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Thursday, October 28, 2010

Take THAT, rainy week!!

What do you wear when you're tired of it raining all blasted week long? You put together a super bright and colorful outfit and then make a face at the weather. Nevermind the fact that the sun finally started coming out just before my dad took the picture, lol. This outfit looks more like spring than fall (my white tights laugh in the face of the after-Labor-Day rule), but my fall wedding looked just like spring too! Ha! It doesn't look as bright in the pic as in person...I got some fairly odd looks while out and about.




(Dress and boots from Forever 21; "Sometimes it's OK to be a quitter" tee from Delia's.)

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Outfit of the Day + Kiss Me Deadly Contest Entry



She is Sara inspired yet another of my outfits. :) I'd been needing inspiration for wearing T-shirts with the multitude of unworn skirts hanging in my closet. For a long time, just about all I wore was some kind of tee with jeans (granted, I at least made them cute tees and good jeans). I got tired of that, go figure, and started trying to dress up more, but now I'm trying to reuse my tees and just pair them with different things, like skirts. I think I'd been overthinking it and just needed to stick a couple different things together and see how it turned out without worrying about being too matchy. One of her recent posts kinda got me thinking again, so this outfit is what I wore yesterday. You may recognize the skirt as the one in a former post of ours where I wore it as a shirt...also inspired by She is Sara! ;) 


Hubby took these pics of me in our stairwell...at nighttime, there aren't a lot of decent places to take pictures inside because of lighting, so we made the most of what we had! The light fixtures, well, they couldn't really be helped too much. (And, I must say, I think his photography skills are improving after only six years of being with me!) I tried to play around with different, more flattering poses. I typically shy away from shots that are taken straight-on or from below; it seems more flattering to me when they're taken just slightly angled downward from the top of your head (can make you look thinner). But I decided to have him try it out from below for these shots, and I think it works when it's done right and when you're posed better. The first pic is what I actually wore during the day, and the second one is to show how it looks more casual. I'm not trying to make a statement with the last photo so much as it just coincidentally came out looking like I was posing like a superhero, so I ran with it. lol I think I need to start wearing other shoes besides these beloved boots! 



And here is my entry for Lime Crime's Kiss Me Deadly: Recreate-a-Look contest! If you hurry, you can still enter through tonight! Go here for details.


(You can click to enlarge all the photos. Blogger is condensing them to make them fit into the space, so they look a bit distorted here until you click on them. I have not edited them to make myself look thinner! lol)

Oh! And one more, just because it's funny. It's an accidental shot hubs took that I thought actually came out kinda artistic...Mom's feet and beagle child's feet (and butt!!). haha I love it!!

Monday, October 25, 2010

How to pose for more flattering photos!

Steph over at The Dashing Eccentric was kind enough to let me know today about a two-parter she posted on her blog about posing in more flattering ways for photos. Her email stemmed from my recent post about how you can look completely different in photos depending on the angles. One of the main things she points out in her guide is that it helps to pose in contrapposto ("an Italian term used in the visual arts to describe a human figure standing with most of its weight on one foot so that its shoulders and arms twist off-axis from the hips and legs. This gives the figure a more dynamic, or alternatively relaxed appearance."). If you look at my post, you'll notice that the super NON-flattering pics of me in the green dress are with me standing completely straight and rigid, and the more flattering pic in the brown floral dress is with me standing with my weight shifted. Well, no wonder! :) 


Fortunately, I've since run across some more pics of me at the rehearsal dinner that are much more flattering, but you know what...I'd still be glad I wore that dress either way! ;)


Here are the links to her posts on this topic (and read through her "about me," which I think is awesome):


http://dashingeccentric.blogspot.com/2010/10/contrapposto-photo-posing-for-curvier.html

http://dashingeccentric.blogspot.com/2010/10/photo-posing-for-curvier-ladies-part.html




Movies & Books: Dorian Gray



I've been wanting to read The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde for several years now...I'm not sure what my excuse is! I'm an avid reader and also listen to a lot of audio books, but somehow this one has remained skipped over. My interest in the book was first piqued because one of my kitties, a gorgeous, long-haired gray tabby, was originally named Dorian Gray by his rescuers. (Though he is exceedingly handsome, he's much too laid-back and loving of a guy to have such a fancy name! :) So his name is Tommy, and it suits him to a T, har har.) 


MY Dorian Gray in the middle of a catnap. :)


When we started up the closet narcissist, I wanted to read it and blog about it because of the narcissism of the main character. When we signed up for Netflix a few months ago, I promptly put the old version of the movie and the new one in our queue, and because I wasn't paying attention, the new one arrived before I could read the book or see the old one, but I had to watch it anyway. I must say, I wasn't prepared for the darkness and eroticism in the movie. Not that I'm complainin'! But I thought it was just gonna be a story about a really narcissistic guy. haha And that he was, but his narcissism was more of the dark, dangerous kind because he wanted to stay young and beautiful simply so he could continue his life of indulgence. I'm still going to read the book and watch the original film eventually and see how they all stack up to each other. I've read that this new version is much darker than those. 


My husband fell asleep during the movie (he does this during almost every movie), and I had really wanted to have a deep conversation about whether men or women handle narcissism better. haha And no, I don't mean narcissism to the extent this movie takes it...more like "our brand" of narcissism (which you know is kinda tongue-in-cheek to begin with) or more so. Men and their stereotypical egos, on the surface, seem not to handle being extremely good looking (and knowing it) as well as women do. Makes me think of the scrumptious Christian in Nip/Tuck. Of course, there are some pretty bitchy, beautiful women too. Adding this in after the fact so as to give more detail behind what I mean... The whole time I was watching the movie, I kept thinking that a woman wouldn't sink to the same depths as he did for the sake of vanity, youth, and living it up without consequence...but I'm not sure what my basis is for thinking that, really, and it may be nothing more than a stereotype. It just seems like more women can be beautiful and still be sweet, whereas more men (but NOT all) who are hot are much too aware of it and are jerks you can't trust. Oh, wait, maybe this is just because I'm jaded! hahaha It seems like most women can always find SOME fault with themselves, though, which is enough to keep them more humble. Do you know what I mean?


hehe


So what do you all think?


Do men and women handle narcissism (or just simply knowing they're hot) differently, and if so, which gender handles it better? 


And if anyone's seen the movie/s or read the book, feel free to pipe in on those too!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Blogger Spotlight: Shybiker



Today I want to introduce one of my favorite bloggers and one of my favorite people in general, my very dear friend, Shybiker (the owner of the fabulous pair of legs above, heehee.) I have known her for a couple of years now, and many, many emails have been exchanged during that time! It's been my honor to get to know her. I love her compassion, kindness, understanding of human nature, honesty, and gentleness. She is a lawyer by day, a biker by hobby, an animal lover, and a true friend. And to echo the way she words it in her bio, "Oh, yeah...and she also happens to be transgendered." To those who may not know or understand, this (for her) means she was born in a male body but has always, from very early childhood, known she was distinctly female inside. Her parents were loving but didn't understand this, and as a result, she has spent most of her life trying to hide her true self from the world, save for a few exceptions. Over the course of our friendship, I have had the good fortune of watching her get a little braver every day and start broadening her network of support, and I've been so happy to see her blog growing and growing and to read all the positive feedback she is getting from so many people. I know it's gone a long way in encouraging her confidence. She has a beautiful spirit, and she deserves nothing less. She has a great blog in which she has recently started exploring women's fashion more and more, and she's doing a great job at it, mixing and matching and having tons of fun with it and lookin' good doin' it. I know you will really like her! 


I wanted to feature her blog today in particular for two reasons. If you're on Facebook, you've no doubt seen the status update going around about wearing purple today in honor of Spirit Day, which is today (10/20), a day to honor gay, lesbian, and transgender teens who have taken their own lives as a result of bullying. Countless transgender teens are either killed in hate crimes or kill themselves just because of the immense struggle to just be who they are, and the statistics MUST CHANGE. It shouldn't be this way; it's senseless and wrong. People need to be allowed to be who they are, end of story! I won't pretend I can completely understand because I haven't been there, but it is a constant struggle for them, and even a little bit of support goes a long way in keeping their hope alive. And today is also Love Your Body Day. Apparently, 80% of women are unhappy with their bodies. This is sad, just plain sad!! And it's one of the reasons KameraWhore and I started this little project called the closet narcissist, to get all of you thinking about how awesome you are! My pal did a blog post on Love Your Body Day, which you can find here: http://shybiker.blogspot.com/2010/10/love-your-body-day.html, and she was also featured in an interview in another blog about this day, which you can read here under "Ralph": http://2eyesinthemirror.blogspot.com/2010/10/happy-love-your-body-day.html.  Let me tell you, reading through it, I was damn near tears because I know her and just beamed with pride over her words of wisdom and confidence. Her words are especially meaningful because of her situation but transcend her situation as well to impact anyone who reads them. We can all learn a lot from her perspective. She is learning to love and accept her body the best she can, and I have a feeling she'd LOVE to be in any of our shoes as women who have the luxury of disapproving of our female bodies!!


Follow her blog and go make friends! :) And learn to appreciate your hot, smokin' bod while you're at it.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Do you wear it even if it's not flattering?

We're baaaaaack!!!! Whew!! Planning my wedding was some of the most fun AND the most stress I have ever experienced in my life! I am so happy to be married, though, and it truly was the most perfect wedding and straight out of the vision I'd been carrying around; how amazing it was seeing it spring to life. The venue and weather were gorgeous, and the husband is equally gorgeous and wonderful. On my ugliest bad hair/bad skin/bloated day, I know I can at least look back on my wedding and feel like I was beautiful on that day, and nothing can take that away from me. I was just so happy!!!


Okay, so what is this weird phenomenon where you can have two photos taken of yourself within seconds of each other but look as though you've gained 20 pounds in the second one? I know photography is all about the angles, but sheesh! These pictures are from a few weeks ago when I got my second tattoo...in one, I look normal (or at least how I think I normally look), and in the second, from a different angle, dude, what happened?!! Suddenly my face is bloated, and I look bigger overall.




I've also been thinking lately about how I will wear something, particularly dresses, that I really, really love even though I know it is not the most flattering cut for my body type. (This started with the yellow dress from my previous fall post, which doesn't seem to be very flattering for me.) I'm not so narcissistic that I can pass up wearing something I love that much. ;) Now, for my wedding day, I was very lucky to have the best of both worlds...the dress of my freakin' DREAMS that also worked for my body type. YES!!! But the dress I wore to the rehearsal dinner, I think it's a bit of a different story. It's a beautiful, ethereal dress I ordered online from Forever 21. It reminded me so much of one that my mom used to wear in the 60s, and since my mom passed away a few years ago and couldn't be at my wedding (at least not in person), it was one of my little ways of honoring her to wear it during the rehearsal. I had lamented to KameraWhore beforehand that I didn't think it looked good on me, and she was probably too sweet to tell me I was right when I tried it on so she could give me her opinion (I thought it looked WAY better on her), but the dress was far too pretty and too sentimental for me to resist. I thought I was all cute pairing it with textured tights and low cowboy boots that also came from F21. People gave me lots of compliments on it even. But when I saw the pictures, oh, Lord!! I was aghast. The dress cinches at the waist, which I thought would be flattering, and I think it was okay from a profile view but not so much from the front or back. I thought the tights and boots were flattering to my calves til I saw the pictures too, and it looked like my calves had no shape whatsoever due to the line caused by the tops of the boots completely interrupting the lines of my legs. But so how do I know if that's what I really looked like or if the camera just happened to catch me from an unflattering angle (several times, lol)? Based on my experience with the tattoo pictures, so much can change when you move your angle even a few inches.  I'm not sure why any of this should surprise me; I've always known I look totally different if my face is turned toward the right vs. the left - there is a reason my nose is pierced on the right side. ;) Incidentally, Kam and I each think our right side is our "good side," which sometimes makes for challenging poses together! (Hint: she looks beautiful from both sides.)


How do we ever know if how we look in pictures is truly how we look? Or in mirrors, for that matter; I look 10 pounds lighter in Kam's full-length mirror as opposed to mine. In any case, because I loved the outfit so much and was so happy that I was probably beaming rainbows out my ass to be getting married, I probably looked better in it in person. And I think, really, that feeling good in it and being confident and happy are the most important things!


  


The first pic was taken the first time I tried on the dress, which is actually a slip with an overlay, and the little ones next to it are from the rehearsal. But compare it to this pic from my honeymoon, when I'd been eating non-stop and yet still look smaller in that outfit somehow. I'm sure I am the ONLY one scrutinizing the angles of my pictures to this level of shallow insanity. ;) But I'd be willing to bet I'm not the only one out there thinking about it in general.


So many questions...thus are the ponderings of a closet narcissist. ;)


What do you think? Do you still wear stuff you know isn't the most flattering cut just because you love it and it makes you happy? (I think you totally should!!) 


And what's your take on unedited photography showing reality?