As a kid, I grew up having serious self-esteem issues surrounding my personal appearance. I had extremely greasy hair, severe acne, and was made fun of on a daily throughout elementary school. I reached my current height of 5’4 at age 11 and was the tallest girl in my class up until the 9th grade. My hormones were all over the place and I was considered weird, unattractive, and awkward for the longest time. My feminine curves didn't fully blossom until the very end of my junior year in high school, but it wasn’t until college, where I began to actively work on myself, trying to figure out how to feel comfortable in my own skin.
I was never one of the ‘cool kids’ or did I hang out with the popular crowd. I believe this helped me find my own voice in a sea of people who dressed, looked, and acted the same 24/7. It took years for me to grow into myself and accept me for who I am. It involved a lot of healing and self-compassion, and it is still a work in progress. Back in school, it was all a big popularity contest, not too different from how things are now but I’ve learned to cope with it differently and to give importance to what truly matters.
As such, I wish to share what I’ve learned along the way, in hopes it will resonate with you and potentially help you feel more comfortable in the skin you’re in, because you are good enough, absolutely beautiful, unique, and completely worth it.
Yes, I said it. Taking a break from NYC is the best thing you could possibly do as a New Yorker. It’s crazy how I hadn’t realized this until last weekend when my boyfriend and I decided to go to Lake George, NY to celebrate our one year anniversary (yay!). What brought this realization about? Well, if you live or have lived in the Big Apple before, you must be familiar with the craze and intensity surrounding NYC’s ‘work hard, play hard’ culture. As a positive, this environment keeps you moving, hustling, and forever striving to achieve whatever it is you've set yourself to accomplish. On the flipside, NYC’s overly competitive nature and non-stop pace can leave you feeling burnout, exhausted, and depleted (and I speak from experience).
At this point, I believe you can tell I have somewhat of a love-hate relationship with this city. But what do you do when things get out of hand balance and you lose perspective of the bigger picture? How do you move past focusing on all the negativity besieging this city and readjust your focus to remain optimistic, without losing sight of all the great opportunities NYC, or the cosmopolitan city in which you live in, has to offer?
Life can be pretty unexpected. If three years ago you would've told me I'd be attending AND witnessing the runway shows of some of the biggest names in fashion, as part of New York Fashion Week, I would not have believed you. This is why my experience at this year's NYFW SS17 was completely and utmost surreal.
To me, the world of fashion is (and forever will be) somewhat of a fantasy. The big names, the personalities, the majestic designs, the outpour of creativity, the inventive, the passion, and the absolute sentiment behind every piece... It is all so remarkable. Maybe because I come from such a small place, where big city experiences like these are only seen in movies and lavish episodes of Sex and the City or maybe because I wasn't expecting to be a part of this at all and suddenly I find myself in rooms and events filled with the most unique and one of a kind individuals, all driven by the same desire to create and the love for fashion. But alas, I don't want to stray too far from the topic.
As such, I've put together the following compilation of photographs, covering both blogger events and my favorite runway looks, in order to give you a better feel in regards to my mindblowing experience at New York Fashion Week SS17. Hope you enjoy it!
Throughout my tenure as a blogger, I’ve had the opportunity to meet a sizeable number of truly passionate, incredibly creative and hardworking women, all which at some point or another have mentioned their interest in owning their own profitable business. I hear you girls, I hear you. As such, and for the past few months, I’ve been doing research on women with an entrepreneurial mindset, who’ve had the courage to put themselves and their talents “out there” and have made their dreams a reality by taking the plunge and opening their own businesses.
From my perspective of a young professional woman who’s always had a 9-to-6, while at the same time juggling an endless amount of side-hustles, the idea of having my own business can be a bit daunting. As I see it (and I know several of you do as well), having a 9-to-6 provides a sense of economic stability which can be difficult to attain right off the bat. Certain people save money for a period of time and quit their day jobs when they feel they have a comfortable cushion to dive into their businesses while using their savings to sustain themselves during the initial "pioneering stage" period. Others trade their 9-to-6 for a part-time gig or begin to freelance, which in turn gives them the flexibility and economic stability needed to push their businesses forward.
All in all, there are various ways to go about it, but in today’s post I want to talk about how a particular woman followed her dreams and started her own handcrafted crochet wear business, which is incredibly successful and she is working really, really hard to continue to make things happen for herself. Meet Valentina Escamilla, the owner and founder of Favorite Little Corner (FLC).
Earlier this summer, during my two week trip to Europe, I decided to spend most of my vacation money on experiences (i.e. sightseeing, dining, exploring places I’d never been to) rather than shopping. However, there were two exceptions to this rule. One was a specific day I set apart in Madrid to snatch a few pieces from stores like Bershka and Primark, which aren’t available in NYC, and the other was when I visited Colour Studio at London’s Box Park and learned they sold shoes from the shoe brand BucketFeet.
BucketFeet is a shoe brand committed to collaborating with artists, whose sole mission is to create a better and brighter world. They accomplish this by creating artist-designed shoes which spark conversations about causes and topics worth discussing and by telling an artist’s story, one stunning shoe at a time. Pretty badass, right? This is why in today’s post I want to talk to you about the Pineappleade slip-ons I got in support of Colombian artist DJ Lu’s artistic social movement.
I recently met up with fellow blogger and friend, Mariann Yip, to chat a bit about the realities of being a blogger with a full-time job. As some of you may know, I’m a Marketing Manager at one of the Big 3 music corporations, and this blog is my passion project and main side-hustle. For Mariann, an Advertising Manager at a media production agency, blogging is also a huge priority in her life, which she intends to turn into her full-time career (rooting for the both of us over here!)
So over matcha brews at Cha Cha Matcha, Mariann and I talked for a few hours about our current endeavors, upcoming projects, and our take on several blogging-related matters. It was the first time we had a one-on-one conversation, as we usually run into each other at overly crowded social events, but the overall discussion flowed ever so naturally! This is probably my favorite part about setting up coffee dates and more intimate interactions with other bloggers. I’m all about connecting with inspiring individuals who hold an entrepreneurial mindset, as Mariann does. Networking and getting to know them on a deeper and more significant level has consistently proven to be a memorable learning experience for all parties involved. Take note.
Let's talk about hurr bay-bee, let's talk about you and me! Cause I've been on a "boost your self-confidence" and "be a badass boss lady" roll with my blog posts lately (see here and here), and I can't forget one of the most crucial aspects around building up your morale. Drum roll, please.
Since I relaunched my blog, the one thing I’ve learned about growing my side-hustle and business has been that you’re not going to go anywhere if you don’t network, network, network, and build a community around your passion project. Pretty evident and simple, correct? Well… It takes a bit more legwork than that but listen closely.
As some of you may know, I lost my SD card containing all the photos I took during my two-week trip to Europe with Terry. If you weren’t aware, this is why I stopped posting about our trip after Part I and Part II of my Madrid Travel Diary (if you still haven’t checked these out, you should – both posts incorporate my only photographic memories of our trip. Deep sigh*.)
What in the world happened? Well, I had an old MacBook Pro from 2012 and I wasn’t able to unload the 700+ videos and photographs to its memory. I had an external drive but even transferring the files from the SD card to my external memory took a hot minute. So I decided to download them in batches; as soon as I began drafting a blog post about a specific city, I would extract the files pertaining to that particular portion of our trip over time. Made sense, right?
"I have nothing to wear to (insert random or special occasion here)," said every other woman on this planet. But seriously, there's absolutely nothing in your closet to slip-on and go? I laugh. Hun, spare a moment to take a thorough mental inventory of your wardrobe. Think about every single piece of clothing you currently own and tell me, how bad is the situation? Don't take me the wrong way, I've been there. Rushing and stressing while I rummage through my drawers, without a single clue of what I'll be wearing that day / night / evening / afternoon, you name it! Exhausting, isn't it?
Because I've been down this road much more than I'd like to admit, I've come up with a simple and straight-forward strategy in response to the "I have nothing to wear" dilemma. So ladies, bear with me for a second.
Needless to say, a trip to Madrid isn't complete until you step foot into this magical place. The park counts with a rose garden, boat rides at the pond, the Crystal Palace, a statue walk, outdoor restaurants, opulent fountains, magical turkey birds (a.k.a. peacocks), and so much more! You'll feel like you walked straight into a fairy tale (Bambi not included).
Because at times it can be difficult to put into words how magnificent and immensely special a place is to you, I've pieced together the following three-and-a-half minute video diary to give you a better sense of what this park means to me. I hope you enjoy it and I'm glad to say I was able to share this experience with my SO. Made it all even more meaningful. Kk, check it out!
Not too long ago, I began to obsess over an extremely convenient jewelry rental subscription service called Rocksbox. Their membership grants you access to a personalized rotating closet of designer jewelry from which you can create your own wishlist within their site, thus giving you the opportunity to sort out which Rocksbox pieces you're interested in receiving.
Once your list is complete, a stylist will select three pieces of jewelry which will be sent to you, based on your profile and your wishlist. You can keep and wear these pieces for as long as you want!
Yes, for as long as you want.
You can also return your box as often as you like and your fab Rocksbox stylist will curate your next set and send it to you right away! What's the catch? Nothing. You pay the same membership fee ($19/month) regardless of how often you exchange your box. So sick, I know!
But enough chitchat. Check out my Rocksbox Unboxing + Review below for more details! And if you're down to try it, you can enjoy your first month of Rocksbox for FREE with my sign-up code: adriannanaomixoxo
When I began planning for this two-week trip to Europe, I knew I wanted our journey to begin in Madrid, capital city of Spain. Back in 2010, I was a sophomore at the University of Puerto Rico, longing for a life changing adventure. I worked, I saved up, I busted my little toosh off studying, and I applied to my school’s study abroad program with the Universidad Complutense de Madrid for a spot in their 2010 – 2011 student exchange program. I got in and my life after such experience would never be the same.
I went back to Madrid in 2015 for a short vacation, only to notice how little to nothing had changed. The University looked exactly as I'd left it, the apartment I used to live in, the streets, the sidewalks, and even the local spots we used to hang out at. Time passed, yet everything felt so familiar. I knew I wasn’t the same girl who ventured on her own to a new country; I’d changed quite a great deal.
In short, living in Madrid completely redefined my perspective on life. For it being so dear and special to me, I knew I had to come back. But this time, it was different. This time, I was coming back with a person who is as special to me as the city itself (and maybe even more).
Hello loves! I know it's been a hot summer minute since I last posted; my schedule has been jam-packed with all sorts of events and adventures but I haven't forgotten about you at all! As you can see, I'm back and ready to give you another dose of summer fashion fun, but if you ever wonder about my whereabouts or would like to keep track of my feats and silly shenanigans, you should follow me on Instagram and SnapChat @adriannanaomi. Promise you'll get a few laughs.
As for today, I'm bringing the nude on nude outfit color palette on to new and more bohemian-looking heights.
As some of you may have noticed, the nude color trend has been somewhat all over the place for the past few months. From nude nails, to nude heels, nude pumps, nude lipstick, and nude addidas, this trend has been making its rounds for a while now. Do I dig it? To a certain extent. But you know me, I don't really follow the crowd. I like to take what's out there and make it my own, give it a little Adrianna Naomi spin with a fresh new take!
There's something about the olive green and white combo that drives me wild, in the best possible way ever. Whether it's an olive green top styled with white skinnies or an olive green dress with white sandals, as I'm featuring today, the mix and match of these two colors reminds me of summer and tasty mojitos all the freaking way. And I mean, ain't nothing better than that! Finger snap*.
So for Mother's Day, as seen on Instagram, I did a short and sweet trip to Puerto Rico to hang out with my momma. The crazy thing was leaving the (still) chilly NYC weather to land straight into mid-spring, humid as can be, warm, and oh-so-tropical paradise. But who's complaining? It was just a bit tricky to go from one climate to another, and figuring out what pieces to bringing to go with the forecast update.
As I was explaining, olive green, summer breeze, white sandals, and mojitos. You get the idea. So I had this comfy olive green dress from Brandy Melville, which went gorgeously with my new 7 Dials Shoes Mazel White Sandals (also, as seen onInstagram LOL) and I was set! Few things compare to the relief one feels when wearing a comfortable, yet appealing, outfit while traveling. It honestly comes down to the mid-point where style, convenience, and ease converge, leaving you with a look that's not only perfect for the occasion but also alluring. Wonderful, isn't it?
This past Friday I had the opportunity to attend a member's only event at The Metropolitan Museum of Art for an exclusive viewing of the museum’s Costume Institute’s 2016 spring exhibit – Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology. The idea behind this event was to provide a special time frame for Members of The Met to experience the recently opened exhibit, which will remain on view through August 14, 2016.
As you can imagine, I wasn’t the only individual who thought of going to this 1-hour viewing in hopes to enjoy the highly acclaimed exhibit without the usual crowds of spectators and worldly visitors who step foot at The Met on a daily basis. A great number of Members also decided to take advantage of the occasion and on Friday, May 14th, the halls of the Robert Lehman Wing were filled with eager art aficionados, fashion connoisseurs, critics, and enthusiasts. Quite the lovely experience.
A few weeks prior I'd watched The First Monday of May, a documentary about the conception of the Costume Institute’s 2015 exhibition China: Through the Looking Glass, where Andrew Bolton, Curator in Charge of The Met’s Costume Institute, and Anna Wintour, chair of the Met Gala, unveiled the process of bringing to life this annual spring exhibit and its inaugural event. Sadly, I didn’t have the opportunity to witness the exhibit last year but I was more than thrilled to partake in this private viewing with the knowledge and background I’d recently acquired from watching the documentary.
Needless to say, the Manus x Machina exhibit surpassed all of my expectations.
When it comes to gifting, I’m all about convenience and practicality. I truly enjoy putting great thought and effort into my selections! By putting myself in other people’s shoes, I think “Do they actually need this?” “Are they even going to use this?” “Would this benefit them in any way?” I swear it’s a full-blown methodology! But why do I do this? Because I genuinely care.
Because people are important to me and I’m not one to half-ass anything in life. Especially on Mother’s Day! Though truth be told, I’ve been pretty behind on this year’s Mother’s Day shopping. Womp, womp.
I know, I know. It’s just been a little hard to make the time lately! And you must think, how much time does she need to get a few gifts lined up for all the important women in her life? Well, darling – I do some intense research. Luckily, I was able to get a few things together, made a list, got some pretty sassy gifts, and now I intend on sharing with you some of these last minute ideas! Fun, right?
Hello friends! How’s it going? Following up on last week’s dreadful forecast, Spring has finally sprung in NYC and I’m beyond excited to be showing a little more skin and ultimately getting some much-needed vitamin D all over the place. So. Much. Yas. Amen.
Let’s get down to business. Festival season is at full speed with Coachella’s first weekend raging with all sorts of sick festival trends! You should totes check these out. Know what else you should peep on? My latest festival season series in collaboration with the wonderful kids at Tobi.com! For those of you who’ve been following this series (and for all my new readers checking this post, welcome!), throughout the last few weeks I’ve been talking about how I’ll be styling my favorite festival pieces this season. It all comes down to the Maxi Dress, the Skater Dress, and for today, the breathtaking Crossback Denim Jumpsuit.Sighs of pure delight everywhere.
Not only is this piece a fun and pretty unique festival essential, but it also transcends the spring and summer seasons so you can end up using it all year long! Prop it up with a fur vest, a long sleeved fitting top, or a long sleeved body suit and you can easily adapt its style to any occasion. But keeping our thoughts and focus on the present circumstances, on today’s post I decided to glam up my festival look and show you a 70’s inspired outfit inspiration! Denim jumpsuit and faux fur? Sounds like the perfect combination.
Happy Tuesday guys! It’s cold. And it’s rainy. Wish I could give you a better update on New York’s weather, but alas, it appears this weekend will be warm and sunny! Can’t freaking wait.
Speaking of warm and sunny weather, let’s talk about my second favorite piece for this upcoming festival season–the Skater Dress! It is such a classic and effortless item. A wardrobe essential, I would say. The best thing about it? Tobi.com has an entire section dedicated to these formfitting beauties, all for insanely low prices! Drop that jaw honey.
Hello, loves! How’s it been? New York is pretty much freezing at the moment. As you can imagine, all I can think of is festival season (which is just around the corner!), warm breezy weather, and non-stop fun in the sun! My body is ready.
On that delightful note, I’ve partnered with the beautiful people at Tobi.com to share my top festival season picks and wardrobe inspirations with you! I know, I’m incredibly excited for this and I hope you enjoy what we’ve prepped for ya'! So to kick this festival series off, today I’ll be talking about one of my favorite pieces for sunny days and beautiful weather–the Maxi Dress.
Let's be candid here–I don't usually shop at thrift stores. My usual "go-to" stores for trendy cheap finds (when I’m really low on budget) are Forever 21, H&M, Marshalls, and the occasional Amazon super deal. But after this weekend, I strongly believe I’ll be changing my frugal ways for good.
Hope you've all enjoyed the first weekend of spring and are ready to bring your best smiles, most colorful outfits, and your best attitude to tackle your goals with pure boldness and a fearless demeanor!
Today I am featuring the bright and wise words of Freelance Writer, Full-Time Author, and Coach, Lise Cartwright, who will be sharing her tips on how to keep that side-hustle motivation at its peak, while still giving your best performance at your full-time job. 'Cause we all know, someone's gotta pay the bills!
So grab a pen and paper, and be ready to take a few notes! Wishing you all an amazing first week of spring.
Happy Friday guys! Hope you're as excited for the weekend as I am! So, how many of you will be utilizing this precious "free" time to do something productive (besides a well-deserved brunch and a few mimosas)? In all seriousness, how many of you will be using part of your weekend to craft and work on something pertinent or relevant to achieving your ultimate dream? I know I will be!
Well, joining me today is Confidence & Success Coach Brandy Middleton, giving us some fantastic tips on how to balance your 9-to-5 with your side hustle, and killing it while you're at it! Have a lovely weekend and don't forget, work hard and make it happen!
How are you feeling right now? How are you feeling at this very exact moment?
Take a few seconds to think about it.
Are you satisfied? Do you feel happy? Are you proud of what you’ve accomplished so far? Yes? No? Maybe?
Truth be told, this is my personal mental and emotional checklist. It’s become extremely useful when shaping and better defining the next steps in my life’s journey, and I can’t emphasize enough on the importance of keeping these aspects of your life in check at all times.
Why? Because your mental, physical, and emotional health should be your number one priority. Always.
Ever have one of those weeks (or every week) where it feels like every atom in the universe is working against your will power to go to the gym? I know the story way too well… You plan to go every day after work, then Monday a report goes out late and you’re stuck in the office until 9PM. Tuesday your roommate locks herself out and begs you to come home and let her in. Wednesday you get an unexpected, but un-bail-able, invitation to see an old friend, and at this point even if you made it to the gym on Thursday, your week is not lining up to fulfill your commitment to lead a healthy lifestyle.
There are ways to sneak activity and quick workouts into your day without ever letting your schedule know the difference! The upside: every additional movement helps your body get a little more of what it craves to keep it healthy and strong.
At this moment, resolve to make three movement changes: morning pyramid, mid-day work breaks, and night-time detox.