Trends Come & Go; Women Stay The Same

Slim waist, athletic arms, flat stomach, large boobs…society sends signals to women everyday that these traits are most desired in twenty-first century America. But how did we get to this point? Who started this trend? How did these characteristics become popular? Interestingly enough, for over three thousand years women have been overly concerned with fitting a certain “beauty mold.” Therefore, it is no surprise that beauty standards still exist, but as time has progressed, these norms have become more outrageous and unachievable. Check out this eye-opening video from BuzzFeed, it will certainly leave you pondering today’s beauty standards and society, as a whole. 

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Remembering Vince Camuto

“I’m passionate about creating a product that women really want…infusing great style comfort and unparalleled value, for every stage of her life.” -Vince Camuto

Every time I open another gray and fuchsia Vince Camuto shoe box, that eloquent quote graces the lid. Unfortunately, Camuto, age 78, recently died peacefully in his home as a result of prostate cancer. Despite this tragic loss, Camuto certainly left a mark on the fashion world. According to Famous Fashion Designers, Camuto co-founded Nine West in 1978, and became the creative director of the label. Later, in 2001, Camuto launched the Camuto Group which “provides services like design, production, marketing and sourcing to retail store owners” (Famous Fashion Designers). By 2005, Camuto had introduced his own footwear collection under his own name- Vince Camuto– the brand we all know and love today.

© Women's Wear Daily

© Women’s Wear Daily

Camuto remains renowned for his beautiful footwear, but he was also never afraid to take a risk and stray from shoes, creating handbags, jewelry, apparel, fragrances, and much more. “Although, [Camuto] specializes in the art of shoe making, he explored new areas of fashion products in order to give full satisfaction to his female customers. His concept about design involves style, innovation and excellence” (Famous Fashion Designers). Personally, I find Vince Camuto shoes extremely comfortable, fashion-forward, and affordable. In fact, I have three pairs of his fabulous footwear in my closet at the moment. Take a look!

© Mary Kate Donahue, 2015

© Mary Kate Donahue, 2015

 Tavi Zipper Boot in Lead / Carlotte Suede Heels in Bright Blue / Fantasia Knee High Boots in Brown

Aside from Camuto’s achievements under his own label, he also helped fellow designers create beautiful products. For example, in 2006, “he partnered with Tory Burch to launch her footwear collection, collaborating with Burch to create the iconic ‘Reva’ ballet flat” (Camuto Group). Without the genius of Camuto, my shoe collection would certainly be lacking!

© Camuto Group

© Camuto Group

Cheers to a successful empire, Camuto! You will be missed!


Works Cited

“Vince Camuto.” Famous Fashion Designers. Web. 26 Jan.  2015. www.famousfashiondesigners.org

“Vince Camuto, (1936-2015).” Camuto Group. Web. 26 Jan. 2015. http://www.camutogroup.com

Behind the Scenes at J. Crew

Ever wondered how that fabulous pair of vibrant chino shorts or crisp lace blouse made its way into your closet? Well, J. Crew has captured the process! From the studio, to the fabric supplier, to the patern-maker and beyond, the clothing we consume everyday has lived a complex life before it settles in a perfectly color-coded closet. As an avid J. Crew shopper, I find it so amazing to have a general sense of how my favorite pair of white jeans are actually made. Next time you find yourself wandering into your local J. Crew, just think of the craftsmanship put into the beautifully colorful garments. Enjoy!

The Bachelor Bracketology

Happy Monday! While most people dread Mondays, I love them; especially when I have something to look forward to all day. If you are not watching The Bachelor on Mondays, then you are missing out! Season 19, with Chris Soules, is better than ever! For the first time in The Bachelor history, Chris was introduced to 30 women on the first night. I guess these ladies are really into life on a farm with “Prince Farming” Chris.

© US Magazine

© US Magazine

After watching the first two episodes and the trailer for the season, I have selected my predictions for the season. As the first girl to step out a limo, Chris and Britt had an instant connection. After receiving the first date card for a one-on-one, Megan and Chris proved their similarities and affections. Personally, I think Ashley S. is sticking around simply to add some drama and it seems as though Ashley I.‘s virginity might cause problems later in the season. In addition, Whitney seems adorable and genuine, Kaitlyn appears to be fun and easygoing, and Juelia is extremely brave for moving on with her tragic past.

© ABC *With modification by Mary Kate Donahue, after Week 2

© ABC
*With modification by Mary Kate Donahue, after Week 2

I stumbled upon The Bachelor Bracket and decided to make my predictions. If this goes anything like the NCAA brackets I fill out, then I will be all wrong! But I have an inkling I might have a better handle on The Bachelor rather than college basketball. Take a look at my bracket and be sure to tune into see the lucky ladies who receive roses tonight!

© Mary Kate Donahue, 2015 *Note: All back text has already occurred, and all pink text are my predictions.

© Mary Kate Donahue, 2015
*Note: All back text has already occurred, and all pink text are my predictions.

Downloaded the bracket here.

New Year, New Me: Going Naked

2015 is all about going Naked…as in the cosmetic product! My birthday (January 8) comes as at the start of the year, which extends my Christmas and holiday celebrations. Now as a legal adult (yes, I bought a lottery ticket), I decided it is finally time to ditch the cheap Wet ‘n Wild eyeshadow for a more sophisticated option. Therefore, I opened a beautiful Naked 2 palette on my birthday and I am a convert to well-made, expensive cosmetic products.

© Mary Kate Donahue, 2015

© Mary Kate Donahue, 2015

Unable to decide between Naked, Naked 2 or Naked 3, I told my mother to purchase whatever was available. Thankfully, the saleswoman at Sephora asked my mother about my complexion and hair color in order to find the best-fit palette. All I can say is this saleswoman certainly knew anything and everything about the Naked palettes. The Naked 2 palette is beyond perfect for my extremely fair, freckled complexion and strawberry-blonde/auburn hair. The palette includes twelve shades; Foxy, Half Baked, Bootycall, Chopper, Tease, Snakebite, Suspect, Pistol, Verve, Busted and Blackout.

© Mary Kate Donahue, 2015

© Mary Kate Donahue, 2015

© Mary Kate Donahue, 2015

© Mary Kate Donahue, 2015

In addition to my new “big-girl” make-up, I also received more mature cosmetic storage. The acrylic storage from the Container Store comes in all shapes, sizes, and configurations. I now have two stackable drawers and an open make-up organizer atop the drawers. Along with the new storage, I decided I had to purge myself of my old cosmetics. Why was I holding on to silver liquid eyeliner and practically empty foundation bottles?!

© Mary Kate Donahue, 2015

© Mary Kate Donahue, 2015

After cleaning out, organizing and using my new Naked product, I feel as though I am certainly ready for adulthood…maybe.

What I’m Watching: House of DVF

What do long weekends call for? Besides catching up with friends, shopping and sleeping, they are all about binge watching your favorite shows! Although I am usually a Netflix enthusiast, I recently found a full series On Demand- House of DVF.

© Mary Kate Donahue, 2015

© Mary Kate Donahue, 2015

Of course I had heard of the wonderful Diane von Furstenberg prior to the show, I never realized how remarkable her character is. In the series, eight girls are presented with the opportunity to learn the ins and outs of the fashion business with Diane von Furstenberg and her team. Ideally, Diane hopes to find one girl to the Brand Ambassador who will travel the world and represent Diane von Furstenberg, as a label. Diane, humble and genuine, relates to each girl as if they have been friends for years. Although, Diane is also never afraid to be stern and impart important life lessons with the girls.

© E! Online

© E! Online

© E! Online

© E! Online

A profound woman, Diane makes her brand and the fashion world as a whole seem approachable and simple. Specifically, in one episode, she advises Kier to release her bitchy tendencies: “I really feel you don’t have to be a bitch to be successful. Being a bitch is always bad. It can never be good” (Henry). Aside from the show, Diane’s words truly resonate with me. Although I was simply hoping to find an amusing television series to watch this weekend, I discovered another strong inspiration in the fashion world. That’s a wrap!

© E! Online

© E! Online

© E! Online

© E! Online

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© E! Online


Works Cited

Henry, Zoe. “Diane Von Furstenberg’s Best Quotes From ‘House of DVF.'” Inc. Inc. 1 Dec. 2014. Web. 18 Jan. 2015. www.inc.com

Red Carpet Fashion: The Highs & Lows

If you did not spend your Sunday night curled up on the couch watching the Golden Globes, then you are doing it all wrong! This Fashionista can certainly proclaim that I indeed watched the full five hours of both red carpet interviews and then the award show, itself. Of course, the nominees and Golden Globe winners are extremely important, but I care much more about what (and who) they are wearing! We certainly saw a great deal of red, cut-outs, white/cream/ivory, metallics & glitter, yellow, open backs…and even some gloves!

Because the Golden Globes kicks-off the awards show season in Hollywood, many stars love to start off with a bang! Some were able to be bold quite well, looking extremely elegant and fun; while, others simply missed the mark. Here are the Fashionista’s favorite (and abhorred) looks from the night.

Top 10 Fashion Lows

10. Kate Hudson’s “too-sexy” gown

Do not get me wrong, Hudson looked hot in her Versace. But..,one wrong move and we would’ve had a major fashion faux-pas! Hudson, herself, exemplified sexy, but the dress as its own entity came across as slightly too sultry. I would have loved to see a higher neckline with the beautiful cut-out work, as (in my humble opinion), Hudson is extremely lucky the paparazzi did not catch an “uh-oh” moment!

© Vogue

© Vogue

9. Lena Dunham’s ill-fitting shift

Although this was Dunham’s best red carpet looks thus far, she still missed the mark. Her Zac Posen ensemble certainly radiated its color, but the structure was lackluster. Dunham, with beautiful curves, would look stunning in a more tailored garment. As her style progresses, I believe Dunham will make the best-dressed list by her next awards show.

© Vogue

© Vogue

8. Claire Danes: the flower child

This Valentino certainly is intricate! I can only imagine the craftsmanship that went into this gown, but I find it underwhelming on Danes. The dress swallowed her frame, inhibiting her from shining through her garment. Danes’ look is proof that proper tailoring is completely necessary.

© Vogue

© Vogue

7. Ruth Wilson’s informal garb

Did Prada raid a zipper factory while making this gown? The unfinished edges resemble zippers, and I find the gown to look highly informal- certainly not red carpet worthy. Cut it short & wear it to a cocktail party, and we might have a winner!

© Vogue

© Vogue

6. Maggie Gyllenhaal’s drab & dowdy dress

I’m convinced this Mui Mui was made of the same shade as my grandmother’s nail polish! While the silhouette is simple, so are Gyllenhaal’s accessories and styling. With such a chic haircut and aesthetic, I would have loved to see her in something a bit more daring and bold!

© Vogue

© Vogue

5. Alan Cumming: in the nude

Forget the traditional black tux! Cumming found this fully nude look and accompanying sneakers to be more ‘suit’-able for the red carpet. Personally, I prefer the traditional black or navy with understated details. But, if Cumming prefers to look as if he is wearing women’s Spanx, that is his decision!

© New York Post

© New York Post

4. Lana del Ray: under-the-sea ensemble

Lana del Ray resembles a combination of Ariel from The Little Mermaid and a bridesmaid dress gone wrong! From the vibrant color and the halter neckline to the pleated skirt, del Ray’s look is too busy. Not too mention, her overly-teased hair added to her fussy look.

© Vogue

© Vogue

3. Rosamond Pike’s dental floss dress

Alright, I get it. She just gave birth and wanted to show a little skin, but Pike did not do so in a graceful manner! The open sides and back of her gown, only supported by ‘dental floss’ straps, exude slutty instead of sexy. This Vera Wang had the potential to look flawless, but unfortunately Pike simply could not pull it off.

© Vogue

© Vogue

2. Katie Holmes: hair to toe

This is the red carpet after all! Holmes looked more homely than hot at the Golden Globes. Her underwhelming gown, nonsexist accessories, and awful hair extensions make her look dull and insignificant. I would love to see her in a more vibrant, fun gown with her hair (sans extensions) styled down.

© Vogue

© Vogue

1. Kiera Knightly’s insect frock

Last time I checked, the Golden Globes are not held in a butterfly sanctuary! Apparently, Knightly missed that memo. Many critics are hesitant to chastise Knightly for this atrocious look, simply because she is with-child. The stars have unlimited access to designers who will create beautiful garments for them, with or without a baby bump! From the scattered insects to the dated ruffles, Knightly looks as if she stole this frock from the set of Pride & Prejudice. Better luck next time!

© Vogue

© Vogue

Top 10 Fashion Highs

10. Gina Rodriguez’s fun LBD

Who doesn’t love a fabulous LBD? Especially one with some unique and fun details? Rodriguez certainly does! She looked simply stunning in Badgley Mischka gown. The mesh, intricate details, and fringe added flair to a classic black gown. Well done!

© E! Online

© E! Online

9. Jennifer Lopez: glittering goddess

Talk about perfection! J. Lo looked absolutely sensational in this Zuhair Murad gown & cape combo. From the beadwork to the sexy slit, this gown fits J. Lo perfectly- both physically and her personality! Jenny from the block has certainly made it in the fashion world.

© Vogue

© Vogue

8. Allison William’s old-Hollywood glamour

Although many are claiming that Williams dress resembles Christmas garland, I absolutely love this look! The ravishing red, delicate beading, and old-Hollywood styling make Williams resemble a sophisticated movie-star. She exudes class in this fabulous ensemble!

© Vogue

© Vogue

7. Julai Goldani Telles’s jewel-toned attire

Wow! This rich sapphire Carmen Marc Volvo gown looked effortlessly gorgeous on Telles. The deep neckline and full skirt provide a beautiful silhouette and  I was stunned by the spectacular color. Although Telles received a modest amount of media attention, I believe her gown was a show-stopper!

© E! Online

© E! Online

6. Hiedi Klum: red hot

Red on the red carpet certainly was a trend this year, but Klum’s ensemble surpasses them all. This striking Versace fits Klum like a glove. The intricate bead work, trumpet skirt, and unexpected neckline made for a jaw-dropping garment. Klum certainly looks red hot!

© E! Online

© E! Online

5. Amal Clooney: red carpet royalty

Clooney has been receiving some negative press for her Golden Globes look, with special scrutiny to her white gloves. Personally, I loved Clooney’s look. Her choice of an understated yet elegant Dior Haute Couture gown was wise, as she did not want to steal the attention from her husband on his night. The white gloves added a bit of sophistication to her look. I believe Kate Middleton would approve!

© Vogue

© Vogue

4. Emily Blunt: Grecian goddess

Effortlessly beautiful. Blunt radiated simplicity and elegance in her Grecian Michael Kors gown. From the bright white and the modest cut-out to the accessories, Blunt resembled a modern-day Grecian goddess. Can I get one in my size?

© Vogue

© Vogue

3. Emma Stone’s ravishing romper

Pants on the red carpet? Stone looked absolutely fabulous in her romper. Unexpected yet perfectly executed, Stone is never afraid to take a fashion risk and this one certainly paid off. The metallic bodice and tailored pant looked put-together, but the beautiful bow was the icing on the cake! I can only dream of pulling off such a stunning ensemble.

© Vogue

© Vogue

2. Chrissy Teigan’s glittering gown

Despite her unfortunate facial expression when her husband, John Legend, won a Globe, Teigan looked gorgeous in her gown. The blush pink complimented her skin tone perfectly, the beadwork was exquisite, and the long-sleeve silhouette was to die for! Her simple styling and soft ponytail completed her effortlessly stunning ensemble. Fabulous!

© Vogue

© Vogue

1. Julianne Moore’s fabulously feathered frock

Where can I get my very own version of this gown?! Moore looked absolutely perfect in her on-of-a-kind Givenchy Haute Couture gown. The simple silhouette, silver bodice, and gradual conversion to feathers make Moore’s gown hard to resist. Maybe it’s my obsession with feathers, but I would do absolutely anything to slip into that garment!

© Vogue

© Vogue

The New Dream Team: Target & Lilly Pulitzer

Have you heard? If you’re a loyal Lilly Pulitzer Instagram follower than you most certainly have! On April 19 (only 102 days away), Target will be launching their Lilly Pulitzer for Target line. According to A Bullseye View, “the limited-edition collection features 15 exclusive prints, which are original works of art, created by Lilly Pulitzer artists specifically for this modern collaboration.” From now on, a trip to target will feel like a luxury stroll down Worth Avenue in Palm Beach, FL.

©  Lilly Pulitzer Instagram

© Lilly Pulitzer Instagram

Personally, I never have too much luck in the clothing department at Target (but I still manage to leave there with several shopping bags), and I’m hoping this new collaboration will offer variety to their garments. If not, there will certainly be a host of other bright, bold, and printed items to choose from: “the 250-piece collection includes apparel, accessories and shoes for women and girls, as well as home accents, outdoor entertaining accessories, beach gear, travel essentials and more” (A Bullseye View). Speaking of home accents, I’m also keeping my fingers crossed for some fabulous bedding. Can you say dorm room decor? I most definitely see the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

© A Bullseye View

© A Bullseye View

© A Bullseye View

© A Bullseye View

I cannot wait to see what this partnership has in store, but I’m confident we will not be disappointed by the merchandise. The only hesitation I have about the whole operation is the fact that Jackie Kennedy and Lilly Pulitzer, herself, would not approve. By making the brand available at a lower-end, more prevalent retailer, Lilly runs the risk of being diminished. Although, Tory Burch once partnered with Target and her brand has flourished since then; therefore, I have little worries for Lilly!  I’m sure many more people will make a splash and buy some Lilly from Target, but those who have been buying the brand for years (like my family and I) will continue to stay loyal to the original line, as well as the Target partnership.

© Target Twitter

© Target Twitter

Don’t forget to follow @lillyfortarget on Instagram!


Works Cited

“Ticket to Sunshine: Introducing Target’s Latest Limited-Edition Collection.” A Bullseye View. Target, 6 Jan. 2015. Web. 7 Jan. 2015. http://www.abullseyeview.com

From My Shelves: The Fashion Book

The Fashion Book…more like the Fashion Bible! Phaidon has managed to include over 200 years of fashion in a beautiful little book that fits in any woman’s handbag. From designers, models, and icons to photographers and even prestigious fashion colleges, The Fashion Book covers the key names in the fashion world in a mere 571 pages. Each entry includes an accompanying photograph of the individual or and illustration that pertains to the work or aesthetic of the individual. First published in 1998, The Fashion Book has seen many runways and photo-shoots since its original creation. Therefore, Phaidon created a new edition; just published in 2014. Although trends and styles have come and gone in the last seventeen year, Phaidon kept timeless icons and designers in addition to the new, fresh faces of the fashion world.

©  Mary Kate Donahue, 2015

© Mary Kate Donahue, 2015

 I could spend hours in my pajamas, simply flipping through the pages of The Fashion Book. With the turn of each page comes increased knowledge of the men and women who have shaped the well-dressed world we live in today. Some of the most notable names include; Coco Chanel, Christian Dior, Jacqueline Kennedy, Alexander McQueen, Kate Moss, Twiggy, Valentino, and so many more! Not to mention, the beautiful cover of the little work of art. The bold pink, black and white design is absolutely stunning and makes the book seem so chic.

©  Mary Kate Donahue, 2015

© Mary Kate Donahue, 2015

If you are anything like me, you absolutely love learning about the history of fashion in order to mold your sense of style. These pages have been the utmost inspiration for me since opening the book on Christmas (thank you David!). I would highly recommend adding The Fashion Book to your literature collection!

2015: The Year of Accepting All Body Types?

Should a woman be defined by a little number (or two) she finds on the tag of her garments? Absolutely not…and some designers are just beginning to realize this. Marisa Meltzer’s article “Plus-Size Fashion Moves Beyond the Muumuu” paints a elaborate picture of the fashion world and the varying views toward plus-sized women.

I find it extremely empowering that so many brands are open to designing for the more curvier women of the world. Although I am not quite plus-sized, I have experienced my fair share of a store not carrying my size or having garments that don’t wear well on girls who aren’t built like pre-pubescent boys. I’ve worn size 8 jeans, size 12 dresses, size XL blouses, size M sweaters, etc. Those numbers and letters mean nothing to me. I focus on what look good on my body; if I have to go up a size in that adorable mini skirt, so be it!

The fashion world is making strides towards including women of all shapes and sizes, but I believe there is still a long road ahead. First of all, forcing plus-sized girls to pay more for their clothing is practically a crime. I know it takes a little more fabric to produce size 18 jeans compared to size 2 jeans, but it is simply belittling to the consumer. Secondly, society conditions women to constantly work on themselves: ‘“When you’re taught to look at your body as a work in progress, you’re not going to spend $1,000 on a coat to last forever because you’re not hoping for it to last forever,’ Ms. Mason said” (Meltzer). Whether trying to shed those love handles or drop 50 pounds for health reasons, women are regularly trying to improve themselves. I wholeheartedly endorse striving to be the best “you” that you can be, but allowing society to permeate women’s ideas about their bodies is another story.

Cheers to 2015 and accepting all women, despite a number/letter/size/shape/features/height/weight/etc.!

©  Vogue

© Vogue


Works Cited

Meltzer, Marisa. “Plus-Size Fashion Moves Beyond the Muumuu. The New York Times. The New York Times Company, 31 Dec. 2014. Web. 2 Jan. 2015.