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Showing posts from June, 2018

Fighting Cultural Appropriation in Fashion: Bihor vs Dior

It's no secret that major fashion labels have been ripping off traditional designs and patterns for years, with the likes of Dolce and Gabana, Tory Burch, and Valentino presenting cultural designs from around the globe and marketing them as their own creations - giving none of the credit to the cultures (and even designers!) responsible for them.

Not only is it a heinous form of cultural appropriation, it also erases the communities in which these designs come from - a slow death of what was once probably vibrant and ancient traditional cultures.

Just last year, Dior debuted a Romanian-themed jacket with designs inspired from the Bihor region and sold it for approx. $35,000!

Romania, however, is fighting back. Bihor Couture is an authentic Romanian brand featuring local craftsmen and designers, supported by Beau Monde - a magazine that features that 100% original Romanian content.

Meet some of the designers here!

Every garment is handcrafted, so it takes some time to make, but it…

Who *is* Pride for, exactly?

I am a queer woman. I will not be attending another Pride.

Most days, I think to think that Minnesota is a fairly progressive state. Our politics may be all over the place, but culturally and socially - ignoring the outlier drunk white assholes that occasionally roam the bus lines - I like to think MN is pretty open and inclusive.

And then this article came across my Facebook dash this morning. Followed by several more. And a few decrying the presence of police precincts and the influx of corporate participation....

I'm not even surprised anymore, y'know. Racism at Pride.

If it wasn't for the Stonewall Riots; if wasn't for those brave, black transgender women and their strong stance against police brutality towards the gay community, we wouldn't even have Pride Month. We wouldn't have anything.

So the unabashed White Supremacist bent within the LGBTQ community, even here in Minnesota, just saddens me. As if the community wasn't divided enough - I can't …

Weekly Food For Thought: 6/25/2018

If you're not outraged, you're not paying attention edition...

1. So you've been hearing and seeing all the news coverage lately on children being separated from their families at the border and kept in cages like dogs? Feeling a little guilty and privileged in the wake of a nice Father's Day weekend? How you can fight family separation at the border.

2. Michelle Wolf airs some candid opinions on mental illness and the deaths of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain. Watch it here. 

3. Child actress Millie Bobbi Brown was subject to homophobic pranks by so-called "fans" that led her to delete her Twitter account following a surge of hate messages. REMINDER, this is a CHILD. This bad ass young woman had this to say about bullying. Check it out. 

4. These fashion and beauty brands are digging themselves quite the hole in 2018. If you support any of these brands, I would recommend reading up on some of their racist and rape apologetic stances. Frankly, I'm just su…

The Homogenizing Aesthetic of the Millennial Lifestyle Blogger

I'm beginning to notice something very eerie as I pop in and out of the latest taprooms and coffee bars near St. Paul's Lowertown. It's something that brings to mind the homogenized horror of George Orwell's 1984 or the minimalist set-designs of 2001, A Space Odyssey. It's unsettling. It's disturbing. It's disorienting. Didn't I just leave this place?

Generic Coffee Shop Generic Taproom
Reclaimed wood bars and tables. Nondescript and uncomfortable chairs. Exposed brick and duct-work. Lots of tall windows. A chalkboard menu. Avocado toast and craft beer.

I'm sure you can think of at least one place you've visited recently that has this exact vibe to it, right? I used to think this kind of aesthetic was neat - it was very open and bright and simple. Your focus was on the people around you, the menu, your drink. The experience.

Now, I can't seem to find a place that doesn't look like this.

I think I'd kill for a good, old-fashioned, mom-…

How To: Thrifting For Your Work Wardrobe.

It's no secret that a majority of my wardrobe is thrifted. In fact, the last thing I bought new was a blouse off the Target clearance rack. I'm a bonafide bargain hunter and I have a passion for breathing new life into someone else's old duds.

But a work wardrobe is a specific kind of monster and one that often dictates a certain sense of quality and functionality - especially if you're in the corporate or creative sectors. So what's a girl to do when she wants a nice set of work clothes without breaking the bank?

She heads to Goodwill. (Or, y'know, whatever your favorite local thrift shop is.)

1.) Know Your Store.

It's important to get a feel for your store's layout so you have an idea of where everything is, especially if your thrift store has multiple floors or entire large sections devoted to certain kinds of items. For example, my Goodwill has two floor, with the entire second floor devoted to clothing. Knowing where the dresses, pants, tops, and ski…

Who Is and Isn't Allowed to Celebrate the Solstice? An Opinion Piece....

Trinity Hall, Cambridge announced its summer holiday event back in January and unfortunately it stirred up one (read that: one) very angry Wiccan student who took to the internet and her campus' newspaper to rant about it.

Georgia Humphrey, who is also an officer of her local LGBT+ group, made this claim:
 the decision to host this year’s May Ball on the eve of the solstice is “offensive” and “gross” because it coincides with a pagan festival.
She goes on to state via Social Media:  “I’m wiccan, which is a branch of paganism. We, along with most other branches of paganism (druids, satanists, hedge witches etc) celebrate the solstices every year and are usually the ones hanging out at stonehenge every year in crazy robes and stuff.

“I think it’s pretty grim to use any religion’s festivals as an excuse for a bunch of students to get drunk.”

I wonder if Miss Humphrey is aware that most, if not all, early Pagan festivities were mostly about getting drunk, rowdy, and sexually active? Es…

Creating a Self-Care Plan: Coping with Stress, Loss, and Trauma

Last week was a dozy for a lot of reasons. For the world, it was the loss of two beloved public personalities. For some of you, it may have been loss of another variety or some other pop-up crisis. For me, it was unbelievable work stress and problems at home with the partner.

We all go through hard times and it's really important that we have a Self-Care Plan in place to help us cope with those things. For some of us, self-care is just something we think about when we need a spa night after a long week at work and for others, it's a long-term plan put in place to keep us going through chronic illness or an enduring trauma.

"Self-care is any activity that we do deliberately in order to take care of our mental, emotional, and physical health."
So what is a Self-Care Plan?

Very simply, it is a plan that we put together for ourselves that include self-care strategies for the short-term, medium-term, and long-term. Short term self-care strategies include things like deep …

Weekly Food For Thought: 06/11/2018

Why Birchbox has suddenly become the beauty subscription hero of 2018 Pride Month....and since I'm cancelling my Ipsy account after this month, I might actually join the box club over the bag club.

Creeping through my 30's, I'm considering my bone density and overall bone health thanks to this MSPmag article.

I love Japanese cooking, but I never thought making Shio Koji (salt koji) would be so easy and so versatile. Read about it here. 

My feet are wonky - I'll admit. I've had surgeries that resulted in minor arthritis, making the wearing of heels almost excruciating. Pop Sugar has some ideas about how to help and this tip about using deodorant to prevent friction is genius! 

Looking to go off the beaten path for your summer vacation this year? Check out all these fun, summery things to do in St Paul and Minneapolis this year - Minnesota ought to be the summer destination! 

And finally, Queer Eye Season 2 will be featuring it's first transgender makeover. Woo f…

When the Suicide Prevention Hotline Doesn't Work....

Full disclosure: This post talks very heavily about suicide, suicide prevention, and virtue-signaling. It will make some of you uncomfortable. If will make some of you squirm. And it should - it's designed to. There's something to be learned and understood here.

Earlier this week, Kate Spade took her own life. Ever since, the internet has been awash with speculations about her apparent mental illness and how she'd been faring recently. In addition, 99% of people who have been posting about it have also been tossing out the Suicide Prevention Hotline number like candy at a parade.

"If you're struggling, reach out to someone. Suicide Prevention Hotline 1-800-273-8255"

 "If you or someone you know needs help, please call the National Suicide Prevention hotline at 1-800-273-8255."

"Please know that your feelings are temporary and you can and will get over this. Call this # as a place to start 1-800-273-8255, it’s the national suicide prevention hotlin…

Weekly Food for Thought: 06/05/2018