ALDO x Moderas

A little over a week ago, I had an opportunity to attend Aldo’s Shoefie Party. You might have seen my Instagram story, I managed to catch their Winter 16-17 collection, and meet with other bloggers, and influencers. That was fun. Thanks for a great evening ALDO, Ritz Magazine & Aruna Krishnan! I needed that break between exams.

I figured this post was long overdue (due to numerous other commitments), but we can consider this as my official reentry to the blog sphere, a revival of sorts. I hope to keep this going. I have radical plans to fit the blog for a new mission. I’m excited to see where this could go, I’d love to have you all tag along on this journey as well.

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Of course I had to choose shoes that would make a statement; this party was at ALDO, after all. I went with these Zara beauties.

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A “shoefie” as we called it. I went with this clutch primarily because I didn’t have any other small bag.

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A quick selfie before the event began.
Pro Tip: If you’re wearing tie-up sandals with pants, make sure the pants are cropped at the ankle so that the tie-up detail is visible. 

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intro graphic.001Here’s a short overview of the collection (I had to make a graphic). It has lots of shoes that are meant to be worn beyond the Winter Season, in classic styles and neutral colours. Pops of red shone through the store. I spoke to the ALDO Brand representatives as well, who gave us some insight on how the collection will refresh as the months pass. Hint, it’s going to be fashion-forward, and on par with global trends– so keep going back, you don’t want to miss it!

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Different shoe styles – sandals, pumps, and tie-up sandals too! – in a range of colours.

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Masculine-inspired styles were carried forward through brogues & oxfords, but remain playful in metallic shades. The mini structured bags look so good too!

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No such thing as Winter in Chennai anyway; these sandals are definitely worth picking up.

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But the best part of the event was unarguably the time I spent with my fellow fashion bloggers from Chennai!

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We couldn’t resist these fun photo props.

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Neither did we stop from walking up to the gorgeous Shriya Saran for a group photo op…

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Okay maybe not “a” group photo op.

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A quick selfie with Tanvi Shah of Jai Ho fame.

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Guess I’m “legitimately” famous now! With the lovely Shilpa from Frill Thrills.

Top: H&M • Pants & shoes: Zara • Necklace: from the sister

[I was invited to this event by ALDO. All opinions are my own.]

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Nature + Fashion, ft ShopSkipper (part 3)

So this is the third part in my ShopSkipper series (which you can explore here)! Why ShopSkipper? Because I am now an official blogger for them(!!). My job will be to feature stores in collaboration with ShopSkipper, and bring you the best of Chennai’s shopping scene— in video form, no less!

So be sure to follow their page to see the ShopSkipper edit ft. yours truly. I’m so excited to be a part of their venture!

Store #3 : VYA

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There’s nothing like uniqueness, and that’s exactly what Vya offers.

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Not your run of the mill necklaces & earrings. Each piece is hand-crafted, and usually features one or more seashells, encased against a colourful backing. The metallic finish varies from collection to collection.

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I loved these rings that made a subtle statement. An unconventional touch to an otherwise fuss-free outfit.

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Vya also offers custom pieces in their range- whether choker, earrings, or rings, you can choose a colour combination & shell setting you like. Mother-of-pearl (seen here) is definitely a beautiful option!

Wearing Mango shirt, Levis, Zara heels. Necklace from Vya.

Check them out on Facebook for the latest updates from the House of Vya.

Have a nice week ahead!

~~ gift guides coming up, watch this space ~~

Why guys should care about fashion

Disclaimer: I do not wish to sound like an agony aunt in this post. Any similarity is purely coincidental. Also, I’m making my foray into male fashion posts by breaking a few stereotypes. Thank you Aditya for the post idea. 

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Neal Caffrey: one of the best dressed males on television. Photo via Pinterest

Most of the guys I know dismiss fashion as something purely for girls, a fickle interest that no “straight” male should care about; alternatively, they think fashion is reserved for formal wear. More often than not, a personal sense of style is equated to narcissism, a trait apparently reserved for women. But I think they’re mistaken, for more reasons than one. Being fashionable is neither something to be ashamed of, nor is it a worthless pastime. It is also not difficult, which is another reason guys write it off.

I believe fashion is a tool that is essential for everyone, and when wielded right, does wonders for you. I say this because I know how impactful fashion is, and how much of a difference it has made to me. And I think guys shouldn’t write it off, because of the following:

1. Fashion is your calling card

Today, first impressions can make or break a path. A dapper guy makes a better first impression on possible employers, and people on the street, in comparison to a not-so-well-dressed one. It instantly elevates your personality, and catches attention in the right way. You don’t need to be on-trend, or dressed in a suit to make a good impression either. Also, dressing well gives you a boost of confidence, which goes a long way in all walks of life. BuC5gk0CUAAQ3zb

Photo via @suits_usa Twitter

Think about it, Harvey Specter’s appeal can be partly credited to his well-cut suits & scarves, and his off-duty style of v-neck t-shirts and denim. Whatever he’s doing, his sense of style adds to his personality, and makes him memorable to both prospective clients, and us viewers (not like he needs another reason!).

2. Fashion is not complicated

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This is cited by guys, and girls alike as a reason to not care about how they dress. And it couldn’t be farther from the truth.

The endless trends spawning from fashion weeks can be a chore for even the most experienced fashionista. However, classic styling options can be played around with easily. All you have to do is look for the right inspiration, and alter it in a way that you like. It’s as simple as a striped round neck t-shirt, a plain shirt, and a pair of chinos. Or even a long sleeve shirt, jeans, and loafers, with the sleeves rolled up. And bam, you look great for any occasion.

Fashion is definitely not complicated; you do not require expert layering to look good, neither do you need to know all the fancy words you can’t pronounce. Fashion is easy; you just need an open mind.

3. Fashion is a form of expression

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Blaine Anderson of Glee has a distinct sense of style (see also: Kurt Hummel). Photo via Pinterest.

Male TV characters have something unique about the way they dress. Whether it’s a button down shirt or a suit, each character wears it in a different way, which speaks about their personality– fun prints and bow ties indicate happiness and joy, a well-made suit instantly reads suave and charming. It is a unique form of identification that can be changed up as many times as one wants, which is why I call it a form of expression. Dressing well on a bad day (everyone has a few) can boost your mood too (#truestory). It can even change to suit your mood, your favourite TV show, and even college dress codes, if you develop a strong aesthetic.

4. Fashion need not be expensive or time consuming

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Classic t-shirt styles like the henley can be bought at any price and made to look expensive if styled correctly. Photo from E! Online via Pinterest

You don’t need to spend on Armani Jeans or J. Crew to look like a million bucks. Buying clothes from your favourite stores works just as well, if not better. All you need to ensure is their fit– it shouldn’t be too tight (especially not t-shirts), and the sleeves shouldn’t go over your wrists. I would personally recommend sticking to long sleeve shirts (button-downs), which can be rolled up. Short sleeved shirts can make you look a little old, depending on the situation.

Fashion isn’t time consuming either. Once you start buying clothes that fit (trying them on is KEY), you’ll know what brands work and what doesn’t. Further, you will eventually evolve a uniform of sorts that you like to wear & you receive compliments on; you’ll have a base that you can build up on for experimentation. Maybe you like chinos and plaid shirts. That’s great! Try wearing a t-shirt inside, and wearing the shirt like a jacket (unbuttoned). And you have a way to multitask clothing => economical fashion.

5. Fashion can be fun! males2

Photo from rockmysocks.com via Pinterest

There are virtually no rules for fashion. You can do anything! Wear striped/mismatched socks with suits. A dress shirt and shorts [fun socks are the best way to perk up any piece of clothing (but not long socks with shorts and/or sandals. just, no)].

You can wear shorts (I can practically hear the sighs of relief), your favourite sneakers, maybe even a seahorse-print shirt. Anything! Fashion is fun, and enjoyable, and a great way to step out of your comfort zone.

Just don’t wear skinny jeans. Leave that to the girls.

Added bonus, your girlfriend will love you for dressing well while retaining your individuality. You needn’t know any fashion trends, but a good, and unique sense of personal style goes a long way– looking good never hurts!

If you guys made it to the end of this post, thank you for reading! I hope you liked my foray into men’s fashion.

And if you want to read more posts for guys (maybe outfit inspiration? Tips on layering? Instagram accounts to follow?), let me know in the comments & follow me on Facebook to keep up! 

Lazy Sundays

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Top- Zara; Tank- Gap; Jeans- Esprit; Shoes- Forever 21; Bag- Michael Michael Kors; Necklace- Westside

I had the opportunity to try Ciclo Cafe today with a few friends. The food there is very good, perfect single-serve portions, a decent variety of options for vegetarians, and non-vegetarians alike. I personally recommend the watermelon & feta salad (it has balsamic vinegar!), and their salted caramel cheesecake– one of the best cheesecakes I’ve tasted. Don’t hate on the fact that I didn’t take pictures inside– light wasn’t great, and it isn’t a very big restaurant. Having returned from dance class right before I was about to leave for the cafe, I decided to keep the outfit simple and fuss-free. Plus, the temperatures are rising in the city. This Zara top is one of my favourites, because it can be dressed up or down, depending on the occasion. Plus, puffy sleeves!! The long length of the sleeves are also very flattering for all arms. I added the boyfriend jeans because 1. You cannot wear skinny jeans in this weather, and 2. It added a really good balance to the slim fitting top. I’m wearing these flats everywhere this summer (I need new shoes). Top it off with a necklace & bag, and you’re good to go. I wanted to add a red lip but in my hurry I forgot; it would have elevated the outfit a little more. Have a good week!

Summer’s lighter layers

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Shirt- Uniqlo; Cardigan- Mango; Trousers- Allen Solly; Shoes & tank top- Forever 21; Bag- Lavie; Sunglasses- Ray Ban; Watch- Hilfiger

Chennai’s back to its hot & humid days, and I couldn’t be happier (sort of). I cannot stand the cold, and even though temperatures don’t drop below 20C, it was still a weird couple of months. But now everything’s fine, and back to normal so that’s good. I will still complain about the humidity in a later post, though.

Location changed AGAIN (I’m proud of this), with my awesome best friend taking my pictures (thanks Ananya!). Bombay Brasserie has beautiful exteriors and interiors– especially that greenhouse-like structure, which is an oven in the late afternoons, but nevertheless. The blues and greens were especially ‘summery’, and it was a nice change of pace for me.

To herald a hotter summer than before, I chose lightweight fabrics, and easy layers, to keep the outfit interesting. The cardigan can be omitted, no big deal. But you’ll survive even if you wear it because we aren’t in peak summer yet. I think the cream + black polka dot print as seen on this cardigan makes for an unusually great combination with this light lime green linen shirt.

The shirt, which has 3/4th sleeves, spares you the trouble of rolling it up perfectly. Linen is wonderful because it has a bit of stiffness to it, which makes the cut of the shirt look a little more polished, in comparison to a regular cotton shirt. Plus, it’s lightweight, which makes it really comfortable. I didn’t button it up fully, since I had a matching tank top inside; this makes it look more relaxed.

I usually save the trousers for a formal event but the cropped length is hugely flattering for all occasions– it makes me look taller! I paired it with neutral metallic sandals, which matched with this sling bag (part of the Lavie 4-in-one bag); matching your shoes with your bag is never a bad idea.

Add bright lips (they’re becoming my ‘thing’; I’m wearing Givenchy Le Rouge in Rose Dressing, numerous dupes probably available), a pair of sunglasses, and there you have it– an easy summer look that looks polished but doesn’t seem like you made too much effort.

Happy hotter days, and may the air conditioner be ever in your favour.

Couture 101

Couture (pronounced ko-tyore) is a term for made-to-order fashion. Usually, couture pieces are looked upon as art. Since they are custom made, they cost a pretty penny (day wear begins at $10,000 and evening wear goes skyrocketing from there). The couture shows are a place to showcase the work done, and for customers to see what the label has for grabs. Usually, labels use couture week as a showcase for their creative ability and to put their brand’s aesthetic out there in its purest form.

You might be thinking, “why should I care about some fashion-related thing I can’t even pronounce correctly?”. And that’s a valid point. But believe me, it does matter to you, and it matters a lot to those in the fashion world.

Couture is not just another excuse for an expensive fashion show. It is both a legal and artistic matter— “A piece is only considered haute couture if it is produced by a haute couture label that adheres to three requirements set forth by the French Ministry of Industry and the Fédération Française de la Couture”. And today in a world of Forever 21 and fast fashion eating up our money, couture signifies the dying art of craftsmanship and fashion at its best. Clothes can take up to 700 hours of labour since they are sewn by hand. The result? Nothing short of exquisite.

Our interaction with couture is on the red carpets- celebrities at award shows usually go for couture pieces. The gown you ogled over at the Golden Globes might have been couture. And there’s more to come as the awards season progresses.

At the end of the day, it is couture accents that trickle down to fast fashion, and end up being bought by us. So you could say this is the start of the fashion cycle.

Couture shows happen twice a year, in January and July, in Paris. In honour of the recently concluded shows, I bring to you my favourite pieces and shows. My favourite thing about couture shows is that you can see how the designers have taken inspiration from something and translated into a full collection of about 40 pieces, each one different from the other. It always inspires me. 

Zuhair Murad

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Theme: Water

Alexandre Vauthier

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Theme: Protection (emphasis on material manipulation)

Elie Saab

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Theme: Beirut in the 1960s + his mother’s tulip print dress (embroidery seen in last picture). 

Atelier Versace

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Theme: Curves (back to the basics of a woman’s body) + emphasis on fit and cut of the clothing

Valentino

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Theme: Romance- Shakespeare, Dante’s Inferno, Marc Chagall

Jean Paul Gaultier

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Theme: Weddings- 61 Ways to Say Yes

Ulyana Sergeenko

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Theme: Georgia & Armenia, and their points in Russian history

Giambattista Valli

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Theme: A conversation between Janis Joplin and Coco Chanel

I can’t choose which one I liked the best. Elie Saab was absolutely beautiful, and I loved the 61 takes on wedding dresses by Gaultier. Which were your favourites? Let me know in the comments!

All photos from Style.com (check out their website here for all the shows) & information supplemented by WhoWhatWear.