Winter in NYC has me sleeping in later. Staying up late reading books and watching movies. More time indoors at the gym. More time alone writing and contemplating surrounded by candles. I’ve been living ungracefully under coats. My hair is always undone and hiding under a beanie or beret. Home has become my sacred place this winter. Lost in stories and movies. I become so inward and nostalgic during the winter. My introvert comes out. But I feel totally at ease with that. Time for me feels slower in the winter. Usually it’s the other way around. It’s because I like the time it gives me to keep for myself. And it’s not a lonely feeling. It’s a feeling of self love that winter gives me. To take time to make myself feel healthy and warm and mentally stimulated when it is physically so, so cold out. It’s a winter blues but it’s a light and bright winter blue. The color of the blue that the sky is on a sunny winter day. How do you feel about winter? Do you share the same thoughts?
Maman Tribeca is one of my favorite places in the city to grab brunch on a weekend, or a lunch on a weekday. The first time I tried their selection, it was at its Soho location, a darling little spot on Centre Street that is curious to all passerby. White, rustic French decor, and the cutest little coffee cups, on top of a delicious range of easy, made to-go breakfast and lunch selection that also were made to be healthy and fresh, really made me a fan.
And then they opened a much larger location in Tribeca, plus an even larger one in Greenpoint which I have yet to try. One can always find something they find mouthwatering at Maman. The Tribeca location has a sweet coffee-shop and comforting (plus totally Instagram-worthy) style front, for the customer who wants just a coffee, a croissant and a quick chat with friends on their lunch break. They serve hearty farm fresh salads, quiches, sandwiches, soups, an assortment of pastries and desserts, and a selection of artisanal breads in the front. The back is a sprawling array of sit down, white washed tables . . . romantic for sure at night. The sit-down menu is an epic array of family-inspired recipes from the South of France and North America. My favorites are the Roasted Carrots and Quinoa Salad (an endless bowl of nourishing heaven), the Pesto Spaghetti Squash (so flavorful), the Deconstructed Avocado Toast (I can eat endless amounts of this) and the Maman Breakfast Sandwich (a reliable classic that is the best kick start to your Saturday morning).
Hello Monday 🙂 It’s been a hectic past days into New York Fashion Week, full of sore feet, cold ankles and over packed schedules. I’ve been heavily collapsing into my bed before midnight each night, starting mornings early with my friend Beatrice who is in town from Los Angeles. Without her, I probably wouldn’t still be up and running. Her energy is so recharging. This past week has been the biggest laugh fest out of all of my 12 seasons of fashion week so far. And wait . . . back up . . . this is my 12th season of fashion week? What a crazy thought. This shy girl from the valley has come a long way it seems. Fashion week in this city has become a sort of second nature act now. It’s like a marathon . . . you have to practice and work up a tolerance built from love even when there is pain. Because that is what fashion week is all about. Love and pain, but it’s worth every bit. And even though I enter each week feeling maybe a little bit lacking in the mental and physical preparation department, as the days go on like the whirlwind they are meant to be, I am overtaken by a swept up feeling that carries me relentlessly throughout the early mornings and extended evenings (that even the blisters on my feet seem to have disappeared for a moment). So that when I look back on these days of dashing around, shooting, editing, writing, it feels something like a dream as real life settles back down like dust.
There have been a lot of things I’ve learned from attending fashion week. But I’ll share just one. I’ve learned to practice gratitude. The years of hard work it’s taken to move from standing to the third row to the first as each season comes . . . those well earned beads of sweat should always act as a reminder to never take anything for granted when it comes to this industry, that can sometimes rip you up and spit you out (a saying that you all can relate to, I am sure). I sure know the feeling from working behind and in front of the scenes for many years. It’s not as easy or as pristine as it seems from all the photos and videos posted on every fashion goer’s social media. But the energy . . . that always feels the same. And that first beat of the runway show gets me every single time. And it feels good to be there.
A lot has changed since my first runway show. These past few years have really seen the growth of the fashion blogger’s influence. It’s been amazing to watch, especially as someone who has been in this space since the very beginning. It can also be easy to feel like one is lost in a sea of influencers with numbers through the roofs. But then I remember, that doesn’t matter at all. Everyone is here for different reasons inspiring to others. And I am still here for a reason, and you readers remind me of that every single day. I find that my fashion taste becomes more refined and pinpointed with each fashion week, and I am grateful to be able to share this growth with you all, alongside other things more personal to me. I’ll continue on for the next few days unfazed by the numbers or the so-called glitz of scene. I’d rather be stressed after five outfit changes than falling into the digital trap that can keep one discouraged, when really there is no reason to be discouraged at all. We are all here for the appreciation of fashion and to celebrate with our friends. Remember when I was discouraged to where red for a reason that I couldn’t really figure out? Well, I ended up wearing red (lots of it) for the first three days of fashion week. I think I needed its boldness to keep me going . . . and right in the nick of time.
You’re never going to be 100% ready and it’s never going to be just the right time, but that’s the point. It means that every moment is also the right moment. If you want it, you just have to do it.
I read this quote somewhere, and it stuck with me. Every moment we have starts as a blank canvas. It’s color is nude. Whether it’s the right or wrong moment, that’s up to us to determine. Nobody else’s. Each moment has the potential to turn into any color we want it to be, as long as we believe in the power of our own decision making. On days when we feel out of control of situations, and as if no puzzle piece seems to fit correctly, remember that blank canvas and refocus your thoughts into something else. Hope and determination are the most colorful things. And nude never felt so enthusiastic before.