Sunday, July 31, 2011

"Thalassa" by Swoon


{View in front of entrance}
This piece can currently be viewed at New Orleans Museum of Art (NOMA). It is displayd in NOMA's Great Hall so it is the first thing you see as you walk through the door. I must say that when I entered the museum, I was awe struck. Its absolutely amazing and made completely from paper products! I just couldn't stop looking at it. There are so many different textures and colors and even though it looks messy... it's still beautiful.   





{View from second floor facing entrance}
The name of the piece is "Thalassa" and it depicts a sea deity which represents New Orleans' reliance on water.  The mastermind behind this piece is the artist Swoon.  Swoon hails from New York and is known for her large scale paper works.  This piece is actually 20 feet tall and the "tentacles" are attached to the Great Hall's railings.   If you watch the video below you an see some of the process in creating this wonderful creation.  If you'd like to see "Thalassa" for yourself; it'll be on exhibition until September 25th.



bottom view
Tip: Every Wednesay NOMA has free admission.




Friday, July 29, 2011

Mission Impossible: Perfect Drug Store Foundation

My fav Bobbi Brown Foundation
NARS Sheer Glow Foundation BARCELONAOkay, so maybe I'm being pessimistic, but I will tell you guys a secret.  I've only owned one drug store foundation. It was by Covergirl and it was one of those formulas that was in a compact and had a powder finish after application. Anyway, after that I started wearing Clinique because of my acne. Then from there, I started dabbling in all sorts of department store brands... I tried Estee Lauder, Lancome, MAC, and then lastly Bobbi Brown. I fell completely in love with Bobbi Brown's Oil Free Even Finish Foundation! It was like I found the holy grail of foundation.  Unfortunately, I was only able to enjoy it for about 2 years... they pulled it and replaced it with another formula. :( I tried the new one out and I wasn't impressed. So, then I heard about Nars Sheer Glow.  I'm currently finishing up that bottle as we speak and I can say that it is a great product... but the coverage isn't as wonderful as the original Bobbi Brown. So, now I'm left at the drawing board.

 I don't have the money to spend $40 every time I get dissatisfied with a product... so I shall go on a journey to the drug store to find my perfect foundation!!  If you are feeling adventurous as well, I suggest checking out Temptalia's Foundation Matrix. It's a great tool. All you have to do is put in whether you have warm/cool tones and then describe your skin color... then an encyclopedia of which foundations match your skin tone will appear.  I recommend finding a brand you know your color in and then look to see which other colors fall in the same column.

These are my criterion for the perfect foundation

  1. Must have great coverage
  2. Matte Finish but radiant
  3. Oil- Free
These are the products I know I want to try out.
  • Almay Clear Complexion
  • Covergirl Ultimate Finish Liquid Powder (Giving it another try)
  • L'oreal True Match
  • Maybelline Dream Liquid Mousse
  • Revlon Colorstay Oily/Combination Skin
If none of those work out I'm going to treat myself to Chanel Mat Lumiere ... we'll see!!  Hopefully, it'll be mission possible!  I'll be chronicling my journey as I go through those 5 foundations.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Winner of Sigma E25 Travel Brush


Speical THANKS to everyone who participated!! 

Winner: FairyWater79@gmail.com(KCM791991-YT)
{Congrats!!! Please email me your shipping information to kimstakeon@gmail.com so that I can forward it to Sigma!}

Attention Everyone: There will be another give away in about one week!! Keep checking back. The prizes are super cute!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Artist of the Month: Janelle Monae


None other than Sean Combs signed this talented artist and made her a star. Janelle Monae is simply... great. She's not just another pretty face. She is genuinely talented. Her voice is astounding and her style in music is unique.  Its unique in that it mixes funk, 60's pop, and modern hip hop.  Her most noted songs are "Tight Rope" and "Cold War"... I happen to love her for a rather unknown song "Nerd  Girl" which she sings with Chester French. Either way, have a listen and see for yourself why she is my artist of the month!

Links:
Janelle Monae Official Site
Listen to "Nerd Girl"

Video:



Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Turquoise Summer

Turquoise Summer

Turquoise Summer by Fleur Luxe featuring agate rings


Whats great about summer is COLOR. This particular summer, I am obsessed with turquoise. Even a turquoise accent can liven up any outfit!  Not to mention, turquoise looks great on every skin tone!  So whether you decide to shop for a new nail polish or are on the hunt for some fun shoes... don't forget about this great hue!  

Not sure what you can wear with turquoise?  I find that it looks best with colors like coral, mustard, and oranges.  If you have a turquoise top and want to wear a denim I would stick with white!  As far as accessorizing goes... silver tends to be paired with it often but I find gold is more bold!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Geek Chic Glitter Grenade Rocker Look

I've never done an official make up tutorial but there is always time for a first!! I recently purchased Geek Chic's new Glitter Grenade in Frag. I was really excited when I received it.  This look is not as intense as lets say Taylor Momsen's rocker eye but its definitely not a day look!!  To intensify the eye you can also line under the eye.
                                          
Geek Chic Glitter Grenades
Its no secret that I'm a big fan of Geek Chic Cosmetics but once again I was really happy with one of their products. I was a little scared at first because most glitter shadows don't show up well or look really, really cheesy when they are on. The Glitter Grenade is awesome in that not only are the sparkles super glitsy, but its quality product!  The glitter looks glamorous! I will say that like any glitter product... there is going to be a lot of fall out. Be sure that you use a primer before applying and if you are applying it over an eye shadow a good trick is to make sure your brush is damp! Also, the pictures don't do it justice. They sparkle much more.

Glitter Grenade in Frag




GET THE LOOK
You'll need: 3 brushes (1 flat brush and 2 eye shadow brushes of your choice), primer, black eye liner (kohl is recommended), black mascara, dark grey eyeshadow {Glock by Kat Von D}, and a dark navy duochrome eyeshadow {Solid Snake by Geek Chic Cosmetics
**Tip: Whenever working with loose powders that tend to have fall out, pat the eye shadow or glitter. Do not sweep across!!  Patting allows direct application to one area and less fall out!



1. Apply eye shadow primer on your bare lid. Let it set and apply dark charcoal eye shadow to your lids. Do not go past your crease line. You want to make sure that you create a rounded shape.
2. Take your dark navy shadow and put it in and above your crease and outer v area.  Be sure that you blend, blend, blend because we will not be using a highlight color. 
3. Before you apply the Glitter Grenade be sure that you get a post card or envelope and put it under your eye. This will catch fall out and make your life much easier!
4. Take your flat brush and dip it in water; you want your brush to be damp. This will grab the product better and ensure that it will make it stick  to your shadow. Pat the glitter on your lids!
5. After, apply eye liner on your lids. You can wing it if you'd like an extra dramatic look. I also put eye liner on my water line and the outer portion of my lower line.  Finish the look with some black mascara and you're all set.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

T-shirt Modification: Knotted Tank & Braided Tank

 Have t-shirts that are cool but don't know what to do with them? Easy... modify them to make a new fun top. Check out the videos if the step by step tutorials are a little confusing.  

What You Need: A t-shirt you don't mind cutting (the bigger the better), fabric scissors, & Cloth Marker

Important Tips:  Be sure that you are trying on the shirts and marking with your fabric marker where you want to make your cuts... trust me on this one!!

To make a fun spiral design,check this out!!  She's good!


 Knotted Tank
 1. After you have marked where you'd like to cut. Cut off your collar in to which ever shape you'd like.
 2. Cut sleeves off.
 3. Cut off any extra length.
 4. Cut off top seam of shirt & any collar left over.
 5. Cut down the center of the shirt to where you'd like your straps to start.  I chose the mid back because I wanted to option to criss cross the straps.   At this point you can also modify the thickness of the straps.
6. At this point you can knot the top of the straps and cut off any extra fabric!!  ALL DONE.






 Braided Straps 
**For this project you will also need 2 long pieces of fabric (30 inch recommended)
 1.  Cut collar, sleeves, and extra length off.                                                                     
 2.  Cut off top seam of shirt. Then cut each strap in half. This will leave you with 8   different straps.
 3. Next, take your long piece of fabric and knot it at the base of the strap. Make sure that your knot is concealed to the inside of the shirt. Begin to braid. Make sure you pull on fabric while your braid to ensure you are using the most of your fabric.
 4. Once you've reached the end of your braid, knot the tshirt to the underside of your shirt.  Now, take the other end of the long fabric and start on the back side of your shirt. Repeat step 3.
 5. Now cut your long piece of fabric. I suggest trying on your shirt and seeing how much fabric you need to keep. Make your knot accordingly.
 6. Now cut off all of the extra fabric... if you have fabric glue I recommend going back and gluing the knots. ALL DONE.


Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Pixics... a place to be a fashionable nerd.

I was recently informed of a new online store called Pixics.com! I was immediately intrigued when I saw the logo because underneath the word Pixics it says "Indie Vintage Retro Geek"... and I love all of those things!  Anyway, I've been pretty excited about finding new online stores because sometimes you can find great deals on them and the merchandise tends to be unique.


Here are some items that I thought were pretty awesome! A. Antique Charm Bracelet - This bracelet is uber cute! I love the beading details and rosette. I think this would be a great piece to wear on a casual jeans and t-shirt day to give your outfit a feminine edge.  B. Paris Cat Tank - I love stripes and cats so naturally I loved this top. This would be great to wear with a pair of dark skinny jeans and peep toe booties. C. Hearts Afire Tea Infuser - I adore this. If you aren't familiar with a tea infuser... its pretty much a fancier version of a tea bag.  All you have to do is put your tea leaves in the mesh ball and drop it in your boiling water. D. Hearts Afire Tea Infuser - This picture does this product more justice. I love the antique look of the heart and it looks pretty fabulous hanging out of that tea cup! E. Bud-dy System Dress - Such a romantic dress!  This is a great date dress! Its not too slutty and not too modest. ;) Its perfect for summer too!  F. Jack Skellington Solar Bobble Head - I thought this was so silly but I would totally buy it! Apparently, when little Jack gets enough light he starts to dance. I cant decide if that's a little creepy or fun. Any how, its a pretty cool gift to give someone or to yourself. hehe

Oh and because you know how much I love a good give away... this website is giving away a Yoshi Pillow!




Sunday, July 10, 2011

Are Shoe Serious: The Right Fit!


Are Shoe Serious: The Perfect Fit

The Golden Rule: "Does my shoe fit?" Requires a yes or no answer!  There are no ifs or maybes involved. Try on a shoe before you purchase them.

Sometimes we fall into traps when we see the cutest shoe that isn't quite our size... chances are the shoe wont look quite as cute if its too big or too small. When trying on shoes, be honest with yourself and only make sacrifices that are feasible.

Things to remember:
FootFitter Pro Two-Way Shoe Stretcher, Women's Medium (US 6.5 - 8.5)1. Shoes break in! If they are just a little snug {and I just mean a little} then simply break them in. You can invest in shoe stretchers if your feet are a little wide. Tip: To get your shoes to stretch faster put rubbing alcohol on the inside of your shoe right before you wear them.
2. There are fitting solutions available. Do you need more support? Maybe a heel grip? They can be purchased at drug stores and major retailers. You have the power to make shoes fit you better... don't feel defeated.
3.  LISTEN TO YOUR SHOE SALESMAN/WOMAN! They can give you vital information as far as how a shoe runs (big or small) and how the design will effect the way it fits.


 A. When wearing an open toe shoe you want to make sure that your toes remain on your shoe. You should also be able see some of the front of the shoe as well!
B. As you can see, the heel remains on the shoe and you can still see the inner sole of the shoe in the front and the back. Its just enough space.
C. Pumps can be very difficult to fit. As you can see in the photo, there is absolutely no space in the back.  When purchasing pumps, remember that your foot is on an incline so you want a fit that is secure around the entire foot.

A. This is a big no no! Even if you are hanging off just a little bit... it looks awful!
B.  See where the pink material meets the inner sole? Thats where your heel should be!
C.  Open toe shoes are designed to show your toes! That shoe is way too big! Go down a size!
D. If you have any space in the back of your shoe... dont wear it. You are asking for trouble walking and possibly a shoe falling off.
E. Another look at a sling back that is way too big.
F. This is the worse!! Toes hanging off the edges is a sin!

A special thanks to my friends India, Ashley & Dung for being foot models! :)





Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Sigma Travel E25 Blending Brush Review/GiveAway!!




Product Description (SigmaBeauty)
Oval-shaped brush with gently chiseled sides. Blends and softens the look of powder or cream shadows. Ideal to apply eye shadow primer, base eye shadow colors, and blend harsh lines.


Quality

The bristles are very soft. The website doesn't specify whether they are synthetic or natural but based on touch and other products that Sigma offers I am very sure that the bristles are natural. This brush is dense yet flexible which is always something I look for!! If a brush is dense it allows you to better control make up application.  As the description implies, the brush is oval shaped which makes it perfect for blending in your eye crease! Other things to note are the handle and the ferrule. The handle is made from wood and the ferrule seems to be on there nice and tight!  Also, as of now I have not experienced any bristle fall out and I've been using the brush for a week and I've washed it!

Value
The full size brush only cost $9.00!!  A brush that is comparable to this one is the famous MAC 217 which costs $22.50.  If you are not partial to a certain make up brand I believe that this a great value for a blending brush. Most drug store brands will cost about $4-$10 but most of those brushes will have a plastic handle and synthetic hair. Having said that... I think this is a remarkable value. Sigma Beauty also sells brush sets for a pretty decent price. Click here to check out other Sigma products

Blending Brush?
Okay, so most of you know why blending your make up is super important but if you are like me and are pressed for time in the morning a blending brush helps you do the blending quicker!  The idea of blending is to form a gradient between colors. Check out my pictures below if you think blending isn't necessary!!! BTW I don't think I would normally wear this look... the eyeshadows used are Flipside & Ecstacy by Urban Decay.
BEFORE BLENDING
AFTER
Giveaway!!!
One lucky reader will win a new Sigma E25 travel brush!!
How to enter:
1. TELL ME WHAT YOUR MAKE UP PET PEEVE IS! (ex. I hate really exaggerated lip liner)
     THERE ARE 3 WAYS TO ENTER!!!!
  • Leave a comment about your pet peeve here!! (leave an email address or youtube username so that I can contact you if you win)
  • Like this facebook page (Fleur Luxe Facebook Page) and leave a comment on this post
  • Retweet me!! Go to www.twitter.com/kespin1 and find this tweet---> Retweet this if you'd like to win a travel Sigma E25 Blending Brush! 
2. All ages can enter! If you are minor please ask your parent/guardian for permission to enter!
3. This give away will run until July 27,  2011 11:59pm CST.
4. This giveaway is sponsored by Sigma Beauty! They will be in charge of sending the winner their prize!  They were also kind enough to send me a travel E25 brush for review.