Self-Care: The Art of Fleeing BS and Maintaining A Positive Outlook on Life

Hellurrrr #fashionablehumans!!!!

Hope this week is lit AF, and that your weekend was full of fun, naps and beautiful moments (veeeery open to interpretation 😏.)

I am in a great mood today, which makes me wonder why this is not a more common occurrence; I am often peppy and positive, but I want that to be an everyday thing, you know? Self-care has been in my mind a lot lately, from taking better care of my skin (working on my version of the 10-step Korean regimen), eating low-carb (23 lbs down, bish) and reading a lot more about positivity, manifestation and purpose.

Indeed, as I get older, I have less and less tolerance for BS and its little cousin Drama. These 2 were not regulars in my life anyway; now though, every time I see them, I just want to call the cops to have them escorted to a different zip code. (I won’t, because the way police brutality is setup…)

Anywhoooo, I would love to share little steps I have been taking every day to be more positive, energized and overall happy with life. I am still a work in progress (and shall be until the day I die), so some of these are still a struggle. Still, they have made a difference for me and I hope they do for you too.

Blogger @Dafrastar discusses positivity in every day life, while rocking a hoodie dress and an Ankara cap from Helmh. ankara, ankara hat, ankara accessories, ankara headwrap, ankara hat, helmh, helmh accessories, ankara accessories, hoodie dress, sweater dress, how to style a hoodie, how to style a hoodie dress, OTK Boots, Stuart Weitzman Highland, Steve Madden GorgeousTake the time to know yourself; being positive starts within.

Who are you, really? No, I am not asking about your degrees, your job, or even your religion. Who are YOU? What do you love, what do you dislike? What makes your heart soar, and what makes you quake with fear? What do you want out of your life? Like, REALLY want?

Answering these questions (and more) will allow you to be honest with yourself about what you aspire to, and who you aspire to be. I personally feel like questioning myself often creates a virtuous circle: I get in touch with my own feelings, follow what I really want and therefore feel happy, fulfilled and positive because I am going after my goals and creating my reality. Don’t leave for others.

Questioning myself often creates a virtuous  circle: I learn who I really am, follow what I really want and feel happy and positive because I am creating my reality.Don’t leave for others.

Blogger @Dafrastar discusses positivity in every day life, while rocking a hoodie dress and an Ankara cap from Helmh. ankara, ankara hat, ankara accessories, ankara headwrap, ankara hat, helmh, helmh accessories, ankara accessories, hoodie dress, sweater dress, how to style a hoodie, how to style a hoodie dress, OTK Boots, Stuart Weitzman Highland, Steve Madden GorgeousBe kind to yourself.

This one is so important, guys. You cannot live a positive life if you refuse to be kind to yourself.

Think about it: we are so kind to others! We stay up late consoling our friends, are there for them when they run into hardships and love them unconditionally. Why can’t we do that for ourselves?

  • We are NOT defined by our mistakes, but instead by our ability to learn from them.
  • We are NOT less worthy than the next girl because she has a smaller dress size, or because we have thicker thighs.
  • We are NOT failures because we have not completed college or just folded after a business venture.

I avoid negative self-talk as much as I can. Writing a great thing about myself in my Panda Planner every morning before I start work, and really taking a minute to internalize it is also a helpful habit. I also really, really try not to fall into the social media comparison trap. I AM ENOUGH.

Always remember: you are smart as shit, strong, fun and destined to do amazing things. Please realize how great you are, and how much you bring to the people around you. Treat yourself like you would your best friend: do not allow your mind or mouth to speak evil of you. (Pro tip: reading manifestation related content further explains how important it is to speak highly of yourself.)

Treat yourself like you would your best friend: do not allow your mind or mouth to speak evil of you.

Blogger @Dafrastar discusses positivity in every day life, while rocking a hoodie dress and an Ankara cap from Helmh. ankara, ankara hat, ankara accessories, ankara headwrap, ankara hat, helmh, helmh accessories, ankara accessories, hoodie dress, sweater dress, how to style a hoodie, how to style a hoodie dress, OTK Boots, Stuart Weitzman Highland, Steve Madden GorgeousAvoid energy leeches.

You know exactly who I am talking about. We all have those friends/acquaintances/family members who are HEAVY to be around. They stay whining (while never trying to fix their issues), angry at someone or supercritical of you and your choices. You never feel positive after spending time with them, but down and exhausted instead. Seeing an incoming call from them makes you sigh heavily… or sends you into fits of panic.

One word: Run. (Fast. And far away.)

While it is okay to listen to a buddy’s venting session (and to help them out when you can), it is NOT okay to let their issues get you down, especially when they refuse to help themselves. After a while, you have to realize that your own positivity and sanity come first. Just have them miss you with the bullshit. Politely change the topic when they mention that fuckboy for the 1,355,676 th time, because they are clearly refusing to learn from their mistakes.

Even worse: beware of people who embrace mediocrity and shit all over your dreams.

Let’s be clear: real friends will STAN when you get a better job, get engaged, get a promotion, lose weight, or finally launch that business (more on being a good friend here). They will also keep it real with you and give you honest but constructive feedback, which is always needed. What you do NOT need is the naysayers, who keep yapping things like  “You can’t do it”, or who suddenly go silent when you share great news. No ma’am.

Protect your energy from those leeches and keep being amazing and positive.

We all have those friends/acquaintances/family members who are HEAVY to be around (…) One word: Run. (Fast. And far away.)

Blogger @Dafrastar discusses positivity in every day life, while rocking a hoodie dress and an Ankara cap from Helmh. ankara, ankara hat, ankara accessories, ankara headwrap, ankara hat, helmh, helmh accessories, ankara accessories, hoodie dress, sweater dress, how to style a hoodie, how to style a hoodie dress, OTK Boots, Stuart Weitzman Highland, Steve Madden Gorgeous

What I am wearing: Dress, here; boots, here; purse, Céline Phantom. Baseball hat, HELMH (wearing Sultan Harare Dashiki cap)

Step out of your comfort zone and try new things.

Got a whole post on this here. Keep pushing your boundaries and find joy in new adventures.

Blogger @Dafrastar discusses positivity in every day life, while rocking a hoodie dress and an Ankara cap from Helmh. ankara, ankara hat, ankara accessories, ankara headwrap, ankara hat, helmh, helmh accessories, ankara accessories, hoodie dress, sweater dress, how to style a hoodie, how to style a hoodie dress, OTK Boots, Stuart Weitzman Highland, Steve Madden GorgeousCelebrate the “NOW”.

One thing that keeps me positive is taking great care of myself. I often joke that the worse I feel, the better I look. I love wearing cool clothes just because, wearing a fresh lash to the office because I want to, changing my hairstyle because I can, and wearing my best shoes on a random Tuesday. Because why the fuck not?

Do not put off rocking a fun dress or wearing your sexy undies for a “special occasion”. Guess what- every day is one! Your closet exists for you; use it! Wear those fun stockings, that perfume that makes you feel like a million bucks, those jeans that make your 🍑 look amazing. You deserve to make yourself happy. All the damn time.

Do not put off rocking a fun dress or wearing your sexy undies for a “special occasion”. Guess what- every day is one! (…) You deserve to make yourself happy, all the damn time.

I hope this helps even one of you to zero in on their happiness, and preserve their positive attitude every day. Life is short; let’s enjoy it with no BS.

Blogger @Dafrastar discusses positivity in every day life, while rocking a hoodie dress and an Ankara cap from Helmh. ankara, ankara hat, ankara accessories, ankara headwrap, ankara hat, helmh, helmh accessories, ankara accessories, hoodie dress, sweater dress, how to style a hoodie, how to style a hoodie dress, OTK Boots, Stuart Weitzman Highland, Steve Madden Gorgeous

On to the ‘fit:

This dress I am HERE for it. Just such a gem! I am in absolute love with it, and in spite of having had it for less than a month, I already wore it 3 times. It is comfy, soft, thick, relaxed, and just everything I ever wanted in a hoodie dress. I had to (considerably) size up (this is a 3X, I am a M-L in most cases), so just keep that in mind. For your reference, I am 36″-29″-45″, and I am 5″11. It is such a fun casual piece, and I think I may wear it again tomorrow. 🤷🏿‍♀️

This baseball hat was kindly sent to me by Harlem over at HELMH. His company provides Ankara headwraps and baseball caps, which got me immediately excited- y’all know I live for a good Ankara print. The cap I am rocking here is the Sultan Harare Dashiki (sold out at the moment), but this one is bae- I kinda want to get it for myself. I find my hat to be very well made, sturdy and with vibrant colors. I’d wear it with regular clothes for that extra dash of culture, heh!

The boots: featured on the blog before, here. Love them; they look good, fit well and are reasonably comfortable.

The purse: featured here. I still feel the same way about it.

That’s it for today guys!!! Thanks so much for your renewed support, and I will see you later this week!

Until next time,

With Love,

D

10 Random Facts about Me

Hello hello #fashionablehumans!

By the way- we are coining this expression. I checked Instagram and this hashtag only has, like, 3 posts- dassit, we’re taking it.

How have you guys been, and how was your holiday? Did you travel to go see family, or did you host?  Personally, I have been super busy yet super happy!  Life is good and I am overflowing with gratitude; I just need to remember to pray more often, swear less and drink my water (as of right now I am drinking wine tho).

Blogger @Dafrastar sharing 10 Random facts about her, rocking Missguided, Stuart Weitzman and Moon River . More on the blog!So- in spite of me yapping for paragraphs on each single one of my posts,  I realized last week that you guys really do not know much about me at all. I was prepping to post my last look from London, and I seized the opportunity to write a bit of a more personal post! To be honest- as much as I love fashion, I often feel that posts only focusing on clothing can be a little dry. For example, I am enjoying the heck out of my Fall 2017 Trends series; however, I also love to share some personal learnings and experiences as well.

Blogger @Dafrastar sharing 10 Random facts about her, rocking Missguided, Stuart Weitzman and Moon River . More on the blog!I have seen the “10 random things about me” tag floating around for quite a while. I never fail to read one; I feel like they give me a neat insight into who people really are, social media/ blogger personas aside. Like- they can speak fluent Russian, are amateur salsa dancers or cosplayed as Sailor Moon last year at Comicon. That shit is just so cool to me!

Sooooo I am trying my hand at it. Let me know if anything surprises you, if you knew everything or if we have some things in common!

10 Random things about me

  1. I am an only child. I feel like that has molded me into being someone who is not at all afraid of loneliness. I am really good at entertaining myself, and I am honestly rarely (if ever) bored.  The main downside to this is that I tend to assume others function the same way; I pack my days full of activities, often forgetting to bake in time to spend with other people.
  2. I love books. I easily read 1-2 MEATY books per month; at some point, I was really into fiction and finished a book every weekend like clockwork. I do not discriminate as far as genres are concerned: fiction, romance, mystery, self-help, nutrition, fitness, professional development, even prose (I cannot last through that shit though, it hurts my brain). The last opened books in my Kindle app currently are:

“Necessary Restorations” by Kate Canterbary (finished it- I love the whole Walsh series and read every book twice, don’t judge me- or judge away, whatever lol)

“Strong Curves” by Bret Contreras and Kellie Davis (just started today, I am very excited about the workouts in this book)

A sample of “Algorithms to Live by: The Computer Science of Human Decisions” by Brian Christian & Tom Griffiths (not started- I actually bought it for a friend in paperback and grabbed a Kindle sample for myself to check it out. She’s smart, so I am sure anything she picks is a good book)

“Drive: The Surprising Truth about what Motivates Us” by Daniel Pink (I’m on the last few chapters, good learnings)

“Outliers: The Story of Success” by Malcolm Gladwell (finished it, very easy read but pretty interesting; can’t wait to read another one of his books.)

  1. I speak 3 languages fluently, and English is the 3rd one. Dioula (my mother tongue, pronounced dee-oo-luh ) and French were the first languages I spoke. I did not start speaking English daily until I was 19 years old, when I moved to the US for college.
  2. I LOVE the Harry Potter series. I have watched every single one of the movies maybe 10 times and I own every single one of the books (as physical copies and in kindle format). I judge anyone who cannot say “wingardium leviosa”, or worse- who has no idea what it means.
  3. Finding jeans is extremely hard for me because I have a short torso and longer legs. I am also 5″11, which does not help. I need an inseam of 35″- 36″to be comfortable, which greatly limits my choices. Oh, and I have a shoe size of 11. Fun.
  4. When I was 19, I competed in a TV show akin to the French version of Jeopardy. I made it to the finals and won a lot of books and chocolate (It was around Easter). I lost to a history teacher, so I was honestly cool with it- listen, I was still perplexed as to how I made it that far.
  5. I got married twice… to the same man. My husband is Indian, so we had a regular wedding with the white dress, cake, bridesmaids etc. and an Indian wedding where I wore a red lehenga. It was fucking epic.
  6. I have a speech impediment; I have been stuttering since I was 6. It does not bother me that much in daily life; as a matter of fact, I have had A LOT of years to practice concealing it, so many people have no idea. I did go to speech therapy for it and got better, but I have since relapsed. I really should go again.
  7. I cannot drink coffee- It is BITTER!!!!! How do you guys do it??? I tried so many times, and I just can’t. Nope. I understand that people can have a taste for it, I appreciate the amount of work that goes into bean selection and roasting, but the beverage itself is just FOUL to me. I love the smell of a freshly brewed pot though.
  8. I do not watch TV. Like none. I do watch Netflix here and there (usually to keep my ears busy when I’m doing my hair), but I do not have the commitment to sit in front of the TV for anything. Everything that I know about TV personalities, I found out on social media. For world news, I catch up pretty easily via a triangulation of Twitter, FB, news apps, Reddit and my husband lol.

There you go, this is it!

Here are more photos of my outfit below, as well as a quick 411:

Blogger @Dafrastar sharing 10 Random facts about her, rocking Missguided, Stuart Weitzman and Moon River . More on the blog!

  • Top: Black sheer bodysuit; used it several times on the blog, here and here for example. It’s from AliExpress and is available here. I love it so much I actually bought two more; one identical and one with a crew neck. The utility I get out of these is amazing- I wore the older one maybe 10 times, and that nets out to less than $1 per wear.
  • Boots: Another blog favorite, here and here. They are the Stuart Weitzman LeggyLady, mostly sold out everywhere but here’s a similar pair here.
  • Blazer: First feature on the blog, but wore it several times already! It is from Missguided, and it is a much much much more affordable version of this one by Balmain; found out about it from a Jennie Jenkins fashion haul, and I have seen the Balmain blazer on Folake from Style Pantry several times in the past years (here, here). EVERY. TIME she wears it, it is DROOL WORTHY. That woman can DRESS. Anyway, back to our train of thought–this Missguided blazer has none of the structure its higher-end cousin benefits from (Jennie compares both in her video, at 10:23– you’re welcome )- but it is a cute blazer, it looks nice with jeans/ minis/ shorts and has a good length. I also scored it for 50% off during a random sale by Missguided, yay!  I will say though- mine is a little too large for my taste, and I wish I had sized down. (Got an 8, and I am an 8 in real life as well.)
  • Shorts: those corduroy shorts were a totally random purchase from Nordstrom Rack, and they were $10!!! They are here, and I also just found a pair on Poshmark (they are from a brand called Moon River).  I will highlight that I wear them back to front because they have cargo pockets in the front, which makes little to no sense to me. Like, why do we need crotch framing pockets? No one needs to highlight their nether regions that badly, and back pockets make MUCH more sense. They are super comfy though, super sassy and overall awesome. I wore them 2 or 3 times when I was in the UK (bought them the day before my trip).

Blogger @Dafrastar sharing 10 Random facts about her, rocking Missguided, Stuart Weitzman and Moon River . More on the blog!

That is it for this blog post! As always, thanks a lot for stopping by and hanging out with me. I would like to tag Shannon from Champagne at Shannon’s, Tisha from Behind the Schmile, Debbie from To Thine Own style be True, Antonia from the Midwest Wife , Yawa from Stilettos and Pearls , Josie from Petite + Bold  and Louisa from La Passion Voûtée to take a stab at it, as well as all of you! If you do it, please leave your link below- I would love to read your list!

Look captured by @mishmash_photography at the Tower of London.

Until next time!

With Love,
D

Denim on denim, and 3 quick ways to find peace in spite of chaos

Hello fashionable humans!

I’m still traveling through England, and I’ve been struggling with my posting schedule because of the unpredictability of my Internet connection. I have not had any reliable WiFi since I left London (my trips are cataloged in my Instagram stories. If you’re interested, my handle is @dafrastar). I am now in Scotland and mercifully have a decent signal; whoop!

Anywho, today’s post is about a denim on denim outfit (clearly), but I also would like to touch on something else. Yesterday, I asked you guys on Instagram how you went about finding an island of calm somewhere in the midst of the hustle and bustle we call life. Indeed, for many of us, daily obligations include getting up at the crack of dawn, getting ourselves (and perhaps the rest of the family) ready for the day, making breakfast/lunch, going to work, having a productive day, and then coming home to unwind- but not before completing dinner, dishes and –insert any other random chore here–. I am out of breath just writing this. More power to the ones who can squeeze gym sessions in, hobbies or time with friends. And just HATS OFF to moms, who do all this- except times 20.

So in all this craziness, how does one regroup when everything gets too much? What happens when social media is just annoying the shit out of you, work sucks, homework just isn’t moving forward and everything is just taking a turn for the worst? Under my Instagram post, you guys had several answers. Retreating to your bedroom was definitely a favorite. Saying a prayer was also mentioned several times. Other options included going on vacation, doing some yoga, drinking a glass of wine or indulging in some 420. Personally, prayer ranks very high for me as well, but I would like to use this post to share more of my personal ways to “get back to neutral”. As always, I would love to hear your thoughts below!

Blogger @Dafrastar rocking denim on denim and sharing her tips on how to find peace in the midst of chaos.

Retreat someplace where I can be quiet for 5 minutes… and that could literally be my head.

It may sound silly to some, but even the appearance of quiet usually helps me get my thoughts in order. I do not require to be actually alone, but closing my eyes, for example, helps me get a handle on what is happening around me. It helps me assess stressors clearly, understand what is causing me to feel frazzled, and therefore act on it. If necessary, this is also a time I use to pray. In the midst of a shitstorm, my prayers usually go like this: “Lord, I hate every second of this shit, but You know why it is happening; so please, in your immense magnanimity, allow me not to care about things that will NOT matter in a few days, and allow me to learn what you wanted me to learn by going through this crap.” I mean, not exactly, but that’s really the gist of it.

Blogger @Dafrastar rocking denim on denim and sharing her tips on how to find peace in the midst of chaos.

Strategize in a way that saves time and makes me feel smart.  (I can’t be the only one who does this.)

Chaos usually means that there is a lot of things to do. Some things need to happen first; sure. Still, there are always 2-3 items that really need to happen at the same time as other things, because they have the potential of being huge bottlenecks later.

A real-life example: on days where I have a mountain of dishes to do + a deck to complete + a blog post to edit + looks to brainstorm, shit can go left quick. After I use step 1 to calm down, I usually start scheduling tasks in my head, and then re-arrange them to optimize my timelines. For example, some tasks should always be done first because, while unimportant, they need be completed fast not to derail my schedule. Dishes and laundry are good examples; starting the dishwasher before doing anything else means that dishes will be clean by the time I am done editing photos, and BAM- 2 things done. This usually makes me feel way smarter than I really am and gives me the courage to charge through everything else.

Blogger @Dafrastar rocking denim on denim and sharing her tips on how to find peace in the midst of chaos.

Drink tea. Gallons of it.

I don’t even mean the kind with caffeine; I mean the silly kind with random herbs and flowers and shit. Here is the thing- I consume little to no caffeine on a daily basis (not even on purpose, kinda just happened.) HOWEVER- God have mercy on anyone who will ever come between me and my caffeine free ginger or peppermint tea. Why, you ask? I DON’T KNOW- STOP ASKING ME QUESTIONS.

Tea is literally my answer to everything in life. Happy? Drink tea. Sad? Drink tea. Angry? Drink tea. Frazzled? Drink tea. Ate too much? Hungry? Tired? DRINK. TEA.

Maybe it’s the process of making it; maybe it helps me feel like at least ONE thing is going right; maybe I just fucking love flowery infused beverages. I have no idea what it is, but tea brings me so much peace… that it is generally what I am doing with my hands as I am going through steps 1 and 2 in my head. And the silly thing is that I will take AGES to drink a cup. So it’s not even that I really need the beverage.

Odds are- you have your tea equivalent. Find it, and use it as a mindless occupation while you strategize and determine how to emerge from chaos. It works, and helps- at least for me- to reset my mind and get back on track (that said, please, for the love little green dragons, don’t pick something harmful like– idk– cocaine).

Blogger @Dafrastar rocking denim on denim and sharing her tips on how to find peace in the midst of chaos.

Time to chat about Denim on Denim Styling!

Now let’s talk about my clothes- all that yapping made me forget I had not touched on those. BTW- this look was put together with items I already had lying around in my closet. Therefore, half of them are sold out and I have no idea where I bought the other half from. Sowee!

Blogger @Dafrastar rocking denim on denim and sharing her tips on how to find peace in the midst of chaos.

I am wearing my best interpretation of denim on denim. In my humble opinion, it is one of the simplest ways to look fashionable yet low key. I personally love pairing darker pants with a lighter denim or chambray shirt, for a good amount of color contrast.  I dislike acid wash, so said top still needs to be some kind of blueish hue to be attractive to me.

The pants: I have owned them for a while (I buy jeans from Lucky Brand every Black Friday, so they are at least 1 year old, possibly older.) These are the Sasha Super Skinnies I believe, which I also featured in this post. I HATE the fact that Lucky Brand does NOT celebrate diversity at all in their ads; they are so non-inclusive, it is almost comical. Sooooo, if you know of another brand that sells jeans up to a 36″ inseam (at prices that would hopefully not bankrupt me), please point me their way.

The top: It is a chambray top I bought from… somewhere. Maybe Marshalls? I remember physically buying it, so it was not Amazon… I will update with details if I can find them, but you can honestly find dozens like it anywhere online. Mine’s only particularity is that it has push buttons instead of regular ones– useful for people with claws like myself.

The scarf: Bought in a boutique in NYC, on a particularly freezing day 6 years ago.

The belt: Thrifted years ago.

The shoes: Stuart Weitzman LeggyLady, featured in this post as well. Kind of sold out everywhere online, but similar (and much cheaper) ones here.

The sunglasses: Bought on the side of the road somewhere in Brazil for like 3 bucks.

DASSIT- If you made it this far, thanks a whole bunch, and see you next time! (likely next week, because this lack of network is no bueno.) Catch my stories on Instagram- I am sharing quite a bit of my daily activities! (Did London, Oxford, Liverpool, Edinburgh, Inverness and headed back to London tomorrow!)

As always- thanks for stopping by.

Blogger @Dafrastar rocking denim on denim and sharing her tips on how to find peace in the midst of chaos.

This look was photographed by Rachel Radcliffe in Piedmont, California.

With Love,

D

3 simple tips to confidently rock a crop top | Featuring Shalom Design

Hey fashionable humans! We made it to the middle of the week, and I hope your day is going stellar!

3 Tips to rock crop tops with confidence! | Blogger @Dafrastar rocking a crop top set accessorized with an intricate glad bead necklace. More on www.dafrastar.comOkay, so let’s talk crop tops. They have been fashionable as long as I can remember. I distinctly recall asking (no, begging) my mother to bring me some midriff-baring tanks from a trip (I must have been like 13). Knowing her, she might have disapprovingly frowned and ignored me; that didn’t stop me though because I stayed rocking them. My guess is that, since she likely didn’t buy me any, I must have scored some from secondhand markets (I have always been into thrifting)- because my allowance definitely couldn’t afford one from a clothing store.

Anyway, I personally see them as a sassy way to show skin, and I love that you can make them as classy as you want (in my book at least). I have worn crop tops to family gatherings, dates, and any other occasion you can think of, besides the office. You can see some cropped action here, here, here and also here on this blog; I clearly like them.

The rules below are not dogmatic at all, and can/should definitely be broken to fit your personal style (I will add below some examples of other bloggers who shatter them with grace). They are just tenets I personally use to make crop tops look good on my body type, which leads me to feel more confident wearing them.

Actually, while we’re at it- what is my body type? Aw, I am so glad you asked!

3 Tips to rock crop tops with confidence! | Blogger @Dafrastar rocking a crop top set accessorized with an intricate glad bead necklace. More on www.dafrastar.comI would likely be somewhere between a pear shape, a hourglass shape and an athletic shape. I know that makes no fucking sense but stick with me for a minute. I am tall, I have full hips and a full chest, but my hips are wider than my chest (that is the textbook definition of a pear shape 🍐). My waist is also not super duper defined, even though it does exist. So I kind of look like a curvy twig in some clothes, but garments with a peplum or more padding up top allow me to decently fake a hourglass-y figure; does that make sense? I will likely dedicate a post to my body type someday (not because I am narcissistic, but because sizing is tricky when you shop online and we all need all the help we can get).

Anywho- where were we? Right, how do I usually wear crop tops?

3 Tips to rock crop tops with confidence! | Blogger @Dafrastar rocking a crop top set accessorized with an intricate glad bead necklace. More on www.dafrastar.com1- I bare only as much skin as I am comfortable with, and that means no belly button for me.

I like baring my tummy but only to a certain extent. I am a huge fan of balance;  open on top-> covered at the bottom; fitted on top -> flared at the bottom, etc. (my mom drilled these rules into my brain when I was a kid and they never left.) Because of this balancing act, I usually like to pair crops with high waisted skirts or pants, which means that I really only stick to baring around 1/3 of my belly- from above my navel to a couple of inches below my chest. It makes me feel covered yet daring, and *most importantly* I get to eat a lot and not worry about my belly poking out to explore the world.

3 Tips to rock crop tops with confidence! | Blogger @Dafrastar rocking a crop top set accessorized with an intricate glad bead necklace. More on www.dafrastar.com2- I try to bare only one thing at the time, at least on top.

I try to go for crop tops that offer my chest a fair amount of coverage- again, keeping with the balancing act discussed above. I do not follow this rule as religiously as Rule #1, but in case I have a cute crop top that also shows cleavage, I try to add accessories like necklaces or even a blazer to balance things out. This rule only applies to the top half of my body though; crops paired with high slit maxi skirts are hot. 🔥🔥🔥

3 Tips to rock crop tops with confidence! | Blogger @Dafrastar rocking a crop top set accessorized with an intricate glad bead necklace. More on www.dafrastar.com3- I keep my crop tops fitted.

There is no particular reason for this one, but I feel like very loose fitting crop tops are often shapeless, ride up (exposing bewbs) and are overall hard to pull off. (Again- this is a Dafra problem because there are a lot of people who make them work beautifully). I tend to favor almost bodysuit- like crops, with a bit of thickness to them and a good amount of stretch. That explains why my favorite crop tops are actually the short version of a fitted turtleneck – to me, a basic fitted high neck crop top really works well as a closet staple. That shit works with everything.

Alright- enough yapping, on to the outfit I am wearing today!

3 Tips to rock crop tops with confidence! | Blogger @Dafrastar rocking a crop top set accessorized with an intricate glad bead necklace. More on www.dafrastar.comWhat I am wearing: Crop top set (Here), blazer (here), booties (here), necklace (here, blue version)

The set: it is super cute, and I cannot wait to wear it again! It is an orange/rust pant and crop top set; it caught my attention on Amazon months ago, but I never got around to getting it until earlier this month, which works I guess- fall colors and all. I find it to be very flattering, but people who wear 2 different sizes for tops and bottoms may have to keep in mind a little stitching may be needed. I got it in a size XL, and I have a 35”-36” chest,  a 29.5’ waist, and  44” hips.

The top: it does not cover a lot of real estate, and a couple of reviewers on Amazon could not make it work. Love it, but it was one size too large for me (I focused on the measurements for the pants when I was ordering). I added a couple of stitches either side of the top, and it fits fine, but I may contact the seller to see whether they would be open to selling me a size L.

The pants: They fit amazing. They are super high waist, long enough for me to wear with a little heel (I have a 36” inseam so that’s a quite feat), thick and opaque. They hug curves a lot and are super flattering.

The jewelry: I am pairing this pant set with a necklace from Shalom Design. To be 100% honest, this whole look was designed around this necklace- I mean LOOK AT IT! It is from my friend Laetitia’s Etsy store, and yes I paid full price for it and am not an affiliate or anything. It is entirely made out of glass beads, and I believe she has them in different accent colors (I went for orange here, but I believe she also has red and blue.) I own another (smaller) necklace from her boutique that kind of looks like this one (I bought it over 2 years ago, so it is no longer featured in her store); I routinely use it to upgrade my jeans + black tee office uniform.

The shoes: They are booties from Amazon (I really do buy most of what I own there); the brand is Breckelles. They were pretty inexpensive (less than $25), they fit true to size, are comfortable and cute! I have had them for since January of this year. The heel tab came off on the left shoe a few months ago, but I am still wearing them- whatever, they just click strangely on the floor and I am sure nobody cares. I might buy another pair in a different color, maybe the Burgundy.

The blazer: featured on the blog before, here. I maintain that I absolutely love it, and I actually bought the burgundy version last week!

That is it for today’s post guys! Do you like/wear crop tops? Do you have any rules you above by? Let me know in the comments.

Also, please see below for some bloggers following completely different rules than I do and looking fabulous.

Aliciatenise, rocking a loose crop top to perfection

Arteresalynn, baring her glorious midriff- y’all seen her six pack???

Another one, because that body is just too fabulous

NicoleSimone serving us loose cropped sweater realness

Another one– that mustard sweater is awesome

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Lacy details 🍂🍁🖤 link in biooooo 📷: @torabisud

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Also, if you don’t follow me on Insta- you should. I post fun shit.

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🍁🍁🍁🍁 EN FINE! It's fall! 😒 I resisted but I have to give up. I'm now wearing fall colors and shit.🙄 Post about my general feelings towards crop tops and how I wear them will be live at 12:00 PST. Btw peep that necklace from my boo @shalomdesign – 🔥🔥🔥 · FR OK OK! C'est l'automne! 😒 J'ai résisté mais je dois vraiment abandonner. Mon été bien aimé est vraiment fini. 🙄 Post sur mes sentiments envers les crop tops (hauts sautés) et comment je les porte en direct sur le blog à 12:00 PST. Vous pensez quoi de mon collier de chez @shalomdesign ? Trop cool, nest-ce-pas?🔥🔥🔥 · 📸 @rachelradcliffephotography · · · · · #stylediaries #outfitideas #styleguide #ootdfash #fashiongoals #stylewatch #stylebook #melaninmagic #stylehunter #outfitidea #instaootd #blackblogger #outfitinspirations #hawt_fashions #deptofstyle #fashionslayer #essencestyle #thefashionforce #browngirlmagic #trendstyle #blackgirlswithstyle #sanfranciscoblogger #melaningoddesses #melanoprime #brownsugarsocial #browngirlbloggers #browngirlswhoblog #africanblogger #africangirlskillingit #africanfashion

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3 Tips to rock crop tops with confidence! | Blogger @Dafrastar rocking a crop top set accessorized with an intricate glad bead necklace. More on www.dafrastar.com

 

 

Bye and see you next week!!!!

 

With love,

D

Leggy Lady: OTK boots, Fun Blazer and Denim Shorts

Hey there peeps, welcome (back)!

If you’re new here (this is post 2 so there’s a 99.99% chance you are), welcome! I am Dafra; if you are interested in learning more about me beyond this fresh OTK boots/denim shorts combo, please check out the sidebar. I hope you have fun reading my musings!

So Post 1 went okay- no tears were shed, nobody lost a limb and people actually gave me great feedback! Grass Fields even reposted my look on their page -hence causing me narrowly avoid death from excitement – so I all in all would call that a successful start to the new blog. I would also like to thank all of you who left comments, double tapped my images or told me in real life that you liked my post. It means so much- you have no idea.

www.dafrastar.com, Stuart Weitzman, leggylady, velvet boots, over the knee boots, otk boots, velvet boots, shorts and over the knee boots So I am coming at you today with the recreation of an outfit I wore last year to Beyonce’s Bay Area Formation stop and LOVED (the outfit, to be clear- LOVE is not nearly strong enough a word to describe what I had coursing through my veins during those few hours 🐝🐝🐝. We  can re-visit that topic later). For reasons you may already understand upon laying eyes on my getup, I have experienced some difficulties in attempting to re-wear it in non-thottish settings, so blogging gave me the PERFECT excuse to revisit it. (I haven’t given up though, I will wear this outfit some place that is neither a concert, nor a photo shoot. Just watch me.)

www.dafrastar.com, Stuart Weitzman, leggylady, velvet boots, over the knee boots, otk boots, velvet boots, shorts and over the knee boots

A few things that will become apparent as I post more and more looks on this blog :

  1. I WILL wear denim any and every chance I get, all day, every day
  2. I would have a 100% black wardrobe if I could (with the exception of- well, denim)
  3. Red lipstick is an absolute staple in my life. I have a dozen different ones (hahahaha lies- waaaay more) and I may be dedicating a post to this mild obsession sometime in the near future
  4. I would never ever physically go shopping if I could buy everything online. One can literally trace back my whole life through bread crumbs from my Amazon shopping history and my Etsy /Poshmark/Ebay/Zara/ ASOS/NastyGal receipts. Everything.
  5. Wearing any item of clothing only once is a failure to optimize in my book. I wear shit until it falls apart.

www.dafrastar.com, Stuart Weitzman, leggylady, velvet boots, over the knee boots, otk boots, velvet boots, shorts and over the knee boots

Given the points above- this look was a no-brainer. All of these pieces came from straight my closet (…which worked out great because that Formation ticket wasn’t cheap, nosebleeds notwithstanding). Bonus points: I could move in my shorts and (poorly) recreate moves from the stage, my legs looked great and I was generally happy with the universe.

www.dafrastar.com, Stuart Weitzman, leggylady, velvet boots, over the knee boots, otk boots, velvet boots, shorts and over the knee boots
What I wore: OTK Boots: Leggylady from Stuart Weitzman (HERE), shorts from Express (Old, similar HERE), Random bedazzled halter top (Similar HERE) and Lookbook jacket from Amazon (HERE). My lipstick is Coloured Raine Cherry Blossom (HERE)

On to the ‘fit:

www.dafrastar.com, Stuart Weitzman, leggylady, velvet boots, over the knee boots, otk boots, velvet boots, shorts and over the knee boots

That Jacket is everything and a bag of chips. It is around $50 and it was such a good purchase! I have worn it countless times: to work with jeans/skirts, fitted or flare; on top of a dressy outfit to tone it down; on top of a strapless dress because I was fucking cold; name it, I’ve done it. I will wear it tomorrow as I will be trekking across of NYC for meetings all day;  seriously- this jacket is BAE (and I like to think I hate that word). I will buy it in more colors (navy perhaps?), or honestly I may just get another black one so I may have it as a back up. The lapels are pretty and unique, but I have noticed the right side lays weird so I have to straighten it sometimes. The peplum situation is flattering and makes my body look hourglassy; the strong shoulder is just the right amount of pointy-ness, and I just really love the overall result. It also has lover 450 reviews on Amazon as of today, and a 4 star rating (out of five). Not too shabby.

The shorts: they are SHORT. Nothing peeks from underneath for me but they are not the kind to wear if you have generous curves – they will spill out 😬 … unless you size up. These are just simple, solid denim shorts to me;  ripped in the right places, adequately distressed, and I love the wash. It is also a staple in my closet and I had already worn them ten times or more prior to Formation (they were purchased in 2013.)

www.dafrastar.com, Stuart Weitzman, leggylady, velvet boots, over the knee boots, otk boots, velvet boots, shorts and over the knee boots

The top I actually wore a semi sheer Zara top to the concert (can’t find it online, will update if I do). The one I have on in the photos is a no-name halter top I got on sale somewhere yearsssss ago for like $10. Nothing major to say about it, but it survived several washes, beading is intact, it is comfortable and roomy and the chiffon-like material is breathable. I have a similar suggestion in the caption above.

www.dafrastar.com, Stuart Weitzman, leggylady, velvet boots, over the knee boots, otk boots, velvet boots, shorts and over the knee boots

Now on to the OTK boots (settle in, this is a long story).

The ones I wore to Formation were these Colin  Stuart boots, purchased from Victoria’s Secret in 2009 or something (they are now discontinued). OMG these suckers HURT! I rarely wore them but could not find the courage to give them away because they were so hot. I promise you I limped around for 2 days after Formation because I danced my little heart out.

One day earlier this year, I was minding my own business making tea in the office kitchen and came across my (always stylish) coworker C. rocking some serious boot candy.  She gave me the 411 (she was wearing the Stuart Weitzman Highland, and also owned the Lowland); after pulling them up on my phone, I audibly gasped at the price. She did warn me they were an investment, and did mention she had had them for over 5 years and had loved every minute of it- so when broken out THAT WAY the cost was not bad but still- damn! I was excited but still mad at the price.

I therefore started stalking those babies everywhere (eBay, Poshmark, anywhere I could think of) in the attempt to nab them at a discount. While roaming the interwebs to find them, I came across the Steve Madden “Gorgeous” boots– which are a pretty close replica of the Highlands. That said, deep down, I really wanted the Lowlands (I wanted a daily OTK boot), but after watching video comparisons (here and here), I just took the leap and bought the Gorgeous anyway because I knew I would still get some use out of them ; also Zappos had some sale going on and I didn’t want to miss out. (I turned out to be right at least- I have worn them a few times and I like them a lot. Money well spent.)

Picture from A Sparkle Factor; see her post about these boots here

Still, I was still pining for a flat pair of boots, so I randomly went to the SW website again to cry at the screen… ONLY TO FIND ANOTHER OTK BOOT, THE LEGGYLADY (WAIT FOR IT) …  50% OFF  ONLY.IN.MY.SIZE!!! (okay fine it was a half size larger but what are socks for?) I could not even believe it- so after pinching myself I bought them without even thinking, not realizing that the likelihood of someone else needing crotch grazing boots in Sz. 11.5 at the same time was VERY slim. But I digress.

After the fact, I immediately had buyer’s remorse and was like …

  • “It’s not even the same boot- what if the reviews on these suck?” (they didn’t)
  • “Shit, they are velvet. That is so extra for every day wear, plus it’s likely annoying to clean.” (that’s true)
  • “Ugh they are so big and my feet will look like fish.” (Well…)

But when they came in the mail… I was just over the moon. (And also banned from buying anything for 2 months).

While I have not worked up the nerve to wear them to work, I wore them out once, wore them to this photoshoot, and actually spent a 9 hours stretch in them the other day without even wincing once! I had no pain at all- so I wore them again the next day for 9 more hours, and walked half a mile. I had no pain or blisters later, so I would say they are definitely good for everyday wear (if you can rock velvet.)

www.dafrastar.com, Stuart Weitzman, leggylady, velvet boots, over the knee boots, otk boots, velvet boots, shorts and over the knee bootsMy final thoughts are that SW shoes are expensive as shit. I am NOT going to be the one to tell you to buy their boots (I offered you an alternative- that I actually wear) but as much as I love the Gorgeous boots, they do NOT make me feel the way my velvet extra AF Leggylady boots do . The latter are also the ONLY boots I have ever found to be TRULY OTK (over-the-knee) for my 5″11 frame, and that matters to me. I will cherish them until they fall apart because I need to squeeze a 6 yr lifetime out of them (at least!) to justify my investment.

Side note – they do not roll down the leg, especially with jeans tucked in, but they do shimmy down a little with bare skin (you can tighten the laces at the back of the thigh though, so that helps a bit).

Dassit! If you read this far, you are a trooper and I appreciate your time. Drop me a comment and tell me about your favorite shoes!

See ya next time,

D

www.dafrastar.com, Stuart Weitzman, leggylady, velvet boots, over the knee boots, otk boots, velvet boots, shorts and over the knee bootsP.S: S/O to @joyofodu for always making me look cool. Check her photography work on Instagram.

With Love,

D