What the MET Gala 2013 Can Teach Us

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┬áCommenting on trussed up celebs isn’t usually my game but I really couldn’t resist with this years MET Gala having a Punk theme. Having a theme for any event doesn’t usually bode well and the stars out last night fell victim trying to live up to it. Unless you are at a fancy dress party don’t change your style for anyone! Let’s have a look eh…

Starting with Dame Viv and date Lily Cole, if anyone had the right to turn up in pins and rips it was Viv but of course she has been there done that. Instead she chose a sumptuous taffeta dress and cape from AW12, voluminous with a dropped waist. Pinned to her breast was a photo of Wiki-leaks’ Bradley Manning. In a sea of tits and legs it was ironically the most punk look of them all.

Lily wore a Westwood gown of course, the design the same as the iconic Olympic dress however the corset of the MET dress crafted from Amazonian wild rubber, a natural material.When I first saw this dress I wasn’t aware of it’s construction, stating on Facebook how I wished it had been made of rubber! The reason this came to mind being the colour of the dress, recalling the colour of the original rubber and latex punk clothing sold at SEX. The photo I found about just shows up the contrast of the corset and skirts.

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Both Vivienne and Lily wore Clomper shoes which I was immensely impressed with,Vivienne wore a runway version with ribbon ties and intricate embroidery. Had to LOL at the lady in blue carrying her heels down the staircase, not our Viv she can ride her bike in these baby’s.

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Christina Ricci was the only other star to wear Westwood (god knows why, not a bondage suit in sight), her McAndrew tartan gown was incredible, but I think she styled it a little off kilter. I didn’t hate her look but I think she should have worn cobweb or pvc stockings to give it a little edge.

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I think by the far the biggest mistake of the evening befell those choosing evening gloves, both Beyonce and Kim are stunning women but their Givenchy gowns swamped them.

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Katy Perry and Linda Evangelista (Marchesa) look like the went on a journey with Bill and Ted, falling out of the wrong century! I do actually like Katy’s crown and Dolce & Gabbana frock but think the shoes make it frumpy.

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Even when the gowns were that bad, so many of the girls looked like trussed up turkey, overly tanned, hair slick wit gel or stiff with spray. Many translated punk as 80s eye make up, more suited to Halloween.Julianna Moore’s quiff was just ridiculous.┬á Brit chic Cara Delevingne showed how to get it right with soft locks to balance out a smudged, smokey eye. Wanting to stand out from the crowd Jessica Biel donned a fake nose ring and Nichole Richie sported frosted hair – more Rocky Horror Show ladies.

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Ok so I can’t leave out Madonna in her Givenchy outfit, yes it is pure Punk in a costumey sense,but if I’d seen someone wearing this on any other occasion I would have given serious hearts to it. The gilt pyramid studs, the tartan, the pop or fuchsia pink heels, even the damn wig. Gah I love it, I shouldn’t but I do and I don’t know why!

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That’s not to say nodding to Punk fashion without looking like a pastiche is impossible, Miley Cyrus (Marc Jacobs), Cary Mulligan (Balenciaga), Alexa Chung (Erdem), Sienna Miller (Burberry) and Donatella Versace (Versace) all looked sleek and chic. I kind of wish Miley had slashed it across the bust, a la Courtney Love in THAT Dior dress. In fact, why they hell wasn’t Love there!!

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The safest option was to flip the V’s to the dress code theme, Rooney Mara (Givenchy), Anna Wintour (Chanel) and Gwen Stefani (Margiela) all stuck to their tried and tested styles and looked fantastic.

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Last but not least, Sarah Jessica Parker who stole the show, from faux-hawk Philip Treacy hat, Giles gown and thigh high Louboutin boot this was not a look for the feint hearted. What might have looked like over kill on anyone else, frankly looked freakin’ fabulous. She’s SJP and she can wear whatever she damn well pleases.

One thing I always wondered about the red carpet, is how celebs get their hair looking so perfect. Apparently they all wear temporary hair extensions! No wonder I could never get my thin locks to look as good. AmericanDreamExtensions.Com are UK specialists in hair extensions I’ve actually got some and have been trying them out, will show you how to in a post soon.

A Week in Small Snapshots

Another crazy, crazy week! Kicking off with the STYLEetc magazine launch party for our Spring issue, the off to London for work and a little bit of play. I admit I am probably becoming an iPhone bore but I really am so impressed with the quality of the camera on it, saves me lugging around the DSLR. I also joined the cult of Instagram (@superelevated) what can I say, its fun! Another app which came to my rescue when the Tube was closed this weekend is Hailo – lets you hail a cab with the touch of a button – absolute life saver! Google Maps and the MX data Tube Map made my life so much easier too. I’ve not really checked out many fashion app’s yet, mostly practical ones but let me know any app recommendations. Here are some visual snippets of what I have been up too and wearing last week. Mostly flat shoes due to all the running around and comfy shorts and tartans for layering. With the odd bit of glam, throwing on a heel. Ive been managing to get the packing down to just two pairs of shoes, a flat and a heel which is impressive for me! Visited the Museum of London who have some fantastic costume displays including this Westwood and McClaren Witches ensemble. I dropped by Selfridges and got to see Cath Kidston promoting her new book. Finishing the week with the Vivienne Westwood sample sale, woop!

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For the Love of Lilly

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(Wearing vintage Lilly Pulitzer dress, vintage necklace, Christian Louboutin Rondaldo Zipper Court Shoes)

I was met with the sad news that designer Lilly Pulitzer had passed away aged 81 yesterday morning.

Her facebook page read Early this morning, Lilly Pulitzer Rousseau passed away peacefully in Palm Beach, surrounded by family and loved ones. Lilly has been a true inspiration to us and we will miss her. In the days and weeks ahead we will celebrate all that Lilly meant to us. Lilly was a true original who has brought together generations through her bright and happy mark on the world.”

I wanted to add my own tribute to Lilly, a true creative and someone who just wanted to put fun into the world. I bought my first ‘Lilly’ two years ago, a chance finding in a vintage shop for just a few pounds. Which I am wearing above. The acid bright, cheerful print made me smile when I found it and makes me smile every time I pull it out. It is such a versatile dress, it can be dressed up or down. Here I have dressed it up with towering heels, but it also looks fab with my French Sole ballet shoes and sandals.Of course I had heard about Lilly before I found my dress, however it wasn’t until after falling in love with my dress that I wanted to discover more about the designer. You can read a short history of Lilly and her design journey on her website and blog, it is a fascinating story which all stated with a juice stand in Palm Beach – Lilly first created her prints to hide the bright stains on her dresses from the juice! When her old school friend Jackie Kennedy was┬á photographed wearing a ‘Lilly’ on holiday huge demand was created for the dresses. Lilly ended up selling more dresses than juice and so her business took off.

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 Jackie Kennedy wearing a Lilly Pulitzer dress

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Since buying my dress I have been on the look out for more ‘Lilly’s’, in a strange twist of fate I found this one yesterday. Thank you Lilly.┬á You were a fine example of how a lot of hard work and a little luck is all you need to follow your dreams.

 

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Lilly Pulitzer Rousseau 1931 – 2013

(Images -Jackie via thefashionexaminer.com; Lilly via qctimes.com)

Cinderella Stories

Christian Louboutin

Versace

Two designers interpretation of the Cinderella fairy tale for the Harrods windows. Christian Louboutin used cream lace over tulle studded with sparkling Swarovski crystals and applique butterflies (top). Versace went for a modern pointed stiletto in clear PVC, accents of metallic pick used on the heel and the brand logo. Both houses choose court shoes in their design. Accompanying a shimmering full skirted strapless gown. On the street outside a huge clock face is projected, the hands almost at 12 midnight.

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Walt Disney (courtesy Disney)

The Cinderella story we are all most familiar with today is likely to be the Walt Disney version, where the handsome Prince rescues Cinderella from her cruel step-mother and awful step-sisters. The presence of the glass slipper is pivotal to the story, had the girl not lost her slipper, the Prince would have had no means of finding her again. The fact that the slippers are crafted from glass makes no sense, a real pair of glass shoes could never be worn, the material would be unmoulding preventing the foot from flexing and of course it would be dangerous, at risk of shattering. Why is the the slipper being made from glass important to the story? The material itself is not at all malleable and┬á prevents the anyone but the true owner from fitting into the shoe – securing the Prince finding it’s rightful owner. The unrealistic nature of the shoe also lends further magic to the fairytale. The tale itself however can be traced back for many years and across many countries. The main theme of the lost shoe is retained however the shoe comes in the form of leather sandals, fur shoes and even gold slippers.

Maison Martin Margiela (courtesy of MaisonMartinMargiela.com)

Throughout my childhood I often wondered what a real pair of glass slippers would look like. Maison Martin Margiela created a beautiful glass version, purely for show of course. For all practical purposes a material such as transparent perspex would work giving a similar illusion to glass. Only trouble is when you mention a perspex shoe most people will recall the traditional stripper shoe! High fashion has created many stylish variations such as my personal favourite Prada SS10 and the recent reinvention of the Maison Martin Margiela perspex wedge for H&M. So perhaps we can all be modern day Cinderella’s.

Pole dancing shoes (courtesy hotstrippershoes.com)

Outfit: All The Glitters

Wearing: Vivienne Westwood Hussar jacket, D&G t-shirt, Zara trousers, Christian Louboutin shoes, Jimmy Choo H&M necklace, Chanel Mimosa nail varnish.

Florrie took these photo’s of me one chilly morning in Convent Garden. I was not in the mood what so ever for photo taking, hence the scowl and the hiding in my collar. Good job Florrie can always get me to crack a smile. Love this jacket though. It is one of my favourite things, it looks a bit extreme but inside it feels just like a cosy old sweater. Which is why I wear it so much I guess, comfort and looking like a Christmas tree, win:win!

Outfit: Marni at H&M Goodness & Some Thoughts on Collaborations

Beauty: Chanel ‘Kensington’ pink lipstick, Chanel green eye shadow from ‘Nymphia’ quad, Chanel powder, Chanel Inimitable mascara, Body Shop Lip and cheek stain blush, Benefit ‘High beam’ highlighter, Benefit ‘It Stick’ concealer, Chanel ‘Coco Blue’ nail varnish. I also straightened my fringe with my first pair of hair irons from TK Maxx, Andrew Collinge only ┬ú20 (Ive never used one before so it’s my new toy).

This is my practice face for when I get the cover of Vogue. One day, maybe one day. So here we go, these are the polka-dot trousers. I have to say I am in love with them, the fabric is a nice weight and I really like the cut. They are on the generous side though so go for the smaller if you are between sizes. I might get these taken in a bit, I totally have to have the purple and gold pair taken in as they only had the size up left, so I am going to keep my eye out in case anyone returns a pair, if not they are worth the few quid to have them altered. One thing I really did note about the entire collection is the good quality of the fabric. The trousers also have a large hem so if you are tall don’t worry about the cropped length as there is about 2″ you could let down if need be. I couldn’t resist pairing these with the spotty socks! Wish I had some spotty shoes.

Wearing: Marni at H&M trousers and earrings, Christian Louboutin shoes, Prada mohair vest, random old top, Primark socks, Dune clutch bag.

I am also wearing the yellow drop earrings, they are clip on and surprisingly light. I was worried they might pinch or be too heavy. The other pair I bought with the acrylic square are a bit heavier but still comfortable to wear.

I am glad I finally got into this collaboration, in reflection I think it may have worked out better for me waiting till after all the hoo-haa as I didn’t end up buying the entire collection. I simply bought pieces I would have bought had they just been in any regular shop, there was no desperate ‘OMG they will sell out if I don’t buy now’ moment. Sure if money were no object it would be fun to have one of everything, but chances are after the initial novelty wore off I wouldn’t wear half of it. I say this from experience with other collections where I have gone a bit mad with the buying, a few months down the line not having worn some things and wondering why on earth I bought them. On the other hand there are things I can’t get enough of, I wear them all the time such as my Karl Largerfeld t-shirt, Jimmy Choo necklace and Matthew Williamson leather jacket. Other things that I haven’t worn yet such as my Lanvin necklace and earrings are still very much in favour, just awaiting their time. My holidays (not that Ive had one in years) will now be a thing of packing ease thanks to my massive Matthew Williamson stash. I wore my two Stella McCartney jumpers until they fell to pieces. The rest such as the Lanvin dress two sizes too big and Jimmy Choo stretch trousers have long gone to the big eBay in the sky, we are all allowed to make sartorial mistakes.

I was thinking that maybe now these collaborations had run their course. I was appalled at the quality of the Versace one and it is the first one I have ever seen actually go on sale. I also thought that much of the Jimmy Choo collection was quite poor, the bags especially. But the the Lanvin and Marni collections were very high quality so I am going leave judgement for now. Looking back over all the collections there are places where corners have been cut for quality in each one, with price points quite low something has to give. Will they have another? Probably. Do I think they should give it a rest for a while? Perhaps. Are they still 100 times more exciting than the Topshop collaborations? Hell yes.

I thought this was a fun video, Stars Modelling the Marni at H&M Collection, showing Milla Jovovich, Drew Barrymore and Co. choosing pieces from the collection to wear at the event.

What do you think of the collection? Did you buy anything?

What Would Mr Louboutin Say?

Wearing Sponge Bob Square Pants socks and Christian Louboutin court shoes.

Probably not as the man intended but I think he would see the funny side. Mr Louboutin seems to have a wicked sense of humor, even his website is quirky.  To enter a pair of heels kick their way out of a glass bell jar, a blue butterfly zooms around the screen. Mr L as the magician or puppet master perhaps, his eyes flashing green as he makes the shoes float around the page! Neon lights flicker and electrical volts hum.

Anyway here is my Valentines effort, Sponge Bob loves ya!

Happy Valentines x

The Red Sole Rules?

From left: Christian Louboutin, Vivienne Westwood, Belmondo

I posted previously about these stunning leopard print flat shoes that I ordered -I was so upset that they didn’t fit but did exchange them for another pair so not to worry. Anyway when I ordered them I obviously didn’t look at all the photo’s as when I opened the box I was a little surprised that they had red soles! Now I am sure you all heard about the court case Christian Louboutin brought against Yves St Lauren, Louboutin was trying to stop YSL from selling a pair of red suede shoes with a red sole. The judge ruled that:

“Because in the fashion industry color serves ornamental and aesthetic functions vital to robust competition, the court finds that Louboutin is unlikely to be able to prove that its red outsole brand is entitled to trademark protection, even if it has gained enough public recognition in the market to have acquired secondary meaning.”

“Red outsoles are a commonly used ornamental design feature in footwear, dating as far back as the red shoes worn by King Louis XIV in the 1600s and the ruby red shoes that carried Dorothy home in┬áThe Wizard of Oz,” court papers filed by YSL read. “As an industry leader who has devoted his entire professional life to women’s footwear, Mr Louboutin either knew or should have known about some or all of the dozens of footwear models that rendered his sworn statement false.”

Whilst a group of academics from some of the US’s most famous law schools added:

“A woman who buys red shoes is doing so for a reason,” the brief argues. “Red shoes have a particular meaning to her, and to others, that cannot be supplied or even approximated by shoes of a different colour. Given the substantial creativity involved in both fashion design and fashion consumption, courts should not lightly allow one particular competitor to monopolise particular fashion submarkets.”

At the time of the case I was all for supporting Louboutin, the red sole is part of what made his designs so unique and original, thus creating such a demand for his brand. Yes red soles have been seen before be it historically or more recently but the red sole in our modern society has become synonymous with his brand, it is a trademark. The YSL shoe design in question however was a real sticking point for me as they designed an entirely red shoe. They also produced the same shoe in other colours. It didn’t seem fair that they should not be allowed to do this. I also had a good look at my own pairs of Louboutins and noticed that the shade of red did vary from model to model as did the place of manufacture. I personally feel that Louboutins lawyers did not argue their case very well. They should have attempted to trademark a particular shade of red and only when it was on the sole of shoes. My fear was that without the trademark every shop on the high street would be knocking out Louboutin-a-like designs red soles included, which would take the uniqueness away from the original Louboutin shoes.

It wasn’t until I had been digging around in my wardrobe that I came across a pair of my Vivienne Westwood boots from A/W 2003 that I notice they too had red soles. I guess I had kind of forgotten about that, or perhaps it was simply because the red soles ‘fit’ with the shoes. The entire collection had been highlighted by flashes of contrasting red against fuchsia pinks. I did also have to wonder if I wasn’t so offended by their red soles as they were by another designer and not a cheap high street copy trying to cash in on the lure of Louboutin’s.

I don’t have any answers for you, would I have worn the leopard lace ups had they of fit? Yes of course. Will I still wear my Vivienne Westwood boot? Hell yes. Do I feel a bit special when I wear my Louboutin’s? I sure do. Would I like them as much if they had black soles for instance? Hmm tough question, perhaps not.

Care to share your thoughts to?

(Sources Wikipedia, Vogue.com)

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Tux Trousers & Heels

(Wearing: vintage lace blouse, vintage tux trousers, Primark dotty socks, Christian Louboutin shoes)

I love wearing menswear, or menswear inspired pieces, especially trousers. I have so many pairs but new additions are always welcome! This is a really old pair of tux trousers, the masculinity is balanced out with the pink lace blouse and of course the high heels.

I am worn out this week, so much to do I can barely string a sentence together. My brain needs a holiday. This weekend I spend packing away all my winter clothes and pulling out all my summer ones, its so nice too see old friends like my Ann Demeulemeester boots and Matthew Williamson crop leather jacket. You know you made a wise buy when you can look at something you have had for years as if it were the first time you wore it.

What are you looking forwards to pulling out again this summer?

Pearl

Another Tale regarding the aquiring of Christian Louboutins

I would very much like to meet Christian Louboutin. I would very much like to ask him why I must go through trials and tribulations to buy his shoes. I would very much like to know if they are in fact regarded as holy grails, so rare to lay your hands on even Indiana Jones might fail. (Did I ever tell you the story of how I nearly ended up being called Indiana Jones, no joke, maybe in another post).

Anyway before I digress, are you sitting comfortably? This may take a while.

One of the main aims of our trip to London was to find shoes, special shoes, special Louboutin shaped shoes. I have wanted a pair of the Rollerball loafers ever since I first laid eyes on them and was hoping I might be lucky enough to find a leopard or velvet pair. The black leather are my favourite but I know they were from last winters collection so didn’t hold my breath. First stop was Motcomb St Louboutin boutique. They didn’t have the Rollerballs there but they helpfully checked their database which also covers Selfridges and Harvey Nichols. No such luck (unless you are a size 36), all sold out. The have all styles in the men’s but they only come in size 40 and up (lucky for some tall ladies, not for little me). The sales assistant did suggest I could try Browns and Harrods though as they have a separate stock.

My second choice were the black leather Pigalle – you might remember I wanted these on my birthday. I also wanted a pair of nude Elisa too which were my third choice. But they didn’t have any Pigalle in either so we decided to go try Harrods. To be fair Motcomb St is quite a small boutique, but it is such a beautiful one, from the outside it looks exactly like you would expect an exclusive boutique to look like, picture box pretty!

I have to say I love Harrods it is a real wonderland store, we had a great time checking it out but alas no Rollerballs or Pigalle! Taking a well needed rest in the Florentine cafe I decided to ring Browns rather than trek all the way over there, and good job too as they didn’t have any either.

The next day we decided to check out Selfridges, especially the Shoe Gallery, honestly we practically bolted up the escalators with glee at the excitement. Erm only to be met by disappointment. The Louboutin section was so busy and there was only one very harassed guy on duty. I had to do my best bolshy bitch just to stop people pushing in front of us. I tried on the new studded Pigalle with the bow but I am really not a bow person and I had to try a size down as they didn’t have my size anyway. We gave up and made a swift exit to check out the rest of the gallery. I think the galleries are OK but to be honest it is a pretty average department store range, well over rated. I was expecting it to take up the entire floor and have every designer under the sun! I found a beautiful pair of Dries van Noten chunky heel courts which I would have snapped up over the Louboutins but nope not available in my size. I did try on the craziest Bambi JCDC shoes Aimee found!

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After mooching around the rest of Selfridges I have to admit I started to feel a little down, we were still having the best time but I had been so, so excited about the Shoe Gallery I couldn’t help it.

So we set off on the trek to Mayfair, as we passed many shops all closed I started to get the sinking feeling that maybe the websites were wrong and nothing was going to be open. I think Aimee might have actually given me a shove off a bridge for dragging her this far for nothing. But yay as we reached the Mount St Louboutin we saw lights and people, and hurried in.

We tried similar blue suede to Christina but in the lower heel, round toes style, absolute stunners – I saw we meaning Aimee chose them and I pinched them, lucky we are the same size. Photo entertainmentwise.com.

I wonder if Mr Louboutin had been up to something, messing with our minds, making us wait till last, until we were worthy of the prize. We walked in and saw that they had the biggest collection with plenty of size 38.5! The staff were lovely and really helpful, especially as I wanted to try on pretty much every pair in the shop. I was pretty disappointed to find that Pigalles are just to narrow a fit for me, very ouchy-pinchy, so I had to pass on the pointy but the selection of round, almond, and peep toes more than made up for it. I wavered over a blue suede pair of round toe pumps and a pair of knotted purple peep toes but I have enough crazy shoes in my wardrobe.

So I went for a the Decollete Jazz which are similar to the Pigalle without the pinchy-pointy toes, I love that you can see the red sole right around the shoe and that they are a cross between patent and matt leather.

Since I was elated to finally find a shop with my size I figured I had better buy these nude Fifi pumps whilst I had the chance, I love the colour and the super skinny heel. I had realised that nude comes in pinky and beigy tones so opted for beigy. A bit greedy yeah I know but whatever, who ever said Christmas shopping only had to be for other people. I had to share the Shoe Girls latest post with you, it seems I am not alone in the shoe snaffling!

I feel I have to end with singing the praised of the staff at both Louboutin boutiques mainly due to the bad press they are always given on review sites. Firstly I need to point out I was pretty much dressed like a scruff, not my usual dressed up designer garb but muddy boots, mismatched leggings and hair belonging to a wild women (hence the lack of outfit photos). Yet not once did I receive a frosty reception, the staff were more than helpful and really friendly too. I admit I am no wall flower and can be very pushy but not at one point did I feel this was necessary. The staff were an absolute credit to the brand, and we joked with one girl that she should get an extra loyalty bonus for the sky scrapers she was wearing!

It is a shame the same couldn’t be said for Miu Miu (security guard eyeing us up) and Burberry (so useless I really couldn’t continue trying to extract information out of them and had to laugh when one guy started to explain online shopping like I have never heard of it before ‘but madame you can then try the coat on at home’ really, how ingenious!) tut tut. It is a good job I find this kind of thing pretty amusing, especially when wearing a coat worth more than half the shop. But I do know that this really upsets some people, and I have friends who won’t go into some shops as they feel intimidated. Fair enough they want to keep the riff raff out but really in this day and age we don’t need the attitude! I tend to forget about this kind of thing as I can usually break the stoniest of people into a laugh but I had been reading this review site the day before looking for opening hours so had it in mind (I also just added my own two cents worth to the page)!

I would love to know if you have had any extra special or extra appalling experiences in a store or boutique?

Pearl
(sat looking at her Louboutin’s because there will be no wearing them in the snow)

P.S BIG CONGRATULATIONS TO:

‘BYE BYE SOCCER MOM’

WINNER OF THE FASHION TO FIGURE GIVEAWAY!