Summer Trend #1: Infinity Bracelets

To kick off the season of Summer Trends, I decided to talk about my favorite one in terms of accessories– the infinity bracelet.

What is the infinity bracelet? Well, it is simply a bracelet with an infinity symbol. They range in styles of leather bands, jeweled, beaded, single stranded, double stranded, bangle, cuffed, and so much more.

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Infinity bracelets range in price from twenty dollars (like some on Etsy.com) to over 200 dollars (like one from Tiffany & Co.). Keep in mind your budget when looking at infinity bracelets, the quality you want, and whether you want individualized details added to it.

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So, how do you wear the infinity bracelet? Well, these are usually delicate pieces of jewelry, which makes them look best when worn with other simple or delicate bracelets. The infinity bracelet I have is a simple and delicate piece designed by Jewelry Craft Studio (http://jewelrycraftstudio.etsy.com) and was personalized to include my initials on one tag and my boyfriend’s initials on the other tag. I wear it with a Zoppini bracelet– aren’t I old-school, huh?– and a C Wonder bracelet, which my boyfriend gave me for my birthday. Image

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But, if you are wearing an infinity bracelet that has additional bracelets attached to it– like the one below– then wear it by itself, otherwise it becomes too much. As well, try to keep your colors in alignment with those of the bracelet. Make it all come together, not oddly stick out.

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What do you think of the infinity bracelet? Will you be wearing it this summer? Or do you already have one? And, if so, does it have a special meaning?

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What Happened to You, Revel?

This past weekend I went to the Revel Resorts and Casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey, for my birthday. I went there last year to celebrate my graduation and I was thoroughly impressed with the entire place and said I would excitedly come back (please check out my previous reviews on the Revel’s style, food, entertainment, etc.). However, upon my return I was honestly disappointed.

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Back in March of 2013, The Revel filed for bankruptcy due to their high debt– $1.5 billion to be exact– and not enough customers. However, as of two days ago, the Revel filed that they have paid off $1.2 billion of that debt and will be changing their marketing technique. Previously they marketed themselves as a high-class resort that happened to have a casino– rather than how the Borgata, Taj Mahal, Tropicana, and Ceasar’s (some of the more iconic resorts and casinos in AC) market themselves as casinos that have other amenities. And while I still love the style of the Revel– it’s pool, Skygarden, and the style of the overall resort are impecable– there were some things that just disappointed me. I could see where things had expanded– such as the stores in the Rowe and elements of the casino– but then there were areas that had been cut back on– the flowers were gone and the food was not as good (too much salt and flour).

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The Revel has announced that they are improving their casino in order to attract more customers. Already, they have added a section for their “Pearls” (high rollers, or million dollar gamblers) and they added a whole new section of slot machines and a bar to the casino. That should definitely be on the top of the Revel’s list since their casino was relatively empty, while Ceasar’s and the Borgata’s were full, even in the off-season. As well, they have expanded their nightclub to where you can enter through the casino and the Skygarden.

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The Revel also says they are going to expand their restaurant options– allowing for more consumer friendly options along with the celebrity chef (and high priced) restaurants they already have. While I was there, I tried a few of the other restaurants I had not on my last visit. I tried the taco truck, Distrito Cantina, with my parents and boyfriend and we were all thoroughly disappointed. The portions were incredibly small– my boyfriend’s order of salsa, which cost almost $20, was in a container the size of a scotch glass and had two chips and two avocado slices, and we were charged for more chips– or not made correctly– instead of getting tomatos on the nachos my mother and I ordered, we got onions. We also tried Luke’s, which is a new restaurant that is similar to a European market with food out everywhere and ready to go, and I was impressed with it overall. It was very good (although my boyfriend said his hot dog tasted like rubber) and had many options. It is still fairly new and still has time to improve.

I think what the Revel is doing is great and it is improving their reputation amongst the places on the boardwalk. It just needs to keep in mind both its customers and location. My only suggestion is that they add more things for the people under 21 to do. I am still two years from the legal age to gamble and drink in most states, including New Jersey, and my boyfriend and I got fairly bored in the resort after a while– thank god for a boardwalk and other resorts. The Revel has said that is trying to emulate the casinos and resorts in Las Vegas, but those places accomodate for all age groups and provide entertainment for everyone. The Revel runs out of things to do after some time. So, maybe allow for 18, 19, or 20 year olds to come into the nightclub, or construct an area for children and teenagers to go to. It would make it easier on parents and families to come to the resort and casino since they do not need to worry about their children.

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So, will I be returning to the Revel? The answer is most likely. I will probably come with my friends in 2 years, when we are all 21, so we can go to the club and casino and bars. It will make it easier for all of us to have fun and enjoy ourselves when we have everything open to us. Until then, I wish you the best of luck Revel and I look forward to seeing where you go and expand.

All photos are taken by me.

What do you think? Have you been to the Revel Resorts and Casino? Do you plan on going?

Do Fashion Ads Make Sex Suck?

There have been countless studies showing that fashion advertisements have effected people’s self-esteem, but could fashion ads be effecting your love life and relationships? What about your sex life?

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Let’s talk about the one thing everyone seems to agree on in terms of fashion advertisements– the affects on self-esteem. There have been countless studies and research done to show that these ads do make people have a lower self-esteem because people are subconsciously (or even consciously in some cases) comparing themselves to the people in the ads; but there has been a recent study by professors at the University of Michigan and the University of Manitoba showing that it depends on the advertisement. Ads that have blatant displays of female idealization– so, makeup ads for example– make women feel better about themselves because they consciously realize what the ad is trying to do. But other ads that feature beautiful people but in a more subtle way– let’s look at a jewelry advertisement, like this one below from Bulgari– are what hits home for our self-esteems. Apparently, when it is obvious, we are immune to the displays of beauty and therefore an integral part of the ad, but if the model is selling us something we can physically can differentiate from them (more than makeup; like clothes, perfume, or accessories), we begin to question our own beauty and feel negativity.

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We all have seen these advertisements that show that “sex sells”– but does it effect our perceptions of love and sex? Does it create new expectations and perceptions of sex? Well, to begin this concept, let’s look at fashion in general. In a documentary done by the BBC, they showed that people buy from specific brands– such as Gucci, Louis Vuitton, and Burberry– because we want to show we are successful and therefore can have the best partner (or, “mate” to be scientific). So, automatically, the fashion industry is effecting whom we are attracted to and want to have a relationship and (eventual) children with– and this applies even if you don’t want children, your body is subconsciously controlling this.

Now, let’s starting looking at a deeper level at advertisements. There are many fashion brands that use blatant sexuality– such as the Versace ads I have at the top of this post– and there are arguments that these ads make it subconsciously okay for sexual abuse and violence (Versace is heavily criticized and said to encourage “gang bangs” through their ads). But does this all set us up for expectations in terms of sex, sort of how pornography has for decades? Do we expect by purchasing one of these products that our sex lives will immediately become steamy and so hot that we not only have one hugely-muscled man lusting after us, but four? Does this also make us think that if we are with a person who owns these products that means they are some wild, crazy animal in bed that will satisfy our every desire? Let’s be honest, just how not every women can do a split like a porn star, not every Calvin Klein or Versace wearing-man will have more abs than Gerard Butler in 300 or be the best partner ever. Maybe he is some guy that looks more like someone on The Big Bang Theory; or maybe he is incredibly hot, but is not that great in the bedroom. What if we are just left disappointed in the end?

Even advertisements that don’t feature overly buff and oiled men can create this sexual friction with reality. Such as this Chanel ad from 2009– it features two women standing very close, which inclines the viewer to think the women will kiss.

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Or there is even this Gucci campaign from the Summer of 2012 collection that alluded to both sensuality between the two female models, but with a third member as well (threesome reference, anyone?)

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Or even an ad with one model can effect our perceptions of sex. There are obvious ones like the Burberry ad for their perfume, which features Rosie Wellington completely naked except for a trench coat and you can clearly get an reference to her pleasuring herself. Or, there are even less obvious ones like the this one by Prabal Gurung– the model is alone and fully clothed, but her expression and body position allude to something completely different.

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So, I am just curious whether fashion advertisements are setting expectations for people in terms of their sexual relationships. That by purchasing these clothes we can have four men wanting to have sex with us at one time, we will have men and women lusting after us (maybe even leading to threesomes?), and even our feeling of self-pleasure will become better. That by buying a $6,000 coat or dress will make me so desirable and every aspect of my love life orgasmic. Really? I mean, I love fashion and the advertisements like a lot of people, but some of them go too far. I would still want the dress even if the model wasn’t going to get gang banged; or I would still want the jacket even if the models weren’t on the verge of making out with each other. Do I need to be shown this and it possibly make me have silly expectations for sex in order for me to buy something? Really?

Do I really need to see this to buy your product? Shouldn’t I be wanting it and buying because I want it, not because I want it?

What do you think? Do you think ads, especially fashion ones, are effecting our love lives and sexual expectations? Please comment below and let me know.

Song of the Month: May

I saw this band live back in April when they came as the opening act for the spring concert at my college (the main performers were Group Love and I honestly was disappointed with their performance). Magic Man is a group of Rhode Island college students who formed a band with a 1960s flair. This is their song “Texas”, which you can download for free (along with their other single “Paris” at http://magicmanmusic.com/). They will be on tour with Walking the Moon for the next few weeks and make sure to check them out– they are very good (plus they were nice enough to take a photo with me and my boyfriend after the concert).

The song and video belong to Magic Man. All rights reserved.

What do you think of the song? What do you think of Magic Man? And do you have a recommendation for June’s song?

Photo of the Month: May

Photo of the Month: May

Well, currently popular culture is swarming with 1920s fashion and references due to the release of the highly expected film, The Great Gatsby. Rather than picking one of the many current editorials of 1920s inspired fashion, I wanted to pay tribute to fashion history. Despite my upkeep of current trends and styles, I am a huge lover of fashion history. I am usually reading a biography on a designer (Chanel is one of my favorites to read about) or an era and how fashion impacted it.

This particular image is from the Vogue’s March issue of 1922. The cover is drawn by Georges Lepape (1887 – 1971), who was a big fashion illustrator from France. His career was at its peak from 1912 to 1925. He was also the first illustrator to introduce movement to images– he would draw models walking in and out of the image.

Vogue was the leading fashion magazine at the time and worked with such artists as Lepape and Salvador Dali. They showed both European and American fashions and showed the epitomization and wealth and desires of the era.

What do you think of the photo? Do you have a recommendation for June? And what do you think of all the 1920s fashion?