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Thursday, March 21, 2013

Spring 2013 films

Here are some films I am looking forward to seeing when they open.

To the Wonder, directed by Terrence Malick looks like the kind of film I would have an emotional reaction to - have you heard of it? It opens April 12.

Mood Indigo, directed by Michel Gondry. Anything French I normally see, and this film has a major plot point that is not discussed in the trailer. It will be interesting to see how that impacts moviegoers! It opens in French theaters April 29. I had hoped it would be at the French Film Festival here in Richmond, but apparently not!

But I do plan on seeing the below, when it is here for the French Film Festival:

Renoir, directed by Gilles Bourdos. I have always loved Renoir's works, so this film looks incroyable! (Seriously I got goosebumps, so I know this one will be fantastique)

Writers, with Greg Kinnear, Jennifer Connelly, Lily Collins, and Kristen Bell looks good. As Greg Kinnear states, "A writer is the sum of their experiences." I like that line a lot!

Of course the late spring/summer releases like Iron Man 3, Star Trek: Into Darkness, all look exciting, but I thought you might like to see the trailers for these more indie films. What are you looking forward to seeing this spring?

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Hair care

For months prior to my wedding in October, I hemmed and hawed over getting my hair cut. My fear was that it would not grow back fast enough for my wedding hairstyle, and, even more so due to the fact that my Pappy had gotten attached to my hair. He always called me "Pretty" and he loved to touch my hair with his weathered, wise hands...

[taken by my Uncle JM]

The wedding hairstylist eventually told me it was 'too late' to cut my hair due to the fact that it would not hold as well (elaborate updo and baby fine hair) if I cut it. She actually said my split ends are why my hair was so fantastic on the wedding day. Yay, I guess? So when she told me this news, I decided to hold out. I finally cut my hair between the honeymoon and Thanksgiving (and Pappy was so bummed, which was really conflicting for me!!).

Pre-cut hair:

Post-cut (with some short-lived styling):

One of the rules I made for myself after this major cut (15" and donated to a charitable cause) was that I was going to "redo" my hair. Fix the years of mis-use and poor treatment as I honestly was clueless for ages. I just knew I loved my natural color, and its softness. The texture, ends, and scalp/root healthiness were always the last thing on my mind, unfortunately. So, I went to Sephora, The Vitamin Shoppe, and Amazon and did some stocking up.

First: I have been taking fish oil for years - I am sure it contributes somewhat to the natural shine in my hair, but I decided to add Biotin to the mix. I will say that not all Vitamin brands are "legit." I will not name the brands that are rubbish but due to the openness of the vitamin market, just be buyer beware. Many brands will actually only carry trace amounts of the vitamin you are taking. Here is the Biotin brand I take every night (I take all of my vitamins at night, 1 per day):

I decided I needed to work on everything - styling products as well as cleansing of the hair and hair shaft. I have always always air-dryed my hair. I rarely use a hairdryer. When I do I am normally using it, I use it on the cool setting and only get the wet out, leaving it damp to air dry.

Depending on the weather here, I use one of two shampoos. Both have a nice clean scent and really work with my hair. I think you could call my hair one of many things: limp, fine, baby fine, sensitive, etc. It doesn't hold a curl unless I sleep with it pinned or twisted. Likewise with waves, only if I have a bun or a braid in. I'll call my hair "annoying" and call it a day. Anyway, these two shampoos really, truly seem to work with the chemistry of my hair:

Yes to Carrots scalp relief - a whopping $8 on Amazon.

Alterna Bamboo Abundant Volume, Item no. 1333665 on Sephora for $20.

My conditioner is one item. I really love it as it does not seem to grease up my hair. I used to have to shower at least once a day. If I didn't - even if I only applied generic conditioner on the ends of my hair, it still was gross enough that I would look like crud on day 2. Now I can easily go 2 days without a shampoo and it still look good. Clearly my head is healthier and happier.

Phytokératine Conditioning Treatment, which I buy at Sephora. Item no. 1364154, $32.

Treatments... sometimes I need a treatment. Depends, again, on the weather. Maybe hormones. I never thought about looking at a calendar until I started typing this post. Anyway, I use this mask on occasion. And the scrub is wonderful when you lose power for four days and cannot leave your house (ew) OR when you spend the week at the beach and you hair knee-jerked itself into being less than perfect. So, I love both for two very different purposes.

MoroccanOil Weightless Hydrating Mask, sold for $22 on Amazon.

Ouidad Mediterranean Bay Leaf Exfoliating Hair & Scalp Treatment, Item no. 1459387. $36 at Sephora.

These two products I use sparingly - for example, if I am styling for an event or party I might use them. I do not use them both everyday. It just depends on if my hair is down or up, etc. etc. I had never even seen these in the store before, even though I know the brands. I guess I just put blinders on for years when it came to buying products? Who knows.

I reach for this product more frequently:

Garnier Fructis Triple Nutrition Nutrient Spray, a mere $6 on Amazon.

This one helps if I am styling my hair (esp. with heat):

Pureology Pure Volume Thickening Spray, $15 on Amazon.

Lastly, I love to spritz something in my hair, just enough that if I am dancing or resting my head on my husband's shoulder he can smell "me." So, that is where the finishing product comes in:

Marchesa Parfum D'Extase Hair Mist, Item no. 1499417, sold exclusively at Sephora for $38.

While I cannot state on an individual basis what of these items has improved my hair, overall, my hair is dramatically healthier. It still has its shine and natural highlights, but the roots are much stronger and thicker. My hair is not falling out as often as it used to, but it may also be growing a little bit faster. The tips are without ugly ends unlike before. My hair stays in a loose ponytail longer, which does mean it is a bit thicker (I use the same hair ties as before).

It is interesting, I never thought I would care about things like my hair, but now that I do I feel really good about it. I know that a lot of you have incredible hair you can do fun things to - but I would love to hear do any of you ever use these products (PIPMegan uses Biotin, for example)?

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Richmond Fashion Bloggers event at Shockoe Denim

I am a member of the Richmond Fashion Bloggers group ("RVAFB") which had a meet up on Friday at Shockoe Denim. Group leader Larissa of RVA Fashion Girl did a wonderful job organizing the entire thing!
The event was such a blast. It was my first group meet up (I have met individuals related to this blog before) and we all had a wonderful time. It is always great to place a face with a name and to network. I actually stayed longer than I planned - even after the event was officially over - to continue to talk to everyone.
Shockoe Denim has a full team of less than ten employees - from the owner to management, cutters to sewing, and even assembling through to the finishing process. Everything is done in this space for the company (everything is gorgeous).
The showroom is also their direct retail space. What is great is while you shop it is open to the factory floor (big glass windows) so you can watch the process as you shop and try-on (they even let us go down on the factory floor).
This team at Shockoe Denim is a group of like-minded people who clearly love their craft. The garments are gorgeous and you can have items made custom fitted, bespoke, etc. They even let you select the threading and buttons:
weight and wash of your chosen denim fabric:
trim and style of cut:
and even custom lining for a completely bespoke look:
... down to every last detail.

The prices - as you can see above - are less than some off-the-rack brands. I was shocked, but excited that I can get a pair for less than my J Brands! And the money goes straight back into here, the River City. I love shopping local, and shopping local retail just raises the bar that much higher - it is exciting and makes me very proud to know we have fashion start-ups here in Central Virginia.

Have you ever bought any items from a custom, local shop?

Please say hello to some of the wonderful people I met on Friday:
Larissa of RVA Fashion Girl (she also is big cheese for RVAFB)
Sydney of Chic Stripes
Anett of Frshsqueezed
Brian of Dirty Richmond (and Ledbury!)
Emily, PR Manager for RVA Fashion Week
Alayna and Bevin of Hole in Jean Pocket
Chynesha and Kelli Neche of Notorious Styles