I get knocked down, but I get up again

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Last week I was running to catch the train. It was just starting to snow, and I was hoping to get home before things really picked up. The doors were closing and a man stuck his hand out to hold them open for me—how nice of him.

Two steps to go before I would be safely inside and I slipped in the kind of way you see cartoon animals slip on banana peels. I slipped and fell hard on my back. I lay for what felt like two minutes but was probably closer to two seconds before realizing my right arm and leg was between the subway car and the platform, a dangerous place for which new New Yorkers are warned to stay away. I quickly, dizzily rolled my way over to the platform and slowly sat up.

“I think I hit my head,” I said to what I thought would be a crowd of strangers hurrying to lend a hand.

But no one seemed to notice except for the subway conductor who gave me a thumbs up before closing the doors for good. It scared me more than it hurt me, at least until the next day when my whole body ached from what I presume was a combination of whiplash and landing flat on the corner of the subway platform. But not one single person asked me if I was ok, not even when I was sobbing on the stairs for 22 minutes while I waited for the next Q train. Yeah, now you know why I was running to catch the previous one.

Here's my theory... because I refuse to believe everyone in this city is horrible. Maybe no one thought to comfort me  because I was wearing my black leather jacket. Girls in black leather jackets don’t usually look like they need help. Girls in black leather jackets always look cool and independent and effortless and they also probably don’t fall in public places. At least, that’s what I tell myself when I’m wearing my leather jacket.

I have always wanted a real leather jacket to keep forever and hopefully pass down to my future daughter. And I think this one is pretty perfect. I imagine it camouflaging all of my a-line dresses and and delicate blouses, just so everyone knows I mean business and don’t need your help. Except when I fall.

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[jacket-uo (similar), top-free people, jeans-zara, shoes-doc marten, necklace-madewell]

hey good-lookin'

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Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

New York is sexy. Women hint at their form with loose, gauzy T-shirts and unbinding bralettes, not suffocating tanks and pushup lingerie. Sundresses graze calves instead of thighs and slips are forsaken in exchange for comfort. When commuting comfortably is a priority and workwear often becomes nightwear style can not be a burden. It's an effortless sexy,  a too cool for the male gaze sexy—something I can get behind. When you put down another person's definition of sexy, clothing options expand and things get interesting.

I gave up cleavage-baring tanks and cheek-grazing shorts when I decided confidence was my decision and was not contingent on the compliments of others. I think this decision came shortly after I traded in my long locks for a boyish cut. Coincidentally the boys found their own "do" unappealing on the opposite sex. It may have whittled down the number of free drinks I got, but it certainly expanded my wardrobe choices and increased the number of compliments I got in public restrooms. Without a motivation to inspire desire I found a new look, an effortlessly "cool" look, a buttoned-up, sometimes androgynous, figure-swallowing look.

There is nothing more commanding than an outfit stolen from the guys. Every woman needs an oversized white button-up and slouchy trousers to mix and match with leather leggings and a cropped sweater respectively. I paired my relaxed button-up with sleek black jeans and a bold lip—my kind of sexy. I resisted the urge to button up all the way to my throat in order to show off my dainty flea market necklace find.

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Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset
Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset
Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset
Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset
Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset
Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset
Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset
Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset
Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

[shirt-madewell, jeans-uo, shoes-similar, sunglasses-madewell, necklace]

jump around

I've decided overalls and jumpers are the winning-est trend to happen this season. Swathed in denim from ankle to shoulder by day and a stretch v-neck number by night, I've decided there is no reason to pick coordinating pants and tops ever again. I will gladly sit all naked and vulnerable in a public restroom for the comfort and convenience of a one-piece. Cover me up and zip me in. I will be living in this Free People jumpsuit this summer. This cropped, army-green denim number is my favorite tax-return purchase. It's the perfect flea-market perusing (with my trusty Birkenstocks) and cocktail-sipping (with strappy heels) number and I will never take it off. Except to pee. And then I will have to completely remove it and have someone else zip me back in. Volunteers?

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[jumper-free people, shoes-birkenstock, necklace-anthropologie, sunnies-madewell]

Thanks, Sarah for the photos.

ponyboy/girl

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Confession. I am not keeping up with runway shows and designer duds anymore. Not forever, but that sure explains my mostly neutral closet and drawers full of boring basics. Sure I still appreciate the artistic process behind each collection and their gowns still appear in my Instagram feed, but it's kind of just not on my radar these days.

These days I'm really into dressing "trend-free." I can honestly say everything I put on my body is a conscious blend of comfort and function. Does this mean I'm an adult? Probably not. Probably just lazy.  I've ditched all my high heels for sleek tennies and strappy flats because blisters are not friends of my city-stomping feet. I wear most tops buttoned up to my neck because cleavage makes me feel too self-aware. And I haven't washed my black skinnies in a month or so because they're the closest thing to black leggings I can wear to work.

With comfort at the top of my sartorial priorities, I've slowly sunk into a sort of boyish look that's kind of fun and new for me. Shapeless jumpsuits, crew-neck T-shirts, sloppy shoes and maybe a kimono for a splash of drama. I like it. New York has stripped me of my love of A-line dresses because you can't sit Indian-style at your dresk in those. My beautiful strappy black heels are in my "can't fit in my closet" suitcase under my bed. But it's OK. My style's never been one to sit in one place for too long. I'm excited for what spring will bring. Maybe I'll be inspired by one of Oscar's polka-dot numbers and dress like a '50s housewife for the month of May. But for now it's all curb-stomping street-wear.

In the 7th grade my English teacher made the class read the Outsiders. It was probably the first book in school I enjoyed and we celebrated the end of the lesson by watching the '80s flick with Ralph Macchio, Tom Cruise, Matt Dillon, etc. I fell head over heels for Ralph Macchio's portrayal of Johnny and every now and again feel a shared bond between the character's kind, meek side—but even more so his dark locks, Converse sneakers, and muscle shirts. Many days I find myself subconsciously likening my outfit to the Greasers, but of course adding a bold lip for girlish flair. Ponyboy, Johnny, Sodapop.... you are my sartorial sprit animal. But my wardrobe is a lot like Robert Frost's poem and the last line of The Outsiders "Nothing gold can stay." Next season it will be on to the next character Abbey wants to play. Cheers, Pony.

Side note: This was the longest winter I've experienced to date. My dream city made me long for sweltering Southern summers. And seasonal depression is real friends. A girl can only take so many grey sweater, grey weather days in a row. Thank goodness the sun has decided to show his elusive self these past couple of weekends. New York spring is beautiful.

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[shirt, jeans-UO, sunnies-madewell, backpack-rebecca minkoff]

I'm here. I think.

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It certainly has been a while. I guess I'll just chalk this up to one of the more personal posts, as I usually focus on personal style and the like. I am in New York City with no ticket home. (Except for my best friends wedding, but I'm coming back right after so that doesn't count. I think.) It's exhilarating and scary and everything I've ever wanted in my short existence as a fashion-forward, liberal-minded, 20-something. Gag. I'm terrified. But the kind of terrified that usually ends up being the best decision you ever made kind of terrified. I've only been this scared one other time and it ended up landing me a couple of awards and a spot on CNN. So it's good. I think.

I am in Brooklyn job-searching and apartment hunting with a few of like-minded thrill-seekers. Gag. (I'm giving myself way too much credit. I never seek thrill. I just think you have to do the whole jobless, air-condition-less thing before you "make it" in this soul-devouring city.)

I'm bad at this whole personal post deal. So far I've just used a bunch of cringe-worthy millennial speak I usually make fun of, so I'll be real. I drink a lot of iced lattes with the money saved up from school and write a lot in my Macbook Pro...edit tests, journaling and the like. I'm lucky. Thanks mom and dad for your support. But it is scary not knowing what my next move will be, but I guess that's good. I think.

So here's to going on three weeks in the city. Heres to the Jamaican food I ate on Saturday that will go down as the best meal I've had in the last six months. Here's to the fun, supportive crowd I get to spend my time without AC with. Here's to the Birkenstocks I bought to help feel a part of the bigger picture in the NYC blogger scene. And here's to the unknown.

I can't leave this post without a pinch of fashion-related material, so below is an accurate portrayal of what I've worn while wandering around the city. Sorry, I haven't found a personal photographer yet. Plus I had to leave my camera at home, as my one suitcase had already exceeded the allotted 50 lbs.

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goodbye, Tuscaloosa

IMG_0117 After graduating from college and all that the mile-marker entails, I am trying to tone down the Forever 21 tutus and cat sweatshirt purchases and instead look for more job-friendly finds. Madewell's sale section has become my go-to for grown-up-gal looks that suit both my style and my desire to look like a trustworthy, job-holding member of the adult world. I plan on this striped tunic dress being in constant rotation in my professional wardrobe—dressed up with a camel-colored blazer of course.

I don't think I will ever own a skirt suit, unless it has polka-dots on it and I can wear it with a turtle-neck, cropped top. I've only really worn my plain black pumps to Christmas Eve Mass. And nude tights will never be in my winter repertoire. I think I will always show a bit of spunk in regards to grown-up clothes. I figure I have a good 20 years before I need nude tights to cover whatever leg blemishes you get post-children.

Also. What's a semi-adult look without an exaggerated neon-blue cat-eye? Probably not work-friendly, but what really defines work-appropriate? Not neon? Ok.

Thanks Madewell, for always being on point with your casual, kind of adultish clothes. Keep up the good work.

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[dress-madewell, scarf-madewell, shoes-nine west, bangle-madewell, watch-as0s]

Thanks, Daniel for the photos.