Love Zahra + Rebecca Minkoff + Summer Festival Style

Music has always played a big part in my life, and I often look back at my memories as if they were a soundtrack. I was never a huge New Kids On The Block fan because my older brother thought they were lame, and since he was eons cooler than me – I had to hold the same opinion, of course.

For me, it all began with Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston, whose ‘Vision of Love’ and ‘I Will Always Love You’ tropes were imitated endlessly by my girlfriends and I while we sat on the jungle gym at the playground (i.e. Annd IIII-EEE-III Will ALLL-Ways Love Youuuuuu), until we convinced ourselves we actually sounded pretty good. Bollywood music would be carry us through the long road trips with my four siblings – mom and dad would hum along to the Lata Mangeshkar and Mohammad Rafi oldies and we would entertain ourselves during this pre-iPad era by playing the ‘ABC animal game’ and ‘Slug Bug’ and even by doing math problems. Side note: We were nerds.

Sitting in my room with Tupac on the discman (and other favorites like Snoop, Nas, Wu-Tang Clan, Biggie, and Bone Thugs N’ Harmony) was one of the only ways my angsty pre-teen self could get away and have some alone time – which was a rarity in my big family. I would flip through the cd insert (probably bought through BMG or Columbia house with one of those buy one get 25 free deals/scams) and read and memorize all of the lyrics to every song. I recall a bus trip to camp in sixth grade where the entire class sang ‘Nuthin’ But a G Thang’ in sync – much to our teacher’s dismay. Then I think it was in Jr. High when ‘Nirvana’s ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ 90’s grunge rock sparked my love of Rock N’ Roll and ultimately set me on a journey to discover and love bands like The Beatles, The Doors, and Led Zeppelin.

In high school, when we were finally able to drive and control our own music selections, we blasted out our speakers to Sublime, and the politically and socially charged Korn and Rage Against The Machine.  I then moved to a neighborhood with a lot of fellow South Asian kids, and thus my love for Bhangra Music began, as it went hand in hand with my newfound love of partying. College brought me back to the old school, I recall sitting in coffee shops with cigarette smoke wafting in the air along with hipster favorites like The Smiths, The Cure, and Belle and Sebastian. When it came to college house parties, I imagine my girls and I dancing and laughing and the dj playing Jay-Z, P.Diddy, 50 Cent, Sean Paul, Nelly, Shakira, and Beyonce.

Lollapalooza reminds me of dating my husband, and going to Grant Park every year to see the hottest bands live always brings me right back to one of my favorite periods of my life. There is something magical about the combination of a bunch of people outside on a hot summer’s night watching their favorite band play live. The artist is at their most raw and vulnerable, their true talents are on display while they play instruments and sing without being able to rely on any post-production editing. The effect is hypnotic, and the mob of fans join together in one big Kumbaya sesh, where everyone loves everyone and the world is a much happier place.

Shakespeare summed it best when he said ‘If music be the food of love, play on.’

Here’s what I wore to Lollapalooza this year, with many thanks to Rebecca Minkoff. Photos by: @quoteAbhi

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Look 1: Dress: Thanks to: Rebecca Minkoff | Shoes: Everlane | Jacket: Zadig and Voltaire – Similar Style | Bag: Thanks to: Patricia Nash Designs (sold out) – Similar Style | Sunnies: Celine | Watch: Thanks to Jord | Bracelets: Nordstrom | Necklace: Rocksbox – Get your free trial using code LoveZahraxoxo at checkout!)

Look 2: Jacket and Skirt: Thanks to Rebecca Minkoff | Sandals: Thanks to Sole Society | Bag: Chanel – Similar Style|  Necklace , Ring , Bracelet Thanks to Kendra Scott | Sunnies: D&G | Watch: Michele 

Love Zahra + Jord Watches

One struggle I’ve always had with blogging is defining one writing style and sticking to it – am I witty and sarcastic like the blogger Man Repeller, or am I insightful and eloquent like Garance Dore? I find that some days I can be either of those voices, and some days I may be cheery and upbeat, and my use of exclamation points may even be bordering on is excessive. Why do we need to neatly fit into one niche or category anyway? Is it some plan the evil marketing gods hatched up to be able to sell us stuff more easily?

The problem I have is I am all of those voices, and choosing one would be like putting me in some sort of box. Being categorized into what I am not, is what I’ve rebelled against my entire life, so there’s no way I am going to do it here on my own blog. I believe we as people are complicated, and we can feel a wide range of emotions and be a lot of different things at once. One person can all at once be a social butterfly and an introvert, a lover and a fighter, an artist and a scientist, a Beyonce and a Solange. (For the .0001 percent of you who don’t get that reference, Beyonce is a glam goddess and Solange is more of a hippy indie chick)

When it comes to style I am exactly the same way. I have the hardest time describing my style, and (not surprisingly) it is always the first question anyone ever asks a Style Blogger. Sometimes I feel very ‘New York’ and wear minimalist black and grey clothing and other days I’m feeling like I’ve got a princess crown on my head and I just want to put on a pink tulle skirt and wear lots of jewelry. Instead of fighting my multiple personalities, I’ve come to  embrace them. If you are like me, I suggest instead of trying to narrow yourself into one style, one voice, or one mood, just be yourself, whoever that may be on any given day.

Today, I am not going to lie, I am feeling myself in this outfit. Whenever I am wearing an eclectic mix of really cool pieces, I feel like what an artist must feel after painting a portrait or sculpting a figure. Fashion is just as much of an art and form of expression as any other medium. One of my favorite pieces I’m wearing is my wooden watch from Jord – I wear it all the time and I am always getting compliments on it because it is so unique.

Jord, which is Swedish for earth, soil, or land, works with a collective of designers to create modern, beautiful and sustainable timepieces. Since I’ve been on my journey to only shop ethical and sustainable brands, I happily and proudly flaunt my Jord watch regularly. Since it is wooden, it works really well with casual and boho style outfits, and here I’ve styled it for a more dressed up look. I love it when my accessories are versatile enough to wear many ways – don’t you?

As always, thanks for stopping by! Have a great weekend~

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jord-watch-rocksbox-bracelet topshop-sleeveless-trench-zara-lace-up-heelsWatch: Thanks to Jord | Sleeveless duster: Topshop | Dress: Thanks to Shopstyle – Similar Style and Similar Style – midi length| Sandals: Zara – Similar Style (on major sale!) and Similar Style (under $100) |Hat: RVCA | Bag: Givenchy – Similar Style  (on sale under $55!) | Bracelet and Ring: Rocksbox – (Get your free trial month with code Lovezahraxoxo!)

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Burgundy + Blue

Today I was a little sick so I was trying to take it easy at home. It is second nature for me to nurture a sick babe or husband, but always so hard to do the same for myself and force myself to not attend to all of the tasks on my (never-ending) to-do list. But this time I am being extra careful because I plan on attending Lollapalooza this weekend so I need to be sure I am 100% back to normal or it will not be much fun. Also, I have a special collaboration I am doing during the festival, so definitely stay tuned for that! I will also be heavily snap chatting I am sure, so definitely add me on Snapchat @Lovezahra.com. Artists I’m especially excited to see include – Banks, Kid Cudi, Metallica, and Sam Smith among so many others.

What I really love about summer shopping is how it just starts really getting warm exactly when all of the summer merchandise goes on major sale – hello instant gratification!  Since I’ve been thinking about Summer fashion since way back in Fall of last year, at the moment I’m really looking to only purchase new items that I can wear now and transition into fall and winter – like the outfit ideas below.

I would wear the sleeveless moto vest over the maxi dress,  or with a jogger pant and tank top. Both looks  work well paired with the comfortable and updated flat for fall – the loafer. The pointed toe has the same leg lengthening effect that a high-heel has, which is why my collection of flats is now getting a little out of hand…

Bonus – almost everything is on sale! Happy shopping!
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Earrings | Dress | Vest | Bag | Pants | Shoes | Watch | Nail Polish

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