Thursday, September 29, 2011

Why Single Girls Want to Meet European Men

This is for all you single ladies planning trip to Europe! HA!

What's your take? I'm dying to know, leave me a comment below!

Monday, September 19, 2011


Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn Oh My! With Pintrest and Tumbler and Google+1. There’s Behance and MySpace and blogger too, Flickr and YouTube, what’s a girl to do?

I am being swallowed by the world of social media!! Not to mention my Etsy shop that has been neglected for at least 2 months now and my personal web site that is in need of an update.  I have always been a social butterfly but this is just getting a bit out of hand!

In a world of social media the only way to stay on top of things is to connect your self to at least on of these sites. But if your trying to run a business, the more the better. Sometimes I know about events that are taking place in my family before my mother does and I live 5,000 miles away! I am able to get information from my siblings through facebook before she is by calling them on the telephone.  And while, yes, its wonderful to feel so connected, especially to my family while living so far away, the difficulty with all of this begins in trying to be an artist, property manager and wife at the same time.  In all of the reading that I have done about promoting your work and/or product and getting the word out about it is the importance of an Internet presence.  Fair enough. 

I have created accounts on almost all of the above-mentioned sites, but now who has the time to keep them all updated while making sure that my art is being updated?  What am I supposed to talk about if there is no new work to show? Now don’t get me wrong, I love to work and I love what I do, but I am beginning to feel a bit overwhelmed here. Even if I do find the time to create new pieces, in order to get them seen, I need to photograph each piece and then upload and edit said photos and then write a description of each piece to make it all sound appealing to the public.  I then find myself social networking obsessed.   Do I have any comments? Any new followers? Any message in my inbox from people wanting to know how to purchase/carry/represent my work? Usually not.

Just a few days ago I read an article saying that the best thing that you can to do promote yourself is to write a really great blog with interesting information that people want to read. Great! But how do you compete with all of the other great blogs out there with thousands of followers?

Now don’t get me wrong, I think its all great and wonderful that we are able to reach a wider audience and connect with people we would have never met otherwise but many times I honestly don’t know where to begin.  
Even our language has changed and one must understand the decoding of Internet speak in order to keep up. TMI, BTW, OMG, LOL, LMFAO, see my automatic spell check isn’t even underlining these anagrams in red, as they now seem to be an integral part of the English language, in fact there is an entire web site called urban dictionary dedicated to deciphering then. And then if you happen to be bi-lingual like me, you have to decode that Internet language as well. Where does it end?!?!? But more importantly where should one begin in this ADD mixed with OCD inducing world of social media?

Well, I have come up with what I hope will be a solution or at least a relief.  Since I am truly trying to start a small business and promote myself as a professional designer, I have decided to take on an intern.  There are thousands of students out there that are looking for experience. Studying mass media communications and need to fill up their resume with real world experience. How great would it look during their first interview for them to have written on that CV that they created a mass media advertising campaign for so and so and increased their sales from a said (very low) amount per year and increased it by such and such percent. Everybody wins! And as I mentioned in a post a few days ago, I am trying to enlist the help of others to share expertise and experience. I hope it works.

However, I’m sure there are many different solutions or ideas as to how to tackle and manage your social media. So tell me, what’s your take on it all? Do you feel it benefits you or hinders you? What are your creative ideas and solutions for dealing with it?  Any advice you’d like to share?  Let me know by leaving a comment below. If no comment box appears below this post try clicking on the word ‘comments’ (see this is another thing, you have to understand how each site works and be tech savvy or your going to waste a lot of precious time trying to figure it all out leaving you tired and frustrated!  I can’t tell you how many times I have tried to get that dang comment box to appear!)

Friday, September 16, 2011

Favoloso Fall

(Well as it turns out my idea about having a separate page about Florentine fashion isn't going to work, bummer) 

Love the gray T-straps!
Even though it doesn’t seem like it these days with temperatures still in the high 30’s C (90’s F) autumn is almost upon us! I couldn’t be happier; it is definitely my favorite time of year.  I love the summer but by this time every year I have had enough of these humid Italian summers. Cooler temps, jeans and sweaters are a welcome change. So to get you in the mood for the new season, the shops are beginning to change their windows and display the new styles and fashions. How exciting!

The Italians have perfected the art of window shopping, they will walk around for hours dressed in their best outfits on a Sunday afternoon and admire all of the beautiful displays, standing for several minutes in front of each store admiring every detail. You can imagine then how important it is for the shops to have gorgeous windows to hold their attention. They are their own works of art, installation pieces, ready to wow and of course make you want to buy!  I have always loved the art of window display and if I ever have to get a ‘real job’ again, this is definitely what I would want to do. 

Yesterday I went out for a little walk around the center of Florence to check out what’s in store for autumn and snapped a few shots for you to check out.  Hope you enjoy them! 
Let's start with Armani
This necklace is A-mazing!

I wish I remembered which store this is....
Because I'm in L.O.V.E with these boots! 
Roberto Cavalli, a  local Florentine
For your home. I always love the windows at Coin
I caught some vetreniste in action!
How incredible is this hat?!

Love the attitude! At Massimo Dutti

and let's not forget about those beautiful Italian men!
Miss Trench
Save the Queen! and that blue coat for me!

I can’t decide which one I like best; they’re all so great! How about you?  Which 
one of these displays is your favorite? Tell me in the comments sections below.  Thanks for stopping by!

I've tried over and over again to figure how to leave the comments box open but it will not work for some reason, to leave a comment, please click on the word 'comments' below! Thanks! 

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Let's Get it Started in Here!

this is my attempt at photography
As a starving artist I am always looking for ways to promote my work and update my portfolio. But of course I have don't really have the money to pay a professional photographer or to hire models and professional make-up artists, yet I would love to have that professional look.  I have tried endlessly to photograph my jewelry and then use a little photoshop  to 'fix' them up, but somehow, they just don't seem to look that good. 

So I got to thinking about how I could get that professional look without having to pay the professional prices.  And then I realized that I am probably not the only artist out there that feels this way so why not look for others that would like to participate and share their skills. Essentially we all have something to offer, an expertise in a specific area so why not get together and have a professional photo shoot?  The photographer benefits by getting to use a model/s, a make-up artist, and a designer free of charge and they get to add the images to their portfolio. The model,  make-up artist and designer benefit, from having professional images taken of themselves and their work. Everybody wins and we don't have to spend any money. If your a graphic designer and want to join in-Fantastic, you can create the ads, postcards, and press kits for the artist/models and add to your portfolio as well.  Set designer, hairstylist? The possibilities are endless and we have the beautiful city of Florence as our backdrop! What could be better?  We can all add the credits to the images as well, for example, my portfolio will list, photographers name, models name, make-up artists name, and anyone else who participates all with contact information for each person. 
How fabulous would it be to get your name on images like this?
And you don't necessarily need to be a working professional either, if you are studying or working to become a model, even better, once our press materials begin to circulate our names get out and reach a wider audience and create a buzz. My goal is to create a press kit and send it out to as many popular fashion magazines as possible. And on top of all that we get to meet other artists and designers in the community, share ideas, and help each other succeed.  I am also currently working on finding a venue to hold a fashion show or display of some kind. I am super excited about the idea and I hope that some of you guys and and girls out there will be as well.  So send me a message here or leave a comment below and let's get it started!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Friday, September 9, 2011

You Say Goodbye...I say Hello

One of the most difficult things about living abroad has to be saying goodbye.  I hate goodbyes. Whether I go home for a visit or my family comes here, saying goodbye is the hardest part.  But somehow we are expecting it, we know that it is going to happen and that we will have to face it soon, but no matter how many times we do it, it never seems to get any easier. 

When one lives abroad it seems as though our lives are full of goodbyes. Its not just our related family that we are forced to say goodbye to, but also the family that we have created here amongst friends.  I know I have mentioned this in previous posts, but we really do become each others extended family,  its an incredible bond that is like no other I have ever experienced.  We have so much in common, based on the single fact that we are all experiencing life in another country from a foreign point of view.  We connect with people that we may have never thought we would be friends with otherwise.  However, that does not necessarily mean that we are all here to stay. Some of us come with a very specific goal in mind, one which includes a time line, an end date. Others come to stay indefinitely,  yet we create the bonds just the same and all of the sudden after spending several years together as a family, celebrating birthday, holidays and just simply getting together to enjoy each others company, after our husbands/significant others form their bonds based the common fact that they all have foreign partners, that end date arrives and we once again have to say goodbye to one of our cherished sisters, knowing that we will always keep in touch, but not knowing exactly when we will see her again, we send her off wishing her all the luck in the world, knowing that she is on to bigger and better things and that she is opening the next chapter in her life.  So we say goodbye for now but most of all we say good luck.  You will be missed and always loved!  So good luck and farewell to our friend Michele!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Swishing the Night Away

So we've all been there, in the dressing room trying on clothes and we decide that we like that dress enough to buy it. Maybe I'll wear it someday, maybe I'll find the right occasion. It's just so cute I can't possibly leave it here! And beside, I'm going to loose 10 pounds and then it will fit me perfectly, just in time for the holidays.  So you bring it home and hang it in the closet........

......And in the closet it stays. Every once in a while you take it out and try it on again, maybe with a cute pair of heels and all the right accessories, but then just like every other time you've tried it on, you take it off just as quickly and back into the closet it goes. It just doesn't fit quite right, or its not really the best color for you, or it makes your hips look a little too wide. But you still love it and you just KNOW that you will wear it. Someday.  Hmmmmmm. Somehow though, that someday never comes. So what do you do?  After all its taking up precious space in the wardrobe.

Well, ladies I'm here to tell you that its time to give up. Yes, that's right, get rid of it, you don't need it in your closet. Give it up for the love of fashion! What I mean by that is let someone else have it, someone who is going to love it and actually wear it! But that doesn't mean you have to throw it in a bag and take it down to your local donation center. Not yet anyway. No, before you do that, have a party! Think of it as a farewell to that beautiful dress who will now have better home. It's time to host a Swish.

Here's how it works; Send out a message on facebook to all your girls and ask them to clean out their closet and get a few things together that they no longer wear. This can be anything, clothes, shoes, jewelry, hats, belts, whatever! Grab a couple bottles of wine and some snacks and invite them over for a night of free shopping! It's so much fun and there are so many benefits. You get to have a fun girls night in drinking wine, hanging out, and trying on clothes.  Someone will finally get some use out of those jeans you never wear and you get to exchange them for things that you actually love and fit you much better and also give you the chance to try things on that you may have overlooked in the store. And if your girlfriends are like mine, they'll TELL you whether or not that dress actually looks good on you. Did I mention that you get to go shopping for free! What could be better than that?  And you don't have to stop at clothes either. My girlfriends and I have included household items, great books we've read, and even make-up. In fact just the other night I picked-up a beautiful leather journal that had never been touched and is in perfect condition. You save money and you get to have fun with the girls. After the Swish is over, take everything that's left and now you can drop it off at a shelter or donation center.

I attended a Swishing party on Saturday night and made out like a bandit.  Check out some of these great pieces I came away with.

Black pencil skirt, so versatile, cute little vintage dress, red and black polka dot dress and 3/4 sleeve gap topper
a pair of gap shorts and old navy skirt that look like they've never even been worn!
Gray ruched tank
bat wing cardi- look so cute on!
Red Jeans! Yay! I don't think I would ever buy these myself, but I love them!
So there you have it! Who says you need to have a lot of money to have a great wardrobe? Have fun!

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