Tags: alison stewart, animal rights activism, anti-bullying, cancer research, charitable fashion, domestic violence prevention, drug addiction prevention, fashion stylist, fashion with a cause, karma for a cure, karmaforacure.com, margaux minutolo, style expert, stylewhipped.com
Recently, I had the pleasure to style an extraordinary editorial that exclusively featured pieces and accessories from Diesel Black Gold. Conceptualized by the always-amazing photographer Andrew Werner, we wanted to highlight certain key pieces from Diesel Black Gold's current collection, but in a new light. Not a direct replication of their runway show and not a typical, expected editorial. So, gathered together was a team who could make Andrew's vision come to life. Avant-garde make-up artist Daniel K, the most incredible assistants (photographer assistant David Pereira Oliveira, who I've had the pleasure of working with before, and the uber-helpful styling assistant Lucio Abruzzi), Andrew behind the lens, myself as the stylist, and our gorgeous, somehow-ok-with-being-barefoot-on-the-streets-of-New-York model Keenan Brill, now with Major Models.
Shot in a gritty alleyway (hence the "gritty" in our title) in the heart of Tribeca on a beautifully sunny day (not sure who to thank for that...), we made a mad-dash to shoot all the looks in a matter of three hours. We used only Diesel Black Gold pieces, including all the jewelry, watches, shoes...even the scarf! In sumptuous fabrics, saturated colors and unsual silhouettes, Diesel did not disappoint this season. Even the accessories are perfectly edgy with just enough of a twist to make you look twice. This is a tale of a hot young guy, living an exciting life in NYC...who leaves us at the end in his emerald green satin tuxedo. Minus a shirt, but in shoes he could easily run down the street in. Makes you wonder where he's off to, huh?
So, to tease you no longer, here are the photos (click on each to enlarge). And I have a feeling any guy would be willing to be barefoot on a Manhattan sidewalk to wear those perfect pants, too.
Tags: alison stewart, andrew werner, daniel k make-up, david pereira oliveira, diesel black gold, editorial, fashion stylist, keenan brill, letter from the editor, lucio abruzzi, style expert, stylewhipped.com, tribeca
As most of you know (or have read), I’m a sucker for music awards shows. When the Grammys came up in February, I was ready and raring to go, studying the nominees like sports fans study the stats on their favorite athletes. And for the most part, I was spot on about my picks winning the coveted gramophone. But, that was chosen by a committee of professionals in the music industry, while the American Music Awards, which aired this past Sunday, was chosen by the fans.
The American Music Awards this year were…to say the least, underwhelming. Well, at least a few of the auto-tuned performances (aka, everyone EXCEPT P!nk, who always rocks any televised performance she has ever done) and fashion statements (Nicki Minaj needed to up her extreme fashion and NOT copy an already-worn style). But when it came to the nominations, I was on pins and needles – hoping for an outcome that screamed more head-bopping and less teeny-bopper. (Even though Beiber seemed to score the most awards – I am still confused as to how.)
I managed to call every winner (even though I may not have agreed with the fans for their choice in music – such is the life of a music critic!) And even though I was (slightly) sad to see my favorites not make the cut with the voters, I decided to share with you my picks for some of the top categories on the AMAs.
1) Artist of the Year: True, Beiber snagged this category and did possibly the cutest thing by dragging his mother up for his acceptance speech, yet I would not have minded seeing Maroon 5 snag this award. It’s been a banner year for Adam Levine and Co., especially with such hits as “One More Night”, “Stereo Hearts”, and “Payphone”. (All of which are in current rotation in my iTunes collection!) And sorry Beibs, but Levine is just better eye candy!
2) New Artist of the Year: Without hesitation my boyfriend, Matt, and I called Carly Rae Jepsen as the winner, clearly based on principle that “Call Me Maybe” was parodied more than “Somebody That I Used To Know” by roller derby girls, the Harvard Men’s Baseball team, and one of the most famous of all – the 2012 Summer Olympics. All of that aside, it would have really been wonderful to see Fun. win this award instead. “Call Me Maybe” had catchiness, but “We Are Young”, coupled with “Some Nights”? Fun. (and their music) have anthem quality!
3) Favorite Album Pop/Rock: Ahhhhh, another Beiber win…but I was (secretly) rooting for One Direction! Yes, they’re a little boy-bandish for my taste – although my high school self would have gone absolutely NUTS for their perfectly coifed look and even more cheesy harmonies! (Yes, I was in LOVE with boy bands for many years…I hang my head in a bit of guilty shame for this one.) Yet 1D had all the components to clearly win this category with the fans. Maybe next year?
4) Favorite Band, Duo, or Group – Country: Oh, Lady Antebellum clearly had this one in the bag. “Need You Now” catapulted their country stardom into the mainstream and they never looked back. But while country is a genre I clearly know very, very little about, Zac Brown Band has all the makings (in my mind) for a powerhouse! (Well, that and Matt played “Chicken Fried” and “Toes” so many times during the summer that I could sing those songs in my sleep.)
5) Favorite Artist – Electronic Dance Music (EDM): It was announced on the AMAs that this is the first year Electronic Dance Music has been acknowledged as a growing trend…hence this new category! David Guetta obviously had this one all wrapped up, especially with some of the artists he has had the chance to work with recently (Usher, Black Eyed Peas, LMFAO…to name a few!) Calvin Harris also has great musical charisma, but my pick? Have to go with Skrillex. He has an original sound in the industry and normally, while I am dead against the idea of electronic music having any bearing on the music industry…its growing popularity has caused me to adapt to respecting the trend.
Whatever your preference, be sure to check out the full list of nominees and winners from the 2012 American Music Awards by clicking here. And for next year’s show – remember, like the election season, your vote counts!
Tags: american music awards, call me maybe, calvin harris, carly rae jepsen, david guetta, fun., jennifer corcione, justin beiber, lady antebellum, maroon 5, music, nicki minaj, one direction, p!nk, skrillex, some nights, stylewhipped, we are young, zac brown band
October is always sort of a weird month for me when it comes to music. Between all the Halloween-themed soundtracks and “Rock"tober in full swing…I’m always at a bit of a loss at which musical direction to take. Instead, classic scary movie marathons, coupled with picking up my favorite thriller novels curb my constant need for new music…at least for a moment or two.
I consider October a bit of a lull period before November kicks off another one of my favorites – the American Music Awards…more on that next month. (And oh yes, I’m ready with commentary on my nomination picks before you can finish “and the winner is…”)
But in this lull, I couldn’t leave my trusty readers without some great new music to check out! So I’ve found a re-kindling for my musical excitement with Ben Gibbard’s new solo album, Former Lives. If you’re not familiar with Ben Gibbard’s work, I’m sure you’ve heard of the bands Death Cab For Cutie (you most likely consider “I Will Follow You Into The Dark” to be one of the greatest indie alternative love songs of all time) and The Postal Service (you’re still trying to figure out all the words to “Such Great Heights,” because it’s perfect). In Former Lives, Gibbard sheds the group dynamic and proves that as a solo artist, he can truly stand out on his own…in songs chock-full of the pursuit of love and the loneliness that lack of love can bring.
Gibbard creates a sound reminiscent of a mixture of Aimee Mann and James Taylor: clean in instrumentation, yet keeping those signature lyrics we all know and love. For the quintessential tear-jerker, check out “Teardrop Windows,” a melancholy tale in loneliness through life…wishing that there was at least someone to share in those simple moments. And for those who have a larger than life view on love, then “Lily” is the perfect song for you. The way Gibbard describes ‘Lily’ using descriptive and bold metaphors…it made me swoon and dream of Ben Gibbard writing that song for me.
Gibbard perfectly blends his "past self" with a sound unlike any other. While most of the songs reflect around the singular romantic theme, the music is perfect for the mellowness of fall, with just a touch of pep! Check out Former Lives, now available on iTunes...happy listening!
Tags: ben gibbard, death cab for cutie, former lives, i will follow you into the dark, jennifer corcione, lily, music, new music, stylewhipped, such great heights, teardrop windows, the postal service
Last week, I told everyone to buy tickets to see the fantastic independent film "Bomber Jackets" premiere at the 2nd Annual Golden Door Film Festival of Jersey City. Well, not only did I get to see that this past Saturday (it was even better on the big screen than it was when I got to see an advance copy in my living room!), but because my brother-in-law, Dino Matis, is one of the stars of "Bomber Jackets," I also got to go to the Friday night red carpet premiere of the headlining "Union Square" starring Mira Sorvino (her father, the great Paul Sorvino, was even there to support the film).
Friday's festivities were held at the incredible Loews Landmark Theater, and the venue was simply spectacular. What I like to think of as "going to the theater" (even if it is a movie), this now-used-as-a-not-for-profit-arts-&-entertainment destination was opulent and ornate and really quite a retro experience. We saw Mira Sorvino's film "Union Square" there that evening (which originally premiered at the Toronto Film Festival last year and was beyond good...), walked the red carpet, and had a great time meeting so many actors and directors involved with the festival's films. And then on Saturday, Art House Productions hosted the "Bomber Jackets" official premiere, shown to a packed house and starring some amazing, should-be-really-proud new actors.
Check out the photos of Dino and I on the red carpet, as well as some of the stunning Loews Landmark Theater (I think it's a general consensus that we'd all like to just move in there!). And don't forget to look for the next year's 3rd Annual Golden Door Film Festival...you definitely don't want to miss being a part of such a fantastic event!
Tags: alison stewart, art house productions, bomber jackets movie, dino matis, fashion expert, golden door film festival, jersey city, loews landmark theater, mira sorvino, paul sorvino, stylewhipped.com, union square movie
No, I'm not suggesting we go back to the popular style of the late '80's (but oh man, did I love my dark green suede bomber jacket in 8th grade...). Instead, I am referring to an Official Selection at the Golden Door International Film Festival of Jersey City, called "Bomber Jackets." The festival itself runs this week from October 11th - 14th, and "Bomber Jackets" is premiering on Saturday the 13th at 4pm. I will be there to see it again, even after having the fabulous opportunity to privately pre-screen the film this weekend. Why will I be there? Well, to start, the movie is gritty and gripping, with break-out performances by talented new actors. It also brings a powerful message about acceptance and the fatally damaging effects of hatred...and someone especially close to me is one of the afore-mentioned talented new actors (I'll keep you in suspense and let you guess who it is...).
A true independent film, "Bomber Jackets" was produced and directed by Rob Santana on a shoe-string budget of a mere $8,000. Filmed 100% on location in urban Jersey City, NJ (right across the river from where I'm sitting now), "Bomber Jackets" was originally an off-Broadway play produced by Miriam Colon in 1996, and brings its audience a disturbing but important lesson in the importance of ending homophobia and violence towards the LBGT community. I don't want to give away the ending, but this is basically the story of an organized group of hatred-filled, homophobic young men in modern-day Jersey City, recognizable by their matching bomber jackets. When a small number of gays start moving into their old-school neighborhood, they become angrier and more violent in their sentiments. That violence escalates into physical attacks when the group's leader can't stand the idea of a cross-dressing gay man living right in their same building. Unbeknownst to him, though, one of his own buddies has fallen for the transvestite and will do anything -- anything -- to come to "her" rescue. To follow is the story of how all of their lives are changed forever.
With especially strong performances from the main character 'Patrick,' played by Robert James Ramirez, 'Tommy,' played by Dino Matis, and 'Patrick's Mom,' played by Kathryn Neville Browne, the ensemble cast has great chemistry and I look forward to seeing many of them in many films to come. Robert James Ramirez and Dino Matis both managed to convey a perfect juxtaposition of anger, frustration, and a secret, introspective softer side that separates them from their peers. And Kathryn Neville Browne brings a character to life you really aren't sure what to make of...in a good way. At only 83 minutes long, I was left wanting to know more about each character's individual story...which I think is a sure sign of an engaging film, especially one that still manages to touch on additional topics like domestic violence, dead-end jobs and infidelity. Which is exactly why you should buy tickets to the official premiere of "Bomber Jackets" at the Golden Door Film Festival. You can purchase them simply by clicking on this link - and at only $10 each, you can spread the word to anyone interested in being moved by the movie's important message...or buy tickets for more than just one of the festival's diverse feature films.
See you at the movies!
Tags: alison stewart, bomber jackets, dino matis, films, golden door film festival of jersey city, independent films, jersey city, kathryn neville browne, LGBT, LGBT issues, lifestyle expert, movie premieres, nj, rob santana, robert james ramirez, stylewhipped.com
If I had to pick one particular genre that I feel the closest connection to…it’s rock! Yes, I have my jazz cds, an obscene amount of pop music, and let’s not even start in on my handful of dance albums. (Club Mix 97 was definitely one of my jams and a favorite guilty pleasure.) But it is rock music that truly resonates with me. It makes me want to drum on every surface imaginable, belt power ballads at ear-splitting levels, and air guitar so hard you’d think I actually knew how to play one! In my area, it’s nice to have at least 95.9 WRAT contributing to my inner rockstar, yet sometimes I also crave a touch of alternative/indie to balance out my mood. So imagine my surprise when during my drive into work one humid summer morning, like their catchy gimmick states, I ‘discovered’ New Rock 101.9! (:::insert heavenly sound here:::)
Featuring a mix of new and 90’s rock/alternative, New Rock 101.9 has brought back to radio what I’ve missed the most, a dedicated rock station that features not only the music of my childhood, but the music that I hope to add (and feature) to my collection. As a little treat for all of you, check out some of my favorite 101.9 tracks on this month’s playlist and be sure to browse the New Rock 101.9 page (or tune in) here: New Rock 101.9.
Jenn’s ‘Alternative’ Discovery Playlist:
1 – Walk by Foo Fighters: I don’t know whether it is Dave Grohl’s gritty voice, the epic lyrics, or the perfect drumming…maybe a combination of all! Foo brings an anthem like no other!
2 – Too Close by Alex Clare: If you’ve watched television within the past few months, you would have heard this track on the new Internet Explorer commercials! (And it is super catchy!)
3 – Gold on the Ceiling by Black Keys: My newest addiction? THIS song! The beat of the drums, coupled with the vintage vibe of the lyrics…perfection. (I can’t stop listening or dancing to it!)
4 – Smells Like Teen Spirit by Nirvana: For those in need of a healthy dose of grunge, look no further! When I’m in need of ripped jeans and a sense of rebellion, listening to this classic by Nirvana brings me back to my childhood (and a need for thrashing around uncontrollably.)
5 – Bulls on Parade by Rage Against The Machine: Every once in a while, I need a good politically angst-filled jam. Rage executes the request perfectly with their charged-up rock anthems…especially this one!
6 – Cough Syrup by Young the Giant: Cue the new alternative…now! Young the Giant injects a little bit of that West Coast indie scene into a re-emerging rock scene! The lyrics offer that feel of angst, mirroring the days of grunge with a modern twist.
7 – Oh Love by Green Day: One of my favorite modern punk-rock bands returns to the radio…better than ever! (And for even more Green Day, be sure to pre-order their ¡UNO!,¡DOS!,¡TRÉ! box set!)
8 – Paradise by Coldplay: Ever since the Grammys, I haven’t been able to get this track out of my head! The lyrics are heartfelt, the melody is addicting, and every time I hear it…I end up looking crazy (or at least I think I do) belting the chorus at the top of my lungs!
9 – Today by Smashing Pumpkins: Whenever I hear this song, I’m taken right back to 7th grade and that feeling of carefree childhood. I hope that when you hear this song…you are too.
Allow your own sense of music discovery to take over every now and then…you never know what you can find to add to your own playlist!
Tags: 95.9 WRAT, alex clare, alternative, black keys, coldplay, foo fighters, green day, indie rock, jennifer corcione, new music, new rock 101.9, nirvana, rage against the machine, rock, smashing pumpkins, stylewhipped, young the giant
Let’s face it—Mondays are the bane of our existence. Sunday becomes that nagging reminder that our weekend fun is over and the work week is upon us. And even with August rolling on by and Labor Day Weekend slowing approaching, it’s only a matter of time until we reach the end of summer. (Insert extremely sad face here.)
Fortunately, I look forward to Mondays, if nothing more than for the Urban Outfitters website featuring what I have come to know as “Music Mondays”! Every Monday, the trendy clothing/lifestyle site features five (free!) songs from up & coming (even a few legendary) artists.
Without a second thought (or even a first listen), I make the choice to download the five randomly-chosen songs. Sometimes, the best part about finding new tunes is just deciding to impulsively buy/download an artist/band that you’ve never heard before…and give it a chance. (And it makes for great shares on my column!)
While I may be into some artists/bands over others, I’ve decided to feature 24 of my favorite song picks! (And trust me, there’s a little bit for everyone.) If you’re into the American folk scene, why not check out Raleigh, North Carolina for Bowerbirds? Or for a bit of an international feel, check out
Ghanian music legend Ebo Taylor? Maybe if you’re more into the Asian influence, check out Shintaro Sakamoto, the former leader of Japanese psych pop band Yuka Yuka Teikoku? (I haven’t been able to stop playing “In a Phantom Mood” for the past few weeks! Very addicting.) Even for those more into an electronic utopia groove, Vancouver’s Teen Daze would be more your speed.
Whatever your preference may be, there’s always a little something for everyone with Music Mondays! You can check out all Urban Outfitter’s Music Monday playlists (just in case you miss one Monday and/or want to listen to a specific playlist) by clicking here: LSTN. Aside from Music Mondays, also feel free to check out all their fabulous music features! (Their LSTN playlist is quite fun too.)
Jenn’s Music Mondays Playlist
1) A Walk – Tycho
2) Coast to Coast – Twerps
3) Capricornia – Allo Darlin’
4) Gimme A Beer – Diamond Rugs
5) Parted Ways – The Heartless Bastards
6) In The Yard – Bowerbirds
7) Cracking Eggs – My Best Fiend
8) The Look of Lust – Standard Fare
9) Wild Desire – King Tuff
10) Dead Pontoon – Toro Y Moi
11) Goldmine – Colleen Green
12) Exercise #3 (Buildings) – CFCF
13) Brooklyn Sunburn (Lushlife Remix) – Teen Daze
14) Stay Useless – Cloud Nothings
15) Gotta Go – Oberhofer
16) Walkin’ Down My Street – Nude Beach
17) Messin’ Up My Mind – Fletcher C. Johnson
18) Quick! – The Magnetic Fields
19) Yaa Amponsah – Ebo Taylor
20) Millions – Eternal Summers
21) How Long Have You Known – DIVE
22) Pale Moon – Wymond Miles
23) In A Phantom Mood – Shintaro Sakamoto
24) To Be Young – Two Wounded Birds
I hope all of you enjoy the rest of your summer and if there are any fun music discoveries you find, feel free to share them! In musical discoveries (even free ones), the journey is the best part.
Tags: allo darlin', bowerbirds, cfcf, cloud nothings, colleen green, diamond rugs, dive, ebo taylor, eternal summers, fletcher c johnson, heartless bastards, jennifer corcione, king tuff, music, music mondays, my best fiend, new music, nude beach, oberhofer, shintaro sakamoto, standard fare, stylewhipped, teen daze, the magnetic fields, toro y moi, twerps, two-wounded birds, tycho, urban outfitters, wymond miles
Part of being an editor is spotting and cultivating talent. Not just looking at trends or designers...but models, make-up artists, and photographers. So when I met Amy Rottmund and started seeing some of her work (under the moniker "Flashlight Photography by Amy Rottmund"), I suggested we feature some of her shots of vintage fashion here on Stylewhipped. Amy takes broody, sexy, 1940's and '50's inspired pictures...showcasing her love of vintage dresses, "real" women with real bodies, and eye for interesting details. Based in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, Amy specializes in capturing important events like engagements, beautiful moments like a new mother and child, and offers portrait sittings that give off an intimate, womanly vibe.
I had a chance to ask Amy about her craft and get some insight into how she sees the world through a camera. With no formal training but a life-long love of photography, Amy's passion "really grew deeper once I had my children...I was and am constantly photographing them to capture those ever-so-precious moments!" When pushed to tell me what truly inspires her as an artist, Amy interesting said "emotion...nothing brings me more joy than capturing emotion on someone's face when they are unaware that I am taking their picture." Amy's #1 thing to photograph? Not surprisingly, it's people...because for her, "every face, expression, and mood differs from the next." So when I asked her if there is any single person she'd like to have the chance to shoot with, she said no...that she prefers to photograph strangers she comes across in her daily life...the "unique and beautiful faces" that she is just now finding the courage to approach unsolicited!
Below you will find the incredibly gorgeous images Amy took exclusively for Stylewhipped.com. Model Katherine Dearolf (in her own vintage clothing) appears in the first three, shot on location in Belmar, New Jersey. And keep scrolling to see Amy's three unexpected self-portraits (which I think are some of the hardest to pull off for any photographer...), in a vintage-inspired dress from ModCloth.com and shot in her hometown of Lancaster. Live in the central-PA area and want to book time with Amy for your own amazing photo session? You can find more of her work and all contact information on her Facebook page or through her ZenFolio profile!
(click to enlarge photos)
Tags: alison stewart, amy rottmund, fashion blog, fashion expert, flashlight photography by amy rottmund, katherine dearolf, pennsylvania photographers, photographers, photography, stylewhipped.com, vintage fashion
To preface this month’s column, I need to rewind back to approximately a year and a half ago. While I may love music and own an extensive collection of more musicians than you knew existed, I am extremely picky when it comes to my favorites. The criteria is simple: the music must be just as good live as it is on the album, the material be strong quality, and the “full package” engaging me to want to listen to more of it. (Granted, if the musicians are decent looking, that never hurts either!)
So imagine my surprise when after a year and a half of performing, my favorite west-coast indie rock group Bonnie Dune (finally) released their first album, The Lost EP. Even though I have been content with my bootlegs of studio and live versions of the band’s tracks, it’s more than just about the music. It’s about Justin Wilczynski, Seth Roberts, Joshua Kerr and Cory Monteith (yes, the Glee guy) delivering songs that feel like pages from my own diary transformed into an album.
True, there are only eight tracks and most of them have been heard several times over through fans clamoring for every bit of the guys they can get their hands on, yet it works. (Well, that and I can’t get enough of those songs I have played hundreds of times over!) The tracks intimate precise selection and perfection in simple melodies, passion ever-present in the soothing timbre of Wilczynski’s vocals. The album tells a story we’re all familiar with: love, loss, friendship and the journey of self-discovery. (In fact, The Lost EP hits so close to home that my first tattoo may be lyrics from “Sailboat”, a tale of growing up and holding on to those things we love.)
Aside from the album, I was fortunate to see the band perform in Hershey, PA last year (and snag a super-cool VIP wristband to meet the guys), an experience I will always cherish. Also featuring Jacob Wick (The Honey Trees) on keyboard, the live show was not only amazing; it was full of love for the screaming throng of fans and glimpses into the friendship between talented (and sweet) musicians. Even after a rigorous ½ hour set, each VIP recipient was greeted with a smile and a “thank you for coming” (at the very least.) Some fans shared gifts, pictures, stories, even a joke or two with the guys. (Josh and Cory, I’m still waiting on a karaoke night!)
To snag a copy of The Lost EP (or share it with all of your friends), you can find it on iTunes here: The Lost EP. Although I love every single track, I encourage you to not only listen to “Sailboat”, but also feel free to check out “Better View” and “Quiet Confidence.” Maybe you’ll find what once was 'lost' too.
P.S. – Minus the full band photo, the rest of the pictures featured are from my experience at Hershey Park…enjoy!