Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Prepare To Trend

Spring! The first day of September brought the return of summer time on our watches and clocks, my one year wedding anniversary and a brand new fashion season - all wonderful reasons for joyous celebration. There’s nothing better than that ‘newness’ feeling in the air. And of course with the new season comes New York Fashion Week, new runway trends and, the piece de resistance of glossy fashion magazines- THE SEPTEMBER ISSUE. 

As temperatures begin to rise more flesh goes on display - an unsettling thought for winter fitness slackers and pale un-tanned bodies. But not to worry, your friendly fashion advisor at The Style Element is to the rescue. This week I give you my three favourite Spring/Summer trends, and accompanying fitness tips to help you look good enough to rock them.  (You’re welcome)

Vintage-Inspired Swimwear

There’s a scene in 1956′s High Society where Grace Kelly kneels poolside and pushes a model boat, the True Love, across the still water. She’s wearing a white halter neck swimsuit that ends in a small, ruffled skirt; her chin-length hair is neatly curled, her feet are bare. Never has a swimsuit looked so elegant.

Of course it’s the bombshells - the pin-ups, of the same era we’re more inclined to think of when it comes to 1950s swimsuits, in particular – Marilyn Monroe. The 50s was the highlight of her playful, curvaceous, steeped in sex appeal persona.

These two women underline the fact that vintage-style swimwear has a place amongst 2013 swimwear trends.  The modern twist is a subtle infusion of vintage cuts and prints – and can be as bombshell as Monroe or as sophisticated as Kelly. This season it’s all about high waisted bikini bottoms as a way to inject a slight vintage feel into otherwise modern swimwear.

How to prepare: Tony Greco (also known as the Bikini Whisperer) created the Ultimate Best Bikini Workout for Glamour Magazine, that will help tone up abs, thighs, and butt—the areas on full display in your average two-piece.

Bodycon Dress

Bodycon dresses first came to prominence in the nineties, rising in popularity for the sleek lines they created on the female figure. The term refers to, and is an abbreviation of, body conscious - as this is definitely a dress worn to highlight the body.

A bodycon dress is essentially a tight fitting, figure hugging dress, made from elasticized material or composite material such as spandex or lycra. They tend to be short in length, usually falling to about mid-thigh level, with the occasional longer styles.

Due to its tightness, this style of dress certainly isn't flattering for all figures. Ideally this dress works best on a woman with an hourglass shape. Women with an athletic build, or small hips and bust will find that the bodycon does nothing for them. Similarly a pear shape figure, that is hips that are much larger than the bust, will want to steer clear of this dress. Remember, the bodycon will only highlight your ‘problem’ areas and will fail to capitalise on your other natural assets.

How to prepare: Follow the ‘Eat to Lose Pounds’ eating plan created by Women’s Health to lose weight fast and safely within seven days.

Bermuda Shorts

The slouchy, cool-girl shorts that were all over the New York runways this season are perfect for every girl who never felt like she could pull off those cheek-baring cutoffs so beloved on Instagram (i.e. most of us). Done properly, they’re ultra chic, fam-friendly, and flattering on anyone.

If the idea of short shorts fills you with dread, but you still want to partake in summer's favoured pant, seek comfort in the Bermuda. While in the past you might have been reluctant to wear these knee-length shorts, this season's rendition is anything but frumpy. Imitate the spring runway and style with feminine or edgy accents. While solid colors, preferably in darker tones, work best for the office, playful prints and denim-styled shorts are great options for more casual settings. As for the most flattering pairs, look for a slim-cut design that tapers down your leg that you can pair with feminine tops like a peplum and high heels. 

How to prepare: Get lean legs by starting this workout, created by Marcela Ceselka, a personal trainer at Club H Fitness in New York City, targets every inch of your lower body—glutes, quads, hamstrings, hips, inner thighs, and calves.

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Interview With The Glorious Gloria Kavetu

Clicking through fashion channels recently, I thought about how brilliant it would be to interview a professional model; someone who has graced runways and fitted designer clothes. It then dawned on me that Namibia has produced two winners of the prestigious Face of Africa model search. My arbitrary musings led me to a Facebook search, which eventually landed me an interview with the first ever Miss Face of Namibia.

Gloria Kavetu, the girl with the golden smile and golden heart, happily agreed to answer my fashion questions. Born in Okahandja, Gloria started modeling and taking part in beauty pageants at the tender age of 8. And because she grew up in a small town she had to learn about the fashion industry the hard way - by watching fashion TV and by practicing.

I think her efforts paid off. Read what she had to say about fashion, style and the essence of beauty.

Were you always a well dressed girl, or was there a time in your life when you can honestly say you had no fashion sense?

I started modeling at a very young age so dressing up and looking good has always been a part of who I am.  But I do agree I have my moments when I’m averagely dressed in a pair of jeans and a tank top. After all it’s not what you wear; it’s how you wear it. I shop in any shop, doesn't matter where. The trick is all about how I put it together.

You looked amazing at that NAMAS, what inspired your dress design?

I contacted Nikola Conradie, one of the best designers in Namibia. I told her I wanted something elegant yet sexy for the Namibian Music Awards, and she put everything together. That’s why I love her, she never disappoints!

I couldn't agree with you more, Nikola is fabulous. In fact I saw you model her designs at the 99FM and Jamsson Fashion Show. Where, would you say you get your fashion ideas and tips from?

I love beautiful things, whether its clothing items or interior decor. So, I’m constantly browsing the internet and magazines for the latest fashion trends.

I hope you consider reading my blog more often. Gloria, There is probably a lot of pressure on the Face of Namibia to look good at all times, how do you handle that?

Yes people expect me to look good all the time, but I don't dress to impress people. I dress because I love looking good.

So how would you describe your style?

“Simple with a touch of elegance”

What is the one item of clothing that you can wear every day?

A pair of jeans suits any occasion.

Who then, is your celebrity fashion icon?

Blake Lively.

I love Blake Lively’s style! She really knows how to put an outfit together. In your opinion, what was your best dressed moment? 

The NAMAS was my best dress moment; maybe it’s because the dress was made specifically for me.

And your worst?

I wouldn't say I had one…or maybe I’m just not aware of it. (She laughs)

Finally Gloria, Face of Namibia is a pageant that was designed to celebrate the beauty of Namibian women. As the name implies the pageant aims to incorporate aspects of tradition, culture and the growing acceptance of beauty. What do you think the essence of style and beauty is?

I think the essence of style and beauty is the person you really are. Your style makes people aware of who you are - whether you have good taste depends on how you put it together, to get that final product. I believe beauty is who you are on the inside; it’s your personality that makes you beautiful.

Gloria was crowned Face of Namibia in September 2011 and has clearly used her former title to grow and positively influence the beauty industry in Namibia. Not only has she modeled for top local designers, but in 2012 she launched a Dental Health Campaign at SOS Children Village.  She is truly a special woman, and it was a pleasure to do an interview with her. 

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