If there was a physical embodiment of Mother Nature, I'd tell her to calm down right about now. It's been raining all day everyday in Tampa this week, and coupled with the 80 to 90-degree heat, the humidity is so bad, walking feels more like swimming. Despite the gloom-and-doom weather, Fonzi and I trekked out to the recently opened Tampa Riverwalk in downtown to shoot this minimalistic, cool for summer look. Although I arrived with straight hair, I left with a half curled and frizzy mess! Florida heat + humidity + Japanese/Puerto Rican/ Spanish mix = crazy hair day.
Is it weird that I was slightly channeling Sporty Spice with this look? My black-and-white ensemble with sporty flatforms and high-neck crop top remind me of Mel C in the "Say You'll Be There" music video, which I'm simultaneously watching as I write this post. I guess my wild beast Coach Swagger bag is channeling Scary Spice. Is "Wannabe" stuck in your head yet? It should be with all these Spice Girls references. "I wanna really, really, really wanna zigazig ah..."
Anyway, back to fashion. The true inspiration for this look were these incredible black-and-white sandals from the Sam & Libby line at Target. I had been looking for the perfect pair of flatforms (or "ugly sandals" as I like to call them), and these fit the bill with their high contrast and matte black gems stones. They're also comfortable. What more can you ask for?
I kept the black-and-white color scheme going with my clothes, choosing a high-neck, thinly striped crop top from American Eagle. It's light weight, and when paired with an airy high-waist, skater skirt like this one from Romeo & Juliet Couture, it keeps you looking and feeling cool on scorching summer days. All three pieces offer a chic and comfortable take on summer dressing.
The real star of this look, however, is my incredible Gary Baseman x Coach wild beast-print Swagger carryall. I featured a closeup of this bag a few months ago on our Instagram, but this is the first post it's in, and I'm excited to finally share this bag with you.
When I started working for Coach back in December, I was wildly excited about new Creative Director Stuart Vevers and the direction he was taking with the iconic brand. Vevers paired up with famed California artist Gary Baseman (you may be familiar with his artwork from the Cranium series of board games) for the Coach Spring 2015 ready-to-wear line, where the print of this bag--the wild beast print--was born. The story behind the print is that it's the pelt of Buster le Fauve ("les fauves" means "wild beast" in French), one of the many wild beast characters Baseman created for the collection. It's whimsical and edgy, and as soon as I saw it on Andy Torres' (Style Scrapbook) Instagram, I had to have it.
There was a caveat, however. This particular bag was made specifically for the grand opening of Coach's Rodeo Drive store, and only eight were made of this color in this size! I still don't know how I was lucky enough to score one, but eventually, I was able to order this very special bag, and it is truly one of my most prized pieces from my closet. Coach has since brought back the wild beast print in natural tones, which you can shop now at Coach.
To match the burnished nickel hardware of my Coach Swagger bag, I chose silver jewelry: a Lucky Brand double pendant necklace, Baublebar crystal Mason ring, Target black stone ring, Forever 21 chain bracelet, and American Eagle initial studs. For the finishing touch, I paired this look with my newly bought Alexander McQueen cat eye shades, an incredible steal at only $40 from Saks Off 5th. I feel like Catwoman off duty when I wear them, and I love the edgy detailing of the razor blades on the temples.
To get this look yourself, check out the gallery below and click through for links. Be sure to check back this week for more summer looks!