Ruben Toledo


Before I even knew who he was, I was obsessed with the artwork of Ruben Toledo. The obsession began with the arrival of the Nordstrom catalog to my house, for which Mr.Toledo would do the cover art and drawings inside. I would thumb through the catalog twice: once to look at the clothing, a second to look at Mr.Toledo's sketches. When I would go to the doctors with my parents, I would look through fashion magazines such as InStyle, looking solely for a Ruben Toledo illustration wether in an advert or to accompany an article:
I always enjoyed looking at the sketches of these glamorous creatures. These women were who I aspired to be. I was going to be one of the well dressed, uber fabulous women in the Toledo sketches.

(True story: As a child, I lived vicariously through my Barbies, and was obsessed with the Fashion Avenue collections , because they looked most like the clothing in the Toledo sketches.)

To this day, any time I get a catalog or mailer from Nordies,  I save them. And besides being on my to read list, one of the reasons I bought all of the Nina Garcia books in the Borders sale was because Ruben Toledo did all the illustrations for the books. They are simply amazing.

Hilary Duff


Hilary Duff is one of the few celebrities I get actual outfit inspiration from. I love that her outfits are simple, yet sophisticated, and she maximizes by accessorizing, especially with one of my favorite accessories: scarves! Here are a few of my favorite looks from Hilary:

Beef Patties


Last week was spring break aka no better time to get in the kitchen and try some new recipes.

I am not one whose very much into fast food. My only exceptions are Chipotle and Five Guys every now and then.While convenient, especially on long days at school, not knowing the ingredients in things freaks me the hell out. (And after checking out the Board of Health grading of restaurants near my school, it may be awhile till that happens again.)

The other day, my dad was thinking of buying some beef patties for lunch. But after checking the estimate amount of calories, I politely declined, and offered instead to make some. He was on his way to butcher anyway, so it worked out perfectly. My fear of fast food and insane calorie amounts is how I usually end up getting ideas for trying out new recipes.

Here is the recipe I used. I made a few tweaks and used all beef for the filling without breadcrumbs (no fillers here!) and margarine. The thing about the patties is that they are easily adaptable. The dough is basic, and the meat can be made with whatever seasonings you like. Don't eat meat? Use chicken, soy chorizo, or veggies! Whatever you use, homemade patties only come out one way and that's delicious.

Help for Japan


This isn't a post to get super preachy or be arrogant and shove donating down any ones throat. Donating is a personal choice and I just wanted to post ways to help, for those that want to:

Text "JAPAN" to 80888 to donate $10 to the Salvation Army or donate online at

TEXT “Redcross” to 90999 to donate $10 to the Salvation Army or donate online at
* Oxfam America -

* World Vision -

* Catholic Relief Services -

**All organizations are approved by the Better Business Bureau. There are many organizations out there that one can donate to besides the ones listed. Make sure that whoever you donate money to, supplies etc. to, that they are registered under the BBB to prevent fraud.

And never underestimate the power of prayer/positive thoughts/well wishes.. Its effects can be immense.

Easy Ravioli


Before I went back to school in January, I was watching Oprah's network OWN, (which I absolutely LOVE!) and Anna and Kristina's Grocery Bag came on. To be quite honest, food shows always catch my attention, but more so when they mention a shortcut to a typically time consuming dish. The episode I saw, they were cooking for this chef and used one of Giada's recipes for ravioli made with egg roll wrappers. There's always left over egg roll wrappers from when my dad makes them, and they usually get stale since we never know what to do with them after. So you can understand why I couldn't get over how GENIUS of an idea this was! 

Here is the recipe from Giada. I opted for a three cheese filling instead of the spinach and mushroom, consisting of ricotta, mozzarella and parmesan cheese with a dash of Italian seasoning. The raviolis were not just easy to make, but very quick. Prepping the filling, sealing the raviolis, and boiling the raviolis, took less than half an hour. Perfect for a quick lunch or dinner.

I decided last minute to take some pics using my (now defunct) Blackberry, hence the photo quality. Regardless, I suggest everyone try it!

Mmm good. Trader Joe's Pomodoro sauce with a little extra mozzarella on top. Absolutely delicious.

Curvy models take the runway during London Fashion Week


[Disclaimer: I know nothing ruffles feathers quite like the "great weight debate" especially when it pertains to the fashion industry/media. This post in no way it to be biased, or to stir up controversy, "Team Plus Size, Anti-Straight size". My stance on this matter comes from the fact that so many designers look at a woman who is curvy/plus size as disgusting, with no place in fashion or the industry as a whole, a viewpoint which is so far from true, that needs to be reevaluated. With that being said, read on :) ]

Instead of talking the talk, of "we embrace a woman with a more realistic figure, and wish we could cast them for our shows", two designers actually walked the walked, and cast plus size models for their shows during London Fashion Week.
Issa has become a household name as of late, after soon to be princess Kate Middleton wore an Issa dress for the announcement of the Royal engagement. For the last ten years, Issa has become known for bold prints, sexy and sophisticated clothing, made by a woman, for a real women. Since Issa is one of my absolute favorite London based designers, I was absolutely delighted and thrilled when I saw Yasmin Le Bon modeling for her. As the Brazilian designer Daniella Helaley states the collection is "designed for real women, like her and their curves." 

Mark Fast
When Mark Fast used plus size models for the first time a few seasons ago, people thought it was a publicity stunt, and even his stylist quit in protest. He stated then: "A lot of people think it's not appropriate to use plus-size models, but I met these girls and I loved their charisma. They're just jewels, you know?" 

Two years later, he is continuing to use a mix of straight sized as well as plus size models casting Lara Cantarell and Gwyneth Harrisson for his latest show. This time around, his managing director states on his behalf:
"We wanted women to know they don't have to be a size zero to wear a Mark Fast dress- curvier women can look even better in one."

To these designers, I say thank you. Thank you, for not being afraid to go against the grain, and for showing the world and the industry, that there is in fact other standards of beauty, that are just that... beautiful. I know, even as time progresses and the demand becomes stronger for more realistic body types to be represented, that many designers will not follow suit (Douglas Hannant made that very clear during NYFW). But for right now, this is more than enough.

images via