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BLVD

Dating Disasters

Style: "Agfa"

By: Kate Foster

 

In the midst of this chaotic, bustling journey that we call life, there is one all-inclusive human connector: the experience of a horrific date. Young and old, black and white, tall and short, each and every one of us can recall a romantic endeavor that makes us want to crawl into a hole and die at its very memory. Fortunately, such bone-chilling events also allow for quite hilarious stories.

Many terrible dates sprout from assumptions. Caleb, a bearded barista at the Starbucks on Broad Street, described his worst hour while preparing a drink: “I was on a date with a gay biology major. I’m a staunch atheist and I assumed with his background that he’d be the same. Wrong. He was incredibly religious and also immature. The date just became more and more sour by the minute, and by the time we left the restaurant, we weren’t talking at all.”

Ouch!

You’d think gossiping, middle-aged women would have long forgotten and recovered from their most terrible dates. Not so in the case of Tameka, who explained with a chuckle, “On my first date ever, my mom decided that it was absolutely necessary that I take my three younger brothers with me. As if that weren’t humiliating enough, while we were driving around, they all started making fun of his bad car and the fact that he had no radio.”

Determined to outdo such a tale, Tameka’s friend Veronica muttered, “At least your mother didn’t follow your car with her brights on the entire night.”

Ladies, if it’s any consolation, you now know how NOT to be the worst mom ever.

Some of the most miserable dates end in a surprise – and not the good kind. Lauren, a 20-something salon worker downtown, explained with a shudder, “I had recently been dumped by a boyfriend I’d had for three years. My friends forced me to go out on a blind date pretty soon after, and I have to say I was hesitant. But when he showed up, I felt much better about the situation. He dressed nice, had a good car and sexy tattoos, and was really funny. When the waiter brought our check, I found out that he had a live-in nanny and a kid.”

Baby mama drama not enough for you? Try a mental breakdown. Gainesville student Mary Lou was really excited about her successful date with a perfect guy. That is, until the next day.

“He texted me and said he couldn’t see me anymore because he was psychopathic and on the verge of a breakdown. A year later, I ran into him … and his new wife.”

Ever been on a date without even knowing it? Yeah, us either. UGA grad student, Audrey, explored uncharted territory one fatal night when a guy drove her to a supposed “group” ice cream social.

“When we got to Cold Stone, none of our friends were there. Apparently ALL of them couldn’t make it? I don’t think so. After we had ice cream, he drove me home, walked me to the door … and I got out of there before I’d have to dodge a kiss.”

At least the poor girl had ice cream to soften the blow.

And, finally, the worst of the worst, the stories that involve hook-ups gone wrong. Kristyn, a UGA student, went over to an old friend’s apartment one night, only to find that they “did nothing more than stare at each other and make awkward conversation for hours on end.”

Sounds like this guy needs to get a bit bolder if he ever wants success in the sack.                    At the opposite end of the spectrum, an outgoing and refreshingly blunt guy named John had to think for a few minutes to decide on his worst. And boy, is it bad:

“I got to talking to a cute girl at a bar one night. We had a few drinks and then decided to head to her place. It got pretty intense – and very hot – until her brother drunkenly stumbled in.”

It’s starting to seem like family members are at the root of far too many dating horror stories.

Hopefully, the stories of these poor souls have eased your mind about your own worst “romantic” evening. If not … may peace be given to your stunned and undoubtedly cynical heart.

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“Daring” Makeup Tips and Tricks

Makeup

By: Kate Foster

Emulating the season’s boldest makeup looks often seems like a daunting task to the everyday woman. She imagines herself strutting confidently into a room, only to hear snickers, and – in the blink of an eye – she feels like a clown. Yes, runway makeup is sometimes unbelievably daring, but if applied correctly, even a cosmetics novice can get it right. Follow the tips below religiously to ensure that you look more SoHo than Bozo.

Make your canvas flawless.

If you’re planning on going all-out with your face, it is essential that you smooth things out from the very beginning. Makeup artists around the globe constantly stress the importance of primer use, and for good reason: as if makeup meltdown wasn’t bad enough in neutral tones, you’ll be humiliated if you see all the colors of the rainbow dripping down your cheeks. Smashbox Photo Finish Primer is a favorite among beauty magazine polls and has been altered for all different skin types.

The next step, explains Clinique beauty counter pro Margaret, is “evening out the color and texture of your skin. Clinique has an amazing Custom-Fit Foundation that makes skin look flawless.”

Just make sure your foundation truly matches! It will definitely look natural if you try on the shade both inside and in the sunlight.

Get the right tools.

Margaret Basham, an incredibly talented Belk makeup artist, often wears both turquoise eyeliner and a deep red lipstick – the fact that she pulls the two colors off at the same time proves her advice to be highly reliable.

“Technique, tools, and blending correctly makes pigment look right in the first place, but also keeps it from fading,” she states.

You don’t have to have the most expensive tools out there, but using a kabuki brush for blush, an arced eyeliner brush, durable eyeshadow and tapering brushes, and a lip brush that guarantees accuracy will do half the job for you. Also, remember that waterproof products will deter most makeup downpour.

Stay balanced.

Once in a blue moon, some stunning, fresh-faced woman doesn’t look ridiculous wearing a bold eye AND lip. For us mere mortals, however, balance is key. If you’re rocking a strong eye, tone down the lips, and vice versa.

Arbor Salon and Spa’s resident makeup artist, Ann, offered up this lesson:

“Don’t go overboard on trends. Work one at a time, and then keep the rest of the face neutral.”

Ever heard Coco Chanel’s genius advice of removing one accessory before leaving home to avoid looking overdone? The same philosophy applies to makeup. Ann advises customers to “choose a look, and then scale it back before application.”

In similarly metaphorical fashion, Basham likes to think of different done-up parts of the face as focal points.

“Too many focal points in anything, whether it be art, fashion, or makeup, cause the whole look to be cluttered,” she says.

Alter your thoughts about what is “daring”.

It’s no doubt that Basham confidently explores a new eccentric look day-to-day, but she credits this mostly to her attitude about makeup.

“What’s clownish to one person is just dramatic to another.”

If you’re dead set on being THAT girl, the one that looks fabulous wearing a multitude of colors, you must be prepared to feel proud of what you’ve put on.

Now that you know the basic guidelines in the art of daring makeup, you can try two of the most flamboyant makeup looks:

Classic Bold: Cat Eye and Regal Red Lips

Apply primer and foundation to the entire face.

Correct spots with concealer and set with powder.

Suck your cheeks in, and use an angled blush brush to apply a matte bronzer to the pits that appear there.

Use a kabuki brush to sweep on a light coral or pink blush to the apples of your cheeks.

Fill in brows with a matching brow pencil or powder – make them appear thicker, but still natural.

Dot black pencil eyeliner along the entirety of your top lashlines; this will ensure a straight liquid line later.

With elbow resting on a stable surface, apply liquid liner thickly to top lashlines, winging it out sharply when you reach the edge of your eye.

Apply white cream eyeshadow underneath brows and in the inner corners of your eyes.

Make your look extra dramatic with a volumizing mascara.

Apply one coat of a cool-colored red lipstick – too warm can make teeth look yellow – to lips. Blot off with a tissue, and then apply another healthy coat. This two-step process ensures longevity.

Trendy Bold: Sporty Eyeliner and Bare Face (seen at the VMA’s and the Monique Lhuillier Spring 2012 Ready-To-Wear show among others)

Apply primer and foundation to the entire face

Correct spots with concealer and set with powder.

Use highlighter on cheekbones, the bridge of your nose and chin. DO NOT APPLY BLUSH.

Apply a black liner to upper lashlines, winging out and up.

Go over this line with a bold color, such as cobalt blue, a seasonal favorite. Other options include violet, emerald green and even orange if the desire so strikes.

Instead of stopping the line at the outer corner, pull it back up and into the crease of your eyelid.

Apply mascara to ONLY top lashes.

Wear a colorless lip balm to keep all attention on your gorgeous eyes.

 

Dying for more daring looks?  It’s one click away – hundreds of talented makeup artists provide step-by-step tutorials on YouTube. Favorites include: Pixiwoo, MasqueradeMakeup, KandeeJohnson and Panacea81.

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DIY: Men’s Studded Combat Boots

By: Chris DeSantis

 

Have you ever experienced true love at first sight? BLVD did when we saw these amazing, studded combat boots by Bess NYC. One look at the $400 price tag, however, had us gagging for oxygen. When you’re in college, style is a must, but so is paying your bills. Fortunately, with a little resourcefulness, creativity and elbow grease, anyone can achieve this $400 look for under $40!

 

Instructions:

 

What You’ll Need:

High quality saddle soap or leather conditioner and cleaner, leather polish of the corresponding color, a dry brush or sponge and cloth, studs, pliers, pencil, paint suitable for metal (optional), a fine tipped paint brush (optional), new laces (optional), any other flourishes you’d like to add.

 

Step 1: Find used boots. Try your local thrift or consignment stores or even ask friends or family if they have any old boots they no longer. It can be difficult to find a pair in pristine condition at a low cost. While restoring neglected leather can seem daunting, don’t be afraid. This look can be useful, as it ensures that the finished leather will look distressed with unique character flaws, something designers charge more for.

 

Step 2: If you want your boots to look newer and are willing to spend more money for shoes in better condition, or find some for cheap, feel free to skip this step. Otherwise, you’ll probably need to restore your boots’ leather to make them more appealing

 

First use your dry brush to gently remove any loose dirt or debris.

Then, use a sponge to apply the saddle soap or leather cleaner. Scrub the leather, working in the soap until the leather becomes more pliable. Then, apply leather conditioner onto a soft cloth and scrub it into the leather for 10 to 15 minutes straight, or until it seems adequately moisturized.

Once the leather appears clean and supple, allow the boots to dry in a room temperature setting, avoiding direct sunlight and heaters, as they will literally cook the leather and dry it out. Also, avoid dark, cool spaces that will allow for mold to grow.

Once dry, take the boots and polish them with shoe polish of the corresponding color. For example, the boots in this tutorial are black so we are using black polish. Apply the polish across the entire surface of the boot and into any cracks you may see. This will help mask flaws and even out color and tone. Wait for them to dry thoroughly before continuing.

 

Step 3: Now that your boots are fresh and brilliantly restored, it is time to start studding! Use your pencil to make a mark where you’d like a stud or draw a general design pattern to follow while studding.

 

Step 4: Take a stud, and pop it into the leather over the guide mark you made. Use your pliers to bend each prong to hold the stud in place. Do this for every stud. This part can be tedious and time consuming depending on your design and how many studs you use. However, it is well worth it.

 

Step 5: After you’re done studding, you can consider yourself finished, or you can continue with small embellishments that can make a big difference. Try getting paint suitable for metal (or plastic depending on your boot) in the color of your choice. In this tutorial, metallic copper was used. Using your fine tipped paintbrush, paint the metal (or possibly plastic) rims around the shoelace holes. Consider painting the shoelace hooks (not all boots have these). This will make the metal look edgy and different. Use artistic liberty with your paints.

 

Step 6: Lastly and optionally, find some chic shoelaces of your choice for that final touch. Maybe even buy some Dr. Scholl’s inserts if you wish. You’re completely done!

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The Dark Duo, Black and Brown Together…No longer a fashion faux pas

Dark Duo

By Caroline Ariail 

 

In fashion, rules are meant to be broken – you know there are no style police stopping you – and this season, that includes the unofficial rule that black and brown should not be worn together. Daring fashionistas know that the right ensemble of black and brown can create a sophisticated, runway worthy outfit. This black and brown misconception most likely stems from the black sock and brown loafer look far too many professionals try to pull off. Maybe the fashion police should exist? Have no fear, black and brown can be paired in more ways than how your biology professor wears (or fails to pull off) the black and brown look.

 

Contrast is key…

According to fashion blogger Megan Stoffel, of beforeispendit.blogspot.com, “wearing black and brown together must look deliberate to be done correctly.” Stoffel noted that her favorite way to wear the dark duo is combining a light cognac brown shoe or accessory with a black outfit. “The contrast in colors looks intentional and nothing short of fashion genius,” says Stoffel.  So wearing a black dress with a dark brown sweater can create a clash as the colors are a bit too similar, but pairing a sweater or accessory in a lighter shade of brown (think tan or beige) and you are creating that distinction and difference. Patent beige ballet flats or pumps create a classy look with a black pencil skirt or black pants.

Accessories tie a look together…

Like the patent beige pumps with black pants, accessories are often the way to work black and brown. Upgrade your casual knit black dress with brown boots and a wide brown belt. Another solution to pairing is a light brown scarf tousled over a black sweater – not only stylish but functional for bracing the cold. A slim brown belt looped around your waist over a black and white striped shirt creates an appealing illusion of brown, black and white. Never be afraid to pair your brown bag or purse with a mostly black outfit – this is a safe bet to breaking up any outfit on the verge of resembling a uniform.

Animal Prints accentuate…

As usual, plenty of animal print has been spotted (pardon the pun) this season. Leopard print is a closet classic that continues to make an appearance on the runaway and in stores. Unleash your wild side by wearing a leopard printed accessory or article of clothing with both black and brown. Pairing leopard with both black and brown will accentuate each color as they are both already found in the print. A leopard penny loafer shoe or ballet flat will tie together a black and brown ensemble. You can mix things up with a leopard scarf. Feeling brave, sassy or both? Leopard printed fedoras top off any black and brown combo.

Already together…

So you love the look of black and brown, but you don’t have that daring side? Have no fear; there are some safer black and brown options for the girl who fears she will clash. Black and brown striped sweaters can be found in stores such as J.Crew, Ann Taylor Loft and Zara. The hard work has been done for you –all you need is a pair of jeans – but be brave and showoff a modern look by adding a shiny patent black belt with brown flats. Your cutting edge look will replace the fears of many and others will soon welcome the lovely color combo of black and brown.

 

 

 

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Doggie Duds

Dawg

 

By: Camille Aig-Imoukhuede

Dressing dogs in stylish duds went main stream once Paris Hilton and other celebrities donned their dogs in t-shirts and tutus. As the years have passed, the designs available for pups have expanded to include dresses, coats, and sweaters. The styles have transformed from merely adorable to entirely chic. Some of the pieces in doggie collections rival the fierceness of the clothes owned by even the most fashion-forward owners. The best doggie designs have fun and functionality at the core of each piece.

 

Dresses:

Putting dresses on female canines shows the world what a pampered princess your pooch is. Dresses for dogs are extremely flirty and fun. The ones available for the winter months are made of velvet and velour materials. A matching headband is the perfect accessory to complete the adorable ensemble. Just make sure that your doggie’s clothes fit properly and are made of a comfortable material to make her feel as much of a princess as she looks.

 

Coats:

From pea coats to parkas, doggie outerwear comes in a variety of styles that will have them turning heads on their winter walks. But dog coats aren’t just about style. Smaller pups often have hair rather thin fur, which offers less protection from extremely cold temperatures. Eliyah Lindsay, a third year student at the University of Georgia and owner of a long haired Chihuahua, says that her pup “needs jackets in the winter along with booties to protect her from the cold weather”.

 

Sweaters:

Sweaters are another option for keeping dogs fashionably warm. Cozy knits come in a variety of colors and thicknesses, and are perfect for the season. Your dog will feel both stylish and adorable in an eye catching sweater.

 

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How to Dabble in Different Decades: A Profile of Vintage Stores in Athens

Community

Some pieces are just too good to let go of, no matter which decade they were designed.  With so many great items from the past, why stifle your sense of style by limiting your wardrobe to just pieces from the current decade? Shopping at vintage stores is one way to find save-worthy pieces from the past and salute previous trends. Vintage stores are also great if you’re looking for a one-of- a-kind item to make you stand out in the crowd. Take a peek into these vintage shops in Athens and you’ll find a must have item on any given day. BLVD took a visit to each of these five stores to uncover tips for vintage shopping and see what cool “find” they had to offer.

 

Community- 119 N Jackson Street Athens, GA 30602

Community

If you’re not familiar with vintage shopping, Community is a great place to have your first experience. Community has an open layout that is easily navigated. At this store, you’ll find many flirty pieces that will mix easily with modern designs. The clothing is organized so that pieces that can be worn together are hung near each other; you won’t have to search for something to wear with a certain piece. Store employee Lera Lynn also pointed out that shopping vintage is not only great for developing a unique sense of style but also for preserving the environment. Many stages of current clothing production, from growing the cotton to transporting it to different stores, can take a toll on the environment. Vintage stores allow these clothes to be reused.

Cool Find: Community has its own clothing line called Community Service. This line is made up of vintage pieces that have been revamped to make them more wearable.

 

Minx-166 W Clayton Street Athens, GA 30601

MinxWhen it comes to fashion, Minx has a bit of a boot obsession. You’ll find both combat and cowboy boots at this shop. Aside from boots, there are an abundant amount of leather pieces in this store, from vintage belts to wallets. Minx also has a great collection of sweaters and men’s shirts.  The owner of the store loves all things vintage and says that she has found many of the things in her store from travelling to different places across the country. Her tip for navigating Minx is, “Don’t be afraid to ask for help.  Store employees know their way around well and can help you find something to fit your style”.

Cool Find:  Vintage Lily Pulitzer Dresses. Lilly Pulitzer began designing in the ‘60s and, if you look closely, her name can often be found in the floral pattern of her vintage dresses.

 

Dynamite- 297 E Broad Street Athens, GA 30601

Those who are fearless when it comes to fashion will find that Dynamite is a gem.  The racks in this store are full of bold styles from the ‘60s, ‘70s, and ‘80s.  Classic Items from high end brands like J. Crew, Diane Von Furstenberg, and Tibi can also be found throughout the store.  Owner Lori Paluck Beynart advises shoppers to recall what they already have in their closet and try to find something that matches what they already own. She says this makes it easier to create outfits and ensures that you buy something

that you can begin wearing immediately. In addition to their vintage offerings Dynamite also sells new pieces from American Apparel that can be paired with the vintage pieces.

Cool find: Vintage sunglasses and intricate hair clips.

 

Agora-260 W Clayton Street Athens, GA 30601

Agora

Agora is a large store with an intimate set up. The space is divided in little sections, and each room is filled with clothes and jewelry. Vintage furniture and vinyl records are just some of the unique items inside. One could easily spend an hour looking through just one area in the store. Acknowledging that the store can be a bit overwhelming, owner Airee Hong says it’s best to come in when you really have time to look through all that Agora has to offer. Her goal is for everyone who visits Agora to leave feeling like they got a history lesson and were able to put together pieces from different eras to create a unique look.

Cool Find: A great selection of eclectic metal and plastic jewelry.

 

 

Cillies- 175 E Clayton Street Athens, GA 30601

Cillies sells vintage clothing in addition to current designs. Employee Lindsay Haddad advises shoppers to be daring when preparing outfits. One way to stand out is to not be so “matchy”, don’t be afraid to take risks. “When buying,” Haddad says, “Cillies looks at the quality of the material.” Vintage pieces sold at the store are made of higher quality fabrics, which is why they have been able to stay in great condition. The vintage clothing in Cillies spans across every decade. A large section in the back of the store is dedicated solely to shoes and contains trendy boots and flats. The selection of designer handbags is also sure to please vintage shoppers.

Cool Find: A wide range of vintage Louis Vuitton and vintage gowns.

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Time for Tea

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Fashion

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New York Fashion Week Spring 2012: Hervé Leger

This season, Hervé Léger took his signature wrap dress to a new level, incorporating a fresh new spin on the shiny, silver and gold themes that play out in the most idealized depiction of a Roman or Viking princess while managing to include seamlessly a geometric patterned look that brings to mind a tribal feel.

Sleek, curve hugging dresses conquered the collection, and to further add onto the “futuristic Roman” theme, nearly every look was paired with either flesh colored or black knee length boots that were as strappy as any warriors yet included the very modern stiletto. Adding to the warrior look was rope straps, knots and gold buckle details that completed the ready-to-wear look without being too overdone.

This, of course, is not to mention the multi-colored tribal prints and shapes which were paired with shiny leather, silver and gold to create the harmonious infusion that is the hallmark of that collection. The geometric diamonds and triangles on many of the looks added warmth and an earthiness to a collection that would have otherwise seemed metallic and cold. Black, white, and flesh tones also dominated the collection and served to bring about a neutral palate to further balance the intensity of the metallic feel. Though it would seem as though Léger would have been satisfied with the funky and fresh tribal warrior mix up, he managed to take the looks to the present century, incorporating leather, frilled dresses, and fringe over draped fabric.

The finale look, a flowing, snow white evening showstopper, included in perfect harmony the themes of fringe, gold pieces, geometric shapes and strappy, neutral toned sandals to bring the collection full circle. The sleek, straightened hair of the models with knotted ponytails and the dewy, natural makeup was understated and perfect for spring, and Léger was careful to select models with a pale, ethereal look that seems to be the statement for the coming season.

- Staci Schmidt

Photos of the entire collection can be found here

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New York Fashion Week Spring 2012: Marc by Marc Jacobs

Marc Jacobs’ runway appearance at the end of his Spring 2012 ready-to-wear collection was much like the fashion that appeared just moments before him: bright, quick, easy and of course, interminably trendy. The first frock seen sashaying around the room, an eccentrically citrus-colored yet understated shift dress, sent a clear message of what was to come. The first half of the models wore looks that could be found in any woman’s closet, such as simple miniskirts, trench coats, suits, high-waisted trousers, street sneakers and even throwback one-piece bathing suits. The refreshing twist? These items were painted every color imaginable, from grass green to electric scarlet. The show took a turn, however, when 90s-era floral prints, classic plaids, and stripes of all sizes stole monochrome’s spotlight. In sync with the rest of Jacobs’ show, these sunny prints were paired with many of the aforementioned minimalist pieces, restraining the runway from becoming a chaotic clash. By the time the final models walked, it was clear that Jacobs had a very keen order set for the looks. Suddenly, the fashion returned to richly pigmented, one-color pieces, finishing with an elegant trouser and bustier combo. Though the show as a whole could lift any modern woman’s – or man’s – spirits, perhaps the most beloved detail of the show was the patriotic red, white and blue that Jacobs, a New York native, splashed across the clothing to pay homage to his cherished America – and the tenth anniversary of 9/11.

- Kate Foster

Photos of the collection can be found here

 

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