Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Fashion In Flight: Aviator Glasses

"Any of you boys seen a fashionista around here?"
Your winter wardrobe has become repetitive and dull. Your winter boots need a coat of polish. 
Your go-to A-line is more safe than spunky. 
You've hit that mid-winter fashion crisis.

Never fear! Spring is on the way!

For some, it's about time to book those mid-winter vacations to someplace warm...and for others, its at least time to pretend you're beach-ready. While it's still a little early for the seasonal investment of high-lights in your tresses, here's a fashion staple that can take you to new heights as you wait for the temperature to rise: aviators.

Taking another cue from our dear Nina Garcia, the aviator-style is an "eternally and universally fashionable shade that instantly brings out that cool factor".

Available in a variety of shades and styles, Nina says that "the classic aviator is the Ray Ban". She suggests staying away from too much shine so save your money and shy away from overly reflective lenses and shiny rims. 

The One Hundred even recommends that "the rims should be in a matte tone of silver or gold" if you want your shades to look authentic.
But don't just take it from us. Celebs have taken this accessory to new heights from films to street-wear. Here's are just some examples of this piece's rise to fame:
"Keep it as close to the original design as possible.
Michael Kors and Ralph lauren do it very well."-TOH

  • Madonna 
  • Kate Hudson, Almost Famous
  • Marlon Brando
  • Paul McCartney
  • Tom Cruise, Top Gun
  • Steve McQueen
  • Lauren Hutton
  • Brad Pitt, Fight Club
  • Jim Morrison
  • Ringo Starr
  • Leonardo DiCaprio, The Aviator
  • Steven Tyler
  • Jack Nicholson
Even if you're kicking around "in your oldest jeans or with your newest tailored YSL jacket", aviators will make you "look equally up-to-the-minute". 

Whether in the air or with groupie-flair, how do you rock this look? Send your street style pics to cosmopolitique@gmail.com, comment below with links to your gallery or post pics to our fan page! Maybe  we'll feature you in an up-coming post!

Until then, keep reading!
And don't forget to follow us @citygrlthoughts

Monday, February 20, 2012

How To: Have A (Real) Girl's Night

This wasn't the only thing that
made my Valentine's Day great!
After college, there are many times when the term "penny pinching" is a gross overstatement. True friends will remind you that you only live once. Even truer friends will ask you to be their Valentine's Day date and enthusiastically encourage you to indulge yourself. 

That's what I have my friend Megan for. 

With our S.O.V.S.' elsewhere on the planet, Megan and I organized for ourselves what would be the ultimate Valentine's Day...just for the two of us. We settled on sushi as our main event and selected the Back Bay locale known as Basho Japanese Brasserie. I coordinated our reservations and we settled on an 8:45 seating. Normally this would be unpleasantly late for me to be eating, but I knew Megan and I would pass the time with good conversation and some sort of adventure.

Megan, like me, enjoys a healthy tasting of beer every once in a while so it only seemed natural that we whet our appetites with some beverages at Boston Beer Works following our long days at the office. Megan met me at the Brookline Avenue location just a after 7 p.m. and we chose to sit at the bar. After we settled in, Megan informed me of a mini-sampling option they offer so that we could try a few different beers at once. When the bartender came to take our order, we instructed her to pick her three favorites from the menu and include the milk chocolate stout they were featuring. Once our "micro"-brews arrived, we began exploring the flavors of  Bunker Hill blueberry ale, Landsdowne lager, Patriot pilsner and the milk chocolate stout. Pretty soon, we were lost in conversation and our beverages but ordered one round of full-sized beers before we crossed Yawkey Way where our dinner awaited us.

This is my valentine with our sampling of beers, from light to dark!
Once inside Basho, we waited a mere five minutes to be seated. The lighting was dim with a pastel glow and Megan and I were seated towards the front of the restaurant by the windows which was both intimate and cozy. By this point, we were starving so everything on the menu enticed us. We settled on appetizers of gyoza and vegetable tempura (which we varied between sweet potato, avocado and cauliflower). Megan chose a Philadelphia roll as her dinner and I eagerly ordered my favorite, Spicy Tuna. Our cocktails came quickly which was excellent because I had been craving a lychee martini for some time. The service was friendly and attentive to clearing excess dishes. Even our dessert, a tart creme brûlée, was briskly whipped up and delivered to our table.
My favorite sushi roll thus far: Spicy Tuna.
Like any good date, we lost track of time and were likely laughing and smiling our way out of Basho sometime after 11. Pleased we had only spent about $50 each on the entire evening, we made a vow to try and repeat a girl's night tradition very soon! 
Basho's interior: Day light.
Did you spend Valentine's Day with someone other than your significant other? Tell us all about it! 
We'd love some recommendations and date ideas! Comment below, 'like' us on Facebook or find us on Twitter @citygrlthoughts

Can't wait to hear your ideas!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Everything I Need to Know I Learned...On Pinterest

Ruining a productive work day. One "pin" at a time.
If you're anything like me, you've probably become very familiar with the term "pinning". 
No, it's not a derivation on Charlie Sheen's obnoxious denial of a mid-life crisis or a newfangled way to play a childhood birthday game. 
"Pinning", in this day and age is a sensation sweeping the masses; a new social media outlet for people who have countless hours to tag pictures and videos of things that intrigue them. 

The first step is acceptance.
For all you members of "Pinners Anonymous" out there, this  page is all too familiar...
A few months ago when a then-newly engaged friend of mine had posted some of her wedding ideas on Facebook, I remember thinking, "what a pointless yet interesting way to create a wish list!" and so the journey began. I applied for an account and within a few days was exploring the site and the catalog of images that were included. But that was a few months ago. Now, Pinterest has everything from pictures of dream destinations to inspirational quotes to funny e-cards. My sister, who is a social media hermit (with the exception of a fairly witty Twitter account), has been receiving a daily text message including a snapshot of a funny thing I find on the site. She doesn't seem to be enjoying it as much as the rest of the female population but if one thing's for certain, Pinterest is growing in fans with or without her.

Just one of the many fun ideas you can use when (and if) Mr. Right pops the question.
Aside from all the useless things on Pinterest, I've found that I can create "boards" of ideas that interest me that are simultaneously informative. To prove this, I will share some of the things my pins have taught me (organized by their corresponding board titles). Maybe it will inspire you to get an account, follow me and spend an unnecessary amount of time "re-pinning" what you see.

Aesthet-tips: To create wavy hair- Mix a teaspoon of salts, a few drops of olive (or jojoba) oil and 1/4 cup of water in a spritz bottle and mist on damp hair.

a girl can dream: Wedding wish jar- Have guests slip small handwritten notes and thoughts for the bride and groom in a large glass jar. Newlyweds can read the notes post nuptials!

Barbie mansion: Organization ideas- Use empty Altoid tins to store small items by name in your junk drawer.

"Cool" Box: Laundry Cheat Sheet-To remove antiperspirant/ deodorant marks from clothes, combine half a teaspoon of dish detergent (or castile soap), a few drops of white vinegar and a half cup of water. Press into the stain with a rag. Flush with water and blot. 

Entertain me: Fun fact-Part of a best friend's job should be to immediately clear your computer history if you die.

Fab&fit: Reasons why you should drink green tea; It is an excellent source of antioxidants, it helps protect your liver from alcohol and it burns fat and enables you to exercise longer. 

inspiration"For what it's worth, it's never too late to be whoever you want to be. I hope you live a life you are proud of. And if you find that you're not, I hope that you have the strength to start all over again."

sweets&treats: Cloud Parfait- Blue Jell-O + Cool-Whip

And there's plenty more where that came from! Sign-up for Pinterest using your Facebook account and follow me, NESSessCITY, for more housewares inspiration, wish list ideas, and much more!

Are you already on Pinterest? Still trying to understand the hype? Comment here, chat and 'like' us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter (@citygrlthoughts)!

Happy pinning!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

"Just Whitney": A Tribute to the Woman Who Changed Music

Whitney Houston: 1963-2012
In 1977, the world knew little of what would come of the 14 year old girl who performed as a back-up singer for Michael Zager's band. It wasn't until 1985 that her first single was even released. However, once Whitney Houston's name hit the airwaves she was no longer "just Whitney". This Jersey girl grew from background vocals to cover girl and recording artist to executive producer in an era where African American artists (especially women) were severely underestimated in American media. Whitney's contribution to American pop culture expanded much farther than her fashion missteps and personal challenges. In hindsight, Houston's 27 year career, which was often discredited by emotional turmoil, broke the boundaries pop culture had imposed on non-white talent and revolutionized the industry just as MTV was taking off.

Aside from her first single becoming a Top 5 R&B hit, Whitney Houston's early successes were numerous and noteworthy. As her name crooned through the airwaves, reviews by the New York Times quickly transitioned her fame from the exclusive R&B industry to more mainstream performances on late-night talk shows. Her third U.S. single, "How Will I Know", introduced her to the audience of MTV through the accompaniment of a music video. Shortly thereafter, she began to gain popularity and soon became the first African American, female artist to receive consistent rotation on MTV.

The next few years were filled with week-long Billboard 200 chart hits and several American Music Awards. She also gained notoriety for her activism in support of Nelson Mandela and the anti-South African apartheid movement, refusing to do any modeling work with agencies that did businesses with South Africa. In 1989, Houston formed The Whitney Houston Foundation for Children, a non-profit that raised funds for the needs of children all over the world. Her global issues involvement continued following a critically acclaimed performance of the Star Spangled Banner at Superbowl XXV. When the track was later released as a commercial single, all proceeds went to the American Red Cross Gulf Crisis Fund gaining Houston praise and the recognition of being named to the Red Cross Board of Governors. The song was re-released following the September 11th attacks and proceeds were once again used for philanthropic purposes. 

Even her ventures onto the silver screen had an impact on pop culture. In Houston's first film, The Bodyguard (1992), she played a star seeking protection against a crazed fan alongside Kevin Costner. This film was especially significant because it did not address the interracial quality of the film. A Wikipedia description of this film perhaps described it best when it said, "Houston's mainstream appeal allowed people to look at the movie color-blind." Along with being hugely successful at the box office, The Bodyguard soundtrack inspired a lead single ("I Will Always Love You"), a world tour and a place on the Billboard top 100 for 14 consecutive weeks.

In the years that followed, Whitney Houston's career was filled with significant moments. In 1995, she accepted a role to play TV producer Savannah Jackson in Waiting to Exhale because she saw the film as "a breakthrough for the image of black women because it presents them both as professionals and as caring mothers." This film was also successful and "proved that a movie primarily targeting a black audience, can cross over to success".

Apart from her philanthropic efforts and unforgettable range, Whitney Houston's impact on the music industry will forever be her legacy. If Michael Jackson can be credited for breaking down the color barrier for black male artists, then Whitney Houston was his female counterpart. Recording artist Anita Baker has been quoted as saying, "Because of what Whitney...did, there was an opening for me...for radio stations, black women aren't taboo anymore." 

Houston's awards have earned her a place in history as the most awarded female artist of all time and she will remain a legend for her efforts in changing the music industry and the world. As news reports develop the details of her final days, it is essential that she be remembered for her achievements and talent over the  personal struggles that extinguished the voice that every other talent was compared against. 

Let's celebrate Whitney by remembering her influence as a performer. What was your favorite Whitney song/ moment?
Comment, 'like' COSMOpolitique on Facebook or tweet us by following @citygrlthoughts

We look forward to hearing from you!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Gay Marriage: Does it really matter?

Apparently Isiah isn't the only one
in support of equal marriage rights...
If you're a current events junkie (or even just a social media fiend), there's no way you could ignore the buzz today when the 9th Circuit Court in California struck down the voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage. Celebs from Corey Monteith to Olivia Munn were literally a-twitter as the news broke across the country and throughtout various social media-spheres. In fact, today's ripple effect of support for equal marriage rights begged the question; if so many are in support, have the unsupportive lost their voice?

Perhaps the most memorable quote in recent history surrounding this issue came forth today through the words of Judge Reinhardt who stated that, "Proposition 8 serves no purpose, and has no effect, other than to lessen the status and human dignity of gays and lesbians in California, and to officially reclassify their relationships and families as inferior to those of opposite-sex couples."

On conservative website, Truevalueexperience.org, writer Reid Guy suggested that since this issue is now going before the Supreme Court that, "the judges decisions could possibly change the landscape of America as we know it. This decision could go down in history as one of the most important since Roe v. Wade." Well, Dear Mr. Guy, we think so too.
Tara's "calling" out anyone who is standing in the way of gay marriage.

But as monumental as this decision is, what changes will it bring with it? Obviously it will enable those who are gay or lesbian to participate in the institution of marriage much like their heterosexual counterparts but what about other social implications? Reid Guy said "the landscape of America" would change right?


In case you haven't figured it out by now, you are either part of the American population that could run off tomorrow to get a marriage license in any state or you're not. You either identify as one sexual orientation or you don't. That isn't going to change. What will change is that every other American will have that opportunity too. Its not a crisis. In fact, its the opposite of a crisis.

In Hillsborough County, Florida, the cost of a marriage license is $93.50. According to Wikipedia, there are approximately 2.5 million weddings a year in the United States. If just 25% of those weddings are between gay and lesbian couples, that's $58,437,500 in revenue a year! Economically speaking, equal marriage rights would be a smart decision for America but that's not the only reason Prop. 8 was rightfully overturned.

With an economic boost and happy neighbors, society will soon see that allowing gay and lesbian couples to tie the knot is about as disastrous as allowing gays to serve in the military, sharing schools with students of a different skin color and permitting women to cast their votes in a ballot box. As history has shown, sometimes a little re-working is in order for us to progress as a civilization. Its time to recognize that the day is soon coming when "...one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of it's creed..."

So we ask to those who are still in opposition, when it comes down to it, will it truly have a negative impact on your life? Does it really matter?

What do you think? Do states have the right to ban same-sex marriage? Leave your thoughts below, on Facebook or on Twitter by following our new name, @citygrlthoughts

We look forward to hearing from you!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Make Your Bed & Get Ahead!: Spring Cleaning 101

You can't keep sweeping your messes under the rug!
Our cleaning tips are hardcore so take off those silly stilettos and get to work!

Yes, it's true that Punxsutawney Phil has decided that there will be six more weeks of winter but we believe that its time to check-in with ourselves and see how those resolutions are going, especially if it means we can get some spring cleaning out of the way! 

We know that the last thing you're looking forward to doing is sorting your junk drawer but think of all the spare change (and other helpful odds and ends) you might discover! (Surprise shopping fund anyone?!)

It might still be February, but if that urge to pull out some spring-y accessories is cramming your closet, here are some strategies that might help minimize the stress!

If you're the type of nester that tends to get sentimental with lots of "things", the key thing to remember is that less is more when it comes to being organized. It might be hard to part with sticky notes that evoke a memory from a funny office conversation but if it's really necessary to keep, hide stacks of "things" under or behind wire curtain panels so that they're (prettily) out of the way and you can re-visit them later.

Brighten up your home workspace with colorful organizational tools like boxes and file containers that are the same shade. The uniformity will add some method to your madness and will brighten the room and your disposition when you can easily access important items.

A place for everything and everything in its place!
Start small. The mission of "clutter control" might just mean that you learn to eliminate the unnecessary paper build-up by the phone or the stack of receipts on your desk. Take baby steps to eliminate the clutter in the first place by finding ways that prevent you from getting lost in a mess in the first place!

Adding a feminine touch to your organization can be fun and creative! We loved Martha Stewart's lattice shed board for hanging tools. For the more advanced organizer, painting the lattice to match your door (or staining it so that it stands out) makes a cleaning project a fun, hands-on art project!

Lastly, find a system for yourself. If you know that doing something a certain way actually helps you to stay organized, then don't change it! The worst thing is re-learning where you put everything so stay simple and stress-free!

Matching your organization tools to already established color schemes
helps you keep the things you love while ditching the mess!

Other links to love: Good HousekeepingINeedMoreTime.com & Don't Get Bit by the Clutterbug

Are you a fan of 'the closet hanger challenge'? Got tips for keeping clean without spending green? Comment below or 'like' us on Facebook.

We'd love to hear your tips and share them!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Put Your Best Foot Forward...In Ankle Booties!

If we had to pick our favorite song about an item in our closet, we'd probably have to go with the Nancy Sinatra's "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'". Little Miss Nancy was certainly stylin' in her mid-calf pleather little number that made her first single famous but in 2012 there's a new sheriff in town...the ankle bootie!

You may have seen any number of designers with styles to be coveted. Our favorites tend to be black or grey and made of shiny or matte materials (much like the ones Gwenyth and Sienna are sporting on the left). As always, its good to have something versatile that can be dressed up or down and make you feel fabulous no matter what. 

As Nina Garcia states in her book The One Hundred, "the ankle boot was originally intended to be hidden beneath classic trousers" but lucky for us, street style existed long before Ted Polhemus and designers soon caught onto the notion that ankle boots with skirts, dresses and drainpipes (see below) was a revolutionary step!
Not your mother's drainpipe pants.
But speaking of dressing, are there fashion rules for these little guys? 
Answer: Absolutely.

If you haven't noticed by now, Nina Garcia's book is sort of like the bible to us. Here are the 5 commandments to ankle booties according to Nina:
  1. When wearing with pants, keep the colors the same. Black skinny pants tucked into booties will elongate the leg and make you feel fabulous.
  2. When wearing with miniskirts, try them with black opaque tights to keep your line going and going. Unless you have fabulous legs, illusion is our master craft.
  3. Make sure the bootie does not cut off straight at the ankle like a traditional bootie-these boots are made to be worn under pants and will chop off the leg and make it look stumpy.
  4. It is a great alternative to the pump-always consider it if the pump seems too safe.
  5. The bootie is a classic way to mix the masculine with the feminine, so don't be afraid to flaunt a little femininity when you have this more masculine shoe on. One must mix it to risk it...

Speaking of risks, how do YOU step out in these fashion favorites? Got pics? Send them to COSMOpolitique@gmail.com, post them to our Facebook fan page or send us a Twitpic by following @COSMOpolitique

And if you still need ideas, channel your inner Nancy and grab a black sequin romper!