Staycation Day 2: Tunic Sweater + Cut Out Booties

On our second day of our staycation in Chicago, I dressed a little more casual for a Mexican dinner al fresco and then for taking in a comedy show at Zanies. I forget how much more fun it is to see a show live, since most of my entertainment comes from Netflix these days (hello, Stranger Things!) I love the light weight knit fabric and open back detail in this sweater tunic, which makes it really versatile for wearing year round. Also now that I’m officially a hat person – after years of thinking I couldn’t pull of the style – my latest addition to my hat arsenal is this one by Janessa Leone, you can feel the high quality and heavy weight of the wool – it keeps its shape perfectly and doesn’t flop around. I highly recommend.

Also for Fall, I’m all about cut out booties, and I’m finding that most of my shoe collection these days is either black or a neutral taupe color like this pair. It just goes with everything and stays in style.

On another note, the second trimester is turning out to be much better than the first, and I’m getting back in to a healthy routine. I’m getting back to posting regularly here on the blog, and I’ve been updating my Pinterest page with some great outfit, shoe, and bag inspiration. Do check it out! I’m also planning on posting my prenatal workout routine and some of my favorite ways to dress the bump for everyday. Stay tuned for that coming up!

Have a great weekend! xx
nordstrom-janessa-leone-splendid all-saints-janessa-leone-hat cut-out-booties-open-back-sweaternordstrom-open-back-sweaterTunic Sweater: thanks to Nordstrom (under $60!) | Jeans: Zara (old) Similar Style | Booties: Thanks to Sole Society – more sizes available here| Hat: Janessa Leone  | Bracelet: Thanks to Pali Roots | Bag: Gigi New York  | Watch: Shore Projects 

Celebrating Diversity – Harpers Bazaar India

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Embracing cultural diversity in the Fashion Industry is still in its infancy, even though the trend is growing at an incredible pace, and I believe it should be celebrated as much as possible. Harper’s Bazaar India is currently leading the way with 9 new covers for a special issue showcasing diversity in beauty with Art Direction by Christopher Sollinger. Some of the models featured include Tyra Banks, Hind Sahli – one of the few Muslim models to make it big out of Morocco, and Tracey Africa – the first trans model to have multiple beauty campaigns in the 70’s. Styling is by KC Jones, who brought in Chanel and Roberto Cavalli, both fashion houses who were happy to support this project from the start.

The resulting collaboration is a luxurious and tantalizing fashion photo story that gives you all the feels, then makes you want to also max out your credit cards trying to copy every single one of the looks. In short, it is phenomenal. Scroll all the way down for a link to the full editorial. Note: the link will take you to another page, click the link again to view.

My first memory of being aware of what ‘beautiful’ was supposed to look like happened very young. I was maybe 6 years old and my family was at a dinner party when someone said how lovely my sister’s skin tone was (it was much lighter than mine). I remember being upset because even at that tender age, like many girls I wanted to be beautiful, and that comment told me that somehow I wasn’t. My parents attempt to console me was by mentioning a saying in our language that roughly translates to: ‘Dark-skinned equals God’s favorite’. To me that was the equivalent of saying I had a face only a mother could love.

I realized pretty early on that the beauty standards my Pakistani parents generation grew up with were outdated, completely wrong, and also probably stemmed from some kind of self-hate resulting from British imperialism anyway.  There is a difference between intellectually believing something and emotionally feeling it, though. Despite knowing it was wrong, there were still times I felt the pressure to look that way, even trying skin lightening creams, or staying out of the direct sun for fear of getting too tan – even if that meant missing out on my favorite summer activity – swimming.

Truly believing in something also depends on whether or not you actually see it represented in society. It’s like the saying goes: if you can’t see it, you can’t be it. One of my motivations for starting my blog back in 2012 was to represent a different image of what a fashion blogger looks like. It was difficult at first because I started at a time when I didn’t know of one single blogger that was of South Asian descent. Happily, now there are plenty of brown skinned blogger babes out there.

It is said to take 30 years for a new idea to seep into culture. The technology we take for granted like flying in an airplane or using the internet, and stuff we will take for granted soon like self-driving cars, didn’t just happen overnight. So too the cultural revolution in Fashion will happen in time, and collaborations like these will stop being a novelty and actually become the norm. It is only inevitable with the world getting smaller by the day. How fast it happens really just depends on how well we embrace that change. When it does, I for one will be right here standing with arms wide open.

View full editorial: Harper’s Bazaar India Editorial

Date Night: Ruffles

This weekend we had a little staycation in Chicago which was just what I needed after so many months of feeling sick and just overall not myself. Thanks to grandparents who graciously take the entire weekend to sit, we had the chance to do it. We took in a Cubs game (they won!), slept in late and ordered breakfast in bed, spent some time doing our own thing – I did a spa day and he went to meet friends and watch a game at a sports bar, and then we met up for dinner and a comedy show. It is so easy to get wrapped up in every day stuff to forget to make time for your significant other – but man, is it important.

Adam was having so much fun that every time we face timed he was too occupied to really want to talk to us. We decided that is much better than having him be sad at home missing us, even though I admit I had a tinge of sadness that my baby is growing up too fast.

For dinner one night I wore my new ruffled blouse, paired with a culotte jumpsuit and block heels. This season I am loving all of the feminine blouses that I’m seeing – ruffles, tie-neck, pleated, or classic with pockets. I like to invest in great blouses that I can wear with a skirt or trousers for more formal occasions like work or events, and again dressed down with jeans for the weekend. I wanted to dress up but a preggo girl still needs to be comfortable! (Just a note – this blouse fits true to size, but if you have a long torso you may want to size up one size.)

Thanks for visiting as always xx
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Top: Thanks to Nordstrom: Shop more Ruffled Options |  Jumpsuit: Thanks to Tobi: Shop more Jumpsuits | Shoes: Zara (old) –Similar Style | Bag: ChanelSimilar Style |Earrings: Thanks to Kendra Scott