Dolled-Up

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The other day I watched Barbie’s episode of The Toys that Made Us on Netflix and it reminded me that I’d been meaning to write about her in a sort of defensive manner, after a Sociology professor compared her to the likes of Satan in a class about a year ago. To him, she’s a brainwashing tool to make parents spend money and little girls turn into very feminine housewives with bad self esteem thanks to her unrealistic, uh, doll body. To me, she wasn’t so much a character I looked up to, but a way to play make believe and spend hours dressing up my own mannequin.

Barbie was created in 1959 with exactly that in mind: a way for little girls to play with a doll you could live through, not a paper doll to just dress up or a baby doll to be a mother to. Funny enough, she was based on a German doll called Bild Lilli, who was in turn based on sexy cartoons from a newspaper called Bild. Unlike Barbie, Bild Lilli was aimed at men who wanted gag gifts, even though with time she gained popularity with children. She was in essence, copied and cleaned up with kids in mind in the shape of Barbie and, so, history was made.

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Bild Lilli cartoons
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The original 1959 Barbie doll
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Barbie and her boyfriend Ken

From then on, Barbie has become a fashion icon if there ever was one. As a kid, flipping through a book I still have about some of her famous outfits through the years was essentially a fashion history lesson, and with that of course comes learning about culture, beauty standards, trends and more. She’s documented decades of history with her makeovers and outfits, not to mention all the careers she’s had and how they reflected the change in women since the 1960s. To me that’s her appeal. Good or bad, she’s history and a part of my childhood that opened the doors to my love for fashion even more.

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I’d say that in the last years she’s become a bit boring and not that fashionable. But then again she’s aimed at kids, not nostalgic adults! Either way, I hope they continue to keep ur her legacy and that there’s many more years to come of great outfits and reflections of our times.

Cindy xx

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What I listened to in 2017

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What can I say about 2017 without repeating that it was terrible over and over? My mother always tells me I’m a pessimist but it’s safe to say that my outlook on this year is that of a realist because, well, have you seen everything that happened this year?

But guys, this post isn’t meant to make you sad. I’m saying goodbye to the year with what I can always rely on to make any year good: music. This year my music discoveries were a mix of the unexpected and the usual, both old and new, but always amazing and worthy of remembering for years to come.

Here’s what Spotify had to say for my taste this year:

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Not too surprising considering I listened to Dangerous Woman on repeat for most of the year. If anything’s surprising it’s the fact that I bothered to listen to more pop and rap in general! I also listened to more music in Spanish (this shouldn’t be weird considering I’m a latina who’s first language is Spanish  but hey, that’s a story for another day.) Look at me branching out! But not to worry, indie was there too. Altogether, I think a sampling of these songs are worthy of a playlist you can check out below if you want to know more about what I’ve been listening, excluding some questionable songs that don’t really fit with the vibe. 😅 I recommend playing it on shuffle because I didn’t bother to put the songs in any order. Bear with me, please.

I’m VERY ready to end the year and this playlist will be here with me as I count down the seconds to start 2018. I hope you all have a lovely, fun, exciting new year! May it be filled with great new songs. Happy listening!

Cindy xx

Two Pre-Fall 2018 obsessions

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Ever since that hurricane-who-must-not-be-named, I’ve been out of the loop when it comes to couture. But fear not, humanity falls back into routine and so have I! What better way to get back on track than with two beautiful Pre-Fall 2018 collections?

The first of these is Chanel’s. Their last collections over the past years have made me a HUGE Chanel fan and this one keeps the love flowing from me (how can it not!?) According to Vogue’s website, the collection is inspired by Lagerfeld’s return to Hamburg, his birth place, and it’s port town culture (sailor hats and all.)

Second is Elie Saab’s collection (another designer who can do no wrong imo.) As much as I love those amazing glittery gowns he makes, this collection is blowing me away with everything from frills and shine to metal and studs. It’s Western chic in all it’s glory. It goes without mention that those shiny things high boots are killing me.

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What are you guys loving on the runway?

Cindy xx


*All pictures were found on Vogue’s website, here and here.

Sewing lessons

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It is very hard to write a blog post when you don’t have much to write about but, in the spirit of being productive once again, I thought I’d talk about the little joy I’m getting over the last weeks thanks to my sewing classes.

It would make sense to take them being so obsessed with fashion, but I never considered them until a few months ago when I finally realized I love clothing a little too much and having a go at making them could be good.

So far, I’m almost done with a blouse and a skirt. The blouse isn’t very exciting at the moment, but the skirt is making me giddy and I already know what to pair it with: my white off the shoulder top and either sandals or heels.

What’s stopping me from finishing them is the lack of electricity to power up my sewing machine. We’re still recovering from hurricane Maria, and though life is slowly going back to normal, it’s is still a daze of inconvenience. It’s precisely during this tough time that sewing classes are what keep me looking forward to more projects to come in better days.

At this point in time no one knows what’s going to happen yet, but I now have something to look forward to. I’m just waiting for the lights to come back so I can keep going on this wonderful journey of clothes and ideas.

Cindy xx

Can’t get you out of my head

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I’ve been feeling not so creative these past few weeks, but after digging around my head for ideas to write about I finally found a should’ve-been-obvious-to-me topic: headbands. Yes, the ever present hair accessory is currently playing a role in my life as a stylish and practical something that I can wear to make me look put together and hide away bad hair days.

Back in those bleak old days of middle and high school, headbands accompanied me in sad attempts at looking cute because, fact is, I just didn’t know how to accessorize back then. These were not very flattering but hey, they sort of tamed my fly-aways. Now in glorious 2017, where style is my number one obsession, I can finally say they look good on me. I’ve come to find out it’s all about the right type of headband. For me, atleast, it’s the stretchy, knotted kinds (bad description but I think you get the idea!)

I’m more in love with them than ever at the moment thanks to my growing love for my current fashion icon Blair Waldorf. I have a thing for watching TV shows way after they air, and so I started watching Gossip Girl this month and appreciating said accessory, a la Blair. There’s no one better than her to teach me how to wear them, as they are her constant signature in every look she wears.

Loving Blair is also loving her classic, preppy style and reminiscing on Audrey Hepburn films that I haven’t seen in what feels like too long, but that’s a topic for another day, no?

Of course headbands don’t have to be preppy, they’re whatever you want them to be, as shown below by my constant icon Brigitte Bardot and two other modern day examples that prove they can be casual, too.

I’m looking forward to playing with more hair accessories in the future and watching some more Gossip Girl. It seems I can’t get either of these out of my head (literally).

Cindy xx

Learning about Dolores del Rio

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One of the great joys in my life is slowly learning more about my interests, for example, Old Hollywood and all things related to it. Today was Dolores del Rio’s turn, as I was kindly reminded via Google Doodle that today is her birthday. Frankly, I don’t know much about her, nor have I seen her movies apart from Flying Down to Rio, a pre-code musical that I’ve talked about before here. Clearly, it was time to change that, so I dedicated some time to read more about her and she seems like a very interesting person! It turns out Dolores was one of the first Latina actresses to make it big in Hollywood (she was considered a female equivalent to fellow “Latin lover” Rudolph Valentino) starring in silent films during the 1920s, and later moving on to talkies in the 1930s, cementing herself as a popular star.

After her decline in Hollywood, she longed to have more control over her career and returned to Mexico during it’s golden age of cinema in the 1940s. From there on she continued to have a successful career, returning sporadically to Hollywood, while also doing theater and TV. Up until her dying day, she was was absolutely gorgeous and a big symbol of both Mexican beauty and Hollywood’s glamour age.

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In fact, as we can see above, she was considered “the best figure in Hollywood” thanks to a strange study which considered that her measurements were the closest to the ideal of the time! She was also muse to artists, writers and poets who were all inspired by her great beauty and charm. One of these was Diego Rivera, who painted this portrait down below:

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Portrait of Dolores del Rio by Diego Rivera (1938)

Dolores was a fashion and beauty icon too, of course, and wore dresses and costumes made by the top designers of her time. Her makeup look was also imitated by both women in the ’30s and other actresses of her time.

I have to say that I get a kick out of seeing her wearing more traditional Mexican fashion. Latino actors, along with actors from other minorities, are often ignored or not as widely remembered as other stars from the golden age of Hollywood, but seeing her embracing her culture and showing it to the world makes me so excited and proud to be Latina like her!

After reading about her I’ll definitely make sure to watch some more of her films. There’s a few of her older ones that are calling my name. 🙂

I’m also including here a video I saw about her today, as part of the universe reminding me to pay attention to her. It’s from “The Ultimate Fashion History”, a YouTube channel I’m falling in love with more and more every day:

Are you a fan of Dolores? Which of her movies do you recommend?

Cindy xx

9 things I learned from watching Sex and the City

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Few shows can come become huge favorites for me, but I can safely say that Sex and the City has become one of these. I remember my mom watching it when I was a kid. Back then it seemed grown up and exciting, so I gave it shot with my sister and we were both instantly hooked. Watching it made me laugh, cry, stress, (you name it), and the lessons I learned from it are ones I’ll keep in mind in the future! In a way, Carrie, Charlotte, Samantha and Miranda were like grown up friends with cool lives and great advice when it comes to life, love, sex and relationships. Here’s some of the things I learned from the show!

1. Always be fabulous

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Life can be shitty, but feeling good about yourself always helps. So go ahead, dance, date, drink, go shopping, live your life! It’s too short to be down in the dumps all the time. Remember to do this regardless of age, too. Being fabulous has no expiration date.

2. Be true to you

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Some people will try to change you. Some will even try to get you to throw out clothes, or they’ll shoe shame you. Those people are idiots. You do you.

3. Know your worth

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Never shrink yourself for anyone! You’re worth so much more than you think you are.

4. Sex isn’t a taboo

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Seriously! It’s so great to see women on TV being so open and honest about sex. Why do we treat such a normal thing as something we can’t even mention?

5. Don’t be afraid to let people in

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Easier said than done, but still something to remember. It’s scary to be vulnerable with someone who could potentially hurt you in the future, but closing yourself up only leads to unhappiness. Take a chance, it might pay off.

6. Always be honest

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Be honest with your partners, your friends, and most importantly, yourself. Honesty can hurt, but it’s better than lies and false illusions. In the end, people will appreciate your words. Maybe don’t be as blunt as Miranda, though.

7. You don’t have to go through life alone

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Sometimes we think we can do everything buy ourselves, but this is basically impossible. The people who love you will be there for you when you need them. Be there for them too!

8. You never know when you’ll meet the one, and they might not be who you expected

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Maybe you’ll meet them late in life or maybe you’ll know them for years before you get together. Life is full of twists and turns and they might not be who you expected, either. Regardless, they’ll be there eventually and they’ll be a happy surprise.

9. Never lose your faith in love

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Love isn’t the solution for your problems in life, but independent working women need love too. We’re only human! Finding someone we can truly connect with can be hard, but it’ll happen. Good things come to those who wait.

I HAVE to watch the SATC movies now, here’s to more lessons I’ll learn from them, too!

Have you learned anything else from the show?

Cindy xx