Cabinet of Curiosity II

Some inspiring things lately. Particularly been thinking about long robes to wear over jeans once it gets cold enough, beautiful jewelry from Brilliant Earth (x) and Tallulah Fontaine (x), and beautiful photography from the likes of Tim Walker, Paolo Roversi, and Sanja Marusic (x). I also included a cyanotype by Christopher James (x). I have been working on my own cyanotypes and I am excited to do a large-scale one like this soon. All images and sources from this post can be found on my Pinterest! (x)
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Mermaid Aura

Alright, as terrifying as it is to post pictures of myself in a bathing suit online, I really love these photos. My love Maddy and I took off to Nevada City yesterday. We hit up the very cool shop Kitkitdizzi (x) and then headed down to the Yuba River. After the icy rivers near Coloma and Placerville, the Yuba River was an amazing change because it was soooo warm. I was in love. I wore my simple high-waisted bottoms from American Apparel (the only thing I have ever purchased there) and my little COS bikini. I love the classic black look, but I really loved the way the lens flare in these photos added a little color. We will just call that my mermaid aura. 

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just a lil' slip

I'm enjoying taking outfit photos again. I'm also really enjoying that most of this outfit is is thrifted for two reasons: it cost me very little and it means I am sticking to my "no fast fashion" policy. About this policy: I just feel like as a person who likes fashion and personal style, I can use my voice to speak out on how depressing it is to me to think about how wasteful the fashion industry can be. It's certainly hard to avoid buying cute lil' things at H&M and Zara (who I am boycotting for being thieves more than fast fashion culprits) but when the thrift stores in your tiny hometown have fun nighties like this one, it gets easier. I love this ditzy little print, especially with these earrings I got from a peddler's fair. I kind of feel like an 70s hooker in this, but maybe that's just me. 

Dress - Thrifted
Shoes - Old Navy 
Earrings - Thrifted
Necklace - Melrose Trading Post
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Details: Howard Two Way Top

I'm so excited to finally share this piece. I've had it for a while--I got it as a trade when I helped style the lookbook for a beautiful label called Howard(x). I've worn it quite a bit, but I hadn't gotten around to photographing it until now. So lemme tell you why it's amazing: it can be worn as a gorgeous, minimal long-sleeved top with a beautiful low back OR as a cool, drapey halter-neck tank top. It's seriously thrilling to have such a well-made piece that I can wear on the hottest days of summer and on brisk winter days. I am working on acquiring more pieces like this--I want to build a wardrobe of easy-but-interesting clothing and of course just weird amazing pieces I find or make along the way. Just developing personal style goals over here (that probably say something profound about my desires for my life but who cares to think about those things).

This top (especially with nothing under it) looks a little pirate-y to me, as usual. (That's a description I strive for with all my outfits). Hahahaha wait no I just figured out why, and bear with me: it's that part in Dead Man's Chest when Will Turner has his shirt split open to be whipped. You know, because this kind of looks like his sexy undershirts with a split-open back? Wow what a reference point. What I'm trying to say is that this top makes me feel like Orlando Bloom and that is important to me personally hahhaha. 

As a tank top, this piece is a little less 18th-century blacksmith and a little more structured-meets-drapery goddess halter. You can leave the sleeves undone for a cool deconstructed look, but I usually tie them behind my back. I just love it. (lol at how much less-polished my look gets as my hair gets wilder, as per usual.)

Top -- Howard (x)
Trousers -- Topshop 
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Magenta Magic

I have missed doing outfit posts. My blog feels scattered and I've said before that I want it to feel more curated so I think I will focus only on fashion for a while and see how that turns out. To kick off this sentiment, I wanted to post something that feels very me. Fashion is definitely resting on some trends right now and it's gotten a tad boring to see the same off-the-shoulder looks (not to say I don't love them, I just think we can challenge ourselves a little more than pairing a Bardot top with some shorts and calling it a day). Minimalism and "cool girl vibes" are "in", but I'm much more of a romantic and I like my look to reflect that sometimes.

That's also not to say that this outfit is anywhere near revolutionary, but it's something that feels personal. I'm a big advocate for wearing slips and nighties as dresses (they make me feel especially dreamy: like Wendy in Peter Pan or something) so I was very excited to find this little number at the thrift store so many years ago. It's an easy piece in a gorgeous color that makes me feel free and flowy. In this heat, I want nothing to do with trends--just make me feel like I won't die of heat exhaustion and I'm happy. 

Dress -- Thrifted
Shoes -- Moorea Seal
Bag -- Very vintage and not-well-taken-care-of Chanel
Handchain -- Kendra Scott via Rocksbox (use code "nibinquielxoxo" for a free month!)

Photos by Ian!

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Thousand Steps Cave

This is a place called Thousand Steps Beach. I had seen a few people visit this spot in Laguna Beach but I never knew how to get to it. I put my lil' research skills to work and found out that it was actually at a beach I had been to before, but I never wandered far enough to find this magical spot. So here's the deal with anyone in Southern California or those looking to venture a long way to come here: this can be a dangerous place. You can only cross through this cave at low-tide. Ian and I got here a little later than we had planned and it was starting to fill back up by the time we left. Most people come to this spot because if you go through the cave you can climb over some rocks to get to some gorgeous man-made pools that fill up with ocean water. We didn't want to risk going out to them only to be stuck on the other side as the tide came in so we didn't go to the pools this time. Next time, next time.
Ian has been so lovely to me lately and he takes just the pictures I want whenever we go somewhere. I wore a rather unexciting red slip dress and no makeup. I love these photos--my god, the light in caves!--but they also serve as a reminder to go back. I want to take photos here of whoever will let me. The walls are so dramatic and colorful. I can't wait. 

Dress - Express
Photos by Ian 
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Details: Very Minimal

My Chemical Romance released a mean and misleading teaser (x) about the 10th anniversary of The Black Parade and now I apparently think mirror selfies are back. I took some pics of my *summer lewk* today which literally only consists of a Victoria's Secret bralette and my moon necklace. Few things make me feel more feminine than a black bra and delicate jewelry. Also few things keep me from passing out in this heat. I would like to give a shoutout to the "glowy skin" trend because I do not wish to divulge how much of my shine right now is from highlighter (sup Glossier Haloscope) and how much is sweat. 

Anyways a girl has got to keep herself entertained when she is unemployed-ish and sometimes selfies are the answer. Also it was the 20th anniversary of Fiona Apple's Tidal so I was listening to that all day. "I got my own hell to raise." How I'm feeling.

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Oh hi Ojai

 I had never been to Ojai and I was very curious about it so I made Ian get in the car with me and go explore today! We had lunch at a delicious vegan place called Hip Vegan and then drove around the mountains looking for waterfalls. I think all the photos I have seen of Ojai were from not-summer because there wasn't very much water there. We did find some pretty flowers with which to take pictures as well as a pretty pink National Forest sign. I wore a cutie little shift dress from my mom and a new bandana from Crater Lake with some constellations on it. It was a good day.
 Dress - TJ Maxx
Bandana - Crater Lake gift shop
Sunglasses - Garrett Leight
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Cabinet of Curiosity I

I do inspiration posts sometimes, but I want to call it something better. The thing I like about the internet is, obviously, having access to many things and being able to share them back. I think of my online spaces as "collections" or the Renaissance-era cabinets of curiosities (wunderkammers, for those in the know). That's why I love blogging and Pinterest and Tumblr and whatever--because I can record and reflect on my findings in the big world. I was just looking through an old blog (the one I began with when I was 15) and it feels like this incredible time capsule. When I look at the images I saved there, I think of exactly how I felt at that time in my life. In awe, and sort of scared. I want to re-capture that in my life now. I want to be scared and feel things deeply. I think that comes from finding out what you connect with, even if they are vague "vibes" from a pretty bra or photo. So without further ado, my new Cabinet of Curiosities collections.

  1. First up is the fucking flawless A.W.A.K.E SS16 collection (x). The dramatic lighting with amazing silhouettes is sooooo my fucking aesthetic oh my god.
  2. The most beautiful tattoo I've ever seen by Baylen Levore (x). I probably wouldn't get a tattoo this large, but if I did it would absolutely be something like this. Triple Goddess importance. 
  3. A beautiful bra from For Love and Lemons (x) will always make me a happy gal.
  4. Okay but this is where I am bragging: I lived out a serious dream. I wrote an article about Renaissance witch art for Lone Wolf Magazine (x). This topic has been an obsession of mine for five years now and I was lucky enough to have a platform on which to express that. I am so grateful to Lone Wolf for the opportunity and I encourage y'all to check out the magazine because it is GORGEOUS. 
  5. Dreaming of road trips to the Bisti Badlands, New Mexico.
  6. Inspired by Koo Bohnchang's work for Vogue Korea (x) which reminds me to look for the strange things and work them into my art. There is no time to be boring, make it different and a little haunting.
  7. Just doing my duties as a person who works for a jewelry retailer--studying jewelry trends. Currently loving gorgeous Calder-inspired pieces by Faris (x) and bold statement pieces by Kendra Scott (x).
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Oregon Diary Part II

I left off on the Oregon adventure pt. 1 with some waterfalls which, to be fair, is also what most of this post will consist of. Here is the continuation of our lil road trip. I made a little video of our time in Oregon. It's pretty rough and I need to get better at remembering to turn my camera on when I see something actually worth filming, but it's a cute little thing that makes me very happy.

 After leaving the Columbia River Gorge, we drove to the Timberline Lodge to see where they filmed some of The Shining. Unfortunately it was incredibly foggy and we could barely see the building itself, but that made it even more spooky. We then continued to a little Airbnb in Sisters and spent the night there. The next morning we met my love Annie in Bend for some breakfast and a meeting with a very mean cat named Leonard. We all wanted to see Smith Rock, so we made our way out there. 
Smith Rock looks like it should be in Utah, honestly. It's a gorgeous collection of rocks that makes it look like a miniature Zion amongst the incredibly flat terrain of Central Oregon. Above is the rock known as Monkey Face, which you can kind of make out, right? We had a gorgeous day there; a river winds through the valley and I just like rocks so it was nice to be surrounded by them.

After Smith Rock we followed Annie down to her home in Crater Lake National Park. She works for the Wildlife department, searching for birds and stuff--basically doing cooler things than I will ever do. I love that woman, let me tell you. Crater Lake is a very surreal place. It's the deepest lake in the United States and was formed out of a collapsed volcano that has been filled with snowmelt over time. It's kind of really scary how still it is, and how you can see basically nothing beyond it. It was pretty rad to see though, despite making me afraid of what lives at the bottom of it.

It was too snowy in Crater Lake to do any real hiking, so Annie took us on yet another tour de waterfalls. We saw like ten huge waterfalls over the course of this trip, and that is enough to make me fall in love with anywhere. Our favorite by far was Watson Falls. We wandered into the forest and saw the stream that ran from it, kind of nodding our heads and not realizing where the actual falls were. Once we hiked further in we realized that Watson Falls was actually a massive waterfall shooting from the side of cliff. The rock faces on these cliffs are so gorgeous, as well as the bright moss that grows around them. Seeing a place so lush and alive is exactly what I needed after months in LA. We got sprayed by the waterfall endlessly and it was a gorgeous kind of baptismal time. 

After a few more waterfalls, we returned to Crater Lake to sit at the lodge with dranks and cheesecake. I just wanted to include some more photos of how eerily still this place is. The water is so blue because it the lake is so deep. The sky almost exactly matches the water so it's easy to feel a little topsy-turvy when you stare out. Seeing the mountains across the lake is almost like looking at a pulse in a hospital--it's so oddly symmetrical but kind of haunting.

Ian and I went to check out Oregon because we wanted to see if it was a place that we would potentially move to. I'm not sure it's the right place for us at the moment, but it was a stunning reminder of the beauty of earth and water. A reminder I certainly needed after shoving my face so far into books this year that I could barely see straight. I hope I can visit Oregon again soon, and I need to remember I really can't go very long without moss and waterfalls. 

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