the show, 4 designers are responsible for turning a bunch of good intentions pieces into practical, everyday attire. Now, it is slightly out there at times, but the concept is remarkable. I mean, what real purpose does that dress hanging in the back of your closet serve if it's just sitting there?

I'm guilty of it, we all are. That leopard print shirt, those lime green shoes, that floor length gown sitting in your closet marked with price tags and good intentions. We tell ourselves that we are waiting to lose ten pounds or for the right occasion to come along, but we secretly know that it will sit there season after season, until we admit to ourselves that it deserves a better home and we put it up for adoption at a second hand shop.

So here's my challenge to you: break out that piece you have been saving for your big break as Beyonce's back up dancer, and wear it. If you can't wear it as is, experiment with it. Change it into something you can wear. Make a skirt out of a pair of jeans, or chop off a full length gown for a flirty cocktail dress.

Look on the internet or in DIY books for ideas. Don't be afraid to try new things, and don't be afraid to fail. The only thing you've got to lose is an article of clothing you didn't wear to begin with. Just be creative and as always, be GORGEOUS.

Glimpse of Gorgeous: Rescuing Your "Good Intentions"

I have a new obsession with TLC's I've Got Nothing to Wear On the show, 4 designers are responsible for turning a bunch of good intentions pieces into practical, everyday attire. Now, it is slightly out there at times, but the concept is remarkable. I mean, what real purpose does that dress hanging in the back of your closet serve if it's just sitting there?

I'm guilty of it, we all are. That leopard print shirt, those lime green shoes, that floor length gown sitting in your closet marked with price tags and good intentions. We tell ourselves that we are waiting to lose ten pounds or for the right occasion to come along, but we secretly know that it will sit there season after season, until we admit to ourselves that it deserves a better home and we put it up for adoption at a second hand shop.

So here's my challenge to you: break out that piece you have been saving for your big break as Beyonce's back up dancer, and wear it. If you can't wear it as is, experiment with it. Change it into something you can wear. Make a skirt out of a pair of jeans, or chop off a full length gown for a flirty cocktail dress.

Look on the internet or in DIY books for ideas. Don't be afraid to try new things, and don't be afraid to fail. The only thing you've got to lose is an article of clothing you didn't wear to begin with. Just be creative and as always, be GORGEOUS.

Glimpse of Gorgeous: 2007 Fall Preview

Just as we are beginning to achieve that perfect sun-kissed glow, summer clothes go on clearance and out comes the much anticipated Fall collection. Somehow, the Fall season is superior to all other seasons in that it symbolizes change and new beginnings. Fall Fashion predestines the costumes we will don as we experience these changes and brave the quickly approaching winter months.

Fall 2007 is remarkably timeless. It is all about those wardrobe essential pieces sneaking out from the back of the closet and being paired with deep colors, modern fits, and untiring design.

This seasons must-haves include the high-waisted, just-below-the-knee pencil skirt, wide-leg trousers, classic trenches, antique jewelry, the boyfriend cardigan, pumps, tights, ankle boots, and deep, rich colors.

So, while you're laying out by the pool, start a shopping list because Fall is just around the corner. Start digging through your closet and check out those Fall preview sales. Add your own touch to these classic trends and no matter what season it is-be GORGEOUS!

Glimpse of Gorgeous: What's In Your Bag?

While the size, style, and print of your bag say to the world "Hello, my name is GORGEOUS!", the items inside of your bag also say a lot about you, and are additionally prepared to come to your rescue in time of need.

In an effort to preserve the longevity of my beloved Chanel bag, I recently purchased a gynormous (yes, you heard me) tan and brown bag with a sort of leaf print from Target for $11.99. Due to its enormity, I have it packed to perfection with every essential necessary for a fashionista on the go.

When stocking your supplies, it is important not to overdo it, but to always be prepared. Currently, my purse contains my White Chocolate cellphone, Ipod (which matches my phone), wallet (please disregard the Vera Bradley print), checkbook, camera (to capture those spontaneous moments), a full face of make-up (to freshen up that gorgeous face), Taihiti, Sweetie lotion (mmm smells like summer), oversized sunglasses, Advil, day-planner, and Mint Mojito Orbit gum (no dirty mouths allowed!)

Ultimately, your bag should fit your lifestyle and there are a million things you can cram into it, especially if it's big enough for its own zip code like mine! So, whatever you pack in your purse, make sure you've got the essentials needed to go out there and be GORGEOUS!

Glimpse of Gorgeous: What’s In Your Bag?

While the size, style, and print of your bag say to the world "Hello, my name is GORGEOUS!", the items inside of your bag also say a lot about you, and are additionally prepared to come to your rescue in time of need.

In an effort to preserve the longevity of my beloved Chanel bag, I recently purchased a gynormous (yes, you heard me) tan and brown bag with a sort of leaf print from Target for $11.99. Due to its enormity, I have it packed to perfection with every essential necessary for a fashionista on the go.

When stocking your supplies, it is important not to overdo it, but to always be prepared. Currently, my purse contains my White Chocolate cellphone, Ipod (which matches my phone), wallet (please disregard the Vera Bradley print), checkbook, camera (to capture those spontaneous moments), a full face of make-up (to freshen up that gorgeous face), Taihiti, Sweetie lotion (mmm smells like summer), oversized sunglasses, Advil, day-planner, and Mint Mojito Orbit gum (no dirty mouths allowed!)

Ultimately, your bag should fit your lifestyle and there are a million things you can cram into it, especially if it's big enough for its own zip code like mine! So, whatever you pack in your purse, make sure you've got the essentials needed to go out there and be GORGEOUS!

Glimpse of Gorgeous: A Vocabulary Lesson

So, people have been asking me, and I'm sure you are wondering: Where the heck did the title Glimpse of Gorgeous come from? and What does it mean to be GORGEOUS? Well, I am here to offer an explanation.

Gorgeous, is defined by Dictionary.com as the following: Dazzlingly beautiful or magnificent; characterized by magnificence or virtuosic brilliance.

Being gorgeous is all about confidence. Anyone can be gorgeous, but not everyone is gorgeous. Gorgeous people smile a lot, even at strangers. They compliment others and use the word gorgeous to do so. Looks matter(and they do), but loving people matters more. Gorgeous sees the glass half full and tries to find good in everyone even if they have to search for it. Gorgeouses aren't afraid to try new things, and are able to laugh at themselves when they make a mistake. Being gorgeous is not settling for just being "pretty". It's taking that extra step beyond looks. Gorgeous turns heads and infects laughter. When gorgeous people look in the mirror, they think about the dictionary definition of gorgeous and know that while the outside may be beautiful, a contagious smile and the ability to make your own sunshine is dazzlingly beautiful. Gorgeous, in fact.

So now that you know, there is only one thing left to do. Go out there, and be GORGEOUS!

Glimpse of Gorgeous: Guaranteed Glam

They take you from ghastly to glamorous in 4.2 seconds (or as fast as you can reach into your bag and put them on). In the June 2007 issue of Harpers Bazaar, Nicole Richie claimed to have "6 or 7 pairs" of them in her purse. This summer's trend list can't seem to get enough of them, and I know I sure can't. Sunglasses. They are in, they are versatile, they are everywhere this season, and they are bringing glamorous back .

This summer, sunglasses are taking us back to that good ole classic feeling with vintage, round and cat-eye frames in every color. The bigger the better, in my own personal opinion. Throw on a pair of retro-style shades for instant chic. Wear them to the beach, to run errands, or don them in the evening a la Holly Golightly.

Whether you are covering up the bags under your eyes, protecting yourself from the sun, or eating a croissant outside of Tiffany's, leave the aviators and "stunnas" at home, for a more Old Hollywood feel and be GORGEOUS!

For a large selection of fabulous sunglasses priced between $4.80-$5.80 visit www.forever21.com OR check out www.sunglasshut.com for an assortment of designer shades.

Glimpse of Gorgeous: Beach Beautiful (No Sand Required)

Growing up on the East Coast (Hampton, VA), summer vacation has always meant one thing: the beach. Going to the beach as much as I can, for as long as I can, whenever I can. I love the sound of waves crashing on the shore, picnicing on the sand, making fun of the tourists, and being stalked by seagulls. Yes, I even love the seagulls. The ocean calms my spirit and leaves its vague memory on my soul. And after a nice long relaxing day at the beach, I cannot resist checking my reflection in the mirror (even more than usual), because the ocean is not only my therapist, it is also my stylist.

Sun-kissed cheeks, salty, tousled curls, and that after-sunscreen scent are in my opinion, the sexiest summer styles. But don't worry, you don't need an ocean stylist or a salon stylist to achieve the exact same look.

I use Redken Fresh Curls Scrunching Spray when I am in Blacksburg or when I just can't get to the ocean to recreate the exact same tousled look. After showering, brush your hair and part it as you usually do. Then, flip your head upside down and scrunch your hair using a towel to soak up the excess water. Next, spray your hair generously with the scrunching spray and flip your hair upside down repeating the same towel-scrunching process. Lastly, let it dry naturally or blow-dry on low. The spray brings out any natural curl or wave that your hair may be hiding. This even works on my sister whose hair is stick-straight.

Do you have a tanning-bed/pre-cancerous mole/premature wrinkle/sunshine phobia? No worries. You can still look like you've been on vacation by using MAC bronzing powder. There are five different shades. They range from lighter matte colors to dark shimmery ones. I use the darkest shimmery one to bring out my already tanned skin. Just use a cosmetic brush and apply it underneath your brow-line, along your cheek bones, and across the bridge of your nose. The powder is dark enough to give you a certain glow, but light enough to avoid the whole "I got in a fight with the sunless tanner and lost" look.

The six hour drive from Blacksburg to the oceanfront is worth it to me. No matter where you are, I advise making the trip. I guarantee the gas money will be cheaper than sessions of therapy. Plus, there is nothing like the sand between your toes, the wind tangling your hair, and the lingering smell of salt in the air. I recommend getting an authentic sun-kissed, tousled-hair look at least once in your lifetime. Just remember, it doesn't work on lobster-fried faces, so load up on the SPF, drive out to the beach, and be GORGEOUS!

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