Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Chatting With CoCo Part 2: Shoe Freak

CoCo LOVES fashion and in my opinion is a Style Maven in her own right. She has given her heart to dressing, styling and designing for her new line LICIOUS, but she has given her soul (or SOLE in this case) to her SHOES! I have to say I completely understand her obsession. Shoes are a transformational piece in your wardrobe; they can take you from day to night, make you feel taller, walk more confidently and give you pure joy. Ladies, those of you who have had that "shoe experience" KNOW what I'm talking about.

She ALWAYS has a great pair of shoes on to compliment her look. Out of all the images I have seen of COCO on and off the red carpet I think I have only seen her in 1 pair of FLATS. If you step into CoCo's World she posts photos of her "Shoe of the Week" on her BLOG. Some of my FAVS:

Mauve(Lilac) Mesh & Patent Leather Christian Louboutin's

Orange Patent Peep Toes (Raport Signature)

Black Tom Ford Mesh Heels w Silver tone Metal Stem.

Versace Boots!

She even expresses her obsession with her shoes in the catchy dance track "Shoe Freak" (available to purchase from iTunes)

We talked all things FASHION and of course we talked about CoCo the self proclaimed Shoe Freak:

LISA: We all know you LOVE SHOES! How would you describe your feelings?

COCO: "It is definitely addiction for me. It is like people collect baseball cards, or cars, I collect shoes; it is a collection. Once you get addicted to it is hard to stop, especially when you know when you put on a pair of hells you feel Fabulous. Your legs look longer, they look shapelier. You just feel all around sexy. Even when you are having a bad body day, put on a pair of heels and you feel better. If you are having a bad hair day It makes you feel very womanly. I can transcend a bad day by putting on a pair of heels and now I feel good. That’s just how I feel inside."

LISA: Where did your love of shoes come from?

COCO: "I was a Tom-Boy when I was little, when I grew up I played sports and had more guy friends then girl friends. I wasn’t really into the girly thing. I didn’t own a doll. I was just that type of girl. Now the shoes … I always had every single colour of Keds that you could find, hot pink, yellow, green through high school and even before. I might be a tomboy but I was looking good with my shoes. My shoes were my everything. Every body always complimented me. I was having a hard time when I was growing up I had a thicker athletic type of body and back then that wasn’t "it", so I felt weird and strange with the other girls in the class. I felt like I was odd and I think maybe that to cover that at little bit I got some pretty damn nice shoes on.

So it progressed through the years from my different coloured Keds to wearing heels.

I had my first heels when I was 12 years old. They were little like 2 inches high and patent leather little pumps. I fell in LOVE, I put those things on and loved I how my legs looks. I always felt a little too big on the bottom and felt like they balanced me out a bit. I put them on and after that day I was hooked forever."

LISA: Do you recall what your first pair of designer heels were?

COCO: "I don’t remember the first pair but I do remember a story when I first got with ICE. I got with ICE around age 22 and I had never had designer shoes before then. To me I was more into shoes and they didn’t have to be designer. If it looked hot I would get them. I didn’t get into designer shoes until got older of course. You don’t really have the stamina or the money to invest until later or even knew what designer shoes were. The first gift I got from ICE was a pair of Louis Vuitton. They were little black pumps, they weren’t really high heels because he didn’t really know my style, but to him they were high heels (they were about 3 inches). The thought of him giving me shoes and they were designer shoes was really the sweetest thing he could have done. When you buy shoes that is a woman’s heart right there. I still got those shoes right now. I will never let them go because they were the first."

LISA: Do you have a FAVOURITE pair?

COCO: "No! because every time I say this if my favourite then I see another pair and this is my favourite. When people come to my closet and we do interviews in my closet it is very hard to pick out one from the other."

LISA: How many pairs do you have at last count?

COCO: "Well, I last counted at 500 and that was a while ago, so maybe by now it is about 600. Problem is I don’t have enough room so now I have to get rid of a pair for a new one. I hate that! But what I am going to do is start giving them out on my Blog. Giving them away to people who cant afford them. I wear a size 6, it is going to be a little hard for people because the size is small"

She also shares a cute shoe story with me about a newspaper clipping ICE brought home for her to read.

COCO: A story that just happened the other day. Ice knows of my collection and I have another one in Arizona. Ice knows I am pretty into shoes so brings home this news paper clipping about a poker player who is 41 years old and it is a big closet with her in her shoe closet.

So I said, "why did you bring this home to me?" he said "I read the article

and she says she has over 1200 pairs of shoes. I thought I was doing good"

I replied "Thanks honey now I have to go shoe shopping".

Coco I'm free to shoe shop with you any time sole sister if you need a partner who can keep up and marathon shop the Manolo's. I may not have the budget you do but I could sure use a pair of Loubies in my life!! (with studs please)

Denim Studded Christian Louboutin's from week 12 of CoCo's Shoe of the Week Series

Take a peek into part of CoCo's NYC Closet ... (Don't forget she has a satellite shoe closet in AZ too!)

SHOE STYLE: Click on Images to ENLARGE

EVOLUTION VINTAGE would pair this Vintage snake like Vintage Silver tone Bendable/Versatile necklace. Twist and mold this piece into any desired shape. It can be styled as a bracelet also. Bendable metal in light silver and gun metal metallic ($90).

With COCO's BeBe heels:

OR This Vintage 1980's Curve Hugging, beaded sweater mini dress ($60)

and CoCo's Tom Ford Mesh Heels with Silver tone metal heel stem

SHOP for these pieces and more @ EVOLUTION VINTAGE

Monday, August 29, 2011

Monday Motivation

I had a few discussions about business yesterday; first at lunch with one of my Central Coast BFF's and then via SKYPE with my Cousin/Brother also known as my Brosin. We talked about being entrepreneurs and building our dreams or visions from virtually nothing, just an idea, concept or passion. It made me think of and state the following; "If it was easy everyone would do it" and it is TRUE. I think about this statement when the going get's tough, I get tired or it just can't quite see the light at the end of the proverbial tunnel (which is quite often lately).

I think that "it" can be applied far and beyond the daily grind of entrepreneurs but also to life in general. I know MANY people who barely participate in this wild party we refer to as LIFE. Some go through their days on auto pilot, some in a haze of drugs (prescription and/or recreational) and some don't even get out of bed. Life in all of it's forms in not an easy thing to navigate, for ANYONE. We all are equipped with different tools; some we acquire on our own and some we are given. We all have unique challenges or struggles as well . ALL OF US. I feel that much of the reward for participating in life or building your dreams is in just the DO-ing regardless of the outcome. You can always find some pride or satisfaction in knowing that you have given your personal best.

So get up today, grab some Monday Motivation and give whatever you are doing in life your BEST. Choose one thing this week that you have been putting off or have always wanted to do but have not because of the perceived level of difficulty. I can guarantee it will be HARD; but you CAN DO IT!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Chatting with CoCo Part 1: Style Maven

If I had 3 words to describe CoCo (a.k.a. Nicole Austin) they would be Hard Working, Sweet and Stylish. I don't have the same style aesthetic as CoCo but what I do LOVE is her confidence and boldness in her personal style choices. She knows what she likes, ignores trends, knows her body and she ROCK'S it on and off the red carpet. She is a fan of color and bold prints, the higher the heel the better and form fitting pieces.

Don't judge this bootylicious bombshell by her cover either as she is much more than what immediately meets the eye. She's an author of a soon to be released fictional novel, a hard working entrepreneur and designer for her clothing line (LICIOUS), a swimsuit model, Recording artist for her dance track SHOE FREAK, star of the HIT reality show "Ice Loves CoCo" on E!, Mommy to her fur-baby Spartacus, Wife to Rapper/Actor/Motivational Speaker and Original Gangsta Ice-T AND a public figure... WHEW! all that and in 4 inch heels!
I had the opportunity to have a very candid telephone chat with CoCo recently about Fashion, Style and much more. She is the REAL DEAL; funny, smart and kind.

This Style Maven has recently expanded her personal love for fashion into a business to dress the curvy girl with custom clothing from her recently launched line LICIOUS Her clothes are designed for the girl who is just like CoCo, Curvy, proud of her shape/curves and loves bold colors. They range in size up to 14 BUT the unique aspect of the line is they will CUSTOM MAKE any of the looks on the site for your body!! CoCo expressed "One good thing about my clothing line is that it is made for the Curvy Woman. Yes, it brings licious out in you. The clothes are very comfortable. It is all spandex and stretchy cotton. It just makes you feel comfortable and sexy. It goes up to size 14. But if you like anything like the pants or dress or whatever, you can take it off the site and we will custom make it to your body. If you are a size 22 that is cool, it still can go up but the size chart does not go past 14. Just get the right measurements and we can make it for you." 

LISA: What does the term LICIOUS mean to you?

COCO: "I actually made the word up as it is very girlie. If you are feeling licious that day I would walk around the house and tell my husband I’m so Licious right now. It became a word I said. Then it so funny that everything like booty-licious came out and Beyonce was singing something about licious…Dude like this is like MY word…like I made this word up a long time ago! so it became part of my line.
When you think of Licious you think of girly and Hot. You feel very fabulous it's Very empowering!!"

LISA: Do you design all the pieces? or do you work with a design team?

COCO: I design all the pieces. Really, this is how it happened. I have always had a hard time wearing jeans and leggings or whatever. I have to get a particular pair of jeans and pull in the waist. It is an ongoing thing since high school. Also I’m short so I always have to taper in the legs.I never have the perfect fitting jeans or pants. So I went to the people that actually make all my bikinis and custom make my clothes for my photo shoots. They already know my body to a tee so I said “Hey, why don’t you start making Jeans for me”? Matter of fact maybe I could start manufacturing them for other people to wear because they probably have the same problem as me. That idea went into…"so Coco, if you are going to have a little line you need to have swimsuits, because you are a bikini model" OK..what else do you want me to put in? You gotta have club outfits and gym clothes. So a little idea of me just wanting jeans expanded to a lot more than I expected.
Really, it is stuff that I want to wear and it is open to the public if you want to wear it too.

CoCo's love for fashion extends onto the red carpet with her husband of 10 years Ice-T. I asked CoCo if she styled all the red carpet looks for her and Ice? She said, "We have similar colors and taste for color. When I pick out my outfit Ice goes to his closet and picks out something that matches. It's just a last minute thing. He loves wearing BLACK it almost looks like the same outfit every time we go out. I encourage him to wear color."
I love seeing Ice and CoCo in the front row of fashion shows during New York Fashion Week. We also talked FASHION and I asked CoCo My Style Maven series questions:

LISA: Can you describe your personal Style aesthetic AND attitude
about fashion?

COCO: Fun, Flirty, Sexy, I like inspire people by what I wear. I kind of consider myself, even though I am not her, Lady Gaga. But in my own different level….I would say my own California girl beach level (LAUGHS).

LISA: What are the key components / pieces in your closet?

COCO: A big thick black belt;I always seem to go to that somehow. Like when I have a dress that just needs to be pulled in at the waist, I always grab that belt. It is about 4 inches wide and it pretty much goes with anything. I always grab that and of course for me I gotta have my heels!!! I actually will make an outfit out of the hells I want to wear. Usually it is vise-versa, you pick the outfit and then the shoes. If I have a cool new pair of heels I just got,I’m not keeping them sitting here in my closet. They need to work tonight somehow.

LISA: How do you feel about Vintage Clothing and Accessories?

COCO: I’m into doing my hair Vintage. I like the old school style …to incorporate the hair pieces and all that good stuff. Like the roaring 20’s. I wish we could bring that back.

LISA: What are your favorite Vintage pieces (Clothing and/or Accessories)? Do you only wear designer vintage?

COCO: I have got the first Gucci Belt. I got it at a Vintage shop in New York. It’s a gold chain belt to wear with jeans or whatever. It clips weird but I think its so old.

LISA: If you could give women 1 piece of STYLE advice, what would it be?

COCO: Pick out what your favourite body part is. Let’s say your legs; accentuate that. Maybe wear a mini turtleneck dress and show off those legs. Whatever you are proud about show it off and cover the rest. Your eyes will go to the part you want seen. If you have a small waist and want it more pronounced wear a black belt to show it off the waist and cover your legs up if you don’t want your thighs to be showing. Your eye has to go to the direction where you want it. Everything else should be downplayed, if you want your butt downplayed wear black pants (LAUGHS).

Check out some of CoCo's Looks ..(Click on Images to ENLARGE).

BRAVO COCO for your bold style choices, for following your instincts and not trends and being LICIOUS every day!!
STAY TUNED FOR CHATTING WITH COCO PART 2 ~ We talk SHOES, Have a look inside CoCo's Closet, and MORE!

Step into CoCo's world @ http://www.cocosworld.com/ Follow COCO on Twitter

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Yellow & Black ... is BACK!

Chic "half moon" manicure & Yellow clutch

On my daily hunt for the treasures from fashion's past I came across these earrings. I love the design and colors as well as the material ... PLASTIC!

The earrings immediately reminded me of the Vintage 80's Theirry Mugler suit that Pat Field styled on Kim Cattrall (As Samantha Jones) in the first sex and the city movie. I would NEVER style them together but they reminded me just how much I LOVED that suit. It is from the Mugler Fall 1988 collection and is FABULOUS!

Since I have a Yearning for Yellow this season I could not resist sharing these!!


Saturday, August 20, 2011

Cut it out ...

Elizabeth Taylor

For some reason lately many of the items I have been acquiring for my eBOUTIQUE EVOLUTION VINTAGE have had the design element of the subtly sexy "CUT OUT". I love the little glimpses of skin and the contrast it gives to both vintage and contemporary garments. It's sister element the "key hole" is another design element I am seeing alot lately and LOVE!

1960's Cut Outs


Photo: Bert Stern - VOGUE 1960's

This design element also has made it's way back onto the runways in the last few seasons to my delight.

Celeb's are also a Cut Above on the red carpet.

Jennifer Lopez

Halle Berry

Karina Smirnoff (DWTS Pro Dancer)

The many variations of this design element is what makes it cutting edge. You can place a cut out virtually anywhere to transform a design. My FAV's are shoulder and back cut outs as well as the front keyhole. My lease favourite is the full bare mid drift! YIKES! to me it takes your look from sexy to skanky (even if you have rockin' abs)

I love to see when the past and the future collide in this way, just reinforcing my personal belief that Vintage clothing is CHIC if styled properly.

Girls give a "cut out" or a "key hole" element a try in the the next garment you purchase. It is a great way to subtly sex up your look without revealing too much. Any woman of any shape or size can make the cuts out and the key hole SEXY!