3 Tips to Get Back on Track after Failure

Wassup wassup #fashionablehumans !

Just came home from sunny Ouagadougou, where I was to celebrate my cousin’s wedding!!!! I was super excited to be back home, see my parents, family and friends, and also EAT EVERYTHING! Real talk, by the week before I left, I had already sent my mom a list of allllll the things I needed to eat during my stay. I came correct!

Blogger @Dafrastar discusses tips to remain motivated, wearing a monochromatic look with a mini leather skirt, suede boots and a fringed top. Monochromatic look, monochromatic inspiration, suede boots, fringe, fringed top, fringe inspiration, black fashion blogger, African Fashion blogger

While I am super fortunate to travel often (this trip brought my count to 4 countries and 4 continents in the past 6 months), being on the go all the time takes its toll, and unfortunately— Dafrastar often gets the short end of the stick (I have not posted in a fucking month). I often find myself falling asleep at my computer (like right now 😂) while blogging. I also mostly work at night, so sometimes I don’t even make it to my computer AT ALL. While I believe that resolutions are obsolete (you may read more on that here), I do have serious goals for the blog in 2018. For example, I aim to post quality content twice a week (as well as stick to a Tuesday & Friday uploading schedule). I believe and trust I will eventually succeed at this, but MAN has it been challenging. I can confidently say I have failed at it so far.

Blogger @Dafrastar discusses tips to remain motivated, wearing a monochromatic look with a mini leather skirt, suede boots and a fringed top. Monochromatic look, monochromatic inspiration, suede boots, fringe, fringed top, fringe inspiration, black fashion blogger, African Fashion blogger

Needless to say, some days I just feel an overwhelming annoyance with myself. How dare I need more than 4 hours of sleep a day? How come I do not have a perfectly organized editorial calendar, with content planned for the next zillion weeks? How come I can’t churn out twelve viral posts per minute, while also slaying my career, keeping full edges and rocking clear skin? WHY? Ugh.

The summary of this tirade is: sometimes I get fucking tired and discouraged of failing at my goals. Life is pretty much the art of juggling shit,  and one invariably has to fall behind somewhere. For me, not hitting my posting schedule for the blog makes me anxious. Anxiety, in turn, makes me catatonic and prone to avoidance; I just want to give everything up and run away. I guess that’s why the expression “falling off the wagon” exists… We all have lives, and side hustles/hobbies don’t always get much love. They eventually end up choo-chooing their way away from our overwhelmed asses.

(…) side hustles/hobbies don’t always get much love. They eventually end up choo-chooing away from our overwhelmed asses.

Therefore, some days I do have to dig deeeep to remain motivated/ get back on track after failing. The tips below help me do it and remain somewhat sane; they are how this blog post is live today, and how many more will see the light of day. These tips apply to everything in life, as far as I am concerned: exercise routines, nutrition, dance classes, skin care… pretty much anything in your life requiring continuous commitment and effort. Let’s jump into it!

Blogger @Dafrastar discusses tips to remain motivated, wearing a monochromatic look with a mini leather skirt, suede boots and a fringed top. Monochromatic look, monochromatic inspiration, suede boots, fringe, fringed top, fringe inspiration, black fashion blogger, African Fashion blogger

1- The path to success is not straight. The ones who make it are the ones who understand that failure is part of the game.

 

This is something we should all remember more often.

 

You likely saw this picture around the internet somewhere. Success and failure go hand in hand; that’s just the truth. Even the greatest athletes have off days, weeks or even years. Does that mean they should stop? Nope, and neither should you. Consistency is hard and we are all bound to fall short sometimes. That said, it is also our duty to refuse to get used to failure. We have to accept it and learn from it, but more than everything, we have to let it fuel our comeback. I will be the first one to admit that failure sucks. Up until this day, not succeeding at something leaves a horrible taste in my mouth. That said, in 2017, I learned to hold myself to high standards and not let failure define me. It was such a liberating moment! I pretty much gave myself the permission to fail as long as I kept getting up and trying harder. Guess what: the areas of my life I applied this rule to saw more success in 2017 than any other year before.

LESSON: Do not focus that much on the “Falling” part of the story; it is the “Getting Up” part that matters.

Consistency is hard and we are all bound to fall short sometimes. That said, it is also our duty to refuse to get used to failure. (…) Do not focus that much on the “Falling” part of the story; it is the “Getting Up” part that matters.

Blogger @Dafrastar discusses tips to remain motivated, wearing a monochromatic look with a mini leather skirt, suede boots and a fringed top. Monochromatic look, monochromatic inspiration, suede boots, fringe, fringed top, fringe inspiration, black fashion blogger, African Fashion blogger

2- Remember: Progress is much better than perfection

This is squarely targeted to people who also suffer from my ailment, the accursed disease of perfection. In our heads, we are failing everyone including the Queen of England if we do not execute things exactly at the time we planned them, with grace, poise and excellence. However, life (and especially work) taught me that the sentence above is the devil, and the devil is a lie. Think about it: visualize yourself making a quilt, or a sweater, or some other shit that requires a large time investment. Making a quilty-square (you know exactly what I’m trying to say) per day may be your initial goal, but you may end up making 4 squares a week (because life), or a couple of your squares could be kind of crooked. Do you stop quilting because your output isn’t perfect? NO, THAT WOULD BE SILLY. You would keep sewing that shit until it was done and chilling on your guest room bed. That analogy applies to life: a crooked quilty square does not mean you stop; it means you learn where to put your needle to make better squares and keep it moving.

LESSON: Slower than planned does not mean stagnant. Hang in there and try to speed up; if you can’t,  still hang in there. Think of any hard project as a master quilting project.

Slower than planned does not mean stagnant. Hang in there and try to speed up; if you can’t, still hang in there. Think of any hard project as a master quilting project. Do you stop quilting because your output isn’t perfect? NO, THAT WOULD BE SILLY.

Blogger @Dafrastar discusses tips to remain motivated, wearing a monochromatic look with a mini leather skirt, suede boots and a fringed top. Monochromatic look, monochromatic inspiration, suede boots, fringe, fringed top, fringe inspiration, black fashion blogger, African Fashion blogger

3- You likely learned a thing or two on your break.

Let’s assume you took an unplanned break from working towards your dream, or maybe stayed on the ground a little longer than usual (due to a particularly vicious setback). Guess what? Chances are, you will get back on the horse with a refreshed mind, renewed purpose, or even better ideas/more drive than before. Anyone who ever had to work on a creative project can attest to the fact that walking away for a while does wonders for the brain. It helps you reset, think about things differently, and maybe even finally grasp something that kept eluding you before. While this is not reason enough to take a hiatus, it is definitely a non-negligible benefit.

LESSON: If you fall hard, realize that the unplanned break will still bring you benefits. Use them to the max; make that setback count!

Anyone who ever had to work on a creative project can attest to the fact that walking away for a while does wonders for the brain. If you fall hard, realize that the unplanned break will still bring you benefits. Use them to the max; make that setback count!

Hang in there, peeps. Just hang in there, and never think that falling off the wagon does not mean you can catch the next train. Bonus: you may even ride in the first class coach.

Blogger @Dafrastar discusses tips to remain motivated, wearing a monochromatic look with a mini leather skirt, suede boots and a fringed top. Monochromatic look, monochromatic inspiration, suede boots, fringe, fringed top, fringe inspiration, black fashion blogger, African Fashion blogger

On to the outfit we are rocking today! This look was initially shot as a part of my Fall 2017 Trends series, to represent for the fringe and fishnets trends. Never got around to posting it. Welp.

The top: I LOVE it (featured in my sequin skirt lookbook as well). It has the right balance of sass and comfort, and I love that the drama is limited to the sleeves (dunno why, but I dig that shit.) I will likely wear it until it falls apart. That said, I still can’t find a link to it for the life of me, so here are 2 similar options here and here. Sowee!

The skirt: I am also in love with this puppy. It is a simple faux leather A-line mini skirt from Zara, and it can be worn so many ways. Maybe I should feature it in a post?…🤔 I rocked it with a turtleneck, an oversized shirt, a tee, a sheer bodysuit… it can do it all. I even wore it with thick tights and a sweater to work, and upped the casual vibe with some sneakers. I’m telling you, it is a jack of all trades.

The boots: they are the Steve Madden Gorgeous, and they are bae; I spoke about them here, and somehow never got a chance to feature them on the blog until now. They are a size 10 (I wear 10.5) so they are a smidgen tight but manageable. I love them with jeans, they make my legs look a mile long.

The fishnets: pretty ordinary ones, get the job done. I would have bought cuter ones if I had given it more thought.

That’s it for this post folks! Please tell me below; how do you manage to get shit done, or how do you motivate yourself to keep going after you fall? Let’s share tips so we can all crush goals this year!

Until next time,

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

No, I do not owe you a smile | Red sequin skirt and one shoulder top

*Hits a 1-2 step, twirls* OW!

People, we made it to Friday! I am so excited about this post, not because I have anything groundbreaking to share, really- but because I am wearing sequins! I look ready to party!

Sidenote: In reality, I am sitting at home with my hair in a puff, drinking peppermint tea and wearing a sheet mask. Classy.

 

Dafrastar wearing a red / burgundy midi pencil sequin skirt and a one shoulder long sleeve ruffled top from Zara

So I want to share something that upset me enough to still remember it after a couple of days. The other day, I was minding my own business on Instagram (a friend told me that the very nature of Instagram makes this sentence an oxymoron but WHATEVER) when a *gentleman* (I would like to say something else but Jesus died for my sins and I need to do better)  took upon himself to TELL ME under one of MY PICTURES that I should smile more. Excuse me Sir,  who sent you, and who exactly are you talking to?

Dafrastar wearing a red / burgundy midi pencil sequin skirt and a one shoulder long sleeve ruffled top from Zara

Truth is, I have realized that I rarely smile in pictures, especially blogging ones. I mean yeah, I sometimes do (the pics in this post are evidence enough), but posing is hard y’all! I am actually dying of laughter in the pic above because I attempted a cross legged model-esque pose @joyofodu taught me, resulting in me almost rupturing my neck. This shit does not come naturally to anyone, at least not to me! I stay mean mugging because I need to focus on not falling on my face!

Anywho, that point notwithstanding, I still believe that I do NOT owe a smile to anyone, at any point of time, ever. Think about the guys who think they have the right to catcall in the streets, asking ladies to smile more? NO SIR, I wear my RBF with pride. Also, my teeth are busy at the moment.

Dafrastar wearing a red / burgundy midi pencil sequin skirt and a one shoulder long sleeve ruffled top from ZaraWhat I am wearing: Skirt, Nasty Gal or Asos,  (old), similar here, here and here (this one costs as much as some people’s rent, and I am very confused as to why it exists); Top, ZARA, here, similar here; Shoes, Steve Madden, similar here. I got mine from DSW; Bag, Dili Haat, Delhi. Similar here

I generally get very aggravated when people tell me about shit women “should do more”, especially people who do not identify as female. Like, no. Just no.

You somehow thought highly enough of yourself to decide what another group of people you are not part of ought to be doing to please YOU more? Like wow… are you Idris Elba or Kofi Siriboe? No? Then go have several seats. As a matter of fact, go have an entire church pew of seats over there. (Idris or Kofi should not say anything like that either btw- not a good look.)

I will get into the outfit in a second, but a quick checklist for anyone who believes at any point of time that their opinion is needed on issues that do not concern them, or on a behavior that does not affect them (or anyone, for that matter):

  • How do you know better, if you are not part of the group in question, or walking in the target individual’s shoes?
  • Why are you an expert?
  • Did anyone ask for your opinion?
  • Are you just looking for people to fit your own ideologies?

I you answered shakily to any of these questions, see gif above. I (or anyone you are attempting to dole your tired wisdom at) am not responsible for making you feel comfortable. BYE.

Dafrastar wearing a red / burgundy midi pencil sequin skirt and a one shoulder long sleeve ruffled top from ZaraWhew . Okay, I’m done with the rant.

So- let’s move on to the outfit!

The skirt: I have owned this skirt for ages (I’ve had it so long that I actually featured it in an OOTD video in 2012 , when I was still on YouTube!) and it’s always been hard to make it work. I mean it’s pretty and all and the sequins sparkle, but the elastic waistband does a girl no favors. Like none. It will dig into your skin and give you a muffin top, with or without a shirt tucked in. It refuses to lay low like its other waistband-y friends and WILL MAKE ITS PRESENCE KNOWN. Which is why I would recommend a skirt without one, or at least without so much elastic tension.

The shirt : it’s cool;  this shoot was the first time I wore it. It’s comfortable, sturdy, not see through, and I would see myself wearing it more. It comes with a pencil skirt too, for when I want to be all matchy-matchy and classy and shit.

The shoes are Steve Madden (I have a problem with this guy, clearly. Perhaps it’s because the brand is sold a lot at DSW and has a size 11 that actually makes sense for my feet.) Their shoes are usually less than $50, last a while and generally look cute. Winner in my book!

The bag: Featured here as well; found a pretty close dupe, link above.

Dafrastar wearing a red / burgundy midi pencil sequin skirt and a one shoulder long sleeve ruffled top from ZaraDassit! We are done for today guys! Have a stellar weekend, and I will hopefully see you on Monday!

Thanks for stopping by!

D